The Holiness of God.
“All the walls were decorated with carvings of cherubim, each with two faces, and there was a carving of a palm tree between each of the cherubim. One face—that of a man—looked toward the palm tree on one side. The other face—that of a young lion—looked toward the palm tree on the other side. The figures were carved all along the inside of the Temple, from the floor to the top of the walls, including the outer wall of the sanctuary.” – Ezekiel 41:18-20 NLT
Everything in God’s future Temple will have a purpose and a reason for its existence. There will be nothing left to chance. Every detail has been worked out beforehand by God. Every measurement has a reason behind it, whether we can see it or not. Even the width of the doors leading from the outside into the vestibule, then into the Holy Place, and then into the the Holy of Holies are sized increasingly smaller for a reason. Like the divine designer He is, God is focusing the attention of the worshiper onto the most important room in the entire building – the Holy of Holies. Everything points to that place. Everything in the Temple reinforces the Holy of Holies and the One who will dwell there. The entire Temple is about the holiness, the set-apartness of God. The walls inside the Temple will be covered in wood paneling, carved with alternating cherubs and palm trees. Each cherub will have two faces, the face of a man and the face of a lion, one looking left and the other right. These creatures were there for a reason. We can see elsewhere in Scripture that cherubim were used by God to protect His holiness. In the book of Exodus, in the instructions given by God for the construction of the Tabernacle. we are told of the two golden cherubim that were to be placed on top of the Ark of the Covenant, their wings spread out over the Ark. “The cherubim will face each other and look down on the atonement cover. With their wings spread above it, they will protect it” (Exodus 25:20 NLT). In the Tabernacle, the curtain that separated the Holy Place from the Holy of Holies was to have cherubim embroidered on it.
In this future Temple, the paneled walls will feature a repeated pattern of cherubim and palm trees. The cherubim represent protection and security. The palms represent life and prosperity. In God, both come together as one. Holiness, health, and happiness – all are realized in God. There is no real life or prosperity apart from Him. And it is His holiness or set-apartness that makes it all possible. Only God can provide true life and prosperity. And in the future kingdom that Ezekiel is getting a glimpse of, God will rule and reign through His Son Jesus Christ and His holiness will permeate everything. He will have protected His holiness all the way until that day, preserving His name and His integrity and insuring that His divine plan is fulfilled so that we might have life and prosperity in Him. The key to it all? His holiness. There is no other god, but Him. He alone is God.
Father, some day the Temple we see described here to Ezekiel will be built. And when that day comes, it will mean that Your plan has been fulfilled. Your program will have been completed. And Your holiness will fill the world. There will be no more gods, no more unfaithfulness, and no more sin. I look forward to that day. In the meantime, help me remember just how holy You are and that it is Your holiness that makes life and prosperity possible, even now. Amen
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men