Posts Tagged tabernacle

Serving God by Assisting Eli – 1 Samuel 3

Okay a few cool things I noticed today in 1 Samuel chapter 3.

First was how Samuel served the Lord by assisting Eli. Verse 3 says: “Meanwhile, the boy Samuel served the Lord by assisting Eli.”

Later in this chapter, we find out that Samuel didn’t even know the Lord yet (see verse 7). Yet, he was “serving the Lord” by assisting Eli. I read this and thought to myself how complicated I try to make things. Sometimes serving the Lord is as simple as doing well what He’s asked us to do in the place He has put us. I’m sure being an assistant to a priest was not the most glamorous job in the day, but this is how Samuel served God.

The next thing I noticed is the fact that God called Samuel. While it’s true that God does use you and me to evangelize and spread the good news, there are a few times in scripture when God does the calling all by Himself.  Certainly, the story of the conversion of Saul to Paul is a great example. Paul thought he was doing God a favor by persecuting a little religious movement called The Way, but God had different ideas. Saul did not come to God on his own – God called him. Jesus called people during His time on earth, too. When the Son of God comes up to you and says, “Follow Me” that’s a pretty good example of God calling you directly.

Here, we see a kind of humorous calling from God to Samuel – late at night while he was sleeping. After the third time of being awakened in the night, Eli, being wise, finally recognized this as the calling of God and had to tell Samuel how to respond (because Samuel did not yet know God).

Which is is another cool thing I noticed in today’s chapter. We often need those older and wiser in the faith to point things out to us. That’s why it’s so important for each of us to have a Christian “sage” in your life.

I love the last part of this chapter. It’s encouraging to read how Samuel grew up with the Lord:

“As Samuel grew up, the Lord was with him, and everything Samuel said proved to be reliable. And all Israel, from Dan in the north to Beersheba in the south, knew that Samuel was confirmed as a prophet of the Lord. The Lord continued to appear at Shiloh and gave messages to Samuel there at the Tabernacle.”

At first I was thinking about how cool it would have been to have been raised in the Temple with the priest, and how much I could have learned. However, I re-read this passage and see that Eli is not even mentioned – well, except for how he did not discipline his sons, and how God was going to reign down in judgement on him and his family. So, Samuel grew up and THE LORD was with him.

We can walk with God – every minute of every day. It’s what God wants for us. Yet, how simple is it to get distracted or busy and not spend the day with Him? I love John Eldredge’s book entitled, “Walking With God”. This book has some helpful insight into how to walk with God in really practical ways.

Lord, I want to serve you where you’ve put me – even though sometimes it seems like I could be doing something a bit more glamorous. Forgive my pride. Thank you that I have wise “sages” speaking life into me. And, today, I choose to walk with You.

peace,
e

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Resting Place of God – Psalms 132

Resting Place of God - Psalms 132Today, I find myself thinking about the resting place of God. We see in Psalms 132, today’s chapter, that Solomon, David’s very wise son, reflects on how diligent his father was in finding that resting place for God.

1 O Lord, remember David and all the hardships he endured. 2 He swore an oath to the Lord and made a vow to the Mighty One of Jacob: 3 “I will not enter my house or go to my bed– 4 I will allow no sleep to my eyes, no slumber to my eyelids, 5 till I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.” 6 We heard it in Ephrathah, we came upon it in the fields of Jaar: 7 “Let us go to his dwelling place; let us worship at his footstool– 8 arise, O Lord, and come to your resting place, you and the ark of your might.

As you may recall from reading 1 Samuel, David set up the first tabernacle and God resided there, in the Holy of Holies. This place was sacred ground where no one but the high priest could come once a year to plead for forgiveness and blessing for his people, and then only after a through ritual of sacrifice, cleansing and purification.

When Jesus Christ gave Himself up as the sacrifice for the sins of man, the veil that separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the temple was ripped from top to bottom. This signifies that no longer is a high priest required to talk to God on our behalf – but now we get the new priviledge of entering God’s presence ourselves – because of what Christ did.

So now, the temple, or tabernacle, has moved inside us as believers who have accepted the gift of the Holy Spirit. He now resides in us and works through us. How much greater is that? How much more valuable is that then even being able to visit Him in some fancy temple somewhere? We don’t have to travel long distance, we don’t have to wait in line, we don’t have to bother with any of that – He is right there! In You!

Now – having said all that – think about what this chapter says about David’s toil to find a resting place for God. David is quoted as saying, “I will not enter my house or go to my bed– I will allow no sleep to my eyes, no slumber to my eyelids, till I find a place for the Lord, a dwelling for the Mighty One of Jacob.”

I’m so grateful He is a God of mercy because there are times I’m so tired, I don’t even think about praying before I crash at night. The encouragement for me today is to become more reverant about this holy temple that God now chooses to reside in – my body. I feel God calling me to take better care of my body, and not run myself so ragged so that I just collapse at the end of the day with no thought of the Holy Spirit living inside me before I allow sleep to my eyes and slumber to my eyelids.

Thank You for your word, Lord.

grace & peace,
e

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