Tuesday, January 31, 2012
Welcome to Day 31 of our Life Journal!
Before you comment or read what I have posted, please read the following passages for yourself and complete your own S.O.A.P. exercise… How does this work?
S.O.A.P = Scripture, Observation, Application, Prayer
Exodus 28 describes the priestly garments (ephod, breastpiece, robe, plate, tunic and under garments, sashes and caps.)
v 29, “Whenever Aaron enters the Holy Place, he will bear the names of the sons of Israel over his heart on the breastpiece of decision as a continuing memorial before the LORD. 30 Also put the Urim and the Thummim in the breastpiece, so they may be over Aaron’s heart whenever he enters the presence of the LORD. Thus Aaron will always bear the means of making decisions for the Israelites over his heart before the LORD.”
v 35 “Aaron must wear it [the robe] when he ministers. The sound of the bells will be heard when he enters the Holy Place before the LORD and when he comes out, so that he will not die.
Exodus 29, the consecration of the priests (Aaron and his sons.) ““Take from this ram the fat, the fat tail, the fat on the internal organs, the long lobe of the liver, both kidneys with the fat on them, and the right thigh.” So specific!
The specific parts of the bull (kidneys, liver, etc), what they were to do with it before the Lord (wave it, sprinkle blood on the alter), and what they were to do after (putting blood on their earlobes and big toes?) and then burning up the offering, except for the hide and intestines (had to be burnt outside the camp.)
Grain offerings, drink offerings, burnt offerings… all very specific instructions, 29:44 “So I will consecrate the tent of meeting and the altar and will consecrate Aaron and his sons to serve me as priests. 45 Then I will dwell among the Israelites and be their God. 46 They will know that I am the LORD their God, who brought them out of Egypt so that I might dwell among them. I am the LORD their God.
Acts 7 ends with Stephen giving the Jewish leaders a tongue-lashing! Acts 7:51, “You stiff-necked people! Your hearts and ears are still uncircumcised. You are just like your ancestors: You always resist the Holy Spirit! 52 Was there ever a prophet your ancestors did not persecute? They even killed those who predicted the coming of the Righteous One. And now you have betrayed and murdered him— 53 you who have received the law that was given through angels but have not obeyed it.” And Stephen is stoned to death… His last words? “Look,” he said, “I see heaven open and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.”
Isn’t Jesus usually seated at the right hand of the father? Was he standing in honor of Stephen? To receive him??
Very in-depth studies of the tabernacle, its furnishings and the priestly garments and accessories have been done. Way to much to go into in a SOAP exercise… However, it’s worth noting that all the details are significant. Noticed the twelve gem stone each representing one of the tribes of Israel. They were close to his heart!
Hebrews 4, “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. 15 For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. 16 Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 10, “…and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near to God with a sincere heart and with the full assurance that faith brings, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23 Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”
I still land on the overall purpose of all of this was to make a way for people to be right/consecrated before God. That atonement could be made for their sins. That God wanted to “dwell among.” Not look down upon, but be among… with. God wanted them (us) to KNOW that he is the Lord our God. It all points to him!
Lord, I am so thankful that you want to dwell among your people. I thank you that you don’t dwell in tents or buildings any longer, but you dwell among us by your Holy Spirit. Help me to “hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”
Lord that I would have the boldness and determination of Stephen…