Tabernacle
Overview
 
The Tabernacle according to the Hebrew Torah
Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...

/Old Testament
Old Testament
The Old Testament, of which Christians hold different views, is a Christian term for the religious writings of ancient Israel held sacred and inspired by Christians which overlaps with the 24-book canon of the Masoretic Text of Judaism...

, was the portable
Portable building
A portable building, or demountable building , is a building designed and built to be movable rather than permanently located. A common modern design is sometimes called a modular building, but portable buildings can be different in that they are more often used temporarily and taken away later....

 dwelling place for the divine presence
Divine presence
Divine presence, presence of God, or simply presence is a concept in religion, spirituality, and theology that deals with the omnipotent ability of a god and/or gods to be "present" with human beings...

 from the time of the Exodus
The Exodus
The Exodus is the story of the departure of the Israelites from ancient Egypt described in the Hebrew Bible.Narrowly defined, the term refers only to the departure from Egypt described in the Book of Exodus; more widely, it takes in the subsequent law-givings and wanderings in the wilderness...

 from Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 through the conquering of the land of Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

. Built to specifications revealed by God (Yahweh
Yahweh
Yahweh is the name of God in the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Jews and Christians.The word Yahweh is a modern scholarly convention for the Hebrew , transcribed into Roman letters as YHWH and known as the Tetragrammaton, for which the original pronunciation is unknown...

) to Moses
Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

 at Mount Sinai
Biblical Mount Sinai
The Biblical Mount Sinai is the mountain at which the Book of Exodus states that the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God...

, it accompanied the Israelites on their wanderings in the wilderness and their conquest of the Promised Land
Promised land
The Promised Land is a term used to describe the land promised or given by God, according to the Hebrew Bible, to the Israelites, the descendants of Jacob. The promise is firstly made to Abraham and then renewed to his son Isaac, and to Isaac's son Jacob , Abraham's grandson...

. It contained the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 which was eventually placed in the First Temple in Jerusalem.
Encyclopedia
The Tabernacle according to the Hebrew Torah
Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...

/Old Testament
Old Testament
The Old Testament, of which Christians hold different views, is a Christian term for the religious writings of ancient Israel held sacred and inspired by Christians which overlaps with the 24-book canon of the Masoretic Text of Judaism...

, was the portable
Portable building
A portable building, or demountable building , is a building designed and built to be movable rather than permanently located. A common modern design is sometimes called a modular building, but portable buildings can be different in that they are more often used temporarily and taken away later....

 dwelling place for the divine presence
Divine presence
Divine presence, presence of God, or simply presence is a concept in religion, spirituality, and theology that deals with the omnipotent ability of a god and/or gods to be "present" with human beings...

 from the time of the Exodus
The Exodus
The Exodus is the story of the departure of the Israelites from ancient Egypt described in the Hebrew Bible.Narrowly defined, the term refers only to the departure from Egypt described in the Book of Exodus; more widely, it takes in the subsequent law-givings and wanderings in the wilderness...

 from Egypt
Egypt
Egypt , officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, Arabic: , is a country mainly in North Africa, with the Sinai Peninsula forming a land bridge in Southwest Asia. Egypt is thus a transcontinental country, and a major power in Africa, the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and the Muslim world...

 through the conquering of the land of Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

. Built to specifications revealed by God (Yahweh
Yahweh
Yahweh is the name of God in the Bible, the God of Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Jews and Christians.The word Yahweh is a modern scholarly convention for the Hebrew , transcribed into Roman letters as YHWH and known as the Tetragrammaton, for which the original pronunciation is unknown...

) to Moses
Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

 at Mount Sinai
Biblical Mount Sinai
The Biblical Mount Sinai is the mountain at which the Book of Exodus states that the Ten Commandments were given to Moses by God...

, it accompanied the Israelites on their wanderings in the wilderness and their conquest of the Promised Land
Promised land
The Promised Land is a term used to describe the land promised or given by God, according to the Hebrew Bible, to the Israelites, the descendants of Jacob. The promise is firstly made to Abraham and then renewed to his son Isaac, and to Isaac's son Jacob , Abraham's grandson...

