Every man of the children of Israel shall pitch by his own standard, with the ensign of their father's house: far off about the tabernacle of the congregation shall they pitch. ~Numbers 2:2
The Book of Numbers derives its name from God's meticulous numbering of the men and tribes of Israel after they left Egypt. This numbering encourages me that God pays careful attention to everyone. In Numbers 2, the entire chapter is devoted to the description of the Tabernacle of God, which needed to be center stage for Israel. All twelve tribes were commanded to camp around the Tabernacle, with three tribes positioned to the east, south, west, and north. This morning, let us meditate on the importance of God’s presence being center stage for us.
There is the significance of the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle represented the presence of God. It was where God met with the high priest, who represented the people to God. It was where atonement was made for sin. It was where the burnt offering occurred, which represented the dedication of the believer. It was where the holiness of God was emphasized. Without the Tabernacle, Israel had no life. Without the Tabernacle, Israel was exempt from the power and blessing of God. The service of the Tabernacle was continuous. All the duties of the priests and the high priest were to be done carefully and reverently. The Tabernacle reminded the people about the ongoing responsibility to worship and reverence God. It served as an integral and indispensable role in the life of Israel. In a similar way, we cannot function apart from God’s presence in our life.
There is the centrality of the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle commanded its presence to be center stage. The tribes pitched their tents around the Tabernacle. Three tribes would be positioned at all four critical positions. They built their lives around God’s presence! Their lives revolved around the special days, rituals, and ceremonies of the Tabernacle. They had little problem remembering to make God their first priority. Their tents faced the Tabernacle. Their children would have to pass by it every day. It was located where no one would miss it. The secret to a fruitful and enduring Christian life comes from building our life around God and not trying to build God around us. The Tabernacle reminded them that God must judge sin and that they needed to be circumspect in what they did and how they conducted themselves. Does the presence of God have center stage in your life? Is it evident that you have been with Jesus?
There is the service of the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle and the tribes required continuous service. The service of the Tabernacle involved everyone on different levels. Where God’s presence is, there must be the service of His people. We serve Him through worship, singing, sacrifices, offerings, care, and attention to God's facility. The Tabernacle had a higher priority than a person’s home. It was the place where God met with man. Being in God's presence must be a place where we are always ready for God to do something great. One of the best ways we can delight ourselves in God’s presence is by serving Him. Are you serving the Lord? At what level are you serving Him? Is there an area of service that you have devoted to God on a weekly basis?
Let’s be conscious of God’s presence in our life and for our life. Let’s make sure that His presence is always center stage.
Have a God-centered God Morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Luke 8-9