|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
26:31-37 A vail, or curtain, separated the holy place from the most holy place. It was hung upon pillars. This vail was for a partition between the holy place and the most holy; which forbade any to look into the holiest of all. The apostle tells what was the meaning of this vail, Heb 9:8. That the ceremonial law could not make the comers thereunto perfect, nor would the observance of it bring men to heaven; the way into the holiest of all was not made manifest, while the first tabernacle was standing. Life and immortality lay hidden till they were brought to light by the gospel; which was signified by the rending of this vail at the death of Christ, Mt 27:51. We have now boldness to enter into the holiest, in all acts of worship, by the blood of Jesus; yet such as obliges us to holy reverence. Another vail was for the outer door of the tabernacle. This vail was all the defence the tabernacle had. God takes care of his church on earth. A curtain shall be, if God please to make it so, as strong a defence to his house, as gates of brass and bars of iron. With this typical description of Christ and his church before us, what is our judgment of these matters? Do we see any glory in the person of Christ? any excellence in his character? any thing precious in his salvation? or any wisdom in the doctrine of the cross? Will our religion bear examination? and are we more careful to approve our hearts to God than our characters toward men?
Verse 33. - Thou shalt hang up the veil under the taches. If the "taches" of ver. 6 or even of ver. 11, are intended, and" under" is to be taken strictly as" immediately under," the mishkan must have been divided by the veil into two equal, or very nearly equal parts; and the tabernacle must in an important particular have completely differed from the temple. In the temple the holy place was twice the length of the holy of holies (1 Kings 6:16, 17). It is possible that "under "may be used vaguely, or that the "taches" of this verse are the "hooks" of ver. 32. That thou mayest bring in. Rather, "And thou shalt bring in." The clause is directive. The most holy. Literally, "the holy of holies" - the inner chamber, that within the veil, which constituted the adytum, or innermost recess of the tabernacle. The ark and the mercy-seat were the special furniture of this inner sanctuary. To these is added later (Exodus 30:1-10) the altar of incense.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And thou shall hang up the vail under the taches,.... Or clasps, which coupled the two grand curtains, or pieces of tapestry, each consisting of five curtains, of which the tabernacle was made, Exodus 26:6, and by this it seems that the place where they met, and were clasped, was where the vail was hung between the holy and the most holy place: for, as Dr. Lightfoot (y) observes, according to the division of the house was the division of the curtains, the vail that parted the holy from the most holy was hung just under the golden clasps that knit the five curtains together; so that five curtains lay over the holy place, and the other five over the most holy; but with this difference, the holy place was ten yards long, and the five curtains sewed together were just so broad, and so they covered only the top and sides, but hung not down at the end which was eastward; but the most holy was but five yards long, and the five curtains over that did not only cover the top, but also hung down at the west end to the silver bases; and of what he says of the goat hair curtains, and their brazen clasps or taches, and where they met, and what they covered; see Gill on Exodus 26:12,
that thou mayest bring in thither within the vail the ark of the testimony; the ark in which the testimony or law of God, testifying his will, was put; of which see Exodus 25:10, &c. this was to be set in the most holy place, as being holy, spiritual, just, and good; and as being fulfilled by Christ, signified by the ark in which it was, through whose righteousness alone there is admission into the holy of holies, by which this law is fulfilled, magnified, and made honourable:
and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy; which was so thick, that there was no seeing through it; and none might enter by it into the holiest of all but the high priest, and he only on the day of atonement; and into the holy place might none come but the priests, to do the service of the sanctuary. The holy place was typical of the church on earth, where all the saints, who are priests to God, worship, and the most holy of heaven, the perfect state of bliss and happiness.
(y) Works, vol, 1. p. 718.
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