Ithamar the Accountant

Today’s Passage – Exodus 36 – 38 (Click on the references to listen to the audio – Click here to view the passage from Blue Letter Bible)

(Second Milers also read – Luke 19 – 20; Proverbs 1; Psalms 6 – 10

Listen to this morning’s Scripture song – Psalm 89:1

Read the 0201 Evening and Morning devotion for today, by the late Charles Haddon Spurgeon.

Read a previous post from the passage – “Too Much?”

“21 This is the sum of the tabernacle, even of the tabernacle of testimony, as it was counted, according to the commandment of Moses, for the service of the Levites, by the hand of Ithamar, son to Aaron the priest. 22 And Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, made all that the LORD commanded Moses. 23 And with him was Aholiab, son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan, an engraver, and a cunning workman, and an embroiderer in blue, and in purple, and in scarlet, and fine linen.” (Exodus 38:21-23)

In this morning’s reading from Exodus 36 – 38, we see a detailed account of the construction of the Tabernacle including all the furniture items as well as the hangings that were used to make up the walls. It is very interesting that God gives us very precise details of the dimensions and descriptions of every aspect of the Tabernacle (See Graphic Below).

My thought this morning is about Ithamar, one of the four sons of Aaron. Ithamar was responsible for overseeing the Merarites and the Gershonites, which were two of the families of the Levites that served as ministers for the Tabernacle. The Gershonites were responsible for setting up, dismantling, and transporting all the “hangings and coverings” of the Tabernacle (Num 4:21 – 28). The Merarites were responsible for setting up, dismantling, and transporting all the “boards, bars, pillars, and sockets” (Num 4:29 – 33). There was another family, the Kohathites, who were responsible for the transportation of all the furniture items, but the Kohathites were not directly under the supervision of Ithamar. 

A second duty of Ithamar that we see from our reading passage today in Exodus 38 is that he was responsible for accounting for all the gold and silver that went into the Tabernacle. He had to work closely with the builders, Bezaleel and Aholiab, to make sure that they had everything they needed to complete the project. We learned from chapter 36 that they had collected far more materials than were necessary for the project through the freewill offerings of the congregation. The people were actually told to stop giving. According to most estimates, the amount of gold that went into the Tabernacle was over a ton (approximately $60 Million today), along with approximately four tons of silver (approximately $2.6 Million today), and two and one-half tons of brass (Note – this is likely copper – approximately $20 Thousand today).

There are two thoughts that I would like to point out from this passage:

  1. The task of accounting is something that we do not normally associate with the office of the priest. Yet here we clearly see that Ithamar was given this responsibility. Sometimes ministers will have to do all kinds of duties that are outside of their main job description in order for God’s service to function properly. 
  2. The priest office was very much a family affair. Moses and Aaron were brothers, and the main priests in the Tabernacle were Aaron’s sons. I once had a man tell me that he left a church because the pastor had hired his son as an assistant. He claimed that it was “nepotism” and that someone outside of the family should have been hired. However, there is no biblical admonition for hiring family members and here in Exodus, it is actually God’s plan for this family to serve together. 

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Bob Fenton
Bob Fenton
1 month ago

Amen Pastor. Psalm 127:1 Except the lord built the house,they labour in vain that build it:except the Lord keep the city,the watchman
waketh but in vain.
Unless you let God be in control of your life and seek his will and guidance’s and trust you will have success and reach your goals and accomplishments.like the post.

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