Permit for Entering the Temple                                

 

For many months now, I see only muddy chaos when I look out the windows of my home. Although the church building is largely completed, all site works for the exterior parking area have yet to proceed. As well, we will have to await the inspection and issuance of an occupancy permit by relevant government departments before the new building can be used for assembly. In short, whether we will be able to enter and utilize the temple will be contingent upon meeting the government¡¦s building and fire safety regulations. I think everyone is longing like me for the speedy conclusion of building works and award of the occupancy permit so that we may enter the temple to pray to and worship God. Brothers and sisters, let us not cease praying and petitioning the Heavenly Father to consummate this aspiration of building and entering the temple.

 

There is a present-day section of city wall on the west side of Old Jerusalem that the Jews consider a remnant of wall left over from the ancient Holy Temple. It has become a place where they cry out and pray to God. Therefore it is known as the ¡§Weeping Wall¡¨. For many religious Jews, their fervent hope is that the Holy Temple can be rebuilt so that they may restore worshipping and praying within. The Book of Ezekiel has just such a prophecy.

 

We know that prophecies in the bible are very accurate. Ezekiel was a prophet during the time of Israel¡¦s exile. God allowed him to see a vision of dry bones turning into a vast army (Ezekiel 37:1-10) in order to foretell the restoration of the nation of Israel. Approximately 2,540 years later, God words really came true. Israel was restored as a nation on May 14, 1948. Through Ezekiel as well, God prophesied that the Holy Temple would once again be rebuilt during the Kingdom of the Millennium, and God¡¦s glory would return to His dwelling (Ezekiel 43:1-7). Many people think that the account of the Holy Temple in chapters 40-48 of Ezekiel is an allegoric church of the future. In fact it is not so. Chapters 40-42 of Ezekiel may be taken as a blueprint for the Holy Temple of the Millennium Kingdom. That is because the temple, the dimensions of which God revealed to Ezekiel, is a physical temple that can be measured, including the doorways, galleries and side rooms throughout the outer court. Verses 1 to 7 of chapter 43 describe the Prophet Ezekiel, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, having a preview of the glory of God re-entering the Holy Temple.

 

Aside from that, God has still not changed the principle whereby one may enter the temple to revere and approach Him. Man must be ashamed of their sins. The law of the temple is to be Most Holy. God has the following pronouncement through the prophet Ezekiel: "Son of man, describe the temple to the people of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their sins. Let them consider the plan, and if they are ashamed of all they have done, make known to them the design of the temple¡Xits arrangement, its exits and entrances¡Xits whole design and all its regulations and laws. Write these down before them so that they may be faithful to its design and follow all its regulations. This is the law of the temple: All the surrounding area on top of the mountain will be most holy. Such is the law of the temple.¡¨ (Ezekiel 43:10-12) To those who wish to approach Him, God reiterates the requirement to ¡§despair of sin, self-examine and be consecrated¡¨. This may be construed as the occupancy permit for entering the temple. The Bible passage can also be applied upon our own persons. God is reminding us to use His words as the precepts for our every-day conduct and lives, and never deviate from them. We are sojourners on this earth, and must live a holy life turned back to God. Only then can we serve before the Lord, gain His favour and be filled by His glory.

 

¡§With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith. We pray this so that the name of our Lord Jesus may be glorified in you, and you in him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.¡¨ (2 Thessalonians 1:11-12)

 

By: Daniel To