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Copyright © L. L. Griffith, 1971, 1996. ISBN 0-929554-01-9. This document may be reproduced in
whole or in part provided that this copyright notice is reproduced on each copy made.

ZION RESTORED
Inner Court Structures
The Temple's Porch
The English text is divided after verse 49. For continuity's sake it might better have been divided after
verse 47. The measures of the six gatehouses being completed, and shown to be alike in their structure
and appointments, the man next takes Ezekiel from the court which surrounds the altar. He goes up now
to the porch of the temple. In his vision Ezekiel follows.

48 And he brought me to the porch of the house, and measured [each] post of the porch, five cubits on
this side, and five cubits on that side: and the breadth of the gate [was] three cubits on this side, and
three cubits on that side.

z Ezekiel is brought up to the porch of the temple's building.


z The man measures a post of the porch.
z This post is five cubits broad.
z A post is on each side of the porch.
z The width of the gate - on each side of the posts - is three cubits.

The man has measured the sides of the porch. There is one post and two gates on each side of the porch.
The width of the whole pattern - as of the whole pattern of the sanctuary of the LORD's house - lies from
east to west. The width of the porch lays, and is measured from east to west.

The porch posts are square. See 41:21, which confirms the squareness of the side posts.

49 The length of the porch [was] twenty cubits, and the breadth eleven cubits; and [he brought me] by
the steps whereby they went up to it: and [there were] pillars by the posts, one on this side, and another
on that side.

z The temple's porch is 20 cubits long.


z The whole porch is eleven cubits wide.
z The porch is approached from the court below it by steps.
z Pillars are located beside the posts, on both sides of the porch.

The design of the porch appears to prevent unauthorized access to the most holy place. But it may also
indicate a more perfect traffic pattern for the priests who must use the gates at each side of the porch. The
existence of the steps leading up to the porch establishes that the porch is upon an even higher elevation

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than the Inner Court, and is upon the third level of height in the structure like a city.

The number of the steps leading up to the temple porch is unstated in Ezekiel's vision. Edersheim speaks
of the steps in the sanctuary.

Some Other Views


Solomon's construction of the temple was terraced. In the reconstruction by Herod, the main entrance of
the temple had a series of wide steps leading up to the outer gate in the wall. One of the gates was tripled
in width, having three arches. At the bottom of the wide steps was a very large piazza. This gate can still
be seen by tourists to the Old City.

When Herod the Great enlarged the mountain summit the temple occupied a site of about 925 to 960 feet
on the sides. The temple and its courts were located toward the northwest corner of the site. The courts
were not all on a level either; the temple was placed upon the highest terraced level. The posts of the
porch projected outward on both sides, like shoulders. The porch and its surrounding chambers covered
the Holy and Most Holy Places. The golden hue of the temple was visible from all around the city. It was
- even then - "beautiful for situation" but surely not as gloriously beautiful and golden as the temple of
the new kingdom age most certainly will be!

Edersheim alludes to Maimonides as his source of information about the steps of the temple's porch.

The temple service began with music. The priests were stationed at both sides of the marble slaying
tables, (at the northern inner gatehouse presumably) where the fat of the sacrifice was laid. At the
scheduled time, they blew blasts with the silver trumpets. The priests faced toward the east where the
people were congregated. The Levites stood upon the fifteen steps which then led up from the court of
Israel to the court of the priests. The Levites faced west toward the temple; the "house" of the sanctuary.

After the prayers ended, the priest who tended the lamps in the Holy Place reentered the (first) room (i.e.,
the Holy Place) to light the remaining unlit lamps. When he came out after doing this, he came out and
stood at the top of the steps with the priest who had incensed the prayers. These steps led down to the
court of the priests. Other priests were located on these steps to the Holy Place during this time. Holding
their hands above their heads, the priests blessed the congregation in the courts below.

