August 8th, 2010

Holy God

My visit to the Tabernacle

I stood at the wall of the Tabernacle court, following the dazzling white fabric with my hand. Stilling myself, I looked deep into the white. The curtain wall filled my eyes before me and spread out to the east and west on either side of me. My plain white robe looked as though it had been cut from the same fabric.

I turned and walked past the altar, where I heard the sounds of death and saw the running of crimson blood. I allowed the sound to fill my ears, to remind me, as I approached the basin. There, I dipped my hand into the pure water and felt its coolness. It was as though I'd reached into the mountains to feel their clear springs and pools. I looked in awe as I let the reality soak into me: this was my hand that I dipped into the basin. My fingers drew out the refreshment. The surface of the water rippled and splashed as I washed off my hands. Next, I leaned over to clean off my feet. Dust was caked onto them, so I rubbed my heels, my ankles, and my soles to rinse off the dirt. With clean feet, I stood and saw the Priest. He extended a hand and led me inside.

Ducking through the doorway, I found myself in a rich, beautiful place. The interior of the tent was shadowed from the outside, and it took a moment for my eyes to adjust from the harsh blue of the outdoor sky. Inside, light flickered warmly and brightly from the golden lampstand. Blue, red, purple and gold danced in the glow. The Priest went to the other side of the tent and took a loaf of bread from the table. He broke off a piece and handed it to me. I reached out to take it; yet as soon as I grasped it in my hand, I faltered.

I could not take this!
I could not take this from the sacred table of God!

As I stood there, holding the piece of broken bread, I looked to the hand from which I had taken it. It was still held out toward me, displaying the hole from the nail. Childlike curiosity took hold of my heart. I stepped a step closer and put a finger to the wound, watching it enter through the palm and emerge from the back of his hand. My Lord and my God! (John 20:28)

I stepped back, gripped with a sense of wretchedness. Who was I to be here, touching the hand of this Man and taking bread from Him? I was not worthy. I was not worthy. He had suffered and sacrificed and only He deserved to eat the bread from this table. I could not... But without a word, He pointed at my robe. And when I looked, I saw there sprinkled blood. His blood. My fears failed. I had been sanctified by the blood of the Lamb. "he was pierced for our transgressions...and by his wounds we are healed." (Isaiah 53:5) I ate the bread, heart full of a realization of the extraordinary cost of this bread. He had paid the cost for me to take and eat my fill of the good things of God.

After I had finished eating the bread, he took my hand led me to the Most Holy Place. For a moment, I looked about for a rope to tie to my ankle just in case... but he bid me follow without it. Inside was the mercy seat, and the cherubim who sat upon it looked down at the blood upon the cover. The same blood that I had seen sprinkled upon myself. The glory of the Lord filled the space as a cloud.

That's the daydream that filled my mind yesterday before I drifted off for an afternoon nap.

Revelation 3:4-5 - "...they shall walk with Me in white...He who overcomes shall be clothed in white garments..."