Ezekiel 45, Insights Into God’s Ideal Plan For Life On Earth
1. Dedicated Space For The Lord, The People, And The Leaders (v1-8)
2. Honest Leaders That Execute Justice And Righteousness (v9-10)
3. Standards For Fair Trade And Exchange (v11-14)
4. People And Leaders Contribute To Corporate Worship (v15-17)
5. Regularly Scheduled Worship And Celebrations (v17-25)
Ezekiel 45, Insights Into God’s Ideal Plan For Life On Earth
Ezekiel 45, Insights Into God’s Ideal Plan For Life On Earth
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As we look at Ezekiel Chapter 45 this evening, I haven't titled the Message Insights into God's Ideal Plan for Life on Earth. Here in Ezekiel chapter 45 we have some insights really, that these last chapters of Ezekiel are are really interesting and different and a little bit of a struggle. For a lot of people, because of some of the content. Is seemingly out of the blue in so many ways and so detailed in so many ways as Ezekiel focus on focuses in on this section. Chapters 40 through 48 really hone in on what we call the Millennium that thousand year reign of Christ when he comes back and. Returns at the second coming and will establish his rule and his throne here on the earth in Israel, and he will rule the earth for 1000. And years, and so we're looking at future events that are still future for us today. Many of the things that Ezekiel prophesied previously in the book have come to pass, and Ben fulfilled. But these are things that are still far future, and as a result can be a little bit perplexing and can be a little bit vague and. And as we try to picture these things as we try to understand them, there's much that God is going to reveal as it unfolds. And then it'll all make sense, but also in the meantime, there's this kind of wrestling with trying to digest what the Lord is saying here and receive from it the important things that. The Lord has for and and so here in that thousand year. Reign of Christ. I'm looking at it this time around. In this way that this is God's ideal plan for life on Earth now walking through the timeline a little bit. Here we are living in what we would call the church. Age began on the day of Pentecost. Or at the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus, depending on how you want to. Calculate it, but it continues on until. The rapture of the. Church and so the Lord is coming back. For the church, there's going to be this moment where the church is caught up to meet the Lord in the air. It's not the second coming because he doesn't come all the way down to the earth. We meet him in the air and then we will be forever with the Lord. The scriptures teach us but meanwhile, back on Earth. Timeline will continue and the Earth will go through seven years of tribulation. More tribulation, more difficulty than the world has ever seen before. And you can read through the Book of Revelation for Chapters 5 through 18. Really kind of break that down and you can understand this is nothing like the world has ever seen. Worldwide chaos. And cataclysmic events will be unfolding during that seven-year period. Well, it ends with the Battle of Armageddon as the Antichrist leads an army and other armies come to battle him and they meet at the Valley of Megiddo. Thus the name Armageddon. But before they can actually unleash their weapons upon each other, then the Lord returns and they all direct their weapons at him because. The whole earth will be essentially in rebellion against God during that time, and that is the 2nd coming and he comes back in the midst of that. Battle sets foot on the mount. Of olives it splits. He wipes out the armies and then he ushers in this new Kingdom called the Millennium. And during this thousand years Jesus will be raining. There will be a righteousness that is in place upon the Earth. Satan will be bound for that thousand year time period and restricted. From tempting and causing problems, and so there is going to be this incredible time and renewing of the Earth during this thousand years. Now at the end of the tribulation period there will be much. Death and judgment as a result of the rebellion against God. But there are a few who will survive the Tribulation period. And so we know about the 144,000 that God seals of the Jewish people who will be witnesses to Jesus and calling people to repentance and ministering to people. And so there will be. Tribulation Saints. People who get saved. Saved after the rapture during the Tribulation period and then they those who survive most of them will be martyred, but those who survive to the end of the tribulation will be the ones who go into the Millennium and then now they begin to populate or re populate the Earth. No unbelievers enter into the Millennium and so. It starts out. With those who are faithful to God, those who have received. Moved Jesus Christ, but for 1000 years normal people are going to have normal lives and get married and have kids and other generations will grow up and there will be not the same experience and not the same relationship with God as the those who entered into the Millennium and so that thousand year period is going to be ruled and reigned by God. But also there's going to be a lot of normal everyday life activity that will be happening at the end of that. The scriptures tell. Us there will be one final revolt and rebellion. As Satan is released from his ******* at the end of that thousand years and tries to one last time overthrow the Lord. But of course he's wiped out quickly and then we enter into eternity. And so this period of the Millennium is talked about in many scriptures and prophesied about in Isaiah. In revelation all over the place. But here in Ezekiel, we're looking at that, but the very specific focus of that time. Period on the things that are happening in the land of Israel and surrounding the city of Jerusalem and the temple area. And so here you get in great detail in this time. In these chapters, the Millennial temple. And there's all these dimensions and all these things. This is a little bit of a drawing of it. Trying to kind of imagine taking some of the measurements and things and putting that into practice. We have in previous years gone through lots of details about that. We're not going to get into all of those measurements and things tonight, but suffice it to say that there will be this temple. The Lord will be there. There will be worship happening here and it will be in the center of Israel in Jerusalem, and there will be this reestablishing. Of the worship of the Lord at the temple. And so as you think about these thousand years as you think about this time period. This is the time when Jesus rules on the earth. And so I think it's appropriate to consider this as God's ideal plan for life on Earth. This is the way things are meant to be. This is the way that God intended for life to happen. And and there's lots of things that we can glean with that mindset. As we work through these chapters tonight in Chapter 45, we'll look at five things. 