The steps mentioned by Edersheim seem to correspond to the third level of steps as noted in Ezekiel
40:49; since they lead immediately onto the porch and then into the Holy Place of the temple.

The above description of the temple service is a rare example. Not much is written and published on the
topic. The description acquaints us with the prior service in the temple and should be compared closely
with the scenes depicted in the book of the Revelation. The similar scenes almost certainly preclude
interpreting the Revelation with the "continuous historic" philosophy of Newton and Bacon. In fact, the
scenes in the Revelation appear to show the temple service in the heavenly Most Holy place before the
temporal sanctuary of the LORD's house on Zion is cleansed, and made ready as a house of prayer for all
peoples after the day of the LORD is fully past. See Ezekiel 43:19- 27; Daniel 8:13-14.

The household complex which Ezekiel describes is not the same as built by either Solomon or as
constructed by Herod. Certain basic features remain the same; certain other things have been changed.
According to Haggai, the prophet of the LORD, Zerubbabel's reconstruction of the temple was nothing,

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but Israel was reassured by the LORD: "According to the word that I covenanted with you when you
came out of Egypt, so My spirit remains among you; fear not. For thus saith the LORD of hosts: 'Yet
once,' (it is a little while), 'and I will shake the heavens and the earth and the dry land; and I will shake
all nations and the desire'" [meaning wealth or goods, as peace offerings] "'of all nations shall come; and
I will fill this house with glory,' saith the LORD of hosts... 'The glory of this latter house shall be greater
than the former,' saith the LORD of hosts 'and in this place will I give peace,' saith the LORD of hosts."

Compare Hebrews 12:25-29 for the writer's interpretation of "yet once" about the time when this promise
is fulfilled. Neither the shaking, nor any effect was evident when this was written. Only when the house is
rebuilt will the magnified glory of the LORD be enabled to fill the 'house' greater than before.

The Temple
The measuring of the temple's porch is now finished. The English text follows here from Ezekiel 41.

1 Afterward he brought me to the temple, and measured the posts, six cubits broad on the one side, and
six cubits broad on the other side, [which was] the breadth of the tabernacle.

z The porch of the temple being quickly measured, Ezekiel is brought to the face of the temple
building.
z The man measures the temple's colonnade along the breadth of the tabernacle.
z The colonnade is on both sides of the building and is six cubits in width.

The word temple should more correctly here be translated as palace. The temple was the residence of the
LORD's glory; and so, by extension was the palace of Israel's rejected king during the short time in which
His glory did dwell among them. See Jeremiah 7:11, 14. The Father's temporal house is designed to be a
most holy place of dwelling in the coming glorious age for Israel.

The tabernacle (see the Hebrew) is the dwelling space within the defined area of the temple building.
(Compare the declaration of 37:21-28 with 43:7-9). The man is now measuring the house, i.e., of the
temple. He first measures the door opening into the first room:

2 And the breadth of the door [was] ten cubits; and the sides of the door [were] five cubits on the one
side, and five cubits on the other side: and he measured the length thereof, forty cubits: and the breadth,
twenty cubits.

z The opening into the Holy Place is ten cubits wide.


z The width on each side of the opening is five cubits.
z The longer sides are forty cubits.
z The wide sides, containing the breadth, are twenty cubits.

The length and width just measured is the interior area of the first room in the palace: the holy place. By
calculating its opening at ten cubits wide, with five cubits more on each side of the opening, the frontal
width adds up to 20 cubits. The size of the holy place has not been changed. As before in Solomon's
temple, this room's floor area remains 20 by 40 cubits. Next, he measures the door and door posts of the
second room:

3 Then went he inward, and measured the post of the door, two cubits; and the door, six cubits; and the

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breadth of the door, seven cubits.

z The man goes inward, and again measures another door's post.
z The post of the doorway is two cubits wide.
z The doorway is six cubits wide.
z The breadth, however, is seven cubits.

