April 5, 2008
THE ESSENTIAL INGREDIENT
by Charles R. Swindoll
Read Exodus 11:1--10
The main point, the central ingredient of Exodus 11 and 12, is obedience. God spoke, some people heard and did what God said. As a result, God used them in His plan at that time in history.
God knew in advance what use that silver and gold would be put to when the new nation arrived at Mount Sinai out in the desert. God already had something in mind that no one had ever dreamed of yet---the Tabernacle, the Tent of Meeting where the Israelites would meet in close proximity with the awesome holy God who had delivered them.
At this point, God didn't tell them why they would need those precious metals. He just said, "Ask for them," and they did. It's called obedience.
Isn't that encouraging? Earlier, we read about Moses' bad day. The ex-shepherd was under the gun, snarled at by the king and thoroughly hated by the Hebrew leadership. But now we read that he was "greatly esteemed" in Egypt by the Egyptians. From the court of Pharaoh on down to the man on the street, people were saying, "Now there's a great man."
Do you know why that was true? Because Moses stood all alone and trusted God (he obeyed), and the Lord gave him favor in their eyes. The Lord delights to do that. Remember Proverbs 16:7? "When a man's ways are pleasing to the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him." We see that borne out yet again in this amazing development.
That may be the very word you need from the Lord today. Perhaps in your work you have come to an impasse; there's an issue of integrity at stake, and you've determined not to compromise. Because of your stand for Christ, you find that you are resented. I want to assure you that if you handle your situation wisely and tactfully, God will see to it that in the eyes of those who are now your enemies, you will one day be esteemed. They will respect your stand because you are standing alone, doing what is right.
Reprinted by permission. Day by Day, Charles Swindoll, July 2005, Thomas Nelson, inc., Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Purchase "Day by Day" here.