Sovereign Grace Baptist Church

Free Grace Media

Of Princeton, New Jersey


AuthorClay Curtis
TitleThe Tabernacle of Fine Twined Linen
Bible TextExodus 26:1-6
Synopsis The inner layer of fine twined linen typifies the holiness of Christ who is the holiness of his people. Listen
Series Exodus 2016
Article Type Sermon Notes
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Audio HI-FI Listen: The Tabernacle of Fine Twined Linen (32 kbps)
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Length 37 min.

Title: The Tabernacle of Fine Twined Linen 
Text: Ex 26: 1-6 
Date: Sept 8, 2019 
Place: SGBC, NJ
The tabernacle in the wilderness was typical of Christ himself.  Hebrews 9 says it was “a figure for the time then present…but Christ being come a greater more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building.” (Heb 9: 9, 11)
Also, the tabernacle was representative of God’s individual elect and the church as a whole.  God told Moses to build this tabernacle that God might dwell or tabernacle among them.  So we read of Christ, “The Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us” or tabernacled among us ((Jn 1: 14).  Our body is called a tabernacle.  In this sense, there are ways in which the tabernacle in the wilderness pictures the individual believer and the church as a whole in whom Christ dwells or tabernacles.  Christ is “a minister of the sanctuary”—the holy, sanctified place, which is sanctified by his indwelling—“and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man” (Heb 8: 2).
Revelation 21:3: And I heard a great voice out of heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and he will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself shall be with them, and be their God. 
Today, we are looking at the inner most covering.  But to give us context, let’s read about all four of the coverings.
First, the inner layer is called the tabernacle itself. It was made of ten fine linen curtains joined together, with cherubim elaborately woven within the linenExodus 26: 1: Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet: with cherubims of cunning work shalt thou make them.  This inner layer typifies the holiness of Christ who is the holiness of his people.
Second, over the linen, was a covering of black goats’ hair.  This layer is distinctly called “the tent.”  It was to be a covering for the inner most covering, which is called the tabernacle, which was made of fine twined linen—Exodus 26: 7: And thou shalt make curtains of goats’ hair to be a covering upon the tabernacle.   Notice verse 14 calls this layer of goat’s hair the tent, “And thou shalt make a covering for the tent.”  This layer of black goat’s hair typifies our humanity.  Christ was not sinful but he was made in the likeness of sinful flesh.  Then, at last, he was made sin for his people.  Yet, like as the fine twined linen was under the tent of goat’s hair, Christ was holy within.  We always find two things mentioned concerning Christ crucified and that is he was made sin for his people yet he knew no sin (2 Cor 5:21). 
The third cover was ram’s skins dyed red—Exodus 26: 14: And thou shalt make a covering for the tent of rams’ skins dyed red.  This typifies Christ who died as a sacrifice to cover our black sins, like as the ram died to make this covering for the black tent of goat’s hair.  Christ died to cover our sins with his precious blood like these red ram skins covered the tent of black goats’ hair.  From the outside, this layer was between the black goat’s hair and God above, covering the black goat’s hair, like as Christ’s blood is between us and God, covering our sins.  From the inside, the fine linen made it so you could not see the black goat’s skin.  By Christ’s holiness within and his righteousness covering us God does not see our sinful flesh. 
The fourth and outer covering was a very, very tough kind of leather—Exodus 26: 14…and a covering above of badgers’ skins.  If you looked upon the tabernacle all you saw was badger’s skins.  There was nothing comely about it to men.  This pictures Christ who made himself of no reputation.  There was no comeliness about him to make us desire him.  But this covering was a tough leather to protect the rest.  So Christ is our Protector, our Shield and Defender
Subject: The Tabernacle of Fine Twined Linen 
Proposition: This inner layer typifies the holiness of Christ who is the holiness of his people. 
Exodus 26: 1: Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, 
These ten curtains of fine twined linen points to the person of our Lord Jesus Christ, the LORD our Righteousness, in his holiness and righteousness.  The number “ten” points us to the Ten Commandments.  Christ is the righteousness of the law who God has provided for his people. 
Romans 10: 3: Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone that believeth. 
The “fine twined linen” typifies Christ’s holiness.   “Fine” means it was the very best material.  Christ is the only begotten Son of God, the very best.  “Twined” means the threads were doubled.  Some say they were twined six times so that it was of the finest quality.  Christ fulfilled the law for his people from his perfect, pure holy heart. 
Revelation 19: 8: And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white: for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. 
Believer, righteousness and holiness is granted to us only from Christ.  Christ is both our Righteousness and our Sanctification.  He is the purity and righteousness by whom we are made holy and righteous.  In contrast, in ourselves, “we are all as an unclean thing, and all our righteousness’s are as filthy rags” (Is 64: 6)  So, sinner, we must have Christ grant to us his “fine linen clean and white” which is “the righteousness of” of those he sanctifies. 
Exodus 26: 1…and blue, and purple, and scarlet: cherubims of cunning work shalt thou make them.