The man has measured the entrance into the second room, albeit in a puzzling manner. The doorway,
being six cubits wide; plus the width of the post on each side, amounts to ten cubits of width. The wall
beside the doorway is therefore five cubits wide on each side, (with its two-cubit post, seven) making
another 10 cubits of the width of the room. The LXX states essentially the same thing as the Hebrew text.

See Diagram L, The House of the Temple.

4 So he measured the length thereof, twenty cubits; and the breadth, twenty cubits, before the temple: and
he said unto me, This [is] the most holy [place].

z The inner chamber is square, 20 by 20.


z This room is the second room of the temple.
z Ezekiel is still informed by the man.
z The most holy place of the site is this chamber.

The dimensions for the most holy place remain unchanged also. The most holy place is the place of the
LORD's throne - the mercy seat upon the ark of the testimony, where law and covenant are kept and
judged from - and the place of the soles of the Father's feet, per Ezekiel 43:7. What is changed in relation
to these rooms? There is no more any veil which hides the presence of the LORD's glory from the
ministering priests. The veil is removed in this new (i.e., modified) pattern.

The furniture in the former house of the LORD included the mercy seat upon the ark of the covenant, but
the only piece of furniture noticed by Ezekiel (in verse 22) is the altar of wood. Why the attention is
drawn to the incense altar rather than to the ark of the covenant is a curiosity, at this point in time.
Perhaps it is because the next temple is designed to be "an house of prayer for all peoples..."? Refer also
to Revelation 8:1-6, where the service at the true incense altar is demonstrated.

The interior measuring of the holy and most holy places is now concluded. The man proceeds to measure
the exterior dimensions of the building of the temple.

The Temple's Exterior


5 After he measured the wall of the house, six cubits; and the breadth of [every] side chamber, four
cubits, round about the house on every side.

z The wall for the exterior building is six cubits wide.


z The side-chambers are four cubits wide.
z They surround each side of the house.

Like the colonnades of the gatehouses, each colonnade of the temple building is double. Each colonnade
is composed of two rows of posts with the colonnade being periodically connected across its width. This
arrangement incidentally forms ribs, side-chambers hard by the temple wall. The width of its wall extends
north to south. Fifteen side-chambers are fitted into the 63 cubits of length along the external side

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dimensions of the colonnades. The east end of the house is joined to the temple's porch. The western end
of the house has no side-chambers.

The Sanctuary Environs


Ezekiel points out to his reader that care must be taken to look and to hear what the prophecy says; then
to "set your heart" (your mind) upon all that Ezekiel was shown.

In the age of the kingdom's restitution to Israel, the temple will be located in a new Jerusalem, upon Mt.
Zion, for both Revelation 21:5 and the Old Testaments prophets report what the LORD has said, "Behold,
I make all things new." We ought not therefore to confuse the sanctuary of the LORD's house on Zion
with the city of Jerusalem.

Mt. Zion is the place of the sanctuary of the LORD. In Ezekiel's vision, he mentions the sanctuary at
41:21, 23; 42:20; 44:27, 27; 45:2. In these texts the Hebrew word is qodesh. The inner sanctuary is the
immediate area pertaining to the altar and the temple courts. As miqdash, the sanctuary is noted at 43:21;
in 44:1, 5,7,9,11,15, 16; in 45:2,3,4,18; in 47:12; and in 48:8,10,21. This word generally refers to the
whole structure upon the mountain, or hill of Zion. The outer sanctuary is the perimeter of gates and
chambers on the pavement of the court immediately within the wall of the sanctuary.

Ezekiel mentions Jerusalem only as the city relates to the temple. He was taken to the site of the smitten
city of Jerusalem, as 40:1-4 indicates. Thereafter the vision of the site is shown to him; the sanctuary's
description fills seven chapters of the vision. Then from 47:13 to 48:15 the locations of the borders of the
promised land - the relocation of the twelve tribes within that land, (vv. 23-29 also); and with the
allocation of the holy sections of the promised land for the two orders of the priests - are given. The
prophecy concludes at 48:15-20, where the location of the city of new Jerusalem is given. The location
for the prince's two lots is given in proximity to the city at 48:21-22. And, at the end, 48:30-35, the gates
of the new Jerusalem are described.

