Today's Manna

February 27, 2017
Curtains, Coverings, and Veils
by Scotty McCurdy
Scripture Reading: Exodus 26

Exodus 26 is much more than it appears to be on the surface. What might merely seem like instructions for an ancient people’s place of worship is a treasure trove of theological truths and pictures of Christ. It is God showing His willingness to dwell with His people.

One element of the tabernacle seems emphasized – its curtains and veils. For a place devoted to God dwelling among His people, there’s a lot of concealment. Why would God desire to be with man, yet separate Himself? It would be helpful to answer that question by looking at two places where God dwells with man at either end of the Bible.

In the Garden of Eden there is no mention of a tabernacle or temple, nor is there need for man to veil or cover himself before God. In fact, Adam enjoys regular fellowship with God, evidenced by God walking through the Garden (Gen. 3:8-11).

On the other end of history, in the eternal New Jerusalem, John makes the point that “the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them” and that he “saw no temple in it, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple” (Rev. 21:3, 22). Once again, as in the Garden, there is no tabernacle, no temple – God is with His people. What happened between Genesis and Revelation? The answer – sin.

God always intended to dwell with man. Yet man chose to sin instead of dwell with God. Thus, we are separated from Him. In His mercy, though, God made a way for that thick curtain – a sobering reminder of separation to all who looked on it – to be removed. Jesus Christ, in His substitutionary death and victorious resurrection, paid the price of our sin and split that veil in two, allowing all who come to Him to truly dwell with God for all eternity.

Because of sin, we do not have the ability to tear the curtain that separates us from God. If left to us, we would be eternally on the wrong side. But Christ made a way! Come to Christ, have your sins forgiven totally and eternally, and dwell with God forever, free from curtains, coverings, and veils.

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