Exodus 25

Listen to Exodus 25

Contributions for the Sanctuary

1 The LORD said to Moses,
2 1"Speak to the people of Israel, that they take for me a contribution. From 2every man whose heart moves him you shall receive the contribution for me.
3 And this is the contribution that you shall receive from them: gold, silver, and bronze,
4 3blue and purple and scarlet yarns and fine twined linen, goats' hair,
5 tanned 4rams' skins, goatskins,[a] acacia wood,
6 5oil for the lamps, 6spices for the anointing oil and for the fragrant incense,
7 onyx stones, and stones for setting, for the 7ephod and for the breastpiece.
8 And let them make me a 8sanctuary, that 9I may dwell in their midst.
9 10Exactly as I show you concerning the pattern of the 11tabernacle, and of all its furniture, so you shall make it.

The Ark of the Covenant

10 12"They shall make an ark of acacia wood. Two cubits[b] and a half shall be its length, a cubit and a half its breadth, and a cubit and a half its height.
11 You shall overlay it with 13pure gold, inside and outside shall you overlay it, and you shall make on it a molding of gold around it.
12 You shall cast four rings of gold for it and put them on its 14four feet, two rings on the one side of it, and two rings on the other side of it.
13 You shall make poles of acacia wood and overlay them with gold.
14 And you shall put the poles into the rings on the sides of the ark to carry the ark by them.
15 The 15poles shall remain in the rings of the ark; they shall not be taken from it.
16 16And you shall put into the ark the 17testimony that I shall give you.
17 18"You shall make a mercy seat[c] of pure gold. Two cubits and a half shall be its length, and a cubit and a half its breadth.
18 And you shall make two cherubim of gold; of 19hammered work shall you make them, on the two ends of the mercy seat.
19 Make one cherub on the one end, and one cherub on the other end. 20Of one piece with the mercy seat shall you make the cherubim on its two ends.
20 21The cherubim shall spread out their wings above, overshadowing the mercy seat with their wings, their faces one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubim be.
21 And you shall put the mercy seat on the top of the ark, and in the ark you shall put the testimony that I shall give you.
22 22There I will meet with you, and from above the mercy seat, from 23between the two cherubim that are on the ark of the testimony, I will speak with you about all that I will give you in commandment for the people of Israel.

The Table for Bread

23 24"You shall make a table of acacia wood. Two cubits shall be its length, a cubit its breadth, and a cubit and a half its height.
24 You shall overlay it with 25pure gold and make a molding of gold around it.
25 And you shall make a rim around it a handbreadth[d] wide, and a molding of gold around the rim.
26 And you shall make for it four rings of gold, and fasten the rings to the four corners at its four legs.
27 Close to the frame the rings shall lie, as 26holders for the poles to carry the table.
28 You shall make the poles of acacia wood, and overlay them with gold, and the table shall be carried with these.
29 And you shall make its plates and 27dishes for incense, and its flagons and bowls with which to pour drink offerings; you shall make them of pure gold.
30 And you shall set the 28bread of the Presence on the table before me regularly.

The Golden Lampstand

31 29"You shall make a lampstand of pure gold. The lampstand shall be made of hammered work: its base, its stem, its cups, its calyxes, and its flowers shall be of one piece with it.
32 And there shall be six branches going out of its sides, three branches of the lampstand out of one side of it and three branches of the lampstand out of the other side of it;
33 three cups made like almond blossoms, each with calyx and flower, on one branch, and three cups made like almond blossoms, each with calyx and flower, on the other branch--so for the six branches going out of the lampstand.
34 And on the lampstand itself there shall be four cups made like almond blossoms, with their calyxes and flowers,
35 and a calyx of one piece with it under each pair of the six branches going out from the lampstand.
36 Their calyxes and their branches shall be of one piece with it, the whole of it a single piece of hammered work of pure gold.
37 You shall make seven lamps for it. And the lamps 30shall be set up so as 31to give light on the space in front of it.
38 Its tongs and their trays shall be of pure gold.
39 It shall be made, with all these utensils, out of a talent[e] of pure gold.
40 And 32see that you make them after the pattern for them, which is being shown you on the mountain.

Exodus 25 Commentary

Chapter 25

What the Israelites were to offer for making the tabernacle. (1-9) The ark. (10-22) The table, with its furniture. (23-30) The candlestick. (31-40)

Verses 1-9 God chose the people of Israel to be a peculiar people to himself, above all people, and he himself would be their King. He ordered a royal palace to be set up among them for himself, called a sanctuary, or holy place, or habitation. There he showed his presence among them. And because in the wilderness they dwelt in tents, this royal palace was ordered to be a tabernacle, that it might move with them. The people were to furnish Moses with the materials, by their own free will. The best use we can make of our worldly wealth, is to honour God with it in works of piety and charity. We should ask, not only, What must we do? but, What may we do for God? Whatever they gave, they must give it cheerfully, not grudgingly, for God ( 2 Corinthians. 9:7 ) service of God, we must reckon well bestowed; and whatsoever is done in God's service, must be done by his direction.

