THE ARK

(The Throne of God)

Exodus 25:10 (NASB) "And they shall construct an ark of acacia wood two and a half cubits long, and one and a half cubits wide, and one and a half cubits high.

11 "And you shall overlay it with pure gold, inside and out you shall overlay it, and you shall make a gold molding around it.

12 "And you shall cast four gold rings for it, and fasten them on its four feet, and two rings shall be on one side of it and two rings on the other side of it.

13 "And you shall make poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold.

14 "And you shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark, to carry the ark with them.

15 "The poles shall remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be removed from it.

16 "And you shall put into the ark the testimony which I shall give you.

17 "And you shall make a mercy seat of pure gold, two and a half cubits long and one and a half cubits wide.

18 "And you shall make two cherubim of gold, make them of hammered work at the two ends of the mercy seat.

19 "And make one cherub at one end and one cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim of one piece with the mercy seat at its two ends.

20 "And the cherubim shall have their wings spread upward, covering the mercy seat with their wings and facing one another; the faces of the cherubim are to be turned toward the mercy seat.

21 "And you shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony which I shall give to you.

22 "And there I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

This where God started with His instructions for the Tabernacle. We started from the outside going in, the way we see things. God started from the inside going out - the way He sees things.

The Ark and Mercy Seat were the only furniture in the inner most part of the tabernacle. They were located in the Holy of Holies. The Ark was at the center of the Tabernacle. There are four arks in the bible.

The first was the ark of Noah .

Genesis 6:13 (NASB) Then God said to Noah, "The end of all flesh has come before Me; for the earth is filled with violence because of them; and behold, I am about to destroy them with the earth.

14 "Make for yourself an ark of gopher wood; you shall make the ark with rooms, and shall cover it inside and out with pitch.

15 "And this is how you shall make it: the length of the ark three hundred cubits, its breadth fifty cubits, and its height thirty cubits.

16 "You shall make a window for the ark, and finish it to a cubit from the top; and set the door of the ark in the side of it; you shall make it with lower, second, and third decks.

17 "And behold, I, even I am bringing the flood of water upon the earth, to destroy all flesh in which is the breath of life, from under heaven; everything that is on the earth shall perish.

18 "But I will establish My covenant with you; and you shall enter the ark-- you and your sons and your wife, and your sons' wives with you.

19 "And of every living thing of all flesh, you shall bring two of every kind into the ark, to keep them alive with you; they shall be male and female.

Only eight souls were brought through the flood and they were inside of the Ark. Judgment fell, but it fell outside of the Ark. They went through the judgment in the safety of God's provision. The word pitch used here is also translated atonement (see definition). Between the water (the judgment) and you there was the pitch (atonement) to protect you.

Ge 6:14 Make <06213> thee an ark <08392> of gopher <01613> wood <06086>;

rooms <07064> shalt thou make <06213> in the ark <08392>, and shalt pitch

<03724> it within <01004> and without <02351> with pitch <03724>.

Strong's No. 03724 (HEBREW)

3724 kopher {ko'-fer} from 3722; TWOT - 1025b; n m

1) price of a life, ransom, bribe

2) asphalt, pitch (as a covering)

3) the henna plant, name of a plant (henna?)

4) village

The second ark spoken of was Mose's ark.

Exodus 2:1 (NASB) Now a man from the house of Levi went and married a daughter of Levi.

2 And the woman conceived and bore a son; and when she saw that he was beautiful, she hid him for three months.

3 But when she could hide him no longer, she got him a wicker basket and covered it over with tar and pitch. Then she put the child into it, and set it among the reeds by the bank of the Nile.

4 And his sister stood at a distance to find out what would happen to him.

5 Then the daughter of Pharaoh came down to bathe at the Nile, with her maidens walking alongside the Nile; and she saw the basket among the reeds and sent her maid, and she brought it to her.

6 When she opened it, she saw the child, and behold, the boy was crying. And she had pity on him and said, "This is one of the Hebrews' children."

7 Then his sister said to Pharaoh's daughter, "Shall I go and call a nurse for you from the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for you?"

