Monthly Archives: September 2010

33. Your genuine faith is more precious than gold

Last time we had a look at how God wants to say 'I love you' in a very special way. He wants to bless us with flowers that will never fade away in His Presence in the Temple. He wants us so close to Him that He can flow through us and produce even more flowers that can never fade away, flowers that will have eternal value.

Now today I want us to explore the entrance and the engravings in the Temple further. As I've mentioned last time, basically everything was overlaid with gold.

Gold is a symbol of wealth; it resembles kings and all their glory. Gold is the underlying wealth of all monetary value. The amount of gold that one has truly reflects your wealth. The prosperity of the kings in the Old Testament was truly measured by the amount of gold that they had. And the kings were truly overflowing with riches when even their clothing was woven with it:

"The royal daughter is all glorious within the palace; her clothing is woven with gold." Psalm 45:13

So when God's wealth and splendor is depicted and explained to our frail brains, gold is used as a way for us to understand the infinite riches that He possesses. When the New Jerusalem is described it is not surprising that an overwhelming amount of gold is mentioned:

"The construction of its wall was of jasper; and the city was pure gold, like clear glass." Revelation 21:18

A whole city made of gold. Wow! Our limited minds cannot fathom the expanse of God's overwhelming richness and glory. I think the golden image was given to us, so that we can try and comprehend in a small way the wonders of God. But I think it is so much more, so much deeper and intricately woven, that we won't understand it now. But it excites me to know that there is more, it flutters within me knowing that our God cannot be fathomed by our restricted minds. Gold is just a miniature piece displaying who our God really is!

Now as wonderful as gold is, it is amazing to read in 1 Peter 1:7 that God says that the genuineness of our faith is more important to Him than gold. He wants us to be genuine when we approach Him. He wants us to be honest, frank and open. The gold means nothing to Him. It reflects a small part of His glory, but it doesn't mean anything to Him. Our honest faith is all that matters now.

I realize now what God wants to tell us with the gold in the Temple. The gold is there to lure us in. It is there to bring us closer to Him. Nowhere in the outer court is gold, only from the entrance onwards. And the reason is, because God wants to attract us closer to Him. It reveals a part of His character, and it reveals His authority as King. And once there, He wants us to be genuine and honest with Him. He wants us to lay our souls bare and to talk to Him. He wants us to just 'be' in His presence and to trust Him with everything. He wants our total surrender.

What attracts you to God? What about Him blows your mind? Go and think about it this week. Tell God and talk with Him about how amazing He is. Glorify Him in everything you do and exalt His Name on high. Then be open and honest with Him. Tell Him what you are worried about, tell Him what your concerns are and even tell Him if you are disappointed with 'Christianity'. Open up to Him, it means more to Him than all the gold in the Universe. His children coming to Him and being close to Him is all that He wants.

Come and enter into the Temple, all the answers are there, all the comfort and all the love. You simply need to enter in.

Father Your Temple is truly glorious. It is so wonderful! Thank you so much that we are allowed to enter in. Thank you that Jesus opened the way for us. We praise Him on high! And we glorify Your Name. Amen

 

 

 

95. Easter 2019

It is Easter and I am once again reminded of how much God loves us. He gave up His most precious Son, in order to have us as His sons and daughters. And as His sons and daughters, we have access to His liberal fountain of love. Psalm 36:7-9 in the Passion Translation displays this perfectly:

"O God, how extravagant is Your cherishing love! All mankind can find a hiding place under the shadow of Your wings. All may drink of the anointing from the abundance of Your house. All may drink their fill from the delightful springs of Eden. To know You is to experience a flowing fountain, drinking in Your life, springing up to satisfy."

Isn't it beautiful? We can find a hiding place from all terror, all crime, all stress under the shadow of His wings. But notice that it says 'under the shadow'. To be under someone's shadow, one needs to be close to him. And that is exactly what God desires. We can be His children, but not necessarily be close to Him. But that is His heart's desire, our closeness to Him. He wants us to experience Him as He truly is and He wants us to experience His unconditional love up close and personal.

