Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The "Jacob the Jeweler" of Israel

Then the LORD said to Moses, "See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, ability and knowledge in all kinds of crafts- to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of craftsmanship. – Exodus 31: 1-5

I used to think that all of these chapters at the end of Exodus and through Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy were meant to be skipped. They seemed to be nothing more than exceedingly boring wastes of time.

But not anymore.

These verses above are interesting. For the last several chapters of Exodus God has been telling Moses how to construct the temporary holy place that God’s presence on earth will inhabit as He goes with Israel on their journey to the Promised Land.

It’s the fanciest tent ever.

When I was reading through all of the instructions (bronze this, gold that, pillar here, curtain there) I often wondered where they were going to get the stuff necessary to build this thing.

Ok so before they left Egypt they pillaged the folk of their jewelry.

Gold and Bronze... Check.

Wood… I guess they can cut trees along the way. Check.

Fancy fabrics… Maybe that was mentioned (someone step in and correct me please), but it’s not too far fetched to believe that when the Israelites asked for the jewelry they also got the fancy garb as well.

But… umm cherubs made of bronze, fancy gold plated beams? Did they bring a jeweler with them?

Well it seems like Bezalel was the “Jacob the Jeweler meets Martha Stewart” of Israel according to God. We don’t learn much about him but I imagine that he must have been a metal worker/craftsman/jack of all trades of some sort back in Egypt. And now those skills are going to be used for God.

Maybe that’s the same for us right now. We may not like our jobs now. I’m sure Bezalel wasn’t so keen on his job in Egypt. Or we may love our jobs but end up not liking them a couple years from now.

But the work that we do now is preparing us for our purpose even though that is hard to see at times.

So stay strong and keep taking steps forward.

I’m willing to bet that as long as we continue to walk in faith and do ALL that we can to take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves; everything that doesn’t make sense now will make sense at some point in the future.

Today’s Reading: Exodus 31-33: Matthew 22: 1-22

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