The Veil and the Screen
Points of Access
There are several points of separation between the outside of the White House and the spot where the president sits. If one wants to get in there, they have to get through a guarded fence. After that, there are security checks. Continuing along, there are monitoring systems, guarded halls, and secured doors.
For one to actually get to him, there are many barriers to go through, and each is designed specifically for the purpose of only allowing a very limited few to gain that access. I’m not sure why anyone would want to gain it with the president we have today, but that is beside the point. If you did want to, it wouldn’t be easy.
If this is so for an earthly president in charge of a single country in a fallen world, how much more secure do you think the passage to the heavenly throne room must be? Think about it… And yet, this is the place that every human soul desires most. And it is the place that is open to any and all, if only the proper access is received.
Today’s passage gives us details into the veil which separates the Holy Place from the Most Holy Place, and the details for the screen covering for the tent itself. Each of these is a separation of some sort, and a separation implies that there is a difference between what is on the inside and what is on the outside.
Further, as there are two separations noted in sequence, it implies that the separation between the two is one of degrees. The instructions for the tabernacle and the tent go from the inner-most section to the outermost section.
What was detailed for the Most Holy Place preceded that which was detailed for the Holy Place. The curtains for the tabernacle were detailed before the covering of the tent which went over it. And the details for the veil come prior to the details for the screen.
The separations, and how they are detailed, are given to teach us lessons about the holiness of God as well as the process of redemption which He has laid out for us. People at a funeral always talk about the guy in the box going to heaven, but when they mention the things that person did to merit such an honor, how often do they not square up with what the Bible speaks of!
It is so common for people to overlook what the Bible teaches about the process. Our verses today will shed light on that process and they confirm the words of Jesus quite well…
Text Verse: “‘And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. 4 And where I go you know, and the way you know.’
5 Thomas said to Him, ‘Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?’
6 Jesus said to him, ‘I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.'” John 14:3-6
There is a lot of marvelous new information in today’s verses, but there will also be repetition in them as well, things seen and explained in previous sermons. However, a theme is being developed and so repeating the symbolism of the things we come across is intended to have us again contemplate the prophetic meaning behind each thing.
Don’t worry if you feel you’ve heard some of this before, you have. But it is a good reminder of all that God is trying to show us. The Lord is instructing Moses and a place where He will dwell is to be the final result. And so the details are meticulously given.
Nothing is left to chance because all of it points in picture to what He will later do in and through Jesus. Yes, it’s all to be found in His superior word. And so let’s turn to that precious word once again and… May God speak to us through His word today and may His glorious name ever be praised.
I. The Veil (verses 31-35)
31 “You shall make a veil
We now come to the veil which will hang before the Ark of the Testimony and which will divide the Holy of Holies from the Holy Place. The veil in Hebrew is paroketh. This is the first of 25 times it will be mentioned in the Bible. With but one exception, every instance will be in Exodus through Numbers and will be speaking of the veil of the tabernacle.
However, it will be seen one more time in 2 Chronicles 3:14 when speaking of the veil that Solomon had made for the Temple in Jerusalem. The word paroketh means “veil.” It comes from the word perek which means “cruelty” or “rigor.” That then comes from an unused root meaning to “break apart” or “fracture.” In this, we can see where cruelty or rigor then comes into play.
There is an implied division which is made explicit in the hanging of the veil. On one side there is one state of existence, and on the other is another state. If you stretch your mind now as we evaluate the symbolism of what the veil is made of, then you might grasp what this paroketh pictures and is picturing.
31 (con’t) woven of blue,
tekeleth – literally, “blue.” The word tekeleth is believed to come from the word shekheleth, the cerulean mussel. In other words the color obtained from it or that is dyed with it. Blue in the Bible is associated with the law, especially the keeping of the law. This is seen explicitly in Numbers 15 –
“Speak to the children of Israel: Tell them to make tassels on the corners of their garments throughout their generations, and to put a blue thread in the tassels of the corners. 39 And you shall have the tassel, that you may look upon it and remember all the commandments of the Lord and do them, and that you may not follow the harlotry to which your own heart and your own eyes are inclined, 40 and that you may remember and do all My commandments, and be holy for your God.” Numbers 15:38-40
31 (con’t) purple,
v’argaman – literally, “and purple.” It is purple or blue/red. The color in the Bible, like in many other cultures, is one of royalty or that which pertains to or belongs to a king. As it is a mixture of blue and red, in meaning it thus is a combination of what those two colors mean – the law for blue; and war, blood, and/or judgment for red. Hence, a royal color because these things pertain to the dominion of a king.
