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Go to Bible: Ezekiel 44
|Eze 44:1||- (top)|
|Eze 44:2||- (top)|
“the prince.” This will be Jesus Christ, the ruler over the Millennial Kingdom. He will be both king and High Priest. There is no one else qualified to be the prince. The Hebrew word translated “prince” is nasi (#05387 נָשִׂא or spelled נָשִׂיא nasiy). The root meaning refers to being lifted up, and thus it can mean prince, leader, chief, captain, etc., the context determines the best translation. It can also refer to a rising mist or vapor. In this context or in other contexts in which it refers to the Messiah, “prince” is a very good translation because God is the king and the Messiah is his only son and rules under Him and with His authority. The prince is called “David” by the figure of speech antonomasia (“name change) in Ezekiel 34:23-24). Also, he is called the “king” in Ezekiel 37:24 because he will be the de facto king on earth, ruling with the full authority of God. The Messiah is called the “prince” quite a few times in Ezekiel (Ezek. 34:24; 37:25; 44:3; 45:7, 16, 17, 22; 46:2, 4, 8, 10, 12, 16, 17, 18; 48:21, 22).
“to eat bread before Yahweh.” Here “bread” refers to food in general. This eating would seem to certainly include the sacrificial meals that he would get to eat as the High Priest.
“he must enter by the way of the vestibule of the gate.” Even the prince will not be allowed to enter through the east gate that Yahweh had entered through because it was closed to all traffic (Ezek. 44:3). He must enter the east gate area from inside the Temple court, and the vestibule was the room that was closest to the inside of the gate (Ezek. 40:9, 15). This verse shows a clear distinction between the prince (the Messiah; Jesus Christ) and “Yahweh the God of Israel” (Ezek. 44:2). The prince is not God, nor does he have the privileges of God. [For more on Jesus Christ not being God, see Appendix 10, Jesus is the Son of God; Not God the Son,” and Appendix 11, “What is the Holy Spirit”].(top)
“Then he brought me by the way of the north gate to the front of the house.” Ezekiel had been in the outer courtyard looking at the east gate (Ezek. 44:1-3). Now God brings him through the north gate of the inner wall into the inner courtyard and right to the front of “the house” (the Temple), and Ezekiel could see that the glory of Yahweh filled the Temple, and Ezekiel fell on his face.(top)
|Eze 44:5||- (top)|
|Eze 44:6||- (top)|
|Eze 44:7||- (top)|
|Eze 44:8||- (top)|
|Eze 44:9||- (top)|
|Eze 44:10||- (top)|
|Eze 44:11||- (top)|
“lifted up my hand.” One way a person swore a solemn oath was to raise his hand and swear. See commentary on Genesis 14:22.(top)
“they will bear their shame and the consequences of the abominations that they have committed.” Many people who are saved and have everlasting life never make the effort to live a truly godly life on earth. In the future kingdom of Christ there will be a distinct difference between those people who made the effort to live truly godly lives and those people who got saved but continued living selfishly and in sin. The people who have little or no rewards in the Millennial Kingdom will realize why that is, and will be ashamed of their selfish lives. In this case in Ezekiel 44:13, there will be priests who did enough to get saved, but worshiped both God and idols, and they will bear the consequence of their idolatry.
[For more on shame in the future life, see commentary on 1 John 2:28 and 2 Cor. 5:10, “good or evil.” For more on the future Millennial Kingdom, see Appendix 3, “Christ’s Future Kingdom on Earth”].(top)
“house.” This refers to the Temple, which is called “the house” or “the house of God.”(top)
“the Levitical priests.” The Masoretic Hebrew text reads, “the priests the Levites,” and this phrase is correct since every priest was also a Levite, but it can be confusing so many versions and commentaries read “Levitical priests,” as does the REV. [For more on the Levitical priests, see commentary on 2 Chron. 30:27].
“sons of Zadok.” “Sons” is being used for descendants.
“Zadok.” Zadok was a priest (thus, a descendant of Aaron) who descended through Aaron’s son Eleazar, and was a priest during the time of David. Zadok supported David and then Solomon, and so it is fitting that the faithful priests who will serve the Messiah, the “greater David,” in the future Millennial Temple are here referred to as the “sons of Zadok.”
“to offer to me the fat and the blood.” The sacrifices and offerings will be restored in the Millennial Temple, but the Bible never explains why. [For more on the sacrifices in the Millennial Temple, such as the burnt offering and sin offering, see commentary on Ezek. 42:13].(top)
|Eze 44:16||- (top)|
|Eze 44:17||- (top)|
|Eze 44:18||- (top)|
|Eze 44:19||- (top)|
|Eze 44:20||- (top)|
|Eze 44:21||- (top)|
“And they are not to take a wife who is a widow or is divorced.” This is what the Law of Moses stipulated about priests (Lev. 21:7, 13-14). However, the idea that the priests in the Millennial Kingdom can marry must mean that this regulation is for priests and Levites who were “natural people” that survived the Tribulation and were allowed into Christ’s kingdom on earth at the Sheep and Goat Judgment. The priests and Levites who were allowed into the kingdom at the Sheep and Goat Judgment will apparently minister along with the priests and Levites who will be raised from the dead in the First Resurrection. Jesus made it clear that people who had lived their life on earth, died, and were in the resurrection did not marry (Matt. 22:30). However, before Jesus clarified that point, we can see that scriptures such as Ezekiel 44:22 could have introduced the idea that people did marry in their next life.
[For more information about the natural people being in the Millennial Kingdom, see commentary on Matt. 25:32, which is about the “Sheep and Goat Judgment.” For more on the resurrections, see commentary on Acts 24:15].(top)
|Eze 44:23||- (top)|
“they are to judge it according to my judgments.” When Christ sets up his kingdom on earth, he will be assisted in governing the earth by people who have been faithful to him (see commentary on Jer. 23:4). [For more on Christ’s future kingdom on earth, see Appendix 3, “Christ’s Future Kingdom on Earth”].(top)
|Eze 44:25||- (top)|
|Eze 44:26||- (top)|
“he must offer his sin offering.” The sacrifices and offerings will be restored in the Millennial Temple, but the Bible never explains why (see commentary on Ezek. 42:13).(top)
|Eze 44:28||- (top)|
“They will eat the grain offering.” That the priests get to eat of the sacrifices and offerings is also stated in Ezekiel 42:13. [For more on the sacrifices in the Millennial Temple, such as the burnt offering and sin offering, see commentary on Ezek. 42:13].(top)
|Eze 44:30||- (top)|
|Eze 44:31||- (top)|