THE TABERNACLE IN THE WILDERNESS (NIV)
In the study of the Tabernacle we learn the ABC’s of Bible truth. In this study, as in all Bible study, we must let the Holy Spirit be our teacher as in I John 2:27, ” … the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you.”
This does not mean that you do not have to study. It means that as you study, be open to the Holy Spirit’s guidance and He will teach you what is truth and keep you from falling into error.
The tabernacle was a literal structure of God’s design, but in Scripture it is also presented as a “Type.”
Definition of a type: “A divinely purposed illustration of some truth. It may be: (1) a person; (2) an event; (3) a thing; (4) an institution; or (5) a ceremonial.
Note: Nothing may be insisted upon as a type without explicit NT. authority.” (From the New Schofield Reference Bible, page 6, note 1) Нельзя ни на чем настаивать как на типе без ясного руководства НЗ.
The Tabernacle is a Type:
1. Of the Church as a dwelling place of God through the Holy Spirit.
“In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his Spirit. (Eph. 2:21-22)
2. Of the Believer.
“Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.” (I Cor. 6:19-20) Also II Cor. 6:16.
3. Of Heaven. +(972) 9 768-48-48
“It was necessary, then, for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified with these sacrifices, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. 24 For Christ did not enter a man-made sanctuary that was only a copy of the true one; he entered heaven itself, now to appear for us in God’s presence.” (Heb. 9:23-24)
The Tabernacle is a Figure of the True. It is Jehovah’s signature in His Word of all that He would do through His Son.
This being true, then the way a person approached the Tabernacle is the way a person gets to heaven.
In verse 23, the word “copies” means an example or a pattern of the true.
4. In Heb. 10:1, we see that the Tabernacle is a “Shadow of the Good Things that are coming.”
The NLT reads, “The old system under the law of Moses was only a shadow, a dim preview of the good things to come, not the good things themselves. The sacrifices under that system were repeated again and again, year after year, but they were never able to provide perfect cleansing for those who came to worship.”
5. The Bible reaches us in Heb. 8:5 that the Tabernacle is a “copy and shadow of what is in heaven. And then it says, “This is why Moses was warned when he was about to build the tabernacle: ‘See to it that you make everything according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.'”
This also being true we see that the way a person approached the Tabernacle is the way a person comes to heaven.
THE PURPOSE OF THE TABERNACLE
It was given by God to reveal through object lessens God’s plan of Redemption.
Every part of the Tabernacle has a spiritual message that pointed the Israelite to the coming Messiah (Christ) and His redemptive work.
Each and every part of the Tabernacle was a symbol and testimony of the coming Christ.
Hebrews 11:27, speaking of Moses says that he, by faith “… left Egypt, not fearing the king’s anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible.”
(Note: This is the second time he left Egypt – the first time he left Egypt he left in fear.)
By faith, Moses and every believing Israelite saw Christ who is invisible. (As the Psalmist says in Ps. 16:8, “I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand..”
FOR BELIEVER’S TODAY:
The same as the purpose for Israel. (See once more Heb. 8:5; 9:23-24)
Exodus 25:8, God says, “Have them make a sanctuary for me (or dwelling place) and I will dwell among them.”
I Cor. 6:19 teaches that the believers body is the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit.
Rev. 21:3 – In Heaven Jesus will dwell in the midst of His Church for all eternity.
We begin our study in Exodus 25:8-9, 22
GOD’S DIVINE GRACE. Ex. 25:8
Moses was on Mt. Sinai waiting to receive the law whose only verdict was death to the sinner. We can imagine that as Moses waited on the Lord to speak that his body trembled with anxiety, and we can also imagine how his heart must have leaped with joy when he heard God say, ” … have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them.”
Why would Almighty God desire to dwell in the midst of a rebellious, idolatrous people who had sinned so greatly?
The only answer is: Jehovah loved them! Only by divine grace would Almighty God desire to dwell in the midst of a people who had sinned so greatly.
GOD’S DIVINE ORDER. Ex. 25:9
“Make this tabernacle and all its furnishings exactly like the pattern I will show you.”
Order is heavens first law. The Tabernacle was God’s and He ordered it. The people were to follow His pattern. They were to do all according to that which He had showed them. God’s work must be done in God’s way.
GOD’S DIVINE PLAN. Ex. 25:22
God’s order is seen in the plan and pattern of the Tabernacle.
1. The people formed a square of about 12 miles.
2. In the midst of the camp stood the Tabernacle, the center of worship.
3. Every tent door opened toward the Tabernacle. Every eye and every heart was directed towards it. The first sight to meet their eye in the morning and the last sight at night was the pillar of cloud and the pillar of fire.
Note: The great truth we see here is that the center of the camp was Jehovah Himself.
a. The pillar of cloud and fire was always in Israel’s presence.
This represents a wonderful truth for us today of the eternal presence of God in the midst of His people. Heb. 13:5, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”
b. Exodus 13:21-22 – God is seen as the Leader and He is the only leader they need.
c. Today we have no pillar of cloud and fire, but God guides us by His Word and by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us. Our responsibility is to obey.
As children of divine light we must seek each day to walk in His will and His way. This is the secret to divine blessing.
A DIVINE TRUTH.
The Tabernacle was God’s first dwelling place on earth. He walked in the Garden with Adam. He visited with Abraham at Mamre. But until the Tabernacle, God had no dwelling place on earth.
God’s dwelling places:
First was the Tabernacle. Next was the Temple. Today, the Church, a spiritual house built of living stones.
We call our church buildings “A house of God,” but this is incorrect. The Church is “A House of Worship.” Only the believer that is born into the family of God, baptized by the Holy Spirit into the body of Christ, washed in the blood of the Lamb and indwelt by the Holy Spirit can claim the honor of being the house of God, the dwelling place of God upon the earth. I Cor. 6:19-20, “Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; (20) you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your body.”
God sought out Adam, preserved Noah, separated Abraham, and saved Israel, now, in the Tabernacle, God seeks to dwell in the midst of His people.
To understand God’s great truth concerning the Tabernacle we must understand:
GOD’S DIVINE PATTERN. (Memorize)
1. The Gate.
2. The Brazen Altar.
3. The Laver.
4. The Door.
5. The Candlestick.
6. The Table of Showbread.
7. The Altar of Incense.
8. The Ark of the Covenant.
The Gate and furniture of the Tabernacle mean nothing unless we have the key to unlock a great truth. Here is the key: Every part of the Tabernacle is A TYPE OF CHRIST.
1. At the Gate we see Christ the Way.
2. At the Brazen Altar we see Christ our Sacrifice.
3. At the Laver we see Christ our Sanctification.
4. At the Door we see Christ our Access our Approach.
5. At the Candlestick we see Christ our Light.
6. At the Table of Showbread we see Christ our Food.
7. At the Altar of Incense we see Christ our Intercessor.
8. At the Ark of the Covenant we see Christ our All and in All
In the Tabernacle we not only see Christ, but we also see the Believer as individual priests with our High Priest, Jesus Christ. We see Christ in our association with Him as believers.
The Tabernacle presents the Person and work of Christ, and the believer as a co-laborer and co-ruler with Jesus.
We will see what takes place at the above listed parts of the Tabernacle.
1. At the Gate – Repentance.
2. At the Brazen Altar – Justification and Consecration.
3. At the Laver – Regeneration and Sanctification.
4. At the Door – Access or Approach in the Holy Place.
5. At the Candlestick – Illumination.
6. At the Table of Showbread – Assurance and Security.
7. At the Altar of Incense – Intercession in the Prayer Life.
8. At the Ark of the Covenant – Faith is turned into sight.
In our study of the Tabernacle we will look first at:
THE HANGINGS OF THE COURT
(verse 9, “Make a courtyard for the Tabernacle. The south shall … have curtains of finely twisted linen.” These are a type of the righteousness of God revealed on the cross through His judgment against sin. Rev. 19:8, “(Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of the saints.”)
Read Romans. 3:21-26
In the Bible, linen is a type of God’s divine righteousness, and when the believer has it on it is a type of divine righteousness that God has imputed unto the believing sinner. “God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God” ( II Cor. 5:21).
The Materials :
1. “finely twisted linen” – speaks of righteousness. The length was twice as long as the width (100 cu. x 50 cu..).
2. There were 20 pillars on each side and ten pillars in front and back.
On the east side (front) 4 pillars were used to make up the Gate. The Gate was the only opening into the court which typifies Jesus Christ as the only way to the Father. John 14:6, Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life No one comes to the Father except through me.”
3. Sockets made of brass.
Brass speaks of Judgment.
4. Hook and fillets of silver.
Silver is a type of Redemption.
5. Pillars speak of Strength.
Again note: The Hanging Curtains are a Type of the Righteousness of God revealed on the Cross through His Judgment against Sin.
