The Agora
Bible Commentary

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40

Exodus 27

Exo 27:1

Exo 27: "The divine Law outlined the ritual that was required to bring the people into relationship with God. This revolved around the great tabernacle in the midst of the Ecclesia of the Wilderness. The first object encountered when entering the tabernacle was the Brazen Altar, just inside the entrance. Every element of the altar had a reflection in the great antitypical Altar, the Lord Jesus Christ. Exo 27 reveals: (1) The altar of burnt offering: vv 1-8. (2) The court of the tabernacle: vv 9-19. (3) Oil for the light: vv 20,21.

"The common Israelite found a place in the tabernacle, through the oil he provided for the Lamp. This was the finest. All impurities were removed, and the olives were broken to pieces and crushed that the oil might be extracted. So the ecclesia was taught the principle of sacrifice and illumination -- the hearing of the Word and its performance in life" (GEM).

The position of the altar of burnt offering, directly in front of the entrance to the tabernacle, teaches plainly that no man may approach unto God except via the shedding of blood, in sacrifice.

The bronze altar symbolizes Christ in sacrificial manifestation: "We have an altar from which those who minister at the tabernacle have no right to eat" (Heb 13:10).

All who touch this altar are made holy (Exo 29:37). Correspondingly, all who touch Christ in baptism -- coming into contact with his blood by being "crucified with him" -- are thereby made holy (Rom 6:1-3).

Thus, two perfect squares in tabernacle (each 50 cubits square): the mercy seat in center of one half; the altar of burnt offering in center of other half.

Exo 27:2

Was the altar supported by 4 cherub-figures, as was the laver in temple (1Ki 7:25)? If so, then the winged ox figures would have had horns projecting above the altar. And the horns = a 7th "city of refuge" (1Ki 1:50; 2:28).

Exo 27:3

FIREPANS: For the transporting of the sacred fire.

Exo 27:4

Vv 4,5: The frame of altar was prob erected around large unhewn stone(s), with an insulating layer of earth (cp Exo 20:24-26). Also, an inclined plane (of earth?) prob on south side (Exo 20:26).

Also, a bronze network (1 1/2 cubits high), prob a platform all around altar, to permit easy access to sacrifices.

Exo 27:5

On east side of altar, a small opening for air circulation, and to remove ashes (Lev 1:16).

Exo 27:7

These poles would prob need to be replaced from time to time, because of continuous heat of altar fires.

Exo 27:9

Vv 9,10: The wall of white linen around about the Tabernacle. This white wall is a symbol of righteousness or justification. The wall would remind the Israelites that they could only worship God acceptably through the righteousness which comes of faith. The linen wall was hung on pillars and sockets of brass (speaking of flesh purified by trial of fire) and was topped by silver (sig our redemption in Christ).

FINELY TWISTED LINEN: Sym righteousness of justification (Rom 5:1; 10:17; Heb 11:1,6). We may worship God only through righteousness of faith.

Exo 27:10

Vv 10-17: The bases prob had sharp points, to pierce ground and provide stability. There were also cords and pegs/pins for this purpose (Exo 35:18; 38:20; 39:40; Num 3:26,37).

Exo 27:16

ENTRANCE: Sym Christ (Joh 10:9; 14:6). We enter holy place only through Christ.

LINEN: White linen, a marked ct with brown and black goatskins of people's tents.

Exo 27:20

CLEAR OIL: No quantity was specified; thus, without measure (Joh 3:34).

All the Israelites were to bring oil for the lamps. So it is the responsibility of each member of the ecclesia to contribute to the general light of the whole. If the light went out, then the priest walked in darkness!

Previous Index Next