Notes: March 15, 2008 – Exodus 40

A year after the exodus from Egypt, Israel erects the completed tabernacle and anoints a priesthood.

I.  God commands Moses to set up the tabernacle (Exodus 40:1-15)

II. Moses obeys God’s command to set up the tabernacle (Exodus 40:16-33)

III. The glory of God, seen as a cloud covering the structure, filled the tabernacle (Exodus 40:34-38)

Meditation Points:

  1. The planning and construction of the tabernacle were not “busy work” to keep the nomadic Israelites occupied along the way. The expense and labor were not in vain. God’s visual illustration of salvation and worship was to be displayed before them daily.  Should our consideration of salvation and the worship of God be any less before our eyes?
  2. How did Israel worship God before the tabernacle?  What did Israel know of God’s holiness, justice, and mercy before the tabernacle? Was there any concept of sacrifice and redemption before the tabernacle? With so much about God before them, one can imagine that they would be glad not to have lived in previous generations.  Are we glad that we live in the New Testament era and that we have a much clearer picture, albeit not literal and visible, of God and true worship?
  3. Moses, who had been with God so often in the past year, was unable to enter the tabernacle when God filled the place with His glory. No man can stand before God uninvited or unredeemed-not even Moses.
  4. When the cloud moved, Israel moved; when the cloud stayed in place, Israel remained camped where they were. Is our understanding of the will of God any less acute?
  5. The presence of God was known by a cloud by day and a fire by night, as it had been from the beginning of the exodus. We should be comforted to know that God never slumbers or sleeps (Psalm 121:4) or takes His phone off the hook, that He will never leave us nor forsake us (Hebrews 13:5).
  6. Does not God’s entering the tabernacle and abiding there indicate His approval?  Who does not want to hear Him say, “Well, done, thou good and faithful servant”(Matthew 25:21, 23)?