Saturday, March 15, 2008


Bezalel & Oholiab

By Ramone - March 14, 2008
Then the Lord said to Moses, "See, I have chosen Bezalel ...and I have filled him with the Spirit of God ...and I have appointed Oholiab to help him"

...Then Moses said to the Israelites, "See, the Lord has chosen Bezalel ...and He has filled him with the Spirit of God, with skill, ability and knowledge in all kinds of crafts- to make artistic designs for work in gold, silver and bronze, to cut and set stones, to work in wood and to engage in all kinds of artistic craftsmanship. And he has given both him and Oholiab ...the ability to teach others. He has filled them with skill to do all kinds of work as craftsmen, designers, embroiderers ...and weavers—all of them master craftsmen and designers.

So Bezalel, Oholiab and every skilled person to whom the Lord has given skill and ability to know how to carry out all the work of constructing the sanctuary are to do the work just as the Lord has commanded."

- Exodus 31:1-11 & 35:30-36:1
I've been wanting to write some things I've learned about Bezalel & Oholiab for awhile, but the notes have been a bookmark in my Bible since last September. But when opening up my Bible yesterday and feeling led to Exodus (thank You, Lord), I found the notes and was again blessed, inspired and moved by the Spirit. And this picture came, too!

Prophetic Artists of Long Ago and of Today

Bezalel & Oholiab were filled with the Spirit so that they could do artwork on the Tabernacle. God fills us with skill, knowledge, talent and ability in all kinds of crafts and arts! Yet this Tabernacle was not some picture in the doctor's office, but it was the specific design by which God would begin to prepare His people to understand what Christ would do for them on the Cross — it was a shadow, a picture of the Atonement. Long ago God used artists prophetically —filling them with His Spirit to make the Tabernacle & Temple and all its symbolic furnishings.

And now in these last days, He is "rebuilding David's fallen tent" — He is rebuilding a temple of praise in His people! (Acts 15) And just as God used artists to make designs and crafts which would shadow Christ and point people to Him, so today He is using Spirit-filled artists to do the same, to draw people back to what His Son has done on the Cross and to Him Himself.

Restoring His Tabernacle!

We are His temple! He is using artists to adorn His temple (people) with pictures of what He has done for us, to point us to Him and His fulfilled, finished work, and to point us to His Spirit who lives in us (who are His temple). Bezalel & Oholiab's art portrayed what was yet to come, but our art portrays what He has done, yet also speaks of what is coming as a result of what He has done!

God is filling us with His Spirit to make art to somehow bride gaps in the church and make His people ONE in Him. He is calling forth artists as intercessors, as those who will paint what they see in His eyes and to preach His reconciliation & presence.

Many people in the church have broken hearts but do not know it, or are told to put on the happy face and not acknowledge the pain inside. But God is using honest (sometimes brutally honest) artists to portray what is inside of us so that it can be brought out into the light and be healed. It is time for the church to go through some Spirit-led "art therapy"! For we are not building a temple that is made with hands, but we are His temple, and if our hearts are broken, then His temple is broken. And God cares about His temple—His people! If we focus on our buildings and our "church services" more than His building (His people), He will tear down our buildings and stop our "having church" programs so that He can heal His people! Will we welcome His healing?

For a long time we have not welcomed unconventional "art" in church — whether dance, drums, painting, finger-painting, banners, miming, etc. We have grown stiff, have become bricks, have resisted expression, and have grown dead in the process. And it is not enough that we ourselves are dead, but we seek to kill the spark of fire and life in people who do rise up in His joy and the giftings He gives them! Enough, God says. He is raising up different unconventional ministries (artists, etc.) and often this will make different traditional people uncomfortable. This needs to happen so that He doesn't have to heal us the hard way! So He is calling us to recognize the "Bezalel's and Oholiab's" and support them (just like Israel supported Bezalel & Oholiab - see Exodus 36) so much until they have to tell us to stop because it's too much!

A Word to the Artists

Exodus contains the detailed instructions of how to build the Tabernacle, but verse 31:4 says that Bezalel, Oholiab and their helpers made many "artistic designs" in and for the Tabernacle. What were they? We don't know! These artists & craftsmen & women were filled with the Spirit to make these. Their work was "full of the Spirit". Their art was given by God and served God's purpose in that day. It was given to draw that generation to Him. Not all prophecy is meant for everyone, and not all Spirit-filled art is meant for everyone. All of our art is to aid the building of the TRUE temple — God's people!

Just like the art of Bezalel & Oholiab, ours too will pass away. And that is okay because "art" is not the point! The point is Jesus and His people. All glory is His! And His heart is concerned with us! Lord, let my art and all of ours humbly be so in Jesus' name! Focus our eyes on what You are focused on, and fill us with Your heart and Your passion, in Jesus' name, amen!

Their Names

"Bezalel" means "In the Shadow of God" and "Oholiab" means "Father's Shine".

