|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
6:15-38 See what was typified by this temple. 1. Christ is the true Temple. In him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead; in him meet all God's spiritual Israel; through him we have access with confidence to God. 2. Every believer is a living temple, in whom the Spirit of God dwells, 1Co 3:16. This living temple is built upon Christ as its Foundation, and will be perfect in due time. 3. The gospel church is the mystical temple. It grows to a holy temple in the Lord, enriched and beautified with the gifts and graces of the Spirit. This temple is built firm, upon a Rock. 4. Heaven is the everlasting temple. There the church will be fixed. All that shall be stones in that building, must, in the present state of preparation, be fitted and made ready for it. Let sinners come to Jesus as the living Foundation, that they may be built on him, a part of this spiritual house, consecrated in body and soul to the glory of God.
Verse 23. - And within the oracle [The description now passes on to the mysterious symbolic figures which were placed in the holy of holies] he made two cherubims [As to the nature, composition, and significance of the cherubim, see notes on Exodus 25:19; 37:7. The only particulars which will require notice here are those in which the cherub of the temple differed from that of the tabernacle] of olive tree [Heb. trees or wood of oil. The oleaster (wild olive) is supposed to be intended, the proper name for the olive tree being זַיִת (Nehemiah 8:15). The wood of the oleaster, which is firm, fine grained, and durable, was used by the Greeks for the images of their gods (Winer). The cherubim of the tabernacle were of solid gold; those of the temple, on account of their great size (fifteen feet high) were necessarily of less costly material. But though of wood, yet the most durable and beautiful of wood, the olive, was employed in their construction. It is noticeable how olive wood is employed for the cherubim and doors of oracle, and for the posts of the temple doorway; the less precious cedar was used for lining the walls and for Beams, etc., while for the floor and doors of house, the commoner cypress sufficed], each ten cubits high. [Half the height of the oracle. They occupied its entire width (ver. 24).
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And within the oracle he made two cherubim of olive tree,.... Or of the oil tree, as in Isaiah 41:19; see Nehemiah 8:15; for there are other trees besides olives, out of which oil is pressed, as pine trees, cypress trees, &c. and which some think are here meant; though the Targum interprets it of the olive tree: these cherubim are different from those made by Moses, and were besides them; these were larger than they; these were made of olive wood, they of gold; these stood on the floor of the house, they at the two ends of the mercy seat, and were made out of it, and were with it in this holy place in Solomon's temple: these two cherubim may be emblems of the angels in their greatness and glory, who are always in the presence of God, behold his face, and wait to do his will; or it may be rather of the two witnesses, said to be the two olive trees standing before the God of the whole earth, Revelation 11:3; who have boldness to enter into the holiest of all, and have sight and knowledge of the mysteries of the ark and mercy seat; have their commission from heaven, and speak according to the oracles of God; these are said to be of image work, 2 Chronicles 3:10; that is, of various forms, as the thee of a man, a lion, an ox, and eagle, Ezekiel 1:10. Dr. Lightfoot thinks (g) they resembled the two Testaments, which in their beginning and end reach the two sides of the world, the creation and the last judgment, and in the middle do sweetly join the one to the other:
each ten cubits high; half as high as the most holy place; emblems either of the high angels, those thrones, dominions, principalities, and powers, or of men of uncommon size as to their gifts and grace.
(g) Prospect of the Temple, c. 15. sect. 4.
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