Exodus 26

1 “Moreover you shall make the tabernacle with ten curtains; of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet, with cherubim. The work of the skilful workman you shall make them. 2 The length of each curtain shall be twenty-eight cubits, and the width of each curtain four cubits: all the curtains shall have one measure. 3 Five curtains shall be coupled together to one another; and the other five curtains shall be coupled to one another. 4 You shall make loops of blue on the edge of the one curtain from the edge in the coupling; and likewise you shall make in the edge of the curtain that is outermost in the second coupling. 5 You shall make fifty loops in the one curtain, and you shall make fifty loops in the edge of the curtain that is in the second coupling. The loops shall be opposite to one another. 6 You shall make fifty clasps of gold, and couple the curtains to one another with the clasps: and the tabernacle shall be a unit. 7 “You shall make curtains of goats’ hair for a covering over the tabernacle. You shall make them eleven curtains. 8 The length of each curtain shall be thirty cubits, and the width of each curtain four cubits: the eleven curtains shall have one measure. 9 You shall couple five curtains by themselves, and six curtains by themselves, and shall double over the sixth curtain in the forefront of the tent. 10 You shall make fifty loops on the edge of the one curtain that is outermost in the coupling, and fifty loops on the edge of the curtain which is outermost in the second coupling. 11 You shall make fifty clasps of brass, and put the clasps into the loops, and couple the tent together, that it may be one. 12 The overhanging part that remains of the curtains of the tent, the half curtain that remains, shall hang over the back of the tabernacle. 13 The cubit on the one side, and the cubit on the other side, of that which remains in the length of the curtains of the tent, shall hang over the sides of the tabernacle on this side and on that side, to cover it. 14 You shall make a covering for the tent of rams’ skins dyed red, and a covering of sea cow hides above. 15 “You shall make the boards for the tabernacle of acacia wood, standing up. 16 Ten cubits shall be the length of a board, and one and a half cubits the width of each board. 17 There shall be two tenons in each board, joined to one another: thus you shall make for all the boards of the tabernacle. 18 You shall make the boards for the tabernacle, twenty boards for the south side southward. 19 You shall make forty sockets of silver under the twenty boards; two sockets under one board for its two tenons, and two sockets under another board for its two tenons. 20 For the second side of the tabernacle, on the north side, twenty boards, 21 and their forty sockets of silver; two sockets under one board, and two sockets under another board. 22 For the far part of the tabernacle westward you shall make six boards. 23 You shall make two boards for the corners of the tabernacle in the far part. 24 They shall be double beneath, and in the same way they shall be whole to its top to one ring: thus shall it be for them both; they shall be for the two corners. 25 There shall be eight boards, and their sockets of silver, sixteen sockets; two sockets under one board, and two sockets under another board. 26 “You shall make bars of acacia wood: five for the boards of the one side of the tabernacle, 27 and five bars for the boards of the other side of the tabernacle, and five bars for the boards of the side of the tabernacle, for the far part westward. 28 The middle bar in the middle of the boards shall pass through from end to end. 29 You shall overlay the boards with gold, and make their rings of gold for places for the bars: and you shall overlay the bars with gold. 30 You shall set up the tabernacle according to the way that it was shown to you on the mountain. 31 “You shall make a veil of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, with cherubim. The work of the skilful workman shall it be made. 32 You shall hang it on four pillars of acacia overlaid with gold; their hooks shall be of gold, on four sockets of silver. 33 You shall hang up the veil under the clasps, and shall bring the ark of the testimony in there within the veil: and the veil shall separate the holy place from the most holy for you. 34 You shall put the mercy seat on the ark of the testimony in the most holy place. 35 You shall set the table outside the veil, and the lamp stand over against the table on the side of the tabernacle towards the south: and you shall put the table on the north side. 36 “You shall make a screen for the door of the Tent, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, the work of the embroiderer. 37 You shall make for the screen five pillars of acacia, and overlay them with gold: their hooks shall be of gold: and you shall cast five sockets of brass for them.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1–6

God manifested his presence among the Israelites in a tabernacle or tent, because of their condition in the wilderness. God suits the tokens of his favour, and the gifts of his grace, to his people’s state and wants. The curtains of the tabernacle were to be very rich. They were to be embroidered with cherubim, signifying that the angels of God pitch their tents round about the church, Ps 34:7. (Ex 26:7-14)

Verses 7–14

The curtains of meaner materials, being made both longer and broader, covered the others, and were defended by coverings of skins. The whole represents the person and doctrine of Christ, and the church of true Christians, and all heavenly things, which outwardly are mean, but inwardly, and in the sight of God, are glorious and precious.

Verses 15–30

The sockets of silver each weighed about 115 pounds; they were placed in rows on the ground. In every pair of these sockets, a strong board of shittim-wood, covered with plates of gold, was fitted by mortises and tenons. Thus walls were formed for the two sides, and for the west end. The wall was further held together by bars, which passed through rings of gold. Over this the curtains were spread. Though movable, it was strong and firm. The materials were very costly. In all this it was a type of the church of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief Corner-stone, Eph 2:20, 21.

Verses 31–37

A vail, or curtain, separated the holy place from the most holy place. It was hung upon pillars. This vail was for a partition between the holy place and the most holy; which forbade any to look into the holiest of all. The apostle tells what was the meaning of this vail, Heb 9:8. That the ceremonial law could not make the comers thereunto perfect, nor would the observance of it bring men to heaven; the way into the holiest of all was not made manifest, while the first tabernacle was standing. Life and immortality lay hidden till they were brought to light by the gospel; which was signified by the rending of this vail at the death of Christ, Mt 27:51. We have now boldness to enter into the holiest, in all acts of worship, by the blood of Jesus; yet such as obliges us to holy reverence. Another vail was for the outer door of the tabernacle. This vail was all the defence the tabernacle had. God takes care of his church on earth. A curtain shall be, if God please to make it so, as strong a defence to his house, as gates of brass and bars of iron. With this typical description of Christ and his church before us, what is our judgment of these matters? Do we see any glory in the person of Christ? any excellence in his character? any thing precious in his salvation? or any wisdom in the doctrine of the cross? Will our religion bear examination? and are we more careful to approve our hearts to God than our characters toward men?

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