Lesson 4

The Brazen Laver

V. The Brazen Laver

Just before the door of the tabernacle stood the brazen laver where the priest was required to wash his hands and feet. God had said wash, "that they die not" (Exodus 30:21). The New Testament application of the brazen laver of water is water baptism. Jesus said, "He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved: but he that believeth not shall be damned" (Mark 16:16). "Baptism doth also now save us" (I Peter 3:21). "But ye are washed, but ye are sanctified, but ye are justified, in the name of the Lord Jesus. . ." (I Corinthians 6:11). (See also Exodus 30:18-21.)

"Thou shaft also make a laver of brass and his foot also of brass, to wash withal, and thou shall put it between the tabernacle and the congregation and the altar, and thou shalt put water therein. For Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their 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 unto the Lord" (Exodus 30:18-20).

Note where the laver was placed, Exodus 40:30, between the brazen altar where a death was demanded, and the tabernacle where the priest officiated and where the Lord of Israel met them. It was placed between the altar (repentance) and the tabernacle (the kingdom) and that is as the Lord by the spirit gave to the Apostle Peter the message, which was according to the pattern shown Moses in the mount. He said, "Repent (here is the altar, or death to sin) and be baptized everyone of you, (here is the laver) in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, (or enter into the kingdom or tabernacle)" Acts 2:38.

In the New Testament there is, first, a death at the brazen altar (repentance) or dying with Christ to sins, and Romans 6:1-5 is a beautiful lesson of what baptism is for after one comes to a knowledge of the truth. Baptism is not only buried with Him by baptism into His death, Romans 6:3, it is also for the remission of sins, Acts 2:38, which statement by the Apostle Peter is also the fulfillment of John 20:23, Matthew 16:19 and I Peter 3:21. These scriptures can be compared with the "pattern" under Moses, to show why the laver was placed between altar (death) and the tabernacle (life). Paul says, "if we have been planted (buried) together in the likeness of his death (baptism), we shall also be in the likeness of his resurrection" Romans 6:5.

Consider the relationship between the name of Jesus in baptism in the New Testament and the blood that the priest took to the water with him in the Old Testament? All through the law one is continually remined that the "life of all flesh is in the blood," under Moses, the schoolmaster. Later Jesus tells Israel, "I am come that ye might have life and have it more abundantly" (John 10:10). His important message to man was life. Study His words carefully and the words of those who wrote of Him after His death, to find that both He and His disciples linked this life with His name.

John states that "In Him was life," John 1:14 and then tells how to get that life, "but as many as received Him gave He power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name, which were born, not of blood, nor the will of flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:12; 13). Here he states that one can get that life or sonship by being born again, and by believing on His name. "What has His name got to do with being born again?" Jesus said, John 3:5, "Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit he cannot enter into the kingdom of God." Go back to the tabernacle again, and here see the way the priest had to go as he enters into the tabernacle into the presence of God. A sacrifice, (death on the altar), blood taken to the laver, and here note that the life is in the blood. In the New Testament His name is used where it was "the blood" in the Old. There is no remission of sins without the blood, and in John 20:31, read these words, "But these are written that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through His name."

Consider these three Scriptures: "We have power to become the sons of God through His name" (John 1:12-13), remission of sins through His name, Acts 2:38 and life through His name, John 20:31. The apostles preached these things in the name of Jesus. Read in the 5th chapter of Acts and the 28th verse the words of the high priest saying, "Did not we straightly command you that ye should not teach in this name, and behold, ye have filled Jerusalem with your doctrine, and intend to bring this man's blood upon us." How? Through the preaching of the name of Jesus. Mark 16:15-16, "Go ye into all the world and preach the gospel to every creature. He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned," Luke 24:47, "And that repentance and remission of sins should be preached in his name among all nations, beginning at Jerusalem." So there is room for every one in the priesthood who will accept the high priest (Jesus) as their father by being born of water and of the spirit; be willing to come to the door of the tabernacle, (even to Jesus) John 10:7 and there be washed before they enter into the tabernacle (kingdom of God).