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Dictionary of Bible Themes – 7438 sanctuary
7438 sanctuary

7438 sanctuary

A place or structure set aside for the worship of God. In Scripture the word generally refers to the tabernacle or the Jerusalem temple. By extension the word signifies a location or spiritual state providing refuge from hostile forces, human, spiritual or natural.

The tabernacle

Ex 25:8-9 See also Ex 36:1; Heb 8:2,5

Worship in the tabernacle was divinely ordained in great detail Ex 30:7-10; Lev 7:37-38; Lev 23:44; Ex 39:1; Nu 3:30-31; Heb 9:1

The people gave generously for the tabernacle Ex 36:4-5

Approach to God’s sanctuary was strictly regulated Lev 12:4 See also Lev 21:21-23; Nu 3:10,38; Nu 8:19; Nu 18:5; Nu 19:20; 2Ch 26:18

A reverent attitude was commanded Lev 19:30 pp Lev 26:2

The Jerusalem temple

David made extensive preparations for Solomon to build the temple 1Ch 22:17-19 See also 1Ch 28:2-3,6

The inner sanctuary of the temple corresponded to the Most Holy Place in the tabernacle 1Ki 6:19 See also 1Ki 8:6 pp 2Ch 5:7; 1Ch 6:49; Heb 9:1-4

Some places were considered sacred because of God’s presence and activity

Ex 15:17 See also Ge 28:16-17; Ex 3:1-5; Ps 15:1; Ps 63:2; Ps 73:16-17; Jer 17:12

Conduct that displeases God will lead to a nation’s sanctuaries being destroyed

Disobedience to God Lev 26:31 See also 2Ch 30:8; Eze 7:24; La 2:7; Am 7:9; Mal 2:11

Dishonesty in dealings Eze 28:18

Idolatry See also Lev 20:3; Eze 8:6; Eze 23:38-39

Profaning the sanctuary Eze 44:7-8; Zep 3:4

Sanctuary from vengeance: the cities of refuge

Jos 20:2-3 See also Nu 35:6,9-12

God himself is his people’s sanctuary

Ps 31:20 See also Dt 33:27; Ps 17:7-9; Ps 27:1; Ps 32:7; Ps 46:1; Ps 64:1-2; Ps 91:4; Isa 25:4; Eze 11:16; Ro 8:38-39; Php 4:7; Heb 6:19

Non-material “sanctuaries” of God

Heaven, where God is perfectly worshipped Ps 102:19 See also Heb 9:24

God’s worshipping people, in whom God dwells Ps 114:2 See also 1Co 6:19; Eph 2:21; 1Pe 2:5

Jesus Christ himself as the “place” where God dwelt on earth Jn 2:19-21

See also

3278Holy Spirit, indwelling
7241Jerusalem, significance
7396Most Holy Place
7459tabernacle, in OT
7467temple, Solomon’s
7474Tent of Meeting
7768priests, OT function
8626worship, places

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