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113 - More than Air Freshener (24 Sept 2022)

More Than Ink / Pastor Jim Catlin & Dorothy Catlin
The Truth Network Radio
September 24, 2022 1:00 pm

113 - More than Air Freshener (24 Sept 2022)

More Than Ink / Pastor Jim Catlin & Dorothy Catlin

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September 24, 2022 1:00 pm

Episode 113 - More than Air Freshener (24 Sept 2022) by A Production of Main Street Church of Brigham City


You pick up your Bible.

Is there more here than meets the is there something here for me.

I mean it's just words printed on paper may look like just print on the page but it's more than Inc. join us for the next half hour, as we explore God's word together as we learn how to explore it on our as we ask God to meet us there in its pages welcome to more than expression following no means you smell something attractive and draws you in right. Smells wonderful fragrance will today is the tabernacle again encounter fragrance that is unique to find what it symbolizes on more than Inc., welcome to our dining table. I'm Dorothy and I'm Jim and this is more than Inc. and we are talking about the book of Exodus and we come today to the one piece of furniture that is in the tabernacle that we didn't come to before I got a dog show up on the manage placed in this place for a reason. So were to be talking about that today that the altar of incense and incense that's burn time so you know just The to start off here how fragrant is incense right I I am a person who is highly reactive to fragrances and if there is too much incense in the air and we do run into it occasionally that it makes me sneeze to back away and never walk in front of those candle stores in the right was a smell right. This is a you think incense that you didn't smell anywhere else. In fact, were to read it a minute how you were for from using us, particularly fragrance in any other way than right there in the tabernacle. This is interestingly out of place because I just go back to chapter 25 first talk about the things that were inside the manager, you know, in terms of like the Ark of covenant in the shewbread table and the golden lampstand. Those are all back there and if you were to walk into the tabernacle that front door.

The debacle in the first room you would see those three things for sure, but they also see this the altar of incense is very small.

It's very small but intricate. Isn't it interesting that wasn't covered them. So what kind of soup that's the question as we go along. It's really quite unique is been pulled out all by itself and and we've just remind you, we've covered how to build the tabernacle that was in chapter 26. We've covered what was inside the tabernacle with exception of this on 25. We talked about the people who do stuff inside the tabernacle high priest and stuff like we talked about was on the altar outside. We talked about all that stuff. We got covered.

We've got the courtyard covered what goes up, but this is left off.

So here we are going back inside the tabernacle. Well, okay, and it comes in the text right.

Following that statement at the end of chapter 29 where it says there meet with you there. I'll meet with the people of Israel, consecrate the tent of meeting altar I will dwell among people.

So there's all this I will like Godself at the end of chapter 29 weeks been drawn into this very intensely personal encounter with God and then the next thing we find is the altar.

Is this so maybe it has something to do with meeting with, this is a really powerful picture to associate.

We can figure it out what it means is we really long so shall we start in the transfer so our report is one of chapter 30, so you shall make an altar on which to burn incense, you shall make it of acacia wood, a cubit shall be its length, and a cubit its breath and it shall be square, and two cubits shall be a type its horns shall be of one piece with it. You shall overlay it with pure gold, its top and rounded sides and horns and you shall make a molding of gold around and you shall make two golden rings for back to the golden rings hundreds molding on two opposite sides with you shall make them, and they shall be holders for poles with which to carry it, and shall make the poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold that stuck out stuff there. Yes, I know we have this relatively small thing you know it's 18 in.˛ on the top and about waist size about 3 feet tall so it's a small thing and all were burning on it is incense and is completely covered with gold completely covers gold and very close to the veil right before you going to the holy voice coming very close right there and now you know incense is kind of a foreign thing to a lot of us in Western culture right for me. I remember my close connection. Incense is way back in the hippie six when incense was a cool thing to burn in apartments a friend stuff like that because you know they came out of Eastern influenza rising is a lot of Indian to this I know. If you smell incense burning in a house is it's really quite distinctive and has a different smells. You can compose instant so many different ways but it's it's usually little smoking and whatchamacallit thing like a wick like away and is it as it burned smokes and the smokers in there and it's the smell of the smoke that's really pleasant. That's were talking about here and so we have a place to do that right in front of the veil okay and probably we should say at this point that the Hebrews were not the only people who incense in their worship right right.

Many, many religions have all speeds and varieties incense because of the symbolism of that smoke rising up to the guys right so this is this is important picture and, in effect, that it is indeed outside the holy of holies. But very close.

The holy holy says something about what it's trying to picture forest well and it's all covered with gold so it's associated with those pieces of furniture that are there in the holy place and have a holy purpose and set apart for this actually read far enough for me.