God called upon Bezalel ("In the Shadow of God") and Oholiab ("Father's Shine") to artistically work on the Tabernacle "in the shadow of God" — the Tabernacle itself was a shadow of the complete atonement on the cross done for us by the Messiah, who is "God With Us" and "the out-shining of God's glory" (literal translation of Hebrews 1:3).

Bezalel's name also means "In the Protection of God", and Oholiab's name also means "Father's Tent". In Christ, in His finished work (the cross), we are healed and restored. And now we are "Father's tent". In His protection, in His shadow, under His wings we find healing and restoration. He is calling us to dwell in His shadow just as certainly as He dwells in us (as Jesus said, "Father and I will come and make our home in you"). There we will find healing and rest. Today He is using all kinds of artists and arts to bring much needed healing to His body, to help us get things out that we haven't recognized or expressed before and see His truth in creative ways that will reach deep places in our hearts, showing us how truly we are at rest in His protection & shadow, how truly He is our Light (Father's Shine!), how we shine in Him and to Him (!), and how truly He has made His home in us!

The Picture - Restoring His Testimony and His Bride

In this picture, Bezalel is painting the cross — preaching the cross, the finished work of Christ's all-sufficient atonement for us! It is in the shadow of His cross that we find all healing. Bezalel is holding up the cross and drawing people to Christ's finished work. He is "drawing" people to Jesus! In November the Lord spoke these words to me and to us all,
"Draw" them to Me!
Oholiab is praying for the church, the bride. He is laying hands on her and God is healing her. God gave Bezalel & Oholiab the ability to teach what they knew to others, and today God is giving prophetic artists the ability and the call to share healing through art with others who do not know — so that they may have their hearts back and restored. She has taken the brush or pencil and is seeing her heart, and he is praying for her. And he is offering the brush to us, to you, to all of us who view and see!

Praise God because He is restoring His testimony so that we may find healing in His shadow! Praise God because He is restoring our hearts -- He is repairing His fallen tent —us!! We have been broken and fallen, but He is rebuilding His tabernacle —us!

And we are being restored and healed on Royal ground! I had thought that the purple & blue color I used on the ground in this picture was just because it looked good, but no, now He is telling me that it is symbolic of how He has brought us into His family, into His house, into His home, and we are seated with Him in Christ in heavenly places! The colors purple & blue in Scripture signify royalty, and are the colors most often worn as robes on kings. Because of His blood, His royal blood shed for us on the cross, we now stand as His sons and daughters completely!

As He restores us and heals our broken hearts, know that you are part of His house; you are His royal son, His royal daughter, and He is not going to let you go, but you stand on holy, royal ground because of what He's done for you and who you are in Him! His desire is for us all to know that He has called us to be part of His family; He has desired to throw that prodigal robe around each one of us! He wants us all to come and rest at the cross, resting on His achievements instead of ours, resting in our identity in Him as His royal sons & daughters.

The background of the picture shows the setting sun, because the sun is setting on this world, the day is late, and the harvest is here! And He is raising up "Bezalel's & Oholiab's" and others to heal and restore His people, so that they may hold up His loving finished work to the world and rescue many hearts.

Ramone ………… This is soooooooooooo right on, Good, Awesome!!! It speaks to me so loudly of what God is doing in the church right now… and has been for sometime… through artists!!! I have seen His heart expressed through others in art… especially you, but never thought He could use me in that way until the past few months! Although I have felt the pull of His heart to pant for Him for some time now, I thought it was an unrealistic wish because I had no confidence in my ability to let His heart speak through my artistic gift. In fact I had sadly sat on His gift for a long time. Not anymore!!!

I want to go back, look up the Scriptures and read it again! Thank you again for speaking forth His heart in such a clear way!

In His love,
Bezalel popped up in last week's sermon! "Filled and skilled" - what a combination ...
Wow, without knowing it or intending to do so, I realize that from top to bottom in this painting, it looks like a rainbow... it progresses from red to purple from top to bottom, and there is even "green" on Oholiab and light blue on the Bride!

Wow, pretty cool. Jesus, is this "rainbow" a word of Your promise to bring about these things, to heal and restore Your bride through Spirit-filled arts in Your church?

(Thank You!!!)
Haha!! LOL!!! And when you mix all the painting colors together, what do you get? When you mix the primary colors of red, yellow and blue together, you get brown!!!

And there in the center of the painting is ...the Cross!! All of the colors converge and the Cross is seen!!! All of our Spirit-filled art points to the Cross, and the complete and net effect of it is to point to the Cross! THe result is that we see what You have done for us, Jesus! Thank You!!
I see the rainbow! :) Funny, God is funny.
On a very similar note, this is a good read (!) ...

The Plight of the Christian Artist by Denny Gunderson
(at Last Days Ministries)
Great blog! Love the insight! I'm pumped...studying Bezalel and Oholiab for a sermon I'm preaching next week and got some new tidbits here...thank you!

Sarah Rowan Dahl
Art that inspires.
great blog !!! i love it ,wonderful words , jesus loves you !!!

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