For those of you that are unfamiliar with the Ark of the Covenant, it is a small box overlaid with pure gold that contained the two tablets of stone on which were written the “ten commandments”, the heart of the covenant Yahweh made with Israel. This ark was kept in the Most Holy Place of the tabernacle/temple in which the Mighty One of Israel dwelt among His people.

And they shall make an ark of shittim wood: . . . And you shall overlay it with pure gold, within and without shall you overlay it, and shall make upon it a crown of gold round about. Exodus 25:10-11

The gold overlay not only represents the holiness and value of the box itself, but the contents of the box as well. The ark is like a treasure chest and its contents are the treasure.

And you shall put into the ark the testimony which I shall give you. Exodus 25:16

The “testimony” is the treasure housed in the Ark of the Covenant, but what is the “testimony”?

And He gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon Mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of Elohim. Exodus 31:18

The testimony, now known as the “ten commandments”, were placed inside the ark for protection, preservation and as a witness to the will of Yahweh for His people.

Yahweh commanded Israel to make poles to carry the ark so that it would not be touched by human hands (Exodus 25:12-15). This, too, was a sign of the incredible value and holiness of the ark and its contents.

Once the tablets of stone were placed inside the ark, a cover called the “mercy seat” was placed over it to seal it. Two images of cherubim were fashioned upon the mercy seat so that they faced each other with their faces looking down at the mercy seat.

And you shall make a mercy seat of pure gold: . . . And you shall make two cherubim of gold, of beaten work shall you make them, in the two ends of the mercy seat. And make one cherub on the one end, and the other cherub on the other end: even of the mercy seat shall you make the cherubim on the two ends thereof. And the cherubim shall stretch forth their wings on high, covering the mercy seat with their wings, and their faces shall look one to another; toward the mercy seat shall the faces of the cherubim be.And you shall put the mercy seat above upon the ark; and in the ark you shall put the testimony that I shall give you. Exodus 25:17-21

After the cover was placed on the ark, the ark was placed in the inner room or Most Holy Place of the tabernacle. No man was permitted to enter that room except the high priest once a year on the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur – The Day of Covering).

Once the ark was positioned and the tabernacle was void of people, the glory of Yahweh came down and rested upon the mercy seat upon the ark.

And there I will meet with you, and I will commune with you from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubim which are upon the ark of the testimony, of all things which I will give thee in commandment unto the children of Israel. Exodus 25:22

Then a cloud covered the tent of the congregation, and the glory of Yahweh filled the tabernacle. And Moses was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of Yahweh filled the tabernacle. Exodus 40:34-35

Now we can understand why the cherubim were looking down at the mercy seat. Yahweh’s glory rested upon the ark between the cherubim. They were bowing down to Him in reverence and worship as they guarded the ark.

Not only was the ark and its contents of great value and holiness by virtue of 1) the gold surrounding it 2) the fact that it could not be touched 3) its position within the holiest place in the tabernacle and 4) it being guarded by cherubim, but to top it all off, the presence of the Creator of the universe, Almighty Yahweh, dwelt upon it. The ark acted as Yahweh’s throne as He ruled over Israel while sitting upon the very laws that governed His Kingdom.

Picture in your mind what was taking place. The mercy seat/cover stood between the Elohim of Israel and His commandments. Yahweh’s people, not only in Moses’ day, but today as well, are prone to break His commandments. However, Yahweh provided a means for them and us to attain mercy and forgiveness. He provided a covering for us and that covering is Messiah Yeshua. When we break Yahweh’s laws, we have a covering or an atonement for our sins through the shed blood of the Savior of the world, Yeshua.

And not only so, but we also joy in Elohim through our Master Yeshua Messiah, by whom we have now received the atonement. Romans 5:11

And all things are of Elohim, who has reconciled us to Himself through Yeshua Messiah, and has given to us the ministry of reconciliation; That is, that Elohim was in Messiah, reconciling the world unto Himself, not imputing their trespasses unto them; and has committed unto us the word of reconciliation. 2 Corinthians 5:18-19

Whom Elohim has set forth to be a propitiation [hilestarion – same word used for “mercy seat” in Hebrews 9:5] through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of Elohim; Romans 3:25

And he is the propitiation [hilestarion] for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. 1 John 2:2

Herein is love, not that we loved Elohim, but that He loved us, and sent His Son to be the propitiation [hilestarion] for our sins. 1 John 4:10

Yeshua the Messiah fulfills the function of the mercy seat in that we receive mercy through him via his righteousness and shed blood on our behalf. This mercy is not only for us who have faith in his atoning blood, but for the entire world. That includes you, dear reader. You need only receive Yeshua as your Savior, your atoning sacrifice, and the blood he shed on the cross almost 2,000 years ago will cleanse you of all your sins.

This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that Elohim is light, and in Him is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Yeshua Messiah His Son cleanses us from all sin. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His word is not in us. 1 John 1:5-10

Once a year, on the Day of Atonement, the high priest of Israel would enter the Most Holy Place with the blood of a sin offering and sprinkle that blood upon the mercy seat to atone for the sins of the people.

Then shall he kill the goat of the sin offering, that is for the people, and bring his blood within the veil, and do with that blood as he did with the blood of the bullock, and sprinkle it upon the mercy seat, and before the mercy seat: Leviticus 16:15

Yeshua died as the ultimate sin offering for the world. His blood was sprinkled upon the mercy seat to atone for the sins of not only Israel, but the world. Not only does he fulfill the sin offering, but he fulfills the function of the mercy seat.

Have you made him your sin offering? Is he your mercy seat through whom your sins are atoned for? Do not make your Creator out to be a liar by saying you have no sin.

For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of Elohim; Romans 3:23

Sin is the transgression of Yahweh’s holy law.

Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law. 1 John 3:4

You have broken Yahweh’s laws, especially the Ten Commandments. The payment for sin is death. The way to cheat death is by having your sins atoned for by the blood of Yeshua. By doing so, you will be clothed with his righteousness and receive the free gift of eternal life.

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of Elohim is eternal life through Yeshua Messiah our Master. Romans 6:23

I hope you will exercise wisdom and choose life.