Ezekiel 42-44: The Glory of the Lord
November 17, 2020
TODAY'S BIBLE READING:
This continued description of the temple in these chapters amounts to much the same as Ezekiel’s previous description—namely a timely reminder of the temple, but in a non-literal sense pointing to the fulfillment of the temple in Christ, in Christ’s people, the gospel-church, and ultimately the New Heaven and the New Earth where God shall be with his people and they shall be glorified with him forever. In these chapters are various elements that are hard precisely to tie down or grasp, but various elements that evoke feelings of awe and magnitude—all of which are intended to lead us to worship God, be awe in of him, repent of our sins, and from a gospel fulfillment point of view, be led to Christ, the fulfillment of the temple in his own body. This glory is shown as very great in various places, particularly:
“Then he led me to the gate, the gate facing east. And behold, the glory of the God of Israel was coming from the east. And the sound of his coming was like the sound of many waters, and the earth shone with his glory. And the vision I saw was just like the vision that I had seen when he came to destroy the city, and just like the vision that I had seen by the Chebar canal. And I fell on my face. As the glory of the LORD entered the temple by the gate facing east, the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court; and behold, the glory of the LORD filled the temple” (Ezekiel 43:1-5)
Some of these elements are so grand that the only possible fulfillment of them is in Christ himself. For instance:
“And he said to me, ‘Son of man, this is the place of my throne and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the people of Israel forever’” (Ezekiel 43:7)
The glory of this God leads us to repent of our sinfulness (“they may be ashamed of their iniquities,” Ezekiel 43:10), and to worship God (“behold, the glory of the LORD filled the temple of the LORD. And I fell on my face,” Ezekiel 44:4).
Let us then not take lightly the extraordinary day in which we live, when Christ has come, and through Christ, the great high priest, we have access to God with freedom and confidence assured and certain. Let us make the most of such privilege, through fervent prayer, attentive Bible reading, open mouthed witness, and integrity of obedience in loving faithfulness.
“The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth” (John 1:14).
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Josh Moody (Ph.D., University of Cambridge) is the senior pastor of College Church in Wheaton, IL., president and founder of God Centered Life Ministries, and author of several books including How the Bible Can Change Your Life and John 1-12 For You.
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