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Book of Ezekiel
Chapter 40

The Millennial Temple

Ezekiel 40 marks the next dramatic time in Israel's history following the seven years of Tribulation Period, which is the building of the Millennial Temple and the establishment of the LORD'S first 1,000 years of His eternal reign over the world.
Psalm 2:6-12 Yet have I set my king upon my holy hill of Zion. 7  I will declare the decree: the LORD hath said unto me, Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. 8  Ask of me, and I shall give thee the heathen for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession. 9  Thou shalt break them with a rod of iron; thou shalt dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel. 10  Be wise now therefore, O ye kings: be instructed, ye judges of the earth. 11  Serve the LORD with fear, and rejoice with trembling. 12  Kiss the Son, lest he be angry, and ye perish from the way, when his wrath is kindled but a little. Blessed are all they that put their trust in him. (KJV)

All the events during the Millennium are about our Lord JESUS CHRIST and His reign.  These chapters in Ezekiel focus on the Millennial Temple where the LORD will physically reside.
(1). This will be His Temple and He will be there forever (Eze.43:6-7).
(2). His Temple is for all nations (Isa.56:7).
(3). This will be a place for fellowship before the LORD (Ex.24:9-11).
(4). This will be a place for singing songs of joy and praises (Ps.27:6).

In today’s world, there is no central place of worship as there will be during the Millennial reign of CHRIST.  In comparing the church age and the future Millennial reign of Christ, the body of Christ (the church) is:
(1). TRUE Christians are the temple of the living GOD (1 Cor.3:16-17; 2 Cor.6:16). There is no central worship center.
(2). TRUE Christians are a building fit together for the LORD to be a dwelling for His SPIRIT (Eph.2:18-22).
(3). TRUE Christians are GOD’S workmanship, created in CHRIST unto good works (Eph.2:6-10).

The end of the church age is marked by the Rapture (its removal to be with the LORD forever). The word ‘rapture’ is not in the Bible, but its doctrine is clearly taught (Jn.14:2-3; 1 Cor.15:51-52; 1 Thes.4:13-18). The rapture of the church is before the 7 years (one week) predicted by Daniel (Dan.9:26-27), the Tribulation Period. 

When the Kingdom of JESUS CHRIST begins, it will never end (Dan.2:42-44). The LORD will call His elect from around the world (Mat.24:29-31). This is the time when the sheep will be separated from the goats (Mat.25:32-46). Israel will experience the great blessings of the LORD, and enjoy the fruits of His Presence (Isa.60:18-62:12).

The Temple will be built, and the center of the world government will be there, and JESUS CHRIST shall rule (Isa.9:6-7; Zec.6:12-15; Ps.2:4-9), and shall rule with a rod of iron (Ps.2:9; Rev.2:27; 12:5; 19:5). The land of Israel will be transformed like the Garden of Eden (Eze.36:33-38).

Ezekiel sees far beyond the seven years of Tribulation to the time that the LORD will return unto His chosen people, Israel, and establish His 1000 year reign over the world. If you have ever wondered what the world will be like during the Millennial Kingdom of Christ, the last eight chapters of Ezekiel describe the features of the Temple, the distribution of the land among the tribes of Israel, the reinstating of the priestly office and a form of the sacrificial system and feasts. Even though much of the last chapters of Ezekiel may seem to be over-filled with detail and measurements, we can only imagine the incredible amount of life, celebration, song and worship as was shown in the vision of the apostle John in Revelation chapters 4 and 5.  This scene in Heaven which occurs after the rapture of the church and the beginning of the seven years of tribulation is one that will most likely be on Earth during the 1,000 year reign of Christ (Rev.4:9-11; 5:8-14). 
The Millennial Kingdom is also a time period where not only does CHRIST reign over the Earth from His seat of government in Jerusalem, but the world will have groups of people different than the mankind has ever experienced throughout history. There will be the survivors of the Great Tribulation Period (the last 3 ½ years of the Tribulation), who will repopulate the world and there will be those who return with CHRIST in their resurrected bodies (Phil.3:21); the raptured saints of the church (1 Thes.4:13-18) and there will also be the Tribulation saints who were killed because they refused to accept the mark of the Antichrist (Rev.14:9-11; 16:2), and there will be the resurrected Old Testament saints as described by Daniel (Dan.12:1-3).

