Exodus 25:2 MEANING

Exodus 25:2


(2) Speak unto the children of Israel that they bring me an offering.--God, being about to command the construction of a dwelling for Himself, such as the circumstances of the case allowed, prefaced His directions concerning its materials and form by instructing Moses to invite the people to contribute from their stores, as an offering to Himself, the various substances which were suitable for the dwelling and its appurtenances. The erection of sanctuaries is one of the fittest occasions for man to shew his gratitude to God by giving to Him of His own, largely and liberally.

Of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart.--Heb., of every man whose heart impels him. Unless gifts come from the heart, they are an offence to God. He "loveth a cheerful giver." When the time came, a noble and liberal spirit was not wanting. (See Exodus 35:21-29; Exodus 36:3-7.)

My offering.--Literally, my heave-offering. But the word seems to be intended in a generic sense.

Verse 2. - Speak unto the children of Israel that they bring me an offering. The word translated "offering" is that commonly rendered" heave-offering;" but it seems to be used here (as in Exodus 30:13; Exodus 35:5, etc.) in a generic sense. The propriety of the people, when God was about establishing his habitation among them, presenting to God all the materials needed, is self-evident and requires no comment. Of every man that giveth it willingly. Literally, "of every man whose heart drives him." God will have no gifts but such as are freely offered. He "loveth a cheerful giver. If a man gives grudgingly or of necessity," God rejects the gift. On the noble spirit which the people showed when the appeal was made to them, see Exodus 35:21-29; and Exodus 36:37

25:1-9 God chose the people of Israel to be a peculiar people to himself, above all people, and he himself would be their King. He ordered a royal palace to be set up among them for himself, called a sanctuary, or holy place, or habitation. There he showed his presence among them. And because in the wilderness they dwelt in tents, this royal palace was ordered to be a tabernacle, that it might move with them. The people were to furnish Moses with the materials, by their own free will. The best use we can make of our worldly wealth, is to honour God with it in works of piety and charity. We should ask, not only, What must we do? but, What may we do for God? Whatever they gave, they must give it cheerfully, not grudgingly, for God loves a cheerful giver, 2Co 9:7. What is laid out in the service of God, we must reckon well bestowed; and whatsoever is done in God's service, must be done by his direction.Speak unto the children of Israel,.... That is, when he should go down from the mountain to the camp:

that they bring me an offering; the Targums of Onkelos and Jonathan call it a "separation": something separated from their substance, and devoted to the service of God, and for the use of the sanctuary afterwards to be built:

of every man that giveth it willingly, with his heart, ye shall take my offering; or take what was offered to him, be it more or less, and of whatsoever person, high and low, rich and poor, so be it it is freely given from the heart; not grudgingly or through force, as the Targum of Jonathan adds; and in such manner did David and his people many hundreds of years after this offer towards building of the temple, and the vessels belonging to that, see 1 Chronicles 29:6 according to the Jewish writers, none but the children of Israel were to offer to this service, and only such who knew what they did; for thus they criticize on the words,"speak unto the children of "Israel": this exempts an Heathen and an idolater; "of every man"; this excludes a little one; "that giveth it willingly with his heart"; this exempts a deaf and dumb man, and a fool, because they have no knowledge to offer freely (z)''however, this we may learn from hence, that whatever we do for the worship and service of God, we should do it freely, cheerfully, and cordially; for God loves a cheerful giver; and if this was required under the legal dispensation, it is much more necessary and obligatory under the Gospel dispensation, and more suitable to it where all things are done and given freely of God, and such large blessings of grace are liberally bestowed by him on persons undeserving.

(z) Maimon. & Bartenora in Misn. Trumot, c. 1. sect. 1.

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