Sunday, July 31, 2016

The Temple and the Tabernacle by J. Daniel Hays

book cover
The Temple and the Tabernacle
by J. Daniel Hays

ISBN-13: 9780801016202
Paperback: 208 pages
Publisher: Baker Books
Released: Aug. 2, 2016

Source: ebook review copy from the publisher through NetGalley.

Book Description from NetGalley:
At various points in Israel's history, God dwelt in specific, significant places, most notably in the tabernacle and the temple. These structures, meticulously planned, extravagantly furnished, and regularly frequented by the devout, were more than just places of worship and sacrifice. They were pictures of God's relationship with his chosen people and of the atoning work that would be done by the Messiah. To understand the tabernacle and the temple, then, is to understand how we are brought into God's family through the sacrifice of his only Son, Jesus.

Visually stunning and theologically rich, this full-color resource brings together the latest scholarship and archeological discoveries to bring God's dwelling places alive for modern believers. It places these important structures in their historical and theological contexts, connects them with the overall biblical story, and shows how they bring meaning and depth to the faith of Christians today.

My Review:
The Temple and the Tabernacle examines what the tabernacle and temples looked like, their purpose, and their theological significance. The author started by looking at the purpose of a temple and how the Garden of Eden fulfilled that role. He then looked at how the ark and tabernacle were built, their function, and some of their symbolic aspects. He contrasted this with how Solomon went about building the temple and what it looked like. I found this contrast enlightening as I'd never stopped to think about how different Solomon's Temple was from the tabernacle.

The author also discussed God's departure from the temple (Ezekiel 8-11), the rebuilding of the temple, Herod's additions to temple area, and the future temple (Ezekiel 40, Rev. 21-22). We get a detailed description of what the temple looked like at various times based on descriptions in the Bible and from other sources. The author generally avoided speculation and stuck to the symbolism pointed out in the Bible itself. However, he did speculate about what the lamp stand, for example, might have originally looked like.

Overall, I found this book very interesting and would recommend it to anyone interested in a detailed study of the tabernacle and the temples.

If you've read this book, what do you think about it? I'd be honored if you wrote your own opinion of the book in the comments.

Excerpt: Read an excerpt using Google Preview.

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