“Take from among you an offering to the Lord. Whoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it as an offering to the Lord: gold, silver, and bronze…” (Exodus 35:5).
Following a very low point in Israel’s service to God (i.e. worshipping the golden calf which Aaron had made, Exodus 32:4-6), Israel is going to reach a high point in their service to God by giving generously when asked to give materials for the construction of the tabernacle (Exodus 35:5-29). In fact they give so much that they had to be “restrained from bringing” any more gifts for the construction of the tabernacle of God. (Exodus 36:6). They go from the valley to the mountain top in their service to God.
Earlier, Moses had pled with God to forgive his people for worshipping the golden calf (Exodus 32:31-32). God listens to Moses’ plea and forgives the people of their iniquity (Exodus 34:9-10). It appears out of great gratitude for having been pardoned of their sin, the people of Israel give so generously to the Lord because they had “willing hearts” (Exodus 35:5).
God has no desire to lay a guilt trip on me to get me to serve Him. He wants me to serve Him out of a “willing heart” because I am grateful for His pardoning me of my sin through the blood of His Son Jesus Christ. On this Lord’s day, although I also am flawed as I struggle with sin, I will worship and serve the Lord out of a willing heart focusing my mind on praising Him for all He has done for me! I want to live on the mountain top in my service to God!
“For a day in Your courts is better than a thousand. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness.” (Psalm 84:10)