Side-chambers of the Temple


The temple -- the palace of the "new" Israel's king-priest -- with its side-chambers, crowns the highest
part of the top of the very high mountain upon which Ezekiel stands. The side-chambers of the temple are
unusual in their design, and are peculiar to this house. Their manner of construction is not incorporated
into any other building of the structure like a city. No dimensions are given for the side-chambers except
for the width, as stated in verse five. Ezekiel now explains the manner of their appearance.

6 And the side chambers [were] three, one over another, and thirty in order; and they entered into the
wall which [was] of the house for the side chambers round about, that they might have hold, but they had
not hold in the wall of the house.

z The side-chambers are three stories high.


z There are 30 side-chambers in each of the ranks.
z They are held by the wall of the building for the surrounding side-chambers.
z This design is utilized so that the side-chambers have their purchase in their own structure, and not
in the wall of the temple's house.

The side-chambers are designed so that they receive no support from the walls of the temple. They are
cantilevered in the outer wall of the colonnade. As a result the construction of the temple and its side-
chambers appears as one building; but each remains a separate and distinct structure although they abut

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hard by one another.

7 And [there was] an enlarging, and a winding about still upward to the side chambers: for the winding
about of the house went still upward round about the house: therefore the breadth of the house [was still]
upward, and so increased [from] the lowest [chamber] to the highest by the midst.

z The side-chambers enlarge as they rise upward.


z The rising continues upward all around the temple.
z Therefore the width of the structure gets bigger as the ranks go higher.
z The width goes upward via the middle side-chambers of the second story.

Since the side-chambers are supported by its own house wall, outside and beside the temple wall, the
enlargement of the side-chambers must project away from the temple wall. This is cantilever design. It is
a feature of modern earthquake proof construction. Architecturally defined, cantilever is any structural
part projecting horizontally and anchored only at one of its sides. And, this is the side that abuts the
temple wall. The side-chambers will project shoulder-like away from beside the holy and most holy
rooms of the temple.

8 I saw also the height of the house round about: the foundations of the side chambers [were] a full reed
of six great cubits.

z Ezekiel also observes the loftiness which surrounds the temple.


z The side-chambers foundations are six great cubits in thickness.

Ezekiel marvels at the height of the temple's location, and at the thickness for the foundations of the side-
chambers. By definition, a foundation is part of a building or wall that provides the base. It may be
entirely or just partly below the surface. Large structures require such a platform as a base. There are two
foundations for the side-chambers, one on the north side and one on the south side of the temple. The
grandeur of the building's loftiness and of its massive substructure inspires the prophet with awe.
Remember, it has been 25 years since Ezekiel last saw the first temple...

The manner of the side-chambers construction which Solomon made for the first temple is found in 1
Kings 6:5-10. That record is quite similar to Ezekiel's pattern but more specific in its detail. The notable
omissions made by Ezekiel suggest that those areas are destined to be explained later, (or maybe
unexplained because remaining unchanged).

The foundations are about 12 feet wide - the same width as the outer bulwark of the sanctuary - and about
125 feet long, i.e., 6 by 63 cubits.

9 The thickness of the wall, which [was] for the side chamber without, [was] five cubits: and [that] which
[was] left [was] the place of the side chambers that [were] within.

z The width of the wall outside for the side-chambers is five cubits.
z The width of the wall is measured by coming away from inside the side-chambers house.

In other words the width of the wall for the side-chambers is measured from inwardly and across the
width of the colonnade in which the side-chambers are located. Another caution: Wall and building are
the same Hebrew word. The context must determine the sense of the translation.

