Bezalel (“In the Shadow/Under the Protection of God”) was the chief artisan of the tabernacle, partnered with Oholiab to oversee the instruction and construction of the work. He was a very gifted workman, showing great skill and originality in engraving precious metals and stones in wood-carving, having many apprentices under him whom he instructed in the arts (Ex. 31:1-10).
See Exodus 35:30-35… Bezalel was called and gifted by God to direct the construction of the tent of meeting and its sacred furniture, and also to prepare the priest’ garments and the oil and incense required for the service.
See Exodus 25:10; 26:1… The rabbinical tradition relates that, when God determined to appoint Bezalel as architect of the desert tabernacle, He asked Moses whether the choice was agreeable with him; Moses said if he was good to God, he was certainly good to him. But, at God’s command, the choice was referred to the people for approval and was endorsed by them.
So, Moses told Bezalel to begin making the tabernacle, the holy Ark, and the sacred utensils.
See Exodus 36:1-7… The people provided the funding necessary – in fact, more than enough – for the work. Then the workers went to work…
Bezalel made the Ark of the Covenant, the Table of the Shewbread & its utensils, the Lampstand, the Lamps, the Incense Altar, the oils & incense, the Altar of Burnt Offering, the utensils for the altar, the Bronze Laver, the Court on the Southside… the ephod & breastplate & robe for the high priest, tunics & turbans for the priests.
See Exodus 38:22.
Jewish rabbinical tradition says Bezalel was only 13yrs old when he accomplished this great work!
Bezalel is the first person in Scripture to be described as “filled with the Spirit of God“; so, a “blue-collar” worker was the first to be so described.
Bezalel would have been considered a “blue-collar” worker today. And, on that day, his skills were just the skills God needed… more than that of the priests & teachers & leaders!
How might you use the skills God has given you to glorify Him? And lead others to do the same?
God filled a craftsman named Bezalel with His Spirit. In doing so, this would allow Bezalel to create works of exceptional beauty and usefulness.
When God’s Spirit fills us, ordinary work takes on extraordinary character. See YOUR work today as God’s uniquely appointed task for you to perform for His glory.
You can read Bezalel’s story in Exodus 25; 26; 31; 35; 36; 38.