One of the first events predicted to occur in the early years of the Kingdom Age is the fulfillment of the final ingathering of all the scattered Jews back to the land of Israel. In our generation, the rebirth of the nation of Israel as foretold by many of the prophets, represents only a partial return of the Jews to their land (see The Regathering of Israel). The ultimate return of the Jews to Israel won’t occur until after Christ comes back and sets up His Kingdom. Moses was actually the first to predict this event, as was recorded in Deut. 30:1-5. This prophecy looks forward to the time when all the Jews who turn from sin, and who survive the Tribulation and are judged by Christ as worthy to enter the Kingdom (see previous sections about the Kingdom Age), will be regathered back to Israel. In addition, the prophet Isaiah said that the Lord would command the nations that every person of Jewish descent should be immediately returned to their land regardless of where they may have been scattered (Isaiah 49:22). Thus, from the very beginning of Israel in the Kingdom, the Lord will cause the complete fulfillment of all the prophecies made from the day of Abraham onward concerning the regathering Israel back to their land.
These are the predictions that the Lord had Moses write down in Deuteronomy thousands of years ago:
“And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the Lord thy God hath driven thee,
And shalt return unto the Lord thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul;
That then the Lord thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the Lord thy God hath scattered thee.
If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the Lord thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:
And the Lord thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers.
Centuries later, Isaiah added to Moses’ prophecy by explaining just how the return of the Jews would be accomplished:
“Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will lift up mine hand to the nations, and set up my standard to the peoples; and they shall bring thy sons in their arms, and thy daughters shall be carried upon their shoulders.”
The people and nations who survive the Tribulation of the Last Days and then go on to enter the Kingdom Age will also be the main force to bring the remaining scattered Jews back to the Promised Land. In the days after Christ’s Return the world will completely realize the truth of the Bible and everyone will finally know why the Jewish people were scattered from their land thousands of years before. Isaiah says that one of the Lord’s first acts during this time will be to command the nations to gather the Jews out of every country which they were previously living and bring them all back to their own land to establish a new nation of Israel. The result of this massive ingathering will be similar to the Exodus from Egypt, but on a worldwide scale, and in this case with the full support and cooperation of all nations. Israel in the Kingdom will be the true home of all believing Jews throughout the world, regardless of where they were previously scattered or living.
However, the state of Israel in the Kingdom will form a new nation in that day, which will be nothing like the state of Israel today. In our day, Israel is based primarily on secularism, which is built on a base of Judaism. They have also built a strong military and economic foundation that protects them from the surrounding hostile nations. Israel has structured their government and very existence, not on following the peaceful ways of Christ, but on building superior capabilities just to survive in a Middle East full of animosity and hatred toward the Jews. In addition, the majority in Israel today are adamantly against Christ and believe they are following Jewish traditions, which is a belief held by even those that are more secular in nature. Many Israelis call Christians (as well as people from other nations) the goyim, which is a derogatory term that refers to someone who is not Jewish and therefore beneath them.
The power, pride, and unbelief of Israel today will be brought low when Christ returns. In fact, the Bible says that when the final state of Israel in the Kingdom is established, they will initially experience strong repentance and regret, and loathe themselves because of the evil they have done in the past. Ezekiel predicts:
“Then shall ye remember your own evil ways, and your doings that were not good, and shall lothe yourselves in your own sight for your iniquities and for your abominations.”
Moses predicted in the verses quoted previously, that Israel would not return to their land in blessing until they repented of their sins and obeyed the Lord. This self-loathing, repentant attitude will help to totally change their lives and status with the Lord, as well as change their position among the nations. In tomorrow’s world, Israel in the Kingdom will no longer be sitting on the brink of annihilation – surrounded by countries that want to destroy them – but they will be secure with the Lord living in their land. In fact, the Lord predicts that all the riches of the nations will flow into Israel and make that relatively small country the most blessed nation on the face of the Earth (Isa. 60:1-22). The following two sets of verses speak of these blessings to come:
“Surely the isles shall wait for me, and the ships of Tarshish first, to bring thy sons from far, their silver and their gold with them, unto the name of the Lord thy God, and to the Holy One of Israel, because he hath glorified thee.
And the sons of strangers shall build up thy walls, and their kings shall minister unto thee: for in my wrath I smote thee, but in my favour have I had mercy on thee.
Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought.”
“Whereas thou has been forsaken and hated, so that no man went through thee, I will make thee an eternal excellency, a joy of many generations.
