The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings by Henry W. Soltau

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THE  TABERNACLE, THE  PRIESTHOOD, AND THE  OFFERINGS.

BY

 HENRY W. SOLTAU

 www.solidchristianbooks.com

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

Contents

Memoir. 6

THE TABERNACLE. 10

Division of the Tribe of Levi 10

THE VAIL. 12

THE COLOURS. 14

THE RIBAND OF BLUE. 16

THE RENT VAIL. 36

THE PILLARS OF THE VAIL. 43

THE CURTAINS OF THE TABERNACLE. 44

THE LOOPS AND TACHES. 52

THE CURTAINS OF GOATS’ HAIR. 58

THE COVERINGS. 74

THE DOOR OF THE TABERNACLE. 81

THE BOARDS AND BARS OF THE TABERNACLE. 89

THE ATONEMENT MONEY. 98

THE USE OF THE ATONEMENT MONEY. 112

THE SILVER TRUMPETS. 121

THE FLOOR OF THE TABERNACLE. 131

THE COURT OF THE TABERNACLE. 136

THE GATE OF THE COURT. 139

PINS AND CORDS. 157

THE CORDS. 164

MATERIALS. 167

THE PRINCIPAL WORKMEN. 176

THE SABBATH. 186

THE FREE GIFTS FOR THE TABERNACLE. 197

THE LIBERAL OFFERINGS. 208

THE PRIESTHOOD. 216

THE PRIESTS. 218

THE GARMENTS FOR GLORY & BEAUTY. 220

THE EPHOD. 228

THE EPHOD GIRDLE. 231

THE ONYX-STONES, OUCHES, AND CHAINS. 232

THE BREASTPLATE. 234

THE SARDIUS. (Heb. Odem.) 242

THE TOPAZ. (HEB. PITDAH.) 245

THE CARBUNCLE. (HEB. BAREKETH.) 248

THE EMERALD. (Heb. Nophech.) 250

THE SAPPHIRE. (HEB. SAPPEER.) 252

THE DIAMOND. (HEB. YAH-GHALOHM.) 255

THE LIGURE. (Heb. Leh-Sham.) 258

THE AGATE. (Heb. Shvoo.) 260

THE AMETHYST. (Heb. Agh-lah-mah.) 263

BERYL. (Heb. Tarshish.) 267

ONYX. (Heb. Shoh-ham.) 270

JASPER. (HEB. JAHSH-PEH.) 278

THE MEMORIAL. 287

THE URIM AND THE THUMMIM. 290

THE ROBE OF THE EPHOD. 296

THE GOLDEN BELLS AND POMEGRANATES. 301

THE MITRE. 307

THE GOLDEN PLATE. 312

THE EMBROIDERED COAT. 324

THE GIRDLE. 333

THE GARMENTS FOR AARON’S SONS. 340

GIRDLES. 343

THE BONNETS. 348

THE LINEN BREECHES. 350

THE REARING UP OF THE TABERNACLE. 361

THE CLOUD. 366

THE CONSECRATION OF THE PRIESTS. 388

THE ANOINTING OIL. 397

THE OFFERINGS. 417

THE BULLOCK FOR A SIN-OFFERING. 417

THE RAM FOR THE BURNT-OFFERING. 423

THE RAM OF CONSECRATION. 427

THE FOOD OF THE PRIESTS. 451

THE EIGHTH DAY SERVICE. 463

THE LAW OF THE BURNT-OFFERING. 475

THE DAY OF ATONEMENT. 485

THE HOLY LINEN GARMENTS. 490

THE OFFERINGS FOR SIN. 491

SPRINKLING THE BLOOD UPON THE MERCY-SEAT. 494

SPRINKLING THE INCENSE ALTAR. 506

THE SCAPEGOAT. 514

THE BURNT-OFFERING. 531

CONCLUDING ADDRESS. 534

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

 

Memoir.

HENRY WILLIAM SOLTAU, the author of The Tabernacle, the Priesthood, and the Offerings, was born in the year 1805. When a youth he was under serious religious impressions, and was for a long time groping after salvation. At Cambridge University he was a regular attendant at church; sought the society of Christian men; went to hear the best preachers; and by good works and prayers hoped to attain to eternal life. In those days a clear gospel was rarely preached; and the earnest cravings of the soul after reality remained unsatisfied.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

