36:1-38 The making of the tabernacle The liberality of the people restrained. - The readiness and zeal with which these builders set about their work, the exactness with which they performed it, and the faithfulness with which they objected to receive more contributions, are worthy of our imitation. Thus should we serve God, and our superiors also, in all things lawful. Thus should all who are in public trusts abhor filthy lucre, and avoid all occasions and temptations to covetousness. Where have we the representation of God's love towards us, that we by love dwell in him and he in us, save in Emmanuel? Mt 1:23. This is the sum of the ministry of reconciliation, 2Co 5:18,19. This was the design of the tabernacle of witness, a visible testimony of the love of God to the race of men, however they were fallen from their first state. And this love was shown by Christ's taking up his abode on earth; by the Word being made flesh, Joh 1:14, wherein, as the original expresses it, he did tabernacle among us.
3. they (the workmen)
received of Moses all the offering, which the children of Israel had brought, &c.—It appears that the building was begun after the first few contributions were made; it was progressively carried on, and no necessity occurred to suspend operations even for the shortest interval, from want of the requisite materials.
they brought yet unto him free offerings every morning, &c.—Moses, in common with other Oriental magistrates, had his morning levees for receiving the people (see on Ex 18:13); and it was while he was performing his magisterial duties that the people brought unto him freewill offerings every morning. Some who had nothing but their manual labor to give would spend a great part of the night in hastening to complete their self-imposed task before the early dawn; others might find their hearts constrained by silent meditations on their beds to open their coffers and give a part of their hoarded treasure to the pious object. All whose hearts were touched by piety, penitence, or gratitude, repaired with eager haste into the presence of Moses, not as heretofore, to have their controversies settled, but to lay on his tribunal their contributions to the sanctuary of God (2Co 9:7).