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Bible Commentaries

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged
Exodus 36

 

 

Verse 1

Then wrought Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whom the LORD put wisdom and understanding to know how to work all manner of work for the service of the sanctuary, according to all that the LORD had commanded.

Then wrought Bezaleel ... Here is an illustrious example of zeal and activity in the work of the Lord. No unnecessary delay was allowed to take place; and from the moment the first pole was stuck in the ground, until the final completion of the sacred edifice, he and his associates laboured with all their energies both of mind and body engaged in the work. And what was the mainspring of their arduous and untiring diligence? They could be actuated by none of the ordinary motives that give impulse to human industry-by no desire for the acquisition of gain-no ambition for honour-no view of gratifying a mere love of power in directing the labours of a large body of men. They felt the stimulus-the strong irresistible impulse of higher and holier motives-obedience to the authority; zeal for the glory, and love to the service, of God.

The words, Then wrought, etc., have been variously rendered. Then-literally, and wrought Bezaleel. Some connect this with the preceding chapter, as a part of a general summary, and thus avoid the anachronism that appears in the arrangement of our version of Bezaleel and Aholiab engaging in the tabernacle work before they were called by Moses. The Arabic version reads, 'Let Bezaleel, and Aholiab, and every wise-hearted man, work, etc.


Verse 2

And Moses called Bezaleel and Aholiab, and every wise hearted man, in whose heart the LORD had put wisdom, even every one whose heart stirred him up to come unto the work to do it:

No JFB commentary on this verse.


Verse 3

And they received of Moses all the offering, which the children of Israel had brought for the work of the service of the sanctuary, to make it withal. And they brought yet unto him free offerings every morning.

They (the workmen) received of Moses ... It appears that the building was begun after the first few contributions were made; it was progressively carried on, and no necessity occurred to suspend operations, even for the shortest interval, from want of the requisite materials.

They brought yet unto him ... Moses, in common with other Oriental magistrates, had his morning levees for receiving the people (see the note at Exodus 18:13); and it was while he was performing his magisterial duties that the people brought unto him freewill offerings every morning. Some who had nothing but their manual labour to give would spend a great part of the night in hastening to complete their self-imposed task before the early dawn; others might find their hearts constrained by silent meditations on their bed to open their coffers, and give apart of their hoarded treasure to the pious object.

All whose hearts were touched by piety, penitence, or gratitude repaired with eager haste into the presence of Moses, not as heretofore, to have their controversies settled, but to lay on his tribunal their contributions to the sanctuary of God (2 Corinthians 9:7).


Verse 4

And all the wise men, that wrought all the work of the sanctuary, came every man from his work which they made;

No JFB commentary on this verse.


Verse 5

And they spake unto Moses, saying, The people bring much more than enough for the service of the work, which the LORD commanded to make.

Spake unto Moses ... By the calculations which the practiced eyes of the workmen enabled them to make, they were unanimously of opinion that the supply already far exceeded the demand, and that no more contributions were required. Such a report reflects the highest honour on their character as men of the strictest honour and integrity, who, notwithstanding they had command of an untold amount of the most precious things, and might, without any risk of human discovery, have appropriated much to their own use, were too high principled for such acts of peculation. Forthwith a proclamation was issued to stop further contributions.


Verses 6-34

And Moses gave commandment, and they caused it to be proclaimed throughout the camp, saying, Let neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. So the people were restrained from bringing.

No JFB commentary on these verses.


Verse 35

And he made a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen: with cherubims made he it of cunning work.

Made a veil - the second or inner veil, which separated the holy from the most holy place, embroidered with cherubim, and of great size and thickness.


Verse 36

And he made thereunto four pillars of shittim wood, and overlaid them with gold: their hooks were of gold; and he cast for them four sockets of silver.

No JFB commentary on this verse.


Verse 37

And he made an hanging for the tabernacle door of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, of needlework;

Made an hanging for the ... door. Curtains of elaborately-worked needle-work are often suspended over the entrance to tents of the great nomad sheikhs, and throughout Persia, at the entrance of summer tents, mosques, and palaces. They are preferred as cooler and more elegant than wooden doors. This chapter contains an instructive narrative: it is the first instance of donations made for the worship of God, given from the wages of the people's sufferings and toils. They were acceptable to God (Philippians 4:18); and if the Israelites showed such liberality, how much more should those whose privilege it is to live under the Christian dispensation? (1 Corinthians 6:20; 1 Corinthians 16:2.)

 


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Exodus 36:4". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/exodus-36.html. 1871-8.

Lectionary Calendar
Tuesday, October 22nd, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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