Growing with God: A daily devotional with Tonia Slimm.
Exodus 27:9a (NIV)
“Make a courtyard for the tabernacle.”
Exodus 27:9a (MSG)
“Make a Courtyard for The Dwelling.
“You shall make the court of the tabernacle.” -AMPLIFIED
The next set of instructions given by God to Moses in Exodus 27 was the directions for building the courtyard for the Tabernacle. The people would be allowed to enter this outer courtyard, but only the priests could enter the area beyond and only the high priest could enter the Holy of Holies. (Remember. there were to be three sections: the courtyard, the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies.)
To enter the courtyard one must go through the gate, and there was only one of them. “On the east end, toward the sunrise, the courtyard shall also be fifty cubits wide. Curtains fifteen cubits long are to be on one side of the entrance, with three posts and three bases…” -Exodus 27:13-14 (NIV)
This gate was quite large, 50 cubits wide, allowing many people to come in at once. It was located in the center of the cloth wall facing toward the east. The gate, itself, was made of a curtain of finely twisted linen; using colors in blue, purple and scarlet. The colors themselves were chosen by God and they represented particular things. Blue stood for God’s righteousness and heaven. Purple stood for royalty, judgement, justice and God’s jealousy. Scarlet, or red, stood for blood, sacrifice and sin.
There was to be only one gate, and this was important; for there is only one way to God, it is through Jesus Christ. The Apostle John shared these words of Jesus, “Jesus emphasized, “I can guarantee this truth: I am the gate for the sheep. All who came before I did were thieves or robbers. However, the sheep didn’t respond to them. I am the gate. Those who enter the sheep pen through me will be saved. They will go in and out of the sheep pen and find food. A thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy. But I came so that my sheep will have life and so that they will have everything they need.” -John 10:7-10 (GW)
Let us notice something of significance in the placing of this gate; it was to face the east, toward the sunrise. (The Temple, once it was built also faced the east.) Why did the Tabernacle face east? Ezekiel gives us a good idea in his book. “Then he (the angel) led me to the gate, the gate that faces toward the east. And behold, the glory and brilliance of the God of Israel was coming from the way of the east; and His voice was like the sound of many waters, and the earth shone with His glory. And it was like the appearance of the vision which I saw, like the vision I saw when He came to destroy the city. And the visions were like the vision I saw beside the River Chebar [near Babylon]; and I fell face downward. And the glory and brilliance of the Lord entered the temple by way of the gate facing toward the east. Then the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner courtyard; and behold, the glory and brilliance of the Lord filled the temple.” -Ezekiel 43:1-5 (AMP)
Jesus, Himself, told us that when He returned to this Earth He would appear in the eastern skies. “For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes as far as the west, so will be the coming [in glory] of the Son of Man [everyone will see Him clearly].” -Matthew 24:27 (AMP)
It is quite amazing how much the Tabernacle is a reflection of Jesus and Heaven. Something that we need to always remember is that God has His purposes for everything. Jesus is the One Gate to the Father, the colors that represent royalty, sacrifice, and God’s righteousness. Even the fact that the Tabernacle faced the East; where our Savior will appear again one day soon had a purpose in God’s plan. Once again we see that He is a God of the details. Hallelujah! Nothing is left to chance with our All-Knowing God!
God, it amazes me in knowing that you are so detail oriented. Nothing is left to chance with you. The more I learn of your detail oriented nature, the more I trust in you and have confidence that nothing happens by accident in my life. You are the Omniscient One who takes care of your Creation like a loving Father; thank you for being exactly who you are. Open my spiritual eyes to see your hand at work in the World around me. God, you are fantastic!