II blew the surprise verse six and you shall put it in front of the veil. Okay you put in front of veil that is above the arc of testimony in front of the Mercy seat that's above the test meet with you.

I will meet with you so so why would God play such an interesting symbol. An interesting graphic for us like you know it pictured again. You walk in the court of the tabernacle you walk past the altar of sacrifice is done, you walk in the front door on the eastern side of the tabernacle proper and I can't do this or should I priest but go through that and now you're in that front room of the tabernacle and there on your right is the table with the bread on your left is the big golden lampstand. As you continue to go forward aimed toward going into the holy of holies you're stopped just before the veil by this looks like a little nightstand covered with gold and it's got smoke coming off of it that smells really nice. Okay the picture. Well, you just said something now that we probably need to clarify that is that other priests were allowed to come in yellow in this holy front right. The only one who went into the most holy place the holy holy places was the high priest and that's why significance at this altar is called most holy, most right because it associated with that duty assigned to only the high priest was met with Zacharias the father, John the Baptist was doing when you sense yeah he went into burn incense is doing it at this thing itself. When this angel came to him and said is been answered yet.

So it's it's just interesting.

It's one more thing before you actually get through the veil in the holy point to write their right outside… Keep reading you want to do some more insight into that's already read six again and you shall put in front, put it in front of the veil that is above the ark of the testimony in front of the Mercy seat that is above the testimony were I will meet with you.

So that's arc of the covenant for seven and Aaron shall burn fragrant incense on it every morning when he dresses the lamps he shall bring it and when Aaron sets the lancet twilight he shall burn it a regular incense offering before the Lord throughout your generations and you shall not offer unauthorized incense on it.

I like that unauthorized incense or burnt offering rights of animals or grain offering.

You shall not pour a drink offering on Aaron shall make atonement on its horns once a year, and with the blood of the sin offering of atonement, he shall make atonement for once in the year throughout your generations. It is most holy to the Lord.

That's our whole instructions on the altar of incense and it's in a very prominent place okay. But did you hear atonement, and atonement all night yet, but there's didn't we have atonement when we sacrificed animals outside in the courtyard well and this apparently is some of the blood is brought in his route into put on the altar of incense right so in a sense, you can say that atonement is not accomplished on this little altar.

But the slow little altar benefits from atonement is important and isn't it interesting that in the previous chapter were told about the sacrifices morning and twilight and here we have then after that that the burning of the fragrant incense in the morning and twilight so the beginning of the day and at the end of the day right right yeah so what is going on. What is this picture and why does have to be physically so close to the veil that's just on the other side of the ark become well you know that in the visual imagery of the incense at that smoke rising up. As always, and as I said before in other religions even symbolize prayer.

Yes, Knight rises to the heavens yet, so let's work on that is the symbol well. Revelation tells us a revelation and I've ate in chapter 8 that very clear that bowls carry this fragrant incense that is the prayers of the saints. Yeah, I've got it here it's it's really pretty overt in the right foot. Revelation 5 passenger seat and when he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, each holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which of the prayers of the sons so this incense you know which one you burned goes into the year and can rise up and write in this particular sense he saying these prayers like incense, rise up, but there actually collected by God in a golden bowl does not dissipate right you know in the air there there something is precious so if you see prayer as something that cannot rises up from us and and and makes its way into the presence of God and is it a pleasing smell to God yet is it's a pleasing aroma. It's incense and that's the whole point. It's in stark contrast in terms of what you're smelling is you experiencing the tabernacle to the killing that's going on.

The animals outside in the roasting the meat you get you get here just on the on the doorstep of coming the presence of God here these prayers or something that is supposed to symbolize the fact that it's it's sweet in God's smelling is the prayers of the St. Sweeney and and I might add as well. It's interesting that its placement next to the next of the veil is interesting because although although we are not permitted to come into the holy of holies our prayers to date they make their way through the veil into the very presence of God and that says a lot about our prayers to him and we may be tainted with sin and can't come in the presence of a holy God, but our prayers make it and they ascend and they smell sweet to God.

