Exo 25,31 “You shall make a lampstand of pure beaten gold – its shaft and branches – with its cups and knobs and petals springing directly from it. 32 six branches are to extend from the sides of the lampstand, three branches on one side, and three on the other. 33 On one branch there are to be three cups, shaped like almond blossoms, each with its knob and petals; on the opposite branch there are to be three cups, shaped like almond blossoms, each with its knob and petals; and so for the six branches that extend from the lampstand. 34 On the shaft there are to be four cups, shaped like almond blossoms, with their knobs and petals, 35 including a knob below each of the three pairs of branches that extend from the lampstand. 36 Their knobs and branches shall so spring from it that the whole will form but a single piece of pure beaten gold. 37 You shall then make seven lamps for it and so set up the lamps that they shed their light on the space in front of the lampstand. 38 These, as well as the trimming shears and trays, must be of pure gold. 39 Use a talent of pure gold for the lampstand and all its appurtenances. 40 See that you make them according to the pattern shown you on the mountain.
As it was shown on the earlier screen of this presentation, if in each of the six pericopes separately one examines the number of Hebrew words occurring in one of the two groups chosen in the comprehensive research:
then it is obtained the above shown graph for the six pericopes, how similar in the shape to the six-branched menorah!: the longest branches and the longest bars are on both ends; the shortest branches and the shortest bars are in the middle.
It should be noted that there is a striking similarity between the above presented menorah, i.e. the six-branched lampstand, and the six-element literary structure of the Book of Exodus 1-18. This lampstand was one of the most important sacral elements required by God within the framework of the covenant which He made with Israel on the Mount Sinai. It had to be situated inside the Tabernacle – the Holy Sanctuary – in the holy place, outside the veil separating this place from “the Holy of Holies”, where the Ark of the Covenant was placed (cf. Ex 26,35). It can be concluded that similarly the Book of Exodus 1-18 is of the highest sacral rank as the covenant treaty built on the six-element literary structure. It plays such an important role because it is the witness of the first, original covenant between God and Israel – the covenant made, yet before the Sinaitic covenant, during the passage of the both partners between the halves of the divided Sea of Reeds (Red Sea). For that reason in the Sinaitic covenant the six-branched lampstand is to remind that everything what God ordered and to what He committed himself in the Previous covenant, has its irrevocable continuation in the next one (i.e. Sinaitic).
The relationship between the menorah and the covenant is testified also by:
It is worth to notice that there is in the Old Testament the law of continuation of the covenant commitments: if God makes one covenant, and afterwards He makes the next one, and then the next one… then in every new covenant not only gives He new requirements, but simultaneously He preserves what was obligatory in all earlier covenants. The God made the covenant with Abram (afterwards called Abraham) three times, about what the Book of Genesis says:
The obligation of the circumcision, which was imposed upon Abraham and his descendants in the second of these covenants (cf. Gen 17:10-14), was and still is important for every Israelite who wants to remain in this covenant.
Therefore, in the covenant of the Passover / of the Exodus the God only reminds of the necessity of its preservation, and does it in the following manner:
The same law of continuation must be perceived in the laws which God gave within the framework of the Sinaitic covenant.
Dr. Wojciech Kosek
15. April 2009
8. December 2010 – the day of publication of this translation to English