Posts Tagged ‘mishkan’

The Feast of Tabernacles – Sukkot

“The Lord said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites: ‘On the fifteenth day of the seventh month the LORD’s Festival of Tabernacles begins, and it lasts for seven days.  The first day is a sacred assembly; do no regular work.  For seven days present food offerings to the LORD, and on the eighth day hold a sacred assembly and present a food offering to the LORD. It is the closing special assembly; do no regular work” (Leviticus 23:33-36). 

The Feast of Tabernacles is the last of the seven ‘’appointed time’s’ given to God’s people.  In Hebrew, the Feast of Tabernacles is sukkot meaning ‘shelters or booths.’ Sukkot is the eight-day fall festival of ingathering that follows the solemn days of awe and the Day of Atonement.  It is known as the ‘season of our joy’ when everyone dances with lulavs and builds temporary shelters with roofs made from branches of trees.  Like the other fall festivals, the Feast of Tabernacles has yet to be fulfilled by Messiah.  Its shadow contains the vision of the coming Millennial Kingdom when Yeshua will once again tabernacle with Israel and the nations in Jerusalem.   The culmination of the Feast of Tabernacles will occur in eternity when there is a new heavens, new earth and the New Jerusalem where Yahweh will sit on His throne and dwell with His people.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Booth or Sukkah, the singular of sukkot – סכה

Samech ס – A Prop means ‘to support and protect’

Kaf כ – An Open Palm means ‘to allow, to open’

Hey ה – A Window means ‘to reveal’

The Hebrew word picture for sukkah: A protection allowing revelation.

Abraham’s Faith

Abraham’s Tent

“By faith he [Abraham] made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country;  he lived in tents as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. For he was looking forward to the city with permanent foundations, of which the architect and builder is God” (Hebrews 11:9-10).

Abraham was called a friend of God because he believed God and had faith in God’s promises to make him a great nation through a promised seed.  Though he had to live in a tent in this world, he had the hope of an eternal city built by God, the New Jerusalem.

Jacob’s Sukkah

Jacob at Succot

“Jacob went on to Sukkoth, where he built himself a house and put up shelters for his animals.  This is why the place is called Sukkoth (shelters)” (Genesis 33:17).

When the Israelites left Egypt, their first stop on their way to Mount Sinai was Takut, the Egyptian name for Sukkoth.   Hundreds of years earlier, Jacob, whose name had been changed to Israel,  stopped at this exact place after he reunited with his brother Esau.  He built ‘temporary dwellings’ for his family and livestock and called it Sukkoth.

Sukkot

“You are to live in sukkot for seven days … so that generation after generation of you will know that I made the children of Israel live in sukkot when I brought them out of the land of Egypt; I am the LORD your God” (Leviticus 23:42).

In the LORD’s command for the Feast of Tabernacles, the Israelites  were to live in sukkot as a reminder of the 40 years they traveled in the wilderness and lived in temporary shelters. Throughout their generations, the nation of Israel (specifically the Jewish people) have built  sukkot no matter where they have lived.

Sukkah

A sukkah can be built in a yard or on a porch or balcony.  It generally has three walls with all or part of its roof open to the sky.  Any roof covering is usually branches from trees.  Lights may be hung in the    sukkah along with interior decorations such as pictures, flowers, leaves or fruit.Some families line the interior walls with white in order to remember the ‘clouds of Glory’ that appeared over like a sukkah them as they traveled  in the desert.  For seven days the sukkah, the personal or family dwelling place,is used for eating, sleeping and inviting special guests for the season of joy. 

The Lulav

“On the first day you are to take branches from luxuriant trees—from palms, willows and other leafy trees—and rejoice before the Lord your God for seven days. Celebrate this as a festival to the LORD for seven days each year” (Leviticus 23:40-42). 

Rejoicing with the Lulav

On the first day of Sukkot, branches from palms, willows and myrtles along with a large fragrant citrus fruit called the etrog are bound together in what is called the lulav or the Four Species representing the nations of the world.   On each day of the Feast of Tabernacles, the lulav is waved facing north, south, east and west while proclaiming the coming Kingdom of God to the nations.

Several other symbolic meanings developed from the four species creating the lulav. Some believe the four species represent the memorial name of God: Yod Hey Vav Hey which is why they species are bound together as one.   Others believe the fruit and the aroma of the trees relate to different people and how they respond to God’s Torah very similar to the Parable of the Sower and how different people’s hearts respond to the Word of God.  Still others believe that the branches and the fruit represent the parts of our bodies, our temporary dwellings, that we are to offer to God as “instruments of righteousness” (Romans 6:12-13).   

The Tabernacle

“On the first day of the first month of the second year, the tabernacle was set up” (Exodus 40:17). 

The Hebrew word for ‘tabernacle’ is mishkan and this is what the Tabernacle or ‘tent of meeting’ was called in the wilderness.    

Hebrew Word Pictures

Tabernacle or Mishkan – משכן

Mem מ – Water means ‘to come down from, immense’

Shin ש – A Tooth means ‘consumed’ or Shekinah, ‘the Divine Presence of God’

Kaf  כ – A Palm or Wing means ‘to cover or allow’

Nun נ – A Fish means ‘ action and life’

The Hebrew word picture for mishkan: The immense consuming [divine presence of God] cover life.

After the children of Israel were delivered from Egypt, they ended up at Mount Sinai where Moses received God’s instructions for constructing His portable ‘dwelling place’, the mishkan. It took a long time for all of its posts, curtains, and holy articles to be made.  Gold, silver and bronze objects that were taken from Egypt had to be melted down or beaten and formed into shapes.  Acacia wood had to be gathered, cut and built into boxes.  Animals had to be slaughtered for their skins.   Fabric had to be spun from flax and wool.

Tabernacle in the Wilderness

Eventually the articles became a the Altar of Sacrifice, a hammered golden Menorah, an Altar of Incense, a Table of Presence and the Ark of the Testimony.  Mirrors were collected from the women to cover the large basin for priestly washing and purification.  Tabernacle coverings were stitched together and mounted on the posts.   Curtains from finely twisted linen with blue, purple and scarlet yarn were hung in the Holy Place.  By the time of their two-year anniversary of leaving Egypt, the Mishkan was set up and the glory of the LORD filled it with a cloud.  Yahweh had His ‘temporary dwelling’ that could be transported when He moved His people. 

“Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.  Moses was unable to enter the tent of meeting, because the cloud remained on it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.  Whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the people of Israel continued with all their travels.  But if the cloud was not taken up, they did not travel onward until the day with it was taken up.  For the cloud of the LORD was above the tabernacle during the day, and the fire was (in the cloud) at night, so that all the house of Israel could see it throughout all their travels” (Exodus 40:34-38).

