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Exodus 25:1--31:18

Context
The Materials for the Sanctuary

25:1 1 The Lord spoke to Moses: 25:2 “Tell the Israelites to take 2  an offering 3  for me; from every person motivated by a willing 4  heart you 5  are to receive my offering. 25:3 This is the offering you 6  are to accept from them: gold, silver, bronze, 25:4 blue, 7  purple, 8  scarlet, 9  fine linen, 10  goat’s hair, 11  25:5 ram skins dyed red, 12  fine leather, 13  acacia 14  wood, 25:6 oil for the light, spices for the anointing oil and for fragrant incense, 25:7 onyx stones, and other gems to be set in the ephod and in the breastpiece. 25:8 Let them make 15  for me a sanctuary, 16  so that I may live among them. 25:9 According to all that I am showing you 17  – the pattern of the tabernacle 18  and the pattern of all its furnishings – you 19  must make it exactly so. 20 

The Ark of the Covenant

25:10 21 “They are to make an ark 22  of acacia wood – its length is to be three feet nine inches, its width two feet three inches, and its height two feet three inches. 23  25:11 You are to overlay 24  it with pure gold – both inside and outside you must overlay it, 25  and you are to make a surrounding border 26  of gold over it. 25:12 You are to cast four gold rings for it and put them on its four feet, with two rings on one side and two rings on the other side. 25:13 You are to make poles of acacia wood, overlay them with gold, 25:14 and put the poles into the rings at the sides of the ark in order to carry the ark with them. 25:15 The poles must remain in the rings of the ark; they must not be removed from it. 25:16 You are to put into the ark the testimony 27  that I will give to you.

25:17 “You are to make an atonement lid 28  of pure gold; 29  its length is to be three feet nine inches, and its width is to be two feet three inches. 25:18 You are to make two cherubim 30  of gold; you are to make them of hammered metal on the two ends of the atonement lid. 25:19 Make 31  one cherub on one end 32  and one cherub on the other end; from the atonement lid 33  you are to make the cherubim on the two ends. 25:20 The cherubim are to be spreading their wings upward, overshadowing 34  the atonement lid with their wings, and the cherubim are to face each other, 35  looking 36  toward the atonement lid. 25:21 You are to put the atonement lid on top of the ark, and in the ark you are to put the testimony I am giving you. 25:22 I will meet with you there, 37  and 38  from above the atonement lid, from between the two cherubim that are over the ark of the testimony, I will speak with you about all that I will command you for the Israelites.

The Table for the Bread of the Presence

25:23 39 “You are to make a table of acacia wood; its length is to be three feet, its width one foot six inches, and its height two feet three inches. 25:24 You are to overlay it with 40  pure gold, and you are to make a surrounding border of gold for it. 25:25 You are to make a surrounding frame 41  for it about three inches broad, and you are to make a surrounding border of gold for its frame. 25:26 You are to make four rings of gold for it and attach 42  the rings at the four corners where its four legs are. 43  25:27 The rings are to be close to the frame to provide places 44  for the poles to carry the table. 25:28 You are to make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold, so that the table may be carried with them. 45  25:29 You are to make its plates, 46  its ladles, 47  its pitchers, and its bowls, to be used in pouring out offerings; 48  you are to make them of pure gold. 25:30 You are to set the Bread of the Presence 49  on the table before me continually.

The Lampstand

25:31 50 “You are to make a lampstand 51  of pure gold. The lampstand is to be made of hammered metal; its base and its shaft, its cups, 52  its buds, and its blossoms are to be from the same piece. 53  25:32 Six branches are to extend from the sides of the lampstand, 54  three branches of the lampstand from one side of it and three branches of the lampstand from the other side of it. 55  25:33 Three cups shaped like almond flowers with buds and blossoms are to be on one branch, and three cups shaped like almond flowers with buds and blossoms are to be on the next 56  branch, and the same 57  for the six branches extending from the lampstand. 25:34 On the lampstand there are to be four cups shaped like almond flowers with buds and blossoms, 25:35 with a bud under the first 58  two branches from it, and a bud under the next 59  two branches from it, and a bud under the third 60  two branches from it, according to the six branches that extend from the lampstand. 25:36 Their buds and their branches will be one piece, 61  all of it one hammered piece of pure gold.

25:37 “You are to make its seven lamps, 62  and then set 63  its lamps up on it, so that it will give light 64  to the area in front of it. 25:38 Its trimmers and its trays 65  are to be 66  of pure gold. 25:39 About seventy-five pounds 67  of pure gold is to be used for it 68  and for all these utensils. 25:40 Now be sure to make 69  them according to the pattern you were shown 70  on the mountain. 71 

The Tabernacle

26:1 72 “The tabernacle itself 73  you are to make with 74  ten curtains of fine twisted linen and blue and purple and scarlet; 75  you are to make them with 76  cherubim that are the work of an artistic designer. 26:2 The length of each 77  curtain is to be forty-two feet, and the width of each curtain is to be six feet 78  – the same size for each of the curtains. 26:3 Five curtains are to be joined, 79  one to another, 80  and the other 81  five curtains are to be joined, one to another. 26:4 You are to make loops of blue material along the edge of the end curtain in one set, and in the same way you are to make loops 82  in the outer edge of the end curtain in the second set. 26:5 You are to make fifty loops on the one curtain, and you are to make fifty loops on the end curtain which is on the second set, so that the loops are opposite one to another. 83  26:6 You are to make fifty gold clasps and join the curtains together with the clasps, so that the tabernacle is a unit. 84 

26:7 “You are to make curtains of goats’ hair 85  for a tent over the tabernacle; 86  you are to make 87  eleven curtains. 26:8 The length of each 88  curtain is to be forty-five feet, and the width of each curtain is to be six feet – the same size for the eleven curtains. 26:9 You are to join five curtains by themselves and six curtains by themselves. You are to double over 89  the sixth curtain at the front of the tent. 26:10 You are to make fifty loops along the edge of the end curtain in one set and fifty loops along the edge of the curtain that joins the second set. 26:11 You are to make fifty bronze clasps and put the clasps into the loops and join the tent together so that it is a unit. 90  26:12 Now the part that remains of the curtains of the tent – the half curtain that remains will hang over at the back of the tabernacle. 91  26:13 The foot and a half 92  on the one side and the foot and a half on the other side of what remains in the length of the curtains of the tent will hang over the sides of the tabernacle, on one side and the other side, to cover it. 93 

26:14 “You are to make a covering 94  for the tent out of ram skins dyed red and over that a covering of fine leather. 95 

26:15 “You are to make the frames 96  for the tabernacle out of 97  acacia wood as uprights. 98  26:16 Each 99  frame is to be fifteen feet long, and each frame is to be two feet three inches wide, 26:17 with two projections 100  per frame parallel one to another. 101  You are to make all the frames of the tabernacle in this way. 26:18 So you are to make the frames for the tabernacle: twenty frames for the south side, 102  26:19 and you are to make forty silver bases to go under the twenty frames – two bases under the first frame for its two projections, and likewise 103  two bases under the next frame for its two projections; 26:20 and for the second side of the tabernacle, the north side, twenty frames, 26:21 and their forty silver bases, two bases under the first frame, and two bases under the next frame. 26:22 And for the back of the tabernacle on the west 104  you will make six frames. 26:23 You are to make two frames for the corners 105  of the tabernacle on the back. 26:24 At the two corners 106  they must be doubled at the lower end and finished together at the top in one ring. So it will be for both. 26:25 So there are to be eight frames and their silver bases, sixteen bases, two bases under the first frame, and two bases under the next frame.

26:26 “You are to make bars of acacia wood, five for the frames on one side of the tabernacle, 26:27 and five bars for the frames on the second side of the tabernacle, and five bars for the frames on the back of the tabernacle on the west. 26:28 The middle bar in the center of the frames will reach from end to end. 107  26:29 You are to overlay the frames with gold and make their rings of gold to provide places for the bars, and you are to overlay the bars with gold. 26:30 You are to set up the tabernacle according to the plan 108  that you were shown on the mountain.

26:31 “You are to make a special curtain 109  of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn and fine twisted linen; it is to be made 110  with cherubim, the work of an artistic designer. 26:32 You are to hang it 111  with gold hooks 112  on four posts of acacia wood overlaid with gold, set in 113  four silver bases. 26:33 You are to hang this curtain under the clasps and bring the ark of the testimony in there behind the curtain. 114  The curtain will make a division for you between the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place. 115  26:34 You are to put the atonement lid on the ark of the testimony in the Most Holy Place. 26:35 You are to put the table outside the curtain and the lampstand on the south side of the tabernacle, opposite the table, and you are to place the table on the north side.

26:36 “You are to make a hanging 116  for the entrance of the tent of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn and fine twined linen, the work of an embroiderer. 117  26:37 You are to make for the hanging five posts of acacia wood and overlay them with gold, and their hooks will be 118  gold, and you are to cast five bronze bases for them. 119 

The Altar

27:1 “You are to make the 120  altar of acacia wood, seven feet six inches long, 121  and seven feet six inches wide; the altar is to be square, 122  and its height is to be 123  four feet six inches. 27:2 You are to make its four horns 124  on its four corners; its horns will be part of it, 125  and you are to overlay it with bronze. 27:3 You are to make its pots for the ashes, 126  its shovels, its tossing bowls, 127  its meat hooks, and its fire pans – you are to make all 128  its utensils of bronze. 27:4 You are to make a grating 129  for it, a network of bronze, and you are to make on the network four bronze rings on its four corners. 27:5 You are to put it under the ledge of the altar below, so that the network will come 130  halfway up the altar. 131  27:6 You are to make poles for the altar, poles of acacia wood, and you are to overlay them with bronze. 27:7 The poles are to be put 132  into the rings so that the poles will be on two sides of the altar when carrying it. 133  27:8 You are to make the altar hollow, out of boards. Just as it was shown you 134  on the mountain, so they must make it. 135 

The Courtyard

27:9 “You are to make the courtyard 136  of the tabernacle. For the south side 137  there are to be hangings 138  for the courtyard of fine twisted linen, one hundred fifty feet long for one side, 139  27:10 with 140  twenty posts and their twenty bronze bases, with the hooks of the posts and their bands of silver. 27:11 Likewise 141  for its length on the north side, there are to be 142  hangings for one hundred fifty feet, with twenty posts and their twenty bronze bases, with silver hooks and bands 143  on the posts. 27:12 The width of the court on the west side is to be seventy-five feet with hangings, with their ten posts and their ten bases. 27:13 The width of the court on the east side, toward the sunrise, is to be seventy-five feet. 27:14 The hangings on one side 144  of the gate are to be 145  twenty-two and a half feet long, with their three posts and their three bases. 27:15 On the second side 146  there are to be 147  hangings twenty-two and a half feet long, with their three posts and their three bases. 27:16 For the gate of the courtyard there is to be a curtain of thirty feet, of blue, purple, and scarlet yarn and fine twined linen, the work of an embroiderer, with four posts and their four bases. 27:17 All the posts around the courtyard are to have silver bands; 148  their hooks are to be 149  silver, and their bases bronze. 27:18 The length of the courtyard is to be one hundred fifty feet 150  and the width seventy-five feet, 151  and the height of the fine twisted linen hangings 152  is to be 153  seven and a half feet, with their bronze bases. 27:19 All 154  the utensils of the tabernacle used 155  in all its service, all its tent pegs, and all the tent pegs of the courtyard are to be made of bronze. 156 

Offering the Oil

27:20 “You are to command the Israelites that they bring 157  to you pure oil of pressed olives for the light, so that the lamps 158  will burn 159  regularly. 160  27:21 In the tent of meeting 161  outside the curtain that is before the testimony, Aaron and his sons are to arrange it from evening 162  to morning before the Lord. This is to be a lasting ordinance among the Israelites for generations to come. 163 

The Clothing of the Priests

28:1 164 “And you, bring near 165  to you your brother Aaron and his sons with him from among the Israelites, so that they may minister as my priests 166  – Aaron, Nadab and Abihu, Eleazar and Ithamar, Aaron’s sons. 28:2 You must make holy garments 167  for your brother Aaron, for glory and for beauty. 168  28:3 You 169  are to speak to all who are specially skilled, 170  whom I have filled with the spirit of wisdom, 171  so that they may make 172  Aaron’s garments to set him apart 173  to minister as my priest. 28:4 Now these are the garments that they are to make: a breastpiece, 174  an ephod, 175  a robe, a fitted 176  tunic, a turban, and a sash. They are to make holy garments for your brother Aaron and for his sons, that they may minister as my priests. 28:5 The artisans 177  are to use 178  the gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine linen.

28:6 “They are to make the ephod of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twisted linen, the work of an artistic designer. 28:7 It is to have two shoulder pieces attached to two of its corners, so it can be joined together. 179  28:8 The artistically woven waistband 180  of the ephod that is on it is to be like it, of one piece with the ephod, 181  of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twisted linen.

28:9 “You are to take two onyx stones and engrave on them the names of the sons of Israel, 182  28:10 six 183  of their names on one stone, and the six remaining names on the second stone, according to the order of their birth. 184  28:11 You are to engrave the two stones with the names of the sons of Israel with the work of an engraver in stone, like the engravings of a seal; 185  you are to have them set 186  in gold filigree 187  settings. 28:12 You are to put the two stones on the shoulders of the ephod, stones of memorial for the sons of Israel, and Aaron will bear their names before the Lord on his two shoulders for a memorial. 188  28:13 You are to make filigree settings of gold 28:14 and two braided chains of pure gold, like a cord, and attach the chains to the settings.

28:15 “You are to make a breastpiece for use in making decisions, 189  the work of an artistic designer; you are to make it in the same fashion as the ephod; you are to make it of gold, blue, purple, scarlet, and fine twisted linen. 28:16 It is to be square 190  when 191  doubled, nine inches 192  long and nine inches wide. 28:17 You are to set in it a setting for stones, four rows of stones, a row with a ruby, a topaz, and a beryl – the first row; 28:18 and the second row, a turquoise, a sapphire, and an emerald; 28:19 and the third row, a jacinth, an agate, and an amethyst; 28:20 and the fourth row, a chrysolite, an onyx, and a jasper. 193  They are to be enclosed in gold in their filigree settings. 28:21 The stones are to be for the names of the sons of Israel, twelve, according to the number of 194  their names. Each name according to the twelve tribes is to be like 195  the engravings of a seal.

