The Way to the Father is Through the Spiritual Tabernacle Called Jesus
In our previous posting we look at the parables of Jesus and gained insight into the fact that we can better understand these analogies of Jesus by looking for a spiritual interpretation of them. This principle provides the critical foundation necessary to answer a number of questions I have received from readers. To review our posting that delves into this subject in more detail, please follow this link: The-Messages-of-Jesus-are-Understood-by-the-Spiritual-Interpretation-of-His-Parables
Questions About the Tabernacle and the Claims of Jesus
This postings is just one in a series of communications that are designed to address a number of questions we referenced above. These questions ask for authoritative scriptural references that support the proposition that Jesus is proclaiming to be the fulfillment of the Tabernacle when He stated, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14: 6.) These questions also ask for scriptural references that support the proposition that the entryways into the Tabernacle are called the Way, the Truth and the Life.
In addressing these requests the establishment of a scriptural foundation is required, that is best provided in a line upon line fashion. Our first posting (link identified above) started the building of that foundation and we continue to build upon it here. All of this is necessary to provide the insight that many of our readers are asking for.
Jesus is the Fulfillment of the Tabernacle
We start by taking a look at the cornerstone of the questions above, namely, the Jesus, “I am…,” scripture:
“Let not your heart be troubled; you believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also. And where I go you know, and the way you know.” Thomas said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, and how can we know the way?” Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me. (John 14:1-6)
Now in our last posting we learned that: All these things Jesus spoke to the multitude in parables; and without a parable He did not speak to them (Matt 13: 34.) Since the parables of Jesus are spiritual references delivered by way of analogy to worldly things, we should start by looking for a real world object that will help us understand the spiritual truth of Jesus. In other words, we need to find the real world analogy that Jesus is referring to when He states; “I am the way, the truth, and the life No one comes to the Father except through Me?” Well, since Jesus and all the disciples were Jews, one must consider that their worldly view would have been that the only way to the Father was through the Tabernacle.
The following scripture validates this statement:
17 “You shall make a mercy seat of pure gold; two and a half cubits shall be its length and a cubit and a half its width. 18 And you shall make two cherubim of gold; of hammered work you shall make them at the two ends of the mercy seat. 19 Make one cherub at one end, and the other cherub at the other end; you shall make the cherubim at the two ends of it of one piece with the mercy seat. 20 And the cherubim shall stretch out their wings above, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and they shall face one another; the faces of the cherubim shall be toward the mercy seat. 21 You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the Testimony that I will give you. 22 And there I will meet with you, and I will speak with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are on the ark of the Testimony, about everything which I will give you in commandment to the children of Israel (Exodus 25: 17-22.)
In this scripture Moses has recorded the words that God gave Him on the mountain top. In it God communicates with him about how the Most Holy Place (the innermost chamber of the Tabernacle) is to be furnished and arranged. What is clear from reading this scripture is that the Father intends to communicate with Moses from this specific area, deep inside the Tabernacle, as the Tabernacle was built to be the place where God would dwell with man on Earth.
Now, if Jesus was communicating a spiritual message by way of parable in John 14: 1-6, and we know that without a parable He did not speak to them (Matt 13: 34), then the Tabernacle had to be the only possible analogy of His parable. This is true because His dwelling there was a part of Israel’s covenant relationship with the Father.
Also, by association, if Jesus is claiming that He is the only way to the Father, and the Tabernacle was their existing way to the Father, then not only is Jesus claiming to be the fulfillment of the Tabernacle; but the terms, the Way, the Truth and the Life, must somehow refer to the pathway through the Tabernacle as well.
To add some support to these conclusions, lets look at John 14: 6 once again: “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me (John 14: 6.) The word “through” is very important as it gives us a sense that we enter into Jesus at a certain point, and then pass “through” to the other side of Him, where we then come into the presence of Father. This adds support to our case as this is precisely the structure of the Tabernacle built in the time of Moses. At that time the tribes of Israel aligned on all sides of the Tabernacle. There was an entryway that lead into what was called the Outer Courtyard. In the middle of this courtyard was a tent like structure that was called the Holy Place, and it also had a single entrance. The inside of the Tabernacle was divided by a curtain and the area behind the curtain was called the Most Holy Place where the Father dwelt. By the way, this curtain or veil as it is sometimes called, is the same one that was torn in two at the time of the death of Jesus on the cross. In any event, what we see here is that there is a pathway to the Father defined here, and interestingly, there are exactly three entryways that must be passed through to get to the Father. Could these be the spiritual Way, the Truth and the Life that Jesus was referring to? More details on this will be coming in future postings.
So, at this point we have correlated this parable of Jesus to the Tabernacle. We have seen that there is substantial evidence supporting such a proposition. But the Tabernacle is an Earthly object and since we view the words of Jesus as parables, then we must look for a spiritual interpretation, especially since a purely physical interpretation seems unrealistic. So, at this point one has to ask if there is scriptural support for a spiritual Tabernacle? A Tabernacle that resides in a spiritual place like heaven, because if there is, then that scripture would validate much of what we are presenting in this post.
Jesus, the Spiritual Tabernacle
Here is an authoritative scriptural support for a spiritual tabernacle in heaven:
Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from heaven saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them, and they shall be His people. God Himself will be with them and be their God (Rev 21:2-4.)
So, this is what Jesus was talking about. The disciples did not know this at the time as the revelation did not come to John until many years after the death, resurrection and the ascension of our Lord into heaven.
In our next posting we will attempt to dig deeper into the correlations between John 14: 1-6 and Revelations 21: 2-4 and find further strength to support what we have presented here today. We will also take a closer look into what is meant by the Way, the Truth and the Life.
Until then, may all of God’s blessings be upon the readers of this post!