There was a way into the Tabernacle court provided for the sinner whereby he could approach from the outside and enter into communion and fellowship with God. He could not come over the fence, or under or through it, but by means of a door (gate) especially provided. At the eastern end of this fence that enclosed the Tabernacle was a wide gate which gave entrance to the tabernacle where God dwelt.
And the hanging (curtain) for the gate (door) of the court was needlework, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen: and twenty cubits was the length, and the height in the breadth was five cubits. (Ex. 38:18)
This was the only opening in the linen fence, and the only way of approach to the tabernacle. It was an opening thirty feet long, seven and one-half feet high, made of white linen, beautifully embroidered with blue and scarlet and purple needlework. The door, of course, points to the Lord Jesus Christ as the only approach to God; for He Himself said centuries later:
I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved. (John 1:9)
Likewise Peter says:
Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved. (Acts 4:12)
Four Colors in the Gate
The curtain which hung across this gate likewise speaks of Him who is the Door into the sheepfold, for this curtain was made of fine white linen. Worked into its texture in fine needlework were patterns of purple, scarlet and blue. These were the four prominent colors of the tabernacle, and each one points to some particular aspect of the nature and character of the person of our Savior. Purple is the sign of royalty, the color of the King. Scarlet is the color of blood, and speaks of sacrifice. White is the color of perfection and righteousness, while blue is the color of heaven. These same colors were also used in the garments of the High Priest.
As applied to the Lord Jesus Christ these four colors speak of Christ in a fourfold way as the King, as a sacrificing Servant, as a perfect Man, and as perfect God. They suggest the picture of Christ in the four records of the gospel by Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. Matthew corresponds to the purple, and tells us of Christ as the King of Israel. Mark corresponds to the scarlet, and presents Christ as the suffering Servant. Luke presents to us the perfect, sinless humanity of Christ Jesus and corresponds to the white linen, while John introduces us to the heaven-sent Son of God, the eternal Creator, aptly suggested by the blue color in the hangings of the court.
Grace and Law
The fence of the law says “stay out,” but the door of the grace of God in Christ says, “Come in, whosoever will.”
Only One Way
As stated, there was only one door, and it is the door of the person of the Lord Jesus Christ, the King, the Servant, the Man, the God of the universe. There is no other way to God than by personal faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God. For He Himself says in John 10:1:
Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. (John 10:1)
Then said Jesus unto them again, Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by me if any man enter in, he shall be saved — ” (John 10:7-9a)
Jesus speaks of Himself in the above passages as both having come in the proper way, i.e. fulfilling all the prophecy and types of the Old Testament that point to Him, and also that He, Himself, is the Way for all mankind. He both came in by the only door, and He is the door of the sheepfold. There is no way to reconciliation with God by any other method.
As Jesus tells us:
I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. (John 14:6)
This is the second of a series on the Tabernacle of Moses. Next:
The Tabernacle of Moses/Picture of Christ ‘” Part 3
The Brazen Altar ‘” Picture of the Cross
All Scripture quotes: KJV, unless otherwise noted.
Thanks to Myers Media © for the royalty-free photos from their The Sanctuary Teaching Aids DVD distributed by Vision Video.
My greatest teacher about the Tabernacle was and is my own personal Bible study, both Old and New Testaments. One of the outstanding influences on my study:
The Tabernacle, by M.R. deHaan, M.D., Copyright 1955 by Zondervan Publishing House ‘” still in print.