Tag Archive: The Ark Of The Covenant

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Jesus, Moses Discuss the Fulfilment of Tabernacle Prophesy









The Tabernacle Courtyard








The Holy Spirit at the Baptism of Jesus















































The Priest in the Holy of Holies


















Jesus is the Light of the World




Jesus-is-the-Lamb-of God













































Jesus the Good Shepherd
















Jesus Ascends into Heaven












The Tabernacle Is Prophetic Of Jesus

The Tabernacle was built to be the earthly abode of God: the place where God would dwell among His people. By looking at the following diagram you will be able to see how the Tabernacle was organized.


There will also be pictures associated with the folowing text that may help in visualizing what the tabernacle may have looked like.

The Tabernacle
The Tabernacle

The Tabernacle

Moses built the Tabernacle in strict conformance to the specifications given by God. For example, in the following scripture God gives Moses a detailed list of items that are required to build the Tabernacle:

Then the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: “Speak to the children of Israel, that they bring Me an offering. From everyone who gives it willingly with his heart you shall take My offering. And this is the offering which you shall take from them: gold, silver, and bronze; blue, purple, and scarlet thread, fine linen, and goats’ hair; ram skins dyed red, badger skins, and acacia wood; oil for the light, and spices for the anointing oil and for the sweet incense; onyx stones, and stones to be set in the ephod and in the breastplate. And let them make Me a sanctuary, that I may dwell among them. According to all that I show you, that is, the pattern of the tabernacle and the pattern of all its furnishings, just so you shall make it.” (Exodus 25:1-9)

Statements like this one are frequently found in the scriptures written by Moses. Many of these references emphasize building of the Tabernacle precisely to God’s instructions. This fact suggests that the form and content of the Tabernacle is extremely important to God; that perhaps it is designed on a heavenly model, one that will enable Him to dwell among His people. If this is the case, then the Tabernacle must be prophetic of the Christ who would also come to dwell with God’s people. Over the centuries the intention of God to dwell with His people did not change as even today, He continues to strive to restore the relationship man lost with Him at the fall. Therefore, the scriptures that define the specifications, processes and objects found in the Tabernacle reflect the will of God to abide with us, and as a result, must also be applicable to the attributes, words and life of Christ who was sent to accomplish God’s intention.

Jesus, Moses and the Tabernacle
Jesus, Moses and the Tabernacle

Jesus is the Fulfillment of the Tabernacle

We are going to look at the Tabernacle scriptures as they are prophetic of Christ. If Jesus is the Christ then the attributes and characteristics of the Tabernacle must be clearly demonstrated in His words and deeds. What we are about to reveal is that there is a precise correlation between the Tabernacle and Jesus. It is for this reason that we will use the scriptural specifications for each component of the Tabernacle to prove that Jesus is the Christ. In the process we will also uncover many hidden attributes of Jesus that will serve to help us better understand His nature.

The Ascension of Jesus
The Ascension of Jesus

Remember that Jesus claimed to be “the Way, the Truth and the Life.” By referencing the diagram above we can see that these names (the Way, the Truth and the Life) are also used to identify the entryways into the major compartments of the Tabernacle. The Way leads us into the Courtyard,

The Tabernacle Courtyard
The Tabernacle Courtyard

the Truth leads us into the Holy Place,

Priest in the Holy Place of the Tabernacle
Priest in the Holy Place of the Tabernacle

and the Life leads us into the Most Holy Place.


It should also be noted that the Tabernacle is constructed in such a way that these passageways must be entered in this prescribed sequence. Therefore, the Way must be entered prior to entering the Truth, and in turn, the Truth must be entered prior to entering the Life.

What we have discovered here is that the words of Jesus that proclaim His identity lead us directly to the Tabernacle. Therefore His claim is that He is the portal into the places that God designed as the place to dwell with His people here on earth. Therefore, our plan is to investigate each of these three chambers in an effort to identify what it is that Jesus is leading us toward. What we will find is that Jesus is drawing us into a closer relationship with God the Father. Jesus uses the Tabernacle as a road map for us to understand what it is that we will find when we enter into a personal relationship with Him. We can proceed into Jesus with confidence because the actions and words of His life demonstrate that He is a far superior substitution for each and every component of the Tabernacle. This proof is a major focus of this blog and the teachings that accompany it will lead us into a much better understanding of who Jesus is. This in turn will lead us to grow and strengthen our relationship with Him.