Thou shalt also suck the milk of the Gentiles, and shalt suck the breast of kings: and thou shalt know that I the Lord am thy Saviour and thy Redeemer, the mighty One of Jacob.
For brass I will bring gold, and for iron I will bring silver, and for wood brass, and for stones iron: I will also make thy officers peace, and thine exactors righteousness.
Violence shall no more be heard in thy land, wasting nor destruction within thy borders; but thou shalt call thy walls Salvation, and thy gates Praise.”
These prophecies foretell a time when the Jews will return to their land and be blessed by all the nations. Their leaders will come to Israel and bring their gold and silver and other riches to bless the people of God. The wealth of the nations will help to rebuild Israel from the destruction of Armageddon and make that nation the premier country on the face of the Earth.
In addition, the Bible predicts that Jerusalem will become the primary city in all the world. In one of the most well-known verses concerning the Millennium, Isaiah predicted that Christ will actually set up Jerusalem as not just the capital of Israel, but as the capital of the entire world. From that one fateful city, the Lord is going to rule over the entire Earth with righteousness and justice. Contrast this with Jerusalem today, which is predicted to become a “cup of trembling” for the entire world as the Last Days unfold (Zech 12:2). For Israel in the Kingdom, however, these conditions will forever change for the better:
“And it shall come to pass in the last days, that the mountain of the Lord’s house shall be established in the top of the mountains, and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow unto it.
“And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.
“And he shall judge among the nations, and shall rebuke many peoples; and they shall beat their swords into plowshares, and their spears into pruning hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more.”
This prophecy in Isaiah talks about building the “mountain” of the Lord’s house. A mountain used in this way means the seat of power and authority. The Lord will be the highest authority in Israel and in the entire Earth. Jesus will be the final judge of all nations and peoples, and he will teach them of his righteous ways.
Can you imagine, the God of the universe will actually be living with his people on the Earth and making Jerusalem His home? That is exactly what the prophets say will happen in the Kingdom Age. All the people of the world will be able to come and see the Lord firsthand. Israel in the Kingdom will become the major destination and Jerusalem the primary city to visit. Children will grow up and discover that there really is a God and that he’s not hidden or difficult to reach, but anyone can actually go and worship Him!
In that day the governments of the world will also have Christ as their final authority and guide. He will literally serve as the King of the world, reigning from the city of Jerusalem. With His authority and power in full control over the affairs of this planet, the nations will never again resort to armed conflict to resolve their problems. International disputes will be solved righteously and fairly through the council of Jesus and His representatives. The nations will learn of his new peaceful ways, even as they work to rebuild their war-torn countries. The result will be the making of a genuine paradise on Earth the likes of which we can barely even imagine today. Israel in the Kingdom will truly bring blessing and peace to all people and all countries!
Notice also that Isaiah’s prophecy indicates that while the nations of the Middle East are burning the weapons of the armies who attacked them in the final battles (see Ezekiel 39:9-10), the rest of the world will be converting any remaining armaments into harmless tools for farming. In all likelihood, all the flammable items will probably be burned for energy and the metals and other salvageable things will be recycled and converted into other items for use in peaceful pursuits. Isaiah says that they will turn the metal of military weaponry into the metal implements of farming and agriculture; thus converting the instruments of killing and death into the tools for food and life. Isaiah 2:4 can be found written on the wall near the entrance to the United Nations, but it is a hollow entreaty to peace from a sinful world filled with violence. The true fulfillment of this prophecy will only come to pass when Christ returns and sets up His Kingdom.
By contrast, the world today actually sacrifices food production for the pursuit of arms – even to the extent of letting many people go hungry or starve. Countries like Iran and North Korea (and many others) let their people remain poor and hungry in order to build more arms. This chronic malnourishment of the people causes disease and death, but still the pursuit of military might continues. In the Kingdom Age, the opposite will occur. The nations will have no need for arms or militaries. They will focus all their work on the things that really matter.
In reality there’s no scientific reason why the Earth can’t support its current population without starvation. In our evil world, however, many governments are more concerned with building and selling weapons than in feeding the poor and needy. Food supplies are left to rot or are diverted to the ruling class rather than sending them to areas of need. As a result of the insane politics of an unquenchable military machine, millions of people starve each year and billions more live in run-down slums which rarely or never receive the aid they need.