When his University career was ended he came to London, entered the legal profession, and became a Chancery barrister. After tasting the pleasures of London life the whole of his religious impressions were cast off, and he plunged into all the gaiety and amusements of the day. His attractive manners, sparkling wit, keen intellect, and extensive literary acquirements, made him a favorite in society. A bright career of worldly prosperity was opening up before him; the world was welcoming him as one worthy of its honour. But “the Lord had need of him,” and the way was being prepared for his deliverance, though he knew it not. God was allowing him to have his own way, till at length he felt like the Israelites when they lusted for flesh, and God gave it to them to the full. He loathed the excitement and pleasure afforded by the scenes of gaiety in which he moved, and yet had no power to stop himself; seeming happy to those around him, whilst at heart he was wretched.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

In the beginning of the year 1837 tidings reached him of the illness of his mother, and he prepared to go to Plymouth to see her. Whilst packing his portmanteau he felt convinced that he should only arrive home to find his mother dead. There was nothing alarming in the letter, but he began to realize it was God’s voice to him. The tedious coach journey was accomplished, and, as he had surmised, his mother had departed. Falling down on his knees by her coffin alone that night he cried out, “Lord, thou must save me, or I am lost for ever.” That was a real prayer.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

Shortly afterwards he was led to Christ through the preaching of an earnest servant of God in Plymouth, and from that day to him “to live was Christ.” He turned his back there and then on the world, and gave up his profession that he might devote himself to the study of the Scriptures and to the work of the gospel. There were at that time many earnest and godly men in Plymouth with whom he was thrown; and these met daily for the study of the Scriptures and for prayer. He thus became trained in the work of the gospel, and entered on a new career of unswerving devotion in the Master’s cause.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

For several years his labours were confined chiefly to Devonshire; and through the whole of the county he went preaching Christ crucified, and ably ministering the word of God amongst Christians. Plymouth, Exmouth, Bideford, and Barnstaple were the chief centers of his work for a time. Latterly, on going to Exeter to reside, the sphere of his influence widened considerably. His name is specially associated with the prophetic meetings held in London, in Freemasons’ Hall, in the years 1865 and 1867; and his visits to Dublin, Glasgow, Birmingham, Hereford, and Taunton, will long be remembered by those who were privileged to meet him and hear him speak.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

His teaching was remarkable, not only for its clearness and depth, but also for its close adherence to Scripture, thus proving how much he lived in communion with God. The great central truths of Salvation through the cross of Christ, and of the Second Coming of the Lord, were ever present to his mind, and pervaded all his teaching. Fearless in his denunciation of what he believed to be error; intensely solemn in his warnings of the power and the consequences of sin; an unflinching standard-bearer of the gospel of God’s grace, and yet most tender in ministering the truth of God to stricken ones—he was the means of strengthening the hands of many a feeble one, and of preserving from the snares of the adversary many of God’s people.

His last visit to London was made in the autumn of 1867; and although symptoms had then appeared of the disease that so soon after laid him altogether aside, he relaxed none of his energies.

On the Lord’s-day he gave no less than six addresses, one of them being delivered in the open-air in Soho Square. He touchingly referred to the days long gone by when he, as a young man of fashion, was well acquainted with that locality; narrating the incidents that had led to the great change in his life, and then testifying to the happiness and blessing of the period of his life since spent in the Lord’s service. Fervently he appealed to the numbers of young men crowding around him to turn their backs on the world and sin, and come boldly forth for Christ. It was past ten o’clock that night before he had finished his work; and it was amongst the last of his days of public service for the Lord.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

Very shortly afterwards paralysis supervened, which gradually exhausted his mental and physical powers. So gradual was the progress of the disease that for seven years and a half he remained amongst his family, though unable to take any active part in the work of the Lord. During this long trial of patience and faith no murmur ever passed his lips. His peace was unbroken, and his mind unclouded by any fear or doubt. He always delighted to hear of the Lord’s work, especially that portion in which his own children were engaged. In July, 1875, he quietly passed away, falling asleep in Jesus to await the day of resurrection.

To many his name is familiar as the author of The Soul and its Difficulties, a little book that has had a world-wide circulation, and that in all quarters of the globe has been used of God to lead hundreds, if not thousands, into the joy and liberty of the gospel.

His larger books on The Tabernacle and The Priesthood are a precious legacy to the Church of Christ, unfolding, as they do, the beauties and glories of the Lord Jesus Christ as portrayed in the Jewish ritual.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

 

THE TABERNACLE The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

Division of the Tribe of Levi

THE tribe of Levi was divided into three families, under his three sons, Gershon, Kohath, and Merari. Each had his own separate place of encampment around the Tabernacle, and to each was committed a peculiar charge and burden. The Merarites, who encamped on the north, watched over, erected, and carried all the solid framework of the building, the pillars of the surrounding courts, together with the sockets of silver and brass.