From a bigger picture point of view, we are about to discover that the structure of the Tabernacle will communicate that there are three separate and distinct levels of relationship that a person can have with God. That these relationships can only be obtained in a prescribed sequence that corresponds to chambers of the Tabernacle. In fact, we will develop a progressively deeper relationship with God as we enter each successive chamber and find the gifts that God has waiting for those who seek Him with all their heart.

While all of this is quite mysterious at a high level, we plan to present the details in subsequent postings. For now we will present a high level overview of our journey through the Tabernacle and its correlation with the life of Jesus. With that said let us start with the Tabernacle Courtyard. Readers of this site can use the following sections as a index to the content of this blog.

The Tabernacle Courtyard

The Tabernacle Courtyard
The Tabernacle Courtyard

Our presentation of the Tabernacle Courtyard is found in the following posts:


















The Tabernacle Holy Place

The Golden Altar is directly in front of the Most Holy Place
The Golden Altar is directly in front of the Most Holy Place

Our presentation of the Tabernacle Holy Place is found in the following post:













The Priest in the Most Holy Place of the Tabernacle


Our presentation of the Tabernacles Most Holy Place is found in the following post:


All of these links will also lead the reader toward a better understanding of the objects found inside each of the major chambers of the Tabernacle. They will also lead toward a better understanding how each object is prophetic of the coming of Jesus.

Jesus Prepares Us To Enter Into His Spirit

Jesus came to earth to prepare the world for entry into the spiritual Promised Land. He did this by giving us His life. The words that He spoke, the miracles that He performed and His promise of a helper that came in the form of the Holy Spirit, set the foundation for our entry into the promise of God.

The Holy Spirit is the spirit of Jesus that lives in us and we live in Him. His spirit empowers us. We will now present a few scriptures that support this proposition. The first scripture provides an example of Jesus preparing His disciples to continue His mission after He is gone. He leaves them the promise of the Holy Spirit who will be sent to them by the Father in His name:

If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever; the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you. I will not leave you orphans; I will come to you. A little while longer and the world will see Me no more, but you will see Me. Because I live, you will live also. At that day you will know that I am in My Father, and you in Me, and I in you. He who has My commandments and keeps them, it is he who loves Me. And he who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I will love him and manifest Myself to him. (John 14:14-21)

The next scripture communicates the story of the Holy Spirit’s descent upon the disciples:

When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled the whole house where they were sitting. Then there appeared to them divided tongues, as of fire, and one sat upon each of them. And they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues, as the Spirit gave them utterance. And there were dwelling in Jerusalem Jews, devout men, from every nation under heaven. And when this sound occurred, the multitude came together, and were confused, because everyone heard them speak in his own language. Then they were all amazed and marveled, saying to one another, “Look, are not all these who speak Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each in our own language in which we were born? Parthians and Medes and Elamites, those dwelling in Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya adjoining Cyrene, visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, Cretans and Arabs; we hear them speaking in our own tongues the wonderful works of God.” So they were all amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, Whatever could this mean? Others mocking said, “They are full of new wine.” But Peter, standing up with the eleven, raised his voice and said to them, “Men of Judea and all who dwell in Jerusalem, let this be known to you, and heed my words. For these are not drunk, as you suppose, since it is only the third hour of the day. But this is what was spoken by the prophet Joel: ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams. And on My menservants and on My maidservants I will pour out My Spirit in those days; And they shall prophesy. I will show wonders in heaven above And signs in the earth beneath: Blood and fire and vapor of smoke. (Acts 2:1-19)

From that day forward they were empowered through the Holy Spirit of God.

In addition, everything about Jesus’ preparation of the people was better that in the time of Moses. Jesus gave us a perfected law that was written on our hearts and that changed our character (see the section on Jesus-the-Brazen-Laver). We no longer blindly follow rules without understanding but rather change our hearts to become more like Jesus. He gave us a perfected priesthood that came with a perfect sacrifice and a perfect offering. Most importantly, He gave us more than a Pot of Manna to eat; He gave us His body to eat and his blood to drink in the new spiritual covenant (see Jesus-the-Table-of-Showbread and Applying-the-Attributes-of-Jesus-our-Table-of-Showbread).

