Which image describes the Tabernacle ceiling or roof as mentioned in the Book of Exodus, and what verse explains that? Was it straight or pointed?


enter image description here

Or 2:

enter image description here

Or 3 (straight from inside, with a covering pyramid like layer around it?): enter image description here

  • We are not told. However, the second picture appears more probable because it had be water-proof and easily allow water to run off.
    – user43409
    Dec 18, 2018 at 4:53
  • Could it be like image 3?
    – Mike
    Dec 18, 2018 at 7:40
  • Image is very similar to image 2.
    – user43409
    Dec 18, 2018 at 9:28
  • 2
    Why does it matter ?
    – Nigel J
    Dec 18, 2018 at 17:12

1 Answer 1


According to the details in Exodus 26:15-30, it seems like the overall structure of the Tabernacle of Moses was covered with a flat roof. Whether there was an inner curtain that formed a pointed ceiling underneath the flat roof (because a ceiling is found below a roof), I could not say.

Both the NIV and ESV Study Bible diagrams show the Tabernacle Tent (which housed both the Holy Place and the Most Holy Place) with a flat roof. The NIV and the NLT confirm that the upright frames were locked together with horizontal crossbars to form a three-sided rectangle with an open end.

26 “Make crossbars of acacia wood to link the frames, five crossbars for the north side of the Tabernacle 27 and five for the south side. Also make five crossbars for the rear of the Tabernacle, which will face west. 28 The middle crossbar, attached halfway up the frames, will run all the way from one end of the Tabernacle to the other. 29 Overlay the frames with gold, and make gold rings to hold the crossbars. Overlay the crossbars with gold as well. 30 “Set up this Tabernacle according to the pattern you were shown on the mountain.” (see also Exodus 25:9, 40; 27:8)

I’m going with your first image.

  • The "curtains" were also of the same length. A pitched roof would require different lengths. And there were no uprights except the cross beam separating the holy place and holy of holies.
    – SLM
    Dec 18, 2018 at 15:00
  • @SLM - I'm not suggesting there was a pitched roof.
    – Lesley
    Dec 18, 2018 at 15:22
  • 1
    Right. I'm agreeing with you and providing additional explanation. If it was a description of a pitched roof, the curtain lengths would vary to account for the pitch. But, since the lengths are all the same, a flat roof is the only possibility.
    – SLM
    Dec 18, 2018 at 17:03
  • What about this? bible-history.com/ibh/images/fullsized/…
    – Mike
    Dec 19, 2018 at 4:04
  • @Mike - What about it, indeed? I am more inclined to go along with the findings of the people behind the NIV and the ESV who have delved into this matter and come up with a view that the Tabernacle followed the structure in image 1. SLM has made comments to support the flat roof approach. Perhaps someone else can present evidence to suggest otherwise.
    – Lesley
    Dec 19, 2018 at 10:27

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