Therefore, those who come to God through Christ are forever Redeemed.
(Read Hebrews 10:1-18)
The Hangings of the Court were an eight foot high wall of Linen around the Tabernacle.
In Ex. 25:8, God said, ” … have them make a sanctuary for me, and I will dwell among them.”
Now, if God wanted a sanctuary to dwell in the midst of the people, why, then the wall?
The answer: To keep them out! But why would God want to keep them out?
The answer: So that in order for one to come to God that person must come God’s way.
There are many who say that there is one God and one heaven but many ways to get there. This is Satan’s deception and entirely false. The Good News of the Gospel is that Jesus Christ ” came to seek and to save what was lost” (Luke 19:10).
In II Corinthians 4:3-4, we read, “But if our Gospel be hidden it is hidden to them that are lost, In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them who believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” ( KJV).
It has always been God’s desire for His fallen creatures to come unto Him, but if they come, they must come God’s way. “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved” (Acts 4:12). See also John 14 :6
What is God’s way and only way to come unto Him? It is a way whereby all our sins and all our iniquities are forever judged and put away. No one can ever come to God unless all their sins are judged and put away through the work of Jesus Christ on the cross at Calvary.
If God could not look upon the cross and see His Son bearing our sins (I Pet. 2:24 “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree …”), and if God could not hear His Son cry out, “My God, my God, why hast Thou forsaken me?” (Matt. 27:46), God’s righteousness would forever keep every sinner from His presence.
When the sinner comes in through the Gate by faith, God’s divine way, whereby all his sins and all his iniquities are forever judged and put away, the sinner is then clothed with divine righteousness. Now, that which would forever have keep the sinner out is what forever keeps him in. Praise God for His wonderful salvation!
We have just learned what Eternal Security is. (Read I John 5:10-13)
w For God to deal with sin alone on the basis of His divine righteousness would mean that He would, because of our sins, forever keep us outside of His divine presence.
w For God to reveal His righteousness He must deal with every person according to His holy law.
And for God to deal with sinful man according to His holy law, apart from Jesus Christ, would mean that He must forever exclude every person forever from His divine presence.
If God had dealt with Israel according to His holy law, not one lamb would have been slain upon the Brazen Altar. And if God had dealt with us on the basis of His holy law alone, then Jesus Christ would never have died on Calvary.
That is what we see in the Wall around the Tabernacle, but God, by His Grace, provided a way.
What is Grace? Grace is the innocent lamb slain in place of the sinning Israelite. The lamb is a mere type of Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God, who came to die for the sins of the world.
When John the Baptist saw Jesus for the first time, he said, “Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29) See also II Cor. 5:21
The Fact Of Sin Is Revealed In Romans 1:18 – 3:20
1. Rom. 1:18-32 – The wicked Gentile idolaters are without excuse. They have a knowledge of God through creation, but by refusing this knowledge they are given up by God to do everything that is vile and evil. (See especially verses 18-24, 26, 28b)
God gave them up in their bodies, in their souls and in their spirit. (Verses 29-2:1)
2. Rom. 2:1-16 – The Gentile civilized people are also without excuse. They have an enlightened conscience and they have a knowledge of God through the work of creation.
3. Rom. 2:17- 3:9 – The religious Jews and Gentiles who know about God through His Word but do not obey the Gospel are also without excuse.
Let us never forget that the more knowledge or light people have, then the greater the condemnation if that knowledge is not received through faith.
4. Rom. 3:10-20 – God’s verdict. This verdict concerns everyone who has not come to God through faith in the person and work of the Lord Jesus Christ.
(1). All are under sin.
(2). There is none righteous.
(3). All the world is guilty before God.
Therefore, all in this connection must forever be excluded from God’s divine presence.
That is the teaching of the Tabernacle in the Linen Curtains surrounding the Tabernacle. BUT PRAISE GOD! BLESS HIS HOLY NAME! GOD HAS PROVIDED A WAY BY WHICH THE SINNER CAN ENTER INTO THE PRESENCE AND FELLOWSHIP OF HOLY GOD.
We see this Truth pictured in the Gate.
The Gate is a picture or type of the Lord Jesus Christ who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life (John 14:6).
What is the Way? It is a way whereby all our sins and all our iniquities and all our uncleanness might be forever judged and forever put away.
There is no other way of salvation in the Word of God. There is no other salvation possible and all of salvation is all GRACE + NOTHING.
Question: How could a holy and righteous God bring sinful man into His divine presence? Listen to Paul’s words in Rom. 3: 21-28.
In the light of Type and in the light of divine revelation given to us through the Apostle Paul the only way for the sinner to come into God’s divine presence is to come His acceptable way.
That is the Truth we see in the Gate of the Tabernacle.
THE GATE OF THE TABERNACLE
At the Gate we see the truth of John 14:6, where Jesus said, “…no man comes to the Father except through me.”
1. Man is declared to be a sinner by nature and by practice. As such he is utterly incapable of coming into God’s divine presence.
2. The righteousness of God apart from the law is revealed in Romans 3:21-28.
When the righteousness of God is revealed, the sinfulness of man becomes more apparent. Therefore, the conclusion is that man must come to God by His only acceptable way, a way by where all of our sins and all our iniquities might be forever judged and put away.
This is the truth of the Curtain and the Gate. Therefore, sinful man can be justified only by Grace apart from the Law. Since God’s only way of salvation is by Grace, then Romans 4:5 is absolutely true which says that salvation comes to him “that worketh not.”
Description of the Gate. Exodus 27:16
The Gate was made of blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen, and held by four brass pillars and sockets. It is the only opening into the court.
A type of the Lord Jesus Christ, the historical Jesus revealed in the Gospels, as the Way.
Note the colors:
They speak of the four Gospels.
1. Blue speaks of Christ the Heavenly One, the Son of God as we find Him in the Gospel of John.
2. Purple speaks of royalty. The Gospel of Matthew pictures Christ as King, the Son of David.
3. Scarlet – the color of blood or sacrifice. This pictures the Lord Jesus as we find Him in the Gospel of Mark, as the Servant obedient unto death.
4. White represents purity and righteousness. In the Gospel of Luke we find our Lord as the Son of Man, the Holy One, the Sinless One.
A truth: No one can come to God without a knowledge of the historical Christ.
Question: If the Gate is the only way and man must have a historical knowledge of Christ, where should we take the sinner?
Answer: To the Four Gospels.
In John 17:3, we read, “Now this is eternal life: that they may know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent.” This knowledge comes from the four Gospels.
Acts 4:12, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved”
A very few people understand what salvation is. Ask someone what it is and the reply will usually be “To be saved from my sins.” It is that, but much more.
Salvation has three tenses. (See Hebrews 9:24, 26, 28)
1. We were saved from the penalty of sin. (26)
2. We are being saved from the power of sin. (24)
3. We will be saved from the presence of sin. (28)
All of this is inclusive in salvation.
The reason so few understand is because salvation includes 12 great doctrines which are all of grace and are all God’s part.
1. Redemption – the payment of a ransom.
2. Reconciliation – to restore to fellowship.
3. Propitiation – the Godward value of the cross. To be made satisfied.
4. Conviction – comes from the Holy Spirit and the Word of God.
5. Repentance – Something God enables us to do.
6. Faith – comes by the Word of God.
7. Regeneration – the work of God by the Holy Spirit.
8. Forgiveness – God alone can forgive sins through the blood of the cross.
9. Justification – God declares the sinner to be righteous.
10. Sanctification – to be set apart for God.
11. Preservation – God preserves us. He keeps us saved.
12. Glorification – One day we shall be like Him.
All of these things are God’s part and all in our salvation and all comes by faith. Again, this knowledge comes to us from the four Gospels.
In the Old Testament economy, the first step for the unbelieving sinner is to acknowledge that he is a sinner by coming to the Gate with a sin offering.
Today, one must come to the Gate (Jesus Christ) on the basis that Christ is the sin offering.
Therefore, the first step that the sinner can take toward God that is acceptable to Him is the step of Repentance.
In other words, a sinner must confess to God that he is a sinner. The picture is this:
1. To have his sins put away, an Israelite came to the Gate with a lamb in his arms..
2. He came exposed to God and to man. When he came he was saying to God and to man: I am coming God’s way.
This is repentance, and without repentance there is no salvation.
THE BRAZEN ALTAR
The Brazen Altar reveal to us Christ our sacrifice.
The Type: A type of Jesus, the Son of Man, divinely able to bear all of God’s judgment against us as sinners.
The Gate was the way by which the sinner could enter into God’s divine presence. After coming through the Gate the first thing to meet the eye was a huge Brass Altar. The Altar was prescribed by God, for in verse 1, God said, “Build an altar of acacia wood.”
