You’ve read his story in scripture. Like me, you may have skipped right over his name. Cause you know, the challenge of Biblical pronunciation, amen? You know what I’m talking about! I’ll bet you don’t raise your hand to read scripture aloud, until you’ve glanced over it to make sure you can say all the words. Right? So when I’m reading about Bezalel, I just call him B.
Even though B’s name is mentioned only nine times in scripture, we see that he was quite important. Why? He was called by God.
“See, I have called by name Bezalel, the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah.” Exodus 31:2 NASB
Bezalel was a skillful man. However, the Lord added more skill and understanding to him. He was supernaturally equipped and enabled by God to do the job assigned to him1. And what was that?
Bezalel was called to work on constructing the sanctuary. He helped make the curtains and he built the ark of the covenant.
“Now Bezalel made the ark of acacia wood; its length was two and a half cubits, and its width one and a half cubits, and its height one and a half cubits;” Exodus 37:1 NASB
Not only that, Bezalel constructed the mercy seat.
“He made a mercy seat of pure gold, two and a half cubits long and one and a half cubits wide.” Exodus 37:6 NASB
Horrors, I’m gasping here! You’re asking so what? What’s the big deal about Bezalel building the mercy seat?
An artisan from the tribe of Judah made a seat representing the mercy of the Lion of Judah.
Interesting fact: the original Hebrew word for mercy seat meant lid, or cover. It also means propitiation, which is a big word meaning to offer a gift to appease someone’s wrath. On the Day of Atonement, the high priest made atonement (or amends) for himself, the Tabernacle, and the people by a sin offering, which included sprinkling blood on this cover. It was here, above the mercy seat that God resided.
The mercy seat points forward to Christ. Jesus was the offering to appease the wrath of God because of our sins. He is the propitiation for our sins. His death was the atoning sacrifice to save us from death. He took our place on the cross. When we place our faith in Jesus as our Lord and Savior, we are covered by His blood.
What better way to commemorate the resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus, than by remembering the mercy He had in choosing to take our place on the cross.
Today, I’m praising God for Bezalel. I’m thankful for his obedience to use his gifts for the glory of God.
The Mercy Seat and B. What a beautiful reflection of Jesus.
Grace be with you,
1 Ex. 36:1-2
1 Ex. 36:1-2