Wednesday: The Church as the Sanctuary
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

After Christ’s ascension to heaven and His inauguration as High Priest in the sanctuary there, the temple on earth no longer had any real purpose in the plan of salvation (see Matt. 27:50-51). However, God still seeks to dwell among His people on earth, which was now possible through the Holy Spirit. The apostles use temple imagery to convey this truth.

Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Read 1 Corinthians 3:16-17; 1 Cor. 6:19-20; 2 Cor. 6:16; Ephesians 2:19–22. Notice the […]

Tuesday: Jesus as the Sanctuary
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Image © Phil McKay from GoodSalt.com

Read John 2:19–21. Why is Jesus’ body compared to the temple? See also John 1:14.

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One of the themes in the Gospel of John is that with Jesus, the better “temple” has come. Tabernacle imagery is used as early as in John 1:14. Jesus is the Word who “dwelt” among men, and they saw His “glory.” The Greek word used for “to dwell” (skenoo) is the verbal form of the Greek noun for “tabernacle” (skene); […]

Monday: Copy of the Pattern
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Read Exodus 25:9, 40; Hebrews 8:5; 9:23, 24. What is the relationship between the earthly and heavenly sanctuaries?

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The Scriptures clearly teach that Moses did not invent the tabernacle but built it according to the divine instruction that he had received on the mountain (Exod. 26:30, 27:8, Num. 8:4). The earthly sanctuary was to be constructed after the “pattern” (Exod. 25:9, 40). The Hebrew word for “pattern” (tabnit) expresses the idea of a model or […]

Sunday: The First Sanctuary on Earth
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Image © Janet Hyun from GoodSalt.com

Bible students have noted that many features of the Garden of Eden correspond to the later sanctuaries in Israel, indicating that Eden was the first symbolic “temple” on earth. Some parallels between Eden and the sanctuary include:

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1. At the end of the Creation account and the report describing the construction of the wilderness tabernacle, the same three elements—approval, completion, and blessing—are expressed with the same key words (compare “all,” “finish,” and “bless” in Gen. […]

Sabbath: Heaven on Earth
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Read for This Week’s Study: Gen. 1:31–2:3; Exod. 39:32, 43; 25:9; Heb. 8:5; John 2:19–21; 1 Cor. 3:16-17; Rev. 21:1–22.

Memory Text: “Who serve the copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, ‘See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain’” (Hebrews 8:5, NKJV).

Though the sanctuary in heaven is the original, the one where God Himself is ministering “for […]

Friday: Further Study: The Heavenly Sanctuary
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Further Study: “Paul had a view of heaven, and in discoursing on the glories there, the very best thing he could do was to not try to describe them.

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He tells us that eye had not seen nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man the things which God hath prepared for those that love Him. So you may put your imagination to the stretch, you may try to the very […]

Thursday: Place of Salvation
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Image © Lars Justinen from GoodSalt.com

Read Hebrews 8:1-2. What is Christ doing at the throne of God?

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The book of Hebrews teaches that Christ is ministering in the heavenly sanctuary as our High Priest. His work there is focused on our salvation, for He appears “in the presence of God for us” (Heb. 9:24, NASB). He sympathizes with us, giving us assurance that we will not be rejected, but instead, receive mercy and grace (Heb. 4:15-16) because of what Jesus […]

Wednesday: Court Room
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Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Image © Jeff Preston from GoodSalt.com

Read Psalm 11:4–7 and Habakkuk 2:20. What else does God do in His heavenly temple, and why is this important for us to know?

Many Psalms reveal that the Lord is not indifferent to the needs of the righteous or to the injustices that they often face. He will react to the issues that cry out for redress, and He will “ ‘justify the righteous and condemn the wicked,’ ” just as any good judge would do(Deut. 25:1, […]

Tuesday: Worship in Heaven
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Read Revelation 4 and 5. 

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What do these two chapters teach us about the heavenly dwelling place of God? In what way is the plan of salvation revealed in these texts, as well?

The vision of the heavenly throne room is a vision of the heavenly sanctuary. This is made evident from the language referring to the Hebrew religious system. For instance, the words for door and trumpet in Revelation 4:1 appear often in the Septuagint (an […]

Monday: Throne Room
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Read Psalms 47:6–9; 93:1-2; 103:19. What do these texts teach us about God and His throne?

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Several visions of the heavenly throne occur in the Bible. Most depict a kind of heavenly assembly, with God as King. Interestingly enough, most of them are concerned with human affairs, usually presenting God as acting for or speaking in behalf of the righteous.

The Bible also reveals God as sovereign. For instance, the kingship of the Lord is a recurring theme in […]