31 (con’t) and scarlet thread,
v’towlaat shani – literally, “and from worms red.” Two words here are used to describe the color. The first is towla. This is actually a worm known as the crimson-grub. However, it is used only in this manner concerning the color from it and cloths dyed with it. The second word is shani which means scarlet.
Taken together, they are translated as “scarlet,” but implying the scarlet which comes from the towla or grub worm. The double words “implies that to strike this color the wool or cloth was twice dipped” (Clarke). The scarlet, or red, in the Bible pictures and symbolizes war, blood, and/or judgment. About this particular type of worm – in Hebrew towla, Henry Morris writes –
“When the female of the scarlet worm species was ready to give birth to her young, she would attach her body to the trunk of a tree, fixing herself so firmly and permanently that she would never leave again. The eggs deposited beneath her body were thus protected until the larvae were hatched and able to enter their own life cycle. As the mother died, the crimson fluid stained her body and the surrounding wood. From the dead bodies of such female scarlet worms, the commercial scarlet dyes of antiquity were extracted. What a picture this gives of Christ, dying on the tree, shedding his precious blood that he might ‘bring many sons unto glory.’ He died for us, that we might live through him!” Henry Morris
In one way or another, it is all about Christ… every word points to the majesty of a bruised and crushed Servant; a glorious Savior. As you can see, each of these colors amazingly pictures His work.
31 (con’t) and fine woven linen.
v’shesh mashezar – literally, “and linen finely twisted.” The shesh is fine linen. It was first mentioned when Joseph, who himself was a marvelous picture of Christ, was clothed in fine linen after interpreting Pharaoh’s dreams and being elevated to his high position in the land. The symbolism of the shesh, or fine linen, is explicitly explained in the book of Revelation –
“Let us be glad and rejoice and give glory to him; for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and his bride has made herself ready. 8 And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and bright: for the fine linen is the righteousness of the saints.” Revelation 19:7, 8 (Jubilee Bible)
Most versions say something like the “righteous acts of the saints.” However, this is incorrect. This is not speaking about what we do, but about what Christ has done. He is the righteousness of the saints and we are given a picture of it here in the veil. His righteousness, based on His purity, is what the veil is composed of.
The shazar, or twisting of the linen, is a picture of each of the previous attributes being woven into the very fabric of Christ – He embodies the law, justice, righteousness, and the right to judge and make war, to shed blood – both that of others and His own.
These things are all finely woven into His very nature, just as they were finely twisted into the linen. Also, the twisting can be further explained in His strength, courage, and steadfastness. As it says in Ecclesiastes –
“Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him.
And a threefold cord is not quickly broken.” Ecclesiastes 3:12
31 (con’t) It shall be woven with an artistic design of cherubim.
On the veil, and into the linen itself, are to be woven keruvim, or cherubs. The word for “artistic design” is khashav. This means to “think about” or “consider.” In other words, there is to be care and careful consideration in the making of the cherubs. Thus the NKJV uses a word which describes that quite well – artistic.
As noted in a previous sermon, the KJV incorrectly translates the cherubim as cherubims. The “im” at the end of cherub is the Hebrew plural marker. Therefore, it is either cherubs or cherubim, but not cherubims.
Cherubim are a select class of angels which, among other things, are near to God, they have great power, and they act as guards. As they are guards of the Tree of Life, they are the ones who can point man to the way of accessing the right to that tree.
This veil then is being constructed and placed for a reason. It symbolically guards access to that Tree of Life. In Genesis 3, after the fall of man and their exile from Eden, cherubs were placed strategically and with purpose –
“So He drove out the man; and He placed cherubim at the east of the garden of Eden, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to guard the way to the tree of life.” Genesis 3:24
As the tabernacle faces east, the symbolic guarding by these cherubs is intended to show us several things. First, it is a picture of the way to access paradise-lost once again. Secondly, that what is inside is guarded and access is therefore restricted.
Thirdly, if something is guarded, it means that access is possible. If there is a lock on a safe, it is meant to guard access to the safe, but the safe can be opened and access can be obtained with the right key or combination.
