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Two Keys to Blessing too Often Missing

Today’s reading

Exodus 34-36; Matthew 23:1-22

Selected Verses

So the people were restrained from bringing, for the material they had was sufficient to do all the work, and more. Exodus 36:6-7

The greatest among you shall be your servant. Whoever exalts himself will be humbled, and whoever humbles himself will be exalted. Matthew 23:11-12


Humility and obedience are two qualities which bring blessing but are usually in short supply. In Jesus’ day, the Pharisees turned religion into a means to prestige and honor in their society. They taught truth but made a great show of their piety and exempted themselves from doing what they taught. They were neither humble nor obedient. Jesus pointed them out as negative examples.

By contrast, there was a time following the exodus during which the Israelites showed a notable degree of humility and obedience. When called upon to offer materials for the construction of the tabernacle and its furnishings, the people went all out; so much so that Moses turned away would-be donors. Their obedience and humility was demonstrated in generosity.

A few years ago I participated in a capital funds drive in my church. It had some of the same characteristics of the collection for the tabernacle in Exodus 36. We set a challenging goal for our small congregation but soon we began to hear stories of how empty nest moms were taking jobs in order to give more. Someone paid off a mortgage early, freeing up money for the campaign. Families delayed replacing their old cars in order to contribute. The proceeds from the campaign stunned the fundraising consultant as the congregation far surpassed his expectations. The people rejoiced as they saw the new building take shape and fill up for the dedication of the beautiful facility.

Think about it

What if humility and obedience flourished in our personal lives and in our congregations? Would God not be greatly glorified and the people enriched with blessing? Pray that becomes reality and that you will do your part to make it so.

© 2017 John A Carroll Used by permission

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