The Ephod

For the accidental or new reader of my blog: this post is part of a series that started with this blog. I would advice you to start reading there for foundation.

We come to the third layer of the priestly garments – this should make you curious, as it says:

Have I not written to thee three times [three fold truths] with counsels and knowledge? (Pro 22:20 YLT)

The Ephod is the only robe like piece of clothes that is not made from one piece. It consists of two identical pieces, front and back, held together by the shoulder pieces (Ex  28:6-8).

Two identical twins – let’s call them the pattern Son and the Sons of God: Jesus is the front piece, we are the back, grown up into full maturity, representing the first born Son of God totally, fully, in perfection and maturity. The glorious church without spots or wrinkles.

Let’s look at the colors: We already know white, blue, purple, and scarlet. But we find gold here too. Gold speaks of the character of God, purity. We are to get the character of God (Rom 12:1-2). No ministry without the character of God

But wait, there are many ministering and lack character. Gods gifts are without regret. But look at their ending.

The two pieces are identical and connected. There is unity. Jesus prayed for this unity in John 17, and he gave us a mean to achieve this unity and to grow up into Him.

And the One who climbed down is the One who climbed back up, up to highest heaven. He handed out gifts above and below, filled heaven with his gifts, filled earth with his gifts. He handed out gifts of apostle, prophet, evangelist, and pastor-teacher to train Christians in skilled servant work, working within Christ’s body, the church, until we’re all moving rhythmically and easily with each other, efficient and graceful in response to God’s Son, fully mature adults, fully developed within and without, fully alive like Christ. No prolonged infancies among us, please. We’ll not tolerate babes in the woods, small children who are an easy mark for impostors. God wants us to grow up, to know the whole truth and tell it in love–like Christ in everything. We take our lead from Christ, who is the source of everything we do. He keeps us in step with each other. His very breath and blood flow through us, nourishing us so that we will grow up healthy in God, robust in love. (Eph 4:10-16 MSG)

He gave us the five fold ministry, the government gifts to bring us into unity and maturity.

For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given; and the government shall be on His shoulder; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (Isa 9:6 MKJV)

The government shall be on His shoulder. The two shoulder pieces represent government, represent the five fold ministry that was given to bring us into His likeness. We are His bride, we are just like Him.

Finally, the color that was foreshadowed both in Aaron’s girdle in the first layer and the fruits in the second layer, has come to fruition: purple, the King, government. We will see what this means shortly for the restoration of truths.

There were two more pieces in this layer, the curious girdle and the breastplate. I will come back to the two shoulder pieces in a later post, and talk about the precious stones on the breast plate there too, together with the golden plate that was on Aaron’s forehead. But for now let’s tackle the breastplate:

The breastplate was made from the same material as the Ephod. And by the way the veil that was between the holy place and the holy of holies. Just to blow your mind:

  • first layer, linen, outer court
  • second layer, blue coat, holy place
  • third layer, Ephod containing all colors, holy of holies

The breastplate was folded, a kind of sachet, both one span of a hand long and wide. God holds the universe in the span of His hand. It includes everything. It was called the breastplate of judgment and  within it there were Urim and Thummim, the fire and the complete truth.

Remember the truths of the third feast, the Tabernacle? In Heb 6:1-2 the writer calls them the resurrection from the death and eternal judgment. We are resurrected from the death and turned into His image and face eternal judgment when Christ returns. Or let’s put it like this: when we find our identity in Christ and He manifests through us, when we bring forth the man child from Rev 12. We are to judge angels, Paul says. And we are to face judgment at the Mercy Seat, where we are rewarded. All this when we manifested as the Sons of God, in maturity.

At that moment we experienced all three baptisms:

  • The baptism of water in Passover, forgiveness of sin, righteousness
  • The baptism of the Spirit in Pentecost, infilling with the Spirit, speaking in tongues, with the Spirit descending like a dove
  • The baptism of fire, pressure, and testing in Tabernacles, becoming like Him, with the voice of the Father saying: “This is my beloved son in whom I am well pleased. Do as he tells you”, the adoption and authorization as Son

The breastplate is connected with golden strings – strings of God’s character – to both the shoulder pieces and the Ephod, right above the curious girdle. The shoulder pieces are depicting government – no perfection, no fire, no judgment, no manifestation without government. No mature Sons of God without the Lordship and Headship of Jesus, but also no mature Sons of God without government gifts, without the five fold ministry and authority in their lives. No authority without being under authority.

But the officer answered, “Sir, I am unfit to have you come into my home. Rather, if you will only give the command, my orderly will recover. For I too am a man under authority. I have soldiers under me, and I say to this one, ‘Go!’ and he goes; to another, ‘Come!’ and he comes; to my slave, ‘Do this!’ and he does it.” (Mat 8:8-9 CJB)

The other connection was made to the front piece of the Ephod, Jesus. No maturity without Him, no judgment without Him, as he is given all authority in the Earth and in Heaven.

The breastplate is, through these connections, held close to Aaron’s heart. It can’t move away from it. No judgment without the heart and grace of God.

Join me in the next post when I discuss the curious girdle.

This series consists of

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By Ralph Rickenbach

Accompanyist | Pastor in Exile | Iconoclast — I am a Gallup certified CliftonStrengths coach and a Spiral Dynamics practitioner.