Verses 10-22 The ark was a chest, overlaid with gold, in which the two tables of the law were to be kept. These tables are called the testimony; God in them testified his will. This law was a testimony to the Israelites, to direct them in their duty, and would be a testimony against them, if they transgressed. This ark was placed in the holy of holies; the blood of the sacrifices was sprinkled, and the incense burned, before it, by the high priest; and above it appeared the visible glory, which was the symbol of the Divine presence. This was a type of Christ in his sinless nature, which saw no corruption, in personal union with his Divine nature, atoning for our sins against it, by his death. The cherubim of gold looked one towards another, and both looked downward toward the ark. It denotes the angels' attendance on the Redeemer, their readiness to do his will, their presence in the assemblies of saints, and their desire to look into the mysteries of the gospel. It was covered with a covering of gold, called the mercy-seat. God is said to dwell, or sit between the cherubim, on the mercy-seat. There he would give his law, and hear supplicants, as a prince on his throne.

Verses 23-30 A table was to be made of wood, overlaid with gold, to stand in the outer tabernacle, to be always furnished with the shew-bread. This table, with the articles on it, and its use, seems to typify the communion which the Lord holds with his redeemed people in his ordinances, the provisions of his house, the feasts they are favoured with. Also the food for their souls, which they always find when they hunger after it; and the delight he takes in their persons and services, as presented before him in Christ.

Verses 31-40 The candlestick represents the light of God's word and Spirit, in and through Christ Jesus, afforded in this dark world to his believing people, to direct their worship and obedience, and to afford them consolations. The church is still dark, as the tabernacle was, in comparison with what it will be in heaven; but the word of God is a light shining in a dark place, ( 2 Peter. 1:19 ) it. In ver. ( 40 ) is an express caution to Moses. Nothing was left to his own fancy, or to that of the workmen, or the people; but the will of God must be observed in every particular. Christ's instruction to his disciples, ( Matthew 28:20 ) , is like this, Observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. Let us remember that we are the temples of the Holy Ghost, that we have the law of God in our hearts, that we are to live a life of communion with God, feast on his ordinances, and are the light of the world, if indeed we are followers of Christ. May the Lord help us to try ourselves by this view of religion, and to walk according thereto.

Cross References 32

  • 1. For ver. 1-7, see Exodus 35:4-9
  • 2. Exodus 35:5, 21, 29; Exodus 36:2; Judges 5:2; 1 Chronicles 29:5; [Ezra 1:6; Ezra 2:68; Ezra 3:5; Ezra 7:16]; Nehemiah 11:2; [2 Corinthians 8:12; 2 Corinthians 9:7]
  • 3. Exodus 26:1, 31, 36
  • 4. Exodus 26:14
  • 5. Exodus 27:20
  • 6. Exodus 30:7, 23, 34; Exodus 31:11
  • 7. Exodus 28:4, 15
  • 8. Hebrews 9:1, 2; See Exodus 36:1-4
  • 9. Exodus 29:45; 1 Kings 6:13; 2 Corinthians 6:16; Revelation 21:3
  • 10. ver. 40
  • 11. Exodus 26:1
  • 12. Exodus 37:1-3; Deuteronomy 10:3; Hebrews 9:4
  • 13. ver. 24, 25; Exodus 30:3, 4; Exodus 37:2
  • 14. Exodus 37:3
  • 15. 1 Kings 8:8
  • 16. [Deuteronomy 31:26; 1 Kings 8:9]
  • 17. See Exodus 16:34
  • 18. Exodus 37:6; Hebrews 9:5
  • 19. ver. 31; Exodus 37:7, 17, 22; Numbers 8:4; Numbers 10:2
  • 20. Exodus 37:8
  • 21. 1 Kings 8:7; 1 Chronicles 28:18; Hebrews 9:5
  • 22. Exodus 29:42, 43; Exodus 30:6, 36; Leviticus 16:2; Numbers 17:4
  • 23. Numbers 7:89
  • 24. For ver. 23-29, see Exodus 37:10-16; [1 Kings 7:48; 2 Chronicles 4:8; Hebrews 9:2]
  • 25. ver. 11
  • 26. Exodus 26:29; Exodus 30:4; Exodus 36:34; Exodus 37:14, 27; Exodus 38:5
  • 27. Exodus 37:16; Numbers 4:7
  • 28. Leviticus 24:5, 6
  • 29. For ver. 31-39, see Exodus 37:17-24; [1 Kings 7:49; Zechariah 4:2; Hebrews 9:2; Revelation 1:12]
  • 30. Leviticus 24:2-4; 2 Chronicles 13:11
  • 31. Numbers 8:2
  • 32. ver. 9; Exodus 26:30; Exodus 27:8; Numbers 8:4; Acts 7:44; Cited Hebrews 8:5; [1 Chronicles 28:11, 19]

Footnotes 5

  • [a]. Uncertain; possibly dolphin skins, or dugong skins; compare 26:14
  • [b]. A cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters
  • [c]. Or cover
  • [d]. A handbreadth was about 3 inches or 7.5 centimeters
  • [e]. A talent was about 75 pounds or 34 kilograms

Chapter Summary


In this chapter an order is given for a freewill offering towards various things for the worship and service of God, and the materials to be offered, which would be useful and acceptable, are mentioned particularly, Ex 25:1-7, as also another order to build a sanctuary for God, after a model that he would give, Ex 25:8,9, and, an ark to put in the law on tables of stone, the fashion of which, and the various things belonging to it, are described, Ex 25:10-16, and a mercy seat with cherubim on it to be set over the ark, where the Lord promises to meet Moses and commune with him, Ex 25:17-22 and a table with various appurtenances to it to place the shewbread on, Ex 25:23-30 and a candlestick of gold, whose parts are described, and all the instruments relative to it, Ex 25:31-40.

Exodus 25 Commentaries

The English Standard Version is published with the permission of Good News Publishers.