What Was Not in the Tabernacle

April 15, 2014 (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

Portrait of Christ
The following is excerpted from our new book A PORTRAIT OF CHRIST: THE TABERNACLE, THE PRIESTHOOD, AND THE OFFERINGS. ISBN 978-1-58318-178-2. This book is an extensive study on the Old Testament tabernacle and its priestly system, which has been called “God’s masterpiece of typology.” Whereas the record of the creation of the universe takes up two chapters of the Bible and the fall of man takes up one chapter, the tabernacle, with its priesthood and offerings, takes up 50 chapters. It is obvious that God has many important lessons for us in this portion of His Word. Speaking personally, nothing has helped me better understand the Triune God and the salvation that He has purchased for man, and I believe that I can guarantee that the reader will be taken to new heights in his understanding of these things. Everything about the tabernacle points to Jesus Christ: the design, the materials, the colors, the court walls and pillars, the door into the court, the sacrificial altar, the laver, the tabernacle tent itself with its boards and curtains and silver sockets, the tabernacle gate, and veil before the holy of holies, the candlestick, the table of shewbread, the incense altar, the ark of the covenant, the high priest, and the offerings. All is Christ. The tabernacle system offers brilliant, unforgettable lessons on Christ’s person, offices and work: His eternal Sonship, His sinless manhood, His anointing, His atonement, His resurrection glory, His work as the life and sustainer and light of creation, His eternal high priesthood and intercession, and His kingdom. In addition to the studies on every aspect of the tabernacle, A Portrait of Christ features studies on the high priest, the Levitical priests, the five offerings of Leviticus, the day of atonement, the ransom money, the red heifer, the cherubims, strange fire, the golden calf, leprosy, the Nazarite vow, the pillar of cloud and pillar of fire, and the transportation of the tabernacle through the wilderness. The tabernacle is very practical in its teaching, as it also depicts believer priests carrying Christ through this world (1 Pet. 2:5, 9). Like the Israelites in the wilderness, believers today are on a pilgrimage through a foreign land on the way to our eternal home (1 Pet. 2:11).

It is instructive to think about what wasn’t in the tabernacle.

There was no chair.

This reminds us that the work of the Levitical priests was never finished. Those sacrifices could not bring salvation; they only pointed to the salvation that would come by Christ. Salvation wasn’t complete until Jesus cried from the cross, “It is finished” just before He surrendered His spirit in death (John 19:30).

Hebrews 10:11-12 And every priest standeth daily ministering and offering oftentimes the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins: 12 But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins for ever, sat down on the right hand of God.

The fact that there was no chair in the tabernacle also reminds us that the believer priest should always be busy in the service of the Lord.

1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.

Life is too short to be lazy or to retire from the Lord’s business. Slumber produces both physical and spiritual poverty.

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Friday Church News Notes, Volume 15, Issue 15

The Friday Church News Notes is designed for use in churches and is published by Way of Life Literature’s Fundamental Baptist Information Service. Unless otherwise stated, the Notes are written by David Cloud. Of necessity we quote from a wide variety of sources, though this does not imply an endorsement.

