The Tabernacle – Part 3: Sermon By Bishop Gobanga
Then the cloud covered the tabernacle of meeting, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter the tabernacle of meeting, because the cloud rested above it, and the glory of the Lord filled the tabernacle. Whenever the cloud was taken up from above the tabernacle, the children of Israel would go onward in all their journeys. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey till the day that it was taken up. For the cloud of the Lord was above the tabernacle by day, and fire was over it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel, throughout all their journeys.Exodus 40:34-38 (NKJV)
You also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.1 Peter 2:5 (NKJV)
Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?1 Corinthians 3:16 (NKJV)
And the Lord said to Moses, Speak to the Israelites, that they take for Me an offering. From every man who gives it willingly and ungrudgingly with his heart you shall take My offering. This is the offering you shall receive from them: gold, silver, and bronze, Blue, purple, and scarlet [stuff] and fine twined linen and goats’ hair, Rams’ skins tanned red, goatskins, dolphin or porpoise skins, acacia wood, Oil for the light, spices for anointing oil and for sweet incense, Onyx stones, and stones for setting in the ephod and in the breastplate. Let them make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them. And you shall make it according to all that I show you, the pattern of the Tabernacle or dwelling and the pattern of all the furniture of it.Exodus 25:1-9 (AMP)
There is a reason why the Tabernacle was constructed according to God’s instructions. Our God is a God of specifics. When God instructs, He gives specifications; as saints we are to follow them as issued. There are key truths interwoven in the quantities of the materials needed in the construction of the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle has certain fundamental teachings one of which is that of Christ. Everything in the Old Testament is summed up in Christ. All that is in the Old Testament is a foreshadow of Christ. Jesus is the fulfilment of the Tabernacle. In Him [Christ] all the prophets and the law are summed up.
The Tabernacle was to host the pure presence of God in the Holy of Holies – He interacted with the High Priest in the Day of Atonement [Yom Kippur]. We learn about the holiness of God through the Tabernacle.
The Tabernacle shows Jesus as the plan of salvation. You see the price that Christ paid for the salvation of mankind. We see Jesus Christ as the High Priest in the heavenly sanctuary.
For Christ (the Messiah) has not entered into a sanctuary made with [human] hands, only a copy and pattern and type of the true one, but [He has entered] into heaven itself, now to appear in the [very] presence of God on our behalf.Hebrews 9:24 (AMP)
The Tabernacle consists of the Inner Court, Outer Court & Holy of Holies. The three sections of the Tabernacle speak of the dispensations of God’s plan for mankind. The materials that were used in the Tabernacle and their meanings include:
- Gold: This represents God’s divine nature. It was used in the Holy of Holies where man had intercourse with God.
- Silver: This represents atonement and redemption. It was used on the footings and connection rods in the Tabernacle.
- Bronze/Brass: Represents judgment. This showed that God is a God of judgment. It was used on the brazen altar and laver. It was found on the outer court and represented the place where sin was judged.
The colours that were used in the Tabernacle and their meaning include:
- Blue which represents the authority of heaven.
- Purple which represents royalty.
- Scarlet which represents the sacrificial Lamb of God.
- White [Linen] which represents the righteousness of God.
The rectangular fence also represented the righteousness of God.
The other materials that were used to construct the Tabernacle include:
- Goat’s skin used as the outside coverings and represented atonement
- Acacia wood used as it was durable. It represents the incorruptible nature of God. This wood was used to build the Ark of the Covenant that was overlaid with gold. Gold in the Tabernacle represents the divinity of Christ.
- Oil represents the anointing of the Holy Spirit.
- Spices for oil and incense.
- Stones on the breastplate – represented the 12 tribes of Israel.
The measurements of the Tabernacle were given in cubits which is the length from the elbow to the finger tip of the index finger. The measurements were symbolic of standards of heaven.
God uses symbols to communicate and relay His thoughts. The language of God is incomprehensible to man.
We are to consider God’s higher thoughts. The language of God is sound, light and pulses of energy. God wants us to understand sound, energy and light; His language. God will compress His thoughts and ideas by using our language to communicate to us.
God wants you to come to a place where you understand His sound, His light and His energy. This is the same way God related with Adam and Eve.
And they heard the sound of the Lord God walking in the garden in the cool of the day, and Adam and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the Lord God among the trees of the garden.Genesis 3:8 (AMP)
Jesus taught in parables to help humanity to understand heavenly realities. Adam walked faster than the speed of light. When you have God’s glory, tiredness is not something you will walk around with.
But those who wait for the Lord [who expect, look for, and hope in Him] shall change and renew their strength and power; they shall lift their wings and mount up [close to God] as eagles [mount up to the sun]; they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint or become tired.Isaiah 40:31 (AMP)
The Lord’s glory covers you and one is ushered into the supernatural where one can do what they weren’t able to do in the natural.
God speaks to us using dreams that have symbols. For instance, when we see spiritual authority figures, they represent Christ. If we saw Christ as He is, we would die.
