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AM Bible Study Archives
"Witness and Works"
Wednesday AM Bible Study
December 27, 2006
Theme: This chapter gives us a type of the Christian life while the church is on earth—dependent upon God for our witness and our works.
Here, God gives His instructions concerning the continual maintanence of what was contained in the Holy Place—the place within the Tent of Meeting that sat before the veil of the Holy of Holies. This place is typical of our current relationship with God under the grace of Christ on earth. It reminds us of how our spiritual standing in God's grace is something that requires continual maintanence and care on our part. We are to work out our own salvation with fear and trembling; for it is God who works in us both to will and to do for His good pleasure (Philippians 2:12).
I. THE OFFERING OF OUR WITNESS: TYPIFIED BY THE LAMPSTAND (vv. 1-4).
A. The lamp shows forth the ministry of the Holy Spirit through God's people as they bear witness to Him in the world. As Dr. Bonar put it:
1. It's not by natural gifts, but by grace; represented by the fact that it is the people who bring the oil.
2. It typifies the work of the Holy Spirit in clearly shining the light.
3. The light is constantly shining; just as the Spirit is constantly testifying of Christ.
4. The Spirit's witness to the world through us is a calmly shining witness; not a flame flickering erratically with human passions.
5. It's a witness that is in the face of the world; that is, before the vale.
6. It shines a light on the table of showbread and the altar of incense; thus illuminating the works of grace.
7. It stands and shines as if it, alone, were responsible for shining the light into this world.
B. We are to so let our light shine that men may behold our good works and glorify our Father in heaven (Matthew 5:13-16). But we must beware to be faithful, lest we make it necessary for Christ to remove our lampstand (Rev. 2:5).
II. THE OFFERING OF OUR SELVES: TYPIFIED BY THE TABLE OF SHOWBREAD (vv. 5-9).
A. The bread was made of fine flour (which represents purity), backed into twelve cakes (one for each of the tribes), set into two rows (as can be handled by the two hands of the priest).
1. The bread was presented to God in the holy place; typifying the offering of ourselves to God in Christ.
2. Each cake was made of two ephahs—twice the among usually needed for one man for one day; thus suggesting the abundance of God's grace in which we stand in Christ.
3. Pure frankincense was placed on the two rows of cakes. Frankincense often symbolized 'acceptance' (Lev. 2:1, 15-16; Matthew 2:11); thus typifying the acceptance of the offering of ourselves and our works through the merits of Christ.
4. The cakes were placed on the golden table—made from the same material as the altar of burnt offering; thus typifying Christ as the basis of the acceptance of our offering.
5. The cakes were baked new and set out fresh each sabbath; thus typifying a need for a continual offering of ourselves as an 'everlasting covenant'.
6. The cakes were to be eaten by the priests; thus typifying God's acceptance of our offering in fellowship with Himself.
B. Thus, we're reminded of what Paul said in Romans 12:1-2; “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.”