Search By Scripture
One of the most loved Psalms of the Bible is Psalm 23. In it, David speaks of fellowship with God in the daily experiences of life. He finds God preparing a table for him which speaks of nourishment and fellowship. A table signifies satisfaction. It also signifies fellowship, a kind of oneness. There is a saying like this: “The crown of fellowship is eating together.” The feasts of Israel are times of fellowship around a meal. Jesus often reclined with people around the table. The New Testament commands us as Believers to show hospitality to everyone, but especially to those who cannot return the favor. According to the predictions of the Bible there is yet a great time of fellowship still ahead at the marriage supper of the Lamb. In the experience of Israel, we see that in the place of meeting, the Tabernacle, the LORD designed a table, THE TABLE OF FELLOWSHIP. The description is given to us in Exodus 25:23-30.
I give you this short introduction to remind you of the big picture. God’s plan will be accomplished, He was working then, and He still is at work despite how things appear. I thank you again for joining us on Hope for Today, let’s go now with Bible teacher, J Mark, for a closer look at today’s lesson.
Genuine hope can only be experienced when we are in the right relationship with God. Our greatest need is to hear what the LORD has said. The text for the teaching that follows is important because, in it, God commands Israel to make a dwelling place for Him. Perhaps that sounds strange to you because King Solomon said to God, “the heaven of heavens cannot contain You.” The Prophet Isaiah, speaking for the LORD, said, “The heaven is My throne, and the earth is My footstool.” How then could God dwell in a structure made by man? God planned to live among His people, Israel. We cannot question that the LORD chose a particular people to whom He related in a special way. He is sovereign, He makes His choices, and He doesn’t need to give us the reasons for His choices. From earlier chapters in Exodus, we saw how the LORD led Israel out of Egypt and brought them to Mt. Sinai. There God led them into a covenant relationship with Him. He needed a people through whom He could reveal Himself to all of humanity. So, Moses on the mountain, in the presence of the LORD, received the instructions for all the details of a place for God to dwell among His people. This place would be called the Tabernacle. God’s relationship with Israel was to be visible. He commanded Moses to build the Tabernacle with all of its furniture and various vessels as visible proof that God was, in fact, “living” among His people. Moses received from God the patterns and detailed instructions to present to the people in PREPARING FOR GOD’S DWELLING. In Exodus 25:1-9 we are introduced to the materials.
After Israel came out of Egypt under Moses’ leadership they camped at Mt. Sinai. This is an outstanding moment in human history because God came down on Mt. Sinai to meet with His people. No other gods have ever met with their followers in this way. There on the mountain, God gave them the Law so they would know how to live. That Law is good for all people everywhere. It was intended to be the Law of God and people everywhere are expected to pay attention to it, respect it and obey what the LORD has spoken. It is this Law that shows us our need for Christ. The Bible tells us “No one has seen God at any time.” In this Scripture from Exodus, Moses and the elders of Israel did not see God face to face, but they saw that under His feet was a pavement of brilliant stone. I believe they were seeing a reflection of God’s Shekinah glory. When God spoke from Mt. Sinai the people of Israel trembled with fear and stood at the further end of the camp. They were afraid of God’s presence. Now, on this occasion, the leaders are APPROACHING GOD’S PRESENCE as recorded in Exodus 24:9-18.
Moses had a special calling, a special responsibility above that of Israel’s other leaders. Those leaders had a God-ordained calling above that of the people. The Israelites had a calling and responsibility that other nations did not have. See how God initiates this covenant.