The holy portions for the sanctuary priests (Ezek 48:9-48:10)

“The portion

That you shall set apart

For Yahweh

Shall be

Twenty-five thousand cubits

In length.

It shall be

Twenty thousand cubits

In width.

These shall be

The allotments

Of the holy portion.

The priests shall have

An allotment measuring

Twenty-five thousand cubits

On the northern side.

It shall be

Ten thousand cubits

In width

On the western side.

It shall be

Ten thousand cubits

In width

On the eastern side.

It shall be

Twenty-five thousand cubits

In length

On the southern side.

The sanctuary

Of Yahweh

Shall be

In the middle of it.”

Ezekiel clearly delineated this sacred territory that was set apart for Yahweh. This section was to be 25,000 cubits or about a mile long and 20.000 cubits wide or about ¾ of a mile wide. The priests shall have a section 25,000 by 10,000 cubits on the northern and western side. Then there would be another 25,000 by 10,000 cubits section on the southern and eastern side. Right in the middle of these two sections would be the sanctuary of Yahweh.

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The seven-month search and burial (Ezek 39:12-39:16)

“‘The house of Israel

Shall spend

Seven months

Burying them,

In order to cleanse

The land.

All the people

Of the land

Shall bury them.

It will bring them honor

On the day

That I show my glory.’

Says Yahweh God.

‘They will set apart men

To pass through

The land continually.

They will bury

Any invaders who remain

On the face of the land.

It will then be cleansed.

They will make their search.

For seven months.

As the searchers

Pass through the land,

Anyone who sees

A human bone

Shall set up

A sign by it,

Until the buriers

Have buried it

In the Valley of Hamon-gog.

A city Hamonah

Is there also.

Thus,

They shall cleanse

The land.”

The house of Israel was to spend 7 months burying the men with Gog, so that they could cleanse the land of Israel and its people. These grave diggers would gain honor on the day when Yahweh was going to show his glory. These body searchers would be set apart to pass through the land continually. They would bury any remains they found. Anyone who saw a human bone was to set up a sign by it, until these buriers buried them in the Valley of Hamon-gog or the city Hamonah, next to it. Thus, the land would be cleansed by removing these dead bodies in 7 months.

The legend of King David (Sir 47:2-47:5)

“As the fat is set apart

From the offering of well-being,

So David was set apart

From the Israelites.

He played with lions

As though they were young goats.

He played with bears

As though they were lambs of the flock.

In his youth

Did he not kill a giant?

Did he take away the people’s disgrace?

Did he not whirl the stone in the sling?

Did he not strike down

The boasting Goliath?

He called on the Lord,

The Most High.

He gave him strength

To his right hand.

He struck down a mighty warrior.

He exalted the power of his people.”

Sirach sets out to portray David as a super hero, not just a holy famous man. He was set apart from all Israelites, like the fat at a sacrificial offering. As a young boy, he played with lions and bears as if they were goats and lambs. Then he killed the giant Goliath with his sling shot as found in 1 Samuel, chapter 17. He did this because he had called on the name of the Lord, the Most High God. Thus he exalted the power of his people with all these exploits. This was super David. It is interesting to note that Sirach did not consider the first king of Israel, King Saul, as a famous holy man, only this second king of Israel, the super hero King David.