Biblegateway Verse of the Day

Part 1: The Sacred Portion (Ezekiel 45)

by Benjamin H. Liles

          Sometimes certain scriptures are easier for me to discern and teach on, while others such as this chapter of Ezekiel take time in prayer and in the wisdom of God. Therefore, when I say this it's from His view and not my own. Even though God talks to His people of Israel mostly in the Old Testament, I believe He means all of Israel and not a portion of. Within Revelation He does this: "And I heard the number of them that were sealed, a hundred and forty and four thousand, sealed out of every tribe of the children of Israel" (Revelation 7:4). Of this number twelve thousand are sealed within every tribe of Israel giving us a full 144,000 people sealed by God.

          So going back to this forty-fifth chapter of Ezekiel we read, "When you divide the land by lot as an inheritance, you must set aside a donation to the Lord, a holy portion of the land...There will be another area 8⅓ miles long and 3⅓ miles wide for the Levites who minister in the temple; it will be their possession for towns to live in...My princes will no longer oppress My people but give the rest of the land to the house of Israel according to their tribes" (Ezekiel 45:1-8, Holman Christian Standard).

          I know within certain English texts the units of measurements are different, but for those of us who don't know Hebrew the translators of this particular translation want English speaking people to understand what those actual measurements are, not in the style of cubits. Either way the intent is clear: the land is divided up almost to an exact number for the tribes to be encamped before the holy God of Israel, before the renewed and restored Temple of God (in this case, the sanctuary).

          Considering the fact over these past few years I have delivered the gospel of Jesus Christ in a myriad of ways, we can easily conclude the "prince" in Ezekiel 45:7 being mentioned is the same One who went to the cross and bore our sins, as well as our death and shame. If He did not do this on our behalf, as the psalmist declares, "If you, O LORD, kept track of iniquities, then who, O Lord, could stand?" (Psalm 130:3, Berean Study).

          I look back on my life and how far I have come, even in my walk with the holy God of Israel through whom Christ intercedes with on my behalf I could never stand before Him. He is so holy and pure no sin can stand in His presence! So, it is for that reason Jesus Christ of Nazareth, born in the city of David (Bethlehem), went before His Father in those final hours offering Himself up so we can become the portion of God.

          What is it God declares in His word in regards to people being holy and just and pure? "The LORD is my portion, says my soul; therefore will I hope in him," says both the psalmist and the writer of Lamentations (Psalm 73:26; Lamentations 3:24). Yes, He is our portion. But I think that God, being the jealous God that He is, desires us to be His portion before all of creation. Why else would He say this, "This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, declares the Lord. I will put My Laws in their hearts and inscribe them on their minds" (Hebrews 10:16, quoting Jeremiah 31:33, Berean Study).

          Friend, I do this as best I can with very little training and help from others aside from the Lord on high. I put this all together in the hopes and prayer that what He shows me within His word makes sense to you. His love and grace are for you, not His wrath. If His sense of justice and wrath were the same as our sense was we would all be cut off from Him forever. No one would inhabit Heaven alongside Him, save for Jesus Christ. But we have His word and His promise He will do miraculous things within us and toward us. But we have to see how much and far we sinned in His sight.

          It is why I sometimes take so long to put together articles, especially over the Old Testament as some passages are truly are. One would have to have immense training, discipline and knowledge of the Holy One to truly see what He says and how to discern His will. So, the question is thus, "How can we know the will of God? And how do we obtain this?" First, we obtain it through the shed blood of Jesus Christ who went to the cross on our behalf. Without Him doing that we have no hope of being brought forth from the grave as He has done. As for knowing His will it is to do as Jesus and the other disciples: reading the word of God, both in the New Testament as well as the Old. Our understanding and stance before a holy God hinges upon our faith, for He alone is victorious over the grave and death. But we ought to also fear God as well, for Christ Himself said, "Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Instead, fear the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell" (Matthew 10:28, Berean Study).

          I pray this helps and shows the love and grace of God for sinful man so we can cleanse ourselves through Him who died in our place. I do this all in the name of Jesus Christ, Lord and Savior. Amen.

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