|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 49. - Like the gates into the courts, the temple porch was entered by steps, of which the number is not stated, though, after the LXX., it is usually assumed to have been ten, Hengstenberg suggesting fourteen. The last particular noted, that there were pillars by the posts, has been explained to signify that upon the posts, or bases, stood shafts or pillars (Currey), or with more probability that by or near the pillars rose columns (Keil, Kliefoth). The height of these is not given, though Hengstenberg again finds it in the elevation of the porch of Solomon's temple - a hundred and twenty cubits (2 Chronicles 3:4). Their exact position is not stated; but they were probably, like Jachin and Boaz in the Solomonic temple, stationed one on each side of the steps.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The length of the porch was twenty cubits,.... From east to west; from the first gate of it to the last; which led directly into the house, or temple:
and the breadth eleven cubits; which may be thus accounted for; two cubits apiece being allowed for each post, and three for each leaf of the door that were hung upon them, and one for the upright post in the middle on which they shut; in all eleven:
and he brought me by the steps whereby they went up to it; as there was an ascent of seven steps to the several gates that led into the outward court; and another of eight steps, which led from that to the gates of the inner court; so there was an ascent from the inner court to the porch of the house, or temple; but how many steps there were is not said. The Septuagint and Arabic versions read ten steps; and the Vulgate Latin version eight steps. According to the Misnah (w), there were twelve in the second temple; so say Jarchi and Kimchi, with whom Josephus (x) agrees. Cocceius thinks there could not be more than two, since the ground of the inward court and temple were continued; but as their number is not given, a determination cannot be made; only it may be observed, that the saints' progress in the knowledge of Christ, and of divine things, and in faith and holiness, is gradual.
And there were pillars by the posts, one on this side, and another on that side; one on the north side, and the other on the south, somewhat like the two pillars of Jachin and Boaz, in Solomon's temple; which some apply to the ordinances of the Gospel saints partake of at their entrance into the Gospel church; but rather they are an emblem of Christ, the supporter of his church, and of all those that aright enter into it; and who, through his grace and strength, become pillars there also, Revelation 3:12, he is their Jachin, who establishes them on himself, the sure foundation; and their Boaz, in whom their strength is, and from whom they have it to exercise grace, discharge duty, and persevere to the end.
(w) Middot, c. 2. sect. 3.((x) De Bello Jud. l. 5. c. 5. sect. 4.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
49. twenty … eleven cubits—in Solomon's temple (1Ki 6:3) "twenty … ten cubits." The breadth perhaps was ten and a half; 1Ki 6:3 designates the number by the lesser next round number, "ten"; Ezekiel here, by the larger number, "eleven" [Menochius]. The Septuagint reads "twelve."
he brought me by the steps—They were ten in number [Septuagint].
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