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LIO 12/6: Reading – Ezekial 45-48

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CedarCreek Church

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LIO 12/6: Reading – Ezekial 45-48

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Ezekial 45

(Click here to view commentary on this chapter)

Division of the Land

45 “When you divide the land among the tribes of Israel, you must set aside a section for the Lord as his holy portion. This piece of land will be 8 1⁄3 miles long and 6 2⁄3 miles wide. The entire area will be holy. A section of this land, measuring 875 feet by 875 feet, will be set aside for the Temple. An additional strip of land 87 1⁄2 feet wide is to be left empty all around it.Within the larger sacred area, measure out a portion of land 8 1⁄3 miles long and 3 1⁄3 miles wide. Within it the sanctuary of the Most Holy Place will be located. This area will be holy, set aside for the priests who minister to the Lord in the sanctuary. They will use it for their homes, and my Temple will be located within it. The strip of sacred land next to it, also 8 1⁄3 miles long and 3 1⁄3 miles wide, will be a living area for the Levites who work at the Temple. It will be their possession and a place for their towns.

“Adjacent to the larger sacred area will be a section of land 8 1⁄3 miles long and 1 2⁄3 miles wide. This will be set aside for a city where anyone in Israel can live.

“Two special sections of land will be set apart for the prince. One section will share a border with the east side of the sacred lands and city, and the second section will share a border on the west side. Then the far eastern and western borders of the prince’s lands will line up with the eastern and western boundaries of the tribal areas. These sections of land will be the prince’s allotment. Then my princes will no longer oppress and rob my people; they will assign the rest of the land to the people, giving an allotment to each tribe.

Rules for the Princes

“For this is what the Sovereign Lord says: Enough, you princes of Israel! Stop your violence and oppression and do what is just and right. Quit robbing and cheating my people out of their land. Stop expelling them from their homes, says the Sovereign Lord. 10 Use only honest weights and scales and honest measures, both dry and liquid. 11 The homer will be your standard unit for measuring volume. The ephah and the bath will each measure one-tenth of a homer. 12 The standard unit for weight will be the silver shekel. One shekel will consist of twenty gerahs, and sixty shekels will be equal to one mina.

Special Offerings and Celebrations

13 “You must give this tax to the prince: one bushel of wheat or barley for every 60 you harvest, 14 one percent of your olive oil, 15 and one sheep or goat for every 200 in your flocks in Israel. These will be the grain offerings, burnt offerings, and peace offerings that will make atonement for the people who bring them, says the Sovereign Lord. 16 All the people of Israel must join in bringing these offerings to the prince. 17 The prince will be required to provide offerings that are given at the religious festivals, the new moon celebrations, the Sabbath days, and all other similar occasions. He will provide the sin offerings, burnt offerings, grain offerings, liquid offerings, and peace offerings to purify the people of Israel, making them right with the Lord.

18 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: In early spring, on the first day of each new year, sacrifice a young bull with no defects to purify the Temple. 19 The priest will take blood from this sin offering and put it on the doorposts of the Temple, the four corners of the upper ledge of the altar, and the gateposts at the entrance to the inner courtyard. 20 Do this also on the seventh day of the new year for anyone who has sinned through error or ignorance. In this way, you will purify the Temple.

21 “On the fourteenth day of the first month, you must celebrate the Passover. This festival will last for seven days. The bread you eat during that time must be made without yeast. 22 On the day of Passover the prince will provide a young bull as a sin offering for himself and the people of Israel. 23 On each of the seven days of the feast he will prepare a burnt offering to theLord, consisting of seven young bulls and seven rams without defects. A male goat will also be given each day for a sin offering. 24 The prince will provide a basket of flour as a grain offering and a gallon of olive oil with each young bull and ram.

25 “During the seven days of the Festival of Shelters, which occurs every year in early autumn, the prince will provide these same sacrifices for the sin offering, the burnt offering, and the grain offering, along with the required olive oil.

Ezekial 46

(Click here to view commentary on this chapter)

46 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: The east gateway of the inner courtyard will be closed during the six workdays each week, but it will be open on Sabbath days and the days of new moon celebrations. The prince will enter the entry room of the gateway from the outside. Then he will stand by the gatepost while the priest offers his burnt offering and peace offering. He will bow down in worship inside the gateway passage and then go back out the way he came. The gateway will not be closed until evening. The common people will bow down and worship the Lord in front of this gateway on Sabbath days and the days of new moon celebrations.

“Each Sabbath day the prince will present to the Lord a burnt offering of six lambs and one ram, all with no defects. He will present a grain offering of a basket of choice flour to go with the ram and whatever amount of flour he chooses to go with each lamb, and he is to offer one gallon of olive oil for each basket of flour. At the new moon celebrations, he will bring one young bull, six lambs, and one ram, all with no defects. With the young bull he must bring a basket of choice flour for a grain offering. With the ram he must bring another basket of flour. And with each lamb he is to bring whatever amount of flour he chooses to give. With each basket of flour he must offer one gallon of olive oil.

