I am neither builder nor artist. Like many of you, I would rather read stories than architectural detail and descriptions of decor. Unlike us, the first Old Testament readers would have been clued into the importance of the details of the tabernacle, which form the main focus of Exodus in its final chapters. The tabernacle is the place where God would dwell with Israel, and thus where heaven meets earth. Consequently, Moses and early Israel would have hallowed the command to make the tabernacle “like the pattern I will show you” (Exodus 25:8, Exodus 25:40). This pattern bears heavenly significance. Consider the ark, with the cherubim facing where God would sit. Later scripture reveals that this is what God’s true throne is like (Isaiah 6:1-6). Angels surround God, praising Him non-stop. This tabernacle is indeed a tangible teacher of God’s Holy character as well as a reflection of His dwelling place.
For this reason, over the next few weeks, I encourage you as a reader to try and draw the tabernacle as you read the instructions. This will enable you to better appreciate its details and the way they communicate truths about creation and God’s heavenly abode. Originally God worked to build our universe to dwell with us (Genesis 1 & 2). Now God is calling His chosen people to take the stuff of the earth (Exodus 25:1-7) to make a new place where He will dwell with them, enabling them to make God known throughout the earth. Remember that as you draw! You could also google “tabernacle picture” and find a similar result if you wish to bypass the rewarding work of picturing this yourself.