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The daily summaries are written by Wayne D. Turner, Pastor of Fayette Bible Church in Fayetteville, Georgia

This is the December 2 reading. Select here for a new reading date:


BibleTrack Summary: December 2
<< Ezek 39
Kings & Prophets

For New King James text and comment, click here.

 

Ezekiel 40-41    Listen Podcast

 

There's going to be a new temple (Ezekiel 40-41)
This prophecy was issued by Ezekiel in 573 B.C. according to Ezekiel 40:1 and covers the rest of the book. Jerusalem had fallen 13 years before this time. These remaining chapters in Ezekiel are dedicated to the millennium temple and worship. There are several points we'll want to make concerning this new temple, but we'll just refrain from covering them all right now and wait until we come to them in the following chapters. I should point out, however, that this temple will be built for the millennium; it will not be the temple that is defiled by the Beast (aka Antichrist) of Revelation 13:1-10 (see notes) during the tribulation. Therefore, at least two temples are in Israel's future - one for the Beast to defile and another for the millennium, built to Ezekiel's specifications.

Let's take a look at the temples that are found in the Bible:

Here we see the dimensions of the outer court and the inner court of the millennium temple. The temple built for the tribulation may be built before the tribulation begins or perhaps during the first 3 1/2 years of the tribulation; it will be accomplished strictly by human effort. The millennium temple will be the fulfillment of Ezekiel's prophecy from God - built to exact specifications. Hang on for two chapters of temple measurements! Actually, we'll be continuing our measurements into Ezekiel 42-43 (see notes).

Let's meet the man with the measuring stick (Ezekiel 40:1-4)

1 In the five and twentieth year of our captivity, in the beginning of the year, in the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after that the city was smitten, in the selfsame day the hand of the LORD was upon me, and brought me thither.
2 In the visions of God brought he me into the land of Israel, and set me upon a very high mountain, by which was as the frame of a city on the south.
3 And he brought me thither, and, behold, there was a man, whose appearance was like the appearance of brass, with a line of flax in his hand, and a measuring reed; and he stood in the gate.
4 And the man 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; for to the intent that I might shew them unto thee art thou brought hither: declare all that thou seest to the house of Israel.

So, who is Ezekiel's host in this passage? He says in verse 1, "...the hand of the LORD was upon me..." We get a hint that Ezekiel sees God in the form of man here, but when we get over to chapter 44, any doubt is erased in Ezekiel 44: 2, 5 (see notes). God himself (not an angel) is giving Ezekiel this tour.

Ezekiel's Millennial Temple will not be built on the existing Temple Mount in Jerusalem. Instead, according to Ezekiel 40:2, it will be built on "a very high mountain." Obviously the cataclysmic events of the end of the tribulation will alter the terrain making such a spot available for the building of this massive structure. Incidentally, Ezekiel's Temple is too large to fit onto the existing terrain. This temple is part of a scheme of transformed land, partitioned in parallel tracts among the restored 12 tribes as seen in Ezekiel 47:13-48:29 (see notes); the temple rests in a large area in the center, and it stretches across the whole country, dedicated to Jehovah and His service (Ezekiel 48:8-22, see notes).

Now to the actual measurements (Ezekiel 40:5-49)

