Matthew Poole's Commentary
Moreover thou shalt make the tabernacle with ten curtains of fine twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet: with cherubims of cunning work shalt thou make them.Moses is commanded to make the tabernacle with ten curtains, Exodus 26:1 The length and breadth of the curtains, Exodus 26:2. The form of the curtains, Exodus 26:3-6. He is commanded to make eleven curtains of goats’ hair, Exodus 26:7. The manner of the making and placing them, Exodus 26:8-14. Of what the tabernacle is to be made, Exodus 26:15. The manner of its making, with other utensils, Exodus 26:16-30. Of the veil, and what it is to be made of, Exodus 26:31. The fashion of it, Exodus 26:32,33. The hanging for the tent-door, Exodus 26:36.
The tabernacle, or tent; a little house wherein the ark, table, and candlestick were to be placed. And scarlet, i.e. with materials of these colours, to wit, wool, as may be gathered from hence, that it is opposed to linen. Compare Exodus 25:4. Of cunning work, either woven, or rather wrought with needle, wherein is most skill and curiosity.
The length of one curtain shall be eight and twenty cubits, and the breadth of one curtain four cubits: and every one of the curtains shall have one measure.No text from Poole on this verse.
The five curtains shall be coupled together one to another; and other five curtains shall be coupled one to another.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make loops of blue upon the edge of the one curtain from the selvedge in the coupling; and likewise shalt thou make in the uttermost edge of another curtain, in the coupling of the second.Loops together with the taches were for the joining the curtains together, as appears from Exodus 26:11, which way of conjunction was most convenient for the often taking them down and setting them up.
From the selvage, or from, or in the extremity, or end, or edge, Heb. lip. In the coupling, i.e. in the place where the two curtains are coupled together. And likewise the second curtain is to be made exactly like the first.
Fifty loops shalt thou make in the one curtain, and fifty loops shalt thou make in the edge of the curtain that is in the coupling of the second; that the loops may take hold one of another.Ver. 5. No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make fifty taches of gold, and couple the curtains together with the taches: and it shall be one tabernacle.The taches, or hooks or buttons, which were put into the loops to unite and fasten the curtains.
And thou shalt make curtains of goats' hair to be a covering upon the tabernacle: eleven curtains shalt thou make.Of goats’ hair, spun, Exodus 35:26, and woven into a stuff, like our camlet.
To be a covering; to be put next above the curtains.
The length of one curtain shall be thirty cubits, and the breadth of one curtain four cubits: and the eleven curtains shall be all of one measure.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt couple five curtains by themselves, and six curtains by themselves, and shalt double the sixth curtain in the forefront of the tabernacle.For the better security of the inward covering.
And thou shalt make fifty loops on the edge of the one curtain that is outmost in the coupling, and fifty loops in the edge of the curtain which coupleth the second.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make fifty taches of brass, and put the taches into the loops, and couple the tent together, that it may be one.No text from Poole on this verse.
And the remnant that remaineth of the curtains of the tent, the half curtain that remaineth, shall hang over the backside of the tabernacle.No text from Poole on this verse.
And a cubit on the one side, and a cubit on the other side of that which remaineth in the length of the curtains of the tent, it shall hang over the sides of the tabernacle on this side and on that side, to cover it.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make a covering for the tent of rams' skins dyed red, and a covering above of badgers' skins.To preserve the rest from the injury of the weather.
And thou shalt make boards for the tabernacle of shittim wood standing up.No text from Poole on this verse.
Ten cubits shall be the length of a board, and a cubit and a half shall be the breadth of one board.No text from Poole on this verse.
Two tenons shall there be in one board, set in order one against another: thus shalt thou make for all the boards of the tabernacle.Two tenons, Heb. hands, i.e. parts of the boards, so cut and framed that like hands they may take hold of and be fastened into the sockets, Exodus 26:19.
And thou shalt make the boards for the tabernacle, twenty boards on the south side southward.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make forty sockets of silver under the twenty boards; two sockets under one board for his two tenons, and two sockets under another board for his two tenons.Forty sockets, or bases, or pedestals, or feet, upon which the boards stood, and to which they were fastened.
And for the second side of the tabernacle on the north side there shall be twenty boards:No text from Poole on this verse.
And their forty sockets of silver; two sockets under one board, and two sockets under another board.No text from Poole on this verse.
And for the sides of the tabernacle westward thou shalt make six boards.No text from Poole on this verse.
