The earthly tabernacle described in Exodus 25 & 26 was a type of Christ - a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ. Col 2:17

So it’s a picture of our redeemed walk with Jesus.

In this article, we look at the significance of the various tent coverings; there are 4 of them, and how each tent covering pointed to Jesus, his character and ministry.


Let’s take a look at the 4 tent covers, starting from the outside in.

FOURTH – Badger Skin Covering

The fourth, or outer layer was made from the 'hides of sea cows', dolphin skins or badger skins. The outer layer was the one people would see - a rather dull and unattractive skin which also served as waterproofing.

It was declared as clean and implied a sacred covering. It was a covering of faith and eternal protection and represented the Covenant God made with Abraham – the father of faith. Your faith in Jesus sanctifies you.

THIRD – Dyed Red Ram’s skin

Below this badger skin covering was a ram’s skin dyed in a red colour.

Also waterproof and one if its Hebrew meanings is strength.

In the story of Abraham who was willing to sacrifice Isaac, God supplied a substitute sacrifice; a ram. This infers that Jesus is your substitute.

The red colour is also a picture of the first Adam – who was described as ruddy and red. David too was red and ruddy – also a type of Jesus.

Just as the 1st Adam brought separation from God, so the 2nd Adam brought re-conciliation with God. Jesus had to go to the cross which required all his strength.

So the red always represents blood for the atonement / covering of our sin.

So this blood covenant completed and finished the Abrahamic covenant and the colour red foreshadows the blood covering of God's Sacrificial Lamb. This covering is the New Blood Covenant. Just as the colour red had to be applied to the ram’s skin, so the blood of Jesus is applied to our lives.

SECOND – Goats Hair

The second covering was to be made of goat’s hair.

Black goat's hair was traditionally used for Bedouin tents. 

Goats in the bible are also associated with the sin offering.

The goats' hair represents our fallen nature, our hardened mindsets, bondage to old habits, values and strongholds.

But sin and bondage will be broken through faith under the Blood Covenant and transforms our carnal thinking.

Christ is our sin offering and became the scapegoat that carried away our sins.

2 Cor 5:21 “For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him”

FIRST – Embroidered Linen

The first covering consisted of ten tapestries, made of "fine-twined linen, and blue, and purple, and scarlet wool," with "cherubim of artistic work woven into the fabric”.

The colours used here have significance:

  • The white linen represented righteousness and purity
  • Blue – symbolized heaven
  • Scarlet - the suffering and sacrificial death of Jesus
  • Purple – symbolic of Royalty – The King and foreshadows the creation of the royal priesthood of believers under the New Blood Covenant.

The cherubim embroidered tapestries were for decoration, they are symbolic of holiness, guarding the place of God’s throne.

In the presence of God you have to consecrate yourself.

Lev 11:44 “For I am the LORD your God. You shall therefore consecrate yourselves, and you shall be holy; for I am holy”

The cover closest to God is In the secret place

Isa 33:17 "Your eyes will see the King in His beauty..."

In the inner tabernacle – it is a time of communion with God.

IN SUMMARY: Each of the tabernacle coverings points to Jesus Christ.

  • First, God made covenant with Abraham (badgers' skins),
  • the covenant was fulfilled in Christ (rams' skins),
  • then those who are under the curtains of goats' hair have the old nature broken down by the power of the Holy Spirit and become a new creature, transformed
  • and those who follow after Christ, are judged as righteous.

 Every day you are in the presence of the King, the King of righteousness, who is holy and beautiful to behold.

Consecrate yourself and be pure before him so that our communion with God is restored.

His tent coverings bring us blessings.