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Bible Commentaries
Exodus 40

Expositor's Dictionary of TextsExpositor's Dictionary

Verses 1-38

Exodus 40:2

What makes worship impressive is just its publicity, its external manifestation, its sound, its splendour, its observance universally and visibly, holding its sway through all the details both of our outward and of our inward life.


All the charm of ritual and ceremonial in worship has for Pater an indefinable and constant attraction. He is for ever recurring to it, because it seems to him to interpret and express an emotion, a need of the human spirit, whose concern is to comprehend if it can what is the shadowy figure, the mysterious will, that moves behind the world of sight and sense.

A. C. Benson, Pater, p. 216.

Exodus 40:13

This very Aaron, whose infirmity had yielded to so foul an idolatry, is chosen by God to be a priest to himself. As the light is best seen in darkness, the mercy of God is most magnified in our unworthiness.

Bishop Hall.

Abraham Lincoln once used this passage to defend his appointment to a high position of some official who had wronged and opposed him. He argued from God's magnanimity. 'I have scriptural authority for appointing him. You remember that when the Lord was on Mount Sinai getting out a commission for Aaron, that same Aaron was at the foot of the mountain making a false god for the people to worship. Yet Aaron got his commission, you know.'

Exodus 40:16

I lighted in the Journal on a very appreciative notice of Faraday, whose death I was grieved to observe. It is by one who signs himself A. de la Rive, and I am sure you will be gratified by the close of it. After describing his scientific career, and speaking of the failing health of latter years, he says, '... Sa fin a été aussi douce que sa vie; on peut dire de lui qu'il s'est endormi au Seigneur. J'ai rarement vu un chrétien plus convaincu et plus conséquent .' That word conséquent I like one who follows it up into all its consequences.

Dr. John Ker, Letters, pp. 40-41.

Exodus 40:33

It is more of this quality of will that is needed this faithful, loyal temperament that cannot put its hand to the plough and afterwards lightly turn back. A persistent will patient and unfaltering above all things it is well to nurse this quality in children faithfulness to the work once taken in hand, be it ever so trivial. Faithfulness is the backbone of faith, and without faith enthusiasm will fade or flicker, after which virtue will be very moderate indeed. And faithfulness implies a sense of duty, a habit of taking conduct as a series of acts that ought to be done, or as pledges that ought to be fulfilled a sense of responsibility for the accurate and thorough fulfilment of every piece of work.

Dr. Sophie Bryant, Studies in Character, p. 170.

Exodus 40:37

All our troubles come from impatience, from not trusting God. It is like moving, when the cloud is still.

General Gordon, Letters, p. 268.

Bibliographical Information
Nicoll, William Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Exodus 40". Expositor's Dictionary of Text. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/edt/exodus-40.html. 1910.
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