Is there a biblical basis why God wanted a Tabernacle to live among Israel (Exodus 25:8)?

And let them make me a sanctuary, that I may dwell in their midst. Exodus 25:8 ESV

What is the significance of the Tabernacle built by Moses?

  • 2
    The answer seems to be in the verse cited.
    – Narnian
    Sep 25, 2014 at 16:10

3 Answers 3


To accomplish God's desire to make his abode among his people, [...]. He wanted to walk among them, be their God, and they his people1.

1. cf. Lev 26:11-12 (RSVCE).

Please see also this Moses' intercession [cf. Exod 33:14-16]:

14 And he said, “My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.” 15 And he said to him, “If thy presence will not go with me, do not carry us up from here. 16 For how shall it be known that I have found favor in thy sight, I and thy people? Is it not in thy going with us, so that we are distinct, I and thy people, from all other people that are upon the face of the earth?”

Summarizing the reasons that appear:

  • It was God's wish.
  • So that God might make his abode among his people, walk with them and be their God, and they his people.
  • In response to Moses' intercession.
  • God's continual presence would distinguish his people from all other people.

According to the NT, the tabernacle serves as a symbol of the heavenly one. Heb 8:5, Heb 9:9, Heb 9:23-24, Heb 10:1; Col 2:17

Spiritually speaking, Christ spoke of His body as the temple (John 2:21). Paul spoke of the church as the body of Christ (1 Co 12:27). Jesus is the "way" and the "image" of God (John 14:6, Col 1:15). God created them male and female in His image (Gen 1:27). This represents Christ and the church (Eph 5:23, Rev 21:2). We leave the earthly tabernacle to join the building of God (2 Co 5:1). Christ is the way to the holiest of holies ( Heb 9:8, 10:20, John 6:29, 14:15).


The Tabernacle was built because the people were so determined to NOT follow the will of God. Rebellion by Adam and Eve, murder between Cain and Abel, greed between Jacob and Esau and their mother, After they were delivered from Egypt the cried and had temper tantrums, they made images of gold and worshipped everything but God, they broke the covenant.  “I have seen these people,” the Lord said to Moses, “and they are a stiff-necked people. 10 Now leave me alone so that my anger may burn against them and that I may destroy them. Then I will make you into a great nation.”


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