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Remember Ezra’s Shame and His response? Today we learn what to do with offerings to the Lord in Ezra 8:24-35.
24 Then I set apart twelve of the leading priests: Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and ten of their kinsmen with them. 25 And I weighed out to them the silver and the gold and the vessels, the offering for the house of our God that the king and his counselors and his lords and all Israel there present had offered. 26 I weighed out into their hand 650 talents of silver, and silver vessels worth 200 talents, and 100 talents of gold, 27 20 bowls of gold worth 1,000 darics, and two vessels of fine bright bronze as precious as gold. 28 And I said to them, “You are holy to the Lord, and the vessels are holy, and the silver and the gold are a freewill offering to the Lord, the God of your fathers. 29 Guard them and keep them until you weigh them before the chief priests and the Levites and the heads of fathers’ houses in Israel at Jerusalem, within the chambers of the house of the Lord.” 30 So the priests and the Levites took over the weight of the silver and the gold and the vessels, to bring them to Jerusalem, to the house of our God.
31 Then we departed from the river Ahava on the twelfth day of the first month, to go to Jerusalem. The hand of our God was on us, and he delivered us from the hand of the enemy and from ambushes by the way. 32 We came to Jerusalem, and there we remained three days. 33 On the fourth day, within the house of our God, the silver and the gold and the vessels were weighed into the hands of Meremoth the priest, son of Uriah, and with him was Eleazar the son of Phinehas, and with them were the Levites, Jozabad the son of Jeshua and Noadiah the son of Binnui. 34 The whole was counted and weighed, and the weight of everything was recorded.
35 At that time those who had come from captivity, the returned exiles, offered burnt offerings to the God of Israel, twelve bulls for all Israel, ninety-six rams, seventy-seven lambs, and as a sin offering twelve male goats. All this was a burnt offering to the Lord. 36 They also delivered the king’s commissions to the king’s satraps and to the governors of the province Beyond the River, and they aided the people and the house of God.
Ezra has a problem. He has all this gold, silver and vessels given. An offering for the house of the Lord God. What can he do? The job of the Levites is the serve the House of God. It makes sense therefore, to have the Levites guard these offerings to the Lord doesn’t it? Twelve of the leading priests are chosen for this duty, Sherebiah, Hashabiah, and ten of their kinsmen with them. In total there were 650 talents of silver, 200 talets of silver vessels, 100 talents of gold, 20 bowls of gold and 2 vessels of bronze. The duty of these 12 men:”Guard them and keep them until you weigh them before the chief priests and the Levites and the heads of fathers’ houses in Israel at Jerusalem, within the chambers of the house of the Lord.” .
The Levites have the offerings, off the whole group set, heading off to Jerusalem. God was with them, not allowing them to be ambushed along the way. Soon they were in Jerusalem were the offering were measured into the hands of Meremoth the priest. Everything was counted and documented.
Now that the whole gang was together… all the Israelites: those who had come from captivity, the returned exiles, they set about to make burnt and sin offerings to the Lord. They also delivered the king’s commissions to this workers, and aided people and the house of God.
The Levites did the job they were supposed to.
The question I suppose, to us, is this….do we do the job we are supposed to?