2 p.m. Sunday June 19, 2022. 95F/35C.
77F and shady indoors. The trip to town was peaceful. This being tourist season, the streets were well-populated with roaming pedestrians, RV’s and motorcycles. Locals all avoided the tourist zones, and took well-traveled side streets in their pickup trucks and vans. Roadside stands boasted of fresh blueberries and strawberries. Their fare appeared to be the same produce offered by a local grocer. Untroubled people in sandals and floppy hats formed haphazard lines in front of each stand. A warm breeze drifted in through the truck windows. It carried the odor of fresh road tar and smoke from the barbecue shack. Summer is here.
The book of Ezekiel, chapter forty two
Abba Father, grant us your peace for our times. What I see around me does not quite match the news reports, so cause those who listen to the reports to lean into you for sureness and peace. Please reveal your meanings in your word, the Bible. In the name of Jesus, I pray. Amen.
Ezekiel continued his tour of a natural-supernatural temple complex. He was taken somewhere in Israel on or near a high mountain. Some parts of the temple were supernaturally constructed while he was there. He gazed upon rooms built into the complex walls:
Now the upper chambers were shorter: for the galleries were higher than these, than the lower, and than the middlemost of the building.
While the KJV was most precise in their translation, it does help to peruse the Hebrew words for that verse. The upper chambers were a bit smaller than the lower chambers. It appears that they had a walkway in front of them, which took up some of the room.
For they were in three stories, but had not pillars as the pillars of the courts: therefore the building was straitened more than the lowest and the middlemost from the ground.
Had the builders used pillars, as they did on the temple building, the walkway could have been built as a ledge, but they did not use pillars so the upper rooms were smaller than the ground floor room, by the width of the walkway.
And the wall that was without over against the chambers, toward the utter court on the forepart of the chambers, the length thereof was fifty cubits.
For the enclosure wall that had the little rooms, on the outer courtyard side, near the gate, that wall, just for the length of the face of the rooms, was fifty cubits.
For the length of the chambers that were in the utter court was fifty cubits: and, lo, before the temple were an hundred cubits.
Ezekiel expressed amazement. The little rooms of the outer court were fifty cubits. But the little rooms of the temple court were 100 cubits. Perhaps he was amazed that God wanted more people closer to him in this temple than in previous temples. There was more space for God’s servants near the temple, and less space for the public in the outer courtyard.
And from under these chambers was the entry on the east side, as one goeth into them from the utter court.
The east entrance gate was surrounded by chambers, to the right, to the left and even above. That would be unusual. In every temple, the eastern gate was for God and his prince. In this temple, God was allowing his entrance to be hugged by the evidence of the presence of men!
The chambers were in the thickness of the wall of the court toward the east, over against the separate place, and over against the building.
The little rooms were built into the east wall, between the courtyard and the wall.
I’m amazed along with Ezekiel, at how God desired the stuff of men, the storage rooms, the offices, the apartments, the walkways, to be right up next to the temple and the eastern gate. The temple seemed to be forecasting an era when God will dwell among men and everyone will be happy with that.
Life in the hollow, Sunday
The grocery store was a little low on stock, but it was not as bad as the great food shortage that I expected. Most of the products missing were those from the big companies. They were low on boxes of macaroni and cheese, cans of ravioli, peanut butter, boxed cereals, and, to be honest, junk food is scarce. Locally-sourced foods were fine. It was easier to navigate the store without big cardboard displays of beef jerky and the newest dog treats, jutting out into the aisles.
I saw no more than one facemask.
The bridges between here and there were being updated. Waiting for my turn to cross gave me time to declare God’s love and the miracle of multiplication over every occupant of the vehicles in line.
Yes, we are about to suffer a food shortage. If anyone lives on pizza and pot pies, those people are in fact now going hungry. Those of us who are depending upon God, and are content with God’s food, seem to be doing just fine.
All those people who drew close to God are finding him drawing closer to them.
In the name of Jesus, our Messiah, be blessed.