. It contained the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 which was eventually placed in the First Temple in Jerusalem. The First Temple in Jerusalem superseded it as the dwelling-place of God among the Israelites. There is no further mention of the Tabernacle after the destruction of Jerusalem
Siege of Jerusalem (587 BC)
In 589 BC, Nebuchadnezzar II laid siege to Jerusalem, culminating in the destruction of the city and its temple in 587 BC.-Siege:Following the siege of 597 BC, Nebuchadnezzar installed Zedekiah as tributary king of Judah at the age of twenty-one. However, Zedekiah revolted against Babylon, and...

 and the Temple by the Babylonians in c. 587 BCE.

The fullest description of the Tabernacle describes an inner shrine (named Holy of Holies) housing the Ark
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 and an outer chamber (Holy Place), with a golden lampstand, table for showbread
Showbread
Showbread , in the King James Version: shewbread, in a biblical or Jewish context, refers to the cakes or loaves of bread which were always present on a specially dedicated table, in the Temple in Jerusalem as an offering to God...

, and altar of incense. This description is generally identified as part of the Priestly source
Priestly source
The Priestly Source is one of the sources of the Torah/Pentateuch in the bible. Primarily a product of the post-Exilic period when Judah was a province of the Persian empire , P was written to show that even when all seemed lost, God remained present with Israel...

 (P), written in the 6th or 5th century BCE. Many scholars contend that it is of a far later date than Moses, and that the description reflects the structure of the Temple of Solomon, while some hold that the description derives from memories of a real pre-monarchic shrine, perhaps the sanctuary at Shiloh. According to the 19th century "Higher Criticism" school of Julius Wellhausen, an earlier, pre-exilic source
Elohist
The Elohist is one of four sources of the Torah described by the Documentary Hypothesis. Its name comes from the term it uses for God: Elohim; it is characterised by, among other things, an abstract view of God, using "Horeb" instead of "Sinai" for the mountain where Moses received the laws of...

 (E) describes the Tabernacle as a simple tent-sanctuary.

Meaning

The English word "tabernacle" is derived from the Latin
Latin
Latin is an Italic language originally spoken in Latium and Ancient Rome. It, along with most European languages, is a descendant of the ancient Proto-Indo-European language. Although it is considered a dead language, a number of scholars and members of the Christian clergy speak it fluently, and...

 tabernāculum meaning "tent" or "hut", which in ancient Roman religion
Religion in ancient Rome
Religion in ancient Rome encompassed the religious beliefs and cult practices regarded by the Romans as indigenous and central to their identity as a people, as well as the various and many cults imported from other peoples brought under Roman rule. Romans thus offered cult to innumerable deities...

 was a ritual structure.

The word sanctuary
Sanctuary
A sanctuary is any place of safety. They may be categorized into human and non-human .- Religious sanctuary :A religious sanctuary can be a sacred place , or a consecrated area of a church or temple around its tabernacle or altar.- Sanctuary as a sacred place :#Sanctuary as a sacred place:#:In...

 is also used for the Biblical tabernacle, as well as the phrase the "tent of meeting". The Hebrew word Mishkan implies "dwell", "rest", or "to live in", referring to the "[In-dwelling] Presence of God", the Shekhina (or Shechina, based on the same Hebrew root word as Mishkan), that dwelt within this divinely ordained structure.

Description

The commandments
Mitzvah
The primary meaning of the Hebrew word refers to precepts and commandments as commanded by God...

 for its construction are taken from the words in the Book of Exodus when God says to Moses
Moses
Moses was, according to the Hebrew Bible and Qur'an, a religious leader, lawgiver and prophet, to whom the authorship of the Torah is traditionally attributed...

: "They shall make me a sanctuary, and I will dwell (ve-shakhan-ti) among them. You must make the tabernacle (mishkan) and all its furnishings following the plan that I am showing you." Thus the idea is that God wants this structure built so that it may be a "dwelling", so to speak, for his presence within the Children of Israel during their wandering in the desert.

Scholars of the "Higher Criticism" school believe there are two accounts of the tabernacle in Exodus, a briefer account and a longer one. Traditional scholars believe the briefer account describes a different structure, perhaps Moses's personal tent. The Hebrew nouns in the two accounts are different, one being most commonly translated as "tent of meeting," while the other is usually translated as "tabernacle".

Elohist account

refers to a "tent of meeting", which was set up outside of camp, and the pillar of cloud, symbolizing the divine presence, was visible at its door. The people directed their worship toward this center. "Higher Criticism" scholars attribute this description to the Elohist source
Elohist
The Elohist is one of four sources of the Torah described by the Documentary Hypothesis. Its name comes from the term it uses for God: Elohim; it is characterised by, among other things, an abstract view of God, using "Horeb" instead of "Sinai" for the mountain where Moses received the laws of...

 (E), which is believed to have been written about 850 BC or later.

Priestly account

The more detailed description of a "tabernacle" is in and , which describes an inner shrine (Holy of Holies) housing the Ark and an outer chamber (Holy Place), with a seven-branched lampstand, table for showbread, and altar of incense. An enclosure containing the sacrificial altar surrounded these chambers. This description is identified by "Higher Criticism" scholars as part of the Priestly source
Priestly source
The Priestly Source is one of the sources of the Torah/Pentateuch in the bible. Primarily a product of the post-Exilic period when Judah was a province of the Persian empire , P was written to show that even when all seemed lost, God remained present with Israel...

 (P), written in the 6th or 5th century BC. Some scholars believe the description is of a far later date than Moses, and that it reflects the structure of the Temple of Solomon; others hold that the passage describes a real pre-monarchic shrine, perhaps the sanctuary at Shiloh, while traditional scholars contend that it describes an actual tabernacle used in the time of Moses and thereafter.

The detailed outlines for the tabernacle and its leaders are enumerated in the Book of Exodus:

Builders

In chapter 31 the main builder and architects are specified:
"God spoke to Moses, saying: I have selected Bezalel
Bezalel
In Exodus 31:1-6, Bezalel |transcribed]] as Betzalel and most accurately as Beẓal'el), is the chief artisan of the Tabernacle. Elsewhere in the Bible the name occurs only in the genealogical lists of the Book of Chronicles, but according to cuneiform inscriptions a variant form of the same,...

 son of Uri son of Hur
Hur (Bible)
Hur was a companion of Moses and Aaron in the Hebrew Bible. He was a member of the Tribe of Judah. His identity remains sketchy in the Torah itself, but it is elaborated in rabbinical commentary.Other individuals named Hur are also mentioned in the Bible....

, of the tribe of Judah
Tribe of Judah
According to the Hebrew Bible, the Tribe of Judah was one of the Tribes of Israel.Following the completion of the conquest of Canaan by the Israelite tribes after about 1200 BCE, Joshua allocated the land among the twelve tribes....

, by name. I have filled him with a divine spirit, with wisdom, understanding and knowledge, and with all types of craftsmanship. He will be able to devise plans as well as work in gold, silver and copper, cut stones to be set, carve wood, and do other work. I have also given him Oholiab son of Achisamakh of the tribe of Dan
Tribe of Dan
The Tribe of Dan, also sometimes spelled as "Dann", was one of the Tribes of Israel. Though known mostly from biblical sources, they were possibly descendants of the Denyen Sea Peoples who joined with Hebrews...

. I have placed wisdom in the heart of every naturally talented person. They will thus make all that I have ordered, the Communion Tent, the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

, the ark cover to go on it, all the utensils for the tent, the table and its utensils, the pure menorah and all its utensils, the incense
Incense
Incense is composed of aromatic biotic materials, which release fragrant smoke when burned. The term "incense" refers to the substance itself, rather than to the odor that it produces. It is used in religious ceremonies, ritual purification, aromatherapy, meditation, for creating a mood, and for...

 altar, the sacrificial altar and all its utensils, the washstand and its base, the packing cloths, the sacred vestments for Aaron the priest, the vestments that his sons wear to serve, the anointing oil, and the incense for the sanctuary. They will thus do all that I command." (Exodus 31:1-11)

Organization

The Tabernacle was during the Exodus, wandering in the desert and conquest of Canaan a portable tent draped with colorful curtains called a "tent of meeting".
It had a rectangular, perimeter fence
Perimeter fence
A perimeter fence is a structure that circles the perimeter of an area to prevent access. These fences are frequently made out of single vertical metal bars connected at the top and bottom with a horizontal bar. They often have spikes on the top to prevent climbing. Residential perimeter fences are...

 of fabric, poles and staked cords. This rectangle was always erected when the Israelite tribes would camp, oriented to the east. In the center of this enclosure was a rectangular sanctuary draped with goat-hair curtains, with the roof made from rams' skins.

Inside, the enclosure was divided into two areas, the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place. These two areas were separated by a curtain or veil. Inside the first area were three pieces of furniture: a seven-branched oil lampstand on the left (south), a table for twelve loaves of show bread on the right (north) and an altar for incense
Incense
Incense is composed of aromatic biotic materials, which release fragrant smoke when burned. The term "incense" refers to the substance itself, rather than to the odor that it produces. It is used in religious ceremonies, ritual purification, aromatherapy, meditation, for creating a mood, and for...

