Stirred Hearts

Stirred Hearts

by Jeffrey Rosario  |  October 28, 2013

Last Sabbath I heard a sermon about a fascinating invitation that God gave to the Israelites as they journeyed through the desert en route to the Promised Land.

God invited them to provide the building materials in order for the sanctuary to be built. We’re talking gold, silver, and precious stones (Exodus 35:4-9). Yet their gifts were only accepted if they came from “willing hearts” (v. 5).

The irony of it all is that these Israelites had just come out of several generations of slavery in Egypt. For about four hundred years they were nothing but the property of others. It seems ridiculous to think that God would ask them to provide the treasures with which to build His house! You’d think that they would be the last people you could count on.

Where were they supposed to get the treasures from? The answer is found several chapters earlier. In Exodus 12:35 we read that before the Israelites left Egypt, the Egyptians themselves gave them treasures to take with them on their way out. So God didn’t ask of them what they could not give. Before He asked them, He placed the gifts in their hands!

When the people heard this invitation, their hearts were “stirred” and they came bringing their gifts (Exodus 35:21; 36:2). They were so excited to contribute that eventually Moses told them to stop because “the material they had was sufficient for all the work to be done––indeed too much” (Exodus 36:7). There was no pulling teeth. It was a privilege to contribute to God’s temple.

So God didn’t ask of them what they could not give. Before He asked them, He placed the gifts in their hands!

It’s a beautiful story. And it all comes together in the New Testament. In Ephesians 2:21, Paul says that we are God’s “building” and “holy temple.” Then in chapter 4 he uses the analogy of the body. We are members of the body of Christ. We have all received a “measure of Christ’s gift” (Ephesians 4:7). Those gifts are to be used for the building up of the body, or the temple, which is the church.

We all have a part to play in the body of Jesus, “from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love” (Ephesians 4:16).

We’re like those Israelite slaves. God is asking for our gifts. But He’s not asking us to give what we don’t have. All we have to offer is what has been placed in our hands by the very God who is inviting us to contribute. So may our hearts, as the Israelites of old, be “stirred” from the amazing privilege of knowing that God is counting on us to contribute to the building up of His house!

Jeffrey Rosario Speaker
Light Bearers
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  • Greg Bartlett

    Yes Jeffery , and the biggest gift he gives us is time .its way easier to give money , it’s hard to separate people from there time . God says greater love has no man , than he lay down his life ( or paraphrased ) take time out of your busy life for others

  • Michael Smit

    Great article brother. Has given me much clarity in regards to my future. Blessings!

  • Ruthie Flynn

    Yesssssssss–the very best gift we can give is our TIME–because that truly is our LIFE–moment by moment. We give our time to what we treasure the most–and where our treasure is, there will our heart be also.

  • Ashlee Wilkin

    Thanks Jeffrey for sharing. Praise God for showing you this! Tonight I am attending the second of 8 meetings on identifying your spiritual gifts. This is such a beautiful parallel to share with others who will be at the meeting. God is so good! May He continue to bless you. Sincerely, Ashlee Wilkin

  • JC

    Amen! I’ve experienced this in my life. When God calls , He provides.

  • Steve King

    Thanks, Jeffery!
    And the warning signs are very clear! It is time! In this landslide of secularism and compromise, may we not only be prudent with our time but also sacrificial with our treasures that when we leave this place, ALL will be totally used up. Always be ready, always put God ahead of everything that we shall not be moved, caught, trapped, tricked, or fooled by the devil.

  • Amen. We all have a “place” in the church here and now just as we have a “place” in the kingdom of God in the future. When i experience daily, Jesus as my sin-pardoning redeemer and ask for his grace in my bankrupt heart, He comes in to help me find my “place” organically. As God, through His Spirit, leads me to my “place”, I will know it… for it is where i have belonged all along. For we are Gods workmanship which were created UNTO good works “that we should walk in them”. Each one of us ALREADY has a place of belonging that we are designed to fit into. This is the ultimate sense of self-actualization and brings with it joy and fulfillment on a level that cant be obtained otherwise. Let it not be said of me or any one of us on that last day that “…and there was no place found for them”.

  • Leslie

    True. All thanks and glory be to GOD in Jesus name with the Holy Spirit. Amen.