MT. ZION & THE TABERNACLE OF DAVID
The practical application to daily life.
Does the Tabernacle of David really have some application to my life after so many years? YES! When God, Himself, says that He will build again the Tabernacle of David and restore it as in the days of old, it does not refer to a new doctrine about this tent or a new denomination but a restoration of something that has been lost to the church. The thought is that something has “fallen down” that will be rebuilt.
A few months ago we did a study about Mt. Zion and the very special place God has given it in the scriptures. God dwelling on Mt. Zion is a direct reference to the Tabernacle of David because before David God dwelt in the Tabernacle of Moses and following David God dwelt in the Temple of Solomon. The only time the scriptures speak about God dwelling on Mt. Zion is during the time of the Tabernacle of David.
Those scriptures that speak about dwelling in His courts that David wrote and He who dwells between the Cherubim, all speak about the Tabernacle of David. The reason we can say that is because at the time these Psalms were written no other dwelling place of God on earth existed. From this we should understand that The Psalms have much instruction for us concerning the practical application of the Tabernacle of David in our experience today.
Since God, Himself, is going to rebuild it and restore it as in the days of old it is advantages to flow with what God is doing and saying to us. For example; The Tabernacle of David only had one piece of furniture and the whole revelation is not about the tent but about the Ark of the Covenant and everything associated with it. The main thing that is associated with the Ark is the very Presence of God and the Voice of God. Another practical element of the Ark is the Mercy Seat where the blood was sprinkled for the corporate sins of the nation.
Another important application for us personally is the three things that were housed within the Ark. One was the Law of Moses contained upon the tablets of stone. Another was Aaron’s rod that budded and the last was the jar that held the Manna.
EXO 16:33] And Moses said to Aaron, "Take a jar and put an omerful of manna in it, and place it before the LORD, to be kept throughout your generations."  As the LORD commanded Moses, so Aaron placed it before the Testimony, to be kept. At this time the “testimony” was the law on tablets of stone because the Ark was not yet built or the Tabernacle of Moses constructed.
HEB 9:3] And behind the second veil, there was a tabernacle which is called the Holy of Holies,  having a golden altar of incense and the ark of the covenant covered on all sides with gold, in which was a golden jar holding the manna, and Aaron's rod which budded, and the tables of the covenant.  And above it were the cherubim of glory overshadowing the mercy seat; but of these things we cannot now speak in detail.
David’s Tabernacle was just the Holies of Holies without the veil of separation between the worshiper and the Ark of His Presence. What we are confronted with here are (1)Altar of Incense, (2) The Ark of the Covenant, (3) The Mercy seat, (4) the Cherubim of Glory, (5) the Golden Jar of Manna, (6) the Tables of the Covenant, and (7) Aaron’s Rod that Budded. These seven components create the environment for the manifest Presence of God. For example; If we eliminated the Mercy Seat would the manifested presence of God still be found there? What if there were no Cherubim of Glory, would God still speak? What has the Tables of the Covenant have to do with God’s Presence? Is the Altar of Incense really that important to the Presence of God? It is obvious to me that each of these things are very important and essential to the function of the Most Holy Place. Which really came first, the Incense or the Presence?
EXO 40:26] Then he placed the gold altar in the tent of meeting in front of the veil;  and he burned fragrant incense on it, just as the LORD had commanded Moses.
EXO 40:34 Then the cloud covered the tent of meeting, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.  And Moses was not able to enter the tent of meeting because the cloud had settled on it, and the glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle.
It was “after” everything in the Tabernacle was set up and functioning that the Glory Cloud of God’s Presence filled the temple. There surely must be some application of this truth for the individual and for the church today.
It is just as true and just as important for the individual and for the church that the blood be sprinkled upon the Mercy Seat today as it was in the type thousands of years ago. Surely the Tables of the Covenant has an application for each of us today. Even the whole Tabernacle is a type and picture for us of heavenly and spiritual things.
Before there was an Ark of His Presence God commanded Moses to take an omerful of manna and place it before the “Testimony” or the Tablets of Stone. Sometime later the manna was placed in the Ark. We should ask does this golden pot that held the Manna still speak to us today? Is there a Bible application for us of this Manna. John 6 is very clear teaching that most anyone can see applies the Manna to Jesus Christ and we are warned to eat of that heavenly Manna for eternal Life. But what about this “Jar” and the Manna?
REV 3:17] `He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone, and a new name written on the stone which no one knows but he who receives it.'
The only “Manna” that was hidden was the Manna that was placed in the jar and put into the Ark of the Covenant. To eat of that Manna was limited to the overcomer. If Jesus Christ is the fulfillment of the manna that was seen in type then a practical application for us is essential. While we have no idea what that means to eat of the hidden Manna that does not depreciate the importance being an overcomer. To imply that the “under-comer” will also eat of the “hidden Manna” is a disservice to the church.
