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The Tabernacle is God's photo journal documenting salvation. It is not an after thought, it is His premeditated explanation of what Jesus would do perfectly on the Cross. The Tabernacle is the clearest portrait of Christ and His redemption to be found in any part of the Old Testament. While God only uses one verse to record Creation (Genesis 1:1), and two chapters (Genesis 1) to explain it, He takes 15 chapters (Exodus 25) to explain the construction of the Tabernacle and 27 more to describe it in action (Leviticus). This task was so important that God did not depend on the ingenuity of craftsmen to follow a blueprint, He actually came into them through His Spirit (Exodus 31:1-6) and guided each step of their work.
Before God sent a Person named Jesus Christ, He sent a picture called the Tabernacle. The Tabernacle is a photo album of the most detailed explanation of salvation in the Old Testament. The Tabernacle is the ABCs of Christian Doctrine, it is a systematic Theology that Paul actually uses in Romans to explain salvation. In the Old Testament the Tabernacle is the dwelling place of God. In the New Testament the Church becomes the dwelling place of God.
Before the Cross, before Christ came, God established ceremonies to typify, shadow, and explain the Cross. The observant would clearly see that sin must be dealt with before God could be approached. Fellowship with God was only possible when the sin problem was settled. That was the message of sacrifice and the meeting place called the Tabernacle.
Now on this side of the Cross, the meaning of the death of Christ to God, and the effects of Christ's death upon us who believe is most clearly taught in the Tabernacle. Even the New Testament has to revert to the Tabernacle to explain Christ's work (Romans 3; Hebrews 8).
Taken from "Seeing the Bible as Whole in Christ" by Discover the Book Ministries (used by permission).