New Poles, the Nose, Judgment and the Mind

by Tony Badillo

When the Ark of the Covenant occupied the Tabernacle, it symbolized God’s
throne-chair. But when installed in the Temple it became King Messiah’s
throne-chair. How and why? And what happened to God’s throne?

In Secrets of the Holy Ark we saw how the Ark represents a throne-chair and how such a concept emerged, not necessarily from Israel but from the Ancient Near East culture to which the Jewish nation belonged. Here we will learn that when Solomon installed the Ark in the newly built stone temple, he made some important changes that are partially indicated by the size and position of the Ark’s poles and two large cherubs posted in the Holy of Holies.

King Messiah’s Throne

In the Tabernacle the Ark symbolized God’s throne-chair (Fig. MT); but hundreds of years later, when Solomon installed it in the Temple, new extended poles were attached to its long sides and from then on it became a symbol of a second throne. But the seat was too narrow and the poles too
long (Fig. ST). Why? Because it also symbolized an Ark-nose with extended nostrils smelling the sweet incense smoke from the Golden Altar. And in this context it symbolized King Messiah’s throne, which ultimately is a throne of judgment. For as both Jewish and non-Jewish sources seem agreed, he (the Messiah) will judge the poor and decide for the meek, Isaiah 11:1-5 and deal justice to the wicked.

The Messiah’s throne seat, therefore, is a
throne of judgment, for he will “judge the poor” etc. Thus in the Temple the ark-throne-seat is shown judging Israel’s heart, the Golden Altar of Incense.

Some Questions and Answers

How do we know that Solomon attached new, extended poles to the Ark? Because in I Kings 8:8 and II Chronicles 5:9, after informing us that the Ark was installed in the Holy of Holies (HH) of the Temple, we are told that its poles extended so far that their ends or tips could be seen from the other room, the Holy Place, but could not be seen from the outside (of the Temple). But how? Wasn’t there thick Dividing Curtain between these two rooms? Yes! Then how could this be so? The best answer involves a Jewish tradition that tells us the priests only saw the impressions the tips or ends of the poles made against the Dividing Curtain. Looking from the Holy Place toward the Holy of Holies, the priests could see two bulges or high spots caused by the new longer poles as their ends pressed against the Curtain. This is how their “ends were seen” (Tanach, Stone Edition, p. 822, also Kings, Soncino Books of the Bible, Soncino Press, 1950, p. 58; and The Holy Temple of Jerusalem by Chaim Richman, p.54, good drawing! ). If there is a better explanation it remains to be written. Christianity almost always portrays the Ark within the Temple positioned in the wrong direction, south to north, and naturally the poles are not drawn forward at all.

Also, to properly depict King Messiah’s ark-throne smelling through the Dividing Curtain, the Ark’s poles had to be attached to its long sides, not its short ones. After all, the nose is arranged lengthwise – not crosswise – to the human face. Even so, why couldn’t Solomon have used the original Ark poles Moses had created? Because they were
too short to reach the Dividing Curtain.

It’s simple arithmetic: The floor space of the Tabernacle’s Holy of Holies was 10x10 cubits, the Temple’s was 20x20 cubits, and the Ark was placed in the
center of either of these rooms, say biblical scholars. If we assume Moses’ ark had 8-cubit carrying poles (their actual length is nowhere given) it is obvious that they could not have reached the Dividing Curtain (see at right). And anything longer than 8 cubits would almost certainly be excessive for carrying the Ark. Then why are the 13 cubit poles shown for Solomon’s temple not deemed excessive? Because the Ark was no longer to be carried upon shoulders of the Levites once it reached its final resting place, Mt. Moriah, today’s Temple Mount, cp., I Chronicles 15:15 with II Chronicles 35:3. Therefore, Solomon’s long poles were only or mostly for symbolic purposes, not practical ones – for symbolizing extended nostrils smelling the sweet smoke from the Altar of Incense, itself a symbol of national Israel’s heart.

The Eyes of Temple Man

To finish the portrait, two 10-cubit tall gold plated cherubim with outstretched wings were also installed in the Holy of Holies; these symbolize the eyes and eyebrows when viewed from the top down. Below are the eyes of Temple Man – or God, or King Messiah, depending on one’s viewpoint.

For a description and height of the two cherubim, see I Kings 6:23-27. Above at center is the Ark and its extended poles compared over a human face. At right is the Temple Man and below him is the Temple Floor Plan according to the Tanach (Old Testament).

Judgment and King Messiah’s Throne

It has already been stated that two thrones are revealed in Solomon’s Temple and that originally the Ark symbolized the Lord God’s throne chair, and that with certain changes it became King Messiah’s throne. Also Isaiah 11:1-5 was quoted as saying that he (King Messiah) will judge the poor and decide for the meek, signifying that he will act as judge. But what does this have to do with nostrils and smelling?

In v. 3, his delight in the fear of the Lord implies he will have supernatural wisdom and understanding by the Lord’s spirit and, therefore, have no need to judge by mere “sight of the eyes or hearing of the ear”. However the phrase, his delight is the fear of the Lord may also be rendered: the fear of the Lord is fragrance to him (Keil & Delitzsch, vol. 7, p. 283), and Jewish kabbalists concluded that the Messiah himself was made “fragrant” through the fear of the Lord (The Messiah Texts, p.22 by Raphael Patai citing Zohar Hadash, Mid. haNe’elam to songs p. 64c). It means he shall delight in obeying the Lord, as one delights in smelling a sweet fragrance. So here we have the link between the Messiah, obedience, and smelling.

For an explanation of how the Tanach compares a disobedient life to a foul odor and an obedient life to a pleasant aroma, seethe Portrayal and Ascension of the Immortal Soul or Spirit. Here is a short quote from that article:

For example, after being exiled and properly chastised, the Lord says to national Israel that he will bring them back and ‘accept them’ as a ‘sweet aroma,’ Ezekiel 20:41. Observe that his smelling of their smoke aromas (v.40) signifies his acceptance of them,the people themselves,v. 41. Sweet aromas are mentioned in Leviticus: 1:9,13,17; 2:2,9,12; 3:5,16, etc., and, therefore, the rejection of an odor is equivalent to rejection of the offerer himself.

Consequently, smelling the smoke from Israel’s offerings was a delight (fragrance) to the Lord while Israel was obedient; but when she started leading an idolatrous, immoral life, she became a foul odor. Smelling an aroma is a portrait of judgment, which is why King Messiah’s throne seat is the Ark-nose, as illustrated below.

Israel, the Covenant and the Ark

At Mt. Sinai, Israel agreed to keep the Ten Commandments and all related laws. Hence, she was judged by this means, Exodus 19:7, 8; 24:3 - 8. At left, her heart (the Incense Altar) and spiritual life (the smoke) are evaluated by the Tablets of the Covenant inside the Ark.

Where is the Throne of the Lord God?

The question is not, Where is God’s throne? but rather, Where is it within Temple Man? First let us briefly review some verses that say or imply his heavenly throne was portrayed by the Ark on earth.

In Exodus 25:22 the Lord says he will speak to Moses from between the cherubim, but “above” the Ark’s lid; and in Leviticus 16:2: the Lord says he will appear in a cloud above (or upon or over) the Ark’s lid. Also in I Samuel 4:4 and II Samuel 6:2 the Lord is enthroned above or upon the cherubim; and in II Kings 19:15 Hezekiah prays to the God of Israel enthroned above the cherubim. And finally, in Psalms 99:1 and Isaiah 37:14 -16, the Lord “sits enthroned upon the cherubim” (in heaven – or over the earthly Ark). However one must not be imagine him sitting upon the small Ark. Rather, it was his voice sounding from between the cherubim that stood for his person, (Exodus:25:22).

The Golden Attic as the New Throne of Israel’s Lord God

In the Temple the Lord’s throne seat is still in the Holy of Holies, but no longer portrayed by the Ark, but a small upper chamber. The Tabernacle had two rooms, the Holy Place and Holy of Holies, but the Temple had three: The Porch (Ulam), Holy Place and Holy of Holies. In asserting this, scholars forget or discount a fourth room that they themselves call the “golden attic,” a small* chamber or space directly above the Holy of Holies (see graphic). Since the Holy of Holies depicts the
head of Temple Man, logic tells us that the space above depicts the area of the mind; and it this small area, the so-called “golden attic” that is now God’s throne seat, while the Ark becomes a throne seat of judgment depicting a nose whose nostrils extend toward the Golden Altar (the heart) on the other side of the Dividing Curtain .

But the Tabernacle could not have revealed this because it did not have an attic, whether of gold or anything else. It was a royal desert tent, yes; but tents do not have attics.

His Chariot Throne-Seat, Gold Attic, and the Mind

In I Chronicles 28:18 King David calls the twin cherubim in the Holy of Holies “the Lord’s chariot” (Heb.,
merkava). How does this identify the location of the the new throne seat of the Lord God within the Temple? Because his chariot-throne, whether in heaven or on earth, is portrayed as powered by cherubim.

Chariots have wheels, but in the Holy of Holies there were no wheels of any type and, therefore, the large twin cherubim stand for the chariot. But notice how the Lord is always said to be positioned on, above or upon the cherubim: In II Samuel 22:11, 12 and Psalms 18:10 the Lord rides upon the cherubim; and in I Samuel 4:4 and II Samuel 6:2 the Lord is said to be enthroned above or upon the cherubim and, finally, in II Kings 19:15 King Hezekiah prays to the God of Israel enthroned above the cherubim. The Lord, therefore – when on his chariot-throne – is consistently said to be seated above the cherubim, even in the Mosaic period when the Ark (as a small replica of a throne-seat) was transported on the shoulders of men.

In Solomon’s Temple, however, the Ark “rested” and was no longer borne by men (compare First Chronicles 28:2 with Second Chronicles 35:3). Instead we read that the large gold-plated cherubim in the Holy of Holies are called the “chariot of the Lord,” I Chronicles 28:18. If so, then they are assumed to be bearing God’s new throne-seat on their wings, and the only thing
above their wings was the Golden Attic.

In Hebrew the usual biblical word for throne-seat is
kisse, meaning seat of honor. But the word for chariot is merkava or merkaba, which may also refer to a seat of some type: merkaba- a chariot, merkab- chariot, seat, or saddle; rekeb- chariot or chariotry, rakab- to mount and/or ride.Merkaba itself is derived from merkab and below are two examples of its use. In the first, merkab is translated as seat, in the second as saddle.

Song of Songs (Song of Solomon) 3:9,10- King Solomon made himself a palanquin ... its seat of purple ...

Leviticus 15:9- Any saddle on which the one with the discharge rides shall ...
This tells us that in the Temple’s Holy of Holies, the Golden Attic is the merkab, the Lord’s new throne-seat. Why? Because 1) it is the only space “above” the twin gold cherubim, 2) the space that can most adequately portray a throne-seat “high and lifted up,” Isaiah 6:1, and, 3) the one that is most closely linked to the Shekinah. Also, 4) because the Shekinah –
as a cloud – resembles the shape of the human brain which is at the highest level of Temple Man’s head, the Golden Attic. And finally, 5) the Lord is depicted as cloaking himself with the cloud: Exodus 14:24 (see where God looks through the cloud), 19:9, and 24:16 (here he calls for Moses from within the cloud’s midst ). Shekinah means “dwelling,” for indeed the Lord dwelled within the cloud, concealing himself with its radiant glory.

The Golden Attic in II Chronicles 3:9

Did the “golden attic” truly exist or is it an invention of scholars? The attic is referred to for certain in II Chronicles 3:9.  Beginning in verses 8-12 the chronicler is describing only the Holy of Holies – andonly this room – the context indicates. But in v. 9 he mentions an upper story, upper chamber, or area above the Holy of Holies, the so-called Golden Attic, and says that Solomon’s builders overlaid it with gold. This empty chamber is shrouded in mystery. No entrance or exit is associated with it; nor is any particular purpose given for it. Also, it may have been partitioned into several smaller cells since some translations refer to it in the plural case, others in the singular. Yet, this small mystical upper space is the most important room of all because it symbolizes the mind of the Lord within his new earthly throne-seat in Solomon’s Temple.

Another indicator of its existence is a gold plate (also called a “crown”) that was attached to the front of the High Priest’s turban with a cord of blue, blue for heaven. By so being, it signified the importance of the forehead, identified withthe mind. On this gold crown or name plate were engraved the words, Holy to the LORD, giving emphasis to his name, Exodus 28:36-38, 29:6, 39:30, 31; Levitcus. 8:9, and echoing what God told David and Solomon about the Temple: “My name shall be there,” and that the Temple was built for his name, I Kings 8:16-20, i.e., his name stands for the Lord himself. Hence, the priestly golden crown with the Lord’s name identifies the Golden Attic as the new throne-seat of the Lord within the Temple (graphic above). See also Secrets of the Holy Place.

Moreover, this also tells you the Lord does not desire to merely live among men and women, as he did at Sinai, but within our minds, through his spirit; and in this manner each us becomes a human mobile temple (like the Tabernacle) for him. The mind is the throne seat of the human body, and on that throne seat should be the Lord (instead of the Sinful Inclination), ruling over his willing and thinking intelligent subjects, whom he created in the first place. In this way, each becomes a chariot or palanquin for the Lord (graphics below). These are the secrets of the Golden Attic.

One Head, Two Thrones

In the Temple, the Lord God’s new throne is the mind-brain, while King Messiah’s throne is the nose and nostrils. Since the Lord’s throne seat is depicted by the mind-brain of Temple Man, it appears that the Shekinah is a cloak of light for the Lord, a way of concealing his essence which may be pure cosmic mind, but one that can assume a human form at will.

During Moses’ time the Lord God’s relation to humanity could not be more fully revealed because of the design limitations of the Tabernacle. And this is one reason why the bodily figure of Temple Man and the two thrones cannot be seen there. Generations later King David arises and desires to build a temple for God, but the task is turned over to his son Solomon who builds it atop Mount Moriah in Jerusalem, II Chronicles 3:1, where Abraham nearly sacrificed Isaac hundreds of years before, Genesis 22:2, 8-14.

Interestingly, some Jewish bibles translate v. 14 above as,
on the mount the Lord will be seen (Or ... will appear) . Or again, On the mount of the Lord He is seen, according to Jon Levenson, Jewish Spirituality, p.44,
Crossroad Publishing, New York. On p. 43 Levenson also connects this to the Jews saying anciently that they would go to the Temple to “see the face of YHWH” (i.e., the Lord), p. 43. They said this because, after all, the Temple was
His palace, was it not? And even though Jews were strictly forbidden making religious icons, the Tanach is replete with verbal portraits of YHWH having or assuming a human form. But since the Temple has a concealed human form, as we have seen, it turns out that the “face” and head of YHWH may be seen in the Holy of Holies, co-mingled with that of the patriarch Jacob, the Levite High Priest, and King Messiah. Amazingly, those forbidden making religious icons created the largest one in the whole world without knowing it, and they did so with God’s approval!

The height of the small Golden Attic – The Holy of Holies itself was a cube of 20 cubits (I Kings 6::20) within the 30 cubit high temple building (1 Kings 6::2), leaving 10 cubits of height unexplained. However, the floor of the Holy of Holies rested atop the rock ( 6 cubits high) where Abraham nearly offered Isaac, leaving 4 cubits for the height of Golden Attic. How do we know this rock was 6 cubits high? Because during the Herodian period, the main floor of the Second Temple was raised six cubits, making itlevel with the floor of the Holy of Holies. From then on the High Priest no longer had to climb a short stairway or ramp when entering this room on the Day of Atonement. The rock is called even shetiyah, the “foundation stone” of the world. Ref., see under the heading Hekal. Also see on this website, First Temple Vs. Second Temple for more graphics and details.


Copyright © 2008 by Tony Badillo
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