The revelation of the meaning of Manna has already been given to us, therefore, we cannot deviate from that understanding. JOHN 6:31] "Our fathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as it is written, `HE GAVE THEM BREAD OUT OF HEAVEN TO EAT.'"  Jesus therefore said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, it is not Moses who has given you the bread out of heaven, but it is My Father who gives you the true bread out of heaven.  "For the bread of God is that which comes down out of heaven, and gives life to the world."
JOHN 6:35] Jesus said to them, "I am the bread of life; he who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who believes in Me shall never thirst.
JOHN 6:48] "I am the bread of life.  "Your fathers ate the manna in the wilderness, and they died.  "This is the bread which comes down out of heaven, so that one may eat of it and not die.  "I am the living bread that came down out of heaven; if anyone eats of this bread, he shall live forever; and the bread also which I shall give for the life of the world is My flesh."
JOHN 6:53] Jesus therefore said to them, "Truly, truly, I say to you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink His blood, you have no life in yourselves.  "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.  "For My flesh is true food, and My blood is true drink.  "He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.  "As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who eats Me, he also shall live because of Me.  "This is the bread which came down out of heaven; not as the fathers ate, and died, he who eats this bread shall live forever."
It was the Living Word of God that came down out of heaven and became flesh among us. His flesh is directly related to His Word. Eating His flesh has a direct application to eating His Word and being sustained by it. Then it is by eating His Word that is directly related to resurrection in the last days. Eternal life is also directly related to eating His Word.
In Acts 15 James takes one small part of this prophesy in Amos 9 to determine that all the Gentiles should seek the Lord without being circumcised. That certainly does not forbid other applications to the Tabernacle of David from being made. The example in Acts 15, on the contrary, opens up the Tabernacle of David for many other applications to New Covenant church life. If James hadn’t used this prophesy to make such a vital decision concerning the Gentiles we could be skeptical today of making such an application. However, James opens up the Tabernacle of David as valid for the church to make spiritual applications. The fact that James only used one phrase of the prophesy does not negate the other phrases but rather recommends them for our understanding. James certainly doesn’t address the hundreds of other applications that could be made to the Tabernacle of David and the open worship that was so unique there.
For example; There is no mention of eating things sacrificed to idols or things strangled or abstaining from fornication or from drinking blood in the revelation of the Tabernacle of David. The application deals with putting stumbling blocks in the way of the Gentiles that are seeking God.
Some of the other strange things that David did that begs explanation was used by Jesus to confront the Pharisees. MATH 12:3] But He said to them, "Have you not read what David did, when he became hungry, he and his companions;  how he entered the house of God, and they ate the consecrated bread, which was not lawful for him to eat, nor for those with him, but for the priests alone?  "Or have you not read in the Law, that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath, and are innocent?  "But I say to you, that something greater than the temple is here.  "But if you had known what this means, `I DESIRE COMPASSION, AND NOT A SACRIFICE,' you would not have condemned the innocent.  "For the Son of Man is Lord of the Sabbath."
REV 3:7 He who is holy, who is true, who has the key of David, who opens and no one will shut, and who shuts and no one opens, says this:  `I know your deeds.
David obviously had some sort of “KEY” that permitted him to access the Presence of God in the old dispensation of the law. David obviously had some sort of “KEY” that permitted him and those with him to eat the consecrated Show Bread. Jesus also had this “KEY” that permitted Him to open so that no one could shut and to lock out any He wanted to lock out.
There are 931 references to David in the Bible and most likely many of these examples have an application to the church. Since what David did with the Tabernacle of David was so extraordinary it must have a viable explanation for us. If Jesus used the incident of the Show Bread to confound the Pharisees how much more the Tabernacle of David begs an explanation.
Aaron’s rod that budded was also placed in the Ark along with the Tablets of the Covenant. NUMB 17:8 Now it came about on the next day that Moses went into the tent of the testimony; and behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi had sprouted and put forth buds and produced blossoms, and it bore ripe almonds.  Moses then brought out all the rods from the presence of the LORD to all the sons of Israel; and they looked, and each man took his rod.  But the LORD said to Moses, "Put back the rod of Aaron before the testimony to be kept as a sign against the rebels, that you may put an end to their grumblings against Me, so that they should not die."
