Today in the new temple vision, Ezekiel sees a stream of water flowing from the temple and out the east gate. The stream turns into a great river. The Lord says when the water reaches the sea, its waters are healed. “And it shall be that every living thing that moves, wherever they may go, will live… Along the bank of the river, on this side and that, will grow all kinds of trees used for food; their leaves will not wither, and their fruit will not fail. They will bear fruit every month, because their water flows from the sanctuary. Their fruit will be for food, and their leaves for medicine.” The healing waters indicate the regeneration that will occur during the time of the new temple. At the end of the story, the Lord will give the disciple John a similar vision – “And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations” (Revelation 22:1-2).
Then the Lord shows Ezekiel the boundaries of the land that will be divided equally among the twelve tribes of Israel. The boundaries correspond with the land boundaries He gave Moses back in the wilderness (Numbers 34). The Lord not only provides land for the twelve tribes of Israel but also “for the strangers who dwell among you and who bear children among you… they shall have an inheritance with you among the tribes of Israel.” The Lord allocates a memorial gate to each one of the twelve sons of Jacob, which surround the new city bringing unity to the once divided nation of Israel. This is also similar to the vision that John will receive of the New Jerusalem which the Lord will establish when He makes a new heaven and a new earth – “And he carried me away in the Spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me the great city, the holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, having the glory of God. Her light was like a most precious stone, like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. Also she had a great and high wall with twelve gates, and twelve angels at the gates, and names written on them, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: three gates on the east, three gates on the north, three gates on the south, and three gates on the west. Now the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them were the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb” (Revelation 21:10-14). And the best part of New Jerusalem is that the Lord is there – “and the name of the city from that day shall be: THE LORD IS THERE.”
We conclude the Book of Ezekiel by reading his last prophecy which says that Nebuchadnezzar is going to conquer Egypt. According to the ESV Study Bible, this prophecy was given in 571 B.C. and Nebuchadnezzar conquered Egypt in 568 B.C.
Today’s reading ends with Evil-Merodach, king of Babylon, releasing Jehoiachin, former king of Judah and a descendant of King David, from prison after thirty-seven years. “And he spoke kindly to him and gave him a more prominent seat than those of the kings who were with him in Babylon. So Jehoiachin changed from his prison garments, and he ate bread regularly before the king all the days of his life. And as for his provisions, there was a regular ration given him by the king of Babylon, a portion for each day until the day of his death, all the days of his life.”
The Lord is faithful to His promise to King David, and He is still working His plan of bringing the promised Savior through this bloodline. So keep reading! (Ezekiel 47:1-48:35, Ezekiel 28:17-30:19, 2 Kings 25:27-30, Jeremiah 52:31-34)