The Living Tabernacle

Sukkah for Yeshua’s Birth

Yeshua is the living tabernacle of God’s divine presence on earth.   According to the details given in the first two chapters of Luke, it can be determined that Yeshua was born on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles.  In a ‘temporary dwelling’ outside the town of Bethlehem, the Word became flesh and was placed in a sukkah.  His heavenly Father, the angels in heaven, the shepherds watching their flocks, his mother Miriam and his earthly father celebrated in the birth of the Son of God.  While all Israel commemorated the festival of ingathering, Yeshua became the reason for the season of great joy!

“The Word became flesh and tabernacled with us, we saw his glory, the glory of the Father’s only Son, full of grace and truth … for it pleased God to have his full being live in His Son…” (John 1:14, Colossians 1:19).

Yeshua celebrates Feast of Tabernacles in John chapter 7, though he didn’t go to Jerusalem until the festival was half over.   When he arrived and began to teach in the Temple, the people were astonished and wondered how he knew so much.  He gave credit to his Father who had sent him to find the lost sheep of Israel and told them to search the Scriptures to know if his teachings were from God or himself.

“So Yeshua gave them an answer: ‘My teaching is not my own, it comes from the one who sent me.  If anyone wants to do his will, he will know whether my teaching is from God or I speak on my own.  A person who speaks on his own is trying to win praise for himself; but a person who tries to win praise for the one who sent him is honest, there is nothing false about him” (John 7:16-18). 

Streams of Living Water

Pool of Siloam

The Levitical priesthood officiated the sacrifices in the Temple during the Feasts and led other traditions rooted in celebrating  the ‘’appointed time’s.’   The highlight each day of the Feast of Tabernacles was the Water Pouring Ceremony.  A white-robed priest would lead a joyful procession carrying a golden pitcher.   The people would follow him through the Water Gate to the Pool of Siloam where he filled the pitcher with water.  He  would return to the Temple with the filled pitcher with the worshippers following him singing, waving their lulavs and dancing in the streets.  When the priest arrived at the Altar, he would pour out the water.  As he poured the water from the golden pitcher, he would cry out in a loud voice words from the prophet Isaiah, “Therefore with joy you will draw water from the wells of salvation” (Isaiah 12:3).

The multitude of people who gathered in Jerusalem for this festival  would respond with:

“LORD, save us!  LORD, grant us success! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the LORD.  From the house of the LORD we bless you” (Psalm 118).

The last and greatest day of the Feast of Tabernacles was called Hoshana Rabbah and means ‘The Great Salvation.‘It was the culmination of the week-long celebration of the Feast and was a vision of the restoration of God’s eternal Kingdom when He would Tabernacle with mankind forever.

Living Water

It was on this day of the Great Salvation that Yeshua responds to his nation’s cry for salvation.  As the Great Salvation, he delivered a message not of judgment, but of freedom and fullness of life in the Spirit.  If they would come to him and put their faith in him, the Spirit of God would be poured out into their hearts and their spiritual thirst would be quenched.  Living waters would flow from within them and they would receive their Great Salvation.

“Now on the last day and greatest day of the festival, Hoshana Rabbah, Yeshua stood and cried out, ‘If a man is thirsty, let him keep coming to me and drink!  Whoever puts his trust in me, as the Scripture says, rivers of living water will flow from his inmost being.’”  (Now he said this about the Spirit, whom those who trusted in him were to receive later.  The Spirit had not yet been given, because Yeshua had not yet been glorified”) (John 7:37-39).

Our Earthly Sukkah

“I think it is right to refresh your memory as long as I live in the tent of this body, because I know that I will soon put it aside, as our Lord Messiah Yeshua has made clear to me” (2 Peter 1:13).

While we live on the earth, we have an earth suit.   Peter and Paul called it our earthly tent.   Our earthly tent is mortal, decaying and dying.  It is only a temporary physical dwelling for our spirits and will one day be destroyed through death.  We will return to the dust of the ground from where we came.   While we live in our mortal sukkot, we know that we are naked and unclothed in the eyes of God.   We cry out in our temporary sufferings and affliction while we wait for the redemption of our bodies and receive our immortal clothes. 

“For we know that if the earthly tent we live in is destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.  Meanwhile we groan, longing to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. For while we are in this tent, we groan and are burdened, because we do not wish to be unclothed but to be clothed instead with our heavenly dwelling, so that what is mortal may be swallowed up by life.  Now the one who has fashioned us for this very purpose is God, who has given us the Spirit as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come” (2 Corinthians 5:1-5).

Once we are born again into God’s Kingdom, our earth tents become the dwelling place for God’s Spirit.  He seals us with His Spirit as a guarantee  that we will be released from our mortal tents and given heavenly bodies.   When we receive our glorified bodies, they will never decay or die because they are eternal.  Until that day arrives, we live in our bodies by faith just as our father Abraham who looked forward to what is to come.

“Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own;  you were bought at a price. Therefore honor God with your bodies” (1 Corinthians 16:19-20).

Feast of Ingathering

“Celebrate the Feast of Ingathering at the end of the year, when you gather in your crops from the field” (Exodus 23:16).

The Feast of Tabernacles is also called the Feast of Ingathering.  It is celebrated after the harvest of grain and grapes while the olive harvest is still in process. 

This ‘’appointed time’’ foreshadows when the House of Judah and the House of Israel are gathered from the nations back to the Promised Land.   This ingathering of God’s chosen people will be so divinely inspired that it will be celebrated as a ‘greater exodus’ than when the Israelites left Egypt.   The Ingathering has only just begun with a modern-day movement of Jewish people returning to Israel from all the nations of the world.  It is called aliyah and means ‘going up.’   

“‘Therefore,’ says The LORD, ‘the day will come when people will not longer swear, “As The LORD lives, who brought the nation of Israel out of the land of Egypt,” but, ‘As The LORD lives, who brought the people of Israel out of the land to the north and all the countries where he drove them,’ for I will bring them back to their own land which I gave their ancestors’” (Jeremiah 16:14-15).

“They found written in the Law, which the Lord had commanded through Moses, that the Israelites were to live in temporary shelters during the festival of the seventh month  and that they should proclaim this word and spread it throughout their towns and in Jerusalem: “Go out into the hill country and bring back branches from olive and wild olive trees, and from myrtles, palms and shade trees, to make temporary shelters”—as it is written” (Nehemiah 8:14-15).

When Israel returned from captivity in the days of Nehemiah, they found the book of Torah that commanded collecting branches to make their sukkot.  In addition to branches from palms, willows, and myrtles, they also collected branches from olive and wild olive trees (Nehemiah 8:14-15).  Because the Feast of Ingathering is a shadow of the coming Kingdom of God, the  olive and wild olive tree branches are significant to its fulfillment.

