THE BIBLICAL FALL FEASTS – PART 15
THE TABERNACLE AND ARK
After 430 years in Egypt (400 as slaves), God delivered Israel and led them across the Red Sea into the Arabian wilderness. His presence stayed with them in a very visible way, a cloud overhead by day and a fire overhead by night. This deliverance occurred approximately 1485 – 1495 B.C. During the second month in the wilderness, God called Moses up on to Mount Sinai. It was there that God gave Moses the Ten Commandments. God also gave him many other instructions for observances and obedience. Included in all of this was detailed instruction on how to build a tabernacle for worship and as a place for God’s presence to dwell among them.
Detailed specifications for the “Tabernacle of the Congregation” are given in Exodus chapters 25-27. It was portable so that it could be moved with them when they travelled yet was very intricately designed.
There was an outer court for the people to congregate. There was inside another court where priests would offer up the sacrifices. Then there was the Holy Place for only the priests in service that week. The most special place was reserved for God’s presence, a place where His shekinah glory would manifest. This was the “most holy place,” also called, “the Holy of Holies.”
Only the High Priest could enter it and only once a year. Inside was the “ark of the Covenant” with a specific design and overlaid in gold (which represents purity). Inside the ark were three items:
· Aaron’s rod which Moses used to part the Red Sea
· The tablets of stone inscribed with the Ten Commandments which represented God’s covenant with Israel
· Manna, the food miraculously provided to them during their 40 years in the wilderness.
The Ark of the Covenant was most holy of all things because it held the shekinah glory of God. If any person were to touch it, they would instantly fall dead. Whenever Israel moved, the tabernacle was “taken up” and specific instructions were given on how to transport the Ark of The Covenant. We today often fail to grasp the true significance and gravity of God’s holiness. It is almost impossible to comprehend it unless you have been transported to heaven’s throne room. A few people (very few) have encountered Him there, and they (including the prophet Isaiah) felt so unworthy to be in His presence.
Yet we are to strive to be holy as He is Holy. Hebrews 12:14 says, “Follow…holiness, without which no man shall see God.” Only as we are clothed in the righteousness of Christ may we be seen as holy in His eyes. We should live our daily lives accordingly.
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