The Mercy Seat

  • The Mercy Seat refers to the throne upon which the very presence and glory of God came down to be with His people.
  • God’s presence appeared as a cloud resting on the Mercy Seat within the Holy of Holies (or Most Holy Place) in the Tabernacle, and later in the Temple.
  • This was an area that was separated from the rest of the Tabernacle/Temple by a thick curtain or veil.
  • Within the Holy of Holies was the Mercy Seat, which formed the lid upon the Ark of the Covenant, which contained the tablets on which the 10 commandments were written.
  • The term Mercy Seat in Hebrew literally means: to cover – as in a lid or top – but it also means to pardon, to atone for, and to cover a debt.
  • God’s presence came down from heaven and sat on a seat of mercy directly covering the Law He commanded His people to follow.
  • The holy presence of God was so powerful that if anyone entered into this Holy of Holies without complying with the directions given to the Israelites at that time, their death was immediate.
  • However, once a year, on the Day of Atonement, the Israelite high priest was permitted to enter the Holy of Holies to sprinkle the blood of an innocent animal on the Mercy Seat to protect the Israelites from the ever-condemning judgment of the Law they were unable to fully keep.
  • From the Mercy Seat, God dispensed mercy to His people.

Christ’s Blood upon the Mercy Seat

  • At the exact moment that Jesus Christ died on the cross, the veil that separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the Temple was torn in two from top to bottom.
  • This signified that because the blood of Christ atoned for sins from the beginning of time to the end of time, the people did not need to be separated from the full glory and presence of God any longer.
  • Because of this, we can freely approach the throne of God – the Mercy Seat – with confidence that our sins have been covered by the innocent blood of Jesus Christ Himself.
  • His blood upon this Mercy Seat shields us from the condemnation of the Law, and our inadequacy in keeping it.
  • We no longer need a high priest to approach God on our behalf, rather each of us – because of Christ’s atoning work – can approach God directly.

Therefore, Mercy Seat Ministry seeks to encourage Christian believers to freely approach the throne of God, trusting fully that His presence with us sits upon His great mercy extended to us through Jesus Christ, our atoning sacrifice.