May I please have all your silver and gold?
Exodus 25: Use a seventy-five-pound brick of pure gold to make the Lampstand and its accessories.
In addition to giving Moses the Ten Commandments during their meeting on Mount Sinai the Lord gives him the plans for the design for and the furnishings of the Tabernacle. This structure is to be a portable worship center. However, its portable status doesn’t mean corners will be cut. This will be the most amazing portable structure ever built and the materials used in construction will be first rate. Even the Lampstand is to reflect this: ornate, hammered out of pure gold, and alive with symbolism. Now how are ex-slaves to come up with “a seventy-five-pound brick of pure gold?” Actually, that problem was taken care of a few months earlier, just prior to the Passover. The Lord instructed the Israelites to go to the Egyptians and simply ask for their valuables! Without understanding why, the Egyptians said, “Sure, here’s all my silver and gold!” In that way, the Israelites left Egypt carrying with them tons of silver and gold. Now, we see the rest of that story. That silver and gold isn’t to be horded by individuals. Really, it was never theirs in the first place. Instead, it’s to be used in this one-of-a-kind construction project. So, what is it that the Lord has put in my hands that was never meant to be kept in the first place? How does he intend for me to use it? In this incident from Exodus I find a practical lesson in stewardship.
Take Away: As a person just passing through this world, nothing is every permanently mine.