About Jesus Steve Sweetman
This Chapter 31
In this section we have
two men mentioned. Verse 2 tells us that God had filled these men with the
Spirit of God, with skill, ability and knowledge of all kinds of crafts.
There are a couple of things to note here.
One thing is that God had to fill these men to make the items they
were told to make. They needed
divine help and inspiration. If
this was true back in these Old Testament days, how more true is it to
have the Spirit of God today in building the church. Without the Holy
Spirit's involvement in the church, the church is not built according to
God specifications. The Holy
Spirit is a must in the church. If
He is excluded from our activities, our efforts are purely humanistic and
worthless to God. This is what
God wanted here in Exodus, and this is what He wants today.
There is no other way. It's God's way or no way.
The second thing to note
is that the Holy Spirit gave these men the ability and the inspiration in
the areas of crafts. I believe
this speaks to the creativity that is part of God's calling on a life.
The Holy Spirit can make people creative, no matter what craft they
are involved in. It can be
building something. It can be
in the arts, such as music, photography, or painting.
The Holy Spirit can provide both the creative inspiration and the
ability in these areas. I'd
only suggest that if the Holy Spirit provides such inspiration and
ability, it would be His will that it is directed towards Him and the
Note the words
"artistic designs" in verse 3.
I've written an article on these words.
It is as follows.
Exodus 31 and 36 God commissioned Bezalel and others to build the
tabernacle that would be His home on earth.
Before they could begin this project, these people were
"filled with the Spirit of God, skill, ability, and knowledge, in all
kinds of crafts, to make artistic designs …" (Exodus 31:3 and
35:32) This tabernacle was to
be God's "home away from home."
For this reason God provided detailed building plans for His
earthly home. It had to be
functional, full of symbolism, and esthetically pleasing.
the reason why God gave these people the Holy Spirit, skill, ability, and
knowledge. It was to
create fine quality art, or as the NIV puts it, "artistic
designs". I really like
the term "artistic designs."
God Himself is the ultimate artist.
An example of "artistic design" in the tabernacle is seen
in the embroidering of the linen curtain.
Exodus 36:35 states, "they made the curtain of blue, purple,
and scarlet yarn, and finely twisted linen, with cherubim worked into
it…" Doesn't that sound
like a work of art to you?
"artistic designs" seen in the tabernacle, and later in the Old
Testament temple, should also be seen in God's New Testament temple.
I don't believe God would want His New Testament home to be any
less esthetically pleasing than His Old Testament home.
Christians, both as individuals and as the church, are now God's
"home away from home." We
therefore should consider ourselves a work of fine quality art.
Jesus has commissioned us to work with Him in creating us into an
esthetically pleasing work of art. If
we can become this work of art, the world will see God's glory in us.
individual Christians, we have God-given talents that the Holy Spirit can
use and improve on. Some of us
are musicians, some singers, some sculptures, some
photographers, and some embroiderers.
The list is endless. We
all have a part to play in creating "artistic designs" in God's
New Testament temple.
the centuries we've used our creativity to build temples from wood, stone,
brick, glass, and steel. In
many cases these temples have been fine works of art.
There's no doubt about that. We
often marvel at these esthetically pleasing structures, but as beautiful
as they are, I suggest we put our creative efforts to better use.
With the skill, ability, and knowledge that comes only from the
Holy Spirit, we can mold ourselves into fine quality art.
God doesn't live in the temples we've built.
He lives in us. Since
we are God's temple, we are to be a fine quality work of art that He would
feel comfortable living in, and which would also radiate His glory.
The temples that we have built radiate more of our own glory than
good book to read concerning Christians and the arts is Franky Schaeffer's
book entitled, "Addicted To Mediocrity", copy written 1981,
published by Crossway Books, a division of Good News Publishers.
Verses 12 and 13 tell us
that God wants Israel
to keep the Sabbaths. Note
here the plural "Sabbaths", not the singular,
"Sabbath". This is
not just the seventh day, it is all the other Sabbaths that God has spoke
to Moses about, for example, leaving the fields fallow every seven years. On
the other hand, the word "Sabbaths" plural, might be in
reference to all the weekly Sabbaths
These Sabbaths were to be
signs between God and Israel. I'd suggest that means these
Sabbaths were to be a means to remember that
Verses 14 to 17 speak
specifically of the seventh day Sabbath.
Verse 14 tells us that if anyone desecrated the Sabbath must be put
to death. It also tells
us that anyone who works on the Sabbath must be cut off from
One thing to note here is
that this day is a "day of rest, holy to the Lord."
The whole purpose of this day was to stop work, rest, and remember
The Sabbath rest for
Christians is a debatable issue. Many
Christians say they keep the Sabbath, but in reality they do not keep it
in the way it is taught in The Law of Moses.
First of all, they keep the wrong day.
It's not the first day of the week.
It's the seventh day of the week.
Also, so often there is much church related activity done on this
day that it is not a day of rest. I
personally do not believe that Christians are required to keep the
Sabbath. I won't state my
reasons here because I have done that elsewhere.
Verse 18 tells us that
before Moses left the Lord, God gave him the two tables of stone in which
God Himself wrote the Ten Commandments on.