Then the Lord said to Moses, 2 “See, I have chosen Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 3 and I have filled him with the Spirit of God, with wisdom, with understanding, with knowledge and with all kinds of skills— 4 to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, 5 to cut and set stones, to work in wood, and to engage in all kinds of crafts.
When we think about the release of the Holy Spirit what first comes to mind? Is it Pentecost (Acts 2) with its tongues of fire and the amazing gift given to the apostles to speak in the native languages of Jews from throughout the known world who were in Jerusalem at the time? Or maybe gifts such as prophecy, preaching, wisdom, teaching and discernment? But it’s probably fair to say that we don’t think about the Holy Spirit’s involvement in building objects and structures, even holy ones. That is exactly what is going on in this passage (especially if you read through v. 11).
This passage in Exodus is a reminder that God gives many talents to His people. We need not despair that we haven’t been given“spiritual” gifts like prophecy, preaching, etc. All talents can be used to honor God, including those of crafts and artisanship (v.4), tent making (v. 7), carpentry and metalwork (v. 8-9), weaving and sewing (v. 10), and oil and incense making (v. 11).
Particularly during this year that has been filled with so much uncertainty, loss and sorrow, God is asking each of us to think about how the talents that He has given each of us can be used to help others in our community. Never think that the gifts you have been given are too inconsequential to matter. A friendly phone call can make all the difference to so many of us isolated during this pandemic.