Veil of the Temple

And thou shalt make a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen of cunning work: with cherubims shall it be made… and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy. – Exodus 26:31,33

Text: Mark 15:38

Prop: a small curtain

Summary: God used the veil of the temple as a barrier to access the Holiest of Holies. This separation ended as Jesus became the mediator between God and man.

The tabernacle
Graphic of Tabernacle at night ©1996 Karl Kofoed, Kofoed Design, used by permission.

Today I want to share with you about a curtain, or veil, that was placed to separate the sanctuary from the Holiest of Holies in the tabernacle. It was actually a veil that served to separate God from man. This portion of the tabernacle was entered into once a year by the high priest to make an atonement, or sin offering, for the whole nation of Israel.

There is something else I want to explain. It has to do with tearing of the robe. If a king were really mad about something, to show his displeasure, he would tear or rend his robe from top to bottom. He would start at the collar and tear it until he exposed his undergarments and that was shameful. It meant that he was really upset about whatever had happened.

When Jesus was crucified for our sins on the cross, some amazing things happened. For one thing, there was a supernatural darkness that covered the land for three hours while Jesus hung on the cross. He willingly gave up his spirit; it was not taken from him by the crucifixion. A great earthquake shook the ground when he died. In Matthew 27:51 the Bible says And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom. Imagine that! It was God the Father that was upset that Jesus had died. He showed his indignation by tearing the veil of the temple in two from top to bottom. The veil which separated God from man had been removed by the sacrifice Jesus made for our sins. Jesus, not a high priest, was now the mediator between God and man. All who seek forgiveness of sins must ask Jesus. He is the One that paid the price for all mankind.

The writer of Hebrews said it eloquently in Hebrews 10:19-22

“Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus, By a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; And having a high priest over the house of God; Let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water.”

©1997 by Jim Kerlin. All rights reserved.

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