On the Brazen Altar all the animals were slain and sacrificed. This is a picture of Calvary and the Cross upon which our Lord Jesus was slain and sacrificed for us. The sinner having forfeited his life by sin is helpless and hopeless. Another life, an innocent one, must be sacrificed in his stead. This is god’s plan. Take away the substitutionary sacrifice of Jesus upon Calvary and you have no Gospel and you have no salvation.
In the Old Testament, we can remember that every time the Israelites offered an animal sacrifice it in some way pictured the Cross of Calvary.
The Altar was made of acacia wood which foreshadows the humanity of Jesus. In Isaiah 53:2, speaking of Jesus, it says that He was to come as “a root out of dry ground,” and in Zechariah 3:8, Jesus is called the “branch.” He was “the man Christ Jesus.” (I Tim. 2:5)
How Jesus became a man is unique. Though He was God He “made himself of no reputation, and took upon him the form of a servant, and was made in the likeness of men” (Phil. 2:6-7 KJV). He voluntarily laid aside the outward expression of His deity and became a man through the virgin birth. This does not mean that Jesus gave up His deity, for He never ceased being God, but He gave up the outward expression of deity to take upon Himself the outward expression of servanthood.
Why did Jesus become a man? The answer is found in Exodus 27:2, where Moses was told, “… overlay it with bronze.”
Bronze or brass, in Scripture, indicated Judgment.
In Numbers 21, when the Israelites sinned, God sent judgment in the form of fiery serpents. The serpents were biting and killing the people and they were helpless to do anything about the bite.
But God gave unto Moses the remedy which was to put a brazen serpent upon a pole. If the people, when bitten, would look upon the serpent they would live.
How could this be? Because God illustrated by the picture of the brass serpent that Another would be judged for Israel’s sins.
John tells us that this serpent was a type of the Lord Jesus, for in John 3:14-15, God says, “Just as Moses lifted up the snake in the desert, so the Son of Man must be lifted up, that everyone who believes may have eternal life.”
When the people in the wilderness looked upon the brass serpent they realized that it was a substitution, and God forgave them on the basis that another had paid the penalty for their sins.Вот, что мы видим, глядя на крест
The Lord Jesus was lifted up for us on the cross as a sinless man, but He was covered “over with brass” or judgment for our sins.
That is what we see when we look by faith at the cross of Calvary. We understand that Another was judged for our sins, and on this basis alone we are forgiven and given eternal life.
The Brazen Altar was the first thing one saw when entering the Tabernacle.
It was seven and one half feet square feet and four and one half feet tall.
It was the largest piece of furniture in the Tabernacle. One could not miss it. Most of the other furniture could have been put inside the Brazen Altar. It was that large. благословивший нас всяким духовным благословением в небесах
God says in Colossians 2:9 KJV, that in Christ, “dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.” This is a wonderfully and blessed truth for us all. Whosoever will may come to the Cross and be saved, and when one is saved he is “blessed … with every spiritual blessing in Christ” (Ephesians 1:3).
The Brazen Altar was a place of personal presentation of sacrifice and public confession of faith.
See Leviticus 1:2-5 and note:
1. He shall offer it voluntarily (Lev. 1:3). At the Altar God met the people, but they must come under the Gate at their own free will.
2. He shall put his hand upon the head (Lev. 1:4). This identifies the offering with the sinner. At the Brazen Altar, God judged them and their sins. There was no other place and no other way. (See John 14:6)
And (vs. 4).
As a holy God He dealt with the sinner according to His holy law, but He does not deal with them on the ground of law, for if He did all would be forever kept out from His holy, divine and righteous presence.
Note: It was an open public profession of faith. Public profession should mean that we identify ourselves with Christ on the cross and say that He died for our sins. He dealt with the sinner on the ground of Grace alone. If Jehovah had dealt with the sinning Israelite on the ground of law alone, no innocent lamb would have ever been slain, but the guilty sinner himself would have to pay the penalty for his sins which was death.
Truth: The death of the offering answered for the death of the sinning Israelite. (See Hebrews 10:9-18)
The acceptance of the offering meant the acceptance and forgiveness of the one for whom the sacrifices was offered.
The Brazen Altar Was Propitious. “Propitiation” means to be made satisfied.
1. The sacrifice at the Brazen Altar was satisfying to God for the man’s sins.
2. When the sacrifice was killed it was in plain view, but it was burned inside the Altar, out of view.
When our Lord hung on the Cross it was in plain view, but when God “… laid on him the iniquity of us all” (Isa. 53:6).
Darkness prevailed over the earth so that no one saw Him suffering on the Cross for our sins from the sixth to the ninth hour (Matt. 27:45). This was too sacred for human eyes to behold.
In Leviticus 9:24 note that the consuming fire was from the Lord. This is indicative to the fact that salvation is of God alone.
Leviticus 6:13: “The fire must be kept burning on the altar continuously; it must not go out.”
Why is the fire upon the Altar to never go out? Simply because the people would never stop sinning. If the fire had gone out God would have brought judgment upon the camp of Israel.
This is a wonderful type of the believer’s eternal security, for what Jesus Christ has done for us at Calvary shall never come to an end. Praise God, the Bible says that Jesus Christ “ever liveth to make intercession for them” (Hebrews 7:25 KJV).
Fire is always a symbol of God’s judgment. We should all be glad that the fire fell on the sacrifice on the Brazen Altar because:
1. The fire consuming the sacrifice showed that it was acceptable to God, therefore judgment does not fall on the sinner.
2. By God accepting the sacrifice at the Altar showed that He would accept the sacrifice of Another in our place.
3. When we accept Jesus Christ as the sacrifice for our sins, and by faith offer Him to God as our own Savior, then the Scriptures tell us that we are the beneficiaries of “his glorious grace which he has freely given us in the One he loves” (Eph. 1:6).
Do we dare stand in our own righteousness when God tells us plainly that they are “filthy rags” (Isa. 64:6).
THE LAVER IN THE TABERNACLE
Exodus 30:17-21; 38:8
Type: The Laver is a Type of Christ our Sanctification as we come daily for cleansing from the defilement of sin in our daily walk.
The Believer’s life is repeatedly referred to in Holy Scripture as a “walk.” (KJV & NASV)
Eph. 4:1 – Believer’s are told to “walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called.”
Eph. 5:8 – Believer’s are instructed to “walk as children of light.”
Eph. 5:2 – Believer’s are to “walk in love.”
Eph. 5:15 – Believers are told to “walk circumspectly.” (Circumspectly means “to be careful.”)
In the Tabernacle the priests would get their feet dirty and would need to wash before entering into the Holy Place to minister. For the Believer today, in our daily walk in life we, too, get our feet dirty and need them cleansed. So we go to the Laver, which pictures Christ cleansing us from the world’s defilement.
Illustration: John 13:2-17 – Jesus begins to wash the disciples feet. Peter, not understanding the significance was adamant in insisting that Jesus would not wash his feet. Jesus told Peter in verse eight that he could have no part with Him if he did not let Jesus wash his feet. Peter, then told Jesus to wash him all over (vs. 9). Jesus told Peter in verse 10 that he did not need to be washed all over, but only his feet.
The spiritual significance is that Peter belonged to Jesus. He was saved, but in his daily walk, he became defiled with sin. Washing the feet signifies that the Believer needs to confess his sins daily to keep the fellowship open between the Believer and God.
John said in I John 1:8-9 KJV, “If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
We do not lose our salvation when we sin, but we do lose our fellowship with God until that sin is confessed. This is the picture of the Laver in the Tabernacle.
A look at the Laver.
1. No measurement is given of the Laver. This pictures the boundless mercy and grace of God.
The believer will sin often in his daily walk, and before he can enter into fellowship with Holy God he must be clean. Therefore, he must stop daily and wash at the Laver.
Note: Only the priest could wash at the Laver. This is because only the priests were allowed into the Tabernacle to minister before the Lord.
This is a picture of the Believer priest today. In I Peter 2:9 and Revelation 1:6, we are called “priests.” And because we are priests, the Bible says in Hebrews 4:16 KJV, “Let us come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”
Do we dare think that anyone can come before the throne of grace while defiled? Absolutely not! Therefore, the need of the Laver.
2. The water in the Laver.
The priests, while walking in the dusty courtyard, would get their hands and feet dirty. So, before coming into the presence of Jehovah they would stop at the Laver and wash.
The water is representative of God’s Word. (See John 3:5; 15:3; Eph. 5:26) Today we are cleansed by the “washing with water through the word” (Eph. 5:26).
Look at the Type before us.
The priest would stop at the Laver and when they would gaze into the Laver they would see their reflection from the mirrors in the basin (See Exodus. 30:8), and in the water. They would see their uncleanness and therefore, would wash themselves in the water.
(Note in Exodus 30:20 that if the priests failed to wash they would die)
Here is a great lesson for the Believer today.