Jesus is Our Covenant Provision

The subject of Jesus being our perfected Pot of Manna suggests that Jesus is our covenant provision. However, to completely understand the significance of this we must also understand the circumstances that led up to the Pot of Manna being stored in the Ark of the Covenant in the first place. The following questions must be answered; what made the Pot of Manna so precious that it was stored inside the Ark of the Covenant? Why was it stored there along with the covenant stones upon which God’s laws were recorded, and why was it stored there next to the Rod of Aaron which designated God’s choice for the royal priesthood? To address these questions we present a deeper investigation into the Pot of Manna and in the process, uncover Jesus as our new covenant provision.

We introduced the Pot of Manna in a previous posting and reported that it was symbolic of God’s provision for His people’s needs as they wondered through the wilderness. What we have not covered is why they had to wonder in the wilderness for thirty eight years in the first place. The reason is because they had refused to enter into the Promised Land[i] as God had commanded them. As a result, God was angry with them and swore that the people who refused to fight for His promise would not see it[ii]. Their wondering through the wilderness gave the next generation[iii] the time necessary to enable them to mature so that they could eventually enter into the Promised Land. In addition, the forty years of wondering was the time necessary for all who refused to enter to die. In this way the sin of the nation was purged[iv] and a new nation was raised up that would learn to trust in God totally.

As there is not any protection from the harsh conditions in the desert, the new generation had to learn depend completely on God for everything. This included the basic items of food, water, clothing shelter and protection from the elements. It is in this journey through the wilderness that the Pot of Manna gains significance as God’s provision to the people who would enter into the Promised Land.

As always, supporting information can be found in the Bible. An account of Israel’s final preparation for entering the Promised Land can be found in the books of Numbers and Deuteronomy. Key points and supporting material have been abstracted and reported in the following paragraphs to give a deeper insight into what transpired and answer the question we have about the Pot of Manna.

The Journey to the Promised Land

The book of Deuteronomy reflects the last 60 days of Moses life. The background to the book is that the nation has spent the past 38 years wondering through the wilderness[v] after having refused to enter into the Promised Land. In Deuteronomy we learn about how Moses prepared the people to enter into God’s Promised Land the second time around. So, this was an extremely pivotal time for the nation of Israel.

By the time of the story of Deuteronomy, Moses was 120 years old. In addition, God tells Moses that He will not allow him to enter[vi] into the Promised Land either. As a result his actions are the final undertakings of his life on this earth. The nation will enter into God’s promise and Moses will be left behind.

The stark reality was that all of those who had previously refused to enter into the Promised Land had already died in the desert[vii] and only their offspring remained. The exceptions were limited to Moses, Caleb and Joshua[viii]. Caleb and Joshua were the only two men who had favored entering[ix] the land the first time around, and as a result were chosen to lead the new nation on its second attempt.

One observation that should be noted is that the nation entering into the Promised Land was a new nation. The people of this nation never knew the bonds of their slavery in the land of Egypt. They also never saw the power of their God bring their deliverance from the evil of Egypt either. The new nation was born in the desert and as such, they grew up knowing only total dependence on God. They grew up knowing the cloud of God that protected them from the burning sun in the daytime, and the fire that illuminated their journey at night[x]. They wore the same clothes and shoes for thirty eight years as they never wore out[xi]. They drank water that sprang up from the rocks that Moses struck with his staff[xii] and they ate the Manna that was found on the ground each morning, which was the bread of life that came down from heaven:

And the house of Israel called its name Manna. And it was like white coriander seed, and the taste of it was like wafers made with honey. Then Moses said, “This is the thing which the LORD has commanded: ‘Fill an omer with it, to be kept for your generations, that they may see the bread with which I fed you in the wilderness, when I brought you out of the land of Egypt.’“ And Moses said to Aaron, “Take a pot and put an omer of manna in it, and lay it up before the LORD, to be kept for your generations.” As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the Testimony, to be kept. And the children of Israel ate manna forty years, until they came to an inhabited land; they ate manna until they came to the border of the land of Canaan. (Exodus 16:31 – 35)

So this is how the Pot of Manna came to be stored in the Ark of the Covenant. God commanded it be saved there so that future generations would remember how He provided for them in the wilderness.

