Worship and Dedication

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 9:7, Numbers 7:1-89, Numbers 8:8-26
Date: 10/17/2009 
Lesson: 3
God ordained the sanctuary to teach the Israelites about Himself, the coming Messiah and proper worship standards.
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Good morning everybody and welcome to sunny Sacramento, California and under the roof of Sacramento central Seventh-day Adventist Church where we're gathered this morning for "central study hour." For those of you who are in the audience, live audience, I want to give you all the very happy--and you're very welcome. And those who are watching on the internet or listening out there somewhere in space, you're also very welcome too. So if you'd like to turn in your hymn books here and if you have a hymn book at home, we're singing 309, "I surrender all," st, 2nd and 4th stanza, "I surrender all." [Music] Well I hope you all surrendered everything to Jesus this morning, because you know Jesus doesn't like things in half measures, and he shouldn't. Can't give him half your heart. It has to be the whole heart.

Isn't that true? So we need to be serious about making that surrender to him. Okay, this song, the previous one rather was for the following people. And I've got things a little back to front, but I'm sure you will forgive me. Dann, leanne and kerwin, heather jessica and denise in australia, stuart mckenzie family in australia, janielle in belize, cheryl, barbara, joe, marilyn and jerome in California, alissia in Canada, diomedes in colombia, flemming in denmark and one from england, anisah, inez, alina and sherace and also in grenada is kayreen, and bob and Paula in Idaho, and Samuel in malawi and carlos in Mexico-- can I get my breath? Would you allow me? Would you indulge me? And also baredu in Minnesota, melissa, adonis and craig in New Jersey, joyann in New York, zida and Michael in Ohio, ralph in Pennsylvania, abel in puerto rico and cacai in thailand. Now is the whole world watching or what? It's amazing, Pastor Doug, what television does.

Anyway, that one was for you. And the following one, "oh I love Jesus," and be turning to number 248, this is for barbara in California, sherace in england, elaine in florida, mabel in honduras, janice and mariscious and georgete in portugal. And by the way, if you'd like a song request here on "central study hour," you can request that by going to www.saccentral.org, and click on the "us" link, or "contact us" link. And you can put in your request. Alright, let's sing The Song.

Enough talking now, 248, "oh I love Jesus," 1, 2, and 3. [Music] Amen. You sang that like you meant it from the heart. That's--praise the Lord. It pleases the Lord when we sing from the hearts.

It just makes him smile. And the angels just rejoice and join with us. Well, this morning our teacher and speaker is Pastor Doug Batchelor, senior pastor here of Sacramento Seventh-day Adventist Church and also the president of Amazing Facts. So before we ask Pastor Doug to come and speak, let's just bow our heads and invite the good Lord's presence. Gracious Father in Heaven, the Sabbath is always such a blessing.

And we thank you on this particular Sabbath, this unique one, they're all unique and special, that we can sing these songs of praise to your glorious, wonderful and most worthy name. And as we come together this morning to open Your Word, we pray that you would anoint Pastor Doug with a spirit of teaching and preaching. And bless him now as he comes to lead out in the study this morning. We thank you for loving us and for hearing our prayers. In the name of Jesus, amen.

Thank you for singing. Pastor Doug, if you would come, we'd appreciate that. Thank you very much. Thank you--hello? We on? There we go. Thank you to our musicians and pastor mike and jessica for leading us in our singing.

I want to welcome everybody here at Sacramento central for our study time. And I want to welcome, of course, the extended class. Always it's amazing to me The Song requests that come in from every time zone of the planet. And it's kind of exciting when you think about it. We had quite a few from australia I noticed.

And I just want to tell our friends in australia, g'day. I'm looking forward to being there. We're going to be doing an evangelistic series in australia from, oh, I think it's about October 24th through November 14. I'll be there for about 4 weeks in just a few weeks. And so by the time this program airs, it will be just a week or two away.

And tell all your friends to come to sydney to the evangelistic meetings that we'll be having there. I look forward to seeing you then. Also want to greet our friends. We have some people scattered all over the country that are members here of central church. But because there is either no church in the area or some other reason they are isolated.

They have joined as online members. And they are members of our family here. I want to welcome the extended members of central church. Some of you might be in that category and you're isolated out there and you can't go to a local church, which is the best thing. But if that's the case, we'd be happy to adopt you.

We do have a process for that. And just go to saccentral.org. And we'll put you in touch with some of the local pastors here. And they do correspond and minister as well as we can through the internet with those members. You know you can listen online.

You can watch studies online. You can get counseling from a pastor online. I always say everything but a potluck and a hug. But anyway, so we try to make it as real as we can. Want to minister to those people that are in those isolated places.

To our lesson now. We're gonna be talking about people--we're in lesson number 3-- "people on the move, the book of Numbers." And we have a free offer. And the offer is "blood behind the veil," written by Joe Crews, "blood behind the veil," offer number 130. If you want a free copy of that, just call the number I'm about to give you. It's 1-866-788-3966.

