Exodus 30:6
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New International Version
Put the altar in front of the curtain that shields the ark of the covenant law--before the atonement cover that is over the tablets of the covenant law--where I will meet with you.

New Living Translation
Place the incense altar just outside the inner curtain that shields the Ark of the Covenant, in front of the Ark's cover--the place of atonement--that covers the tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant. I will meet with you there.

English Standard Version
And you shall put it in front of the veil that is above the ark of the testimony, in front of the mercy seat that is above the testimony, where I will meet with you.

New American Standard Bible
"You shall put this altar in front of the veil that is near the ark of the testimony, in front of the mercy seat that is over the ark of the testimony, where I will meet with you.

King James Bible
And thou shalt put it before the vail that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
You are to place the altar in front of the veil by the ark of the testimony--in front of the mercy seat that is over the testimony--where I will meet with you.

International Standard Version
You are to put the altar in front of the curtain that is over the Ark of the Testimony, in front of the Mercy Seat that is over the Testimony where I'll meet with you.

NET Bible
"You are to put it in front of the curtain that is before the ark of the testimony (before the atonement lid that is over the testimony), where I will meet you.

New Heart English Bible
You shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you.

GOD'S WORD® Translation
Put the altar in front of the canopy which [hangs] over the ark containing the words of my promise. I will meet with you there in front of the throne of mercy that is on the ark.

JPS Tanakh 1917
And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the ark-cover that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

New American Standard 1977
“And you shall put this altar in front of the veil that is near the ark of the testimony, in front of the mercy seat that is over the ark of the testimony, where I will meet with you.

Jubilee Bible 2000
And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the seat of reconciliation that is over the testimony, where I will testify unto thee of myself.

King James 2000 Bible
And you shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you.

American King James Version
And you shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you.

American Standard Version
And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy-seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And thou shalt set the altar over against the veil, that hangeth before the ark of the testimony before the propitiatory wherewith the testimony is covered, where I will speak to thee.

Darby Bible Translation
And thou shalt put it in front of the veil which is before the ark of the testimony in front of the mercy-seat which is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

English Revised Version
And thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy-seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

Webster's Bible Translation
And thou shalt put it before the vail that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy-seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with thee.

World English Bible
You shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you.

Young's Literal Translation
and thou hast put it before the vail, which is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy-seat which is over the testimony, whither I am met with thee.
Study Bible
The Altar of Incense
5"You shall make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold. 6"You shall put this altar in front of the veil that is near the ark of the testimony, in front of the mercy seat that is over the ark of the testimony, where I will meet with you. 7"Aaron shall burn fragrant incense on it; he shall burn it every morning when he trims the lamps.…
Cross References
Exodus 25:21
"You shall put the mercy seat on top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony which I will give to you.

Exodus 25:22
"There I will meet with you; and from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, I will speak to you about all that I will give you in commandment for the sons of Israel.

Exodus 30:5
"You shall make the poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold.

Exodus 30:7
"Aaron shall burn fragrant incense on it; he shall burn it every morning when he trims the lamps.

Exodus 40:26
Then he placed the gold altar in the tent of meeting in front of the veil;

1 Chronicles 23:13
The sons of Amram were Aaron and Moses. And Aaron was set apart to sanctify him as most holy, he and his sons forever, to burn incense before the LORD, to minister to Him and to bless in His name forever.
Treasury of Scripture

And you shall put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony, before the mercy seat that is over the testimony, where I will meet with you.

vail

Exodus 26:31-35 And you shall make a veil of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine …

Exodus 40:3,5,26 And you shall put therein the ark of the testimony, and cover the …

Matthew 27:51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in two from the top …

Hebrews 9:3,4 And after the second veil, the tabernacle which is called the Holiest of all…

before the mercy seat that is over the testimony. These words are thought to be a repetition of the preceding clause, before the vail that is by the ark of the testimony. The repetition, as Dr. Kennicott observes, places the altar of incense before the mercy seat, and consequently in the Holy of Holies! Now this could not be, as the altar of incense was attended every day, and the Holy of Holies entered only once in the year. The five words which appear to be a repetition are wanting in twenty-six of Kennicott's and Rossi's MSS and in the Samaritan Text.