If the water is a picture of the Word of God, how are we going to see our reflection and our defilement if we do not study and аgаin God’s Word?
The reason that so many professing Christians today are spiritually dead is simply because they attempt to enter into God’s holy presence before being cleansed at the Laver of God’s Word. The Holy Spirit speaks to us and points out our sin as we spend time in His Word. But many Christians, rather than going to the Laver of God’s Word that they may see their reflection of defilement and seek God’s forgiveness, will attempt to approach God with a prayer, such as “Lord, forgive me of my many sins.”
That is no confession at all!
God wants us to name our sins and we cannot do that except the Holy Spirit reveal them to us as we stop for daily cleansing at the Word. This is why many Christians have lost the joy of their salvation.
When we go to God’s Word in faithful meditation and worshipful study we can trust the Holy Spirit to speak to our hearts and reveal to us our sins. Then we cleanse ourselves by confessing them to God, and for our cleansing we claim I John 1:9
Just as it was the priests responsibility to stop and wash at the Laver before entering the holy presence of God, else they die – it is our responsibility to judge ourselves.
I Corinthians 11:31-32, “But if we judged ourselves, we would not come under judgment. When we are judged by the Lord, we are being disciplined so that we will not be condemned with the world.”
How do we judge ourselves? I John 1:9
When the priest goes to the Brazen Altar he must be clean from the defilement of sin because he represents Jesus Christ, our Savior, “who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).
When the priest goes into the Holy Place he is representative of the Believer who approaches “the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in out time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16).
THE DOOR IN THE TABERNACLE
Type: The Door is a type of the risen and glorified Christ as revealed in the Epistles “through whom we have access into this grace wherein we stand” (Rom. 5:2).
Description: It was a cloth screen of blue, purple, scarlet and fine twined linen supported by five pillars, the only opening into the Holy Place.
Note: The Door is supported by Five pillars whereas the Gate is supported by Four pillars.
The colors of the Door are the same as at the Gate (blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen). As we noted in the study of the Gate, the colors gave us the historical record of Christ in the Gospels. Therefore, the colors in the Door are also a picture of Christ. The difference is the number of posts. There were four posts in the Gate and there are five in the Door.
(A rule of interpretation: Where there is a difference there is a distinction)
Since the Tabernacle is figure of the true (Heb. 9:24) there is no room for error. The coloring was the same as the Gate. The only difference was the number of pillars (Four in the Gate and Five in the Door).
Read Exodus 26:36-37.
Gold, in Scripture, is a symbol for Deity.
The Brass Sockets were the only brass in the Tabernacle proper.
Brass, in Scripture symbolizes judgment.
1. At the Brazen Altar we saw the divine judgment of God coming upon Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God our sacrifice.
2. At the Laver we saw the self-judgment of the priests.
3. What does the brass at the Door signify? Here I must confess my ignorance, I do not know unless it is to remind the worshiper once more that Christ, the Door, by reason of His suffering and because of Christ being judged for our sins.
So we see that Christ is the Door by which “we have access by faith into this grace in which we stand” (Romans 5:2).
The 21 Epistles reveal to us what we have in Christ Jesus as given to us by the Apostle in Ephesians 1:3, “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ.”
The last two words, “in Christ,” are the most important words in the Epistles to the Believer. Everything we have is in Christ Jesus. What we have “in Christ” in the heavenly places reveal to us what we have as new creatures in Christ Jesus. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come” (II Corinthians 5:17).
After we are saved and become new creations in Christ, then we are not to know Christ after the flesh any more.
How, then, are we to know Him? As Believer’s we are His priests, and as priests we are to know Him in a different way. This is what makes us new creations in Christ Jesus.
The old things are passed away.
What old things? The old associations. The old conditions as a sinner before God when we were outside the divine righteousness of God.
And why are they passed away? Because:
When we were unsaved we needed a mediator between holy God and us the sinner – and that mediator was Christ. We read in I Tim. 2:5, “… there is one God and one mediator between God and men, the man Christ Jesus.”
In essence, when I came to the Gate as a sinner, I needed a mediator to intervene between me and Holy God, and that mediator was Christ.
But now that I am saved I no longer need a mediator, for as a child of God, and in the family of God, I now have an advocate. The Apostle John, speaking to born again believers said, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous” (I John 2:1 KJV).
An “advocate” is someone that speaks in our defense.
When I find myself in sin today, what do I do? I do not go to the Brazen Altar, but I go running to the Laver (I John 1:9), where I am cleansed and my fellowship in Christ is maintained.
II Corinthians 5:17
1. I am a new creation and old things are passed away.
2. I am no longer outside the divine righteousness of God and in need of a mediator, but I am inside the righteousness of God and clothed in God’s divine righteousness and therefore, secure in Him for all eternity.
Now, in this position which is eternal, my fellowship is to be with Him in the Most Holy Place, and knowing Him in the Most Holy Place I am to know Him no more after the flesh, but as my High Priest at the Father’s right hand.
As Believer’s in Christ Jesus we are not to be like Israel in the wilderness, for forty years going around in circles, complaining and finding faults and having no desire for heavenly food.
NO! WE ARE TO BE IN CAANAN, GOING FROM VICTORY TO VICTORY AND LIVING WITH JESUS IN THE MOST HOLY PLACE!
I John 1:7: “But if walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.” The word “purifies” (Greek: KATHARIZEI, present tense) means to be constantly purifying
The “another” is God the Father
Here we see where we have fellowship with God through Jesus Christ.
Look at the Type.
We are to have fellowship with Him where He is now, and according to Holy Scripture (Hebrews 9:24), He is in heaven at the right hand of the Father.
Therefore, if we “walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another.” The “one another” is ourselves and God. This is what makes us new creations in Christ Jesus. As cleansed priests we can have fellowship with Christ where He is now.
And this fellowship is possible, only as we come clean through the Door, having confessed our sins at the Laver. I am now in position to have fellowship with Christ where He is now.
So we see that the Door is the only entrance for the Believer into the Tabernacle and into His presence. The Door, “through whom we have gained access by faith into this grace in which we now stand. And rejoice in the hope of the glory of God.” (Romans 5:2).
The reason today that we, as the body of Christ, are in such low spiritual condition is because few Christians ever take steps forward into the Christian life of true fellowship. Few Christians today know what they have in Christ and it is because they will not come to the Laver and confess their sins. And because of this they are like Israel wandering in the wilderness, complaining and finding fault without experiencing any blessing.
When we come to the Holy Place to have fellowship with Jesus, then and only then are our minds centered on things above. The Apostle Paul tells us in Colossians 3:1-2, “Since, then. you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts (affections) on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”
1. Then and only then do we seek those things which are above.
2. Then and only then do we enjoy the life of power and blessing.
3. Then and only then are we taken up with the Person of our Lord, and seek to bring honor and glory to the Father and the Son.
A LOOK AT THE CANDLESTICK
The Candlestick contains seven lampstands. Its purpose was to bear the light. It had no other function.
It was the only light in the Holy Place. All other light was excluded.
The Candlestick was beaten out of a talent of pure gold with its six branches and seven lamps which gave light in the Holy Place.
The Lampstand, a type of Christ our Light.
John 1:4 – “In him was life, and that life was the light of men.
John 1: 9 – “The true light that gives light to every man was coming into the world.”
John 8:12 – Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
John 9:5 – Jesus said, “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
Jesus Christ, our light, shining in the fullness of the power of the sevenfold Spirit as in Isaiah 11:2 where He is called “the Spirit of wisdom, understanding counsel, power’ knowledge, fear of the Lord” and in Hebrews 1:9 He is called the Spirit “of joy.”
The Type: The Candlestick is a type of the fullness of the glory of Christ and the church revealed through Believers and filled with the Spirit and living with Him in the Holy Place. Colossians 2:9-10, “For in Christ all the fullness of Deity lives in bodily form, and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority.”
Natural light was excluded from the Tabernacle. Cp. 1 Cor. 2:14″ (from New Schofield Reference Bible, note 2, page 103). The only light was light from the Candlestick.
I Corinthians 2:14, “The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned.”
Because natural light was excluded from the Tabernacle and the Candlestick is a type of the Holy Spirit, this helps us to understand why the unbeliever cannot understand the spiritual truths of God’s Word.
Read Ephesians 3:16-19
A review of what we have seen:
1. At the Gate we see Christ the Way.
2. At the Brazen Altar we see Christ our Sacrifice.
3. At the Laver we see Christ our Sanctification
4. At the Door we see Christ our Approach and Access.
5. At the Candlestick we see Christ our Light.
At the Candlestick we see Christ our Light, not the light of the world, but the Light of the Believer in the Most Holy Place.