The safe hasn’t been welded shut permanently. Instead, it merely requires the proper validation for access. And so fourth, the guarding of the cherubs implies that what is inside being guarded is that proper validation, if you will. It is what provides access.
32 You shall hang it upon the four pillars of acacia wood overlaid with gold.
Like the rest of the furniture and structure of the tabernacle and tent, the wood was to be of acacia, or shittim. As before, it symbolized Christ’s human nature. These pillars were to be overlaid with gold. And like before, this symbolizes His divine nature. There were to be four pillars for the hanging of the veil.
Again, the meaning of the number four is important to recall –
“Now the number four is made up of three and one (3+1=4), and it denotes, therefore, and marks that which follows the revelation of God in the Trinity, namely, His creative works. He is known by the things that are seen. Hence the written revelation commences with the words, “In-the-beginning God CREATED.” Creation is therefore the next thing, the fourth thing, and the number four always has reference to all that is created. It is emphatically the number of Creation; of man in his relation to the world as created… It is the number of things that have a beginning, of things that are made, of material things, and matter itself. It is the number of material completeness. Hence it is the world number, and especially the ‘city’ number.” EW Bullinger
These four pillars, holding up the veil, are then representative of the final point between the things of the world and the heavenly things behind it. This is explicitly stated in the book of Hebrews as picturing the work of Christ. First, we are told that this veil was a picture for the time when access to God was not yet available –
“…the Holy Spirit indicating this, that the way into the Holiest of All was not yet made manifest while the first tabernacle was still standing.” Hebrews 9:8
Next we are told that in His work, Christ went from the earthly to the heavenly in order to complete the process of redemption –
“For Christ has not entered the holy places made with hands, which are copies of the true, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us…” Hebrews 9:24
The four pillars thus represent the transition from the sphere of creation to the sphere of the heavenly. This transition is made possible by the God/Man – Jesus Christ – who is that point of transition between the two spheres. He is the infinite united to the finite; He is the divine united to the creation.
32 Their hooks shall be gold,
A new word is now introduced for “hooks.” It is vav. It will only be used 13 times in the Bible and all are in Exodus and all are referring to the hooks for hanging on pillars. As these are the only times they are mentioned, and they are all in the same context, it is not entirely sure what they are.
The Greek translation of the OT calls them “capitals.” One translation calls them “heads,” one “pegs,” and the rest all say “hooks.” To get a clue as to what they are, we can look at what vav is. It is the sixth letter of the Hebrew aleph-bet and it has the meanings of “add,” “secure,” and “hook.”
A vav, whether in ancient writing or modern, has the appearance of a peg or a hook of some sort. The vav as a letter is used in Hebrew to serve as a connector to words and members within a sentence, and even the sentences of a discourse. Thus it draws them together. Therefore, hook or peg is the obvious and preferred meaning.
These would probably have been attached to the poles and the veil would have been hung from them. As the vav is also the sixth letter of the aleph-bet, there must be symbolic meaning attached to these as well. The number six is the number of man. Thus, these gold hooks are a picture of the divine Man.
It pictures Christ, the divine Man who is the hook or transition between the two realms – the finite and the infinite. Just as the vav is the connector of words and members within a sentence, Christ is the connector between the divine and the earthly. Thus it is a reference to His incarnation. He is the God/Man.
As there are four of them, we can see the connection to the four gospels which speak of the Man who is divine. The gospels are what speak of Him and His work and they are what testify to His fulfillment of the law which alone can again allow access through the veil. The gold hooks thus again speak of the work of Christ.
The gospels are what connect the Old Testament to the New, hooking them together into a unified whole. However, there is another point to consider. The four hooks, each a vav or a “six,” taken together thus equal twenty-four. And there is, according to Bullinger, a set meaning for the number twenty-four –
“It is the number associated with the heavenly government and worship, of which the earthly form in Israel was only a copy.” EW Bullinger
Again, this is a perfect matching to what Hebrews 8:5 tells us concerning the tabernacle being a copy and a shadow of the heavenly things.
32 (con’t) upon four sockets of silver.
Like the sockets for the tabernacle boards, there are four sockets for these four pillars and they are likewise silver. Silver, as explained before, pictures redemption. Thus, in the work of Christ as the Redeemer of creation, the number four is what is pictured. Combined with the previous 96 silver sockets, we now have 100.