It is when we are up close and personal that we can drink from the anointing of the abundance of His house. We can drink our fill from the delightful springs of Eden. We will never thirsty, but we will be hydrated, ready to take on anything that the world might throw at us.

Then when we spend the time with Him and in His Word, we get to know Him, truly know Him and His heart beat for this world. It is then that we experience a soothing flowing fountain springing up inside of us. This fountain will provide life for us as it should be and we will be satisfied. We will have true Shalom, the way things ought to be. We will be content with where we are and with what we have, we will be filled to the brim with Him and more and more of Him. Hallelujah! We will have our heart's desires because it will be in line with His heartbeat.

And all this is ours because Jesus died on the cross. Life in abundance is there for the taking because Jesus opened the way for us. We have free access to the delightful springs of Eden, preserved for the sons and daughters of the Most High. We can commune in His presence and spend quality time with Him, because the veil was torn. And there in His presence are the answers of all of life's questions. There is all that we need for our time here on earth. There is all the wisdom, health, peace, wellness and strength that we need. We simply need to enter in.

Are you ready to enter in? Are you ready to experience so much more in this life? It is freely available to you, Jesus opened the way. He is the way, the truth and the life. Take His hand and allow Him to lead you on His destined road for you. So many Christians wander off the best pathway for their lives. Do not allow that to happen to you. Stay close to Him, He will lead and guide you. He wants what is best for you. Trust in Him, give over to Him and allow Him to breathe His life into you. He wants to; you simply need to allow Him.

Father, thank you for sending Your precious Son to us. Thank you that we can rejoice and honor Him! Thank you that He opened the way for us to enter into Your holy presence. It is such an honor and a privilege and yet we take it for granted so many times. We are sorry and want to stay under the shadow of Your wings. There we are safe and secure, able to drink of the fountain of life. Hallelujah! We praise and honor You! Amen

32. See the spiritual flowers in your life

Last week we had a wonderful revelation of the meaning of the two pillars in front of the Temple. It is so amazing to see that all the symbolism surrounding the Temple is there to draw people closer to God. That is His hearts' desire. To have people close to Him. And when we are close to Him, life will make sense and we can have a clearer view of what is going on in our lives.

Today I want us to have a look at the entrance of the Temple:

"The two doors were of olive wood; and he carved on them figures of cherubim, palm trees, and open flowers, and overlaid them with gold; and he spread gold on the cherubim and on the palm trees." 1 Kings 7:32

Again symbolism is locked in the carvings used. In fact the whole Temple inside had these three symbols namely cherubim, palm trees and open flowers.

We have looked at the meanings behind the cherubim and the palm trees, so today we will have a look at the open flowers. The Bible talks a lot about flowers. Let us have a look at a couple of verses and see to what conclusion we can come.

"I am the rose of Sharon, and the lily of the valleys." Song of Solomon 2:1

"The flowers appear on the earth; the time of singing has come, and the voice of the turtledove is heard in our land." Song of Solomon 2:12

If we look at these two verses Jesus compares Himself to the rose of Sharon. And in His love language for His bride He mentions flowers quite often. Today we also associate flowers with a gift of love, friendship or even sympathy. Flowers are beautiful and there to be enjoyed. It says 'I love you' in so many ways.

But of course flowers can fade away as well as we see in 1 Peter 1:24, 24:

"All flesh is as grass and all the glory of man as the flower of the grass. The grass withers, and its flower falls away, but the Word of the Lord endures forever."

God compares all the glory of man to flowers that falls away. All our own efforts, all our own striving will amount to nothing at the end of the day. But fortunately the Bible says that the flowers in the Temple are open flowers. In other words it is symbolic of flowers that will never fade away, because they are blooming in the presence of God.

Thus the open flowers in the Temple tell us that God loves us dearly. He wants to give us flowers and say 'I love you' in a special way. Nowhere outside the Temple were flowers except for the lilies depicting God's provision. But otherwise, if we want to be surrounded by His love, we need to enter into the Temple and stay there. And there the flowers will last, because all the flowers inside is to the glory of God and not to the glory of man. All we do whilst inside the Temple is to His glory and the fruit of what we do led by His Spirit will last forever, it will never fade away.