28:22 “You are to make for the breastpiece braided chains like cords of pure gold, 28:23 and you are to make for the breastpiece two gold rings and attach 196  the two rings to the upper 197  two ends of the breastpiece. 28:24 You are to attach the two gold chains to the two rings at the ends of the breastpiece; 28:25 the other 198  two ends of the two chains you will attach to the two settings and then attach them 199  to the shoulder pieces of the ephod at the front of it. 28:26 You are to make two rings of gold and put them on the other 200  two ends of the breastpiece, on its edge that is on the inner side of the ephod. 28:27 You are to make two more 201  gold rings and attach them to the bottom of the two shoulder pieces on the front of the ephod, close to the juncture above the waistband of the ephod. 28:28 They are to tie the breastpiece by its rings to the rings of the ephod by blue cord, so that it may be above the waistband of the ephod, and so that the breastpiece will not be loose from the ephod. 28:29 Aaron will bear the names of the sons of Israel in the breastpiece of decision over his heart 202  when he goes into the holy place, for a memorial before the Lord continually.

28:30 “You are to put the Urim and the Thummim 203  into the breastpiece of decision; and they are to be over Aaron’s heart when he goes in before the Lord. Aaron is to bear the decisions 204  of the Israelites over his heart before the Lord continually.

28:31 “You are to make the robe 205  of the ephod completely blue. 28:32 There is to be an opening 206  in its top 207  in the center of it, with an edge all around the opening, the work of a weaver, 208  like the opening of a collar, 209  so that it cannot be torn. 210  28:33 You are to make pomegranates 211  of blue, purple, and scarlet all around its hem 212  and bells of gold between them all around. 28:34 The pattern is to be 213  a gold bell and a pomegranate, a gold bell and a pomegranate, all around the hem of the robe. 28:35 The robe 214  is to be on Aaron as he ministers, 215  and his sound will be heard 216  when he enters the Holy Place before the Lord and when he leaves, so that he does not die.

28:36 “You are to make a plate 217  of pure gold and engrave on it the way a seal is engraved: 218  “Holiness to the Lord.” 219  28:37 You are to attach to it a blue cord so that it will be 220  on the turban; it is to be 221  on the front of the turban, 28:38 It will be on Aaron’s forehead, and Aaron will bear the iniquity of the holy things, 222  which the Israelites are to sanctify by all their holy gifts; 223  it will always be on his forehead, for their acceptance 224  before the Lord. 28:39 You are to weave 225  the tunic of fine linen and make the turban of fine linen, and make the sash the work of an embroiderer.

28:40 “For Aaron’s sons you are to make tunics, sashes, and headbands 226  for glory and for beauty.

28:41 “You are to clothe them – your brother Aaron and his sons with him – and anoint them 227  and ordain them 228  and set them apart as holy, 229  so that they may minister as my priests. 28:42 Make for them linen undergarments to cover their naked bodies; 230  they must cover 231  from the waist to the thighs. 28:43 These must be on Aaron and his sons when they enter 232  to the tent of meeting, or when they approach 233  the altar to minister in the Holy Place, so that they bear no iniquity and die. 234  It is to be a perpetual ordinance for him and for his descendants 235  after him. 236 

The Consecration of Aaron and His Sons

29:1 237 “Now this is what 238  you are to do for them to consecrate them so that they may minister as my priests. Take a young 239  bull and two rams without blemish; 240  29:2 and 241  bread made without yeast, and perforated cakes without yeast mixed with oil, and wafers without yeast spread 242  with oil – you are to make them using 243  fine wheat flour. 29:3 You are to put them in one basket and present 244  them in the basket, along with 245  the bull and the two rams.

29:4 “You are to present 246  Aaron and his sons at the entrance of the tent of meeting. You are to wash 247  them with water 29:5 and take the garments and clothe Aaron with the tunic, 248  the robe of the ephod, the ephod, and the breastpiece; you are to fasten the ephod on him by using the skillfully woven waistband. 249  29:6 You are to put the turban on his head and put the holy diadem 250  on the turban. 29:7 You are to take the anointing oil and pour it on his head and anoint him. 251  29:8 You are to present his sons and clothe them with tunics 29:9 and wrap the sashes around Aaron and his sons 252  and put headbands on them, and so the ministry of priesthood will belong to them by a perpetual ordinance. Thus you are to consecrate 253  Aaron and his sons.

29:10 “You are to present the bull at the front of the tent of meeting, and Aaron and his sons are to put 254  their hands on the head 255  of the bull. 29:11 You are to kill the bull before the Lord at the entrance to the tent of meeting 29:12 and take some of the blood of the bull and put it on the horns of the altar 256  with your finger; all the rest of 257  the blood you are to pour out at the base of the altar. 29:13 You are to take all the fat that covers the entrails, and the lobe 258  that is above the liver, and the two kidneys and the fat that is on them, and burn them 259  on the altar. 29:14 But the meat of the bull, its skin, and its dung you are to burn up 260  outside the camp. 261  It is the purification offering. 262 

29:15 “You are to take one ram, and Aaron and his sons are to lay their hands on the ram’s head, 29:16 and you are to kill the ram and take its blood and splash it all around on the altar. 29:17 Then you are to cut the ram into pieces and wash the entrails and its legs and put them on its pieces and on its head 29:18 and burn 263  the whole ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering 264  to the Lord, a soothing aroma; it is an offering made by fire 265  to the Lord. 266 

29:19 “You are to take the second ram, and Aaron and his sons are to lay their hands on the ram’s head, 29:20 and you are to kill the ram and take some of its blood and put it on the tip of the right ear of Aaron, on the tip of the right ear of his sons, on the thumb of their right hand, and on the big toe of their right foot, 267  and then splash the blood all around on the altar. 29:21 You are to take some of the blood that is on the altar and some of the anointing oil and sprinkle it 268  on Aaron, on his garments, on his sons, and on his sons’ garments with him, so that he may be holy, 269  he and his garments along with his sons and his sons’ garments.

29:22 “You are to take from the ram the fat, the fat tail, the fat that covers the entrails, the lobe 270  of the liver, the two kidneys and the fat that is on them, and the right thigh – for it is the ram for consecration 271 29:23 and one round flat cake of bread, one perforated cake of oiled bread, and one wafer from the basket of bread made without yeast that is before the Lord. 29:24 You are to put all these 272  in Aaron’s hands 273  and in his sons’ hands, and you are to wave them as a wave offering 274  before the Lord. 29:25 Then you are to take them from their hands and burn 275  them 276  on the altar for a burnt offering, for a soothing aroma before the Lord. It is an offering made by fire to the Lord. 29:26 You are to take the breast of the ram of Aaron’s consecration; you are to wave it as a wave offering before the Lord, and it is to be your share. 29:27 You are to sanctify the breast of the wave offering and the thigh of the contribution, 277  which were waved and lifted up as a contribution from the ram of consecration, from what belongs to Aaron and to his sons. 29:28 It is to belong to Aaron and to his sons from the Israelites, by a perpetual ordinance, for it is a contribution. It is to be a contribution from the Israelites from their peace offerings, their contribution to the Lord.

29:29 “The holy garments that belong to Aaron are to belong to his sons after him, so that they may be anointed 278  in them and consecrated 279  in them. 29:30 The priest who succeeds him 280  from his sons, when he first comes 281  to the tent of meeting to minister in the Holy Place, is to wear them for seven days. 282 

29:31 “You are to take the ram of the consecration and cook 283  its meat in a holy place. 284  29:32 Aaron and his sons are to eat the meat of the ram and the bread that was in the basket at the entrance of the tent of meeting. 29:33 They are to eat those things by which atonement was made 285  to consecrate and to set them apart, but no one else 286  may eat them, for they are holy. 29:34 If any of the meat from the consecration offerings 287  or any of the bread is left over 288  until morning, then you are to burn up 289  what is left over. It must not be eaten, 290  because it is holy.

29:35 “Thus you are to do for Aaron and for his sons, according to all that I have commanded you; you are to consecrate them 291  for 292  seven days. 29:36 Every day you are to prepare a bull for a purification offering 293  for atonement. 294  You are to purge 295  the altar by making atonement 296  for it, and you are to anoint it to set it apart as holy. 29:37 For seven days 297  you are to make atonement for the altar and set it apart as holy. Then the altar will be most holy. 298  Anything that touches the altar will be holy. 299 

29:38 “Now this is what you are to prepare 300  on the altar every day continually: two lambs a year old. 29:39 The first lamb you are to prepare in the morning, and the second lamb you are to prepare around sundown. 301  29:40 With the first lamb offer a tenth of an ephah 302  of fine flour mixed with a fourth of a hin 303  of oil from pressed olives, and a fourth of a hin of wine as a drink offering. 29:41 The second lamb you are to offer around sundown; you are to prepare for it the same meal offering as for the morning and the same drink offering, for a soothing aroma, an offering made by fire to the Lord.

29:42 “This will be a regular 304  burnt offering throughout your generations at the entrance of the tent of meeting before the Lord, where I will meet 305  with you to speak to you there. 29:43 There I will meet 306  with the Israelites, and it will be set apart as holy by my glory. 307 

29:44 “So I will set apart as holy 308  the tent of meeting and the altar, and I will set apart as holy Aaron and his sons, that they may minister as priests to me. 29:45 I will reside 309  among the Israelites, and I will be their God, 29:46 and they will know that I am the Lord their God, who brought them out from the land of Egypt, so that I may reside among them. I am the Lord their God.

The Altar of Incense

30:1 310 “You are to make an altar for burning incense; 311  you are to make it of 312  acacia wood. 313  30:2 Its length is to be a foot and a half 314  and its width a foot and a half; it will be square. Its height is to be three feet, 315  with its horns of one piece with it. 316  30:3 You are to overlay it with pure gold – its top, 317  its four walls, 318  and its horns – and make a surrounding border of gold for it. 319  30:4 You are to make two gold rings for it under its border, on its two flanks; you are to make them on its two sides. 320  The rings 321  will be places 322  for poles to carry it with. 30:5 You are to make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold.

30:6 “You are to put it in front of the curtain that is before the ark of the testimony (before the atonement lid that is over the testimony), where I will meet you. 30:7 Aaron is to burn sweet incense 323  on it morning by morning; when he attends 324  to the lamps he is to burn incense. 325  30:8 When Aaron sets up the lamps around sundown he is to burn incense on it; it is to be a regular incense offering before the Lord throughout your generations. 30:9 You must not offer strange incense on it, nor burnt offering, nor meal offering, and you must not pour out a drink offering on it. 30:10 Aaron is to make atonement on its horns once in the year with some of the blood of the sin offering for atonement; 326  once in the year 327  he is to make atonement on it throughout your generations. It is most holy to the Lord.” 328 

The Ransom Money

30:11 329 The Lord spoke to Moses: 330  30:12 “When you take a census 331  of the Israelites according to their number, 332  then each man is to pay a ransom 333  for his life to the Lord when you number them, 334  so that there will be no plague among them when you number them. 30:13 Everyone who crosses over to those who are numbered 335  is to pay this: a half shekel 336  according to the shekel of the sanctuary 337  (a shekel weighs twenty gerahs). The half shekel is to be an offering 338  to the Lord. 30:14 Everyone who crosses over to those numbered, from twenty years old and up, is to pay an offering to the Lord. 30:15 The rich are not to increase it, 339  and the poor are not to pay less than the half shekel when giving 340  the offering of the Lord, to make atonement 341  for your lives. 30:16 You are to receive the atonement money 342  from the Israelites and give it for the service 343  of the tent of meeting. It will be a memorial 344  for the Israelites before the Lord, to make atonement 345  for your lives.”

The Bronze Laver

30:17 346 The Lord spoke to Moses: 347  30:18 “You are also to make a large bronze 348  basin with a bronze stand 349  for washing. You are to put it between the tent of meeting and the altar and put water in it, 350  30:19 and Aaron and his sons must wash their hands and their feet from it. 351  30:20 When they enter 352  the tent of meeting, they must wash with 353  water so that they do not die. 354  Also, when they approach 355  the altar to minister by burning incense 356  as an offering made by fire 357  to the Lord, 30:21 they must wash 358  their hands and their feet so that they do not die. And this 359  will be a perpetual ordinance for them and for their descendants 360  throughout their generations.” 361 

Oil and Incense

30:22 362 The Lord spoke to Moses: 363  30:23 “Take 364  choice spices: 365  twelve and a half pounds 366  of free-flowing myrrh, 367  half that – about six and a quarter pounds – of sweet-smelling cinnamon, six and a quarter pounds of sweet-smelling cane, 30:24 and twelve and a half pounds of cassia, all weighed 368  according to the sanctuary shekel, and four quarts 369  of olive oil. 30:25 You are to make this 370  into 371  a sacred anointing oil, a perfumed compound, 372  the work of a perfumer. It will be sacred anointing oil.

30:26 “With it you are to anoint the tent of meeting, the ark of the testimony, 30:27 the table and all its utensils, the lampstand and its utensils, the altar of incense, 30:28 the altar for the burnt offering and all its utensils, and the laver and its base. 30:29 So you are to sanctify them, 373  and they will be most holy; 374  anything that touches them will be holy. 375 

30:30 “You are to anoint Aaron and his sons and 376  sanctify them, so that they may minister as my priests. 30:31 And you are to tell the Israelites: ‘This is to be my sacred anointing oil throughout your generations. 30:32 It must not be applied 377  to people’s bodies, and you must not make any like it with the same recipe. It is holy, and it must be holy to you. 30:33 Whoever makes perfume like it and whoever puts any of it on someone not a priest 378  will be cut off 379  from his people.’”

30:34 The Lord said to Moses: “Take 380  spices, gum resin, 381  onycha, 382  galbanum, 383  and pure frankincense 384  of equal amounts 385  30:35 and make it into an incense, 386  a perfume, 387  the work of a perfumer. It is to be finely ground, 388  and pure and sacred. 30:36 You are to beat some of it very fine and put some of it before the ark of the testimony in the tent of meeting where I will meet with you; it is to be most holy to you. 30:37 And the incense that you are to make, you must not make for yourselves using the same recipe; it is to be most holy to you, belonging to the Lord. 30:38 Whoever makes anything like it, to use as perfume, 389  will be cut off from his people.”

