Verses 10–17

Here is an account of 1. The two cherubim, which were set up in the holy of holies. There were two already over the ark, which covered the mercy-seat with their wings; these were small ones. Now that the most holy place was enlarged, though these were continued (being appurtenances to the ark, which was not to be made new, as all the other utensils of the tabernacle were), yet those two large ones were added, doubtless by divine appointment, to fill up the holy place, which otherwise would have looked bare, like a room unfurnished. These cherubim are said to be of image-work (2 Chron. 3:10), designed, it is likely, to represent the angels who attend the divine Majesty. Each wing extended five cubits, so that the whole was twenty cubits (2 Chron. 3:12, 13), which was just the breadth of the most holy place, 2 Chron. 3:8. They stood on their feet, as servants, their faces inward toward the ark (2 Chron. 3:13), that it might appear they were not set there to be adored (for then they would have been made sitting, as on a throne, and their faces towards their worshippers), but rather as themselves attendants on the invisible God. We must not worship angels, but we must worship with angels; for we have come into communion with them (Heb. 12:22), and must do the will of God as the angels do it. The thought that we are worshipping him before whom the angels cover their faces will help to inspire us with reverence in all our approaches to God. Compare 1 Cor. 11:10; Isa. 6:2. 2. The veil that parted between the temple and the most holy place, 2 Chron. 3:14. This denoted the darkness of that dispensation, and the distance which the worshippers were kept at; but, at the death of Christ, this veil was rent; for through him we are made nigh, and have boldness not only to look, but to enter, into the holiest. On this he was wrought cherubim. Heb. he caused them to ascend, that is, they were made in raised work, embossed. Or he made them on the wing in an ascending posture, as the other two that stood on their feet in an attending posture, to remind the worshippers to lift up their hearts, and to soar upwards in their devotions. 3. The two pillars which were set up before the temple. Both together were somewhat above thirty-five cubits in length (2 Chron. 3:15), about eighteen cubits high a-piece. See 1 Kgs. 7:15-22, where we took a view of those pillars, Jachin and Boaz, establishment and strength in temple-work and by it.