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Monday, February 15, 2016

Yesterday's Work, Today's Reward

"Then the cloud covered the Tent of Meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Moses could not enter the Tent of Meeting because the cloud had settled upon it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle." (Exodus 40:34-35)

The artisans may now rest from the "minutia of obedience." The fruit of their painstaking labors is about to be revealed. After the tedium of sanding, sewing, and smelting they stand back and watch as Moses assembles the disparate pieces of their work into one cohesive structure. But this is no ordinary structure; this is the habitation of God among His people.

In response to the faith-filled obedience of His people who have completed the structure revealed to Moses on the mountain God manifests His Presence--the Shekinah glory. He fills the tabernacle and the out-radiating of His glory so illuminates the structure that Moses cannot enter it. This is the "wow" factor at work! Just like Job said, "I've heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eyes see you", so what they had only heard from Moses becomes real. In their wildest dreams they never could have imagined what they saw in the instant the glory filled the tabernacle. 

Plowing must take place first in order to plant and, then later, harvest a crop. The "plow" precedes the "Wow!"

This is what God intends for church to be like when the disparate pieces of His body--each redeemed sinner--fulfill their purpose in unity and love and the glory of the Lord falls on His people. The church becomes what He always intended it should be--a showplace for His glory. Believe it or not, God intends this experience for local bodies of believers. Even though they exhibit flaws, hurts, and struggles, they allow Jesus, the Master Artisan, to shape them by His Spirit so that the Body fits together and functions as one. Churches like this cause believers and unbelievers alike to experience . . . the "Wow!" factor of God's presence among His people.

Questions for today's Chronological Bible reading:
Exodus 39:1-40:38
  • How does Moses summarize the completion of the tabernacle and its materials?
  • What does the Lord instruct Moses to do once the tabernacle materials are all completed?
  • What Does God command Moses do that will consecrate the materials and the priests?
  • What happens once the tabernacle and its furnishings are completely "set up"?
Turning truth into prayer
Ask the Lord to reveal any areas remaining "undone" in your life and in your church that prohibit His glory from settling on you and your church.