In the Holy Place

In the last teaching, we began looking at the Holy Place , the Outer Sanctuary.  Only those
who were called to the priesthood, set apart and cleansed for ministry, stood before God in
this place.  ADONAI (the LORD) required that the priests minister to Him daily in the Holy
Place , and He prescribed the manner in which they were to come before Him.  First Peter 2:5
states, “you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy
priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.”  Yeshua
(Jesus) has made it possible for us to come before God as priests and minister directly to him
in the Holy Place .  So, like the priests in the Old Testament tabernacle, we must listen for God’
s call, allow Him to set us apart and cleanse us, and then accept the responsibility of
ministering to God as He leads.
                               Come Together

In the earthly tabernacle, the golden lampstand was the first thing the priests would see as
they entered into the Holy Place because it provided the only light for the room.  You will recall
that the lampstand represents the oneness of believers with Yeshua (Jesus) and Yeshua with
the Father as the stands represent all congregations (see Rev. 1.20) and the Lamp is Yeshua
magnifying God’s Light (see Rev. 21:23).  Thus, the collective Body of Believers lifts up
Yeshua who makes God’s Light shine far and wide.  The light from the lampstand illuminates
the incense altar and the table of the Bread of the Presence also within the Holy Place .  All
three elements together give us a picture of John 17:21:  “that all of them may be one, Father,
just as you are in me and I am in you.  May they also be in us so that the world may believe
that you have sent me.”

The Messiah is coming back for His Body; one unit, not scattered, individual pieces.  The
importance of fellowship among believers is stressed throughout the Old and New Testaments
and demonstrated in the Bread of the Presence.  The Bread of the Presence sat upon a table
overlaid with gold (see Numbers 25:23-30).  Every day, the priests were to bake fresh bread
to place on this table and then partake of the bread within the Holy Place (see Leviticus 24:5-
9).  This command necessitated daily fellowship among the priests.  The bread itself
represented the presence of God among the 12 tribes of Israel (there were 12 loaves set out
daily).  Hence, the priests came together around the Presence of God to unite the nation.

The incense altar was the place at which the High Priest offered pure incense offerings to
God.  It was also overlaid with gold and stood directly in front of the curtain that was before
the Ark of the Testimony (see Ex. 30:1-10).  According to Revelation 5:8, incense offerings
are the prayers of God’s people.  As the called and set apart ones, we are commanded to
pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers (Eph. 6:18).  These prayers, our
incense offerings, are a pleasing aroma in God’s nostrils.  When we come together in the Holy
Place , our High Priest, who is Yeshua (Jesus), receives them all and presents them
collectively to the Father.

Yeshua’s (Jesus’) offering of our collective prayers (incense offerings) ushers us into God’s
presence (the Most Holy Place ).  As we commune with God and each other (the Bread),
unbelievers and backsliders experience God and are drawn to give or rededicate their lives to
the Messiah who made it possible.  Coming together in one God-ordained place at God’s set
time brings John 17:21 to life through a Holy Place experience, in which New Testament
Scripture fulfills Old; the stronger our prayers and the more genuine our fellowship, the
greater His Presence.  This is just rehearsal for worship in Jerusalem when the Messiah
returns (see Zech. 14:16).  Then we will all worship in one place at one time:  one with each
other and one with God.