Monday, February 20, 2012

Anointing, Consecrating, Meeting




Scripture

Now on the day that Moses had finished setting up the tabernacle, he anointed it and consecrated it with all its furnishings and the altar and all its utensils; he anointed them and consecrated them also.
(Numbers 7:1 NASB)
Now when Moses went into the tent of meeting to speak with Him, he heard the voice speaking to him from above the mercy seat that was on the ark of the testimony, from between the two cherubim, so He spoke to him.
(Numbers 7:89 NASB)

Observation

Moses and the children of Israel followed all of God's instructions and built the tabernacle. God's intention was that his presence would be there in the midst of his people. I imagine a loving parent that wants to live right in the middle of their children, sharing with them day in and day out in their lives. The tabernacle was completed and it was time to put on the finishing touches. First of all Moses anointed the the tabernacle, along with all of the furnishings, the altar and all the utensils. They were made holy by the anointing. God was going to come and live there! God, whose very nature is pure holy love was going to dwell in the tabernacle and therefore everything around him had to be made holy as well. Moses followed the instructions that he had been given because he wanted God's presence to be among the people.

After anointing the items, he consecrated them. They had been made holy, but now they were being consecrated for the purpose which they were to fulfill. That is, everything in the temple had a particular purpose or function. Every item was consecrated and designated to fulfill the purpose for which it was created. There was no doubt as to the function, for it was all made clear.

Finally, after all of this was completed Moses went into the tent of meeting to speak with God. There seems to be no surprise that God is present and his voice is heard speaking to Moses directly. The specific description of the placement of the voice of God places God directly in the room with Moses. It is in this place that Moses and God share intimate, life-changing, fellowship.

Application

There is something in this pattern -- the anointing, the consecration and the meeting that moves beyond the realm of material goods in the house of the Lord. When Christ dies on the cross, the curtain to the holy of holies is torn in two. The home of God moves from a singular physical place to the very heart of mankind. Therefore the process which we see occurring with the Israelites in regard to a tabernacle becomes very real for each of us as followers of Christ. We are invited into the type of intimate fellowship with God which Moses experienced, and this is accomplished in a pattern mirroring that of the tabernacle.

First of all there is an anointing of ourselves by the Holy Spirit. When the Holy Spirit is allowed to fill every nook and cranny of our being, then we are anointed and made a holy people. It is only by being a holy people that we can exist in the presence of a holy God. Therefore, it is God's desire that we be holy. The Israelites had to bring the items to the tabernacle and anoint them for them to be made holy. We must present ourselves wholeheartedly before God and allow the cleansing power of his Holy Spirit to wash over us and make us pure and holy.

Next there is an act on our part and that is one of consecration. That is, giving up of ourselves and our personal desires and presenting ourselves as instruments of service before God. That is, realizing that our very existence is one of service to him and allowing God to craft us into instruments for his purposes. Here is where our lives come to completion, or perfection. We fulfill the purpose for which God has created us. Each lampstand, dish and bowl had a separate purpose in the tabernacle, but combined they created an incredible experience of worship to God.

Finally, when we are anointed and consecrated we are invited into intimacy with God such as we have never imagined. Yes, we can literally describe the location of his voice for he is so very near to us, and we are invited on a daily basis into the very holy of holies to share with God. This is God's intent and purpose for each and every single one of us -- an anointing, consecration and an on-going meeting. Yes, it is possible, even today!

Prayer

Lord, thank you for the possibilities of an intimate relationship with you because of all that Christ has done for us! Amen.

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