Our cell leader brought a toy model of Moses’ tabernacle to our meeting. The plan was to read Exodus 26 and recreate the model using the instructions there.
We laid the parts out. Curtains, boards, pillars, the Ark of the Covenant, the Mercy Seat, the stone tablets, Aaron’s rod, the pot of manna, the Lampstand, the Table of Showbread, the Altar of incense, the Altar of burnt offering, the golden basin, 3 bulls, 3 sheep, 3 lambs, 3 priests, 1 high priest. All constructed to a scale of 90:1.
We had a good time laughing at ourselves struggling to put the model together. We tried our best to understand the descriptions in the bible as we needed to identify the various important items accurately. The lampstand (also known as the menorah) is easy to spot. The altars are a different matter. They stumped us as they all have the same design…only the dimensions were different. Victor caught on fast as he could differentiate the altar of burnt offering (Exodus 27:1-8) and the altar of incense after the description was read.
It was a fun way to dig into the word of God. We didn’t just skim the Bible but attempted to visualize the word. As Jamie was reading the description of the lampstand (Exodus 25:31-40), I was holding the little model in my hand, tracing the lamp, the branches, the flowers, and the buds as she read each part. One single piece of hammered gold. Imagine the workmanship needed.
When we put the boards of the tabernacle together, they didn’t really fit properly. Then we realised that we were supposed to insert a thin metal rod in the middle of the boards. One rod each for all the 3 sides. Wow, what a difference the metal rods made. The boards lined up so straight and strong. We all thought that God is such a genius.
The model took shape slowly. Most of us got a backache after hovering over the model but we are very happy with our work. This is a small model of a real tabernacle that do not exist anymore. Come to think of it, the real tabernacle is also a model. We know that it describes Jesus; His person and His works.
Jesus is the original
As we round up the meeting, we prayed and asked God to show us how the details of the tabernacle point to Jesus and the truth wrapped in it.