Full Version: the Tabernacle - a pattern for Christian worship
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The Tabernacle of Moses and The Tabernacle of David are two old testament types that can teach us God's way to come into His presence. They give us a pattern for worship that logically and effectively brings us from intention to full intimate union with our Creator. It is a huge subject, so my hope for this topic is to make the premise with a basic outline and then see how the conversation develops. Many, many other threads could be split from this one central idea. So if something intrigues you, and seems bigger than you can say in a response here, do not hesitate to start a new topic.

The pattern that can bring us into the presence of God follows the architecture and the furniture of Moses Tabernacle. The Tabernacle is also the blueprint on which liturgical churches are designed and examination of the elements of the modern liturgical church arrangement are quickly recognized as following the pattern set up in Moses Tabernacle. Are most contemporary Christians aware of that fact? I think only a small part of the church has any idea that they are connected to anything earlier than the church of Acts.

The Tabernacle of Moses had 3 areas surrounded by a linen fence: Outer Court, Holy Place (Inner Court), and the Holy of Holies (where the Ark of the Covenant resided and the High Priest could be in the presence of the Shekinah glory of God.) Looking at the Ark as the destination of our worship journey. Let's walk through the basic pattern of the Tabernacle:

w does one enter any enclosure? By the gate, of course. One first entered the Outer Court through the gate where Judah camped. Judah means "praise". We begin to come into the Lord's presence with praise. Remember the old charismatic song, "He has made me glad"? "I will enter His gates with thanksgiving in my heart..I will enter His gates with praise!" Praise is an appropriate way to begin to worship.

The first thing we encounter in the Outer Court is the Brazen Altar. The brazen altar was where the animal sacrifices were burned. It is the place of atonement for sin. It is appropriate once we have praised God to offer up our sins for atonement. Songs of confession, contrition, and gratefulness for the atoning blood of Jesus can be appropriate here.

We then approach the Laver. The laver was a large basin filled with water and used for cleansing. The laver represents purification. Songs about the cleansing power of the Word and the work of the Holy Spirit move us ever closer to our ultimate worship goal---communion with a Holy God.

We leave the outer court and enter the Holy Place....we are met by two more pieces of furniture. The Candlestick or menorah have lamps that are fueled by oil, a type of the Holy Spirit, and there are seven branches, which represent the Seven Spirits of God. The candlestick tells us that we are just about to enter the Throne Room, for in the book of Revelation, John tells us he say 7 lamps blazing before the Throne of God. We can move into a deeper place of proclamation and acknowlegement of the mystery of the Holy Spirit and the awesomeness of His power.

The table of Showbread also stands in the Holy Place, and the bread represents Yeshua, the Bread of Life, spiritual food for us. We partake and are strengthened, and we sing songs of appropriate glorification.

And now, just before the veil that obscures the Holy of Holies, we find the Altar of Incense. This is a place of intercession, both ours and of our Lords who lives to ever interceded for us before God. The incense is a type of prayers that go up before the Lord. We sing songs that release the Holy Spirit to do his work in our world and in our hearts, and glorify Him.

We enter the Holy of Holies. This is the Throne of God, as proclaimed in Psalm 80:1 Oh, give ear, Shepherd of Israel, You who lead Joseph like a flock; You who are enthroned between the cherubim, shine forth! (NASB) We have been cleansed, have glorified, have brought offerings of praise and intercesion...and now, we can enter the chamber of God, meet with Him, adore Him, be awed in His presence. This is the place for the songs of the throne room--about holiness, majesty, sovereignty and everlasting mercy.

Two books I'd like to recommend:

<URL url="http://www.amazon.com/Let-Draw-Near-Judson-Cornwall/dp/0882702262">Let Us Draw Near by Judson Cornwall. Biblically based novel detailing the lives and thoughts of Moses and his contemporaries as they followed God's instructions to build the Tabernacle. Cornwall imagines how they might have interpreted the events as they happened.

<URL url="http://www.amazon.com/Tabernacle-David-Kevin-J-Conner/dp/0914936948">The Tabernacle of David by Keven J. Connor. Amazing book that parallels the elements of the Tabernacle of David with New Testament revelations. I would take a look at this one in the context of the premise that the Tabernacle is a pattern for worship......and David's Tabernacle was all about worship.

Also two companion books with the same intent:

<URL url="http://www.amazon.com/Tabernacle-Moses-Kevin-J-Conner/dp/091493693X">The Tabernacle of Moses

<URL url="http://www.amazon.com/Temple-Solomon-Kevin-J-Conner/dp/0914936964">The Temple of Solomon