As the trumpet blast grew louder and louder, Moses spoke and God answered him with a voice.The Lord came down upon Mount Sinai to the top of the mountain, and the Lord called Moses to the top of the mountain, and Moses went up. The Lord said to Moses, Go down and warn the people, lest they break through to the Lord to gaze and many of them perish.Exodus 19:19-21 (AMP)
God wants us to understand this language of thunder and light.
Now all the people perceived the thunderings and the lightnings and the noise of the trumpet and the smoking mountain, and as [they] looked they trembled with fear and fell back and stood afar off. And they said to Moses, You speak to us and we will listen, but let not God speak to us, lest we die.Exodus 20:18-19 (AMP)
When you are in the presence of the Lord – the presence of the Lord comes upon you and you do things that are beyond your human capacity. [SELAH]
Moses used to bask in the glory of the God and his spirit man was able to understand the language of God.
And all the people saw the pillar of cloud stand at the tent door, and all the people rose up and worshiped, every man at his tent door. And the Lord spoke to Moses face to face, as a man speaks to his friend. Moses returned to the camp, but his minister Joshua son of Nun, a young man, did not depart from the [temporary prayer] tent.Exodus 33:10-11 (AMP)
And He said, Hear now My words: If there is a prophet among you, I the Lord make Myself known to him in a vision and speak to him in a dream. But not so with My servant Moses; he is entrusted and faithful in all My house. With him I speak mouth to mouth [directly], clearly and not in dark speeches; and he beholds the form of the Lord. Why then were you not afraid to speak against My servant Moses?Numbers 12:6-8 (AMP)
Daniel saw visions in God that he could not explain.
Then I, Daniel, looked, and behold, there stood two others, the one on the brink of the river on this side and the other on the brink of the river on that side. And one said to the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, How long shall it be to the end of these wonders? And I heard the man clothed in linen, who was above the waters of the river, when he held up his right and his left hand toward the heavens and swore by Him Who lives forever that it shall be for a time, times, and a half a time [or three and one-half years]; and when they have made an end of shattering and crushing the power of the holy people, all these things shall be finished. And I heard, but I did not understand. Then I said, O my lord, what shall be the issue and final end of these things? And he [the angel] said, Go your way, Daniel, for the words are shut up and sealed till the time of the end.Daniel 12:5-9 (AMP)
God uses symbolism to communicate. When God uses Number 8, it represents new beginnings.
Number 6: Represents man.
Number 5: Grace. Ascension graces of Christ.
Number 7: Perfection & completion. When God says things are complete.
Sections In The Tabernacle
The Outer Court:
It contained the brazen altar and laver. Sacrifices were offered here and sin had to be judged. Bull and rams represented the sinner and were mounted on the brazen altar and the animal was tied. The brazen altar represented the Mosaic Law. The altar was 1500 cubits, which is the duration (1500 years) that the Mosaic Law was in place. The law was in place to bring judgment. There is nothing in the Outer Court that provides deliverance.
The Holy Place/Inner Court:
It represented the Church Age. The area was 20 by 10 by 10, covering an area of 2000 cubits. The Church Age is 2,000 years. It represents the era of grace. You and I are in the era of grace.
Priests were the only ones who would enter after undergoing washing in the brazen laver. They weren’t to enter without ceremonial washing. The Holy Place contained the show bread which was placed on a table. it represented Christ as the bread of life and the word of God.
On the right hand side, there was a lamp stand which was positioned with 7 candle sticks. It represents Jesus as the light of the world.
The Altar of incense: a place where the priests would burn incense. Intercession was offered here. It symbolizes Jesus as our intercessor as He is constantly interceding for us.
The furniture in the Tabernacle was either made of gold (represents deity), silver (represents the atoning work of Christ) or wood (represents humanity of Christ). It represented the need for sanctification and relying on Christ as the intercessor, bread of life and as the light of the world.
The Holy Of Holies:
Measured 10 by 10 by 10 covering an area of 1,000 cubits and represents the Kingdom Age. This represents 1000 years of the Messianic kingdom and reign of Jesus Christ. The period of the law lasted 1500 years. The Church Age will span 2000 years. The Kingdom Age will span 1000 years.
It is a place of culmination. The Holy of Holies was accessed once a year on the Day of Atonement. It is at the Holy of Holies that one is literally in the presence of God. It represents the 1000 years in the Kingdom Age when Christ will return. This is when we are like Christ and are glorified. Christ will reign for a 1000 years during His Messianic reign. It is where we know Christ as life. This is where Christ becomes our everything. We are priests of the new covenant. We are no longer in the outer court. We are not to remain in the Church Age but the Kingdom Age where Jesus is our life.
The Kingdom Age is where God will dwell with humanity in visible form.
Then I saw a new sky (heaven) and a new earth, for the former sky and the former earth had passed away (vanished), and there no longer existed any sea. And I saw the holy city, the new Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, all arrayed like a bride beautified and adorned for her husband; Then I heard a mighty voice from the throne and I perceived its distinct words, saying, See! The abode of God is with men, and He will live (encamp, tent) among them; and they shall be His people, and God shall personally be with them and be their God.Revelation 21:1-3 (AMP)
Beloved, we are [even here and] now God’s children; it is not yet disclosed (made clear) what we shall be [hereafter], but we know that when He comes and is manifested, we shall [as God’s children] resemble and be like Him, for we shall see Him just as He [really] is.1 John 3:2 (AMP)
The Holy of Holies is where a saint has the substance of the presence of God.
