Stephen’s Address: God’s True Tabernacle

“Our fathers had the tabernacle of witness in the wilderness, as He appointed, instructing Moses to make it according to the pattern that he had seen, 45 which our fathers, having received it in turn, also brought with Joshua into the land possessed by the Gentiles, whom God drove out before the face of our fathers until the days of David, 46 who found favor before God and asked to find a dwelling for the God of Jacob. 47 But Solomon built Him a house.

48 “However, the Most High does not dwell in temples made with hands, as the prophet says:

49 ‘Heaven is My throne,
And earth is My footstool.
What house will you build for Me? says the Lord,
Or what is the place of My rest?
50 Has My hand not made all these things?’” — Acts 7:44-50.

Stephen continues to address the council. He says that the children of Israel had the tabernacle in the wilderness built according to the pattern God had given to Moses. They took it to the promised land under Joshua. This tabernacle was in use until the reign of King David who asked God of his desire to build a permanent dwelling for the God of Jacob. However, God chose Solomon to build a temple.

Stephen states that the Most High does not dwell in temples made by humans. He quotes what God declared through the prophet Isaiah to prove his point that God is in Heaven, the earth is beneath Him, and He is the Maker of everything. He is too large — infinite — to be contained in any building!

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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