Who is among you that feareth the Lord, that obeyeth the voice of his servant, that walketh in darkness, and hath no light? let him trust in the name of the Lord, and stay upon his God.
Behold, all ye that kindle a fire, that compass yourselves about with sparks: walk in the light of your fire, and in the sparks that ye have kindled. This shall ye have of mine hand; ye shall lie down in sorrow. Isaiah 50:10-11
Last time I wrote about the fourth commandment and its relation to the ancient and eternal temple pattern. For reference I thought I would include a diagram of the basic elements of the tabernacle of Moses as detailed in Exodus 35 through 40 together with some of the principles I believe are important in understanding this universal temple pattern. Different renderings of the tabernacle and subsequent ancient temples together with associated principles are abundant on the internet as well for reference.
Download Akimball_John_temple_graph (pdf) (you can also click on the jpg above and save to your computer if you would like)
Every time I have put this pattern down on paper I have changed it a little, highlighting something, adding insight, etc. There is virtually limitless meaning that can be drawn from the temple pattern as it is described and referenced in different sections of the scriptures, and my illustration only imperfectly captures a small degree of what there is to understand. Just in chapters 35 through 40 of Exodus alone there is so much that can be learned through the symbolism contained therein. Nothing is random or inconsequential, even down to the specific colors used in different parts of the tabernacle.
In continuation of my previous thoughts I believe it is profoundly significant that chapter 35 of Exodus, which initiates the instruction on the construction of the tabernacle of Moses begins with reference to the fourth commandment. In truth the fourth commandment to keep the Sabbath day holy is identical in structure and purpose to the universal temple pattern.
In this particular reference to the fourth commandment the Lord highlights a principle that is an important component both of the ancient commandment and the temple pattern as recorded in Exodus 35:3:
Ye shall kindle no fire throughout your habitations upon the sabbath day.
In similar manner the tabernacle of Moses is designed and constructed so as to receive no light into the Holy of Holies (which parallels the Sabbath in the pattern) except that which comes from God alone. It is completely enclosed in a way that allows no sunlight or other outside light to penetrate. Light is to come from God only into the Holy of Holies, just as light comes from God only in the beginning in the creation, just as light comes from God only in the form of the Zohar in the Ark of Noah, etc.
The principles embodied in and taught from this temple component and these always present and recurring events and conditions that conform to the temple pattern are at their most fundamental darkness and light, the Fall and the Redemption, sin and grace—the truth that man and all other imperfect creations receive life and light entirely from Christ, and that without Him all is lost but with Him all is possible.
The fact that anciently the Sabbath includes the prohibition against kindling fire, or in other words creating one’s own light, and that light should be received from God alone on the Sabbath, then, has great spiritual significance. In our time with the Law of Moses fulfilled, and the Gospel of Christ established, the prohibition against kindling fire on the Sabbath is of more symbolic significance than it is literal, but the spiritual principle remains:
What is different spiritually about the Sabbath? How do I find light that comes from God alone on the Sabbath, and what are the kindling of fire and compassing of sparks that are counterfeit light, preventing communion with God? How does focus on and worship of God on the Sabbath affect the rest of my week?...