Nevertheless, undaunted, archaeologists have searched for evidence of the Tent of Meeting
for years, which they posited would be found in ancient Shiloh (next to the settlement of Shiloh in the Binyamin region).
Feeling Moses' pain, God instructs him to select 70 elders and bring them to the Tent of Meeting
. There, the Creator promises, he'll make a special appearance and charge the elders with helping Moses lead the people.
Noah's ark was another buoyant form of divine sanctuary, and much later in the story Moses is instructed to create a sanctuary for God's glory in the carefully measured and tailored Tent of Meeting
. It's a place too holy for the average person to enter, and any unauthorized folk who so much as touched its utensils were endangered.
Moses took 70 elders of Israel to the tent of meeting
, so that the Lord could take some of the spirit which was upon Moses and anoint the elders, who would then assist in the governance of the people.
The description of "the cloud" and "the glory of Yahweh" as the means by which God is present corresponds to the tabernacled presence of the Lord, which will soon fill the newly built tent of meeting
(40:34-35) and will later take possession of Solomon's temple (1 Kings 8:10-11).
Rashi sees the phrase "and I will speak to you from above the cover ..." contradicting Leviticus 1,1: "...[TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII]"/"And elsewhere it is noted, 'God spoke to him/Moses out of the Tent of Meeting
, saying ...'" According to Rashi, "out of the Tent of Meeting
" refers to the Tabernacle in general, beyond the covering on the Ark.
"The cloud covered the Tent of Meeting
. When the cloud was raised up from the Tabernacle, the Children of Israel would embark on all their journeys.
Tents were pitched to a set pattern and the tent of meeting
was always in the centre - this housed the tabernacle, or God's dwelling place, and was the focal point of their lives.
Is this what Moses felt when the cloud of Yahweh descended on the Tent of Meeting
? For those moments I felt like I knew the God of the Tent--the one not confined to temples or official places of worship, but the God who walks in our everyday.