Before the Kohathites can perform their task, the priests must first take action. First of all, the care for the ark is mentioned. The ark is for God the most important. The priests cover the ark with the veil, on top of which they lay a covering of porpoise skin and on top of it, finally, a cloth of pure blue. The latter is seen when the ark is being carried by its poles through the wilderness.
In all this we see a beautiful spiritual meaning for us. The ark represents the Lord Jesus as God (gold) and Man (wood), Who accomplished the work of reconciliation (mercy seat) by which He met all the holy demands of God (cherubs). Before we as Kohathites can carry the truth of the Lord Jesus through the wilderness, before we pass it on to others, we must first have been busy with it as priests. We must first bring a truth in worship to God before we can show it to others and thus pass it on to others. Only then can we call a truth our spiritual property. It is not about taking a truth in our understanding, but in our heart.
The truths of the Lord Jesus and the church cannot be shown openly and naked to the world. If this happens, what the Lord Jesus warns about: “Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine” (Mt 7:6a6“Do not give what is holy to dogs, and do not throw your pearls before swine, or they will trample them under their feet, and turn and tear you to pieces.). Dogs and pigs are unclean animals. These truths must be carried through the world with appropriate covering.
The ark is first covered with the veil, which represents the Lord Jesus in His flesh, His body (Heb 10:2020by a new and living way which He inaugurated for us through the veil, that is, His flesh,). People in the world have seen Him as Man. But they saw nothing attractive in Him: “For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot, And like a root out of parched ground; He has no [stately] form or majesty That we should look upon Him, Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him. He was despised and forsaken of men, A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief; And like one from whom men hide their face He was despised, and we did not esteem Him” (Isa 53:2-32For He grew up before Him like a tender shoot,
And like a root out of parched ground;
He has no [stately] form or majesty
That we should look upon Him,
Nor appearance that we should be attracted to Him.
3He was despised and forsaken of men,
A man of sorrows and acquainted with grief;
And like one from whom men hide their face
He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.
). This is represented in the covering of porpoise skin.
This covering is also a protection against all kinds of weather influences, so they will not get a grip on the ark. In the same way the Lord Jesus was in His life on earth not harmed by anything from outside (Jn 14:3030I will not speak much more with you, for the ruler of the world is coming, and he has nothing in Me;).
The outer covering is a cloth of pure blue. Everything with the Lord Jesus on earth speaks of heaven. Nicodemus speaks for his unbelieving colleagues when he says: “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God” (Jn 3:22this man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You have come from God [as] a teacher; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.”). His heavenly origins cannot be denied. Thus we give our testimony concerning Him in this world.