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Exodus 30:17-21 (The Bronze Laver)

Aug 14, 2016   //   by Charlie Garrett   //   Exodus, Exodus Sermons (written), Old Testament, Sermons, Torah, Torah (written)  //  No Comments

Exodus 30:17-21
The Bronze Laver

Jesus said in John 13 that he who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean. It’s a verse we’ll revisit today, but it is a simple truth. If we take a nice long shower and then work on an art project in the den for an hour or so, we don’t say, “Gee, I have to go take another shower.” Instead, we just go wash our hands and that’s that.

In old Israel, the people wore sandals and the paths were dusty. When someone took a bath, afterwards they might go out for an evening walk. When they got home, they wouldn’t go take another bath, instead, they would just wash their feet as they came into the house. It would wash off the dust and that was that.

On the surface, this is what He was referring to. One is clean after taking a bath. However, they might do something that would later make them partially unclean, even though they were still completely clean in the overall sense.

The Bible uses this same terminology as a picture of our spiritual state as well. Just like almost every other actual thing that the Bible speaks of, there is an underlying spiritual connotation. The Bible speaks of building a house on a rock, but there is an underlying spiritual meaning which is being conveyed.

The Bible speaks of anointing something with oil. That pictures something else as well. If we can understand what something physical pictures on a spiritual level, then we can understand the root of what God is showing us. Today, we will see the instructions for another piece of tabernacle furniture. It will, just like everything else, show us spiritual pictures of Christ, His work, and how it relates to us.

Text Verse: “I will wash my hands in innocence;
So I will go about Your altar, O Lord,
That I may proclaim with the voice of thanksgiving,
And tell of all Your wondrous works.
Lord, I have loved the habitation of Your house,
And the place where Your glory dwells.” Psalm 26:6-8

As far as taking a bath, I hope that the spiritual picture which that makes applies to everyone here. If not, you will need to correct that. If so, then the lesson of the Bronze Laver is another step for you to pursue. You’ve taken your bath; next you need to keep your hands and feet clean. Let’s see what this is picturing. It’s all to be found in His superior word. And so let’s turn to that precious word once again and… May God speak to us through His word today and may His glorious name ever be praised.

I. The Bronze Laver (verses 17-21)

17 Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying:

This is the second of three times in this chapter that these exact same words are stated, v’dabber Yehovah el Mosheh lemor. Each time, the words are set off as their own verse, and so it is as if we are being asked to pause and consider them.

Something new is being introduced which is calling out for Moses, and thus us, to ponder. As this has been a dialogue between the Lord and Moses, and as Moses is recording what was said, the words seem all the more remarkable. Instead of saying, “Then I was next instructed,” or “Then the Lord spoke to me,” it is very formal and precise.

Moses’ words are recorded then, not for himself alone, but for all who would read them in the future. It is as if they are saying,  “Get ready! Something new and highly important is coming to your hearing. Stop and consider what lies ahead.” Now that we have so prepared ourselves, we can move forward into the “what” and “why” of the coming verses.

18 “You shall also make a laver of bronze,

The kiyyor is introduced into the Bible here. It is a basin, or a laver. The word comes from an unused root meaning properly “to dig through,” and so it is could be a variety of things that are shaped out, as if excavated, like a pot, washbowl, pulpit, platform, or furnace.

In this case, it is a washbowl which Moses is instructed to make. It is to be made of nekhoshet, or bronze. As we have seen, bronze mainly symbolizes judgment, but also endurance.

Concerning judgment, it can be negative, such as in the case of bronze fetters being worn by those who have been sentenced for a crime, or in a pictorial judgment such as that found in the curses of Deuteronomy 28:23 where the punishment for disobeying the Lord is described as “…your heavens which are over your head shall be bronze.” That picture is one of rainless skies, heat, and anguish.

However, the judgment can also be one of purification and justification. This is seen time and time again as well. As this laver will be used for washing, we can already make the mental connection that the bronze will signify positive judgment in purification and sanctification.

