Did it symbolize Christ or the gospel?
1 Kings 7:1 - 51
ESV - 1 Solomon was building his own house thirteen years, and he finished his entire house. 2 He built the House of the Forest of Lebanon. Its length was a hundred cubits and its breadth fifty cubits and its height thirty cubits, and it was built on four rows of cedar pillars, with cedar beams on the pillars.
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As I read it, the vessel containing the molten sea was positioned in the temple so that it blocked the access to God's presence, symbolizing the necessity of the Levitical priests first facing judgment (as indicated by the fire that was necessary to form the brass from which the vessel was made). However, the content of the vessel was used for the ceremonial cleansing of the priests, which then allowed them that access. In that way, the content prefigured the cleansing and freedom from judgment provided by Christ through His sinless life, the shedding of His blood, and His resurrection, making all who placed their faith in Him part of the new universal priesthood of believers. The fact that the brim of the vessel was like that of a cup (2 Chronicles 4:5) was a precursor to believers being able to drink the water of life (Isaiah 55:1; Revelation 22:17).
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