The Gershonites pitched towards the west, and had under their care the curtains, hangings, and coverings of the Tabernacle and court, which they also bore on the journeys: whilst to the Kohathites, whose camp was south, were allotted the charge and carriage of the holy vessels. Thus was all distributed among these three families of Levites, and the burden of one was kept distinct from that of another.

In like manner, we may divide the truth under three heads: the solid foundation and framework, without which the Tabernacle itself could not be spread abroad, portray the great verities on which the whole of salvation rests, viz: the Person of Him who is God and Man, the eternal, unchanging, and unchangeable Son of God, Jesus Christ, the same yesterday, and to-day, and for ever.

The varied colors, as well as costly materials, of which some of the beautiful draperies were fashioned, attracted and pleased the eye of the beholder, both by their brilliancy and tasteful arrangement. So does the eye of faith explore and delight in the display of God manifest in the flesh. The character and ways of Jesus, and His blessed work accomplished on the cross, reveal Him to us, and make Him manifest as the Son of God.

The holy vessels of different forms and adapted to different uses, but all to one end — that Israel might have access to God — represent the priestly offices of Christ, which depend on the glories of His person, and result from the perfection of His work.

In pursuing the subject, this subdivision will, in measure be retained. But, though prominence be given to one aspect or portion of truth, yet the Spirit of God would always have us contemplate the one undivided Christ. If His character be displayed, it is in order that He may be revealed. If His offices are more particularly before us, it is that we may “know HIM.” The soul is not nourished by mere abstract statements of the character, or even of the work of the Lord. HE is the living bread: His flesh and blood must be eaten, as He says, “As the living Father hath sent me, and I live by the Father; so he that eateth ME, even he shall live by me.” — John 6:57.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

When Moses received directions from God respecting the Tabernacle, the order in which the vessels and parts were enumerated, was different from that in which they were subsequently made. Thus the Ark, the Shew-bread table, and the Candlestick were first described to him; then the Curtains, Coverings, Vail, and Door; after that, the altar of Burnt-offering, and Boards, and Bars, of the Tabernacle. In the order of construction, the Curtains, Coverings, Boards, Bars, and Sockets — in fact the whole Tabernacle was first fashioned before the Vail and Door, or any of the vessels were made.

The order followed in this exposition will be, first; to consider the various Curtains and Hangings, and the Courts formed by them: and subsequently, the Boards, Bars, Pillars, and Sockets; first the Gershonite, and then the Merarite charge. In doing so, the Vail has been selected by way of commencement, because we have a distinct Scripture in the New Testament, directing us to its typical signification. “The Vail, that is to say, His flesh.” — Hebrews 10:20. And if we can, by means of this key, unlock some of the hidden treasures contained in this type, we shall be better able to arrive at the true interpretation of the other parts.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

THE VAIL.

“And thou shalt make a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen of cunning work: with cherubims shall it be made.” — Exodus 26:31.

 “And he made a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen: with cherubims made he it of cunning work.” — Exodus 36:35.

FINE TWINED LINEN. — One material only is specified in the construction of the Vail, ”fine linen:” the blue, purple, and scarlet, were simply colors. Upon this ground-work of fine linen these colors were displayed; so that the observer would be first arrested by the beauty of the blue, the depth of the purple, and the brilliancy of the scarlet, before he perceived the material, over which these tints were spread. Does not this aptly exemplify that wondrous truth, “God was manifest in the flesh?” “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us; and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.”

The Wife, in Revelation 16:7, is represented as having made herself ready for the marriage supper, and it is added in the succeeding verse, “To her was granted, that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean, and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints.” Revelation 16:8. Here a twofold, yet united, aspect of the truth is beautifully presented: the Church makes herself ready, and yet she is clothed by another. So in Revelation 7:14, believers are said to have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb: while, in Revelation 1:5, it is written “Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood.” We may view the saint as clothing or washing himself; for he may be regarded as, by faith, appropriating to himself the precious blood of Christ; or, we may consider the work as all accomplished for him by the Lord Jesus, through the grace and mercy of God. The word “righteousness of saints” is remarkable, being in the plural number; it may be rendered ‘righteousnesses;’ the fine linen displaying every form of bright and holy purity; righteousness in every aspect; according to that beautiful word “Thou art all fair, my love: there is no spot in thee.” But whence were these garments derived? If we turn to Jeremiah 23:6, “This is His name, whereby He shall be called, Jehovah our Righteousness.” Jehovah Jesus is the righteousness of the saints. He is the spotless robe; they are clothed with Him; they stand accepted (graced) in the Beloved. God has made Him to be unto them “righteousness, sanctification, and redemption,” and His name is placed upon them; as, in Jeremiah 33:16, Jerusalem on earth will have “Jehovah our Righteousness” as the name whereby she shall be called.

