We’re covering four chapters of Exodus today, because it finishes up the book without leaving one chapter out there sort of just all on its own. In essence it is the building and construction of the Tabernacle, its furnishings, its tools, and its priests’ garments.
You probably noticed an almost mind numbing repetition of the blueprints as they were being built or made. But lest we criticize the text for unnecessary redundancy, let’s ask the question of why God might have wanted it repeated. I can at least imagine that it could be, because He wanted to emphasize the importance of following the pattern He had given, and how it was followed to the letter. Why would that be important for 21st century Christians to read and know? I’ll talk about that in just a minute or two.
After all the workmen finished their tasks, the Scripture says (39:43) that Moses did an inspection of all the work. His inspection revealed that the workers had built everything exactly according to the pattern, everything was exactly according to God’s command. And then the verse says that Moses blessed them.
The rest of today’s reading goes on to the official erection of the Tabernacle, and how the Lord showed His approval by filling the Tabernacle with His glory in the form of a cloud by day and a fire by night. That cloud, later, by lifting became the signal that Israel should break camp and follow wherever God led.
Now back to what these things might mean to us: the Lord in the new covenant has given to us a pattern (Romans 6:17; Philippians. 3:17; 2 Tim. 1:13; etc.) for His new Tabernacle (Temple, see 1 Cor. 3:16,17 and Ephesians 2:21,22). The inspector will not be Moses this time, but Christ — our Moses (Savior, Lawgiver, and Prophet — often paralleled in the NT); and if we build it according to the pattern, we will also be blessed. And the church built according to the pattern will also be filled with the glory of God’s presence in His Spirit (Eph. 2:22).
We’re not talking about a physical structure this time; we’re talking about a people for God’s own possession, who not only have come to salvation through His one way (John 14:6; John 3:16; Acts 2:38), but worship Him according to the pattern, follow His pattern for organization and leadership, and follow the blueprint of real discipleship. Such a “Tabernacle” — such a people — will be blessed and will be the home of God’s real glory here on earth.
See you tomorrow, Lord willing.