And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of the congregation there…
I. IS NOT THE GOODLY PORTION FREELY PROVIDED, AND WAITING YOUR ACCEPTANCE? Hath not the Lord God of your fathers freely given you a title to the country of peace and rest in heaven? May not "an entrance be ministered unto you abundantly"? &c. His hand broke asunder your chains, when ye lay helpless in the land of your spiritual bondage — when Satan was your taskmaster, sin your service, and death your wages. He paid the full ransom of your deliverance. The same hand which took you forth from the captivity and death of sin has still led you onward, cheered with increasing hope of reposing in the kingdom and glory of Jesus Christ. As your day, so has your strength been. Is there then, in the little circle of perishing enjoyments around you, is there, even among the present spiritual privileges with which Divine love has invested you, anything sufficiently great to satisfy the aspirations of one who looks for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life?
II. IS NOT THE ATTAINMENT OF SALVATION THE GREAT BUSINESS OF LIFE, TO WHICH YE SHOULD BE DEVOTED? Your life, in its best and only worthy acceptation, consists not in seeking "what ye shall eat, and what ye shall drink, and wherewithal ye shall be clothed," and how ye shall enjoy the present, and be aggrandised for the future; but in holy resolve and aim to seek the salvation that is in Christ Jesus with eternal glory. Be your portion of present advantages, whether temporal or spiritual, what it may, let it not absorb your minds, that ye may rest upon it, and seek nothing beyond. Do not live so much beneath your privileges as to be satisfied with the mere shadow of good; while the pure, perfect, unsatiating, and everlasting reality solicits you in vain.
III. HAVE YE NOT LOST TIME ENOUGH ALREADY? If we look inward to the experience of our own hearts — if we recollect the testimony of years past and gone, they will surely speak of long and guilty inattention to the duty of serving God who hath called us to His kingdom and glory. How many opportunities have ye possessed of walking with God, like Enoch, and of illustrating the holy character of His religion so unequivocally, that men must have taken knowledge of you that you had been with Jesus! What then remains? Redeem the time by an increasing zeal and diligence to do the work of God, and to attain by His grace a meetness for the inheritance of the saints in light.
(R. P. Buddicom, M. A.)
Parallel VersesKJV: And the whole congregation of the children of Israel assembled together at Shiloh, and set up the tabernacle of the congregation there. And the land was subdued before them.