The fine linen of the Vail seems, then, especially to present to us “the Righteous One,” who in His life of toil and sorrow, and most especially in His death of shame and suffering, manifested that unsullied purity, that perfect obedience, and that delight in accomplishing the will of His Father, whereby He has earned for Himself a name, which is above every name, the name of Jesus; “who was made sin for us, that we might be made the righteousness of God in Him.”

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

THE COLOURS. The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

BLUE. – This ranks pre-eminent, being always the first mentioned in the frequent enumerations of the colours given in the latter chapters of Exodus. It attracts, without dazzling the eye; and the epithet lovely is very appropriately attached to it. It is seen spread over the expanse of heaven, of boundless extent. When the thunder-cloud vails the sky, and the tempest bursts in fury on the earth with its desolating power, this serene colour is concealed; but we hail its gradual reappearance as a sure presage of the returning calm, and of the sun’s genial beams. It is peculiarly a heavenly colour; and throughout these types, is closely linked with gold. Thus in Exodus 28:6 and Exodus 28:15, the word “and” is omitted between the gold and blue; so that the passages may be read as follows: “They shall make the ephod of gold, blue, and purple; the curious girdle of the ephod shall be of gold, blue, and purple, etc. Thou shalt make the breast-plate of gold, blue, and purple, etc. “The same order is precisely repeated in Exodus 39:2; Exodus 39:5; Exodus 39:8, the “and” being again omitted between the gold and blue. Taches of gold were inserted into loops of blue, connecting together the curtains of the Tabernacle. Laces of blue, passing through rings of gold, fastened the breast-plate to the ephod, and a lace of blue bound the golden plate to the mitre of the high priest. The golden vessels of the sanctuary, with the exception of the ark, were all covered with a cloth of blue. If the gold was a type of the glory, majesty, and eternity of the Son of God, blue will fitly represent the grace and love He manifested as declaring the character of God. “God is love.” So inseparably and exclusively is this blessed attribute descriptive of Him, that He affirms it to be His very nature. It is not of earth. As the blue vault of heaven, with its vast dimensions, defies our puny measurements, so the breadth, and length, and depth, and height of the love of Christ passeth knowledge. The thunders of God’s wrath and holy indignation against sin, may for a time, seem to obscure His love. But “His anger endureth but a moment.” Judgment is “His strange work,” for “He delighteth in mercy.”

The dark cloud only intimates a passing storm, needful, it may be, to purify the air. Compared with the azure depth beyond, it is but superficial and momentary. And, since we have known the full outpouring of His wrath upon His Son, no cloud, however black, can cross our sky, without the heavenly blue being seen in the bow, which God has set there as a token of eternal mercy, that judgment once poured out shall never more be repeated.

In looking at the Vail, the first colour, which would draw the attention of the beholder, was the Blue. The sinner’s first glance of faith on the Lord Jesus recognizes Him as from above, “God manifest in the flesh,” “the only-begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” Grace is ever the attraction to one who is burdened with guilt. The woman who was a sinner, Luke 7:37-50, despised and shunned by her more decorous neighbors, broke through all restraints, to welcome Christ. She heard that Jesus sat at meat in the Pharisee’s house. God had, in very deed, come down to visit fallen man: but no thunders of Sinai, no fearful voice of stern rebuke, no trumpet sound of judgment heralded His approach. He came upon one errand, that of mercy. He made known the depth of God’s heart, and the woman felt she had a claim above all others upon His compassion, for she knew herself most guilty. Conscious of her unfitness for His presence, and yet assured that her very unfitness had brought Him down from heaven – loathing herself on account of her sin, and yet aware that her loathsomeness was her best plea to be in the company of Christ, she rushed, unbidden, into that assembly; all considerations of propriety giving way before the one engrossing thought, that it was her Saviour, her God, who sat there, neglected by all but herself: and there she remained, satisfied with her nearness to Him; lost to all around her, her heart more broken, the more she tasted His love; arrested by the heavenly beauty of Him on whom she gazed. At length, she heard words which could come from no lips but those of the Son of God: “Thy faith hath saved thee: go in peace.” Well might she have exclaimed, “Thou art fairer than the children of men: grace is poured into thy lips.” (Psalms 45:2.) She recognized the loveliness of the blue.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

It would be deeply interesting, to trace through the Gospels this beautiful colour, exhibited in the ways of the Lord; and above all, its intensity, in those last scenes of anguish and distress, when He proved how He loved us. But this may suffice to direct others into these green pastures, and to the still waters, where refreshment and rest are found.

The Tabernacle The Priesthood and The Offerings

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