They made the bronze basin and its bronze stand from the mirrors of the women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting.
Reflection: Mirrors and Sanctification
By John Tillman
The first observation from today’s reading is that the women serving at the entrance to the tent of meeting gave up valuable hand-held devices, polished brass mirrors, to create a basin for ceremonial cleansing used by priests entering the tent of meeting. The modern analogy is obvious.
Can we be persuaded to give up, even for a short period of time, the valuable hand-held devices that reflect back to ourselves so much about us?
We pour our identity into our devices, and they give us back a river of reflective content. They show us an irresistible, aspirational self-portrait—just click “add to cart.” They sing us a song composed by an algorithm that knows us better than ourselves through granular data culled from our wants, lusts, and preferences.
Narcissus never faced such a captivating image. Sailors never heard such siren songs. No wonder we find it hard to turn away. No wonder we steer inexorably closer to shore.
It is appropriate that mirrors were transformed and used for ceremonial cleansing. Confession is self-reflective. May we follow the example of these women to transform our use of technology for spiritual purposes. May our devices cease to be vehicles of vanity or vain pursuits, but basins of reflective repentance and redemption.
The second observation today, is that the women who gave these gifts served in a special position at the entrance to the tent of meeting. Some, unwilling to admit that these women have a legitimate role in the tabernacle, translate the Hebrew tsaba’ as “assembled” rather than “served.” But even when tsaba’ is translated as assembled in other places, it is still in the context of official service, usually conscripted military service as in Jeremiah 52.25. Tsaba’s most common translation is to fight or defend.
Regardless of what their exact duties were, these women were not randomly gathering around the entrance. They were assembled for a purpose. Tsaba’ implies that they served in an official capacity and were conscripted in a manner similar to Levites or soldiers.
No one is exempt from being conscripted to serve, calling our communities to enter in and meet with Christ. Being sanctified through the washing of the Word, as with the water of the basin, is a prerequisite to our ministry.
Sanctify and transform your technology in ways that deliver the word of God to you. Our devotionals are just one part of that. Seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance to transform your interactions with all the technology you encounter.
Prayer: The Request for Presence
Send out your light and your truth, that they may lead me, and bring me to your holy hill and to your dwelling;
That I may go to the altar of God, to the God of my joy and gladness; and on the harp I will give thanks to you, O God my God. — Psalm 43.3-4
Exodus 38 (Listen – 4:23)
John 17 (Listen – 3:40)
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Eli’s sons were corrupt in the extreme. They stole from the offerings of the people, committing financial sins and threatening violence toward those who objected. They used their spiritual positions of power to manipulate and pressure women at the tabernacle for sexual favors.
Read more about Further up, Further in
In Christ, there is no priestly barrier—all are priests with him as our high priest. There is no genealogical barrier, for we are made sons and daughters in Christ. In Christ, there is not male or female, but we are one in him. In Christ there is no abled or disabled, for our weaknesses are transformed in his glory. In Christ racial barriers are destroyed and the division of Babel is reversed. In Christ nationalism is meaningless for we serve a King of Kings and have citizenship in a higher kingdom.