More Than a Sanctuary
God directed Moses to build a place of worship filled with visuals that would teach the people about His nature. The children of Israel had come out of a pagan environment filled with gods who needed to be appeased. The nations around them were worshipping capricious gods who could viciously turn on them if they did not make them happy. It was a huge task for God and Moses to change all that. They were an ignorant people with little if any literacy skills and just as we fill our children’s books with lots of illustrations so the sanctuary was a treasure house of illustrations.
The very name sanctuary was to reveal God’s desire to make them safe in a dangerous world. It contained a table of bread to demonstrate God’s assuring promise to feed them. It had candlesticks that they might understand God would enlighten them. The sanctuary was a place accused people could find safety until they had a just hearing. It illustrated in the morning and evening sacrifices that God would provide Himself a lamb and provide forgiveness.
The world is still a dangerous place and we need a safe place. In John 10:28 Jesus promises us He will hold us safely in His hand and no one can harm us. In John 7:37 Jesus promises to quench our thirst. In John 6:37 Jesus promises to feed us. And the end of each Gospel is an account of Jesus’ sacrifice for us.
We don’t need a sanctuary building any longer. We have Jesus. He is all the sanctuary ever was and many times more.
Written by Roger Bothwell on August 30, 2003
Spring of Life, 151 Old Farm Rd. Leominster, MA 01453