If we could grasp the meaning of this offer, we would
choose a quite different behaviour, a one full of humbleness to
meditate about the privilege we have by this access to the Palace
of our Creator God. This behaviour would also encourage us to
teach our family how to behave within this marvellous neighborhood
which is given to us.
Paul knew that and let us read how he draw the attention of Timothy
(I Timothy 3: 1-15):
" This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work.
A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;
Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous;
One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity;
(For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?)
Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.
Likewise must the deacons be grave, not doubletongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of filthy lucre;
Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.
And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a deacon, being found blameless.
Even so must their wives be grave, not slanderers, sober, faithful in all things.
Let the deacons be the husbands of one wife, ruling their children and their own houses well.
For they that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus.
These things write I unto thee, hoping to come unto thee shortly:
But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth."
(I Timothy 3: 1-15)
If we really want to become the guests of God in
His Palace, please follow the examples of the deacons, the bishops,
Paul and especially the Lord Jesus Christ. They will guide us
on the way of success.
We must understand a first rule: When you are the guest of somebody else, it is your duty to respect the habits of the owner of the guesthouse. In other words, it means that in order to start a life in God's Palace, we must first accept and follow all the rules and laws applied by God in His Kingdom.
To behave according to this new way of life means
to become what the Bible defines as a Christian.
We must invest all our efforts to fill our lives with deeds showing our
Christianity; it will occur once we will live
by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God!
If we do so, we will become true witnesses of God
in the present world and people around us will recognize by our
behaviour that we belong to another world, the one of the house
of God. But this membership means much more!
To keep this hope to live in God's palace, with His
prestigious family, we must become and remain useful
servants and sons or daughters for our Lord.
To reach this position, we must first build a good
knowledge of the house we want to live in. Please remember that
this house is
It is important to know the character of our Host
and to know how to adapt to Him. We can easily understand from
the Bible that a good method is to put the ten commands of our
Creator in our heart.
But let us start by a short visit of this marvellous Palace whose
doors are opening before us and let us follow the
way given by our Lord Jesus-Christ (Hebrew 3: 1-3 and 6):
"Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus;
Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house.
For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honour than the houseÖ
ÖBut Christ as a SON over his own house; WHOSE HOUSE ARE WE, IF WE HOLD FAST THE CONFIDENCE AND THE REJOICING OF THE HOPE FIRM UNTO THE END."
(Hebrew 3: 1-3 and 6)
We will try to give you a better understanding of
the house of God and we will start with a return to the past to
read about the Tabernacle which is a figure for the true Palace.
Moses built the Tabernacle and Paul described it quickly as follows
(Hebrew 9: 1-10):
Then verily the first covenant had also ordinances of divine service, and a worldly sanctuary.
For there was a tabernacle made; the first, wherein was the candlestick, and the table, and the shewbread; which is called the sanctuary.
And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all;
Which had the golden censer, and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron's rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;
And over it the cherubims of glory shadowing the mercyseat; of which we cannot now speak particularly.
Now when these things were thus ordained, the priests went always into the first tabernacle, accomplishing the service of God.
But into the second went the high priest alone once every year, not without blood, which he offered for himself, and for the errors of the people:
The Holy Ghost this signifying, that the way into the holiest of all was not yet made manifest, while as the first tabernacle was yet standing:
in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience;
Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation.
(Hebrew 9: 1-10).
This Tabernacle, as described by Paul, is not the
Temple but however it was built after THE
MODEL THAT WAS SHOWN BY THE LORD TO MOSES.
The raw materials used to build the Tabernacle are
VERY EXPENSIVE ONES.
Moreover all the raw materials are OFFERINGS
FROM PEOPLE GIVING THEM WILLINGLY WITH THEIR HEART.
Let us read that in Exodus 25: 1-9:
"And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying,
Speak unto the children of Israel, that they bring me an offering: of every man that giveth it willingly with his heart ye shall take my offering.
And this is the offering which ye shall take of them; gold, and silver, and brass,
And blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats' hair,
And rams' skins dyed red, and badgers' skins, and shittim wood,
Oil for the light, spices for anointing oil, and for sweet incense,
Onyx stones, and stones to be set in the ephod, and in the breastplate.
And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them.
According to all that I shew thee, after the
pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the instruments
thereof, even so shall ye make it."
By the way, you may observe that the offerings made
by the children of Israel are in excess compared to what is necessary.
The important keypoint of this building is to keep
it in mind all the time:
The Tabernacle is not built according to the taste
and ideas of the children of IsraŽl but in accordance with
the plan of God!
This is confirmed to us at the end of the book of
Exodus (Exodus 40: 16-33) :
"Thus did Moses: according to all that the LORD commanded him, so did he.
And it came to pass in the first month in the second year, on the first day of the month, that the tabernacle was reared up.
And Moses reared up the tabernacle, and fastened his sockets, and set up the boards thereof, and put in the bars thereof, and reared up his pillars.
And he spread abroad the tent over the tabernacle, and put the covering of the tent above upon it; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he took and put the testimony into the ark, and set the staves on the ark, and put the mercy seat above upon the ark:
And he brought the ark into the tabernacle, and set up the vail of the covering, and covered the ark of the testimony; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he put the table in the tent of the congregation, upon the side of the tabernacle northward, without the vail.
And he set the bread in order upon it before the LORD; as the LORD had commanded Moses.
And he put the candlestick in the tent of the congregation, over against the table, on the side of the tabernacle southward.
And he lighted the lamps before the LORD; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he put the golden altar in the tent of the congregation before the vail:
And he burnt sweet incense thereon; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he set up the hanging at the door of the tabernacle.
And he put the altar of burnt offering by the door of the tabernacle of the tent of the congregation, and offered upon it the burnt offering and the meat offering; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he set the laver between the tent of the congregation and the altar, and put water there, to wash withal.
And Moses and Aaron and his sons washed their hands and their feet thereat:
When they went into the tent of the congregation, and when they came near unto the altar, they washed; as the LORD commanded Moses.
And he reared up the court round about the tabernacle
and the altar, and set up the hanging of the court gate. So Moses
finished the work."
Seven times we are told that Moses acted as commanded
by the Lord. And please note that Moses completed ALL his
work in time being ready for the second feast of Passover.
Moses took utmost care to get a full knowledge of
the house of God and we read earlier that he remained faithful
in all the house of God.
The glory of the Lord took residency in this Tabernacle
at the beginning of the second year of the stay of the children
of Israel in the desert. With the coming of Passover and the festival
of unleavened breads, the Lord agreed to come back IN the
camp of Israel which he had left after the event of the golden
calf. The Lord decided indeed to stay OUTSIDE the camp
in order not to be obliged to kill the children of Israel because
Isn't it possible to compare this event with the
tear of the veil in the Temple of Jerusalem when Jesus died? It
was also at the start of the festival of unleavened breads? Let
us read about this in the Bible, in the New covenant (Luc
"And it was about the sixth hour, and there was a darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour.
And the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst.
And when Jesus had cried with a loud voice, he said, Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit: and having said thus, he gave up the ghost." (Luc 23: 44-46)
And also in Hebrews: 6: 19-20:
"Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;
Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec."
(Hebrews: 6: 19-20)
The Tabernacle did not stay at the same place but
first it travelled during 39 years in the desert. Afterwards,
it crossed the Jordan river to start its 400 years journey in
in the Holy Land.
A long time after the building of the Tabernacle, David is chosen by God to rule over all the children of Israel. But he is not authorised to build the TEMPLE for God. It will be the task of his son Solomon. David
made nevertheless everything ready by collecting all the raw materials
necessary for this building. Here also the Bible (I Chronicles 29: 1-19)
tells us that everything collected for the Temple
is, as for the Tabernacle, an offering coming from people GIVING
THEM WILLINGLY WITH THEIR HEART:
"Furthermore David the king said unto all the congregation, Solomon my son, whom alone God hath chosen, is yet young and tender, and the work is great: for the palace is not for man, but for the LORD God.
Now I have prepared with all my might for the house of my God the gold for things to be made of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and the brass for things of brass, the iron for things of iron, and wood for things of wood; onyx stones, and stones to be set, glistering stones, and of divers colours, and all manner of precious stones, and marble stones in abundance.
Moreover, because I have set my affection to the house of my God, I have of mine own proper good, of gold and silver, which I have given to the house of my God, over and above all that I have prepared for the holy house.
Even three thousand talents of gold, of the gold of Ophir, and seven thousand talents of refined silver, to overlay the walls of the houses withal:
The gold for things of gold, and the silver for things of silver, and for all manner of work to be made by the hands of artificers. And who then is willing to consecrate his service this day unto the LORD?