5 And behold a wall on the outside of the house round about, and in the man’s hand a measuring reed of six cubits long by the cubit and an hand breadth: so he measured the breadth of the building, one reed; and the height, one reed.
6 Then came he unto the gate which looketh toward the east, and went up the stairs thereof, and measured the threshold of the gate, which was one reed broad; and the other threshold of the gate, which was one reed broad.
7 And every little chamber was one reed long, and one reed broad; and between the little chambers were five cubits; and the threshold of the gate by the porch of the gate within was one reed.
8 He measured also the porch of the gate within, one reed.
9 Then measured he the porch of the gate, eight cubits; and the posts thereof, two cubits; and the porch of the gate was inward.
10 And the little chambers of the gate eastward were three on this side, and three on that side; they three were of one measure: and the posts had one measure on this side and on that side.
11 And he measured the breadth of the entry of the gate, ten cubits; and the length of the gate, thirteen cubits.
12 The space also before the little chambers was one cubit on this side, and the space was one cubit on that side: and the little chambers were six cubits on this side, and six cubits on that side.
13 He measured then the gate from the roof of one little chamber to the roof of another: the breadth was five and twenty cubits, door against door.
14 He made also posts of threescore cubits, even unto the post of the court round about the gate.
15 And from the face of the gate of the entrance unto the face of the porch of the inner gate were fifty cubits.
16 And there were narrow windows to the little chambers, and to their posts within the gate round about, and likewise to the arches: and windows were round about inward: and upon each post were palm trees.
17 Then brought he me into the outward court, and, lo, there were chambers, and a pavement made for the court round about: thirty chambers were upon the pavement.
18 And the pavement by the side of the gates over against the length of the gates was the lower pavement.
19 Then he measured the breadth from the forefront of the lower gate unto the forefront of the inner court without, an hundred cubits eastward and northward.
20 And the gate of the outward court that looked toward the north, he measured the length thereof, and the breadth thereof.
21 And the little chambers thereof were three on this side and three on that side; and the posts thereof and the arches thereof were after the measure of the first gate: the length thereof was fifty cubits, and the breadth five and twenty cubits.
22 And their windows, and their arches, and their palm trees, were after the measure of the gate that looketh toward the east; and they went up unto it by seven steps; and the arches thereof were before them.
23 And the gate of the inner court was over against the gate toward the north, and toward the east; and he measured from gate to gate an hundred cubits.
24 After that he brought me toward the south, and behold a gate toward the south: and he measured the posts thereof and the arches thereof according to these measures.
25 And there were windows in it and in the arches thereof round about, like those windows: the length was fifty cubits, and the breadth five and twenty cubits.
26 And there were seven steps to go up to it, and the arches thereof were before them: and it had palm trees, one on this side, and another on that side, upon the posts thereof.
27 And there was a gate in the inner court toward the south: and he measured from gate to gate toward the south an hundred cubits.
28 And he brought me to the inner court by the south gate: and he measured the south gate according to these measures;
29 And the little chambers thereof, and the posts thereof, and the arches thereof, according to these measures: and there were windows in it and in the arches thereof round about: it was fifty cubits long, and five and twenty cubits broad.
30 And the arches round about were five and twenty cubits long, and five cubits broad.
31 And the arches thereof were toward the utter court; and palm trees were upon the posts thereof: and the going up to it had eight steps.
32 And he brought me into the inner court toward the east: and he measured the gate according to these measures.
33 And the little chambers thereof, and the posts thereof, and the arches thereof, were according to these measures: and there were windows therein and in the arches thereof round about: it was fifty cubits long, and five and twenty cubits broad.
34 And the arches thereof were toward the outward court; and palm trees were upon the posts thereof, on this side, and on that side: and the going up to it had eight steps.
35 And he brought me to the north gate, and measured it according to these measures;
36 The little chambers thereof, the posts thereof, and the arches thereof, and the windows to it round about: the length was fifty cubits, and the breadth five and twenty cubits.
37 And the posts thereof were toward the utter court; and palm trees were upon the posts thereof, on this side, and on that side: and the going up to it had eight steps.
38 And the chambers and the entries thereof were by the posts of the gates, where they washed the burnt offering.
39 And in the porch of the gate were two tables on this side, and two tables on that side, to slay thereon the burnt offering and the sin offering and the trespass offering.
40 And at the side without, as one goeth up to the entry of the north gate, were two tables; and on the other side, which was at the porch of the gate, were two tables.
41 Four tables were on this side, and four tables on that side, by the side of the gate; eight tables, whereupon they slew their sacrifices.
42 And the four tables were of hewn stone for the burnt offering, of a cubit and an half long, and a cubit and an half broad, and one cubit high: whereupon also they laid the instruments wherewith they slew the burnt offering and the sacrifice.
43 And within were hooks, an hand broad, fastened round about: and upon the tables was the flesh of the offering.
44 And without the inner gate were the chambers of the singers in the inner court, which was at the side of the north gate; and their prospect was toward the south: one at the side of the east gate having the prospect toward the north.
45 And he said unto me, This chamber, whose prospect is toward the south, is for the priests, the keepers of the charge of the house.
46 And the chamber whose prospect is toward the north is for the priests, the keepers of the charge of the altar: these are the sons of Zadok among the sons of Levi, which come near to the LORD to minister unto him.
47 So he measured the court, an hundred cubits long, and an hundred cubits broad, foursquare; and the altar that was before the house.
48 And he brought me to the porch of the house, and measured each post of the porch, five cubits on this side, and five cubits on that side: and the breadth of the gate was three cubits on this side, and three cubits on that side.
49 The length of the porch was twenty cubits, and the breadth eleven cubits; and he brought me by the steps whereby they went up to it: and there were pillars by the posts, one on this side, and another on that side.

The dimensions of this temple are given in cubits, or more specifically, "a measuring reed of six cubits long by the cubit and an hand breadth" (verse 5).

