What does God do when He wants beautiful craftsmanship? Pours out His Holy Spirit
How does God increase IQ? Holy Spirit
How does God increase ability? Holy Spirit
How does God increase ones artistic ability? Holy Spirit
How does God equip Teachers for His people? Holy Spirit
At least, this is the obvious conclusion for God’s intended purpose of filling Bezalel with the Holy Spirit from the following texts:
Exo 31:1-11 The LORD said to Moses, (2)“See, I have called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, (3) and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with ability and intelligence, with knowledge and all craftsmanship, (4) to devise artistic designs, to work in gold, silver, and bronze, (5) in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, to work in every craft. (6)And behold, I have appointed with him Oholiab, the son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan. And I have given to all able men ability, that they may make all that I have commanded you: (7) the tent of meeting, and the ark of the testimony, and the mercy seat that is on it, and all the furnishings of the tent, (8)the table and its utensils, and the pure lampstand with all its utensils, and the altar of incense, (9) and the altar of burnt offering with all its utensils, and the basin and its stand, (10) and the finely worked garments, the holy garments for Aaron the priest and the garments of his sons, for their service as priests, (11) and the anointing oil and the fragrant incense for the Holy Place. According to all that I have commanded you, they shall do.”
Exo 35:30-35Then Moses said to the people of Israel, “See, the LORD has called by name Bezalel the son of Uri, son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah; (31) and he has filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, with intelligence, with knowledge, and with all craftsmanship, (32) to devise artistic designs, to work in gold and silver and bronze, (33) in cutting stones for setting, and in carving wood, for work in every skilled craft. (34)And he has inspired him to teach, both him and Oholiab the son of Ahisamach of the tribe of Dan. (35) He has filled them with skill to do every sort of work done by an engraver or by a designer or by an embroiderer in blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, or by a weaver–by any sort of workman or skilled designer.
I stand alongside the Pentecostal/Charismatic tradition of acknowledging the “charismata” for the church. I am grateful that Jesus has poured out the Holy Spirit for my regeneration unto justification, for strength against the flesh in my sanctification, AND FOR SPECIAL EMPOWERING TO CARRY OUT SPECIFIC TASKS OR MINISTRIES FOR THE EDIFICATION OF GOD’S PEOPLE AND HIS GLORY. I also stand alongside Reformed Theology in its embracing of God’s “common grace”. I acknowledge that God does work through people in the arts, sciences, and workplace to sustain this world and also show forth beauty for His glory. I believe that God works through unbelievers for these ends…which is essentially understood as “common grace”, distinguished from “saving grace”…where God acts in a saving fashion among people to draw them unto belief and love for Christ. I think that Moses could have gone out and found some “qualified” folks to carry out the tasks of building the tent, ark, mercy seat, tables, etc. BUT God instead chooses to endue specific people for the task with His Spirit. What I take from this is that God wants Glory!!! If people, through “common grace”, built the tent…they would look upon the product with adoration in their own abilities. Although I would look upon the work and acknowledge God’s hand in it for His glory…the builders would want the credit. The reason God doesn’t just pick unbelieving CEO’s or unbelieving great orators as His spokesmen is because it would detract from His glory.SO, God poured out His Spirit so that something beautiful would be created and SO THAT people would look upon it and attribute it to God’s Beauty and Glory and SO THAT the workers involved would give God ALL glory for the ability to carry out the function. I think that was the point of Peter’s words as follows:
1Pe 4:10-11 As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God’s varied grace: (11) whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies–in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen.
My Pentecostal/Charismatic brothers and sisters…please function in the gifts always mindful that the very reason they are given is so He would get ALL the glory.
My Reformed/Dispensational/Cessationist brothers and sisters…please reconsider whether God is properly glorified when you deny His special “charismata= grace gifting” in your ministries. Right or wrong, the impression given to others is that you are fine without the Spirit’s special enabling and are thus operating in your own abilities. Now I know that you would “say” God gets the glory because He created you and leads you by His providence for His glory…but way too many “act” arrogantly as if all skill was simply acquired through hard work, the reading of many books, advanced degrees, etc.
Like Sam Storms, I would contend for a “convergence” of these two great theological traditions. I myself have inherited a charismatic piety that is inclined towards fasting and prayer in seeking God’s blessing upon ministry endeavors. At the same time, some such folks would devalue the need for rigorous study and theological training. Their training comes on their knees, hungering for God.
I have also been influenced heavily by my Reformed friends…many of whom are disciplined with their weekly reading and sermon preparation. Their training tends to come late at night, reading and deep in thought…Meditating upon God’s Sovereign Glory, enraptured by it.
© 2008, Rick Hogaboam. All rights reserved.