Then he brought me 1back to the outer gate of the sanctuary, 2which faces east. And it was shut.
And the LORD said to me, "This gate shall remain shut; it shall not be opened, and no one shall enter by it, for 3the LORD, the God of Israel, has entered by it. Therefore it shall remain shut.
Only 4the prince may sit in it 5to eat bread before the LORD. He 6shall enter by way of the vestibule of the gate, and shall go out by the same way."
Then he brought me by way of 7the north gate to the front of the temple, and I looked, and behold, 8the glory of the LORD filled the temple of the LORD. And 9I fell on my face.
And the LORD said to me, 10"Son of man, mark well, 11see with your eyes, 12and hear with your ears all that I shall tell you concerning 13all the statutes of the temple of the LORD and all its laws. And mark well 14the entrance to the temple and all the exits from the sanctuary.
And say to 15the rebellious house,a to the 16house of Israel, Thus says the Lord GOD: O house of Israel, 17enough of all your abominations,
in 18admitting foreigners, 19uncircumcised in heart and flesh, to be in my sanctuary, 20profaning my temple, when you offer to me my food, the fat and the blood. Youb have broken my covenant, in addition to all your abominations.
And 21you have not kept charge of my holy things, but you have set others to keep my charge for you in my sanctuary.
"Thus says the Lord GOD: 22No foreigner, uncircumcised in heart and flesh, of all the foreigners who are among the people of Israel, shall enter my sanctuary.
But 23the Levites who went far from me, going astray from me after their idols 24when Israel went astray, 25shall bear their punishment.c11
They shall be 26ministers in my sanctuary, having oversight 27at the gates of the temple and ministering in the temple. They shall slaughter the burnt offering and the sacrifice for the people, and 28they shall stand before the people, to minister to them.
Because they ministered to them before their idols and became 29a stumbling block of iniquity to the house of Israel, therefore I have 30sworn concerning them, declares the Lord GOD, and they shall bear their punishment.
They 31shall not come near to me, to serve me as priest, nor come near any of my holy things and the things that are most holy, but 32they shall bear their shame and the abominations that they have committed.
Yet I will appoint them to keep 33charge of the temple, 34to do all its service and all that is to be done in it.