“Bezalel made the ark of acacia wood. Two cubits and a half was its length, a cubit and a half its breadth, and a cubit and a half its height.” (37:1)
There’s no way Bezalel could know the significance of the piece he was crafting. He couldn’t have known that one day it would give all the Philistines tumors (1 Samuel 5), or that Uzzah would be struck down dead for touching it (2 Samuel 6:7), or that it would melt Nazi faces (Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark). It was about to be possessed by the Holy Creator God.
No one would ever be audacious enough to suggest the ark was powerful because of Bezalel. I’m sure some of you have never heard his name before. So why, when we witness the power of God through the work of a simple person, do we give that person glory?
Think about it. Some pastor has a really successful church. What happens? He gets a book deal and a podcast and everyone tries to make their ark with exactly the same demensions. The method and the man become the source of power to be replicated.
I’ve spent a lot of my time in YWAM helping with marketing, and recruiting for our Discipleship Training Schools. I’ve worked my booty off and it’s really discouraging when each quarter our school size is still small. Then it’s back to the drawing board, what are we doing wrong? I’ve spent a lot of this time stewing in the corner occasionally barking, “you can’t schmooze someone into following God. You can’t build something and run around like the priests of Baal, cutting ourselves, asking God to bring down the fire.” (1 Kings 22). But somehow I still find myself making 50 phone calls a day and hoping something sticks.
A theme of this year, for me, has been humility and obedience. I am convinced these are the only methods we need. What did Bezalel do? He followed instructions. This is the only “philosophy of ministry” I will ever need. And if, someday, God erupts in some revival situation, I’ll be as surprised as anyone else. He is the only one who builds eternal things. He is the reason for “ministry”. It can never be numbers. It can never be perceived success.
“The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13)
Crown Him with many crowns! Let’s be like Bezalel. Let’s build a place for God’s glory, by His design and instruction, and never attempt to steal His glory (unless we’d like our Nazi faces melted off).