The Tabernacle Erected
1Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, 2“On the first day of the first month (Abib) you shall set up the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting [of God with you]. 3You shall place the ark of the Testimony there, and you shall screen off the ark [from the Holy Place of God’s Presence] with the veil (partition curtain). 4You shall bring in the table [for the bread] and arrange its setting; you shall bring in the lampstand and mount and light its lamps. 5You shall set the golden altar of incense in front of the ark of the Testimony [outside the veil], and put the [hanging] veil at the doorway of the tabernacle. 6You shall set the [bronze] altar of burnt offering in front of the doorway of the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting. 7You shall set the basin between the Tent of Meeting and the altar [of burnt offering], and put water in it. 8You shall set up the courtyard [curtains] all around and hang up the screen (curtain) for the gateway of the courtyard. 9Then you shall take the anointing oil and anoint the tabernacle and all that is in it, and consecrate it and all its furniture; and it shall be holy (declared sacred, separated from secular use). 10You shall anoint the altar of burnt offering and all its utensils, and consecrate the altar, and the altar shall be most holy. 11You shall anoint the basin and its base, and consecrate it. 12Then you shall bring Aaron and his sons to the doorway of the Tent of Meeting and wash them with water. 13You shall put the holy garments on Aaron and anoint him and consecrate him, that he may serve as a priest to Me. 14You shall bring his sons and put tunics on them; 15you shall anoint them just as you anointed their father, so that they may serve as priests to Me; and their anointing shall qualify them for an everlasting priesthood throughout their generations.” 16Thus Moses did; in accordance with all that the Lord commanded him, so he did.
17Now it happened on the first day of the first month (Abib) in the second year [after the exodus from Egypt], that the tabernacle was erected. 18Moses erected the tabernacle, laid its sockets, set up its boards, put in its bars and erected its support poles. 19He spread the tent over the tabernacle and put the covering of the tent over it, just as the Lord had commanded him. 20He took the Testimony [the stones inscribed with the Ten Commandments] and put it into the ark [of the covenant], and placed the poles [through the rings] on the ark, and put the mercy seat on top of the ark. 21Moses brought the ark into the tabernacle, and set up a veil (partition) for the screen (curtain), and screened off the ark of the Testimony, just as the Lord had commanded him. 22Then he put the table in the Tent of Meeting on the north side of the tabernacle, outside the veil. 23He set the bread [of the Presence] in order on it before the Lord, just as the Lord had commanded him. 24Then he put the lampstand in the Tent of Meeting, opposite the table, on the south side of the tabernacle. 25Moses mounted and lighted the lamps [on the lampstand] before the Lord, just as the Lord commanded him. 26He put the golden altar [of incense] in the Tent of Meeting in front of the veil; 27he burned fragrant incense [as a symbol of prayer] on it, just as the Lord commanded him. 28Then he set up the screen (curtain) at the doorway of the tabernacle. 29He set the altar of burnt offering before the doorway of the tabernacle of the Tent of Meeting, and offered on it the burnt offering and the grain offering, just as the Lord commanded him. 30He placed the basin between the Tent of Meeting and the altar [of burnt offering], and put water in it for washing. 31Then from it Moses and Aaron and his sons washed their hands and their feet. 32When they entered the Tent of Meeting, and when they approached the altar, they washed, just as the Lord commanded Moses. 33And he erected the courtyard all around the tabernacle and the altar, and hung the screen (curtain) at the gateway of the courtyard. So Moses finished the work.
The Glory of the Lord
34Then the cloud [the Shekinah, God’s visible, dwelling presence] covered the Tent of Meeting, and the glory and brilliance of the Lord filled the tabernacle. 35Moses was not able to enter the Tent of Meeting because the cloud remained on it, and the glory and brilliance of the Lord filled the tabernacle. 36In all their journeys, whenever the cloud was taken up from over the tabernacle, the Israelites would set out; 37but if the cloud was not taken up, then they did not journey on until the day when it was taken up. 38For throughout all their journeys, the cloud of the Lord was on the tabernacle by day, and there was fire in it by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel.