Introduction To The Study Of The Tabernacle



When Moses was to receive the plan of the tabernacle, he waited six days before God called him (Exod. 24:15-18). During the forty days and nights on the mountain, God gave the plan of the tabernacle to Moses. It had to be erected precisely according to plan. We read many times: as the Lord had commanded Moses. And then: So they did.

What did Moses receive from God on Mount Sinai? Moses received two things from God on Mount Sinai. First, the Law, it is the two stone tablets with the Ten Commandments. Secondly, he received the pattern or plans of the tabernacle and all its furnishings and accessories.

  • The Law - to show God's righteousness and holiness to man. At the same time      the ugliness of sin, and man's inability to keep the law; that leads to judgment and punishment.

  • The tabernacle - God's solution to man for the guilt of man - to plot a way out for people who break God's holy law. The tabernacle thus speaks of God's grace, forgiveness, pardon, reconciliation, redemption and salvation.

Moses received these two things from God, the Law and the tabernacle. The one (Law) convicted and convinced of sin, and man's inability and his own hopelessness. The other (tabernacle) provides God's solution for sin and how to find mercy, forgiveness and pardon from God.

We also read in Hebrews 8 and 9 that these things - the tabernacle and its accessories - was a copy and shadow of heavenly things (Hebrews 8:5), and that the sanctuary made with hands, was copies of the true (Hebrews 9:24). All of this revolves around the person and work of Jesus Christ. He was the body of which the tabernacle was a shadow. He was the sanctuary in whom God dwelt among us. The fullness of God dwelled in the physical body of Christ.