The Old Testament Tabernacle : Lesson #1 The Pattern and Materials

The Old Testament Tabernacle : Lesson #1

The Pattern and Materials (Exodus 25:1-8)


Here we are going to look at the materials used in building the tabernacle. Most of the materials in the tabernacle are a type of something that connects with either the Lord Jesus Christ or salvation. These materials were chosen not randomly but specifically by God.

The materials are listed in verses 3-7 of the passage. Where did the nation of Israel get these materials from? In Exodus 12:34-36 we see that when Israel departed from Egypt they borrowed jewels of silver, jewels of gold, and raiment from the Egyptians. And after all the plagues the Egyptians were glad to give it to them whatever they asked for.

There are two things found in Verse 2 about the offering of the materials that makes a good spiritual application for us today.

1) The offering was to be given willingly.

  • If we are going to serve God knowing that now our bodies are the temple of the Holy Ghost (1 Corinthians 6:19), then we must give ourselves willingly to him and also anything we have must be willingly given to him also.

2) It is his anyway.

  • Note that God calls it “my offering”. If we would think of everything we have as belonging to God which it does anyway, then we would not have trouble giving it to him willingly.
  • Without the good health or mental ability that comes from God we would have nothing anyway, therefore everything we have comes from him.

Now let us list each material and give some types for which the materials stand for.

1)  Gold

  • Gold represents Deity (Highest value on earth)

2)  Silver

  • Silver represents the price of redemption. Remember that Jesus was betrayed for 30 pieces of Silver (Zechariah 11:3 ; Matthew 26:14-15)

3)  Brass

  • Brass represents judgment. The altar where all the sacrifices were burnt was the brazen altar. This is a type of sin being judged. Remember that the brazen serpent on the pole is a type of Jesus on Calvary (John 3:14) and our sins were judged in Jesus on Calvary.

4)  Blue

  • Blue represents the color of heaven (Numbers 15:38)

5)  Scarlet

  • Reference to the blood of Jesus

6)  Purple

  • Color of Royalty. It is interesting to note that blue and scarlet make purple. Therefore, the son of God from heaven shedding his blood for our sins makes us royalty.

7)  Fine linen

  • Fine linen is the righteousness of the saints (Revelation 19:8)

8)  Goats hair

  • Goats hair represents the sin offering (Leviticus 9:5) it can also represent a sin bearer (Leviticus 16:21).

9)  Ram skins dyed red

  • The rams skin represent the sacrifice of Jesus Christ (Genesis 22:13). They are also connected with the ministry of a priest (Exodus 29)

10)  Badgers skin

  • It is interesting that badgers skin was used for covering items in the tabernacle when they were going to be moved (Numbers 4:1-25)
  • This has a connection with being a type of the gospel note that in Ezekiel 16:10 God said he shod Israel’s feet with badgers skin. In Ephesians 6:15 part of our spiritual armor is having our feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace, and in Romans 10:15 it says that the feet on them that preach the gospel of peace are beautiful.
  • Therefore, in the tabernacle we can see a type of the death, burial and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ which is the Gospel. So, when the tabernacle was on the move it was covered with badgers skin just as feet are to shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.

11)  Shittim wood

  • This is said to be a very durable wood. In type it represents the humanity of the Lord Jesus Christ. Most things in the tabernacle that were made of shittim wood were overlaid with gold. Therefore, in type we have both the humanity of Jesus and the deity of Jesus.

12)  Oil for the light

  • The oil was olive oil (Exodus 27:2), and this is a type of the Holy Spirit.

13)  Spices for anointing and incense

  • Incense is used upon the altar of incense, and this is a type of the prayers of the saints (Revelation 8:3).
  • The anointing oil was used for anointing the instruments of the tabernacle and the priests (Exodus 33:22-33)

14)  Onyx stones and stones for the ephod

  • The stones were for the breastplate and the ephod which the high priest wore (Exodus 28).

The pattern of the tabernacle:

We know that God gave Moses the pattern for the tabernacle (Exodus 25:9), but the word pattern indicates that there is another one which is the pattern. The pattern that God showed Moses to build the tabernacle from is the one found in Heaven.

Hebrews 8:1-5 ; Hebrews 9:23,24


The Old Testament Tabernacle : Lesson #1 Handout

 The Pattern and Materials (Exodus 25:1-8)

 1)  Below is a list of the materials used in the construction of the tabernacle. Give an example for what each thing in the list is a type of.







Fine Linen

Goats Hair

Ram’s Skin dyed Red

Badgers Skin

Shittim Wood

Oil for Light

Spices for anointing Oil

Onyx Stones

Stones for Ephod


2)  Where did Moses get the pattern for the tabernacle from? Give references.