We'll send it to you for free. And this will help correspond with and give some enhanced material for our study in the book of Numbers. You know, before we get into the lesson, let me just say something. When people talk about the book of Numbers, I dare say that when I were to--if I were to ask you, you know, what books of the Bible have you read the most, some of you might say the Gospel of John, or you might say the book of Romans. Some of you in wanting to read through the Bible, you've gotten through Genesis 10 times, but that's as far as you got.

I don't think there'd be too many people here that would say, "I've read through Numbers many times." Now some of you have read through the Bible several times, and maybe you went through Numbers like that. But Numbers gets a bad rap. People think the book of Numbers is a book filled with Numbers. It does start out with some chronology, but there's a lot of very interesting stories and information in the book of Numbers. And even Numbers can be interesting.

I've got a little amazing fact that I'll share with you to start with. It just came out this week. And I want to thank those of you out there who e-mail Pastor Doug. I get a lot of my Amazing Facts, 'cause friends say, "hey doug, have you seen this?" And I glean a lot of those in our Amazing Facts library and our radio programs. But this came to me this week.

This just happened this week. You might wonder how did the children of Israel multiply from people when they came into Egypt to maybe 1.5 million when they left? Just this week the Israel news released the sad news that grandma rachel krishevsky passed away at 99. And her 1,400 descendents gathered to say farewell to grandma, 1,400 descendents in one life, 1,400. She knew the names of all of them. Let me read this to you.

"The commandment to be fruitful and multiply, the krishevsky family followed quite closely. Last Saturday," one week from today, "the great grandmother, rachel passed away at the age of , leaving behind no less than ,400 children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and even great-great-grandchildren. Krishevsky got married to her cousin, yitzhak, just before turning 19. The couple brought seven sons and four daughters into the world." Almost like job, he had seven sons and three daughters. She had more.

"In accordance with the haredi custom," these are ultra-orthodox jews that believe in the Bible mandate to be "fruitful and multiply," so they had 11. "They brought up their children to see children as a great joy. Her children subsequently adopted her outlook and produced children of their own. These 150 children continued the commitment to be fruitful," and they "had no less than 1,000. From here, the lineage continued to go even further, and rachel was blessed with a few hundred great-grandchildren.

Due to their great Numbers, the family is not quite clear precisely how many descendents there are. 'The estimate in the family is about 1,400 people since most of the family line were blessed with many children,' said one of the grandchildren. 'Grandma was a God-fearing woman her whole life. Her door was always open to the homeless and the poor near the Market who were looking for a place to eat. She knew the entire book of Psalms by heart--'" memorized the entire book of Psalms by heart-- "and participated in all the family events, and up until two years ago she knew all of them by name.

'" Isn't that amazing? So is it possible when the children of Israel come with and they stay 200 years in the land of--and God tells them "be fruitful and multiply--" in the land of Israel, that they could come out with that great multitude? By the way, you remember it does say in Exodus 1 and 2 it says, "they grew exceedingly." They multiplied greatly. They grew exceedingly great. It talks about them really multiplying. And so I thought I'd just share that with you since we're talking about the book of Numbers. We have a memory verse.

Memory verse is Corinthians 9:7. And I'll appreciate if you say that with me. Corinthians 9:7, you ready? "Every man according as he purposes in his heart, so let him give, not grudgingly or of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver." Now the reason it's using this memory verse is because as we look in Numbers 7 and 8, our core for study this week is Numbers 7 and 8, it's talking about the making a donation for the consecration of the altar. Matter of fact, I'm gonna turn with you into the book of Numbers. Why don't you go to Numbers 7 with me.

And one thing you may know is this chapter actually has--it's one of the longest chapters in the Bible as far as the number of verses--89 verses. A lot of the verses are redundant, and I'll tell you why. When they are getting ready to dedicate and consecrate this altar--matter of fact, I'll begin by reading--don't lose your place here in Numbers 7. Exodus 29:11-12, let me just read this for you. "Then you shall kill the bull before the Lord, by the door of the tabernacle of meeting.

And you'll take some of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar with your fingers, and pour all the blood beside the altar." So they're going through this dedication service. How many of you have seen when they've built a big ship during world war ii, what would they do before they launched it? They'd Christen it. That comes from the word where they used to give a Christian name to someone during their baptism. It called the Christening. So they would Christen these ships.

They'd name the ship, and they'd launch the ship and inaugurate the ship, dedicate the ship. And they did that to this altar. Now the first thing you saw when you came into the Jewish tabernacle was this great, big, bronze altar. They built it in a way where it could be disassembled, like lego blocks, so they could carry it through the wilderness, 'cause it was portable. But when they assembled it, it was pretty big, because you used to have to sacrifice oxen on it.