The Millennial Kingdom of CHRIST is a time when the Covenants and Promises made to Abraham and his decedents by the LORD will be fulfilled, that are not yet completed. As described in the Book of Hebrews and elsewhere, the Old Testament saints looked forward to the time when these Promises would be fulfilled, such as the Promise of the land to the seed of Abraham, although it did not occur during their physical lives on Earth (Heb.11:8-10, 13-16).

The Millennial Temple will be the last of the Temples where people will worship the LORD. The other places of worship of the LORD were:
(1). The Tabernacle that Moses built was patterned after the one he saw in Heaven (Ex.25:8-9; Acts 7:44). ***The glory of the LORD filled the tabernacle (Ex.40:34-35).

(2). The Temple David designed and Solomon built (1 Chron.22:1-5; 28:1-19).     ***A second time that the glory of the LORD filled the temple at its dedication (2 Chron.7:1-2). This Temple was destroyed by King Nebuchadnezzar (2 Chron.36:19).

(3). The Temple was rebuilt by the Jews who returned to the land with Ezra after 70 years of captivity (2 Chron.36:23; Ezra 1:2-3).

(4). This temple was upgraded by Herod (Mat.24:1; Mk.13:1; Lk.21:5; Jn.2:20). ***This Temple was destroyed in 70 AD by the Romans

(5). There will be a Temple in the Tribulation Period (Mat.24:15; Mk.13:14; Rev.11:1-2; 13:14-15). ***This Temple will be destroyed with the pouring out of the 7th bowl judgment (Rev.Ch.16), and the Return of Christ on the Mount of Olives (Zec.14:1-5; Acts 1:11).

(6). The Millennial Temple will be similar to what David designed (1 Chron.22:1-5; 28:1-19). ***This will be the third time that the glory of the LORD will fill the Temple (Eze.43:4-5; 44:4).

After the first 1,000 years of the LORD’S eternal reign, and following the great white throne judgment (Rev.20:11-15) the New Jerusalem and the Tabernacle of God will descend from Heaven to above the Earth and be with men (Rev.21:1-3).

There are many Scriptures that describe the life and times of the Millennial reign of CHRIST,  the following give us a good idea as to what it will be like: (Isaiah 2:1-4; Isaiah 11:1-9; Isaiah 65:17-25; Micah 4:1-5;  Zechariah 14:20-21).

Ezekiel's Temple . . . What? When? Why?

The closing chapters of the prophetic book of Ezekiel are among the most contested in all of Scripture. There are many different and conflicting interpretations. Do these Chapters that describe a Great Temple, speak symbolically or literally? Do they refer to a time gone by, or to a future state? The disagreements are many. There are also mysteries in chapters 40-48, who is the prince or leader involved in the Temple worship?

Ezekiel is not the only Old Testament prophet who saw a future, glorious Temple for GOD'S chosen people Israel, complete with animal sacrifices, in the Holy Land:
Prophecies of a Millennial Temple: Isaiah 2:3; 60:13; Daniel 9:24; Joel 3:18;  Haggai 2:7,9
Prophecies of animal sacrifices in the future Temple: Isaiah 56:6-7; 60:7; Jer. 33:18; Zec.14:16-21

GOD has promised to the line of Zadok an everlasting priesthood (1 Sam. 2:35; 1 Kings 2:27, 35). This confirms GOD'S Promise of an everlasting priesthood to Zadok’s ancestor Phinehas (Num. 25:13), which also confirms His Promise of an everlasting priesthood to Phinehas' grandfather Aaron (Ex.29:9; 40:15; 1 Chron. 6:3-8, 50-53). In addition, this Promise of an everlasting priesthood was strongly confirmed by GOD (Jer.33:17-22), who links the endlessness of the Levitical priests with the endlessness of the Davidic Kingship and the endlessness of the Earth's rotation on its axis! In view of these Promises of GOD, confirmed again and again, it is highly important that the Millennial Temple of Ezekiel will have the sons of Zadok as its priests (40:46, 44:15). GOD always means what He says! The basic probability of this being fulfilled literally is fortified greatly by the mention of 12,000 Levites who will be sealed by GOD (Rev.7), during the still future 70th week of Daniel (Dan. 9:26-27).  If these are literal Levites it would not be consistent to think that the Temple is spiritual or symbolic. And if GOD'S Promises to Aaron, Phinehas and Zadok are spiritualized, how can we think that His Promises to David will be literally fulfilled (2 Sam. 7:13, 16)?

