- SHILOH, THE PLACE
- The Millennial (1,000 year) Temple is described in Ezekiel 40-48
- Prophecies of a Fourth Millennial Temple
- Prophecies of animal sacrifices in the Fourth Temple
- An everlasting priesthood
- Twelve thousand Levites will be sealed in the Great Tribulation
- The Temple courts will be about one square mile in size
- The Holy Precinct will be about forty miles in circumference
- The Jerusalem Third Temple will be replaced by a New Temple in Shiloh
- The entire sacred district will be 50 x 50 miles square in size
- The only Temple in the world will be located in Israel
- The geological formations of the earth will be changed
- The new Millennial Temple will be located at Shiloh
- The millennial system of sacrifice will be different
- Messiah will be recognized as the High Priest
- Messiah will restore the glory of Israel on a grand scale
- Israel will be guided by the Oral Torah of the Messiah (Torah of the Spirit)
- The sacrifice of Adonai’s Beloved Son will be remembered
- The sacred district will stretch out from Jerusalem to Shechem
- The global state will be one of universal reverence for Adonai (the LORD)
- The Promised Land of Israel will physically be given new life
- Conditions will exist like the Garden of Eden
III. SHILOH, THE PLACE
Ezekiel 40-42 provides us with an immense number of details concerning the dimensions, parts and contents of the future Millennial (1,000 year) Temple. The Temple structure and ceremonies have a definite symbolic and spiritual significance but this does not argue against its literal existence. Like the Tabernacle the Millennial Temple is a literal structure filled with both symbolic and historical significance. Ezekiel was given specific instructions to “Declare to the house of Israel all that you see” (40:4). The Israelites were to “keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them” (43:11). This is an exact parallel to the pattern of the Tabernacle which Moses saw in the Mount and which Adonai commanded him to construct (Exodus 25:8, 9).
The Millennial (1,000 year) Temple is described in Ezekiel 40-48:
All must agree that the Temple of Ezekiel 8-11 was the literal Temple of Ezekiel’s day, even though the prophet saw it “in the visions of Adonai” (8:3) while he himself was still in Babylon (8:1). These four chapters mention:
1. “The door of the gate of the inner court” (8:3);
2. “The porch”(8:16);
3. “The altar” (8:16);
4. “The threshold of the house” (9:3);
5. “The east gate of Adonai’s house” (10:19).
1. “A gate to the inner court” (40:27);
2. “The porch of the house” (40:48);
3. “The altar” (43:18);
4. “The gate facing toward the east” (43:4)
Prophecies of a Fourth Millennial Temple:
Ezekiel is not the only prophet who saw this future, glorious Fourth Temple [the near future Third Temple to be built in Jerusalem on the Temple Mount will be permanently desecrated, destroyed, and never rebuilt] that is complete with animal sacrifices:
Isaiah 2:3: “And many peoples will come and say, ‘Come, let us go up to the mountain of Adonai, to the house of the Al-Mighty One of Jacob that He may teach us concerning His ways and that we may walk in His paths.’ For the law will go forth from Zion and the word of Adonai from Jerusalem.”
Isaiah 60:13: “The glory of Lebanon will come to you, the juniper, the box tree and the cypress together, to beautify the place of My sanctuary; and I shall make the place of My feet glorious.”
Daniel 9:24: “Seventy weeks have been decreed for your people and your holy city, to finish the transgression, to make an end of sin, to make atonement for iniquity, to bring in everlasting righteousness, to seal up vision and prophecy and to anoint the most holy.”
Haggai 2:7, 9: “I will shake all the nations; and they will come with the wealth of all nations, and I will fill this house with glory,’ says the Adonai of Hosts… The latter glory of this house will be greater than the former,’ says the Adonai of Hosts, ‘and in this place I will give peace,’ declares the Adonai of Hosts.”
