Tuesday, August 28, 2012

August 28, 2012 … God’s Temple Is Holy

Chronological Bible Reading Plan - Day 241 

Passage of the Day: Reference of Today’s Chronological Bible Study: Ezekiel 9-12 To study these chapters, go to this link -

Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 9: 1-5 : [NLT] … 1 Then the LORD thundered, “Bring on the men appointed to punish the city! Tell them to bring their weapons with them!” 2 Six men soon appeared from the upper gate that faces north, each carrying a battle club in his hand. One of them was dressed in linen and carried a writer’s case strapped to his side. They all went into the Temple courtyard and stood beside the bronze altar. 3 Then the glory of the God of Israel rose up from between the cherubim, where it had rested, and moved to the entrance of the Temple. And the LORD called to the man dressed in linen who was carrying the writer’s case. 4 He said to him, “Walk through the streets of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of all those who weep and sigh because of the sins they see around them.” 5 Then I heard the LORD say to the other men, “Follow him through the city and kill everyone whose forehead is not marked. Show no mercy; have no pity!  
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 10: 1-2; 18-19 : [NLT] … 1 As I looked, I saw what appeared to be a throne of blue sapphire above the crystal surface over the heads of the cherubim. 2 Then the LORD spoke to the man in linen clothing and said, “Go in between the whirling wheels beneath the cherubim, and take a handful of glowing coals and scatter them over the city.” He did this as I watched. … 
18 Then the glory of the LORD moved from the door of the Temple and hovered above the cherubim. 19 And as I watched, the cherubim flew with their wheels to the east gate of the LORD’s Temple. And the glory of the God of Israel hovered above them. 
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 11: 1-2: 5-6;14-17; 23-24 : [NLT] … 1 Then the Spirit lifted me and brought me over to the east gateway of the LORD’s Temple, where I saw twenty-five prominent men of the city. Among them were Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, who were leaders among the people. 2 Then the Spirit said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who are responsible for the wicked counsel being given in this city. … 
5 Then the Spirit of the LORD came upon me, and he told me to say, “This is what the LORD says to the people of Israel: Is that what you are saying? Yes, I know it is, for I know every thought that comes into your minds. 6 You have murdered endlessly and filled your streets with the dead. … 
14 Then this message came to me from the LORD: 15 “Son of man, the people still left in Jerusalem are talking about their relatives in exile, saying, ‘they are far away from the LORD, so now he has given their land to us!’ 16 Therefore, give the exiles this message from the Sovereign LORD: Although I have scattered you in the countries of the world, I will be a sanctuary to you during your time in exile. 17, the Sovereign LORD, will gather you back from the nations where you are scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel once again. … 
23 Then the glory of the LORD went up from the city and stopped above the mountain to the east. 24 Afterward the Spirit of God carried me back again to Babylonia, to the Judeans in exile there. And so ended the vision of my visit to Jerusalem. 25And I told the exiles everything the LORD had shown me.  
Highlight Passage: Ezekiel 12: 1-3; 8-12; 26-28 : [NLT] … 1 Again a message came to me from the LORD: 2 “Son of man, you live among rebels who could see the truth if they wanted to, but they don’t want to. They could hear me if they would listen, but they won’t listen because they are rebellious. 3 So now put on a demonstration to show them what it will be like to go off into exile. Pack whatever you can carry on your back and leave your home to go on a journey. Make your preparations in broad daylight so the people can see you, for perhaps they will even yet consider what this means, even though they are such rebels. … 
8 The next morning this message came to me from the LORD: 9 “Son of man, these rebels, the people of Israel, have asked you what all this means. 10 Say to them, ‘this is what the Sovereign LORD says: These actions contain a message for Zedekiah in Jerusalem£ and for all the people of Israel.’ 11 Then explain that your actions are a demonstration of what will soon happen to them, for they will be driven from their homes and sent away into exile. 12 “Even Zedekiah will leave Jerusalem at night through a hole in the wall, taking only what he can carry with him. He will cover his face, and his eyes will never see his homeland again. … 
26 Then this message came to me from the LORD: 27 “Son of man, the people of Israel are saying, ‘His visions won’t come true for a long, long time.’ 28 Therefore, give them this message from the Sovereign LORD: No more delay! I will now do everything I have threatened! I, the Sovereign LORD, have spoken!”
Cross Reference Passage: Matthew 21: 11-13 : [NLT] … To study this passage, go to this link -
Cross Reference Passage: Mark 11: 15-17 : [NLT] … To study this passage, go to this link -
Cross Reference Passage: John 2: 13-17 : [NLT] … To study this passage, go to this link -

My Journal for Today: Four more chapters in Ezekiel this morning; and studying through them I was reminded of a scenario in the New Testament which was captured in three of the Gospel accounts; and besides trying to copy the essence of Ezekiel, Chapters 12-15 above, I’ve also linked you to the three passages in the NT which describe Jesus returning to the Temple in Jerusalem and in righteous anger, at what He discovered there, took a whip and cleared the Temple of those who had desecrated His Father’s House.

In these chapters in Ezekiel, the Prophet was given a Spirit-tour vision of God, leaving His Temple in Jerusalem, because it had been desecrated by idolatrous and rebellious Israelites. If you read through these chapters, see if it doesn’t remind you of the righteous anger exhibited by Jesus, God’s Son, seeing that God’s rebuilt Temple had been perverted by greedy money-changers and con-men who worshipped money more than their God. And seeing this desecration, Christ angrily purged the Temple.

Well, in these chapters in Ezekiel’s journal, we read of God’s righteous anger being visited upon those who had horribly desecrated His earthly dwelling place – The Temple in Jerusalem; … and so, God was brought to purging that place completely and moving out of the Temple to the Mount of Olives, while Ezekiel was then charged to go back and give this picture of prophesy to the Israelites in Babylon.

My friends, I hope you realize that we now have the Temple of the Holy Spirit of God residing in our hearts as Christians (see 1st Cor. 6: 19-20); and our Lord demands that we keep that temple pure and holy; and if we desecrate God’s temple in our hearts with impurity and idolatry, God is going to be forced to come in an purify His place of residence; and that scene in our lives WILL NOT BE PRETTY!

Oh, how there are times when I let in attitudes of greed and impurity into my heart – God’s holy temple; and it is only when I confess that His place can be cleansed and made holy again (see 1st John 1: 9). I pray today that we’re all keeping God’s temple – our hearts – pure and doing all we can to prevent desecration of His Temple.

My Prayer Today: … Lord, You know my heart. As Jeremiah said {Jer. 17: 9), my heart, Your Temple, can be a desperately wicked place. So, I plead that You do whatever You must do to help me keep Your Temple pure. Amen

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