Willing Artisans

31:1 390 The Lord spoke to Moses: 391  31:2 “See, I have chosen 392  Bezalel son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah, 31:3 and I have filled him with the Spirit of God 393  in skill, 394  in understanding, in knowledge, and in all kinds 395  of craftsmanship, 31:4 to make artistic designs 396  for work with gold, with silver, and with bronze, 31:5 and with cutting and setting stone, and with cutting wood, to work in all kinds of craftsmanship. 31:6 Moreover, 397  I have also given him Oholiab son of Ahisamach, of the tribe of Dan, and I have given ability to all the specially skilled, 398  that they may make 399  everything I have commanded you: 31:7 the tent of meeting, the ark of the testimony, the atonement lid that is on it, all the furnishings 400  of the tent, 31:8 the table with its utensils, the pure lampstand with all its utensils, the altar of incense, 31:9 the altar for the burnt offering with all its utensils, the large basin with its base, 31:10 the woven garments, the holy garments for Aaron the priest and the garments for his sons, to minister as priests, 31:11 the anointing oil, and sweet incense for the Holy Place. They will make all these things just as I have commanded you.”

Sabbath Observance

31:12 401 The Lord said to Moses, 402  31:13 “Tell the Israelites, ‘Surely you must keep my Sabbaths, 403  for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations, that you may know that I am the Lord who sanctifies you. 404  31:14 So you must keep the Sabbath, for it is holy for you. Everyone who defiles it 405  must surely be put to death; indeed, 406  if anyone does 407  any 408  work on it, then that person will be cut off from among his 409  people. 31:15 Six days 410  work may be done, 411  but on the seventh day is a Sabbath of complete rest, 412  holy to the Lord; anyone who does work on the Sabbath day must surely be put to death. 31:16 The Israelites must keep the Sabbath by observing the Sabbath throughout their generations as a perpetual covenant. 31:17 It is a sign between me and the Israelites forever; for in six days 413  the Lord made the heavens and the earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed.’” 414 

31:18 He gave Moses two tablets of testimony when he had finished speaking with him on Mount Sinai, tablets of stone written by the finger of God. 415 

1 sn Now begin the detailed instructions for constructing the tabernacle of Yahweh, with all its furnishings. The first paragraph introduces the issue of the heavenly pattern for the construction, calls for the people to make willing offerings (vv. 2-7), and explains the purpose for these offerings (vv. 8-9). The message here is that God calls his people to offer of their substance willingly so that his sanctuary may be made.

2 tn The verb is וְיִקְחוּ (vÿyiqkhu), the Qal imperfect or jussive with vav; after the imperative “speak” this verb indicates the purpose or result: “speak…that they may take” and continues with the force of a command.

3 tn The “offering” (תְּרוּמָה, tÿrumah) is perhaps better understood as a contribution since it was a freewill offering. There is some question about the etymology of the word. The traditional meaning of “heave-offering” derives from the idea of “elevation,” a root meaning “to be high” lying behind the word. B. Jacob says it is something sorted out of a mass of material and designated for a higher purpose (Exodus, 765). S. R. Driver (Exodus, 263) corrects the idea of “heave-offering” by relating the root to the Hiphil form of that root, herim, “to lift” or “take off.” He suggests the noun means “what is taken off” from a larger mass and so designated for sacred purposes. The LXX has “something taken off.”

4 tn The verb יִדְּבֶנּוּ (yiddÿvennu) is related to the word for the “freewill offering” (נְדָבָה, nÿdavah). The verb is used of volunteering for military campaigns (Judg 5:2, 9) and the willing offerings for both the first and second temples (see 1 Chr 29:5, 6, 9, 14, 17).

5 tn The pronoun is plural.

6 tn The pronoun is plural.

7 sn The blue refers to dye made from shellfish. It has a dark blue or purple-blue, almost violet color. No significance for the color is attached.

8 sn Likewise this color dye was imported from Phoenicia, where it was harvested from the shellfish or snail. It is a deep purple-red color.

9 sn This color is made from the eggs and bodies of the worm coccus ilicus, which is found with the holly plant – so Heb “worm of brilliance.” The powder made from the dried maggots produces a bright red-yellow color (W. C. Kaiser, Jr., “Exodus,” EBC 2:452). B. Jacob takes the view that these are not simply colors that are being introduced here, but fabrics dyed with these colors (Exodus, 765). At any rate, the sequence would then be metals, fabrics, and leathers (v. 5).

10 sn This is generally viewed as a fine Egyptian linen that had many more delicate strands than ordinary linen.

11 sn Goat’s hair was spun into yarn (35:26) and used to make the material for the first tent over the dwelling. It is ideal for tenting, since it is loosely woven and allows breezes to pass through, but with rain the fibers expand and prevent water from seeping through.

12 sn W. C. Kaiser compares this to morocco leather (“Exodus,” EBC 2:453); it was skin that had all the wool removed and then was prepared as leather and dyed red. N. M. Sarna, on the other hand, comments, “The technique of leather production is never described [in ancient Hebrew texts]. Hence, it is unclear whether Hebrew meoddamim (מְאָדָּמִים), literally ‘made red,’ refers to the tanning or dyeing process” (Exodus [JPSTC], 157).

13 tn The meaning of the word תְּחָשִׁים (tÿkhashim) is debated. The Arabic tuhas or duhas is a dolphin, and so some think a sea animal is meant – something like a dolphin or porpoise (cf. NASB; ASV “sealskins”; NIV “hides of sea cows”). Porpoises are common in the Red Sea; their skins are used for clothing by the bedouin. The word has also been connected to an Egyptian word for “leather” (ths); see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 265. Some variation of this is followed by NRSV (“fine leather”) and NLT (“fine goatskin leather”). Another suggestion connects this word to an Akkadian one that describes a precious stone that is yellow or ornge and also leather died with the color of this stone (N. M. Sarna, Exodus [JPSTC], 157-58).

14 sn The wood of the acacia is darker and harder than oak, and so very durable.

15 tn The verb is a perfect with vav (ו) consecutive; it follows in the sequence initiated by the imperative in v. 2 and continues with the force of a command.

16 tn The word here is מִקְדּשׁ (miqdash), “a sanctuary” or “holy place”; cf. NLT “sacred residence.” The purpose of building it is to enable Yahweh to reside (וְשָׁכַנְתִּי, vÿshakhanti) in their midst. U. Cassuto reminds the reader that God did not need a place to dwell, but the Israelites needed a dwelling place for him, so that they would look to it and be reminded that he was in their midst (Exodus, 327).

17 tn The pronoun is singular.

18 sn The expression “the pattern of the tabernacle” (תַּבְנִית הַמִּשְׁכָּן, tavnit hammiskan) has been the source of much inquiry. The word rendered “pattern” is related to the verb “to build”; it suggests a model. S. R. Driver notes that in ancient literature there is the account of Gudea receiving in a dream a complete model of a temple he was to erect (Exodus, 267). In this passage Moses is being shown something on the mountain that should be the pattern of the earthly sanctuary. The most plausible explanation of what he was shown comes from a correlation with comments in the Letter to the Hebrews and the book of Revelation, which describe the heavenly sanctuary as the true sanctuary, and the earthly as the copy or shadow. One could say that Moses was allowed to see what John saw on the island of Patmos, a vision of the heavenly sanctuary. That still might not explain what it was, but it would mean he saw a revelation of the true tent, and that would imply that he learned of the spiritual and eternal significance of all of it. The fact that Israel’s sanctuary resembled those of other cultures does not nullify this act of revelation; rather, it raises the question of where the other nations got their ideas if it was not made known early in human history. One can conclude that in the beginning there was much more revealed to the parents in the garden than Scripture tells about (Cain and Abel did know how to make sacrifices before Leviticus legislated it). Likewise, one cannot but guess at the influence of the fallen Satan and his angels in the world of pagan religion. Whatever the source, at Sinai God shows the true, and instructs that it all be done without the pagan corruptions and additions. U. Cassuto notes that the existence of these ancient parallels shows that the section on the tabernacle need not be dated in the second temple period, but fits the earlier period well (Exodus, 324).

19 tn The pronoun is plural.

20 sn Among the many helpful studies on the tabernacle, include S. M. Fish, “And They Shall Build Me a Sanctuary,” Gratz College of Jewish Studies 2 (1973): 43-59; I. Hart, “Preaching on the Account of the Tabernacle,” EvQ 54 (1982): 111-16; D. Skinner, “Some Major Themes of Exodus,” Mid-America Theological Journal 1 (1977): 31-42; S. McEvenue, “The Style of Building Instructions,” Sem 4 (1974): 1-9; M. Ben-Uri, “The Mosaic Building Code,” Creation Research Society Quarterly 19 (1982): 36-39.

21 sn This section begins with the ark, the most sacred and important object of Israel’s worship. Verses 10-15 provide the instructions for it, v. 16 has the placement of the Law in it, vv. 17-21 cover the mercy lid, and v. 22 the meeting above it. The point of this item in the tabernacle is to underscore the focus: the covenant people must always have God’s holy standard before them as they draw near to worship. A study of this would focus on God’s nature (he is a God of order, precision, and perfection), on the usefulness of this item for worship, and on the typology intended.

22 tn The word “ark” has long been used by English translations to render אָרוֹן (’aron), the word used for the wooden “box,” or “chest,” made by Noah in which to escape the flood and by the Israelites to furnish the tabernacle.

23 tn The size is two and a half cubits long, a cubit and a half wide, and a cubit and a half high. The size in feet and inches is estimated on the assumption that the cubit is 18 inches (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 267).

24 tn The verbs throughout here are perfect tenses with the vav (ו) consecutives. They are equal to the imperfect tense of instruction and/or injunction.

25 tn Here the verb is an imperfect tense; for the perfect sequence to work the verb would have to be at the front of the clause.

26 tn The word זֵר (zer) is used only in Exodus and seems to describe something on the order of a crown molding, an ornamental border running at the top of the chest on all four sides. There is no indication of its appearance or function.

27 sn The “testimony” is the Decalogue (Exod 24:12; 31:18; Deut 4:13; 9:9; 1 Kgs 8:9); the word identifies it as the witness or affirmation of God’s commandments belonging to his covenant with Israel. It expressed God’s will and man’s duty. In other cultures important documents were put at the feet of the gods in the temples.

28 tn The noun is כַּפֹּרֶת (kapporet), translated “atonement lid” or “atonement plate.” The traditional translation “mercy-seat” (so KJV, ASV, NASB, NRSV) came from Tyndale in 1530 and was also used by Luther in 1523. The noun is formed from the word “to make atonement.” The item that the Israelites should make would be more than just a lid for the ark. It would be the place where atonement was signified. The translation of “covering” is probably incorrect, for it derives from a rare use of the verb, if the same verb at all (the evidence shows “cover” is from another root with the same letters as this). The value of this place was that Yahweh sat enthroned above it, and so the ark essentially was the “footstool.” Blood was applied to the lid of the box, for that was the place of atonement (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 269-270).

29 tn After verbs of making or producing, the accusative (like “gold” here) may be used to express the material from which something is made (see GKC 371 §117.hh).

30 tn The evidence suggests that the cherubim were composite angelic creatures that always indicated the nearness of God. So here images of them were to be crafted and put on each end of the ark of the covenant to signify that they were there. Ezekiel 1 describes four cherubim as each having human faces, four wings, and parts of different animals for their bodies. Traditions of them appear in the other cultures as well. They serve to guard the holy places and to bear the throne of God. Here they were to be beaten out as part of the lid.

31 tn The text now shifts to use an imperative with the vav (ו) conjunction.

32 tn The use of זֶה (zeh) repeated here expresses the reciprocal ideas of “the one” and “the other” (see R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, 26, §132).

33 sn The angels were to form one piece with the lid and not be separated. This could be translated “of one piece with” the lid, but it is likely the angels were simply fastened to it permanently.

34 tn The verb means “overshadowing, screening” in the sense of guarding (see 1 Kgs 8:7; 1 Chr 28:18; see also the account in Gen 3:24). The cherubim then signify two things here: by their outstretched wings they form the throne of God who sits above the ark (with the Law under his feet), and by their overshadowing and guarding they signify this as the place of atonement where people must find propitiation to commune with God. Until then they are barred from his presence. See U. Cassuto, Exodus, 330-35.

35 tn Heb “their faces a man to his brother.”

36 tn Heb “the faces of the cherubim will be” (“the cherubim” was moved to the preceding clause for smoother English).

37 sn Here then is the main point of the ark of the covenant, and the main point of all worship – meeting with God through atonement. The text makes it clear that here God would meet with Moses (“you” is singular) and then he would speak to the people – he is the mediator of the covenant. S. R. Driver (Exodus, 272) makes the point that the verb here is not the word that means “to meet by chance” (as in Exod 3:18), but “to meet” by appointment for a purpose (וְנוֹעַדְתִּי, vÿnoadti). The parallel in the NT is Jesus Christ and his work. The theology is that the Law condemns people as guilty of sin, but the sacrifice of Christ makes atonement. So he is the “place of propitiation (Rom 3:25) who gains communion with the Father for sinners. A major point that could be made from this section is this: At the center of worship must be the atoning work of Christ – a perpetual reminder of God’s righteous standard (the testimony in the ark) and God’s gracious provision (the atonement lid).

38 tn The verb is placed here in the text: “and I will speak”; it has been moved in this translation to be closer to the direct object clause.

39 sn The Table of the Bread of the Presence (Tyndale’s translation, “Shewbread,” was used in KJV and influenced ASV, NAB) was to be a standing acknowledgment that Yahweh was the giver of daily bread. It was called the “presence-bread” because it was set out in his presence. The theology of this is that God provides, and the practice of this is that the people must provide for constant thanks. So if the ark speaks of communion through atonement, the table speaks of dedicatory gratitude.

40 tn “Gold” is an adverbial accusative of material.

41 sn There is some debate as to the meaning of מִסְגֶּרֶת (misgeret). This does not seem to be a natural part of the table and its legs. The drawing on the Arch of Titus shows two cross-stays in the space between the legs, about halfway up. It might have been nearer the top, but the drawing of the table of presence-bread from the arch shows it half-way up. This frame was then decorated with the molding as well.

42 tn Heb “give.”

43 tn Heb “which [are] to four of its feet.”

44 tn Heb “houses”; NAB, NASB “holders.”

45 tn The verb is a Niphal perfect with vav consecutive, showing here the intended result: “so that [the table] might be lifted up [by them].” The noun “the table” is introduced by what looks like the sign of the accusative, but here it serves to introduce or emphasize the nominative (see GKC 365 §117.i).

