The inner sanctuary of the tabernacle set up at Sinai and of Solomon’s temple, where the ark of the covenant was kept. It is a symbol of the unapproachable presence of God.
Terms used to describe the Most Holy Place
Ex 26:33 “the Most Holy Place” (or “Holy of Holies”), in contrast to the “Holy Place” where the altar stood. This superlative suggests increasing closeness to the presence of God. The distinction is not always observed, however. In Leviticus chapter 16 “Holy Place” is used regularly (translated in NIV as “Most Holy Place” in verses 2, 16, 17, 20, 27, and as “sanctuary area” in verse 3, though it is the inner sanctuary that is referred to, as the phrase “behind the curtain” (verse 2) shows); 1Ki 6:16 the “inner sanctuary” in contrast to the outer; Heb 9:7 literally “the second (tabernacle)” in contrast to the first or outer
The structure and design of the Most Holy Place
In the wilderness tabernacleThe only details concern the curtains forming the walls of the two sanctuaries, and in particular the dividing curtain which separates the Most Holy Place from the outer sanctuary:Ex 26:31-33; Ex 36:35-36; Ex 40:21
Dictionary of Bible Themes Scripture index copyright Martin H. Manser, 2009. As Editor, Martin Manser wishes to thank all those who compiled or edited the NIV Thematic Study Bible, on which this work is based.
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