5 insights that are helpful. I think for us in this life but also helpful as we try to imagine and consider some of the things that will be happening in eterne. T as well. And so let's just walk through these. I know we're kind of jumping right into the middle of a very strange section. If you haven't been following along with us, but hopefully the Lord will kind of catch you up as we dive in here to Ezekiel chapter 45 point number one, we find in verses one through 8 and. That is that. God's ideal plan. For life on Earth includes a dedicated space for the Lord, the people and the leaders and verse one it tells us. Moreover, when you divide the land by lots into inheritance, you shall set apart a district for the Lord a holy section. Of the land, its length shall be 25 cubits and its width 10,000. It shall be holy throughout its territory all around. And so here the Lord begins to talk about the dividing of the land and this is parallel to the division of the land that was given to the people of Israel as they entered into the promised land the first time under Joshua, each tribe was given a portion of land, and so that. Is going to happen again. Ezekiel chapter 48 details the order and some of that information, but here's it summarized really quickly on a map for you. You know, starting with the the top tribe and then working your way down row by row, by row, each tribe is given a portion of land and then the understanding of that is that in within each tribe, each family. Is given a portion of land and then within within each family you know each of the the children and grandchildren are given a portion of land, so so everybody has. It's a piece of land as far as the Jewish people are concerned. The 144,000 and other Jews who enter into the millennial Kingdom. They get to go back into the land of Israel and re populate the land of Israel according to their heritage and the tribe that they are descendants. And so there is this apportioning of land this land that is given to each person, each individual, each family of the the Jewish people. They're in that. Millennial Keane. But along with that, God says in verse one you shall set apart a district for the Lord. A holy section of the land. And so, as you kind of look at this overview, right in the middle. Of it there is. This little separate section and this little square sliver, I'm going to kind of zoom in on it here and so here you get this. Smaller portion that is outlined here for some very specific uses and to illustrate that further, here's another map. Another way to look at it. The dimensions are not exactly identical, but it kind of just helps you picture that God says there's to be a division of land. For all of the people, they all. Get their space. But then the Lord has his space, and so there is the portion that is given for the Lord. And that's where the temple lies. And so in verse two and three, it says of this there shall be a square plot for the sanctuary 500 by 500 rods with 50 cubits around it for an open space. So this is the district you shall measure. 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 wide. It shall be the sanctuary. The most holy place. And so in that thousand year reign of Christ, as he is establishing the ideal for life on Earth, there is a place, a physical place in a certain location that is devoted to the Lord, and is the place for people to come and meet. With the Lord. And so the temple will be established here on this place, designated and devoted to the Lord. But then. The worship there at the temple doesn't just happen automatically, it's not run by robots, it's run by priests and levite's servants who are working at the temple and helping to bring the people into the presence of God and help them to execute the worship of God that they're seeking. And so God says they need a place nearby. To be able to be close in proximity. To be able to serve at the temp. And so the priests are given their portion in verse four and five. It shall be a holy section of the land belonging to the priests, the ministers of the sanctuary who come near to the, to Minister to the Lord. It shall be a police for their houses and a holy place for the sanctuary and area, 25,000 cubits long and 10,000 wine shall belong to the levite's. The ministers of the Temple. They shall have 20 chambers as a possession, and so there is this devoted portion to those who serve there at the temple, and are responsible for leading the people in to the worship of the Lord. Then we see in verse six there is some common land that it belongs to the city. It belongs to the people of the city as a whole and not to a special group. In verse six it says you shall appoint as the property of the city and area 5000 cubits wide and 25,000 long. Adjacent to the district of the Holy Section, it shall belong to the whole House of Israel. And so, here was a common land. So this is where you would have your baseball fields and your soccer fields, and you know you would have the kind of community things that that would be there around Jerusalem. It would belong to the whole House of Israel, so all of the tribes would not have a designated portion, but it would be open for use. And so you could maybe think of it kind of like a National Park, you know, just like a a big strip of land that that got it apportioned to the people. Well, one of the feasts that they will be celebrating is the Feast of Tabernacles, which requires all of the people to go and to set up tents and to remember the time in the wilderness when they lived in tents. And so this is probably land for that as well. But it's this Community property that would be used and available for all of the people. Of Israel. Well then finally, verse seven and eight gives us the land of the Prince. Verse 7 says the Prince shall have a section on one side and the other of the Holy District and the city property and bordering on the city or on the Holy District and the city property extending westward on the West side and eastward on the east side. The length shall be side by side with one. Of the tribal portions from the West border to the east border, the land chubbiest possession in Israel, and my Princess shall no more oppress my people, but they shall give the rest of the land to the House of Israel, according to their tribes. And so the Prince has a portion of land. Now this of course raises a question. Who is the Prince? And it's a question that is often asked in this passage of Ezekiel and these chapters. He's closing 8 chapters of Ezekiel and