Summary: God, in Christ Jesus, removed all the distinctions of the temple by becoming sin for all and giving His own righteousness to all.
Isaiah 64:1-10 1- “Oh that thou wouldest rend the heavens, that thou wouldest come down, that the mountains might flow down at thy presence, 2- s [when] the melting fire burneth, the fire causeth the waters to boil, to make thy name known to thine adversaries, [that] the nations may tremble at thy presence! 3- When thou didst terrible things [which] we looked not for, thou camest down, the mountains flowed down at thy presence. 4- For since the beginning of the world [men] have not heard, nor perceived by the ear, neither hath the eye seen, O God, beside thee, [what] he hath prepared for him that waiteth for him. 5- Thou meetest him that rejoiceth and worketh righteousness, [those that] remember thee in thy ways: behold, thou art wroth; for we have sinned: in those is continuance, and we shall be saved. 6- But we are all as an unclean [thing], and all our righteousnesses [are] as filthy rags; and we all do fade as a leaf; and our iniquities, like the wind, have taken us away. 7- And [there is] none that calleth upon thy name, that stirreth up himself to take hold of thee: for thou hast hid thy face from us, and hast consumed us, because of our iniquities. 8- But now, O LORD, thou [art] our father; we [are] the clay, and thou our potter; and we all [are] the work of thy hand. 9- Be not wroth very sore, O LORD, neither remember iniquity for ever: behold, see, we beseech thee, we [are] all thy people. 10- Thy holy cities are a wilderness, Zion is a wilderness, Jerusalem a desolation.”
“All our righteousnesses [are] as filthy rags”
Matthew 22:16 “And they sent out unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Master, we know that thou art true, and teachest the way of God in truth, neither carest thou for any [man]: for thou regardest not the person of men.”
Mark 3:6 “And the Pharisees went forth, and straightway took counsel with the Herodians against him, how they might destroy him.”
Mark 12:13 “And they send unto him certain of the Pharisees and of the Herodians, to catch him in [his] words.”
Herodians where akin to the Sadducees; worshipers of Herod as the Messiah.
-Herod’s Temple covered 20% of Jerusalem.
-The floors were marble
-The walls were beautiful white limestone
-Many of its interior walls were paved in solid gold.
- As many as 17,000 priests served at the temple
In all of its beauty, Herod’s temple revealed something about the people’s relationship with God.
It also said something about the people’s relationship with each other.
If I were to pick one word to describe that statement, it would be “separation.”
There was separation between God and man, man and man, and even woman and man.
The temple was divided into three courts;
- The outer court was called the court of the Gentiles.
--A sign at the entrance to the second court of the temple
warned foreigners not to enter, under the penalty of death.
Those who were not descendents of Abraham, the uncircumcised, or those who did not keep the Torah could not enter the second court.
If they tried to enter, they would be stoned to death.
The Romans did not allow the Jews to carry out capital punishment except for this one offence.
This second, or center, court was divided into three sub-courts.
1-There was the court of women.
Like the name implies, Jewish women could go here as well as men and children.
2-The court of Israel, and only Jewish men could go in there.
3-Was the court of the priests. You had to be a priest to enter here.
Beyond the second court was the Holiest of Holies.
The Gentiles had their court.
The Jews had their court.
The Holiest of Holies was God’s court. Only He could dwell here.
It was surrounded by a veil so thick that a team of oxen could not tear it
No one except the high priest could enter the Holiest of Holies,
And he could do it only once a year at the Feast of Atonement.
If a Gentile went into the court of the Jews, man would kill him.
If a person went into the Holiest of Holies unlawfully, God would
The temple was a picture of the relationship between God and
man and between man and man before Christ came.
There was separation in every place.
There was separation between God and man, Jew and Gentile, and even man and woman.
Yet, Jesus, by dying and rising from the grave, tore down all of these walls
Ephesians 2:11-14, 19 “Wherefore remember, that ye [being] in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; 12- That at that time ye were without Christ, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without God in the world: 13- But now in Christ Jesus ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Christ. 14- For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition [between us]; 19- Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God;”