Welcome to Chapter 1 of Part 2 from Arise and Shine. Today, Anna is introducing us to the free will offering of silver. She gives examples from her own life of how God has compelled her to bring forward this free will offering – the Promise of redemption. And Bettie and Anna invite you to join them in prayer at the end.
We will be adding additional poem, prayers and devotionals to this page, on the theme of silver and redemption, as the LORD directs.
Take from among you a contribution to the Lord. Whoever is of a generous heart, let him bring the Lord’s contribution: gold, silver, and bronze; Exodus 35:5
In the temple, 100 silver hooks held up the curtain ushering the priest into the Holy of Holies and the presence of God. These hooks were made from the free will offering of silver brought forward by the Israelites and King David for the building of the Temple.
Silver was also melted to make the basins and bowls for the ritual purification and cleansing of the priests. And it was used to make the silver bands with their hooks of silver for all the pillars that held up the court. Additionally, it was used to make two trumpets of silver, of hammered work that were used “for summoning the congregation and for having the camps set out” (Numbers 10:2).
Silver is known as the currency of redemption and a metal refined and purified by fire:
“The words of the LORD are pure words, like silver refined in a furnace on the ground, purified seven times.”
(Psalm 12:6, ESV)
Take away the dross from the silver,and the smith has material for a vessel;
(Proverbs 25:4, ESV).
Instead of bronze I will bring gold,
and instead of iron I will bring silver;
instead of wood, bronze,
instead of stones, iron.
I will make your overseers peace
and your taskmasters righteousness.
(Isaiah 60:17, ESV)
30 pieces of silver were paid to redeem a slave from captivity. 30 pieces of silver were paid by the religious leaders to Judas, so he would betray Jesus with a kiss. 30 pieces of silver were thrown by Judas back into the temple, before he hung himself. 30 pieces of silver were used to buy the Potter’s field to bury the bodies of foreigners.
Thus, the free will offering of silver symbolized the very redemption Christ would bring through His death on the Cross. The Word “redemption” in Hebrew literally means a buying back. God bought back our hearts, freeing us from our enslavement to sin, through the very betrayal of man.
For thus says the LORD: “You were sold for nothing, and you shall be redeemed without money.” (Isaiah 52:3, ESV)
So, now, when Christ compels us to bring forward the free will offering of silver, we are literally bringing forward His Promise of redemption. We are bringing forward God’s Promise to buy us back, fully and wholly. We are declaring His faithfulness to move through His Living Water (the Spirit-infused Word of God) to:
- purify us
- cleanse us
- lift up the Body of Christ (which includes those of us who are His) and bring it to complete healing and wholeness
- strengthen us and establish us in Christ
- to gather us together and cause us to depart at His command, as the trumpet is blown.
In what situations have you found God encouraging you to bring forward His Promise of redemption? In what ways have you noticed God has been redeeming you and others you know?
God has been redeeming me personally through repeated breakings. Through these breakings God has helped me to differentiate between the voice of our enemy, with his cruel accusations of condemnation, and the moment by moment revelation of the Word of God, through the Holy Spirit’s promptings.
In setting me apart unto His purposes, Christ is helping me to lift up the Name of Jesus above all else. He has been teaching me, through the pain and sorrow of each surrender, to lay before Him His Promise of redemption and in those moments He has been filling me with renewed trust and faith in His faithfulness to fulfill His Word to me. He has been opening my eyes to see all the redemption He has already brought through each surrender.
I now see, how under His leadership and in His strengthening, I am daily choosing to die to old thought patterns and arise unto the new. Through all the surrenders, I am beginning to see my past through new eyes: Christ’s eyes of redemption.
Now, rather than trying so hard to do the “right” thing to prove myself worthy, which I did when I subjected myself to man’s authority (much like the disciple Peter did before Paul rebuked him for being a hypocrite), I am learning instead to allow Christ to prove me His. I am learning to still and listen for the moment-by-moment revelation of God’s Word by the Holy Spirit. I am learning to obey the Living Word of God – Jesus – who speaks inside of me. The Living Word that is now becoming a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path.
I can see how Christ has taken ownership of me, buying me back from the enemy who once had tethered me to sin, striving and idol worship (of self, church, religious leaders and friends). Through every surrender His labor of love has wrought in my heart, God has opened my eyes to the gift of free will He has given me, the free will to choose Him and the true desires of my heart.
And in this purifying work of the Living Word, Christ is redeeming the years that the locusts ate. God is even using my Prodigal past for good. He is using my honest boasting in my weakness to His glory and grace, to strengthen my relationships, bring peace and joy to my home and heart, and to root me and others ever deeper in His truth, love and mercy. He is perfecting His power in my weakness.
In our LORD Jesus, our Rock and Redeemer, nothing is ever wasted. Not one detail of our stories is ever too shameful or unimportant, but rather each detail becomes an essential part of God’s masterpiece, declaring His love and great mercy to the world.
When God reminds us through His Word that the old has gone and that we are not to look back on our past, it means that when we give our life to Jesus, our slate has been made clean. Our failings turn from being a shameful burden to carry, to evidence of God’s great love and compassion for us and His power to save and redeem our lives for His glory.
Peter’s heartbreaking denials of Jesus now declare the power of the Cross to save and redeem us all. They remind us that absolutely nothing can separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Saul ordering the execution of Stephen now awakens our hearts to the depths of God’s mercy that we too can draw upon in suffering and persecution. It also reminds us of the power of the Cross to open our own and others’ blinded eyes to see and to give us new names, declaring us new creations in Christ Jesus. Paul’s thorn in his side reminds us all, even today, that God’s power is perfected in our weakness and not in our own ability, health or strength.
Perhaps you too, recognize Jesus doing a similar work of redemption in your heart and life, as He has been in mine. For, Christ labors in each one of us to exchange our heart of stone for His heart of flesh. A heart of flesh not hardened by sin and pain, but compelling us to willingly join Christ in His suffering that we might draw upon His love and mercy to declare each heart set before us: eternally His. A heart of flesh declaring each one of us purchased by the blood of the Lamb and our inheritance of redemption – complete healing and wholeness in body, mind, heart and soul – as safely sealed by the Holy Spirit.
And oh how I long, as I am sure you do also, to see this redemption unveiled in us all: fully and wholly, when Christ returns.
Dear Great and Glorious Lord,
We come before you acknowledging that we are so in need of redemption. You are Holy and we are not. You are pure and we are tainted. Lord will you daily cleanse us from our old way of thinking? Will you continue to take away our striving and show us that You alone have the power to redeem us from our sins?
You, our God, have purchased salvation for us with the precious blood of your own Son. May we let you redeem us from these sinful ways of living, and find Your gift of new life flooding into our hearts.
And as we boast in our weakness, may our testimonies to Your glory and grace and the blood of the Lamb arise to silence the accusations of the enemy against our brethren. May Your redemption not just flood our own hearts, but others’ also, not by might, nor by power, but by the Spirit of God.
In the precious name of your Holy Son, Jesus, we pray.