Aaron’s rod that budded speaks to us about the authority that God has established and sealed by the holy anointing oil. Touch not mine anointed is a strong warning. Aaron was chosen by God, anointed, consecrated, clothed with the holy garments and set before the people as high priest. The fact that his rod budded, produced blooms and bore ripe almonds speaks to us of three subsequent stages of growth that never happen at the same time before. This witnesses to the supernatural confirmation by God of His divine order. This also focuses upon the real problem which was that these were rebels who were grumbling and were flirting with death.
Many today who have little interest in the restoration of the Tabernacle of David still speak about the restoration of Aaron’s rod that budded and the Manna that came down out of heaven.
The “Book of the LAW” was also placed outside and alongside of the Ark of the Covenant. We don’t read of it being in the Tabernacle of David but we do see it in 2KINGS 22:8 Then Hilkiah the high priest said to Shaphan the scribe, "I have found the book of the law in the house of the LORD." And Hilkiah gave the book to Shaphan who read it.
This was “the Word of God” for the Old Covenant. While it was placed outside the Ark it was an integral part of the Ark of the Covenant. The Covenant was established with the “Book of the Law” which was read in the hearing of all the people. All the people said they would do it and it was then set as a witness against them. EXO 24:7] Then he took the book of the covenant and read it in the hearing of the people; and they said, "All that the LORD has spoken we will do, and we will be obedient!"  So Moses took the blood and sprinkled it on the people, and said, "Behold the blood of the covenant, which the LORD has made with you in accordance with all these words."
We readily accept the Scriptures as the Word of God and accept that God has set them in our midst that we may do them and be obedient. In other words the type is valid for us today to make application to our lives.
Also as was quite evident that the presence of God was no longer at the Tabernacle of Moses that was at Gibeon because the Ark was in the Tabernacle of David that was on Mt. Zion. That indicates that it IS the Ark of the Covenant that fulfills the Most Holy Place because that is where the manifested Presence of God was. A “Most Holy Place” without the manifested Presence of God was just an empty tent. What made it “ Most Holy” was the Presence of Him Who is Most Holy.
Without laboring the point further we could point out that everything in the Tabernacle of Moses and the Tabernacle of David speaks of Jesus Christ and has it’s fulfillment in Him. However, we are also said to be the temple of the Holy Spirit and that we are being built up into a spiritual house for the habitation of the Spirit. God said He would walk in us and live in us. In this sense the Tabernacle of David has a fulfillment in us.
The fact that there was NO Holy Place in the Tabernacle of David speaks volumes to us and places “ministry” in proper perspective with the Presence of God. This shows us that “ministry” is just the result of our relationship to the Lord and His manifest Presence. 2 CHRON 29:9] "For behold, our fathers have fallen by the sword, and our sons and our daughters and our wives are in captivity for this.  "Now it is in my heart to make a covenant with the LORD God of Israel, that His burning anger may turn away from us.  "My sons, do not be negligent now, for the LORD has chosen you to stand before Him, to minister to Him, and to be His ministers and burn incense." This describes the “ministry” with 3/4 toward God and 1/4 toward the people. The 3/4 part is revealed in the Tabernacle of David and shows that which meets God’s need. The 1/4 part is what meets the people’s need. The Tabernacle of Moses that was at Gibeon functioned to meet the people’s need. David’s Tabernacle met God’s need and reveals His heart.
The Rod that Budded is connected to the Ark and speaks to us of the Holy Anointing and God’s delegated authority among men. It is our relationship with the Ark that confirms our anointing and our delegated authority. Like all the elders of Israel [that represented the 12 tribes] they could assume they had authority simply because they were elders but God showed who He had accepted and set there to represent Him. There are many today that assume they have the anointing and the authority because of their position but without a solid connection to the Ark and the Presence of God that cannot be confirmed and usually gets perverted.
If we were to make a modern day application to us personally we should ask, “ Do we have the contents of the Ark firmly placed and working in our lives, experientially?” In other words; Is the fulness of Christ manifest in us today? Is the Book of the Covenant speaking the “truth” about us?
JOHN 1:16] For of His fulness we have all received, and grace upon grace.  For the Law was given through Moses; grace and truth were realized through Jesus Christ.
EPH 3:19] and to know the love of Christ which surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled up to all the fulness of God.
Eph 1:22] And He put all things in subjection under His feet, and gave Him as head over all things to the church,  which is His body, the fulness of Him who fills all in all.
If David’s Tabernacle represents “the fulness of Him Who fills all in all” then the TENT must speak to us of the true church that holds the “fulness” of the Ark of the Covenant, Himself. That is His word, His authority and His provision. The Manna speaks to us of not living by natural bread alone but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God. The Manna was and is God’s provision for His people. Now the Manna is a person instead of a product but still must be eaten regularly to sustain our life and prepare us for resurrection. This is still speaking of Angel’s food.