That's with the picture of the instances I found one place in the Psalms are David actually writes in Psalm 141 he says, oh Lord, I call upon you hasten to me. So this is a prayer give ear to my voice when I called you. Let my prayer be counted as saints before you and the lifting up of my hands. As the evening sacrifice so he even says that overtly that we always on Revelation let my prayer be counted as incense rising up to for you to smell so yeah, this incense is the prayers of God's people coming out of his idea that that we know when Jesus says I'll dwell within you, my spirit will be in you that is holy places holy holies becomes in us where we meet with God and sell as our prayers right, we are freed from having to go to the tabernacle and burn the stuff and do the thing off of extern all of that takes place in the realm of the spirit we are indwelt by God's Holy Spirit. And I might add to the nice nice smelling relook at the recipe for this incense and second, but the nice smell is it's it's so wonderful in so many respects and in it so pleasing to smell and I would and melodic strain shops in the 60s sort didn't smell that great but it was strong. It was very different permeates and fills the entire thing. So that's why like the picture of being on the other side of the veil from God is to go session because even though were not allowed in their prayers to make it in and it does to this smell would permit and ask you go through the veil, so it's a wonderful statement of hope about the efficacy of our prayers. Does God listen to us are our prayers actually reaching to worry is does it does even care that we pray to our prayers are prayers good to him to smell are not what they are. He delights them and collects them in a golden bowl.

According to Revelation. Our prayers are not only effective, but is something that God loves to smell the metaphor in that way it's something that's pleasing to him. So if your position we are praying because of needs or whatever it is and you wonder does God really care about me. Remember the fact that your prayers are rising up to him very naturally in a way that he's smelling them and going. Yes, that's a sweet smell to me the prayers of the saints. I wouldn't go beyond that to the idea that that that we because we are indwelt by the spirit we smell good to God because very presence is in us. And Paul talks about that second dance to it when he says we are God always leads us in triumph in Christ and manifests the rest the sweet aroma, sweet aroma the knowledge of him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God. Among those are being saved and among us were perishing. To some it smells good and to some it doesn't smell good is the indisputable evidence of the aroma of the presence of God, yeah.

It's a unique smell to them and depending on where you're at with God you give it can either spell doom or great hope one of those two messages, but there's no getting around the fact is that you are you are making a fragrance you go and how it's received is different but never be discouraged about whether your prayers being listen to because look at Sabre strongly here is there. There is no barrier that stops your prayers from coming very presence of God. Nothing, and he and he loves the smell loved the smell. I was thinking to. There's a there's an event that happens in acts. Remember, remember that since your and Cornelius up in Caesarea and he sees these eventually Peter comes up to him and baptize the house stuff like that. What said it's in that passage that when you like three in the afternoon.

An angel appears to him as he is doing oceans and the angel says your prayers have been heard your prayers have ascended so it's that same kind of idea right you prayers. It ascended as a memorial before God. It's very incense units language) so that sets me thinking about not doing some studying on prayer and when Jesus said when asking teachers to pray and pray this way our father who is in heaven right just underscoring God is separate. He's either he is above you right right, however, and we talked about this a lot there's attention here in the tabernacle were God is stating clearly. He wants to be with us, you know it's right. And yet when when he specifies his tabernacle, his tent, you can't come into the very core, where he is, so he wants to be with you, but you can't come all the way in. And again that's because of sin. We talk a lot about this very clearly figured in the imagery of the altar, and so much and yet be. Even though we are excluded from walking into his presence because of our sin does not mean that he disregards our prayers and after that was clear for Cornelius when he does he's praying and they ascended to God and doesn't matter that he's a he's a Gentiles century and of the Roman army prayers still make it up into the presence of God smell sweet and got a response to the actual fragrance again before we read the rest of this passage has in the consecration. Aaron remember he was anointed with a particular oil oil – and in a week or two, but again it had a very special recipe and smelled in a particular way, that was only associated with the ministry of the priest, who served God on your behalf and you were supposed to use that recipe for me out anyway) and here we have the high priest closely associated with burning incense, so that's good to permeate his garments when he goes in a desolate house to he's going to smell like what he's just been doing and it's interesting to that he is how you put this, he's enabling the prayers of the saints is that he is actually in the he's action a role, whereas high priest is making it so that the prayers he's off his offering is through his service that the prayers ascend. Yeah.

And since this is an altar in a way it's it's really saying that there's something being accomplished here that's different from the altar outside where the animals were sacrificed with the something be accomplished here that glorifies and serves God and that very thing is the offering up of our prayers. In a sentence like those sacrifices well altar comes after rank the sacrifice outside for sin first right and then going in and offering fragrant incense on this altar. Yeah it's and you know is is we stand inside the holy place. That's the first room in the tabernacle. Now we have all the elements in their right left is the gold lampstand right is a table to show Britt straight ahead just before the veil is this is this little table with the incense and as you stand and look at those three things you can ask yourself know what are these thing these three things separately telling us we talked about this before the bread speaks a lot of fellowship, breaking bread with somebody.

It talks really dumb meeting with God's right of the present spread out here sitting at the table with sitting with God to very fellowship meeting oriented and then the left. You got that lampstand that's providing light in a dark place.