This verse confirms that the construction of the side-chambers incorporates five cubits of the stated
measure (a horizontal measure) in the width of the wall of the house (per verse five) and has no purchase

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in the temple's wall. Again, note that the height of the wall is not stated; nor is the length of a side-
chamber stated. Only by default is the whole area for the side-chambers shown by the pattern.

The prophet is in awe at the height of the holy city. His first impression of the view from the top of the
very high mountain is remarkable. This is the Mount Zion of the new Jerusalem which is presently now
above, but will be from above, when the Deliverer comes to save Israel from complete destruction in the
"last days." It is not within the present city which is still under various persecutions from the surrounding
nations, and from even those nations that profess to "love" her for either political or religious reasons.
From his vantage point on the top of the mountain, Ezekiel can see all the structures of the holy city on its
terraces, and the city of new Jerusalem, per Ezekiel 48, lying round about the mountain. The LORD will
comfort Zion, and her waste places.

This well could have been the view shown to Jesus by "the devil" during his temptation in the wilderness,
as related in Matthew 4:5-7. For, there were many political rebels and upstarts against the government of
the nation during his days. Although Herod believed John the Baptist was genuine, and although Pontius
Pilate believed that Jesus was the legitimate king of the Jews and not a political rebel, it was expedient,
according to Caiaphas, the Jewish High Priest, that one man should die for the nation, rather than that the
nation should be destroyed by Rome for any rebellion against its care-taker state.

In this case, the expedience condoned by the Babylonish Rome completely altered the course of history
for the Jewish nation, adding many years to her time of unconsoled desolation.

10 And between the chambers [was] the wideness of twenty cubits round about the house on every side.

z A width of 20 cubits broad goes around every side of the house.


z This width is confined to the area "between the chambers."

"Between the chambers?" What "chambers?"


Here the word for "chambers" is lishkah. Several times before Ezekiel has noticed "chambers" which are
also lishkah: at 40:17, and 40:38, 44, 45, and 46.

"Between" is a difficult word to comprehend unless one is actually looking at the full pattern of the
sanctuary's Inner Court. Furthermore, all of these chambers cannot be the same chambers, because the
prior texts specify the locations of all the other chambers. Thirty chambers are upon the lower pavement,
and the others are beside the gatehouses of the Inner Court. These chambers are only 20 cubits distant
from the temple's structure; and so are much closer than the chambers upon the pavement of the lower
court.

Diagram O, Chambers beside The Temple Square, shows the position of these chambers beside both the
north gatehouse and beside the south gatehouse, as the areas marked A and B.

The use and description of these side-chambers are not greatly detailed. Now Ezekiel speaks of the
structure that adjoins the temple's house, also called chambers; lishkah. Ezekiel is looking at the
surveyed site of the sanctuary. He is observing the area of the temple and its buildings in the Inner Court.

11 And the doors of the side chambers [were] toward [the place that was] left, one door toward the
north, and another door toward the south: and the breadth of the place that was left [was] five cubits
round about.

z The openings to the side-chambers are to the left.


z One opening faces to the north

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z One opening faces to the south.


z The breadth of the space to the left is five cubits wide.

Now the uncertainty as to whether the west end of the temple house has side-chambers is resolved. The
space "left" (remaining) at the west (coincidently, the left side) is an alley, a rear exit passage way from
the side-chambers. The entrance to the side-chambers is from the gates by the posts of the temple's porch.
The side-chambers may be galleries for the priests who are singers and musicians, or they may be rooms
for the LORD's councilors...

See Diagram P, View of the Temple's Square.

A Building Facing A Separate Place


12 Now the building that [was] before the separate place at the end toward the west [was] seventy cubits
broad; and the wall of the building [was] five cubits thick round about, and the length thereof ninety
cubits.

z There is a building facing a "separate place."


z This building is at the end, toward the west.
z The building is 70 cubits wide.
z It has a wall all around it, five cubits broad.
z The building is 90 cubit long.

