Bible: What Does Ezekiel 41-43 Teach Us About the Millennial Temple?
The Millennial Temple
Measuring the Temple
Next, the sanctuary—its doorways, entryway, and sidewalls—receives the Angel's same meticulous measurement; He refers to this site as the "Most Holy Place" (vv. 1-4).
In addition to those objects already mentioned, He methodically sizes up every dimension of this structure, meting out the temple wall (v. 5), its side chambers (all three stories), and the doors of the side chambers (vv. 6, 11).
Ezekiel discusses a detail about the side chambers, noticing that the width of the structure increased as he ascended (v. 7).
The foundation of the side chambers is an elevation surrounding the temple (v. 8).
Other structures that the Man measures include the building at the western end and its wall (v. 12), as well as the temple and courtyard area with its galleries (vv. 13-17).
The floor, the sanctuary's wall, and the space above the door feature cherubim and palm tree designs (vv. 18-20).
Doorposts, the altar, and the front of the sanctuary are all wooden (vv. 21-22); carved cherubim and palm trees cover the doors as well (vv. 23-26).
The Angel of the LORD
Priestly Chambers in the Temple
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The Chambers of the Priests
The prophet walks with the Angel into the outer court and into the chamber opposite the building toward the north (v. 1). As he does, the architecture becomes more elaborate.
Ezekiel describes an inner court and an outer court, various doors, and chambers three stories high, plus walls and galleries.
In this chapter, he primarily discusses the chambers of the priests.
Doors lead to the various chamber locations (vv. 2, 4, 12); the chamber facing the temple is twice as long as those facing the outer court (v. 8; cf. v. 2).
Three of the four directions—north, east and south—contain chambers which have been made the same size in each place (vv. 10-11).
The Angel explains the purpose of these chambers: they will serve as dining rooms for the priests to feast on the offerings (v. 13).
After eating their meal, these officials will leave their garments in the chamber and put on regular clothes (v. 14).
Ezekiel accompanies the Angel (who has finished measuring the inner temple) through the Eastern Gate (v. 15), and the Latter describes His measurements of all four sides of the Temple (five hundred rods each) [vv. 16-20].
A wall five hundred cubits by five hundred cubits separates "the holy areas from the common" (v. 20).
Sacrifices in the Millennium
The Purpose of Animal Sacriifces
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After his Companion brings him to the Eastern Gate (v. 1), Ezekiel observes and describes another vision of God; he identifies Yahweh's appearance the same way he did earlier (see chapter one).
Coming from the east, the LORD’s Shekinah soon fills the temple (vv. 2-5).
The Spirit then transports Ezekiel into the inner court where he learns that this temple will house Yahweh's earthly throne "forever" (vv. 5-7).
The eventual state of man/God relations in Israel will be peace and intimate fellowship, so Yahweh exhorts His people to make peace with Him now by rejecting idolatry and harlotry (vv. 7-9).
In other words, God's grace will bring about reconciliation, but mankind will need to repent to acquire it.
Yahweh's sovereign will for Israel remains perfectly united with mankind's responsibility to turn to Him.
Furthermore, the LORD commands Ezekiel to teach His people about this temple, so that they might be ashamed of their iniquities.
If they respond properly to God's grace, he should then disclose the temple's design details, its ordinances and laws, and especially its "most holy" quality to them so that they might obey and perform what Yahweh desires (vv. 10-12).
[Wonder of wonders! Even after all those years of His people's disobedience and idolatry, God still desires Israel's fellowship!]
Yahweh provides explicit dimensions for the altar (vv. 13-17) and gives ordinances for its consecration (vv. 18-27).
Animal sacrifices—a young bull (sin offering) [vv. 19-21], a kid of the goats (sin offering) [v. 22], another young bull and a ram (v. 23), and a series of goats, bulls, and rams for seven days—remain the means by which Israel should make atonement for the altar (vv. 25-26).
On the eighth day, the people should bring peace offerings to the newly sanctified altar (v. 27).
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