Moses Part 14

Moses, the man of God

A study

Part 14

Details of the Dwelling place of God

Exo.25 – 31; 36 – 40

The people of Israel were delivered from the bondage of Egypt, on the very same day on which they killed the Passover Lambs and applied the blood. (Exo.12: 51) Immediately thereafter, they started their journey through the wilderness, toward their Promised Land. (Exo.6: 6 – 8) On their journey, God’s redeemed people were taken to Mount Sinai and were kept there for one whole year. After giving His LAW and making a COVENANT with them, God commanded His redeemed people to make a SANCTUARY for Him, so that He may DWELL AMONG THEM. (Exo.25: 8, 9) In a similar manner, we have been delivered from the bondage of sin and Satan by the precious blood of the Lamb of God. Now we are in a journey in this world, bound for the Kingdom of the Heavens. During this journey, God desires that we must individually and collectively become His habitation. He wants to dwell among us, commune with us and guide us in this journey.

In Exodus Chapters 25 to 31 we see God giving the pattern of the Tabernacle to Moses, and from Chapters 36 to 40 we find the Tabernacle being constructed. That Tabernacle was the example/shadow and pattern/figure of the real habitation, which God desires to have today in our midst. (Heb.8: 5, 9: 24) Numerous details of the tabernacle and its furniture contain deep spiritual meaning, giving us teachings on how we can become a true habitation of God in which God will dwell in all His glory and lead and guide us and bless us in our life.

DETAILS OF THE TABERNACLE AND THEIR SPIRITUAL MEANING

A FENCE consisting of tall white curtains, which enclosed the courtyard of the Tabernacle, confronted any individual who approached the Tabernacle. (Exo.27: 9-15, 38: 9-17) It indicated that God is so holy that a sinful man can neither see Him nor enter His presence. (1Tim.6: 16, Hab.1: 13)

When we go around and come to the front side of the Tabernacle there we find the one and only GATE. It is so wide and beautiful that it seems to welcome everyone. (Exo.27: 16-18, 38: 18,19) It represented the Lord Jesus Christ, who alone is the Saviour welcoming everyone to be saved freely while the door is open. John 14: 6, 1Tim.2: 3-5, Rev.22: 17, Eph.2: 18, 3:12, Matt.11: 28

As soon as we enter through the gate the BRAZEN ALTAR of Burnt Offerings confronts us. (Exo.27: 1-8, 38: 1-7) No sinner can come to God unless a perfect substitute is offered on his stead. The Lord Jesus Christ loved us and has given Himself for us as an offering and a sacrifice to God. (Eph.5: 2, 1Pet.2: 24, 3: 18) When we put our faith on the Lord Jesus Christ, we become the children of God, and worthy to come to the presence of God. (John 1: 12)

When we go past the Brazen Altar and move further, we find the LAVER before entering into sanctuary. The Laver is a huge brazen vessel containing water. The priests who serve in the Tabernacle keep washing their hands and feet each and every time they are about to enter the sanctuary. (Exo.38: 8) All the priests are bathed before starting the day’s ministry in the Tabernacle. But later during the course of the whole day they had to wash many times when their hands and feet get defiled. (Exo.30: 18-21, 40: 30-32) The Lord Jesus Christ on the same night, on which He was betrayed, washed the feet of His disciples. On that occasion He told Peter, “He that is bathed need not bathe again except to wash his feet.” (John 13: 10) From this we learn that when we put our faith on the substitutionary sacrifice of our Lord Jesus Christ, we are saved once for all from eternal condemnation. (John 3: 16, 5: 24) But during our pilgrim walk on the earth, we are often likely to get defiled and so we need a continual cleansing by the Word of God. (Eph.5: 26,27) This is accomplished through true love and humility in our fellowship with one another as demonstrated by our Lord in John 13, referred above. Only if you have true love and humility, you can teach and convict a fellow-believer who is defiled. And whenever you are convicted about any defilement in you, you should sincerely repent and wholeheartedly turn away from that defilement, and thus you can be cleansed to enter into further ministry and blessings of the Lord.

Then we come to the actual Sanctuary. The walls of the Sanctuary are constructed using forty-eight BOARDS made of shittim wood, overlaid with pure gold. Bars and hoops were used to hold the boards together and keep them standing. (Exo.26: 15-30, 36: 24-31) The wood used for the boards reminds us that we are so unworthy and are the dust of this earth. (Psa.103: 14) But the overlay of pure gold indicates that when we received the Lord Jesus Christ as our Saviour, we have “put on” Christ. Before our salvation our own righteous works were like filthy rags. (Isa.64: 6) But when we believed in the work accomplished by the Lord Jesus Christ on our behalf we were clothed by His righteous work. (Gal.3: 27, Isa.61: 10) Just as those boards were firmly secured together, we also as living stones must be fitly framed and built up together, to become the habitation of God. So, to have the presence of God in the midst of us, we must not only put on Christ but also be bound together by true love and oneness of mind. (Eph.2: 21, 22, 1Pet.2: 5)

This dwelling place of God stood on the desert sand. For any building, the FOUNDATION is very important and it has to be strong and firm. According to the pattern laid down by God, His dwelling place had a very special kind of foundation. Each one of the above boards was fitted on two large blocks of silver each weighing about 50kgs, embedded on the floor. This silver came from the silver offered by each of the Israelites for the ransom or atonement of their souls. (Exo.30: 11-16, 38: 25-28) It also speaks about the price paid by the Lord Jesus Christ to save us, because He was betrayed for 30 pieces of silver to be crucified. Thus the dwelling place of God can stand only on the price paid by our Lord Jesus Christ on our behalf on the cruel cross of Calvary.

The sanctuary is divided into two parts, the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies. The entrance to the Holy Place was kept closed by the OUTER VEIL and the entrance to the Holy of Holies was kept closed by the INNER VEIL. Another veil/curtain was used to cover the GATE at the entrance to the outer court. All these three, i.e. (i) Curtain at the Gate, (ii) the Outer veil and (iii) the Inner Veil, were woven in FOUR COLORS.

  1. White – reminder of the holiness of God,
  2. Blue – representing the heavens and reminding the One who is in heaven,
  3. Purple – reminding that the One whom we commune with is the Lord of lords and King of kings (only the very rich people used this color)
  4. Scarlet – reminding us about the sacrificial death of the Lord Jesus Christ, by which we are able commune with God. (a large number of insects had to be killed to prepare this color)

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