Friday, April 15, 2011

Importance of the Tabernacle

One very significant fact that I feel compelled to add to my "Importance of The Tabernacle" article, is the one that points out the perpetuality of the Tabernacle and its service for every generation. Let's take a look:

In Exodus 25:8, God gives an explicit command to build him the sanctuary (The Tabernacle).

Compare it to the verses of 2 Samuel 7:1-17 (particularly, 2 Samuel 7:7) and 1 Chronicles 17:1-15 (particularly 1 Chronicles 17:6).

As you can see from the aforementioned verses, The Tabernacle is the ONLY sanctuary, that is directly sanctioned by God Himself. Whereas, the Temple was only approved by God (even though with some degree of reservation) at the request of David, as David's reward for his righteousness, and was not directly sanctioned.

On the other hand, the same verses (and also 1 Kings 5:3) of the Tanakh point out that David, even though he had asked, was not allowed to build the Temple (i.e 1 Chron 17:4). Only his son, Solomon, was given such permission.

Another important conclusion that can be drawn from all the verses mentioned, is that in the original text of Pentateuch, The Tabernacle is referred to as (בית מקדש  שכן ) "The House of Sanctuary of The Presence" (i.e Exod 25:8), whereas the Temple is referred to as (בית מקדש לשמי) "The House for the Sanctuary of The Name" (2 Sam 7:13 and 1 Kings 5:3).

In other words, the Temple was considered only as the place dedicated to the Name of God, whereas the Tabernacle was an actual place where God prefer both His Name and His Presence to dwell. This is very important distinction that is usually played down (if not omitted) in the traditional interpretations.

And last, but not least, this distinction is explicitly underlined in some of the verses of the Pentateuch, such as Exodus 27:21, Leviticus 24:3, Numbers 18:23, e.t.c

So, as you can see, The Tabernacle and its Service WAS and STILL IS the responsibility of EACH generation of the Children of Israel, regardless of the existence of the Temple.

And as I have pointed out on many occasions, without the Tabernacle, existence of the Temple is pointless, if not outright heretical.

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