And they're big. And so it was wood and it was overlaid with bronze. And it had a grate in it like a barbeque. And this is where they made their sacrifices. First thing you saw when you went through the door was the altar.

And the reason for that is it represented the sacrifice of Christ. Let me read something to you from the book, "selected messages: book 1," page 106-107. The jews saw the sacrificial offerings-- "the jews saw in the sacrificial offerings the symbol of Christ whose blood was shed for the salvation of the world. All these offerings were to typify Christ and to rivet the great truths in their heart that the blood of Jesus alone cleanses from all sin." And so this altar, the first thing in the approach to God, which is the holy of holies, the ark of the covenant was the presence of God, was you had to come to the altar. It was the place of sacrifice.

And this is very important in the Jewish economy. Matter of fact, I'm gonna have--before we read Numbers 7-- I'm gonna have someone else read a verse for me, Exodus 29:37. We gave out some verses. You got that? Go ahead please. Exodus 29:37, "seven days you shall make atonement for the altar and sanctify it.

And the altar shall be most holy. Whatever touches the altar must be holy." Alright, I want to emphasize the word "holy." And it was consecrated for days. It's not like they just had one ceremony and broke a bottle of martinelli's over it. They had a 7 day consecration. But no, wait, there's more.

If you look in Numbers 7, it tells you what they went through in the dedication of the altar. And it was quite a service. You're gonna find--if you've got a computer program, a Bible computer program, you can highlight some words here in Numbers 7. You're gonna find out the exact same words appear 12 times. I'm gonna read those words to you here.

And let me see. I could start several places. Alright, let's start with verse 12. Just a--this is where it starts, it begins. Numbers 7:12, "and the one who offered his offering on the first day," notice that, first day, "was nahshon The Son of amminadab, from the tribe of judah.

" A prince from each tribe made an offering. Now here's where the redundancy begins. "His offering was one silver platter, the weight of which was one-hundred thirty shekels, one silver bowl of seventy shekels, according to the shekel of the sanctuary, both of them full of fine flour mixed with oil as a grain offering; one gold pan of ten shekels, full of incense; one young bull, one ram, and one male lamb in its first year, as a burnt offering; one kid of the goats as a sin offering; and for the sacrifice of peace offerings: two oxen, five rams, five male goats, and five lambs in the first year. This was the offering of nahshon The Son of amminadab." Now everything I read there, from verses 13-17 is repeated word for word 12 times. How many of you have, you've read this before? Every day for 6 days they brought a cart that had this offering.

And two of them would sometimes share a cart. It's like a little wagon. They were covered wagons they had, I don't know, been given when they came out of Egypt. You probably needed a covered wagon crossing the desert there like our pioneers. And they were laden with these very valuable offerings, very generous offerings.

And it was to consecrate the altar and to provide the things that would be used in the tabernacle for its services. Now evidently what happened is days they'd make an offering, they took the Sabbath, they started up again for another days, they took a Sabbath. So you ended up with 21 days in consecrating the altar. You just read where they made an offering of blood to consecrate it for 7 days. Then for 6 days they'd bring a wagon load.

Each of the princes, one of the princes for 6 days took the Sabbath, another 6 days of bringing offerings, took the Sabbath, 21 days to consecrate this altar. It was a big deal. Of course they had 40 years in the wilderness, so they had time to do it. But this is trying to emphasize how holy and sacred it was. And that's something that's maybe been lost.

Now I'm gonna read something here for you. Don't lose your place in Numbers totally, but jump to Exodus 29:44. I'm gonna read a couple verses to you. "So I will consecrate the tabernacle of meeting and the altar. I will also consecrate both aaron and his sons to minister to me as priests.

" That's really the summary of our study today, consecrating the furniture and consecrating the people that would minister there. Now read in Leviticus 9:23. Can you find that real quick? This is gonna be worth your while. Stay with me. After this consecration is all done, "and Moses and aaron went into the tabernacle of meeting, and came out and blessed the people.

Then the glory of the Lord appeared to all the people." They saw the shekinah glory, the shining of God. "And--" how many of you got that there with me? I want you to read these next verses, at least if you've got king James, the new king James, it'll make sense. And it says, "then the glory of the Lord appeared, and fire came out from before the Lord and consumed the burnt offering and the fat on the altar." Now did someone get up there with a flint and a iron stone and try and kindle a fire? Did they come with a bow and a string and try and rubbing sticks together? How did they get the first fire on the altar after it was consecrated? The fire of God came down and it launched it. This was called holy fire. It wasn't the common fire that a man might kindle by rubbing sticks or using a flint and stone.

They were only for the history of the temple. They were to keep that fire burning. How many of you remember when we had the olympics that they have a torch carrier that goes around the world. And they supposedly light it in--where? Greece, oh mount olympus, greece. I think they start it there.

