What temple is this? (Ezekiel 40:5–42:20)


Ezekiel 40:5

ESV - 5 And behold, there was a wall all around the outside of the temple area, and the length of the measuring reed in the man's hand was six long cubits, each being a cubit and a handbreadth in length. So he measured the thickness of the wall, one reed; and the height, one reed.

Clarify Share Report Asked October 27 2019 My picture Jack Gutknecht

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Mini Tim Maas Retired Quality Assurance Specialist with the U.S. Army
My understanding is that the temple spoken of in the passage cited in the question (which is far larger, according to the dimensions given, than any actual temple built in either the Old or New Testaments) has evoked varying interpretations of its significance.

Some, who expect a literal fulfillment of the building of this structure, view it as occurring during Christ's millennial kingdom, as foretold in Revelation. However, instead of having sacrifices offered (as in the Old Testament) in anticipation of Christ's ultimate sacrifice of Himself for the forgiveness of sins, the sacrifices offered in the new temple will be memorials of Christ's action, or as rituals meant for the ceremonial cleansing of the temple. 

Those who view Ezekiel's vision in a figurative sense regard the temple that Ezekiel described as an indication of God dwelling permanently, and more prevalently than ever before, with His people in a perfect future relationship, described in a manner which those to whom Ezekiel was prophesying could understand and relate to.

There was also an intent to emphasize to those reading Ezekiel's words that God was always involved in the lives of His people, no matter how bleak their present circumstances at any given time might be.

October 28 2019 3 responses Vote Up Share Report

Mini John Appelt
The vision of the temple was given to Ezekiel fourteen years after the city was captured, Ezekiel 40:1, and the temple was burned, II Chronicles 36:19.

This temple has to be future because Ezekiel saw the glory of God coming from the east into the temple, and filling the temple, Ezekiel 43:2-5, which has not happened yet. He noted that the vision was like the one he had when he was by the River Chebar which was when the glory of God departed from the temple, Ezekiel 10:18, 11:23. Ezekiel also saw that the gate facing the east was shut and was told it would remain so because the Lord God had entered by it, Ezekiel 44:1, 2. 

The detailed descriptions of the temple are precisely given, but they are no different than Solomon’s temple. In 1861, Timothy Otis Paine, wrote a book, “Solomon’s Temple,” in which he proposed the thesis that Ezekiel’s descriptions complemented the other passages that describe the temple. He wrote that I and II Kings and Jeremiah give the details of the temple, but the description in Ezekiel gives what is lacking in those books. He wrote, 

“It is as if the writer of the Kings, and Jeremiah and Ezekiel, had examined each what the other had written, and then each supplied what the others had omitted.”

He proceeded to give some examples how different passages presented different features not given elsewhere. For example, some passages as the Kings give the inside measurements, whereas Ezekiel gives the outside measurements.

He also showed that Herod’s temple followed the same plan which means the temple was always of the same measurements but differing in its glory. In Matthew 24:1, the disciples seemed quite impressed with the buildings of the temple Herod had been building for over 46 years, John 2:20. The future temple will follow the identical plan of the previous temples.

Paine stated the usual drawings of the temple of his day were “about five times too wide, four times too high, and bottom upwards.” 

When he said, ‘bottom upwards,’ he noted that the temple had three levels of galleries that overhung on the outside on the north and south sides, Ezekiel 41:6, 7. Each level of galleries jutted out further with the widest at the top. Each gallery was supported by columns of pillars, making a portico under the galleries. This colonnade extended around the western end of the temple. ‘Solomon’s porch,’ John 10:23, Acts 3:11, 5:12, was a separate portico or colonnade on the east side of the temple, I Kings 6:3. 

One purpose of Ezekiel’s vision was to “describe the temple to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities…” Ezekiel 43:10, 11. They had defiled the holy name of God, Ezekiel 43:6, and His sanctuary with abominations, Ezekiel 5:11.

The vision also gives certainty that the temple will be rebuilt after the pattern of Solomon’s temple, and that the glory of the Lord God will dwell in it.

February 04 2022 0 responses Vote Up Share Report

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