Brazen Laver. Ex 30:17- 21; 38:8
The brazen laver stood between the brazen alter and the door of the tabernacle. It was the second piece of furniture in the court. Its construction, location, purpose, and spiritual meanings are important. It was washing basin for the priest to wash their feet and hands when they went to minister at the alter. They must wash their feet and hands before they enter the sanctuary. God himself provided the water in the brazen laver (1 Cor 10:4). The entrance to the holy place was forbidden to ordinary Israelite. Only the priest were allowed to enter the holy place to minister after they wash their feet and hand at the laver. Because God is holy, they must purify themselves daily at the Laver before they enter the holy place. The New Testament believers are considered to be royal priesthood and a holy nation to God (1 Pet 2:5, 9). They are set apart saints to serve Christ and glorify God. Christ saved us and made us a kingdom of priests to God (Rev 1:5). So every child of God is at the same time a priest. Now there is a common priesthood of all believers to offer up spiritual sacrifice. As royal priesthood we are called to show the praises of God who has saved us. The New Testament does not divide believers priest and laymen. The Laver speaks of believers and their need of cleansing in their daily life. They are living in a fallen world in a sinful flesh and are prone to be defiled by the sinful corruptions of this world (1 John 1:9; John 17:17). Christ has finished the work of salvation. His blood brings an eternal redemption to everyone who trust him. They had been to the brazen alte, cross of Christ. The moment they trust Christ the blood of Jesus cleansed them from all their sins. But they still sin. Here the ministry of Christ at the right hand of God the Father as our Advocate is important. He cleanses our feet through the washing of water by the Word pf God daily (John 13). The New Testament does not recognize a special class of priests or laymen.
Brazen Laver was made of the looking mirrors made of polished brass. Once these mirrors were valuable to women. But they were willing give their mirrors for the use in the tabernacle because of their devotion to God. This speaks of their devotion and sacrifice to God. This looking mirror was made of polished brass. There was no wood involved in the construction of the Laver. There were no measurement given for the Laver. Who can measure the immeasurable greatness of God's power that raised Christ from the dead (Eph 1:19). When the brazen alter is a type of Christ's death on the cross the Laver is the picture of His glorious resurrection (John 7:37-39). Christ's death on the cross brings eternal redemption and it will never be repeated. So once redeemed always redeemed. But believers still be defiled by sin. For this the Lord Jesus is our Advocate with the Father. He cleanses our feet through the washing of water by the Word daily (Eph 5:26; John 15:3). The Laver with water in it is a type of the Word of God in twofold ways. As a looking glass it reveals our sinfulness. The water in the laver is a type of the Word of God (James 1:23-25). When the Word of God is ministered to our hearts in the power of risen Christ, it reveals our sinfulness and cleanses us from sin. What was once vanity mirror now serves a higher purpose in the Tabernacle. What is given to God is wasted (Rom 12:1, 2). The water in the laver was obtained from the smitten rock , which is type of Christ (1 Cor 10:4). When a soldier speared the side of Christ blood and water flowed (John 19:34). The blood speaks of atonement Christ has made for us and the redemption sinner experiences at conversion. The water speaks of the cleansing they receive from defilement daily to serve Christ (John 13:1-6; 1 John 5:6).
The brazen Laver was placed between brazen altar and the Holy place. Only the priest were allowed to wash from it. They first had to pass the brazen alter to come to Laver. It is God’s order. In salvation, we see three important truths. Justification, sanctification and glorification. At the brazen altar, sinner is justified and enters into a relationship with God. At the cross a sinner is justified. Now he is being sanctified by the Word of God (John 17:17). The the brazen laver is a picture of it. Believers are cleansed by the washing of the water with the Word (Eph 5:26).
The priests were instructed to wash their hands and feet before they minister inside the tabernacle (Exodus 30:19, 20). God is not only interested in the forgiveness of our sin but also about our daily sanctification. Laver is a picture of glorified Christ (John 7:37-37). What Christ has done on the cross is the foundation of all Christian blessings including holiness. There is a positional sanctification and a practical sanctification. The positional sanctification happens when we get saved. The practical sanctification speaks of our daily cleansing and our walk with Christ. Jesus spoke about that in His upper room discourse to His disciples (John 13:2-8). Our positional sanctification comes as a result of imputation Christ's righteousness when we get saved. The practical holiness is produced by God through his Word. The Holy Spirit uses the Word of God to transform our lives into the likeness of Christ daily (John 17:17). God is holy and He wants His children to be holy (1 Pet 1:15, 16). Even though we are saved, we still live in the flesh. There is a battle going on in us between flesh and Spirit (Rom 7:14, 18; 8:7). We are not totally eradicated from sin yet. The desire of our flesh are against the desire of Spirit (Gal 5:17). The Holy Spirit enables us to overcome sin as we obey Christ (Rom 8:2, 6; 7:25; 2 Cor 3:17; 1 John 4:4). God can use only those who have a clean hands and pure hearts (Psalms 24:4). The pathway to holiness is occupying ourselves with Christ. When we turn our eyes on Christ, then only we see how imperfect we are. That is what a mirror does. Before salvation we did not care about sin. After being saved, the Holy Spirit convicts us of our sins. The daily washing of feet is necessary to maintain fellowship with Christ (John 13:8).