Two Requirements: The Book of Instruction & Two Tablets of Stone
In God’s dealings with ancient Israel, He provided two sets of instructions (Exo 34:27-28), which occupied different places in the Ark. A brief preamble to these instructions follows. “…[John] saw… the Temple in heaven, God’s Tabernacle, …thrown wide open” (Rev 15:5, NLT), “…and the Ark of His covenant could be seen inside the Temple…” (Rev 11:19, NLT). Years prior, God shared the blueprint of the heavenly temple with Moses. He said, “Have the people of Israel build me a holy sanctuary so I can live among them. You must build this Tabernacle and its furnishings exactly according to the pattern I will show you. When the Ark is finished, place inside it the stone tablets inscribed with the terms of the covenant, which I will give to you [Exo 34:29]. …Then put the atonement cover on top of the Ark” (Exo 25:8-9, 16, 21, NLT). The terms of the covenant, housed inside the Ark, is “…The law, [declared to be], …holy, …right, and good” (Rom 7:12, NLT). In contrast, the other guidance provided to the Israelites took the form of a Book of Instruction, which originated from God’s conference calls with Moses (Exo 20:22; 25:22; 33:9; 34:27). Reference to this is as follows: “Take this Book of Instruction and place it beside, [‘…in the side…’], the Ark of the Covenant of the Lord your God, so it may remain there as a witness against the people of Israel” (Deut 31:26, NLT). “After the death of Moses…, the Lord spoke to Joshua…. He said: ‘…The time has come for you to lead these people…. I promise you what I promised Moses…. Be careful to obey all the instructions Moses gave you.’ …Study this Book of Instruction continually. Meditate on it day and night so you will be sure to obey everything written in it. Only then will you prosper and succeed in all you do” (Jos 1:1-8; 23:6; 1 Kings 2:3; 2 Kings 23:21, NLT). “The Lord your God will delight in you if you obey His voice and keep the commands and decrees written in this Book of Instruction, and if you turn to the Lord your God with all your heart and soul” (Deut 30:10, NLT). “[Joshua] followed the commands that Moses the Lord’s servant had written in the Book of Instruction…” (Joshua 8:31-34, NLT). “If you refuse to obey all the words of instructions that are written in this book, and if you do not fear the glorious and awesome name of the Lord your God, then the Lord will overwhelm you and your children with indescribable plagues…. The Lord will afflict you with every sickness and plague…, even those not mentioned in this Book of Instruction, until you are destroyed” (Deut 28:58-61; 29:20-21, 27, NLT).
Bro. Graham F. Watts, Sr.