The Math of the Sabbath & the Tithe: The Sabbath Has Absolutely Nothing to do With Going to Church

Today’s selected reading continues in the Old Testament book of Exodus as it was written and recorded by Moses the servant of the Lord. More specifically, today’s passage is found chapters thirty-one through thirty-five of this Old Testament book. THE CALL AND ANOINTING TO WORK! REVISITING THE SABBATH! RECLAIMING THE SABBATH! THE GOLDEN CALF! THE LORD KNOWS YOUR IDOLATRY! THE INTERCESSION OF MOSES! BREAKING TABLETS AND CONFRONTING SIN! WHO ARE THEY THAT BE ON THE LORDS SIDE! THE LEVITES RESPOND TO THE CALL AND ARE SET APART! DEPART BUT I WILL NOT GO WITH YOU! MOSES PITCHES THE TABERNACLE! IF YOU DON’T GO, CANT GO! YOUR PRESENCE IS EVERYTHING! LEAD US WITH YOUR PRESENCE, SHOW ME YOUR GLORY! THE LAW AND THE GLORY! When you come to this particular portion of Scripture you will find the narrative of the children of Israel at the mountain of God in the wilderness shifting from the instruction given unto Moses concerning the furniture of the Tabernacle, concerning the priests which would minister before the Lord in the court of the Tabernacle, as well as the incense which would be used upon the altar of incense and the anointing oil which would be used to anoint the priests, the furniture of the Tabernacle, as well the Tabernacle itself. What is so incredibly interesting about the instruction given to Moses while atop the mountain of God in the midst of the glory of the living God is that if you study these chapters you will find there were two distinct purposes for the oil. Within these chapters you will encounter and come face to face with the awesome and incredible truth that there was an oil which was needed for the golden lampstand which was found in the Holy Place, and there was an oil that was used for anointing the ministers of the Lord, as well as that which was used in the ministry of the Lord. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this absolutely incredible and tremendous reality, for to do so would be to miss something that is truly and incredibly important. As you read and study the words which are found within these chapters you will find that there was an oil that was needed for light in the sanctuary, while there was another oil that was used to anoint the ministers of the Lord. It is absolutely necessary and imperative that we recognize and pay close attention to these two distinct realities, for within these realities we can and will come face to face with the awesome reality that when we speak of the oil which represents the Holy Spirit within our lives—not only are we referencing that which gives us light with which we shine in the midst of the sanctuary and in the midst of the darkness, but also that which anoints us. We must carefully consider the awesome and tremendous reality that is found within these chapters for there is a strong contrast between the anointing and appointing of Aaron and his sons to stand before and serve the Lord as His ministers within the sanctuary, as well as those who were called by the living God and filled with the Spirit of God, in wisdom and understanding, and knowledge in order that they might construct the Tabernacle with all its instruments, furniture, and even its curtains and the garments which the priests of the Lord would wear when they ministered before the Lord.

As you read the words found within these chapters you will undoubtedly encounter and come face to face with the incredible reality that there were essentially two distinct groups of individuals who were separated and consecrated by the living God the work of the ministry. Upon reading these chapters I was brought face to face with the reality that there were Aaron and his sons who were anointed, ordained and appointed to stand before the Lord and serve Him as His faithful ministers before and around the altar, as well as within the Tabernacle. With that being said, we must recognize and understand that there was also a second group of individuals who were separated and set apart by the Lord for a work that was entirely and completely different. There were those who bore the testimony that they stood before the living God both night and day ministering before and around His holy altar, while there were others who bore the testimony that they built and constructed the Tabernacle with all its furniture and instruments. When we speak and think about the Tabernacle we must recognize that as surely as there was a pattern for the Tabernacle which needed to be followed exactly as the LORD had commanded, there was a great need for those who would actually carry out the construction and completion of the Tabernacle. It was unto Moses whom the pattern of the Tabernacle was given, yet it wasn’t Moses who was actually called and chosen to build the instruments, the furniture, and even the framework for the Tabernacle. If and as you study the words found within these chapters you will find that without those whom the Lord specifically called and chose for the work of making the Tabernacle which would be found in the midst of His people there might not have been a Tabernacle. It would be incredibly easy to think about and focus our attention on those who ministered before the Lord within the courts of the Lord while losing sight of those who actually engaged themselves in building and putting together the courts in which they ministered. These chapters bring us face to face with the absolutely incredible reality that there were those who were called, chosen, ordained and appointed by the living God to minister before and around the altar which was present in the outer court of the Tabernacle, but there were those who were used by the living God to form and fashion the altar which they ministered before. In order to help illustrate this point even further I would invite you to carefully consider the words which the Lord spoke unto Moses concerning the ordination and appointment of Aaron and his sons as they were ordained and appointed as the ministers of the Lord:

“And thou shalt put them upon Aaron thy brother, and his sons with him; and shalt anoint them, and consecrate them, and sanctify them, that they may minister unto me in the priest’s office. And thou shalt make linen breeches to cover their nakedness; from the loins even unto the thoughts they shall reach: and they shall be upon Aaron, and upon his sons, when they come near unto the altar to minister in the holy place; that they bear not iniquity, and die: it shall be a statute for ever unto him and seed after him. And this is the thing that thou shalt do unto them to hallow them, to minister unto me in the priest’s office: Take one young bullock, and two rams without blemish, and unleavened bread, and cakes unleavened tempered with oil, and wafers unleavened anointed with oil: of wheaten flour shalt thou make them. And thou shalt put the into one basket, and bring them in the basket, with the bullock and the two rams. And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the Tabernacle of the congregation, and shalt wash them with water. And thou shalt take the garments, and put upon Aaron the coat, and the robe of the ephod, and the ephod, and the breastplate, and gird him with the curious girlie of the ephod: and tho shalt put the mitre upon his head, and put the holy crown upon the mitre. Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him. And thou shalt bring his sons, and put coats upon them. And thou shalt gird them with girdles, Aaron and his sons, and put the bonnets on them: and the priest’s office shall be theirs for a perpetual statute: and thou shalt consecrate Aaron and his sons. And thou shalt cause a bullock to be brought before the Tabernacle of the congregation; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the bullock. And thou shalt kill the bullock before the LORD, by the door of the Tabernacle of the congregation. And thou shalt take of the blood of the bullock, and put it upon the horns of the altar with thy finger, and pour all the blood beside the bottom of the altar…And ghoul shalt slay the ram, and thou shalt take his blood, and sprinkle it round about the altar…And thou shalt take the other ram; and Aaron and his sons shall put their hands upon the head of the ram. Then shalt thou kill the ram, and take of his blood, and put it upon the tip of the right ear of Aaron, and upon the tip[ of the right ear of his sons, and upon the thumb of their right hand, and upon the great toe of their right foot, and sprinkle the blood upon the altar round about. And thou shalt take of the blood that is upon the altar, and of the anointing oil, and sprinkle it upon Aaron, and upon his garments, and upon his sons, and upon the garments of his sons with him: and he shall be hallowed, and his garments, and his sons, and his son’s garments with him…” (Exodus 29:1-36).

It is necessary that we draw our attention to the words which are found within the twenty-ninth chapter of this Old Testament book, for within this Old Testament book we encounter and come face to face with the reality that when it came to the consecration of Aaron and his sons—as well as the garments which they were in their service before the Lord—the living God took it very seriously. What we must come to terms with is that before Aaron and his sons could even stand before the Lord and minister before His holy altar and in His sanctuary—both they and the garments they wore needed to be sanctified, consecrated and made holy before the Lord. Neither Aaron, nor his sons could stand before the Lord to minister unto Him until and unless they were first consecrated and set apart by the living God for the work of the service of the sanctuary. Please mark this reality and mark it well, for it is this reality that directly confronts us who would seek to stand before the Lord to minister in His holy sanctuary. When we speak about and consider the work of the ministry and the work of the sanctuary of the Lord it is absolutely necessary and imperative that we come to terms with the fact that there is not only a separation and setting apart of those who have been ordained and appointed by the living God, but there is also an anointing that needs to take place. What’s more, is that when you read the words found within this chapter you will discover that not only were Aaron and his sons anointed with the blood from the ram, but they were also anointed with the holy anointing oil which the LORD instructed and commanded Moses to have made. This is quite astonishing and quite remarkable when you take the time to think about and consider it, for when we think about anointing—specifically being anointed for the work of the ministry of the Lord within His sanctuary—we must include in the conversation that anointing takes both the blood and the sacred oil. With that being said, we must also recognize that the anointing and consecration of Aaron and his sons could not include one without and apart from the other. Aaron and his sons could not be anointed with the oil and think they were then ready to stand before the Lord and minister in His holy sanctuary. Similarly, neither Aaron nor his sons could be anointed with the blood only and think and believe they were ready to stand before the Lord and minister in His holy sanctuary. For Aaron and his sons to be sanctified for the work of the ministry it required both the blood and the oil working in tandem with each other in order to allow them to stand before the Lord and minister before and around His altar and within the Tabernacle. Oh that we would recognize and understand this absolutely reminds us reality, for it brings us face to face with the pattern of God when it comes to those who are ordained and appointed to serve before Him in the midst of His sanctuary and house.