has many possible answers, but mainly 2. Answers the Prince is typically understood to be one option. Jesus himself and so as this is the time period where Jesus will be ruling and reigning upon the earth. Some look at these chapters and when the Prince is mentioned, understand that to be a reference to Jesus himself, fulfilling all of these things. There's some challenges to that as you walk through them. Since I'm not going to get into the details of that necessarily, but another option that is possible for this Prince kind of a mean understanding of who this is is. It's just a name for a person who is a leader of Israel and there's a bit of a hint at reference. To possibly multiple Princess over this thousand year time, and so it would be, you know, different people at different times depending on who is leading the nation at the time and so seems like there is. Going to be this governmental position where there would be a Prince who would be, of course under King Jesus, but Prince who has a certain role and responsibility within the land of Israel and so land is given as a. A portion of that. Responsibility and privilege that comes with the role that the Prince is given. Now I know I didn't get into all of those measurements and I didn't like lay out all those things. That's not what we're about. Tonight we we've done that previously, and so you can kind of refer back to previous teachings. Or we can talk about it later if you want but but here as I'm looking at all these things. I think you know it's it's good for us to consider these things. In light of this is the time when the Lord is reigning, and so it's his ideal. And it gives us some insight into how God intends for things to be. And so, for example, there would be those. There's not a lot of them, but there would be those who would kind of challenge the idea of land ownership as believers. But here in the scriptures we can see this is something that God is not opposed to and so. Owning land and having private property and having personal space is something God approves of and designs and orchestrates for his people. That's part of his. This plan, his ideal plan for life on Earth, that every tribe and every family and every individual family within the tribe gets their own space, their own land. It's theirs. They are to have, you know boundaries and borders and they're able to hold those borders and boundaries and protect them and have their own private. And personal spaces. And then also there is space for the Lord. And that's an interesting thing to consider that there is a single location, right? It's interesting to think about in the thousand year reign of Christ. Who knows what's going to happen during the tribulation period to all of our technology, right? But if there was ever going to be an epic height of technology and virtual meetings, and all of that like that could happen in the millennial Kingdom if that was the Lord's plan, but. We don't get any hints or insight about that. Maybe it'll happen. But even if it does happen, in addition to there is the physical meeting space. That God sets up for his people to go to meet with him, to worship him, to spend time together to collectively, corporately gather together and worship the Lord. And so there's a place for leaders. There's a place for the people. There's a place for the Lord and, and this is by God's design it and I would suggest this carries on into. Beyond this life and beyond right now into eternity as well. Because as you look at Revelation Chapter 21 and you see the description there of the New Jerusalem, this huge city that God will bring down from heaven and the the way that it's described here describes the idea of space that describes you know portions and and. And there's the the possibility of. Physical, although maybe it's more spiritual than physical, but but space land. But maybe it's not exactly land, but hopefully you're kind of getting what I'm saying here. Space in an atmosphere that that is apportioned to us. You think about what Jesus said in John Chapter 14 in my father's house are many mansions. If it were not so, I would have told you I go to. Prepare a place for you. There's a there's a place Jesus says I'm preparing for you and I'm going to prepare that place and I'm going to go. Or come back and get you when it's ready so that you may be where I am and so that we'll be together for all of eternity. But in eternity then you'll have this place. You'll have this space, and so it's interesting to consider. This is part of God's plan. God's ideal is for there to be these dedicated spaces. For the Lord, for the people and for the leaders in the land. All right, moving on to point #2 Verses 9 and 10. Point #2 another insight into God's ideal plan for life. On Earth it includes honest leaders that execute justice, and righteousness hears God's ideal plan. Verse 9 thus says the Lord God enough. Oh, Princess of Israel. Remove violence and plundering execute justice and righteousness and stop dispossessing my people, says the Lord God. At this time, there's going to be an end to all of the corruption of leadership for. The people of Israel. And throughout their history there has been issues and problems not to try to malign or slander any Israeli leaders. Today, that's not my intention, but in Ezekiel Day the corruption of the Jewish leaders was really horrific and and you can see that because God says enough. Stop the violence. There was a an oppression of the leaders of Israel upon the people of Israel that included physical harm and violence. Remove violence, he says, and plundering, and so this oppression of the leaders upon the people included taking what didn't belong to them, taking from the people more than what was fair, or just or right, or justified. And so there was plundering. There was violence. There was no justice, there was no righteousness. And the leaders were dispossessing the people of this land that God had given to each tribe and to the families of each tribe more and more. The families were losing it, while the leaders corruptly grabbed and seized those lands for their own sake, using their power, using their violence, using their plundering and taking. For themselves, what had been given to the people of God. We saw an example of this just a few weeks back in the Book of Jeremiah in Jeremiah Chapter 34, when the city is under siege by the Land of Babylon and they start crying out to the Lord. They seek the Lord and they start to try to like rededicate themselves to the Lord. And so they come up with an idea we need to release all of our slaves. And start. Right now, this ideal plan that God has stopped the violence stop the plundering stop. The dispossessing and you know start executing justice and righteousness. We we may need