I thought I knew a lot about the Bible. I’ve read it cover to cover. I’ve taken Bible classes. I’ve even had 40 plus years of teaching in church. Little did I know, however, how much I would learn about the Bible at camp this year.
For our theme “Created For Worship” at Living Waters Bible Camp, we built a life size replica of the Old Testament Tabernacle. I’ve read that passage in the Old Testament many times and I usually got lost in the overwhelming detail of the materials, the dimensions and the contents. I knew that there is a wealth of meaning behind all the objects but I could never conceptually put it all together in my mind.
This year, as I assisted in leading campers and groups through a hands-on experience of the Tabernacle, it was a time of learning for me and truly a blessing to watch others examine their relationship with God via this incredible tool.
The whole point of the Tabernacle was for God to “dwell” (or tabernacle) with man. Man would approach the presence of God through rather simple steps to eventually arrive in the Holy of Holies (the presence of God). We start at the Gate, where we discover there is only one way into the courtyard. Next is the Altar, where a Lamb is sacrificed. The following step is the Laver where the priests wash in the water. The Holy place is lit by a lampstand which offers the light and features the table of show bread. Only Christ is the Way, the Lamb of God, the Living Water, the Light of the Word and the Bread of Life!
Another interesting aspect of the tabernacle is the unique role of the Priest. I always thought of them as having the easy job. Everyone else worked and they just went into the Holy of Holies once a year. Sweet job! Right? Not really. With potentially 2-3 million Israelites brining daily sacrifices, the priests’ job would have been back breaking work filled with endless blood and guts of animals. It must have been a very difficult job.
In Deuteronomy 18 it says: “The Levitical priests—indeed, the whole tribe of Levi—are to have no allotment or inheritance with Israel. They shall live on the food offerings presented to the Lord, for that is their inheritance…You are to give them the first fruits of your grain, new wine and olive oil, and the first wool from the shearing of your sheep, for the Lord your God has chosen them and their descendants out of all your tribes to stand and minister in the Lord’s name always.”
What a clear calling! The Levites were to stand and minister in God’s name. They didn’t have jobs like everyone else…they were in the Lord’s service and depended on the rest of the nation to supply their needs.
Our family counts it a privilege and responsibility to stand and minister in the Lord’s name always. Some days our ministry feels like “blood and guts” and other days we get to stand in the presence of God in the Holy of Holies. When that happens it is all worth it! But none of it would be possible without your help.
Through the gifts of regular supporters we are at 82% of our needed support. The additional 18% is dependent on one-time gifts. Would you be willing to contribute a one-time gift this year? Either visit our website www.lwbc.org/about/donate or use the enclosed envelope.
We also covet your prayers and invite you to volunteer at camp anytime! To find out more how you can help you can visit our website. We thank you for all you have done for us and count you as a blessing from God.
Paul and Jenny Thompson