Read Exodus 39-40
As The Lord Had Commanded Moses
Fourteen times in the final two chapters of Exodus, this exact phrase appears: “As the Lord had commanded Moses.” There are at least two other times that a similar phrase is used. It is a testimony to the Lord’s ability to relay understandable commands, to Moses’ ability to relay those commands to the people, and the people’s willingness to follow the leader God had chosen for them.
Moses writes, “According to all that the Lord had commanded Moses, so the children of Israel did all the work” (Exodus 39:42). How much was neglected by Moses and the children of Israel in what God had commanded? Nothing was ignored. They did “all that the Lord had commanded Moses”! Brother Tom L. Bright used to tell his students in preaching school, “You can’t get ‘aller’ than all!” They either did it all, or they didn’t, and Moses said they did!
The final verse of the chapter reads, “Then Moses looked over all the work, and indeed they had done it; as the Lord had commanded, just so they had done it. And Moses blessed them” (Exodus 39:43). A couple of very important things are revealed here.
First, Moses inspected the work. He examined it closely to be sure that it was “as the Lord had commanded.” He understood the command, and he had relayed it faithfully to the workers, and they followed the instructions to the letter. That’s important.
Second, notice what Moses did after finding that the children of Israel had faithfully obeyed: “And Moses blessed them.” He took the time to examine it, and he took the time to encourage them! It is important to recognize the efforts of those who are hard workers in the church and to thank them for their labors. They are not working for praise, but it never hurts to show appreciation for a job well done.
Paul thanked God for the church in Thessalonica for their “work of faith,” among other things (1 Thessalonians 1:2-3). Moses likewise blessed those who had put so much effort into the tabernacle and priestly garments because of their diligence and precision to the Lord’s command.