An Unprecedented Spirit of Generosity (Exodus 36:3) - Radical

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An Unprecedented Spirit of Generosity (Exodus 36:3)

“And they received from Moses all the contribution that the people of Israel had brought for doing the work on the sanctuary.”
-Exodus 36:3

I want to connect what we are about to read with what we prayed in the previous episode. As we were praying through Exodus 35, we see all these contributions coming in for the tabernacle. And we see how God’s spirit moved the hearts of the people to give freely. I just want you to hear today how freely they give. And for us to do part two of what we were praying through in the previous episode.

They still kept bringing him freewill offerings every morning. So all the craftsmen who were doing every sort of task on the sanctuary came each from the task that he was doing and said to Moses, “The people bring much more than enough for doing the work that the Lord has commanded us to do.”

Exodus 36:3 Reminds Us to Give

Moses gave commands. And word was proclaimed throughout the camp: Let no man or woman do anything more for the contribution for the sanctuary. The people were restrained from bringing for the material they had was sufficient to do all the work and more. Don’t you love this picture? The people were giving too much. You’re giving too much freewill offering. Stop it. They had to restrain the people from giving. That was the picture of generosity here in Exodus 35 and Exodus 36:3.

I just want to lead us to pray for that kind of generosity among us. In your heart, in my heart, when we think about giving to and through our local churches for the spread of the gospel around the world, for the building up of the church, for the relief of the poor, that we would give until we almost have to be restrained in our giving.

Exodus 36:3 Leads Us to Praise Jesus

God, we praise you. God, we praise you for what your spirit was doing in Exodus 35 and Exodus 36:3. We praise you for the spirit of generosity and giving that ended up having to be restrained in Exodus 36:3. God, this is the work of your spirit in the hearts of your people and we praise you for it, and we pray for it. We pray for this in each of our churches, God, we would get to the point where we have to restrain people from giving.

This Verse Leads Us to Pray for Generosity

We ask for that kind of generous spirit in our churches. In your church as a whole, when it comes to the spread of your glory in the world, when it comes to the spread of the gospel to people who’ve never heard it, when it comes to the building up of your church, when it comes to help for those in need, God, we pray that you would give us, each of us, in our lives, in our families and in our churches with the way we use the resources we have. God, make us generous like this. All the more.

This is the Old Testament, the old covenant picture of giving. How much more reason to we have to give in the new covenant in light of the abundant grace you’ve poured out on us in Jesus. God, help us to give like this, more than this. Help us to give to the point where others restrain us in our giving. God, do this kind of work. We ask you to teach us to give like this of our resources in a world of urgent, spiritual and physical need. In Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

David Platt serves as a pastor in metro Washington, D.C. He is the founder of Radical.

David received his Ph.D. from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and is the author of Don’t Hold Back, Radical, Follow MeCounter CultureSomething Needs to ChangeBefore You Vote, as well as the multiple volumes of the Christ-Centered Exposition Commentary series.

Along with his wife and children, he lives in the Washington, D.C. metro area.


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