IN OMINOUS MOVE, SUPREME COURT REFUSES TO REVIEW RULING AGAINST CHRISTIAN PHOTOGRAPHER (Friday Church News Notes, April 11, 2014, www.wayoflife.org fbns@wayoflife.org, 866-295-4143) - In an ominous move against First Amendment rights, the U.S. Supreme Court has refused to hear the appeal by a Christian photographer who was charged with human rights violation for refusing to photograph a private “commitment ceremony” for two lesbians. In 2006, Elane Photography was fined nearly $7000 by the New Mexico Human Rights Commission for refusing to photograph the ceremony. Owners Elaine and Jonathan Huguenin are Christians who believe that marriage is the union of one man and one woman. The Huguenins took the matter to court, but they have lost at every level. In August 2013, the New Mexico Supreme Court “ruled that Christian photographers cannot decline to participate in gay-marriage commitment ceremonies” (“New Mexico Court,” Breitbart, Aug, 22, 2013). The state’s highest judges went so far to say that forcing Christians to act contrary to their religious faith is the price of citizenship. Justice Richard Bosson said, “The Huguenins are free to ... pray to the God of their choice ... But there is a price, one that we all have to pay somewhere in our civic life.” Even though eight state attorneys general filed briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court in support of the Huguenins, the judges refused to hear the appeal, thus letting the lower court’s anti-First Amendment decision stand. Legal pundits say that it is probable that the Supreme Court will wait until a federal appeals court rules on this issue before taking it into consideration, but it is ominous that the judges had no interest in giving immediate relief to Christians who are being oppressed by homosexual activists and by a government bent on advancing a “new morality.” This will create a climate in which it will be nearly impossible for a Bible-believing Christian to own a business or hold a job, particularly in government and education, if he or she is not willing to accept the government’s view of morality.

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Matt Maher: Building the One-World Church Through Music

Updated April 10, 2014 (first published August 20, 2013) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

zz_maher_8_19The following study of popular worship singer Matt Maher further illustrates the fact that contemporary praise music is a key element in building the end-time, one-world “church.” It describes the very dangerous spiritual world to which many fundamental Baptist churches are building bridges.

Many are deceived by the fact that contemporary praise musicians sing about the Lord in such a seemingly sincere manner. They ask, “Can it be wrong to sing Maher’s ‘Lord, I Need You’?”

I would answer by asking this: Is Matt Maher, who prays to Mary and believes that she aids men in salvation, singing about the same “Lord” as the Bible-believing Christian? When the pope and thousands of Roman Catholics, who hold to a false gospel and worship a piece of bread as Jesus, join their voices to sing this song, who are they singing to in reality, according to God’s Word?

Too many professing Bible-believing Baptists are following their emotions and their vanity and the crowd and their bellies (e.g., build bigger churches, sell more books, don’t offend the popular leaders, etc.) rather than God’s Word and the Spirit of Truth.


The Canadian born Matt Maher (b. 1974), who lives in Tempe, Arizona, is an eight-time GMA Dove Award Nominee. He has a degree in Jazz Piano from Arizona State University.

Like John Michael Talbot, Matt Maher is a Roman Catholic ecumenical bridge builder.

He grew up Catholic but had a “profound awakening” through a charismatic Catholic group. This consisted of an emotional experience that he had while watching a skit “The Broken Heart” about a girl who gets a new heart from God after giving hers away to a young boy.

“‘I was standing in the back of the room and I burst into tears,’ Maher remembered. Not long after, he started writing worship songs for the group’s prayer sessions and devoted himself to performing Christian music” (“Catholic Rocker Matt Maher,” Religion News Service, May 17, 2013).

The skit did not present the biblical gospel, and Maher’s conversion was not a biblical conversion. It was a religious conversion that did not include repentance from error and rejection of Rome’s false christ and false gospel.

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The Red Sea and Mt. Sinai

April 9, 2014 (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

Nuweiba 155
Theological liberals and many of their “evangelical” friends say that Israel crossed north of the Red Sea in the Bitter Lakes region. Consider the following statement from Halley’s Bible Handbook, which is reputed to be conservative:

“The sea then would have flowed north into the depressions known today as the Bitter Lakes. If a steady wind pushed the shallow water north into the Bitter Lakes, it would have lowered the level of the water so that a land bridge would appear, which is not an uncommon phenomenon. The waters on the north and the south then were a ‘wall’ or ‘defense.’ There is no need to assume perpendicular heaps of water defying gravity--although there is no question that God could have done exactly that. ... The Egyptians followed through the exposed sea mud and were caught and tangled by the returning tide following the relaxed pressure of the wind.”

