|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
40:1-49 The Vision of the Temple. - Here is a vision, beginning at ch. 40, and continued to the end of the book, ch. 48, which is justly looked upon to be one of the most difficult portions in all the book of God. When we despair to be satisfied as to any difficulty we meet with, let us bless God that our salvation does not depend upon it, but that things necessary are plain enough; and let us wait till God shall reveal even this unto us. This chapter describes two outward courts of the temple. Whether the personage here mentioned was the Son of God, or a created angel, is not clear. But Christ is both our Altar and our Sacrifice, to whom we must look with faith in all approaches to God; and he is Salvation in the midst of the earth, Ps 74:12, to be looked unto from all quarters.
Verse 11. - The breadth of the entry (literally, opening) of the gate, ten cubits. Obviously this measurement was taken from north to south of the gate-entrance (ver. 6), and represented the whole breadth of the doorway and the threshold, or one-fifth of the entire length of the gate-building. The second portion of the verse, the length of the gate thirteen cubits, is explained by Bottcher, Hitzig, Havernick, Keil (with whom Plumptre agrees), as signifying the length of the covered way from the east entrance, since it is supposed the whole length of forty cubits (the length of the gate without the porch) would hardly be roofed in; so that assuming a similar covered way of thirteen cubits at the other end of the gate-building, as one came "from the house," there would be an open space, well, or uncovered courtyard, of fourteen cubits in length and six broad, enclosed on all sides by gate-buildings. The roofs extending from the east and west would be supported on the "posts" of the chambers mentioned in ver. 10. Smend, however, infers, from the windows in the posts within the gate (ver. 16), that the whole extent was roofed in, and accordingly can offer no explanation of the clause; Kliefoth and Schroder prefer to regard the thirteen cubits as the height of the gate, although the word translated "length" never elsewhere has this meaning.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And he measured the breadth of the entry of the gate, ten cubits,.... Five yards, two feet and a half: this was the measure of the eastern gate, whether outward or inward; for they were both of a measure, as appears from the thresholds being alike:
and the length of the gate, thirteen cubits; that is, the height of it; it was seven yards and three inches high; a prodigious gate this! a fit emblem of our Lord Jesus Christ, as the open door, the gate of life, through which whoever enters shall be saved; and there is room for multitudes to enter.
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