Sabbath, May 15, 2004
“Thus in the ministration of the tabernacle, and of the temple that afterward took its place, the people were taught each day the great truths relative to Christ’s death and ministration, and once each year their minds were carried forward to the closing events of the great controversy between Christ and Satan, the final purification of the universe from sin and sinners.” –Patriarchs and Prophets, p. 358.
• To consider how the divine works of salvation are represented through different stages.
• To study the sanctuary and its furnishings not only as symbols of Jesus and of His work, but to also apply their meaning in our spiritual life.
• To realize that we should have a goal in our life and that we need to reach it before the sealing time.
EVERYONE A TEMPLE FOR THE LORD
1. What is every believer before God?
1 Corinthians 3:16, 17 Know ye not that ye are the temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwelleth in you? If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are.
1 Corinthians 3:16, 17, 5-12 For what have I to do to judge them also that are without? do not ye judge them that are within?
2 Corinthians 6:16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Exodus 25:8 And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.
THE SYMBOLS OF THE FIRST SECTION
2. How many sections were there in the tabernacle of the earth which was built according to the heavenly pattern? Was the plan for its three sections accidental?
Exodus 27:9 And thou shalt make the court of the tabernacle: for the south side southward there shall be hangings for the court of fine twined linen of an hundred cubits long for one side.
Hebrews 9:1-3 Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary. For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary. And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all.
3. What did the gate and the two typical objects placed inside the court symbolize?
Exodus 38:18, 19 And the hanging for the gate of the court was needlework, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen: and twenty cubits was the length, and the height in the breadth was five cubits, answerable to the hangings of the court. And their pillars were four, and their sockets of brass four; their hooks of silver, and the overlaying of their chapiters and their fillets of silver.
John 10:1-3, 9, 10 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he that entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out.
Exodus 38:1-7 And he made the altar of burnt offering of shittim wood: five cubits was the length thereof, and five cubits the breadth thereof; it was foursquare; and three cubits the height thereof. And he made the horns thereof on the four corners of it; the horns thereof were of the same: and he overlaid it with brass. And he made all the vessels of the altar, the pots, and the shovels, and the basons, and the fleshhooks, and the firepans: all the vessels thereof made he of brass. And he made for the altar a brasen grate of network under the compass thereof beneath unto the midst of it. And he cast four rings for the four ends of the grate of brass, to be places for the staves. And he made the staves of shittim wood, and overlaid them with brass. And he put the staves into the rings on the sides of the altar, to bear it withal; he made the altar hollow with boards.
Acts 2:23 Him, being delivered by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, ye have taken, and by wicked hands have crucified and slain:
1 Corinthians 1:17, last part. “For Christ sent me not to baptize, but to preach the gospel: not with wisdom of words, lest the cross of Christ should be made of none effect.”
Exodus 38:8 And he made the laver of brass, and the foot of it of brass, of the lookingglasses of the women assembling, which assembled at the door of the tabernacle of the congregation.
Acts 22:16 And now why tarriest thou? Arise, and be baptized, and wash away thy sins, calling on the name of the Lord.
1 Corinthians 6:11 And such were some of you: but ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified in the name of the Lord Jesus, and by the Spirit of our God.
FURNISHINGS OF THE HOLY PLACE AND SYMBOLS THAT POINT TO CHRIST
4. What spiritual experiences do the three objects in the sanctuary symbolize?
Exodus 40:25 And he lighted the lamps before the Lord; as the Lord commanded Moses.
John 8:12 Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.
Ephesians 5:8 For ye were sometimes darkness, but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
• Table with the shewbread:
Exodus 40:22, 23 And he put the table in the tent of the congregation, upon the side of the tabernacle northward, without the vail. And he set the bread in order upon it before the Lord; as the Lord had commanded Moses.
John 6:35, 51, 57, 58 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst… I am the living bread which came down from heaven: if any man eat of this bread, he shall live for ever: and the bread that I will give is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father: so he that eateth me, even he shall live by me. This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever.
• The golden altar:
Exodus 40:26, 27And he put the golden altar in the tent of the congregation before the vail: And he burnt sweet incense thereon; as the Lord
Hebrews 7:25 Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them.
