Topic for study: What the design of the Tabernacle says about 1844

  1. The Countdown that begins in the Courtyard

  2. How the tabernacle is associated with Judgment.
  1. The surprise element foretold (the disappointment).
  1. What characteristics help the Remnant to make it through

  2. Where the Good News is portrayed in the Judgment.

First we need to make a distinction (again) between the tabernacle and the sanctuary

  • The tabernacle is the building, the house, the body, the structure, place of defense & refuge, the man, the resource
  • The sanctuary is the furnishings, the home, the organs of the body, the spirit of life, place of learning, the woman, the application of the resources


The 6th panel of the goat hair curtain (Ex 26:7-9)

     Imagine going home this evening and checking your computer for any email messages, or turning on the TV, or getting out your cellphone to make a call, and you see only a blood-red screen with the number 10 on it. It stays on for a whole minute and you can’t turn off the monitor or TV or cellphone. You go to your neighbors to tell them of the strange incident, only to find that they also experienced the same thing. You call the police to see if they know anything about it, and they are just as puzzled, for they, too saw the blood-red screen with the number 10. When you watch the evening news they also are talking about the strange number.

     The next day the same thing happens. But this time it is with the number 9. Then the following day the number 8. By now it seems the whole nation is talking about it. Is it a countdown? Why the blood-red color? What is going to happen after it hits 1?

     This is the desired effect I see in the sanctuary countdown.

This isn’t the only countdown God has used. There were others.

The ten plagues to the Exodus (Exo 3:20; chapter 12)

The 70 weeks of Daniel 9 (Daniel 9:24-27)

The arrival and death of the Messiah

The close of probation for Israel as God’s chosen nation (destruction of Jerusalem)

The end of the world— The 7 sevens in Revelation

7 churches (1:11)

 7 seals (5:1)

  7 trumpets (8:2)

   7 thunders (10:3)

    7-headed dragon (12:3)

     7 last plagues (15:1)

      7 kings (17:10)



What does red portray? Why would it be the color for judgment?

RED gets our attention faster than any other color..

Red represents the blood of Christ (Isa 1:18)
     H119: “dyed red” to show blood   
     Numbers 19:2  “This heifer was to be red, which was a symbol of blood.” 4T 121

(Ex 12:7)  Up one wall, across the top, and down the other wall

Where is the red shown in the confrontation with the pharaoh of Egypt? [Preparing for the tenth plague]

Where in the 70-week prophecy of Daniel 9? [death of the Messiah]

Where in Revelation? [confrontation by the great red dragon/Lamb slain]


Rams’ skins were dyed (Ex 26:14)

(Isa 1:18) Sins like scarlet (H8144), red (H110), crimson (H8438)

H8144: properly the insect or its color, also stuff dyed with it: – crimson, scarlet (thread).

H119: To show blood (in the face), that is, flush or turn rosy: – be (dyed, made) red (ruddy).

H8438: From H3216; a maggot (as voracious); specifically (often with ellipsis of H8144) the crimson grub, but used only (in this connection) of the color from it, and cloths dyed therewith

Did God forewarn the world of these coming judgments?

The Flood (Gen 6:17)

The Exodus (Exo 7-12)

His death (Matt 20:18, Luke 18:31-33)

The destruction of Jerusalem (Dan 9:26, Matt 24:1-2, Luke 21:6)

The fall of Babylon (Rev 14:8. 16:19, 18:2, 21)

 So what is the purpose of the surprise?

     “I saw the disappointment of the trusting ones, as they did not see their Lord at the expected time. It had been God’s purpose to conceal the future and to bring His people to a point of decision. Without the preaching of definite time for the coming of Christ, the work designed of God would not have been accomplished. Satan was leading very many to look far in the future for the great events connected with the judgment and the end of probation. It was necessary that the people be brought to seek earnestly for a present preparation.” {EW 246}

     “The Christian who manifests patience under bereavement and suffering, who meets even death with the calmness of an unwavering faith, may accomplish for the gospel more than he could have by a long life of faithful labor. Often the mysterious providence which our shortsighted vision would lament is designed by God to accomplish a work that otherwise would never be done.” {TT 245-6}

     “Five hundred years before, the Lord had declared by the prophet Zechariah: “Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: He is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass.” Zechariah 9:9. Had the disciples realized that Christ was going to judgment and to death, they could not have fulfilled this prophecy.

     “In like manner Miller and his associates fulfilled prophecy and gave a message which Inspiration had foretold should be given to the world, but which they could not have given had they fully understood the prophecies pointing out their disappointment, and presenting another message to be preached to all nations before the Lord should come. The first and second angels’ messages were given at the right time and accomplished the work which God designed to accomplish by them.” {GC 405}


The loops (Ex 26:4, 10) and taches (vss 6,11)

The challenge: these words are used only in reference to the tabernacle

Now get the picture:

  • both curtains are in two sections
  • on the two edges where the curtains face each other are loops
  • The KJV says, “may take hold one of another”. This is a poor translation because the taches actually do the connecting
  • We can better understand it as saying, “that they might answer to one another in both curtains.” In other words, they were to be directly opposite each other. In today’s vernacular we use “answering to one another” as holding each other accountable to an agreement.
  • So, the loops are directly across from each other
  • but the loops have no way built in to connect with each other

So first we need to find out what the loops are symbolizing. And God gave us a hint in the linen loops. He told us they were to be BLUE.

  • Num 15:38-39 that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the LORD, and do them; and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring:
  • The blue points us to God’s Word and holds us to it
  • God’s Word is TRUTH.
  • So we have Biblical truths on one side of the vail, and Biblical truths on the other side of the vail, both reaching out to one another. This gives the picture of type/antitype, counterparts, questions proposed/answers given, prophecy/fulfillment. But there is nothing to connect them yet.

