The Morning Star Rising on the First Day

The Brazen Laver


The Brazen Laver is second of two objects located in the Tabernacle’s Courtyard.


Then you shall set the altar of the burnt offering before the door of the tabernacle of the tent of meeting. And you shall set the laver between the tabernacle of meeting and the altar, and put water in it. (Exodus 40:6-7)


The Laver’s function was to provide a place for the priests to purify themselves prior to serving in ministry or entering the Tabernacle’s Holy Place. As the following passage suggests, purification is a required precursor to priestly ministry.


You shall also make a laver of bronze, with its base also of bronze, for washing. You shall put it between the tabernacle of meeting and the altar. And you shall put water in it, for Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet in water from it. When they go into the tabernacle of meeting, or when they come near the altar to minister, to burn an offering made by fire to the LORD, they shall wash with water, lest they die. (Exodus 30:18-20)


The Brazen Laver therefore is a wash basin made of polished bronze (which is derived from the word, brazen). The bronze surface is polished to such a highly reflective state that it obtains mirror like qualities. In fact, the Laver was made from the bronze mirrors of the serving women who assembled at the door of the tabernacle of meeting (Exodus 38:8). Because of this reflective characteristic, the priests were able to see their reflection in the Laver as they bent over it to wash.