The "separate place" is a piece or part by definition that is "cut off" or "cut away" in some manner. It is
"set apart." The verse makes this definition by its description of the area.

The house of the temple, its exterior chambers and the surrounding court, the area described in verses 1-
11, is the place of the LORD's throne and of His resident glory during the reign of Israel's Messiah, when
he comes again as both king and high priest of the nation. As the high priest then, he will continually
have access to the most holy dwelling place of the heaven on earth, according to promise. At that time the
blessed of the LORD will see "the heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending above
the Son of man," John 1:52.

The blessed of the LORD - the zadokim - will dwell under the shadow of His glory when the new
heavens and the new earth are established; when Israel is restored to the land in truth and in
righteousness; when all the short time of "Jacob's troubles" are past. But before that happy time comes,
the temple and the altar must be built and the sanctuary completed.

13 So he measured the house, an hundred cubits long; and the separate place, and the building, with the
walls thereof, an hundred cubits long;

z The house at the end to the west is measured at 100 cubits of length.
z The separate place, with its building and wall, is also 100 cubits long.

Verse twelve introduced us to this other building beyond the temple's house. Neither its design nor its
purpose nor function is stated. Its presence appears to be noted solely for the purpose of proving the
measure of the Inner Court's higher central area. See Diagram M, The Building to the West

This building is rectangular, 70 by 90 cubits. With its wall and excluding its "separate place," the building
occupies an area of 80 by 100 cubits.

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14 Also the breadth of the face of the house, and of the separate place toward the east, an hundred cubits.

z The breadth of the site - the width is east to west - is 100 cubits also.

All things of its length and breadth are accounted for. The block is square.

15 And he measured the length of the building over against the separate place which [was] behind it, and
the galleries thereof on the one side and on the other side, an hundred cubits, with the inner temple, and
the porches of the court;

z There is a building opposite the "separate place" which is behind the building to the west.
z The man measures the length of this opposite building.
z He measures the galleries which are on each side of the "separate place," both at 100 cubits.
z The temple inward, and the porches of the court, are measured.

Ezekiel omits to state directly whether the measuring is done to the north or to the south; probably the
text implies by "one side" and "the other side" that both directions were measured.

Verses 12-15 prove the total area within the high court of the Inner Court. It is 200 cubits wide, east to
west, and 100 cubits wide, north to south.

The measuring of the individual buildings within the temple's court site is now completed.

The Galleries
Verse 15 provided notice concerning "the galleries" and "the porches of the court" of the temple area but
did not elaborate on them .

The building to the west, its separate place, the galleries and the porches of the court are not described
any further. Either these places were well known in Ezekiel's day (therefore it would be unnecessary to
so) or they may be areas about which further revelation is due.

The galleries, at this point in Ezekiel's vision, seem to refer to the design of the tiers of the outer
chambers, which are located on the structures parallel to the building to the west and parallel to the
temple. Narrow courts or wide pathways provide access to all these buildings. Ideas about the appearance
of the galleries vary among the commentaries, which are few. It is Gesenius's opinion which is the most
enlightening, (although he surely was not a witness of the vision!). He conjectures some things about
(what he calls) the galleries of Ezekiel 41:15-16 and 42:3-5, saying that the word galleries indicates an
increment or projection of a room level or porch, perhaps being a terrace on a roof top.

A gallery is an elevated floor section used as additional seating. Theaters, auditoriums, and other similar
structures use the design. The seating projects from a rear wall over the back part of the assembly room.

It is entirely possible that the "galleries" of the chambers are choir lofts for the singers. But, bear in mind
that the "new" glory of the LORD now present in the pillar of cloud by day and fire by night will
overshadow the sanctuary of His house in the new kingdom of Israel.