The Bible clearly teaches that while there is no such thing as an earthly Temple, altar or animal sacrifices in TRUE Christianity (John 4:21; Heb. Ch.7-10), there will be such provisions for Israel following the rapture of the church (Mat.24; 2 Thes. 2:4; Rev. 11:1-2). Also (Hos.3:4-5; Dan, 9:24, 27). And too, Revelation 20:9 indicates that Jerusalem, the beloved city, will once again be the camp of the saints during the Millennium. The clear New Testament teaching of a post-rapture Holy Place and Temple of GOD in Jerusalem, shall be complete with the altar (Rev.11:1), preparing us to expect a Millennial Temple in connection with the holy city Jerusalem, for it is in complete harmony with Old Testament teaching.  

There are those who say that this Temple was just a figment of Ezekiel's imagination, and which say that this Temple shows certain realities of the Church which shall be fulfilled in the eternal state. I think that Israel will have the only sanctuary and priesthood in the world during the Millennium, so the Temple courts and sacred area will need to be greatly enlarged to accommodate the vast number of worshippers and the priests who will serve them (Isa. 2:3, 60:14, 61:6, Zec. 8:20-23). Several Old Testament prophecies speak of great geographical changes that will occur in Palestine at the time of Christ's Second Coming (Isa.64:1-2; Mic.1:3-4; Nah.1:5-6: Hab.3:6; Zec.14:1-5), so it is not impossible to imagine a 2,500 square mile area for the Temple and city fitted into a reshaped and enlarged land (Isa.26:15; 33:17; 54:2; Zech.14:4-10). Revelation 16:20 informs us that at the end of the Great Tribulation massive earthquakes will cause islands and mountains to vanish. Thus, both Testaments speak of topographical and geographical changes that will accompany the introduction of the Millennial Kingdom. Jerusalem itself will be the capital of the world, the beloved city (Rev. 20:9), and its size will surely be proportionate to its importance. If Nineveh, the capital of one ancient empire, was supposedly sixty miles in circumference (Jonah 3:3), why would it be impossible for the Millennial Jerusalem to be forty?

It is unthinkable that a system of animal sacrifices will be reinstituted after the one perfect sacrifice of Christ has been accomplished, especially in the light of Hebrews Ch.7-10. While this might seem to be a most difficult objection to the Millennial Temple being literal, several important things tend to modify the force of this objection:
(1). The Millennial system of sacrifices described by Ezekiel differs greatly from the Aaronic system, so that it is not just a reinstitution of Mosaic Judaism as many have claimed. These changes could not have escaped the notice of post-captivity Jews, such as Zerubbabel and Joshua, who, seeing the glorious framework into which Ezekiel placed these new ordinances, would have realized immediately that the prophecy could only be fulfilled in the Millennial Kingdom; so they made no effort to build such a Temple after the exile. The Levites will have fewer Temple privileges except for the sons of Zadok who will serve as priests. The Feast of Pentecost is omitted as well as the great Day of Atonement, and there is no evening sacrifice.

(2). Just because animal sacrifices and priests have no place in Christianity, does not mean that they will have no place in Israel after the rapture of the Church . . . for there is a very clear distinction made all through the Scriptures between Israel and the church! And just because GOD will have finished His work of sanctification in the church by the time of the Rapture, we must not think that He has finished His work of teaching, testing and sanctification of Israel. Dear on, one of the main reasons for the 1000 year Kingdom of Christ will be to justify His chosen people, Israel before the eyes of all nations (Isaiah Ch. 60, 61). We should not think that Israelites during the Millennium will also be Christians, without priests, without sacrifices, and without a Temple. Saints like John the Baptist who died before Pentecost were not Christians (John 3:29, Mat. 11:11); and those who are saved after the rapture of the church will also be excluded from membership in the Bride of Christ (Rev.21:9), although they will certainly be made perfect like all the redeemed (Heb. 12:23).