Prophecies of animal sacrifices in the Fourth Temple:
Isaiah 56:6-7: “Also the foreigners who join themselves to Adonai, to minister to Him, and to love the name of Adonai, to be His servants, everyone who keeps from profaning the sabbath and holds fast My covenant; even those I will bring to My holy mountain and make them joyful in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their sacrifices will be acceptable on My altar; for My house will be called a house of prayer for all the peoples.”
Isaiah 60:7: “All the flocks of Kedar will be gathered together to you, the rams of Nebaioth will minister to you; they will go up with acceptance on My altar, and I shall glorify My glorious house.”
Jeremiah 33:18: “And the Levitical priests shall never lack a man before Me to offer burnt offerings to burn grain offerings and to prepare sacrifices continually.”
Zechariah 14:16-21: “Then it will come about that any who are left of all the nations that went against Jerusalem will go up from year to year to worship the King, Adonai of Hosts, and to celebrate the Feast of Booths. And it will be that whichever of the families of the earth does not go up to Jerusalem to worship the King, the Adonai of Hosts, there will be no rain on them. If the family of Egypt does not go up or enter, then no rain will fall on them; it will be the plague with which Adonai smites the nations who do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Booths. This will be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all the nations who do not go up to celebrate the Feast of Booths. In that day there will be inscribed on the bells of the horses, ‘HOLY TO ADONAI.’ And the cooking pots in Adonai’s house will be like the bowls before the altar. Every cooking pot in Jerusalem and in Judah will be holy to the Adonai of Hosts; and all who sacrifice will come and take of them and boil in them. And there will no longer be a Canaanite in the house of the Adonai of Hosts in that day.”
An everlasting priesthood:
An everlasting priesthood #2. This confirms Adonai’s promise of an everlasting priesthood to Zadok’s ancestor Phinehas (Numbers 25:13), which also confirms His promise of an everlasting priesthood to Phinehas’ grandfather Aaron (Exodus 29:9; 40:15). See 1 Chronicles 6:3-8, 50-53 for the full genealogy.
An everlasting priesthood #3. Furthermore, this promise of an everlasting priesthood was strongly confirmed by Adonai through Jeremiah 33:17-22, who links the perpetuity of the Levitical priests with the perpetuity of the Davidic Kingship and the perpetuity of the earth’s rotation on its axis. Therefore, in view of these promises the Millennial Temple of Ezekiel will have the sons of Zadok as its priests. (40:46; 44:15).
Twelve thousand Levites will be sealed in the Great Tribulation:
This truth is underscored by the mention of 12,000 Levites who will be sealed by Adonai during the yet future seventieth week of Daniel (cf. the Unveiling, Hitgallut 7:7). Since the future sealed Levites are literal then the Millennial Temple is literal. And since Adonai’s promises to David are to be fulfilled literally then equally so His promises to Aaron, Phinehas, and Zadok will be fulfilled literally as well (2 Samuel 7:13,16). The Scriptures clearly teach us that while there is no such thing as an earthly Temple, an altar, or animal sacrifices at the present time, there will be such provisions for Israel in the messianic age (compare Hosea 3:4-5 with Daniel 9:24, 27). The Brit Chadashah teaches of a future “holy place” and “temple of Adonai” in the Sacred District of Jerusalem, complete with an “altar.” This prepares us to anticipate a Millennial Temple in connection with the sacred district (40 X 50 miles) that is adjacent to “holy city” of Jerusalem (10 X 50 miles) that is in harmony with the teaching of the Tanakh.
The Temple courts will be about one square mile in size:
The area of the Millennial Fourth Temple courts (500 x 500 measures [reeds] or about one square mile; a reed measures six royal cubits or about 10.5 feet) will be larger than the entire ancient walled city of Jerusalem. The sacred area reserved for the priests and Levites will be over 40 x 50 miles (20,000 x 25,000 measures [reeds]). This means the new area will be placed within a much greater geography than present-day Israel now enjoys. The violent changes that will be made to the earth’s natural configuration during the Great Tribulation (צָרָה גְדוֹלָה) and the time of Jacob’s Trouble (עֵֽת־צָרָה הִיא לְיַֽעֲקֹב-Et-Tzarah Hi Le-Ya’akov) will significantly extend the geographical boundaries between the Jordan River and the Mediterranean Sea (Ezekiel 47:18). This more generous (post-Tribulation) tract of land will also reserve a “portion for the prince” the descendants of Jonathan will receive special honor during the millennial age on either side (east and west) of the sacred 40 x 50 mile precinct (45:7, 47:21; cf. perpetual covenant between the house of David and the house of Jonathan).
