Altar of Burnt Offerings
Altar-of-Burnt-Offerings
Laver
Laver
Golden Candlestick
Golden Candlestick
Table of Shewbread
Table of Shewbread
Altar of Incense
Altar of Insense
Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant

Monthly Archives: October 2012

The tabernacle was built from materials that were donated from the children of Israel.  After requesting donations, so much was freely given that a commandment was given for them to stop (see Exodus 36:5-7).  More than enough was received so as to build the structure according to the commandment of the Lord.  The foundation of the tabernacle was made of 100 talents of silver which equals approximately 7,545 lbs.  Of all the metal used in the tabernacle, silver accounted for 50%, gold 15%, and bronze 35%.  All but 45 lbs of the silver was used to build the foundation.

Silver is a precious metal which has many uses, and it is symbolic that such a valuable offering was used the foundation.  Just as Israel gave of their precious goods, the Father gave His most precious ‘good’, in the form of His Son Jesus Christ.  The Father gave the Son to serve as the foundation of the Gospel.  The Lord is the foundation of justice, and mercy.  He is the foundation of that which separates the light from the darkness, the good from the evil, the holy from the unholy.  The Lord is the foundation of the way back to the presence of the Father, and the means whereby all people can over come spiritual and physical death.  The Lord is the foundation of the means to eternal happiness and everlasting increase.

The scriptures admonish us to build upon the foundation of Jesus Christ.  If we desire to be his disciple, then we must follow in his footsteps, seek to act as he would act, seek to speak as he would speak, see to love as he would love.  As we do this, we will build upon a foundation which cannot fail.

“…Remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation: that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, ye, his shafts in the whirlwind, ye, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.” ~ Helaman 5:12

I write these things in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

The veil of the tabernacle divided the Most Holy Place from the Holy Place.  Woven within the veil were cherubic emblems  symbolizing the guardians of the way of the way of the tree of life.  The veil is a symbol of physical death, one of the obstacles which prevents us having direct access to the Father.

Jesus Christ was the first individual to overcome physical death through his atoning sacrifice.  In fact, the scriptures associate the rending of the veil of the temple with the physical death of the Lord.

“Jesus, when he had cried again with a loud voice, yielded up the ghost.  And behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent; and the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose, and came of of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.” ~ Matt. 27:50-53

It is incorrect to assume that the rending of the veil of this temple means that a temple is no longer necessary, or a part of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  For the door of the temple was still intact.  The only way an individual can enter through the door of the tabernacle (spiritually speaking) is to have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, offer a broken heart and a contrite spirit, submit to the will of the Father by being baptized by one of his authorized agents, and living your life so as to receive the companionship of the Holy Ghost.  Then you will have access to the grace of God to redeem you from spiritual death.

Jesus Christ was the first individual to pass through the veil of death through his resurrection, and return to the Father.  Now that he has vanquished death, everyone will return to his presence to be judged.  When physical death comes upon us, those who are in the Holy Place (spiritually speaking) will be prepared, while those who are elsewhere will not.  If we desire eternal life, the most important focus of our life should be to enter into the Holy Place (spiritually speaking).

I write these things in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

 

The table of shewbread, the golden candlestick, and the altar of incense were the only three vessels inside the holy place.  The table of shewbread was a future symbol of the ordinance of the sacrament, and the continual need of spiritual nourishment.  Partaking of the bread and water is designed to help us remember the salvation from physical death, and the opportunity of liberation from spiritual death through the blood of Jesus Christ.

Previously, wine was used in the sacramental ordinance.  Modern revelation specifies that wine is not necessarily required.  The humble attention and devotion of the individual towards the Father is what makes the ordinance effective.  Through the prophet Joseph Smith, the Lord has revealed the following:

“…I say unto you, that it mattereth not what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink when ye partake of the sacrament, if it so be that ye do it with an eye single to my glory – remembering unto the Father my body which was laid down for you, and my blood which was shed for the remission of sins.” ~ D&C 27:2

The Lord Jesus Christ gave his physical body so that we might all be resurrected and saved from physical death.  This is what we are to remember as we partake of the bread.  The blood of Jesus Christ was shed so that we might receive a remission of our sins by obedience to the laws and ordinances of the Gospel, this is salvation from spiritual death.  This is what we are to remember as we drink the water.  Through this ordinance, we can receive the continual companionship of the Holy Ghost.  I testify that this power is real, and that the Lord’s promise of having the spiritual to be continually with you is real.  I consider the companionship of the Holy Ghost to be perhaps the greatest blessing I enjoy in my mortal existence, for through it, all other considerations of eternal significance have lasting meaning.

I write these things in the name of my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

The sideboards of the tabernacle formed a division between the outer courtyard and the two rooms of the inner sanctuary  the holy place, and the most holy place.  In order to enter into the holy place, spiritually speaking, one of the things we must do is hearken unto the word of God.  To hearken means to both listen and obey.  Nephi, an ancient prophet from the Book of Mormon explained to his older brothers, the spiritual significance of a dream his father Lehi had previously received.

In the dream, a rod of iron led the way to the tree of life.  As Nephi explained, the rod of iron was the scriptures, which teach mankind how to obtain the fruit of the tree of life, or the love of God.

“And I said unto them that [the rod of iron] was the word of God; and whoso would hearken unto the word of God, and would hold fast unto it, they would never perish; neither could the temptations and the fiery darts of the adversary overpower them unto blindness, to lead them away to destruction.” 1 Nephi 15:24

Those who held onto the rod of iron were led in safety to the tree of life.  Those who did not wandered in darkness, and some fell into a river of water which flowed near the tree.  Nephi’s brothers again asked him what the river of water meant.  To which he responded:

“…the water which my father saw was filthiness… and I said unto them that it was an awful gulf, which separated the wicked from the tree of life, and also from the saints of God.” 1 Nephi 15:27-28

Those who held fast to the scriptures received of the love of God, and were made clean through the blood of the lamb.  Those who departed from the scriptures fell outside the claim of mercy and were subject to the full implications of justice.  Those who hearken (listen to and obey the word of God) were made clean, while those who did not remained filthy.  The sideboards of the tabernacle separate the clean and holy from the filthy and unholy.  Every aspect of the tabernacle testifies of the Lord Jesus Christ.