18 (con’t) with its base also of bronze,

The base in Hebrew is the word ken. This isn’t the first time it has been used, but it is the first time it is used in this sense. It means a pedestal or station, but also a base, estate, foot, office, place, or well. It is the same as the adjective and adverb ken which is an especially common word in Hebrew which means, “thus,” “so,” “rightly,” and so on. As a positive response to a question, one would say ken.

Scholars are divided on exactly what this ken is. Some believe it is a base upon which the laver sat. Others find it to be a shallow trough of some sort which would receive water from the laver when a spout was opened. This is not unlikely because throughout the Middle East, this was a common means of washing hands and feet. A practice which even continues to this day. No matter what, the use of the laver is known…

18 (con’t) for washing.

No matter what the base actually is, what is unlikely is that the laver was simply a large bowl where the priests would go and dip their hands in as so many depictions show. The water would be defiled by the hands if this was what happened.

The two probable solutions to this would be either a separate bowl being dipped into the water to take some out, of which the text says nothing, or a type of spout which would allow the water to come out of the laver. The second seems much more likely, even though this is also not specified. No matter what, the laver’s use is known. It is for washing. Later, in Exodus 40, the full purpose for the laver is given –

“He set the laver between the tabernacle of meeting and the altar, and put water there for washing; 31 and Moses, Aaron, and his sons would wash their hands and their feet with water from it. 32 Whenever they went into the tabernacle of meeting, and when they came near the altar, they washed, as the Lord had commanded Moses.” Exodus 40:30-32

The laver was used for purification in connection with any duties associated with the tent of meeting and the altar, meaning the brazen altar. And, notice that it included Moses in this. Despite being the mediator and the one who was to perform the consecration and ordination of Aaron and his sons, Moses still was required to wash from the laver any time he did something in connection with the tent of meeting or the altar.

Though he was used by the Lord to establish the priesthood, he was still not free from the requirements of that priesthood. He was not above the precepts of the law which he was used to initiate.

Verse 18 contains all of the instructions given for the making of this bronze laver. What is more than remarkable is that nothing is said of its size, height, width, shape, or ornamentation. It is completely devoid of any further description. Nothing about how it was transported is mentioned either. This is completely different than any other article which has been made.

Though the size of the menorah wasn’t given, the amount of gold, which would determine its size, was. Concerning this laver, what is lacking in written instruction was certainly not lacking in minute detail for Moses to adhere to. As Moses has been expressly told several times, and is even repeated in Hebrews 8, we read this precept –

“According to all that I show you, that is, the pattern of the tabernacle and the pattern of all its furnishings, just so you shall make it.” Exodus 25:9

So Moses was aware of any and all of the details concerning the making of this laver, and yet none of it is recorded. The omission of this detail then carries as much weight as that which has been included. Further, in contrast to this laver, the bronze sea and the ten lavers, which served the same specific purpose in the temple in Jerusalem, were exactingly described. They were intricately worked with elaborate designs. This detail is seen in 1 Kings 7 and 2 Chronicles 4.

The only other thing about this laver which hasn’t been noted yet, but which will be seen in Exodus 38:8 is that… –

“He made the laver of bronze and its base of bronze, from the bronze mirrors of the serving women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.”

Mirrors were not made of glass at this time in history. Instead, metals which were highly polished and exactingly shaped served as mirrors. The specificity concerning where the bronze for this laver came from cannot be without special significance.

The Greek translation of this verse from Exodus 38 says, “..of the women that fasted, who fasted by the doors of the tent of the testimony.” Two verses concerning such women lead us to a better understanding of who they were and why Exodus 38:8 is so specific concerning where the bronze came from –

“Now Eli was very old; and he heard everything his sons did to all Israel, and how they lay with the women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of meeting.” 2 Samuel 2:22

&

“Now there was one, Anna, a prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the tribe of Asher. She was of a great age, and had lived with a husband seven years from her virginity; 37 and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, who did not depart from the temple, but served God with fastings and prayers night and day.” Luke 2:37

What appears to be the case is that some of the women, at the time of the building of the tabernacle, gave up their mirrors which had been used for the earthly adorning of themselves and instead devoted themselves to the service of the Lord in the courts of the temple as a heavenly offering. In other words, what was once a means of obtaining earthly praise was given over for the purpose of receiving heavenly commendation. It seems that the offerings of these first women became a model for other women to follow during the times while the law was in effect.