ANOINTED WITH THE BLOOD & OIL! Of course when we think about and consider these two realities we must understand the blood representing the blood of the Lamb which was shed upon the cross of Calvary two thousand years ago, and the oil representing the Holy Spirit who was released and poured out on the day of Pentecost. As we think about and consider this thought we must acknowledge within our own personal lives that for us to truly be consecrated and sanctified by the living God for the work of the ministry and the work of His service—not only do we need to be anointed with the blood, but we also need to be anointed with the oil. True consecration requires both the blood and the oil in order that we might truly be anointed for the work of the ministry and for the service of the Lord. If Aaron and his sons were anointed merely with the blood rather than the oil, and the oil was somehow left out—neither Aaron nor his sons could stand before the Lord to minister before the Lord. What’s more, is that there was also the process of cleansing which needed to take place as Aaron and his sons needed to wash before they could even put on the sacred and holy garments which were needed for the work of the ministry and service of the Tabernacle. CLEANSING & CONSECRATION! Oh as we think about and consider the absolutely wonderful and tremendous reality concerning Aaron and his sons and their being ordained for the work of the ministry within the Tabernacle we must acknowledge the awesome and incredible reality that for them to truly be able to stand before the Lord to serve in the ministry of the sanctuary they needed both cleansing as well as consecration. In other words, cleansing and consecration worked hand in hand and in tandem with each other and could not be separated from each other. Consecration and cleansing are intrinsically linked and connected with each other as not only must we be cleansed with and by the water, but we must also be anointed with and by the blood and the oil. There is the process of cleansing which needs to take place within our lives—a work which is most certainly followed by a being anointed with and by the blood and the oil that we might truly be consecrated and sanctified for the work of the ministry of the Lord which He has called and ordained us to do. Let us—as we are reading the words within these chapters—not only be confronted with the reality that we need to allow ourselves to be cleansed by the water, but so also we must be anointed with the blood and the oil that we might truly be sanctified and consecrated before and unto the living God.

With all of this being said we must acknowledge that while there was quite the intricate process that was needed for the consecration of Aaron and his sons to stand before the Lord to minister in His holy sanctuary, there were those who were called by the living God—specifically for the purpose of building the Tabernacle. Oh, there was a work that was needed in the ministry of the Tabernacle, but there was also a work that was needed for the construction and building of the Tabernacle. What we must recognize and understand is that there were those who were specially and specifically called by the living God for the purpose of building and constructing the Tabernacle and for building the furniture of the sanctuary, and for creating the garments which the priests would wear, as well as the curtains and covering for the Tabernacle. There would be those who would be specifically chosen by the living God for the sole purpose of taking the pattern of the Tabernacle and building everything that would be needed for the construction of the Tabernacle in order that the living God might dwell in the midst of His people. While it might not seem like the task is and was all that important we must recognize that those who were called by the living God for the purpose of forming and fashioning the furniture and instruments of the Tabernacle were required to do so exactly according to the pattern and design of the living God. Those who were called by the living God for the purpose of designing the furniture of the Tabernacle, designing the instruments of the tabernacle, making the garments for the priests, making the curtains and covering for the tabernacle, as well as the veils which would stand in the midst of the Tabernacle, and even the incense and anointing oil needed to do so exactly as the living God had instructed and commanded. There could absolutely be no deviation from the pattern which the living God had revealed and spoken unto Moses, nor could there be any alterations or adjustments made with and from their own imaginations. There was such a tremendous responsibility upon the shoulders of those who were called by the living God to build the instruments, the furniture, the framework and all that was needed for the Tabernacle, for if they deviated even the slightest bit they would run the risk of the house not meeting the requirements of the living God, and thus jeopardizing His dwelling in the midst of His people. As surely as Aaron and his sons needed to be consecrated in order that they might stand before the living God to minister before and unto Him, so also those who were called by the living God for the purpose of building the Tabernacle needed to be called of God, and anointed for the purpose of work and for the purpose of the work. Consider if you will the words which are found in the opening verses of the thirty-first chapter beginning with the first verse:

“And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of URI, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah: and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship, to devise cunning works, to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass, and in cutting of stones, to set them, and in carving of timber, to work in all manner of workmanship. And I, behold, I have given with him Aholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan: and in the hearts of all that are wise hearted I have put wisdom, that they may make all that I have commanded thee; the Tabernacle of the congregation, and the ark of the testimony, and the mercy seat, that is thereupon, and all the furniture of the tabernacle, and the table and his furniture, and the pure candlestick with all his furniture, and the altar of incense, and the altar of burnt offering with all his furniture, and the laver and his foot, and the cloths of service, and the holy garments for Aaron the priest, and the garments of his sons, to minister in the priest’s office, and the anointing oil, and sweet incense for the holy place: according to all that I have commanded thee shall they do” (Exodus 31:1-11).

NINE TENTHS AND FIVE SIXTHS! NINETY PERCENT! ONE HUNDRED FORTY FOUR HOURS! CAN YOU LIVE WTHIN SIX SEVENTHS AND NINE TENTHS? CAN YOU FUNCTION WITHIN SIX DAYS AND OPERATE OFF NINETY PERCENT! I HAVE GIVEN YOU SIX DAYS TO WORK AND NINETY PERCENT TO USE THE DIVINE MATH OF GOD! If you continue reading in these chapters which are before us today you will find the Lord once more speaking unto Moses concerning the sabbath. As you study and read the chapters which are found within the old redeem the book of exodus you will find that this was now the third time the Lord had spoken unto Moses concerning the sabbath. What’s more is that this is the third time the Lord has spoken unto Moses concerning the sabbath since the sixteenth chapter. If you turn and direct your attention back to the sixteenth chapter you will the Lord giving very specific instruction to the children of Israel concerning the manna which He would give them in the wilderness from heaven. You will recall that when the Lord was speaking unto the children of Israel concerning gathering manna you will find that he instructed them to gather only what they needed and what was enough for them for each day. When it came to the sixth day, however, the children of Israel were to gather twice as much for they were not permitted to gather any on the sabbath day. With this command the Lord was speaking unto the children of Israel concerning the law of the sabbath and how the sabbath was to be a day of rest where there was to be no work that was supposed to be done. The seventh day was hallowed by the Lord and was to be treated as holy and sacred before and unto Him. There were those who dared think they could go out on the sabbath and gather bread, and yet when they went out to gather they were surprised to find that no manna was on the ground. I would dare say there were those who did not take the living God at His word and who did not gather enough for the sabbath, and when the sabbath came they thought they could go out and gather bread. Oh how incredibly shocked and disappointed they must have been to encounter an Emory wilderness floor without any bread from heaven. Pause for a moment and think about and consider the awesome and tremendous reality that it was possible for the sabbath day to be a day of rest, and yet there were those who most likely spent the sabbath day hungry and without bread—not only because they did not honor the word of God, but also because they did not hallow and treat the sabbath day as holy unto the Lord. It’s absolutely necessary that we recognize and pay attention to this reality, for not only was there a clarion call to honor the word which the living God had spoken, but there was also an emphatic declaration unto the children of Israel to hallow the sabbath day and to keep it holy before and unto the Lord.

If you continue reading the words which are found in the Old Testament book of exodus you will find and discover that in the twentieth chapter when the living God was giving the Ten Commandments unto Moses from the midst of His glory atop the mountain one of the commandments that was spoken was to honor the sabbath and to keep it holy. It would be directly linked and associated with this command the living God would first mention unto the children of Israel that they were given six days in which to do there work, but on the seventh day they were to do no work. In all reality this is quite foreign to us within our modern generation, for most of us are used to working our jobs five days out of the week with a minimum of forty hours a week. There are a select group of people who would also work on the sixth day—whether it’s working for and at their place of employment, or whether they are like me and use that sixth day to get ready for the following week. I know that for myself I use the sixth day of the week to prepare and get myself read for the following week, for one thing about me is that I like doing as little as possible when I get home from work each night. The children of Israel were given six days during the week with which to get all their work and do all their work, and when it came to the seventh day they were to keep that day as holy unto the Lord and consecrate it with and by rest. It’s such an interesting concept to think about and consider the fact that we can actually keep the sabbath day as holy unto the Lord and consecrate it with and by our rest. WHEN REST CONSECRATES A DAY! WHEN REST MARKS A DAY AS HOLY! We dare not miss and lose sight of this tremendous and wonderful reality, for to miss on this reality would be to miss on the absolutely wonderful and tremendous reality that the sabbath day was to be treated as holy unto the Lord and that we honor the sabbath and keep it holy before the LORD through our rest. Pause for a moment and think about and consider that reality, for it is one that is absolutely and incredibly intriguing and captivating. It’s incredibly astonishing to think that the living God gave seven days during the week, and in the midst of giving us seven days during the week He broke Rhode seven days apart and gave us six days with which to do our work. We must not miss and lose sight of this absolutely wonderful and incredible reality, for to do so would be to miss the absolutely wonderful and incredible truth concerning the sabbath and we are to treat and regard the sabbath day.