to do that right now, and so in Jeremiah Chapter 34, verse 10, it tells us that they let the sleeves go. But then what happened was they felt like the threat from Babylon had been taken care of and they changed their mind afterwards and they said actually, never mind, we're not in trouble. After all, Babylon gone away and so they re enslaved those people that they had just freed reexecuted violence and plundering. And dispossessing and took away justice and righteousness. And so they reversed their word, reverse their commitment, and went back to their ways of oppressing the people. And that was the condition and the experience of the Jewish people. For much of their history, and God says that's enough, not in this time in this thousand year reign no more the leaders of Israel, the Princes. They're going to execute justice and righteousness. Verse 10. You shall have honest scales and honest ephah and an honest bath. You're gonna be honest, you're going to deal honestly and with integrity the way that the people deserve to be treated as the people. Of the Lord. And so this is God's ideal plan. Honest leaders that execute justice and righteousness. Now we can consider that for this life. We just went through an election period. Did we get that? Did we get honest leaders that execute justice and righteousness? I'll leave that for you to decide, or you can talk to Richard afterwards. You know in some regards we don't have a lot of control on those things, and we have the opportunity to do our part, but we don't have full authority to be able to manage those things. But where I look at this as I understand that we all have been given some level of authority by the Lord in the lives of other people, and that we've been called to make disciples, and so we may not be able to. Have a say in every leader that has a role in whether or not they execute justice and righteousness, but we can, for our part, take great care in the responsibilities that we've given been given to make sure that we walk in integrity and execute justice and righteousness. And do what's right. Before the Lord, with the authority that God has given to us and the role that he has apportioned to us. I think this has some interesting implications for eternity as well, you know. The reason why I'm thinking about these things in light of eternity is because here we're looking at the Lord's ideal, his plan right and and. So here we get some glimpses in this millennial Kingdom of how God intended life on. Earth to be. I think it foreshadows for us a little bit now. It's interesting that there's not a lot that the scriptures have to say about eternity in regards to the specifics, right like. No more sorrow, no more tears we know that glory we know that glorified bodies we know that but what is it that will be taking place? And what will he turn? Do you look like we know we'll be with the Lord and forever but beyond that there's just little slivers that are given here and there. And so I think it's interesting to consider. And I'm not trying to, you know, make a big doctrine out of this. But just to maybe give us a little bit of a glimpse of some possibilities. What if, in eternity there are leadership roles? And there is the execution of justice and righteousness in the roles that God gives in eternity. Now you can think about this in light of what the Lord shares as a parable in Luke, Chapter 19. The parable of the miners and the different servants are given different amounts of money and told to put that to work until the master returns, and so when he returns, he's received the Kingdom. The servants come to give account, and the first one came and says, master, your miner has earned 10 minus, and so the master says, well done, good in a good servant, because you were faithful in a very little have authority over 10 cities. And then the second one came master. Your miner has earned 5 minus. He said you also be over 5 cities. Now this is a parable and you don't want to, you know, make too big of a deal out of 1 passage or one parable. And so again, I'm not trying to invent a new doctrine here, but to just invent a new way for us to kind of imagine some things and perhaps. There's going to be some real opportunity to serve the Lord with some authority with some role and responsibility in eternity that will be based upon our faithfulness to the Lord in this life. And as we're faithful here. In the little things that in the future, in eternity, God will have greater things and greater opportunities for us that we get to be part of the work of God and we don't know exactly what that will be. What does it mean to be over 10 cities? No idea. But but there is this idea that the Lord hints at us that that this life is meaningful. And what we do now prepares us for the things that he has for us in the life that is to come. All right, insights into God's ideal plan for life on earth. The third thing we consider here is that it includes standards for fair trade and exchange. Standards for fair trade and exchange. This is part of God's plan. Check out verse 11 through 14. It says the ephah and the bath shall be of the same measure, so that the bath contains 110th of an Omer and the evil 110th of a Homer. Their measure shall be according to the Homer. The shekel shall be 20 gehres, 20 shekels, 25 shekels, and 15 shekels shall be your. China this is the offering which you shall offer. You shall give 1/6 of an ephah from a Homer of wheat and 1/6 of an ephah from a Homer of barley, the ordinance concerning oil, the bath of oil is 1/10 of a bath from a core. A core is a Homer of 10 baths for 10 baths or Homer. Did you get all that? Yes, all these measurements. Now I'm not trying to break them down. I didn't look up all of the, you know equivalents to how we would describe these things. Again, that's not the point for our time together. Today, in trying to understand all the exact dimensions, but you can if you'd like to. There's a lot of information about ideas for what each of these represents and how much but, but the point is, there's these are measurements. These are, they're dry measurements, liquid measurements. Establishing a standard so that everybody is using the same standard and so a pound is a pound or a court is a court. A pint as a pint, you know that it is equitable across the board, and this is what God establishes here. So for the people in that time. There will be these standard measurements now that may not be the you know something that you think about. It might be, but you know the US has a a focus on and a group of people who are devoted to and dedicated to standards, and maintaining that you know there are these measurements and standards and that we all are saying the same thing when we use the same words. That may not be what