Timna Park: Tabernacle Replica

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Timna Park: Tabernacle Replica

 

Location

 

1. Timna Park is 17 miles (27 km.) north of Eilat and the Red Sea, on Hwy. 90.

 

2. Located within Timna Park is another park that has an exact replica of the tabernacle God ordered Moses to build while he was on Mount Sinai.

 

3. This tabernacle contains every piece of furniture, Brazen Altar, Table of Showbread, Ark of the Covenant, and everything the original tabernacle had. It’s the only life-size model of its kind in Israel that is exactly like the original one. It has been researched extensively and built according to the specifications given to Moses.

 

4. Timna Park is in the arid desert of Arava and is on the route the Israelites would have taken in their travels. It’s not for certain, but it’s possible the Israelites could have camped in the same area.

 

5. The landscape around Timna Park is very similar to that of biblical times when the children of Israel wandered in the desert for forty years. The arid country, lack of water, and heat, all paint a picture of what it would have been like to live in the desert at that time.

 

Historical Background

 

1. The tabernacle was portable, and its specifications are found in Exodus chapters 25–40.

 

2. Most Christians skim over or don’t read the sections and books of the Bible that deal with the details of the Law and the tabernacle.

 

3. Some might wonder why God spent 40 days instructing Moses about the tabernacle, but only spent 6 days creating the entire universe?

 

4. And if God only needed a little over one chapter to describe the structure of the world, why did He need 15 chapters to describe the structure and details of the tabernacle?

 

5. For most Christians, reading from Genesis to Exodus chapter 20 is great. Then, they get bogged down in the rest of Exodus, Leviticus, and part of Numbers. 

 

6. The fact that God spends so much time on the details of how mankind can be right with Him reveals that He is more concerned about having a relationship with us over the importance of His creation.

 

Places of Interest

 

1. Tabernacle Courtyard Fence

 

  • It measures 75 ft. wide (23 m.) by 150 ft. long (46 m.).

 

  • The Courtyard has 60 posts with linen curtains all around it.

 

  • The Courtyard posts were 7.5 ft. high (2.29 m.).

 

  • Each post had a bronze base with silver hooks and rings on top.

 

  • Acacia wood was used for the tabernacle. These trees can be seen close to the tabernacle in Timna Park today.

 

  • The Eastern Gate, which was the entrance, had 4 posts and a colored curtain.

 

2. Courtyard

 

  • The Bronze (copper) Altar measured 7.5 ft. wide square (2.29 m.) by 4.5 ft. high (1.37 m.) and had 4 horns on each corner (also called the horns of the altar).

 

  • The Bronze Laver or washbasin made from brass.

 

  • Sacrifices and cleansing took place in the courtyard outside the Holy Place. Judgment and cleansing had to take place first before the priests could enter the temple.

 

3. The Tabernacle (also known as the Tent of Meeting)

 

  • It measured 45 ft. long (13.72 m.) by 15 ft. wide by 15 ft. high (4.57 m.).

 

  • It was made with 10 curtains of fine linen of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn.

 

  • Each curtain was made with an embroidered cherub.

 

4. The Holy Place

 

  • Only the priests and High Priest could enter the Holy Place.

 

  • It measured 15 ft. wide (4.57 m.) by 30 ft. long (9.14 m.).

 

  • It contained the menorah made from a single piece of gold.

 

  • The Table of Showbread (representing the unleavened bread of the first Passover) measured 36 inches wide (91.44 cm.) by 18 inches deep (45.72 cm.) by 27 inches tall (68.58 cm.). On it were 12 loaves of bread which represented the 12 tribes of Israel.

 

  • There was the Altar of Incense, which measured 18 inches square (45.72 cm.) by 36 inches tall (91.44 cm.). Only a special kind of incense was to be burned upon it.

 

  • The priests wore white, linen robes with a colorful sash.

 

  • The High Priest wore special garments (a turban, ephod, breastplate, and robe). The breastplate contained 12 stones, each representing the 12 tribes of Israel. There were bells and pomegranates at the bottom of the robe.

 

5. The Veil Curtain separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies. It was made of blue, purple, and scarlet thread.

 

6. The Holy of Holies

 

  • It measured 15 ft. by 15 ft. (4.6 m. by 4.6 m.).

 

  • Only the High Priest could enter the Holy of Holies once a year on the day of Yom Kippur, and he wore a holy linen coat (Lev. 16:4).

 

  • He had to be purified from all sin before entering.

 

  • Tradition holds that a rope was tied to the waist of the High Priest in case God smote him for being impure in His site. By doing so, he could be drug out with the rope because they were forbidden to enter the Holy of Holies. However, this tradition is not in the Bible.

 

  • Inside the Holy of Holies was the Ark of the Covenant, which measured 45 inches wide (114 cm.) by 27 inches deep by 27 inches tall (68.58 cm.).

