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Bible Pathways 09/14/2002

September 14

Read Ezekiel 46 -- 48

In Today's Reading:

Worship by the prince; river from the Temple giving life; boundaries and divisions of the land; gates of Jerusalem.

Verses for Today:

Behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the House eastward (47:1).

The first part of Ezekiel's final vision from God described the Temple, which he called the House (Ezekiel 40 -- 43); the second part described the worship and the character of the worshipers (44 -- 46). Water flowed from the House and became deeper as it continued. Among other things, this symbolizes our continued walk with the Lord, for, as we experience more and more the all-sufficiency of His provision, we come to realize that His supply of all our needs has no limits.

The descriptions of the land and the city are very different from either ancient or present-day, geographical Israel and Jerusalem. Instead, it is a vision anticipating the glorious future that all believers in Jesus as the Messiah will experience. All who love Him will enjoy the new Promised Land during the millennial reign of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Ezekiel was led by his guide to the front of the Temple and to the source of waters [issuing] out from under the threshold of the House eastward (47:1). The water apparently emerged from under the eastern gate as a small stream that flowed a thousand cubits (a little less than one-third of a mile) (47:2-3). The prophet's guide caused him to pass through the waters and Ezekiel found that they were ankle deep. The same process was repeated at a second and at a third distance, each measuring a thousand cubits. At these locations the waters were found to be to the knees, and then to the loins (47:4). At a fourth distance of a thousand cubits (47:5), the waters had become a river that could not be passed through because of its depth. This river suddenly and miraculously broadened and deepened, illustrating something above and beyond both the past and present natural geography of Jerusalem.

We see a growing spiritual experience in the deepening of the river going beyond its ability to merely provide life. In addition, its waters provide life for the trees, which bear abundant, wholesome fruit (47:9,12; compare Revelation 22:2). This is what the Holy Spirit does in the lives of those who yield to Him. We begin to experience His supply as a small stream which flows out from Christ the Fountainhead and which continues to increase in depth and preciousness as we walk in the Spirit and in the light of His Word.

These blessings of eternal life flowing from the throne of the glorified Lamb of God will flow to all the world, which shall be full of the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea (Isaiah 11:9; compare Joel 3:18; Zechariah 14:8). Our loving Father has provided His people with a pure river of the Water of Life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. . . . and on either side of the river, was there the Tree of Life, which . . . yielded her fruit . . . and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. . . . Whosoever will, let him take the Water of Life freely (Revelation 22:1-2).

Christ Revealed:

Through the river of Living Waters and in the name of the city, which is also one of the Names of God, Jehovah-Shammah -- the Lord is there (Ezekiel 47:1-12; 48:35; also Revelation 21 -- 22).

Word Studies:

46:7 as his hand shall attain unto = as he is able; 46:24 places of them that boil = kitchens; 47:2 utter = outer; 47:12 according to his (its) months = every month; 48:20 holy oblation = sacred district.

Prayer Needs:

Government Official: Rep. Ron Lewis (KY) · Pray for your Sunday School teacher · Country: Togo (5 million) in western Africa · Major languages: French and several African languages · Limited religious freedom · 41% belief in false gods and voodoo; 32% Roman Catholic; 19% Muslim; 8% Protestant · Prayer Suggestion: Pray without anger or resentment in your heart (1 Timothy 2:8).

Optional Reading: Revelation 19

Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 10:9

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