you pictured. Like yeah I can't wait till Jesus. Comes and then he like establishes the standard of what a pound is like. I'm just like so excited that you know it's all going to be the same and it's we're going to ditch. You know the metric and you know we don't have to deal with centimeters or or Celsius versus Fahrenheit like we're going to have a standard. I can't wait till Jesus comes. And there's one kind of degree, right? Like that's probably not on our radar, but I think it's interesting that that's the kind of thing that is established here, that there's all these definitions. This is how much this is the standard that will be in place in that time. In that millennial Kingdom. Now it's Jesus ruling and raining on the earth at that time. And he could take the five loaves and the five fish every day and just multiply it for everybody. So why is there even a need to measure anything? Everybody just has more than they can handle, right? But that's not the way that he chooses to operate in that thousand years. Instead, there's going to be people doing work. Working fields, bringing in a portion of wheat and exchanging that for different things, giving that in different kinds of offerings. There's going to be trade and exchange commerce going on. And that all is all harbored and fostered by the Lord. What is? Established here though, is that it just needs to happen. It's all good. It's all part of God's plan. It just needs to happen in a way that is. Fair, a fair rate of exchange that fair trade and exchanging that. Is going on. Have you ever heard the story about the Baker? Who sued the farmer? I doubt the story is actually true, but it's one that's often told in these kinds of context. The Baker took the farmer to court because he noticed as the years have progressed, that the pound of butter that he got from the farmer was not the same as it was. It was several years before that there was a diminishing and he would get less and less butter from. The farmer, even though he was always buying a pound whenever he would make the exchange, and so he takes this farmer to court. And he says, judge, you need to do something about this guy because I've been getting a pound of butter for him for a year from him for years, but the same. Pound that I'm getting now is not the same as what it was before, and so the farmers called up to testify. And what do you have to say about this? And so the farmer gives his testimony and says, well, judge I, I don't know if my pound is changing. I use his loaf of bread, his pound of bread as the the weight on my scale to know how much butter to give him. And so I just give him whatever balances the scale and the implication being the pound. Of bread that this Baker was giving was less and less and less, and that's why the pound of butter that he was getting was less and less and less. And again, I don't know if that's a true story. It seems unlikely, but it illustrates the point we all understand there is a lot of taking advantage of others in ripping off or bad exchanges and bad deals that are going on. In the millennial Kingdom there will be trade. There will be exchange. There will be commerce in some. Way, and that's OK that's fostered by the Lord, but what the Lord says is what's important is that we all use the same measurement that there's not the taking advantage of each other. Sneaking, you know a little bit extra for yourself somehow and and trying to take advantage of a situation. And so as we consider that that's God's ideal. And so we can apply that to our life and make sure that we walk in fairness and integrity and that we don't just take advantage just because you have an opportunity to take advantage and get something out of someone or get one over on someone you need to understand that's not, you know. He looked the Lord open the door. I could get more than what they were supposed to give me. Yeah, you know, I got too much change and I can just keep it and now it's mine and no, no, no that's that's not the blessings from heaven that that you should not take advantage just because you can or just because that opportunity was there. Fairness and integrity should be. The standard by which we operate in this life. And again, thinking about eternity with these things. I think it's interesting to consider along with what we've already talked about, that perhaps there will be some type of Fair trade and exchange in eternity. Like what are we? Going to trade. You know pieces of cloud, I don't know, but. But there is the possibility you know eternity is going to be so much more than this life. It's not gonna be less than this life and and all of the things that God is established here in this life. It's not that they have no bearing and no basis for all of eternity, but that that doesn't seem like the Lord that there is likely going to be. Operations things to do. And and ways for us to interact with the Lord and one another. And so I would not be surprised if there was a standard of weights and measures in eternity. Well, we probably wouldn't need the standard because we all have the standard embedded in our hearts and in our soul, right? Like we know the the the things that are. True and right, and we can always, you know, pull out an exact cup of flour every time or whatever but. Those kind of weird idea. But anyways the point is I think it's interesting to consider that that in eternity again, it's not going to be nothingness. There's going to be things to do work to accomplish, ways to serve the Lord and honor the Lord and glorify the Lord and interact together along the way in that. Well point #4 moving on to verses 15 through 17. Insights into God's ideal plan for life on Earth includes people and leaders contributing to corporate worship, verse 15 says. And one lamb shall be given from a flock of 200 from the rich pastures of Israel. These shall be for grain offerings, burnt offerings and peace offerings. To make atonement. For them, says the Lord God, all the people of the land shall give this offering for the Prince in Israel. So then it shall be the Princess part to give burnt offerings, grain offerings and drink offerings as the feasts, the new moons, the Sabbaths, and all the appointed seasons of the House of Israel, he shall prepare the sin offering the green offering the burnt offering and the peace offerings, to make atonement for the House of Israel. Here we can see that in this millennial Kingdom there is going to be the operation of the temple, which includes all of these various types of worship unto the Lord, the feasts, the celebrations, the sacrifices, and in. All of that. The provision for those things is going to happen by the people as well as the leaders. Now I know there's a couple things that kind of are are tricky things, as