THE THEME OF THIS DEVOTION IS:
The local gathering of God’s people is where the corporate Presence of God is made manifest. (As our LORD said, “Where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20) This is where miracles and revelations occur that far exceed those of private devotion. It is necessary for God’s people to present themselves in unity before the Majesty on High.
THE STONE commentary on Exodus 25 makes the point that the rest of the book of Exodus deals with the construction of the Mishkan (the Tent of Witness—the Tabernacle). The further point is made that the Tabernacle becomes the concrete expression of all that went before and that it is the focal point of Israelite life from the time of its completion forward. For us it corresponds to the regular local gathering of the Community of the Faithful in Messiah Yeshua. This is the “Little Sanctuary” of Ezekiel 11:16, which the Jewish people recognize as the Synagogue while Israel is in diaspora—though Samuel operated in a circuit of similar purpose during his teaching ministry among the nation as a whole. Jesus regularly attended and participated in the life of the local synagogue, as did the Apostles.
One of the remarkable facts that we can derive from the Tabernacle is that it not only expresses the corporate vehicle of spiritual life for God’s people but that it also describes the single temple of an individual disciple of the LORD. The construction of the Tabernacle is according to the cubit of a man; and it represents the three-fold construction of a human temple: Spirit (the Holy of Holies where God abides on the throne of the consecrated human spirit); Soul (where God operates through the unique faculties of the human neshama—the human soul—made in the image of God in man—including the court of the human conscience); and Body (might, strength as referred to in the Shema of Deuteronomy 6—and represented by the outer court of the tabernacle with its doorway leading out into society beyond the individual human being. Paul refers to this construction in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 where he calls for consecration of the entire self to God—“And I pray God that your WHOLE Spirit and Soul and Body be preserved blameless unto the coming of our LORD Yeshua the Messiah.”)
This glorious passage in the Torah, beginning the Parashah at verse 1 of chapter 25 but then calling for the construction of the Mishkan in verse 8 reads:
VE’ASU LI MIK’DASH
And they shall make for me a Sanctuary
And I shall dwell among them.
(or, “So that I may dwell among them.”)
Here we see that it is not God who makes the sanctuary for him; it is we who prepare ourselves to be His habitation. We must consecrate ourselves—every part of our being—to Him. This is why we sing worship to Him, in order that we may unite our whole selves in the service of devotion to our Beloved.
Does not a bride adorn herself gloriously on her wedding day? Does she not bathe and present herself beautifully to her husband every day and every night of their lives?
Nothing can take the place of private devotion. You should rise every day and pray as our LORD taught us to do in his teaching and by his example.
Nothing can take the place of corporate devotion. You should gather with God’s people regularly and not forsake the assembling of yourself with the Body of Messiah. (Hebrews 10:25)
When you rise and call on the Name of the LORD, and when you gather with the Body of Messiah, you will discover that God is PRESENT with you everywhere you go.