Reading #1 – Exodus 39
Reading #2 – Psalms 71
Reading #3 – Proverbs 9
Reading #4 – Jonah 3
Reading #5 – 2 Corinthians 10
Exodus 39 – The Priestly Garments. The last item to be made was the priestly garments. The purpose of the garment was to give dignity and honor to the Priest. The colors of the vestment were blue, purple, and scarlet (2). Blue represents the G_D’s commands. Purple is for royalty. Scarlet is for war and sacrifice. Putting these three colors together was a reminder that for the priest to be successful in his life and ministry, he had to abide by G_d’s laws. The priest was royalty among the nation and he had to carry himself according to G_d’s laws so that his sons and the nation would know the clear defined difference between the world’s ways and G_d’s (1). The sacrificial animals given belonged to someone so the priest had to respect them. The ephod that the High Priest wore had 12 stones on them which was a reminder of who the priest served and who would be affected by his choices (8-14). The robe was made of blue and would have a hem around the collar and the base so that it would not become frayed. At the bottom of the robe, pomegranates made out of blue and bells made of gold (23-26). The turban was the crown and had a gold plate that said: “Holy to the Lord” (28-31). Once this was completed, the items were brought to Moses for inspection (42-43).
Psalm 71 – Prayer of an Old Man for Rescue. When we first put our trust in the Lord, it is an act of faith. When we see the Lord do something in our life, that faith grows (1). The writer was in trouble but not of his doing. When an individual is the originator of his/her trouble, he/she inherits the tornadoes in his/her life (Proverbs 11:28). This writer outlines his concerns for the problems he is facing and is asking for deliverance which is aligned with Jesus’ model of prayer (2-4, Matthew 6:9-13). When we seek the Lord’s help only as a last resort after all of our wealth, power, and charm have been to no avail, our hope will be an illusion rather than a life-sustaining power or “faith”. The writer had seen the Lord’s work over his life from his youth to old age and never once had the Lord failed him (5-7, Psalms 37:23-26). The enemy that was confronting the aged king thought “we’ve got him now and he will pay dearly” forgot one major thing about him and that was, “David knew the Lord G_d and walked in obedience to him and this would be the turning point in the battle (17-24).
Proverbs 9 – Wisdom’s Invitation. This character Wisdom, unlike her anti-thesis “Folly”, developed and built her house with tested and proven materials. The strength of her house rests on seven pillars or, “perfectly balanced” (1). The implication is that no matter where you go in her house, it always be secure and there is no hidden agenda for the unsuspecting individual (6 compared to 16-18). When an individual accepts Wisdom’s invitation, it is life-changing only if the person allows it to be (3-5). So, if the invitee comes only for the flowing words and succulent meal, he/she will leave as empty as they were when they arrived at Wisdom’s house.
Jonah 3 – Nineveh Repents. Jonah, the reluctant prophet, arrived in Nineveh and proclaimed the coming judgment from G_d for the nation’s sinfulness (1-4). When Jonah’s message reached the King of Nineveh, a proclamation went out calling for a nationwide day of repentance (5-9). This singular act showed the Lord “we care and we are sorry” and the coming destruction did not happen at that time (10).
2 Corinthians 10 – Paul Describes Himself. Paul had outlined his concern for the church and the direction many had taken it in a letter. The problem with the letter is that it can be misconstrued to be an attempt at “hiding behind the curtain” (1). The thing is, Paul deeply loved the church trouble-makers and all and would have rather written an “I love you” with flowing words than to hit at the core of what was going on. The hope was, the people would have stood up and listened and changed the direction they were taking (2). The problem is, walking in the admonition of the Lord is not a matter of “I love you so I will overlook your indiscretions”, it is a matter of standing on the truths of G_d’s work and walking in obedience so that we are not hindered by sin and this was what Paul trying to get across (3-4). Of course, there are sophisticated arguments that appear on the surface to be true and wise but are, in truth, an empty box waiting to collapse under the weight (5-6). The people who were walking in disobedience put the argument that “Paul’s a blowhard, don’t listen to him” not realizing koinonia will compel the Shephard to do whatever was necessary to protect the flock from the goatherders (7-11). Paul knew without a doubt who he was in Christ Jesus and had no need for a polished resume’ to prove his authenticity or the headship he held by G_d’s authority (12-13). The reason for not overstating his limits is that his message would be lost in the sounds of bluster and bluff (14-18).