“The prince must enter the gateway through the entry room, and he must leave the same way. But when the people come in through the north gateway to worship the Lord during the religious festivals, they must leave by the south gateway. And those who entered through the south gateway must leave by the north gateway. They must never leave by the same gateway they came in, but must always use the opposite gateway. 10 The prince will enter and leave with the people on these occasions.

11 “So at the special feasts and sacred festivals, the grain offering will be a basket of choice flour with each young bull, another basket of flour with each ram, and as much flour as the prince chooses to give with each lamb. Give one gallon of olive oil with each basket of flour. 12 When the prince offers a voluntary burnt offering or peace offering to the Lord, the east gateway to the inner courtyard will be opened for him, and he will offer his sacrifices as he does on Sabbath days. Then he will leave, and the gateway will be shut behind him.

13 “Each morning you must sacrifice a one-year-old lamb with no defects as a burnt offering to the Lord. 14 With the lamb, a grain offering must also be given to the Lord—about three quarts of flour with a third of a gallon of olive oil to moisten the choice flour. This will be a permanent law for you. 15 The lamb, the grain offering, and the olive oil must be given as a daily sacrifice every morning without fail.

16 “This is what the Sovereign Lord says: If the prince gives a gift of land to one of his sons as his inheritance, it will belong to him and his descendants forever. 17 But if the prince gives a gift of land from his inheritance to one of his servants, the servant may keep it only until the Year of Jubilee, which comes every fiftieth year. At that time the land will return to the prince. But when the prince gives gifts to his sons, those gifts will be permanent. 18 And the prince may never take anyone’s property by force. If he gives property to his sons, it must be from his own land, for I do not want any of my people unjustly evicted from their property.”

The Temple Kitchens

19 In my vision, the man brought me through the entrance beside the gateway and led me to the sacred rooms assigned to the priests, which faced toward the north. He showed me a place at the extreme west end of these rooms. 20 He explained, “This is where the priests will cook the meat from the guilt offerings and sin offerings and bake the flour from the grain offerings into bread. They will do it here to avoid carrying the sacrifices through the outer courtyard and endangering the people by transmitting holiness to them.”

21 Then he brought me back to the outer courtyard and led me to each of its four corners. In each corner I saw an enclosure.22 Each of these enclosures was 70 feet long and 52 1⁄2 feet wide, surrounded by walls. 23 Along the inside of these walls was a ledge of stone with fireplaces under the ledge all the way around. 24 The man said to me, “These are the kitchens to be used by the Temple assistants to boil the sacrifices offered by the people.”

Ezekial 47

(Click here to view commentary on this chapter)

The River of Healing

47 In my vision, the man brought me back to the entrance of the Temple. There I saw a stream flowing east from beneath the door of the Temple and passing to the right of the altar on its south side. The man brought me outside the wall through the north gateway and led me around to the eastern entrance. There I could see the water flowing out through the south side of the east gateway.

Measuring as he went, he took me along the stream for 1,750 feet and then led me across. The water was up to my ankles.He measured off another 1,750 feet and led me across again. This time the water was up to my knees. After another 1,750 feet, it was up to my waist. Then he measured another 1,750 feet, and the river was too deep to walk across. It was deep enough to swim in, but too deep to walk through.

He asked me, “Have you been watching, son of man?” Then he led me back along the riverbank. When I returned, I was surprised by the sight of many trees growing on both sides of the river. Then he said to me, “This river flows east through the desert into the valley of the Dead Sea. The waters of this stream will make the salty waters of the Dead Sea fresh and pure. There will be swarms of living things wherever the water of this river flows. Fish will abound in the Dead Sea, for its waters will become fresh. Life will flourish wherever this water flows. 10 Fishermen will stand along the shores of the Dead Sea. All the way from En-gedi to En-eglaim, the shores will be covered with nets drying in the sun. Fish of every kind will fill the Dead Sea, just as they fill the Mediterranean. 11 But the marshes and swamps will not be purified; they will still be salty.12 Fruit trees of all kinds will grow along both sides of the river. The leaves of these trees will never turn brown and fall, and there will always be fruit on their branches. There will be a new crop every month, for they are watered by the river flowing from the Temple. The fruit will be for food and the leaves for healing.”

Boundaries for the Land

13 This is what the Sovereign Lord says: “Divide the land in this way for the twelve tribes of Israel: The descendants of Joseph will be given two shares of land. 14 Otherwise each tribe will receive an equal share. I took a solemn oath and swore that I would give this land to your ancestors, and it will now come to you as your possession.

15 “These are the boundaries of the land: The northern border will run from the Mediterranean toward Hethlon, then on through Lebo-hamath to Zedad; 16 then it will run to Berothah and Sibraim, which are on the border between Damascus and Hamath, and finally to Hazer-hatticon, on the border of Hauran. 17 So the northern border will run from the Mediterranean to Hazar-enan, on the border between Hamath to the north and Damascus to the south.

