Saturday, April 19, 2014

Patterns of Eden in Exodus


As I was reading my way through Exodus, I noticed there was mention of the tabernacle and doing things with it before the chapters wherein is described the making of it.  I thought that was odd.  It meant that the chapters had not been arranged in chronological order as I preciously thought.  That meant that there was some other order that was being used for an instructive purpose. 

After some more thought, it seemed to me that the stories of the children of Israel’s sins had been lumped together and set before the stories of their faithful obedience to Moses’ (and God’s) instructions.  This made me think that perhaps the stories had been arranged in a manner to create a type of the Fall of Adam.

Consider:

Children of Israel
Garden of Eden/Adam and Eve
Stories of the people leaving Egypt, Creation of the Israelite people
Creation of man
The giving of commandments for the temple’s construction
The creation of a paradisiacal earth and the first commandments to Adam
The making of the golden calf while Moses was absent
(The Fall of Israel)
the Fall of Man
The excuses of Aaron
Adam accounting to God
Moses’ plea for the people
(Reminder of Christ’s atonement to prevent immediate destruction )
Providing a Savior for man
Moses and Levites punishing the wicked people with death
Physical death

The tabernacle is moved outside the camp of Israel (Even though it wasn’t supposed to have been built yet)
(God’s presence is removed )
Spiritual death
(rough correspondence to Adam leaving the Garden of Eden)
God to only show his back parts to Moses
Spiritual death (though attenuated for the prophets)
Moses puts a veil over his face when with Israel
Spiritual death and rejection of the higher law
Repetition of giving the commandments, giving the lower law
Giving the law of sacrifice

Command to gather offerings for making the tabernacle
Giving the law of sacrifice
People give offerings for tabernacle construction
Obedience to the law of sacrifice

It seems the Book of Exodus, taken in a broad view, is meant to show how Israel was following the same pattern as Adam and Even had in the Garden of Eden.   We also recognize that it has many elements of the temple narrative. 

Cool, huh?