The Altar of Burnt Offering
They built the altar of burnt offering of acacia wood, three cubits high; it was square, five cubits long and five cubits wide. 2 They made a horn at each of the four corners, so that the horns and the altar were of one piece, and they overlaid the altar with bronze. 3 They made all its utensils of bronze—its pots, shovels, sprinkling bowls, meat forks and firepans. 4 They made a grating for the altar, a bronze network, to be under its ledge, halfway up the altar. 5 They cast bronze rings to hold the poles for the four corners of the bronze grating. 6 They made the poles of acacia wood and overlaid them with bronze. 7 They inserted the poles into the rings so they would be on the sides of the altar for carrying it. They made it hollow, out of boards.
- The brazen-altar was first made of bronze, which represents judgment. It was the place where the sin offerings were laid and sacrificed. It didn’t reside in the Holy Place, where only the priests could see, it was in the outer court where all could enter. When you walked through the gate of the outer court, the altar was the first thing you would see. Now, think about that in terms of your own life. When you fellowship with God, what is your primary focal point as you enter into that time of worship? Do you stand there and sing songs as you retrace the steps of your day or worries of tomorrow? Does your mind wander continuously as your read His Word or your heart get distracted as you pray? If so, then we must ask ourselves this: Are my eyes fixed on the Sacrifice?
The Basin for Washing
8 They made the bronze basin and its bronze stand from the mirrors of the women who served at the entrance to the tent of meeting.
- There were no specific measurements given for the laver, but we know it was made of bronze and was meant for the washing of hands and feet. The application for believers today is that we are forgiven through Christ’s work on the cross, but we are washed through His Word. We need to be washed daily in His Word to cleanse ourselves, so that we can serve and minister before Him (The Tabernacle Place).
o “…Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless” (Ephesians 5:25-27).
o “Let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled [with blood] to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water” (Hebrews 10:22).
9 Next they made the courtyard. The south side was a hundred cubits long and had curtains of finely twisted linen, 10 with twenty posts and twenty bronze bases, and with silver hooks and bands on the posts. 11 The north side was also a hundred cubits long and had twenty posts and twenty bronze bases, with silver hooks and bands on the posts.
12 The west end was fifty cubits wide and had curtains, with ten posts and ten bases, with silver hooks and bands on the posts. 13 The east end, toward the sunrise, was also fifty cubits wide. 14 Curtains fifteen cubits long were on one side of the entrance, with three posts and three bases, 15 and curtains fifteen cubits long were on the other side of the entrance to the courtyard, with three posts and three bases. 16 All the curtains around the courtyard were of finely twisted linen. 17 The bases for the posts were bronze. The hooks and bands on the posts were silver, and their tops were overlaid with silver; so all the posts of the courtyard had silver bands.
18 The curtain for the entrance to the courtyard was made of blue, purple and scarlet yarn and finely twisted linen—the work of an embroiderer. It was twenty cubits long and, like the curtains of the courtyard, five cubits high, 19 with four posts and four bronze bases. Their hooks and bands were silver, and their tops were overlaid with silver. 20 All the tent pegs of the tabernacle and of the surrounding courtyard were bronze.
- If you remember from previous studies, there is the tabernacle proper (the tent – which included the Holy Place and Holy of Holies) and the outer court, which surrounded the tabernacle proper. The court was also called the “Tent of Congregation” (Exodus 39:40). It was where all the Israelites gathered to worship Jehovah corporately. God knew that corporate worship was necessary for the life of the believer. In Hebrews 10:25 we’re told not to forsake the assembling of ourselves together. Like mentioned in Exodus 26, how can we bear one another’s burdens if we are not fastened together? Christ did not die for us to stand separately, but sacrificed Himself so we could be tied to Him and to the other believers. God desires a unified body – a tabernacle – for Him to dwell in.
The Materials Used
21 These are the amounts of the materials used for the tabernacle, the tabernacle of the covenant law, which were recorded at Moses’ command by the Levites under the direction of Ithamar son of Aaron, the priest. 22 (Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, made everything the Lord commanded Moses; 23 with him was Oholiab son of Ahisamak, of the tribe of Dan—an engraver and designer, and an embroiderer in blue, purple and scarlet yarn and fine linen.) 24 The total amount of the gold from the wave offering used for all the work on the sanctuary was 29 talents and 730 shekels, according to the sanctuary shekel.
25 The silver obtained from those of the community who were counted in the census was 100 talents and 1,775 shekels, according to the sanctuary shekel— 26 one beka per person, that is, half a shekel, according to the sanctuary shekel, from everyone who had crossed over to those counted, twenty years old or more, a total of 603,550 men. 27 The 100 talents of silver were used to cast the bases for the sanctuary and for the curtain—100 bases from the 100 talents, one talent for each base. 28 They used the 1,775 shekels to make the hooks for the posts, to overlay the tops of the posts, and to make their bands.
29 The bronze from the wave offering was 70 talents and 2,400 shekels. 30 They used it to make the bases for the entrance to the tent of meeting, the bronze altar with its bronze grating and all its utensils, 31 the bases for the surrounding courtyard and those for its entrance and all the tent pegs for the tabernacle and those for the surrounding courtyard.
- This section may seem a bit meaningless because it’s simply an account of the materials which were given and levied. But how wonderful it is to know that God is into details! He knows exactly what you give and the heart that you give it with. Second Corinthians 9:7 says, “Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.” The Israelites willingly gave unto the Lord because they recognized what the Lord had given to them…freedom! May your giving be a reflection of worship and not just an action you feel you have to complete because it is your “Christian duty.” Amen.