The Candlestick in the
By Ed Christiansen
"And thou shalt make a candlestick of pure gold: of
beaten work shall the candlestick be made: his shaft, and his branches, his bowls, his
knops, and his flowers, shall be of the same. . . it shall be one beaten work of pure
gold. . . And thou shalt make the seven lamps thereof: and they shall light the lamps
thereof that they may give light over against it. . . And the tongs thereof, and the
snuffdishes thereof, shall be of pure gold" (Exodus 25:31-38).
"Take ye from among you an offering unto the LORD.
Whosoever is of a willing heart, let him bring it, an offering of the LORD; gold,
and silver, and brass. And blue, and purple, and scarlet, and fine linen and goats
hair. And rams skins dyed red, and badgers skins and shittim wood. And oil for
the light, and spices for anointing oil, and for the sweet incense" (Exo.
"....The people bring much more than enough for the
service of the work, which the LORD commanded to make." So Moses commanded, "let
neither man nor woman make any more work for the offering of the sanctuary. . . For the
stuff they had was sufficient for all the work to make it, and too much" (Exo.
The LORD had put within Bezalel "the Spirit of
God, - in wisdom and in understanding, and in knowledge and in all manner of
workmanship" (Exo. 31:3-4).
From the Jewish Midrash:
The Temple Menorah occupies a central role among the sacred
vessels, for it is the symbol of light and the Temple is called "the light of
the world" (BI Bava Batra 4:A). One reason for this is the light of the Menorah
bursting forth from the Holy Temple. The Menorah was the "height of an average
The Midrash helps us to understand the making of the
Menorah: "Moses had such great difficulty constructing the Menorah more
than all the other Tabernacle vessels . . . until the Holy One, Blessed be He, showed him
an image of the Menorah and pointed it out, as it states, And this is the
construction of the Menorah, of beaten gold . . . Moses toiled greatly but still
could not produce it. Finally God said, Moses, just take the talent of gold and cast
it into the fire. When they went to retrieve it, the completed Menorah emerged.
"Moses struck the finishing touch, but it was
created of itself" (O. Tanchuma Bhalotcha 4).
Partners With God
In the final result, the Menorah was created by combined
forces, the talent of the earthly craftsmen together with Divine assistance. For success
man must work with his talent while God sends a blessing from above. As David wrote, "If
God does not build this house, His workers have toiled in vain" (Psalm 127:1). On
the one hand, this verse teaches us that there is no hope for the Temple to be built
without heavenly aid, while at the same time it also shows us that God will not build it
without the earthly, human efforts of man.
In Jerusalem today there are those who believe they have
been given the duty to prepare the holy vessels for the Third Temple. Many are made and
waiting for use.
"And he put the candlestick in the tent of the
congregation, over against the table, on the side of the Tabernacle southward"
(Exo. 40:24). The priest would tend to the candles, fixing and preparing the wicks and
lighting them anew. However, one flame "the western candle" was
required to burn perpetually. The oil and wicks of this candle were changed in such a way
as to insure that it would never be extinguished.
"The Western Candle" is the middle flame of the
Menorah. It is called so because all of the other lights in the Menorah are facing this
middle branch, while it alone faces west. Therefore, through the middle flame, in reality,
all seven lights are facing west the direction of the Holy of Holies. Many times
this middle candle is called, "The Servant" candle, for with it all the other
candles are lighted.
Uniqueness of the Menorah
In Solomons Temple, ten such golden Menorahs
graced the Sanctuary, but in the Second Temple there was only one Menorah. The
Menorah has become the symbol depicting the modern State of Israel and her people. All of
the other nations have unclean animals or birds for their symbols.
The Menorah being the 7-branched candlestick is different
from the Hanukkah Menorah which is 9 branches and represents the miracle of light which
occurred at the time of the Macabees. The 7-branch Temple Menorah is a symbol of the way
Israel was to be to the nations of the world, giving them light as Isaiah said, "I
the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee,
and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the Gentiles" (Isaiah
42:6). This LIGHT was to come through the seed of Abraham for all peoples. "And he
said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up the tribes of
Jacob, and to restore the preserved of Israel: I will also give thee for a light to the
Gentiles, that thou mayest be my salvation unto the end of the earth" (Isaiah
In an issue of Bible Light On the News, we
had a lighthouse on the cover with the words, "Behold He spreadeth the light upon
it, and covereth the bottom of the sea" (Job 36:30). That lighthouse was
purposely put on high cliffs so as to guide te ships into port safely. So is the Light
that God gave to Israel, in bringing many "sons and daughters" into port safely.