Then the chief of the fathers and princes of the tribes of Israel and the captains of thousands and of hundreds, with the rulers of the king's work, offered willingly,
And gave for the service of the house of God of gold five thousand talents and ten thousand drams, and of silver ten thousand talents, and of brass eighteen thousand talents, and one hundred thousand talents of iron.
And they with whom precious stones were found gave them to the treasure of the house of the LORD, by the hand of Jehiel the Gershonite.
Then the people rejoiced, for that they offered willingly, because with perfect heart they offered willingly to the LORD: and David the king also rejoiced with great joy.
Wherefore David blessed the LORD before all the congregation: and David said, Blessed be thou, LORD God of Israel our father, for ever and ever.
Thine, O LORD is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is thine; thine is the kingdom, O LORD, and thou art exalted as head above all.
Both riches and honour come of thee, and thou reignest over all; and in thine hand is power and might; and in thine hand it is to make great, and to give strength unto all.
Now therefore, our God, we thank thee, and praise thy glorious name.
But who am I, and what is my people, that we should be able to offer so willingly after this sort? for all things come of thee, and of thine own have we given thee.
For we are strangers before thee, and sojourners, as were all our fathers: our days on the earth are as a shadow, and there is none abiding.
O LORD our God, all this store that we have prepared to build thee an house for thine holy name cometh of thine hand, and is all thine own.
I know also, my God, that thou triest the heart, and hast pleasure in uprightness. As for me, in the uprightness of mine heart I have willingly offered all these things: and now have I seen with joy thy people, which are present here, to offer willingly unto thee.
O LORD God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, our fathers, keep this for ever in the imagination of the thoughts of the heart of thy people, and prepare their heart unto thee:
And give unto Solomon my son a perfect heart, to keep thy commandments, thy testimonies, and thy statutes, and to do all these things, and to build the palace, for the which I have made provision."
(I Chronicles 29: 1-19)
By the way, David recognised also that all these
offerings like anything else in the universe belong to God in
Solomon, just like Moses, will not build the Temple according to his
design and his taste: NO, ALL HAS BEEN BUILT
FOLLOWING EXACTLY THE PLANS OF GOD! Let us verify it by
reading verse 19 of chapter 28 in the first book of the Chronicles:
"All this, said David, the LORD made me
understand in writing by his hand upon me, even all the works
of this pattern."
Regretfully the first Temple was completely destroyed by the
armies of Babylon under the reign of king Nebucadnetsar. We will have to wait the fall of Babylon and the reign of Cyrus before the start up of the building of the second Temple.
The order to rebuild is given by God to Cyrus. Still this time, you can
check by yourselves in the book of Ezra that once again it will be made WITH OFFERINGS FROM CYRUS AND PEOPLE GIVING THEM WILLINGLY WITH THEIR HEART.
This time also, the Temple is not rebuilt after the
ideas of Cyrus but according to the very precise instructions
given by the Lord to Cyrus.
Each time, our Creator leaves each one free to take
part in the building, nobody is forced to do so, but if we decide
to join Him and His team, it will be according to His will.
History teaches us that the second Temple was destroyed in its
turn by the Roman army 70 AC. An important question
thus should be raised:
Where is the House of Our Lord today?
We must find where we can honour our Father as He wishes us to do. The
Word of our Creator is as a lamp onto our path to
help us to find the answer and the way in order not to be lost
like a wanderer.
And indeed, Jesus gives us the answer to that question
by making a wonderful promise in John 14, verse 23:
"Jesus answered and said unto him, If a
man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him,
and we will come unto him, and make our
abode with him."
And a little earlier Jesus explained what means "to love him"; you can read it verse 15 in the same chapter:
Isn't the answer very clear and very simple? The Father and His Son will agree to elect their residency in those who love Jesus-Christ! Our living bodies may become the House of the Father and of His Son if we invite them to do so. All this can become a realty thanks to the gift of the Holy Spirit:
(I Corinthiens 3:16)
But this new Temple described by Paul is not yet
finished, it is still in a building stage. Like for the previous
buildings made for Our Lord, you will see that the same basic
rules are followed:
"Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto God, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto God."
"Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, all evil speakings,
As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that ye may grow thereby:
If so be ye have tasted that the Lord is gracious.
To whom coming, as unto a living stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of God, and precious,
Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to God by Jesus Christ."
(I Pierre 2:1-5)
Unfortunately the Church of God is fattening and
her heart is so full of pride that she will forget her Lord and
His advice given few thousands year ago:
"When thou hast eaten and art full, then thou shalt bless the LORD thy God for the good land which he hath given thee.
