Study 2 of 13 on The Sanctuary

“U2 Sings “heaven on earth, I need it now. I’m sick of all of this hanging around” And then Bono goes on to sing about all the things he is sick of…. If the sanctuary is in heaven and we are here on earth, what difference does it make to those who can’t even grasp the concept of heaven because of all the sick things that humankind, created in God’s image, perpetuate? In the years of the church what have we done to the least of these in comparison with all the pointing towards the end game of the Second Coming?…because to correctly define sanctuary …perhaps active, positive, demonstrative examples are needed from those who choose to worship in God’s sanctuary here on earth…so others can see it as it is heaven.” –Falvo Fowler

Scriptural Basis: Gen. 1:31–2:3; Exod. 39:32, 43; 25:9; Heb. 8:5; John 2:19–21; 1 Cor. 3:16, 17; Rev. 21:1–22.

Key Text: “Who serve the copy and shadow of the heavenly things, as Moses was divinely instructed when he was about to make the tabernacle. For He said, ‘See that you make all things according to the pattern shown you on the mountain’ ” (Hebrews 8:5, NKJV).

Discussion Questions:
1. If the Sanctuary was constructed for a direct fellowship with God, would Eden have been the first sanctuary?

2. How can we conclude that the greatest suffering of sin is not death and suffering, but the withdrawal of direct access to God in worship?

3. If the Garden of Eden was the first sanctuary on earth, and if there is a heavenly sanctuary that existed in heaven even before that, what does it say about the primary purpose of the sanctuary? Was the sanctuary, as often understood from the OT images, essentially a place for sacrifices for sin?

4. Both in Exodus and in Hebrews we clearly learn that the earthly sanctuary was a copy of the heavenly (Exo. 25:8,9; 26:30; 27:8; Heb. 8:2,5). What similarities between the two can be seen? And what should we not expect?

5. John 1:14 says that the “Word became flesh and dwelt among us.” This is a reference to the incarnation of Jesus. The “dwelt” can also be translated “tabernacled;” that is to say, Jesus Himself in a way became our “sanctuary.” In what practical ways can we justify saying so?

6. Paul often says that Christians as a corporate body, ie., the church, and as individuals constitute a temple of the Holy Spirit (3:16, 17; 6:19, 20; 2 Corinthians 6:16; and Ephesians 2:19–22). What are the implications of such a stand to our lives and conduct—both individually and corporately?

7. How is our belief in the workings of the Sanctuary demonstrated outside of the Sabbath?

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