Exodus 40:4 We Must Come to God His Way

Exodus 40:4 (KJV)
And thou shalt bring in the table, and set in order the things that are to be set in order upon it; and thou shalt bring in the candlestick, and light the lamps thereof.

God is a God of order.

We live in such a casual world today. People want freedom:

  • Freedom from work
  • Freedom from expectation
  • Freedom from social pressures
  • Freedom from morality
  • Freedom from cultural acceptance

In short, they want freedom from God. They want God to accept them as are. They want the idea of God to go away. They want to be a god unto themselves.

Truth is, it just isn’t the way it is. God is. To the clearheaded mind, every evidence demonstrates that. And God is a God of order and design.

We, who would come to God, must come according to His design.

 

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Exodus 40:4 We Must Come to God His Way

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Exodus 36:5-7 Enough and Too Much

Exodus 36:5-7 (KJV)
And they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the LORD commanded to make.
And Moses gave commandment, and they caused it to be proclaimed throughout the camp, saying, Let neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. So the people were restrained from bringing.
For the stuff they had was sufficient for all the work to make it, and too much.

Once the people had seen Moses’s countenance, having met with God, and heard his vision for the tabernacle, they were only too willing to be involved. They gave and they worked. Soon enough these people, far from a perfect crowd by the way, had given:

  • More than enough,
  • Sufficient and
  • Too much

This passage is often used to motivate Christian giving; “If only everyone would do what they can, God’s work could have more than enough now too.” The implication is that the reason pastors, or other spiritual leaders, cannot tell the people to stop giving is because they haven’t all done what they could.

Perhaps there is another reason.

In the case of the tabernacle, Moses had specific instructions what he was building. His was not a five, ten and twenty year plan[1]. He was to build the tabernacle and the furniture to go inside it. That was it. They knew when they had more than enough because they had a fixed project in view.

Perhaps the reason some ministries never seem to have enough is because they have no finished product in view. They dream of bigger, better and more. Having such dreams, they are never content to tell their congregations that they have given enough.

I am of the opinion that if the congregation will tithe faithfully, the preacher ought to accept that as enough.

[1] The Tabernacle was used, as it was originally built, for hundreds of years.

 

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Exodus 36:5-7 Enough and Too Much

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Exodus 35:5 The Farmer’s Faith

Exodus 35:5 (KJV)
Take ye from among you an offering unto the LORD: whosoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it, an offering of the LORD; gold, and silver, and brass,

I once knew a man who had pastored a church in a Midwestern farming community. This man was a believer in the black and white nature of the Bible. If the Bible says it, we are to obey it without question or hesitation.  I agree by the way.

In this man’s case, his trouble came during harvest season. The Bible taught the Jews that they were to take the Sabbath off, even during harvest. This preacher just could not abide a farmer who would harvest on Sundays. He had church members, even leading ones, who harvested seven days a week for the two or three weeks it takes to get crops in. Either the farmer was going to get right or the preacher was going to be gone. The preacher left, never, to my knowledge, to pastor again.

How is it possible to reconcile the inerrant and black and white nature of God’s Word with patiently ministering to those we see as disobeying the Bible?

Of course there are some things that we would have to stand upon and take whatever are the consequences of our stand. But in many cases we can reconcile the two by looking for the willing heart. Ours is not to force our faith on others but to teach and preach the Bible to them. As they become more exposed to the Word of God, it will have the effect of changing their hearts

  • I can’t force a farmer to forsake his fields on Sundays but
  • I can teach Him God’s Word and pray he comes to trust God for the harvest while he worships God on Sunday[1]

[1] This principle may be applied to any number of other circumstances.

 

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Exodus 35:5 The Farmer’s Faith

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Exodus 33:7 Those Who Sought The LORD

Exodus 33:7 (KJV)
And Moses took the tabernacle, and pitched it without the camp, afar off from the camp, and called it the Tabernacle of the congregation. And it came to pass, that every one which sought the LORD went out unto the tabernacle of the congregation, which was without the camp.

Once the tabernacle was constructed the Bible says, “that every one which sought the Lord went out” to it.

Obviously there were some who did not seek the Lord. Surely there were some who still sought after the gods they had connived Aaron into making, some who sought the gods of Egypt, some who pretended to seek God but they did it in their own way.

God gets to decide how we properly seek and worship Him. He has determined we do it in the place He ordained and the fashion He organized.

That, today, is a local, New Testament Baptist[1] Church.

[1] I am historically, doctrinally and Scripturally convinced that there is no other New Testament church.

 

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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 33:7 Those Who Sought The LORD

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Exodus 31:2-5 Just Giving Thanks Today

Exodus 31:2-5 (KJV)
See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah:
And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,
To devise cunning works, to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass,
And in cutting of stones, to set them, and in carving of timber, to work in all manner of workmanship.

One of the members of our church is keenly aware that it was the Lord who gave to him the skills he possesses. He makes mention of it frequently and gives thanks for it often. In his case, those skills are remarkably similar to those of Bezaleel.

I want merely to give thanks today for that man and for each of those who labor hard using skills God has gifted to them and who faithfully provide for their families and generously give to God’s house.

 

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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 31:2-5 Just Giving Thanks Today

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Exodus 30:15 The Rich and The Poor

Exodus 30:15 (KJV)
The rich shall not give more, and the poor shall not give less than half a shekel, when they give an offering unto the LORD, to make an atonement for your souls.

