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Extravagance and Excellence (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston
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April 3, 2023 6:00 am

Extravagance and Excellence (Part B)

Cross Reference Radio / Pastor Rick Gaston

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April 3, 2023 6:00 am

Pastor Rick teaches from the book of the Acts

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Each morning, the priest would burn incense on that and each evening and care for the lamps at the same time. So, what's the point of all of this for us? Ministry is hard work. It is hard work. And if you think, I'm going to serve Jesus, it's going to be glorious. Well, it's going to be glorious. Gloriously difficult. It is just no way around it. And we're told this in the scripture through the imagery that's given to us.

I mean, to bring the animals up, to butcher them. This is Cross-Reference Radio with our pastor and teacher Rick Gaston. Rick is the pastor of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville. Pastor Rick is currently teaching through the Book of 1 Kings. Please stay with us after today's message to hear more information about Cross-Reference Radio.

Specifically, how you can get a free copy of this teaching. Now, here's Pastor Rick in the Book of 1 Kings Chapter 7 as he continues his message, Extravagance and Excellence. The oxen, so necessary in that agrarian culture, spoke of strength and labor, and together in this picture you have the effort necessary to uphold cleansing, which the water represented at the temple. The symbolism, the Jews would not have missed the symbolism in the design or in the use of the temple, and we don't either. I mean, when we see three crosses, we know immediately what that means. One of the people on one of those crosses went to hell.

The other two did not. And there's a whole story behind these things, and it was just that way with them also. We're not wasting our time when we look at some of these symbols that are outstanding. They're easy to see.

Some of them are not as easy for us. But this temple, it's no longer mobile. It's stationary.

It's in a fixed position. So, with Moses, God in his mercy designed the temple so it could be portable and they could move it without too much effort. I guess the Ark of the Covenant. If he had made it solid gold, they couldn't walk with that through the desert, but he overlays wood, and the planks for the temple and all the things like that. It was all manageable.

Well, now that it's stationary, they're not restricted by that. And God, who's designed this and handed it to David, this is going to make perfect sense to have a constant reservoir of water on the temple mount. Ahaz, that dirty rotten scoundrel king that comes later, he's going to eliminate the bronze oxen and cut them up and set this giant basin on a stone. You get that in 2 Kings 16.

Verse 26, it was a handbreath thick and its brim was shaped like the brim of a cup, like a lily blossom. It contained 2,000 baths. It would take a lot to fill this basin. How many buckets?

It's 3 inches thick. It usually holds 12,000 gallons of water. It has a capacity for 17,000 gallons of water, 23 tons of water.

It's all a water tower without the lid. And we'll come back to this when we get to the little carts that hold 250 gallons of water each, or at least a capacity for. Verse 27, he also made 10 carts of bronze.

Four cubits was the length of each. Verse 28, and this was the design of the carts. They had panels and the panels were between frames. On the panels between the frames were lions, oxen, and cherubim, and on the frames a pedestal on top. Below the lions, the oxen, the wreaths, and the plated wood. The lions speak, of course, courage and strength, military might in this case because it's the kingdom oxen without the cotton.

The oxen speak of the economy and the cherubim, the spiritual facet, God's kingdom. So that's the symbolism on these carts. So you have these carts, and on top of the carts is going to go another basin, a smaller one than of course the giant sea, and these will be manageable by the priest. So they'll go over to the bronze, sea of bronze, that water reservoir, and be able to draw from it.

It's not stated, but I mean it certainly had some practical way of functioning with these things, refilling it. And so now Moses' temple had one laver. This one has one giant reservoir and 10 portable lavers so that the priest can conduct their duties, and we'll come to that. Now verse 30 through 35, does anyone want to stand up and read out loud in the Russian language?

We can do that. We go to verse 37 because of the details of these carts. They have wheels and axles, and they have looks like little braking system to keep them stationary from rolling away. They're thought out well. Verse 37, thus he made 10 carts. All of them were the same mold, one measure and one shape. So uniformed and Unitarian, these carts were.

Beautifully decorated metal wagons, mostly bronze. Verse 38, and I pause there, it has certainly an alloy strong enough to be able to hold the water. And because the capacities are given doesn't mean that's how much they put in. You need some space to control swishing around. I'm sure, you know, don't fill it up.

