Day #12-Draw Near Through Christ
Updated: Feb 16
Timna-A Full-Scale Tabernacle!
We began our day at 8:30. We enjoyed sleeping-in a little, as we are all feeling a bit weary.
Timna is a neat geaological area about 20 miles north of where we spent the night in Eilat. Evidently, the copper mines in Timna date back to the time of the ancient Egyptians.
However, we traveled to Timna today in order to see the full-scale tabernacle.
Exodus 25-31 and 35-40 describe the construction and contents of the tabernacle. After redeeming His people at the Exodus, God designed a way to once again dwell with His people. Once Adam and Eve sinned against God and were removed from the Garden, life was always "East of Eden." Cherubim guarded the entrance to the garden so that Adam and Eve could not return.
When God designed the tabernacle, He gave symbols, signs, and shadows that pictured the gospel of Jesus Christ of how sinful humans could once again return to fellowship with God. The materials and furniture of the tabernacle, and ultimately in the temple, were always intended to be symbols, and not the substance. Jesus is the substance of all the furnishings of the tabernacle.
(Hebrews 9:9-11, 10:1, Colossians 2:17).
Entrance To The Tabernacle
The entrance to the tabernacle was on the eastern side of the courtyard. This was a regular reminder that when our first parents were removed from the garden on the eastern side, we return through the eastern door of the tabenacle. God has provided a way to return to fellowship with God.
Seven Pieces of Furniture
The Altar of Sacrifice
The first piece of furniture we saw today and that you would have seen in the tabenacle as you walked into the courtyard in Old Testament times was the altar. This is where the priests would offer lambs and goats as an offering for a sin offering to the Lord. This would make atonement (covering) for sin. There were four horns on each corner. Reminding is that every sinner, north to south, east to west, could receive atonement if be offered a sacrifice by faith. Because this is the first piece of furniture we see, we are reminded that our sin must be dealt with by blood and death before we can enter the presence of God. (Exodus 27:1-8, Leviticus 17:11).
The Laver of Washing
The second piece of furniture we see after the copper-covered altar of sacrifice is the laver of washing. It was where the priests washed their hands and feet for purification. (Exodus 30:18-21) It's a visual lesson that although our sins have been forgiven, we still get dirty and need purification. (I John 1:9) Many people get this completly backwards. They attempt to clean-up their lives prior to being forgiven by faith in the Sacrifice.
ENTERING THE HOLY PLACE
Once you enter the first section of the tent, you will see three more pieces of furniture. And, rather than being overlaid with copper, all the pieces of furniture in the tent were overlaid with gold.
The Golden Lampstand
The purified priests now were able to enter the Holy Place. The first piece of furniture to the left was a gold-overlaid, 7 branched candlelabra that looks like a fruitful tree, with six branches, and a central trunk. Each of the branches were cupped to be filled with olive oil. These lights were to never go out. The golden lamstand was the only source of light for the tabernacle. Jesus is the light of the world.
The Golden Table of Showbread
Opposite of the golden lampstand was the Table of Showbread on the north side of the Holy Place. Twelve loaves of bread , representing the twelve tribes of Israel, were set out, before the Lord, once a week. They could only be seen by the flicker of the golden lampstand. On the Sabbath, the priests were allowed to eat the bread. It symbolized both Jesus being the "bread of life" as well as the fellowship (communion) God and man can now have because sins have been forgiven. (I Cor. 10: 16-21)
The Golden Altar of Incense
The Golden Altar of Incense stood between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies. Incense was offered here, not saccrifices. The High Priest would offer the incense offering in the morning and evening and when it would hit the hot coals taken with the shovel from the altar of sacrifice, it would billow smoke and a sweet fragrance. It pictures our prayers thst we offer and Jesus' constant intercession for us. Psalm 141:2, Revelation 5:8, 8:3).
THE HOLY OF HOLIES
The second section was called the Holy of Holies. It was separated with a large curtain (see below) that could only be entered once a year, by the High Priest, on the Day of Atonement.
The Golden Ark of the Covenant and
The Mercy Seat
The Box at the bottom was the Ark of the Covenant. It was a wooden box overlayed with gold that contained three items: Aaron's rod that budded, a bowl of manna and the ten commandments. It represented the presence of God with His people.
The Cherubim and base were called The Mercy Seat. Once a year the High Priest would enter here and offer blood on the mercy seat for atonement for the sins of the people.
The High Priest
You will notice that the Ephod (the vest) had twelve stones on it. The names of all twelve tribes were inscribed on the twelve stones. This represented the High Priest both keeping the people of God close to His heart as well as representing them all before God.
The Cherubim show up throughout Scripture.
-The cherubim are first mentioned as guarding the garden of Eden after Adam and Eve sinned. (Gen. 3)
_The cherubim were embroided on the veil between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies as well as perched atop the Mercy Seat.
-The cherubim show up again around the throne worshipping with the redeemed instead of barring us from the presence of God any longer.
My friend, Chris Anderson, captured the Biblical theology of the cherubim in his song, Draw Near Through Christ.
DRAW NEAR THROUGH CHRIST
(Text by Chris Anderson; Tune by James Koerts)
In Eden’s bliss we walked with God
Unhindered by the curse.
Yet we rebelled and were expelled—
Estranged; alone; perverse.
Two mighty cherubs barred the path
To Eden’s holy place;
No more could men, now stained by sin,
Behold our Maker’s face.
Beneath the Law we sought the Lord
Through sacrifice and priest.
One time each year one man, in fear,
Sought God with blood of beast.
Still mighty cherubs blocked the way
So sinners could not pass—
In curtain sewn, on golden throne,
They stopped the rebel fast.
Then Christ appeared to clear the way
To God for sinful man;
Fulfilled the Law without a flaw—
Our Temple, Priest, and Lamb.
Astounded cherubs stepped aside;
Each hid his flaming sword.
With nail and thorn the Veil was torn;
Draw near through Christ the Lord!
In Jesus’ name we boldly come
Before the throne of grace.
With empty hand, in Christ we stand
To seek Almighty’s face
Till saints and cherubs join in awe
Around the Savior’s throne.
With one great voice we will rejoice:
“All praise to Christ alone!”
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The Splitting of the Red Sea
We had a fabulous time on the Red Sea today. We enjoyed a boat ride and lunch BBQ. Some of us even took a swim. The water from the Red Sea is so clear.
We were able to see four countries and a couple of continents from the boat.
Passing Through the Red Sea
The narrative of the people of Israel crossing the Red Sea is not just another Old Testament miracle. It is the climax point of God delivering His people from Egypt, just as He had promised Abraham He would do. 10 plagues were sent to Pharoah leading up to the passover and the death of the firstborn sons who didn't have the Passover lamb's blood on their door frames. After this final, devastating plague, Pharoah allows the children of Israel to leave with Moses. Not long after they have been journeying through the Egyptian Wilderness (Sinai Pennisula) headed towards the Red Sea, Pharoah and the Egyptian Chariots begin chasing after Israel. The children of Israel came to the banks of the Red Sea not too far from where we were today.
God split the Red Sea apart and dried the land so that the nearly 2 million Israelites could escape. Once all the Egyptians were in the Red Sea, Moses stretched forth his staff again and all the Egyptians were destoyed. It was the greatest rescue that the people of God praised Him for throughout the Old Testament. We were in those waters today!
Tomorrow we are off to Jordan!
Just two daya left!