46 tn Or “a deep gold dish.” The four nouns in this list are items associated with the table and its use.

47 tn Or “cups” (NAB, TEV).

48 tn The expression “for pouring out offerings” represents Hebrew אֲשֶׁר יֻסַּךְ בָּהֵן (’asher yussakh bahen). This literally says, “which it may be poured out with them,” or “with which [libations] may be poured out.”

49 sn The name basically means that the bread is to be set out in the presence of Yahweh. The custom of presenting bread on a table as a thank offering is common in other cultures as well. The bread here would be placed on the table as a symbol of the divine provision for the twelve tribes – continually, because they were to express their thanksgiving continually. Priests could eat the bread after certain times. Fresh bread would be put there regularly.

50 sn Clearly the point here is to provide light in the tent for access to God. He provided for his worshipers a light for the way to God, but he also wanted them to provide oil for the lamp to ensure that the light would not go out. Verses 31-36 describe the piece. It was essentially one central shaft, with three branches on either side turned out and upward. The stem and the branches were ornamented every so often with gold that was formed into the shape of the calyx and corolla of the almond flower. On top of the central shaft and the six branches were the lamps.

51 tn The word is מְנֹרָה (mÿnorah) – here in construct to a following genitive of material. The main piece was one lampstand, but there were seven lamps on the shaft and its branches. See E. Goodenough, “The Menorah among the Jews of the Roman World,” HUCA 23 (1950/51): 449-92.

52 sn U. Cassuto (Exodus, 342-44) says that the description “the cups, knobs and flowers” is explained in vv. 32-36 as three decorations in the form of a cup, shaped like an almond blossom, to be made on one branch. Every cup will have two parts, (a) a knob, that is, the receptacle at the base of the blossom, and (b) a flower, which is called the corolla, so that each lamp rests on top of a flower.

53 tn Heb “will be from/of it”; the referent (“the same piece” of wrought metal) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

54 tn Heb “from the sides of it.”

55 tn Heb “from the second side.”

56 tn The text uses “one” again; “the one…the one” means “the one…and the next” in the distributive sense.

57 tn Heb “thus.”

58 tn For clarity the phrase “the first” has been supplied.

59 tn For clarity the phrase “the next” has been supplied.

60 tn For clarity the phrase “the third” has been supplied.

61 tn Heb “will be from it.”

62 tn The word for “lamps” is from the same root as the lampstand, of course. The word is נֵרוֹת (nerot). This probably refers to the small saucer-like pottery lamps that are made very simply with the rim pinched over to form a place to lay the wick. The bowl is then filled with olive oil as fuel.

63 tn The translation “set up on” is from the Hebrew verb “bring up.” The construction is impersonal, “and he will bring up,” meaning “one will bring up.” It may mean that people were to fix the lamps on to the shaft and the branches, rather than cause the light to go up (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 277).

64 tn This is a Hiphil perfect with vav consecutive, from אוֹר (’or, “light”), and in the causative, “to light, give light.”

65 sn The first word refers to something like small tongs or tweezers used to pull up and trim the wicks; the second word refers to fire-pans or censers.

66 tn “are to be” has been supplied.

67 tn Heb “a talent.”

68 tn The text has “he will make it” or “one will make it.” With no expressed subject it is given a passive translation.

69 tn The text uses two imperatives: “see and make.” This can be interpreted as a verbal hendiadys, calling for Moses and Israel to see to it that they make these things correctly.

70 tn The participle is passive, “caused to see,” or, “shown.”

71 sn The message of this section surely concerns access to God. To expound this correctly, though, since it is an instruction section for building the lampstand, the message would be: God requires that his people ensure that light will guide the way of access to God. The breakdown for exposition could be the instructions for preparation for light (one lamp, several branches), then instructions for the purpose and maintenance of the lamps, and then the last verse telling the divine source for the instructions. Naturally, the metaphorical value of light will come up in the study, especially from the NT. So in the NT there is the warning that if churches are unfaithful God will remove their lampstand, their ministry (Rev 2-3).

72 sn This chapter is given over to the details of the structure itself, the curtains, coverings, boards and walls and veil. The passage can be studied on one level for its function both practically and symbolically for Israel’s worship. On another level it can be studied for its typology, for the tabernacle and many of its parts speak of Christ. For this one should see the commentaries.

73 tn The word order in Hebrew thrusts the direct object to the front for particular emphasis. After the first couple of pieces of furniture are treated (chap. 25), attention turns to the tabernacle itself.

74 tn This is for the adverbial accusative explaining how the dwelling place is to be made.

75 sn S. R. Driver suggests that the curtains were made with threads dyed with these colors (Exodus, 280). Perhaps the colored threads were used for embroidering the cherubim in the curtains.

76 tn The construction is difficult in this line because of the word order. “Cherubim” is an adverbial accusative explaining how they were to make the curtains. And מַעֲשֵׂה חֹשֵׁב (maaseh khoshev) means literally “work of a designer”; it is in apposition to “cherubim.” The Hebrew participle means “designer” or “deviser” so that one could render this “of artistic designs in weaving” (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 280-81). B. Jacob says that it refers to “artistic weavers” (Exodus, 789).

77 tn Heb “one” (so KJV).

78 tn Heb “twenty-eight cubits” long and “four cubits” wide.

79 tn This is the active participle, not the passive. It would normally be rendered “joining together.” The Bible uses the active because it has the result of the sewing in mind, namely, that every curtain accompanies another (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 348).

80 tn Heb “a woman to her sister,” this form of using nouns to express “one to another” is selected because “curtains” is a feminine noun (see GKC 448 §139.e).

81 tn The phrase “the other” has been supplied.

82 tn Here “loops” has been supplied.

83 tn Heb “a woman to her sister.”

84 tn Heb “one”; KJV “it shall be one tabernacle”; NRSV “that the tabernacle may be one whole”; NLT “a single unit.”

85 sn This chapter will show that there were two sets of curtains and two sets of coverings that went over the wood building to make the tabernacle or dwelling place. The curtains of fine linen described above could be seen only by the priests from inside. Above that was the curtain of goats’ hair. Then over that were the coverings, an inner covering of rams’ skins dyed red and an outer covering of hides of fine leather. The movement is from the inside to the outside because it is God’s dwelling place; the approach of the worshiper would be the opposite. The pure linen represented the righteousness of God, guarded by the embroidered cherubim; the curtain of goats’ hair was a reminder of sin through the daily sin offering of a goat; the covering of rams’ skins dyed red was a reminder of the sacrifice and the priestly ministry set apart by blood, and the outer covering marked the separation between God and the world. These are the interpretations set forth by Kaiser; others vary, but not greatly (see W. C. Kaiser, Jr., “Exodus,” EBC 2:459).

86 sn This curtain will serve “for a tent over the tabernacle,” as a dwelling place.

87 tn Heb “you will make them”

88 tn Heb “one”

89 sn The text seems to describe this part as being in front of the tabernacle, hanging down to form a valence at the entrance (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 284).

90 tn Heb “one”

91 sn U. Cassuto (Exodus, 353) cites b. Shabbat 98b which says, “What did the tabernacle resemble? A woman walking on the street with her train trailing behind her.” In the expression “the half of the curtain that remains,” the verb agrees in gender with the genitive near it.

92 tn Literally “cubit.”

93 sn U. Cassuto states the following: “To the north and to the south, since the tent curtains were thirty cubits long, there were ten cubits left over on each side; these covered the nine cubits of the curtains of the tabernacle and also the bottom cubit of the boards, which the tabernacle curtains did not suffice to cover. It is to this that v. 13 refers” (Exodus, 353).

94 sn Two outer coverings made of stronger materials will be put over the tent and the curtain, the two inner layers.

95 tn See the note on this phrase in Exod 25:5.

96 tn There is debate whether the word הַקְּרָשִׁים (haqqÿrashim) means “boards” (KJV, ASV, NAB, NASB) or “frames” (NIV, NCV, NRSV, TEV) or “planks” (see Ezek 27:6) or “beams,” given the size of them. The literature on this includes M. Haran, “The Priestly Image of the Tabernacle,” HUCA 36 (1965): 192; B. A. Levine, “The Description of the Tabernacle Texts of the Pentateuch,” JAOS 85 (1965): 307-18; J. Morgenstern, “The Ark, the Ephod, and the Tent,” HUCA 17 (1942/43): 153-265; 18 (1943/44): 1-52.

97 tn “Wood” is an adverbial accusative.

98 tn The plural participle “standing” refers to how these items will be situated; they will be vertical rather than horizontal (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 354).

99 tn Heb “the frame.”

100 sn Heb “hands,” the reference is probably to projections that served as stays or supports. They may have been tenons, or pegs, projecting from the bottom of the frames to hold the frames in their sockets (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 286).

101 tn Or “being joined each to the other.”

102 tn Heb “on the south side southward.”

103 tn The clause is repeated to show the distributive sense; it literally says, “and two bases under the one frame for its two projections.”

104 tn Or “westward” (toward the sea).

105 sn The term rendered “corners” is “an architectural term for some kind of special corner structure. Here it seems to involve two extra supports, one at each corner of the western wall” (N. M. Sarna, Exodus [JPSTC], 170).

106 tn Heb “they will be for the two corners.” This is the last clause of the verse, moved forward for clarity.

107 sn These bars served as reinforcements to hold the upright frames together. The Hebrew term for these bars is also used of crossbars on gates (Judg 16:3; Neh 3:3).

108 tn The noun is מִשְׁפָּט (mishpat), often translated “judgment” or “decision” in other contexts. In those settings it may reflect its basic idea of custom, which here would be reflected with a rendering of “prescribed norm” or “plan.”

109 tn Although translated “curtain” (traditionally “veil,” so ASV, NAB, NASB) this is a different word from the one used earlier of the tent curtains, so “special curtain” is used. The word פָרֹכֶת (farokhet) seems to be connected with a verb that means “to shut off” and was used with a shrine. This curtain would form a barrier in the approach to God (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 289).

110 tn The verb is the third masculine singular form, but no subject is expressed. It could be translated “one will make” or as a passive. The verb means “to make,” but probably has the sense of embroidering both here and in v. 1.

111 tn Heb “put it.”

112 tn This clause simply says “and their hooks gold,” but is taken as a circumstantial clause telling how the veil will be hung.

113 tn Heb “on four silver bases.”

114 tn The traditional expression is “within the veil,” literally “into the house (or area) of the (special) curtain.”

115 tn Or “the Holy of Holies.”

116 sn This was another curtain, serving as a screen in the entrance way. Since it was far away from the special curtain screening the Most Holy Place, it was less elaborate. It was not the work of the master designer, but of the “embroiderer,” and it did not have the cherubim on it.

117 tn The word רֹקֵם (roqem) refers to someone who made cloth with colors. It is not certain, however, whether the colors were woven into the fabric on the loom or applied with a needle; so “embroiderer” should be understood as an approximation (cf. HALOT 1290-91 s.v. רקם).

118 tn “will be” has been supplied.

119 sn In all the details of this chapter the expositor should pay attention to the overall message rather than engage in speculation concerning the symbolism of the details. It is, after all, the divine instruction for the preparation of the dwelling place for Yahweh. The point could be said this way: The dwelling place of Yahweh must be prepared in accordance with, and by the power of, his divine word. If God was to fellowship with his people, then the center of worship had to be made to his specifications, which were in harmony with his nature. Everything was functional for the approach to God through the ritual by divine provisions. But everything also reflected the nature of God, the symmetry, the order, the pure wood, the gold overlay, or (closer to God) the solid gold. And the symbolism of the light, the table, the veil, the cherubim – all of it was revelatory. All of it reflected the reality in heaven. Churches today do not retain the pattern and furnishings of the old tabernacle. However, they would do well to learn what God was requiring of Israel, so that their structures are planned in accordance with the theology of worship and the theology of access to God. Function is a big part, but symbolism and revelation instruct the planning of everything to be used. Christians live in the light of the fulfillment of Christ, and so they know the realities that the old foreshadowed. While a building is not necessary for worship (just as Israel worshiped in places other than the sanctuary), it is practical, and if there is going to be one, then the most should be made of it in the teaching and worshiping of the assembly. This chapter, then, provides an inspiration for believers on preparing a functional, symbolical, ordered place of worship that is in harmony with the word of God. And there is much to be said for making it as beautiful and uplifting as is possible – as a gift of freewill offering to God. Of course, the most important part of preparing a place of worship is the preparing of the heart. Worship, to be acceptable to God, must be in Christ. He said that when the temple was destroyed he would raise it up in three days. While he referred to his own body, he also alluded to the temple by the figure. When they put Jesus to death, they were destroying the temple; at his resurrection he would indeed begin a new form of worship. He is the tent, the curtain, the atonement, that the sanctuary foreshadowed. And then, believers also (when they receive Christ) become the temple of the Lord. So the NT will take the imagery and teaching of this chapter in a number of useful ways that call for more study. This does not, however, involve allegorization of the individual tabernacle parts.

120 tn The article on this word identifies this as the altar, meaning the main high altar on which the sacrifices would be made.

121 tn The dimensions are five cubits by five cubits by three cubits high.

122 tn Heb “four”; this refers to four sides. S. R. Driver says this is an archaism that means there were four equal sides (Exodus, 291).

123 tn Heb “and three cubits its height.”

124 sn The horns of the altar were indispensable – they were the most sacred part. Blood was put on them; fugitives could cling to them, and the priests would grab the horns of the little altar when making intercessory prayer. They signified power, as horns on an animal did in the wild (and so the word was used for kings as well). The horns may also represent the sacrificial animals killed on the altar.

125 sn The text, as before, uses the prepositional phrase “from it” or “part of it” to say that the horns will be part of the altar – of the same piece as the altar. They were not to be made separately and then attached, but made at the end of the boards used to build the altar (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 363).

126 sn The word is literally “its fat,” but sometimes it describes “fatty ashes” (TEV “the greasy ashes”). The fat would run down and mix with the ashes, and this had to be collected and removed.

127 sn This was the larger bowl used in tossing the blood at the side of the altar.

128 tn The text has “to all its vessels.” This is the lamed (ל) of inclusion according to Gesenius, meaning “all its utensils” (GKC 458 §143.e).

129 tn The noun מִכְבָּר (mikhbar) means “a grating”; it is related to the word that means a “sieve.” This formed a vertical support for the ledge, resting on the ground and supporting its outer edge (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 292).

