|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
27:1-8 In the court before the tabernacle, where the people attended, was an altar, to which they must bring their sacrifices, and on which their priests must offer them to God. It was of wood overlaid with brass. A grate of brass was let into the hollow of the altar, about the middle of which the fire was kept, and the sacrifice burnt. It was made of net-work like a sieve, and hung hollow, that the ashes might fall through. This brazen altar was a type of Christ dying to make atonement for our sins. The wood had been consumed by the fire from heaven, if it had not been secured by the brass: nor could the human nature of Christ have borne the wrath of God, if it had not been supported by Divine power.
Verse 8. - Hollow with boards shalt thou make it. See the comment on ver. 1. The term here used for" boards," (which is different from that in ch. 26:15-29) implies strength and solidity. As it was showed thee in the mount, Compare Exodus 26:30, with the comment ad loc.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Hollow with boards shalt thou make it,.... The frame of it being made of boards of shittim wood, there was nothing within side but the grate, which was put within the square, down into the middle of it, and so was light of carriage; though the Targum of Jonathan, and other Jewish writers, represent this hollow as filled up with dust and earth, to answer to the altar of earth Moses was before bid to make; but this seems quite contrary to the present direction: the hollowness of the altar may denote the emptiness of Christ when he became a sacrifice: he emptied himself, as it were, when he became incarnate, of all his greatness, glory, and riches, and became mean and poor for the sake of his people, that they through his poverty might be made rich, Philippians 2:7.
as it was showed thee in the mount, so shall they make it; or, "as he showed thee" (g), that is, God. Moses had a model of this altar showed him, and he was to be careful to instruct the workmen, and see to it, that they built it exactly according to the model.
(g) "fecit videre", Pagninus, Montanus; "ostendit Dominus", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Drusius; so Ainsworth.
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