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From Eternity Past

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    The True Heavenly Sanctuary

    The earthly sanctuary was “a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices”; its two holy places were “patterns of things in the heavens.” Christ, our great High Priest, is “a minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched and not man.” Hebrews 9:9, 23; 8:2.EP 248.2

    The apostle John was granted a view of the temple of God in heaven. He beheld there “seven lamps of fire burning before the throne.” He saw an angel “having a golden censer; and there was given unto him much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne.” Revelation 4:5; 8:3. Here the prophet was permitted to behold the first apartment of the sanctuary in heaven. Again, “the temple of God was opened,” and he looked within the inner veil upon the holy of holies. Here he beheld “the ark of his testament” (Revelation 11:19), represented by the sacred chest constructed by Moses to contain the law of God.EP 248.3

    Paul declares that “the tabernacle and all the vessels of the ministry,” when completed, were “the patterns of things in the heavens.” Hebrews 9:21, 23. And John says that he saw the sanctuary in heaven. That sanctuary, in which Jesus ministers in our behalf, is the great original. The sanctuary built by Moses was a copy.EP 248.4

    Important truths concerning the heavenly sanctuary and the work there carried forward for man's redemption were to be taught by the earthly sanctuary and its services.EP 249.1

    After His ascension, our Saviour was to begin His work as our High Priest. “Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us.” Hebrews 9:24. Christ's ministration was to consist of two great divisions, each occupying a period of time and having a distinctive place in the heavenly sanctuary. So the typical ministration consisted of two divisions, the daily and the yearly service, and to each a department of the tabernacle was devoted.EP 249.2

    Christ at His ascension appeared in the presence of God to plead His blood in behalf of penitent believers. So the priest in the daily ministration sprinkled the blood of the sacrifice in the holy place in the sinner's behalf.EP 249.3

    The blood of Christ, while it was to release the repentant sinner from the condemnation of the law, was not to conceal the sin; it would stand on record in the sanctuary until the final atonement. So in the type the blood of the sin offering removed the sin from the penitent, but it rested in the sanctuary until the Day of Atonement.EP 249.4

    In the great day of final award, the dead are to be “judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works.” Revelation 20:12. Then the sins of all the truly penitent will be blotted from the books of heaven. Thus the sanctuary will be freed, or cleansed, from the record of sin. In the type this great work of blotting out of sins was represented by the services of the Day of Atonement, the cleansing of the earthly sanctuary accomplished by the removal of the sins by which it had been polluted.EP 249.5

    In the final atonement the sins of the truly penitent are to be blotted from the records of heaven, no more to be remembered or come into mind. So in the type they were borne away into the wilderness, forever separated from the congregation.EP 249.6

    Since Satan is the direct instigator of all the sins that caused the death of the Son of God, justice demands that Satan suffer the final punishment. Christ's work for the redemption of men and the purification of the universe from sin will be closed by placing these sins upon Satan, who will bear the final penalty. So in the typical service, the yearly round of ministration closed with the purification of the sanctuary and the confessing of the sins on the head of the scapegoat.EP 250.1

    Thus in the ministration of the tabernacle the people were taught each day the great truths relative to Christ's death and ministration, and once each year their minds were carried forward to the closing events of the great controversy between Christ and Satan, the final purification of the universe from sin and sinners.EP 250.2

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