Saturday, October 22, 2011

How the Golden Candlestick Represents the 66 Books of the Bible


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The Golden Candlestick was the only source of natural light in the Tabernacle.  It was made from one piece of pure beaten gold; and since gold in the Bible represents Divinity, combining these two reveals that one day God would be beaten.

But since God is a Spirit (Jn. 4:24), then the only way he can be “beaten” is for him to become a man; and that’s exactly what he did through the personage of Jesus Christ; God come in the flesh: the light of the Word (Jn. 1:1-14, etc.).[1]

But not only does the Golden Candlestick represent the living Word, it also represents the written Word.  But how?
Ps. 119:105 Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

The Golden Candlestick has a central shaft with three branches protruding from each side.  On each branch there were 3 sets of 3 ornaments, with each set containing a bowl, a knop, and a flower: 9 total on each branch (3 sets of 3).  On the central shaft there were 4 sets of these same 3 ornaments for a total of 12.   

So to either side of the central shaft there were 27 ornaments, with 12 ornaments on the central shaft itself.  Choosing the right side, there are 27 ornaments representing the 27 books of the Bible found in the New Testament.  That leaves the 27 ornaments on the left side and the 12 ornaments on the central shaft, which added together totals 39, which is the number of books found in the Old Testament.  So adding all of the ornaments together represents the total number of books that would eventually become part of the canon of Scripture; and so this is how the Golden Candlestick represents the 66 books of the Bible.  This of course doesn’t tell us which 66 books, but it does teach that there will be no more than 66. 

But there’s more.  The Golden Candlestick further represents the written Word of God as follows:

The plans and construction of the Golden Candlestick were inspired by God but built by men who had been empowered by the Holy Spirit (Ex. 31:1-11; 35:34-35 e.g.); likewise, the written Word was also inspired by God and “constructed” by men who were also led by the power of the Holy Spirit (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21; etc.).  Thus, the pattern is the same, and brings to remembrance the necessity of God’s many admonitions to build everything according to his design with warnings not to add or subtract from his Word (cp. Ex. 25:9, 40; Dt. 4:2 e.g.).   

The Golden Candlestick was given to the Jews, and since the Golden Candlestick also represents the written Word, then this is teaching that ALL Scriptures would eventually come from the Jews and none other (Rom. 3:1-2); hence, any “holy book” claiming Divine inspiration can immediately be rejected if it wasn’t written by a Jew.  This also teaches that Luke wasn’t a Gentile, as some postulate that he was. 

And lastly, the Golden Candlestick was given to the Jews for the benefit of the whole congregation, but it was maintained by the priests; and since the Golden Candlestick also represents the Word of God, then this is teaching that only the priests (scribes) were responsible for maintaining the written text of God’s Word; and since the Levitical priesthood has now been replaced by the priesthood of all believers (1 Pet. 2:9-10; etc.), then this is also teaching that only Christians have the responsibility of maintaining the written text of God’s Word.  Hence, no non-Levitical Jew or unsaved person has ever been given the responsibility of maintaining the written text of God’s Word – whether Old or New Testament.  Taken together, then, God’s written Word is solely reserved for God’s chosen people.  Only God’s people have the ability to understand the Scriptures – not the unsaved due to the fact that they’ve had their understanding “darkened” (1 Cor. 2:14; Eph. 5:18). 

Selah.

[1] Jesus beaten: cp. Is. 53; Mt. 27:26-30; Mk. 15:15-19; Jn. 19:1-3, etc.

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