I'm sure that everyone who is following these blog posts has been faithfully reading the Bible passages they refer to - but just in case you haven't, I'll point out that there is quite a lot of repetition in the closing chapters of Exodus. In chapters 25-31, God provided instructions for the making of the Tabernacle and the things which are to go in it, and then (following the account of the golden calf and the renewal of the covenant) chapters 35-39 record how the people duly followed the instructions God has given for making the Tabernacle - using language which is very similar (although in a different order) to that of chapters 25-31.
Several times in these final chapters we hear that the people went about things just as the LORD had commanded, and at the end of chapter 39 the point is emphasised:
The Israelites had done all the work just as the LORD had commanded Moses. Moses inspected the work and saw that they had done it just as the LORD had commanded. So Moses blessed them.
There is normally more than one way of doing things. And often God is happy to allow us to choose how to go about things. But sometimes there is only one way which is God's way, and if we go about things any other way it will only lead to disaster (see Proverbs 14:12, 16:25).
There was more than one way in which Jesus could have ended his life on earth. For example, he could have called on thousands of angels to come and rescue him from the human authorities (Matthew 23:53). But instead, he made a conscious decision to do things God's way (Matthew 23:39,42). As a result, on this day of the year we remember that Jesus was truly dead and buried - simply because he chose to do things God's way.
Questions to ponder:
- What did it cost Jesus to do things God's way? What would you like to say to him about that today?
- Are there any areas in your life where you have chosen to do things your way instead of God's way? If so, is it time to turn round?