This ark was made of reeds which was readily available. In this case, the judgment was to throw your baby into the Nile river. The river furnished the materials to make the ark. Both Noah's ark and Mose's ark were covered with pitch.

Exodus 2:3 And when <03588> she could <03201> not longer <05750> hide <06845> him, she took <03947> for him an ark <08392> of bulrushes <01573>, and daubed

<02560> it with slime <02564> and with pitch <02203>, and put <07760> the child <03206> therein; and she laid <07760> [it] in the flags <05488> by the river's <02975> brink <08193>.

+Strong's No. 02564 (HEBREW)

2564 chemar {khay-mawr'} from 2560; TWOT- 683b; n m

1) slime, pitch, asphalt, bitumen

The third ark, the Ark of the covenant was made of acacia wood which was lined like the first two arks, but it was lined inside and out with gold. The Ark had a golden crown, the symbol of sovereignty and power. This means that the Ark is a type of Jesus - The King.

God wanted to live amongst His people and He would do so over the Ark of the Covenant and the Mercy Seat. This Ark had three tabernacles or dwelling places. These were the tabernacle of Moses, the tabernacle of David and the temple of Solomon. Exodus 25 is the first mention of the Ark and the last mention of the Ark in the old Testament is in Jeremiah.

Jeremiah 3:14 (NASB) 'Return, O faithless sons,' declares the LORD; 'For I am a master to you, And I will take you one from a city and two from a family, And I will bring you to Zion.'

15 "Then I will give you shepherds after My own heart, who will feed you on knowledge and understanding.

16 "And it shall be in those days when you are multiplied and increased in the land," declares the LORD, "they shall say no more, 'The ark of the covenant of the LORD.' And it shall not come to mind, nor shall they remember it, nor shall they miss it, nor shall it be made again.

The fourth Ark is mentioned in the bible in Revelations.

Revelation 11:19 (NASB) And the temple of God which is in heaven was opened; and the ark of His covenant appeared in His temple, and there were flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder and an earthquake and a great hailstorm.

When the true Ark is seen in heaven, the acts of nature are reminiscent of the giving of the law.

When Moses came to the burning bush, God told him to take off his shoes because He was walking on Holy Ground. In the tabernacle proper, (the Holy Place & Holy of Holies) the priests wore no shoes. Shoes are the symbol of wealth and independence. Slaves wore no shoes - remember the prodigal son. To go into the presence of God, you must be totally dependent on Jesus.

The Mercy Seat speaks of the throne of God on the earth. Moses went up the mountain into the shekinah glory of God. There the heavens opened up to him and the real heaven was visible. God told Moses to go down and make a scale model of what he saw. God cautioned him again and again to make it according to the pattern.

The Mercy Seat is where God sits among his people. It also speaks of Christ, for God now dwells among His people in those of us who are in Christ.

Exodus 25:22 (NASB) "And there I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

The Ark was made of acacia wood, which like the reeds is readily available. It is called an indestructible wood and it speaks of the humanity of Christ. It was wood which grew in dry desert places - Jesus was described as a root from dry ground.

It was covered with gold on the inside and out. This speaks of the glory of God.

Numbers 10:33 (NASB) Thus they set out from the mount of the LORD three days' journey, with the ark of the covenant of the LORD journeying in front of them for the three days, to seek out a resting place for them.

The Ark was to go before the people and guide their way. The opposite is true when people refused to go into the promised land after the spies brought back an evil report. They then changed their mind and wanted to enter the promised land. They went, but without the Ark and the result was disaster. It is the same for those who turn away from God in unbelief and who presume to lay hold of the blessings with Christ.

Numbers 14:40 (NASB) In the morning, however, they rose up early and went up to the ridge of the hill country, saying, "Here we are; we have indeed sinned, but we will go up to the place which the LORD has promised."

41 But Moses said, "Why then are you transgressing the commandment of the LORD, when it will not succeed?

42 "Do not go up, lest you be struck down before your enemies, for the LORD is not among you.

43 "For the Amalekites and the Canaanites will be there in front of you, and you will fall by the sword, inasmuch as you have turned back from following the LORD. And the LORD will not be with you."

44 But they went up heedlessly to the ridge of the hill country; neither the ark of the covenant of the LORD nor Moses left the camp.