I told you that, Ira. You know, just get it halfway. It's going to swish out, and water is pretty heavy. So verse 38, then he made 10 lavers of bronze. Each laver contained 40 baths. Each laver was four cubits. On each of the 10 carts was a laver. So these are the basins that sat atop of the carts. The carts were six foot square and four and a half feet high. So they're, you know, like an hors d'oeuvre cart at some restaurants. Handles on the corner, 230 gallons thereabout. That's about one ton if it's full, but they are again likely not having them full. They were kept in the court of the priests next to the sanctuary.

Five on the north side, five on the south side. Mobile, as I mentioned, for refilling and for emptying. I mean, after you dip your hands in it and start using it, you've got to get rid of it. And so these were very functional. Water for washing and preparing the sacrifices and the general cleanliness of the temple. We get this in the parallel description in Chronicles chapter 4, 2 Chronicles. He also made 10 lavers and put five on the right side and five on the left to wash in them. Such things as they offered for burnt offerings, they would wash in them. But the sea for the priests was to wash in. So the priests used these lavers, these portable lavers, to wash the parts for offerings and the bronze, the sea where they would wash themselves and no doubt refill the carts and empty them out.

Are you on the edge of your seats yet? I like this very much because it's a welcome upgrade for the priests. This was, you know, we need to get water on the temple and this satisfies it. The rebuilt temples of Zerubbabel, because after this one is destroyed, the Jews go off to Babylon, they come back, they rebuild their temple. It will have one laver and then Herod will develop that temple and it will still have only one laver. The sea of 10, the sea and the 10 carts, however, are not mentioned in Ezekiel's millennial temple. Okay, so Ezekiel's temple, he lays out, this is the temple of the millennial reign. I strongly believe everything connected with that temple would be symbolic. There will be no blood sacrifices. Some people get all upset about that.

That's just an added bonus for me. But anyway, there's no laver mentioned, which means there's no cleaning of animal parts, because there's no butchering going on, because Christ is the perfect sacrifice and they're commemorative. They have these emblems because there will be people born in the millennial reign who have no knowledge of these things, except through us and the Jewish people and the emblems that belong to the temple. So if you are 200 years into the millennial reign and you're born, how are you going to learn about Christ and the sacrifice for sinners? Because you're still going to be born a sinner, those who are born then. They still will need a savior and they still need religion, true religion. And this would explain the benefit of having the temple in Jerusalem and pilgrims from all over the world going there. Death will be almost non-existent, so the population is going to be just this population explosion. The Bible says the desert will bloom again.

Siberia, Antarctica, you know, there'll be people everywhere. And we will be kings and priests. We will be government and the spiritual leaders in the millennial reign. So I think it's very significant, all of this emphasis on how much water is at the temple in Solomon's kingdom. And yet it is absent in the millennial kingdom. And the only exploration to me that makes any sense is that there'll be no need to wash the body parts that have been butchered because there will be no butchering. Now if you're Jewish, you won't like that if you're practicing Judaism, but Christian has to always come, hey, the finished work of Christ, there's no need for the sacrifice of animals.

That's obsolete and of no value. Verse 39, and he put five carts on the right side of the house, five on the left. He set the sea on the right side of the house toward the southeast. So that's how we know where these pillars of Jacob and Boaz went because he tells us when he talks about right, left, and in this case, the right side of the house is the southeast.

And that means you have to be from looking out the temple, that would be to your right, excuse me, and that's how you would know it. Okay, so coming back to verse 40. Huram made lavas and shovels and bowls, so Huram finished doing all the work that he was to do for King Solomon for the house of Yahweh.

So the contractors completed all these tools with the ashes and the just preparation and cleanup he was contracted to do. Well verse 41, we can skip that. It's go right to 42, 400 pomegranates for the two networks, two rows of pomegranates for each network. And so again, bringing attention to this, these pomegranates that spoke of abundance. Verse 43, the 10 carts, the 10 lavas on the carts, one sea and 12 oxen under the sea. This made up their water system. Verse 45, the pots, the shovels, the bowls, all these articles which Huram made for King Solomon for the house of Yahweh were of burnished bronze.

Of course, he had an army of helpers. The bowls would be there to collect the blood. Then once a year, of course, there was the sacrificial splashing of the blood at the golden altar, but the place was not a, it was a slaughterhouse and a butcher shop, but it was kept clean relative to what was going on. Verse 46, in the plan of Jordan the king had them cast in clay molds between Sukkoth and Zaratan.

You say, why does he put that in there? Well, these places were 40 miles away. So it's kind of interesting in those days before vehicles, you know, cars and trucks.