33 And you shall hang the veil from the clasps.
This translation is incorrect. The word is takhat, “under,” not “from.” The veil is not hanging from the clasps. Rather it is hung upon the vavihem, or hooks, of the previous verse. But its placement is under the clasps mentioned in Exodus 26:6 which united the curtains into one whole.
This is the point where the two chambers were to be divided. It was a distance of 5×4, or 20 cubits from the front, and 10 cubits from its back. By hanging the veil at this point, it thus makes the back room, the Most Holy Place, a perfect cube of 10x10x10 cubits. There is intent and purpose here.
The number 10 signifies “the perfection of Divine order. It implies that nothing is wanting; that the number and order are perfect; that the whole cycle is complete” (Bullinger). Thus, the cubed back room has been divinely ordered in all ways. In this room is found a picture of the complete cycle of the redemption of man. This is realized in the following words…
33 (con’t) Then you shall bring the ark of the Testimony in there,
The veil, at this specific point in the tabernacle and under the curtains, is the partition behind which the Ark of the Testimony is to be brought. It is into this spot, marking out the perfection of Divine order, which is…
33 (con’t) behind the veil.
The veil, of which every detail points to Christ, is to be the dividing marker for the Ark of the Testimony. Upon it are the cherubs which are pointing east. Behind the veil there is Paradise restored. Before the veil is guarded access. The implication is that there is a fracture between the two. There is cruelty and rigor anticipating entry into a place of delight.
33 (con’t) The veil shall be a divider for you between the holy place and the Most Holy.
The first time that the word qodesh or “holy” was used was in Exodus 3:5 when Moses was told to take off his sandals as he was standing on holy ground. Since then, it has been used six more times in various ways. Now the eighth time it is used is when speaking of the “Holy Place” or ha’qodesh.
The number eight is that of superabundance and new beginnings. The implements in the Holy Place are those which point to the new beginnings in Christ. After that, the ninth and tenth uses of this word are found in this verse as well when speaking of qodesh ha’qodeshim, or the Holy of Holies.
Thus, there is another stamp of the perfection of Divine order in the tenth use of qodesh, or Most Holy, in the Bible. In this place “nothing is wanting; that the number and order are perfect; that the whole cycle is complete” (Bullinger). It is the most marvelous thing to consider how God has structured even the cycle of the use of words in the Bible to show us spiritual truths.
The symbolism of this Veil, its meaning, is explicitly given in the book of Hebrews –
“Therefore, brethren, having boldness to enter the Holiest by the blood of Jesus, 20 by a new and living way which He consecrated for us, through the veil, that is, His flesh, 21 and having a High Priest over the house of God, 22 let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.” Hebrews 10:19-22
The veil is said to be a picture of the flesh of Christ, His body. Only through that can access to God be restored. And this is exactly what the Bible says occurred on a Friday, 11 April 32AD. The record of Luke will suffice for our edification and to stir up our gratitude to God who gave the life of His Son for us –
“Now it was about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour. 45 Then the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was torn in two. 46 And when Jesus had cried out with a loud voice, He said, “Father, ‘into Your hands I commit My spirit.’” Having said this, He breathed His last.” Luke 23:44-46
The barrier to Eden was removed; the Paradise which was lost was restored, and intimate fellowship between God and man which had ended with the coming of our sin was again made possible through the tearing of the Veil, which is the body of our Lord Jesus Christ. The debt was paid, the anger was poured out, and propitiation was realized through His death. Behold, He makes all things new.