45 Then the Amalekites and the Canaanites who lived in that hill country came down, and struck them and beat them down as far as Hormah.

The Ark was about the size of a little cedar chest. It was 3'-9" long x 2'-3" wide x 2'-3" high. On top of the Ark was actually the last piece of furniture - the Mercy Seat. It was actually a lid or a covering and was made of solid beaten gold and had two cherubim all made of the same piece. This Mercy Seat is the same height as the Table of Show Bread and the grate in the Brazen Altar. The Ark and Mercy Seat were the most important articles of furniture in the tabernacle.

You had gold on the inside and out and wood in the middle. This speaks of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. During the Passover meal, the Jews take three pieces of matsa (Unleaven bread) and put them in a small bag with three compartments. The center piece of matsa is removed and broken. They don't know why they do it, this speaks of Jesus being broken. The wood in the center of the gold speaks of the humanity of Jesus.

The word-Ark literally means coffin and is translated that way in Genesis 50:26

Genesis 50:26 (NASB) So Joseph died at the age of one hundred and ten years; and he was embalmed and placed in a coffin in Egypt.

Genesis 50:26 . yowceph:H3130 muwth:H4191 . . me'ah:H3967 . 'eser:H6235 shaneh:H8141 ben:H1121 . . chanat:H2590 . . . . yasam:H3455 . . 'arown:H727 . mitsrayim:H4714

727. 'arown, aw-rone'; or 'aron, aw-rone'; from H717 (in the sense of gathering); a box:--ark, chest, coffin.

Exodus 35:12 (NASB) the ark and its poles, the mercy seat, and the curtain of the screen;

Exo 35:12 . 'arown:H727 . . bad:H905 . . . kapporeth:H3727 . . . poreketh:H6532 . . macak:H4539

Jesus is the Ark of God. He is the Unbroken Law. He is the Rod that budded. He is the Bread of Life from heaven.

They were told to cast four rings of gold for the four corners. Staves were inserted through these rings and used to carry the Ark. These four rings speak of the earth - four directions, four seasons. Four is the number of the earth. The staves stayed in place. The Ark was carried on the shoulders of sanctified priests.

Don't try to see God, except on the shoulders of sanctified priests. We are a nation of priests and we are to bare the likeness of God.

The Mercy Seat which rested on the Ark was spoken of as the seat of the Most High God. Priests ministered from the standing position. The work was not over and had to be done each year. In Hebrew the word for Mercy Seat is "Kapporeth" and it means to cover sins or to atone.

3727. kapporeth, kap-po'-reth; from H3722; a lid (used only of the cover of the sacred Ark):--mercy seat.

The cherubim were one with the Mercy Seat and made of the same piece of material. They are inseparable from the propitiatory work of Christ. They are often looked upon as representatives of believers - in that, as believers are one with Christ. Cherubim are symbols of guardianship as it was at the Garden of Eden. The Cherubim were first mentioned in Genesis 3:24.

Genesis 3:24 (NASB) So He drove the man out; and at the east of the garden of Eden He stationed the cherubim, and the flaming sword which turned every direction, to guard the way to the tree of life.

The Cherubim were embroidered on the Veil and were rent when the Veil was rent. We have been crucified with Christ.

Galatians 2:20 (NASB) "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me, and delivered Himself up for me.

Spiritually, we are seated with Christ in high places.

The Lord Jesus rose to the true tabernacle in heaven and sat at the right hand of the Father. The work was finished. The Mercy Seat is the place where God met man. The crown on the Ark held the Mercy Seat in place.

Hebrews 10:11 (NASB) And every priest stands daily ministering and offering time after time the same sacrifices, which can never take away sins;

12 but He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, SAT DOWN AT THE RIGHT HAND OF GOD,

The sitting down of God speaks of the word spoken on the cross, "It is finished". In Genesis 2, the bible says that God rested on the seventh day.

Genesis 2:1 (NASB) Thus the heavens and the earth were completed, and all their hosts.

2 And by the seventh day God completed His work which He had done; and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done.

