The Brazen Laver
It is the maintaining of fellowship with Christ, that we wish to speak of.
And one of the examples of this, is:
Exodus 30:18-20 “Thou shalt also make a laver of brass, and his foot also of brass, to wash withal: and thou shalt put it between the tabernacle of the congregation and the altar, and thou shalt put water therein.
For Aaron and his sons shall wash there hands and there feet thereat:
When they go into the tabernacle of the congregation, they shall wash with water, that they die not; or when they come near to the altar to minister, to burn offering made by fire unto the Lord:”
The brazen Laver was made for cleansing. It was set just outside the door of the Holy Place, in the court of the tabernacle. This was in the natural sunlight. The priests, and people offering, could be in this court; but the people could not minister at the altar or the laver.
When Aaron and his sons were given for the service of the priesthood, they were brought to the laver and given a bath by Moses; once.
Exodus 29:4, 9 “And Aaron and his sons thou shalt bring unto the door of the tabernacle of the congregation, and shall wash them with water.
And thou shalt gird them with girdles, Aaron and his sons, and put the bonnets on them: and the priest office shall be theirs for a perpetual statute: and thou shalt consecrate Aaron and his sons.”
This pictures our regeneration; when we are born again. It was never repeated.
They were priests from then on.
So with us. When we are born again, we are forever His children.
1 Peter 2:9 “But ye are chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should show forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light:”
But as priests, they would minister, by sacrifice, at the brazen altar. There, the sacrifices for sin and peace would be given.
Their hands would be bloody, and their feet would be dirty from walking on the bare ground.
So, they were commanded to come to the Laver to wash both their hands and feet, before they went into the Holy Place to burn incense at the golden altar, or light the lamp (M’nourah).
This they were to do every time they went into the Holy Place.
The Holy Place signified fellowship with God:
the golden altar and the burning incense showed the prayer which ascends to God (the fire to burn came from the brazen altar everyday, tying Christ sacrifice and our prayers together)
the table of shewbread showed forth the sufficiency of God for our needs;
and the lampstand showed forth God as the only light for our work.
All showed forth fellowship with God.
But before they could go in and have this fellowship, they must wash at the brazen laver.
As Christians, we need daily cleansing from the defilements of the way, if we are to maintain fellowship with God.
In our walk, we constantly have dealings with those who are dead in trespasses and sins; and their very influence defiles us.
In honesty, we are also aware of the blemishes of our service (which speak of our hands), and the failures of our walk (our feet).
We do; but we hesitate, and mar our words.(as though we were ashamed of Christ)
We don’t do what God wants us to do. (We have good reasons, we think. How good will they seem before God?)
These do not interfere with our standing as Christians. We are still born again.
But it does interfere with our communion with God.
Ephesians 5:26 “That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word.”
James 4:8 “Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double-minded.”
1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”
The Laver, like everything else in the Tabernacle speaks of Christ’s sufficiency to meet our every need.
The example from the New Testament is Peter:
John 13:8-10 “Peter saith unto him (Jesus), Thou shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee not, thou hast no part with me.
Simon Peter saith unto him, Lord, not my feet only, but also my hands and my head.
Jesus saith unto him, He that is washed needeth not save to wash his feet, but is clean every whit: and ye are clean, but not all.”
At the Last Supper, when Jesus washed the disciples feet, Peter protested; “You will never wash my feet!” Peter knew He was Lord, and it did not seem right for Him to do this.
But Jesus made it clear, “If I don’t wash your feet, you will have no part WITH Me.”
Jesus didn’t say, “If I don’t wash you, you will have no part in Me.”
But He said, “you will have no part with me”.
Jesus told Peter he was clean “every whit”, except for the cleansing of his feet.
“In Christ”, speaks of our being born again.
“With Christ”, speaks of our fellowship with Him.
And if we are to have fellowship with Christ (and the strength that comes from it), we must be cleansed, daily from our sins, and defilements.
(Defilement comes from the things we hear; we may not agree with the awful stuff; but we have heard it, and it defiles us.
It comes from the things we see. Though we may not desire to have them (a new car, or the jackpot of the lottery; as well as the other lusts), still we have been brought into their influence.
These, defile us.)
The Laver of Brass shows God judgement on these defilements; for the priests could not enter the Holy Place, without washing.
But it also shows that He has met the need of that judgement, by the water, which removes the very things that condemn.
The Laver was there, but they had to wash in the water that it provided.
Christ Jesus has made a way for us to come and wash in His word.
They were tested, by the Laver. Would they wash and have all that the Holy Place meant?
We, too, are tested by the Son of God. Do we want that fellowship and communion which enlivens us? Will we go to the Word of God and judge our ways before Him?
1 Corinthians 11:31 “For if we would judge ourselves, we should not be judged.”
Water is also to invigorate. And the Word of God gives us comfort and a refreshing feeling. It revives us. It makes us feel whole, and clean again. Ready for the next moment, the next day.
Revelation 22:17 “And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.”