Even in the age of grace, GOD wants TRUE Christians to be reminded of the terrible price that CHRIST JESUS paid on the cross, through the symbolism of the bread and the cup (1 Cor. 10:16). Drinking of this cup of blessing (1 Cor.10:16) does NOT involve a re-offering of the Body and Blood of Christ as the Roman church does, for that is in DIRECT OPPOSITION to the Book of Hebrews, that He died ONCE (Heb.9:13, 26, 28, 10:10). When we drink of this cup of blessing, it serves as a wonderful remembrance of CHRIST and our declaring the LORD'S death till he come (1 Cor. 11:24-26). http://www.godcannotlie.org/true_children_of_god.htm

Terrible events happened in Jerusalem during Ezekiel’s life. Not like Jeremiah, Ezekiel was not present in Jerusalem when these things happened. Instead, he was in exile in Babylon . . . but Ezekiel did SEE these things happen! He saw them in visions, by the power of GOD’S HOLY SPIRIT. On some events, it seemed as if the HOLY SPIRIT lifted him up as if to take him back to Jerusalem. Every time, Ezekiel carefully recorded the things that he saw.

Ezekiel saw the terrible things that happened to GOD’S Holy Temple. He saw the people worshipping false gods in Chapter 8. He saw how the people of Judah had become well-known for their wicked behaviour and murders. He saw that GOD would not permit this evil to continue. And Ezekiel saw when GOD’S glory left His Temple in Chapter 10. Ezekiel knew that Jerusalem had lost GOD’S special protection. Enemies would destroy the city and the Temple. The residents would suffer terribly.

This last vision in the Book of Ezekiel happened 25 years after Ezekiel went into exile, 14 years after the army of Babylon had destroyed Jerusalem, so, no one was then living in Jerusalem. The walls, the houses and even the great Temple were nothing but piles of stones. Israel and Judah seemed to be in a hopeless situation. But the Lord GOD gave this vision to Ezekiel, and a wonderful vision it was.

Ezekiel saw a Temple, similar to the one that the Babylon army destroyed. But, different than the old Temple, for people were obeying GOD’S law, the whole nation was loyal to GOD. The rulers were fair and honest. The priests were holy. GOD’S awesome Glory was again present in His Temple, and the people had a new name for their capital city: The LORD is there (48:35).

What a wonderful vision, but with so many different interpretations, it is very difficult to know its meaning. Many people, including this humble servant, believe that this Temple will exist in the future, and JESUS, the MESSIAH, will return to rule as King there.

There are some who do not think that this Temple will actually exist. They think that GOD was using this vision to teach the exiles. He wanted to show them what the word holy really means. He wanted to teach them how priests should behave. He wanted them to know what proper worship is, and He wanted them to know that people should willingly obey His law, and then and only then would He live among them. Only then would they be His people and He would be their GOD.

Dear one, if GOD does not established a building to be His House, then the builders work in vain (Ps. 127:1). Only if GOD sends His Glory to fill a place, the greatest Temple or church in the world is just an empty building. We can only worship GOD properly when He sends His HOLY SPIRIT. If a person does not have the HOLY SPIRIT within, they are none of His!
Romans 8:9 But ye are not in the flesh, but in the Spirit, if so be that the Spirit of God dwell in you. Now if any man have not the Spirit of Christ, he is none of his. (KJV)  
TRUE Christians are blessed indeed, for we have the HOLY SPIRIT with us forever!
1 John 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world. (KJV)
John 14:16-17 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you. (KJV)  
John 14:27 Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: not as the world giveth, give I unto you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. (KJV)

Thank You Jesus, Thank You, Thank You, Thank You!!

Book of Ezekiel

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