Answer : ____________________
NOTE: God's way, or plan, of salvation was revealed in the earthly sanctuary. Everything in the sanctuary, or connected with its services, was a symbol of something Jesus would do in saving us. We cannot fully comprehend the plan of salvation until we understand the sanctuary and its services. It was a huge, 3-D object lesson explaining the process of salvation.
NOTE: The sanctuary blueprints, with full specifications for its construction, were given to Moses by God on Mount Sinai (Hebrews 8:5). This was to be a microcosm of God's genuine sanctuary in heaven.
The first sanctuary, or tabernacle, was an elegant, tent-type structure (15 feet by 45 feet, based on an 18-inch cubit). There the supernatural presence of God dwelt and special services were conducted. The walls were made of upright acacia wood boards set in silver sockets and overlaid with gold (Exodus 26:15-19, 29). The roof was made of four layers of coverings--linen, goats' hair, rams' skins dyed red, and badgers' skins (verses 1, 7, 14). It had two rooms: the holy place (15 feet by 30 feet), and the most holy place (15 feet by 15 feet.). Refer often to the above diagram as you review this lesson.
NOTE: : The altar of burnt offerings (Exodus 27:1-8) is where animals were sacrificed. It was located in the courtyard just outside the entrance of the sanctuary. This altar represented the cross of Christ. The sacrificial animal represented Jesus, the ultimate sacrifice (John 1:29). The laver (Exodus 30:17-21; 38:8) was a large wash basin of brass located between the entrance of the sanctuary and the altar of burnt offerings. There priests washed their hands and feet before entering the sanctuary or offering a sacrifice. The water represented baptism, cleansing from sin, and the new birth.
NOTE: The table of shewbread (Exodus 25:23-30) represented Jesus, the living bread (John 6:51). The seven-branch candlestick (Exodus 25:31-40) represented Jesus, the light of the world (John 9:5; 1:9). The lamps of oil symbolized the Holy Spirit (Zechariah 4:1-6; Revelation 4:5). The altar of incense (Exodus 30:1-8) represented the prayers of God's people (Hebrews 5:7).
NOTE: The only object in the most holy place (Exodus 25:10-22) was the ark of the testimony, a chest of acacia wood overlaid with gold. Atop the chest were two angels made of solid gold. The cover of the ark was called the mercy seat (Exodus 25:17-22), where God's presence dwelt. This spot symbolized God's throne in heaven, which is likewise located between two angels (Psalms 80:1, Isaiah 6:1, 2).
NOTE: God wrote His covenant with His own finger on two tables of stone, and they were placed inside the ark. The mercy seat was above them, which signified that as long as God's people confessed and forsook their sins (Proverbs 28:13), mercy would be extended to them through the blood that was sprinkled on the mercy seat by the priest (Leviticus 16:15, 16). That blood represented the blood shed by Jesus to bring all people forgiveness and cleansing (Matthew 26:28; Hebrews 9:22).
NOTE: Sacrificing animals was necessary to help people understand that without the blood of Jesus shed on the cross, there could be no forgiveness of sin. The shocking truth is that the punishment for sin is death. Since all of us have sinned, we should all die--and we would have died, except that Jesus gave His perfect life by dying in our behalf to pay for our sins. The sinner brought his own sacrificial animal and slew it with his own hand (Leviticus 1:4, 5). It was bloody and shocking, impressing people with the solemn truth that sin caused Jesus' death. Thus, they looked forward to the cross for salvation, while we look back to the cross for salvation. There is no other source of salvation.
NOTE: When the sinner placed his hands on the head of the animal and confessed his sins, the sins were symbolically transferred from the sinner to it. Thus, the animal became guilty and had to pay the death penalty. This represented Jesus bearing our sins.
NOTE: The priest sprinkled some of the blood before the veil inside the sanctuary, thus symbolically transferring the sin from the people to the sanctuary. When Jesus ascended to heaven after His death, He offered His blood (as did the high priest of old) to show that our sins are forgiven when confessed in Jesus' name (1 John 1:9).
NOTE: Jesus serves as the sacrifice for our sins and as our heavenly high priest, thus accomplishing two miraculous things for us. The first is a complete life change called the new birth, with all the sins of the past forgiven (John 3:3-6; Romans 3:25). The second is power to live right in the present and future (Titus 2:14; Philippians 2:13). These two things make a person righteous, which means a right relationship exists between that person and God. There is no way for a person to become righteous by works (his own efforts), because righteousness comes from grace that only Jesus can supply (Acts 4:12). This is righteousness by faith, which is the only true form of righteousness.
NOTE: Jesus is ready to fulfill all of these glorious promises in your life. Are you ready? Kneel down now and ask Him to take control of your life. He will not fail you.
NOTE: Yes, our role is to turn our hearts and will over to Jesus and permit Him to rule. We must trust Him with full control of our lives. Many believe that Jesus will take all who merely profess His name to heaven, regardless of their conduct. But this deadly belief is not true (Matthew 7:14).
NOTE: The day of atonement was a solemn day of judgment that took place in Israel once each year (Leviticus 23:27). Every sin had to be confessed and forsaken. Those who refused were on that very day cut off forever from the camp of Israel (verse 29). On that day, two goats were selected. One was the Lord's goat and the other was the scapegoat, which represented Satan (Leviticus 16:7, 8). The Lord's goat was slain and offered for the sins of the people (verse 9). Its blood was taken into the most holy place and sprinkled upon and before the mercy seat (verse 14). Only on this special judgment day did the high priest enter the most holy place. The sprinkled blood (representing Jesus' sacrifice) was accepted by God, and the confessed sins of the people were transferred from the sanctuary to the high priest. He then transferred these confessed sins to the scapegoat, which was led into the wilderness and abandoned (verses 16, 20, 22). In this manner, the sanctuary was symbolically cleansed from the sins of the people, which had been transferred there by the sprinkled blood all throughout the previous year.
NOTE: Yes! That day's services pointed to the blotting out of sin by Jesus, our high priest in the heavenly sanctuary. He is there to mediate for His people and stands ready to blot out the sins of all who will exercise faith in His shed blood. The ancient day of atonement, like modern Israel's Yom Kippur, foreshadowed the final atonement to be made for planet Earth. The final atonement leads to the final judgment, which will forever settle the sin question in the life of every individual. Our next lesson shows how God set the date for the heavenly judgment to begin. Exciting!