Beware that thou forget not the LORD thy God, in not keeping his commandments, and his judgments, and his statutes, which I command thee this day:
Lest when thou hast eaten and art full, and hast built goodly houses, and dwelt therein;
And when thy herds and thy flocks multiply, and thy silver and thy gold is multiplied, and all that thou hast is multiplied;
Then thine heart be lifted up, and thou forget the LORD thy God, which brought thee forth out of the land of Egypt, from the house of bondage;"
No the Church of God will not keep in mind this warning and she will follow the same way as her spiritual ancestors, the way of apostasy. The
same causes produce the same effects!
Read this dark prophecy in the book of the Daniel,
the prophet (Daniel 8: 10-24):
"And it (the little horn) waxed great, even to the host of heaven; and it cast down some of the host and of the stars to the ground, and stamped upon them.
Yea, he magnified himself even to the prince of the host, and by him the daily sacrifice was taken away, and the place of the sanctuary was cast down.
And an host was given him against the daily sacrifice by reason of transgression, and it cast down the truth to the ground; and it practised, and prospered.
Then I heard one saint speaking, and another saint said unto that certain saint which spake, How long shall be the vision concerning the daily sacrifice, and the transgression of desolation, to give both the sanctuary and the host to be trodden under foot?
And he said unto me, Unto two thousand and three hundred days; then shall the sanctuary be cleansed.
And it came to pass, when I, even I Daniel, had seen the vision, and sought for the meaning, then, behold, there stood before me as the appearance of a man.
And I heard a man's voice between the banks of Ulai, which called, and said, Gabriel, make this man to understand the vision.
So he came near where I stood: and when he came, I was afraid, and fell upon my face: but he said unto me, Understand, O son of man: for at the time of the end shall be the vision.
Now as he was speaking with me, I was in a deep sleep on my face toward the ground: but he touched me, and set me upright.
And he said, Behold, I will make thee know what shall be in the last end of the indignation: for at the time appointed the end shall be.
The ram which thou sawest having two horns are the kings of Media and Persia.
And the rough goat is the king of Grecia: and the great horn that is between his eyes is the first king.
Now that being broken, whereas four stood up for it, four kingdoms shall stand up out of the nation, but not in his power.
And in the latter time of their kingdom, when the transgressors are come to the full, a king of fierce countenance, and understanding dark sentences, shall stand up.
And his power shall be mighty, but not by his own power: and he shall destroy wonderfully, and shall prosper, and practise, and shall destroy the mighty and the holy people."
(Daniel 8: 10-24)
Paul informs us also implicitly about this destruction
to come and he confirms that the destructor will go then to his
"If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are."
(I Corinthiens 3:17)
Jesus, our Saviour, is represented by the sheaf of
barley which was waved before the Lord shortly after the Sabbath
in the seven days of the unleavened breads, at the time of Passover.
He is the Leader of the people who are building the Church of
God. This is the reason why we must follow Him and His deeds.
First you must note that He offered Himself willingly
as a sacrifice to God:
"This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man LAY DOWN HIS LIFE for his friendsÖ
These words spake Jesus, and lifted up his eyes
to heaven, and said, Father, the hour is come; glorify thy Son,
that thy Son also may glorify thee:"
(Jean 15: 12-13 and 17:1)
Second, Jesus-Christ did not act according to
His desires but on the contrary according to the will of His Father
"Saying, Father, if thou be willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine, be done."
The Church of God, despite what we have read before, will not be overcome by the power of death. Like Jesus Christ, she will come back to life. The present and future history of the Church of God shows that she behaves in a way very similar to the one of the Tabernacle.
Indeed, the Tabernacle was moving from place to place
in the desert but also during the first 400 years of the children
of IsraŽl in the Promised Land.
The same is for the Church of God: Her members do
not have a defined dwelling as they are described by Peter as
foreigners and travellers on earth:
"Dearly beloved, I beseech you AS STRANGERS AND PILGRIMS, abstain from fleshly lusts, which war against the soul;"
(I Pierre 2:11)
To convince more about this nature of the Church, please read the chapter 11 of the epistle of Paul to the Hebrews. Today, the Church of God is in the
desert of this world in which we are living today, like the children of IsraŽl were the Sinai.