Once each year, on the Day of Atonement, the high priest would enter the Holy of Holies and sprinkle blood seven times on the Mercy Seat. Seven is the number of spiritual perfection. Life had to be given to provide the blood that came between the Law and the God. If blood did not cover the Law, God would have to judge according to the Law and since the wages of sin is death, anyone who came into God's presence with sin and without blood, must die.

Romans 3:25 (NASB) whom God displayed publicly as a propitiation in His blood through faith. This was to demonstrate His righteousness, because in the forbearance of God He passed over the sins previously committed;

The word atonement is translated propitiation in the King James. The word propitiation can be translated Mercy Seat. Jesus was sent as a Mercy Seat. The cherubim uphold God's holiness.

2435. hilasterion, hil-as-tay'-ree-on; neut. of a der. of G2433; an expiatory (place or thing), i.e. (concr.) an atoning victim, or (spec.) the lid of the Ark (in the Temple):--mercyseat, propitiation.

Jesus is our propitiation. The word - propitiation in the Greek means to satisfy, or the appease. Jesus on the cross satisfied God's wrath against our sin. The blood of the goat which was sprinkled on the Mercy Seat each year, was a picture of the blood of Jesus which would cover our sins once and for all. God cannot overlook sin. It must be paid for, but we cannot pay for it without dying. Jesus paid for it that we might live. Sin must be judged and it was and the penalty was paid.

The Mercy Seat is made of solid gold. It speaks of the divine. God, in His fullness.

When Moses would see the cloud lifting, the people would begin to gather their goods. Moses would say, "Let God arise and His enemies be scattered." They would follow the cloud until it stopped. Moses would then say, " Return O'Lord to Your rest, the marid of thousands of Israel." The cloud would again rest over the Mercy Seat. God would take His seat. When the cloud is moving, we will want to move. We want to be where the cloud is. The cloud used to be on the outside, but on the day of Pentecost, the cloud moved inside. Now, we are not lead from the outside, but from the inside. The same cloud that lead them in the wilderness, leads us from within.

There nothing said in the Holy of Holies. The blood does all of the talking. When the Cherubim look down at the Law which we have broken, they see blood. Some one or something has died. Without the shedding of blood, there is no remission of sins.

1 Samuel 6:19 (NASB) And He struck down some of the men of Beth-shemesh because they had looked into the ark of the LORD. He struck down of all the people, 50,070 men, and the people mourned because the LORD had struck the people with a great slaughter.

There has to be a blood covering.

Hebrews 9:22 (NASB) And according to the Law, one may almost say, all things are cleansed with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no forgiveness.

23 Therefore it was necessary for the copies of the things in the heavens to be cleansed with these, but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these.

24 For Christ did not enter a holy place made with hands, a mere copy of the true one, but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us;

Hebrews 12:24 (NASB) and to Jesus, the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood, which speaks better than the blood of Abel.

Hebrews 9:11 (NASB) But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation;

Psalms 85:9 (NASB) Surely His salvation is near to those who fear Him, That glory may dwell in our land.

10 Lovingkindness and truth have met together; Righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

11 Truth springs from the earth; And righteousness looks down from heaven.

12 Indeed, the LORD will give what is good; And our land will yield its produce.

13 Righteousness will go before Him, And will make His footsteps into a way.

In Jesus, Mercy and Truth, Righteousness and Peace, Love and Faithfulness come together. In Jesus, the wrath of God against sin and the love of God for sinners have come together.

God first looks at the person of His Son, before He looks at the accomplishment of His Son. When Jesus was announced by John, the Baptist, he said behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sins of the world. The person first and the what He did. Paul said, I've determined that I would know nothing save Christ and Him crucified. The person first and then the action. In Revelations, John said - I beheld a lamb as it had been slain. The person and then the action.

You cannot trust that which you don't know. If you don't know the person of Jesus, how can you trust in Him. Not His actions, because there are times when He doesn't seem to be around. You must know His person. You may not know what He is doing, but you know God and what ever He is doing is what needs to be done. We don't need to know why.

The place where the Ark sat was the Holy of Holies. It was an exact cube. 10 cubits x 10 cubits x 10 cubits. Remember in Revelations, the city that is four square.

Revelation 21:1 (NASB) And I saw a new heaven and a new earth; for the first heaven and the first earth passed away, and there is no longer any sea.