Romans 8:34 Who is he that condemneth? It is Christ that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who also maketh intercession for us.
Revelation 8:3, 4 And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.
“The slumbering Church must be aroused, awakened out of its spiritual lethargy, to a realization of the important duties which have been left undone. The people have not entered into the holy place, where Jesus has gone to make an atonement for His children.” – Review and Herald, February 25, 1890.
“Christ Jesus is represented as continually standing at the altar, momentarily offering up the sacrifice for the sins of the world.…
“The religious services, the prayers, the praise, the penitent confession of sin ascend from true believers as incense to the heavenly sanctuary; but passing through the corrupt channels of humanity, they are so defiled that unless purified by blood, they can never be of value with God. They ascend not in spotless purity, and unless the Intercessor who is at God’s right hand presents and purifies all by His righteousness, it is not acceptable to God. All incense from earthly tabernacles must be moist with the cleansing drops of the blood of Christ. He holds before the Father the censer of His own merits, in which there is no taint of earthly corruption. He gathers into this censer the prayers, the praise, and the confessions of His people, and with these He puts His own spotless righteousness. Then, perfumed with the merits of Christ’s propitiation, the incense comes up before God wholly and entirely acceptable.” – Seventh-day Adventist Bible Commentary, vol. 6, pp. 1077, 1078.
SYMBOLIC MEANING OF THE ARK’S OBJECTS
5. What is the meaning of the objects within the ark? What spiritual traits do they represent that we should reach when we are ready to be sealed?
Hebrews 9:4 Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant.
• Tables of testimony:
Hebrews 8:10 For this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, saith the Lord; I will put my laws into their mind, and write them in their hearts: and I will be to them a God, and they shall be to me a people.
• Pot with the manna:
Nehemiah 9:15 And gavest them bread from heaven for their hunger, and broughtest forth water for them out of the rock for their thirst, and promisedst them that they should go in to possess the land which thou hadst sworn to give them.
John 6:31-35 Our fathers did eat manna in the desert; as it is written, He gave them bread from heaven to eat. Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world. Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread. And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
Revelation 2:17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.
• Aaron’s rod:
Numbers 17:10 And the Lord said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony, to be kept for a token against the rebels; and thou shalt quite take away their murmurings from me, that they die not.
“The deliverer was to go forth as a humble shepherd, with only a rod in his hand; but God would make that rod the symbol of His power.…
“Yet Moses dared not choose. In place of a shepherd’s crook a rod of power had been given him, which he could not lay down until God should release him.” – Patriarchs and Prophets, pp. 251, 396.
“The truth is of no value to any soul unless it is brought into the inner sanctuary, and sanctifies the soul. Piety will degenerate, and religion become a shallow sentimentalism, unless the plowshare of truth is made to go deep into the fallow ground of the heart.” –Review and Herald, May 24, 1892.
PREPARATION, THE GOAL OF OUR LIFE
6. Since the mediating work of Christ in heaven will soon come to an end, what should we do without delay in order to be sealed?
Amos 4:12, last part “Therefore thus will I do unto thee, O Israel: and because I will do this unto thee, prepare to meet thy God, O Israel.”
7. How should we enter the most holy place where our dear Saviour resides?
Hebrews 10:19-24 Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having an high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) And let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works.
“Those who rejected the first message could not be benefited by the second; neither were they benefited by the midnight cry, which was to prepare them to enter with Jesus by faith into the most holy place of the heavenly sanctuary. And by rejecting the two former messages, they have so darkened their understanding that they can see no light in the third angel’s message, which shows the way into the most holy place. I saw that as the Jews crucified Jesus, so the nominal churches had crucified these messages, and therefore they have no knowledge of the way into the most holy, and they cannot be benefited by the intercession of Jesus there.” – Early Writings, pp. 260, 261.
• Are you aware that your body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and the dwelling place of the Lord?
• If you could have stood in the in the court of the old sanctuary, what would you have considered first? Why?
• Out of all the furnishings located in the holy place, which inspires you to approach the Lord?
• If you were in the most holy place in heaven, what would be your greatest joy?
• Have you set goals in your life with the hope of having this experience one day? Are you reaching them?