One of the questions that we posed when we started this section was; why was the Pot of Manna stored in the Ark of the Covenant along with the Covenant Stones and the Rod of Aaron. The answer is that the Pot of Manna is a part of God’s covenant. The people of Israel promised to honor God’s law and in return He would dwell with them in a land flowing in milk and honey, which is the Promised Land. God’s dwelling place was the Most Holy Place of the Tabernacle which the people carried with them in their journey. Since the Tabernacle was made by men it required the services of priests for its care and upkeep. These priests also ensured that there were adequate sacrifices for the forgiveness of the sins of the people, enabling them to move closer to God along their journey. Hence the Rod of Aaron is stored inside the Ark.

The Pot of Manna is symbolic of God’s provision along the journey that leads to His promise. It is symbolic of His provision of food that fell from heaven every morning and became the sustenance of survival. It is also symbolic of the water that flowed from the rocks in the midst of the desert and the clouds that protected the people from the burning sun in the day as well as the fire that illuminated their pathway at night. It is symbolic of all of God’s provisions to a people who are dedicated to realizing the promises of God’s covenant. To those who are steadfast on the journey and are willing to see the former worldly man pass away and be replaced with a spiritual man who knows only total dependence upon God.

Jesus is the Ark of the new covenant as He has sacrificed His body and blood on the cross for the forgiveness of our sins. This sacrifice is foundational to the new covenant as it enables us to move closer to God through Jesus. His sacrifice ensures that each one of us can move through the wilderness found in our own life and engage in a journey to the Promised Land in heaven. A journey where our hearts of stone are changed to hearts of flesh filled with compassion. A journey in which our dependence on the world is replaced by total reliance on Him. A journey where we come to know God and see Him face to face in the Promised Land, a land where our every need is satisfied.  Then we will know the promise of His perfect provision.

[i] Numbers 14:3 – 4  Why has the LORD brought us to this land to fall by the sword, that our wives and children should become victims? Would it not be better for us to return to Egypt?”  So they said to one another, “Let us select a leader and return to Egypt.”

[ii] Numbers 14:22 – 23  because all these men who have seen My glory and the signs which I did in Egypt and in the wilderness, and have put Me to the test now these ten times, and have not heeded My voice, they certainly shall not see the land of which I swore to their fathers, nor shall any of those who rejected Me see it.

[iii] Numbers 14:31 – 33  But your little ones, whom you said would be victims, I will bring in, and they shall know the land which you have despised. But as for you, your carcasses shall fall in this wilderness. And your sons shall be shepherds in the wilderness forty years, and bear the brunt of your infidelity, until your carcasses are consumed in the wilderness.

[iv] Numbers 14:35  ‘I the LORD have spoken this; I will surely do so to all this evil congregation who are gathered together against Me. In this wilderness they shall be consumed, and there they shall die.’

[v] Deuteronomy 2:14  And the time we took to come from Kadesh Barnea until we crossed over the Valley of the Zered was thirty-eight years, until all the generation of the men of war was consumed from the midst of the camp, just as the LORD had sworn to them.

[vi] Deuteronomy 1:37  The LORD was also angry with me for your sakes, saying, ‘Even you shall not go in there;

[vii] Deuteronomy 2:14  And the time we took to come from Kadesh Barnea until we crossed over the Valley of the Zered was thirty-eight years, until all the generation of the men of war was consumed from the midst of the camp, just as the LORD had sworn to them. For indeed the hand of the LORD was against them, to destroy them from the midst of the camp until they were consumed. So it was, when all the men of war had finally perished from among the people, that the LORD spoke to me, saying:  ‘This day you are to cross over at Ar, the boundary of Moab.

