Rev. Matt Wietfeldt, Director of Admissions and the Christ Academy program at Concordia Theological Seminary in Ft. Wayne, IN, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Ezekiel 40:1-27.
Ezekiel’s book comes to a grand climax and conclusion with the vision he receives of the new temple. In the first part of Ezekiel’s ministry, the LORD condemned His people’s idolatry, prompting Him to leave His temple. Yet after the temple was destroyed, the LORD brought Ezekiel into the second part of his ministry, in which he comforted the people of God with the promise of restoration and rescue. Those promises are brought to fulfillment in Ezekiel’s vision of a new temple, in which the LORD will dwell with His people forever. This vision is not intended as a blueprint for a structure to be built; rather, through this vision the LORD intends to prepare the hearts of His people to receive Christ as Savior when He comes. Ezekiel’s vision of the outer courts of the temple reminds us that through faith in Christ, both Jew and Gentile are welcomed into God’s presence.
“The Faithful Watchman” is a mini-series on Sharper Iron that goes through the book of Ezekiel. Just when Ezekiel should have begun his service as priest in the temple in Jerusalem, the LORD called him to be a prophet in exile in Babylon. Through fantastic visions and attention-grabbing action prophecies, the prophet Ezekiel is a faithful watchman who proclaims the word of the LORD to bring people to repentance over their sins and to faith in the coming Savior, Jesus Christ, the glory of the LORD made flesh.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
Sharper Iron is underwritten by Lutheran Church Extension Fund, where your investments help support the work of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod. Visit lcef.org.
Vision of the New Temple
40 In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after the city was struck down, on that very day, the hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me to the city.[a] 2 In visions of God he brought me to the land of Israel, and set me down on a very high mountain, on which was a structure like a city to the south. 3 When he brought me there, behold, there was a man whose appearance was like bronze, with a linen cord and a measuring reed in his hand. And he was standing in the gateway. 4 And the man said to me, “Son of man, look with your eyes, and hear with your ears, and set your heart upon all that I shall show you, for you were brought here in order that I might show it to you. Declare all that you see to the house of Israel.”
The East Gate to the Outer Court
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[b] in length. So he measured the thickness of the wall, one reed; and the height, one reed. 6 Then he went into the gateway facing east, going up its steps, and measured the threshold of the gate, one reed deep.[c] 7 And the side rooms, one reed long and one reed broad; and the space between the side rooms, five cubits; and the threshold of the gate by the vestibule of the gate at the inner end, one reed. 8 Then he measured the vestibule of the gateway, on the inside, one reed. 9 Then he measured the vestibule of the gateway, eight cubits; and its jambs, two cubits; and the vestibule of the gate was at the inner end. 10 And there were three side rooms on either side of the east gate. The three were of the same size, and the jambs on either side were of the same size. 11 Then he measured the width of the opening of the gateway, ten cubits; and the length of the gateway, thirteen cubits. 12 There was a barrier before the side rooms, one cubit on either side. And the side rooms were six cubits on either side. 13 Then he measured the gate from the ceiling of the one side room to the ceiling of the other, a breadth of twenty-five cubits; the openings faced each other. 14 He measured also the vestibule, sixty cubits. And around the vestibule of the gateway was the court.[d] 15 From the front of the gate at the entrance to the front of the inner vestibule of the gate was fifty cubits. 16 And the gateway had windows all around, narrowing inwards toward the side rooms and toward their jambs, and likewise the vestibule had windows all around inside, and on the jambs were palm trees.
The Outer Court
17 Then he brought me into the outer court. And behold, there were chambers and a pavement, all around the court. Thirty chambers faced the pavement. 18 And the pavement ran along the side of the gates, corresponding to the length of the gates. This was the lower pavement. 19 Then he measured the distance from the inner front of the lower gate to the outer front of the inner court,[e] a hundred cubits on the east side and on the north side.[f]
The North Gate
20 As for the gate that faced toward the north, belonging to the outer court, he measured its length and its breadth. 21 Its side rooms, three on either side, and its jambs and its vestibule were of the same size as those of the first gate. Its length was fifty cubits, and its breadth twenty-five cubits. 22 And its windows, its vestibule, and its palm trees were of the same size as those of the gate that faced toward the east. And by seven steps people would go up to it, and find its vestibule before them. 23 And opposite the gate on the north, as on the east, was a gate to the inner court. And he measured from gate to gate, a hundred cubits.
The South Gate
24 And he led me toward the south, and behold, there was a gate on the south. And he measured its jambs and its vestibule; they had the same size as the others. 25 Both it and its vestibule had windows all around, like the windows of the others. Its length was fifty cubits, and its breadth twenty-five cubits. 26 And there were seven steps leading up to it, and its vestibule was before them, and it had palm trees on its jambs, one on either side. 27 And there was a gate on the south of the inner court. And he measured from gate to gate toward the south, a hundred cubits.
- Ezekiel 40:1 Hebrew brought me there
- Ezekiel 40:5 A cubit was about 18 inches or 45 centimeters; a handbreadth was about 3 inches or 7.5 centimeters
- Ezekiel 40:6 Hebrew deep, and one threshold, one reed deep
- Ezekiel 40:14 Text uncertain; Hebrew And he made the jambs sixty cubits, and to the jamb of the court was the gateway all around
- Ezekiel 40:19 Hebrew distance from before the low gate before the inner court to the outside
- Ezekiel 40:19 Or cubits. So far the eastern gate; now to the northern gate
English Standard Version (ESV)
The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Permanent Text Edition® (2016). Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.