 

  • On top of the Ark of the Covenant was the Mercy Seat, which measured 27 inches high (68.58 cm.). Molded to it were 2-winged cherubim angel figures made from one piece of gold.

 

  • Inside the Ark of the Covenant were the Ten Commandments written on Stone Tablets by the finger of God, Aaron’s Rod that budded, and a Jar of Manna.

 

The Tabernacle in the Bible

 

1. God gave the instructions to Moses of how to build the tabernacle while he was on Mount Sinai.
Exodus 24:15–18: Then Moses went up on the mountain, and the cloud covered the mountain. 16 The glory of the Lord dwelt on Mount Sinai, and the cloud covered it six days. And on the seventh day he called to Moses out of the midst of the cloud. 17 Now the appearance of the glory of the Lord was like a devouring fire on the top of the mountain in the sight of the people of Israel. 18 Moses entered the cloud and went up on the mountain. And Moses was on the mountain forty days and forty nights.

Hebrews 8:5: They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things. For when Moses was about to erect the tent, he was instructed by God, saying, “See that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown you on the mountain.”

 

2. The tabernacle was to be God’s special dwelling place among His people.
Exodus 25:1–9: The Lord said to Moses, 2 “Speak to the people of Israel, that they take for me a contribution. From every man whose heart moves him you shall receive the contribution for me. 3 And this is the contribution that you shall receive from them: gold, silver, and bronze, 4 blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, goats' hair, 5 tanned rams' skins, goatskins, acacia wood, 6 oil for the lamps, spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrant incense, 7 onyx stones, and stones for setting, for the ephod and for the breastpiece. 8 And let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell in their midst. 9 Exactly as I show you concerning the pattern of the tabernacle, and of all its furniture, so you shall make it.

 

3. The presence of God was over the tabernacle in the form of a cloud by day and fire by night.
Numbers 9:15–17: On the day that the tabernacle was set up, the cloud covered the tabernacle, the tent of the testimony. And at evening it was over the tabernacle like the appearance of fire until morning. 16 So it was always: the cloud covered it by day and the appearance of fire by night. 17 And whenever the cloud lifted from over the tent, after that the people of Israel set out, and in the place where the cloud settled down, there the people of Israel camped. 

 

4. Part of the reason the Levites were chosen to be the priests and servants of the temple was because of the zeal for the Lord they displayed regarding the Golden Calf at Mount Sinai.
Exodus 32:25–29: And when Moses saw that the people had broken loose (for Aaron had let them break loose, to the derision of their enemies), 26 then Moses stood in the gate of the camp and said, “Who is on the Lord's side? Come to me.” And all the sons of Levi gathered around him. 27 And he said to them, “Thus says the Lord God of Israel, ‘Put your sword on your side each of you, and go to and fro from gate to gate throughout the camp, and each of you kill his brother and his companion and his neighbor.’” 28 And the sons of Levi did according to the word of Moses. And that day about three thousand men of the people fell. 29 And Moses said, “Today you have been ordained for the service of the Lord, each one at the cost of his son and of his brother, so that he might bestow a blessing upon you this day.”

 

Faith Lesson from the Tabernacle

 

1. God focused on the details of the tabernacle because He wanted to embed some essential concepts in our minds.

 

2. The details of the tabernacle reveal how sinful people must approach a holy God.

 

3. The tabernacle was God’s dwelling among mankind.

 

4. The details of the tabernacle and sacrificial system reveal that God is more concerned about having a relationship with us than His creation.

 

5. It reveals the honor and respect we should have toward God.

 

6. The tabernacle and sacrificial system show the consequences of sin and the value of Christ’ sacrifice on the Cross. When a person sinned in the Old Testament, it cost them financially as they had to offer a sacrifice from their flocks or purchase one.

 

7. The tabernacle was a pattern of heavenly things.

Hebrews 8:5–6: They serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things. For when Moses was about to erect the tent, he was instructed by God, saying, “See that you make everything according to the pattern that was shown you on the mountain.” 6 But as it is, Christ has obtained a ministry that is as much more excellent than the old as the covenant he mediates is better, since it is enacted on better promises.

 

8. The tabernacle gives insight and understanding regarding the privilege believers have today of being the temple of the living God. 

1 Corinthians 3:16–17: Do you not know that you are a temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 17 If any man destroys the temple of God, God will destroy him, for the temple of God is holy, and that is what you are.

 

9. The concepts of the tabernacle provide understanding for believers today about how we are a living temple made with living stones. 

1 Peter 2:4–5: And coming to Him as to a living stone which has been rejected by men, but is choice and precious in the sight of God, 5 you also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house for a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

 

10. For those who skim over or neglect to read the details in Exodus, Leviticus, and Numbers, they will miss the foundational truths of who Christ is and what He did in redeeming us through His work on the Cross. 

 

11. The New Testament is built upon the foundation of the Old Testament. If our understanding of the Old Testament is weak, so will be our understanding of the New Testament.
 

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Timna Park: Tabernacle Replica

 

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