23 Dec. Ezekiel 43:1-12

23 Dec. Ezekiel sees God’s glory returning to Jerusalem

“Then the man led me to the outer east gateway [of the Second Temple], and I saw the glory of the God of Israel coming from the east. It sounded like the roar of rushing water, and its brightness made the earth shine.”

“The vision I saw, was like the vision I had seen when the LORD came to destroy the city [see Ezekiel 7:1-27] and also like the vision I had seen by the Kebar River [see Ezekiel 1:1-28]. I bowed face down on the ground. The glory of the LORD came onto the Temple area through the east gateway.”

“Then the Spirit picked me up and brought me into the inner courtyard. There I saw the LORD’s glory filling the Temple.”

“As the man stood at my side, I heard someone speaking to me from inside the Temple. The voice from the Temple said to me, ‘Human, this is my throne and the place where my feet rest. I will live here among the Israelites for ever.’”

“’The people of Israel will not make my holy name unclean again. Neither the people nor their kings will make it unclean with their sexual sins or with the dead bodies of their kings. The kings made my name unclean by putting their [palace] doorway next to my [Temple] doorway, and their doorpost next to my doorpost so only a wall separated them from me.’”

“’When they did their acts that I hate, they made my holy name unclean; and so I destroyed them in my anger. Now let them stop their sexual sins and take the dead bodies of their kings far away from me. Then I will live among them for ever.’”

“’Human, tell the people of Israel about the [Second] Temple so they will be ashamed of their sins. Let them think about the plan of the Temple. If they are ashamed of all they have done, let them know the design of the Temple and how it is built.’”

“’Show them its exits and entrances, all its designs and also all its rules and teachings. Write the rules as they watch so they will obey all the teachings and rules about the Temple. This is the teaching about the Temple: all the area around the top of the mountain is most holy. This is the teaching about the Temple.’”

          (Ezekiel 43:1-12)

 

 

In his vision in today’s passage, Ezekiel saw the radiance of the LORD (the ‘glory’ or ‘Shekinah’ (in Hebrew) - signifying the dazzling personal presence of God himself) returning to the Temple from the east (see Ezekiel 10.18-20 & 11:22-23 for Ezekiel’s vision of God’s ‘glory’ leaving the Temple).

Ezekiel was looking far into the future to a time when God promised to “live here among the Israelites for ever” and when “the people of Israel will not make my holy name unclean again.” (Ezekiel 43:7)

In the New Testament, the gospel writers tell us that the ‘glory’ of God returned to earth when Jesus was born in Bethlehem (see Luke 2:9). They relate how God, in the person of Jesus, crossed the Kidron Valley from the Mount of Olives and entered Jerusalem through the eastern gate on the first ‘Palm Sunday’ in fulfilment of the prophesy of Zechariah 9:9. (see Matthew 21:1-11 & Ezekiel 43:4)

Matthew goes on to describe how Jesus entered the Temple via the east gate and threw out the traders and money-changers in fulfilment of the prophesy of Jeremiah 7:11. Each of these actions reflected Ezekiel’s vison in which God himself re-entered Jerusalem and re-dedicated the Temple by cleansing it and removing the things that God hates.

The photo symbolises the dazzling radiance of the ‘glory’ of God (the ‘Shekinah’).

You can read more from the closing chapters of the Book of Ezekiel (Chapters 44-48) @ The Bible Journey | Ezekiel sees the glory of the LORD


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