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God's Mysteries Revealed
Since we are going to be spending so much time in the kingdom, we should learn about it;
and the new earth is going to have a lot of similarities to the kingdom, although there are some differences. I know God wants
us to learn about the kingdom, because he has told us so much about it in Isaiah, Jeremiah, Ezekiel, the minor prophets, the
psalms, and so forth. And the benefit of learning about the kingdom, is that it will help you persevere through trials, and
help you labor more fervently.
could have given us just an overview of the kingdom in these last 9 chapters of Ezekiel, but instead they focus a lot on one
building, the temple, so that if we know this one building that will be at the center of the kingdom in a very detailed way,
the entire kingdom will all be very real and solid to us, so that our sure hope of entering the kingdom in the future will
help us in our trials and labors today.
Ezekiel 40:1-2. The Mountain
When Ezekiel first arrived in the future at the land of Israel, he saw a very
high mountain. Now, there is no high mountain in Israel today, but there will be geological changes before the Messianic Kingdom.
Isaiah 2:2 says, “It shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of
the LORD’S house,” meaning the mountain that will have the Lord’s house,
the temple, on it, “shall be established in the top of the mountains.” That means it is going to be the highest mountain in the world. Ezekiel 20:40 says, “For in mine holy mountain, in the mountain of the height of Israel, saith the Lord GOD, there
shall all the house of Israel, all of them in the land, serve me.”
Zechariah 14:1-10 talks about the geological changes
that will be necessary. “Behold, the day of the LORD cometh.” ‘Day of the Lord’ is another name for the seven year tribulation period; and it is also
called ‘the time of Jacob’s trouble’ (Jer30:7). Verse 2, “I
will gather all nations against Jerusalem to battle ... then shall the LORD go forth, and fight against those nations.” The Messiah, God, returns with us and smites the armies of the Gentile nations, as we saw in Revelation
his feet shall stand in that day upon the mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east.”
That is also where God, Jesus, left the earth from (Acts 1:9-12). “And the mount
of Olives shall cleave in the midst thereof toward the east and toward the west, and there shall be a very great valley,” running east and west, “and half of the mountain shall
remove toward the north, and half of it toward the south ... and the LORD my God shall come,”
in the person of Messiah at the end of the tribulation period, “and all the saints,” that’s us, returning with Christ.
“All the land shall be turned as a plain from
Geba to Rimmon south of Jerusalem: and it [probably Jerusalem, not the plain] shall be lifted up, and inhabited in her place.” So all
the mountains around Jerusalem, and to the south of it in the land of Israel, will be lowered, and leveled into a plain, but
Jerusalem will raised up higher than it is now, and other mountains around the world will be lowered, not to a plain, but
until their peaks are lower than Jerusalem’s mountain.
After seeing the mountain, the next
thing Ezekiel saw as he got close to the temple compound was an angel standing by a wall. Ezekiel 40:3-5, “He
brought me thither, and, behold, there was a man, whose appearance was like the appearance of brass.”
That means he was an angel. He looked like a man, but he was shining brightly. Most angels don't have wings, or they wouldn't
look like men. Only cherubim and seraphim have wings.
He had, “a line of flax in his hand,” which was for measuring long distances, “and a measuring
reed,” which was for measuring short distances. “And
he stood in the gate, ... and behold a wall on the outside of the house round about, and in the man’s hand a measuring
reed of six cubits long by the cubit and an hand breadth.” There were three kinds
of cubits in Israel during that time, a short, medium, and a long cubit. The short cubit was about 15”, the medium cubit
was a short cubit plus one handbreadth, or about 18”, and the long cubit was a medium cubit plus one handbreadth, or
about 21”. If the medium cubit was the most commonly-used cubit, then the measuring stick the angel had was probably
of long cubits, which was the medium cubit “and an hand breadth,” Ez40:5. So to get a general idea how long things are as we go through this tour, just multiply the
cubits by 2; each long cubit equals almost two feet.
Can we go back and forth between heaven
are records of people physically going to heaven. The first is Enoch in Gen. 5:18-24. The second is Elijah in 2 Kings 2:1-11. These are the two witnesses who will return to earth in Revelation 11, prophesy against the antichrist, be killed, and then will rise from the dead and
be taken to heaven on the third day. With the exception of those taken in the rapture, nobody escapes the
And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment
fact of life in Heb. 9:27-28. So with God, it is possible to move between heaven and earth but it is clear
that as far as living people is concerned it doesn't happen often and only happens for God's ultimate purposes.
There are also many accounts such as Daniel and John who describe heaven via angelic messenger,
or a vision or other mental state. In a contemporary setting, there is the story of a little boy who was at death's door and
had a view of Jesus and heaven and an older sibling that he never knew about who had died prematurely. So there is also a
mental state or vision means of going back and forth and catching glimpses of heaven. This also, by all accounts, doesn't
happen very often and again is done for God's purposes.
there are people who have been resurrected - sometimes after days in the case of Lazarus - and who come back and live life
out on earth. We would believe that their soul went to the appropriate place in the meantime - either the paradise compartment
of the grave in the case of Lazarus (since Christ hadn't died yet) or heaven after Christ's resurrection for a righteous soul,
or the punishment side of the grave for every other soul. So a person's soul can make that transfer and come back if God allows
the body to be resurrected.
angels go back and forth all the time at the request of God or on their own.