- In this chapter are described the priests' chambers, their use, and the dimensions of the holy mount on which the temple stood. These chambers were many. Jesus said, In my Father's house are many mansions: in his house on earth there are many; multitudes, by faith, are lodging in his sanctuary, and yet there is room. These chambers, though private, were near the temple. Our religious services in our chambers, must prepare for public devotions, and further us in improving them, as our opportunities are.
Ezekiel 42:1-20 . CHAMBERS OF THE PRIESTS: MEASUREMENTS OF THE TEMPLE.
2. Before the length of an hundred cubits--that is before "the separate place," which was that length ( Ezekiel 41:13 ). He had before spoken of chambers for the officiating priests on the north and south gates of the inner court ( Ezekiel 40:44-46 ). He now returns to take a more exact view of them.
5. shorter--that is, the building became narrower as it rose in height. The chambers were many: so "in My Father's house are many mansions" ( John 14:2 ); and besides these there was much "room" still left (compare Luke 14:22 ). The chambers, though private, were near the temple. Prayer in our chambers is to prepare us for public devotions, and to help us in improving them.
16. five hundred reeds--the Septuagint substitutes "cubits" for "reeds," to escape the immense compass assigned to the whole, namely, a square of five hundred rods or three thousand cubits (two feet each; Ezekiel 40:5 ), in all a square of one and one-seventh miles, that is, more than all ancient Jerusalem; also, there is much space thus left unappropriated. FAIRBAIRN rightly supports English Version, which agrees with the Hebrew. The vast extent is another feature marking the ideal character of the temple. It symbolizes the great enlargement of the kingdom of God, when Jehovah-Messiah shall reign at Jerusalem, and from thence to the ends of the earth ( Isaiah 2:2-4 , Jeremiah 3:17 , Romans 11:12 Romans 11:15 ).
20. wall . . . separation between . . . sanctuary and . . . profane--No longer shall the wall of partition be to separate the Jew and the Gentile ( Ephesians 2:14 ), but to separate the sacred from the profane. The lowness of it renders it unfit for the purpose of defense (the object of the wall, Revelation 21:12 ). But its square form (as in the city, Revelation 21:16 ) is the emblem of the kingdom that cannot be shaken ( Hebrews 12:28 ), resting on prophets and apostles, Jesus Christ being the chief corner-stone.