The question that I can’t help but think about and consider as I sit here this morning is whether or not we trust God with the math of our lives. I fully realize and recognize that there might be those of you who are reading the words within this writing and would wonder how and why I could ask such a question of whether or not we trust the living God with the math of our lives, and you might even feel as though such a question is neither relevant or important to the discussion concerning the sabbath. I would love to present and submit to you for your consideration that when we think of the divine math in our lives we must think about the fact that when it comes to each and every week we have been given seven days in an entire week, yet within those seven days we have been given six days with which to do our work and with which to accomplish those things we need to accomplish. What we must realize and recognize is that when the living God gave the command concerning the Sabbath He wasn’t referring to it in the context of employment and working jobs Monday through Friday—or perhaps whatever other schedule you might work during the week. We must understand the direct context of the command concerning the sabbath centers around the reality of doing any type of work and/or any type of labor during the week. The LORD God gave the command to keep the sabbath day as holy and to keep the sabbath day as consecrated and set apart as sacred unto Him, and the way that we do that is not by what we do on the sabbath, but rather by what we don’t do. In a world where we get so caught up and consumed in what we do that actually matters there is one area before the living God where what we don’t do actually honors Him—perhaps even above anything that we would do otherwise. If there is one thing we must recognize and consider concerning the Sabbath day it’s that it was the one single day during the week when no work, nor any labor could be done and completed. The sabbath day was both about our willingness and obedience in honoring the command of the Lord, but it was also about our willingness to do absolutely nothing. What’s so incredibly intriguing and captivating about the sabbath is that it flies directly in the face of those of us who prefer to to one hundred miles an hour at all times during the week without taking any rest unto ourselves. The command to keep the sabbath and to abstain from all work and all labor in honor of the command of the Lord flies directly in the face of the command of the Lord and that which He designed the sabbath to be—both for God Himself, as well as for us who would keep the sabbath. We must realize and recognize that the sabbath day is for us a day of rest and refreshment, which is so absolutely critical and vital for our well being, but it is also a day that honors the command of the living God and treats as sacred and holy that which He has ordained.

I wrote and mentioned concerning trusting the living God with the math of our lives and what I am referencing with that is the fact that out of the seven days during the week we have been given six days with which to do our work, with which to do our labor, and with which to do anything we want. Pause for a moment and think about the math in that equation, which is six/sevenths, for while the Lord created each week to have seven days He gave us six of those days and asked for only one. Stop and think about that for a moment, for when it comes to seven days during the week the living God has graciously given us six of those days to do absolutely everything we need or want to do, while asking for one single day during the week. I ONLY ASKED FOR ONE! It is absolutely incredible to think about the fact that the living God made seven days during the week and gave unto us six of those days for ourselves to do what we need to do and accomplish what we need to accomplish, and yet He only asks for one day during the week. The question I can’t help but think about when considering the command concerning the sabbath is how so often we squabble and argue over this one day—all the while completely forgetting the incredible reality that the living God has given us six days during the week for and unto ourselves. Oh, how many times have you, how many times have I argued with God over the one single day during the week He asks for without evening being thankful and grateful for the other six days during the week He has graciously given unto us for our work, our labor, our desires and our purposes. The LORD God created seven days during the week and gave unto us six days during the week to do what we think and feel we need to do, and yet He asks for one single day during the week with which to commit wholly and completely unto Him without arguing, murmuring, complaining or squabbling. The truth of the matter is that there are so many times when we think about the sabbath and we feel as though we can rob and steal from God when it comes to the sabbath by using it to serve our own needs, our own desires and our own wants. Truth be told—when and if we use the sabbath and thus refuse to treat it as holy we are not only failing and refusing to honor the command of the Lord, but we are actually using it to serve our own desires and pleasures and elevating them above the command of the living God. What’s more, is that the sabbath day is that one day during the week when what we don’t do is actually of great importance of far greater worth before and unto the living God than what we could do. Stop for a moment and think about and consider the fact that there is one single day during the week when it’s not about what we can do or what we have done that honors and pleases the living God, but rather it’s that which we don’t do that actually honors the living God. It’s necessary and imperative that we recognize and understand this absolutely incredible reality, for it is this single day when we choose to give ourselves unto the living God rather than giving unto Him what we can do. Oh that we would fully understand and comprehend the fact that what is so sacred and holy about the sabbath is that when we honor this particular day during the week we are doing more than simply abstaining from our work and our labors, but we are actually emphatically declaring unto the living God that we are giving Him ourselves and our lives as holy and consecrated before and unto Him.

