Touring the Temple

February 6, 2012 at 12:45 pm | Posted in Ezekiel | 1 Comment
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Chapters 40 – 48 in Ezekiel contain the vision God gave Ezekiel concerning the Millennial Temple. This gave assurance to the surviving exiles that the temple which had been destroyed would be restored. The detailed specifications for the Temple have spiritual applications, but they are also literal and actual details for a real temple. It appears that the Millennial Temple will probably be located on Mount Zion when Christ rules and reigns on this earth during what some theologians call the “Millenium.” Milli = 1000; annum = years.

The spiritual lessons concerning the description of the Temple have to do with God showing the people that their empty performance-centered worship was displeasing to the Lord. God’s plan for worship is that it be God-centered.

The main purpose of the Temple was obedience to God’s word in worship. God’s Word is where we go to find out God’s opinion about things. God’s opinion of people worshipping Him? It’s good. God’s opinion of prayer? It’s good. God’s opinion of people reading and studying the Bible? It’s good. God’s opinion of giving people the good news of God’s saving grace? It’s good. God’s opinion of believers serving the Lord in love alongside other believers? It’s good. God’s opinion of fornication, laziness, lying, or rebellion against God’s appointed leader? They’re bad. We know these things are good or bad because God has expressed how He feels about them in the Bible.

The temple we see described in these chapters of Ezekiel is the temple connected with Revelation Chapter 20, not Revelation Chapter 21. There are many similarities, but it’s not the same temple that we see as being found in the Heavenly City. It is a temple that will be set up on Earth during the Millennial Reign when Christ will rule as Messiah and High Priest.

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.

Ezekiel 40:3

This measuring reed was a symbol of ownership and it was used for taking a “property survey.” Ezekiel was given a tour by an angel (a man colored like bronze). The tour of the temple revealed many similarities to Solomon’s Temple (I Kings 7), but this temple will have no veil between the Holy Place and the Holy of Holies because Christ Himself will be present with His people. Additionally, there will be no Ark of the Covenant or Mercy Seat, no golden altar of incense, no golden lamp stand with seven arms. Incense will not be used to symbolize the prayers of God’s people ascending up to Him.

In Chapter 43:1-12 Ezekiel got to see the glory return to the Temple. He had watched the glory depart earlier.

Then brought he me the way of the north gate before the house: and I looked, and, behold, the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD: and I fell upon my face. And the LORD said unto me, Son of man, mark well, and behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears all that I say unto thee concerning all the ordinances of the house of the LORD, and all the laws thereof; and mark well the entering in of the house, with every going forth of the sanctuary. And thou shalt say to the rebellious, even to the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; O ye house of Israel, let it suffice you of all your abominations, In that ye have brought into my sanctuary strangers, uncircumcised in heart, and uncircumcised in flesh, to be in my sanctuary, to pollute it, even my house, when ye offer my bread, the fat and the blood, and they have broken my covenant because of all your abominations. And ye have not kept the charge of mine holy things: but ye have set keepers of my charge in my sanctuary for yourselves.

Ezekiel 44:4-8

People who go to holy places should be holy people. There may be buildings around your local church building where immoral activities are going on, but the church itself should stand out as a place of holiness in your community. And the church members themselves ought to stand out as examples of holiness. This does not mean that all the members of a local Christian church have to be clones. Christians should stand out in the world for our holiness, but we need be prepared to explain why we stand out. Sometimes I hear people say, “I could just tell so-and-so was a Christian. There was just ‘something about’ him/her.” That’s not bad, but it’s not enough. If we talk differently than unbelievers, if we dress differently, have a different attitude, pray before we eat our food, we need to be able to articulate Biblical reasons for doing those things. The Temple shown to Ezekiel had distinguishing details, but they all “meant” something.

Rehearsing Repetitive Roman Reigns Really Recognizes Right Reckoning

November 5, 2010 at 10:53 am | Posted in A Little Alliteration, Romans | 14 Comments
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God wants us to understand the significance of Adam’s one sin and Christ’s one sacrifice. Count how many times you see the Word “one” in Romans Chapter 5: Verses 12, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19. I believe there are eleven “ones.”

Now count how many times you see the Word “reign?” Verses 14, 17, 21, for a total of five “reigns.” The Holy Spirit is emphasizing and comparing Adam’s kingdom and Christ’s kingdom.

Now look for the Words “much more:” Verses 9, 10, 15, 17, 20, for a total of six. The blessings that were gained by Christ’s obedience are “much more” – or much greater – than those lost by Adam’s disobedience.

That is the key difference in what Christ did so that He was victorious, and what Adam did so that he was defeated: Obedience. Adam was DISobedient unto death, so we have to die. Christ was OBEDIENT unto death, so we can live.

Moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound:

Romans 5:20, emphasis added

This expression – “the law entered” – reminds me of the stage directions found in the manuscript of a play. (Falstaff enters, stage right.) The Law entered, like an actor, so that the Law could put on a show. It showed us how holy God is and how helpless we were to keep His commands in our fallen state. The Law is not “bad.” It is our schoolmaster – to bring us to Christ.

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