you think about this. OK, so like wait. A minute there's going to. Be sacrifices a GUID in the millennial Kingdom? According to Ezekiel, yes, that's something prevalent throughout these last few chapters of the Book of Ezekiel, as he talks about this final thousand year reign of Christ, there is sacrifices happening. At the time. It's really not a problem as we consider it because we understand from the beginning sacrifices never dealt with sin fully and completely. There was always a temporary thing that pointed to and foreshadowed the final solution for sin, and that was the Messiah. Jesus dying on the cross for us. And so as. The author of Hebrews says the blood of bulls and goats. It never was effective at taking away sin. It was always a temporary solution that projected the Christ. Who would come? And so it seems that in this millennial Kingdom there will be sacrifices going on, but it will be a little bit like communion for us in that we partake of communion to remember and kind of revisit the work of the Lord in a similar way. The sacrifices will be happening, and that will be a remembering Jesus pointing. Back to the cross and back to what he has done for us in in remembrance of that, and so that is kind of the best understanding and explanation. Some of the sacrifices that happened here, but aside from that, there is these sacrifices to be made, and it includes animals that includes produce of the field, like green. It includes some liquids and oils. It it includes a variety of things, and so where does that all come from? Now again, Jesus is there, he could just. Generate it, here's all the oil that you need for the the offerings. Here's all the grain that you need. Here is all the. Animals that you need and he could just generate it right there out of nothing. He is the Lord. He is not prohibited or hindered from doing that. But how does God supply the necessary ingredients for the worship that's happening at the temple? Verse 15 tells US1 Lamb shall be given from a flock of 200. Here's what God says. All right, all of these shepherds in the land. You have a flock of 200, so you are to give one lamb from amongst your 200. If you have 400, you can give two lamps and and so one out of 200 is the ratio there. That is to be given for this corporate. Worship for this time of gathering together and notice what he says in verse 15. From the rich pastures of Israel. That it's not going to be hard to find, you know. Shepherd, with 200 sheep, there's going to be rich pastures in Israel, and there's going to be an abundance. And out of the overflow of the blessings that God is pouring into people's lives, he's saying, OK, now take a piece of that and give that. To the work of the Lord into the corporate gathering of worship, and so in verse 16 it says all the people of the land shall give this offering for the Prince in Israel, and so they're not giving it directly to the temple. They're giving it to the Prince. It's almost like a tax, except for it's not a tax. It is an offering to the Lord that's given to someone who's entrusted with it, who will then utilize it for the corporate worship gatherings. Verse 17 then it shall be the Princess part to give all of these things burnt offerings, grain offerings and drink offerings at the feasts. So, so the Prince is supplied with the resources that he's responsible to provide, so he has to provide the resources so that these corporate worship these public worship events can take place and the way that he receives those is not the Lord generates it from him. He doesn't, you know, go around. And harvest the things himself. It's given to him by the people. He guards safeguards those offerings to the Lord and then at the various occasions now brings out the appropriate offerings for the time of worship that is taking place. I think this is. Interesting, this is God's ideal plan. That again, things don't just come out of nowhere and the people are not just taking their animal directly to the ult. Sure, but but that there is this process where the Lord involves the people. The Lord involves the Prince, the leader and and together, as they all do their part now, they're able to have this time of corporate worship. They all contribute. They all take part in the work that God wants to do in the gathering together of. The people of God. It's a it's a good picture of how God likes to operate. As I often share, you know, we as the body of Christ are. Designed in a way to be intertwined, interdependent, and so there is not, you know, just one person is responsible for our corporate times of worship, even though sometimes it might appear that way. 'cause all we see is the stage but but there's all these parts and pieces and God has designed the body. Of Christ too. Have all of these different people contributing so that the corporate worship time can take place and that we can gather together and worship the Lord in and so there is those occasions that the Lord wants us to spend time with him to give. To his work in a variety of ways, don't just think the obvious financially, but the spiritual gifts and our roles in the body of Christ. All of these are part of our offering and way that we contribute, and so there is opportunity for us to contribute. And that's how God has designed it. That's God's ideal plan for us too. To be walking with him in corporate worship and so church for believers right now today should never be just a passive. We just sit there and like like we're going to the movies like you know when you go to the movies you you probably didn't have a part in making the movie right, but when you go to church you should have a part in making the movie. Like you should have a part in the whole process in the. The things that are going on you, you should be invested and not just sitting there like going to the movies that God is designed in a way that people and leaders contribute to the corporate worship so that we can come together and experience the Lord in the way that. He has designed it. Well, finally kind of along the same line of thought point #5, thinking about insights in God's ideal plan for life on Earth. It includes regularly scheduled worship and celebrations. Verse 17 again. So then it shall be the Princess part to give burnt offerings, green offerings and drink offerings at the feasts, the new moons, the Sabbaths, and at all the appointed seasons of the House of Israel. He shall prepare. The sin offering the green offering the burnt offering and the peace offerings to make atonement. For the House of Israel. Here the Lord. Lists out for us quite a few. Things that are going on. The first group of things that we can look at gives us this idea of regularly scheduled. There is to be these regularly scheduled gatherings at the temple for the