The Holy Precinct will be about forty miles in circumference:
The Millennial holy precinct reserved for Temple, priestly, Levitical, and public worship use will be approximately 40 miles in circumference and therefore be about ten times the circumference of the ancient city. The New Jerusalem that will be adjoined immediately to the holy precinct’s southern border will be approximately a 10 x 50 mile area (5,000 x 25, 000 measures [reeds]). Note: measures indicates “reeds,” not cubits! The combined dedicated area of the New Jerusalem and the Fourth Temple land will create an approximately 50 x 50 mile square holy district. Consequently, the new Temple will be located considerably north of the present Jerusalem site. The new Temple site will be located approximately twenty miles out from the southern section of the New Jerusalem, in the center of the priestly precinct of land (Ezekiel 48:8, 10).
The Jerusalem Third Temple will be replaced by a New Temple in Shiloh:
This new Temple of Ezekiel will be built in Shiloh due to the severe desecration of the Third Temple that will cause the Holy One to send a great earthquake that will completely swallow up ‘under the earth’ the severely defiled temple and all of the apostate worshipers who will be worshiping the ‘abomination’ that ‘desolates’ on the Temple Mount. Therefore, this great earthquake will cause 7,000 persons to be buried alive under the ruins of the destroyed, desecrated temple. For this reason the Fourth Temple will have to be reconstructed and rededicated anew in a previously holy but never desecrated area.
Consequently, the Fourth Temple will be built at the ancient sacred site at Shiloh, where the tabernacle once stood for over 350 years (Genesis 49:10; Joshua 18:1; 1Samuel 3:21; Psalm 78:60; talmudic sources say the Tabernacle was in Shiloh 369 years).
The new worship area will be considerably larger than the previous dedicated worship sites, stretching from the northern border of the New Jerusalem, in the south, to Shechem (and the ancient City of Shalem) in the north. Therefore, due to the severe desecration of the Third Temple (referred to in Chapter 2) the Third Temple (בית המקדש השלישי- Beit HaMikdash HaShlishi, The House, the Holy, the Third) on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem will be completely destroyed at the Middle of the Time of Jacob’s Trouble (Jeremiah 30:7; the “great tribulation”-צָרָה גְדוֹלָה). Thereafter, no Temple will ever again be allowed to be built in the City of Jerusalem.
Therefore, the Fourth Temple (בית המקדש הארבעה-Beit HaMikdash HaArba’ah, The House, the Holy, the Fourth) described in this chapter is built in Shiloh (within the large 40 X 50 mile Sacred District of Jerusalem; that will be located immediately north of the 10 X 50 mile City of Jerusalem).
Just as there is truly only one LORD and God, there shall be only one Temple.
The Fourth Temple will be built, cleansed, dedicated, Nisan 1-7, and put into full international service, Nisan 8, in the first year of the Messiah’s worldwide reign (the Messiah will return to earth a ‘second time’ on a yet unknown future observance of Yom Kippurim (Tishri 10). This Fourth Temple will be the only Temple in the world during the entire one thousand years Golden Age of Israel and the International Commonwealth of Israel.
The entire sacred district will be 50 x 50 miles square in size:
The entire combined Jerusalem-Holy district will form a perfect square, approximately 50 x 50 miles in size.
