God instructs Moses to command
the people to bring pure olive oil beaten to cause the lamp to burn for the
We learn so much in this single verse about God's presence in the world and our duty to serve and support our God. Could there be a more profound statement of our principal purpose in life?
God's presence in our midst is symbolized in the Biblical account of the sanctuary by the flame that burns in the lamp there, and its radiance, by the light.
Who must bring the oil to make this fire, which emits this light? It is we who must! It is up to us, and on ongoing basis, to bring the fuel that makes God's light shine bright in the world for ourselves and all others.
The oil we bring must be fine and pure. This means that it requires our best effort, really the finest we can bring. It may come in many ways, such as prayer or action or study. But, in all cases, surely our gifts must be true and the most supportive of a clean and bright flame.
Whether it's from our intelligence or our creativity or the goodness of our heart, our offering, as with the oil that is beaten from the olive, likely, too, may come from pain or sacrifice.
Above all else, we must understand that God counts on us forever to help bring forth the Divine light that warms and enlightens our way as well as that of the whole world.