There the Inner Court of the house is accessible by the priests who are the "sons of Zadok." See 40:46;
43:19; 44:15; and 48:11, where these Melchizedek-like priests are alluded to.

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Abraham looked for this "city" whose Builder and Maker is God. The true children of Abraham will
delight to see its literal foundation with the new Jerusalem.

Special Features of the Inner Court


Ezekiel is now shown the decorative exterior features of the buildings of the Inner Court: the temple
structure, the building to the west, and the chambers on each side of the court.

16 The door posts, and the narrow windows, and the galleries round about on their three stories, over
against the door, cieled with wood round about, and from the ground up to the windows, and the
windows [were] covered;

z Thresholds, the narrow-windows, and the three-storied galleries are overlaid with wood all around
their extent.
z The paneling begins at ground level, "narrows" the windows.

This wood paneling is notable throughout the galleried area.

17 To that above the door, even unto the inner house, and without, and by all the wall round about within
and without, by measure.

z The paneling continues above the door's opening into the house inward, inside and outside,
according to its measures.
z All the walls are covered with wood.

The "house" itself is covered with the wood. The kind of wood is unstated, but it is known that Hiram,
King of Tyre, furnished David with both cedar and fir for the building which Solomon constructed. See 1
Kings 6:15-20. The walls appear to have been solid panels. The materials list is noted also in 1 Kings 7,
and in 2 Chronicles 8 and 9, in full.

A Design on the Panels


18 And [it was] made with cherubims and palm trees, so that a palm tree [was] between a cherub and a
cherub; and [every] cherub had two faces.

z The wood carving alternates a cherub with a palm tree in its design.
z Each cherub has two faces.

19 So that the face of a man [was] toward the palm tree on the one side, and the face of a young lion
toward the palm tree on the other side: [it was] made through all the house round about.

z Each face looks toward a palm tree.


z One face is of a man; the other face is of a lion.
z This pattern continues on all the paneling throughout the house.

Here Ezekiel is speaking particularly of the temple's house.

20 From the ground unto above the door [were] cherubims and palm trees made, and [on] the wall of the
temple.

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z The design starts at floor level and extends to above the door's opening.
z The design is upon the wall of the temple.

The door's opening faces the porch that looks toward the court of the altar. In order for the design to be
visible on the sides of the temple's house, the side-chambers are required to be elevated to the height of
the door's opening at the least. Thus the galleries of the side-chambers would appear as "porches of the
court." Verse 15 showed these porches in proximity to the temple, inward.

Ezekiel is still in the Inner Court, but near its front, watching as the man finishes measuring that court's
site.

The Columns of the Porch


21 The posts of the temple [were] squared, [and] the face of the sanctuary; the appearance [of the one]
as the appearance [of the other].

z The temple side posts are set square to the face of the sanctuary.
z These posts are identical in appearance.

These side posts, like Jachin and Boaz, (which were placed before Solomon's temple and were made of
bronze) are situated beside (and between) the entrance gates to the temple's porch. They were noticed at
40:48-49. The verse may also allude to a single row of pillars beside these posts, which would mark off
the higher Inner Court from the somewhat lower Court of the Altar, above the steps to the porch of the
temple.

The Incense Altar


The remaining verses of Ezekiel 41 relate to certain features of the temple which are pertinent to the
man's earlier instruction to Ezekiel for the people of Israel. The first item is the altar of incense. It is the
only piece of furniture supplied for the use of the priests who serve the LORD within the inner gates of
the Inner Court of the sanctuary of the LORD's house.

22 The altar of wood [was] three cubits high, and the length thereof two cubits; and the corners thereof,
and the length thereof, and the walls thereof, [were] of wood: and he said unto me, This [is] the table
that [is] before the LORD.

z The altar, made of wood, measures three cubits high. It is two cubits long on each side; therefore, it
is square on top.
z Its sides are made of wood.
z This table stands before the presence of the LORD, whose glory sits upon the mercy seat.