Walk in this life and see the open flowers that God wants to bless you with. See Him in everything and glorify Him in all. Then you will have treasures in Heaven, where it will never fade and stand the test of time.

Father thank you for all the flowers all around us. Thank you that when we do see physical flowers, that they are a reminder to us of all Your love, blessings and goodness. You are so amazing, so wonderful, such a blessed God. It is wonderful to know that everything we do flowing out of Your presence have eternal value. We praise You for that. Amen

31. Follow Him into the Temple

Last time we had a wonderful revelation of the meaning of the two pillars and their names (please have a look at it again to refresh your memory). We learned that God established a new covenant with us through the sacrifice of His Son and now He wants us to walk in agreement with Him. He wants us to enter into the Temple, unto a deeper revelation of Him.

Now today I want to finish off the two pillars by looking at the detail on the pillars themselves. The top of the pillars were in the shape of lilies and there were pomegranates on the pillars too:

"The capitals on the two pillars also had pomegranates above, by the convex surface which was next to the network; and there were two hundred such pomegranates in rows on each of the capitals all around." 1 Kings 7:20

Okay, so let us take a look at these two symbols. First of all we've seen in previous weeks that lilies resemble God's provision and care. God would look after them and provide for them.

Secondly let us have a look at pomegranates in the Bible. In Numbers 13:23 we see that the scouts brought back pomegranates to show how wonderful the Promised Land was. The pomegranates were a sign of a prosperous new future. Also in Deuteronomy 8:8 Moses mentions pomegranates to tell them how full of abundance the Promised Land is. Amongst so many things he could have mentioned he mentions pomegranates along with milk and honey and a couple of other things. But the point is, it was a sign of good things, God's unearned favor bestowed upon them. Another place where pomegranates are mentioned is in Song of Songs 6:11 and 8:2. Pomegranates are mentioned here as abundance provided and as a delicatessen to be enjoyed. It was certainly a sign of good things to be enjoyed. Therefore we can conclude that pomegranate is a symbol of prosperity and life to be enjoyed with God.

Interestingly there were two hundred on each pillar. Now the meaning of two hundred is complete deficiency. 'It is a strong expression of a person that is completely devoid of solutions or not able to provide sufficiently' (Hearing God - Numbers dictionary - Martin van der Merwe). Now, if we add the two together we come to four hundred and this means: full dominion/power/authority. So for me the meaning is clear, if Israel were to walk alone they would be completely deficient, devoid of solutions, but if they walk together with God they will have full dominion.

So, let us take all these together and see what God wants to reveal. He is saying that if Israel will walk with Him in full dominion, He will look after them and provide for them like the lilies. He will give them life to be enjoyed in abundance like the pomegranates.

If we take all this together with what we learned last week we can apply it to our lives today as well. God is saying that we need to walk with Him in agreement in the New Covenant that He has established for us. Alone we are completely deficient, but together with Him we can walk in full dominion. He will look after us and will give us access into His Promised Land where there is prosperity and a wonderful life to be enjoyed.

Sounds too good to be true doesn't it? Sounds like a fairy tale, and yet it is the Word of God teaching us this. We are more inclined to believe what the world tells us than what the Word of God says, so sad. And you know what; it is when we run around in the outer court, in the world, that we get hurt. It is when we rush around and are too busy to go up the steps to the entrance of the Temple that we get frustrated and discouraged.

