The Berean Expositor
Volume 17 - Page 17 of 144
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Lev. 16: begins with the words:--
"And the Lord spake unto Moses after the death of the two sons of Aaron, when they
offered before the Lord, and died . . . . . Speak unto Aaron thy brother, that he come not
at all times within the vail before the mercy seat, which is upon the ark; that he die not."
The words "at all times" mean "just at any time". Aaron and his sons were becoming
too familiar, and made certain religious conventions necessary. It is the habit of the
superior person to sneer at conventions, but with some natures they have their place, and
while set forms, solemn ritual, and ceremonial may degenerate into superstition and
empty formalism, they have their place. The solemn ritual of the day of atonement, and
the restriction of access to the high priest once every year, would have the tendency to
hallow the name of God and prevent that unholy familiarity that was evidently
developing. And so there is the washing of the flesh, the linen clothes, the sin offering
and the atonement, the incense and the seven times sprinkled blood. The words of the
wise man are very appropriate here:--
"Keep thy foot when thou goest to the house of God, and be more ready to hear,
than to give the sacrifice of fools; for they consider not that they do evil. Be not rash
with thy mouth, and let not thy heart be hasty to utter anything before God: for God is in
heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few" (Eccles. 5: 1, 2).
The cherubim [which are so closely associated with the mercy seat as to be made "of
the matter of the mercy seat" (Exod. 25: 19 margin)], have been dealt with in the series
Redemption, both in connection with the cherubim themselves, and in connection with
the original office of Satan, and though we do not pretend to have exhausted the teaching
of Scripture, we can say nothing more to profit at the end of an article. May the four
simple features brought before us in connection with the ark and mercy seat be a blessing
to us:--
An unbroken covenant.
An undying Priest.
An unfailing supply.
A place of fellowship and communion.
"And truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ . . . . . If
we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the
blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin" (I John 1: 3-7).
The table of shewbread (Exod. 25: 23-30).
"All one in Christ."
pp. 49 - 55
Having considered something of the rich teaching set forth by the ark of the covenant,
and the mercy seat within the second veil, we now, following the order of the narrative
before us, pass into the holy place and turn our attention to the furniture there.