18 (con’t) You shall put it between the tabernacle of meeting and the altar.

This is the logical place for the laver because it was to be used for washing when either they went into the tent of meeting or when they ministered at the brazen altar. Before doing either, they were to first come to this laver and wash. In the next section of this chapter which concerns the holy anointing oil, it will say this in Exodus 30:25-30–

“It shall be a holy anointing oil. 26 With it you shall anoint the tabernacle of meeting and the ark of the Testimony; 27 the table and all its utensils, the lampstand and its utensils, and the altar of incense; 28 the altar of burnt offering with all its utensils, and the laver and its base. 29 You shall consecrate them, that they may be most holy; whatever touches them must be holy. 30 And you shall anoint Aaron and his sons, and consecrate them, that they may minister to Me as priests.”

As the laver and its base are considered most holy, and as the priests had to wash at it prior to participating in any of the duties associated with the most holy things, then this should teach us a lesson concerning holiness. There is a fount of cleansing which is needed, even for those who are consecrated and set apart for the service of the Lord.

As far as the exact placement of this laver, Jewish tradition says that it was placed between the entrance to the tent of meeting and the brazen altar, but not exactly between them. They say it was placed a little to the south. This is not found in Scripture however.

18 (con’t) And you shall put water in it,

The details for the use of the laver are simply described here. It doesn’t say how much water, it doesn’t say how often to change the water or to fill it up, and so on. This is all that is given. It is completely different than, for example, the Menorah and the Altar of Incense, both of which are given almost minute detail as to their attendance.

19 for Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet in water from it.

“Aaron and his sons” means the priestly line who would attend to the tabernacle and later the temple. This then is an explanatory statement concerning the priestly line throughout the time of the law. It is set in contrast to the verse from Exodus 40 that I mentioned a while ago.

That verse included Moses who would be the one exception to this rule throughout the entire period of the law. After Moses, the use of the laver would be solely for “Aaron and his sons,” meaning the priestly line which descended from Aaron.

It is these people alone who were to “wash their hands and their feet.” As these members picked up dirt and defilement, they needed to be washed in order to symbolize purification before the Lord. As the laver was considered most holy, then the water inside of it would be as well.

20 When they go into the tabernacle of meeting, or when they come near the altar to minister, to burn an offering made by fire to the Lord, they shall wash with water,

The priests were required to make the daily sacrifices upon the altar in the morning and at twilight. They were also to tend to the Menorah and the Altar of Incense at these times. The Table of Showbread had its regular schedule, and the Ark of the Covenant was to be approached each year by the high priest on the Day of Atonement.

For each of these times, and all others which are designated by the law, the priests were required to first wash their hands and their feet at this laver. Though it is almost neglected in written detail, its use was as frequent as any implement in the entire sanctuary, even more so!

20 (con’t) lest they die.

These words are actually a part of the first clause. The NKJV has placed them at the end, indicating that death would be the result for not washing in any of the circumstances of this verse. However, the words “lest they die” are actually after “when they go into the tent of meeting.” The conjunction “or,” along with the words of the next verse, give us clarity.

This may seem like excessive punishment for such an infraction, but when considering the nature of the duties, the One to whom the observance was due, and the frequency of this being required, it makes good sense. As the Pulpit Commentary states it –

“Contempt of the simple and easy regulation to wash at the laver would imply contempt of purity itself; and so an entire hypocrisy of life and character, than which nothing could be a greater offence to God.” Pulpit Commentary

21 So they shall wash their hands and their feet, lest they die.

A second emphatic statement is made, repeating the substance of what had just been said. This brings to memory the time when Moses came to the burning bush and was told to take off his shoes. The most holy things were most holy, the ground within the tabernacle was deemed most holy because of the presence of the Lord.