I have seen this with my own life. I actually liked the outer court at one stage of my life because I truly succeeded in it. I received acclaim and I received the medals. So it was nice for me there. But God wanted more for me, He wanted me to go deeper, He wanted me to enter into the Temple with Him. He wanted me to walk in agreement with Him. But I didn't want to go, I resisted. I wanted to stay where praises could be seen and experienced. I wanted to stay where the world clapped their hands for me and looked up to me. And then God had to take me through a journey where it became unbearable for me to stay in the outer court. All acclaim vanished and the medals were given to others. I was thrown with mud and I stained my most precious dress. I got hurt and I lay there for a long time. I didn't want to get up and I felt very sorry for myself and I was angry with God too. I was truly angry that He allowed this to happen to me. How could He? But ever so gently He worked with me, He gently came and washed off the mud from my face. He extended His hand and lifted me up. And slowly but surely my heart softened through the care of the Holy Spirit, and I started to walk after Him. Up the steps, past the pillars and into the Temple. And I can honestly say, wow. Deeper and deeper with Him, wow. It is nothing compared to the acclaim I received in the outer court, nothing! It is SO much more. It is exhilarating. Walking with Him is amazing. I will tell more of my journey later. But for now ask yourself the question as to where you are? Where is God in your story? Are you ready to follow Him? Don't shun Him. He won't force you to follow Him into the Temple, but He really wishes you would. He wants to look after you and bring you into the Promised Land. Most Christians stay outside and never experience the fullness that He has for them, what are you going to do?

Father, wow. Thank you for my journey, for my story. All of us have a story to tell. Thank you for loving me too much to leave me in the outer court. I love and praise You. You are My Provider, the One I will love forever and ever! Amen

 

30. Stop running and walk in agreement with God

Last week we finished off the water basins and carts that surrounded the Temple. And what a wonderful revelation we obtained from these. Please go and read it if you have missed it and have the time.

Today I want us to start moving towards the Temple and have a look at the two bronze pillars at the entrance of the Temple. These two pillars were made of bronze and the top of the pillars were in the shape of lilies. They also had pomegranates as decorations. These two pillars also interestingly had names:

"Then he set up the pillars by the vestibule of the Temple; he set up the pillar on the right and called its name Jachin, and he set up the pillar on the left and called its name Boaz." 1 Kings 7:21

So let us have a look at the symbolism of the two bronze pillars and their interesting names.

First of all. Why two pillars except that it is practical? Two symbolizes agreement. And I believe that God wanted to tell the Israelites that He wants to walk in agreement with them. He and them should be a team. The Temple was in effect there to draw them closer to Him. So the one pillar symbolized Him and the other the Israelites themselves. And together they were in total agreement.

Secondly the bronze symbolized God's righteous judgment against sin. And this whole Temple typifies God's grace and forgiveness of it once they came to Him for forgiveness.

Thirdly let us have a look at the names. Jachin means 'Yah establishes' and Jachan means victorious. This is the pillar on the right. The pillar on the left is Boaz, which means 'Bearer of the covenant'. Put together it would seem that they mean that Yah (meaning God) establishes the covenant and is victorious. Isn't that wonderful?

So put together these two pillars seem to indicate the following to us:

God is righteous to judge all sin, but He established the covenant for Israel, so that they could walk in agreement with Him into victory. Wow. This statement really made me think, because it is saying the same to us today.

He was righteous in judging all our sin in His Son. He had to deal with sin, so that He could establish a new covenant with us. And in this new covenant there is only one thing for us to do and that is to walk in agreement with Him. Isn't it just amazing how the same message comes through the whole time while we are discussing the Temple? And that is that God wants us close to Him by His side, walking in agreement. That is all. That is the whole secret to life. And yet it is too simple, it is too easy and now we run around frantically trying to 'figure' everything out. We rush around and try on our own. We sweat, we fight, we go to war in our businesses and we struggle to survive. We reason everything out, we blame the government and everyone we can for the way things are. We want to excel and to reach the top; we want to make something of our lives, frantically searching for meaning. We look around and we see a sick world, we see people struggling and we conclude that we need to toughen up to make it. We grit our teeth and we become determined to show the world that we can. We put unrealistic pressure on our children and we teach them to dance to the melody of this life. We teach them to cope under pressure and we teach them that life isn't fair. And all the while God is standing at the entrance of the 'Temple' waiting for us to get into agreement with Him. He sees us running around in the outer court, sacrificing, sweating and crying. And all the while He is crying too, because He has so much more for us. So much more. He is waiting for us to give up on our own efforts and rather to walk further with Him.