And they run it to wherever the olympics are gonna be. This last time it was china. And they've got sometimes it's an electronically gas-burning torch that can't go out that they run. But theoretically they're supposed to light, each time they pass the torch, they're supposed to light it off the former torch. So it was originally lit in olympia and it makes its way to the event.

And you'll see them carry it up the steps in great ceremony. And then they hold it over this thing and it ignites the torch that burns through the olympics. And then they extinguish it after the olympics are over. But you're supposed to just use the original fire from mount olympus and take it to the next location. Well, this was holy fire.

Whenever they took coals to burn on the altar of incense that was inside the tabernacle, the little altar where the incense went, they would take coals from the holy fire. Two of the priests, sons of aaron, they didn't think it mattered and they went and took some fire from a campfire in the camp to burn. And what did God do? Fire came from God out of heaven and killed them because they didn't use the holy fire. How is that relevant? What does that mean to you and I today? Is there a counterfeit for the Holy Spirit? When fire came down on the apostles in acts 2, what was that a symbol of? Holy Spirit came down. This fire of God is the symbol for the Spirit of God.

Is there a counterfeit? Do sometimes we use manmade things to try and act like it's the Spirit of God? We manufacture programs and machinery and we say--we do a lot of activity--and we say, "oh yeah, this is the work of the church." God says, "my spirit's not in it." Man-made fire. They're supposed to use the holy fire from God for this. Now someone else read for me Chronicles 7:1. I think I gave that out among the Scriptures. You have that rhonda? We need a mic right up here, please.

Go ahead read that for us, Chronicles 7:1. "Now when Solomon had made an end of praying, the fire came down from heaven and consumed the burnt offering and the sacrifices; and the glory of the Lord filled the house." Can you read the next verse? "And the priests could not enter into the house of the Lord, because the glory of the Lord had filled the Lord's house." There was so much glory, they had to stay outside. Wouldn't that be nice if we had that problem here at central church? We all had to gather in the courtyard. "Why don't you go in?" "Too much glory. God is just shining in there.

I'm not going in there." Can you imagine? That's what happened. Isn't that what it said? Now what kind of fire was on that altar? Keep in mind when they dismantled the old tabernacle that was tattered in the days of David from--that had been going through the wilderness, they inaugurated a new temple now. And God said, "I'm gonna show 'em my presence is there." And fire came down. And for a couple hundred years anyway, that temple of Solomon, they had the fire of God burning on that altar from that first kindling that came. It's very important.

When fire comes down like that, it usually represents God's approval, power of God, blessing of God, the Spirit of God. When Elijah prayed and fire came down, Elijah prayed couple three times fire came down. Once on Mount Carmel, a couple of other times it burnt up some soldiers that came to arrest him. Not very often that fire comes down like that. In Revelation does it say the devil's gonna counterfeit that fire? "He'll deceive them by the means of the miracles he has power to do, going so far as bringing fire down on earth in the sight of men," to deceive.

So there's this counterfeit fire that comes down on a counterfeit altar in the last days. So we just need to be aware of that. And so these men brought their sacrifices before the Lord. And then it goes on to say in Exodus 30:23 that they would make special offerings. And it says, "take for yourself quality spices.

" These were not to be the generic store brand. These were to be the highest quality spices, "five-hundred shekels of liquid myrrh, half as much sweet-smelling cinnamon, two hundred and fifty shekels, two hundred and fifty shekels of sweet-smelling cane. With it you shall anoint the tabernacle of meeting and the ark of the testimony." There was a special formula, special recipe of oil that was used in the tabernacle for anointing. Now I just--i found something, I remember reading it. And I did digging around on the internet and I found it again.

"In 1988, a team of archeologists searching around the area of the dead sea," where they found the dead sea scrolls, "they found a cave that contained," among I think some other parchments, "a jar of oil of anointing that had been lost for 2,000 years. The oil, after analysis, proved to be composed of the five special ingredients exactly as the Bible described," that we just read here. You know, they could still detect that there was the scent--I'm sure it was rancid or putrid at this point. But it was that sacred oil that had the cinnamon and the cane and the frankincense and myrrh. And this was the sacred anointing oil.

"The museum verifies that the composition of the oil is unlike that of any other ever evaluated. This special oil was necessary for the anointing of the temple, the sacred vessels, and priests and Kings." Now they didn't use just any kind of oil. But they would use the special oil when they would anoint the temple. They would anoint the vessels. And they anointed the priests and the King.

You remember when Samuel came to anoint David as king. Did he just go get some italian olive oil? Or did he get canola cooking oil or coconut oil or--no. And as nice as some of that might be, this was an oil that had special fragrances added to it, 'cause it wasn't really made for cooking. It was made to anoint. When aaron was anointed, it talks about the oil running down.

