Exodus Types: 6d. The Tabernacle In the Wilderness, A Manifold Type of Christ and His Church

Here is what was done with the offerings, with some variation in connection with certain offerings. - First, the blood was shed and atonement made. - Then, the blood was sprinkled and the atonement appropriated. The victim was burned, the fire picturing judgment upon sin. - Then part of the meat was eaten by the priests symbolizing fellowship based on forgiveness. "But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin" (I John 1:7). The laver used by the priests for washing is a type of cleansing for the Christian worker. The laver was located midway between the brazen altar and the main part of the Tabernacle itself. "Thou shalt also make a laver of brass, and his foot also of brass, to wash withal: and thou shalt put it between the tabernacle of the congregation and the altar, and thou shalt put water therein. For Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet thereat: when they go into the tabernacle of the congregation, they shall wash with water, that they die not; or when they come near to the altar to minister, to burn offering made by fire unto the Lord" (Exodus 30:18-20). The priests were required to wash themselves before going into the Tabernacle, or before ministering at the altar. The material the laver was made from was the brass looking glasses which had been offered by the women. "And he made the laver of brass, and the foot of it of brass, of the looking glasses of the women assembling, which assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation" (Exodus 38:8). This reminds us of James’ statement that the law or the Word is like a mirror. "But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed" (James 1:25). The New Testament constitutes all believers as priests. "And hath made us kings and priests" (Revelation 1:6). But it is important that priests be clean. The psalmist asked the question how to be cleansed. "Wherewithal shall a young man cleanse his way? by taking heed thereto according to thy word" (Psalm 119:9). First John 1:9 promises cleansing after confession: "If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness." After he is conscious of any sin, every Christian worker should confess his sin immediately and be forgiven and cleansed. Only thus is he prepared to serve the Lord. The Tabernacle itself did not rest upon the sand, but rather upon a mass of silver sockets, with each upright board resting on two sockets; so each one of us must rest himself upon Christ for salvation. "And forty sockets of silver he made under the twenty boards; two sockets under one board for his two tenons [pegs], and two sockets under another board for his two tenons" (Exodus 36:24). Each board was fastened securely to the sockets by means of pegs. The foundation of the Tabernacle was actually the combination of all of these silver sockets, picturing redemption through Christ as our foundation. "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ" (I Corinthians 3:11). Every individual sinner who hopes to be saved must rest upon Christ for his salvation. The arrangement of the material in the walls of the Tabernacle symbolizes the unity of believers. "And he made boards for the tabernacle of shittim [acacia wood, standing up . . . And he made bars of shittim wood . . . And he made the middle bar to shoot through the boards from the one end to the other. And he overlaid the boards with gold, and made their rings of gold to be places for the bars, and overlaid the bars with gold" (Exodus 36:20, 31, 33, 34). The boards stood upright. The bars were horizontal placed in rings. The middle bar went through from end to end. The purpose was to hold all together. This typifies the unity of believers. "Endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace" (Ephesians 4:3). This unity is based on the presence and work of the Holy Spirit. The outside covering of the Tabernacle of badgers’ skins is a type of what Christ is to the average unsaved person. "And a covering above of badgers’ skins [sealskins, margin: porpoise skins]" (Exodus 26:14). This skin was no doubt a rough, shaggy, and repulsive-looking skin. This pictures Christ in relation to most unsaved people, to whom Christ is not at all attractive. This reminds us of the words of the prophet Isaiah in predicting concerning the Messiah: "For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him. He is despised and rejected of men, a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not" (Isaiah 53:2, 3). The next to the outside covering of the Tabernacle of rams’ skins dyed red is a type of what Christ is to God. "A covering for the tent of rams’ skins dyed red" (Exodus 26:14). Rams were used in the voluntary burnt offering. Thus this covering represents Christ’s voluntary consecration to do God’s will. "I delight to do thy will, O my God: yea, thy law is within my heart" (Psalm 40:8). This consecration led to the cross. It indicates Christ was acceptable to God in His life and ministry, and in His sacrificial death for us. The next to the inside covering of the Tabernacle of goats’ hair is a type of what Christ has done for us. "Thou shalt make curtains of goats’ hair to be a covering upon the tabernacle" (Exodus 26:7). In Palestine during Bible times the average goat was black, not white. A goat was sacrificed as a sin offering on the great Day of Atonement. Part of this curtain would hang over in front of the Tabernacle (v. 9). This would suggest to the Israelite forgiveness because of the death of a substitute (a goat). Thus it is a type of Christ’s death for us. "Christ died for our sins" (I Corinthians 15:3). The beautiful inside covering of the Tabernacle is a type of what Christ is to believers. "Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet: with cherubim of cunning work shalt thou make them" (Exodus 26:1). There were ten curtains fastened together to make one covering. The white linen suggests Christ’s holiness; the blue, His deity; the purple, His royalty; the scarlet, His humanity and sacrificial death; and the cherubim (see Genesis 3:24) who were guards or watchers, picture the keeping power of Christ. All this and more - Christ is to the believer! [Old Testament Types - FHW]

Read More