In touching these holy articles with defiled hands, or in walking in the holy places with defiled feet, it would be reckoned as sin against the Lord and thus deserving of death. Their consecration did not bring them to an indelible state of holiness. Rather, they acquired defilement through their regular lives. To ensure that they maintained purity before the Lord, they were thus required to wash. This is reflected in the words of Leviticus 11:44 –

“For I am the Lord who brings you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God. You shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.” Leviticus 11:44

*21 (fin) And it shall be a statute forever to them—to him and his descendants throughout their generations.”

The washing of the hands and feet during the ministering of their duties was to be olam, or forever to their generations. The word olam indicates that which is concealed. It is an indeterminate amount of time which simply extends on without knowing when it will end. Hence, the term “forever” is used.

In this case, forever is to be taken in the sense of the duration of the covenant which comprises the words we are looking at. As the covenant is annulled in Christ, it is no longer a requirement. But for as long as the generations of the law were to remain, the statute was in force for Aaron and his sons, meaning the priestly line who ministered before the Lord.

There is a Laver which is available to me
And from within it comes water to cleanse and purify
I am to attend to it always, even daily
And in coming to it, the water has power to sanctify 

In washing with it, I am able my duties to complete
And from it the water has power to cleanse my soul
Through this washing, there is again fellowship so sweet
And my life remains steady before God, always under control 

No matter how many times I come, the water continues to pour
From the Laver, there is no end to the cleansing flow
And so I will come to it every day for sure
And in my walk I will be purified, I know

II. The Symbolism of the Laver

This laver is the seventh implement to be described in relation to the tabernacle furniture. The first was the Ark of the Covenant, then the Mercy Seat, the Table of Showbread, the Menorah, the Brazen Altar, and then the Altar of Incense. This now is the final such implement.

However, it is actually the second one to be approached when entering the courts, immediately after the Brazen Altar. There is a great deal of difference between the two. The altar was made of wood and brass, but the laver is of brass only. The dimensions of the altar were given in detail, but no dimensions are given for the laver.

The transport of the altar is given in that it was to be covered and carried on poles placed into rings. However, nothing is mentioned about how the laver was to be moved and nothing is said about a covering for it.

The altar was used for burning with fire; the laver for holding water. Even though only the priests could work at the altar, many of the sacrifices for it came from the general population. However, the contents of the laver were solely for the use of the priests. There is thus a great difference in these two implements.

As I just said, and as verse 19 notes, this implement is solely for the use of the priests – for Aaron and his sons. But there is a truth to be found in this, if they didn’t use the laver to wash, they would still be Israelites, but they would not be allowed to perform the duties of a priest. This then shows us a spiritual truth.

When we as Christians interact with the world, we won’t stop being Christians. We are once and forever justified before the Lord because of what He did. However, as we become defiled by the things of this world, we lose our effectiveness to do the priestly things that we should be doing. Our fellowship with God is fractured, and our ability to minister properly to others becomes useless.

Therefore, the Bronze Laver points to Christ, just as all the other implements have. It is through the cleansing which comes from Him that we are made suitable to perform our proper priestly roles as Christians.

Concerning its composition, we have seen time and again that bronze signifies judgment. In the case of this laver, it is after the judgment on sin for justification which was seen at the altar. Therefore, this Laver is looking to judgment on defilement and thus it signifies purification. It is a picture of the continued purification of the believer because of Christ.

Despite having been justified through the altar sacrifice, we still see Christ’s inflexible righteousness which tests us, judges us, and which ends close fellowship with God when we continuously violate His precepts. This is a lesson that every born again believer should heed, but which is far too often ignored.

We may not lose our salvation, but we can lose the joy of it as we continuously stray away from what Christ expects. In understanding this, we can see then what the water which is contained within the Laver signifies. Surely, it cannot be overly difficult to see what it is.