34 You shall put the mercy seat upon the ark of the Testimony in the Most Holy.
If Christ’s body is the Veil, then the Mercy Seat is a picture of where Christ’s body was lain. The Mercy Seat is where the blood evidenced the death of the animal in the Old Testament; it is where the blood evidenced the death of Christ in the New. There between the cherubs on the mercy seat, propitiation was found. This is seen in John’s gospel –
“But Mary stood outside by the tomb weeping, and as she wept she stooped down and looked into the tomb. 12 And she saw two angels in white sitting, one at the head and the other at the feet, where the body of Jesus had lain.” John 20:11, 12
Just as the animal’s blood was given as a temporary propitiation for the sins of Israel, year by year on the Day of Atonement, so Christ’s blood was given as a one-time, permanent propitiation for our sins on what the Day of Atonement only looked forward to. This is again explained in Hebrews –
“But Christ came as High Priest of the good things to come, with the greater and more perfect tabernacle not made with hands, that is, not of this creation. 12 Not with the blood of goats and calves, but with His own blood He entered the Most Holy Place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption. 13 For if the blood of bulls and goats and the ashes of a heifer, sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies for the purifying of the flesh, 14 how much more shall the blood of Christ, who through the eternal Spirit offered Himself without spot to God, cleanse your conscience from dead works to serve the living God? 15 And for this reason He is the Mediator of the new covenant, by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions under the first covenant, that those who are called may receive the promise of the eternal inheritance.” Hebrews 9:11-15
The placing of the Mercy Seat upon the Ark of the Testimony is to show that Christ had fulfilled the law. Under His blood, meaning His death, the law was thus annulled. It is the shedding of His blood which sealed the fulfillment of the Old Covenant, and it is what brought in the New Covenant.
Access for those who believe is unconditionally granted. For those who don’t, they remain outside the veil and cut off from the promises which are found in Christ, and in Him alone. However, there is still something calling to them…
35 You shall set the table outside the veil, and the lampstand across from the table on the side of the tabernacle toward the south; and you shall put the table on the north side.
Outside the Holy of Holies is where the table, meaning the Table of Showbread, was to be placed. The table was explained previously, but in short, the bread pictures Christ, the Bread of life. However, that life can only be imparted through His death. Thus, the Table of Showbread is placed outside of the Holy of Holies, on the east side of the veil.
Until He died, we could not obtain access to God through Him. The Lampstand is also outside of the veil. It was also explained in great detail, but in short, it is what illuminates the work of Christ for us. It is what shows us the way in to what would otherwise be a darkened place.
It is placed nokakh, or opposite, the Table of Showbread, on the south side of the tabernacle. In placing it to the south, it would thus illuminate the north, where the table was placed. The work of Christ the Lord, our Bread of Life, is highlighted and illuminated for us to know that He is the One who alone can gain access for us, once again, into Paradise.
Only through partaking of His life can we again become partakers of what His life offers. And in partaking of it, we must also partake of His death. It is all pictured in these implements which are being so meticulously described, one by one, and in logical order.
All things new, this is how it shall be
One step at a time and it will come out as I have planned
A return to paradise will happen, just you wait and see
Yes, I am leading You back to that delightful land
All things new, it is a promise I made long ago
And the journey has been progressing steadily through the years
As the plan has unfolded, there has been tribulation, trial, and woe
And yes, through it all, there have been many shed tears
But these things had to come about; you will someday understand
Without the trials, heaven could never seem so sweet
All things new, marvelous things are coming from My open hand
When once again and forevermore, in a loving bond we shall meet
II. The Screen (verses 36 & 37)
36 “You shall make a screen for the door of the tabernacle,
The translation is incorrect. This is not a door for the tabernacle, or mishkan. Rather, it is a door for the tent, or ohel. This is the access point to the tent which covers the tabernacle, here a screen.
It is now a new item which is directed to be fashioned. It is a masakh. This word is used 25 times, mostly in Exodus and Numbers to describe this item. However, it is used three other times in 2 Samuel, Psalm 105, and Isaiah 22. It is variously translated as a screen, hanging, covering, etc.
In Isaiah, the word is translated as “defense.” Thus, we can get the idea that this is what keeps something out. It covers and therefore impedes access. This screen is said to be made specifically for the door of the tent. Just as access was restricted to the Holy of Holies, so it is also restricted to the tabernacle and the Holy Place itself. Nobody outside would be able to look in beyond the door.
It pictures the life of Christ, hidden from the eyes of those before His coming. He was veiled in the Old Testament Scriptures. They knew a Messiah was coming, but they could not gaze upon what He would be like.
All they would see would be the dull looking coverings of the tent and this veil of separation with its colors and designs. Beyond that, they couldn’t imagine the majestic beauty which lay just behind and under them. Likewise, the people of Israel could never have imagined the majesty which lay ahead of them as they awaited the One who would restore all things.
The light was already shining; the bread was already laid out; the veil was already hanging in anticipation, and the ark lay resting in its perfect cube. But none of this was known to them except in words which failed to describe the marvel they were separated from. The span of time yet future, and even the dullness of the eyes of those who beheld the Person who finally arrived, obscured their perception of the infinite value of Jesus Christ.
