Other aspects of the Old Testament tabernacle are also fulfilled in John’s writings. Consider the lampstand. The first mention of the lampstand is in the book of Exodus, where we are told that the lampstand was in the tabernacle (Exo. 25:31). In chapters eight and nine of the Gospel of John we are told that Christ is the light of the world. In 8:12 the Lord Jesus said, “I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall by no means walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” In 9:5 the Lord went on to say, “While I am in the world, I am the light of the world.” In these chapters we have Christ as the reality of the lampstand. As the lampstand, the Lord Jesus is the light of life to enlighten this dark world. Furthermore, in chapter one of Revelation we have “seven golden lampstands” (vv. 12, 20). This is another indication that in the writings of John we have the fulfillment of the tabernacle and the offerings.
THE TRIUNE GOD REVEALED IN THE WORD
Let us now say a further word concerning reality. In John 1:1-3 we see that in the beginning was the Word and that all things came into being through Him. Through the Word, who is the very God, the entire universe was created. In verse 4 John goes on to say, “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.” According to verse 14, the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us, full of grace and reality. In the footnote on truth in 1 John 1:6 in the Recovery Version and in messages nine through eleven of the Life-study of 1 John, we point out that in John’s writings truth, or reality, first refers to the Triune God. This means that God is the reality, that Christ is the reality, and that the Spirit is the reality. Furthermore, the word God speaks is reality.
How can we say that God Himself is reality? We can say this because John 1 reveals that God became flesh and tabernacled among us, full of reality. John 1:17 also says that grace and reality came through the incarnated God. As God incarnate, the Lord Jesus said, “I am the way, and the reality, and the life” (John 14:6). Before He died, the Lord spoke concerning the Spirit of reality (14:17; 15:26; 16:13). In his first Epistle John clearly says that the Spirit is the truth, the reality (1 John 5:6). Moreover, in John 17:17 the Lord Jesus said, “Sanctify them in the truth; Your word is truth.” Therefore, from all these verses we see that reality is God, Christ, the Spirit, and the Word.
God, Christ, the Spirit, and the Word convey the reality of the universe. The Triune God is Himself this reality, and the Triune God is revealed in the Word and conveyed by the Word. This means that the Word is also the reality, the reality which is actually the Triune God Himself. In His incarnation, the Triune God was the fulfillment of the tabernacle and the offerings. Therefore, as the embodiment of the Triune God, Christ is the real tabernacle, and He is the real offerings.
(The Fulfillment of the Tabernacle and the Offerings in the Writings of John, Chapter 25, by Witness Lee)