Even one of the Psalms talks about the oil that ran down on aaron's beard. What does that represent? Why did they put these special spices in there, these exotic fragrances in there? Someone read for me--oh by the way, you find that recipe in--also in Exodus 37:29, "and he made the holy anointing oil, the pure incense of sweet spices, according to the work of the apothecary." These were the perfumers. That was their expertise. Someone read for me Galatians 5:22-23. "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

" Very good. This is to symbolize these spices are emblematic of the fruits of the Spirit that are in our lives. So it's not just the oil. It's the oil will then manifest itself through these different fragrances. We have these fruits of the Spirit, the love, the joy, the peace, so forth in our lives at that time.

Okay, well we're moving right along. Let's go on to--we talked a little--oh, you know, one more thing I wanted to say about the altar before I believe it-- before I leave that subject. I do believe it. What does it mean to us today? There's no tabernacle. There's no altar.

Or is there? Should we have altars today? I'm not talking about a little buddhist shrine in your--you know with a fountain in your front yard. I'm talking about in your home. Look in Genesis 12:7. "Then the Lord appeared to abram and said, 'to your descendants I will give this land.' And there he built an altar to the Lord, who had appeared to him." Verse 8, "and he moved from there to the mountains east of bethel, and he pitched his tent--" the word "bethel" means house of God-- "and he pitched his tent with bethel on the west and ai on the east; and there," what's it say? "He built an altar to the Lord and called on the name of God." The altar was not just a place of sacrifice. It was a place to call on the name of the Lord.

All of the neighbors understood that they had an altar and that they spent time in prayer. In the Batchelor family, we have prayer together every morning, every night. And sometimes we gather in the living room. If you've been to our home, you know we've got a great big picture window in the front living room of our house. And so it's not uncommon for the neighbors to walk by and see us kneeling there, it's easy to see, on the floor having prayer with our family.

The altar's also the place where you read, you study, you worship God. Do you have an altar? That altar should be consecrated. And that altar ought to be dedicated. And of course it represents the sacrifice of Christ. And then you can even jump over to chapter 13:4.

It says he returned, "to the place of the altar that he had made at the first. And abram called on the name of the Lord." So everywhere abram goes he built an altar. You'll also notice Jacob. He made an altar, even the place where he had the vision of the ladder going to heaven. He poured some oil on it there.

He consecrated it. He set up a stone. And so they had these places that were set aside as places where they met with God. And not only should you have one in your home, but we are a family. And this church represents a holy place where there's an altar in this church.

You've ever heard of the altar call? When we bring--we don't have a place where we sacrifice lambs, but when you're preaching about the Gospel, then you are renewing that covenant, that sacrifice of Jesus and presenting it to people. So that's a modern equivalent. I don't want you to think we're just studying what happened back in the book of Numbers. We apply these things to our day. Amen? "Communion with God," is our next section in our study.

The last verse of that long chapter in Numbers 7 is verse 89. And it says there, "now when Moses went into the tabernacle of meeting to speak with him, he heard the voice of one speaking to him from above the mercy seat--" mercy seat is a word that martin luther kind of gave to the covering of the ark-- "that was on the ark of the testimony, from between the two cherubim," or the angels; "thus he spoke with him." Now is that--was God really sitting there? What did Solomon say when he dedicated the earthly temple? "The earth is your footstool. What house are we gonna build that will contain you?" There's no building that we build and say, "God, could you step in here for a moment?" I mean, you know, the heavens are his throne. So when God chose to meet with Moses at a particular place, it's important for us to have these places. Now God is everywhere.

I remember the first time that I was with my grandma, we were driving, and she pointed to a temple. My grandma was Jewish. She said, "it's the house of God." And to me that was such an awesome thought that, "wow, that's where God lives." But, you know, somehow in my mind, you're young, you think that well, long as I'm not there, he doesn't see what I'm doing. But, you know, I learned better since then. But just because God meets with us in certain places, it doesn't mean he isn't with us everywhere.

I mean God told Jonah, "where can you flee from me?" Wherever we go, he's there. But was the top of Mount Sinai a holy place? Did God say, "don't touch that mountain?" And then in the holy of holies in the ark, he said, "this is a holy place. Only the priests can come in." This is a very sacred place where God meets with us. And there need to be places, we need to have places like that, that we realize are sacred places where God speaks to us. It's good for us to have a closet, so to speak, it doesn't mean you have a closet that you go in and pray.

That was a figure of speech Jesus used. For Daniel, it was his upper room where he went to pray. Do you have a place that's sort of a holy place where you meet with God? That's important. Hebrews 4:4-6--no, no--14-16, "seeing then that we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus The Son of God, let us lay hold fast our confession. For we have not have a high priest that cannot sympathize with our weakness, but he was in all points tempted as we are, yet without sin.

" Was Jesus tempted in every way we're tempted? That means all the same categories that we're tempted. If you're tempted with heroin, that doesn't mean Jesus was tempted with heroin, but in all the categories where you're tempted: the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. And he understands those things. He can relate. "Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace and help in time of need.