The Outer Court:
It was located on the Eastern side. It represents Christ as the way and the door. It is symbolic of Christ as the entrance into the Kingdom of God. You can only get saved through Christ.
And make the altar of acacia wood, five cubits square and three cubits high [within reach of all]. Make horns for it on its four corners; they shall be of one piece with it, and you shall overlay it with bronze. You shall make pots to take away its ashes, and shovels, basins, forks, and firepans; make all its utensils of bronze. Also make for it a grate, a network of bronze; and on the net you shall make four bronze rings at its four corners. And you shall put it under the ledge of the altar, so that the net will extend halfway down the altar. And make poles for the altar, poles of acacia wood overlaid with bronze. The poles shall be put through the rings on the two sides of the altar, with which to carry it. You shall make [the altar] hollow with slabs or planks; as shown you on the mountain, so shall it be made. And you shall make the court of the Tabernacle. On the south side the court shall have hangings of fine twined linen, a hundred cubits long for one side.Exodus 27:1-9 (AMP)
I am the Door; anyone who enters in through Me will be saved (will live). He will come in and he will go out [freely], and will find pasture.John 10:9 (AMP)
The gate had four pillars representing the 4 Gospels in the New Testament: Matthew, Mark, Luke & John. Without the pillars, the Gospel will not stand.
The curtain fence made of white linen which surrounded the Tabernacle. The curtains had the following colours:
- Blue (representing heaven)
- Purple (royalty)
- Scarlet (a reminder of sacrifice)
The fine linen around the Tabernacle represents complete righteousness. The fine white linen shows that we do not enter into Christ with our own righteousness i.e. not our works. We are sustained by the righteousness of Christ.
The perimeter fence shows that God wants us to look at Him as our safety and surety. We are the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus.
The first furniture in the Tabernacle was the Brazen Altar.
And the fire upon the altar shall be kept burning on it; it shall not be allowed to go out. The priest shall burn wood on it every morning and lay the burnt offering in order upon it and he shall burn on it the fat of the peace offerings. The fire shall be burning continually upon the altar; it shall not go out.Leviticus 6:12-13 (AMP)
Sacrifices were offered at the altar. There was perpetual fire here. Animals were bound on each horn as the animal was not a willing sacrifice. All that made the altar was made of bronze. One entered and knew judgment was taking place. It tells us that God hates sin.
God’s anger will always be rekindled towards sin. The fire on the altar was a reminder of the anger of God against sin that must be judged. God will not transact with man unless sin in his life is dealt with.
The altar represents Jesus Christ on the Cross. It was a type foreshadowing the perfect altar and was mounted upon Christ. Christ’s sacrifice covered all. The brazen altar represents the perfect altar, which is the Cross. Jesus was a willing sacrifice.
The horns were a place of refuge. When people sinned, they ran and held the horns on the brazen altar.
And Adonijah feared because of Solomon, and arose and went [to the Tabernacle tent on Mt. Zion] and caught hold of the horns of the altar [as a fugitive’s refuge].1 Kings 1:50 (AMP)
The brazen altar was a place to find mercy. It shows that our God is a God of mercy. Whosoever calls on the name of Jesus at the Cross shall not be judged but find grace and mercy. Transaction takes place at the altar. Grace and mercy are found. Jesus is our substitute.
The second furniture piece contained the Brazen Laver. The Brazen Laver was like a basin that had water and was at the right hand side of the Outer Court.
And the Lord said to Moses, You shall also make a laver or large basin of bronze, and its base of bronze, for washing; and you shall put it [outside in the court] between the Tent of Meeting and the altar [of burnt offering], and you shall put water in it; There Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet. When they go into the Tent of Meeting, they shall wash with water, that they die not; or when they come near to the altar to minister, to burn an offering made by fire to the Lord.Exodus 30:17-20 (AMP)
He made the laver and its base of bronze from the mirrors of the women who ministered at the door of the Tent of Meeting.Exodus 38:8 (AMP)
The Brazen Laver was a place of washing at the altar/holy place before ministering. The Brazen Laver was made of polished bronze that looked like a mirror. The word of God is the word that reflects back to you like mirror. The word of God sanctifies and shows the state of our hearts.
It can be noted that the priests washed themselves. You cannot minister before you have been ministered to by God. God needs to impact ones before ministering. If you want to deal with sin in your life; address it using the word of God.
We need to be careful on how we transact in the world by having our mind set in heaven.
I appeal to you therefore, brethren, and beg of you in view of [all] the mercies of God, to make a decisive dedication of your bodies [presenting all your members and faculties] as a living sacrifice, holy (devoted, consecrated) and well pleasing to God, which is your reasonable (rational, intelligent) service and spiritual worship. Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].Romans 12:1-2 (AMP)
Leave a Reply