-burning (west), straight ahead before the dividing curtain.

Beyond this curtain was the cube-shaped inner room known as the (Holy of Holies
Holy of Holies
The Holy of Holies is a term in the Hebrew Bible which refers to the inner sanctuary of the Tabernacle and later the Temple in Jerusalem where the Ark of the Covenant was kept during the First Temple, which could be entered only by the High Priest on Yom Kippur...

) or (Kodesh Hakodashim). This area housed the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 (aron habrit), inside which were the two stone tablets brought down from Mount Sinai by Moses, on which were written the "10 Commandments."

Subsequent history

During the conquest of Canaan
Canaan
Canaan is a historical region roughly corresponding to modern-day Israel, Palestine, Lebanon, and the western parts of Jordan...

, the main Israelite camp was at Gilgal
Gilgal
Gilgal is a place name mentioned by the Hebrew Bible. It is a matter of debate how many of the places named Gilgal are identical.-The Gilgal associated peacefully with Joshua:...

, and the Tabernacle was probably erected outside the camp.

After the conquest and division of the land among the tribes, the Tabernacle was moved to Shiloh in Ephraimite territory (Joshua's tribe) to avoid disputes among the other tribes . It remained there during the 300-year period of the judges (the rules of the individual judges total about 350 years [1 Kings 6:1;Acts 13:20], but most ruled regionally and some terms overlapped).

The subsequent history of the structure is separate from that of the Ark of the Covenant. After the Ark was captured by the Philistines, King Saul
Saul
-People:Saul is a given/first name in English, the Anglicized form of the Hebrew name Shaul from the Hebrew Bible:* Saul , including people with this given namein the Bible:* Saul , a king of Edom...

 moved the Tabernacle to Nob, near his home town of Gibeah
Gibeah
Gibeah is a biblical site identified by archaeologists as a hill in Jerusalem, on the outskirts of the Pisgat Ze'ev neighborhood, known as Tell el-Ful.-Etymology:...

, but after he massacred the priests there , it was moved to Gibeon.

When the Ark was eventually returned to Jerusalem, where it was placed "inside the tent David had pitched for it" , not in the Tabernacle, which remained at Gibeon. The altar of the Tabernacle at Gibeon was used for sacrificial worship , until Solomon finally brought the structure and its furnishings to Jerusalem to furnish and dedicate the Temple.

There is no further mention of the Tabernacle after the destruction of Jerusalem
Siege of Jerusalem (587 BC)
In 589 BC, Nebuchadnezzar II laid siege to Jerusalem, culminating in the destruction of the city and its temple in 587 BC.-Siege:Following the siege of 597 BC, Nebuchadnezzar installed Zedekiah as tributary king of Judah at the age of twenty-one. However, Zedekiah revolted against Babylon, and...

 and the Temple by the Babylonians in c. 587 BCE.

Incorporated into Temple in Jerusalem

God asked for a stationary abode:
"And it came to pass that night, that the word of the LORD came unto Nathan, saying, Go and tell my servant David, Thus saith the LORD, Shalt thou build me an house for me to dwell in? Whereas I have not dwelt in [any] house since the time that I brought up the children of Israel out of Egypt, even to this day, but have walked in a tent and in a tabernacle"..."And when thy days be fulfilled, and thou shalt sleep with thy fathers, I will set up thy seed after thee, which shall proceed out of thy bowels, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build an house for my name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom for ever." .


Although King David himself was not allowed to build the temple, because he was a man of war, God promised that his son would build it. After David died, his son Solomon
Solomon
Solomon , according to the Book of Kings and the Book of Chronicles, a King of Israel and according to the Talmud one of the 48 prophets, is identified as the son of David, also called Jedidiah in 2 Samuel 12:25, and is described as the third king of the United Monarchy, and the final king before...

 built the Temple
Solomon's Temple
Solomon's Temple, also known as the First Temple, was the main temple in ancient Jerusalem, on the Temple Mount , before its destruction by Nebuchadnezzar II after the Siege of Jerusalem of 587 BCE....