" Now, there's something else that's in this. I just want to make sure I cover this in our lesson here today--i better mention it now. When the sanctuary was first built--no, back up, doug. Say it differently. Alright, strike that.

How often did the high priests go into the holy of holies in the temple? Once a year. Was that the only time anyone ever went in the holy of holies? I heard someone say it. There was one other time. That's when it was all dedicated. We're talking here about dedicating the altar and I ran past that, but this verse here touches on it.

If you understand this, it'll solve a multitude of conundrums that people grapple with, especially in our church. When Jesus died on the cross and rose from the dead, mary went to grab him by the feet. He said, "do not cling to me, or do not detain me, for I have not yet ascended to my father." Jesus then ascended to The Father. Where did he ascend, holy place or most holy place? Most holy place. Let me tell you why.

Think about it. Think, think, think, think, think. Stay with me. I'm not done. You'll get mad at me if you don't stay with me.

What was the heavenly temple doing until Christ died? I mean if on the earthly temple they offer blood for lambs, right? Was any blood being offered in the heavenly temple until the sacrifice of Christ? No. So when was it activated? When was it consecrated? When was it mobilized? Wasn't it after the sacrifice of Jesus? He ascended into heaven. His sacrifice was declared victorious and successful. He went in before The Father pleading his own blood that then activated, consecrated, dedicated the heavenly temple, because it's not the blood of goats and lambs that washes away our sin. It wasn't until Christ was sacrificed.

Then he went down to earth. Remember when he first appeared to mary, she grabbed him and he said, "don't detain me." He comes back Sunday night, and he says, "all hail," because now he has been declared victorious. And for the next 40 days he meets with them, he teaches them, then he ascends into heaven to commence his work as our high priest in the holy place, the first apartment. In 1844, he entered the last phase of his work, cleansing the heavenly temple and the earthly temple. I was listening on my way to church this morning, or just as I was getting dressed, pastor dwight nelson was talking about this work, this atonement that began where God is cleansing his people, cleaning his church from the false teachings of the dark ages.

He began this movement here on earth in 1844. And Christ is now in the presence of The Father going through the final phase. So do you understand how the consecration, the dedication, the Christening, the activating, whatever you want to call it, that plays a very important role, 'cause Moses did go into the holy of holies when they inaugurated the sanctuary. It says he sprinkled all the implements. Would that include the ark? With this sacred oil and with the blood of the sacrifice.

Alright, so now it's talking about we go boldly into the presence of God. When it--and that was from Hebrews 4, talking about boldly coming before the Lord, is boldly irreverently? Does boldly mean that we have confidence that God will hear us? We can come confidently because of Christ. Some have confused the boldness for a recklessness or for an irreverence. Let me read something to you here. We're talking about communion with God.

Isn't that our heading here? Ecclesiastes 5:1-2, Solomon, who built that first temple said, "walk prudently when you go to the house of God and draw near to hear rather than to give the sacrifice of fools." What is the sacrifice of fools? I'll offer to you that it's empty words, idle chatter, is the sacrifice of fools, doesn't cost anything. "For they do not know they do evil." Are there some people that come to a church, and they're talking and being irreverent and they're not aware that they're doing evil? They don't know. "For they do not know they do evil. Do not be rash with your mouth, and let not your heart utter," hastily, or "anything hastily before God. For God is in heaven, and you on earth; therefore let Your Words be few.

" It's not a sin to say something. But especially when we come into this holy place to worship God, there should be a boldness because we're coming because of Jesus' blood, but a reverence at the same time. And I'm saying this because I think the church right now struggles with how to you treat a holy place holy, and you don't get so regimented and so quiet that, you know, people can't express a greeting to somebody, but at the same time it turns into a very common place. Let me read a statement to you from the book, "child guidance," page 542, "do not have so little reverence for the house and worship of God as to communicate with one another during the sermon. If those who commit this fault could see the angels of God looking upon them and Marking their doings, they'd be filled with shame and abhorrence of themselves.

God wants attentive hearers. It was while men slept that the enemy so tarries." I think she's also talking about sleeping there, not just talking. There ought to be a reverence in church. And i--i struggle with this because, you know, where do you draw the line? Sometimes you might need to lean over and say to your children, "shh," you know, "pay attention," whatever you need to say. But and I think it's good to greet each other.

When a brother or sister comes in, if you don't say hello, they might come and go and you'd be the only one. I think it's okay. But then you don't want it to just start to drift off into, "so, did you see that car sale last week in the newspaper?" I mean, then you're losing that sense of reverence. And so it doesn't say, "don't speak." "Let Your Words be few." You all know what I'm talking about? You know in the world, if you want to go hear a sacred concert, or even a classical concert, go listen to beethoven or mozart. People dress up to go to these orchestras and operas and symphonies.