And without that connector,

  • the Bible predicts they will be disappointed,
  • they will be expecting what they think is going to happen, but it doesn’t
  • they will have no way to justify their disappointment
  • and they will become the laughing stock of the world, and God’s name dishonored

Then God tells us about the connectors, the brass and gold taches

  • No other place to go in God’s Word to find out how taches are used or what they might signify, except here in Exodus, in relation to the curtains and vail
  • H7165 Strong’s Definition: From H7164 a knob or belaying pin (from its swelling form)
  • If a stranger comes into a community and quickly makes a name for himself, either by acts of benevolence or evil, the community wants to know more about him
    • Where is he from?
    • Who is he related to?
    • What is his occupation?
  • So let’s go to the root word from which taches is taken
    • H7164 BDB Definition: (Qal) to bend down, stoop, crouch
    • What picture do we get here? (humility?)

Could this be suggesting that humility is necessary to progress in our spiritual walk toward the Most Holy Place? And perhaps that it will also characterize those who follow their Lord to the other side and become founders of the last church?

  • GC 405 “The world had been looking on, expecting that if the time passed and Christ did not appear, the whole system of Adventism would be given up. But while many, under strong temptation, yielded their faith, there were some who stood firm. The fruits of the advent movement, the spirit of humility and heart searching, of renouncing of the world and reformation of life, which had attended the work, testified that it was of God.”

Look how Mrs. White puts humility, gold, and faith together, and with that which connects.

  • RH 12/11/1900 “The worthless material will be consumed; but the gold of true, simple, humble faith will never lose its value. It can never be consumed; for it is imperishable.”
  • TM 161 “How my heart goes out in rejoicing for those who walk in humility of mind, who love and fear God. They possess a power far more valuable than learning or eloquence. ‘The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;’ and His love and fear are like a thread of gold uniting the human agent to the divine. Thus all the movements of life are simplified. When the children of God are struggling with temptation, battling against the passions of the natural heart, faith connects the soul with the only One who can give help, and they are overcomers.”
  • GC 405 “They dared not deny that the power of the Holy Spirit had witnessed to the preaching of the second advent, and they could detect no error in their reckoning of the prophetic periods. The ablest of their opponents had not succeeded in overthrowing their system of prophetic interpretation. They could not consent, without Bible evidence, to renounce positions which had been reached through earnest, prayerful study of the Scriptures, by minds enlightenedby the Spirit of God and hearts burning with its living power; positions which had withstood the most searching criticisms and the most bitter opposition of popular religious teachers and worldly-wise men, and which had stood firm against the combined forces of learning and eloquence, and the taunts and revilings alike of the honorable and the base.”
  • The Advent Herald and Signs of the Times Reporter, vol. 8, No. 14 (Nov 13, 1844) “True, there had been a failure as to the expected event, but even this could not shake their faith in the word of God. When Jonah proclaimed in the streets of Nineveh that within forty days the city would be overthrown, the Lord accepted the humiliation of the Ninevites and extended their period of probation; yet the message of Jonah was sent of God, and Nineveh was tested according to His will. Adventists believed that in like manner God had led them to give the warning of the judgment. ‘It has,’ they declared, ‘tested the hearts of all who heard it, and awakened a love for the Lord’s appearing; or it has called forth a hatred, more or less perceivable, but known to God, of His coming. It has drawn a line, … so that those who will examine their own hearts, may know on which side of it they would have been found, had the Lord then come—whether they would have exclaimed, ‘Lo! this is our God, we have waited for Him, and He will save us;’ or whether they would have called to the rocks and mountains to fall on them to hide them from the face of Him that sitteth on the throne, and from the wrath of the Lamb. God thus, as we believe, has tested His people, has tried their faith, has proved them, and seen whether they would shrink, in the hour of trial, from the position in which He might see fit to place them; and whether they would relinquish this world and rely with implicit confidence in the word of God.’”
  • CD 188 “Whenever it is necessary for the advancement of the cause of truth and the glory of God, that an opponent be met, how carefully, and with what humility, should they [The advocates of truth] go into the conflict. With heart searching, confession of sin, and earnest prayer, and often fasting for a time, they should entreat that God would especially help them, and give His saving, precious truth a glorious victory, that error might appear in its true deformity, and its advocates be completely discomfited.”


We all know that the gospel has good news for the Judgment. But how does God illustrate that in the Tabernace?

  • How many gold taches were there? [50]
  • How many brass taches? [50]
  • What should we make of this information? Why would God see fit to include this into our fact-folder on the sanctuary?
    • what 50 is associated with
  • the width of Noah’s ark Gen 6:15.
  • It was also the number of righteous souls Abraham began with in his interceding for the Sodomites from being destroyed. Gen 18:26
  • It’s also the breadth of the courtyard in the sanctuary here Exo 27:12,
  • the 50th year liberty to all is given, which we call the Year of Jubilee Lev 25:10
  • the redemption price for laying with a virgin. Deu 22:29
  • It was also the purchase price King David for property used to build an altar on to stay a plague (2Sam 24:24)
  • the number of prophets Obadiah hid per cave from Jezebel’s wrath (1Ki 18:4)]
    • What’s the common denominator in all these? [redemption]

In this class we have seen how the detail given in the design of the tabernacle has portrayed various aspects of the 1844 movement: the countdown, the association with the Judgment, the surprise element (disappointment), the characteristics of the remnant who would not give up their belief (study of God’s Word and faith, coupled with humility), and even how the Good News is revealed.

This is typical to the parable style Jesus used in His teachings. He would give a story with specific detail to illustrate His point, like the Sower and the Seed (Matthew 13:3-9, 18-23; Luke 8:5-8, 11-15). Every detail had its purpose. And so it is in the design of the Tabernacle.