Ancient Worthies and a Change of Nature
In conjunction with the Pastor’s thought that the Ancient Worthies will receive a change of nature at the end of the millennium we should like to present further scriptural evidence which we believe confirms his supposition. Once again let us return to the Book of Ezekiel beginning with Chapter 46, some of which we had already entertained, however a brief review will bring us up to speed.
As was stated,
Ezekiel’s Temple, which was never built, is a vision of Christ and the faithful church (John 2:19-21; 1 Cor. 3:16), and the blessing of fleshly Israel and the whole world in the thousand-year kingdom of Christ and beyond.
The fact that it was never built (by human hands) is because of what it represents, it is a picture of the Church, God’s workmanship (NOT man’s workmanship) Eph 2:10. Speaking of the New Jerusalem, John writes “And I saw no temple therein: for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb (the Christ, head and body) are the temple of it” (Rev 21:22). Ezekiel’s Temple foreshadows the establishment of Messiah’s Kingdom on earth, when restitution blessings will flow to all the willing and obedient of mankind.
Verse 1 “Thus says the Lord God: “The gateway of the inner court that faces toward the east shall be shut the six working days; but on the Sabbath it shall be opened and on the day of the New Moon (the New Covenant) it shall be opened.”
During the past 6000 years of mankind’s history the Creator has not dealt with the world (thus symbolically speaking the east gate has been shut), but as we enter the seventh one thousand year-day, the Sabbath, the Millennium, the Lord shall once again return his face (favor) toward men, during the “times of restitution of all things”, at this time the inner east gate will be opened.
Verse 2 “The prince (i.e. the Ancient Worthies) shall enter by way of the vestibule of the gateway from the outside (the outer court), and stand by the gate post. The priest shall prepare his burnt offerings and his peace offerings. He shall worship at the threshold of the gate. Then he shall go out, but the gate shall not be shut until evening (until the end of the Millennial Age).”
Note: In the study of Ezekiel’s Temple it is easy to get confused in regards to which particular gate is being spoken of, understand that Ezekiel’s Temple was set up similar to the Tabernacle, except with the tabernacle you only had one entrance point and one courtyard surrounding the Tabernacle, whereas in Ezekiel’s Temple there are two courtyards, and inner and outer one with each having three access points or gates, the front one to the east, and the two side ones at the north and south. (See the diagram of the Temple.)
Burnt offerings represent the full consecration of the individual, and of his entering into or under the New Covenant arrangement, whereas peace offerings represent the thankfulness and joy of the individual as he is once again restored to fellowship with the Lord. The prince being privileged to enter the east gate and to worship at the threshold of the gate typifies the intimate communion between the Ancient Worthies and the Little Flock, and of their consecrations to the Christ.
We would naturally assume the second threshold was the one being spoken of since logically in order for the Prince to stand by the gate post he would have had to have passed through the vestibule and the first threshold in order to be found standing by the gate post whether the first set or the second.
Verse 3 “Likewise the people of the land shall worship at the entrance to this gateway before the Lord on the Sabbath and the New Moon.”
Mankind likewise will be permitted to approach the entrance to this gateway to worship before the Lord and consecrate their perfect humanity to Christ (however THEY WILL NOT be permitted to traverse its steps nor enter the vestibule of the gateway).
“Who shall not reverence you O Lord, and glorify your name? For you alone are holy, for all the nations (people) shall come and worship before you, for your judgments (righteous acts, thy works) have been manifested (in man’s condemnation, redemption and restitution).” Rev 15:4
With this gate opened the people will be able to see the Altar, they will be able to understand the true significance of the ransom sacrifice of our Lord and of the Church’s share in the sin offering, pictured by the Temple proper in the background behind the Altar.
Thus the second part of the Father’s will, will have been done, for he desires not only that all men should be saved (from the Adamic curse), but likewise that all men shall come to the knowledge of the truth. What truth is that specifically? That there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the Man Christ Jesus, who gave himself a ransom for all to be testified in due time.” (1 Tim 2:4-6) This will be the time when the world will receive that testimony.
Verse 8 “When the prince enters (the gate), he shall go in by way of the vestibule of the gateway, and go out the same way.”
In other words although he stands at the threshold of the gate (we would assume the second threshold), the gate to spirit begettal he cannot enter (or pass through this threshold at this particular time i.e. during the Day of the New Moon, the Sabbath, the Millennial Age), however as the plain of human perfection was pictured by traversing the “seven steps” (Ezek 40:26) up to the inner threshold of the outer gate and through the gate into the outer court, so too the prince is spoken of as traversing the “eight steps” (Ezek 40:37) up to the inner threshold of the inner gate.
The higher elevation of the inner gate to that of the outer gate depicts the difference between the perfect earthly plain and the perfect spiritual plain; the angels inhabit a plain of existence, which is, but one step above that of a perfect man. The fact that the prince climbs the eight steps to the inner threshold may well suggest the change of natures of the Ancient Worthies at the end of the Millennial Age.
Continued with next post