18 “The eastern border starts at a point between Hauran and Damascus and runs south along the Jordan River between Israel and Gilead, past the Dead Sea and as far south as Tamar. This will be the eastern border.

19 “The southern border will go west from Tamar to the waters of Meribah at Kadesh and then follow the course of the Brook of Egypt to the Mediterranean. This will be the southern border.

20 “On the west side, the Mediterranean itself will be your border from the southern border to the point where the northern border begins, opposite Lebo-hamath.

21 “Divide the land within these boundaries among the tribes of Israel. 22 Distribute the land as an allotment for yourselves and for the foreigners who have joined you and are raising their families among you. They will be like native-born Israelites to you and will receive an allotment among the tribes. 23 These foreigners are to be given land within the territory of the tribe with whom they now live. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!

Ezekial 48

(Click here to view commentary on this chapter)

Division of the Land

48 “Here is the list of the tribes of Israel and the territory each is to receive. The territory of Dan is in the extreme north. Its boundary line follows the Hethlon road to Lebo-hamath and then runs on to Hazar-enan on the border of Damascus, with Hamath to the north. Dan’s territory extends all the way across the land of Israel from east to west.

“Asher’s territory lies south of Dan’s and also extends from east to west. Naphtali’s land lies south of Asher’s, also extending from east to west. Then comes Manasseh south of Naphtali, and its territory also extends from east to west.South of Manasseh is Ephraim, and then Reuben, and then Judah, all of whose boundaries extend from east to west.

“South of Judah is the land set aside for a special purpose. It will be 8 1⁄3 miles wide and will extend as far east and west as the tribal territories, with the Temple at the center.

“The area set aside for the Lord’s Temple will be 8 1⁄3 miles long and 6 2⁄3 miles wide. 10 For the priests there will be a strip of land measuring 8 1⁄3 miles long by 3 1⁄3 miles wide, with the Lord’s Temple at the center. 11 This area is set aside for the ordained priests, the descendants of Zadok who served me faithfully and did not go astray with the people of Israel and the rest of the Levites. 12 It will be their special portion when the land is distributed, the most sacred land of all. Next to the priests’ territory will lie the land where the other Levites will live.

13 “The land allotted to the Levites will be the same size and shape as that belonging to the priests—8 1⁄3 miles long and 3 1⁄3 miles wide. Together these portions of land will measure 8 1⁄3 miles long by 6 2⁄3 miles wide. 14 None of this special land may ever be sold or traded or used by others, for it belongs to the Lord; it is set apart as holy.

15 “An additional strip of land 8 1⁄3 miles long by 1 2⁄3 miles wide, south of the sacred Temple area, will be allotted for public use—homes, pasturelands, and common lands, with a city at the center. 16 The city will measure 1 1⁄2 miles on each side—north, south, east, and west. 17 Open lands will surround the city for 150 yards in every direction. 18 Outside the city there will be a farming area that stretches 3 1⁄3 miles to the east and 3 1⁄3 miles to the west along the border of the sacred area. This farmland will produce food for the people working in the city. 19 Those who come from the various tribes to work in the city may farm it. 20 This entire area—including the sacred lands and the city—is a square that measures 8 1⁄3 miles on each side.

21 “The areas that remain, to the east and to the west of the sacred lands and the city, will belong to the prince. Each of these areas will be 8 1⁄3 miles wide, extending in opposite directions to the eastern and western borders of Israel, with the sacred lands and the sanctuary of the Temple in the center. 22 So the prince’s land will include everything between the territories allotted to Judah and Benjamin, except for the areas set aside for the sacred lands and the city.

23 “These are the territories allotted to the rest of the tribes. Benjamin’s territory lies just south of the prince’s lands, and it extends across the entire land of Israel from east to west. 24 South of Benjamin’s territory lies that of Simeon, also extending across the land from east to west. 25 Next is the territory of Issachar with the same eastern and western boundaries.

26 “Then comes the territory of Zebulun, which also extends across the land from east to west. 27 The territory of Gad is just south of Zebulun with the same borders to the east and west. 28 The southern border of Gad runs from Tamar to the waters of Meribah at Kadesh and then follows the Brook of Egypt to the Mediterranean.

29 “These are the allotments that will be set aside for each tribe’s exclusive possession. I, the Sovereign Lord, have spoken!

The Gates of the City

30 “These will be the exits to the city: On the north wall, which is 1 1⁄2 miles long, 31 there will be three gates, each one named after a tribe of Israel. The first will be named for Reuben, the second for Judah, and the third for Levi. 32 On the east wall, also 1 1⁄2 miles long, the gates will be named for Joseph, Benjamin, and Dan. 33 The south wall, also 1 1⁄2 miles long, will have gates named for Simeon, Issachar, and Zebulun. 34 And on the west wall, also 1 1⁄2 miles long, the gates will be named for Gad, Asher, and Naphtali.

35 “The distance around the entire city will be 6 miles. And from that day the name of the city will be ‘The Lord Is There.’”

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