New Defender's Study Bible Notes
40:17 the second year. The Israelites had left Egypt in the first month, the fourteenth day of the month, so the tabernacle was set up one year after they started preparations to leave. The actual construction of the tabernacle and then the installation of the priests and their ministries there took almost nine months.
40:34 glory of the LORD. This cloud of glory, so brilliant that they could not even enter the tabernacle, had been with them day and night ever since they left Egypt (Exodus 13:21-22), and stayed with them, as both guide and protection throughout their years in the wilderness (Numbers 9:15-23). Its perpetual presence, evidencing the personal presence of God the Creator, who is Light, testifies clearly that these forty years were years of unique divine power and provision. Its miracles are not to be explained in terms of the normal processes of nature.
This shekinah, the glory cloud, appeared again centuries later at the dedication of Solomon’s temple (I Kings 8:10-11). It will also fill the new Jerusalem, the eternal heavenly tabernacle (Revelation 21:10-11,22-23), when it is established on the new earth, and there God, in Christ, will personally dwell with His people forever.