[viii] Deuteronomy 1:29 – 39  Then I said to you, ‘Do not be terrified, or afraid of them. The LORD your God, who goes before you, He will fight for you, according to all He did for you in Egypt before your eyes,  and in the wilderness where you saw how the LORD your God carried you, as a man carries his son, in all the way that you went until you came to this place.’  Yet, for all that, you did not believe the LORD your God,  who went in the way before you to search out a place for you to pitch your tents, to show you the way you should go, in the fire by night and in the cloud by day. And the LORD heard the sound of your words, and was angry, and took an oath, saying, Surely not one of these men of this evil generation shall see that good land of which I swore to give to your fathers, except Caleb the son of Jephunneh; he shall see it, and to him and his children I am giving the land on which he walked, because he wholly followed the LORD.’  The LORD was also angry with me for your sakes, saying, ‘Even you shall not go in there; Joshua the son of Nun, who stands before you, he shall go in there. Encourage him, for he shall cause Israel to inherit it. Moreover your little ones and your children, who you say will be victims, who today have no knowledge of good and evil, they shall go in there; to them I will give it, and they shall possess it.

[ix] Numbers 14:36 – 38  Now the men whom Moses sent to spy out the land, who returned and made all the congregation complain against him by bringing a bad report of the land, those very men who brought the evil report about the land, died by the plague before the LORD. But Joshua the son of Nun and Caleb the son of Jephunneh remained alive, of the men who went to spy out the land.

[x] Exodus 13:21 – 22  And the LORD went before them by day in a pillar of cloud to lead the way, and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so as to go by day and night. He did not take away the pillar of cloud by day or the pillar of fire by night from before the people.

[xi] Deuteronomy 8:2 -4  And you shall remember that the LORD your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep His commandments or not. So He humbled you, allowed you to hunger, and fed you with manna which you did not know nor did your fathers know, that He might make you know that man shall not live by bread alone; but man lives by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the LORD. Your garments did not wear out on you, nor did your foot swell these forty years.

[xii] Numbers  20:11  Then Moses lifted his hand and struck the rock twice with his rod; and water came out abundantly, and the congregation and their animals drank.

Jesus Is The Fulfillment Of The Law


The most important items in the Ark of the Covenant are the stone tablets upon which the Ten Commandments are written. This law was presented to the people of Israel by Moses and since has been fulfilled in Jesus Christ, who came not to destroy the law but rather to make it perfect. The following scripture reinforces this point:


Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill. For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled. (Matthew 5:17-18)


Jesus teaches us that the law came to enable us to change our hearts based on an understanding of the things that are offensive to God. This is far superior to blindly following rules without conviction and hoping that God will see us as a righteous people because of it. God gave us the law so that we would change our nature and in doing so no longer desire evil but rather the presence of God in our lives. Paul correctly describes this condition in some of his disciples when he wrote:


You are our epistle written in our hearts, known and read by all men; clearly you are an epistle of Christ, ministered by us, written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of flesh, that is, of the heart. (2 Corinthians 3:2)


Therefore in Jesus, the law (the Ten Commandments written on stone tablets) is perfected because He extends the law to the condition of our heart. Therefore, in accepting Jesus as our Savior and earnestly seeking to be like Him through the power of the Holy Spirit, our hearts are changed, which means that we have adopted a higher standard. We have adopted a standard that not only eliminates the physical act of sinning but also eliminates the desire to do evil as well. Here is an example that demonstrates this point:


For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not murder, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment. But I say to you that whoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment. And whoever says to his brother, ‘Raca!’ shall be in danger of the council. But whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be in danger of hell fire. Therefore if you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother has something against you, leave your gift there before the altar, and go your way. First be reconciled to your brother, and then come and offer your gift. Agree with your adversary quickly, while you are on the way with him, lest your adversary deliver you to the judge, the judge hand you over to the officer, and you be thrown into prison. Assuredly, I say to you, you will by no means get out of there till you have paid the last penny. You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery. But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart. If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell. (Matthew 5:20-30)


Jesus fulfilled the law that was at first written on stone tablets, through the love and compassion that is instilled into the hearts of men by the power of the Holy Spirit. Through this teaching we understand that looking at a woman with lust in our hearts is also adultery. Simply refraining from the act itself is insufficient as it is our heart that must be changed. Jesus replaced blind obedience to the law with real change in the character and nature of men that no longer blindly follow rules of acceptable conduct, but rather, through the conforming of their hearts to the nature of God:


This is the covenant that I will make with them after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws into their hearts, and in their minds I will write them, then He adds, “Their sins and their lawless deeds I will remember no more.” (Hebrews 10:16-17)


In this regard, we are conformed to be like Him.

