Read Exodus 23 -- 25
In Today's Reading:
The reader may be surprised to find that all laws that are beneficial to "mankind" were drawn from the laws God gave on Mt. Sinai. Read carefully the details of three very important feasts and the pattern of the Tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant -- all symbolic of Christ and His relationship with believers today. Again, he gloriously provides for the protection, care, and guidance of His people by sending an Angel (23:20).
Verse for Today:
He said to Moses, Come up to the Lord, you, and Aaron, Nadab, and Abihu, and seventy of the elders of Israel; and worship afar off (Exodus 24:1).
Laws instituted; three feasts (celebrations in the Lord's honor) which must be kept; Instructions for Tabernacle furnishings.
These men were summoned into the very presence of God. Because God is Holy and man is defiled by sin, they had to worship Him from a distance. To do otherwise would have meant instant death.
Notice what made it possible for them to be able to eat and drink in the presence of God. Moses wrote all the words of the Lord . . . and built an altar. . . . he offered burnt offerings, and sacrificed peace offerings of oxen to the Lord. . . . And he took the Book of the Covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that the Lord has said we will do, and be obedient. (It was only then that) Moses took the blood, and sprinkled it on the people (Exodus 24:4-8). Following this Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and 70 leaders of Israel went up the mountain and feasted in the presence of the One True Creator God (24:8-10).
These events foreshadow the blood of Christ as the perfect substitutionary sacrifice. Each of us has the privilege of being in His presence through prayer and hearing Him speak as we read His Word. This was made possible by Jesus, Who once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that He might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened (made alive) by the Spirit (1 Peter 3:18).
A Thought from Proverbs: But whosoever commits adultery with a woman lacks understanding: he that does it destroys his own soul. A wound and dishonor shall he get; and his reproach shall not be wiped away (6:32-33).
As the Ark of the Testimony (Covenant). The wood demonstrates His Humanity; the gold overlay His Deity; only through His blood sprinkled on it could one receive forgiveness; God dwelt above the Mercy Seat (Exodus 25:10-22). Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by His own blood He entered in once into the Holy Place (Holy of Holies), having obtained eternal redemption for us (Hebrews 9:12).
23:2 decline after many = yield to the evil majority; wrest = pervert; 23:3 Neither . . . countenance = Not to be partial to; 23:8 gift = bribe; 23:13 be circumspect = take heed, be cautious; 23:19 seethe = to cook food by boiling; 23:24 quite = completely; 23:31 sea of the Philistines = Mediterranean Sea; 25:9 instruments = furniture; 25:10 cubit = about 18 inches; 25:11 crown = rim; 25:37 over against it = on the opposite wall.
Government Officials: Sen. Conrad Burns (MT) and Rep. William Pascrell (NJ) · Pray for one another · Country: Poland (39 million) in eastern Europe · Major language: Polish · Religious freedom · 87% Roman Catholic; 1% Eastern Orthodox; .5% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Seek the Lord in times of trouble; He will shelter you (Psalms 27:5).
Optional Reading: Matthew 25
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:5