Ezekiel 44: Orthodoxy and Orthopraxy
Ezekiel 44 takes us back to the outside of the vision of the Temple. The people of Israel have been rebellious at this undefined future time (surprise!), and here is what the offense was.
Eze 44:6 And thou shalt say to the rebellious, even to the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; O ye house of Israel, let it suffice you of all your abominations,
Eze 44:7 In that ye have brought into my sanctuary strangers, uncircumcised in heart, and uncircumcised in flesh, to be in my sanctuary, to pollute it, even my house, when ye offer my bread, the fat and the blood, and they have broken my covenant because of all your abominations.
Eze 44:8 And ye have not kept the charge of mine holy things: but ye have set keepers of my charge in my sanctuary for yourselves.
Eze 44:9 Thus saith the Lord GOD; No stranger, uncircumcised in heart, nor uncircumcised in flesh, shall enter into my sanctuary, of any stranger that is among the children of Israel.
This seems to go along with what I had written yesterday regarding the Temple of the perfect design. Yesterday, we talked about the idea of how it was interesting that the Temple the people had built for themselves could not match up to the ideal design of what God Himself had laid out. I suggested then that perhaps this shows how the human life is not up to the standard that God been set for us. This is powerful commentary on sin nature.
Today expands on that. It seems to suggest that there are people in the Temple who are uncircumcised in heart and flesh. To me this kind of sounds like a lack of orthodoxy and orthopraxy. In the heart, there is not the right attitude. Their beliefs and their orthodoxy had fallen apart. However, they also are not living right in the flesh. Their actions are also not physically right. They’re not living the way they should.
I think this points out some very important things for us. It is a combination of life and belief. I certainly think that salvation comes through faith alone and not by works, but I also believe that a life that is transformed by a true belief will demonstrate the actions that are the consequence of that belief. That is where the right practice comes in. It is the argument for the fruit of the spirit. It comes about from living in the way of Jesus. By living out a life following the principles of Christianity, certain actions and lifestyle choices should come forth.
These have been difficult chapters for me. I am not a professional in Old Testament prophecy, but I’m just being straightforward with you. Interpretation is a difficult job, and I will be happy to get back to more straightforward content, but I hope this might provide at least a little bit of food for thought.