This reality and concept concerning the math of our lives extends beyond simply the sabbath, for it extends into the realm of tithes and offerings. If you read the Scripture from beginning to end you will find and discover that when it comes to the tithes and offerings, the living God asks for us to bring a tenth of what we make and bring in and give it unto Him as holy and sacred. What makes this so absolutely incredible and intriguing is when you think about the fact that if the Lord is asking us for ten percent of what we make and bring in, or one/tenth of what we bring in then that means He has chosen to give us the remaining ninety percent or nine/tenths. Pause for a moment and think about and consider that reality, for the same way we treat the sabbath is the same way we treat the tithe. Please note and please understand that what I mean by that is that just as we fail to recognize and understand that we have been given six of the seven during the week, so also we fail to acknowledge the fact that we have been given ninety percent of that which we bring in. I would like to urge you to to think about and consider the fact that the living God has deliberately and intentionally chosen to give you nine/tenths or ninety percent of what you make and bring in while only asking for ten percent, and has given you six/sevenths or six days out of the week while only asking for one single day. ONE DAY AND ONE TENTH! If you take the time to think about the math of both of these equations it should automatically and immediately strike you as odd that God seems to be getting the short end of the stick. Think about it for a moment, for if everything belongs to the living God, He only asks for ten percent of what already belongs to Him and allows us to keep the remaining ninety percent. If each and every day during the week belongs to the living God, He only asks for one of those days with which we honor Him by obeying His command. When it comes to the sabbath we honor the living God—not only by abstaining and refraining from our work and labor, but also by giving Him ourselves during that day. We must recognize and understand that the sabbath day is as much about what we don’t do as it is about the giving of ourselves wholly and completely before and unto the LORD. Oh, what would happen in our lives if rather than argue with God about the sabbath we started dedicating and devoting that day completely and utterly unto Him where we give Him ourselves afresh and anew? What would happen if rather than arguing with the living God concerning the ten percent He asks us for we recognize that everything belongs to Him, and even though everything belongs to Him, He allows us to keep ninety percent of what He has given unto and blessed us with. When was the last time you stopped and thought about the divine math of your life and considered the fact that you have been given six out of seven days during the week, and you have been given ninety percent of one hundred percent of what the living God has given you. Perhaps the single greatest question is whether or not we are willing to stop arguing with God over the one day during the week He asks for, as well as the ten percent of the one hundred percent He asks for. What’s more is whether or not we can and will choose to trust the living God with the other six days, as well as the ninety percent of what He has given us and allowed us to keep and use within and during the course of our lives. Do we and will we believe that God is able to bless the remaining ninety percent of what He allows us to keep, as well as blessing the remaining six days during the week separate and independent of the single day He asks for?

