Thursday, 13 July 2017

The Temple

Some details in Ezekiel's visions were of course representative of things - like his vision of the river; and his vision of the dry bones living; and probably some of the dimensions of the vision too, etc. 

The Jews didn't expect that all of that would come to pass literally -
but they understood enough to know that they were meant to rebuild a temple and reinstate Levitical-style worship. And build a temple they did! 

If some aspects of Ezekiel's vision have a still-future application, the fulfilment can only be in-keeping with New Testament theology, not contradictory to it. 

It's just a rule of thumb - an irrevocable New Testament truth: there's to be no return to Levitical-style worship.

That's an interpretive key which governs how we interpret and apply Old Testament prophecy. 

It's a truth which trumps Old Testament law - because it's a truth which was spoken by our Lord Himself and by His holy Apostles. The law itself predicted this.

There's to be no return to Levitical-style worship. 

As for Haggai's temple, it was about the temple that was built at the return from Babylon, not about a future temple - because if it wasn't, then Haggai's prophecy had no relevance to his immediate audience. 

Herod's expansions made it bigger than Solomon's temple. 

That's the temple which Messiah Himself visited - the Lord whom they sought - can there be any greater glory than that? than to have Israel's Saviour and Maker Himself in it? 

Proselytes from all nations made annual pilgrimages to it, bringing offerings which helped beautify it and sustain its priests.

These were the people who saw and heard the miracle of the day of Pentecost. That's the temple where the new Messianic community of those who believed met daily, where miracles of healing were done in Jesus' Name, in the city where the sick were brought into the streets, and even the shadow of Peter healed them - everyone! so that multitudes believed, even priests. 

Many people did indeed find peace - and salvation - in that Temple, through the Apostles. 

Even before the day of Pentecost, many found peace in the Temple. 

God did give the nation of the Jews a certain peace too, at their return from captivity, in comparison to the existential threats they'd been experiencing in captivity. 

But the greatest way God gave peace in that place was by sending His Son to that place, to that very place. Not all received that peace, but many did, as predicted. 

Truly Haggai's prophecy came to pass: an astounding miracle, given the precarious position the Jews were in around the time of their captivity!

But God's not into returning to the shadow. 

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