Going Into The Ark Of The Covenant

In the sections that follow we will present information pertaining to the Ark of the Covenant. This information will become supporting material for later postings that proclaim Jesus to be the Ark of the New Covenant, the manifestation of the Most Holy Place and our passage way to both.

The Ark of the Covenant

The Ark of the Covenant symbolizes the Divine Presence of God and for this reason it is the most sacred of all the objects found in the Tabernacle. Fundamentally, the Ark is a box made of wood. It was approximately 5 feet long, three feet wide and three feet high. The Ark has a lid that covered it and both were completely covered in gold. The Ark also has four golden rings, one placed near each corner. Two poles also made of gold covered wood were placed into the rings on each side of the Ark. They enabled the Ark to be transported from place to place. The Ark contained three items inside.

The Covenant Stones

First of all, the Ark contained the Covenant Stones which served as a continual reminder of the covenant between God and Israel. The Covenant Stones were engraved with the Ten Commandments[i] given by God. These commandments served as the foundation of God’s covenant with Israel. If the people obeyed God’s commandments then He promised to give them life and prosperity in the Promised Land, which is the land of Canaan, a land flowing with milk and honey:

That you may fear the LORD your God, to keep all His statutes and His commandments which I command you, you and your son and your grandson, all the days of your life, and that your days may be prolonged. Therefore hear, O Israel, and be careful to observe it, that it may be well with you, and that you may multiply greatly as the LORD God of your fathers has promised you; ‘a land flowing with milk and honey.’ (Deuteronomy 6:2-3)

‘And it shall be that if you earnestly obey My commandments which I command you today, to love the LORD your God and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul, ‘then I will give you the rain for your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you may gather in your grain, your new wine, and your oil. And I will send grass in your fields for your livestock, that you may eat and be filled. ‘(Deuteronomy 11:13-15)

For if you carefully keep all these commandments which I command you to do; to love the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways, and to hold fast to Him; then the LORD will drive out all these nations from before you, and you will dispossess greater and mightier nations than yourselves. Every place on which the sole of your foot treads shall be yours: from the wilderness and Lebanon, from the river, the River Euphrates, even to the Western Sea, shall be your territory. No man shall be able to stand against you; the LORD your God will put the dread of you and the fear of you upon all the land where you tread, just as He has said to you. (Deuteronomy 11:22-25)

The Pot of Manna

A second item found inside the Ark is the Pot of Manna. It represented the bread of God that came down from heaven and fed the nation of Israel as they wondered through the desert:

I have heard the complaints of the children of Israel. Speak to them, saying, ‘At twilight you shall eat meat, and in the morning you shall be filled with bread. And you shall know that I am the LORD your God.’ So it was that quails came up at evening and covered the camp, and in the morning the dew lay all around the camp. And when the layer of dew lifted, there, on the surface of the wilderness, was a small round substance, as fine as frost on the ground. So when the children of Israel saw it, they said to one another, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was. And Moses said to them, “This is the bread which the LORD has given you to eat.” (Exodus 16:12-16)

The Rod of Aaron

The third item found in the Ark was Aaron’s rod and it testified to God’s choice of Aaron as the royal priest. The following passages communicate that Aaron was challenged for the right to be the high priest by members of the community. God’s choice was communicated in a miraculous way:

And the LORD spoke to Moses, saying: Speak to the children of Israel, and get from them a rod from each father’s house, all their leaders according to their fathers’ houses; twelve rods. Write each man’s name on his rod. And you shall write Aaron’s name on the rod of Levi. For there shall be one rod for the head of each father’s house. Then you shall place them in the tabernacle of meeting before the Testimony, where I meet with you. And it shall be that the rod of the man whom I choose will blossom; thus I will rid Myself of the complaints of the children of Israel, which they make against you. So Moses spoke to the children of Israel, and each of their leaders gave him a rod apiece, for each leader according to their fathers’ houses, twelve rods; and the rod of Aaron was among their rods. And Moses placed the rods before the LORD in the tabernacle of witness. Now it came to pass on the next day that Moses went into the tabernacle of witness, and behold, the rod of Aaron, of the house of Levi, had sprouted and put forth buds, had produced blossoms and yielded ripe almonds. Then Moses brought out all the rods from before the LORD to all the children of Israel; and they looked, and each man took his rod. And the LORD said to Moses, “Bring Aaron’s rod back before the Testimony, to be kept as a sign against the rebels, that you may put their complaints away from Me, lest they die.” (Numbers 17:1-10)