In our day we believe that the rich owe it to the poor to do more than their fair share. We also tend to believe that the poor deserve to be cared for, if not by the wealthy, then at least through the state treasury.

These ideas have developed through centuries of experiences where the wealthy became more so as the impoverished starved. (During, for instance, the potato famine[1]) the royal and the wealthy developed a culture of obligatory benevolence. It isn’t that they think well of the less fortunate but that they think it an obligation of their status to reach out in some perfunctory way.

The Bible teaches no such thing. God is no respecter of persons. The Bible teaches two concepts concerning the responsibilities of the rich and poor:

Give in proportion to what you receive
The rich are not expected to give more than the poor. Each gives according to their income.

Each is equal in the eyes of God
God does not view the wealthy as any greater than the poor. Every soul is of equal worth. Each has the same access to God.

On top of these two principles is the grace of giving – giving beyond one’s means simply out of devotion.

The wealthy owe the poor nothing but to treat them with respect and to deal with them fairly. The poor deserve nothing but the same opportunities to work and earn as others.

[1] See, for instance, www.missedinhistory.com/blogs/missed-in-history-irish-potato-famine-part-1.htm

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 30:15 The Rich and The Poor

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Exodus 25:17 An Appropriate Picture of Jesus

Exodus 25:17 (KJV)
And thou shalt make a mercy seat of pure gold: two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof.

I was struck with the term mercy seat. It is here called “a mercy seat” as if it was something that Moses would have been already familiar with. Not “the mercy seat” but “a mercy seat.”

The phrase means something like “a propitiatory covering.” Think satisfying. The law, the authority, the experiences both good and bad are all covered by something magnificent and beautiful.

It is a seat. That implies rest. Being satisfied, God’s judgment rests. He is no longer in a position to strike out against enemies but in a seated position to hear from His friends.

The mercy seat is an appropriate picture of Jesus.

  • He satisfied God’s righteousness
  • He covered man’s wickedness and
  • He invites us into God’s presence

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 25:17 An Appropriate Picture of Jesus

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Exodus 23:32-33 The DownFall of This Generation’s Believers

Exodus 23:32-33 (KJV)
Thou shalt make no covenant with them, nor with their gods.
They shall not dwell in thy land, lest they make thee sin against me: for if thou serve their gods, it will surely be a snare unto thee.

God makes a promise in this passage we ought to pay close attention to. The promise is that if we compromise with the worldview of the lost, it will be a snare to us.

  • It’s not a threat
  • It’s not a danger
  • It’s not even a real potential

It is a promise. If we entertain the ideas of the unsaved, spiritual or otherwise, it will trap us. We will sin against God (or else the compromise itself is the sin) and do us in.

The downfall of this generation of believers has been our friendship with the world.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 23:32-33 The DownFall of This Generation’s Believers

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Exodus 18:23 Just Counsel

Exodus 18:23 (KJV)
If thou shalt do this thing, and God command thee so, then thou shalt be able to endure, and all this people shall also go to their place in peace.

I have generally read this verse to mean that Jethro “ordered” Moses to obey his counsel with those words, “…and God command thee so.”

It is more likely that Jethro gave the counsel and then left it to Moses to discern God’s command one way or the other. Moses’s following of this counsel is not an indication of Jethro’s influence over Moses but of the wisdom of Jethro’s counsel. Moses followed the counsel because he had confirmed it with the Lord.

For any adult counsel is just – counsel. It might be wise counsel and counsel which we ought to follow but in the end, it is our responsibility to take all counsel to God for confirmation or denial.

  • If God’s Word is opposed we should reject the counsel no matter who it might offend.
  • If God’s Word confirms it we ought to accept and follow it no matter who it is that provided it.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 18:23 Just Counsel

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Exodus 15:2 God Gave A Song

Exodus 15:2 (KJV)
The LORD is my strength and song, and he is become my salvation: he is my God, and I will prepare him an habitation; my father’s God, and I will exalt him.

Surveying the defeat of the Egyptians at the Red Sea and reflecting upon how it was accomplished, Moses and the people burst into singing (I imagine that Moses composed the song under inspiration of the Holy Spirit and then taught it to the people. The power of music is how quickly we can learn it). The opening statement gives a threefold alliteration. God was their:

  • Strength
  • Song and had become their
  • Salvation

The salvation referenced is not from sin.[1] This is deliverance from a trial. Salvation, in reference to sin, is more accurately represented in the Passover.

Saved people find strength in God. He steels our emotions. He encourages us in hardship. His Word gives hope in our darkness. We are weak but He is strong. When we have God’s strength we find it easier to sing. Though there are always hurdles to overcome our faith finds reasons to rejoice.

And as we walk our path in this life, strengthened by His might and rejoicing with the song He puts in our hearts, we invariably witness again and again how He defeats our enemies.

[1] Though 1 Corinthians 10 draws a very tight correlation.

 

To my readers:
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For this and more than 3900 earlier Daily Visits with God visit http://bit.ly/18XDiAs. There you will find daily visits going back to 2006.

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Exodus 15:2 God Gave A Song

Please consider helping our church’s teen department by signing up for cash back shopping at Bible Baptist Church Fundraiser. This program has three levels of participation, the first being completely free.