Monday, February 1, 2016

Ezekiel's Temple and the Millennium Follow up

This is a follow up to Distinguishing between The Millennium and the New Heaven and New Earth.  And also my more recent Bethel, The House of God post.

My position on Isaiah 65 and 66 being the New Heaven and New Earth not The Millennium remains unshakable.  I've been doing some rethinking on Ezekiel, I certainly think many of the conditions in Ezekiel could also apply to The Millennium, and was also thinking maybe it's not the New Creation till YHWH-Shammah descends.  But the fact remains it's Revelation 21-22 that draws on this part of Ezekiel while 20 draws on 37-39.

Isaiah 66 which is still the same Prophecy as Isaiah 65 says in verse 3.
He that killeth an ox is as he that slayeth a man; he that sacrificeth a lamb, as he that breaketh a dog`s neck; he that offereth an oblation, [as he that offereth] swine`s blood; he that burneth frankincense, as he that blesseth an idol. Yea, they have chosen their own ways, and their soul delighteth in their abominations:
This further assured me that if indeed the Sacrifices being carried out in Ezekiel proves it's the Millennium in some people's minds then Isaiah can't be talking about the same time period.

But that also reminds me of why as a Christian the Sacrifices Ezekiel describes makes me uncomfortable either way.  The rationalizations I often hear from Christians for them are not satisfactory to me.

I read a few months ago an argument a Christian made that Ezekiel 40-48 is not going to be fulfilled in The Future, it was a hypothetical Constitution for the Return from Captivity that Israel rejected.  While that argument sounded quite reasonable, the problem I have with that is so much of Ezekiel's Temple besides the Sacrifices seem to anticipate what changed at The Cross.  No veil, no wall of separation, no separate courts for gentiles and women, ect.   

Add to that how Revelation 21-22 clearly draws on this part of Ezekiel.  And my recent insights regarding Bethel.  And I simply can't write off the Eschatological relevance of these chapters.

Then it hit me, what if both views are right in a sense?  It was originally a potential model for the return from captivity but was rejected.  However God still plans to make it happen anyway, but certain conditions will be different because of The Cross chief among them being no Sacrifices as Isaiah 66 clearly instructs.  Though some ceremonies may be performed using Jesus' already shed Blood.

You may think "what do we need the Brazen Altar for then?"  I'm thinking maybe it'll be converted into a monument with a Cross on top, a memorial of the permanent Sacrifice that made all others moot.

For the options I provided before for dealing with the size difference between Ezekiel's YHWH-Shammah and New Jerusalem.  I was favoring the John saw it from the inside option, and I still like that view, but....  I've watched this video from Rob Skiba.  I really don't like the Pyramid parts and I could do without the Flat Earth stuff.  But he still has interesting speculations.

That made me re-think the New Jerusalem borders include everything in Ezekiel's vision option.  The borders if you put YHWH-Shammah or Bethel (or the Altar east of Bethel) at the center of New Jerusalem would include everything in Ezekiel's vision, and it seems everything God promised to Abraham.  Plus Assyria and Egypt fitting Isaiah 19.  It'd also include some of Greece and about all of Asia minor, that's most destinations of Paul's travels, and all Seven Churches of Revelation, where Jesus also talks about New Jerusalem in the message to Philadelphia.

I keep looking into the Montanists, trying to decide if I think it's fair to label them heretics or not.  I can't find any clear statement on their soterology.  Much of what we know of them comes from their critics which had me skeptical of the most negative things said.  Still I do suspect they were an early example of how modern Charismatics sometimes go over board.

One of that movement's founding principles was the founders having a Prophetic revelation that New Jerusalem would be in Asia Minor, which had me thinking "well that's clearly a False Prophecy".  Now however I'm considering what if they misunderstood a Prophetic revelation that New Jerusalem would include Asia Minor? 

On the subject of Noah's Ark, I believe Bob Cornuke's theory that it's in Northern Iran, that site is within the cube also (as well as Jabal el-Lawz, the real Mt Sinai).

And the traditional location of the mythical Gates of Alexander is around about where the northern border would be between the black and Caspian seas.  A legend I mention in a Biblical context only because of how it's legacy became tied to Gog and Magog.

It may be both those options for the size issue are valid in a sense.  Because again the very laws of physics will change I believe.

If you're wondering "what about Jerusalem in the Millennium then?"  I don't know.  I notice Revelation 20 never clearly refers to the Holy City till after the Thousand Years are over and doesn't name it.  But I'm pretty sure that's Jerusalem since I see it as the same as Ezekiel 38-39.

I also found this study helpful.

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