Advent Bible Study

A Guide to Bible Study Methods Found in Scripture

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  • The Tabernacle, Temple, and Sanctuary: Genesis 1 to Exodus 27

    The Tabernacle, Temple, and Sanctuary: Genesis 1 to Exodus 27

    Series of books on the Tabernacle, its construction, the services and priesthood.

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  • The Tabernacle, Temple, and Sanctuary

    A new verse by verse look at the Tabernacle

    1st in a new series of books looking at the Tabernacle just as Moses recorded the details.

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Chapter 11 The Separating Curtain

Posted by adventbiblestudy on June 20, 2016

Exodus 26:31-37 NLTse “For the inside of the Tabernacle, make a special curtain of finely woven linen. Decorate it with blue, purple, and scarlet thread and with skillfully embroidered cherubim. (32) Hang this curtain on gold hooks attached to four posts of acacia wood. Overlay the posts with gold, and set them in four silver bases. (33) Hang the inner curtain from clasps, and put the Ark of the Covenant in the room behind it. This curtain will separate the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place. (34) “Then put the Ark’s cover–the place of atonement–on top of the Ark of the Covenant inside the Most Holy Place. (35) Place the table outside the inner curtain on the north side of the Tabernacle, and place the lampstand across the room on the south side. (36) “Make another curtain for the entrance to the sacred tent. Make it of finely woven linen and embroider it with exquisite designs, using blue, purple, and scarlet thread. (37) Craft five posts from acacia wood. Overlay them with gold, and hang the curtain from them with gold hooks. Cast five bronze bases for the posts.

Inside the Tabernacle a special curtain was hung between four pole or columns. Gold hooks attached the curtain to the columns. This curtain made a separation between the Holy and Most Holy compartments. The Most Holy contained the Ark of the Covenant. The first room contained the table, placed in the north side, and lampstand on the south side.

Another curtain was made to cover the entrance of the Tabernacle hung in the same manner as the curtain used to separate the Holy from the Most Holy. Moses didn’t mention anything about cherubim or angles on the curtain over the entrance. But Moses did say it had exquisite designs. All of those curtains were made of the finest linen.

Now we have a better picture of the inside of the Tabernacle. One set of linen curtains decorated with blue, purple, and scarlet thread with images of angels covered the back and both sides. That was the north, south, and western walls. The curtains on the north and south walls went from the the Most Holy into the Holy room. They showed a connecting element between the two. A support structure shared the same connection. A portion of those gold covered boards could be seen inside the Holy and Most Holy compartments.

A special curtain was made to separate the Holy room from the Most Holy. It was similar in design to the curtains along the three sides, except it was connected to four gold covered wooden pillars by gold hooks. The curtain covering the entrance on the east side were the same colors as the other curtains but Moses didn’t describe any angels on that curtain. It was also attached to pillars by gold hooks.

Silver bases were also visible inside the Tabernacle. They were used to hold up the walls and the columns supporting the separating curtain and curtain covering the entrance. The columns supporting the curtain at the entrance were held up by bronze bases.

When looking up, gold can be seen. Along the ground, silver bases. At the entrance of the Tabernacle, gold covered columns were supported by bronze bases. At this point we don’t want to assume what those materials represent, or why they are used in their particular locations. When it comes time to examine symbolism, we have to remember this is a pattern of the Tabernacle Moses saw in Heaven.

The Tabernacle is a mixture of splendor and simplicity. It features precious metals of gold, silver, and bronze. Materials mentioned and used as symbols throughout the Bible. The Tabernacle Moses build was a copy of the Heavenly Sanctuary where Jesus judges this world. The book of Hebrews compares details of the Tabernacle and Sanctuary. One of the most interesting points in that comparison is the movement of one piece of furniture from one location to another. Strange as it may seem, Moses was not yet shown that alter. For some reason, God followed His pattern of placing details in His particular order. At this point, it is best to follow the pattern as Moses was shown and just as he recorded it.

When we stray from God’s pattern, we may think we are doing Him a service. But we’ve seen how that turned out with Sarah and some of the other women. We may ask why God offered the priesthood to Israel before they were ready. To answer that question, we have to gain a more complete understanding of the priesthood and how they were to represent God in their ministry. We can’t do that by jumping around from chapter to chapter and book to book. We have to follow God’s sequence and pattern. If we followed the usual method of study some people use, we most likely will miss details. When we stray away from God’s sequence, we are guaranteed to miss lessons locked away in the course Moses dictated.

Since the Tabernacle is also a pattern of Jesus’ ministry, in Heaven as well as in this world, we hope to learn secrets not yet revealed. There are specific procedures the priests had to follow when ministering in the Tabernacle. Are those reflections on Jesus’ ministry, our role as His representatives, or both? Since those steps were recorded for us to learn from, wouldn’t those records showing the view Moses saw in Heaven be just as, or more important?


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