Exodus Chapter 25 Verses 17-22
:17 “And thou shalt make a mercy seat of pure gold: two cubits and a half shall be the length thereof, and a cubit and a half the breadth thereof. 18 And thou shalt make two cherubims of gold, of beaten work shalt thou make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat. 19 And make one cherub on the one end, and the other cherub on the other end: even of the
mercy seat shall ye make the cherubims on the two ends thereof. 20 And the cherubims shall stretch forth their wings on high, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and their faces shall look one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubims be. 21 And thou shalt put the mercy seat above upon the ark; and in the ark thou shalt put the testimony that I shall give thee. 22 And there I
will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel.”
The mercy seat described to us above is a shadow of God’s mercy towards his children based on Christ’s covenant work of redemption. We notice some of the parallels between the mercy seat and God’s mercy toward his children based on the covenant work of Jesus Christ:
1. The length and the breath of the mercy seat is the same as the length and the breadth of the Ark of the Covenant. Moreover, the mercy seat has as its foundation the Ark of the Covenant as it sits on top of the Ark of the Covenant. This teaches us that the mercy seat is not greater or lesser in length and breath than the Ark of the Covenant. Thus, God’s mercy does not exceed nor is it less than the covenant
work represented in the Ark of the Covenant. In the Ark of the Covenant were the tables of covenant that God made with the children of Israel. Therefore, his mercy in that covenant was not less than or greater than the number of the children of Israel.
Similarly, Christ’s covenant work and mercy in the covenant of redemption is not greater than or lesser than the number embraced in that covenant. The covenant of redemption is spelled out for us in Rom. 8:29, 30: “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brethren. Moreover whom he did predestinate, them he also called: and
whom he called, them he also justified: and whom he justified, them he also glorified.” The exact same ones, no more, nor no less, that God foreknew were also predestinated, called, justified and glorified. In addition, John 17:2 “As thou hast given him power over all flesh, that he should give eternal life to as many as thou hast given him.” Christ gives eternal life to as many as (not one more, not one less
than) the Father gave him.
2. Notice that there is no height dimension given in the description of the mercy seat. This teaches us that the mercy of God is not bound to those embraced in his covenant.
3. There were two cherubims of gold of beaten work with one on either end of the mercy seat. The wings of the each cherub stretched from one end of the tabernacle to the inward wing of the other cherub. Moreover, the cherubs had their faces inward toward the mercy seat and the Ark of the Covenant. Since the bible number two is associated with the subject of witness, the two cherubims would therefore be
witnesses. The law and the prophets answer to these two witnesses as their testimony like the wings of the cherubims stretch throughout the Old Testament age. Their faces being inward teach us that the testimony centers around the covenant work in the Ark and the mercy of God. That the cherubims are of beaten work teaches us that the children of Israel have been tried, tested and shaped by the written word of God
in the Old Testament. Since the cherubims are of gold, we see that the testimony is the testimony of the king, who of course if God.
In parallel, the witnesses that we have today stretch further than just the law and the prophets. We have the witnesses of the Old and New Testaments which stretch in their testimony from the beginning of time until the resurrection of the dead and into heaven’s glory world. The testimony is that of King Jesus, who is both the King of kings, and the King of the kingdom of heaven. The centerpiece of their testimony
is the covenant work of Jesus Christ and his resultant mercy towards his covenant people.
4. The Lord promised to meet with Moses and to commune with Moses from above the mercy seat and between the cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony. In contrast, we read in Rev. 8:3 “And another angel came and stood at the altar, having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. 4 And
the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel's hand.” Today, God meets with all of his people in prayer through the atoning work of Christ and his intercession on their behalf.
:23 “Thou shalt also make a table of shittim wood: two cubits shall be the length thereof, and a cubit the breadth thereof, and a cubit and a half the height thereof. 24 And thou shalt overlay it with pure gold, and make thereto a crown of gold round about. 25 And thou shalt make unto it a border of an hand breadth round about, and thou shalt make a
golden crown to the border thereof round about. 26 And thou shalt make for it four rings of gold, and put the rings in the four corners that are on the four feet thereof. 27 Over against the border shall the rings be for places of the staves to bear the table. 28 And thou shalt make the staves of shittim wood, and overlay them with gold, that the table may be borne with them. 29 And thou shalt make the dishes
thereof, and spoons thereof, and covers thereof, and bowls thereof, to cover withal: of pure gold shalt thou make them. 30 And thou shalt set upon the table showbread before me alway.”
Based on the information provided for us in the above scriptures we make the following observations and comparisons:
1. With the gold crown and the table overlaid with pure gold and gold being associated with kings and kingdoms in the scriptures, we conclude that this table was designed to be a king’s table. That being the case, then this table is as a shadow pointing us to the table of the King of the kingdom of heaven: the table of Christ the King of the kingdom of God.
2. When Christ came as the King of the kingdom of God, he possessed a two-fold nature. He was both God and man. The table in the tabernacle consisted of both shittim wood and pure gold. This two fold material would mirror the two fold nature of Christ.
3. The rings and the staves are designed in the same way as the rings and the staves in the Ark of the Covenant and would have the same significance both to the table and to the Ark of the Covenant.
4. This table was designed as an eating table as it held bowls and spoons and dishes and covers. Moreover the showbread was placed on the table. Later we find that the showbread consisted of 12 loaves and the priests were to put fresh loaves on the table daily. There are two verses in the New Testament that speak expressly of the Lord’s table:
a. Luke 22:30 “That ye may eat and drink at my table in my kingdom, and sit on thrones judging the twelve tribes of Israel.”
b. 1 Cor. 10:21 “Ye cannot drink the cup of the Lord, and the cup of devils: ye cannot be partakers of the Lord's table, and of the table of devils.”
The bible number 12 is the representative number. For instance, twelve princes represented the twelve tribes of Israel. Thus 12 represented the entirety of Israel. Since there were twelve loaves on the table of showbread, this would representatively signify food for the entirety of Israel.
Moreover, the loaves were arranged in order of six loaves by six loaves. Using six sitting beside the second six if could be seen as 66, which is the number of books of the bible. It is no stretch to say that the spiritual food for all of God’s elect children is the sixty six books of the Old and New Testaments.
Eating at a King’s table is usually restricted to the children of the King. We read in Rev. 1:5 “And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, 6 And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” This
passage shows us that the same ones that Christ redeemed are also made kings and priests unto God. Thus, those that Christ chose and redeemed would have the privilege of being able to eat at the king’s table.
In Matthew, Mark, Luke and John we read of the Lord feeding a multitude of people with five loaves of bread and two small fishes. Afterwards the disciples picked up the fragments which consisted of twelve baskets.
Matt. 14:17 “And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes. 18 He said, Bring them hither to me. 19 And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to his disciples, and the disciples to the multitude. 20 And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the
fragments that remained twelve baskets full. 21 And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children.” In this, the Lord blessed the loaves and gave to the disciples to give to the multitude that ate and were filled. Today, the Lord gives messages to the gospel minister, who delivers to the congregation and gives them spiritual food to eat in the worship service. Those who are in the
congregation are eating at the King’s table spiritually.