Are you ready to stop running, to stop trying, to stop forcing things to happen? He is waiting at the entrance. He is ready to lead you in, in agreement with Him. Are you ready?

Father I see Your tears of frustration. I see You agonizing for Your children determined on doing their own thing. Father, we know that in agreement with You all things are laid out for us. In agreement with You we can walk and not grow weary, run and not faint. You will give us the strength. Here we come Father; we look forward to walking in agreement with You. In Jesus' Name. Amen

29. Do things the right way around

Last week we finished with all the symbolism locked up in the ten water basins and carts alongside the Temple. Today I want us to draw all the meanings together and see if we can come to one message portrayed to us today concerning the water basins and carts.

First of all we had a look at the number of water basins and what it represents and we came to the conclusion that it means that we are living under grace and not under the Law anymore. We are cleansed and received the righteousness of Christ as a gift from Him.

Secondly we had a look at the oxen engraved on the panels. They represent Christians who are strong, loyal, hardworking, groundbreakers, dedicated to Him and Him alone.

Thirdly we had a look at the lions engraved on the panels. We found that lions depict to us ruler ship, boldness and mighty power. We have all of this, because of His mighty Spirit inside of us! All majesty and power and glory are due to the Lion of Judah that overcame sin and Who will rule this world for all eternity.

Fourthly we had a look at the cherubim engraved on the panels. We came to the conclusion that it depicts that we must stay close to God, in His presence. We should be defenders of all that is good and continue praising His holy Name.

And lastly we had a look at the palm trees engraved on the panels. We concluded that we must walk in the victory that Jesus bought at the cross for us. We should give honor to Him, praise Him and then flourish where we are planted.

So let us see what message God wants us to hear loud and clearly through all of this. He wants us to stay close to Him, clothed with His righteousness, standing in His victory. There in His presence we are surrounded by mighty power and the ultimate Ruler ship, equipping us for the road ahead. We realize that this is all grace and then (and only then) can we step out and be strong groundbreakers for Him, standing up for what is right, all the way praising His glorious Name and flourishing where we are!

Wow, what a powerful message!

In our society we often get the order wrong. We are well-meaning Christians, trying our utmost best. But we start running, trying to be strong, groundbreakers, loyal and hardworking. We try to stand up for what is right and we try to do the right thing. And when things get tough, when things are not running as smoothly as we would have hoped, we get tired, discouraged and run down. But it is because we have it all wrong. We need to start first and foremost in His Presence. We need to dwell there, breathe in His heavenly air and soak up His presence. We need to listen; we need to allow Him to love us and to guide us on the right route. And in His presence, we need to KNOW that we are forgiven, righteous and surrounded by His power. We need to understand that He is Ruler overall and will lead us, we need to know that He has already won, that He has already brought the victory for us and that we needn't fight for it anymore.

Then and only then, are we ready to step out. Our minds need to be renewed with this knowledge, we need to be filled to the brim with Him, we need to hear His Voice clearly as to the road we must walk in and then we can step out. Then we can walk and praise His Name as far as we go. We can break the hard ground for Him, we can be strong by His power and doing the right thing will just come naturally. When you flow by His grace in the wisdom of His Spirit, you will not get run down or discouraged, because you will be led by Him. He will be beside you, taking every step with you. He will lead and guide you where He wants you. And that is super special. A life lived in His will is a successful life in His eyes. And that is good enough for me.

So come, follow Him, be with Him, and listen to Him. In His presence you will find everything, all life's questions answered. He is waiting for you.

