Using the north and south gates (Ezek 46:9-46:10)

“When the people

Of the land

Come before Yahweh,

At the appointed festivals,

Whoever enters

By the north gate

To worship

Shall go out

By the south gate.

Whoever enters

By the south gate

Shall go out

By the north gate.

They shall not return

By way of the gate

By which they entered.

But they shall go out

Straight ahead.

When they go in,

The prince shall

Come in with them.

When they go out,

He shall go out.”

Interesting enough, Yahweh, via Ezekiel, had a sense of crowd control for these religious festivals. Although you could enter from either the north or south side gates, you could not turn around. You had to go straight ahead. If you came in on the north side, you went out the south side, and vice versa. Here the prince came in with the people, while just earlier he had a special entrance.

The role of the prince in these offerings (Ezek 45:16-45:17)

“All the people

Of the land

Shall join

With the prince in Israel,

In making this offering.

But this shall be

The obligation

Of the prince

Regarding

The burnt offerings,

The grain offerings,

The drink offerings,

At the festivals,

The new moons,

The Sabbath,

All the appointed festivals

Of the house of Israel.

He shall provide

The sin offerings,

The grain offerings,

The burnt offerings,

The peace offerings,

To make atonement

For the house of Israel.”

The prince in Israel would be responsible for providing the animals and grains for the sacrifices and sin offerings at the various festivals. All the people of the land would join with the prince for these offerings. However, it was the obligation of the prince to make sure that there were animals, grains, and oils available for these burnt offerings, grain offerings, and the drink offerings at all these religious festivals, including the new moons and the Sabbath. The prince was to provide for these various offerings, including the peace offerings, in order to make atonement for the house of Israel.

The Zadok priests as teachers and judges (Ezek 44:23-44:24)

“They shall teach

My people

The difference

Between the holy

And the common.

They shall show them

How to distinguish

Between the unclean

And the clean.

In a controversy,

They shall act

As judges.

They shall decide it

According to my judgments.

They shall keep

My laws,

As well as my statutes

Regarding

All my appointed festivals.

They shall keep

My Sabbath holy.”

These Zadok priests would teach Yahweh’s people the difference between the holy and the common, as well as how to distinguish between the unclean and the clean. In any controversy, they would act as judges. They would decide all these cases according to Yahweh’s judgments. They were to keep all Yahweh’s laws and statutes regarding the appointed religious festivals. Finally, they were to keep the Sabbath holy.