At the Candlestick we see Christ as the Light of the believer to guide him as he travels through a dark and sinful world. The non-believer can not experience the light at the Candlestick as this light is revealed only to those who are walking in fellowship with Jesus.
In the study of the candlestick we see Jesus Christ where He is now, in heaven (Heb. 9:24) to “appear for us in God’s presence.”
Let us not forget this truth: When Jesus was slain on the cross the veil was torn into so that now there are not two compartments in the Holy Place, but only one. So, you see, now the only thing that can keep us from walking into the very presence of God is unconfessed sins at the Laver. THIS IS THE SECRET OF VICTORY FOR THE BELIEVER
The Truth Revealed At The Candlestick:
Only God’s children who have come clean at the Laver, and are filled without measure of the Holy Spirit, and have entered into His presence can go forth as light bearers to bring honor and glory to the Father as Jesus prayer in John 17 that He (Jesus) might be glorified in us on earth.
This is the life of victory, for it is in the Holy Place that the light of Jesus shines on us.
1. As His priests we are to dwell in the Holy Place with Him. So, let us not forget that we enter into His presence as worshipers.
2. In His presence we go forth to work – and we go forth clothed in the whole armor of God as victorious warriors. This is the Christian life that God has planned for us.
3. At the gate was the only entrance into the court.
4. The Door was the only entrance into the Holy Place and God’s presence. It is here that we have access to this grace wherein we stand.
So, we see in the Tabernacle that it is the Laver that stands in the way of all blessings and privileges of the priests.
In this same respect we see today that only unconfessed sin stands in the way of the all blessing and privileges given to us as His priests.
When we see I John 1:7 in this light it takes on a new meaning. “If we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin.”
So, we see that for us as Believers today, in order for us to walk in the light, we must walk with Jesus where He is now – a place where all outside light is excluded.
In John 8:12, Jesus said, “I am the light of the world” – but now He is no longer the light of the world.
In John 9:5, Jesus said, “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.”
In John 12:35, Jesus again said, “You are going to have the light just a little while longer. Walk while you have the light .
Arthur Pink said, “The world rejected the Light, and so far as they were concerned extinguished it. Since He was put to death by wicked hands, the world has never again gazed on the Light. He is now hidden from their eyes” (Arthur Pink, Gleaning From Exodus, pp 222).
Though Jesus is no longer the light of the world, He is the source of the light of the world. The cleansed Believer is the light bearer, and we shine in this darkened world as those who have come to Him through confession, and are forgiven, cleansed, and filled without measure with Holy Spirit – and we go forth in His presence to be a witness.
As Believer’s we are told that we are to “shine as lights” (Phil. 2:15) while we live in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation.
So, if we “walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another.” The “one with another” is our Lord and us – and how can two walk together except they be agreed (Amos 3:3). And how can we be agreed if we do not go to the Laver?
Hold on to this!
In the Tabernacle there were two compartments.
1. In the first compartment there was the Holy Place with the Candlestick, the Table of Showbread, and the Altar of Incense.
2. In the second compartment was the Most Holy Place, sometimes referred to as The Holy of Holies. Within this compartment was the Ark of the Covenant. When Christ died for our sins, the veil in the Holy Place was rent into and it was torn from top to bottom, signifying that God Himself tore the Curtain down. And when the Curtain was rent into, the two compartments became one, making the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies one.
Now, there is nothing to hinder the Believer from walking in the Most Holy Place, but unconfessed sin.
When we come clean at the Laver, we may have fellowship with Jesus at the Candlestick, at the Table of Showbread, at the Altar of Incense, and at the Ark of the Covenant. This is the normal Christian life.
Let us not forget that under the law any priest who came into the Holy Place with unwashed hands and feet died by the hand of Jehovah, therefore the truth is this: It is absolutely impossible for any of us to have all that our Lord has for us with unconfessed sin in our lives.
As the priest who is cleansed and comes within the Door, the first thing a cleansed priest needs is Light. Light was absolutely necessary for priestly ministry and service. The reason for this must be clear to all. It is because in the Holy Place all outside light is excluded. This is why the unsaved cannot understand the things of God (II Cor. 4:4).
The only light in the Holy Place was the Candlestick, and we read in Hebrews 9:2, “For there was a tabernacle made; the first in which was the lampstand, and the table of showbread, which is called the sanctuary.” And again, the key which unlocks the truth is the key in Hebrews 9:24 which is “the figure of the true.”
The Holy Place from which all natural light is excluded is a type of heaven (Revelation 22:5). This is what is in the future for all who are God’s children.
The making of the Candlestick:
w1. The candlestick was beaten out of one piece of pure gold. the piece of gold was the size of a talent (approx. 120 pounds). With price of gold today at $350.00 an ounce, the Candlestick would cost about $672,000.00.
Note: It was one piece to begin with.
2. The Candlestick was made with a main stem and its six branches.
3. The golden ornaments, the knobs, flowers, the fruit-like almonds, and the bowls were made as ornaments of the central stem and on the branches.
The Candlestick was made with seven bowls, one on the central stem and one each on the six branches. The same ornament on the central stem was on the six branches.
4. Pure olive oil which was beaten was used for the light.
5. The lamps were to be kept burning continually. It meant instant death to fail to follow the plan..
Read Leviticus 24:1-4:
Why do you think the Holy Spirit keep repeating the word “continually?” If Christians would understand this precious truth I do not believe they would ever doubt their salvation again.
6. The trimming of the wicks with the golden snoppers and the filling of the lamps with oil was a ministry performed by the high priest every morning when he burned incense on the golden altar.
Remember this! The filling of the oil was done by the high priest alone.
The high priest is a type of Christ and the oil is a type of the Holy Spirit. In the light of type we can understand Ephesians 5:18 (KJV), “And be not drunk with wine, in which is excess, but be filled with the Spirit.”
The filling was accomplished daily by the high priest.
7. A blue cloth and a covering of badgers skin covered the Candlestick while on the march. (See Numbers 4:9-10)
The Candlestick was beaten out of one piece of pure gold. This was the only piece of furniture in the Holy Place which was beaten out.
Note this truth: The beating was not done in the Holy Place, but was done on the outside. (See Philippians 2:5-8). This is a picture of Christ who was beaten outside of heaven, but on the cross. This was the only piece of furniture in the Holy Place that was beaten.
In the light of the Type and the revelation of His sufferings on the cross – who can tell just how great His sufferings were?
At the hands of the religious leaders?
Matthew 26:67-68. “Then they spit in his face and struck him with their fists. Others slapped him and said, ‘Prophesy to us, Christ, Who hit you?'”
Jesus knew, but He opened not His mouth.
At the hands of the soldiers? (See Matthew 27:26-31 and Isaiah 52:14)
The beatings of Jesus took place outside the Holy Place. This typifies the sufferings that precede the glory.
Note: The Candlestick did not appear until the beating had been accomplished.
The Candlestick was made with its main stem and six branches. The stem and branches are one piece made from one lump of gold. This typifies the oneness of Jesus Christ and His church through His redemptive work at Calvary. Ephesians 5:30, “For we are members of his body.” This is our security throughout all eternity. Romans 8:38-39 bear out this truth.
The Candlestick was made of pure gold. As previously stated, gold is a type of deity and glory. So we can see from this type that the Believer is a part of His divine nature. From this we see that:
1. His life is our life.
2. The strength of the branches is in the stem. With this knowledge we can say with confidence as Paul said in Philippians 4:13, “I can everything through him who gives me strength.”
Also, it reminds us of the words of Jesus in John 15:5, “apart from me you can do nothing.”
A look at the Golden Ornaments.
We see the knobs, the fruit-like almonds and the bowls. These were made as ornaments on the central stem and also on the branches. The truth presented here is that the beauty of the stem was also placed on the branches.
Our heavenly Father sees the Believer as one with His Son and beholds the Believer in all the splendor of Jesus Christ.
Truth: The ornaments which adorn us as one with Christ in glory as light bearers should be manifested in and through us to a lost and dying world. This tells us that we cannot be effective witnesses and soul winners unless others can see Jesus in us.
The Pure Olive Oil after Beaten was used for the Light.
1. The oil is a type of the Holy Spirit.
2. The light is a type of Christ as the brightness of God’s glory. (Hebrew 1:3)
3. The purpose of the lamps.
To bear light and to reveal the beauty of the Candlestick. We see here the Church as the witness of Christ through whom the fullness of His glory is to be revealed.
The glory of Christ is to be revealed through us here and in glory. (See Revelation 1:20)
4. The purpose of the Holy Spirit in the Believer is to reveal the beauty of Christ, the central stem, and never for self.
We see, in this respect, the witness of the Church through which the fullness of the glory of Christ is to be revealed.