Only if the coverings were removed could the people clearly see what was hidden. And only when the veil is lifted in Christ can someone look at the words of the Old Testament and understand what they are actually saying. Otherwise, only darkness and shadows are what is seen.
36 (con’t) woven of blue, purple, and scarlet thread, and fine woven linen,
Like the curtains and the veil, the colors are chosen to picture Christ in all ways. These carry the same signification as they did in both of the other weavings. However, there is a difference to be noted in the making of this one…
36 (con’t) made by a weaver.
maaseh roqem – worked embroider. The word raqam is a verb which means “to variegate color.” Thus it is translated variously as “an embroiderer,” “a weaver,” or “with needlework.” It is used only 9 times in the Bible and eight of them are in Exodus and referring to this work on the tabernacle.
The other time it is used, which is in Psalm 139, it gives us a better hint as to how to interpret it –
“I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
15 My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.” Psalm 139:14, 15
The weaver would skillfully and meticulously fashion this screen according to the instructions of God through Moses. It is, again, a picture of Christ. The colors signify His roles as outlined earlier, but as it comprises the one and only door of the tent leading to the tabernacle, it shows us that the means of coming further is exclusive.
No person could come in another way. As the inner chambers picture Christ’s life and work, the New Testament fulfillment of this door is found in the words of John 10 –
“I am the door. If anyone enters by Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.” John 10:9
Heaven’s pastures are available, but only through One access point. The Door is Christ. But the fact that Christ is there is a point of grace all by itself…
37 And you shall make for the screen five pillars of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold;
Unlike the veil which was hung from four pillars, for this door, there were to be five of them. They are of the same material as the others, acacia or shittim overlaid with gold. And the materials carry the same signification once again – the divine/human natures of Christ. But this time, there were five.
And so, once again, we need to go to Bullinger and determine the meaning of five –
“Five is four plus one (4+1). We have had hitherto the three persons of the Godhead, and their manifestation in creation. Now we have a further revelation of a People called out from mankind, redeemed and saved, to walk with God from earth to heaven. Hence, Redemption follows creation. Inasmuch as in consequence of the fall of man creation came under the curse and was “made subject to vanity,” therefore man and creation must be redeemed. Thus we have:
These are the five great mysteries, and five is therefore the number of GRACE.”
As a testament to what lay inside behind the screen, five pillars, indicating Grace, held it up. Every single detail of the tent and the tabernacle, including all that is inside of it, is of grace. There were five bars on all three other sides – Grace. And there are five pillars on this side- Grace. It is all about God’s grace in Christ. The Lord could have destroyed Adam; he allowed him to live; Grace.
He could have wiped out the whole world, but Noah found grace in His sight. He could have left Abraham in Ur, worshipping gods of wood and of stone, but by grace He called him out. Each step of the way, grace was bestowed. The tabernacle is a picture. It was never intended to be a permanent residence, nor a permanent point of meeting.
Instead, it was simply a picture of the grace to come. The doorway is a testimony to the grace of God in Christ. Five pillars suspended the screen; grace established and upheld the work of Christ. They are, in essence, the grace of God in Christ.
37 (con’t) their hooks shall be gold,
Like the hooks of the veil, these are to be of solid gold as well. In these five vavehem or “hooks” is a picture similar to the four which held the veil. Those four represented the four gospels; however these five would represent all five of the New Testament books of history – the gospels plus Acts.
As the four gospels are a witness to the work of Christ in connecting the Old Testament with the New, adding Acts to them gives a picture of the new life to be found in Christ once inside the screen. They are what tie together the work of Christ and the understanding of that work.
The tabernacle and the tent are working outwards from the Ark, not the other way around. Each step outward means a greater need is realized in order to gain access. And again, there is a picture in the numbers. There are five hooks or vav’s. Each vav represents the number six. Therefore 5×6 = 30. Bullinger explains the number –
“Thirty being 3 x 10, denotes in a higher degree the perfection of Divine order, as marking the right moment.” EW Bullinger
In other words, the moment of grace is the right moment. Paul explains it in 2 Corinthians –
“We then, as workers together with Him also plead with you not to receive the grace of God in vain. 2 For He says:
‘In an acceptable time I have heard you,
And in the day of salvation I have helped you.’
Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” 2 Corinthians 6:1, 2
Each item that is described by God for Moses to construct is simply filled with information relevant to the redemptive process of man.
*37 (fin) and you shall cast five sockets of bronze for them.
Unlike the sockets for the pillars which held up the veil, these are not silver. Instead, they are bronze. The difference is that these sockets do not signify redemption, as it were. Rather, they signify judgment. The word for “bronze” is nekhosheth.
This word refers to copper and its alloys. The metals, whether copper, bronze, or brass, get their color from the copper which along with gold is a metal which possesses a natural color other than silver. The color of bronze symbolizes judgment.
This judgment can be negative, such as in the case of bronze fetters being worn by those who have been sentenced for a crime, or in a pictorial judgment such as in Deuteronomy, where the punishment for disobeying the Lord is described as the heavens being bronze. It is a picture of rainless skies, heat, and anguish.
However, the judgment can also be one of purification and justification. This is seen throughout the Bible as well. In this bronze, there would be both significations. The first is for those who remain outside of the tent. They can only anticipate negative divine judgment in return for their sins.
However, for those who receive the grace of God in Christ, they can expect God’s positive divine judgment of their sins through Christ’s work. The picture is there, and it calls out from the pillars, awaiting any who would receive God’s mercy and find His grace.
And so, as we close today, having looked into the astonishing pictures of Christ to come in tangible, actual implements constructed by Moses at the instruction of the Lord, we need to evaluate our own position in relation to Him. Have we received the judgment on our sins pictured here?
Have we passed through the door, which is Christ? Have we come to the veil and received the gift of His torn body, passing through it into the heavenly realm and restored access to God? If you haven’t, then only sorrowful judgment remains. Please, please receive the work of Jesus Christ.
His body was torn just for you. The veil was rent asunder in order to restore you once again to full and complete fellowship with God. Call on Jesus; be reconciled to God through His shed blood; and you too will be returned to the land of delight that was lost so long ago. Call on Christ today…
Closing Verse: “This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the Presence behind the veil, 20 where the forerunner has entered for us, even Jesus, having become High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.” Hebrews 6:19, 20
Next Week: Exodus 27:1-8 A place for propitiation when we falter… (The Brazen Altar) (74th Exodus Sermon)
The Lord has you exactly where He wants you. He has a good plan and purpose for you. Even if a deep ocean lies ahead of You, He can part the waters and lead you through it on dry ground. So follow Him and trust Him and He will do marvelous things for you and through you.
The Veil and the Screen
You shall make a veil
Of blue, purple, and scarlet thread you will entwine
And fine woven linen
It shall be woven with cherubim of an artistic design
You shall hang it upon the four pillars
Of acacia wood overlaid with gold
Their hooks shall be gold, upon four sockets of silver
It shall be constructed just as to you I have told
And you shall hang the veil from the clasps
Then you shall bring the ark of the Testimony too
In there, behind the veil
The veil shall be a divider for you
Between the holy place and the Most Holy
This is where the veil is intended to be
You shall put the mercy seat, so shall it be
Upon the ark of the Testimony in the Most Holy
You shall set the table outside the veil
And the lampstand across from the table, you see
On the side of the tabernacle toward the south
And you shall put the table on the north side; so shall it be
You shall make a screen for the door of the tabernacle
Woven of blue, purple, and scarlet thread, these three
And fine woven linen
Made by a weaver is how it is intended to be
And you shall make for the screen
Five pillars of acacia wood
And overlay them with gold
Let these instructions be clearly understood
Their hooks shall be gold
And you shall cast five sockets of bronze for them
Now these instructions to you have been told
The details are so fine, each tells a marvelous story
Of the coming of Christ and the things that He will do
Every bit of it tells us of His splendid glory
He the Holy One who is ever faithful and true
Found in Him is grace and life; found in Him is God’s mercy too
The heavy burdens we have carried are lifted off through the Lord
Great and marvelous things He had done for me and you
And a record of them is kept for us to read in His sacred word
Oh God, how You are so very good to us!
How we rejoice in the things that You have done!
Through Your marvelous grace, You have sent Jesus!
And through His shed blood, our victory is won!
For this, O God, we shall ever sing Your praise
For ages upon ages… Yes! Even for eternal days
Hallelujah and Amen…