Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Journal Through the Bible: Week 86 Saturday

Ezekiel chapter 48

The LORD gives final instructions in this chapter, specifically He tells how the land is to be divided. Part of this is a repeat of a few chapters ago when He told Ezekiel that a portion was to be set apart for the prince. Repeating important instructions is always a good idea and God, the Heavenly Father, obviously saw a need to emphasize this.

Does God issue any commands?

  • God states how He wants the land divided among the 12 tribes of Israel. Joseph has 2 portions registered under the names of his sons Ephraim and Manasseh.
  • The priests, the sons of Zadok who kept the LORD'S ordinance, are to receive a set portion as the representative of the tribe of Levi. Theirs is a holy oblation which they can never sell.
  • People from every tribe will serve the holy city.
  • A portion of the land shall be set aside for the prince.
  • The gates of the city will be twelve: Reuben, Judah, and Levi on the north; Joseph, Benjamin, and Dan on the east; Simeon, Issachar, and Zebulun on the south; and Gad, Asher, and Naphtali on the west.

Does God make any promises?

  • The name of the city from that day shall be THE LORD IS THERE!

Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?

  • Since the ruling family of David never again ascended the throne and none of his descendants through the recorded historical record in the Bible claimed the land for the prince I believe that the prince is none other than Jesus Christ.

Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • Given the size of the city, its name, and reference to the prince, it seems to me that this chapter deals with the division of the land of Israel at the time of the Millennium when Jesus shall rule.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Read Through the Bible in 2014: October 27-November 1 Schedule

10/27/2014      Ezekiel 34, 35 Psalms 94, 95
10/28/2014      Ezekiel 36, 37 Psalms 96-98
10/29/2014      Ezekiel 38, 39 Psalms 99-101
10/30/2014      Ezekiel 40-42 Psalms 102, 103
10/31/2014      Ezekiel 43, 44 Psalm 104
11/1/2014      Ezekiel 45, 46 Psalm 105

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Journal Through the Bible: Week 86 Friday

Ezekiel chapter 47

The LORD GOD returned Ezekiel to the door of the Temple where he saw water flow out from the threshold on the east side of the Temple that came out from the south side of the altar and flowed toward the north. The man with the measuring stick led Ezekiel through the water. He led Ezekiel further and further out until Ezekiel could no longer cross without swimming. Then the man returned Ezekiel to the shore and explained the vision to him.

Does God issue any commands?
  • God commanded that the land be divided just as He stated. Even the strangers (foreigners) that live among them are to have land as an inheritance. (verses 21-23

Does God make any promises?

  • The waters would flow out to the desert in the east and to the sea where the waters will be healed. Everything that the water touches shall live but the marshy places would be left as brackish salt water.
  • The trees beside the river that Ezekiel saw will bear fruit every month and their leaves will not fade. The trees will be for food and the leaves for medicine.
  • God promised that Israel would possess the land of Promise. Joseph will have 2 portions (as the birthright which Reuben lost).

Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?

  • Just as when Moses struck the rock and water flowed from it, this water represents Jesus, the Living Water. Jesus said Himself that He is the Living Water when talking with the woman at the well in John chapter 4.
  • I believe that the man speaking to Ezekiel is Jesus.
  • The vision of Ezekiel in the water is similar to the lessons that Jesus taught Nicodemus about being born of the water and the spirit in John 3:5 and what He taught His disciples, especially Peter, on the night that He washed their feet before observing the Passover with them prior to His crucifixion. It is a picture of salvation.

Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • The time being described is a time of health and life. This must be the Millennial Kingdom rule of Jesus in Israel that is being described. Isaiah also described such a time when men will live to be of great old ages once again before death takes them. (Physical death is not abolished in that 1,000 years but it is greatly delayed! Death is finally abolished at the end of time.)

Friday, October 24, 2014

Journal Through the Bible: Week 86 Thursday

Ezekiel chapter 46

God gave Ezekiel more instructions for any future prince that ruled Israel as well as further directions for the sacrifices. Ezekiel was also shown more of the rooms in the Temple.

Does God issue any commands?

  • The gate of the inner court facing east shall be closed on the six working days but opened on the sabbath and new moon.
  • The priests shall prepare the prince's burnt offering and his peace offerings as the Prince stands by the post of the gate. Then the prince shall worship at the threshold of the gate. After that He will go out but the gate will not be shut until the evening. Someone is to be appointed to shut the gate. (That brings to mind David's saying in Psalm 84:10 about being a doorkeeper for the LORD.)
  • The people will also worship the LORD there in the sabbaths and new moons.
  • The prince will offer to the LORD 6 lambs and a ram, and a meat offering on each sabbath. On the day of each new moon He will offer a young bullock, six lambs, and a ram, also a meat offering.
  • The prince will enter and exit through the East Gate but the people will enter through the North Gate and exit through the South Gate and vice versa.
  • During feasts and solemnities the meat offering shall be an ephah per bullock and an ephah per ram, and an hin of oil per the lambs.
  • A lamb of the first year shall be prepared as a burnt offering and also a meat offering will be prepared each morning.
  • If the prince had sons he could give them land which would then become theirs by right of inheritance. And if the prince gave servants land it would return to the prince's possession during the year of liberty (Jubilee). The prince was not allowed to take the inheritance of another by force. (Remember Ahab and Naboth's vineyard?)

Does God make any promises?

  • The Prince shall enter by the porch by the East Gate.

Does this chapter teach anything about Jesus?

  • Jesus is the true Prince of Israel. He will enter the Temple through the East Gate and will worship His Father.
  • The sacrifices mentioned are all pictures of the atoning work of Jesus.

Does this chapter teach anything about yet-future events?

  • Many of the instructions given by God appear to be in theory only as they pertained to the coming temple of Zerubbabel and that of Herod. No prince of the line of David ever ruled Israel during those times so no prince ever gave a gift of inheritance to a son or a gift to his servants that would then be returned to the prince in the year of liberty (a Jubilee year) but this should not be of concern. ("If" is a very important word in verses 16-17.) It is no different than when God gave His exact standards, or commandments, to Moses for the people to follow as their covenant with Him knowing full well that they would not be able to keep them. These are the standards and we cannot keep them. If Israel had not broken the covenant the nation would not have gone into captivity and the ruling family of David would have reigned continuously and followed the standards set down for the ruling prince. However, since all that did happen, the Son of David (Jesus) had to be made the sacrifice and those who worship Him are then His sons and servants. I believe that this passage deals with the future Temple during the 1000 year reign of Christ upon the earth.