About Jesus Steve Sweetman
Chapter 40, 41, 42
will not comment on each verse in this section of Scripture.
Many commentators don't even attempt to comment on these chapters
because it is hard to figure out.
first thing to note is that many, if not most, Bible teachers suggest
there is a 13 year period of time in Ezekiel's visions that have taken
place between the vision of chapters 38 and 39 to the vision of chapters
40 through 48.
verse 1 of chapter 40 gives the reference point to this vision.
It was in the twenty fifth year of Israel's seventy year exile. Not
even half of the time period of the exile had elapsed.
also that this vision was given to Ezekiel fourteen years after the fall
of the city. The city is in
reference to Jerusalem. What we need to understand
here is that there were three major times when
1 also speaks of "the hand of the Lord being upon " Ezekiel.
What a moment that must have been.
For those Christians who have experienced the presence of the
Lord through the Holy Spirit, we might be able to imagine this to a
degree, but I believe this was one powerful time in Ezekiel's life, as
was the other times we have seen when the hand of the Lord came on him.
the first five verses of Ezekiel 40 we see that Ezekiel is taken to
Ezekiel saw was probably meant to be an encouragement to the Jews who
were in the midst of captivity. They
were not in their own land. They
had lost their capital city and the temple.
This vision would show
the measurements that you will read in these chapters, you will see the
word "cubit" mentioned often.
The general consensus is that a cubit is at least 18 inches long,
and possibly as long as 24 inches. Thus
the measuring rod that is in the hand of the man in the vision is from 9
to 12 feet long.
we see in Ezekiel 40, 41, and 42 is a very detailed examination and
measuring of a temple. Three
whole chapters are designated to the measurements of all aspects of this
temple. You have to admit
that the man showing Ezekiel this temple was very exact, leaving nothing
out. This was the blueprint
to some kind of temple.
obvious question is, "what does this mean"?
As I've said, many Bible teachers ignore this passage. Others who
don't ignore it have differing ideas to the passage's meaning.
Some people take this temple to be symbolic.
For those who see this as symbolic, there are a number of
suggestions what this is symbolic of.
The number one symbolism is the church at the end of this age.
The problem with taking any part of Scripture symbolically is
that there are countless interpretations to the symbolism.
can't see that this temple is meant to be taken symbolically, mainly
because of the detailed measurements given.
We have similar details given to build the tabernacle in Moses'
day, and it was meant to be built. I
believe this temple is a literal temple.
those who believe this is a literal temple, the next question is,
"what temple is this"? Some
suggest that it is Solomon's
is a large number of Bible teachers who see this temple as what they
call the "Millennial Temple" that they say will be built in
the thousand year rule of Jesus on earth, after the Great Tribulation
that ends this age. I lean
towards this thinking. That
being said, there are some difficulties to overcome with this
believe we need to realize that Ezekiel's visions throughout this book
have been in chronological order, and if that is so, then these chapters
must take place after the war of chapters 38 and 39, which could easily
put chapters 40 to 48 in the thousand year rule of Christ.
of the biggest concerns people have with this temple being the Millennial
will see later in chapter 43, verses 10 and 11, that the temple and all
that takes place in the temple, including the sacrifices, is to remind
thing I think we should understand about the Millennium is that during
this period of time, Israel
will be on earth, living as it was meant to live all along.
That would mean, the dictates of the Law of Moses would be
carried out, but not in a sense of looking forward to the cross, but
looking backwards to the cross. Israel
would finally obey the Old Testament decrees of the Lord that they were
meant to obey.
might ask, "where does that leave the Gentile Christian"?
The Gentile Christian was never under the Law of Moses in the
first place. These things
probably don't apply to us in the Millennium. The
Gentile Christian, or the church, might well be living the way in which
they were meant to live during the age of grace.
add to the confusion of this passage we need to note that in the
description of these things there are some apparent omissions that would
have been in the Old Testament Temple.
We see no high priest mentioned here. Among some other things,
there is no arc of the covenant. One
possible explanation is that this temple differs from the Old Testament
temple because the Lord Jesus is actually in the midst of His people.
see no high priest, but we do see someone who is called a prince, that
in my opinion, seems to do some of the duties of the high priest. That
being said, why have a high priest when you have Jesus in your midst.
couple of other things to note concerning the temple is that there is no
silver or gold in this temple. Items
that were covered in gold are now made of wood only.
in chapter 40, verse 7, that there is an alcove for guards in this
temple. This tells us
something. This temple is
not the New Jerusalem on the new earth.
There will be no need for guards then, but apparently there will
be need for guards in the thousand year rule of Christ.
chapter 40, verse 22, the mention of "palm tree decorations".
This is just one of countless examples of how exact this temple
is described. This can't be
a symbolic temple.
in chapter 40, verses 39 and 40 the mention of burnt offerings.
This is what causes many problems for Bible teachers.
Why are there burnt offerings if this is the temple in the
thousand year rule of Christ?
As I have stated earlier, the only explanation would be that
these offerings are looking back to the cross in memorial.
They are not offerings made to forgive sin.
chapter 41, verse 5. The
walls of the temple were 6 cubits thick.
That's 9 to 12 feet thick. These
are thick walls, as is most of what is concerned here with the temple.
The temple is built extremely solid, maybe to withstand an attack
at the end of the thousand year rule of Jesus, or possibly another
chapter 41, verse 19. This
verse speaks of carvings of palm trees and cherubim.
Each cherub had two faces, one of a man and one of a lion.
The could well represent Jesus, the man, and the lion of the
tribe of Judah, meaning God. Jesus, as it
has been said, "is the God/man".
42 continues with the detailed measurements of the temple and other
buildings associated with it. One
thing we need to note about this temple is that there are many other
buildings that make up the temple complex.
There is more than one building.
This is one major complex.