Verse 1 – In the twenty-fifth year of our captivity, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, in the fourteenth year after the city was captured, on the very same day the hand of the Lord was upon me, and He took me there.
It is highly probable that this vision took place during a jubilee year. The jubilee year began with the month Tisri, a time as “the beginning of the year.” The tenth day of this month was the day of atonement (Leviticus 16:29, 30).
Verse 2 – In the visions of God He took me into the land of Israel and set me on a very high mountain; on it toward the south was something like the structure of a city.
Verse 3 – He took me there, and behold, there was a man whose appearance was like the appearance of bronze. He had a line of flax (for measuring the ground-plan) and a measuring rod in his hand, and he stood in the gateway.
Verse 4 – And the man said to me, “Son of man, look with your eyes and hear with your ears, and fix your mind on everything I show you; for you were brought here so that I might show them to you. Declare to the house of Israel everything you see.”
The description of this man as bronze is either an angel or the Lord Himself, because He addresses Ezekiel as “Son of man.”
Verse 5 – Now there was a wall all around the outside of the temple. In the man’s hand was a measuring rod six cubits long, each being a cubit and a hand-breath; and he measured the width of the wall structure, one rod; and the height, one rod.
Verse 6 – Then he went to the gateway which faced east; and he went up its stairs and measured the threshold of the gateway, which was one rod wide, and the other threshold was one rod wide. (The length of the measuring rod, six units of 21 inches.)
Verse 7 – Each gate chamber was one rod long and one rod wide; between the gate chambers was a space of five cubits; and the threshold of the gateway by the vestibule of the inside gate was one rod.
These gate chambers were guardrooms inside the gates. Guardrooms were also part of Solomon’s temple (2 Chronicles 12:11).
Verse 8 – He also measured the vestibule of the inside gate, one rod.
Verse 9 – Then he measured the vestibule of the gateway, eight cubits; and the gateposts, two cubits. The vestibule of the gate was on the inside.
Verse 10 – In the eastern gateway were three gate chambers on one side and three on the other; the three were all the same size on this side and that side.
These chambers were for the priests and Levites to lodge in during their ministration.
Verse 11 – He measured the width of the entrance to the gateway, ten cubits; and the length of the gate, thirteen cubit.
At this point, you might be thinking, “Why is any of this important or relevant today?” Because it gave the Israelites hope who were in captivity. The temple in Jerusalem had just been destroyed, and they felt hopeless. The details given in this vision gave the people hope that what Ezekiel saw had come from God and would surely happen in the future. God wanted the people to see the splendor He has planned for those who are faithful, and yes, when we are building something for God, He does, as we should, pay attention to details.
Verse 12 – There was a space in front of the gate chambers, one cubit on this side and one cubit on that side; the gate chambers were six cubits on this side and six cubits on that side.
Between the rails and the chambers were benches set up for the priests to sit on.
Verse 13 – Then he measured the gateway from the roof of one gate chamber to the roof of the other; the width was twenty-five cubits, as door faces door.
Verse 14 – He measure the gateposts, sixty cubits high, and the court all around the gateway extended to the gateposts.
Verse 15 – From the front of the entrance gate to the front of the vestibule of the inner gate was fifty cubits.
Verse 16 – There were beveled window frames in the gate chambers and in their intervening archways on the inside of the gateway all around, and likewise in the vestibules. There were windows all around on the inside. And on each gateposts were palm trees.
These palm trees also decorated Solomon’s temple (1 Kings 6:29, 32, 35). These windows gave light to the chambers.
Verse 17 – Then he brought me to the outer court; and there were chambers and a pavement made all around the court; thirty chambers faced the pavement.
A paved surface served as a border around the outside edges of the outer court. Along this pavement were 30 rooms used by the Levites, perhaps used for their meals.
Verse 18 – The pavement was by the side of the gateways, corresponding to the length of the gateways; this was the lower pavement.
Verse 19 – Then he measured the width from the front of the lower gateway to the front of the inner court exterior, one hundred cubits toward the east and the north.
Verse 20 – On the outer court was also a gateway facing north, and he measured its length and its width.
Verse 21 – Its gate chambers, three on this side and three on that side, its gateposts and its archways, had the same measurements as the first gate; its length was fifty cubits and its width twenty-five cubits.
Verse 22 – Its windows and those of its archways, and also its palm trees, had the same measurements as the gateway facing east; it was ascended by seven steps, and its archway was in front of it.
