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From Here to Forever

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    Holy and Most Holy Places

    In the holy place was the candlestick on the south with its seven lamps giving light both day and night; on the north stood the table of shewbread. Before the veil separating the holy from the most holy was the golden altar of incense, from which the cloud of fragrance, with the prayers of Israel, was daily ascending before God.HF 253.2

    In the most holy place stood the ark, a chest overlaid with gold, the depository of the Ten Commandments. Above the ark was the mercy seat surmounted by two cherubim wrought of solid gold. In this apartment the divine presence was manifested in the cloud of glory between the cherubim.HF 253.3

    After the settlement of the Hebrews in Canaan, the tabernacle was replaced by the temple of Solomon, which, though a permanent structure and upon a larger scale, observed the same proportions and was similarly furnished. In this form the sanctuary existed—except while it lay in ruins in Daniel's time—until its destruction by the Romans in A.D. 70. This is the only sanctuary on earth of which the Bible gives any information, the sanctuary of the first covenant. But has the new covenant no sanctuary?HF 253.4

    Turning again to the book of Hebrews, the seekers for truth found that a second or new covenant sanctuary was implied in the words already quoted: “Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary.” Turning back to the beginning of the previous chapter, they read: “Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such an high priest, who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.” Hebrews 8:1, 2.HF 254.1

    Here is revealed the sanctuary of the new covenant. The sanctuary of the first covenant was pitched by Moses; this is pitched by the Lord. In that sanctuary earthly priests performed their service; in this, Christ, our great High Priest, ministers at God's right hand. One sanctuary was on earth, the other is in heaven.HF 254.2

    The tabernacle built by Moses was made after a pattern. The Lord directed: “According to all that I show thee, after the pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the instruments thereof, even so shall ye make it.” “Look that thou make them after their pattern, which was showed thee in the mount.” The first tabernacle “was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices”: its holy places “patterns of things in the heavens.” The priests served “unto the example and shadow of heavenly things.” “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.” Exodus 25:9, 40; Hebrews 9:9, 23; 8:5; 9:24.HF 254.3

    The sanctuary in heaven is the great original of which the sanctuary built by Moses was a copy. The splendor of the earthly tabernacle reflected the glories of that heavenly temple where Christ ministers for us before the throne of God. Important truths concerning the heavenly sanctuary and man's redemption were taught by the earthly sanctuary and its services.HF 254.4

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