But if the Menorah is lit, it does not matter what the lampstand looks like, it will look beautiful anyway.
A friend in our fellowship the other day had a vision of the Menorah (or Menora, apparently it can be spelt either way). She said she did not know why she had this but we all felt it was significant. The Menorah was the lampstand that God told Moses to make as part of many things that were to go in the Tabernacle, as they were journeying through the desert towards the Promised Land. The instructions that God gave to Moses on how to make them are incredibly detailed. In Exodus 25:31-40 we read: “Make a lampstand of pure gold. Hammer out its base and shaft, and make its flowerlike cups, buds and blossoms of one piece with them. 32 Six branches are to extend from the sides of the lampstand—three on one side and three on the other. 33 Three cups shaped like almond flowers with buds and blossoms are to be on one branch, three on the next branch, and the same for all six branches extending from the lampstand. 34 And on the lampstand, there are to be four cups shaped like almond flowers with buds and blossoms. 35 One bud shall be under the first pair of branches extending from the lampstand, a second bud under the second pair, and a third bud under the third pair—six branches in all. 36 The buds and branches shall all be of one piece with the lampstand, hammered out of pure gold.
37 “Then make its seven lamps and set them up on it so that they light the space in front of it. 38 Its wick trimmers and trays are to be of pure gold. 39 A talent of pure gold is to be used for the lampstand and all these accessories. 40 See that you make them according to the pattern shown you on the mountain
The book of Hebrews reminds us in chapter 8:5-6 that all the items God told Moses to make are a copy and a shadow of heavenly things. It says: They serve at a sanctuary that is a copy and shadow of what is in heaven. This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: “See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.” 6 But in fact the ministry Jesus has received is as superior to theirs as the covenant of which he is mediator is superior to the old one, since the new covenant is established on better promises.
But why did our friend have a vision of a Menorah and not just a plain old candle or lamp?
Could it be that:
1. It is a reminder to us, as the body of Christ, of our Jewish roots. As a nation and even as a church many have forgotten God’s Chosen People. Some even say that we, as Christians have taken the place of Israel, but the Bible makes it quite clear this is not so. In Romans 11:17-18 the message is easy to understand. God, by His grace, has grafted us in to the original vine: But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.
2. As we know, seven is God’s perfect complete number. We know that the lampstand represents the presence of God among His people. In Revelation we see the lampstands representing the Spirit’s presence in Jesus’s letters to the churches.
3. The Menorah is shaped like a single vine with branches all coming out of one stem which reminds us of the fact that we must abide in Jesus, the main vine at all times if we want to bear fruit for Him. In John 15:5 it says: “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.
4. It is a symbol of what we need to be as the body of Christ. First of all, the lamps have to be lit if they are going to do any good at all. If the lamps are not lit then the Menorah is just a pretty piece of decoration. It is just there for show. Without the Holy Spirit the Church can be just a pretty building. Jesus said something like this when talking of the Pharisees as ‘Whitewashed Tombs’. In Matthew 23 it says: "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of the bones of the dead and everything unclean. But if the Menorah is lit, it does not matter what the lampstand looks like, it will look beautiful anyway. It is also a symbol of our unity. We as a body should all be lights individually but all joined together by one spirit and common purpose, to be a light to the ever-darkening world. If one of the lights go out the whole body suffers and does not shine so brightly. We must endeavour to help that person to be lit again so that as a body all our parts are working correctly.
1 Corinthians 12 says: If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honoured, every part rejoices with it.
The Menorah was created to give light. Let us do what we were created for and be a shining example, a light in the darkness.
May God bless and enrich your life
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