130 tn The verb is the verb “to be,” here the perfect tense with vav (ו) consecutive. It is “and it will be” or “that it may be,” or here “that it may come” halfway up.

131 tn Heb “to the half of the altar.”

132 tn The verb is a Hophal perfect with vav consecutive: וְהוּבָא (vÿhuva’, “and it will be brought”). The particle אֶת (’et) here introduces the subject of the passive verb (see a similar use in 21:28, “and its flesh will not be eaten”).

133 tn The construction is the infinitive construct with bet (ב) preposition: “in carrying it.” Here the meaning must be that the poles are not left in the rings, but only put into the rings when they carried it.

134 tn The verb is used impersonally; it reads “just as he showed you.” This form then can be made a passive in the translation.

135 tn Heb “thus they will make.” Here too it could be given a passive translation since the subject is not expressed. But “they” would normally refer to the people who will be making this and so can be retained in the translation.

sn Nothing is said about the top of the altar. Some commentators suggest, in view of the previous instruction for making an altar out of earth and stone, that when this one was to be used it would be filled up with dirt clods and the animal burnt on the top of that. If the animal was burnt inside it, the wood would quickly burn. A number of recent scholars think this was simply an imagined plan to make a portable altar after the pattern of Solomon’s – but that is an unsatisfactory suggestion. This construction must simply represent a portable frame for the altar in the courtyard, an improvement over the field altar. The purpose and function of the altar are not in question. Here worshipers would make their sacrifices to God in order to find forgiveness and atonement, and in order to celebrate in worship with him. No one could worship God apart from this; no one could approach God apart from this. So too the truths that this altar communicated form the basis and center of all Christian worship. One could word an applicable lesson this way: Believers must ensure that the foundation and center of their worship is the altar, i.e., the sacrificial atonement.

136 tn Or “enclosure” (TEV).

137 tn Heb “south side southward.”

138 tn Or “curtains.”

139 sn The entire courtyard of 150 feet by 75 feet was to be enclosed by a curtain wall held up with posts in bases. All these hangings were kept in place by a cord and tent pegs.

140 tn Heb “and.”

141 tn Heb “and thus.”

142 tn Here the phrase “there will be” has been supplied.

143 sn These bands have been thought by some to refer to connecting rods joining the tops of the posts. But it is more likely that they are bands or bind rings surrounding the posts at the base of the capitals (see 38:17).

144 tn The word literally means “shoulder.” The next words, “of the gate,” have been supplied here and in v. 15. The east end would contain the courtyard’s entry with a wall of curtains on each side of the entry (see v. 16).

145 tn Here “will be” has been supplied.

146 tn Heb “shoulder.”

147 tn Here the phrase “there will be” has been supplied.

148 tn The text uses the passive participle here: they are to “be filleted with silver” or “bound round” with silver.

149 tn Here the phrase “are to be” has been supplied.

150 tn Heb “a hundred cubits.”

151 tn Heb “fifty.” The text has “and the width fifty [cubits] with fifty.” This means that it is fifty cubits wide on the western end and fifty cubits wide on the eastern end.

152 tn Here “hangings” has been supplied.

153 tn Here the phrase “is to be” has been supplied.

154 tn Heb “to all”; for use of the preposition lamed (ל) to show inclusion (all belonging to) see GKC 458 §143.e.

155 tn Here “used” has been supplied.

156 sn The tabernacle is an important aspect of OT theology. The writer’s pattern so far has been: ark, table, lamp, and then their container (the tabernacle); then the altar and its container (the courtyard). The courtyard is the place of worship where the people could gather – they entered God’s courts. Though the courtyard may not seem of much interest to current readers, it did interest the Israelites. Here the sacrifices were made, the choirs sang, the believers offered their praises, they had their sins forgiven, they came to pray, they appeared on the holy days, and they heard from God. It was sacred because God met them there; they left the “world” (figuratively speaking) and came into the very presence of God.

157 tn The form is the imperfect tense with the vav showing a sequence with the first verb: “you will command…that they take.” The verb “take, receive” is used here as before for receiving an offering and bringing it to the sanctuary.

158 tn Heb “lamp,” which must be a collective singular here.

159 tn The verb is unusual; it is the Hiphil infinitive construct of עָלָה (’alah), with the sense here of “to set up” to burn, or “to fix on” as in Exod 25:37, or “to kindle” (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 370).

160 sn The word can mean “continually,” but in this context, as well as in the passages on the sacrifices, “regularly” is better, since each morning things were cleaned and restored.

161 tn The LXX has mistakenly rendered this name “the tent of the testimony.”

162 sn The lamps were to be removed in the morning so that the wicks could be trimmed and the oil replenished (30:7) and then lit every evening to burn through the night.

163 sn This is the first of several sections of priestly duties. The point is a simple one here: those who lead the worship use the offerings of the people to ensure that access to God is illumined regularly. The NT will make much of the symbolism of light.

164 sn Some modern scholars find this and the next chapter too elaborate for the wilderness experience. To most of them this reflects the later Zadokite priesthood of the writer’s (P’s) day that was referred to Mosaic legislation for authentication. But there is no compelling reason why this should be late; it is put late because it is assumed to be P, and that is assumed to be late. But both assumptions are unwarranted. This lengthy chapter could be divided this way: instructions for preparing the garments (1-5), details of the apparel (6-39), and a warning against deviating from these (40-43). The subject matter of the first part is that God requires that his chosen ministers reflect his holy nature; the point of the second part is that God requires his ministers to be prepared to fulfill the tasks of the ministry, and the subject matter of the third part is that God warns all his ministers to safeguard the holiness of their service.

165 tn The verb is the Hiphil imperative of the root קָרַב (qarav, “to draw near”). In the present stem the word has religious significance, namely, to present something to God, like an offering.

166 tn This entire clause is a translation of the Hebrew לְכַהֲנוֹ־לִי (lÿkhahano-li, “that he might be a priest to me”), but the form is unusual. The word means “to be a priest” or “to act as a priest.” The etymology of the word for priest, כֹּהֵן (kohen), is uncertain.

167 sn The genitive “holiness” is the attribute for “garments” – “garments of holiness.” The point of the word “holy” is that these garments would be distinctive from ordinary garments, for they set Aaron apart to sanctuary service and ministry.

168 tn The expression is לְכָבוֹד וּלְתִפְארֶת (lÿkhavod ulÿtifaret, “for glory and for beauty”). W. C. Kaiser (“Exodus,” EBC 2:465), quoting the NIV’s “to give him dignity and honor,” says that these clothes were to exalt the office of the high priest as well as beautify the worship of God (which explains more of what the text has than the NIV rendering). The meaning of the word “glory” has much to do with the importance of the office, to be sure, but in Exodus the word has been used also for the brilliance of the presence of Yahweh, and so the magnificence of these garments might indeed strike the worshiper with the sense of the exaltation of the service.

169 tn Heb “And you, you will speak to.”

170 tn Heb “wise of heart.” The word for “wise” (חַכְמֵי, khakhme, the plural construct form) is from the word group that is usually translated “wisdom, wise, be wise,” but it has as its basic meaning “skill” or “skillful.” This is the way it is used in 31:3, 6 and 35:10 etc. God gave these people “wisdom” so that they would know how to make these things. The “heart” for the Hebrews is the locus of understanding, the mind and the will. To be “wise of heart” or “wise in heart” means that they had the understanding to do skillful work, they were talented artisans and artists.

171 sn There is no necessity to take this as a reference to the Holy Spirit who produces wisdom in these people, although that is not totally impossible. A number of English versions (e.g., NAB, NIV, NCV, NRSV, TEV, CEV, NLT) do not even translate the word “spirit.” It probably refers to their attitude and ability. U. Cassuto has “to all the artisans skilled in the making of stately robes, in the heart [i.e., mind] of each of whom I have implanted sagacity in his craft so that he may do his craft successfully” (Exodus, 371).

172 tn The form is the perfect tense with the vav (ו) consecutive; after the instruction to speak to the wise, this verb, equal to an imperfect, will have the force of purpose.

173 tn Or “to sanctify him” (ASV) or “to consecrate him” (KJV, NASB, NRSV). It is the garments that will set Aaron apart, or sanctify him, not the workers. The expression could be taken to mean “for his consecration” (NIV) since the investiture is part of his being set apart for service.

174 sn The breastpiece seems to have been a pouch of sorts or to have had a pocket, since it was folded in some way (28:16; 39:9) and contained the Urim and Thummim (Exod 28:30; Lev 8:8).

175 sn The word “ephod” is taken over directly from Hebrew, because no one knows how to translate it, nor is there agreement about its design. It refers here to a garment worn by the priests, but the word can also refer to some kind of image for a god (Judg 8:27).

176 tn The word תָּשְׁבֵּץ (tashbets), which describes the tunic and which appears only in this verse, is related to a verb (also rare) of the same root in 28:39 that describes making the tunic. Their meaning is uncertain (see the extended discussion in C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:473-75). A related noun describes gold fasteners and the “settings,” or “mountings,” for precious stones (28:11, 13, 14, 20, 25; 36:18; 39:6, 13, 16, 18; cf. Ps 45:14). The word “fitted” in 28:4 reflects the possibility that “the tunic is to be shaped by sewing, … so that it will fit tightly around the body” (C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:475).

177 tn Heb “and they.” The word “artisans” is supplied as the referent of the pronoun, a connection that is clearer in Hebrew than in English.

178 tn Heb “receive” or “take.”

179 tn Here the Pual perfect with the vav (ו) consecutive provides the purpose clause (equal to a final imperfect); the form follows the use of the active participle, “attached” or more Heb “joining.”

180 tn This is the rendering of the word חֵשֶׁב (kheshev), cognate to the word translated “designer” in v. 6. Since the entire ephod was of the same material, and this was of the same piece, it is unclear why this is singled out as “artistically woven.” Perhaps the word is from another root that just describes the item as a “band.” Whatever the connection, this band was to be of the same material, and the same piece, as the ephod, but perhaps a different pattern (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 301). It is this sash that attaches the ephod to the priest’s body, that is, at the upper border of the ephod and clasped together at the back.

181 tn Heb “from it” but meaning “of one [the same] piece”; the phrase “the ephod” has been supplied.

182 tn Although this is normally translated “Israelites,” here a more literal translation is clearer because it refers to the names of the twelve tribes – the actual sons of Israel.

183 tn This is in apposition to the direct object of the verb “engrave.” It further defines how the names were to be engraved – six on one and the other six on the other.

184 tn Heb “according to their begettings” (the major word in the book of Genesis). What is meant is that the names would be listed in the order of their ages.

185 sn Expert stone or gem engravers were used to engrave designs and names in identification seals of various sizes. It was work that skilled artisans did.

186 tn Or “you will mount them” (NRSV similar).

187 tn Or “rosettes,” shield-like frames for the stones. The Hebrew word means “to plait, checker.”

188 sn This was to be a perpetual reminder that the priest ministers on behalf of the twelve tribes of Israel. Their names would always be borne by the priests.

189 tn Heb “a breastpiece of decision” (חֹשֶׁן מִשְׁפָּט, khoshen mishpat; so NAB). The first word, rendered “breastpiece,” is of uncertain etymology. This item was made of material similar to the ephod. It had four rows of three gems on it, bearing the names of the tribes. In it were the urim and thummim. J. P. Hyatt refers to a similar object found in the Egyptian reliefs, including even the twisted gold chains used to hang it from the priest (Exodus [NCBC], 282).

190 tn Heb “four.”

191 tn “when” is added for clarification (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 375).

192 tn The word זֶרֶת (zeret) is half a cubit; it is often translated “span.”

193 sn U. Cassuto (Exodus, 375-76) points out that these are the same precious stones mentioned in Ezek 28:13 that were to be found in Eden, the garden of God. So the priest, when making atonement, was to wear the precious gems that were there and symbolized the garden of Eden when man was free from sin.

194 tn For clarity the words “the number of” have been supplied.

195 tn The phrase translated “the engravings of a seal” is an adverbial accusative of manner here.

196 tn Heb “give, put.”

197 tn Here “upper” has been supplied.

198 tn Here “the other” has been supplied.

199 tn Here “them” has been supplied.

200 tn Here “other” has been supplied.

201 tn Here “more” has been supplied.

202 sn So Aaron will have the names of the tribes on his shoulders (v. 12) which bear the weight and symbol of office (see Isa 9:6; 22:22), and over his heart (implying that they have a constant place in his thoughts [Deut 6:6]). Thus he was to enter the presence of God as the nation’s representative, ever mindful of the nation’s interests, and ever bringing the remembrance of it before God (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 306).

203 sn The Urim and the Thummim were two objects intended for determining the divine will. There is no clear evidence of their size or shape or the material of which they were made, but they seem to have been familiar items to Moses and the people. The best example of their use comes from 1 Sam 14:36-42. Some have suggested from the etymologies that they were light and dark objects respectively, perhaps stones or sticks or some other object. They seem to have fallen out of use after the Davidic period when the prophetic oracles became popular. It may be that the title “breastpiece of judgment” indicates that these objects were used for making “decisions” (J. P. Hyatt, Exodus [NCBC], 283-84). U. Cassuto has the most thorough treatment of the subject (Exodus, 378-82); he lists several very clear rules for their uses gathered from their instances in the Bible, including that they were a form of sacred lot, that priests or leaders of the people only could use them, and that they were used for discovering the divine will in areas that were beyond human knowledge.

204 tn Or “judgment” (KJV, ASV, NASB, NRSV). The term is מִשְׁפָּט (mishpat), the same word that describes the breastpiece that held the two objects. Here it is translated “decisions” since the Urim and Thummim contained in the breastpiece represented the means by which the Lord made decisions for the Israelites. The high priest bore the responsibility of discerning the divine will on matters of national importance.

205 tn The מְעִיל (mÿil), according to S. R. Driver (Exodus, 307), is a long robe worn over the ephod, perhaps open down the front, with sleeves. It is made of finer material than ordinary cloaks because it was to be worn by people in positions of rank.

206 tn Heb “mouth” or “opening” (פִּי, pi; in construct).

207 tn The “mouth of its head” probably means its neck; it may be rendered “the opening for the head,” except the pronominal suffix would have to refer to Aaron, and that is not immediately within the context.

208 tn Or “woven work” (KJV, ASV, NASB), that is, “the work of a weaver.” The expression suggests that the weaving was from the fabric edges itself and not something woven and then added to the robe. It was obviously intended to keep the opening from fraying.

