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Offerings for the Tabernacle


The L ord said to Moses: 2Tell the Israelites to take for me an offering; from all whose hearts prompt them to give you shall receive the offering for me. 3This is the offering that you shall receive from them: gold, silver, and bronze, 4blue, purple, and crimson yarns and fine linen, goats’ hair, 5tanned rams’ skins, fine leather, acacia wood, 6oil for the lamps, spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrant incense, 7onyx stones and gems to be set in the ephod and for the breastpiece. 8And have them make me a sanctuary, so that I may dwell among them. 9In accordance with all that I show you concerning the pattern of the tabernacle and of all its furniture, so you shall make it.

The Ark of the Covenant

10 They shall make an ark of acacia wood; it shall be two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high. 11You shall overlay it with pure gold, inside and outside you shall overlay it, and you shall make a molding of gold upon it all around. 12You shall cast four rings of gold for it and put them on its four feet, two rings on the one side of it, and two rings on the other side. 13You shall make poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold. 14And you shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, by which to carry the ark. 15The poles shall remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be taken from it. 16You shall put into the ark the covenant that I shall give you.

17 Then you shall make a mercy seat of pure gold; two cubits and a half shall be its length, and a cubit and a half its width. 18You shall make two cherubim of gold; you shall make them of hammered work, at the two ends of the mercy seat. 19Make one cherub at the one end, and one cherub at the other; of one piece with the mercy seat you shall make the cherubim at its two ends. 20The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings. They shall face one to another; the faces of the cherubim shall be turned toward the mercy seat. 21You shall put the mercy seat on the top of the ark; and in the ark you shall put the covenant that I shall give you. 22There I will meet with you, and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim that are on the ark of the covenant, I will deliver to you all my commands for the Israelites.

The Table for the Bread of the Presence

23 You shall make a table of acacia wood, two cubits long, one cubit wide, and a cubit and a half high. 24You shall overlay it with pure gold, and make a molding of gold around it. 25You shall make around it a rim a handbreadth wide, and a molding of gold around the rim. 26You shall make for it four rings of gold, and fasten the rings to the four corners at its four legs. 27The rings that hold the poles used for carrying the table shall be close to the rim. 28You shall make the poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold, and the table shall be carried with these. 29You shall make its plates and dishes for incense, and its flagons and bowls with which to pour drink offerings; you shall make them of pure gold. 30And you shall set the bread of the Presence on the table before me always.

The Lampstand

31 You shall make a lampstand of pure gold. The base and the shaft of the lampstand shall be made of hammered work; its cups, its calyxes, and its petals shall be of one piece with it; 32and there shall be six branches going out of its sides, three branches of the lampstand out of one side of it and three branches of the lampstand out of the other side of it; 33three cups shaped like almond blossoms, each with calyx and petals, on one branch, and three cups shaped like almond blossoms, each with calyx and petals, on the other branch—so for the six branches going out of the lampstand. 34On the lampstand itself there shall be four cups shaped like almond blossoms, each with its calyxes and petals. 35There shall be a calyx of one piece with it under the first pair of branches, a calyx of one piece with it under the next pair of branches, and a calyx of one piece with it under the last pair of branches—so for the six branches that go out of the lampstand. 36Their calyxes and their branches shall be of one piece with it, the whole of it one hammered piece of pure gold. 37You shall make the seven lamps for it; and the lamps shall be set up so as to give light on the space in front of it. 38Its snuffers and trays shall be of pure gold. 39It, and all these utensils, shall be made from a talent of pure gold. 40And see that you make them according to the pattern for them, which is being shown you on the mountain.

23. Thou shalt also make a table. The sentiment of a certain ancient bishop 134134     This was Acacius, bishop of Amida, who sold the treasures of the Church for the redemption of 7000 Persian slaves, who were perishing by famine in the hands of some Roman soldiers. Vide Socrates, lib. 7-121, quoted in Bingham, book 5-100; 6-6 ̔Ο Θεός ἡμῶν ὔτε δίσκων ὄυτε ποτηρίων χρὠβει· οὔτε γὰρ ἐσθίει, ὔτε πίνει, ἐπεὶ μὴ προσδεής ἐστιν, seem to be the words referred to by C is deservedly praised, who, when he sold the sacred vessels in the time of a famine, to relieve the distress of the poor, thus excused himself to the Church: “Our God, who does not eat or drink, has no need of patens and chalices;” and yet this seems little in accordance with this His command, that bread should be offered to Him. I answer, that if, under that pretext, the bishop had stripped the sacred table of its ornaments under the Law, he would have spoken unseasonably, what, under the Gospel, he spoke piously and wisely; because at the coming of Christ the shadows of the Law ceased. But God would then have the loaves, which were offered to Him, deposited among the golden dishes and censers, and spoons placed with them, not that He had need of meat and drink, but that He might prescribe the duty of temperance to His people, by deigning to have His table among them; for, when they ate of the same wheat, of which the sacred loaves were made, they were reminded by that symbol that their meat and drink was to be taken, as if they sat before God, and were His guests. Finally, they were taught that the food, by which man’s life is sustained, is in a manner sacred to God; that thus they might be contented with simple and sober food, and might not profane the things which were dedicated to His service. Although, therefore, this offering might appear to be gross and rude, yet it had a just object, i.e., that believers might acknowledge that God presided over their tables, because the loaves were presented in the temple before God in the name of all the people. The same was the intention of the first-fruits, in which the produce of the whole year was consecrated; that even in their feasts they might cherish a recollection of God, who fed them as a father does his children. They are called “the bread of faces” 135135     A.V., shew-bread. “In Hebrew called bread of faces or presence; because they were to be set before the face, or in the presence of God continually. The Hebrew doctors give also another reason, because every cake was made square, and so had as it were many faces.” — Ainsworth, in loco. by Moses, because they always appeared before God, in which sense the Greeks called them the bread προθέσεως, because they were always in His presence; for it was not permitted them to remove the precious offering, until others were substituted in their place. I now pass over many points, because what I now omit will soon have to be treated of.

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