CULT
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CULT. Complex of rites, ceremonies, practices, paraphernalia, symbols, institutions, personnel External religious life. Cult (cont.). Not a negative term: each religious group has its own cult. Concerns how one expresses or maintains a relationship with God. Tabernacle and the Israelite Cult.

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CULT

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Cult

CULT

Complex of rites, ceremonies, practices, paraphernalia, symbols, institutions, personnel

External religious life


Cult cont

Cult (cont.)

  • Not a negative term: each religious group has its own cult.

  • Concerns how one expresses or maintains a relationship with God.


Tabernacle and the israelite cult

Tabernacle and the Israelite Cult

  • Layout and Function

  • 3 elements:

    • Court where laypeople may enter;

    • Holy place where priests may enter;

    • Holy of Holies/Most Holy place- where high priest entered once per year

  • Increasing sanctity- decreasing access


Outer court

Outer Court

  • Implements of bronze

  • Altar of burnt offering- rarely called Yahweh’s “table”

  • Perpetual fire: the hearth of God

  • God’s presence and his holiness

  • “Horns” of the altar

  • Laver- “to wash”


Holy place

Holy Place

  • Accessible to priests and levites.

  • Implements of gold.

  • Table for special bread

  • Menorah/candlesticks

  • Incense altar


Holy of holies

Holy of Holies

  • Shape of a cube

  • Ark of the Covenant, covered by “Atonement cover”- made of solid gold

  • Significance of location and contents

  • 1 Chron 28:2; 1 Sam 4:4; Jer 3:16-17


Layout and material

Layout and Material

  • Source of layout- God

  • Source of materials- Israelites (Exod 25:1-7)- a model for freewill offerings?

  • Julius Wellhausen- questions historicity of 1 ton gold, 3 tons silver, 2.5 tons bronze


Tabernacle and symbolism

Tabernacle and Symbolism

  • Genre of literary material = narrative and law, not apocalyptic like Daniel/Revelation

  • Don’t get carried away looking for symbolism everywhere.

  • Do note symbolism which is demonstrably present: dimensions and location; increasing sanctity; clothing.


Tabernacle and sinai

Tabernacle and Sinai

  • Approach to the mountain:

  • people stay at bottom;

  • leaders half way up;

  • Moses alone to the top

  • Decreasing access, greater purity of material

  • Tabernacle parallels Sinai


Tabernacle and sinai1

Tabernacle and Sinai

  • Exodus 24:16

  • Exodus 40:34

  • Tabernacle perpetuates Sinai


Tabernacle and sinai2

Tabernacle and Sinai

  • Exodus 24:18

  • Exodus 40:35

  • Intensifies Sinai


Tabernacle completes sinai

Tabernacle completes Sinai

  • Sinai = marriage; Tabernacle is living together afterwards (Exod 29:45-46)

  • Danger of feeling loss of God’s omnipresence if just tied to Sinai

  • The important element is not geographical place but rather theological presence


Tabernacle and camp

Tabernacle and Camp

  • Central location in camp

  • All have equal access

  • All equally served

  • None given special treatment


Tabernacle and creation

Tabernacle and Creation

  • Tabernacle building narrative- 7 sections, each started with “Yahweh said to Moses” (Ex 25:1-31:17)

  • 7th unit- Exod 31:12-17 the Sabbath

  • - creation-Tabernacle


Verbal conceptual parallels

Verbal/Conceptual Parallels

  • Gen 2:1,2; Exod 39:32- finished (hlk), work (hdwb[), had done (hc[)

  • Gen 2:2; Exod 40:33b- finish, work

  • Gen 2:3; Exod 39:43- bless

  • Exodus 40:2- new beginning

  • Sabbath = peak in creation of world and of tabernacle

  • Time with God surpasses place where God is


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