They're hauling everything on donkeys and carts or rollers, depending on what it is. And it is impressive. This is probably the heaviest chapter in Kings. I've been ready for this when we were finishing up Judges. We're going to get to Kings in those first 10 chapters.

I mean, it is tough and this is why. Verse 47, so Solomon did not weigh all the articles because there were so many and the weight of the bronze was not determined. Well, David is the one that saved up the bulk of this bronze. First Chronicles 22, and David prepared iron in abundance for the nails and the doors of the gates and for the joints, and bronze in abundance beyond measure.

So they had a surplus of material. Verse 48, thus Solomon had all the furnishings made for the house of Yahweh, the altar of gold, the table of gold on which was the showbread. No dimensions are given for the altar and the lampstand. Never in the Bible is the lampstand are the dimensions given, speaking of unlimited light. But the altar is probably the same size as Moses, three foot high, 18 wide, because it just burnt incense on that altar. And there was no blood sacrifice except once a year. Of course, the priest would come and sprinkle it. But each morning the priest would burn incense on that and each evening and care for the lamps at the same time.

So what's the point of all of this for us? Ministry is hard work. It is hard work. And if you think I'm going to serve Jesus, it's going to be glorious. Well, it's going to be glorious. Gloriously difficult.

It is just no way around it and we're told this in the scripture through the imagery that's given to us. I mean, to bring the animals up, to butcher them, to haul away the blood, to clean up. The weight of what? What's water?

Like eight and a half pounds a gallon. So it's just so much work goes into this. So if you serve Jesus, don't go whining about how hard it is. How about, do I get to whine?

No, I don't. I'm not going to allow, sometimes I feel like really whining, but I know better. It's worth it. It is to me and I think it is to all those who want to serve the Lord. So when you say, I want to serve Jesus, you're really saying, I want to be a slave for Jesus.

And that is something that is honorable. In scripture, the burning of incense is a picture of prayer. Our prayers rising up to God, you can reference Psalm 141 verses 1 and 2, Revelation 5-8 and Revelation 8-3.

I will like to read Exodus 30-10. And Aaron shall make atonement on its horns once a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonement. Once a year he shall make atonement upon it throughout your generations. It is most holy to Yahweh.

That's the incense altar that represents prayer. The point, God is saying, your prayers, even the mostly ungranted ones, or all the ungranted ones, are still meaningful to me. That's what God is saying. I mean, we pray for good things as Christians and we don't always get them. We pray for people that are sick and don't get better. We pray for people's souls and to get saved. We have a lot of prayers and we often don't see them answered, granted. But God says, don't be discouraged. That doesn't mean they're meaningless to me.

It's just He is God and we are not and there are things we don't know and He does. Verse 49, the lampstands of pure gold, five on the right side, five on the left in front of the inner sanctuary with the flowers and lampstands and the wick trimmers of gold. Little things, you know, they needed scissors to trim the wicks so that the lamps would burn bright. Who does that? Somebody had to do that. Who refills the soap in the bathroom? Somebody's got to do that.

What about the tissue boxes? When someone has to do that in God's house, that you may know how you conduct yourselves in the house of God, the pillar and ground of truth. Believing that it's worth it or else your labor is in vain. You don't really help out the church. You know, it's a bad thing, so I'm going to go down and help out the church.

I'm going to go serve. The church does not want token help. It wants servants who work for Jesus Christ. Should it be anything less? I don't think so.

None of us want to be hirelings, as difficult as it may be. Well, we are at verse 50 which speaks of the lampstand. Verse 49, the lampstand of pure gold, five on the right, five on the left. So there were ten lamps now, not one, making the brilliance of the holy place ten times brighter in this temple than it was in Moses' temple.

And this is advancement. I'll come back to that. Verse 50, the basins, the trimmers, the bowls, the ladles and the censors of pure gold and the hinges of gold, both on the doors of the inner room, the most holy place and for the doors of the main hall of the temple. It's typical that David would be given this vision to make brighter the house of God because he did it with his psalms, did he not? Did he not just, I was glad when they said, let's go to church. I was glad when they said, let us go to the house of the Lord.

And then when he speaks of being betrayed, you know, we used to, you know, go in the throng together to the temple and it was just, you know, this lamentation in his tone, his sob that he was betrayed by someone that used to go to church with him. And we see these things carried out. But it is very appropriate of God to, of all the men and women that he had to choose from to say, David, I want you to give the prince to my temple and I want it to be ten times brighter.