Soon, the Chruch will enter in what the book of the Revelation calls the promised millenium and this period of time will be used to purify the whole earth just like the children of IsraŽl should have done for the Promised Land.
During the millenium, the people of believers will
be like Abraham:
"For he looked for a city which hath foundations, whose builder and maker is God."
Here is the true home of God symbolized by the Temple of Jerusalem built by Solomon. It is not anymore a temporary residency but a permanent place to live.
The New Jerusalem is the last House of God revealed
in the Scriptures.
The Bible tells us that still today
God has entirely designed this new city. But God will not bring this city out from the heaven to earth before a complete purification of earth. Indeed God
cannot live in the presence of sin. For this reason,
Peter has written in his second epistle
(II Pierre 3: 10-13):
"But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.
Seeing then that all these things shall be dissolved, what manner of persons ought ye to be in all holy conversation and godliness,
Looking for and hasting unto the coming of the day of God, wherein the heavens being on fire shall be dissolved, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat?
Nevertheless we, according to his promise, look for new heavens and a new earth, wherein dwelleth righteousness."
(II Pierre 3: 10-13)
This purification will start during the reign of Jesus Christ and will be
finished before the apparition of the New City where
God will live with the mankind:
"And I saw a new heaven and a new earth: for the first heaven and the first earth were passed away; and there was no more sea.
And I John saw
coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.
And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying,
and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God.
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away."
And a little latter, John writes for
"And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it."
(Revelation 21: 22)
Let us follow John in his tour of this prestigious
city and admire its beauty:
"And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the LambÖ
And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever."
(Revelation 22: 1 and 5)
(Revelation 22: 6)
If like the tree of life, we continuously bear the
fruits of the Spirit and if we persevere to do so, then we may
become living pillars in the Temple of the New Holy City, coming
down out of heaven; in other words, it means that we may become
the pillars of God himself!
"Him that overcometh will I (Jesus) make a pillar in the temple of my God, and he shall go no more out: and I will write upon him the name of my God, and the name of the city of my God, which is new Jerusalem, which cometh down out of heaven from my God: and I will write upon him my new name."
(Revelation 3: 12)
Do you start to understand the true character of
our God? We have seen what He is preparing for us. Such a Divine
work cannot be compared with anything else in the course mankind's
existence till now. But all this was announced and to some extent
proven in advance.
Here is what Isaiah is prophesying about our time:
"Bind (The Lord is speaking) up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.
And I will wait upon the LORD, that hideth his face from the house of Jacob, and I will look for him.
Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.
And when they shall say unto you, Seek unto them that have familiar spirits, and unto wizards that peep, and that mutter: should not a people seek unto their God? for the living to the dead?
if they speak not according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.
And they shall pass through it, hardly bestead and hungry: and it shall come to pass, that when they shall be hungry, they shall fret themselves, and curse their king and their God, and look upward.
And they shall look unto the earth; and behold trouble and darkness, dimness of anguish; and they shall be driven to darkness."
(Isaiah 8: 16-22)
It means simply but strongly that the people of God
have recourse to two important supports:
Let us find in the Scriptures the meaning of this testimony which
interests us more particularly now. If we go back to the time when Moses received for the first time from the Lord the ten commandments written on two tables of stone. Moses stayed forty days on the mount Sinai without eating nor drinking and he received many instructions from the Lord, in particular the one we will read in the book of Exodus in chapter 25, verse 16:
"And thou shalt put into the ark the testimony
which I shall give thee."
The testimony must be found in the ark located itself
in the Tabernacle. In order to get more information about this
famous Testimony, we invite you to read in the book of Deuteronomy
"At that time the LORD said unto me, Hew thee two tables of stone like unto the first, and come up unto me into the mount, and make thee an ark of wood.
And I will write on the tables the words that were in the first tables which thou brakest, and thou shalt put them in the ark.
And I made an ark of shittim wood, and hewed two tables of stone like unto the first, and went up into the mount, having the two tables in mine hand.
And he wrote on the tables, according to the first writing, the ten commandments, which the LORD spake unto you in the mount out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly: and the LORD gave them unto me.
And I turned myself and came down from the mount,
and put the tables in the ark which I had made; and there
they be, as the LORD commanded me."
Here we see that the testimony are the ten commandments written with the finger of the Lord as that is confirmed in the book of Exodus 31: 18:
"And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God."