And two boards shalt thou make for the corners of the tabernacle in the two sides.Which were of another fashion than the former, as may be gathered both from the distinct nomination and use of them, and from the laws of building. And whereas the rest were but single boards, these were double, for greater strength and conveniency of joining them together.
And they shall be coupled together beneath, and they shall be coupled together above the head of it unto one ring: thus shall it be for them both; they shall be for the two corners.Coupled together, Heb. as twins, i.e. equal and equally joined together, and exactly answering one to the other.
Unto one ring, which ring was exactly in the corner, and with the help of the bars kept the corner boards, and with them the other boards of the tabernacle, close together. But you must note, that here were two rings in each corner, the one in the upper, the other in the lower parts.
And they shall be eight boards, and their sockets of silver, sixteen sockets; two sockets under one board, and two sockets under another board.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make bars of shittim wood; five for the boards of the one side of the tabernacle,By bars you may understand either,
1. Several rows or orders of bars, one bar beginning at the end of the other, and each containing four cubits in length, and altogether twenty cubits, which was the length of the tabernacle; or,
2. Single bars, which seem truer,
1. Because the word signifies bars, not rows of bars; and why should we go from the proper signification of the word without cause?
2. If bars be put for rows of bars, there must be five rows of bars on a side, there being so many bars said to be on a side. But the abettors of that opinion allow only four rows of bars on a side; and it is apparent the middle bar, which is one of the five, is but one single bar, Exodus 26:28, and therefore it may be presumed the rest were so too.
3. The name of the middle bar implies, that of the other four bars, two were above it, and two below it.
Object. But if they were each single bars, reaching the whole length of the building, why is it said peculiarly of the middle bar, that it should reach from end to end, or from extremity to extremity? Exodus 26:28.
Answ. This may be peculiarly said of this, either because the other four might want something of the just length of the building, or because the middle bar might stand out beyond the two ends of it, for conveniency of the carriage of the building.
And five bars for the boards of the other side of the tabernacle, and five bars for the boards of the side of the tabernacle, for the two sides westward.There was but one side westward. Either therefore here is a transposition of the Hebrew words, which is usual, and the words are thus to be placed and rendered,
westward, looking to both sides, or, westward, according to both the other sides, now mentioned, to note that the number and length of bars in the west end should be equal to those on either of the other sides; or here is an enallage of the number, the dual or plural for the singular, of which there are many examples, and so the words are to be rendered, for the side looking westward.
And the middle bar in the midst of the boards shall reach from end to end.In the midst of the boards; not within the thickness of the boards, as the Jews conceive, but in the length of them; as appears,
1. Because this bar, as well as the rest, was gilded, Exodus 26:29, which was frivolous if it were never seen
2. Because all the bars had rings made to receive and hold them up, Exodus 26:29.
And thou shalt overlay the boards with gold, and make their rings of gold for places for the bars: and thou shalt overlay the bars with gold.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt rear up the tabernacle according to the fashion thereof which was shewed thee in the mount.Either by visible representation to his eye, or rather by mental vision or impression of it upon his imagination.
And thou shalt make a vail of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen of cunning work: with cherubims shall it be made:Thou shalt make a veil, which was thick and strong that none could see through it, called the second veil, Hebrews 9:3, whereby the holy of holies, which represented the highest heaven, was divided from the holy place, where the church militant, or its representatives, met and served God, Exodus 26:33. For the signification of this veil, see Luke 23:45 Hebrews 9:8,24 10:19,20.
And thou shalt hang it upon four pillars of shittim wood overlaid with gold: their hooks shall be of gold, upon the four sockets of silver.The hooks were fastened to the tops of the pillars, as the veil was fastened to them.
And thou shalt hang up the vail under the taches, that thou mayest bring in thither within the vail the ark of the testimony: and the vail shall divide unto you between the holy place and the most holy.Under the taches, or, in the place (as the Hebrew tacheth oft signifies) of the taches, to wit, where the two curtains are joined together by taches, Exodus 26:6.
And thou shalt put the mercy seat upon the ark of the testimony in the most holy place.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt set the table without the vail, and the candlestick over against the table on the side of the tabernacle toward the south: and thou shalt put the table on the north side.No text from Poole on this verse.
And thou shalt make an hanging for the door of the tent, of blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine twined linen, wrought with needlework.For the door of the tent, i.e. of the holy place, where it was divided from the court of the people.
And thou shalt make for the hanging five pillars of shittim wood, and overlay them with gold, and their hooks shall be of gold: and thou shalt cast five sockets of brass for them.No text from Poole on this verse.