Sept. 12, 2009
Read Ezekiel 40
Highlights In Today's Reading:
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.
Ezekiel's vision of dry bones assured the exiles that, at a future time, God would restore to them their promised land (chap. 37). The vision also foretold the final overthrow of all nations hostile to the people of God. Know ye therefore that they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham. . . . unto Abraham, saying, In thee shall all nations be blessed (Gal. 3:7-8). In this way, God revealed Himself to the world (Ezek. 38 — 39).
A few years after the vision of dry bones, Ezekiel received a vision of being brought into the land of Israel: In the fourteenth year after that the city was smitten . . . the hand of the Lord was upon me . . . and set me upon a very high mountain . . . and, behold, there was a man . . . (who) said unto me, son of man, behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears, and set thine heart upon all that I shall shew thee (40:1-5). Ezekiel looked far into the future and beheld a glorious Temple far more magnificent than even Solomon's Temple. But no instruction was given regarding who would build it or when. God gave Moses detailed instructions for building the Tabernacle (Ex. 25:9) and David gave detailed instructions to Solomon concerning the spectacular Temple he was to build. But no directions were given to Zerubabbel, Haggai, Zechariah, Ezra, Nehemiah, nor any biblical writer after them.
No Jewish Temple has existed in Jerusalem since AD 70, when the Romans destroyed Herod's Temple. Almost 2000 years have passed with no recovery of the Ark of the Covenant, representing the presence of God.
To Zechariah was given this great prophetic revelation: Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, saying, Behold the Man whose Name is The BRANCH . . . and He shall build the Temple of the Lord: Even He shall build the Temple of the Lord; and He . . . shall sit and rule upon His throne; and He shall be a priest upon His throne (Zech. 6:12-13). That magnificent structure awaits the return of Jesus who will rule for 1000 years on earth as both King and High Priest.
But Christ being come an High Priest . . . by a greater and more perfect Tabernacle, not made with hands . . . by His own blood He entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption for us (Heb. 9:11-12; John 4:21-24; Gal. 3:23-25; Col. 2:17).
Thought for Today:
O sing unto the Lord a new song; for He hath done marvelous things: His right hand, and His holy arm, hath gotten Him victory (Ps. 98:1).
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 = winged panels; 42:20 profane = unholy, common.
Pray for Bible Pathway Printer: Ambrose Printing Staff, Nashville TN • Government Officials: Sen. Sam Brownback (KS), Rep. Ben Chandler (KY), Rep. Michael McMahon (NY), and Rep. Henry Waxman (CA) • Country: Chad (7 million) in north-central Africa • Major languages: French and Arabic • Limited religious freedom • 35% Muslim; 31% animist; 11% Protestant; 5% Roman Catholic • Prayer Suggestion: Declare the wondrous works of God with thanksgiving (Ps. 26:6-7).
Optional Reading: Revelation 17
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 11:29