EXODUS 35, JOHN 14, PROVERBS 11, EPHESIANS 4

Exodus 35:5-9
If it seems you have read this before, you have.  It is not deja vu.  Exodus 35-39 and Exodus 25-30 are very similar.  To see for yourself, compare Exodus 25:2-7 to Exodus 35:5-9.

In Exodus 25-30, God is giving Moses the details of the construction of the tabernacle and the necessary components of worship.  In Exodus 35-39, Moses and the people of Israel are doing precisely what God said to do. 

Reading these next five chapters will seem redundant, but there are some great pearls in the text.  Like today, aren't you amazed at how a nation of slaves could supply so much valuable material for the tabernacle?  God fulfilled His promise to Abraham in Genesis 15:13-14, "Then the LORD said to Abram, “Know for certain that your offspring will be sojourners in a land that is not theirs and will be servants there, and they will be afflicted for four hundred years.  But I will bring judgment on the nation that they serve, and afterward they shall come out with great possessions."  In Exodus 3:21-22, He reaffirmed the promise to Moses and the Israelites did plunder the Egyptians in Exodus 12:36. 

Also, notice verse 21, "they came, everyone whose heart stirred him, and everyone whose spirit moved him, and brought the LORD's contribution."  Who stirs the heart and makes the spirit willing?  What is God really after in giving?  A willing heart, not a legal demand.  Check out Exodus 36:5-7 to see what happened. 

Proverbs 11:23-27
Reading Proverbs 10-30 is a section of scripture where, if I am not careful, my mind can wander.  If you find this true for you, I do not have any advice on how to remain focused.  However, I do have one suggestion: when a verse uniquely catches your attention, stop and back up a few verses and see if a flow of thought becomes apparent.

In today's reading, verse 24, "One gives freely, yet grows all the richer" jumps out at me.  I suspect it has to do with knowing "It is more blessed to give than receive" (Acts 20:35).  But by going back a few verses and reading through the passage, a topic becomes obvious. 

Verse 23 says good comes from the desire of the righteous.  Verse 24 says giving does not deplete riches. Verse 25 says by blessing others; I will be blessed.  Verse 27 says if I seek good, I will find good. 

In those four verses, God's wisdom tells me it is proper to do good for others and in the process not only will they be blessed, but so will I.  By seeking to do good, I will find good.  Examining the other half of these verses tells me the pursuit of the opposite leads to wrath, want, and evil. 

I hope and pray this method of reading these passages helps.

Father, I confess my mind is quick to wander, but I want Your wisdom.  Holy Spirit, You directed these passages to be a part of Your Word.  You know what I need for the day.  Please give me eyes to see what pearls You are laying before me.

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