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Exodus 25:10-22, The Ark of the Covenant

A Dwelling for God

Narrative Lectionary Daily Devotions written by Kace Leetch from Clergy Stuff.

ark of the covenant.jpg

The Israelites were used to worshiping alongside the Egyptians. They were probably quite used to the Egyptian rites and rituals, gods and goddesses. But God wanted more. God wanted them to leave the false gods and worship only God. So God made it quite clear how they should worship. God told them how to make the ark of the covenant, in which the tablets containing God's ten commandments would rest. For centuries, wherever the ark of the covenant went, there God went also. Wars were fought and won based on who possessed the ark of the covenant. And it was dangerous, too. Only certain priests could touch or lay eyes on it, as it would kill all others. It was a sign that God meant business. God was a powerful God that demanded total respect and full adoration, and exclusive worship.

Perhaps there is something that you own, carry, or have access to that is where God lives for you. Maybe it's something that reminds you to pray. Maybe it is or it contains something holy. It's important to have those things. It's also important, though, to remember it's not the thing that is holy or powerful -- it is our God that the thing represents and who is holy and powerful.

Narrative Lectionary Text: Exodus 25:10-22

They shall make an ark of acacia wood; it shall be two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high. You shall overlay it with pure gold, inside and outside you shall overlay it, and you shall make a molding of gold upon it all around. You shall cast four rings of gold for it and put them on its four feet, two rings on the one side of it, and two rings on the other side. You shall make poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold. And you shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, by which to carry the ark. The poles shall remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be taken from it. You shall put into the ark the covenant that I shall give you. Then you shall make a mercy seat of pure gold; two cubits and a half shall be its length, and a cubit and a half its width. You shall make two cherubim of gold; you shall make them of hammered work, at the two ends of the mercy seat. Make one cherub at the one end, and one cherub at the other; of one piece with the mercy seat you shall make the cherubim at its two ends. The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings. They shall face one to another; the faces of the cherubim shall be turned toward the mercy seat. You shall put the mercy seat on the top of the ark; and in the ark you shall put the covenant that I shall give you. There I will meet with you, and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim that are on the ark of the covenant, I will deliver to you all my commands for the Israelites.

Earlier Event: October 10
Exodus 20:1-21, The Ten Commandments
Later Event: October 12
Exodus 32:1-35, The Golden Calf