“On the day when Moses had finished setting up the tabernacle and had anointed and consecrated it… the chiefs of Israel, heads of their fathers’ houses, chiefs of the tribes,.. brought their offerings before the Lord, six wagons and twelve oxen, a wagon for every two of the chiefs, and for each one an ox. They brought them before the tabernacle… [Nahshon the son of Amminadab, of the tribe of Judah] offered his offering the first day...one silver plate whose weight was 130 shekels, one silver basin of 70 shekels, both of them full of fine flour mixed with oil for a grain offering; one golden dish of 10 shekels, full of incense; one bull from the herd, one ram, one male lamb a year old, for a burnt offering; one male goat for a sin offering; and for the sacrifice of peace offerings, two oxen, five rams, five male goats, and five male lambs a year old…
“This was the dedication offering for the altar on the day when it was anointed, from the chiefs of Israel: twelve silver plates, twelve silver basins, twelve golden dishes full of incense;.. all the cattle for the burnt offering twelve bulls, twelve rams, twelve male lambs a year old, with their grain offering; and twelve male goats for a sin offering; and all the cattle for the sacrifice of peace offerings twenty-four bulls, the rams sixty, the male goats sixty, the male lambs a year old sixty.” Numbers 7:1-3,12-17,84,86-88
Moses finished setting up the tabernacle, all the detailed work was complete, all its furnishings were anointed and consecrated, yet there was no “eat, drink and be merry.” The dedication of God’s tabernacle stirred dedication in Israel’s leaders to manifest in generous, measured, orderly contribution for the Lord’s ongoing work. Rather than sitting back to luxuriate in satisfaction and rest, or even to pat on the back and give lip-service to a job well done, they came with gifts unto the One Who had provided for it all. Imagine each tribe’s chief, anticipating his day, carefully weighing, counting, preparing, as the offerings were brought forth day after day for twelve days. The rhythm and beauty of this bounty was music to the LORD’s ears as He hovered above the mercy seat. (Numbers 7:89; Ecclesiastes 2:24; 3:13; 5:18; Luke 12:19)
How does the music resound with me? Is the incense of this sacrifice pleasing to my heart? Are there times when I choose to rest in laurels, or sigh in resignation after hard work, only to leave it unfinished? Am I determining ‘closing time,’ or do I seek my Lord’s every request of me and give, and give more, so His work can continue? Do I count a simple consecration of myself to Him enough, and fail to move forward to complete the offering, which might require more of my time, my effort, my resources, than I’d originally anticipated? “Choose this day whom you will serve. But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.” (Joshua 24:15)
Father, thank You for Your finished work that enables me to finish mine. Help me keep a loose grip on all You have given me, contributing it freely and gratefully to You for Your service and glory.