Speak unto the children of Israel, that they may bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering. — Exodus 25:2
I have a pair of gloves that look pretty pathetic. There is a rip in one finger and the smooth leather palm is worn hopelessly thin. After all, they are nearly eleven years old and have seen a lot of use. The fall and winter seasons in the Northwest (and even the spring in some years) are generally wet and often cold, so the gloves have gone in and out of my coat pocket many times.
Somehow, although the gloves are almost past being usable, I’ve had a hard time disposing of them. You see, they were a gift from my ten-year-old son. It touched my heart that he assessed my need for some hand-warmers. As chief “Allowance Dispenser” in our household, I knew he must have saved for a long time to be able to purchase them for me. Of our five children, this middle son was probably the one who had the hardest time saving for anything! So his willingness to part with some of his cherished dollars was a thoughtful and much-appreciated gesture.
God’s first requirement, as the Children of Israel began preparing for the building of the Tabernacle, was that the offering of both goods and services was to be from those who gave willingly from their hearts. What value a willing and generous spirit places on the object given! It is a value that cannot be calculated in dollars and cents.
This principle of giving willingly continues in our time. God wants His children to be supportive of His work and willing to help in any way possible. If a person gives grudgingly, he shows that he has a stingy heart. Our attitude when we give far outweighs the actual amount given.
We never need to feel embarrassed if we can give only a small gift to God’s work. In the eyes of God, a willing offering from the resources we have will be counted precious.
Almighty God, the Creator, was going to dwell with His people! In this portion of text, God began to give specific details regarding the building of a sanctuary, promising that He would meet with the people from above the Mercy Seat within the Tabernacle.
The instructions were specific and detailed, and there was to be no deviation.
God instructed that many of the Tabernacle furnishings were to be made of shittim, or acacia, wood. Acacia trees grow in barren settings and were quite common in Old Testament times. The wood is very hard, making it an excellent material for furniture. It is still used in furniture making today.
The offerings were to consist of gold, silver, brass, onyx stones, materials of blue, purple, and scarlet for coverings, fine linen, and certain animal skins. They were also to give oil for the light, spices for the anointing oil, and sweet incense. All contributions were to be of the best quality, because they were for God’s sanctuary.
The demand that all these things be done according to the instructions and after the pattern shown to Moses on Mount Sinai is repeated many times. In Exodus 25:9 it is stated this way: “According to all that I shew thee, after the pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the instruments thereof, even so shall ye make it.”
(Hannah’s Bible Outlines - Used by permission per WORDsearch)
V. The construction of the Tabernacle
B. The instructions for the building
1. The materials for the construction (25:1-9)
2. The Ark of the Covenant (25:10-16)
3. The Mercy Seat (25:17-22)
4. The table of shewbread (25:23-30)
5. The lampstand (25:31-40)
Generous people are not necessarily faithful to God, but faithful people should always be generous.