Exodus 25:30 And thou shalt set upon the TABLE OF SHEWBREAD before me alway. 31 And thou shalt make a CANDLESTICK OF PURE GOLD: of beaten work shall the candlestick be made: his shaft, and his branches, his bowls, his knops, and his flowers, shall be of the same.
When God gave Moses instructions about the tabernacle one of the pieces of furniture within the Holy place was the Table of Shewbread and next to it was the Golden Candlestick. Shewbread literally meant “the bread of faces and the bread of display.” There were to be twelve loaves one representing each tribe and together as His holy nation. They were equal in size and made of the same ingredients. They were to be replaced at the end of seven days or week. The priest was to feed on it and share in God’s delight for it. It was situated on the north side of the Tabernacle next to the light that would come from the Golden Candle stick and the light from it. The Law of God required that the bread be constantly in the presence of God (Exodus 25:30); therefore, sometimes it is referred to as the Table of Presence Bread. It was also a reminder of the covenant they had with God and His provision for all twelve tribes. Today, Jesus is our Bread of Life and our provision for all we need. The elements of the Tabernacle in the Old Testament point to different aspects fulfilled by Jesus in His Cross and sacrifice for us that God delighted in. Visually looking from above and down at the elements inside the Tabernacle they form a Cross. There are also several truths we can understand from the Tabernacle.
It can also reveal to us that true unity (the sameness, oneness in the Bread of Faces), fellowship and communion is in the light of God’s Word (The Lampstand). There can be no real unity outside of the Light and Truth of God’s Word. Biblical unity of Christians is in the light of the teachings of the Scriptures and the truth of God’s Word, the same doctrinal truths of the Christian faith we are told to earnestly contend for (Jude 3) not an “ecumenical” (worldwide) unity of all churches in an organizational unity. That kind of manmade effort toward unity would force one to include people who reject fundamental doctrines of the faith and embrace people who hold to doctrinal error. The ecumenical spirit of unity preaches love and unity at all costs but totally disregard truth.
To the Lord, the Table of Shewbread with the twelve loaves symbolized what God sees, the whole body of believers, the unity of them, and His delight in them all. God sees the whole Body of Christ and delights in our unity. Even though we may be gathered in different local Churches and even different denominations, God sees the unity of the whole Body of Christ of all true believers in the Lord Jesus Christ. He doesn’t see the different organizational structures but the substance of each loaf, the spiritual nature of our unity. All false unity movements of men try to bring about an external organizational unity, a unity at all costs, which usually ends up in a unity based on compromise of the truth of God’s Word. There are things in our day, as Christians that we delight in about our God but God delights in seeing the many members of Christ’s Body assemble together in His presence when the Church comes to worship Him. The whole Body, the face of every member, together before Him is His delight.
The world sees hundreds of denominations but God sees the Church, the Body of Christ, which includes some from many denominations, placed into one Body (1 Cor. 12:12, 13) and one in Christ (Gal. 3:28). We have come into a spiritual unity, a unity of the Spirit (Eph. 4:3) when we believe and are born of the Spirit, placed into one Body. We are to attain a unity of the faith (Eph. 4:13) as we come into a common understanding of the core truths of the Christian faith as taught to us in the Bible.