In the kingdom age, the Lord will see to it that every person has his needs met. Without huge defense budgets draining the economies of the nations, world prosperity will quickly become greater than at any other time in history and even greater than we can imagine. From the smallest of nations to the largest, as they follow the Lord’s ways prosperity and peace will be the norm, not the exception.
In the case of the nation of Israel in the Kingdom, this prosperity will quickly transform them into the premier nation on the face of the earth. Actually, Isaiah indicates that not one, but three Middle Eastern nations will become the premier nations in the Kingdom Age:
“In that day shall there be a highway out of Egypt to Assyria, and the Assyrian shall come into Egypt, and the Egyptian into Assyria, and the Egyptians shall serve with the Assyrians.
“In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst of the land.
“Whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt, my people, and Assyria, the work of my hands, and Israel, mine inheritance.”
Can you believe this incredible reversal predicted by Isaiah in these verses? Israel and her oldest and most bitter of enemies – Egypt and Assyria – are destined to become the closest of allies in the Kingdom Age! In fact, the Lord himself says that he will bless Egypt and Assyria right along with Israel in those days. From Mesopotamia to Israel and through the Nile River region and Northern Africa, the Middle East will blossom and bloom into spectacular prosperity, because the Lord will be there!
This prophecy emphasizes how different the world will become without sin running rampant and destroying everything. Though these three countries have had a history of thousands of years of hatred toward each other, when Christ returns all the old animosities will be forgiven and forgotten. These three nations will together become the most prestigious and prosperous countries in all the Earth and examples for the rest of the world to follow. Isaiah even predicts that a major highway will be constructed to provide a link between these three countries. People setting out on a pilgrimage to see the Lord will no doubt use this highway as they travel from the surrounding continents toward Israel. Many more highways will be built leading like a spiderweb out from Israel into the surrounding nations and continents. People will be traveling constantly to reach Israel and see the Lord in the Kingdom.
They will travel not only for business and trade, but also for worship, celebrations, special feast days, for divine council, and even out of plain curiosity. In fact, it seems that many, if not all of the Old Testament Jewish feasts will actually be reinstituted in the Kingdom Age. How do we know this? For one thing, Zechariah predicted that any nation refusing to come up to Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles would be judged and suffer a drought. From this prophecy we can at least conclude that one of the holy days will be required for not only Israel to observe, but for the whole world to obey. This is what Zechariah predicts:
“And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles.
And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, the Lord of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain.
And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith the Lord will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.
This shall be the punishment of Egypt, and the punishment of all nations that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles.”
In addition, since the Feast of Tabernacles was only a part of the overall Temple worship services prescribed by Moses, this may also be a hint that the entire Old Testament ceremony of worship will be reestablished when Christ returns.
In fact, we can already infer from prophecy that when the Temple is rebuilt in the Last Days, which is predicted to occur before Christ returns, the Jews will reinstitute full Temple worship including the sacrifice of animals and the celebration of feast and holy days. This can be concluded from the predictions of Daniel concerning the last seven years of this age (Dan. 9:27; Dan. 12:11) and from the teachings of Jesus on the End Times (Matt. 24:15-22). These prophecies indicate that when the Abomination of Desolation occurs near the midpoint of the final seven years, the Antichrist will stop the sacrifices and oblations and present himself as God in the Temple (for more information on this, see the section entitled The Abomination of Desolation).
The return to a literal form of Temple worship may seem foreign to Christians today, because the Temple has not been a part of Jewish life for thousands of years. Some Christian authors have even written that the prophecies dealing with Temple worship in the Kingdom are only symbolic of the perfection of the coming Millennium. Some even say that the New Testament replaced the Old Testament methods of worship, so the predicted worship in the Millennial Temple is just symbolic and not to be taken literally.
However, while it is true that the judgment Israel suffered in 70 AD destroyed the Temple and stopped the accompanying sacrificial worship, it is not correct to say that Jesus himself came to destroy the law and its ceremony.
In one respect, every law within the Old Testament style of worship was ultimately designed to point directly to Christ in a symbolic way. Secondly, it was God himself who originally instituted these rules, and he actually stated that they would stand forever. Thus, the basic practice of Temple worship can’t be construed to be gone or abolished forever – just temporarily suspended.
Jesus even said plainly that he came not to destroy the law but to fulfill it (Matt. 5:17-19). In fact, the Lord used the sacrifices and holy days of the Old Testament to help his followers better understand his mission and purpose. When Jesus died on the cross, his death could then be understood to be the supreme Passover sacrifice for sins – something that all the animal sacrifices in history could not accomplish, because they were only designed to be examples of Christ’s ultimate sacrifice.
