Read Exodus 26 -- 28
In Today's Reading:
Directions given for constructing the Tabernacle, court, furniture, and enclosure; plans for altar; Aaron's priestly garments; ephod
Just inside the courtyard surrounding the Tabernacle stood the Brazen Altar (Exodus 27:1-8; 38:30), also called the Altar of Burnt Offering (30:28). God had said to Moses: You shall make an altar of shittim wood. . . overlay it with brass (27:1-2). Throughout the Bible, brass is symbolic of the judgment of God upon sin (compare Numbers 21:6-9; John 3:14-16). All sacrifices were offered on the Brazen Altar, with its fire which was kindled by a direct act of God and which was never to go out (Leviticus 6:13).
In offering an unblemished sacrificial animal, the Israelite understood that the animal's life was being forfeited in his place because of sins he had committed. He knew that it was only through the sinless animal being slain on his behalf that he could maintain a right relationship with God. The worshiper entered the one door into the outer court and approached the Brazen Altar. Then he placed his hands upon his sacrifice to signify his guilt being transferred to the innocent animal.
Between the altar and the Tabernacle was the large Brass Laver made from many brass mirrors which the women of the camp had provided (Exodus 38:8). Each day after the priest had offered a sacrifice, he approached the Laver of Brass (30:17-19) and washed his hands and feet before ministering in the Holy Place. The water and mirrors were symbolic of the Word of God which both reveals our sins and is the cleansing power to remove sin from our lives (Titus 3:5; James 1:23,25).
God used the Romans to destroy Herod's Temple: its Brazen Altar, Brass Laver, Gold Candlestick, Table of Showbread, and Altar of Incense. The Ark of the Lord's Covenant, with its Mercy Seat, had been missing since the Babylonian captivity. All of these had symbolized Christ, Who had fulfilled them (Hebrews 9:1 — 10:22; 13:10-12). Since the crucifixion, bodily resurrection, and ascension of Christ, both Jews and Gentiles have but one God-appointed means of cleansing from sin.
Christ gave Himself for the Church that He might sanctify (make holy) and cleanse it with the washing of water by the Word (Ephesians 5:26). Jesus also said: Now you are clean through the Word which I have spoken to you (John 15:3).
26:6 taches = devices for fastening two parts together; 26:19 tenons = projections that fit into another; 27:6 staves = poles for carrying; 27:21 order it = keep it burning; 28:8 curious girdle = skillfully made belt; 28:32 hole of a habergeon = neck in a jacket or protective armor.
Through the Brazen Altar, upon which the sin sacrifice was burned (Exodus 27:1-8; Leviticus 4:1-12). Jesus' sacrifice was the fulfillment of all Old Testament sacrifices. In Whom we have redemption through His blood (Ephesians 1:7; John 1:36).
Government Officials: Rep. Xavier Becerra (CA) and Sen. Mark Dayton (MN) · Country: Maldives (300,000) 400 miles southwest of Sri Lanka · Major languages: Divehi and English · Christian witnessing is banned · 99.9% Muslim; .1% Christian · Prayer Suggestion: Rejoice that He has promised to sustain us at all times (Psalm 55:22).
Optional Reading: Matthew 26
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 5:6