Ezekiel 43: Not Matching the Pattern
Ezekiel 43 is a difficult one, but it does kind of give you the impression that perhaps we are talking about a Temple that is not meant to be literal. We took all of those measurements, and then we receive this statement from God.
Eze 43:10 Thou son of man, shew the house to the house of Israel, that they may be ashamed of their iniquities: and let them measure the pattern.
Eze 43:11 And if they be ashamed of all that they have done, shew them the form of the house, and the fashion thereof, and the goings out thereof, and the comings in thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and all the forms thereof, and all the laws thereof: and write it in their sight, that they may keep the whole form thereof, and all the ordinances thereof, and do them.
On one level, it doesn’t necessarily make sense that this would be a literal Temple because why would the people be necessarily committing a sin if their building did not match the pattern God outlined? It is not as if there was a previous command to build the Temple a certain way. If there had been that command, then it certainly would make sense.
It seems as if there is something a little bit broader to say about this vision. God has given a pattern of an ideal Temple that would be used to worship Him and bring Him glory. Our lives are supposed to do that as well. We’re supposed to conduct ourselves in a way that God had outlined, but we clearly do not fit into His ideal pattern. We have seen the ideal in Jesus Christ, and when we see it, we realize that we come dramatically short. We realize that we have sin in our lives, and, as Christians, we work to walk closer with God.
It seems that that might be a little more appropriate way to interpret in this passage. I’m not saying that there can’t be another Temple in the future (I don’t want to upset people here), but it doesn’t seem that this passage necessarily points to that. It seems more that there is some type of relationship or lifestyle that needs to be repaired in this case.