209 tn The expression כְּפִי תַחְרָא (kÿfi takhra’) is difficult. It was early rendered “like the opening of a coat of mail.” It occurs only here and in the parallel 39:23. Tg. Onq. has “coat of mail.” S. R. Driver suggests “a linen corselet,” after the Greek (Exodus, 308). See J. Cohen, “A Samaritan Authentication of the Rabbinic Interpretation of kephi tahra’,” VT 24 (1974): 361-66.

210 tn The verb is the Niphal imperfect, here given the nuance of potential imperfect. Here it serves in a final clause (purpose/result), introduced only by the negative (see GKC 503-4 §165.a).

211 sn This must mean round balls of yarn that looked like pomegranates. The fruit was very common in the land, but there is no indication of the reason for its choice here. Pomegranates are found in decorative schemes in Ugarit, probably as signs of fertility. It may be that here they represent the blessing of God on Israel in the land. The bells that are between them possibly have the intent of drawing God’s attention as the priest moves and the bells jingle (anthropomorphic, to be sure), or that the people would know that the priest was still alive and moving inside. Some have suggested that the pomegranate may have recalled the forbidden fruit eaten in the garden (the gems already have referred to the garden), the reason for the priest entering for atonement, and the bells would divert the eye (of God) to remind him of the need. This is possible but far from supportable, since nothing is said of the reason, nor is the fruit in the garden identified.

212 tn The text repeats the idea: “you will make for its hem…all around its hem.”

213 tn The words “the pattern is to be” are not in the Hebrew text, but are supplied in the translation for clarity and for stylistic reasons.

214 tn Heb “it”; the referent (the robe) has been specified in the translation for clarity.

215 tn The form is a Piel infinitive construct with the lamed (ל) preposition: “to minister” or “to serve.” It may be taken epexegetically here, “while serving,” although S. R. Driver takes it as a purpose, “in order that he may minister” (Exodus, 308). The point then would be that he dare not enter into the Holy Place without wearing it.

216 sn God would hear the bells and be reminded that this priest was in his presence representing the nation and that the priest had followed the rules of the sanctuary by wearing the appropriate robes with their attachments.

217 tn The word צִּיץ (tsits) seems to mean “a shining thing” and so here a plate of metal. It originally meant “flower,” but they could not write on a flower. So it must have the sense of something worn openly, visible, and shining. The Rabbinic tradition says it was two fingers wide and stretched from ear to ear, but this is an attempt to give details that the Law does not give (see B. Jacob, Exodus, 818).

218 tn Heb “the engravings of a seal”; this phrase is an adverbial accusative of manner.

219 sn The engraving was a perpetual reminder of the holiness that was due the Lord (Heb “Yahweh”), that all the clothing, the furnishings, and the activities were to come under that description. This corresponded to the symbolism for the whole nation of binding the law between the eyes. It was to be a perpetual reminder of commitment.

220 tn The verb is the perfect tense with the vav (ו) consecutive; it follows the same at the beginning of the verse. Since the first verb is equal to the imperfect of instruction, this could be as well, but it is more likely to be subordinated to express the purpose of the former.

221 tn Heb “it will be,” an instruction imperfect.

222 tn The construction “the iniquity of the holy things” is difficult. “Holy things” is explained in the passage by all the gifts the people bring and consecrate to Yahweh. But there will inevitably be iniquity involved. U. Cassuto explains that Aaron “will atone for all the transgressions committed in connection with the order of the service, the purity of the consecrated things, or the use of the holy gifts, for the declaration engraved on the plate will prove that everything was intended to be holy to the Lord, and if aught was done irregularly, the intention at least was good” (Exodus, 385).

223 tn The clause reads: “according to/by all the gifts of their holiness.” The genitive is an attributive genitive, the suffix on it referring to the whole bound construction – “their holy gifts.” The idea of the line is that the people will consecrate as holy things gifts they bring to the sanctuary.

224 tn This clause is the infinitive construct with the lamed preposition, followed by the prepositional phrase: “for acceptance for them.” This infinitive provides the purpose or result of the act of wearing the dedicatory frontlet – that they will be acceptable.

225 tn It is difficult to know how to translate וְשִׁבַּצְּתָּ (vÿshibbatsta); it is a Piel perfect with the vav (ו) consecutive, and so equal to the imperfect of instruction. Some have thought that this verb describes a type of weaving and that the root may indicate that the cloth had something of a pattern to it by means of alternate weaving of the threads. It was the work of a weaver (39:27) and not so detailed as certain other fabrics (26:1), but it was more than plain weaving (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 310). Here, however, it may be that the fabric is assumed to be in existence and that the action has to do with sewing (C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:475, 517).

226 sn This refers to a band of linen wrapped around the head, forming something like a brimless convex cap, resembling something like a half egg. It refers to the headgear of ordinary priests only (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 310-11).

227 sn The instructions in this verse anticipate chap. 29, as well as the ordination ceremony described in Lev 8 and 9. The anointing of Aaron is specifically required in the Law, for he is to be the High Priest. The expression “ordain them” might also be translated as “install them” or “consecrate them”; it literally reads “and fill their hands,” an expression for the consecration offering for priesthood in Lev 8:33. The final instruction to sanctify them will involve the ritual of the atoning sacrifices to make the priests acceptable in the sanctuary.

228 tn Heb “fill their hand.” As a result of this installation ceremony they will be officially designated for the work. It seems likely that the concept derives from the notion of putting the priestly responsibilities under their control (i.e., “filling their hands” with work). See note on the phrase “ordained seven days” in Lev 8:33.

229 tn Traditionally “sanctify them” (KJV, ASV).

230 tn Heb “naked flesh” (so NAB, NRSV); KJV “nakedness.”

231 tn Heb “be.”

232 tn The construction for this temporal clause is the infinitive construct with the temporal preposition bet (ב) and the suffixed subjective genitive.

233 tn This construction is also the temporal clause with the infinitive construct and the temporal preposition bet (ב) and the suffixed subjective genitive.

234 tn The text has וְלאֹ־יִשְׂאוּ עָוֹן וָמֵתוּ (vÿlo-yisuavon vametu). The imperfect tense here introduces a final clause, yielding a purpose or result translation (“in order that” or “so that”). The last verb is the perfect tense with the vav consecutive, and so it too is equal to a final imperfect – but it would show the result of bearing the iniquity. The idea is that if they approached the holy things with a lack of modesty, perhaps like the pagans who have nakedness and sexuality as part of the religious ritual, they would pollute the holy things, and it would be reckoned to them for iniquity and they would die.

235 tn Heb “seed.”

236 sn So the priests were to make intercession for the people, give decisions from God’s revealed will, enter his presence in purity, and represent holiness to Yahweh. The clothing of the priests provided for these functions, but in a way that brought honor and dignity. A priest was, therefore, to serve in purity, holiness, and fear (Malachi). There is much that can be derived from this chapter to form principles of spiritual leadership, but the overall point can be worded this way: Those whom God selects to minister to the congregation through intercessory prayer, divine counsel, and sacrificial worship, must always represent the holiness of Yahweh in their activities and demeanor.

237 sn Chap. 29 is a rather long, involved discussion of the consecration of Aaron the priest. It is similar to the ordination service in Lev 8. In fact, the execution of what is instructed here is narrated there. But these instructions must have been formulated after or in conjunction with Lev 1-7, for they presuppose a knowledge of the sacrifices. The bulk of the chapter is the consecration of the priests: 1-35. It has the preparation (1-3), washing (4), investiture and anointing (5-9), sin offering (10-14), burnt offering (15-18), installation peace offering (19-26, 31-34), other offerings’ rulings (27-30), and the duration of the ritual (35). Then there is the consecration of the altar (36-37), and the oblations (38-46). There are many possibilities for the study and exposition of this material. The whole chapter is the consecration of tabernacle, altar, people, and most of all the priests. God was beginning the holy operations with sacral ritual. So the overall message would be: Everyone who ministers, everyone who worships, and everything they use in the presence of Yahweh, must be set apart to God by the cleansing, enabling, and sanctifying work of God.

238 tn Heb “the thing.”

239 tn Literally: “take one bull, a ‘son’ of the herd.”

240 tn The word תָּמִים (tamim) means “perfect.” The animals could not have diseases or be crippled or blind (see Mal 1). The requirement was designed to ensure that the people would give the best they had to Yahweh. The typology pointed to the sinless Messiah who would fulfill all these sacrifices in his one sacrifice on the cross.

241 sn This will be for the minkhah (מִנְחָה) offering (Lev 2), which was to accompany the animal sacrifices.

242 tn Or “anointed” (KJV, ASV).

243 tn The “fine flour” is here an adverbial accusative, explaining the material from which these items were made. The flour is to be finely sifted, and from the wheat, not the barley, which was often the material used by the poor. Fine flour, no leaven, and perfect animals, without blemishes, were to be gathered for this service.

244 tn The verb קָרַב (qarav) in the Hiphil means to “bring near” to the altar, or, to offer something to God. These gifts will, therefore, be offered to him for the service of this ritual.

245 tn Heb “and with.”

246 tn Here too the verb is Hiphil (now imperfect) meaning “bring near” the altar. The choice of this verb indicates that they were not merely being brought near, but that they were being formally presented to Yahweh as the offerings were.

247 sn This is the washing referred to in Lev 8:6. This is a complete washing, not just of the hands and feet that would follow in the course of service. It had to serve as a symbolic ritual cleansing or purifying as the initial stage in the consecration. The imagery of washing will be used in the NT for regeneration (Titus 3:5).

248 tn The Hiphil of לָבַשׁ (lavash, “to clothe”) will take double accusatives; so the sign of the accusative is with Aaron, and then with the articles of clothing. The translation will have to treat Aaron as the direct object and the articles as indirect objects, because Aaron receives the prominence in the verse – you will clothe Aaron.

249 tn The verb used in this last clause is a denominative verb from the word for ephod. And so “ephod the ephod on him” means “fasten as an ephod the ephod on him” (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 316).

250 sn This term does not appear in chap. 28, but it can only refer to the plate with the inscription on it that was tied to the turban. Here it is called a “holy diadem,” a diadem that is distinctly set apart for this service. All the clothing was described as “holy garments,” and so they were all meant to mark the separation of the priests to this holy service. The items of clothing were each intended for different aspects of ministry, and so this step in the consecration was designed to symbolize being set apart for those duties, or, prepared (gifted) to perform the ministry.

251 sn The act of anointing was meant to set him apart for this holy service within the house of Yahweh. The psalms indicate that no oil was spared in this ritual, for it ran down his beard and to the hem of his garment. Oil of anointing was used for all major offices (giving the label with the passive adjective “mashiah” (or “messiah”) to anyone anointed. In the further revelation of Scripture, the oil came to signify the enablement as well as the setting apart, and often the Holy Spirit came on the person at the anointing with oil. The olive oil was a symbol of the Spirit in the OT as well (Zech 4:4-6). And in the NT “anointing” signifies empowerment by the Holy Spirit for service.

252 tc Hebrew has both the objective pronoun “them” and the names “Aaron and his sons.” Neither the LXX nor Leviticus 8:13 has “Aaron and his sons,” suggesting that this may have been a later gloss in the text.

253 tn Heb “and you will fill the hand” and so “consecrate” or “ordain.” The verb draws together the individual acts of the process.

254 tn The verb is singular, agreeing with the first of the compound subject – Aaron.

255 sn The details of these offerings have to be determined from a careful study of Leviticus. There is a good deal of debate over the meaning of laying hands on the animals. At the very least it identifies the animal formally as their sacrifice. But it may very well indicate that the animal is a substitute for them as well, given the nature and the effect of the sacrifices.

256 sn This act seems to have signified the efficacious nature of the blood, since the horns represented power. This is part of the ritual of the sin offering for laity, because before the priests become priests they are treated as laity. The offering is better described as a purification offering rather than a sin offering, because it was offered, according to Leviticus, for both sins and impurities. Moreover, it was offered primarily to purify the sanctuary so that the once-defiled or sinful person could enter (see J. Milgrom, Leviticus [AB]).

257 tn The phrase “rest of” has been supplied in the translation for clarification.

258 tn S. R. Driver suggests that this is the appendix or an appendix, both here and in v. 22 (Exodus, 320). “The surplus, the appendage of liver, found with cow, sheep, or goat, but not with humans: Lobus caudatus” (HALOT 453 s.v. יֹתֶרֶת).

259 tn Heb “turn [them] into sweet smoke” since the word is used for burning incense.

sn The giving of the visceral organs and the fat has received various explanations. The fat represented the best, and the best was to go to God. If the animal is a substitute, then the visceral organs represent the will of the worshiper in an act of surrender to God.

260 tn Heb “burn with fire.”

261 sn This is to be done because there is no priesthood yet. Once they are installed, then the sin/purification offering is to be eaten by the officiating priests as a sign that the offering was received. But priests could not consume their own sin offering.

262 sn There were two kinds of “purification offering,” those made with confession for sin and those made without. The title needs to cover both of them, and if it is called in the traditional way “the sin offering,” that will convey that when people offered it for skin diseases, menstruation, or having babies, they had sinned. That was not the case. Moreover, it is usual to translate the names of the sacrifices by what they do more than what they cover – so peace offering, reparation offering, and purification offering.

263 tn Heb “turn to sweet smoke.”

264 sn According to Lev 1 the burnt offering (often called whole burnt offering, except that the skins were usually given to the priests for income) was an atoning sacrifice. By consuming the entire animal, God was indicating that he had completely accepted the worshiper, and as it was a sweet smelling fire sacrifice, he was indicating that he was pleased to accept it. By offering the entire animal, the worshiper was indicating on his part a complete surrender to God.

265 tn The word אִשֶּׁה (’isheh) has traditionally been translated “an offering made with fire” or the like, because it appears so obviously connected with fire. But further evidence from Ugaritic suggests that it might only mean “a gift” (see Milgrom, Leviticus 1-16, 161).

266 sn These sections show that the priest had to be purified or cleansed from defilement of sin and also be atoned for and accepted by the Lord through the blood of the sacrifice. The principles from these two sacrifices should be basic to anyone seeking to serve God.

267 sn By this ritual the priests were set apart completely to the service of God. The ear represented the organ of hearing (as in “ears you have dug” in Ps 40 or “awakens my ear” in Isa 50), and this had to be set apart to God so that they could hear the Word of God. The thumb and the hand represented the instrument to be used for all ministry, and so everything that they “put their hand to” had to be dedicated to God and appropriate for his service. The toe set the foot apart to God, meaning that the walk of the priest had to be consecrated – where he went, how he conducted himself, what life he lived, all belonged to God now.