The first mention of the olive tree is in Genesis after the flood when Noah sends out a dove and it brings back a leaf, a symbol of new life.   In Exodus Moses is given pure olive oil as one of the ingredients for the anointing oil, a symbol of the Spirit.   In Deuteronomy, the land flowing with milk and honey also flowed with olive oil indicating the abundance of provision in the Promised Land.  The doors of Solomon’s Temple were made from olive wood on which were carved the cherubim that guarded the entrance to the Garden of Eden (1 Kings 6:32). In the Psalms, children are like olive shoots around a blessed man’s table. Jeremiah and Hosea call Israel ‘a thriving olive tree with great splendor.’

When Paul discusses the olive tree in Romans 11,  he sees natural olive branches and wild olive branches attached to the same tree.   He tells the gentiles, those of the nations, that they are the wild olive branches which have been grafted into the olive tree along with the natural branches of Israel.

When a branch is grafted into a tree, it gets its nourishment from the roots and sap of the tree.  It will still bear fruit, wild olives, but only through its dependence on the natural tree.   If the grafting doesn’t take and the branch doesn’t get its nourishment,  it will die and fall off the tree.

Paul reminds the gentiles that as wild olive branches they can be cut off the olive tree if they become arrogant over the natural branches.    They are to remember that the living water of the Spirit that comes from Messiah, the root of David,  and the nourishing sap of the  Hebrew Scriptures supports them both by faith.    Though some of the natural branches may have been broken off due to a lack of faith, they are easily grafted back into their own olive tree  (Romans 11:13-24).    

The addition of olive and wild olive branches to the sukkah in Nehemiah’s time suggests that the Ingathering will not only include the natural olive branches of Israel,  but also the wild olive branches  of nations who have joined the covenant that God made with Israel.  When both branches of olives live by faith in Yeshua trusting in him as the root of the tree, living water will bring nourishing sap to both branches.  They will finally thrive with splendor as God intended for  the Olive Tree of Israel.

The Millennial Kingdom

“In the last days the mountain of the LORD’s temple will be established as the highest of the mountains; it will be exalted above the hills, and peoples will stream to it. …Everyone will sit under their own vine and under their own fig tree, and no one will make them afraid, for the LORD Almighty has spoken” (Micah 4:1, 3).

Ezekiel’s Millennial Temple

Yeshua’s teachings centered around the Kingdom of God or the Kingdom of Heaven.  Though it was near, it had not yet fully arrived and will not arrive until he had been glorified and crowned King.  During a one thousand year ‘season of our joy,’  the nations of the world will come to the mountain of the LORD in Jerusalem.  Yeshua will sit on his throne in the Temple and rule the nations from Israel.  His reign will join the present world and mortal men with immortal men in a unique time in history.  With an iron scepter, he will rule the earth and prepare its people for his Father’s eternal kingdom.

“After six days Yeshua took Peter, James and his brother John and led them up a high mountain privately.  As they watched, he began to change form – his face shone like the sun, and his clothing became as white as light.  Then they looked and saw Moses and Elijah speaking with him.   Peter said to Yeshua, ‘It’s good that we’re here, Lord.  I’ll put up three sukkot [temporary dwellings]  if you want – one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.’  While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them; and a voice from the cloud said, ‘This is my Son, whom I love, with whom I am well pleased. Listen to him’! (Matthew 17:1-5).

Just days before, Yeshua told the disciples that some of them would not die until they saw the Son of Man coming in his kingdom (Matthew 16:28).  They were waiting for this kingdom to arrive with great expectation.  Six days later Yeshua took Peter, James and John up a mountain.

The three disciples watched as Yeshua changed into glory in front of them. They saw him speaking with Moses and Elijah establishing a witness of three to the transfiguration.  They didn’t realize that were receiving only a glimpse at the coming Kingdom, but believed that Yeshua was establishing his Kingdom rule on earth at that ‘’appointed time’.‘   They believed that Yeshua was going to take up his throne in Jerusalem and reign as King of Kings.  They weren’t being stupid as often taught,  they knew the prophecies.  Peter responded with his great faith in Yeshua’s words about the Kingdom of God when he offered to build these three glorified men, Moses, Elijah and Yeshua shelters or sukkot.

The Eternal Tabernacle

“And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place (the Mishkan) is now among the people, and he will dwell (tabernacle) with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God” (Revelation 21:3 NIV and Orthodox Jewish Bible).

The New Jerusalem Descends

At the end of Yeshua’s Millennial reign, a new heaven and a new earth will appear.  Everything from the old heaven and earth will pass away.  The New Jerusalem will come down out of the restored heavens and descend to the renewed earth.  There won’t be a Temple in the New Jerusalem because God will be the Temple.  There will be no sun or moon to shine on it because the glory of God gives it its light.  It’s lamp will be Yeshua.

The river of the water of life will flow from the throne of God producing fruit for each month and healing leaves for the nations.  The servants of God will worship Him as His throne will be in the city.   The eternally redeemed will see His face and His name will be written on their foreheads.  They will reign as kings forever and ever.  When the New Jerusalem descends from heaven, Yahweh, the Father, the Creator,  the great I AM will eternally Tabernacle with His people.

“All of these people kept on trusting until they died, without receiving what had been promised.  They had only seen it and welcomed it from a distance, while acknowledging that they were aliens and temporary residents on the earth.  …As it is, they aspire to a better homeland, a heavenly one.  This is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city”  (Hebrews 11:13-15).

Our father Abraham lived in a tent. As Abraham’s children by faith and heirs to the same promises, we also live in earth tents like he did.  Until the day of our redemption, we will live as strangers and foreigners on this earth.  We can celebrate Sukkot with the hope of our future glory by building a sukkah.  As we feast in our ‘temporary dwelling’, we can identify with the children of Israel who lived in tents with the Mishkan of Yahweh in their midst.

Yeshua took on the tent of a human body to live with us. As the Messiah of Israel, he will soon return to Jerusalem as King to prepare the nations for the eternal Kingdom of Heaven.  When we  keep our eyes on the promises of God and the New Jerusalem we will truly understand the ‘season of our joy’ and the Feast of Tabernacles.

“Celebrate the Festival of Tabernacles for seven days after you have gathered the produce of your threshing floor and your winepress.  Be joyful at your festival—you, your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, and the Levites, the foreigners, the fatherless and the widows who live in your towns. For seven days celebrate the festival to the Lord your God at the place the Lord will choose. For the Lord your God will bless you in all your harvest and in all the work of your hands, and your joy will be complete” (Deuteronomy 16:13-15).

©2011 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing. For a hard copy of this article,  please purchase Journey with Jeremiah: Nourishment for the Wild Olive. 

Parashah 19: T’rumah (Contribution)

Parashah 19: Exodus 25:1-27:19

“Adonai said to Moshe, ‘Tell the people of Isra’el to take up a collection for me — accept a contribution from anyone who wholeheartedly wants to give’” (Exodus 25:1-2).