The Hebrew word “suph,” which is translated “Red” in most Bibles, does mean “reed,” but this does not refer to a reed lake. The Red Sea was called “Reed Sea” in ancient times, not because it was shallow, but because reeds grew in marshy areas along its shores in places. (The Hebrew word refers to water reeds in general and not to papyrus only.) Further, in the New Testament it is called the Red Sea and not the Reed Sea (Acts 7:36; Heb. 11:29). In ancient times the name Red Sea was given to the entire Arabian Sea, including the modern Red Sea and its arms and the Persian Gulf (Kenneth Kitchen,
On the Reliability of the Old Testament). In 1 Kings 9:26, the Gulf of Aqaba where Ezion Geber was located is called the Red Sea.

The bottom line is that the Bible says Israel crossed a sea, and the description of the crossing is not the description of a marsh or a lake. In ancient times the Bitter Lakes were not deep; they were more like marshy salt flats.* But the water that Israel crossed is described as deep and mighty. It formed a wall unto the Israelites on the right and left as they crossed it (Ex. 14:22; 15:4-5, 10; Neh. 9:11; Psa 106:9; Isa. 51:10). Paul describes the crossing as a baptism in the cloud and in the sea (1 Cor. 10:1-2). As baptism means immersion, Paul was saying that Israel walked between towering walls of water beneath the cloud of glory. We know, then, that the crossing was over an arm of the sea itself and not a lake or marsh. (* “Prior to the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, Great Bitter Lake was a large salt flat; in the arid climate, basins rarely accumulate enough water to become true lakes,” NASA Earth Observatory.)


Traditionally, the crossing was somewhere in the north of the Gulf of Suez. According to this view, Israel crossed here and then journeyed south into the peninsula to Mt. Sinai. The exact mountain is not known with certainty, though there are some good candidates.

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Fifty Years of Anglican Liberalism

Updated April 8, 2014 (first published June 16, 2003) (David Cloud, Fundamental Baptist Information Service, P.O. Box 610368, Port Huron, MI 48061, 866-295-4143, fbns@wayoflife.org)

The worldwide Anglican Communion is composed of some 80 million members * in 164 countries, including the “mother church,” the Church of England, and the Episcopal Church in America. (* A large percentage of Anglican members are “invisible” because they are church members due to the fact that they were baptized as infants and perhaps catechized, but they do not participate in the functional life of the churches.)

The Anglican Church is permeated with theological liberalism at every level.

Consider some examples:

In 1953, Archbishop of Canterbury William Temple [pictured above] , in his book
Nature and God, said, “... there is no such thing as revealed truth.”

In 1960, Episcopalian Bishop James Pike said the doctrine of the Trinity is “outdated, incomprehensible and nonessential” (
The Christian Century, Dec. 21, 1960). (Billy Graham was a guest at Pike’s ordination on May 15, 1958 and praised the liberal bishop in glowing terms. Nine days later, Graham invited Pike to sit on the platform during his evangelistic crusade in San Francisco and had him lead in prayer. On Dec. 4, 1960, Graham spoke in Pike’s pulpit at Grace Cathedral in San Francisco.)

In 1961, Archbishop of Canterbury Michael Ramsey said, “... heaven is not a place for Christians only. ... I expect to see many present day atheists there” (
London Daily Mail, Oct. 2, 1961). That same year, Bishop James Pike called the virgin birth of Christ a “primitive myth” and said that Joseph was probably Jesus’ real father (Redbook magazine, August 1961). He also said that Adam and Eve, the Garden of Eden, heaven, and hell are myths. (Billy Graham invited Ramsey to the platform during his 1975 crusade in Brazil and allowed him to speak to the crowd (Fundamental Evangelistic Association News & Views, May-June 1975).

In 1963, Episcopal theologian Paul van Buren started the God-is-dead movement with the publication of his book
The Secular Meaning of the Gospel. That same year, Anglican Bishop John Robinson said in his book Honest to God, “The whole scheme of a supernatural being coming down from heaven to ‘save’ mankind from sin ... is frankly incredible to man ‘come of age.’”

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