5. The purpose of the Holy Spirit in the Believer is to reveal the beauty of Christ, the Central Stem, and never for self-glory, self-gratification or self-pleasure. We read in John 16:13-14, “But when he, the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth. He will not speak on his own; he will speak only what he hears, and he will tell you what is yet to come. He will bring glory to me by taking from what is mine and making it known to you.”
6. The Purpose of the Candlestick was also to shine upon the Table of Showbread which is a type of Christ our Food. This tells us the Holy Spirit always works through the Word of God.
Remember this truth.
The oil cannot shine of itself. It shines through the use of a wick. The oil is the great illuminator which shines through us to glorify our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.
II Corinthians 4:6, “For God, who said, ‘Let light shine out of darkness, made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.'”
1. The trimming of the Wicks. The purpose of the wicks were to burn to illuminate the Holy Place and to reveal the beauty of the Candlestick. Now, since the oil could work effectively only through trimmed wicks, the Holy Spirit can only work effectively through cleansed vessels. It was absolutely necessary for the wicks to be trimmed daily. The truth we see here is that the experiences of yesterday are to be forgotten. Paul said in Philippians 3:13-14, “Brethern, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead , I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
It is not the purpose of the Holy Spirit to glory in experiences – and our living daily with our High Priest in the Holy Place will give us new experiences each day.
Let us not get so taken up with our experiences that Christ is forgotten. When we dwell on yesterday’s experiences we tend to let our faith be replace by feelings.
The purpose of the Light was to reveal the Central Stem, even so, the purposes of Believers today is to glorify the Lord Jesus Christ.
EATING AT THE TABLE OF SHOWBREAD
Exodus 25:23-30; Leviticus 24:5-9
At the Candlestick it is a privilege for the Believer to shine for Christ. Jesus tells us in Matthew 5:14, “You are the light of the world.”
The Believer is the light of the world, but unless we have come clean at the Laver and are feasting at the Table of Showbread, and walking with Jesus in the Holy Place, we cannot shine for Him.
At the Table of Showbread we find that it is our privilege to be filled with Him that we may be shining witnesses unto the glory of God, but we cannot be except we are feasting on the Word of God as we shall see as we learn that the Showbread is the food of the priests.
At the Table of Showbread we see Christ our Food, and at the Altar of Incense we see Christ our Intercessor.
At the Candlestick we saw that the first thing the priest needs is light. The second thing he needs is food. Remember this! The food is necessary for fellowshipping and for witnessing
Description of the Table of Showbread:
It was made of acacia wood, overlaid with gold and crowned with two crowns of gold. It held up the loaves in the presence of Jehovah where they were eaten on the Sabbath by the priests.
A type of the risen Christ, crowned with glory and honor, upholding the Believer in the presence of God, which becomes food to our hearts as we realize it by faith in the Holy Place.
Hebrews 2:9, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace Of God he might taste death for everyone.”
The Table of Showbread:
1. Made of acacia wood – a type of Christ’s humanity. John 1:14, “The Word became flesh and lived among us…”
His humanity is also seen in the Brazen Altar where God who became a man, laid down His life in sacrifice for us.
In Hebrews 2:9, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace Of God he might taste death for everyone.”
Exodus. 25:24, “Overlay it with pure gold and make a gold molding around it.”
Overlaid with gold speaks of His glory and deity w On the Table were twelve loaves of bread. Leviticus 24:8 , “This bread is to be set out before the Lord regularly, Sabbath after Sabbath, on behalf of the Israelites, as a lasting covenant.”
The loaves represented the whole house of Israel.
Truth: Jehovah saw them, not as they were in themselves, but as represented before the Lord.
A wonderful and glorious truth: Today, God does not see us as we are in ourselves, but as we are in Jesus Christ – already in glory and glorified. That is the only way that God can see us.
1. The bread is a type of Christ, the Believers Food.
John 6:51, “I am the living bread that came down from heave. If any man eats of this bread he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world.”
2. On the Table were two crowns of gold. These crowns or rims were like two walls around the Table. Their purpose was to secure the Bread upon the Table.
In Type they were a picture of the hand of Christ and the hand of God.
John 10:27-30. Jesus said, “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one can snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who hath given them to me, is greater than all; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one.”
These are the two hands that forever keep the Believer secure in Him. The Believer is kept forever in the Holy Place by the hand of Christ and the hand of God.
The word “snatch” means to take by force. The great truth here is that if the Believer could take himself out of the hand of God he would have to have more power than God. How could anyone ever doubt the eternal security they have in God.
Salvation is all of God plus nothing, and until the child of God rests completely in the finished work of Christ, and comes clean at the Laver, and partakes of the Word of God, he is left insecure and unsure. It is the food of God that sustains us and it is in the truth of His Word that we find rest. Hebrews 7:25, says “Therefore he is able also to save completely those that who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”
It is a tragedy to the thousands of Believers who cannot see this blessed truth in God’s Word, for without acceptance of this truth one cannot find rest.
While on the march the Bread was kept safe on the Table by the two crowns (rims) of Gold.
Truth: The glory of God is concerned with the security of God’s people, and the honor of God is at stake in the security of His people. If one child of God ever went to hell – the glory of God and the honor of God would forever be marred and tainted. But praise God! According to the promises of His Word no child of God can ever be lost. (See John 3:16; 5:24; Romans 8:38-39; I John 5:10-13)
* The Equality of the Loaves.
1. They were made of fine flour. The flour was beaten or crushed into fineness which speaks of Christ’s sufferings and also of the evenness of His character.
2. The loaves were of the same quality, size and weight. Since they represented the whole nation of Israel we see by the loaves that each tribe was represented equally before the Lord.
The wonderful truth for us to see today.
There is no difference in our standing before God. All Believers are represented before God in our High Priest.
No loaf was piled upon the other. They were lined up so each could be seen equally and each would be kept safe on the Table by the crowns. The anti-type is that every Believer has equal standing before God and every Believer is as near to God as another.
PRAYING AT THE ALTAR OF INCENSE
Thus far we have seen that the first thing a cleansed priest needs is light. Next, he needs food. Now we will see that he needs intercession.
1. At the Candlestick we saw Christ our Light.
2. At the Table of Showbread we saw Christ our Food.
3. At the Altar of Incense we see Christ our Intercessor.
At the Altar of Incense the priest is brought near to God in a life of intercession for others.
The Golden Altar was made of acacia wood, overlaid with gold, and crowned with gold, and on which perpetual incense was burned by the high priest, as well as the incense offered by the priests. (See Exodus 30:1-10, 34-38)
The Altar of Incense is a type of Christ, crowned with glory, ever living to make intercession for us in which ministry every believer may have fellowship. (See Hebrews 7:25; Revelation 8:3-4) As we have previously seen, acacia wood is a type of Christ’s humanity and gold is a type of His deity.
Therefore, in the Altar we see Christ’s perfect humanity and absolute deity. This truth is revealed in Hebrews
Chapter 2 reveals His humanity.
Chapter 3 considers the High Priest of our profession
Chapter 4 Read verses 14-16 and note the great invitation in verse 16 of our Great High Priest.
“Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. (15) For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin. (16) Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.”
The Golden Altar was the tallest piece of furniture in the Holy Place. In this we see its exalted position. As priests our holiest privilege in the presence of the Father is to live a life of intercession for others. But this is only possible as we come first to the Laver for cleansing.
First we see:
The Picture At The Altar.
It is a picture of prayer. The Psalmist said in Psalm 141:2, “May my prayer be set before you like incense; may the lifting up of my hands be like the evening sacrifice.”
The Psalmist desired his prayer before God be pleasing as incense. How often do we send prayers before God without giving thought to how God might see them?
How can we be sure that our prayers are pleasing as sweet incense before God? God gives us blessed instruction in the Tabernacle.
The first prerequisite is that one must come to the Brazen Altar, the place of sacrifice.
The Brazen Altar, as you remember, was the picture of Calvary, the place where Our Lord suffered, died and shed His blood for our sins. One cannot be saved and cannot be a Christian except he come to the Brazen Altar to have his sins washed clean by the blood of Jesus.
He must have sacrificed the Lamb of God for his sins.
God invites all of us to approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” (Heb. 4:16), but it is impossible to come without the blood. It is Christ’s blood alone that allows us to stand boldly in the presence of holy God.
The second prerequisite for our prayers to be pleasing to God is found in Exodus 30:18-21. Remember the Laver is the place of confession, and the priests had to wash their hands and feet before entering the holy place the Bible says, “so that they will not die.” It was absolutely essential.
That is one reason why some believers today do not get their prayers answered. In Psalm 66:18, the Psalmist said, “If I regard iniquity in my heart, the Lord will not hear me. (KJV)”
The Bible tells us in Psalm 65:2 that God is a God who hears prayer, but the prayer must come from those who have come to the Laver and confessed their sins.
