Exodus 36


Moses appoints Bezaleel, Aholiab, and their associates, to the work,

and delivers to them the free-will offerings of the people, 1-3.

The people bring offerings more than are needed for the work, and are

only restrained by the proclamation of Moses, 4-7.

The curtains, their loops, taches, &c., for the tabernacle, 8-18.

The covering for the tent, 19.

The boards, 20-30.

The bars, 31-34.

The veil and its pillars, 35, 36.

The hangings and their pillars, 37, 38.


Verse 1. Then wrought, &c.] The first verse of this chapter

should end the preceding chapter, and this should begin with verse

the second; as it now stands, it does not make a very consistent

sense. By reading the first word veasah, then wrought, in

the future tense instead of the past, the proper connection will

be preserved: for all grammarians know that the conjunction vau

is often conversive, i.e., it turns the preterite tense of those

verbs to which it is prefixed into the future, and the future into

the preterite: this power it evidently has here; and joined with

the last verse of the preceding chapter the connection will appear

thus, Ex 35:30-35, &c.:

The Lord hath called by name Bezaleel and Aholiab; them hath he

filled with wisdom of heart to work all manner of work. Ex 36:1:

And Bezaleel and Aholiab SHALL WORK, and every wise-hearted man,

in whom the Lord put wisdom.

Verse 5. The people bring much more than enough] With what a

liberal spirit do these people bring their free-will offerings

unto the Lords! Moses is obliged to make a proclamation to

prevent them from bringing any more, as there was at present more

than enough! Had Moses been intent upon gain, and had he not been

perfectly disinterested, he would have encouraged them to continue

their contributions, as thereby he might have multiplied to

himself gold, silver, and precious stones. But he was doing the

Lord's work, under the inspiration of the Divine Spirit, and

therefore he sought no secular gain. Indeed, this one

circumstance is an ample proof of it. Every thing necessary for

the worship of God will be cheerfully provided by a people whose

hearts are in that worship. In a state where all forms of

religion and modes of worship are tolerated by the laws, it would

be well to find out some less exceptionable way of providing for

the national clergy than by tithes. Let them by all means have

the provision allowed them by the law; but let them not be

needlessly exposed to the resentment of the people by the mode in

which this provision is made, as this often alienates the

affections of their flocks from them, and exceedingly injures

their usefulness. See Clarke on Ge 28:22,

in fine, where the subject is viewed on all sides.

Verse 8. Cherubims of cunning work] See on Ex 25:18. Probably

the word means no more than figures of any kind wrought in the

diaper fashion in the loom, or by the needle in embroidery,

or by the chisel or graving tool in wood, stone, or metal;

See Clarke on Ex 25:18. This meaning Houbigant and other

excellent critics contend for. In some places the word seems to

be restricted to express a particular figure then well known; but

in many other places it seems to imply any kind of figure commonly

formed by sculpture on stone, by carving on wood, by engraving

upon brass, and by weaving in the loom, &c.

Verse 9. The length of one curtain] Concerning these curtains,

See Clarke on Ex 26:1, &c.

Verse 20. And he made boards] See Clarke on Ex 26:15, &c.

Verse 31. He made bars] See Clarke on Ex 26:26, &c.

Verse 35. He made a veil] See Clarke on Ex 26:31, &c.

Verse 37. Hanging for the-door] See Clarke on Ex 26:36, &c.

Verse 38. The five pillars of it with their hooks] Their

capitals. See Clarke on Ex 26:32, &c.

THERE is scarcely any thing particular in this chapter that has

not been touched on before; both it and the following to the end

of the book being in general a repetition of what we have already

met in detail in the preceding chapters from chap. xxv. to xxxi.

inclusive, and to those the reader is requested to refer. God had

before commanded this work to be done, and it was necessary to

record the execution of it to show that all was done according to

the pattern shown to Moses; without this detailed account we

should not have known whether the work had ever been executed

according to the directions given.

At the commencement of this chapter the reader will observe that

I have advanced the dates A. M. and B.C. one year, without

altering the year of the exodus, which at first view may appear an

error; the reason is, that the above dates commenced at Tisri, but

the years of the exodus are dated from Abib.

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