**At least two of the latter pictures of the furniture of the tabernacle of Moses are incorrect.**


Most pictorial illustrations of the position of the two staves which were inserted into the four rings of the Ark of the Covenant are incorrect. The prevalent depiction illustrates the two staves positioned in the rings of the ark as running parallel to the longest length of the ark, which is two cubits and a half. However, we note in 1 Kings 8:8 and again in 2 Chronicles 5:9 that when the staves were partially withdrawn from the rings of the ark, “that the ends of the staves were seen out in the holy place before the oracle, and they were not seen without [outside the Holy Place].” (1 Kings 8:8). This positioning clearly places the staves parallel to the shorter sides of the ark.

We may further note that Bezaleel cast for the ark “four rings of gold, to be set by the four corners of it; even two rings upon one side of it, and two rings upon the other side of it.” (Ex 37:3). In this particular usage, the primary Hebrew meaning of side is “a rib (as curved, lit. (of the body).” In application, these sides are the shorter width or breadth of the ark, which is a cubit and a half, to either side of our Lord God’s Shekinah presence above the ark. Please note that two rings are attached to each side of the ark, and not to the front nor to the rear as they would necessarily have to be should the staves run parallel to the front and rear.



(Ex 37:25-27)  And he made the incense altar of shittim wood: the length of it was a cubit, and the breadth of it a cubit; it was foursquare; and two cubits was the height of it; the horns thereof were of the same. And he overlaid it with pure gold, both the top of it, and the sides thereof round about, and the horns of it: also he made unto it a crown of gold round about. And he made two rings of gold for it under the crown thereof, by the two corners of it, upon the two sides thereof, to be places for the staves to bear it withal.
Please immediately note our Lord’s plain statement of description that the Altar of Incense had only “two rings,” that it was “foursquare,” and that the two rings were attached to the “two corners” thereof. With this information given to guide us, there can only be one possible explanation. The correct explanation is that one ring each was attached to two opposing corners, and that one stave each was inserted into the one ring at those opposing corners, and that the Altar was therefore borne up, perfectly balanced, with a non-ringed corner in the lead and pointing forward.
Are these two very common errors in our perceptions of God's tabernacle significant? Yup! You better believe it! The composition, function, appearance, and description of every single article of furniture in the tabernacle of Moses, and the tabernacle itself, is inconceivably significant. Our Lord God esteemed them worthy according to the pattern, and delivered them to us atop Mount Sinai along with the Law. Each item is therefore directly relevant to the doctrine of Christ.
(Ex 25:40)  And look that thou make them after their pattern [that means exactly], which was showed thee in the mount.