In Hebrews 9:4 it tells us that that ark of the covenant was to hold these items:
. . . and the ark of the covenant overlaid round about with gold, wherein was the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded, and the tables of the covenant;
Now, we already know that the ark represents many aspects of Christ so, as would be natural, the objects inside the ark should also tell of Christ.
The golden pot of manna is one interesting topic. First off we have the gold. You all should, by now, know what that means. Then we have the manna itself.
Manna was a mystery to the Israelites and they named it after that. Kind of like the kangaroo story . . . haven’t heard that story? Well here you go:
Two Australian men were walking in the outback when they saw a big creature hopping around. One of the men hit the other on the shoulder and whispered, “kangaroo?” The translation of his question would be, “what is that?” So, thereafter kangaroo’s were named kangaroos after the first person who asked, “what is that?!” At least, that is how the story goes . . .
These Israelites didn’t know what it was so, when they see it, the first thing they say is “what is it?” In the same manner, did people question Christ. They questioned Him before His ministry, during it and even at His death and after His resurrection. Christ was always, and still is, questioned.
However, the manna has more significance. We see in Numbers 11:7 that it says manna looked like “bdellium”. This bdellium is directly related to myrrh, one of the gifts given to Christ after His birth. But, it’s significance does not stop there. Since bdellium is linked to myrrh, and since myrrh was used on the dead, we have a immediate claim here towards the death of Christ.
When a rebellion sprang up in the Israelite’s camp, God crushed it. And, to prove, once again, that He had power over all, He made Aaron’s rod (something with no roots) bloom flowers and produce almonds . . . overnight! You can read more about that in Numbers 17.
Anyway, this small item that God worked so many miracles through paves way for the greatest event in history.
The almonds that were produced from the rod represent a promise being fulfilled by God. For the shadow it cast it speaks of all the prophecies of Christ. The almonds made the point that God will keep His promises.
But, the shadow of Christ does not stop at the almonds. No, in fact, it begins well before and very far after. Considering the fact that a dead rod, probably being used for 80+ years as a walking stick, cane, rod, and staff, it would be extremely dried out and totally dead. No one could look at the rod and say, “it is still alive.”
Just like the rod, Christ had died. Nobody could deny that He was dead. It would be preposterous to assume so. So, like the rod, Christ had died. No doubt about it, it would be all over for the rod and Christ. Death was final.
However, like the rod, God raised Christ back to life and bore fruit of all the promise He had made.
As for the Ten Commandments . . . they represent that Christ will come as a holy, perfect Human Who was sinless and yet chose to bear the sins of mankind. They don’t tell a happy story but that is the story of sin; our nature.
I find it truly amazing how God incorporated so many astounding things in His tabernacle. It is true: God’s tent, the Tabernacle, threw a detailed shadow of Christ.