A spectacular Temple in which Jesus can dwell when He returns to earth to reign for a 1000 years is outlined in today's chapters.
A few years after the vision of dry bones, Ezekiel received another vision. In the five and twentieth year of our captivity . . . in the fourteenth year after that the city was smitten, in the selfsame day the hand of the Lord was upon me. . . . In the visions of God brought He me into the land of Israel, and set me upon a very high mountain (Ezel. 40:1-2). This new vision looked far into the future, where Ezekiel beheld a glorious Temple, far more magnificent than the Temple built by Solomon.
The measurements of the grounds and the many details concerning the building and its unusual architectural design are recorded; but no instruction was given to Ezekiel regarding who would build it or when it would be built. In striking contrast, God gave Moses detailed instructions for building the Tabernacle and even the names of the craftsmen who were to build it in the wilderness (Ex. 25:9; 31:1-11). But Zechariah foretold: Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts . . . Behold the man whose Name is The BRANCH (Jesus Christ) . . . He shall grow up out of His place, and He shall build the Temple of the Lord: Even He shall build the Temple of the Lord; and He shall bear the glory, and shall sit and rule upon His throne; and He shall be a priest upon His throne: and the counsel of peace shall be between them both (Zech. 6:12-13).
Almost 2000 years have passed since the Romans destroyed the Temple, with no recovery of the Brazen Altar, Laver of Brass, Pure Gold Candlestick and Mercy Seat, Table of Showbread, or Altar of Incense. The Ark of the Covenant, representing the presence of God, disappeared in 586 BC, when Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem.
The altar and the priests offering sacrifices for the sins of the people had all foreshadowed Jesus Christ, His atonement for our sins, and our relationship with Him through His sacrifice on the cross. Through the Romans who destroyed Herod's temple, God removed the opportunity for the Jews to offer further sacrifices.
These laws were imposed on them until the time of reformation. But Christ being come an High Priest . . . by a greater and more perfect Tabernacle . . . by His own blood He entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption for us (Heb. 9:10-12; comp. John 4:21-24; Gal. 3:23-25; Col. 2:17).
Thought for Today:
Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you (Luke 6:28).
Through the sacrifice (Ezek. 40:42). Jesus made the final once for all. . . . sacrifice for sins for ever (Heb. 10:10-12). Thus He became our only Mediator with God by dying for our sins. The patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Christ is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God for us. . . . And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for Him shall He appear the second time without sin unto salvation (9:23-28).
40:17 thirty chambers were upon the pavement =30 rooms faced this pavement terrace; 40:23 over against =opposite; 41:24 turning leaves =hinged panels; 42:20 profane =unholy, common.
Pray for Government Officials: Sen. Scott Brown (MA), Sen. Sam Brownback (KS), Rep. Ben Chandler (KY), Rep. Michael McMahon (NY), and Rep. Henry Waxman (CA) • Country: Bangladesh (125.7 million) in southern Asia • Major languages: Bangla and English • Present religious freedom may become limited • 86.6% Muslim; 12.1% Hindu; .6% Buddhist; .3% Christian; .4% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Pray to be sensitive to give God the praise for everything you do (Ps. 40:16).
Optional Reading: Revelation 17
Memory Verse for the Week: Galatians 1:24