Exodus 25:21,22 And you shall put the mercy seat above on the ark; and in the ark …

Leviticus 16:13 And he shall put the incense on the fire before the LORD…

1 Chronicles 28:11 Then David gave to Solomon his son the pattern of the porch, and …

Hebrews 4:16 Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may …

Hebrews 9:5 And over it the cherubim of glory shadowing the mercy seat; of which …

I will

Exodus 30:36 And you shall beat some of it very small, and put of it before the …

Exodus 29:42,43 This shall be a continual burnt offering throughout your generations …

Numbers 17:4 And you shall lay them up in the tabernacle of the congregation before …

(6) Before the vail.--The ark was behind the vail (Exodus 26:33; Exodus 40:3), the altar of incense directly in front of it, nearer to the vail than either the golden candlestick or the table of shewbread. Hence the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews speaks of it as belonging, in a certain sense, to the Holy of Holies (Hebrews 9:4; see Kay, in Speaker's Commentary). The "vail that is by the ark of the testimony" is distinguished here from the vail, or curtain, at the entrance to the holy place.

Before the mercy seat.--The altar bore a close relation to the mercy seat. It was the instrument by which the "mercy" there enthroned was made available to the penitent sinner.

Where I will meet with thee.--Comp. Exodus 25:22; Exodus 29:42-43.

Verse 6. - Thou shalt put it before the vail. It might have been doubtful from what is said here, which side of the veil the altar was to be placed. The doubt is precluded by the narrative of what Moses actually did in Exodus 40:21-29, which makes it clear that the altar was placed with the golden candlestick and the table of shew-bread, outside the veil, in the "holy place," and not within the "holy of holies." Where I will meet with thee. See above, Exodus 25:22. Thou shalt put it before the vail,.... That divides between the holy and the most holy place; not within the vail in the holy of holies, but before it at the holy place, for there the altar of incense stood: Josephus (o) says, between the candlestick and the table, i.e. of shewbread, stood the altar of incense; now the candlestick and shewbread were in the holy place; and with this account the Talmudists (p) agree, who say, that the table was in the north, distant from the wall two cubits and a half, and the candlestick on the south, distant from the wall two cubits and a half, and the altar was in the middle, and stood between them: and Maimonides (q) gives the like account of its situation, which is here further described:

that is by the ark of the testimony; which vail was by it, before which the altar was placed; the ark of the testimony was the chest or coffer in which the law was put, and which was the testimony of the will of God, from whence it had this name; and it stood in the most holy place; and not by it in the same place, but over against it, in the holy place stood the altar of incense:

before the mercy seat, that is over the testimony; the mercy seat that was over the ark, a lid or cover to it, where the testimony was; and towards this, before the face of it, was the altar of incense, where the priest officiating, looked directly towards it; having that in view for the acceptance of the people's prayers to God through Christ, which they were making while he was burning the incense:

where I will meet thee; as he had before promised, Exodus 25:22.

(o) Antiqu. l. 3. c. 6. sect. 8. (p) T. Bab. Yoma, fol. 33. 2.((q) Hilchot Beth. Habechirah, c. 1. sect. 7. 6. thou shalt put it before the veil that is by the ark of the testimony—which separated the holy from the most holy place. The altar was in the middle between the table of showbread and the candlestick next the holy of holies, at equal distances from the north and south walls; in other words, it occupied a spot on the outside of the great partition veil, but directly in front of the mercy seat, which was within that sacred enclosure; so that although the priest who ministered at this altar could not behold the mercy seat, he was to look towards it, and present his incense in that direction. This was a special arrangement, and it was designed to teach the important lesson that, though we cannot with the eye of sense, see the throne of grace, we must "direct our prayer to it and look up" [Ps 5:3] (compare 2Co 3:14; Heb 10:20; Re 4:1).30:1-10 The altar of incense represented the Son of God in his human nature, and the incense burned thereon typified his pleading for his people. The continual intercession of Christ was represented by the daily burning of incense thereon, morning and evening. Once every year the blood of the atonement was to be applied to it, denoting that the intercession of Christ has all its virtue from his sufferings on earth, and that we need no other sacrifice or intercessor but Christ alone.
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