So now you have like to have understanding the way things are.

You have truth with a lot of aspects of who got it from that and straight ahead you have these prayers that are offered up to make their way regardless of the veil and the presence of God. This is just really that's the S the outer room before you come in the presence of God is you know a lot about who God is just based on that outer room. Let's read on. Yes, over the skip ahead in chapter 30 because there's some interesting things will come to next time the bronze labor and stuff like that.

There's a there's a few more items we need to look up over the skip down to the end will react to get the recipe for the incense yeah that happens in verse 34 University for all right so the Lord said to Moses, take sweet spices stacked day and Nietzsche and galbanum sweet spices with pure frankincense and each there shall be an equal part. So in this actual recipe. It's a recipe and making incense blended by the perfumer, seasoned with salt, pure and holy. You shall beat some of it very small and put part of it before the testimony in the tent of meeting, where I shall meet with you, it shall be most holy for you and the incense that you shall make according to its composition. You shall not make for yourselves.

It shall be for you holy to the Lord who never makes any like it to use as perfume shall be cut off from his people.

While this is unique, not for any other use completely unique and I like that he starts by saying take sweet spot not not accurate spices, but take sweet spices. So again, the idea is that the smell of this will be pleasant smells good was attractive and in and as it rises up visually. It's attractive and pleasant to God's smelling as well fragrance that he likes is what you're trying to say which is why were doing this and and we don't want to use this incense just to kind of make your house smell good. You don't use it for any other part right because what it wants to do is be the unique representation of our prayers to God.

That's what it represents. And every time you smell that you should think prayer. This is the fragrance of intimacy with God exactly which again takes us back to that second Corinthians 2 passage that he manifests the sweet aroma of the knowledge of him in every place. Be quiet because we've been intimate fellowship with him like it we smell like we so we so undersell what prayer the value prayer not only to us but to our relationship with God and II don't know why that is is I think in the modern church would tend to think purchase, you have to do the ritual is something we do. It's a duty right and it is that but it is more tedious and enjoying the communion yet showing the relationship doesn't always involve words doesn't always involve words and forget the fact that is something that is tremendously pleasing in fragrance to God if he loves it.

If you are with someone you love, and who is profoundly committed to your good right you don't always have to be talking to enjoy the company.

Yeah, you can just be with them and enjoy the quiet fragrance of their presence, and that I think this is involved in the picture here is is really a very beautiful thing. I think it's one of the most striking images in the entire tabernacle design not only well I think it is.

I mean not only what it is, in terms of in terms of smelling it, but what it does in terms of rising by itself to where God is in terms of broaching the barriers, like the veil into God's presence and and in a way it's like the last thing before you come in the presence of God, is the fact that your prayers come into the presence of God. First, I think that's just it's just a striking symbol. I think that's why he set it apart, so we covered here rather than we did before. Chris is really putting a special spotlight right here.

This is a very special thing. It finishes the what's inside the tabernacle, but in a funny place because like like you mentioned at the last chapter, God wants to meet with us and it starts with prayer and it just makes it the whole time since it would be right here. Well starts with the sacrifice will know that I know followed by just before you come to grasp presence is prayers what you know you my flight I went to Sam's and got I can come into his presence, but my prayers can't write. And this this altar is right there associated with the holy holiest of holy I see what you think this is like the only thing in the most holy place of actions outside the veil and that's the prayers of the saints so they could see it left that the smoke rising assistant visual rights agreed to rising unlawfully because the ideas God is upset and our prayers just naturally go up and make it does nothing stop them to read his revolutionary past is now we have a such a full picture to be a great way when He is off yeah this Revelation chapter 8 verses three and four and another angel came and stood at the altar with a golden sensor. That's the thing that burns incense and he was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all the saints on the golden altar before the throne and the smoke of the incense, the prayers of the saints rose before God and the angel. That's how precious and central. Our prayers are in God's amazing what we got one minute and I am just captivated by the idea of this sweet frankness, sweet Freon skiing in God's presence and it is unique. It's not something that you experience anywhere else you think the smell leaked out from the tabernacle to the people outside. I think it was associate. I mean it was on the governments of the high priest yeah so everywhere he went. Smell like it if he was wearing those garments he would've smelled you and if they caught the symbology which I think you did say my prayers have been broadened presence of God himself.

That would be evidence just because of wafting from a high priest. I think it is.

I think the smell was there for the so anyway, we've done the altar of incense on June wonderful symbology next back of Phillips more items in the tabernacle area together on limiting mainstream church sitting solely responsible to contact us with your questions or comments. Time is so excited I couldn't say anything

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