Fine twined linen of blue, purple and scarlet was used to interweave cherubims into the white fine twined linen.  The cherubim were one with the fine twined linen.  Some say the cherubs typify Christ’s angels who are ministering spirits continually ministering to his people.  But the picture is of Christ dwelling in his people, making us one with him, holy and righteous, and one with God our Father.   Therefore, in the color of this thread and the fact the cherubim which were made from it were woven into the fine twined linen so as to be one, we see a type of what it took for Christ to unite his people with God. 
These cherubim were woven by a “cunning work.”  It took skilled weavers who cunningly made these cherubim one with the fine twined linen.  We are made holy and righteous by Christ’s “cunning work” whereby he made us one with him and one with the Father. 
We see Christ and his work typified in these colors by which the cunning workmen made these cherubim to be one with the fine linen.  The order of these colors is significant because everywhere we find these three colors mentioned this is the order—“blue, and purple and scarlet.”  Here are a few examples: 
Exodus 25:4: And blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats’ hair, 
Exodus 35:6: And blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats’ hair, 
Exodus 35:23: And every man, with whom was found blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen, and goats’ hair, and red skins of rams, and badgers’ skins, brought them. 
So on one side is “blue.” This reminds us of the blue heaven.  In order to make us holy and righteous and one with him, it took the Son of God coming down out of heaven. 
On the other side is “scarlet.”  This is the color of blood.  In order to make us holy and righteous and one with God, the Son of God had to be made flesh like unto his brethren so that he could lay down his life in our place for “without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sins” (Heb 9:22).
In the middle is “purple.”  This is the color of royalty.  When they mocked Christ our King they put a crown of thorns on his head, a reed as a scepter in his hand and they put on his back a purple robe.  This color is made by combining these other two colors.  Here is the picture.  By the blood of Christ’s humanity, he purged our sins.  By the eternality of his Deity, he accomplished our eternal redemption.  So like as blue and scarlet combine to make the color of royalty so by God and Man coming in one person and finishing this work for his people, Christ is now exalted in his royal, kingly, mediatorial glory, as both Lord and Christ, the Prince and Savior of his people for to grant us repentance and faith.  It is by the GodMan and his sacrifice for us that we are one with God our Father in him. 
Exodus 26: 2: The length of one curtain shall be eight and twenty cubits, and the breadth of one curtain four cubits: and every one of the curtains shall have one measure. 3: The five curtains shall be coupled together one to another; and other five curtains shall be coupled one to another. 4: And thou shalt make loops of blue upon the edge of the one curtain from the selvedge in the coupling; and likewise shalt thou make in the uttermost edge of another curtain, in the coupling of the second. 5: Fifty loops shalt thou make in the one curtain, and fifty loops shalt thou make in the edge of the curtain that is in the coupling of the second; that the loops may take hold one of another. 6: And thou shalt make fifty taches of gold, and couple the curtains together with the taches: and it shall be one tabernacle.
These curtains were grouped together with five on one side and five on the other.  Then they were united by the blue loops with the gold taches coupling them together. 
One side of the ten commandments are toward God, the other side toward man.  Christ fulfilled both.  As the Representative of his people, he loved God with all his heart, and his neighbor as himself.  He was the only one by whom the law is fully and perfectly fulfilled and therefore discharged from his people.  Thereby, Christ is pictured in blood loops and the gold couplings that unites God and his people so that we are one tabernacle, one holy and righteous dwelling place of our God. 
Brethren, it is significant that God calls the inner fine linen “the tabernacle” and the next covering of goat’s hair, God calls “the tent.”  I realize the words “tabernacle” and “tent” sometimes carry the same meaning in scripture as temporary dwellings.  But here they are two different words because they picture two different things. 
The inner curtains of fine twined linen are called the tabernacle, typifying Christ our holy dwelling who dwells in us and in whom we dwell.  He is our holiness and our holiness in Christ is eternal.  But the tent of goat’s hair typifies our sinful flesh, which is a tent, a temporary dwelling place.  This tent of flesh is the sinful part of us which is of Adam—including our sin nature and our sinful bodies.  Since it is of Adam and sinful, one day we will die and put off these tents. 
Still, our lasting dwelling is in Christ our Holiness!   Our inward man is created in the righteousness and holiness of Christ with Christ in our new man and our new man in Christ so that we are united and inseparable.  Christ is our permanent dwelling place and we his.  The following passage uses the word “tabernacle” to describe our flesh but the meaning is that it is a temporary dwelling like a tent.  So this passage declares what we see in the tabernacle of fine linen and the tent of goat’s hair. 
2 Corinthians 5: 1: For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens. 2: For in this we groan, earnestly desiring to be clothed upon with our house which is from heaven: 3: If so be that being clothed we shall not be found naked. 4: For we that are in this tabernacle do groan, being burdened: not for that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life. 5: Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing is God, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit. 6: Therefore we are always confident, knowing that, whilst we are at home in the body, we are absent from the Lord: 7: (For we walk by faith, not by sight:) 8: We are confident, I say, and willing rather to be absent from the body, and to be present with the Lord.