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The Bible gives us a detailed description of the brazen altar. It was a square, hollow box, made of acacia wood and covered with bronze.
The measurements of the 4-sided box were 7.5 ft x 7.5 ft x 4.5 ft. On each of the four corners of the box, there were horns that represented strength, salvation, and security.
Pans, shovels, basins, fleshhooks, and firepans were the accessories used at the brazen altar. The bronze grate had rings attached and included two acacia poles covered in bronze.
1 John 3:5
2 Corinthians 5:21
1 Samuel 2:10
1 Corinthians 1:8
1 Corinthians 15:1-4
The Significance of the Brazen Altar
The altar was a place of substitutionary sacrifice. It was a place of death that speaks of justification.
God wanted to dwell among his people. But, how does a holy God dwell among a sinful people?
First God required the people to offer a sacrifice for their sins. God told Adam and Eve that the result of their sin was death. However, God had mercy on humankind and provided them with a way to temporarily cover their sin.
Instead of immediately requiring their own blood (death), God allowed the blood of an animal to atone or take away sin, making it possible for the worshipers to enter into God’s presence.
Only the finest animal – a perfect one – was good enough.God asked them for a perfect, flawless sacrifice because:
The animal represented an undeserving recipient of a deserved punishment.
God wanted people to trust in his provision, so he asked that the sacrifice be valuable.
The perfect animal foreshadowed Jesus, the perfect sacrifice who atones for sin once and for all.
Because these sacrifices only temporarily covered the sins of the people, they needed to be offered on a regular basis.
The people would bring the offering and would put their hand on the head of the animal while it was killed. This symbolically, yet temporarily, put their sins onto the animal, and the animal died in their place.
1 Timothy 2:5
1 Peter 2:24