Exodus 25

* What the Israelites were to offer for making the tabernacle.

(1-9) The ark. (10-22) The table, with its furniture. (23-30)

The candlestick. (31-40)

1-9 God chose the people of Israel to be a peculiar people to

himself, above all people, and he himself would be their King.

He ordered a royal palace to be set up among them for himself,

called a sanctuary, or holy place, or habitation. There he

showed his presence among them. And because in the wilderness

they dwelt in tents, this royal palace was ordered to be a

tabernacle, that it might move with them. The people were to

furnish Moses with the materials, by their own free will. The

best use we can make of our worldly wealth, is to honour God

with it in works of piety and charity. We should ask, not only,

What must we do? but, What may we do for God? Whatever they

gave, they must give it cheerfully, not grudgingly, for God

loves a cheerful giver, #2Co 9:7|. What is laid out in the

service of God, we must reckon well bestowed; and whatsoever is

done in God's service, must be done by his direction.
10-22 The ark was a chest, overlaid with gold, in which the two

tables of the law were to be kept. These tables are called the

testimony; God in them testified his will. This law was a

testimony to the Israelites, to direct them in their duty, and

would be a testimony against them, if they transgressed. This

ark was placed in the holy of holies; the blood of the

sacrifices was sprinkled, and the incense burned, before it, by

the high priest; and above it appeared the visible glory, which

was the symbol of the Divine presence. This was a type of Christ

in his sinless nature, which saw no corruption, in personal

union with his Divine nature, atoning for our sins against it,

by his death. The cherubim of gold looked one towards another,

and both looked downward toward the ark. It denotes the angels'

attendance on the Redeemer, their readiness to do his will,

their presence in the assemblies of saints, and their desire to

look into the mysteries of the gospel. It was covered with a

covering of gold, called the mercy-seat. God is said to dwell,

or sit between the cherubim, on the mercy-seat. There he would

give his law, and hear supplicants, as a prince on his throne.
23-30 A table was to be made of wood, overlaid with gold, to

stand in the outer tabernacle, to be always furnished with the

shew-bread. This table, with the articles on it, and its use,

seems to typify the communion which the Lord holds with his

redeemed people in his ordinances, the provisions of his house,

the feasts they are favoured with. Also the food for their

souls, which they always find when they hunger after it; and the

delight he takes in their persons and services, as presented

before him in Christ.
31-40 The candlestick represents the light of God's word and

Spirit, in and through Christ Jesus, afforded in this dark world

to his believing people, to direct their worship and obedience,

and to afford them consolations. The church is still dark, as

the tabernacle was, in comparison with what it will be in

heaven; but the word of God is a light shining in a dark place,

#2Pe 1:19|, and a dark place indeed the world would be without

it. In ver. #40| is an express caution to Moses. Nothing was

left to his own fancy, or to that of the workmen, or the people;

but the will of God must be observed in every particular.

Christ's instruction to his disciples, #Mt 28:20|, is like this,

Observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. Let us

remember that we are the temples of the Holy Ghost, that we have

the law of God in our hearts, that we are to live a life of

communion with God, feast on his ordinances, and are the light

of the world, if indeed we are followers of Christ. May the Lord

help us to try ourselves by this view of religion, and to walk

according thereto.
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