But this brings us to another aspect we need to consider: whether the reestablishment of the true Feast of Tabernacles as it’s going to be observed in the Kingdom Age also implies the reestablishment of Temple worship, including animal sacrifices. A major part of every Jewish feast also included some form of animal sacrifice in its regulations. It would therefore seem plausible that if all the high holy day ceremonies are to be reestablished by Israel in the Kingdom, then we should also admit that there’s at least a possibly that sacrifices will be a part of the worship.
A return to sacrifices is even harder for some to accept than merely bringing back the observance of annual feasts and holy days. In many ways, the Old Testament is now looked upon as being part of the old law, which was supplanted by the New Testament of liberty and forgiveness through Christ. No aspect of Israel’s Temple worship rituals relates to the strictness of the law more than that of animal sacrifices. Many theologians say that if the death of Jesus did anything to the Old Testament style of worship, it made the necessity of animal sacrifices obsolete. How then can we even dare to think that sacrifices may be a part of worship for Israel in the Kingdom?
An alternative position, of course, might be that the full form of Old Testament worship won’t really be reinstituted at all, at least not in its entirety. In other words, similar to the way the Jews currently follow the observance of their holy days, even without the Temple or its accompanying sacrifices, they could also do likewise in the Kingdom Age, but with a new Temple being present in Jerusalem. However, before we accept or reject the idea of the return of full Temple worship, including sacrifices, we need to consider a unique prophecy contained in Ezekiel chapters 40 through 48. Although a thorough study of all nine chapters is beyond the scope of this discussion, we can quickly get an idea of what Ezekiel is talking about by considering only some of the most important passages within his prophecy.
First of all we should realize that chapter 40 of Ezekiel immediately follows the great End Times prophecies concerning Israel as found in chapters 34 through 39. Another important point is that the last of these prophecies in Ezekiel brought us chronologically through time up to the point of Russia’s attack and the battle of Armageddon. Chapter 39 finally ends with the description of the subsequent cleanup at the beginning of the kingdom age, which we studied previously.
Since Ezekiel chapters 34-39 were basically chronological with respect to what will happen in the Last Days, we might also be able to assume that the predictions in 40-48 continue the chronology further into the future. If this is indeed the case, then we could also expect to find in those chapters some description of what the Kingdom Age will be like, especially with regard to the nation of Israel in the Kingdom. The fact is, this is precisely what the prophecy is all about.
The prophecy in Ezekiel chapter 40 begins like many of the other visions Ezekiel experienced during his ministry, but this time with a supernatural trip to a future nation of Israel. At this point in his life, the prophet was being held captive in Babylon along with the surviving Jews after the southern kingdom of Judah was defeated and swept away in the wake of the Babylonian attack in 587 BC. In his vision, Ezekiel initially finds himself set down upon a high mountain which looks upon a city below, presumably the city of Jerusalem. After being brought down to the city itself, the prophet meets a man (definitely an angel since he is said to have the appearance of bronze). The angel has a measuring reed in his hand, and he instructs Ezekiel to carefully record everything that he is about to see and experience.
The angel then begins to use his measuring stick to stake out the dimensions of an elaborate structure within the city. Over the course of the next three chapters, Ezekiel records the results of an exhaustive architectural tour of a future Jewish Temple along with its surrounding walls and structures. So detailed does this description become that the angel even has Ezekiel carefully write down the dimensions of every wall, and also record the positioning of every last object that will be placed within it.
In order to understand what particular Temple this prophecy is referring to we must first recognize two important details about Ezekiel’s description. First, this could not have been a vision of an existing Temple in Jerusalem, because at this point in Ezekiel’s life the Temple that Solomon had built centuries before was in ruins from the Babylonian attack. Secondly, it also couldn’t have been an accurate prediction of what the Temple was to look like after the Babylonian captivity, because history tells us that when the Temple was rebuilt the structural details were quite different from what the angel described here. Even when the Temple was remodeled in the days of Herod it’s design was considerably different from Ezekiel’s description.
Then to what Temple is Ezekiel’s prophecy referring? There are several theories. One version is that the whole vision is just symbolic, that Ezekiel was just trying to encourage the Jews who were being held captive in Babylon by promising them a future day of restoration with a rebuilt Temple. Another interpretation is that the entire prophecy is merely describing the future establishment of the church and only using the Temple as a spiritual metaphor of the church in Heaven.