Moshe meets with Yahweh and receives the instructions for making the Tabernacle or Tent of Meeting.  In order to make the Tabernacle and the holy objects, Yahweh tells Moshe to take up a free-will offering from those who ‘wholeheartedly’ desire to give.  The people contribute gold, silver and bronze; blue, purple and scarlet yarn; fine linen, goat’s hair, tanned ram skins and fine leather; acacia wood; oil for the lamp, spices for the incense; onyx stones and others stones to be used for the ritual vest and breastplate.

While the Complete Jewish Bible uses ‘wholeheartedly, the New International Version says, “whose heart prompts them to give” and the Orthodox Jewish Bible, “give it willingly with his heart ….”  Sha’ul also describes the free-will offering, “Each should give according to what he has decided in his heart, not grudgingly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver” (2 Corinthians 9:7).

The Greek word hilaro used in Corinthians means ‘hilarious, laughing and merry.’  It’s not that Elohim wanted Isra’el to be laughing hysterically when they gave, but He desired them to be filled with great joy. They had been blessed abundantly with huge plunder from the Egyptians that could be used to build Elohim’s dwelling among the people.

Contributions came from people with ‘willing hearts’ meaning not everyone would be giving.   There are always some whose hearts are hard and have no desire to give.   The Greek gogguzo for ‘grudgingly’ means ‘with murmuring.’ The Greek lupé for ‘compulsion’ means with ‘pain, grief or sorrow.’   An unwilling person gives sorrowfully with the parting of whatever they are giving and murmurs about it.

The Amplified Bibletranslates 2 Corinthians 9:7,

”Let each one [give] as he has made up his own mind and purposed in his heart, not reluctantly or sorrowfully or under compulsion, for God loves (He takes pleasure in, prizes above other things, and is unwilling to abandon or to do without) a cheerful (joyous, “prompt to do it”) giver [whose heart is in his giving].”

Kodesh haKadashim – The Holy of Holies

The sanctuary and all of its furnishings are to be made according to everything Moshe is shown on the mountain “because what they are serving is only a copy and shadow of the heavenly original” (Hebrews 8:1-6).  

 The Ark of the Covenant

Hear us, Shepherd of Isra’el, you who lead Joseph like a flock. You who sit enthroned between the cherubim …” (Psalm 80:1).

The Ark of the Covenant was made of Acacia wood 3 ¾ feet long, 2 ¼ feet wide and 2 ¼  feet high.  It was covered both inside and out with pure gold.   A gold  molding went around the top with four gold rings attached to each of the four sides, two rings on each side.  Two poles made of Acacia wood covered with gold were put permanently into the rings on the sides of the Ark so it could be carried. 

Many of the objects in the Tabernacle used Acacia wood overlaid with gold.  Acacia wood is also known as wattles.  The origin of wattle may mean ‘to weave’ and its branches have been used to weave walls and fences.  Acacia is a shrub or small tree found in the wilderness area where the Israelites traveled.  It is a strong wood and its density makes it difficult for water or insects to penetrate keeping to safe from decay. 

Selah

Yeshua’s body never saw decay (Psalm 16:9-11).

Kapporeth – The Ark Cover

“I will live in your tent forever and find refuge in the shelter of your wings (Selah)” (Psalm 61:5).

The Ark’s cover was also made of Acacia wood and covered in gold.   It was 3 ¾ feet long and 2¼  feet wide.  Two k’ruvim or cherubim were made of hammered gold, one piece with the Ark cover.  One was put at the head of the Ark cover and the other at the foot and facing each other.  The cherubim had their wings spread open covering the ‘mercy seat’ or kapporeth where the high priest placed the blood of atonement on Yom Kippur.  This is a representation of the two k’ruvim who were placed at the entrance to Gan Eden keeping Adam and Eve out and to protect the Tree of Life.  In the Holy of Holies at the Ark of the Covenant, Yahweh would meet with Moshe and speak to him from above the kapporeth between the two k’ruvim.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Atonement (Cover) or kapporeth – כפורת – kaf, peh, vav, resh, tav

cover speaks of the binding, the head of the covenant

Cherub (Heavenly Being) or keruv – כרוב – kaf, resh, vav, bet

cover of the head binds to the house

The Holy Place

“A tent was set up, the outer one, which was called the Holy Place; in it were the menorah, the table and the Bread of the Presence” (Hebrews 9:2).

Table of Presence

A table made of Acacia wood 3 feet long, 18 inches wide and 18 inches high was covered with gold.  It had a molding of gold around the top like the Ark with a rim about 6 inches wide.  It had four gold rings attached to the four corners near the legs to hold the poles that would be used to carry the table.  The poles were made of Acacia wood and covered in gold.    The dishes, pans, bowls and pitchers used with the table were also made of pure gold.  The Bread of Presence would be placed on the Table.

Menorah

“I’ve been looking at a menorah; it’s all of gold, with a bowl at its top, seven lamps on it, and seven tubes leading to the lamps at its top. Next to it are two olive trees, one on the right side of the bowl and the other on its left” (Zechariah 4:2-3).

The Menorah, the seven-branched oil lamp, was one piece made of pure hammered gold. Its base, shaft, cups, ring of outer leaves and petals were all one piece.  It had six branches extending from its sides, three branches on one side of the central shaft and three on the other.  

On each branch were three cups shaped like almond blossoms, each with a ring of outer leaves and petals.  On the central shaft were four cups shaped like almond blossoms, each with its ring of outer leaves and petals.  Where each pair of branches joined the central shaft was a ring of outer leaves one piece with the pair of branches.  All six branches were made the same way.  All of its tongs and trays were made of pure gold.   The seven lamps for the Menorah were mounted to light the space in front of it.  The total amount of gold for the Menorah  and its utensils was 60 pounds.  At todays value of gold, the cost of gold for the Menorah would be $1,267,200.

The Hebrew word Menorah has the root word or which means ‘light.’ The Hebrew word Torah also has the root of or.  Both the menorah and the instructions of Elohim light our paths and guide our steps (Psalm 119:105).

Hebrew Word Pictures

or (Light)  אורalef, vav, resh

the first binding of the head

Menorah (Lampstand) – מנורה – mem, noon, vav, resh, hey

the mighty life bound to the head revealed

Torah (Instruction) – תורה – tav, vav, resh, hey

the bound to the head revealed

The Tabernacle or Mishkan

“He [Adonai] abandoned the Tabernacle at Shiloh, the tent he had made where he could live among people” (Psalm 78:60).

