In Exodus 25:31 the Lord gives Moses specific instructions for the design of a special Golden Lampstand for the Tabernacle, and later for the Temple. This lampstand, or in Hebrew "Menorah", had one central lamp with six branches for a total of seven lamps. The central lamp was the first to be lighted and was known as the Servant Lamp.
We know the significance of the number seven in scripture, the number of completion. The number seven is used throughout scripture. Likewise, there are patterns throughout scripture based upon the Golden Lampstand or the Menorah. In these Menorah designs, the Servant Lamp or the fourth lamp usually refers to light, fire or the Throne of God.
The Creation of Genesis shows a Menorah design. There are seven days of creation. Notice that on the first day the Lord said "let there be light", but this light was the light of the Lord's presence. The lights that we observe on a daily basis, the sun and moon, were created on the fourth day in the Servant Lamp position!
The instructions given to Moses in Exodus 25 include certain decorations on each branch of the Golden Lampstand. There are three sets of three designs on each branch for a total of nine. On the main staff are four sets of three designs for a total of twelve. The three designs are, in the New King James Version, bowls, knobs and flowers. This, therefore, is the layout of the designs on the Lord's Golden Lampstand:
|- 9 -||- 9 -||- 9 -||- 12 -||- 9 -||- 9 -||- 9 -|
In Psalms 119:105 David describes God's Word as "a lamp to my feet and a light for my path". If you add the number of decorations on the Golden Lampstand the total is sixty-six. There are sixty-six "decorations", or books, in God's Word! What a coincidence(?!?). Further, if you add the first four numbers, 9-9-9-12, the total is thirty-nine, the number of books in the Old Testament. This is not a coincidence! Naturally, the remaining numbers total twenty-seven, the number of books in the New Testament. Amazing! You will notice that the central supporting staff of the lampstand, the one with twelve designs, is included in the number representing the Old Testament. The Old Testament is the support for the entire Bible. The Old Testament laid the foundation for God's Plan that we have been so fortunate to receive today.
Further, the branches of the Golden Lampstand divide the Bible into clear separations.
I – The first nine books, Genesis through I Samuel, cover the patriarchs and the establishment of Israel as a nation through the death of King Saul.
II – The next nine books, II Samuel through Job, cover the history of the Kingdom of Israel. They start with the royal kingship of David (the Messiah was not to be of the line of Saul) and finish with the story of Job. The story of Job shows someone who had it all and lost it all, only to regain all that was lost and more. The story of Job is a story of the nation of Israel, who had it all and lost it all, but will regain all that was lost and more in the coming Kingdom.
III – The next set of nine books are prophetic and include the Psalms through Daniel. Matthew tells us that David was considered a Prophet in Matthew 13:35. The Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes and the Song of Solomon are prophetic, but the prophecy is by implication rather than proclamation.
The fourth branch, which is the center of the menorah, is known as the Servant Lamp. The Servant Lamp always refers to the Lord, or His throne, or Light (sometimes in the form of a flame). God is Light. (I John 1:5)
Jesus is the Servant Lamp. In the Revelation 1:13 He is pictured in the middle of the golden lampstands.
IV – The next set contains twelve books and is very clear. It is the twelve books of so-called "minor" prophets. They are called minor only because their works are smaller. They are not minor in importance.
V – The next set of nine books includes Matthew through Galatians. These books were written to a Hebrew audience. Some scholars say the Book of Matthew was originally written in Hebrew. In the Parable of the Ten Virgins in Matthew 25 have you ever wondered why the bride is not mentioned? It is because the groom is Jesus the Christ and the bride is the Christian Gentile nations! Matthew through Galatians were written to Jews. Galatians uses Jewish pictures for its Jewish audience (Galatians 4:8-10, 4:21-31, 6:12-16).
VI – The center set of nine books in the New Testament includes Ephesians through Philemon. It appears that these books were addressed to a Gentile audience. Ephesians does not use the Jewish pictures as does Galatians. In fact, Paul tells the Ephesians that he is a preacher to the Gentiles in chapter three.
The little Book of Philemon concludes the Gentile portion of the New Testament. It is a picture of the Church coming home! It is a story of the Rapture! Onesimus, the slave worthless to his master, is a type of the Church. Paul, in this story, is a type of Jesus. Onesimus was a slave to sin and Paul paid his debts, even though Onesimus owed Paul his life. Onesimus, which means "profitable", then returned home to the Master.
VII – The last set of nine books is addressed again to a Hebrew audience. It starts with Hebrews and concludes with The Revelation, which tells the story of the tribulation of the Jews in the final days and the final atonement for Israel. In Jeremiah (Jer. 30:1-7) the prophet is telling of a time when the Lord will bring Israel back from captivity. He describes it as a day like no other. "It will be awful. None will be like it. It will be a time of trouble for Jacob." (verse 7). Another name for Jacob is Israel. The time of trouble, or tribulation, will be for the Children of Israel.
Please notice that the "Gentile books" of the New Testament are bracketed by the Jewish books. There are nine books addressed to a Jewish audience, then nine books addressed to a Gentile audience, then nine more books addressed to Jews. This may explain the statement of Jesus that "the first will be last and the last will be first". The Jews were the first to receive the Word, but will be the last to be blessed by it. The Gentiles were the last to receive the Word, but were the first to be blessed by it. Praise the Name of the Lord!!