In last week’s bible class, someone made a comment using the children of Israel and the building of the tabernacle under the old law. The importance of this place is clearly seen in Exodus 25:8, as the Lord says to Moses, “And let them make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them.” God yearned to be close to His people again, and so, He commands for His dwelling place to be built.
And I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, in understanding, in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship…
God had informed Moses that he had called Bezalel, along with Aholiab as well as “all the gifted artisans” (Exodus 31:6) to get busy building His dwelling place. Sadly, before Moses returned to let Israel know God’s will about this tabernacle, they rebelled and punishment came upon them. Soon, though, the work on the tabernacle would begin, so Moses brings all of God’s people together to begin the project. In Exodus 35:5 we read, “Whoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it as an offering to the Lord: gold, silver, and bronze” and the list goes on. Those who were “gifted artisans” were to “come and make all that the Lord has commanded” (Exodus 35:10). We read in Exodus 35:21, “Then everyone came, whose heart was stirred, and everyone whose spirit was willing, and they brought the Lord’s offering for the work of the tabernacle of meeting, for all its service, and for the holy garments.” Both men and women came, bringing personal possessions (Exodus 35:22) to accomplish the goal. They, meaning those whose hearts were stirred and spirit was willing, actually gave “too much” (Exodus 36:7). “Then all the gifted artisans” (Exodus 36:8) got busy building the tabernacle. The verse that sounds so encouraging is this one, “According to all that the Lord had commanded Moses, so the children of Israel did all the work” (Exodus 39:42)
Now therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God . . . in whom you also are being built together for a dwelling place of God in the Spirit.
Ephesians 2:19, 22
Like the tabernacle of old, we, the body of Christ, the church, is a place in which God seeks to dwell. Paul would speak of the church as “having been built” while at the same time saying that “the whole building, being fitted together, grows into a holy temple in the Lord” (Ephesians 2:21). That means, we are still under construction, even though the chief resident has already taken up occupancy. Like the tabernacle of old, we have been given the commands. All that is needed are the same things needed to complete the tabernacle of old: gifted people, whose hearts are stirred and spirit is willing and the generosity to give all we can. Couple those qualities with our sovereign God and the job is all but finished. What is your heart telling you?