The famous city Yerushalayim (YeruShalem), lying immediately south of the holy district means “Foundation of Shalem.” The entrance to the “northern” border of Shechem (שְׁכֶם-meaning shoulder or governance) was in ancient days called Shalem (Genesis). These ancient names Yerushalayim (יְרוּשָׁלַם) and Shalem (שָׁלֵם) indicate Adonai meant for the entire area from Yerushalayim to Shalem (adjacent to Shechem) to one day be used as a sacred 50 X 50 mile area for His Shalom (Perfect Presence) to dwell. For this reason the Sar Shalom (the Prince of Peace) has taught us we are to be shelamim (שְׁלֵמִים) as Avinu Shebashamayim is Shalem (שָׁלֵם):
לָכֵן הֱיוּ שְׁלֵמִים, כְּמוֹ שֶׁאֲבִיכֶם שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם שָׁלֵם הוּא.פ
Therefore, you are to be perfect (shelamim), as your heavenly Father is perfect (Shalem).
Therefore, this was Adonai’s plan from the beginning when Malki-Tze’dek (the King of Righteousness), Abraham, Isaac and Jacob *first colonized the sacred area. The holy city is the foundation of peace and the holy precinct is the sanctuary of shalom that rests upon it. The ruler over this entire holy city-sanctuary area is Malki-Tzedek (מַלְכִּי־צֶדֶק) and Melek Shalem (מֶלֶךְ שָׁלֵם), the King of Shalom, the Messiah Yeshua (Genesis, Psalm, Isaiah, Hebrews).
*Malki-Tze’dek (Noah’s son Shem) was the first to colonize Yerushalayim. He was the ancient ruler of the entire sacred region that spanned from the city of Yerushalayim (in the south) to the ancient city of Shalem (in the north; modern Nablus). His magnificent palace was located in the city of Shalem at the northern border of his kingdom. His rule of Jerusalem located at the southern border of his kingdom, therefore, predates King David’s rule of Jerusalem by more than a thousand years. Only Malki-Tze’dek and the Messiah have held the office of Priest-King (cf 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, מֶלֶךְ שָׁלֵם, King of Shalem). King David was a Prophet-King. His Greater Son, the Messiah holds all three offices: Prophet, Priest, and King.
The only Temple in the world will be located in Israel:
Prophecy #1: Israel will have the only sanctuary and priesthood in the world during the millennial age. The greatly enlarged Temple courts and sacred area will be needed to accommodate the vast number of international worshipers and the priests who will serve them (Isaiah 2:3, 60:14, 61:6, Zechariah 8:20-23).
Prophecy #2: Various prophecies in the Tanakh speak of great geological changes that will occur in Israel at the time of the Messiah’s Second Coming, so it is not difficult to imagine a 2,500 square mile area for the Temple and city fitted into a reshaped and enlarged land (cf. Isaiah 26:15; 33:17; 54:2 and especially Zechariah 14:4-10).
Prophecy #3: Zechariah 14:4-10 tells us of new valleys and rivers, and a flattening of portions of land “like the Arabah” which then “shall be lifted up.” Therefore, the entire Dead Sea region will be lifted up more than 1,300 feet above its present sea level, for it will contain fish “after their kinds, as the fish of the great sea, exceeding many” (Ezekiel 47:10).
The geological formations of the earth will be changed:
Prophecy #4: Hitgallut 16:20 (the Scroll of Unveiling) reports that at the end of the Great Tribulation gigantic earthquakes will cause islands and mountains to vanish. Thus, there will be dramatic topographical and geographical enhancements that will accompany the inauguration of the messianic kingdom.
Jerusalem itself will be the capital city of the entire world.
Prophecy #5: Jerusalem itself will be the capital of the world, the beloved city (Hitgallut 20:9; at the end of the Brit Chadashah) and its size will surely be proportionate to its importance. Therefore, if Nineveh, the capital of one ancient empire, was sixty miles in circumference (Jonah 3:3), certainly it will be appropriate for the new millennial Jerusalem-holy district to be at least fifty miles in circumference.