worship of the Lord and so categorized as feasts. There's more than just one kind of feast. But there is a. Variety of different feasts that God will have established for his people. They're in the millennial Kingdom, and so every time there's a feast then there's associated offerings and and requirements that go along with it. And so there is the feast. Then there was the new moons. So every time there's a new moon, so 12 times. A year right there is to be certain things that take place certain gathering certain celebrations. Certain rituals that are performed in the worship of the Lord and in the SAP. That's how often do Sabbaths happen. Well, once a week, and so once a week there's to be some things. Once a month there is to be some things and then throughout the year there's to be these feasts. And then it says that all the appointed seasons of the House of Israel. So so there's all these different occasions and seasons and days, and you know. Sometimes they're spread out by a month. Sometimes they're spread out by a week, sometimes they're just once or twice a year. There's there's all of these things, but they're regularly scheduled. And I think that's interesting to consider. In God's plan, in his ideal plan, when he says, OK, I'm setting up my Kingdom and I can layout anything, everything the way that I want it to be. Here's how it's gonna work. There's going to be this many days in a year and on these occasions. There's going to be these special events at the temple where people come and worship and celebrate and gather and engage with the Lord in a variety of ways. And so there is the regularly scheduled events. And then at each of the events there's different kinds of worship or different kinds of offerings that are being given to the Lord. And so he lists here said offering a grain offering a burnt offering and a peace offering. And so you can think about those as different kinds of sacrifices and different animals involved in each one. Some of them involved grain like the grain offering, right? The peace offering you know could involve a variety of things and and so there is different ingredients in this. Depending on what season it was or what event it was. But it was regularly. Scheduled and then they would have the appropriate ingredients and they would worship the Lord. Now I think it's good to understand this and to really kind of put in perspective that this was not just sacrificed for the sake of putting an animal. To death, but the majority of these sacrifices are related to the way I put it here celebrations. So you think about the grain offering the peace offering. These were offerings that were not just burned. Something on the altar, but that was you, Bernie, small portion of the offering on the altar and the remainder of that offering. You have a meal with your family. And so it wasn't just a burned something on the altar. OK, God got his food and he's good and we walk away. But it was a let's camp out. Let's spend some time enjoying what God has done for us. And so here, Lord, we want to thank you. Here's a small piece of this offering. The rest of it we're going to go in BBQ and we're going to have. All you can eat. You know, carnitas in our own place and and have a good feast and celebrate together. And there's a reason why the feasts were called feats. Because they weren't fast, they were feats. They there were times to celebrate and have a good meal together. Looking again at the quick diagram of the temple as you walk through chapters 4041424344, you can kind of walk through all of these different things and and one of the components of the temple was kitchens in each corner. Sure, there were these open kitchens. You might call them like you know, BBQ kitchens where people would. They would offer a piece and then they would go take the rest to the kitchen and they would cook their meal. They would prepare their feast and then there were 30 chambers all around and so there was. You know a great multitude of opportunities for people to reserve a Chamber you know and and and to go. You could think of those as. Restaurants and and so they would take the food. That they cooked part of it. They offered to the Lord, then they cooked it, and then they took it into their chamber with their family, and they had a good meal together. All you can eat carnitas, or, well, I guess it wouldn't be cutting. That's right, I'm just thinking out that's. Not kosher, OK, but. Condensada they'd have all you can. Install it and it would be. A great time of celebration now. All of the dimensions are a little bit like guesswork. Cubits how long is a cubit and you know different ideas. And so people come up with different ways to measure this, but just kind of taking some conservative numbers. You look at those 30 restaurants. That's those within the green, right? Those 30 chambers. Each of those buildings conservatively is a little bit larger than this building we're in right now, so picture like 30 of these just active all the all the time. Just people coming in and out. All these you know, different opportunities and rooms for people to come and have feasts and celebrate together like God intends. For his people to not come in a solemn, you know, like I have to offer a sacrifice and I can't smile and it's got to be like this serious occasion. I mean, there are the times that God needs that in our lives, right? But but there's so many occasions where God. Wants it to be a feast. And he wants us to gather together friends and family and and have a good meal and celebrate what God has done in our lives. And so in his design his ideal plan. It includes it. It fosters it. This kind of activity it builds in hey, every season you're going to have these kinds of things and you don't want to see you know Uncle Joe you know that often, but once a year you're going to gather together with him and you're gonna have a good feast together and reflect on the work of God and the grace and the mercy of God. Well, the remainder of the verses go on to give a few more examples of the different occasions. And so there was a yearly cleansing that he talks about in verses 18 through 20. It says, thus says the Lord God in the first month. On the first day of the month you shall take a young bull without blemish, and cleanse the sanctuary. The priest shall take some of the blood of the sin offering and put it on the doorposts of the temple on the four corners of the ledge of the altar and on the gateposts of the gate. Of the inner court, and so you shall, you do, on the 7th day of the month, for everyone who has sinned unintentionally or in ignorance. Thus you shall make atonement for the temple. And so during this time, the people who populate the Millennium will be regular humans who still make mistakes. It