They made the bronze basin and its bronze stand from the
mirrors of the women who served at the entrance to the Tent of
‚ÄúThen the LORD said to Moses, ‚ÄúMake a bronze basin, with its bronze stand, for washing. Place it between the Tent of Meeting and the altar, and put water in it. Aaron and his sons are to wash their hands and feet with water from it. Whenever they enter the Tent of Meeting, they shall wash with water so that they will not die. Also, when they approach the altar to minister by presenting an offering made to the LORD by fire, they shall wash their hands and feet so that they will not die. This is to be a lasting ordinance for Aaron and his descendants for the generations to come.‚Äù‚Äù
(Ex 30.17-21 NIV)
‚ÄúIn that day the Lord will snatch away their finery: the bangles and
headbands and crescent necklaces, the earrings and bracelets and
veils, the headdresses and ankle chains and sashes, the perfume
bottles and charms, the signet rings and nose rings, the fine robes
and the capes and cloaks, the purses and mirrors, and the linen
garments and tiaras and shawls.‚Äù
(Is 3.18-23 NIV)
I am so struck by these ladies that served at the entrance. They gave
up their mirrors to make the bronze basin. These mirrors came from
the rich egyptians when the Hebrews “plundered the Egyptians” because
God made them generous toward them. These women, for years, were told
what they looked like from these mirrors, they got their visual
identity from these mirrors. The thing is, Egypt represents the land
of sin and death and oppression, so they were getting their identity,
and what they thought was a look at their beauty, from articles made
in the land of sin, death, and oppression. They gave these up, it’s
like they said, “we aren’t going to get our identity from these any
more” Or like the Barlowe Girl song, “You don’t define me.”
They moved on from looking at themselves and began looking to the
congregation. Because they took their eyes off themselves, the men
could wash and be clean before God and not be struck dead.
How many times do we define ourselves by our possessions, and so make
it difficult for our fellow believers to be washed clean? In our
contest of possessions that begin to possess us, in the comparing and
the showing off, the brother who is trying to keep up or fit in with
us that have so much eventually gets left behind and left out.
These ladies gave up the expensive and fine items that used to say
“this is what you look like” and in return all of Israel gained
fellowship and access to God.
Doesn’t Jesus tell us to do the same thing to draw near to Him?
‚ÄúThen he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said:
‚ÄúIf anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his
cross and follow me.‚Äù
(Mark 8.34 NIV)
the young rich man believed, like so many of us do, that all of his
‘blessings’ were ‘blessings’ from God, and showed his ‘blessed’ life.
But Jesus would never take away a blessing from us, so maybe they
weren’t blessings after all.
‚ÄúJesus looked at him and loved him. ‚ÄúOne thing you lack,‚Äù he said.
‚ÄúGo, sell everything you have and give to the poor, and you will have
treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.‚Äù‚Äù
(Mark 10.21 NIV)