The new Millennial Temple will be located at Shiloh:
Prophecy #6: The Millennial (Fourth) Temple will be located about twenty miles north of Jerusalem at Shiloh (Shiyloh: meaning tranquility, rest, the peaceable one, a peace-maker, a place and person of rest; from shalah: safe, secure in mind, “to be in a state of rest”). Adonai specifically indicated to Ezekiel that the Temple area will no longer adjoin the royal palace as in the days of old (43:7-9). The point is clearly stated in 43:12: “This is the law of the house: upon the top of the mountain [the yet future highest mountain in the world] the whole limit thereof round about shall be most holy. Behold, this is the law of the house.”
Prophecy #7: Vast topographical changes will not make the new Israel any less the Promised Land, nor will a centralized, enlarged Temple twenty miles removed from the city’s northern border be a disappointment to the people of Israel who have been accustomed to thinking of it in terms of Mount Moriah. The important thing is that the glory of Adonai will fill the Temple (43:5), and the city will be renamed “Adonai Sham’a” (ה’ שמה-Adonai is There).
Prophecy #8: There will be a new system of animal sacrifices re-instituted at the Temple after it has been made perfectly clear to all that the one perfect once-in-eternity sacrifice of Messiah has been accomplished. This new sacrificial system will exist only as a means to regally worship Adonai and venerate His Messiah (M’shico), the Lamb of Adonai (Seh HaElohim) who takes away the sin of the world.
The millennial system of sacrifice will be different:
The messianic-millennial age system of sacrifices described by Ezekiel differ profoundly from the Aaronic system, so that it is not simply a re-institution of Mosaic Judaism as some have claimed. These changes could not have escaped the notice of the post-captivity Yehudim, such as Zerubbabel and Joshua, who upon seeing the glorious context into which Ezekiel placed these new ordinances would have immediately realized that the prophecy could only be fulfilled in the kingdom age. Therefore, Zerubbabel and Joshua made no effort to build such a temple after the exile. There will be no Ark of the Covenant, Table of the Law, Cherubim, Mercy Seat, Veil, Golden Lampstand, or Table of Showbread in the Fourth Temple.
Messiah will be recognized as the High Priest:
Prophecy #9: Instead of a high priest (for Yeshua alone is our High Priest forever, Psalm 110:4), there will be a prince who has some royal and priestly powers, but will actually be neither king nor high priest (cf. Messiah in Purim).
Prophecy #10: The Levites will have fewer temple privileges except for the sons of Zadok who will serve as priests. The Festival of Shavuot is omitted as well as Yom Kippur (the great Day of Atonement), and there is no evening sacrifice.
Messiah will restore the glory of Israel on a grand scale:
The dimensions of the temple and courts are changed and they are removed from the city. With regard to additions that will be made:
Addition #1. The entrance of the Glory into Ezekiel’s Temple to dwell there, forever.
Addition #2. The Living Waters that flow, enlarging from beneath the Altar.
Addition #3. Three, the suburbs, the wonderful trees of healing.
Addition #4. The new distribution of the land according to the twelve tribes, each with their own portion.
Addition #5. Resettlement of the tribes; the Prince’s portion.
Addition #6. The City’s new name, “Adonai Sham’a” (Adonai is There).
Addition #7. A converted people gloriously worshiping Adonai “in Spirit and in truth.” Therefore, these additions magnificently describe a Restored Israel existing on a grander scale than ever known before!
Israel will be guided by the Oral Torah of the Messiah (Torah of the Spirit):
Animal sacrifices and priests will definitely have a place once again in Israel after the miraculous resurrection and ascension into heaven of the Assembly of Messiah. Although Adonai will have finished His work of sanctification in the Assembly of Messiah by this time (a remnant) He will not have finished His work of the overall complete instruction, testing, and sanctification of the entire nation and people of Israel.
The sacrifice of Adonai’s Beloved Son will be remembered:
It is obvious that the Letter to the Hebrews (האגרת אל העברים) was mainly written to messianic believers living before the messianic age. The people of Israel (Jews) and of the Commonwealth of Israel (Gentiles) living in the messianic age will not live as they do now; in a time without priests, without sacrifices, and without a Temple.
