The Millennial Temple: the Altar of Sacrifice – Part 5

Ezekiel 43 Altar of Sacrifice

The altar of sacrifices’ design and statutes for its sanctification are given in Ezekiel 43:13-27.  The altar sits in the inner court before the temple proper (Ezek. 40:47).  The base is one-and-a-half feet high.  It is surrounded by a one-and-a-half foot wide trench or gutter with a nine inch high top edge, undoubtedly for draining blood and water (v. 13; cf. 1 Kin. 18:32, 34-35).  The base supports three tiers, one on top of another.  The first is three feet high and twenty-four feet square (v. 14).  The second is six feet high and twenty-one feet square (vv. 14, 17).  This tier also has a gutter with a nine inch top edge (vv. 14, 17).  The top tier is the hearthstone, measuring six feet high and eighteen feet square.  Four horns will extend from the top of its corners (vv. 15-16).  Eastward facing steps ascend the altar (v. 17).  This creates the first of many contrasts with the Mosaic sacrificial system, within which a staircase climbing the altar was prohibited (Ex. 20:26).  This altar will be the largest, measuring approximately thirty feet square at its base and eighteen feet in height.  Thomas Constable noted that the design makes the altar resemble a small ziggurat.[1]

The cleansing of the altar calls for the first animal sacrifices in the Millennium.  This is yet another parallel with the Tabernacle and Solomon’s temple in the purification of their sacrificial altars (Ex. 29:36-37; Lev. 8:15-16; 2 Ch. 7:9).  On the first of seven days, a young bull is to be brought before the Zadokite priests so that some of the blood can be applied to the altar’s four horns, the corners and the border (vv. 19-20).  On the second day, an unblemished male goat is to be sacrificed and used to cleanse the altar in the same manner as the bull (v. 22).  On all seven days a goat, a young bull and a ram will be prepared as an offering (vv. 21, 23, 25).  This process purifies, consecrates and makes atonement for the altar (v. 26).  It will now be ready to receive the burnt and peace offerings, so that God may accept the people (v. 27).

[1] Constable, Dr. Constable’s Notes on Ezekiel (Garland, TX: Sonic Light, 2015), 231.

Comments

  1. Nice work Matt!

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