However, both of these theories fall short of the truth when we consider just how carefully the angel measured each part of the Temple. The prophecy is simply too long and involved with intricate and detailed measurements to believe that the whole thing has no literal meaning.
There is a third theory, however, which is by far the best, and it is also the one which is most likely correct. Since no historical Temple can be found to match the dimensions of Ezekiel’s description, it only seems reasonable to assume that the prophecy is literal and has yet to be fulfilled. In other words, instead of being some vague symbolic description or metaphor, the prediction is better understood if it’s taken to be genuine and as something that will find exact fulfillment sometime in Israel’s future. With this in mind, there is only one period that this prophecy could possibly be referring to – the Kingdom Age. If this conclusion is indeed correct, then Ezekiel’s elaborate description becomes the primary prophetic blueprint for constructing the Millennial Temple – a Temple which will soon be the focus for the whole world’s worship of Christ and of God.
This also leads to another important question: Will this future Temple be built before or after Jesus returns? It is very possible that the Temple which is predicted to exist in the Last Days (the very same one that the Antichrist is predicted to desecrate—see The Abomination of Desolation) will also go on to survive into the Kingdom Age. If so, then Israel may soon use Ezekiel’s guidelines for constructing the End Times Temple. This scenario would also correlate well with Malachi’s prophecy which states that the Lord will “come suddenly to his temple” when he returns (Mal. 3:1). He could not come back to his Temple if it were not yet rebuilt or had been destroyed in the wars of the Last Days. Therefore, it seems likely that Israel will soon use Ezekiel’s blueprint to construct a new Temple in Jerusalem—an event which will definitely signal to the world the extreme nearness of Christ’s coming!
However, there is also much more to Ezekiel’s prophecy than merely providing the architectural details for the future Temple. Besides giving the overall physical dimensions of the structure, Ezekiel goes on to describe the worship practices of Israel in the Kingdom. Amazingly, we find that most of the regulations governing the Temple operations correlate directly to the Old Testament form of worship, complete with its great variety of sacrifices and offerings.
Yes, Ezekiel describes sacrifices! In fact, from the very first day that the altar is dedicated in the Kingdom Age there are a number of specific sacrifices, which the priests are commanded to offer (Ezek. 43:18-27). In a long series of regulations very similar to the dedication of the Tabernacle after the Exodus from Egypt, Ezekiel predicts that the Temple services and worship practices in the Kingdom will be almost identical to the way Israel administered them in the Old Testament. For instance, the duties within the Temple proper are prophesied to be done exclusively by the Levites, who will be the Temple priests just as they were throughout Israel’s history. Ezekiel quotes the Lord as saying,
“…the priests, the Levites, the sons of Zadok, who kept the charge of my sanctuary when the children of Israel went astray from me, they shall come near to me to minister unto me, and they shall stand before me to offer unto me the fat and the blood, saith the Lord God.
“They shall enter into my sanctuary, and they shall come near to my table, to minister unto me, and they shall keep my charge.
“And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and common, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.
“And in controversy they shall stand as judges, and they shall judge it according to mine ordinances; and they shall keep my laws and my statutes in all mine assemblies; and they shall hallow my sabbaths.”
Ezekiel 44:15-16, 23-24
In the verses immediately preceding this passage the Lord through Ezekiel had said that those Levites who turned away from Him during the time of Israel’s slide into sin would never again be allowed to enter the Temple. Since in reality no one who experienced the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem lived to see the rebuilding of the next Temple, this prophecy wouldn’t make any sense unless the Temple referred to is the very one which will be present only after the resurrection of the dead. Only after Christ returns and his people are raised could the Levites who remained true to God during the period of Israel’s backsliding be rewarded by being made priests in the Kingdom Age Temple. Thus, the primary administrators within the future Temple will be exclusively gathered from the immortal group of people who will be resurrected at the rapture. In this way, the individuals closest to God will be none other than members of Christ’s glorified church – particularly those from the tribe of Levi. This is not to say that people from other nationalities within the church will be in any way excluded from seeing the Lord or ministering. Indeed, since the Apostle John predicted that the saved will become priests of God (Rev. 20:6) and some of them will serve him day and night in his Temple (Rev. 7:15), it seems quite clear that the resurrected church in its entirety will be the principle administrators of all areas of worship.
Notice also that the passage quoted above refers to the careful separation of clean and unclean things which further lends credence to the fact that there will be a full return to very strict ceremonial regulations. Ezekiel even says that the Sabbath observances will be followed to the letter.