Here is a beautiful thought. If you have come by the Brazen Altar and have offered up the Lamb of God as a sacrifice for your sins and then have come and washed at the Laver by confessing your sins and you have entered into the Holy Place to offer up your prayers with sweet smelling incense you are in the will of God, and in I John 5:14 we read “This is the assurance we have in approaching God: that if we ask any thing according to his will, he hears us.”
* At the Golden Altar we see Christ our Intercessor. In verse 8 we see that perpetual incense was burned before the Lord. “Perpetual” means unchanging. It can never fail and can never end. (See Romans 8:33-36)
* The Altar is a type of the glorious person of Christ offering up perpetual intercession on the Believers behalf in the presence of the Father (See Hebrews 7:25).
* On the Day of Atonement a cloud of incense must cover the Mercy Seat before the high priest, the representative of Israel, could sprinkle the blood on the Mercy Seat. (See Leviticus 16:12-15)
The truth we see here is that before Christ, our High Priest, entered into the presence of God for us with His own blood, He crowned the Mercy Seat with a cloud of incense by His intercession. This is His great intercessory prayer in John 17.
* The fire on which the incense was laid in the Most Holy Place was taken from the Brazen Altar where the sin offering was consumed. Note a very close connection between the two Altars. What took place at the Golden Altar was based upon what took place at the Brazen Altar. This identified the priests activities at both Alters.
The picture we get here is that the intercession of our High Priest was for only that which His blood has purchased.
The Position Of The Altar.
It was placed just before the Veil and before the Ark.
Let us not forget that when Christ died for our sins the Veil was rent in two from top to bottom.
Now in the Holy Place their is only one compartment. There is nothing standing between the throne of God and the prayers of His people. There is nothing to hinder the prayers of His priests today except they must come into the Holy Place having been cleansed at the Laver, filled with His Spirit, and feasting on His Word.
The Perversion At The Altar..
Associated with the high priest in his holy ministry of intercession was a family of priests who burned incense before the Lord. God instructed that “no strange incense (KJV)” was to be offered. The word “strange” means something that is alien or foreign. So anything that was not in accordance with God’s requirements was strange.
Since incense has to do with prayer and takes place in the Holy Place we must think this has to do with worship.
First, only the priests were allowed to pray at the Golden Altar. I Peter 2: 5 & 9 tell us that all believers are “a holy priesthood” and “a royal priesthood.”
Therefore, as Believers we are permitted and encouraged to offer our prayers to holy God, but our prayers must come from a sincere and pure heart. We must understand that all pretense is an offense to God.
A LOOK AT THE VEIL
EXODUS 26: 31-35
The veil divided the two compartments inside the Tabernacle Proper.
The first room, called The Holy Place, contained three pieces of furniture which was the Candlestick or Lampstand, the Table of Showbread, and the Golden Altar Of Incense.
The other room was called the Holy of Holies or the Most Holy Place. Inside this room was kept the Ark of the Covenant.
In the Holy of Holies the Shekinah (the manifest glory of God) was to be seen. The Shekinah was the manifest presence of God and it was here that God would commune with the high priest who represented the people (Exodus 25:22). The veil hid this sight from all but the high priest, who alone could enter on the Day of Atonement.
Now, for a look at the Veil.
I. THE DESCRIPTION. Exodus 26:31
It was the same color as the Gate.
1. The blue represented Christ in His heavenly character.
2. The purple represented royalty. it represents the Lord Jesus who one day will be recognized as King of kings and Lord of lords
3. The scarlet portrayed Christ as the Lamb of God who shed His blood for our sins.
4. The fine linen represented the righteousness of Christ.
The Veil was a picture of Jesus in His flesh.
“Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, (20) by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body …Because of what Jesus accomplished in His flesh on the Cross, we now have boldness to enter into the very presence of God.
II. BEHIND THE VEIL. EXODUS 26:33
Directly behind the Veil stood the Ark of the Covenant which contained three items. (See Hebrews 9:4)
1. The golden pot that contained manna.
2. Aaron’s rod that budded.
3. The tables of the covenant.
These three objects were testimonies to the true and living God.
1. The manna testified to god’s provision in the wilderness.
2. Aaron’s rod that budded testifies of God’s power to life from the dead.
3. The tables of the covenant testified of God’s perfect standard which demanded righteousness for anyone who stood before Him.
It is the flesh of Jesus that hid the glory of God from human eyes, but for anyone who would look beyond the veil of His humanity saw more than mere man.
In Matthew 16:13, Jesus asked the question, “Who do people say the Son of man is?”
The in verse 16, we see that Peter looked beyond His flesh and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”
Many people today do not look beyond His flesh and they can see Him no more than a great teacher or a great example. They cannot see Him as He really is, the divine Son of God.
III. THE DIVISION. EXODUS 26:33
The Veil prevented access to God until it was rent into. The Veil divided the place of worship and service from God’s presence.
For any worship to reach God it must pass through Christ. There are many people who desire to approach God but cannot except they go through Christ. Paul reminds us in I Timothy 2:5 that “… there is one God and one mediator between God and man, the man Christ Jesus.”
IV. THE WAY INTO GOD’S PRESENCE. MATTHEW 27:51-51; HEBREWS 9:8
It was not until Christ’s death was the way into God’s presence made manifest. When Christ died on the cross for our sins the veil in the Temple was divinely rent in to. The moment that Christ died the door of access into the throne of Grace was opened for every Believer.
Tradition says the veil was four inches thick and that two teams of horses could not pull it apart. Whether this was true or not is speculation, but we do know it was rent from top to bottom which signifies that God and not man rent the veil.
The death of Christ was a divine appointment. Concerning His death, Jesus said in John 10:18, “No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord.”
Isaiah 53:10 – “Yet it was the LORD’S will to crush him and cause him to suffer.”
On the cross, God was judging our sin in the Person of His Son. I Peter 2:24, “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree.”
The veil was rent deliberately. It was rent to open completely the way to God for everyone. But one must come by Jesus Christ.
John 14:6, Jesus says, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”
Acts 4:12, “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to men by which we must be saved.”
Because of what our Lord did at Calvary, the Bible encourages us to “come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need (KJV.”
THE ARK OF THE COVENANT
The Ark, the Mercy Seat, and the Cherubim were all a part of the same piece of furniture.
The Ark was a chest of Shittim Wood overlaid without and within with Gold.
Three items were in the Chest.
1. The Manna.
2. Aaron’s Rod that budded.
3. The Tables of the Law.
Type: The Ark is a type of Christ as the Son of Man now crowned with glory who kept perfectly the whole law. Psalm 40:8, “I delight to do thy will, O my God; yea, thy law is within my heart.”
Matthew 5:17-18, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets; I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.”
The Cherubim are the figures on the ends of the Mercy Seat, beaten out of the same piece of gold. (See Exodus 25:18-20)
It is not clear what or who the Cherubim represent.
Some see them as attributes of God. Others see them as the highest of angelic beings. Still others see them as representing the four Gospels. And yet others see then as types of the Believer.
(See Ezekiel 1:9-10; Revelation 4:6-8; 5:8-10)
First, the Ark.
In the Word of God the Holy Spirit has given seven names to the Ark.
1. The Ark of the Testimony.
This name was given because of inside the Ark was placed the two tables of testimony. (Exodus 25:22; 31:18)
2. The Ark of the Covenant Of The Lord. Numbers 10:33
This name was given because Christ is the surety of a better covenant.
Hebrews 7:22, “By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better testament”
(NASV) “so much more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.”
3. The Ark of the Lord, The Lord Of All The Earth.
Joshua 3:13, “And it shall come to pass, as soon as the soles of the feet of the priests who bear the ark of the Lord, the Lord of all the earth …”
This was a title given after Israel entered into the Promised Land.
4. The Ark of God.
I Samuel 3:3, “And before the lamp of God went out in the temple of the LORD, where the ark of God was …”
5. The Ark of the Lord God.
I Kings 2:26, Solomon told Abiathar, the priest, “… I will not at this time put thee to death, because thou didst bear the ark of the Lord God before David, my father …”
In the Hebrew, “Lord God” is Adonai Jehovah.
“Adonai” refers to His headship – the One from whom all blessings come.
“Jehovah” – the covenant making God. In this name we see God in covenant relationship.
6. The Holy Ark.
I Chronicles 35:3, Josiah, speaking to the Levites said, “Put the holy ark in the house which Solomon … built.” Jesus Christ is the Holy One.
7. The Ark of Thy Strength.
Psalm 132:8, “Arise, O LORD, into thy rest, thou, and the ark of thy strength.”
The Psalmist learned this truth, when in Psalm 89:19, he said, “I have laid help upon one who is mighty.”
We see this in I Corinthians 1:24, “Christ the power of God.”
The Key that unlocks the Truth.
Hebrews 9:4, “Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, in which was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant.”
