Today’s reading is Exodus 25-27, Psalm 90, and Philippians 1.
In our reading from Exodus we learn about God’s detailed instructions to Moses for the creation and construction of the Ark of the Covenant to hold the Ten Commandments, the Tabernacle, and related structures. We also read Psalm 90 which many to believe to be the oldest Psalm and the one given credit for being authored by Moses with 73 Psalms being credited to David, 12 to a musical director Asaph, and 12 to the sons of Korah with another approximately 50 being anonymous. To me this Psalm from Moses reads much like it could have come from Ecclesiastes where Solomon speaks about the vanity of life and the only true purpose and meaning is in God.
Yes, the Tabernacle is built, but Moses wants the people to know in Psalm 90:1, and he also states the same in his final words and blessings before his death to the tribe of Asher is Deuteronomy 33:27, that Lord is their true “dwelling place.” He has been with them all along. This is further established and is finalized with Christ’s crucifixion and Resurrection that we know that God now dwells with us and in our hearts. This is illustrated by the Temple curtain being torn when Jesus died (Matthew 27:51, Mark 15:38, Luke 23:45), signifying that there is no longer separation between God and man.
With this established that God is with us and even in us, the rest of Psalm 90 and Paul’s writing in Philippians 1 instruct us to make the most of our days and live for Him. A few years ago I developed my own personal purpose (or mission) statement which is “To impact others by helping them live life to the fullest.” The foundation of this comes from John 10:10. This challenges me to make the most of each day despite my circumstances and that life is not about me, but is instead about impacting others and glorifying Him through my words and actions which is not as easy as it sounds. I could not help but see a similar theme in Psalm 90 and Philippians 1.
Here are some of the verses that speak to this…
12 So teach us to number our days
that we may get a heart of wisdom.
13 Return, O Lord! How long?
Have pity on your servants!
14 Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love,
that we may rejoice and be glad all our days.
15 Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
and for as many years as we have seen evil.
16 Let your work be shown to your servants,
and your glorious power to their children.
17 Let the favor[a] of the Lord our God be upon us,
and establish the work of our hands upon us;
yes, establish the work of our hands!
9 And it is my prayer that your love may abound more and more, with knowledge and all discernment, 10 so that you may approve what is excellent, and so be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God.
20 as it is my eager expectation and hope that I will not be at all ashamed, but that with full courage now as always Christ will be honored in my body, whether by life or by death. 21 For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. 22 If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me. Yet which I shall choose I cannot tell.
He should and will be glorified through whatever our circumstances may be. Not only are we to accept this, but we are to embrace and want Him to be glorified through whatever hardships we are going through. This is not easy, and we must remind ourselves each day that life is not about us and our individual wants and desires…it’s about the impact we can have on others for His glory. And through those hardships and challenges let us trust in Him and remember what Paul tells us in Philippians 1:6
6 And I am sure of this, that he who began a good work in you will bring it to completion at the day of Jesus Christ.
Just like the Tabernacle and the Ark of the Covenant, and I would say very much more so, He created us with thought and purpose for this reason.
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.