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Bible Commentaries

The Biblical Illustrator

Exodus 36

Verses 1-38

Exodus 36:1-38

Every wise-hearted man in whom the Lord put wisdom and understanding to know how to work.

Consecrated art

Dannecker, the German sculptor, occupied eight years upon a marble statue of Christ. He believed then, and ever afterward, that he had been inspired of God to do that thing. He thought that he had seen a vision of Christ in his solitary vigils. He had but transferred to the marble the image that the Lord had shown to him. His rising fame attracted the attention of Napoleon, and he was requested to make a statue of Venus similar to Ariadne, for the gallery of the Louvre. He refused, saying, “A man who has seen Christ would commit sacrilege if he should employ his art in the carving of a pagan goddess. My art is therefore a consecrated thing.” Is there not an experience of communion with God in Christ, not uncommon with mature believers, which is equivalent to a vision of the Lord, and which renders life and life work, even its humblest occupations, sacred? The lowliest not less than the loftiest life may have this element of an infinite dignity.

Indolence in the Church

A North American Indian convert, being catechised upon “original sin,” stated that he rather thought that in his case it was laziness. Original sin certainly seems to take this form in the case of many members of our Churches. What is the proportion of Christian workers in any Church? Are they not invariably a small minority? Why so? What exemption can the majority plead? It is said the working bees cast out the drones from the hive. Were we to proceed upon this principle, what terrible depletion would our Churches suffer! (J. Halsey.)

False estimates of Church-workers

We sometimes form a too favourable estimate of the number of workers in our Churches, erroneously judging from the number of departments of service, and imagining that each department has its own distinct staff; whereas, as a rule, it is the individuals who are active in one sphere who display the same activity in another. I believe that in dramatic exhibitions the impression of a large army is sometimes produced upon the spectators by the device of marching the same band of persons over and over again across the stage. We get our impressions of the noble army of Christian workers very much in the same way. (J. Halsey.)


See Exodus 25:10-40; Exodus 30:1-6; Exodus 30:23-38.

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Bibliographical Information
Exell, Joseph S. "Commentary on "Exodus 36". The Biblical Illustrator. 1905-1909. New York.