Ezekiel 40:31 MEANING

Ezekiel 40:31
(31) Utter = Outer, and so in Ezekiel 40:37; Ezekiel 42:1; Ezekiel 42:3; Ezekiel 42:7; Ezekiel 42:14; Ezekiel 44:19; Ezekiel 46:20-21. In old English utter and outer appear to have been often interchanged.

Eight steps.--All the gates of the inner court (see Ezekiel 40:34; Ezekiel 40:37) had one more step than those of the outer, the inner court being raised so much more above the outer than the outer was above the precincts. The two sets together made up fifteen steps, the same number as led up in the later Temple from the court of the women to the court of Israel, and on which, according to Jewish tradition, the Levites stood to chant the fifteen Psalms (Psalms 120-134) called "Songs of Degrees."

Ezekiel 40:32-34 describe the east gate, and Ezekiel 40:35-37 the north gate, both exactly like the one already described.

40:1-49 The Vision of the Temple. - Here is a vision, beginning at ch. 40, and continued to the end of the book, ch. 48, which is justly looked upon to be one of the most difficult portions in all the book of God. When we despair to be satisfied as to any difficulty we meet with, let us bless God that our salvation does not depend upon it, but that things necessary are plain enough; and let us wait till God shall reveal even this unto us. This chapter describes two outward courts of the temple. Whether the personage here mentioned was the Son of God, or a created angel, is not clear. But Christ is both our Altar and our Sacrifice, to whom we must look with faith in all approaches to God; and he is Salvation in the midst of the earth, Ps 74:12, to be looked unto from all quarters.And the arches thereof were toward the outward court,.... And so not within the gate of the inward court, but on the outside of it, towards the outward court, at the front of the gate as you went in:

and palm trees were upon the posts thereof; of the gate, or of these arches or porticos; signifying that none should enter here but righteous persons; this is the gate of the righteous, Psalm 118:19; see Gill on Ezekiel 40:16;

and the going up to it had eight steps; one more than the ascent to the outward gates; some say eight more, and make these to be fifteen, answerable to the fifteen steps by which the Levites went up from the court of the women to the court of Israel (n), and sung upon them the fifteen songs of degrees, mentioned in the Psalms: but here are only eight; and denote the gradual progress of believers in faith and holiness; and that the nearer they come to the holy of holies, the greater their proficiency should be, and more advances made in the knowledge of divine things.

(n) Misna Succa, c. 5. sect. 4. Lipman. Tzurath Beth Hamikdash, sect. 24.

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