268 tn Here “it” has been supplied.

269 tn The verb in this instance is Qal and not Piel, “to be holy” rather than “sanctify.” The result of all this ritual is that Aaron and his sons will be set aside and distinct in their life and their service.

270 tn S. R. Driver suggests that this is the appendix or an appendix, both here and in v. 13 (Exodus, 320). “The surplus, the appendage of liver, found with cow, sheep, or goat, but not with humans: Lobus caudatus” (HALOT 453 s.v. יֹתֶרֶת).

271 tn Heb “filling.”

272 tn Heb “the whole” or “the all.”

273 tn Heb “palms.”

274 tn The “wave offering” is תְּנוּפָה (tÿnufah); it is, of course, cognate with the verb, but an adverbial accusative rather than the direct object. In Lev 23 this seems to be a sacrificial gesture of things that are for the priests – but they present them first to Yahweh and then receive them back from him. So the waving is not side to side, but forward to Yahweh and then back to the priest. Here it is just an induction into that routine, since this is the ordination of the priests and the gifts are not yet theirs. So this will all be burned on the altar.

275 tn “turn to sweet smoke.”

276 tn “them” has been supplied.

277 sn These are the two special priestly offerings: the wave offering (from the verb “to wave”) and the “presentation offering” (older English: heave offering; from a verb “to be high,” in Hiphil meaning “to lift up,” an item separated from the offering, a contribution). The two are then clarified with two corresponding relative clauses containing two Hophals: “which was waved and which was presented.” In making sacrifices, the breast and the thigh belong to the priests.

278 tn The construction is an infinitive construct with a lamed (ל) preposition. The form simply means “for anointing,” but it serves to express the purpose or result of their inheriting the sacred garments.

279 tn This form is a Piel infinitive construct with a lamed (ל) preposition. It literally reads “for filling the hands,” the idiom used throughout this chapter for ordination or installation. Here too it has a parallel use of purpose or result.

280 tn Heb “after him”; NCV, NLT “after Aaron.”

281 tn The text just has the relative pronoun and the imperfect tense. It could be translated “who comes/enters.” But the context seems to indicate that this would be when he first comes to the tent to begin his tenure as High Priest, and so a temporal clause makes this clear. “First” has been supplied.

282 tn “Seven days” is an adverbial accusative of time. The ritual of ordination is to be repeated for seven days, and so they are to remain there in the court in full dress.

283 tn Or “boil” (see Lev 8:31).

284 sn The “holy place” must be in the courtyard of the sanctuary. Lev 8:31 says it is to be cooked at the entrance of the tent of meeting. Here it says it will be eaten there as well. This, then, becomes a communion sacrifice, a peace offering which was a shared meal. Eating a communal meal in a holy place was meant to signify that the worshipers and the priests were at peace with God.

285 tn The clause is a relative clause modifying “those things,” the direct object of the verb “eat.” The relative clause has a resumptive pronoun: “which atonement was made by them” becomes “by which atonement was made.” The verb is a Pual perfect of כִּפֵּר (kipper, “to expiate, atone, pacify”).

286 tn The Hebrew word is “stranger, alien” (זָר, zar). But in this context it means anyone who is not a priest (see S. R. Driver, Exodus, 324).

287 tn Or “ordination offerings” (Heb “fillings”).

288 tn The verb in the conditional clause is a Niphal imperfect of יָתַר (yatar); this verb is repeated in the next clause (as a Niphal participle) as the direct object of the verb “you will burn” (a Qal perfect with a vav [ו] consecutive to form the instruction).

289 tn Heb “burn with fire.”

290 tn The verb is a Niphal imperfect negated. It expresses the prohibition against eating this, but in the passive voice: “it will not be eaten,” or stronger, “it must not be eaten.”

291 tn Heb “you will fill their hand.”

292 tn The “seven days” is the adverbial accusative explaining that the ritual of the filling should continue daily for a week. Leviticus makes it clear that they are not to leave the sanctuary.

293 tn The construction uses a genitive: “a bull of the sin offering,” which means, a bull that is designated for a sin (or better, purification) offering.

294 sn It is difficult to understand how this verse is to be harmonized with the other passages. The ceremony in the earlier passages deals with atonement made for the priests, for people. But here it is the altar that is being sanctified. The “sin [purification] offering” seems to be for purification of the sanctuary and altar to receive people in their worship.

295 tn The verb is וְחִטֵּאתָ (vÿhitteta), a Piel perfect of the word usually translated “to sin.” Here it may be interpreted as a privative Piel (as in Ps 51:7 [9]), with the sense of “un-sin” or “remove sin.” It could also be interpreted as related to the word for “sin offering,” and so be a denominative verb. It means “to purify, cleanse.” The Hebrews understood that sin and contamination could corrupt and pollute even things, and so they had to be purged.

296 tn The construction is a Piel infinitive construct in an adverbial clause. The preposition bet (ב) that begins the clause could be taken as a temporal preposition, but in this context it seems to express the means by which the altar was purged of contamination – “in your making atonement” is “by [your] making atonement.”

297 tn Once again this is an adverbial accusative of time. Each day for seven days the ritual at the altar is to be followed.

298 tn The construction is the superlative genitive: “holy of holies,” or “most holy.”

299 sn This line states an unusual principle, meant to preserve the sanctity of the altar. S. R. Driver explains it this way (Exodus, 325): If anything comes in contact with the altar, it becomes holy and must remain in the sanctuary for Yahweh’s use. If a person touches the altar, he likewise becomes holy and cannot return to the profane regions. He will be given over to God to be dealt with as God pleases. Anyone who was not qualified to touch the altar did not dare approach it, for contact would have meant that he was no longer free to leave but was God’s holy possession – and might pay for it with his life (see Exod 30:29; Lev 6:18b, 27; and Ezek 46:20).

300 tn The verb is “you will do,” “you will make.” It clearly refers to offering the animals on the altar, but may emphasize all the preparation that was involved in the process.

301 tn Heb “between the two evenings” or “between the two settings” (בֵּין הָעַרְבָּיִם, ben haarbayim). This expression has had a good deal of discussion. (1) Tg. Onq. says “between the two suns,” which the Talmud explains as the time between the sunset and the time the stars become visible. More technically, the first “evening” would be the time between sunset and the appearance of the crescent moon, and the second “evening” the next hour, or from the appearance of the crescent moon to full darkness (see Deut 16:6 – “at the going down of the sun”). (2) Saadia, Rashi, and Kimchi say the first evening is when the sun begins to decline in the west and cast its shadows, and the second evening is the beginning of night. (3) The view adopted by the Pharisees and the Talmudists (b. Pesahim 61a) is that the first evening is when the heat of the sun begins to decrease, and the second evening begins at sunset, or, roughly from 3-5 p.m. The Mishnah (m. Pesahim 5:1) indicates the lamb was killed about 2:30 p.m. – anything before noon was not valid. S. R. Driver concludes from this survey that the first view is probably the best, although the last view was the traditionally accepted one (Exodus, 89-90). Late afternoon or early evening seems to be intended, the time of twilight perhaps.

302 tn The phrase “of an ephah” has been supplied for clarity (cf. Num 28:5). The ephah was a commonly used dry measure whose capacity is now uncertain: “Quotations given for the ephah vary from ca. 45 to 20 liters” (C. Houtman, Exodus, 2:340-41).

303 tn “Hin” is a transliterated Hebrew word that seems to have an Egyptian derivation. The amount of liquid measured by a hin is uncertain: “Its presumed capacity varies from about 3,5 liters to 7,5 liters” (C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:550).

304 tn The translation has “regular” instead of “continually,” because they will be preparing this twice a day.

305 tn The relative clause identifies the place in front of the Tent as the place that Yahweh would meet Moses. The main verb of the clause is אִוָּעֵד (’ivvaed), a Niphal imperfect of the verb יָעַד (yaad), the verb that is cognate to the name “tent of meeting” – hence the name. This clause leads into the next four verses.

306 tn The verb now is a Niphal perfect from the same root, with a vav (ו) consecutive. It simply continues the preceding verb, announcing now that he would meet the people.

307 tn Or “will be sanctified by my glory” (KJV and ASV both similar).

sn The tabernacle, as well as the priests and the altar, will be sanctified by the power of Yahweh’s presence. The reference here is to when Yahweh enters the sanctuary in all his glory (see Exod 40:34f.).

308 tn This verse affirms the same point as the last, but now with an active verb: “I will set apart as holy” (or “I will sanctify”). This verse, then, probably introduces the conclusion of the chapter: “So I will….”

309 tn The verb has the root שָׁכַן (shakan), from which came the word for the dwelling place, or sanctuary, itself (מִשְׁכָּן, mishkan). It is also used for the description of “the Shekinah glory.” God is affirming that he will reside in the midst of his people.

310 sn Why this section has been held until now is a mystery. One would have expected to find it with the instructions for the other furnishings. The widespread contemporary view that it was composed later does not answer the question, it merely moves the issue to the work of an editor rather than the author. N. M. Sarna notes concerning the items in chapter 30 that “all the materials for these final items were anticipated in the list of invited donations in 25:3-6” and that they were not needed for installing Aaron and his sons (Exodus [JPSTC], 193). Verses 1-10 can be divided into three sections: the instructions for building the incense altar (1-5), its placement (6), and its proper use (7-10).

311 tn The expression is מִזְבֵּחַ מִקְטַר קְטֹרֶת (mizbeakh miqtar qÿtoret), either “an altar, namely an altar of incense,” or “an altar, [for] burning incense.” The second noun is “altar of incense,” although some suggest it is an active noun meaning “burning.” If the former, then it is in apposition to the word for “altar” (which is not in construct). The last noun is “incense” or “sweet smoke.” It either qualifies the “altar of incense” or serves as the object of the active noun. B. Jacob says that in order to designate that this altar be used only for incense, the Torah prepared the second word for this passage alone. It specifies the kind of altar this is (Exodus, 828).

312 tn This is an adverbial accusative explaining the material used in building the altar.

313 sn See M. Haran, “The Uses of Incense in Ancient Israel Ritual,” VT 10 (1960): 113-15; N. Glueck, “Incense Altars,” Translating and Understanding the Old Testament, 325-29.

314 tn Heb “a cubit.”

315 tn Heb “two cubits.”

316 tn Heb “its horns from it.”

317 tn Heb “roof.”

318 tn Heb “its walls around.”

319 tn Heb “and make for it border gold around.” The verb is a consecutive perfect. See Exod 25:11, where the ark also has such a molding.

320 sn Since it was a small altar, it needed only two rings, one on either side, in order to be carried. The second clause clarifies that the rings should be on the sides, the right and the left, as you approach the altar.

321 tn Heb “And it”; this refers to the rings collectively in their placement on the box, and so the word “rings” has been used to clarify the referent for the modern reader.

322 tn Heb “for houses.”

323 tn The text uses a cognate accusative (“incense”) with the verb “to burn” or “to make into incense/sweet smoke.” Then, the noun “sweet spices” is added in apposition to clarify the incense as sweet.

324 tn The Hebrew is בְּהֵיטִיבוֹ (bÿhetivo), a Hiphil infinitive construct serving in a temporal clause. The Hebrew verb means “to make good” and so in this context “to fix” or “to dress.” This refers to cleansing and trimming the lamps.

325 sn The point of the little golden altar of incense is normally for intercessory prayer, and then at the Day of Atonement for blood applied atonement. The instructions for making it show that God wanted his people to make a place for prayer. The instructions for its use show that God expects that the requests of his people will be pleasing to him.

326 tn The word “atonements” (plural in Hebrew) is a genitive showing the result or product of the sacrifice made.

327 sn This ruling presupposes that the instruction for the Day of Atonement has been given, or at the very least, is to be given shortly. That is the one day of the year that all sin and all ritual impurity would be removed.

328 sn The phrase “most holy to the Lord” means that the altar cannot be used for any other purpose than what is stated here.

329 sn This brief section has been interpreted a number of ways by biblical scholars (for a good survey and discussion, see B. Jacob, Exodus, 829-35). In this context the danger of erecting and caring for a sanctuary may have been in view. A census would be taken to count the losses and to cover the danger of coming into such proximity with the holy place; payment was made to ransom the lives of the people numbered so that they would not die. The money collected would then be used for the care of the sanctuary. The principle was fairly straightforward: Those numbered among the redeemed of the Lord were to support the work of the Lord to maintain their fellowship with the covenant. The passage is fairly easy to outline: I. Every covenant member must give a ransom for his life to avoid death (11-12); II. The ransom is the same for all, whether rich or poor (13-15); and III. The ransom money supports the sanctuary as a memorial for the ransomed (16).

330 tn Heb “and Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying.” This full means for introducing a quotation from the Lord is used again in 30:17, 22; 31:1; and 40:1. It appears first in 6:10. Cynthia L. Miller discusses its use in detail (The Representation of Speech in Biblical Hebrew Narrative, 373-86).

331 tn The expression is “when you take [lift up] the sum [head] of the Israelites.”

332 tn The form is לִפְקֻדֵיהֶם (lifqudehem, “according to those that are numbered of/by them”) from the verb פָּקַד (paqad, “to visit”). But the idea of this word seems more to be that of changing or determining the destiny, and so “appoint” and “number” become clear categories of meaning for the word. Here it simply refers to the census, but when this word is used for a census it often involves mustering an army for a military purpose. Here there is no indication of a war, but it may be laying down the principle that when they should do this, here is the price. B. Jacob (Exodus, 835) uses Num 31 as a good illustration, showing that the warrior was essentially a murderer, if he killed anyone in battle. For this reason his blood was forfeit; if he survived he must pay a כֹּפֶר (kofer) because every human life possesses value and must be atoned for. The payment during the census represented a “presumptive ransom” so that they could not be faulted for what they might do in war.

333 tn The “ransom” is כֹּפֶר (kofer), a word related to words translated “atone” and “atonement.” Here the noun refers to what is paid for the life. The idea is that of delivering or redeeming by a substitute – here the substitute is the money. If they paid the amount, their lives would be safe (W. C. Kaiser, Jr., “Exodus,” EBC 2:473).

334 tn The temporal clause uses a preposition, an infinitive construct, and then an accusative. The subject is supplied: “in numbering them” means “when [you] number them.” The verb could also be rendered “when you muster them.”

