The English word "tabernacle" is derived from the Latin word tabernaculum meaning "tent, hut, booth." Tabernaculum itself is a diminutive form of the word taberna, meaning "tavern". The word Sanctuary is also used as its name.
The detailed outlines for the Tabernacle and its leaders are enumerated in the Book of Exodus:
- Chapter 25: Materials needed, the Ark, the table of showbread for the Twelve Tribes, the Menorah.
- Chapter 26: The Tabernacle, the beams, partitions.
- Chapter 27: The copper altar, the enclosure, oil.
- Chapter 28: Vestments for the priests, ephod garment, ring settings, the breastplate, robe, head-plate, tunic, turban, sashes, pants.
- Chapter 29: Consecration of priests and altar.
- Chapter 30: Incense altar, washstand, anointing oil, incense.
Also, in a later tradition, from Hebrews:
- Chapter 9: which includes the enshrined leftover manna, the stone tablets of the Commandments, and the Rod of the Patriarch Aaron; the latter confirming the legitimacy of the Levitical priesthood.
Physical descriptionExodus, chapters 36, 37, and 38.
Transplantation into the Temple at Jerusalem and utilization
When King David conquered Jerusalem and his son King Solomon built the first temple, known as Solomon's Temple, all the elements of the tabernacle were incorporated into the newly built permanent temple.
The Levitical Priests would use the tabernacle to speak to God. Twice a day a priest would stand in front of the golden prayer altar and burn fragrant incense. Other procedures were also carried out in the Tabernacle.