Temple Tabernacle HaysThe book of Exodus tells a thrilling story, and is naturally the inspiration for numerous adaptations and allusions within literature (Daniel Deronda, Superman). However, the stirring narrative of Israel’s deliverance from Egypt and ascent to Sinai to meet God takes a sharp right-turn into plodding blueprints for the tabernacle, its utensils, and the priestly garments. It’s like watching Frodo heroically ascend to the peak of Mount Doom only to then receive a 3-hour lecture from Treebeard. At least, that is how we often consider the latter half of Exodus. In reality, it’s far from an anticlimactic letdown, and the problem is not the text but ourselves. As I am discovering through teaching Leviticus, when one delves into the difficult material in Scripture, it is always rewarding. Or as one scholar puts it: if it’s weird, it’s important. In The Temple and Tabernacle, J. Daniel Hays has helped bridge this gap by providing a study of Israel’s tabernacle and temples that is approachable and concise.

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