Verse 23 – A gate of the inner court was opposite the northern gateway, just as the eastern gateway; and he measured from gateway to gateway, one hundred cubits.
Verse 24 – After he brought me toward the south, and there a gateway was facing south; and he measured its gateposts and archways according to these same measurements.
Verse 25 – There were windows in it and in its archways all around like those windows; its length was fifty cubits and its width twenty-five cubits.
Verse 26 – Seven steps led up to it, and its archway was in front of them; and it had palm trees on its gateposts, one on each side and one on that side.
Verse 27 – There was also a gateway on the inner court, facing south; and he measured from gateway to gateway toward the south, one hundred cubits.
Verse 28 – Then he brought me to the inner court through the southern gateway; he measured the southern gateway according to these same measurements.
Verse 29 – Also its gate chambers, its gateposts, and its archways were according to these same measurements; there were windows in it and in its archways all around; it was fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide.
Verse 30 – There were archways all around, twenty-five cubits long and five cubits wide.
Verse 31 – Its archways faced the outer court, palm trees were on its gateposts, and going up to it were eight steps.
Verse 32 – Then he brought me into the inner court facing east; he measured the gateway according to these measurements.
Verse 33 – Also its gate chambers, its gateposts, and its archways were according to these same measurements; and there were windows in it and in the archways all around; it was fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide.
Verse 34 – Its archways faced the outer court, and palm trees were on its gateposts on this side and on that side, and going up to it were eight steps.
Verse 35 – Then he brought me to the north gateway and measured it according to these same measurements –
Verse 36 – Also its gate chambers, its gateposts, and its archways. It had windows all around; its length was fifty cubits and its width twenty-five cubits.
Verse 37 – Its gateposts faced the outer court, palm trees were on its gateposts on this side and on that side, and going up to it were eight steps.
Verse 38 – There was a chamber and its entrance by the gateposts of the gateway, where they washed the burnt offering.
Verse 39 – In the vestibule of the gateway were two tables on this side and two tables on that side, on which to slay the burnt offering, the sin offering, and the trespass offering.
The entire sacrifice system foreshadowed the death of Christ for the sins of the world. Christ made this sacrifice of Himself for sin once for all (Hebrews 10:1-4, 10).
Verse 40 – At the outer side of the vestibule, as one goes up to the entrance of the northern gateway, were two tables; and on the other side of the vestibule of the gateway were two tables.
Verse 41 – Four table s were on this side and four tables on that side, by the side of the gateway, eight tables on which they slaughtered the sacrifices.
Verse 42 – There were also four tables of hewn stone for the burnt offering, one cubit and a half long, one cubit and a half wide, and one cubit high; on these they laid the instruments with which they slaughtered the burnt offering and the sacrifice.
Verse 43 – Inside were hooks, a hand-breadth wide, fastened all around; and the flesh of the sacrifices was on the tables.
Verse 44 – Outside the inner gate were the chambers for the singers in the inner court, one facing south at the side of the northern gateway, and the other facing north at the side of the southern gateway.
Verse 45 – Then he said to me, “This chamber which faces south is for the priests who have charge of the temple.
Verse 46 – “The chamber which faces north is for the priests who have charge of the altar; these are the sons of Zadok, form the sons of Levi, who came near the Lord to minister to Him.”
According to Ezekiel, the Zadokites will be distinguished from the Levites in the coming age. Zadok is traced to Aaron son Eleazar. Zadok served as priest under David. Zadok was also appointed chief priest during Solomon’s reign. The Zadokites were elevated and the Levites demoted out of the concern for ritual purity, a dominated subject in Ezekiel 40-46.
Verse 47 – And he measured the court, one hundred cubits long and one hundred cubits wide, foursquare. The altar was in front of the temple.
The temple was square-shaped, 175 feet long and 175 feet wide.
Verse 48 – The he brought me to the vestibule of the temple and measured the doorsteps of the vestibule, five cubits on this side and five cubits on that side, and the width of the gateway was three cubits on this side and three cubits on that side.
Verse 49 – The length of the vestibule was twenty cubits, and the width eleven cubits; and by the steps which led up to it there were pillars by the doorposts, one on this side and another on that side.
Some of you may have become board reading the dominations of the new temple, but God is very specific in how He wanted it built when they returned to Jerusalem. God has a purpose in everything He does.