There are many other verses that can be quoted in reference to the worship regulations of the Kingdom Age. In general, however, we can definitely conclude that the city of Jerusalem and particularly the Temple will become the focal point for the entire world to worship the Lord. Thus, in the coming Golden Age, Israel will become the primary nation on the face of the earth, especially in three main areas: economic, political, and spiritual affairs.
In many ways, these prophecies in Ezekiel describe a world considerably different than most people have ever imagined. For instance, many Christians have had the idea that the current worship traditions of the church would be continued right on into the Kingdom. We now know that the reality of the situation will be quite different. Contrary to what many people have taught and believed, there will indeed be a radical return to Old Testament Jewish laws which will affect not only Israel, but to some extent every nation on Earth.
In addition, many people have had the impression that Jesus will be readily accessible to anyone wishing to see him—perhaps similar to the way he was when he was on Earth the first time. Will it really turn out that the Lord will just travel the Earth and visit the nations so that people can see and speak to him? Will he mingle in large crowds of people as he travels the world as he did in the First Century land of Israel? Have you ever really considered where the Lord will reside in the Kingdom Age? The insight the Bible gives us on this question may come as a surprise. The answer is actually buried within a tremendous prophecy which describes the return of the Glory of God back to Israel. In this one passage the Lord himself indicates that the future Temple in Jerusalem will literally become his Earthly habitation:
“And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel came from the way of the east; and his voice was like a noise of many waters, and the earth shined with his glory.
“And the glory of the Lord came into the house by the way of the gate whose prospect is toward the east.
“So the Spirit took me up, and brought me into the inner court, and, behold, the glory of the Lord filled the house.
“And I heard him speaking unto me out of the house…
“Son of man, the place of my throne, and the place of the soles of my feet, where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Israel forever, and my holy name, shall the house of Israel no more defile, neither they, nor their kings, by their harlotry, not by the carcasses of their kings in their high places.”
The very God of the universe in the form of the glorified and powerful Jesus Christ is about to return to Earth and come suddenly to his Temple to sit upon his rightful throne. Christ will come with great glory and light up the Earth before him as he enters into the Temple grounds through the Eastern Gate. Similar to the way the Glory of God inhabited the Holy of Holies in the Old Testament Temple, Jesus will rule the world from within the very confines of the Kingdom’s most sacred structure. Thus, the future Temple will become not only a prominent place for ceremonial worship, but it will literally become the Holy Palace of the Lord. All those people wishing to worship God or to obtain council from Him will come to Jerusalem and particularly to the Temple itself. Israel in the Kingdom will become the central place in all the Earth for worship of the Lord.
And just as there was an orderly way to worship the Lord in Old testament times, so too will there be rules and regulations required of anyone who desires to worship Christ in the Kingdom Age. A person will not just be allowed to walk into the temple and casually say “Hi” to the God of the universe. With literally millions of people wanting to see him that would create instant chaos. To avoid confusion and a continual mob scene at the Temple gates, there will be definite times and an orderly way for the people to enter and worship. The following verses give us a hint of how this will work:
“Thus saith the Lord God: The gate of the inner court that looketh toward the east shall be shut the six working days, but on the sabbath it shall be opened, and in the day of the new moon it shall be opened.
“And the prince shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate from outside, and shall stand by the post of the gate, and the priests shall prepare his burnt offering and his peace offerings, and he shall worship at the threshold of the gate; then he shall go forth, but the gate shall not be shut until the evening.
“Likewise, the people of the land shall worship at the door of this gate before the Lord in the sabbaths and in the new moons.
“But when the people of the land shall come before the Lord in the solemn feasts, he that entereth in by the way of the north gate to worship shall go out by the way of the south gate; and he that entereth by the way of the south gate shall go forth by the way of the north gate; he shall not return by the way of the gate by which he came in, but shall go forth the opposite way.”
Thus, the people of the world will come before the Lord on the Sabbaths and on the special feast days while the priests administer and organize the worship and offerings. Who the prince actually represents in this prophecy we can only guess. Perhaps it will turn out to be David since he was always considered to be one of the foremost leaders in Israel’s history. Then again, it may refer to the equivalent of the High Priest. But regardless of how these details ultimately are fulfilled, it’s still quite apparent that the order of worship for Israel in the Kingdom and for the world will be closely associated with the future Temple and administered in much the same way it was in ancient Israel.
Coming soon: World Conditions in the Kingdom