If you continue reading these chapters found within the Old Testament book of Exodus you will come to the thirty-second chapter where you will find the children of Israel engaging themselves in idolatry before and in the presence of the Lord. Having witnessed and beheld the peels of thunder and flashes of lightning, having beheld the thick cloud and consuming fire which was upon the mountain, and after hearing the noise of the trumpet waxing louder and louder as the Lord spoke from atop the mountain unto Moses the children of Israel grew impatient and weary waiting for Moses who was atop the mountain of God in the midst of the wilderness. As you continue reading the words which are found within these chapters you will find that when the people saw that Moses was delayed in coming down from the mountain they gathered themselves unto Aaron his brother and demanded that he make them gods, which would go before them, for they did not know what happened or became of Moses who brought them forth from the midst of the land of Egypt. In the midst of uncertainty the children of Israel grew impatient and weary waiting for Moses to come down from the mountain, and in that place of waiting for Moses to come down they demanded of Aaron that he fashion for them gods which would go before them in the midst of the wilderness. This is actually quite astonishing when you think about and consider it, for the children of Israel drew back in fear when they beheld the consuming fire atop the mountain, and they shrank back in fear when they beheld the thunders and lightnings in the midst of the sky surrounding the mountain, and as a result of their fear they demanded of Moses that he speak unto them and they would listen, but as far as the living God speaking unto them they did not want Him speaking unto them for fear that they would perish. This is actually quite astonishing and remarkable when you take the time to think about and consider it, for the children of Israel had their eyes on man, and when they were unsure and uncertain concerning that man, and when they were uncertain and unsure what had become of that man, they took matters into their own hands and turned to a different man whom they could clearly see before them. IT’s necessary and imperative that we recognize and understand that when the children of Israel grew impatient and weary with Moses not knowing what became of him they turned to someone completely and utterly different—namely, his brothers Aaron. What’s more, is that not only did they turn to Aaron the brother of Moses, but they asked and demanded of Aaron that he form and fashion for them gods which led and brought them forth out of the midst of Egypt. Please don’t miss this absolutely incredible reality, for the children of Israel were guilty of two evils before the golden calf was even formed and fashioned by Aaron from the midst of the fire. Before the golden calf was even formed by Aaron, the children of Israel not only turned to a different man when they grew disappointed, impatient, discontented and weary with Moses, but I would also dare say they grew impatient with the living God who we must remember was still atop the mountain where Moses had gone to speak with and hear from God.

Perhaps the question we must ask ourselves while reading the words which are found within these chapters is not only whether or not we have grown impatient and discontented with man, but whether or not we have also grown impatient and discontented with the living God. We must ask ourselves whether or not we have grown impatient with the living God who has ransomed and redeemed us—and not only redeemed us, but also revealed Himself unto us—and as such, we have formed and fashioned a god after our own liking and our own desire. The children of Israel had grown impatient and discontent with Moses who had brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, and in the midst of that impatience and discontentment they turned their attention to someone else whom they could speak with and entreat to cater to their needs. What I find to be so incredibly intriguing about these chapters is that when the children of Israel grew impatient and discontent with Moses and came unto Aaron his brother, they didn’t ask or demand of Aaron that he lead them forth from the mountain which was still ablaze with the consuming fire and still shrouded in thick darkness and clouds. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this awesome and incredible reality, for it would have been very easy for the children of Israel to come unto Aaron and ask him to lead them forth from the mountain and into the land of Canaan where the Lord had promised their ancestors He would lead them. Please don’t miss and lose sight of this reality, for I can’t help but wonder what would and what could have happened if instead of revealing unto Moses that the children of Israel had packed up camp and were preparing to depart from the mountain. We know from this chapter that the living God revealed unto Moses that the children of Israel had turned their hearts and backs on Him and had formed and fashioned a golden calf and began engaging in idolatrous worship of the golden calf. It’s absolutely and utterly fascinating to think about and consider the fact that the children of Israel didn’t come unto Aaron and ask him to lead them forth from the midst of the mountain and into the wilderness, or even into the land of Canaan which the living God had sworn on oath to their ancestors and the patriarchs of Israel. Nowhere in this chapter will you find the children of Israel asking Aaron to lead them forth from the midst of the mountain, but rather they asked Aaron to build for them a golden calf which they could worship. This is quite intriguing and astonishing when you take the time to think about and consider it, for while they could have asked Aaron to lead them forth from the mountain of God in the wilderness, they instead chose to ask him to form and fashion for them gods which would go up before them in the midst of the wilderness and into the land which the Lord had promised on oath to their ancestors. How absolutely remarkable it is to think about the fact that the children of Israel could have asked Aaron to lead them forth from the mountain in the wilderness not knowing what had happened and become of Moses, yet what they instead chose to do was ask Aaron to build for them gods which would lead and go before them.