In the messianic Golden Age of Israel Adonai will deem it necessary for all of the followers of the Messiah (Jew and Gentile) to be reminded of the awful price that the Messiah paid, through the symbolism of the festival sacrifices.
After the Messiah gloriously returns to earth these sacrifices will serve as a powerful “reminder” of the Messiah’s redemptive sacrifice. Likewise, in the context of distinctive Israelite worship, the five different offerings (four of them with blood-shedding) will serve as a constant reminder of the great sacrifice our Messiah made to make our salvation possible.
These memorial sacrifices will be completely unique in light of the fact that no other bloodshed will be allowed in the entire world because of a return to conditions that will be similar to those conditions of tranquility that existed in the Garden of Eden (cf. Isaiah).
This practice of worldwide non-violence will make the sacrifices upon the Temple altar all the more illuminating and doubly inspirational.
The sacred district will stretch out from Jerusalem to Shechem:
Participation in these sacrifices will be compulsory; they will not be voluntary. Ezekiel says that Adonai will “accept” people on the basis of animal sacrifices (43:27), and they are “to make atonement for the house of Israel” (45:17; cf. 45:15). Once again, as in anciet times, the privilege of life and physical blessing in the theocratic kingdom of Israel and the Commonwealth of Israel will be contingent upon outward conformity to the ceremonial law. Such conformity did not bring salvation in the times of the prophets, but the faithful Yehudim willingly conformed.
Only faith in Adonai can bring salvation, and this has been Adonai’s plan in all of human history.
Therefore, these mandatory sacrifices will not be expiatory. They were not expiatory in Mosaic times (“it is impossible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins”) and they will not be able to save anyone in the messianic kingdom age.
The global state will be one of universal reverence for Adonai:
Nevertheless, the symbolic and instructional value of the sacrifices will be upheld by a legal system of ensured participation. Unlike the present global state of lawlessness toward one’s neighbor and thereby wholesale disrespect for Adonai, the new messianic kingdom status quo will be one of universal care and respect (shalem, shalom) for all (love of neighbor); this friendship love of one’s neighbor being the expression of worship that Elohei HaShalom desires most (1, 2, 3, 4).
For those minority populations who decide to neglect the annual Feast of Sukkot (Booths), they will experience the consequences of a drought or a plague (Zechariah). If the true significance of the five offerings is understood, it is not difficult to see how they could serve as a highly effective means of Divine instruction and discipline for Israel and her neighboring nations during the messianic kingdom age.
The Promised Land of Israel will physically be given new life:
In Ezekiel 47 we read of a stream that issues from the Fourth Temple to become a great river after a few miles. This river enters into the Dead Sea and completely heals it of its death. The trees growing on the banks of this miraculous river will enjoy perennial foliage and fruit; even the leaves will be used for “medicine” and the fruit, although for food, never wasting.
When Messiah came, He changed water to wine, multiplied loaves and fishes, instantly calmed a great storm, healed the sick and raised the dead (Isaiah; 1, 2, 3, 4, 5). Messiah said that those who did not believe all that the prophets spoke were “fools and slow of heart.” In the light of these prophetic events and our Lord’s strong admonition, these prophecies must be taken literally.
Conditions will exist like the Garden of Eden:
Idyllic conditions (like Eden) will largely prevail in the messianic age, with longevity, universal peace, transformation of animal life, and blossoming of the deserts. These ideal conditions are not completely new if we carefully consider some of the conditions that existed in the Garden of Eden.
In Genesis, we discover that some of the trees and fruits possessed super-vegetative powers and were sustained by a stream from within the Garden that divided into four rivers (Genesis 2). We are informed that one of the trees, the tree of life, even possessed the power to sustain eternal life. The reality of the Temple stream of Ezekiel 47 should concretely be seen as Adonai’s miraculous near restoration of the Divine spiritual and natural order that was enjoyed in Genesis 2.
The perfect restoration of creation, therefore, will not completely occur until after the millennial age and Great White Throne Judgment. The Eternal Age will begin when Adonai’s people and His holy angels enter into the eternal righteous dwelling of His new heaven and new earth.