The Hebrew word mishkan means ‘tent’ and was the portable tent that became the dwelling place of Yahweh’s glory while the Israelites traveled through the wilderness.  The sides of the Mishkan were made with 10 sheets of finely woven linen and blue, purple and scarlet yarn, 42 feet long and 6 feet wide.  Two sets of five sheets were joined to one another.  Fifty loops of blue were on the edge of the outermost sheet in the first set and the same to the second set opposite each other. Fifty fasteners of gold connected the sheets to each other so the Mishkan formed one single unit.  A skilled artisan crafted k’ruvim or cherubim into each sheet.  

Hebrew Word Pictures

Mishkan (Tent)– משכן – mem, shin, kaf, noon

the mighty consumes and covers life

For the Mishkan, there were four layers of coverings:  linen, goat skins, ram skins and badger skins.  The linen curtains were the first inside layer and the only covering seen by the priests who entered the Holy Place.  Tapestries made of blue, purple and scarlet yarn had k’ruvim woven in them.  Linen represents the pure and holy priesthood. The armies of Messiah and his Bride are also clothed in linen garments (Revelation 19).

Eleven sheets of woven goat’s skin black fur covered the linen curtains as the second layer.  Each sheet was 45 feet long and 6 feet wide.  Five sheets were joined together with the sixth sheet folded double at the front of the tent.  Fifty loops were made on the edge of the outermost sheet with 50 fasteners of bronze put in the loops to join the tent together so that it formed a single unit.  The sheets hung over the back of the Tabernacle, 18 inches on each side.

On the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur),  two goats were required for the purification of the Tabernacle and the people of Isra’el.  One goat was sacrificed as the offering for the sins of Isra’el.  The other goat, the scapegoat, was presented alive to Elohim. On the head of this goat, Aaron placed all of the sins of the nation of Isra’el and then it was set free in the wilderness to take the sins far away from the camp purifying it from sin (Leviticus 16:21-22).   Though many commentaries suggest the goat skins represent Messiah’s sacrifice for sin,  it is important to note the goat brought purification from sin and restoration of the Tabernacle.  Like the scapegoat, Yeshua’s bloodpurifies us from sin so fellowship is restored between Elohim and man.   (1 John 1:7).   

Ram skins were the third covering.  These skins were dyed red and waterproof.  The Hebrew word for ‘ram’ is ayil and means ‘strong one.’  Rams were used for burnt offerings and the consecration of priests.   It was a ram Abraham found in the thicket that became the substitute sacrifice for Isaac.  The skins of the ram are a reminder of the ‘binding of Isaac’ and shadow of the binding of Yeshua to the cross. Yeshua is the ‘strength’ of his Father who became the substitute ‘ram’ for the sins of humanity. 

The fourth covering was made of badger skins.  The Hebrew word for ‘badger’ is tachach and translated as a sea cow or dugong, an aquatic animal that swam along the shores of the Red Sea.  This was final waterproof covering that had no real beauty.  This was the exterior part of the Tabernacle that was seen by everyone in the camp.  Yeshua was not especially handsome; his appearance did not attract us so it was easy to see him and not recognize him (Isaiah 53;2).   

Selah

Each of the coverings describe the believer’s walk of faith.  Being human, whether Jew or non-Jew, is a common life experience.  Like the exterior badger skin, our humanity is nothing.  We are made from the dust of the earth only to return to the dust. Our outer shell is seen by everyone, but will disappear like the withering grass.

The ram’s skin is the first step of salvation when one accepts the substitute sacrifice given to Adam and Eve, Abraham and Isaac and to each of us through Yeshua.  These skins are dyed red as a reminder of a covenant that was instituted and secured by blood, the blood of the ‘ram’ that takes away the ‘sin of the world.’   

The third covering is the goat skin and the next step in salvation.  It symbolizes a walk of sanctification that purifies us from sin.  It is necessary to be purified from everything that contaminates body, soul and spirit (2 Corinthians 6:17).

The linen represents the third part of salvation, the hope of glory, our transformation from mortality to immortality.  This linen cover represents priests who will minister in the Tabernacle for our High Priest, Yeshua; the armies that will fight with their Commander, Yeshua; and the Bride of the Bridegroom, Yeshua.

In order to complete the interior of the Mishkan, it was necessary to have planks, crossbars and sockets.  Upright planks were made of Acacia wood 15 feet long and 2 ¼ feet wide.  Two projections on each plank joined them together.  On the northern and southern sides were 20 planks each with 40 silver sockets under the planks (two sockets under one plank).  On the western and eastern sides were six planks.  On the rear corners were two planks and at the back, there were eight planks with 16 silver sockets. 

Crossbars were made of Acacia wood overlaid with gold.  There were five crossbars for the planks on each side; the middle cross bar, halfway up the planks was to extend from end to end   All the planks were covered with gold with gold rings through which the crossbars would pass.

With the abundance of  gold and silver inside the Tabernacle, there would have been an ethereal glow emanating from the light of the Menorah.  To minister within the tent walls of the Mishkan, a priest would be supernaturally enveloped into the essence of the heavenly Tabernacle.

The Dividing Curtain – The Veil

“Only the cohen hagadol [high priest] enters the inner one [Holy of Holies]; and he goes in only once a year, and he must always bring blood, which he offers both for himself and for the sins committed in ignorance by the people” (Hebrews 9:7).

A curtain of blue, purple and scarlet yarn and finely woven linen was made with  k’ruvim worked into the tapestry.  It was hung with gold hooks on four acacia-wood posts overlaid with gold and stood in four silver sockets.  The curtain was hung below the fasteners.  The curtain separated the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place and was called the parokhet coming from the Hebrew word pargod which means ‘cloth’ and can also refer to a coat or cloak.

In Jewish tradition, it was believed the Temple veil was the lower part or ‘hem’ of the garment of Elohim.  In Scripture, when someone tore their clothes, it wasn’t a random act.  The word for ‘tear’ in Hebrew is keriah and means ‘cut.’  Tearing clothes was a sign of a broken heart.  When the veil, or Elohim’s garment was torn in two at Yeshua’s death, it was evidence the Father’s heart was ‘cut’ and broken at the death of His son.

“The curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.  And when the centurion, who stood there in front of Yeshua, saw how he died, he said, “Surely this man was the Son of God!” (Mark 15:38-39)

Hebrew Word Pictures

Veil (Curtain) or parokhet – פרוכת – peh, resh, vav, kaf, tav

the mouth of the head, the binding covers the covenant

The Door to the Mishkan

The door to the Tabernacle was a screen made of blue, purple and scarlet yarn and finely woven linen.  To hang the screen,  five posts of Acacia wood overlaid with gold and five bronze sockets were made.

The five posts covered in gold  have been interpreted to be the five books of Torah or the pillars of instruction the priests used to teach the nation of Isra’el.  Only the priesthood could pass beyond this ‘door’ and enter the Holy Place where the Menorah, the Table of Presence and the Altar of Incense were located.  In the Holy Place, they would offer prayers of intercession with incense, walk by the light of the Menorah, and eat a fellowship meal at the Table of Presence.