The ten commandments are basic for the Church of God: They are the
only sentences pronounced by the Lord Himself from the top of
the mount Sinai to the millions of people who came
out like us from the country of sin. The Lord did not only pronounce
these ten commandments but he also wrote them with His finger
as a Testimony on two tables of stone. In other words it is a
proof of His alliance with His nation of Israel.
If you want to understand better the importance attributed by the Lord to
scriptures, we invite you to read our other article
on the subject.
But as you have seen, these first tables of stone with the ten commandments will not reach the ark as they will be broken by Moses once he will have seen his people worshipping the golden calf. These first two tables have been cut by the Lord and he wrote the commandments on both sides of the stones; it was the work of the Lord (Exodus 32: 15-16). By the way, this detail about the Lord writing on both sides of the stone shows how He does not like to waste raw materials such as these pieces of stone.
Then, a set of two new tables of stone were prepared
and these are the ones which were placed in the ark.
Do not confuse the ten commandments and the law! The law was not kept in the ark, but at side:
"And it came to pass, when Moses had made an end of writing the words of this law in a book, until they were finished,
That Moses commanded the Levites, which bare the ark of the covenant of the LORD, saying,
Take this book of the law, and put it in the side of the ark of the covenant of the LORD your God, that it may be there for a witness against thee.
For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck: behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye have been rebellious against the LORD; and how much more after my death?"
(Deuteronomy 31: 24-27)
Now we can understand the meaning and the value of
the law and the testimony to which the people of God will have
to turn. In order to understand better the value of the law of
God, we will read together the very last words of Moses:
"And Moses made an end of speaking all these words to all Israel:
(Deuteronomy 32: 45-47)
This law, which cannot be confused with the testimony,
disappeared several times in the history but the Lord always gives
a way to find it for people with the will to seek it with love
and zeal. It was in particular the case with king Josias and
his country when they realized their sins and repented to turn
into the good way of the life.
The Temple of the Lord is completely destroyed today but what
then became the Law and Testimony, did they also disappear? What became
the tables of stone and the written version of the
A first hint to find the answer is provided by God in the prophecy of Jeremiah:
"Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that
with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:
Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD:
But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD,
(Jeremiah 31: 31-33)
This prophecy started to be accomplished today with the Chruch of God. If we are part of the true Church of God, we must thus let God write himself His commandments on our heart. Isn't it the way we should understand Jesus Christ and his teachings in the sermon of the mount. He asks us to amplify the ten commandmens by having them all the time in our thoughts.
Paul confirms this to some extent when he speaks about the behaviour of the pagans:
"(For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another;)"
(Romans 2: 13-15)
Having this in mind, we discover that the Testimony
still exists today but under a different form. We should be the
witnesses of Jesus and thus of God; our words and our lifes must
become a testimony of God, a proof that His Word is the Truth.
The devil will try everything to destroy this proof by destroying the remainders of Church of God a little before the end, but it
will be in vain:
"And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night.
And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and
and they loved not their lives unto the death.
Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.
And when the dragon saw that he was cast unto the earth, he persecuted the woman which brought forth the man child.
And to the woman were given two wings of a great eagle, that she might fly into the wilderness, into her place, where she is nourished for a time, and times, and half a time, from the face of the serpent.
And the serpent cast out of his mouth water as a flood after the woman, that he might cause her to be carried away of the flood.
And the earth helped the woman, and the earth opened her mouth, and swallowed up the flood which the dragon cast out of his mouth.
And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed,
(Revelation 12: 10-17)
With this knowledge in us, let us God shape us and
use us as raw materials for the building of His new residency.
Do not resist, He is the potter and we are the clay. God is working
us and not the contrary which would mean that we are shaping a
god according to our images.
And now we can see again that, as in the past, if
we want to be part of the new Temple God, we must offer ourselves
willingly with our good hearts to God and He will bring us on
His holy mountain:
"But ye are come unto mount Sion, and unto the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels,
To the general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect,
And to Jesus
and to the blood of sprinkling, that speaketh better things that that of Abel.
See that ye refuse not him that speaketh. For if they escaped not who refused him that spake on earth, much more shall not we escape, if we turn away from him that speaketh from heaven:
Whose voice then shook the earth: but now he hath promised, saying, Yet once more I shake not the earth only, but also heaven.
And this word, Yet once more, signifieth the removing of those things that are shaken, as of things that are made, that those things which cannot be shaken may remain.
Wherefore we receiving a kingdom which cannot be moved, let us have grace, whereby we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear:
(Hebrew 12: 22-29)