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Wednesday in the Word

Second Baptist Church

May 9, 2018

Exodus  30:22-31:17

  1. Verses 22-33. Moses is commanded to anoint everything in the sacred area with a special anointing oil made of myrrh, cinnamon, cassia and olive oil. This would be a very costly perfumed oil. It was special and only used for sacred purposes. The oil would signify that these things were most holy. The priests as well were anointed with this oil, and no other people could be anointed with the oil. The oil was exclusively for the priest and the sacred place, and any use of it otherwise would lead to judgment. This oil was a symbol of the Holy Spirit sealing us. The oil became a covering for everything in the sacred area, and today the Holy Spirit is a seal of God’s ownership and symbol of God’s presence (Eph 1:13 Luke 4:18). The Spirit of God places a special aroma on the believers that signifies their belonging to God. The Holy Spirit/anointing oil covers the smell of sin. The Holy Spirit produces fruit in the believer that perfumes our lives with good works (Eph 5:18, and Galatian 5:22-23).

  2. Verses 34-37. Not only are all the things in the sacred place covered with a costly fragrant oil, the air is filled with the sweet smell of incense. The main ingredient of the incense is frankincense along with gum resin, galbanum and onycha. This incense was exclusive to the tabernacle. No one could make this formula for any other use than the use in the sacred space. The smell of the incense would be in and on everything. Notice that the final issues for the sacred space have to do with having a sweet aroma in the place. This sweet aroma is a picture of how we are to be a fragrant smell unto the Lord with our prayers and living. When we get saved, the scent of our sin is changed to the scent of holiness pleasing unto the Lord. When incense is burned, it not only fills the air, but attaches itself to the things near it.

  3. Verses 1-11. God did not call Moses to do everything. God tells Moses that he has given two other men in the camp the skills, knowledge, and wisdom to create everything that God spoke to Moses about from the construction of the items needed to the garments that the priest would wear. This is a very important idea, that God doesn’t put all the work on one person. The skills that Behazalel and Ohiliab had were skills that Moses didn’t have. Their skills came from the Lord, but these skills were different from those of Moses. God doesn’t gift us all the same way, but we are all gifted. Notice how God says he filled him, or gave him the ability. This is teaching us that all our skills are from the Lord. Eph. 4:13 reminds us that leaders of the church are to help equip the saints for ministry and not do all the ministry.

  4. Verses 12-17. The Hebrews were used to working every day and never taking a break to worship and thank God for his benefits and blessings. It is important that the people have a set day to worship God. God had to train the people to worship. God put a rule in place for the whole community to take a day of rest and reflection. This day of rest, Sabbath, was a symbol of a covenant between the people and God. No work was to be done on that day. Just as God rested, the people are to rest once a week to look at what God has done. If God rested, surely his creation must rest. Later on Jesus would be the “rest” that the Sabbath symbolized. The various elements of the Sabbath symbolized the coming of the Messiah, who would provide a permanent rest for His people. The Jews were constantly “laboring” to make themselves acceptable to God. Their labors included trying to obey a myriad of do’s and don’ts of the ceremonial law, the Temple law, the civil law, etc. Of course they couldn’t possibly keep all those laws, so God provided an array of sin offerings and sacrifices so they could come to Him for forgiveness and restore fellowship with Him, but only temporarily. Just as they began their physical labors after a one-day rest, so, too, did they have to continue to offer sacrifices. Hebrews 10:1 tells us that the law “can never, by the same sacrifices repeated endlessly year after year, make perfect those who draw near to worship.” But these sacrifices were offered in anticipation of the ultimate sacrifice of Christ on the cross, who “after He had offered one sacrifice for sins forever, sat down on the right of God” (Hebrews l0:12). Just as He rested after performing the ultimate sacrifice, He sat down and rested--ceased from His labor of atonement because there was nothing more to be done, ever. Because of what He did, we no longer “labor” in law-keeping in order to be justified in the sight of God. Jesus was sent so that we might rest in God and in what He has provided. Hebrews 4 is the definitive passage regarding Jesus as our Sabbath rest. The writer to the Hebrews exhorts his readers to “enter in” to the Sabbath rest provided by Christ. After three chapters of telling them that Jesus is superior to the angels and that He is our Apostle and High Priest, he pleads with them to not harden their hearts against Him, as their fathers hardened their hearts against the Lord in the wilderness. Because of their unbelief, God denied that generation access to the holy land, saying, “They shall not enter into My rest” (Hebrews 3:1l). In the same way, the writer to the Hebrews begs his readers not to make the same mistake by rejecting God’s Sabbath rest in Jesus Christ. “There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God’s rest also rests from his own work, just as God did from his. Let us, therefore, make every effort to enter that rest, so that no one will fall by following their example of disobedience” (Hebrews 4:9-11). There is no other Sabbath rest besides Jesus. He alone satisfies the requirements of the Law, and He alone provides the sacrifice that atones for sin. He is God’s plan for us to cease from the labor of our own works.

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