As far as the makeup of the bronze, we were told that it came from the mirrors of the serving women who assembled at the door of the tent of meeting. The Bible took the time to specifically note that, unlike almost all of the other voluntary offerings, this one was most specific.

It shouts out to us to consider what a mirror is used for. The Laver pictures Christ, as we have seen. He is the Word of God and from Him issues the word of God. Both are discerners of the hidden things. Christ is the active discerning of what is hidden in man, whereas the Bible is what passively allows man to see what is hidden in himself. The composition of the Laver being mirrors then points to what it says about the Word of God in Hebrews 4 –

“Let us therefore be diligent to enter that rest, lest anyone fall according to the same example of disobedience. 12 For the word of God is living and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the division of soul and spirit, and of joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart. 13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give account.” Hebrews 4:11-13

The bronze laver, made from these precious mirrors, points to Christ’s ability to discern and judge the very thoughts and intents of the hidden heart of man. And so, if Christ is the Laver, then what issues from Him is symbolized by the water. As He is the Word of God, and the word proceeds from Him, then it is a picture of the word itself; the Bible.

So much is tied up in this because the Holy Spirit worked to ensure that we received the written word through the prophets and apostles. Jesus came and dwelt among us and spoke the word. But suffice it to say that it is the word which is pictured in the water.

As we have only one source for knowing Christ during this dispensation, then it must be that source, meaning the Bible, the written word of God which is our water of cleansing. Numerous verses in both testaments show us this. A direct one from Psalm 119 is –

“How can a young man cleanse his way?
By taking heed according to Your word.” Psalm 119:9

Another from the New Testament is again explicit –

“Husbands, love your wives, just as Christ also loved the church and gave Himself for her, 26 that He might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word…” Ephesians 5:25, 26

These and a host of other verses show us that this water symbolizes the life which flows from the Word of God. And especially for us during this dispensation, it is the written word meaning the Bible. Understanding that, there is more to see in the idea of washing.

In the ordination of Aaron and his sons which was recorded in Exodus 29, they were completely washed. That was a one-time washing only for ordination. However, they are now instructed to wash their hands and their feet each time they minister to the holy things. This then shows a contrast between the two types of washing.

Further, the first was done for them by Moses one time and never repeated, the other was done by themselves frequently. This contrast is seen in what happens to believers in Christ. The first conducted for them typified regeneration – moving from Adam to Christ, once for all. The second typifies on-going sanctification and constant spiritual cleansing.  This is actually seen in Jesus’ washing of the disciples in John 13 –

“Jesus said to him, ‘He who is bathed needs only to wash his feet, but is completely clean; and you are clean, but not all of you.’ 11 For He knew who would betray Him; therefore He said, ‘You are not all clean.’” John 13:10, 11

He uses two different words there for us to understand what is meant. The first is “bathed” or louó. It signifies the washing of the entire person; a full washing. This signifies cleansing from sin. The second word He used was “wash” or  niptó. This indicates a simple washing of one’s own hands. It is an on-going process of keeping something clean.

What is seen is a contrast of what the Lord does for us in regeneration, and what we receive from the Lord in our sanctification. The regeneration is actively conducted by Him. It is once for all, and its effects are permanent, meaning forever. In our sanctification, we passively receive from Him as we actively cleanse ourselves with Him.

We open the spigot and we receive sanctification and cleansing through the washing of water by the word. This then is why the Laver comes after the Brazen Altar. The Altar speaks of justification before God because of the application of the work of Christ. The Laver speaks of sanctification before God because of application of His word.

We don’t need to have the blood reapplied, but we need to continuously apply the water, even to go back and minister as a priest at the altar. The holiness of God demands that in order to be in proper fellowship with Him, we must treat Him in the holy manner He deserves. Arthur Pink states this beautifully with these words –

“What is needed by the exercised believer as he is conscious of the blemishes of his service (the “hands”) and the failures of his walk (the “feet”), is to avail himself of that which the Laver and its water pre-figured—the provision which God has made for us in His Word. What is needed by us is a practical appropriation of that Word to all the details of our daily lives.” AW Pink

How sad it is to think that the water is right there for us if we desire it. The word is written, its precepts are available, and the yielding of our lives to it will bring us back into a right standing with our heavenly Father. And yet so few avail themselves of this fount of spiritual blessing.

