The open land use in the city (Ezek 48:17-48:20)

“The city shall have

Open land.

It shall be

On the north side,

Two hundred fifty cubits,

On the south side,

Two hundred fifty cubits,

On the east side

Two hundred fifty cubits,

On the west side

Two hundred fifty cubits.

The remainder of the length

Alongside the holy portion

Shall be

Ten thousand cubits

To the east,

Ten thousand cubits

To the west.

It shall be alongside

The holy portion.

Its produce shall be

Food for the workers

Of the city.

The workers of the city,

From all the tribes of Israel,

Shall cultivate it.

The whole portion

That you shall set apart

Shall be

Twenty-five thousand cubits square.

That is

The holy portion together

With the property of the city.”

Yahweh, via Ezekiel, had plans for the area around the holy land with the Temple in it. The city would have 250 cubits of open space land on each side of the property, about 400 feet on the east, west, north, and south sides. The remainder of the land alongside the holy portion would be 10,000 cubits or about 16,000 feet on both the east and west side for producing food for the city workers. These city workers, from all the different tribes of Israel, would cultivate and farm this land. The total amount of land set aside for the holy portion and the city land around it would be 25,000 cubits square or about 40,000 square feet.

The priests and the sanctuary land (Ezek 45:3-45:4)

“In the holy district,

You shall measure off

A section

Twenty-five thousand cubits long,

Ten thousand cubits wide.

This shall be

The sanctuary,

The most holy place.

It shall be

A holy portion

Of the land.

It shall be

For the priests,

Who minister

In the sanctuary.

They approach Yahweh

To minister

To him.

It shall be

A place

For their houses,

A holy place

For the sanctuary.”

This 25,000 by 20,000-cubit area was divided into 2 parts. This first part included the space for the Zadok priests and the sanctuary itself so that it was 25,000 by 10,000 cubits. The sanctuary, the most holy place, the 500-square cubit building would be in this half of the holy land of Jerusalem. Besides the sanctuary, this area included the houses for the Zadok priests who ministered to Yahweh in this sanctuary. Thus, the holy priests would live next to the holy place, where they would be cultic ministers.

The measurement of the inner court (Ezek 40:47-40:47)

“He measured the court,

One hundred cubits deep,

One hundred cubits wide,

A square.

The altar was

In front of the temple.”

Then the bronze man measured this inner court. Sure enough, it was square, 100 cubits or 160 feet on every side. The altar was in front of the temple.

 

The preparation tables for the burnt offerings (Ezek 40:42-40:43)

“There were also

Four tables

Of hewn stone

For the burnt offerings,

One cubit and a half long,

One cubit and a half wide,

One cubit high.

The instruments

Were to be laid there.

These instruments

Were to slaughter

The burnt offerings

As well as the sacrifices.

These were pegs,

One handbreadth long.

They were fastened

All around the inside.

The flesh

Of the offerings

Was to be laid

On the tables.”

There were 4 hewn stone tables for the burnt offerings, that were 1½ cubits long and wide. These tables were a little less than 3 feet square tables. However, these stone tables were only 1 cubit high, about 18 inches high, not very high. The instruments of slaughter for the burnt offerings and sacrifices were these 4-inch-long pegs that were all fastened together. The flesh of the animals was to lay on these stone tables.

The gathering with Ezra (Neh 8:1-8:3)

“All the people gathered together into the square before the Water Gate. They told the scribe Ezra to bring the book of the Law of Moses which Yahweh had given to Israel. Accordingly, the priest Ezra brought the law before the assembly, both men and women, and all who could hear with understanding. This was on the first day of the seventh month. He read from it facing the square before the Water Gate from early morning until midday, in the presence of the men and the women and those who could understand it. The ears of all the people were attentive to the book of the law.”

All of a sudden, out of nowhere Ezra himself shows up to read the Law of Moses. Ezra had not come with the original settlers. He came to Jerusalem about 70 years later, a few years before Nehemiah. The first person narrative of Nehemiah seems to end. This also assumes that the Water Gate is complete or that there is some kind of gate where people can meet. Perhaps this was after the rebuilding of the wall and the gates. This was on the southeast side of Jerusalem. At this assembly were both men and women, as well as those who could understand, which may refer to children who could reason. Ezra faced the square and read from early morning to midday. Everyone was attentive to the Law of Moses. We are not sure what part of the Pentateuch he read, probably not Genesis or Exodus. More than likely it was Deuteronomy that seems to be their favorite book. This was the 1st day of the 7th month or the New Year gathering time. This author noted that they were all attentive.

 

The most holy place (2 Chr 3:8-3:9)

“King Solomon made the most holy place. Its length corresponded to the width of the house. It was twenty cubits and its width was twenty cubits. He overlaid it with six hundred talents of fine gold. The weight of the nails was fifty shekels of gold. He overlaid the upper chambers with gold.”

The room for the most holy place was the full width of the building, not that big at a mere 30 feet wide. In fact, it was square 30 feet pm every side. This was where the Ark of the Covenant would stay. There was not a mention of the nave to the holy place that was in 1 Kings, chapter 6. However, this inner most holy place was overlaid with lots of gold, 600 talents of gold, about $600,000,000.00 worth of gold. There were in fact golden nails, worth about $25,000.00 each. The mention of the value of this gold was added here as opposed to 1 Kings that did not mention its value.