will be a time of righteousness, while the Lord Reigns, but there will still be sin issues that will be dealt with as they encounter the Lord, and so there would be this yearly cleansing for the sanctuary that would take place. And again, as we think about these things for ourselves. You can understand this is God's ideal plan for life. That that we have perhaps built into our schedule these spring cleaning times where we allow the Lord to search our hearts and check our hearts and make sure that we repent of all things that are not of him and things that we've allowed in our lives. And so you know, perhaps there is this regular occasion at the beginning of the year. That is appropriate for us to consider and give God opportunity to do this House cleaning as we deal with those sin things. Well, there is also the yearly Passover verse 21. In the first month on the 14th day of the month, you shall observe a Passover, a feast of seven days, unleavened bread. Shall be eaten. And on that day the Prince shall prepare for himself, and for all the people. Of the land of. A bowl for us in offering. On the seven days of the feast he shall prepare a burnt offering to. The Lord 7 Bulls and Seven Rams without blemish daily for seven days and a kid of the goats daily for us in offering, and he shall prepare a grain offering of 1 chief of each bowl and one ephah for each ram, together with a hint of oil for each. So the Passover feast that got established in Exodus will be celebrated during this millennial Kingdom. And so every year on the same time, same day, they would have this occasion. Seven days they would gather and they would have this feast and walk through these scenes, remembering how God delivered them, eating the unleavened bread. It's interesting instead of a lamb. There's a bowl as the offering here in the Passover, as the lamb has already been sacrificed, he's full grown, now glorified, ruling in Jerusalem, and so it's a bowl, not a lamb. That is, reminding them of the Lord and his deliverance, and his work interesting to consider. But every year God wanted them to remember that the deliverance that he had brought. For them, and then that yearly Feast of Tabernacles in verse 25 in the 7th month, on the 15th day of the month. At the feast he shall do likewise for seven days according to the SIN offering the burnt offering, the green offering, and the oil. And so the Feast of Tabernacles, they would gather together camp in the tents and remember how God brought them through the wilderness. Those are just some examples. It's not all of the list. It's not the whole feast or the. Whole schedule for the year, but. Ezekiel gives us these examples to give us the understanding there were these regularly scheduled things, each one kind of had different perspectives, different things to focus on and and the Lord designed it that way so that periodically throughout the year the people would be interacting with the Lord in a variety of ways. I think this is good for. Us to consider, you know in our lives. Today we have in this life opportunity to celebrate Thanksgiving and Christmas and Easter and Halloween and you know, whatever the New Year's and those other things, it's one of the reasons why I encourage you. The last month and 1/2 or two months at before the end of the year to start praying about what's your? Bible reading plan for next year, right? This is one of the feasts that I engage in every year. It's like one of those times that I just remember every year like we need to stop and just allow the Lord to redirect and maybe. Give us new insight, new direction in our Bible reading plan or devotional plan, and so there's that kind of thing going on there. Gathering together with family and friends and rejoicing and celebrating in the work of God, this is. Part of God's design. It's part of what God is implementing in the new Millennium, and so we can understand this is something that God wants. Mr Party can today as well, and you know, there's obviously unholy ways to partake in all of those things, and that's not God's intention. But but also, God's intention is not for us to abstain from all feasts and celebrations, and all regularly scheduled things. You know, sometimes we can kind of think. Well, it's like if it's regularly scheduled, you know it's not really an act of worship. It's just I'm supposed to every Sunday. You go to. Church and so you know, I do know. God schedules it every 7th year to, you know. Have these kinds of engagements and to worship the Lord in this way, and so that is part of the way that God works in our lives and to embrace those things and allow the Lord to use those things. In our lives. And I think also this hints a little bit at eternity as well. Revelation Chapter 22 tells us about the tree of life and it will produce a different fruit every month, and so there will be 12 fruits. One fruit for each month. There, in eternity there's going to be some sense of time. There's going to be some sense of month. There's going to be different fruits that are produced in different seasons that are experienced. We don't know a lot about eternity and how exactly all that's going to look and work together. But those kinds of things, occasions, and seasons, and different times and different occasions throughout the year is part of the way that God works in our life. And so there's an opportunity for us to embrace him and interact with him in that, even in our lives and schedules now. So here in Ezekiel 45 we get some insights. Into God's ideal plan for life on Earth, dedicated space for the Lord, the people and the leaders. Honest leaders that execute justice and righteousness standards for fair trade and exchange. People and leaders that contribute to corporate worship and regularly scheduled worship and celebrations. That's the things that will be going on during the Millennium. It's things that we have opportunity in this life to take to heart and allow the Lord to work. In us, and draws near to him and help us to walk in these things. 'cause this is his ideal plan. For us and it gives us a little bit of a glimpse of eternity. Some of the things that God may have in store for us as we look forward to forever and. Ever with him? Lord, we thank you for. Your word that has so much insight, Lord and so much kind of fresh perspective. I pray Lord, that you would speak to us in each of our hearts where we need to Lord. And each of these things that are part of your ideal plan that we might be lacking in or neglecting Lord, I pray that you would stir us up. But may we kind of be fired up in those things again that we. Might grab hold of you. In these different aspects of life that you want us to experience and walk in and to learn to relate to you through, we pray this in Jesus name.