Thought for the Week - 26th August

Pastor Gareth Watkins

1 Chronicles 26: 26-30

This Shelomith and his brethren were over all the treasuries
of the dedicated things which King David and the heads of fathers’ houses,
the captains over thousands and hundreds,
and the captains of the army, had dedicated.
Some of the spoils won in battles they dedicated to maintain the house of the Lord.
And all that Samuel the seer, Saul the son of Kish, Abner the son of Ner,
and Joab the son of Zeruiah had dedicated, every dedicated thing,
was under the hand of Shelomith and his brethren.
Of the Izharites, Chenaniah and his sons performed duties as
officials and judges over Israel outside Jerusalem.
Of the Hebronites, Hashabiah and his brethren,
one thousand seven hundred able men, had the oversight of Israel on the west side
of the Jordan for all the business of the Lord, and in the service of the king.

This week, something lived through these verses for me.

These verses are full of details of families and relatives. The Levites were the ones who were to attend to the tabernacle of Moses. They used to carry the tabernacle around, as they didn’t have a temple at the time, with the Ark of the Covenant inside.

Through David there was a new day coming where there wouldn’t be a tabernacle anymore – there would be a temple. This temple, under God, had a specific design, specific dimensions, and had specific articles in it. It wasn’t a small place, it was massive.

Above, we read of a time where they are going from the tabernacle to the temple that was to be built; a huge place with ancillary buildings. David had been given the instruction of what God wanted him to build. This is to be God’s Holy temple. It was to be a representation of God’s reign over all of creation and all the nations. It wasn’t just a building. This is something that God Himself was putting onto David to build. David had been told what to do.

David, under God, had been told where to build the temple. He’d been told the material of the temple and the planned functions of the temple. They were no longer to carry the tabernacle from hundreds of years before. This was a new time and David was the man who was to sort it out.

Chapter 24 is where David starts to sort out a different way of life for the Levites. There are to be three different groupings to accomplish different tasks according to what David was laying out. We then start reading lists upon lists of names of families. In Chapter 24 we read of the officials, the ones who would be in the front. The priests performing the duties within the new temple.

Chapter 25 lists those who could play instruments. These Levites were those who would lead praise and worship in the temple. The third group of Levites were the ones responsible for the care of the temple.

This was a place that was going to be the temple of God. A place where God Himself was to be found. Where God Himself had instituted the stones, nails, wood, and structure. It was a new temple for God for the whole world.

In Chapter 26 we read of the Levites responsible for the treasures and more practical things. We read that they were responsible:

over all the treasuries
of the dedicated things which King David and the heads of fathers’ houses,
the captains over thousands and hundreds,
and the captains of the army, had dedicated.

Imagine what they would have brought! Imagine the Prime Minister of this country dedicated something to God. Then the House of Lords. Then the Army and the local councils. These things weren’t in their houses – they could be found in the temple. David has set aside a group of men to look after these things. There was a lot of stuff. If we go back to Chapter 22 and beyond, we read of stones, nails and iron. We read details of bronze (so much that they can’t count it), 4,000 tonnes of Gold, 40,000 tonnes of silver, and all manner of precious stones etc. All were to be fashioned in the way that God had intended. No details were to be missed out, even down to the spoons, ladles and serving spoons. All in their detail are there.

God has a lot of detail in His mind. He doesn’t leave things to chance. When He does something, He does it well. Even down to the detail in your personal life that you need sorted in order to progress! That’s the God that we have.

These men were responsible for smallest of details, even down to the changing of lightbulbs as it would be in our times. These people were set aside. They had responsibility in the sight of God to oversee this new temple on behalf of the king and of God Himself.

We read further on that the spoils from battles were dedicated into the house of God. These men were bringing things, captive from other nations, and dedicating it to the house of God. These Levites were responsible of all the dedicated things in this new temple, which is yet to be built.

Do you think you have dedicated and precious things in your own church? You might not have big altars and ornate pillars, but you will still have very precious, dedicated things.

What do you feel is precious in your church that you are to be responsible for? Is there are responsibility on you and I for the special treasures in our churches? Can we say what we like? Can we behave as we life? Or do we have responsibilities for things?

What have we got that is precious unto God that we should surely have responsibility for?

In 1 Peter 2: 4-5 we read:

Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men,
but chosen by God and precious,
you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood,
to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

Later in 1 Peter 2:9 we read:

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation,
His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him
who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

We have in our possession, as living stones, a responsibility to proclaim the message of the priest. We have responsibilities, as part of this new living temple, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God. It’s our responsibility to play our parts, as these Levites were cut and set apart. Our responsibilities, in Christ, are particular for us before Him as living stones. As we are being built up into the spiritual house. We are now the living stones, and we don’t come without responsibility. We have in some ways, an even greater responsibility in 2018.

What are we responsible for?

We are responsible for remembering what God has done in our church – the healings, the salvations, the baptisms in the Holy Spirit, and the outworking of gifts. It’s our duty to remember the precious things – that may not be the gold, the silver and jewels that can be easily bought. The treasures are the things that God Himself gives us, and we have a responsibility to hold onto them, not just cast them aside as if they don’t matter. There’s a responsibility for each one of us to remember.

We have a responsibility to give an account for our faith to whoever requests it. A treasure we have to be responsible for is to give an account of our faith.

Another treasure that we have to be responsible for is Holy living and personal relationship with Christ. We should be able to hold onto that Holy life and not take it down into the dirt. It’s easy not to live a Holy life. It’s our responsibility to maintain a standard of Holiness and keep our personal relationship with Christ, and our walk, intact. We need to be living stones in that relationship, not dead stones. Living stones, built into a temple to worship God. Surely, that is our responsibility.

The Levites were told by David what to do. Here we are, all those years later, being built into a living temple unto God, with similar kind of responsibility but with a far greater understanding of who God is.

God takes away our new sins, God gives us a new life and God gives us a new starts. He gives us a life that we could never enjoy ourselves. He gives us a life that’s more fruitful and blessed, and a life that will go on to our children’s children. The effect of this life in God – this living temple that He’s building – continues to our children’s children and beyond.

The responsibility for all that comes to each one of us.

We have a great responsibility to carry. Some people don’t see these things. Some people can’t seem to find the depths of God. We have to be responsible for what God has given us as living stones.

Jesus made it very simple to understand (Matthew 22:37-39). How do we do all these things?

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart,
with all your soul, and with all your mind

You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

We love God with all our might. We love our neighbour as ourselves. That’s how we fulfil our responsibilities. If we do these things, then in doing that, we will fulfil our responsibilities under God.

Would you attend to your responsibilities? Or would you leave it to somebody else?

Oh that we would take our responsibilities seriously. We have been built into a church. God has built us into a living temple for His purposes. We are here for His purposes. The old temple was there for their purposes. We have living things as treasures that are far more valuable than all the gold and trappings that the world can bring.


Show Buttons
Hide Buttons