Father we glorify and praise Your Name. You are amazingly awesome. Thank you for everything that You bought for us. Thank you for Your grace and love towards us. You gave it all for us even though we are undeserving. We glorify Your Holy Name and praise You forever. We love You. Amen

 

28. You are victorious (1)

Last week we had a look at the Cherubim carvings on the panels of the carts carrying the water basins. Today we will look at another carving that is on the carts:

"And on the top of the cart, its flanges and its panels were of the same casting. On the plates of its flanges and on its panels he engraved cherubim, lions, and palm trees, wherever there was a clear space on each, with wreaths all around." 1 Kings 7:35, 36

Okay, so the cherubim and lions we have covered in recent weeks. So today, let us have a look at the significance of the palm tree engraving and what it means to us today.

Palm trees are mentioned throughout the Bible. First of all it represents an oasis in the desert. God provided for the Israelites in their difficult time in the desert. They were desperately thirsty and the Lord provided for them:

"Then they came to Elim, where there were twelve wells of water and seventy palm trees; so they camped there by the waters." Exodus 15:27.

Palm trees were therefore seen as a symbol of God's provision. This was also depicted by the palm leaves that were used during the Festival of Shelters, to build shelters for them in order to remember God's victory in saving them from the Egyptians (Leviticus 23:40). Interestingly Jericho, the Israelites first victory in the Promised Land was called the city of palms (Deuteronomy 34:3), again illustrating God's provision in bringing about their victory. It was all Him, they simply had to be obedient.

Then looking at the New Testament we see the crowds waving palm branches when Jesus entered into Jerusalem rejoicing in their King - John 12:12-15. This day became known as Palm Sunday where we celebrate Jesus' triumphant entry into Jerusalem and His victory over sin and reclaiming salvation for us all.

In the book of Revelation we also see saints waving palm branches:

"After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, "Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!" Revelation 7:9, 10

Again people exalt Jesus and bring glory to Him waving palm branches. Thus the palm trees remind us of God's victory and God's provision. God wants us to remember His victory and give everything over to Him in our lives. We need to trust Him for provision and for victory so that we can flourish. Psalm 92:12 compares us to palm trees:

"The righteous shall flourish like a palm tree."

Allow God to provide for you, be obedient and follow Him, regardless of circumstances. Do not look at the desert all around, but rather look UP and see the provision coming your way. Then rejoice in His victory brought for you. Wave your proverbial palm branch; give all glory to Him, our Savior and King! Then see how you flourish. Not because you are great, but because of what Jesus has done for you. He has opened up the way to true life. Grab it by the horns and live life fully. Do not regret anything in your life. Walk side by side with Him and see how things change whilst doing your victory dance alongside Him. Lift your palm branch up high and give glory to Him.

Father we praise You. You are our Provider, You are our victory, You are our Leader and we want to follow You day and night. You are so wonderful and amazing. We love You. Amen

 

 

27. Stay close to God

Last week we saw that there were lion, oxen and cherubim carvings on the carts supporting the water basins. We saw that the lion represents leadership and primarily the Lion of Judah, Jesus Himself. And as we follow Him and stay close to Him, we will be safe from the devil prowling around looking at whom he may devour. We needn't fear with Jesus by our side, loving us and looking after us.

Now today I want us to have a look at the other carving on the carts, namely the cherubim. If we have a look at the Bible, Cherubim are often mentioned as God dwells between the Cherubim (Psalm 80:1, Psalm 99:1).

They are first mentioned where they were instructed to guard the access to the Garden of Eden after Adam and Eve were banished from it - Genesis 3:24.

Cherubim are depicted as powerful creatures. In Ezekiel 1, Ezekiel is shown a powerful vision. He is shown four Cherubim surrounding the movable Throne of God. They had 4 faces, one human, one ox, one lion and one eagle - symbolizing power and wisdom. They are mobile and can move in any direction that God chose:

"…they went wherever the spirit wanted to go and they did not turn when they went." Ezekiel 1:12

Their role is to guard God's holy domain and presence from any sin and corruption. They also praise and worship God day and night before His throne:

"The four living creatures, each having six wings, were full of eyes around and within. And they do not rest day or night, saying: 'Holy holy, holy, Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come!" Revelation 4:8.

Therefore it is safe to say that Cherubim are guardians, praising God, filled with power and wisdom and they can move without effort in any direction that God chooses. They stay close to Him and glorify Him. They know exactly what to do as He instructs them.

