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Saturday, November 16, 2013

The Jewels of a Willing Heart

This is the devotion I did for our ladies meeting last night.  I had 2 other devotions almost done, but didn't feel good about them.  I was talking to Whitney about the jewelry craft we were doing at the meeting and it was like the Lord hit me up the side of my head that I needed to do a devotion on jewels!  So, as soon as I got home from church, I typed "jewels" into my Bible program and read all the scriptures that contained the word, "jewels" and here's what I came up with.  Hope you enjoy it!

The Jewels of a Willing Heart

Exodus 35:22  And they came, both men and women, as many as were willing hearted, and brought bracelets, and earrings, and rings, and tablets, all jewels of gold: and every man that offered offered an offering of gold unto the LORD.
       Tablets  (kuwmaz) worn by Hebrew women, seems to denote any form of necklace or bracelet, perhaps formed together with beads.
       Moses gives instructions for the laws, feasts, priests (etc, etc) and the construction of the tabernacle beginning in chapter 19 and then in chapter 35:4, 5 said, “This is the thing which the Lord commanded, saying, Take ye from among you an offering unto the Lord:  whosoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it, an offering of the Lord; gold, and silver, and brass,…….”

       The jewels came from Egypt

Exodus 11:2  Speak now in the ears of the people, and let every man borrow of his neighbour, and every woman of her neighbour, jewels of silver, and jewels of gold.
Exodus 12:35  And the children of Israel did according to the word of Moses; and they borrowed of the Egyptians jewels of silver, and jewels of gold, and raiment:
Those who were willing, whose hearts were stirred, had no problem bringing what was asked of them to help build the tabernacle.  And those who were not willing were not forced.

Comparisons between the tabernacle and our church

       Moses was on Mt. Sinai 40 days and 40 nights receiving instructions from God on the building of the tabernacle and order of worship, duties of the priests, etc.  Jesus was in the wilderness 40 days and 40 nights where he fasted and prayed before beginning His work of building His church.
       Moses did not force the people to make offerings toward the building of the tabernacle.  The Lord doesn’t force us to work in building His church (our church) today.  It is a privilege to take advantage of.
       The building of the tabernacle didn’t happen overnight.  The project consumed their lives for many months!  Exodus 19:1-3 tells us that Moses “went up unto God” “in the third month” after they left Egypt.  And then in Exodus 40:17 we are told, “in the first month in the second year, on the first day of the month” the tabernacle was raised up.  Imagine how excited they were to finally see the fruits of their labors!  I can imagine that those who were not involved were excited, too, but I think some of them probably wished they had done more!  Our church is not going to grow overnight.  You know how exciting it is to see visitors come that you have invited!  Those of us who go out on visitation are excited and encouraged when we see the fruits of that labor.  Kathy is a direct result of that ministry.  We were faithful in going and the Lord was faithful in bringing her in!
       The building of the tabernacle took a personal sacrifice on the part of the people.  It wasn’t going to build itself.  The work of this church is also about sacrifice.  A sacrifice of our time, talents and abilities (our jewels).  God will use anyone willing to work for Him, while there are some things that He only wants men or women to do specifically, He will put anyone to work for Him that has a willing heart to do so. In fact, He gives us the skills and talents we have to be used for Him at any given time. Ephesians 4:11,12 reads,  “And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”
       The tabernacle was all about the sacrifice made by the priest to cover the sins of the people.  The church is all about the sacrifice Jesus made (our high priest) to not just cover but take away the sins of people.
Jesus Christ is the heart of every Christian.  Those who faithfully serve Him do so willingly.  The word willingly means, of our own free will.  We have the opportunity to see some amazing blessings in our lives.
1 Corinthians 2:9  says, “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.”  Let’s all examine ourselves and give willingly of our jewels to the Lord’s work!

Lord, thank You for the privilege of serving You.  You have given all of us certain talents and abilities.  All You are looking for is a willing heart to serve so You can do mighty things through your humble servants.  Lord, lead and guide and prepare our hearts to be eager to diligently study Your Word so that we can effectively serve You in the areas of Your calling. We love You and ask this in Jesus’ name. Amen.