Messianic Prophecy In The Pentateuch (Ten)

It is written:

“”Make a table from acacia wood. The table must be 2 cubits long, 1 cubit wide, and 1 1/2 cubits high. 24  Cover the table with pure gold and put gold trim around it. 25  Then make a frame 1 handbreadth wide around the table. And put gold trim on the frame. 26  Then make four gold rings and put them on the four corners of the table, where the four legs are. 27  Put the rings close to the frame around the top of the table. These rings will hold the poles used to carry the table. 28  Use acacia wood to make the poles, and cover them with gold. The poles are for carrying the table. 29  Make the plates, the spoons, the pitchers, and the bowls from pure gold. The pitchers and bowls will be used for pouring the drink offerings. 30  Put the special bread before me on the table. It must always be there in front of me.”. (Exodus 25:25-30)

The table of Showbread was another piece of furniture in the Tabernacle which was prophetic of the New Testament and Christian Age. One Roman Catholic author, during his study of the Lord’s Supper, has written:

““This passage contains three important clues to the meaning of this strange bread. First, upon careful examination, you’ll notice that the bread was not the only item on the golden table. Next to it were “flagons and bowls” for pouring “libations”—that is, sacrificial drink offerings of wine (compare Numbers 15: 5–7; 28: 7). So, when it comes to the Tabernacle of Moses, we can rightly refer to it as the bread and wine of the Presence. “Intriguingly, as the Jewish scholar Menahem Haran argues, this wine was different from all other wine offerings, since it was not poured out by the priests. Instead, this wine seems to have been drunk in a sacred meal of bread and wine. Second, as I mentioned above, most older English translations, like the King James Version, speak about the Showbread. However, the actual Hebrew expression is lehem ha panim, which in most modern English Bibles is “Bread of the Presence.”…“In sum, when we look at the pages of the Old Testament, it should be quite clear that the Bread of the Presence stood at the very center of Israelite worship. Alongside the famous Ark of the Covenant and the golden Menorah, it was one of the three most sacred objects in the Holy Place, the inner sanctum of the ancient Tabernacle. “No one doubts how important the Sabbath was in ancient Israel; the Bread of the Presence was the Sabbath sacrifice, the “most holy” offering. Finally, it was both the sign of the “everlasting covenant” with Israel and the Bread of the Lord’s perpetual presence in the Tabernacle—the “Bread of the Face” of Almighty God. Clearly, according to Jewish Scripture, the mysterious Bread of the Presence was no ordinary bread.” (Brant Pitre, Jesus And The Jewish Roots Of The Eucharist: Unlocking The Secrets Of The Last Supper, 120-125 (Kindle Edition); New York, NY: Image)

We find in the Table of the Showbread several remarkable elements of Messianic prophecy.

First, the Table was specifically a reminder of the people of God. The twelve unleavened loaves of bread were symbolic of the people of God. This was a place of fellowship between God and His people, reminding us that the greatest fellowship is that of the Lord’s church.

Second, the elements of the table pointed unquestionably to the establishment of the Lord’s Supper (the unleavened bread and the fruit of the vine-see Matthew 26:26-29).

Third, there was a sense in which God was especially “present” in the Table, just as He is during the Lord’s Supper. Indeed, this is the meaning behind the word “communion,” the idea being that in the Lord’s Supper, God’s people enjoy a special time of memorial with Him and with each other (1 Corinthians 10:16-19).

What a blessing it is to gather around the Lord’s Table, of which the Table of Showbread powerfully and prophetically declared!

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