Hebrews 9:23 It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.
On the mount God gave Moses a set of instructions, laws and commandments to help establish a people unto himself. This information would help mold and guide this people to a level of understanding and insight never seen before in human history.
As part of these instructions God gave Moses some patterns to follow. These patterns carry through even today as a guide to better our understanding in the areas of salvation, fellowship, the Church and even marriage.
Exodus 25:9 According to all that I shew thee, after the pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the instruments thereof, even so shall ye make it.
Pattern of the Tabernacle
The tabernacle was to be built in exacting measurements and materials. This basic level of obedience, as a foundation, was needed to be followed in order to have confidence in weightier matters…
Matthew 25:21 His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord.
There is no mistake, when the instructions for the Tabernacle were established in Exodus 25.. it started with the Ark, then the sanctuary, then the border… building around God as the center.
Let’s look at the basic parts:
- The walls (boundary) Exodus 25 – 27
- The Altar – Exodus 27-1
- The Laver – Exodus 30:18
- The Courtyard – Exodus 25 – 32
- The Sanctuary – Exodus 25 – 26
- Furniture (table of Shewbread, candlestick, altar of incense) Exodus 25
- The Vail, Veil Exodus 26:31
- Holy of Holies (containing the Ark of the Covenant) Exodus 25
Details, Details, Details
The pattern as the tabernacle is laid out with a specific order to follow. We see this pattern in many different areas; but first in the area of it detail. Every element of the tabernacle, down to the clothes that the priests wore, shows God’s desire for things to be done decently and in order: (1 Corinthians 14:40) This detail oriented pattern teaches us that everything has a reason, place and purpose. This should be the pattern we follow in our lives as well. Every detail can make the difference. In the work we do and the life we lead we should do all with this pattern and goal in mind.
Ecclesiastes 9:10 Whatsoever thy hand findeth to do, do it with thy might; for there is no work, nor device, nor knowledge, nor wisdom, in the grave, whither thou goest.
The Pattern seen in Salvation and the Christian life
The pattern of the temple is a fantastic guide for us to see how we can have true fellowship and worship with God. In order for us to reach the Holy of Holies ,whereby we can have that perfect worship; we must go through the path that God laid out. This path is seen in the pattern of the tabernacle.
The boundary of the tabernacle only allows one way to get in:
John 10:1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.
Throughout all of human history God has always made a path to get to Him but, it was always just one way.
Matthew 7:14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.
John 14:6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.
The first thing you come to after you enter in at the door, is the Altar. The sacrifice of Jesus is the very first and necessary step to true worship and fellowship with God.
Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Right after the Altar is some cleansing. The laver is used to wash off the dirt of the world. In order to get to the point that you can have fellowship is to get the dirt of the world, the sins of the flesh washed off.
Ephesians 5:26 That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,
Note: The Laver was polished brass to a mirror finish… always reflecting the Altar
Area of Fellowship (Church)
Hebrews 10:25 Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching.
This is the area where we can fellowship with others, share stories of God’s goodness and mercy. In this area of fellowship we see some parts:
Hebrews 9:2 For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary.
- Candlestick – Psalms 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.
- Table – 1 Corinthians 10:21 Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord’s table, and of the table of devils.
- Shewbread – Acts 20:7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight.
Additionally there were other items in the Sanctuary
- Altar of incense – Ephesians 5:2 And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Hebrews 10:19 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,
20 By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh;
Exodus 26:31 And thou shalt make a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen of cunning work: with cherubims shall it be made:
When Christ died the veil of the temple was rent from top to the bottom opening the access to the Father through Jesus Christ.
Holy of Holies
This is where God would come down to receive the offering. It contained the Ark which held the commandments of God and a golden censer.
Ephesians 5:27 That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.
The Holy place, where God met at the mercy seat, was a set apart place where only those who were clean and sanctified could enter. However, when Christ made His sacrifice that ripped the veil and gave entry.. THAT fact did not change. The world feels like it has access because the veil is not there but, looking closely at the order that God set of the tabernacle; this pattern is what we are to follow in our Christian life. To have true fellowship, to be right with God… we must go through the order HE set. To try to come any other way is the same as a thief and a robber.