The Courtyard

“Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering and come into his courts” (Psalm 96:8).

The entire Tabernacle area was enclosed with a ‘fence’ measuring 150 feet by 75 feet.  Tapestries, 7 ½ feet high,  were made of finely woven linen supported by posts in bronze sockets.  All of the posts around the Courtyard were banded in silver and stood in bronze sockets. The hooks on the posts and rings for attaching the tapestries were made of silver.

The Altar of Sacrifice

“Adonai is God, and he gives us light. Join in the pilgrim festival with branches all the way to the horns of the altar” (Psalm 118:27).

The Altar of Sacrifice, located in the Courtyard, was square, 7 ½ feet long and 7 ½  feet wide and made of Acacia wood planks.  It was hollow on the inside and overlaid with bronze.  It was to be 4 ½  feet high with horns on its four corners, one piece with the Altar.  All utensils, pots, shovels, basins, meat-hooks and fire pans were made of bronze.  It had a grate of bronze netting and bronze rings on the four corners.  Poles overlaid with bronze were put into the rings on each side for transporting.

The Gate

“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name” (Psalm 100:4).

The only way to enter the Courtyard was through the gate which was a colorful screen 30 feet wide made of blue, purple and scarlet yarn and finely woven linen.  It was hung on four posts in four sockets.  Everything else needed for serving in the Tabernacle, as well as the tent pegs, were made of bronze.

Yeshua, the Mishkan

Holy of Holies

“But when the Messiah appeared as cohen gadol [High Priest] of the good things that are happening already, then, through the greater and more perfect Tent which is not man-made (that is, it is not of this created world),  he entered the Holiest Place once and for all” (Hebrews 9:11-12).

Ark of the Covenant

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, accompanied by all the angels, he will sit on his glorious throne. All the nations will be assembled before him, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates sheep from goats. The ‘sheep’ he will place at his right hand and the ‘goats’ at his left” (Matthew 24:31-33).

The Kapporeth

“As Miryam cried, she bent down, peered into the tomb, and saw two angels in white sitting where the body of Yeshua had been, one at the head and one at the feet.   “Why are you crying?” they asked her. “They took my Lord,” she said to them, “and I don’t know where they have put him” (John 20:11-12).

The Veil

“What is more, their minds were made stone like; for to this day the same veil remains over them when they read the former Covenant; it has not been unveiled, because only by the Messiah is the veil taken away.  Yes, till today, whenever Moshe is read, a veil lies over their heart” (2 Corinthians 3:14-15).

The Holy Place

“There he [Yeshua] serves in the Holy Place, that is, in the true Tent of Meeting, the one erected not by human beings but by Adonai” (Hebrews 8:2).

The Table of Presence

“Yeshua said to them, “Yes, indeed! I tell you it wasn’t Moshe who gave you the bread from heaven. But my Father is giving you the genuine bread from heaven; for God’s bread is the one who comes down out of heaven and gives life to the world …. “I am the bread which is life! Whoever comes to me will never go hungry, and whoever trusts in me will never be thirsty” (John 6:31-35).

Menorah

“He came to be a testimony, to bear witness concerning the light; so that through him, everyone might put his trust in God and be faithful to him” (John 1:7).

Yeshua spoke to them again: “I am the light of the world; whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light which gives life” (John 8:12).

“While I am in the world, I am the light of the world” (John 9:5).

The Tabernacle

“The Word became flesh and Tabernacled among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).

The Temple Curtain

“But Yeshua, again crying out in a loud voice, yielded up his spirit. At that moment the parokhet in the Temple was ripped in two from top to bottom; and there was an earthquake, with rocks splitting apart” (Matthew 27:50-51).

The Door to the Holy Place

“Here, I’m standing at the door, knocking. If someone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he will eat with me” (Revelation 3:20).

The Courtyard

“After three days they found him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, listening to them and asking them questions.  Everyone who heard him was amazed at his understanding and his answers” (Luke 2:46-47).

The Bronze Laver

“So he [Yeshua] rose from the table, removed his outer garments and wrapped a towel around his waist.  Then he poured some water into a basin and began to wash the feet of the disciples and wipe them off with the towel wrapped around him” (John 13:4-5). 

The Altar

“Therefore, if you are offering your gift at the altar and there remember that your brother or sister has something against you,  leave your gift there in front of the altar. First go and be reconciled to them; then come and offer your gift” (Matthew 5:23-24).

The Gate

“Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (Matthew 7:11-14).

Haftarah – (Old Testament Readings)

Isaiah 37:15-16

B’rit Chadashah (New Testament Readings)

Hebrews 8:1-6

Hebrews 9:23-24

Hebrews 10:1

Midrash T’rumah:  The Shelter of His Wings

Discuss the Psalms that talk about the ‘shelter of Elohim’s wings’ in reference to the ‘mercy seat’ between the wings of the k’ruvim on the Ark cover (Psalm 17:8, 36:8, 57:2, 63:8, and 91:4.

©2018 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article.  For a hard copy of this Torah portion or the complete cycle, please purchase Open My Eyes, Wonders of Torah.

Parashah 23: P’kudei (Accounts)

Parashah 23: Exodus 38:21-40:38

(In a regular year, read with Parashah 22;  in a leap year read separately.)

These are the accounts of the tabernacle, the tabernacle of the testimony, recorded as Moshe ordered, by the Levites under the direction of Itamar, the son of Aaron, the priest” (Exodus 38:21).

Bezalel was singled out by Yahweh and filled with wisdom, understanding, and knowledge concerning every kind of artistry.  Bezalel descended from the tribe of Judah, the lineage of the Kings of Isra’el: David, Solomon, Abijah, Joash, Ahaz, Hezekiah, Zedekiah, Josiah and ultimately King Yeshua.

His assistant is Oholiab who was a skilled engraver, designer and a weaver of colors.  Oholiab is from the tribe of Dan which means ‘judge.’  Samson, one of the Judges of Isra’el descended from the tribe of Dan. 

The Materials for the Tabernacle

Gold

“The fear of Adonai is clean, enduring forever. The rulings of Adonai are true, they are righteous altogether, more desirable than gold, than much fine gold, also sweeter than honey or drippings from the honeycomb. Through them your servant is warned; in obeying them there is great reward” (Psalm 19:10-12).

Gold, symbolic of Yeshua’s Kingdom, was used for everything made in the sanctuary.   The total weight of gold used was 29 talents, 730 shekels, or 1,930 pounds.  Today’s (2017) market value is $1275.80 per ounce which equals $20,412.80 per pound.  At 1,930 pounds, the price of gold used at today’s market value is $393,967.04.

Gold Thread

“They hammered the gold into thin plates and cut them into threads (wires) in order to work it into the blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen crafted by the skilled artisan” (Exodus 39:3).