Therefore, God performed a great miracle in selecting the Rod of Aaron for the priesthood. A rod, which was a carved piece of wood, came to life, blossomed and bore fruit. So significant was this event that the rod was stored in the Ark as a testimony against those who would not believe.

The Portability of the Ark

Because the people often moved from place to place, the Ark was designed to be portable. For this reason it was created with rings attached to its sides that enabled it to be transported via golden poles.

The Position of the Ark

The Ark is positioned along the wall that is directly across from the entry way (the semi transparent veil called the Life) to the Most Holy place. This veil fills the doorway separating the Holy place from the Most Holy. The result is that the Golden Altar of Incense and the smoke that rose from it (symbolizing the spiritual warfare of the people) were visible through the veil because it is positioned directly across the doorway from the Ark. Therefore, the spiritual warfare of the people (their prayers symbolized in the smoke going up from the altar) was visible by God as he sat on the Mercy Seat. In addition, it was from this Mercy Seat that God would speak to His people and bring either blessing or cursing in reaction to their obedience or disobedience to the covenant (law).

The Priesthood and the Ark

The Most Holy place was visited by the high priest just once each year. The high priest entered the chamber on this special occasion to sprinkle the blood of the sacrifice on the corners of the altar for the forgiveness of the sins of the people:

And Aaron shall make atonement upon its horns once a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonement; once a year he shall make atonement upon it throughout your generations. It is most holy to the LORD. (Exodus 30:10)

Other Names for the Ark

The Ark is called the Ark of the Covenant because it represented the Mosaic covenant between God and Israel. It was also referred to as the Ark of the Testimony as it was a continuous testimony to the covenant law housed in the Ark. It was sometimes referred to as the Ark of Thy Strength because it represented God as both powerful and a blessing to Israel. In addition, it was often called the Holy Ark because of the sacredness and holiness it represented.

So, in summary, the Most Holy Place is the most precious of all the places found in the Tabernacle. It is so special that only the High Priest was allowed to enter into it, and then only once a year[ii]. The Most Holy Place is where God talked to Moses directly and therefore is the place where the closest of all relationships with God is established. This relationship is symbolized by covenant and the symbols of the covenant that are found inside the Ark of the Covenant. The Ark is covered by the Cherubim and the presence of God Himself, who sits directly on the Mercy Seat which is between the angels (Cherubim). This symbolizes the importance and the sacredness of the Ark and its contents.

The Ark contained the stone tablets on which were engraved the Ten Commandments, which are the foundation of the law for the people. The law reminded the nation that God’s favor would be upon them if they remained in covenant. This included the conquest and inhabitation of the Promised Land. The Ark also contained the Pot of Manna, which symbolized God’s provision of their every need as they wandered in the desert and were transformed to become totally dependent on Him. Again, the Pot of Manna is symbolic of God’s provision. The Ark also contained the Rod of Aaron which miraculously budded when the authority of Aaron’s priesthood was challenged. This symbolized Gods favor on Aaron but also is prophetic of God’s choice of Jesus as the high priest according to the order of Melchizedek. We will investigate this further in future postings.

Our next posting will present the claims of Jesus that correlate to the objects found in the Most Holy place. In addition, we will look at the miraculous actions of God that support these statements of Jesus and support the notion that He is the manifestation of the Most Holy Place, a place that can be entered through the doorway called, “the Life.”

[i] Exodus 24:12 Then the LORD said to Moses, “Come up to Me on the mountain and be there; and I will give you tablets of stone, and the law and commandments which I have written, that you may teach them.”
[ii] Exodus 30:10 And Aaron shall make atonement upon its horns once a year with the blood of the sin offering of atonement; once a year he shall make atonement upon it throughout your generations. It is most holy to the LORD.