Following is the definition of a "cubit" taken from Easton's Bible Dictionary:

Cubit: Heb. ‘ammah; i.e., “mother of the arm,” the fore-arm, is a word derived from the Latin cubitus, the lower arm. It is difficult to determine the exact length of this measure, from the uncertainty whether it included the entire length from the elbow to the tip of the longest finger, or only from the elbow to the root of the hand at the wrist. The probability is that the longer was the original cubit. The common computation as to the length of the cubit makes it 20.24 inches for the ordinary cubit, and 21.888 inches for the sacred one. This is the same as the Egyptian measurements.

Assuming the sacred cubit (since we're talking about a temple here), the rod would be a little over 11 feet long. Many computations for Ezekiel's temple are based upon a rod of 10.5 feet long, and cubits ranging in length between 20 to 22 inches. Therefore, you may see a variance of 10% or so in the dimensions of this temple by scholars who have gone the extra mile with their meticulous computations.

And more measurements (Ezekiel 41)

1 Afterward he brought me to the temple, and measured the posts, six cubits broad on the one side, and six cubits broad on the other side, which was the breadth of the tabernacle.
2 And the breadth of the door was ten cubits; and the sides of the door were five cubits on the one side, and five cubits on the other side: and he measured the length thereof, forty cubits: and the breadth, twenty cubits.
3 Then went he inward, and measured the post of the door, two cubits; and the door, six cubits; and the breadth of the door, seven cubits.
4 So he measured the length thereof, twenty cubits; and the breadth, twenty cubits, before the temple: and he said unto me, This is the most holy place.
5 After he measured the wall of the house, six cubits; and the breadth of every side chamber, four cubits, round about the house on every side.
6 And the side chambers were three, one over another, and thirty in order; and they entered into the wall which was of the house for the side chambers round about, that they might have hold, but they had not hold in the wall of the house.
7 And there was an enlarging, and a winding about still upward to the side chambers: for the winding about of the house went still upward round about the house: therefore the breadth of the house was still upward, and so increased from the lowest chamber to the highest by the midst.
8 I saw also the height of the house round about: the foundations of the side chambers were a full reed of six great cubits.
9 The thickness of the wall, which was for the side chamber without, was five cubits: and that which was left was the place of the side chambers that were within.
10 And between the chambers was the wideness of twenty cubits round about the house on every side.
11 And the doors of the side chambers were toward the place that was left, one door toward the north, and another door toward the south: and the breadth of the place that was left was five cubits round about.
12 Now the building that was before the separate place at the end toward the west was seventy cubits broad; and the wall of the building was five cubits thick round about, and the length thereof ninety cubits.
13 So he measured the house, an hundred cubits long; and the separate place, and the building, with the walls thereof, an hundred cubits long;
14 Also the breadth of the face of the house, and of the separate place toward the east, an hundred cubits.
15 And he measured the length of the building over against the separate place which was behind it, and the galleries thereof on the one side and on the other side, an hundred cubits, with the inner temple, and the porches of the court;
16 The door posts, and the narrow windows, and the galleries round about on their three stories, over against the door, cieled with wood round about, and from the ground up to the windows, and the windows were covered;
17 To that above the door, even unto the inner house, and without, and by all the wall round about within and without, by measure.
18 And it was made with cherubims and palm trees, so that a palm tree was between a cherub and a cherub; and every cherub had two faces;
19 So that the face of a man was toward the palm tree on the one side, and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on the other side: it was made through all the house round about.
20 From the ground unto above the door were cherubims and palm trees made, and on the wall of the temple.
21 The posts of the temple were squared, and the face of the sanctuary; the appearance of the one as the appearance of the other.
22 The altar of wood was three cubits high, and the length thereof two cubits; and the corners thereof, and the length thereof, and the walls thereof, were of wood: and he said unto me, This is the table that is before the LORD.
23 And the temple and the sanctuary had two doors.
24 And the doors had two leaves apiece, two turning leaves; two leaves for the one door, and two leaves for the other door.
25 And there were made on them, on the doors of the temple, cherubims and palm trees, like as were made upon the walls; and there were thick planks upon the face of the porch without.
26 And there were narrow windows and palm trees on the one side and on the other side, on the sides of the porch, and upon the side chambers of the house, and thick planks.

Ezekiel's measurements here are quite thorough. You may find it interesting to compare these measurements with those found for Solomon's Temple in I Kings 6:1-38; II Chronicles 3:1-17 (see notes).


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Copyright 2003-2011 by Wayne D. Turner