, following the pattern revealed to Moses and incorporating all the elements of the Tabernacle. However, the Book of Chronicles says that the LORD himself gave the plans for the temple to David and he wrote them down "under the hand of the LORD."
"All this, said David, the LORD made me understand in writing by his hand upon me, even all the works of this pattern."


Compare and , .

Significance for Sabbath

The concluding instructions for the Tabernacle's construction are stated at the end of the Book of Exodus, chapter 31, and in that same chapter, immediately following the words about the Tabernacle, God reminds Moses about the importance of the Jewish Sabbath
Shabbat
Shabbat is the seventh day of the Jewish week and a day of rest in Judaism. Shabbat is observed from a few minutes before sunset on Friday evening until a few minutes after when one would expect to be able to see three stars in the sky on Saturday night. The exact times, therefore, differ from...

:
"God told Moses to speak to the Israelites and say to them: You must still keep my sabbaths. It is a sign between me and you for all generations, to make you realize that I, God, am making you holy. Keep the Sabbath as something sacred to you. Anyone doing work shall be cut off spiritually from his people, and therefore, anyone violating it shall be put to death. Do your work during the six week days, but keep Saturday as a Sabbath of Sabbaths, holy to God. Whoever does any work on Saturday shall be put to death. The Israelites shall thus keep the Sabbath, making it a day of rest for all generations, as an eternal covenant. It is a sign between me and the Israelites that during the six weekdays God made heaven and earth, but on the seventh day, he ceased working and rested." (Exodus: 31: 12-17). http://bible.ort.org/books/pentd2.asp?ACTION=displaypage&BOOK=2&CHAPTER=31

The rabbis of the Mishna derive from this juxtaposition of subject-matter, the fact that the commandment to rest on the Sabbath day, as stated in Genesis 2:1-3 "Heaven and earth, and all their components, were completed. With the seventh day, God finished all the work that He had done. He ceased on the seventh day from all the work that he had been doing. God blessed the seventh day, and he declared it to be holy, for it was on this day that God ceased from all the work that he
had been creating to function." is not pushed aside by the commandments to construct the Tabernacle. Not only that, but the very definition of what constitutes "work" or "activity" that must not be done by any Israelite, on pain of death (only when there was a Sanhedrin
Sanhedrin
The Sanhedrin was an assembly of twenty-three judges appointed in every city in the Biblical Land of Israel.The Great Sanhedrin was the supreme court of ancient Israel made of 71 members...

, and only with acceptable witnesses present), is defined by the 39
categories of activity
39 categories of activity prohibited on Shabbat
The commandment to keep Shabbat as a day of rest is repeated many times in the Tanakh, the Hebrew Bible. The commandment is usually expressed in English in terms of refraining from the doing of work on Shabbat, but the Hebrew term used in the Bible is melakha , which has a slightly different...

 needed for the construction of the Tabernacle and for its functioning as the center of the sacrifices enumerated in the Book of Leviticus.

Relationship to the Golden Calf

Some rabbis have commented on the proximity of the narrative of the Tabernacle with that of the episode known as the sin of the Golden Calf
Golden calf
According to the Hebrew Bible, the golden calf was an idol made by Aaron to satisfy the Israelites during Moses' absence, when he went up to Mount Sinai...

 which begins in the Book of Exodus 32:1-6. Maimonides
Maimonides
Moses ben-Maimon, called Maimonides and also known as Mūsā ibn Maymūn in Arabic, or Rambam , was a preeminent medieval Jewish philosopher and one of the greatest Torah scholars and physicians of the Middle Ages...

 asserts that the Tabernacle and its accoutrements, such as the golden Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 and the golden Menorah were meant as "alternates" to the human weakness and needs for physical idols as seen in the Golden Calf episode. Other scholars, such as Nachmanides disagree and maintain that the Tabernacle's meaning is not tied in with the Golden Calf but instead symbolizes higher mystical lessons that symbolize God's constant closeness to the Children of Israel.

Blueprint for synagogues

Synagogue
Synagogue
A synagogue is a Jewish house of prayer. This use of the Greek term synagogue originates in the Septuagint where it sometimes translates the Hebrew word for assembly, kahal...

