Nepaug Bible Church - http://www.nepaugchurch.org - Pastor's Prayer Meeting Lesson Notes - http://www.nepaugchurch.org/pm/pm20070509.htm
EXODUS: FUNCTIONING WELL IN A HOPELESS GROUP ASSIGNMENT
Part II: God's Sustainment Of Israel In The Wilderness Amid Humanly Hopeless Trials
M. God's Establishment Of The Tabernacle Of Meeting
8. The Lampstand Oil: The Holy Spirit's Comprehensive Ministry
(Exodus 27:20-21 et al.)
Lesson: The discussion of the lampstand oil and its placement in the Exodus text reveals the Holy Spirit's ministry not only in Christ's earthly ministry, but of His current worldwide conviction of the lost and of His manifold, effective, lasting "Helper" ministries to us Christians!
- The Holy Spirit not only empowered Christ in His earthly ministry (Isaiah 11:1-2), but He now also convicts the world (John 16:7-11) and functions as the believer's "Helper" (John 14:15-18 ESV) !
- Well, the Exodus 27:20-21 discussion on the tabernacle lampstand oil together with its placement in the Old Testament text in Exodus signifies the ministry of the Holy Spirit in relation to each of these parties:
- The Lampstand Oil: The Holy Spirit's Comprehensive Ministry, Exodus 27:20-21 et al.
- J. Vernon McGee noted in his work, Thru the Bible, v. I, p. 287 on the Exodus 27:20-21 passage about the lampstand oil that "it is unusual that this subject be brought up at this particular place." (emphases ours)
- He has a point, for God's words about the lampstand where the oil was used are back in Exodus 25:31-40.
- However, in view of the revelation in Zechariah 4:1-6 coupled with insight on the Holy Spirit's ministry in the New Testament, the placement of this discussion on the lampstand oil in the text is informative on the roles of the Holy Spirit not only in Christ's earthly life, but to today's unsaved and saved peoples:
- The Zechariah 4 vision has olive oil used for the lampstand lights to picture the Holy Spirit's enabling the High Priest Joshua and Governor Zerubbabel, Ibid.; Ryrie Study Bible, KJV, 1978 ed., ftn. to 4:14.
- Using this information, we know the Holy Spirit's work in the earthly ministry of Christ, toward the unsaved and to believers are signified by the presence and placement of Exodus 27:20-21 in the text:
- The oil was to be put in the lampstand (Exodus 27:20b), and the lampstand represents Christ as "the Light of the world" (John 8:12 with Isaiah 9:1-2); His ministry of performing prophecy-fulfilling miracles (Mtt. 11:2-6 with Isa. 35:5; 61:1) was empowered by the Holy Spirit as He disclosed He was God's Son to be believed for salvation (Isaiah 11:1-2; John 1:32-34; 20:30-31).
- However, as the Exodus 27:20-21 discussion on the lampstand oil was given right after the discussion on the tabernacle court in Exodus 27:9-19, Exodus 27:20-21 also relates to the ministry of the Spirit to convict the world: (1) we before learned the tabernacle court's wall of bare linen held up by brass posts was an unwelcome sight to an outsider that urged him toward the embroidered curtain that opened directly to the bronze altar. (2) Thus, the lost is convicted by the Holy Spirit (John 16:7-11) to trust in Christ and His death for his sin to be saved (Revelation 22:17; John 3:16).
- Then, as the Exodus 27:20-21 discussion was given just before God's words on the priests' clothing in Exodus 28:1-43, and believers today are a royal priesthood (Rev. 1:5-6), the oil prefigures the ministries of the Holy Spirit to the believer, John 14:16-18 NIV: these include the one-time, permanent baptizing (1 Cor. 12:13) and sealing (Eph. 1:13-14) ministries, and equipping us with spiritual gifts for service (1 Cor. 12:4-11), filling [controlling] (Eph. 5:18), guiding (Rom. 8:14), assuring (Rom. 8:16) and interceding (Rom. 8:26) (Charles C. Ryrie, The Holy Spirit, p. 67-107)
- As such, the Exodus 27:20-21 call (1) that the oil come from beaten versus crushed olives showed it was of the highest quality (Ibid., Ryrie, ftn. to Ex. 27:20), typifying the able DEITY of God the Holy Spirit. (2) As the oil was to be tended "from evening to morning" by the priests (Ex. 27:21b), it typified the need for today's royal-priests, Christians at all times to rely in faith upon the Holy Spirit for power in life and service, Gal. 5:16; 1 Cor. 2:3-5. (3) As the oil was to be kept burning as a perpetual statute (Ex. 27:21c), it signified the perpetuity of the Spirit's ministry particularly to Christians, John 14:16; Eph. 1:13-14.
Application: (1) May we see that Christ was empowered by the Holy Spirit to prove His identity as God's Son in His earthly ministry (2) that we heed the Spirit's convicting work to trust in Christ to be saved. (3) Then, may we as believers always rely upon the enabling ministry of the Spirit for life and service.