And they put on their tuxes and their fine gowns. And they make you turn off your cell phones at the door. And if you're coughing everyone glares at you, right? And they show such--they say, "we want to hear every little nuance of the music. Shhh." And if you rustle or anything, everyone just stares you down. You'll be excused.

You'll be escorted out. That's for a classical concert. Should we have less reverence when we come to worship God? Is it just me or do some of our churches--it's starting to look like it's a gathering at the moose lodge. You know what I mean? Nothing against our moose members here, but you know what I'm talking about. It's just--and there's a commonness that is coming into the church.

And we lose that sense of reverence. Well, it talks about this. So when we commune with God, we ought to maintain that sense of reverence and holiness for this place. Let's go on to section number 3. I've still got a couple sections left and running out of-- running out of time.

Someone read for me, we're talking about "light in the sanctuary." Someone read for me Numbers 8:1. "And the Lord spoke to Moses, saying: 'speak to aaron, and say to him, 'when you arrange the lamps, the seven lamps shall give light in front of the lampstand.'" Alright, now how did they light the lamps? Where did the fire come from to light the lamps, do you think? Did someone pull out his little bic propane lighter? No, they took a wick and they went and ignited that wick from the holy fire. And that holy fire was brought in. And they would light the middle lamp of the seven lamps on the menorah. Now the way it sat in the temple is they had one pedestal and it broke off into seven branches, so they called it a lamp with seven candlesticks on it.

And then they would light the other six off that one in the middle. If those six lamps represent the days of the week, what did the center one represent? Sabbath. Every other one was illuminated off that center one. In other words, it's from our communion with God on Sabbath we gather the light that gets us through the week. And so it just signified that holy relationship there.

Someone read for me Revelation 1:12-13. I think we've got somebody ready over here. I want to make sure that our studio has got you on camera here. But go ahead, start reading. "Then I turned to see the voice that spoke with me.

And having turned, I saw seven golden lampstands, and in the midst of the seven lampstands one like The Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the feet and girded about the chest with a golden band." Amen. Many of the apocalyptic prophesies in the Bible transpire in the context of the sanctuary. If you read in Zechariah, Revelation, Daniel, Ezekiel, you'll notice the language of the sanctuary in those visions. It's very interesting. When for instance, on the earthly sanctuary they had a curtain with angels sown into it, is that because God has a curtain in heaven with angels sown into it? Or does he have a living wall of angels that it represents? In the earthly tabernacle, the ark with the Ten Commandments had two golden angels on top.

Does God have two golden angels on the right and left of his throne like Solomon had the golden lions by his throne? Or does God have real angels? So you're seeing now that the earthly temple was a miniature and the figures there were imperfect and much smaller in scale than the real dwelling place of God. Notice, for instance, in the earthly temple there was one candlestick, seven little lamps on it. In Revelation Jesus is seen walking among how many lamps? Seven. And these are probably huge, blazing lamps. I mean I can't communicate how glorious it probably looked.

And Jesus is in the midst of them, so it's not one anymore. So this is just reminding us that the context of what we see on earth compared to the real dwelling place of God in heaven, you need to magnify the scale ,000 times, because God is telling us, you know, this is just a--it's like a little matchbox car compared to the real ferrari. You know what I mean? There's really no comparison. Okay. And the light needed to be arranged so that it would illuminate.

What were the boards made of in the earthly tabernacle? It was wood overlaid with gold. Does gold reflect when it's polished? It's like a mirror. And they--why did they need light during the daytime? Were there any windows in the holy place? No, they had a very thick curtain. And I really appreciate these hotels when I travel back east and the sun comes up too early, they not only have the little curtain that just closes, they got a real thick one that stops the light. And you can actually darken your room.

So they had a thick curtain that darkened the room. No windows. So where did they get their light? The only source of light was that lamp that came from the fire of God. And that's what illuminates God's church is the light of God. And it would reflect-- they'd arrange it.

There were probably cups that reflected over towards the altar of incense and the shewbread so they could see what they were doing. And it would ricochet off the walls as well. So they would--they turned it and arranged it to illuminate the whole tabernacle is what it's saying there. Something else that you'll see. Who will read Numbers--oh, we're getting down to the "dedication of the levites" here.

That's part 1. Numbers 8:7. Let me read this for you real quick. Thus you shall do to them to cleanse them." Not only is it dedicating the temple and its furniture, he's dedicating the people who will minister there. "You will sprinkle the water of purification on them, and let them shave all their body, and let them wash their clothes, so as to make themselves clean.

" You know, it's often true that when people are being taken from a war zone, or if they're being liberated from some prison of war camp and they're being introduced into a new camp, they have them shave completely. And they wash them. Do you know why? 'Cause the camps were often infested with lice and different kinds of disease. Let's face it, it's a little harder to keep a lot of hair clean. I don't have much trouble keeping my hair clean.

