Life-Study of Exodusby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
It is difficult to understand why there was a veil within the tabernacle. If we consider the situation of the tabernacle as a whole, we may be puzzled by the fact that there was a veil separating the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. The tabernacle was a tent thirty cubits in length, ten cubits in width, and ten cubits in height. The veil served as a partition between the Holy of Holies and the Holy Place. This veil was a curtain of blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twined linen. It was the work of a skillful workman, and it was made with cherubim. In color and design it was exactly the same as the ceiling of the tabernacle, the first layer of the covering. Whenever a priest came into the tabernacle, he would immediately notice that the ceiling and the veil were the same.
The Holy of Holies was a cube measuring ten cubits in each direction. The Holy Place was twenty cubits in length and ten cubits in both width and height. The term Holy of Holies is a Hebrew expression meaning the most holy place, the holiest of all. The crucial question is why there had to be a separation between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies. For what purpose was the tent divided into two rooms? Whenever we build a house with rooms or erect a partition in a room, we have a specific purpose. The various rooms in a house each have a particular purpose, and each room contains furniture suitable to it. For example, the furniture in the bedroom is very different from that in the living room. The Holy of Holies contained only one piece of furniture—the ark. In the Holy Place there were the table of the bread of the presence, the lampstand, and the incense altar. Whenever a priest came into the Holy Place, he first went to the table for nourishment. After being nourished at the table, he would go to the lampstand to trim it and add oil to it so that it would shine brightly. Following this, he would go to the incense altar. As we shall see in a later message, both the incense altar and the incense offered at this altar are types of Christ. Through Christ as the sweet fragrance to God typified by the incense, we can enter into the Holy of Holies, the very place where God stays, where He meets with us, and where He communes with us. In the Holy of Holies, where God’s shekinah glory is, we have fellowship with Him. Although we know what was in the Holy Place, we still need to see why there was the need to have a veil, a curtain, separating the ark of the testimony in the Holy of Holies from the table and the lampstand in the Holy Place. We still need to find out why there was the need of a partition to separate the tabernacle into two sections.
According to Hebrews 10:20, the veil signifies the flesh of Christ. When the Lord Jesus died on the cross, the veil in the temple was rent from the top to the bottom. This means that through death the veil of Christ’s flesh was cleft. What is difficult to understand is the significance of the veil within the tabernacle being placed on four pillars. The pillars are different from the boards. We have seen that on the north, west, and south sides of the tabernacle there was a total of forty-eight boards. On the east side, instead of boards, there was a curtain, called the first veil. Thus, the veil within the tabernacle may be called the second veil. The first veil was put on five pillars, and the second veil was put on four pillars.
As we have pointed out, the forty-eight boards of the tabernacle are not types of Christ. The most we can say is that they are types of the enlargement of Christ, or types of the enlarged Christ. We cannot say that the boards typify Christ directly, for these boards are types of the believers who are the enlargement of Christ. Likewise, the four pillars upon which the second veil was placed are not types of Christ. Although the pillars differed from the boards in shape, they were made of the same materials—acacia wood overlaid with gold. Furthermore, they stood on a base of silver. Underneath each standing board were two sockets of silver in which the two tenons were firmly placed. There was a total of ninety-six sockets, two for each board. Each of the four pillars was placed in a silver socket. Thus, with the tabernacle there was a total of one hundred sockets of silver.
The fact that the pillars rest in sockets of silver is a further proof that the pillars typify the believers and not Christ Himself. Christ has no need of redemption to be His standing. However, the believers must have a firm standing, and this standing, as signified by the silver sockets, is the redemption of Christ. Both the boards and the pillars are believers who stand on Christ’s redemption.
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