It is there for us to draw from. Just as the priests had to go to the Laver and draw the water from it, we too have to draw from the word, using it to judge ourselves, to guide our lives, and to grow in a close and personal relationship with the Lord. Paul sums the thought up so well with these words –

“Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.” Colossians 3:16

In doing these things, we will keep ourselves from temptations, we will be kept from falling into evil practices, we will stay on the right path, and be able to resist the devil. The snares he sets for us will be evident long before we come close to them. This is the power of the word of God to affect our lives. The water of the Laver is our written word. In pursuing it, we can fulfill Paul’s admonition from 2 Corinthians 7:1 –

“Therefore, having these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of God.”

And this perfecting comes in two ways, symbolized by the two parts of the body which were washed by the priests. The hand washing was intended to signify purity in action, whereas the foot washing was to signify holiness in how they walked and conducted their lives. Together, they signify the right-now and the on-going. Our cleansing is to be for the task at hand as well as for the steps we take which lie ahead.

In this pursuit of the word though, there is more than just keeping ourselves from harm and growing in holiness. There is an aspect which anyone who reads the Bible daily will surely comprehend – relief and reinvigoration. When Aaron and his sons washed their feet, especially before the evening work, they would be tired from the labors of the day.

When the cool water came down on them, it would have been a blessing to their soul. This is what the Bible gives us each time we pick it up, looking for a moment away from the weariness of the labors of the world. Reading David’s psalms can lift even the most wiped-out soul from the pit of the most melancholy spell. Such is the power of the Word of God when we open the tap and let it flow upon us.

Having seen so far what the Laver is according to the word, we need to see what is missing concerning it according to that same word. As I noted, nothing is said of its size, height, width, shape, or ornamentation. It is completely devoid of any further description. In this, we see a picture of unlimited provision.

The Laver could have held a gallon or 1000 gallons. The omission thus tells us that we don’t need to know. It holds water and water will issue from it. That is all we need to know. And so it is with Christ. He is unlimited in scope, being very God of very God. And what issues from Him is therefore unlimited in scope.

His word is fully sufficient to cleanse and to keep on cleansing. He is sufficient to sanctify and to keep on sanctifying. He is sufficient to purify and to keep on purifying. From Him, the water never ceases. Every need is met, and every desire is fulfilled in Him.

But not only was the size of the laver not given, the transport of it was not detailed either. The transport of all of the other implements is detailed, even minutely, but nothing is sad of this. No mention of it being covered is given, no words tell us of how it is moved.

This omission was purposeful in order to show us Christ once again. He is ever available for our cleansing. No matter where we move, and no matter what deplorable place we go to, there is always available to us the pure cleansing of the word. It will never depart from us. As long as we come to the tap, the water will flow. In this life, we will never search out all of the mysteries of His word, and in eternity, the water will never run dry. This is the promise of Revelation 22 –

“And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.” Revelation 22:1

And there is one more omission concerning the laver, at least as far as Israel is concerned. It is mentioned 10 times in the books of Moses. It is seen 9 times in Exodus and once in Leviticus. All of these are in connection with the construction and consecration of the tabernacle. After that it is not mentioned again.

Instead, only the lavers for the temple are once again described. This is probably not by accident, but is intended to show us just how far Israel departed from the word of the Lord throughout its history. They were redeemed by God. Those who participated in the Day of Atonement received His covering, but the people never lived close enough to the Lord to be considered as cleansed from their daily walk.

It is the continued theme of the Old Testament. This is certainly why they were twice exiled and it explains beautifully the words of comfort for Israel which lie ahead someday when they turn to Christ. This is seen in Zechariah 13 –

“In that day a fountain shall be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for uncleanness.” Zechariah 13:1

The fount was opened for them, but they rejected Him. Therefore, they were exiled and God turned His focus to the Gentiles who have gladly received what is offered in these ancient types and shadows. However, Israel is being prepared for the day when the cleansing water will pour out for them.

