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Most of the articles on these WebPages have been written by godly men with a central belief in the Lord Jesus Christ. However as with most of us, they may have different beliefs concerning some particular doctrines. These articles have been made available for the purpose of “gleaning the good” where good can be found. I do not necessarily endorse all that is written by others, anymore than I expect others to endorse all that I write.

   Morning Thoughts by Elder Philip Conley

Exodus 26:14, "And thou shalt make a covering for the tent of rams' skins dyed red, and a covering above
of badgers' skins."

This morning, people are looking for beauty, and unfortunately, they are looking for it in all the wrong places. True beauty is not found in superficial qualities, nor is it found in the natural man's appetites. Rather, true beauty is found in things of an unseen nature that go beyond this vale of tears into a land where beauties untold await the family of God. So, when looking for portions of that beauty here, we need to search for it by faith (not sight) and look past what our eyes behold into what our faith perceives and sees.

The verse above has (I believe) a dual application of thought to bring forth. While there may be more applications than I have seen, I do believe that these two can be sufficiently shown in the passage. This
verse is in the midst of God telling Moses the pattern for the tabernacle, furniture, priestly garments, etc
while in the mount. God gave moral laws to keep, and He also gave ceremonies to be performed in specified
manners. The verse above is declaring the pattern of the Old Testament tabernacle that would house the ark
of the covenant, mercy seat, altar, etc that the congregation would worship and sacrifice in. The tabernacle had two types of skins that covered the roof of it. While the red dyed rams' skins were in the roof portion, the badgers' skins covered over the rams' skins.

The first application that I believe can be seen in this is that our Lord was outwardly not comely or desirable according to nature. (Isaiah 53:2) He did not come in gorgeous array with eloquent words while of reputable social standing. Rather, He came in the form of servant, making Himself of no reputation while walking through this earth for 33.5 years. Outwardly, one would not see Him pass and know (by His appearance), "There goes the King of kings." This should be ample enough evidence to know that He did not walk around with a halo and sparkling white garments. He looked like the common people around Him, and even though gracious words proceeded out of His mouth with no other man speaking like Him (John 7:46), it still took faith to be able to understand that He is the Lord of glory.

So even though outwardly there was nothing desirable (like the badgers' skins), inside that body dwelleth
all the fulness of the Godhead. (Colossians 2:9) Even though that body was nothing desirable (according to
nature), it is still without spot, blemish, and has Divinity in it. Jesus Christ was more than a man, and today, He remains our GodMan to mediate on our behalf. How does one understand that this One is the Lamb of
God that taketh away the sin of the world? How does one understand that though outwardly there is nothing
comely that His blood cleanseth us from all unrighteousness? It takes faith to be able to see beyond what our eyes behold. It takes faith for the righteousness of God to be revealed to us. (Romans 1:15-17) He is the ram typified in Genesis 22 that was substituted for us (Isaac) to bear our sins and reproaches.

Mystery of mysteries that our Holy Redeemer would bear our reproaches and be stricken for our transgressions! To the natural mind, He failed in this life. Outwardly, He never travelled the world,
He never became king, sultan, or ruler of a natural domain, He had no wealth of earthly goods, and His
life was ended at a young age. There is nothing glorious in a natural way in that story. But, inside that story is the grandest theme of redemption this earth has ever known, coupled with the manifestation of a love that passes all the knowledge this earth could muster. Our Creator and Lord assumed flesh and suffered in our stead. He bore the ridicule of those not worthy to be considered in the same breath, and He forever stamped His victory through eternity with the most glorious declaration given on earth, "It is finished." Truly, the rams' skins dyed red typifies what faith speaks to us about our Jesus.

The other application of this is found in how we assemble today. The worship service of the old dispensation does not mirror the worship service of the new dispensation. However, there are parallels to be found, and one of the clearest parallels to be found is that the old worship did not look appealing on the outside. Outwardly, men saw a tent covered over with badgers' skins. Inside, however, there was gold, silver, furniture, and these red rams' skins covering the whole thing. To the natural man, there is nothing appealing about the church of the Living God. The entertainments of man are nowhere to be found, and the thrust of the worship is removed fromself and focused on the Lamb. Outwardly, the music may sound off-key (due to the lack of musical instruments), and the preaching may seem unlearned (due to no formal training in the ministry).

Yet, the church has always borne these reproaches by those without the walls that could only see badgers'
skins. To those inside, there is beauty that comes from heaven itself when we see the real treasures that our Lord has given unto us while we serve Him here.

It pains me to hear folks "beat up the bride" when they are looking at things purely in a mercenary way.
They are focused on the sight and not the faith. They see the problems and not the beauty. The inside
portions of the tabernacle still had vestiges of things not beautiful. The offerings that were made inside still had odours that were not well-pleasing, and the incense could not completely annul the smell.  But, the inside of the house was glorious and beautiful. Likewise, our service may still have traces of the world and our own pride that needs to be burned away, but the house of God is a beautiful place as the saints assemble to worship.

Finally, all the glory that is found in the church can only have meaning with the covering of the blood of Christ. Notice that inside the walls the covering that is seen is the red rams' skins. Our covering and refuge when in service can only be the shed blood of Christ that we trust is applied to us. We cannot come to be made under the blood of Christ, but as His family (Israel) we have the right to assemble under His blood. As He was not seen as glorious, beautiful, and grand while He walked this earth, we should not be surprised when His manifest and visible bride is not seen as glorious and beautiful in this world. They saw badgers' skins around Him (flesh) even though His blood is the only acceptable offering in God's court.  They see His bride today as being out-of-touch, archaic, foolish, and about to die (badgers' skins), but inwardly, the love of Christ flows from breast to breast and faith to faith that gives us sweet peace (for a little while) that we feel to be under His blood and part of His family. May we earnestly seek and press further into Zion's beauties to see more of the red skins than we have before.

In Hope,

Bro Philip