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Biddulph Bible Class Thursday, pm 18th September 2008

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Place: Biddulph AOG.           Date: Thursday, pm 18th September 2008.

Text: John 1:17.                     Theme: The Tabernacle, Part 5.

Introduction:                          Reading: John 1:17

          “For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.”

The Showbread Table (Exodus 25:23-30)

Now we can pass out of the outer court and through the door of the tabernacle and enter the holy place. The Showbread Table was placed on the right-hand side of the Holy Place, the North side. The priest had at his right hand the table of showbread, also referred to as the table of the presence. It was made of acacia wood overlaid with pure gold.

Its size was 2 cubits or 1 metre (3 feet) in length,

X 1 cubit or ½ metre (1/2 feet) in breadth,

X 1 1/2 cubits or ¾ metre (2 1/4 feet) in height.

Around the table was a border crown of gold and then a little further in, on the table top, an additional border crown which would hold the contents in place. The table had FOUR corners and FOUR rings on the corners, with FOUR legs, and two gold plated poles were inserted through golden rings attached to the legs for transporting.

It was made from acacia wood overlaid with gold, speaking of the two-fold nature of Jesus Christ. Jesus was born of Mary (Son of Man) as a genuine human being, yet conceived by the Holy Spirit and called the Son of God, “And the angel answered and said to her, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Highest will overshadow you; therefore, also, that Holy One who is to be born will be called the Son of God” Luke 1:35. Truly man overlaid with God.

The Showbread Table had an outer crown made of gold, unlike the Burnt Offering Altar. Back there in the Outer Court, all was about washing, judgement and death at the bronze-coated Laver and Burnt Offering Altar. Here in the Holy Place, all is about life, food, light and fragrant incense.

At the Showbread Table (and at the Golden Incense Altar) in the Holy Place we see Jesus “we see Jesus who was made a little lower than the angels, because of the suffering of death” in the Outer Court, but now “crowned with glory and honour” Hebrews 2:9.

The wood and the gold of the table speak of Christ:

1.     The wood. Is a striking type of Christ Jesus? He was fresh and strong, and his fruit brought healing to those that came to Him. His words were the strength of those that heard Him; Jesus was the food (bread of life) for all.

2.     The Gold. Speaks of the deity of Christ Jesus. Gold never rusts nor tarnishes; it maintains its shine, when all other metals dull. Every other man BUT Christ has been a disappointment. Moses sinned; Elijah run away, Abraham did it his way, David and Solomon both failed in their kingship. YET Christ shines above ALL MEN!

Jesus was the ALMIGHTY GOD, yet wept has a man over the grave of Lazarus, BUT the God-man commanded him to arise from the grave!

Notice, again the crown that held the bread, and the crown around the table, a double crown. See we worship at the table of the King of all kings, and the Lord of all lords. This table must speak to you of the table of the Lord, as it does for me.

But you may say, “There is no cup there!” YES! But now we are INSIDE the tabernacle, our sins have been dealt with outside at the altar and laver, NOW we are INSIDE the Holy place in the presence of the Holy ONE who is the bread of life to us!

The outer crown speaks of separation; we are not of this world, but His!

This is the first mention of the word “table” (communion and fellowship) in the Bible.

The Table had FOUR corners, FOUR rings and FOUR legs, with TWO crowns, and had FOUR vessels on it with the bread. There were FOUR vessels of pure gold on the table with the bread:

Dishes (bread plates).

Pans or Spoons (to sprinkle frankincense).

Pitchers (for liquid offerings).

Bowls (vessels containing the frankincense).

The purpose of the golden table was to hold 12 cakes of bread made of fine flour. They were placed there in two rows of six, each loaf representing one of the tribes of Israel (Leviticus 24:8). This bread is sometimes referred to as being the 'showbread' because its literal meaning is 'bread of the face', i.e. bread set out before the face or presence of God.

The loaves of unleavened bread remind us of the Lord Jesus saying “I am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall never hunger” John 6:35. This unlimited supply of heavenly food, fresh every week, is to be the portion of the priests.  Jesus is the living Bread, that came down from heaven to give us His life, life IN us (John 6:51, 53).

The Showbread is also called the Bread of the Presence. To partake of Christ as the Bread of Life, we (the priests) must be in the presence of God, who is Spirit, John 4:24God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” The Showbread is for all the priests, in fellowship with one another in God's presence.

A. Every seventh (Sabbath) day, fresh hot loaves were provided by Aaron. The priests were entitled to eat the old loaves while standing (note: no chair, you cannot be seated in the presence of a Holy God) in the Holy Place.

B. The frankincense that was removed each week was as a special oblation (offering) to God.

C. 12 loaves were the same material, size, and weight (no partiality).

D. According to Leviticus 22, if a priest was unclean he could not eat of the showbread.

E. According to tradition 8 priests held hands as they changed the bread, and passed it for fellowship.

E. They were to be holy because of the bread

Leviticus 21:6 “They shall be holy to their God and not profane the name of their God, for they offer the offerings of the LORD made by fire, and the bread of their God; therefore they shall be holy.”


No Sitting Down

For although the bread was on a table, no priest could ever be seated at that table or anywhere else in the tabernacle.

Priests always stood while they carried out their duties. There was no place to be seated, no provision for rest in this pattern of worship and no suggestion that their task was ever completed.

Only in the work of Christ as our great high priest on behalf of his people was the work ever finished. His sacrifice was fully effective and was a completed work. No priest could ever be seated but after his great cry, “It is finished,” Jesus Christ left the altar of Calvary and sat down at the right hand of God.

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