This week's reading gets into the instructions for the furnishings in the tabernacle and also the High Priests garments. The first thing that struck me in our reading this week was the light for the tabernacle. The fuel for the lamps was made of pure oil of pressed olives which burned with little smoke. The purity of the oil is indicative of the standard God demanded of all the sacrifices offered to Him. The lamp was never to go out, but burn continually.
Now as we are His tabernacle, we need to keep our lights burning continually so that we can shine in the darkness of this world. If ever the world needs our light to shine brightly, it's now!
The second thing that struck me and blessed me out of my socks was reading about the priestly garments. A vest was made of fine linen with brilliant colors. It's two main sections covered the chest and back, with seams at the shoulders, and a band at the waist.
The shoulders were emblazoned with beautiful memorial stones. Two onyx stones were engraved with the names of the tribes of Israel, and were set in gold. they symbolized the intercessory work of the priest.
He was to represent the people before the Lord. The names of the tribes of Israel were literally written on his shoulders,so that the priest would bear their names before the Lord on his two shoulders as a memorial.
Four rows of precious and semiprecious stones were fastened to the breastplate. These twelve stones bore the names of the twelve tribes of Israel. This was another symbol of the priests representation of the people before the Lord.
Over his heart was a touching phrase that reminded the priest of his solemn responsibility. He represented the nation before the living God!
Let's bring it to the 21st century. Today God says in Isaiah 49:16 "See,I have engraved you on the palms on my hands!" Wow, that's a lot more personal than a tribe being worn over a priest's heart. Your name is on His hand. Can it get more personal than that?
Once again, God let's us know how much He personally loves us. How His heart is empty, until you're there. I'm glad He pursues us relentlessly until we choose Him.
Thank you Father!