Gold is a soft metal, and while possible to make a very thin gold wire that can be woven like thread, it is rather fragile and breaks when repeatedly bent back and forth. In embroidery it was mostly laid on the surface of the cloth and held down with stitches, rather than being threaded into a needle and passed in and out of the fabric.  Most gold thread was made by beating gold very thin, cutting it into strips, and wrapping the strip in a spiral around a “core” thread. The core made the thread more flexible and less breakable.  The actual gold coating on the thread was quite thin and while the thread would bend easily and you could, with care, actually pass the thread through fabric, its tolerance for abrasion was very limited. In embroidery this thread was still mostly laid on the surface of the cloth and stitched down and called “couching.”

Hebrew Word Pictures

Gold or zahav – זהבzayin, hey, bet

division revealed in the house

Silver

“The words of Adonai are pure words, silver in a melting-pot set in the earth, refined and purified seven times over” (Psalm 12:7).

The silver, symbolic of Yeshua’s redemption, given by the community weighed 100 talents, 1,775 shekels or 6,650 pounds.  Today’s (2017) market value of silver is  $16.13 per ounce which equals $258.08 per pound.  At 6,650 pounds of silver, the price of silver used at today’s market value is  $17,162.32.  Silver was used to cast the 100 sockets for the sanctuary and curtain.  Each socket used 66 pounds of silver which would cost $17,033.28  each with today’s market value.

The amount given by each individual was called a beka. The beka is a half shekel or 1/5 an ounce of silver.  This would be about $3.35 in today’s market value for a half shekel.  A beka was paid by every man 20 years old or older who were counted in the census which was 603,550 Israelite men and came to $2,021,892.50.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Silver or kesaph –  כסףkaf, samech, peh

cover and support the words

Bronze

“He trains my hands for war until my arms can bend a bow of bronze; “You give me your shield, which is salvation, your right hand holds me up, your humility makes me great” (Psalm 18:35-36).

The offering of bronze, symbolizing Yeshua’s judgment of man, weighed 4,680 pounds.  Bronze is an alloy of copper and tin while brass is an alloy of copper and zinc. The price of bronze is under $1.00 per pound in today’s market value.  Bronze was used for the sockets to the entrance to the Tabernacle, the Altar of Sacrifice, the grate in the Altar, all the  utensils for the Altar, sockets for the Courtyard and gateway and all of the tent pegs for holding the Tabernacle in place.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Bronze or nechash – נחשnoon, chet, shin

life’s inner room (heart) consumed

Blue

“Meanwhile, Mordecai left the king’s presence arrayed in royal blue and white…” (Esther 8:15).

The Hebrew word for ‘blue’ is tekelet and covers the spectrum of blue from sky blue to a deep royal blue.  Though it has come to mean ‘light blue,’ techelet was actually the name of the blue dye extracted the chillazon sea snail.  When the 70 elders went up the mountain with Moshe, the pavement under Yahweh’s feet was sapphire, clear as techelet.

Blue is associated with the heavenly realm and was central to the colors of the Tabernacle because it was a shadow of the heavenly one. Blue is also associated with the commandments of Yahweh and the high priest’s ephod was woven entirely of blue representing his close association with Torah.

When the Israelite camp moved from one place to another in the wilderness, specific instructions were given for the objects in the Tabernacle.  The Ark of the Covenant was covered with the veil and a blue cloth over top.  Blue cloth covered the Table of Presence and all of its utensils, the Menorah and the Altar of Incense.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Blue or techelet – תכלת – tav, kaf, lamed, tav

sign covering the shepherd’s covenant

Purple

“And they clothed him [Yeshua] with purple; and they twisted a crown of thorns, put it on His head…. And when they had mocked Him, they took the purple off Him, put His own clothes on Him, and led Him out to crucify Him” (Mark 15:17,20).

The Hebrew word for ‘purple‘ is argaman and symbolizes Yeshua’s royalty.  The curtain in the Tabernacle that separated man from the presence of ‘I AM’, His throne room,was made of purple, blue and scarlet yarns.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Purple or argaman – ארגמן – alef, resh, gimel, mem, noon

the first highest raises up the mighty life

Scarlet

“Come now, and let us reason together,” says Adonai, “Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; Though they are red like crimson, they shall be as wool” (Isaiah 1:18).

According to the prophet Isaiah, scarlet is the color of our sins.  The Hebrew word for ‘scarlet’ is towla and means ‘maggot or worms.’  These worms, also known as the crimson grub, were used to extract the crimson color.  Crimson or scarlet yarns were woven into the fabrics for the Tabernacle along with blue and purple.

Maggots or worms appeared on the manna when the Israelites disobeyed Yahweh and kept it overnight.  By weaving this color into the Tabernacle, it was not only a shadow of Messiah’s blood sacrifice, but a reminder to Isra’el not to sin especially when it came to the Shabbat. If the maggots were the crimson grub, they had enough of them to make the scarlet yarn! 

Hebrew Word Pictures

Scarlet or towla – תולע – tav, vav, lamed, ayin

the sign bound to the shepherd revealed

Fine Linen

“Let us rejoice and be glad! Let us give him the glory! For the time has come for the wedding of the Lamb, and his Bride has prepared herself — fine linen, bright and clean has been given her to wear. (“Fine linen” means the righteous deeds of God’s people.”)” (Revelation 19:7-8)

The Hebrew word for fine linen is sheshee and means ‘white or bleached.’  Linen is made from the fibers of the flax plant which was cultivated in Egypt and known for its pure white color (Exodus 9:31).   The process is labor intensive,  but when it is woven into garments, it is cool and remains fresh in hot weather.  In ancient times, linen was mainly used by the wealthy and the priesthood.   The tunic, the turban, and shorts for the high priest were made of finely woven linen. The curtains for the Tabernacle interior and Courtyard were made of fine linen along with the wicks for the Menorah.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Fine Linen or sheshee – שש – shin, shin

the all consuming glory

Linen or bad – בדbet, dalet

house of the door (door of the house)

Onyx Stones

“The name of the first [river] is Pishon; it winds throughout the land of Havilah, where there is gold.  The gold of that land is good; aromatic resin and onyx stone are also found there” (Genesis 2:11-12).

Onyx Stones with Tribes

The Hebrew word for onyx or sardonyx is shoham and has its roots in the Arabic word for ‘blackness.’  Onyx is a type of chalcedony, a member of the crystals family.  It symbolizes inner strength, discipline and reason.  Two onyx stones were put in settings of gold and placed on the high priest’s shoulders – one on the right and one on the left.  They were engraved with the names of the sons of Isra’el, six names on one side and six on the other.  They were considered to be ‘remembrance’ stones.  When Aaron entered the Holy Place dressed in his priestly garments, ‘I AM’ would see all the names of the tribes of Isra’el written on the stones and would be moved to have mercy on His people.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Onyx or shoham –  שוהם – shin, vav, hey, mem

consumed and bound to reveal the mighty

They Did It!