Babies, especially in the animal kingdom often come into the world naked, like kittens and mice. Some of you probably had little babies look like esau, but they're typically not as much hair. And so it represented for them, they were cleansed with water. They were shaved of their hair. And the levites kind of went through a new birth.

They were born again. They were cleansed from their sins as they began to minister for the people. So not only were the instruments consecrated, and they were cleansed; the levites were cleansed. Now I was gonna have someone read Numbers 8:10. "So you shall bring the levites before the Lord, and the children of Israel shall lay their hands on the levites.

" Alright, now--oh I wish I had more time to talk about this. They laid their hands on them. What does that represent? They were setting them aside. They were being ordained as a nation of priests. And why did the children of Israel lay hands on them? Why not just Moses and aaron? Well, if you look in the book of Numbers in chapter 3:39, there were 20,000 of them.

And so, you know, when I go overseas and we have a big baptism, I get all the local pastors to help because I can't baptize 300-400 people. And so you get a lot of people to help you do this. So you had the people of God were laying hands on the levites. And have you ever studied laying on of hands? Is there a doctrine about laying on of hands? Let me read something to you, Hebrews 6:1-2. This is really--always got my attention.

Hebrews 6:1-2, "therefore, leaving the discussion of elementary principles of Christ, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation--" he says not going back to the elementary things-- "not laying the foundation of repentance from dead works and faith toward God, of the doctrine of baptisms--" we all agree that the doctrine of baptism is a pretty elementary study. I mean a person can get baptized. They gotta study that one. It's pretty basic. It's one of the fundamentals.

"Laying on of hands, resurrection from the dead, and eternal judgment." You know, when I do an evangelistic meeting, I talk about baptism, judgment, resurrection from the dead. Those are all your fundamentals. What does he insert here along with other fundamentals? The doctrine of laying on of hands. Any of you ever heard that included in an evangelistic series? I think that we really have maybe missed something, because they understood that a basic was to talk about--did Jesus lay hands on the disciples when he--? Yes, he did. The disciples then set apart to Paul and silas and they laid hands on them.

And when the deacons were chosen, they laid hands on them. Moses laid hands on aaron when he was dedicated. There's this teaching in the Bible that we don't hear much about. And sometimes I wonder--of course we understand the truth about the communion and foot-washing and Sabbath and these different things. But Bible writers say this was an elementary doctrine.

I think we all understand it. We practice it. But you don't hear a real study on it much these days. Well, this whole army of priests that people laid hands on them and set them aside for their work. And so I just thought that was very interesting.

And so it says in Numbers 8:14, "thus you will separate the levites from among the children of Israel, and the levites shall be mine." And verse 16, it says, "they shall be wholly given unto me from among the children of Israel; instead of such as those that open every womb, even the firstborn of all the children of Israel, I have taken the levites unto me." Now was levi the firstborn tribe? No, that was ruben. Ruben was disqualified from that sacred office of being the priest for them because he slept with his stepmother. That's what it says. And so God passed him by. Why was levi chosen? We mentioned last week, there where they made the golden calf, the levites stood with Moses.

They stood against the apostasy. And so God chose them to be the nation of priests. They used to always consecrate the firstborn of the animals to the Lord. And they said, "like the firstborn, levi is now going to be chosen to be the priest for the entire nation." And that stayed true all the way up to the time of Christ. And then it was transferred to a spiritual priesthood.

When Jesus was sacrificed, the high priest tore his robe, symbolizing the levitical priesthood was over. And the veil in the temple was torn symbolizing the earthly temple was over. And now it was moving into the new economy. Alright, we have a lot more to study in the book of Numbers, but I see we're out of time. For our friends, don't forget, we have a free offer.

If you missed it at the beginning, please send for the book, "blood behind the veil." We'll send it to you for free. Call that number, 866-788-3966. Also want to remind again our friends that are in the continent of australia, we look forward to seeing you in the sydney area in the end of October, beginning of November. We'll be doing some meetings there. God bless you.

We'll study again together next Sabbath. If you've been encouraged by today's message and would like to know more about what God's Word says to you today, Amazing Facts invites you to visit our educational website at www.Bibleuniverse.com. At Bibleuniverse, you'll discover exciting truths that will fill you with peace and purpose. The mysteries of the Bible will unfold for you at your own pace. Visit www.Bibleuniverse.com today. Expand your universe. Thank you for joining us for this broadcast. If you've missed any of our Amazing Facts programs, visit our website at amazingfacts.org. There you'll find an archive of all our television and radio programs, including "Amazing Facts presents," "central study hour," "everlasting Gospel," "Bible answers live," and "wonders in the word.

" You'll also find a storehouse of biblical resources geared towards answering some of your most difficult questions. And our online Bible school is just a click away. One location, so many possibilities, amazingfacts.org.

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