Thursday, November 29, 2012

Royal Priesthood: Preparing your Sanctuary for Worship

The functionality of the royal priesthood as it relates to worship; even in dance.

This will be a series of posts describing in great detail the role that we have as a royal priesthood. Whether you are a liturgical or praise dancer, all ministries will gain greater understanding as they learn their role in worship. Those that are in music ministry and dance ministry will greatly benefit from understanding the meaning of true worship, and how the Heavenly Father designed and commanded us to worship Him. All scripture is taken from the commandments concerning the duties of the priest; found in the first five books of the Bible, the Torah (Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy).

In this post I will be using the name for what most Christians call God, Yahweh. Yahweh means "I am who I am" in Hebrew. This is the name that was given to Moses as he received instruction on how to get Pharaoh to release the children of Israel from bondage (Exodus 3:14).

The First Commandment Concerning the Priest

Build the Holy House of Yahweh (God) Exodus 25:8-9 "And let them make me a sanctuary; that I may dwell among them. According to all that I show you, after the pattern of the tabernacle, and the pattern of all the furnishings of it, even so shall you make it." 

The Most High has a set pattern for building a sanctuary. It is according to what He commands. We see here that the children of Israel were given specific instructions on how to build a sanctuary for Yahweh. Why? Because each individual furnishing and pattern represented Yahweh's plan for us to enter into His presence with worship. It is the same pattern that He expects us to follow today.

The Furnishings 

Each furnishing had a specific function within the Temple. 

The brazen or bronze altar was for the slaughtering of animal sacrifices to atone for sins. (Exodus 27:1-8)

The basin was for the washing of the hands and the feet of the priest. Why? The hands and the feet contained toxins made from oils and sweat. In order to be properly cleansed the priest had to wash themselves before they were allowed to enter to the most Holy Place.  (Exodus 30:17-21)

The veil, made of scarlet, purple, and blue; shielded the sinful man from the presence of Yahweh. The veil was the entry into the Most Holy place. The priest was the only mediator that was able enter into the presence of Yahweh. He had to be perfect before He could enter into the Most Holy Place; and he could only enter into His presence once a year to atone for the sins of the children of Israel and his sins. Entering into the presence of Yahweh before time and with sins meant death for the priest. Also, anyone that was not designated to enter into His presence would die. Only the priest had the awesome privilege of being before the Heavenly Father. (Exodus 26:31-35)

The table of the showbread or bread of His presence represented the communion that the Most High has with man.  (Exodus 25:30)

The golden altar of incense was set in front of the veil leading into the Most Holy Place to represent the aroma of the prayers, praise, and worship that goes before the Lord. (Exodus 30:1-10)

The lampstand or Menorah was set on the left side of the Most Holy Place. It was the only light in the entire Temple near the Most Holy Place. (Exodus 25:31-40) 

The ark of the covenant represented the glory of Yahweh. It is where the 10 commandments were kept as a memorial to the children of Israel. (Exodus 25:10-22) 

All of the furnishings represented the actual throne room. This is the reason that the sanctuary was so sacred. 

Preparing your Sanctuary for Worship

praise in motion, Hands lifted with purple flag Copyright 2012 Katina Davenport
Preparing a sanctuary was and is about being cleansed of your sins before you enter into His presence. Building His house is now about building our temples, which is our body. We do this by keeping sin out, through repentance, and by forgiving others so that you can be allowed to enter into His presence. Before you can offer your gift of dance to the Heavenly Father in worship you must have a forgiving heart. If you remember that your brother, mother, child, spouse, Pastor, or whomever has an ought against you, leave your gift and reconcile; or in other words forgive anyone that has offended you, Matthew 5:23-24. Also, if you do not forgive, the Heavenly Father will not forgive you, Matthew 6:15. Before you come into His presence with thanksgiving and enter into His courts with praise, remember to wash your heart. 

Forgiveness and repentance is the key to entering into His presence. This is a daily practice because the Holy Spirit dwells within; and we do not want to offend Him. 

Liturgical or praise dancers has the responsibility of building the House of Yahweh just as the entire body of Christ. We have part of the glory of the Father living within us because we accepted Him has savior  It is our job to build his Temple. Though many will see the commandment to build the Holy House of Yahweh as something that was done in the Old Testament, it is still applicable today. In fact, Yahweh still wants us to build our temples, His Holy House using both Spirit and Truth. You will find how to do this in His Word. 

©2012 Katina Davenport all rights reserved 

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