WORSHIPPING GOD IN THE IMAGE THEY MADE! As you continue to delve into this chapter you will find that once Aaron received from the children of Israel the golden earrings which were in their ears he formed and fashioned a golden calf with a graving tool after he made a molten calf. Once the golden calf had been formed and fashioned Aaron declared unto the children of Israel that what was before them was their gods which brought them up out of the land of Egypt. Immediately following this we find that Aaron built an altar before it, and made a proclamation that the following day would be a feast before and unto the LORD. Scripture reveals that the following morning the children of Israel rose up early and offered burnt offerings and brought peace offerings while sitting down to eat and drink, and rising up to play. Please mark this and mark it well within your heart and mind, for what we find here is not only Aaron forming a golden calf which he then proclaimed to be the gods which brought the children of Israel forth from the midst of the land of Egypt, but Aaron also proclaimed a feast on the following day. The following day the children of Israel rose up early in order that they might offer burnt offerings and peace offerings before the Lord as they worshipped the golden calf while the glory of the God was still atop the mountain. Please don’t overlook this, for the children of Israel were at the base of the mount encamped round about it worshipping a golden calf which Aaron had formed and fashioned with a graving tool and the mountain was still shrouded in thick darkness and clouds and was found to be in the midst of the consuming fire which was atop and upon the mountain. It is absolutely astonishing to think about and consider the fact that the children of Israel proceeded to worship the living God in the image they had made while the true and living God was atop the mountain in the midst of the consuming fire and thick clouds and darkness. This is something that is quite intriguing when you take the time to think about and consider it, for it reveals the absolutely incredible reality that it is possible for us to experience the glory and presence of the living God within our lives and within our sanctuaries, and yet we can still insist on worshipping the living God in the image(s) we have made. It is possible that we can grow so impatient, so weary and so discontent with man and with the living God that not only do we ask man to form for us a false image of the living God, but we also proceed to worship God in the images we have made according to our liking and our choosing. Oh I can’t help but wonder how many men and women among us within our churches and houses of worship have grown impatient with man, and as a direct result of their impatience they have not only turned to others, but have also demanded that a false image of the living God be formed and made according to their liking, desire and passions. What’s more, is that I can’t help but wonder how many of our churches and houses of worship today are truly worshipping the one true God versus worshipping God according to and after the image they have made. How many churches and sanctuaries are indeed gathering together to worship, and yet that which they are worshipping is nothing more than a false image of the living God which they have made according to their own liking and their own desire? There is a clear and present danger in thinking we can worship God according to an image we have made after our own liking and our own desire while refusing to and no longer worshipping Him according to His holiness, glory and presence.

I can’t help but be absolutely and incredibly intrigued by the fact that when the children of Israel grew impatient concerning Moses, and when they came unto Aaron, they did not ask Aaron to lead them forth from that place and either into the wilderness, or straight up in the land which the Lord had promised unto them. If and as you read the words which are found within this chapter you will find that the children of Israel wanted one thing from Aaron when they came unto him, and it wasn’t to lead them forth from the base of the mountain. This is rather unique and astonishing when taken into consideration, for t would be very easy to think that the children of Israel would and could have asked Aaron to lead them forth from the midst of the wilderness and into the land of Canaan, and yet the truth of the matter is that this wasn’t the request. This is actually astonishing when you think about and consider it, for of all things the children of Israel could have asked Aaron for they asked him to form and fashion for them gods which led them forth from the midst of the land of Egypt, and which would go before them. How incredible it is to think about the fact that not only did the children of Israel ask Aaron to form gods for them which would go before them, but once the golden calf was made before the children of Israel Aaron proceeded to declare unto the children of Israel that these were their gods who delivered them out of the land of Egypt. It’s worth noting that the golden calf which Aaron had formed and fashioned before the children of Israel not only looked back to what the LORD God of the Hebrews had done for them, but it also looked forward to what lie ahead of them when they transitioned from the base of the mountain and ventured deeper and further into the wilderness. When the children of Israel worshipped God in the image they had made, they not only did so acknowledging what the living God had done for them, but they also acknowledged the fact that they wanted gods to go up before them. They could not deny what God had done for them in leading them forth from the midst of the land of Egypt, and they could not deny what the living God had done at the Red Sea, and while they did acknowledge that this god which was before them was the God who delivered them out of the land of Egypt, they also declared that they wanted gods to go before them. Even their false and idolatrous worship had the sound of sincerity in it, for they were still giving off the sound that they wanted gods to go before them in the midst of the wilderness, and even into the land which was promised unto them. Oh it is absolutely incredible when you think about and consider this, for it has the ability to dramatically altar and change how we worship the living God, for the question we must ask ourselves is whether or not we are worshipping God in the image we have made, and whether or not we are worshipping God with a false sincerity that sounds holy and sounds righteous, and yet is nothing more than a pseudo and false humility and worship. As I bring this writing to a close the question we must ask ourselves is who are we truly worshipping when we enter into the house of the Lord, and are we truly worshipping the one true God, or are we worshipping a false god in an image we have formed and fashioned ourselves.

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