"And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them" Exodus 25:8. Thus spoke the LORD to Moses at Sinai while the children of Israel awaited Moses' return. Have you ever studied that sanctuary? The entire sanctuary system of ceremonies and sacrifices was actually symbolic of the plan of salvation. It was intended to keep ever before each believer in the true God, an understanding of their inability to accomplish their own salvation and the provision made by God of a Savior whose death would fulfill the penalty for their sins.
As one reads Exodus 25 and onward, there are found minute instructions for every detail in the construction of the sanctuary, its furniture, and the preparation of the priestly garments. God even gave special abilities for the carrying out of His instructions. "And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, See, I have called by name Bezaleel . . . And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship" Exodus 31:1-3.
One might ask "why so much detail?" Because without it, the sanctuary (tabernacle) would not fulfill its intended function which was to "serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things, as Moses was admonished of God when he was about to make the tabernacle: for, See, saith he, that thou make all things according to the pattern showed to thee in the mount" Hebrews 8:5. Right now Jesus is involved in an ongoing work for us in the heavenly sanctuary. "For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us" Hebrews 9:24.
The Psalmist tells us "Thy way, O God, is in the sanctuary" Psalm 77:13. To know God's way is our pursuit. Over the next few weeks we will consider various aspects of the earthly sanctuary and its ceremonies in an endeavor to acquire a deeper understanding of God's plan for our salvation – His "way".