 (mishkan) construction over the last two thousand years has followed the outlines of the original Tabernacle, which was of course also the outline for the temples in Jerusalem until they were destroyed. Every synagogue has at its front an ark, aron kodesh, containing the Torah
Torah
Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five books of the bible—Genesis , Exodus , Leviticus , Numbers and Deuteronomy Torah- A scroll containing the first five books of the BibleThe Torah , is name given by Jews to the first five...

 scrolls comparable to the Ark of the Covenant
Ark of the Covenant
The Ark of the Covenant , also known as the Ark of the Testimony, is a chest described in Book of Exodus as solely containing the Tablets of Stone on which the Ten Commandments were inscribed...

 which contained the tablets with Ten Commandments
Ten Commandments
The Ten Commandments, also known as the Decalogue , are a set of biblical principles relating to ethics and worship, which play a fundamental role in Judaism and most forms of Christianity. They include instructions to worship only God and to keep the Sabbath, and prohibitions against idolatry,...

. This is the holiest spot in a synagogue equivalent to the Holy of Holies
Holy of Holies
The Holy of Holies is a term in the Hebrew Bible which refers to the inner sanctuary of the Tabernacle and later the Temple in Jerusalem where the Ark of the Covenant was kept during the First Temple, which could be entered only by the High Priest on Yom Kippur...

.

There is also usually a constantly lighted lamp, Ner tamid, or a candelabrum lighted during services, near this spot similar to the original Menorah. At the center of the synagogue is a large elevated area, known as the bimah where the Torah is read. This is equivalent to the Tabernacle's altars upon which incense and animal sacrifices were offered. On the main holidays the priests
Kohen
A Kohen is the Hebrew word for priest. Jewish Kohens are traditionally believed and halachically required to be of direct patrilineal descent from the Biblical Aaron....

, kohanim, gather at the front of the synagogue to bless the congregation as did their priestly ancestors in the Tabernacle from Aaron
Aaron
In the Hebrew Bible and the Qur'an, Aaron : Ααρών ), who is often called "'Aaron the Priest"' and once Aaron the Levite , was the older brother of Moses, and a prophet of God. He represented the priestly functions of his tribe, becoming the first High Priest of the Israelites...

 onwards.

Prayer

Twice a day, a priest would stand in front of the golden prayer altar and burn fragrant incense. Other procedures were also carried out in the Tabernacle.

Christian references

The Tabernacle is mentioned several times in the Epistle to the Hebrews
Epistle to the Hebrews
The Epistle to the Hebrews is one of the books in the New Testament. Its author is not known.The primary purpose of the Letter to the Hebrews is to exhort Christians to persevere in the face of persecution. The central thought of the entire Epistle is the doctrine of the Person of Christ and his...

 in the New Testament
New Testament
The New Testament is the second major division of the Christian biblical canon, the first such division being the much longer Old Testament....

. For example, according to Jesus
Jesus
Jesus of Nazareth , commonly referred to as Jesus Christ or simply as Jesus or Christ, is the central figure of Christianity...

 serves as the true high priest
Kohen Gadol
The High Priest was the chief religious official of Israelite religion and of classical Judaism from the rise of the Israelite nation until the destruction of the Second Temple of Jerusalem...

 in heaven
Heaven (Christianity)
Traditionally, Christianity has taught Heaven as a place of eternal life and the dwelling place of Angels and the Throne of God, and a kingdom to which all the elect will be admitted...

, which is the true tabernacle, of which the earthly tabernacle was merely a "copy and shadow" .

See also

  • Brith HaKehuna
    Brith HaKehuna
    The priestly covenant is a Hebrew Bible and chazalic term used to describe the general and specific attributes of the eternal covenant that God gave to Aaron and his descendants the Aaronic priesthood as found in the Hebrew Bible and Oral Torah....

  • Church tabernacle
    Church tabernacle
    A tabernacle is the fixed, locked box in which, in some Christian churches, the Eucharist is "reserved" . A less obvious container, set into the wall, is called an aumbry....

  • Replicas of the Jewish Temple
    Replicas of the Jewish Temple
    Replicas of the Jewish Temple are scale models or authentic buildings that attempt to replicate the Temple of Solomon, Second Temple and Herod's Temple in Jerusalem.-Scale models:...

  • Tabernacle (LDS Church)
    Tabernacle (LDS Church)
    In the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints , a tabernacle is a multipurpose religious building, used for church services, conferences, and as community centers. They differ from meetinghouses and temples in design, scale, and purpose...

  • Tachash
    Tachash
    Tachash is an animal referred to in the Bible , the skin of which was used in the Tabernacle, as the outer covering of the tent of the Tabernacle and to wrap sacred objects used within the Tabernacle for transport....


External links

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