We can learn a lot from the Cherubim. We should also be guardians of all that is good. We should defend God's Name and we should protect our souls from the onslaughts of the evil one. We should also be flexible and open to the leading of the Holy Spirit and move in whichever direction He leads us. And we should praise God in every situation. But above all, we should stay close to Him like the Cherubim. We should stay close to His throne, close to His heartbeat. Because when we are close, we can feel Him breathing, we can experience His heart of love and we can know what He wants us to do without even thinking twice.

That is all that God wants. He wants us living and breathing within His presence every moment of every day. Then we will hear His voice more clearly and we will know which route to take. Then we will move when His Spirit moves just like the Cherubim and protect His honor and glory wherever we go. Prayer within the presence of God is quickly answered, the manifestation might take long, but the prayer is answered and the peace that surpasses all understanding will reign in your heart. Therefore if you do not know the answer to your prayer at the moment, something that you have been praying very long about, ask yourself where you are finding yourself? In the throne room of God or in the board room of life? If God were to answer our half-hearted prayers originating from the board room of life, it will be an insult to Him and will not draw you closer to Him. Only in His throne room are all the answers to life. Come and enter, He is waiting for you.

Thank you Father that You show us so much symbolism in Your Word. Thank you for showing us in Your Word powerful Cherubim protecting Your honor. We learn a lot every day and we want to stay by Your side just like they do. Thank you that it is now possible because of the blood of Your Son. We love You. Amen

 

26. Don't fear, the Lion of Judah is with you

Last week we learned that the ten water basins represented the righteousness of God. These basins were placed five on the right side of the Temple and five on the left. And the number of five is grace. Therefore we learned that God's righteousness can only be obtained through grace (God's unmerited, unearned favor). Nothing we can ever do can make us earn God's favor. It is a free gift from above, all because of the finished wonderful work of Christ.

Now today we are going to start to look at the ten carts in which the ten water basins were placed. These carts were beautifully decorated. And I want us to have a look at the symbolism of these carvings on the cart and what it represents.

"And this was the design of the carts: They had panels, and the panels were between frames; and on the panels that were between the frames were lions, oxen, and cherubim." 1 Kings 7:28, 29

A couple of weeks back we had a look at oxen and we came to the conclusion that oxen represents Christians who are strong, loyal, hardworking, groundbreakers, dedicated to Him and Him alone. So today we will have a look at the symbolism locked in the carving of a lion.

Now we all know that the lion is nicknamed the king of the jungle, and with good reason. A lion is a powerful animal (Proverbs 30:30), ready to devour its prey, and not scared of anything. Animals and people alike listen when lions roar.

Lions are also mentioned throughout the Bible in several text verses. I have selected a few. Let's have a look:

Jesus is mentioned as being the Lion of Judah:

"Do not weep. Behold, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has prevailed to open the scroll and to loose its seven seals." Revelation 5:5.

God is also depicted as roaring like a lion and when He does, His children come - Hosea 11:10. The righteous are also likened to the boldness of a lion - Proverbs 28:1. Nebuchadnezzar/Babylon was depicted as a lion in Daniel 7:4, as they ruled the whole known world.

Lions therefore depict to us rulership, boldness and mighty power. We have all of this, because of His mighty Spirit inside of us! All majesty and power and glory are due to the Lion of Judah that overcame sin and Who will rule this world for all eternity. And we are part of His body and therefore we should stand up for who we are and not be scared of the devil prowling around like a roaring lion (1 Peter 5:8). We should never give him a foothold to come close to us, but we should stay close to the Lion of Judah Who had defeated him.

The devil makes me think of Scar in the Lion King film. He was an outcast lion, not strong enough to defeat Mufasa, the leader of the pride. The devil is the same; he is not strong enough to defeat Jesus. In fact he is an imitator of Christ, trying to be the mighty Lion that He is. But the truth is, he is nothing compared to powerful Jesus. And because he cannot do anything to Him, he walks around looking for rebellious cubs to devour, not staying close to their Leader…. We therefore need to be obedient and listen to the mighty roar of the One looking out for us and stay close to Him.