For as you well know, all of the knowledge, wisdom and understanding of God we have comes
from the Jews. Israel has given us the complete Bible and even Luke was a Jew of the
dispersion, so every book in the Bible was penned by a son of Abraham. The Light keeps us
from the rocks of anxiety, the rocks of destruction, the rocks of perplexity, the rocks of
fear, the rocks of the unknown, rocks of doubt - all of which would bring us down to the
final shipwreck of life. But rather, let us bask in the LIGHT of the TRUTH of GOD and in
His teachings that will bring Release, Joy, Hope, Peace, Faith and Salvation.
The Word was given for our example I Corinthians
10:6-10: "Now these things were our examples, to the intent we should not lust
after evil things . . . neither be ye idolaters . . . Neither commit fornication . . .
Neither let us tempt Christ . . . Neither murmur . . . Now all these things happened unto
them for ensamples and they are written for our admonition upon whom the ends of
the world are come."
The Law is indeed "Holy and good" (Romans
7:12). It is given for us that we might know how to measure up to a Holy God, to obey Him
in all truth, to fulfill His desires.
Also, remember, Israel was following the fire by night and
the cloud by day and the Shekinah was in the very midst of them in the Tabernacle. Also
the Menorah was a constant reminder of the His light that was leading them to the promised
land. All this was done in Christ\Messiah. Paul reminds us in two verses: "And did
all drink the same spiritual drink: for they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed
them and that Rock was Christ" (I Cor. 10:4). ". . . The Covenant that
was confirmed before of God in Christ" (Gal. 3:17).
Some feel we can flaunt the Law and not obey, but
Christ\Messiah is given to them who obey. "And being made perfect, he became the
author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him" (Hebrews 5:9).
Cant be Hidden
"Arise, shine: for thy light is come and the glory
of the LORD is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross
darkness the people; but the LORD shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon
thee. And the Gentiles shall come to thy light, and kings to the brightness of they
rising" (Isaiah 60:1-3).
These verses are addressed to Jerusalem: Verse 1: Light
being the symbol of joy and salvation, Jerusalem is told that her light had been
rekindled. "Shine" alludes to the return of kingship or prophecy. Verse
2: When darkness covers the earth, Jerusalem will experience the manifestation of
Gods glory. Verse 3 translation from Hebrew: Nations and kings will
seek guidance from Israels doctrines. It is customary for those in
darkness to look to those who have light.
Look with me at verse 5 very quickly: "Then thou
shalt see and be radiant." The King James says, "flow together" - either
one is good. A Hebrew commentator brought out the following: "Thou shalt see"
thy scattered children returning from all directions, the last ingathering of the seed of
Abraham. We are living in that time period, getting ready for the next great event of
history to unfold.
Israel is to be the "head of the nations and not
the tail" (Deut. 28:12-13). For out of her will come Salvation, Salvation for all
mankind, that we might have peace in the earth, true peace that comes from knowing Him who
is PEACE, the Messiah of Israel. When He makes His appearance the great war machine of
mankind will have to be dismantled, and the war mongers will cease.
Jesus said, "I have come that you might have life,
and have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). Truly the Messiah is light and life.
As Lightening (Mt.
Israel is looking for the Messiah and expecting Him. Let us
with Israel follow the command of the Almighty: "PRAY for the PEACE of
JERUSALEM." When this fulfillment is come, then the world as we know it will be
revolutionized, for the Light from the Holy Temple will lighten us. "But the path
of the just is as the shining Light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day"
(Proverbs 4:18). "The sun shall be no more thy light by day; neither for
brightness shall the moon give light unto thee but the LORD shall be unto thee an
everlasting light, and thy God thy glory" (Isaiah 60:19).