2016 ST Message Five


Crystallization-Study of Exodus (4)

Message Five

The Tabernacle and the Priesthood

Opening Word of the Prophesying Meeting

Reading the verses in each day.

Reading the main points in the outlines.

Pray-reading the verses:

And you shall command the children of Israel to bring to you pure oil of beaten olives for the light, to make the lamps burn continually. In the Tent of Meeting, outside the veil which is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall set it in order from evening to morning before Jehovah; it shall be a perpetual statute to be observed throughout their generations by the children of Israel—Exo. 27: 20-21.

You yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house into a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ—1 Pet. 2:.

Word of Appetizer

Why does the divine record speak of the priesthood immediately after the description of the tabernacle?

The last two verses of chapter twenty-seven speak of the lighting of the lamps in the tabernacle. These verses give us the reason that these two sections of Exodus are put together. Here is the reason: we cannot have the tabernacle without the priesthood, and neither can we have the priesthood without the tabernacle. This indicates that, spiritually speaking, the priesthood and the tabernacle are one entity.

Spiritual Burden

The fact that the tabernacle is mentioned before the priesthood in Exodus emphasizes the need of the believers to be built up to be God’s dwelling place so that they may serve Him as a corporate, coordinated priesthood.

We all need to see that the goal of the Lord’s recovery is to recover Christ as life and everything to us so that we may be transformed and built up.

Concluding Word of the Prophesying Meeting

The Revelation of the Truth

Life and building are the basic and central revelation of the Bible.

In the sequence of the divine record in Exodus, the priesthood follows the tabernacle.

The fact that the tabernacle is mentioned before the priesthood in Exodus emphasizes the need of the believers to be built up to be God’s dwelling place so that they may serve Him as a corporate, coordinated priesthood.

God’s unique goal is the building.

The Experience of Life

Life is for building. Life is the Triune God embodied in Christ and realized as the Spirit dispensing Himself into us for our enjoyment. The Triune God is dispensing Himself as life into His believers and that the believers, as the result of this dispensing, become the building of God, His expansion, enlargement, and corporate expression.

Practice and Application

The priesthood is a body of priests who are built together to live and serve as one entity. The priests are not individualistic believers but a corporate body. Only when we are built into and coordinated into the building do we have the ground to serve the Lord. Our unique need is to be built up.

Using Key Verses to Have a Bird’s-Eye View over the Whole Outline

Key Verses (1)

Jesus said to her, I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes into Me, even if he should die, shall live—John 11:25

And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it—Matt. 16:18.

Life Is for Building—The Corporate Expression of the Triune God; God’s Unique Goal Is the Building—The Priesthood

I. Life and building are the basic and central revelation of the Bible:

Life is for building, the corporate expression of the Triune God, and the building is of life.

The central vision of the Bible—the building of the house of God.

IV. God’s unique goal is the building:

• For eternity God wants the New Jerusalem; today He wants the church.

• The goal of the Lord’s recovery is to recover Christ as life and everything to us so that we may be transformed and built up; this building is the priesthood.

Key Verses (2)

And you shall command the children of Israel to bring to you pure oil of beaten olives for the light, to make the lamps burn continually. In the Tent of Meeting, outside the veil which is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons shall set it in order from evening to morning before Jehovah; it shall be a perpetual statute to be observed throughout their generations by the children of Israel—Exo. 27:20-21.

II. In the Sequence of the Divine Record in Exodus, the Priesthood Follows the Tabernacle

IV. We must serve God according to the vision of God and of the pattern shown on the mountain:

• Exodus 27:20-21 reveals that immediately after the tabernacle came into existence, there was the need of the priesthood for the lighting of the lamps; this indicates that, spiritually speaking, the priesthood and the tabernacle are one entity.

• The priesthood and the tabernacle as one entity signify the church composed of God’s redeemed people as a spiritual house and a priesthood.

• Through the pictures in the book of Exodus, God reveals that His redeemed people are both the tabernacle and the priesthood; with the fulfillment of the types in the New Testament, the tabernacle and the priesthood are put together.

Key Verses (3)

You yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house into a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ—1 Pet. 2:5.

But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people acquired for a possession, so that you may tell out the virtues of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light—9

III. The Need of the Believers to Be Built Up to Be God’s Dwelling Place—Serve Him as a Corporate, Coordinated Priesthood

The priesthood is a body of priests who are built together to live and serve as one entity

The priestly service is a work of being built up and of building; our priesthood must be the building and for the building.

• Since the priesthood equals the house, and the house depends on the building, the priesthood also requires the building up of the saints; because of the need for building up, the church must be the house of God before it can be the priesthood; our unique need is to be built up.

Prophesying Topics—Twelve Topics per Week

D1

T1 Life is for building and the building is of life (John 11:25; 1 Cor. 3:9)

(Please explain that life and building are the basic and central revelation of the Bible.) (Please refer to the Outline I. A-E)

T2 This building is the enlargement of God Himself (Rev. 21:2)

(Please explain that the proper building is the enlargement of God, enabling God to express Himself in a corporate way.)

D2

T1 In the sequence of the divine record, the priesthood follows the tabernacle (Exo. 27:20-28:2)

(What is the reason that the tabernacle and the priesthood in Exodus are put together?)

T2 The priesthood and the tabernacle are one entity (1 Pet. 2:5, 9) (Please refer to the Outline II. A-C)

(Please explain that God’s redeemed people are both the tabernacle and the priesthood.)

D3

T1 The priesthood is a body of priests who are built together (1 Pet. 2:5, 9)

(Please explain that apart from the building it is impossible to have the priesthood.) (Please refer to the Outline III. A-B)

T2 One aspect of our work is to be built up, and another aspect is to build (1 Pet. 2:5)

(Please explain that we are building by being built up. This is to genuinely serve God as priests.) (Please refer to the Outline III. C. 1-7)

D4

T1 The priesthood requires the building up of the saints (Eph. 2:21-22)

(Please explain that as the materials for God’s building, we must still be built up with others into God’s house.)

T2 Building involves coordination (Eph. 4:16)

(Please explain that only when we are built into and coordinated into the building do we have the ground to serve the Lord.)

D5

T1 Our unique need is to be built up (Matt. 16:18; Eph. 4:16)

(Please use your experience to explain that the only way to be holy, spiritual, or powerful is to be built into God’s building.)

T2 Our protection is not our spirituality—it is God’s building (Matt. 16:18)

(Please explain that if we want to be protected, we need to be built into God’s building.)

D6

T1 God’s unique goal is the building (Exo. 25:8; Matt. 16:18)

(Please explain that both in the Old Testament and in the New Testament, God’s goal has always been the building.)

T2 When we are built up together, God will have a building (Eph. 2:21-22)

(Please explain the reason the situation among God’s people is disappointing and discouraging.) (Please refer to the Outline IV. C-E)

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