“The Tabernacle its construction and furnishings”, Part 20

There seems to be several differing views as to how precisely the upright frames or boards were
constructed, some imagining them to be
shaped like pillars (similar to those used to support the first
and second Veils), some see them as
hollowed frames similar to those used in modern housing
construction, to which generally drywall is attached, while others accept the traditional view that they
solid boards.

Note the following:

The point most open to discussion in the description of the Tabernacle is the term qeresh (pl. q’
rashim, rendered `boards’). The usual theory, based on the probably erroneous ideas of the
Septuagint and Josephus,
regards them as pillars, and is advocated, e.g., by Benzinger (in E.B. art.
Tabernacle), but this makes the whole structure a most unwieldy and impossible affair (each
`board’ being a huge timber 10 x 1 1/2 cubits.. and weighing between 1,000 and 2,000
. There is no evidence that qeresh means any such thing (cf. Nowack, Heb. Archaologie, 11, p.
56, note
). It is the plausible suggestion of A.R.S. Kennedy (HDB, IV, p. 659f. and cf. Driver in
Cambridge Bible on Exod 26:15) that the `boards’ were light, strong frames shaped somewhat
like the accompanying illustration, sufficiently rigid to sustain the weight of the curtains and give
the necessary firmness to the walls
and yet so open as to allow the rich embroidery of the inner
curtains to be visible from the inside
, which would be impossible on the ordinary theory that
qeresh means a solid `board’ or pillar. (New Standard Bible Dictionary, “Tabernacle”)

“It seems evident, therefore, that the
keresh (qeresh) of P. must be a frame of wood, such as builders in
all countries have employed in the construction of light walls… this sense suits
Ezek 27:6 admirably; `thy
panels are of ivory inlaid in box wood.’ We may now translate Exod 26:15,16 thusly, taking the
parenthesis last: `
And thou shall make frames of the dwelling of acacia wood, standing up, two
uprights for each frame, joined to each other by cross rails—10 cubits the height and a cubit and
a half the breadth of the single frame
.’ We now see how it is that a writer as fond of measurements as
P. has omitted to give the third dimension: a frame has, strictly speaking, no thickness.” (
Dictionary Of The Bible, p. 660)


In regards to the “solid board” theory, similar to that of the “Pillar” view it is suggested by some that
these boards if truly solid wood, would be far too cumbersome and weightily for the Israelites to handle,
however we tend to disagree,
let us remember that the same great architect who supervised the
construction of the Great Pyramid with individual stones weighting in access of 60 tons, is the
same architect and designer of the Tabernacle
. Undoubtedly God in his wisdom chose “Shittim” or
Acacia” wood in the construction of the tabernacle and its furniture for this very reason, as this wood is
both strong and light of weight thus eliminating the supposed (weight) reasons against solid frames.

Furthermore we understand that the “
Linen curtain” which overhung the gold covered wooden structure
was a symbol or representation of the Church, both Head and Body whose true beauty is hidden from
the world by the covering goat skin, ram skin, and seal skin curtains, in conjunction with this we also
understand that the gold covered pillars, boards, silver bases and sockets were likewise all symbols and
types typifying the spiritual glory of the body of Christ hidden from the view of the world.

These symbols and types prefigured in the tabernacle were also maintained in the interior of the
tabernacle as well, “
the heavenly places” (Eph 2:6), as for example the first section of the tabernacle
the “Holy” typifies the spirit begotten condition of those fully consecrated to the Lord, who although
spirit begotten new creatures nevertheless possess this “
treasure”, this new nature in “earthen vessels
2 Cor 4:7) reckoned as being fully justified as was typified by the gold covered pillars found within the
Holy, which supporting the “
entrance curtain” (the first Vail), were set in “copper” bases, copper being
a symbol or type of human perfection whether reckoned or actual.

However in the “
Most Holy” everything was covered in gold that is with the exception of the “silver
” which supported the four pillars upon which the “Second Vail” was hung, nothing beyond this
point, beyond the second vail was to represent the human nature whether reckoned or actual

the Most Holy represents the spirit born condition, the condition of those who having passed the
vail of death, represented in the Second Vail, have overcome and have reached the spirit plane of


Now should we concede to the thought that the boards were hollowed frames thus allowing
supposedly for better mobility and so as the beauty of the tapestry (the linen curtains) could be
exhibited within the structure,
we would likewise in this act destroy the type pictured within the
Most Holy, the spiritual condition
, for let us not forget that due to the length of the linen curtains (28
cubits) and the height and the width of the tabernacle structure (10x10x10=30 cubits) when placed over
the structure they would only come down to within a cubit short of reaching the ground on both sides of
the tabernacle thus exposing the “
Goat Skin” curtains which did reach to the ground on both sides, and
if you recall these curtains represented
the justified human nature of both our Lord and the Church,
thus the human nature howbeit perfect, and fully justified would be shown in the type as inhabiting the
spiritual plane.

The Scriptures however are quite clear on this issue, “
Flesh and blood (the human nature) cannot
inherit the kingdom of God
(the spiritual phase of the kingdom)” 1 Cor 15:50

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