Our passage presents to us a series of contrasts. Things we’ve read of before in Exodus are now very different. And within our text, there is a contrast between the people of Israel, the object of God’s wrath, and Moses, the man of God’s friendship. So the passage shines a light on what sin does, and what it does to the humankind’s relationship with their Creator.
This week, the Lord God proceeds in ch 26 to discuss the construction of the Tabernacle itself. Remember that tabernacle means dwelling place. In fact, that word for dwelling place is what comes first in the original Hebrew. With that very word, we are reminded again of the very special purpose this tent is given. The tabernacle is God’s home. We must keep this before our understanding and affections as we proceed through Exodus 26. As a place of God’s presence, the Tabernacle is a place of grace, It is a home of mercy and covenant love.
Today we move from behind the veil into the larger room of the Tabernacle. In the Holy Place there are three pieces of furniture/ Directly in front of the veil separating the Most Holy Place and the Holy Place is the Altar of Incense;; To the right of the Altar of Incense, on the south side of the Holy Place, was the lampstand. To the left of the Altar of Incense, on the north side of the Holy Place, was the Table. These latter two objects are our focus today.
As God explains how the Tabernacle is to be made, he begins right a the center of the Tabernacle, right at the heart of this holy system, with the Ark of the Covenant, the only piece of furniture in the Most Holy Place within the Tabernacle. By beginning with the Ark, he gives great priority to his presence. This morning, we consider this central object, the Ark of the Covenant.