Look in the mirror today and see the Lion of Judah roaring through you. When you look and you see this reflection, walk with the humble power that comes with it. A lion is not scared of little jackals running all around him. He is not fazed by what the stock markets say, or what the people predict all around him. He is not worried about his cubs, as they will be protected with him around. He roars and animals listen. He roars and troublemakers flee. Stand up as the lion that you are in Him. Walk closely by His side. In His pride you are safe, you are protected, you are fed, and you are loved. Walk proudly in a humble way just as He does. Not thinking better of yourself as others, but knowing who you are with Him walking beside you/ within you. He is the mighty awesome One, forever and ever. And together with Him, whom shall we fear?

Wow! You are the mighty awesome Lion protecting us and caring for us. Thank you Lord for showing this to us! We are so excited to walk this journey with You! Amen

25. The righteousness of Christ

Last week we finished with the sea of bronze used for the washing of the priests. Today we will start to look at the ten water basins used for washing the burnt offerings. These ten water basins are so full of symbolism we will need to spend the next couple of weeks on them. Today I would like us to start at looking at the reason why these water basins were used as well as the symbolism of the number.

"He made ten lavers, and put five on the right side (of the Temple) and five on the left, to wash in them; such things as they offered for the burnt offering they would wash in them, but the Sea was for the priests to wash in." 2 Chronicles 4:6

Okay so these ten water basins/lavers were used to wash the burnt offerings in. The symbolism here for me is that whatever we bring to the Lord as a sacrifice, we can wash with the water of the Holy Spirit. God wants us cleansed of all wrong doing. That is why Jesus came to shed His blood for us, so that we can be cleansed of all sin and washed with the water of the Spirit. So that we can stand up and be free and liberated from the old lives we used to live and that we can walk as the new creations that we are. We need to put on our armor, amongst others, the breastplate of righteousness. Whose righteousness? Jesus's! He has done it all for us. He was our burnt offering. We simply need to wash ourselves clean by His Spirit and put on His breastplate of righteousness.

There are ten water basins. Ten is the number representing amongst other things, the Ten Commandments. It therefore represents righteousness before God if you follow His law. And the Temple was the perfect place to follow the Law and to be reminded of it. But as we've seen, we are now redeemed from the Law. Jesus gave His righteousness to us in exchange for our sins.

"For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him." 2 Corinthians 5:21

We are the righteousness (blamelessness) of God IN Christ, not out of our own strength, but HIM shining and living through us. Out of our own strength we will get tired and drained, but through Him anything is possible!

And what is amazing to me is that the ten water basins were split in two, five on the left of the Temple and five on the right. I suppose it was practical to have water basins both sides, but with God nothing is just 'practical'. There is always a deeper meaning in the Bible to everything He did and ordained to be. For five is the number of grace. Isn't it wonderful? While ten represents the Law, five represents grace. So God was in fact telling His people then already, that though they are performing the Law and bringing their sacrifices, there will come a day where it will be all grace!

Are you not glad that we are living in the grace period? What a wonderful privilege! Can you imagine going to the Temple and taking the animal and sacrificing it there? Can you imagine doing that on a regular basis? I for one am certainly glad that we have been freed from that! The one positive from having to bring one's sacrifice regularly forced one to think of God and of drawing closer to Him. Today, a whole number of Christians do not even think of God on a regular basis. They know that they believe and that they are saved, but that is it. They do not draw closer to Him; they do not truly appreciate the Sacrifice made. Let us not all fall into this trap. But let us all hunger for more and more of Him. Let us forever be grateful for what He has done for us. In His righteousness we can have access to the Father and we can have a real intimate relationship with Him, something this world can never provide.

Father, thank you for all the symbolism locked in Your Temple. It is truly amazing and we can learn so much from it today. Thank you for the Sacrifice of Your precious Son. We are eternally grateful and look forward to a life spent with You. Amen