“Then they brought the tabernacle to Moses …  The people of Isra’el did all the work just as Adonai had ordered Moshe. Moshe saw all the work, and — there it was! — They had done it! Exactly as Adonai had ordered, they had done it. And Moshe blessed them” (Exodus 39:33-43).

For months the Israelites worked with skill to perfectly create the Mishkan according to the plan Moshe had been given on the mountain.  Wooden boxes of Acacia wood had been covered in gold for the Altars the Table. Mirrors had been transformed into a Bronze Laver.  Tapestries had been woven together in blue, scarlet and purple yarns with the image of k’ruvim. Fine linen had been twisted from flax, spun and sewn together for tent coverings. Animal skins had been tanned into leather.  Gold had been beaten into a Menorah and fine slivers of golden thread glistened between the colorful yarns.   Silver sockets had been polished.  Bronze tent pegs waited to be hammered into the ground.  Anointing oil, lamp oil and aromatic spices were ready for use.   Priestly garments had been fashioned with blue cloth, precious stones, fine linen and golden chains. The Israelites gathered everything they had made and brought it to Moshe.

The Mishkan Rises

On the first day of the first month of the second year after the Israelites had left Egypt, the Mishkan was set up. One year after they were given Yahweh’s ‘appointed times,’ the people of Isra’el were raising up His divine place of residence where He could live with His treasured people.  Moshe did everything exactly as commanded because ‘the appointed time’ of Pesach was arriving in 14 days.

After the gold posts, silver sockets and gold ceiling rafters were set, the four coverings were hung on rings.  Bronze stakes were pounded into the ground.  The Ark of the Covenant was put in the Holy of Holies and concealed behind the colorful veil woven with k’ruvim.  In the Holy Place, the Table of Presence was set up and on it Moshe arranged the loaves of the Bread of Presence.   Wicks and oil were put in the cups of the golden Menorah across from the Table of Presence and the lamps were lit.   The golden Altar of Incense was placed in front of the veil and the smell of burning incense filled the Holy Place.   The entrance screen to the Most Holy Place was hung on its five golden posts.   In the Courtyard, the Altar of Sacrifice was set up near the entrance to the Tabernacle.  Between the Altar and the entrance screen to the Most Holy Place, the Bronze Laver was filled with water.  Finally, the fine linen curtains that surrounded the Courtyard were hung along with the screen, the gate to the Tabernacle.    

Everything was anointed with the holy oil.  Aaron was brought to the entrance to the Tabernacle and washed with water.  He put on the high priest’s garments and the turban with the golden ornament engraved with “Holy to Yahweh.” He was anointed with oil and consecrated to serve as a cohen gadol.  His sons were also washed and put on the priestly garments.  They were anointed like their father to serve as cohanim throughout their generations (Exodus 40:35).

‘I AM’ Makes His Decision

This is the culmination of the book of Exodus describing the Israelites’ journey from slavery to freedom.  They plundered Egypt and entered the wilderness.  They crossed the Red Sea, ate manna, drank water from a ‘rock,’ saw ‘I AM’ in lightning and thunder on a mountain, heard His voice and received His divine instructions – Torah.

They sinned against their Deliverer and Provider and had to drink contaminated water and watch many of their loved ones die at the hands of the Levites.  Though they repented through mourning, they did not know what Yahweh’s decision would be regarding their destiny.

Had Moshe’s intercession been enough?   Would Yahweh forgive them?  Or would He continue to keep His distance?  Would He be merciful and compassionate to them?  Would they worship the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob as they had been promised in Egypt or had they lost that privilege?  Would the Shekinah of the One who redeemed them, guided them, protected them, fought for them, and spoke with them, appear and live among them in the Tabernacle they built with their hands and willing hearts?  Did ‘I AM’ still consider Isra’el His treasured possession?

“Then the cloud covered the Tent of Meeting and the glory of Adonai filled the Tabernacle.  Moshe was unable to enter the Tent of Meeting, because the cloud remained on it, and the glory of Adonai filled the Tabernacle. Whenever the cloud was taken up from over the Tabernacle, the people of Isra’el continued with all their travels. But if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not travel onward until the day when it was taken up.  For the cloud of Adonai was above the Tabernacle during the day, and fire was [in the cloud] at night, so that all the house of Isra’el could see it throughout all their travels” (Exodus 40:34-38).

Yahweh chose to live with His people, His treasured possession, His holy nation.   More importantly, He chose to remain with them until they reached the Promised Land.   This reveals the character of Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh who is willing to remain close and near to His people despite their faithlessness.   Exodus concludes with the ultimate expression of Yahweh’s grace and mercy, compassion and lovingkindness found in the Old Testament.

Yeshua in the Tabernacle Colors

Yeshua is the Tabernacle of Yahweh’s Spirit.  He is the golden thread woven throughout the tapestries of the Tabernacle giving promise to his coming Kingdom.  Like silver that is refined in a furnace, Yeshua was tested and afflicted and overcame death, his Altar of Sacrifice.  With the engraved onyx stones, he will remember the Tribes of Isra’el and return to earth with power and strength making war with the nations who have come against the chosen people of his Father. He will remove the maggots of Isra’el’s scarlet sins and sprinkle clean water on them from the heavenly Bronze Laver.   They will be cleansed from all their idolatries and reflect the glory of Messiah.  His armies, redeemed from among the nations of the earth, will follow him wearing fine linen, white and pure.  They are not only sanctified warriors, but also his Bride, who are rewarded for their righteous works in the Most Holy Place.  Dressed in the finest royal purple robe, Yeshua will sit on the throne in the Holy of Holies in Jerusalem and as the Ark of the Covenant judge the nations for 1000 years.  During that that time, the glory of Yahweh will return to Isra’el and Yeshua will be known in Yerushalayim as High Priest and King of Kings.

Haftarah (Readings of the Prophets)

1 Kings 7:40-8:21

B’rit Chadashah (New Testament Readings)

Revelation 15:5-8

Midrash P’kudei: Mirrors of Reflection

The Bronze Laver was made from mirrors allowing the reflections of not only the priests to be seen, but also the reflection of the Altar of Sacrifice in front of it and the Tent of Meeting in back of it.  Reflect on what has happened from the beginning of Exodus and the enslaved Israelites to the end with the construction of the Tabernacle.  How do the objects in the Tabernacle reflect their journey as a nation?  How does each object in the Tabernacle reflect our salvation journey as followers of Messiah: being justified, sanctified and glorified?

©2018 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article.  For a hard copy of this Torah portion or the complete cycle, please purchase Open My Eyes, Wonders of Torah.