Nationally, they will sit as chief among the nations. Spiritually, they will be purified by the water which flows from the throne there in Jerusalem. This is described in Ezekiel 47:1-12. The water will flow from the throne and be so abundant that it will even bring the Dead Sea to life. Only the swamps and marshes won’t be healed.

The note that the ritual for Aaron and his sons was forever to them throughout their generations is an anticipatory look into the true and eternal cleansing in Christ. The law failed, not because it wasn’t holy, but because man isn’t holy. Only through Christ can that be corrected. And in Him, it is completely corrected.

What we need to do now, in our present walk, is to pursue Christ. We should fill ourselves with His word, apply its precepts to our lives, and live always in a state of purifying ourselves to honor His holiness. We can hold onto the words of the Lord from John 15:3 that say –

“You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you.”

But we also need to hold onto the truth that our one-time cleansing from a bath does not mean that we don’t need ongoing cleansings through self-washings. One has eternal value and can never be removed, whereas the other has right-now value which can affect so much of our earthly life as well as our heavenly rewards. As I’ve said, the tap is there. We just need to open it and wash.

If Christ is the discerner of our inner selves, then let us use what we have from Him for our own self evaluations; let us look into the perfect law of the Lord in order to discern our faults, and let us strive to mirror the Lord until the day when He looks at us and sees as much of Himself reflecting back into His precious, purifying eyes as is possible.

And for those who have never taken the first step, not of being sanctified by the word, but of being justified by the Lord, it’s time to make the decision to do so. No matter how much you wash your hands, the defilement will remain unless the sin of your soul is first washed away.

This is the problem with religion; always putting the horse in front of the cart. “I’m going to clean myself up and God will be counting me in for sure.” That’s not how it works. Only Christ can clean us up to make us right before God. After that, we use what Christ offers to keep ourselves clean. Let’s get it in the right order and you’ll be in the sweet spot for all eternity. Call on Jesus, receive His forgiveness, and then live for Him all the days of your life. Do it today!

Closing Verse: “But when the kindness and the love of God our Savior toward man appeared, not by works of righteousness which we have done, but according to His mercy He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, whom He poured out on us abundantly through Jesus Christ our Savior, that having been justified by His grace we should become heirs according to the hope of eternal life.” Titus 3:4-7

Next Week: Exodus 30:22-33 The wonderful smells must have been so intense… (The Holy Anointing Oil and the Holy Incense) (86th Exodus Sermon)

The Lord has you exactly where He wants you. He has a good plan and purpose for you. Even if a deep ocean lies ahead of You, He can part the waters and lead you through it on dry ground. So follow Him and trust Him and He will do marvelous things for you and through you.

The Bronze Laver

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying
These are the words He was relaying

You shall also make a laver of bronze
With its base also of bronze, for washing, as I submit
You shall put it between the tabernacle of meeting and the altar
And you shall put water in it

For Aaron and his sons shall wash, as is meet
In water from it, their hands and their feet

When they go into the tabernacle of meeting
Or when they come near the altar to minister, by and by
To burn an offering made by fire to the Lord
They shall wash with water, lest they die

So they shall wash their hands and their feet, lest they die
And it shall be a statute to them forever
To him and his descendants throughout their generations
As long as this law continues, they shall cease this never

Lord, in this simple Laver, we see marvelous pictures of you
And of the word which you have spoken as well
Help each of us to do those things we should do
And purify ourselves as the pictures of this Laver do tell

Let our actions be right and acceptable each day
May our steps be free from error; walking a path which is holy
And help us to wash ourselves with your word, we pray
Until the time when we stand there before the glassy sea

For marvelous are you, O God
And worthy are You of our seeking right living through Your word
And may we forever upon the holy path trod
Until the day when comes for us Jesus Christ our Lord

We long for that day and may it be soon we pray
Until then we will continue to pursue You day by day

Hallelujah and Amen…

 

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