335 sn Each man was to pass in front of the counting officer and join those already counted on the other side.

336 sn The half shekel weight of silver would be about one-fifth of an ounce (6 grams).

337 sn It appears that some standard is in view for the amount of a shekel weight. The sanctuary shekel is sometimes considered to be twice the value of the ordinary shekel. The “gerah,” also of uncertain meaning, was mentioned as a reference point for the ancient reader to understand the value of the required payment. It may also be that the expression meant “a sacred shekel” and looked at the purpose more – a shekel for sanctuary dues. This would mean that the standard of the shekel weight was set because it was the traditional amount of sacred dues (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 333). “Though there is no certainty, the shekel is said to weigh about 11,5 grams…Whether an official standard is meant [by ‘sanctuary shekel’] or whether the sanctuary shekel had a different weight than the ‘ordinary’ shekel is not known” (C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:181).

338 tn Or “contribution” (תְּרוּמָה, tÿrumah).

339 tn Or “pay more.”

340 tn The form is לָתֵת (latet), the Qal infinitive construct with the lamed preposition. The infinitive here is explaining the preceding verbs. They are not to increase or diminish the amount “in paying the offering.” The construction approximates a temporal clause.

341 tn This infinitive construct (לְכַפֵּר, lÿkhapper) provides the purpose of the giving the offering – to atone.

342 tn Heb “the silver of the atonements.” The genitive here is the result (as in “sheep of slaughter”) telling what the money will be used for (see R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, 11, §44).

343 sn The idea of “service” is maintenance and care of the sanctuary and its service, meaning the morning and evening sacrifices and the other elements to be used.

344 sn S. R. Driver says this is “to keep Jehovah in continual remembrance of the ransom which had been paid for their lives” (Exodus, 334).

345 tn The infinitive could be taken in a couple of ways here. It could be an epexegetical infinitive: “making atonement.” Or it could be the infinitive expressing result: “so that atonement will be made for your lives.”

346 sn Another piece of furniture is now introduced, the laver, or washing basin. It was a round (the root means to be round) basin for holding water, but it had to be up on a pedestal or base to let water run out (through taps of some kind) for the priests to wash – they could not simply dip dirty hands into the basin. This was for the priests primarily to wash their hands and feet before entering the tent. It stood in the courtyard between the altar and the tent. No dimensions are given. The passage can be divided into three sections: the instructions (17-18), the rules for washing (19-20), and the reminder that this is a perpetual statute.

347 tn Heb “and Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying.”

348 sn The metal for this object was obtained from the women from their mirrors (see Exod 38:8).

349 tn Heb “and its stand bronze.”

350 tn The form is the adverb “there” with the directive qamets-he ( ָה).

351 tn That is, from water from it.

352 tn The form is an infinitive construct with the temporal preposition bet (ב), and a suffixed subjective genitive: “in their going in,” or, whenever they enter.

353 tn “Water” is an adverbial accusative of means, and so is translated “with water.” Gesenius classifies this with verbs of “covering with something.” But he prefers to emend the text with a preposition (see GKC 369 §117.y, n. 1).

354 tn The verb is a Qal imperfect with a nuance of final imperfect. The purpose/result clause here is indicated only with the conjunction: “and they do not die.” But clearly from the context this is the intended result of their washing – it is in order that they not die.

355 tn Here, too, the infinitive is used in a temporal clause construction. The verb נָגַשׁ (nagash) is the common verb used for drawing near to the altar to make offerings – the official duties of the priest.

356 tn The text uses two infinitives construct: “to minister to burn incense”; the first is the general term and expresses the purpose of the drawing near, and the second infinitive is epexegetical, explaining the first infinitive.

357 tn The translation “as an offering made by fire” is a standard rendering of the one word in the text that appears to refer to “fire.” Milgrom and others contend that it simply means a “gift” (Leviticus 1-16, 161).

358 tn Heb “and [then] they will wash.”

359 tn The verb is “it will be.”

360 tn Heb “for his seed.”

361 tn Or “for generations to come”; it literally is “to their generations.”

sn The symbolic meaning of washing has been taught throughout the ages. This was a practical matter of cleaning hands and feet, but it was also symbolic of purification before Yahweh. It was an outward sign of inner spiritual cleansing, or forgiveness. Jesus washed the disciples feet (Jn 13) to show this same teaching; he asked the disciples if they knew what he had done (so it was more than washing feet). In this passage the theological points for the outline would be these: I. God provides the means of cleansing; II. Cleansing is a prerequisite for participating in the worship, and III. (Believers) priests must regularly appropriate God’s provision of cleansing.

362 sn The chapter ends with these two sections. The oil (22-33) is the mark of consecration, and the incense (34-38) is a mark of pleasing service, especially in prayer. So the essence of the message of the chapter is that the servants of God must be set apart by the Spirit for ministry and must be pleasing to God in the ministry.

363 tn Heb “and Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying.”

364 tn The construction uses the imperative “take,” but before it is the independent pronoun to add emphasis to it. After the imperative is the ethical dative (lit. “to you”) to stress the task to Moses as a personal responsibility: “and you, take to yourself.”

365 tn Heb “spices head.” This must mean the chief spices, or perhaps the top spice, meaning fine spices or choice spices. See Song 4:14; Ezek 27:22.

366 tn Or “500 shekels.” Verse 24 specifies that the sanctuary shekel was the unit for weighing the spices. The total of 1500 shekels for the four spices is estimated at between 77 and 100 pounds, or 17 to 22 kilograms, depending on how much a shekel weighed (C. Houtman, Exodus, 3:576).

367 sn Myrrh is an aromatic substance that flows from the bark of certain trees in Arabia and Africa and then hardens. “The hardened globules of the gum appear also to have been ground into a powder that would have been easy to store and would have been poured from a container” (J. Durham, Exodus [WBC], 3:406).

368 tn The words “all weighed” are added for clarity in English.

369 tn Or “a hin.” A hin of oil is estimated at around one gallon (J. Durham, Exodus [WBC], 3:406).

370 tn Heb “it.”

371 tn The word “oil” is an adverbial accusative, indicating the product that results from the verb (R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, §52).

372 tn The somewhat rare words rendered “a perfumed compound” are both associated with a verbal root having to do with mixing spices and other ingredients to make fragrant ointments. They are used with the next phrase, “the work of a perfumer,” to describe the finished oil as a special mixture of aromatic spices and one requiring the knowledge and skills of an experienced maker.

373 tn The verb is a Piel perfect with vav (ו) consecutive; in this verse it is summarizing or explaining what the anointing has accomplished. This is the effect of the anointing (see Exod 29:36).

374 tn This is the superlative genitive again, Heb “holy of holies.”

375 tn See Exod 29:37; as before, this could refer to anything or anyone touching the sanctified items.

376 tn The perfect tense with vav (ו) consecutive follows the imperfect of instruction; it may be equal to the instruction, but more likely shows the purpose or result of the act.

377 tn Without an expressed subject, the verb may be treated as a passive. Any common use, as in personal hygiene, would be a complete desecration.

378 tn Heb “a stranger,” meaning someone not ordained a priest.

379 sn The rabbinic interpretation of this is that it is a penalty imposed by heaven, that the life will be cut short and the person could die childless.

380 tn The construction is “take to you,” which could be left in that literal sense, but more likely the suffix is an ethical dative, stressing the subject of the imperative.

381 sn This is from a word that means “to drip”; the spice is a balsam that drips from a resinous tree.

382 sn This may be a plant, or it may be from a species of mollusks; it is mentioned in Ugaritic and Akkadian; it gives a pungent odor when burnt.

383 sn This is a gum from plants of the genus Ferula; it has an unpleasant odor, but when mixed with others is pleasant.

384 tn The word “spice is repeated here, suggesting that the first three formed half of the ingredient and this spice the other half – but this is conjecture (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 400).

385 tn Heb “of each part there will be an equal part.”

386 tn This is an accusative of result or product.

387 tn The word is in apposition to “incense,” further defining the kind of incense that is to be made.

388 tn The word מְמֻלָּח (mÿmullakh), a passive participle, is usually taken to mean “salted.” Since there is no meaning like that for the Pual form, the word probably should be taken as “mixed,” as in Rashi and Tg. Onq. Seasoning with salt would work if it were food, but since it is not food, if it means “salted” it would be a symbol of what was sound and whole for the covenant. Some have thought that it would have helped the incense burn quickly with more smoke.

389 tn Or to smell it, to use for the maker’s own pleasure.

390 sn The next unit describes the preparation of skilled workers to build all that has been listed now for several chapters. This chapter would have been the bridge to the building of the sanctuary (35-39) if it were not for the idolatrous interlude. God called individuals and prepared them by his Spirit to be skilled to do the work for the tabernacle. If this were the substance of an exposition, it would clearly be a message on gifted people doing the work – close to the spiritual lesson of Ephesians 4. There would be two levels of meaning: the physical, which looks at the skilled artisans providing for a place to worship Yahweh, and the spiritual, which would bring in the Spirit-filled servants of God participating in building up his kingdom.

391 tn Heb “and Yahweh spoke to Moses, saying.”

392 tn Heb “called by name.” This expression means that the person was specifically chosen for some important task (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 342). See the expression with Cyrus in Isa 45:3-4.

393 sn The expression in the Bible means that the individual was given special, supernatural enablement to do what God wanted done. It usually is said of someone with exceptional power or ability. The image of “filling” usually means under the control of the Spirit, so that the Spirit is the dominant force in the life.

394 sn The following qualities are the ways in which the Spirit’s enablement will be displayed. “Skill” is the ability to produce something valuable to God and the community, “understanding” is the ability to distinguish between things, to perceive the best way to follow, and “knowledge” is the experiential awareness of how things are done.

395 tn Heb “and in all work”; “all” means “all kinds of” here.

396 tn The expression is לַחְשֹׁב מַחֲשָׁבֹת (lakhshov makhashavot, “to devise devices”). The infinitive emphasizes that Bezalel will be able to design or plan works that are artistic or skillful. He will think thoughts or devise the plans, and then he will execute them in silver or stone or whatever other material he uses.

397 tn The expression uses the independent personal pronoun (“and I”) with the deictic particle (“behold”) to enforce the subject of the verb – “and I, indeed I have given.”

398 tn Heb “and in the heart of all that are wise-hearted I have put wisdom.”

sn The verse means that there were a good number of very skilled and trained artisans that could come to do the work that God wanted done. But God’s Spirit further endowed them with additional wisdom and skill for the work that had to be done.

399 tn The form is a perfect with vav (ו) consecutive. The form at this place shows the purpose or the result of what has gone before, and so it is rendered “that they may make.”

400 tn Heb “all the vessels of the tent.”

401 sn There are some questions about the arrangement of the book. The placement of this section here, however, should come as no surprise. After the instructions and preparation for work, a Sabbath day when work could not be done had to be legislated. In all that they were going to do, they must not violate the Sabbath,

402 tn Heb “and Yahweh said (אָמַר, ’amar) to Moses, saying.”

403 sn The instruction for the Sabbath at this point seems rather abrupt, but it follows logically the extended plans of building the sanctuary. B. Jacob, following some of the earlier treatments, suggests that these are specific rules given for the duration of the building of the sanctuary (Exodus, 844). The Sabbath day is a day of complete cessation; no labor or work could be done. The point here is that God’s covenant people must faithfully keep the sign of the covenant as a living commemoration of the finished work of Yahweh, and as an active part in their sanctification. See also H. Routtenberg, “The Laws of Sabbath: Biblical Sources,” Dor le Dor 6 (1977): 41-43, 99-101, 153-55, 204-6; G. Robinson, “The Idea of Rest in the OT and the Search for the Basic Character of Sabbath,” ZAW 92 (1980): 32-42; M. Tsevat, “The Basic Meaning of the Biblical Sabbath, ZAW 84 (1972): 447-59; M. T. Willshaw, “A Joyous Sign,” ExpTim 89 (1978): 179-80.

404 tn Or “your sanctifier.”

405 tn This clause is all from one word, a Piel plural participle with a third, feminine suffix: מְחַלְלֶיהָ (mÿkhalleha, “defilers of it”). This form serves as the subject of the sentence. The word חָלַל (khalal) is the antonym of קָדַשׁ (qadash, “to be holy”). It means “common, profane,” and in the Piel stem “make common, profane” or “defile.” Treating the Sabbath like an ordinary day would profane it, make it common.

406 tn This is the asseverative use of כִּי (ki) meaning “surely, indeed,” for it restates the point just made (see R. J. Williams, Hebrew Syntax, 73, §449).

407 tn Heb “the one who does.”

408 tn “any” has been supplied.

409 tn Literally “her” (a feminine pronoun agreeing with “soul/life,” which is grammatically feminine).

410 tn This is an adverbial accusative of time, indicating that work may be done for six days out of the week.

411 tn The form is a Niphal imperfect; it has the nuance of permission in this sentence, for the sentence is simply saying that the six days are work days – that is when work may be done.

412 tn The expression is שַׁבַּת שַׁבָּתוֹן (shabbat shabbaton), “a Sabbath of entire rest,” or better, “a sabbath of complete desisting” (U. Cassuto, Exodus, 404). The second noun, the modifying genitive, is an abstract noun. The repetition provides the superlative idea that complete rest is the order of the day.

413 tn The expression again forms an adverbial accusative of time.

414 sn The word “rest” essentially means “to cease, stop.” So describing God as “resting” on the seventh day does not indicate that he was tired – he simply finished creation and then ceased or stopped. But in this verse is a very bold anthropomorphism in the form of the verb וַיִּנָּפַשׁ (vayyinnafash), a Niphal preterite from the root נָפַשׁ (nafash), the word that is related to “life, soul” or more specifically “breath, throat.” The verb is usually translated here as “he was refreshed,” offering a very human picture. It could also be rendered “he took breath” (S. R. Driver, Exodus, 345). Elsewhere the verb is used of people and animals. The anthropomorphism is clearly intended to teach people to stop and refresh themselves physically, spiritually, and emotionally on this day of rest.

415 sn The expression “the finger of God” has come up before in the book, in the plagues (Exod 8:15) to express that it was a demonstration of the power and authority of God. So here too the commandments given to Moses on stone tablets came from God. It too is a bold anthropomorphism; to attribute such a material action to Yahweh would have been thought provoking to say the least. But by using “God” and by stating it in an obviously figurative way, balance is maintained. Since no one writes with one finger, the expression simply says that the Law came directly from God.



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