Summary: Why does God ask for specific items for worship?
God chose a people through Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. God changed Jacob’s name to Israel and so Jacob’s sons became the 12 Tribes of Israel. God brought the Israelites to Egypt but their sins made them slaves to Egypt. But because God made a promise to His Chosen People, God miraculously freed the Israelites from their slavery and took them to the desert to prepare their lives with God in the Promised Land. This preparation is what we read in the Book of Exodus. Open your Bibles to Exodus 25…..
Read along with me, actually starting with v18 of Exodus 24…….
Let us again note that God called Moses to be the Primary Priest for Israel. Moses spent 40 days and 40 nights with God in the mountain getting detailed instructions for the people’s relationship with God.
v1-7: offerings of various materials were to be given to God from anyone with a right heart for God! Offerings were desired by God but not forced! Offerings were to be done with right hearts!
v8-9: God specified a special place be built where He can meet with the people
v10-21: God specified in detail an ark to contain the “testimony” (the 10 Commandments in stone); these were the 2 stone tablets God was going to give Moses.
v22: God promised to be present above the Ark
v23-30: a special table was to be made for the “Bread of the Presence” (known as showbread)
There must always be “showbread” at that Table! Isn’t it interesting that Jesus said He is the Bread of Life! I believe this is one of the significance of the items God called for from the Hebrews of old.
v31-38: Gold lampstands were to be made with intricate details!
v39: God specified the worth of the gold used (i.e. they were not cheaply made)!
v40: All must be done according to God’s Specifications and Moses was responsible!
You probably realize that there’s a purpose and a reason for each of the items listed here in Exodus 25. I encourage you to study during the week the significance of each of the items requested by God. For us this morning, let us note the major applications to our lives from this passage.
Let us note again that God was preparing His people for life with Him in the Promised Land and so He gave specific instructions. Again in the same way, God speaks to Christians today through His Word because Christians are headed towards the eternal Promised Land of heaven! God gives specific instructions because He desires His people to live with Him!! What would you say life would be like if God was directly, actively, and physically present all the time in our lives??
God’s desire is for people to live with Him, in perfection, and heavenlike! And, as we noted in Exodus 25…. Life with God includes material beauty, right hearts, and worship!
Now, God certainly asks for very expensive things for worship! Does God have a right to ask for all those expensive things?
What was the very first worship offerings noted in the Bible??
The first worship offerings to God was with Cain and Abel and where did their offerings basically came from??
In the same way, God called for expensive items like gold from the Hebrews of old, which He actually provides for them!
God provides what He asks for in worship! God will not ask for what we don’t have!
Therefore, as we read in Exodus 25:1, God only accepts offerings with a right heart! The first thing is to always have a right heart! Life with God includes material beauty, right hearts, and worship!
Now, why should we worship God??
Life with God includes worship of God and we worship God because He has given us everything! We would not exist without God. We worship God because we owe Him everything; but God does not force anyone to worship. But listen to this, we noted that God does not ask for something we don’t have; If are to worship with a right heart, how can we have a right heart??
Hebrews 3:12 tells us this, See to it, brothers and sisters, that none of you has a sinful, unbelieving heart that turns away from the living God. And so, a right heart is one who believes and turn to the Living God; in context of Hebrews 3, the Living God is Jesus Christ. God gave Jesus Christ so that whoever believes in Him will be righteous in God’s sight.
We can worship God with a right heart only if we have accepted God’s gift of righteousness through belief in Jesus Christ as Savior and God!
And so, no one has an excuse not to live with God in beauty, with right hearts, and worship because God desires it and has given everything to make it possible! People will not live with God in eternity and will be judged because they chose not to accept what God has given! Sadly, many people refuse (they choose not) to go to heaven. But more sadly, many Christians today are poor testimonies of God’s gift.