And I want it to make difficult service easier with all that water. I mean, they're just having a place for it. Isaiah 60 verse 1 and 3, Arise and shine for your like has come and the glory of Yahweh has risen upon you. For behold, the darkness shall cover the earth and deep darkness the people, but Yahweh will arise over you and his glory will be upon you. The Gentiles shall come to you, to your light, the kings, to the brightness of your rising.

Well, that's millennial. It is unfortunate that the Jewish people never really learned how to invite the outsider in. They just never got it.

Not until Paul comes along. In all their history, they never let their light shine to the Gentiles enough to bring them in. Often repelled them. And today in the church, we have to be careful because we're not supposed to lasso people to get them to come to church. We'll let the light shine. And when they come, they have to learn how to behave in the house of God. Otherwise, you are building a foundation on rubble that will collapse. These laws, these principles, Christians often apply them everywhere in life except the house of God and then scratch their head and wonder why the Bible's not preached in churches anymore.

There's a reason for that. It's not magic. I think most men, when they're called to ministry, they want to preach the gospel and the truth and the word, and in many churches, they're not allowed to. Some churches are structured where they don't have that burden, but most churches, the pastors just can't speak what they want because they have to answer to a board and not a Lord, and that is a big problem. John's gospel, then Jesus spoke to them again saying, I am the light of the world. He who follows me shall not walk in darkness but have the light of life. And so this temple, ten times brighter. As a Christian, I'm supposed to be ten times brighter. It's one of the lessons coming out of this.

Again, it's my walk. So in our desperation, we shouldn't have a desperation like this, but some have this desperation to reach the lost or to bring people into the house of God, and that is a killer because that means you will surrender high principles to get them to come in and break down more high principles, instead of just saying, hey, it's a taker to leave a deal. This is it. Don't you want that from a car dealer? Wouldn't it be nice to say how much is it, and I want to know that I'm paying the same thing that guy's paying. Everybody else love the haggling at the car dealers? Man, you just always feel like, I bet you I left $8,000 on the table, and they're all snickering.

I know that's probably not true, but you feel that way. So with the house of God, you want people to come in and say, listen, this is how we do it. There's nothing.

There's no tricks. This is it. What you see is what it is. Boy, that would be refreshing to me. It was that way at Costa Mesa.

I mean, you'd go there, and back before it became defiled, you would go there, and man, it was like this. This is New Testament Christianity, as close as you can get to the Book of Acts, and now they just preach anything, unfortunately. Joseph Parker, I believe it was Joseph Parker who was a great pastor in England back in the mid-19th century, and he said from the pulpit, when I die, if a man should come into this church and preach any heresy, let Ichabod be written across the door of the church. Joseph Parker died. I'm sure hoping it's Joseph Parker.

I know he's dead and in heaven, but I'm pretty sure it was him. The man that replaced him started out strong and then began to become a heretic in his preaching, and somebody who heard Joseph Parker say that painted on the door, Ichabod, the glory has departed. Man, that's Christianity.

Oh, and vandalism, too. And, you know, you just say to yourself, well, it may not have worked for that church. Did anybody look at that and say, we have to get our act together. That is, you know, we have departed.

Well, if they did not, others can hear that story and say, well, you know, as best as I can, I'm not going to let that happen to me. Verse 51, so all the work that King Solomon had done for the house of Yahweh was finished, and Solomon brought in the things which his father David had dedicated, the silver and the gold and the furnishings, he put them in the treasuries of the house of Yahweh. Surplus of wealth, even after all that labor and painting or overlaying everything with gold, still there was a surplus, and so Solomon deposits that into the trust of the church or the temple.

They could buy supplies and sustain themselves, and yet all this beauty was destroyed. All of this wealth has been lost, confiscated by an idolatrous army, an army of idolaters, as God said would happen. The extravagance of the king comes out in this chapter, but also the excellence in ministry.

And excellence in ministry can only come through hard work, and then a little bit more hard work. Thanks for joining us for today's teaching on Cross Reference Radio. This is the daily radio ministry of Pastor Rick Gaston of Calvary Chapel Mechanicsville in Virginia.

We trust that what you've heard today in the book of 1 Kings has had a lasting imprint on your life. If you'd like to listen to more teachings from this series or share it with someone you know, please visit We encourage you to subscribe to our podcast, too, so you'll never miss another edition. Just visit and follow the links under radio. Again, that's Our time with you today is about up, but we hope you'll tune in next time to continue studying the word of God. Join us again as Pastor Rick covers more in the book of 1 Kings on Cross Reference Radio.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-04-03 10:30:20 / 2023-04-03 10:40:12 / 10

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