The Ark contained three things, and the truth is revealed by these three things.
1. The Tables of the Covenant.
This is the law and is written by God.
Exodus 20:1, “And God spoke all these words.”
Exodus 32:16, “And the tables were the work of God, and the writing was the writing of God, engraved upon the tables.”
Exodus 31:18, The “tables of stone, written with the finger of God.”
Therefore, we are to understand from the Ark which contained the law, that it is a type of Christ, in whose heart the law of God was written and was kept.
Psalm 40:8, “I delight to do thy will, O God; Yea, thy law is written within my heart.”
Matthew 5:17, Jesus said, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law … I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill.”
For Christ to keep the law meant for Him to do just what His heart prompted Him to do.
Jesus alone loved God with all His heart, soul, strength, and mind, and His neighbor as Himself.
Therefore, Jesus Christ, as the Son of Man, under the law, fulfilled perfectly all the claims of the law toward God and man.
The law was written in His heart because the Word of God dwelt in Him in all of its fullness, and the Father and the Holy Spirit dwelt in Him, also. We read in Colossians 2:9, “For in Him dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily.”
The truth we have here is that when we are filled with His Word (Psalm 119:11, “Thy word have I hidden in my heart that I may not sin against God”), and filled with His Spirit (Ephesians 5:18, “And be not drunk with wine … but be filled with the Spirit”), then our only desire will be to do only those thongs which please Him.
The Truth: Without the Word of God saturating our hearts and minds. Without hiding it in our hearts and being filled with the Holy Spirit, it is impossible to please God, for the Spirit cannot work apart from the Word of God.
This is the normal Christian life. This is the life of victory and blessing.
In Colossians 3:16, we read, “Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching, and admonishing one another in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs; singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.”
2. The Golden Pot That Had Manna.
Exodus 16:33, “And Moses said unto Aaron, Take a pot, and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations.”
The Ark which contained the pot of manna is a type of Christ, who is the source of our life and strength.
John 6:35, Jesus said, “I am the bread of life, he that cometh to me shall never hunger, and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.”
Our lives as believers are sustained by eating of the Word. Peter tells us that, “As new born babes, desire the sincere milk of the word that ye may grow thereby.” (I Peter 2:2)
I think the Holy Spirit must be grieved today because of the lack of hunger for God’s Word by God’s people.
I read in the latest Gallop poll that more people are going to church today than twenty years ago, but their ignorance of the Bible is much greater.
As children of God we need to ask our heavenly Father to give us a desire for His Word that we may receive blessing.
3. Aaron’s Rod That Budded. Numbers 17:1-9
The budding of Aaron’s rod pictures for us God’s indorsement of Aaron.
Jude 11, “Woe unto them! For they have gone the way of Cain, and ran greedily after the error of Balaam, and perished in the gainsaying of Korah.”
The sin of Korah was his denial of the authority of Moses as God’s chosen spokesman.
While in Egypt, Korah and his associates had seen the advantage of the priesthood. He saw that the Egyptian priest had great wealth and political influence and all the things that went with it. Because of greed Korah wanted this for himself.
Almighty God chose Christ and endorsed Him, and woe unto them that oppose Him.
During the Great Tribulation the Trinity of evil in Revelation 13 will oppose Him.
1. The trinity of evil is made up of Satan, the antichrist, and the false prophet. All three will end up in the lake of fire because of their opposition to God’s appointed man, Jesus Christ.
2. Every unbeliever, every unsaved person that rejects Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior, all who oppose Him will be cast into the lake of fire and separated from God for all eternity.
II Thessalonians 1:7-9, “And to you who are troubled, rest with us, when the Lord Jesus shall be revealed from heaven with his mighty angels, In flaming fire taking vengeance on them that know not God, and that obey not the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ; Who shall be punished with everlasting destruction from the presence of the Lord, and from the glory of his power.”
The Rod in the Ark is a memorial that God stands against everyone that opposes Jesus Christ.
THE MERCY SEAT
The Mercy Seat was a lid of pure gold that covered the law in the Ark, upon which the blood was sprinkled on the Day of Atonement. (See Exodus 25:21-22 & Leviticus 16)
Type: The Mercy Seat was a type of Christ as the Believer’s Propitiation, the One who has satisfied every claim of the law against Himself and us.
Romans 3:25, “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.”
Hebrews 9:5, “And over it the cherubim of glory shadowing the mercy seat; of whom we cannot now speak particularly.”
The lid was made of pure gold, and was made to cover the Ark – and thus to cover the law.
Suppose there was no mercy seat to cover the Ark. If that were so, then the God’s holy law would be uncovered and there would be no mercy to silence the thunderings of the execution of its righteous sentence on sinful man.
The law is perfect and holy and demands the death sentence on its violator. In Galatians 3:10, Paul said, “Cursed is everyone that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.”
The only man who can stand before holy God on the basis of having kept the law was Christ Jesus.
This helps solves a much misunderstood portion of Scripture in I Samuel 6:19-20.
The Philistines had captured the Ark and they soon discovered this was a hot potato they could not handle and they returned the Ark to Israel.
The Scripture says that Jehovah “smote the men of Beth-shemesh, because they had looked into the Ark of the Lord, even he smote of the people fifty thousand and three score and ten men …”
The sin committed which God so severely punished was Israel’s daring to uncover what God had covered. For them to look into the Ark the Mercy Seat had to have been removed, and by removing the Mercy Seat they exposed themselves to the law and separated God’s mercy from His judgment.
See Leviticus 16:14-15.
The blood of the bullock and the goat was sprinkled upon the Mercy Seat by the high priest once a year on the great Day of Atonement.
It was above the Mercy Seat, between the Cherubim, in which Jehovah manifested His presence in the Most Holy Place.
The Mercy Seat is, therefore, a type of God’s throne – the throne of grace where we are told in Hebrews 4:16 to “come boldly unto the throne of grace that we might obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of trouble.”
The Key That Unlocks The Truth Is:
Hebrews 9:5 – “And over it the cherubim of glory shadowing the mercy seat; of which we cannot now speak particularly.”
Romans 3:25 – “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God.”
The word “mercy seat” in Hebrews 9:5 is translated “propitiation” in Romans 3:25. (See also I John 2:2 & 4:10)
Propitiation simply means “satisfaction.” The just demands of a holy God for judgment of the sinners’ sins was met on the cross.
Remember this! Propitiation is not appeasing the anger of a vengeful God, but it is satisfying the righteous demands of a holy God, and thereby making it possible for holy God to show mercy to sinful man.
Vines says, “Through the propitiatory sacrifice of Christ, he who believes on Him is by God’s own act delivered from justly deserved wrath, and comes under the covenant of grace.”
In Luke 18:13, when the publican said, “O God, be merciful to me a sinner.” The word “mercy” there is the same Greek word translated as “Propitiation” elsewhere. The Publican was saying, “O God, be propitious to me a sinner.”
Scofield says, “On the Day of Atonement the blood was sprinkled on the Mercy Seat representing the righteous sentence of the law had been executed, changing the judgment seat into a mercy seat.”
Because of what Christ has done for us on the cross we can now approach God because His justice has been satisfied. We can approach Him with freedom because we know that He holds no resentment in His heart toward us.
Therefore, the truth is this:
Christ is the One whom God has set forth as the Mercy Seat. Christ alone has covered the law and satisfied all the claims of a holy law against the believer.
The law demands perfect obedience or death.
1. The covering of pure gold is a type of Christ who satisfied all the claims of the law against Himself as a man under the law by perfectly obeying it. And He satisfied the claims of the law against every sinner that comes to Him by faith.
We see in I John 2:1-2 that the work of Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of the Mercy Seat.
2. In the Old Testament, on the Day of Atonement, the high priest went into the Holy Place and sprinkled the blood of the sacrifice on the Mercy Seat. This was to make atonement for the sins of the people for the past year. But when Christ died, we read in Hebrews 9:12, “… by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”
Then, in Hebrews 9:24, we read, “Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.
3. The Mercy Seat is the Place of union and communion with God. Man can only meet God on God’s terms at the blood-sprinkled Mercy Seat.
When the lost sinner comes by faith to the throne of grace and claims Christ’s blood to satisfy God for his sins – he will immediately be born of God, and this brings him into eternal union with God.
No longer is he seen in Adam alone, for now he is in the second Adam, Jesus Christ.
No longer is he “without hope in the world” (Ephesians 2:12), but his body becomes “the temple of the Holy Spirit” ( I Corinthians 6:19 ).
God says that it is from above the Mercy Seat that He will commune with men.
The Tabernacle had a Veil which kept the priest from going into the very presence of God, except once a year on the Day of Atonement.
Now that the Veil has been rent, God says we have “boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say his flesh” (Hebrews 10:19-20)