The dimensions for this table may be contrasted with those given for the first incense altar in Exodus
30:1-10. That table was overlaid with gold. Ezekiel makes no other comment concerning its design.

The Temple Doors


The doors of the holy place and of the most holy place of the temple are next described.

23 And the temple and the sanctuary had two doors.

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z Both rooms of the house have two doors.

Through time words sometimes change in meaning. In the Greek text of the Christian New Testament,
the entire sanctuary is called the temple. In Ezekiel's vision the holy place is called the temple, hekal; and
the most holy place is called the sanctuary, qodesh. The confusion is caused by translation difficulties.

The first room of "the house" is therefore designated as the temple; and the inner room as the sanctuary.

24 And the doors had two leaves [apiece], two turning leaves; two [leaves] for the one door, and two
leaves for the other [door].

z Each door of the rooms is composed of two parts, being in two leaves, that turn.
z There are two hinged leaves to the first door.
z There are two hinged leaves to the second door.

Refer to 41:2-3, which speaks of the openings of the doorways. It is the leaved doors for those openings
which are noted here. The leaves are certainly hinged at their outer sides at the point of their turning.
These are the only actual doors which Ezekiel notices at any place in the buildings of the sanctuary of the
LORD's house.

There is no observation of a veil or curtained hanging between the two rooms of "the house," nor
provisions for such.

The door for the opening into the sanctuary, the inner room, is six cubits wide. Being more narrow than
the door to the first room, each of its turning leaves is three cubits broad. Nevertheless, a massive door.

The outer eastern gate of Herod's temple, the Beautiful Gate, had double doors also. So huge and so
resistant were they to open and to close that twenty men were assigned the duty to open them in the
morning and to close them in the evening. The opening of the temple gates was the signal to slay the
lamb for the daily sacrifice. These were the gates which led directly into the Holy Place. At the same time
the priests who served the temple's holy place entered to do the work of refreshing the shewbread and the
lamp.

Note that, in the past, the doors of the temple were left ajar during the day and were closed during the
night. The reader may contrast this past practice with that prophesied by Isaiah, the holy prophet of the
LORD, regarding the custom which is to be established during the Messianic age. See Isaiah 59:20-21
through Isaiah 60:1-11.

Design Re-emphasized
25 And [there were] made on them, on the doors of the temple, cherubims and palm trees, like as [were]
made upon the walls; and [there were] thick planks upon the face of the porch without.

z The design upon the temple doors is the same cherub and palm tree design which was for the
temple walls.
z The face of the porch outside the temple is covered with thick wood.

Here is the confirmation that verses 16-20 also spoke only of the temple's pattern.

26 And [there were] narrow windows and palm trees on the one side and on the other side, on the sides

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of the porch, and [upon] the side chambers of the house, and thick planks.

z On the sides, the wall facing the porch, and on the walls of the side-chambers are "narrow-
windows" and palm trees, and thick planks.

The "one side" and the "other side" refers to the wall on the left and the right side of the doorway into the
temple. The side-chambers project beyond the dimensions of the temple's porch and side posts. They
would be visible - as wings or as "shoulders" - in a frontal view of the whole temple structure. They are
covered with the same design of thick wooden planks.

It cannot be determined whether the temple structure has a roof as a covering. Other Scriptures indicate
that no covering is required during the future age since the Shekinah Glory will stand over the house by
day and night continually.

Chapter 41 of Ezekiel's vision concludes the description of the sanctuary's structures. Chapter 42 will
detail the use of the chambers which are set apart in the Inner Court for the use of the priests.

"Woe unto him who buildeth his house by unrighteousness and his chamber by wrong; who
uses his neighbor's services without wages and gives him not for his work; who saith, 'I will
build myself a wide house and large chambers and cutteth out windows; and it is paneled
with cedar and painted with vermilion.'
Shall you reign because thou closest thyself in cedar?"
-- Jeremiah 22:13-15

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