2 And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.

3 And I heard a loud voice from the throne, saying, "Behold, the tabernacle of God is among men, and He shall dwell among them, and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be among them,

Revelation 21:9 (NASB) And one of the seven angels who had the seven bowls full of the seven last plagues, came and spoke with me, saying, "Come here, I shall show you the bride, the wife of the Lamb."

10 And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the holy city, Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God,

The church, you and I are the bride of Christ.

Revelation 21:15 (NASB) And the one who spoke with me had a gold measuring rod to measure the city, and its gates and its wall.

16 And the city is laid out as a square, and its length is as great as the width; and he measured the city with the rod, fifteen hundred miles; its length and width and height are equal.

17 And he measured its wall, seventy-two yards, according to human measurements, which are also angelic measurements.

The cube speaks of the balance of God.

The book of John is a picture of the tabernacle in the way it is arranged. In Revelations, chapter 4, John sees the real tabernacle that Moses saw on the mountain. John sees the reality behind the model which we are studying.

Revelation 4:1 (NASB) After these things I looked, and behold, a door standing open in heaven, and the first voice which I had heard, like the sound of a trumpet speaking with me, said, "Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after these things."

2 Immediately I was in the Spirit; and behold, a throne was standing in heaven, and One sitting on the throne.

3 And He who was sitting was like a jasper stone and a sardius in appearance; and there was a rainbow around the throne, like an emerald in appearance.

4 And around the throne were twenty-four thrones; and upon the thrones I saw twenty-four elders sitting, clothed in white garments, and golden crowns on their heads.

5 And from the throne proceed flashes of lightning and sounds and peals of thunder. And there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God;

6 and before the throne there was, as it were, a sea of glass like crystal; and in the center and around the throne, four living creatures full of eyes in front and behind.

7 And the first creature was like a lion, and the second creature like a calf, and the third creature had a face like that of a man, and the fourth creature was like a flying eagle.

8 And the four living creatures, each one of them having six wings, are full of eyes around and within; and day and night they do not cease to say, "HOLY, HOLY, HOLY, is THE LORD GOD, THE ALMIGHTY, WHO WAS AND WHO IS AND WHO IS TO COME."

9 And when the living creatures give glory and honor and thanks to Him who sits on the throne, to Him who lives forever and ever,

10 the twenty-four elders will fall down before Him who sits on the throne, and will worship Him who lives forever and ever, and will cast their crowns before the throne, saying,

11 "Worthy art Thou, our Lord and our God, to receive glory and honor and power; for Thou didst create all things, and because of Thy will they existed, and were created."

He sees living creatures all around the throne. The first has the face of a lion - the book of Matthew ,the book of the King; the second has the face of a calf or an ox - the book of Mark, the book of the servant; the third had the face like that of a man - the book of Luke, the book of the true Man; and the fourth had the face like that of an eagle - the book of John, the book of God. This is the same thing that Ezekiel saw.

The Cheribum were the living creatures. The twenty four elders represent the twelve tribes of old and the twelve apostles of new. Everything is in three - the old, the new, and the real. At this point, we leave the Holy of Holies and enter the Holy Place. The twenty-four, two groups of twelve speak of the Table of Showbread where God and man fellowshipped. It then says there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne. This speaks of the Lampstand. The speaks of the revelatory light and presence of the Holy Spirit. In verse 8, the creatures were crying, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty. This speaks of the Golden Altar of Incense. Their sweet praise was rising up before God. John then saw a book that no one was worthy to open - the Laver. He then saw the Lion from the tribe of Judah in the form of a lamb as it had been slain - the Brazen Altar.

John saw the real thing of which the tabernacle of Moses is the model or shadow.

Paul says, don't you know that your body is the Naos, the Holy of Holies. God now dwells on earth in the church, you and I.

1 Corinthians 3:16 (NASB) Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

1 Corinthians 6:19 (NASB) Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you, whom you have from God, and that you are not your own?

In those times, you could only enter into the presence of God in the person of the High Priest. Today were enter into the presence of God in the person of our High Priest, Jesus Christ, the Lamb of God slain before the foundation of the earth. Amen.