|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
44:1-31 This chapter contains ordinances relative to the true priests. The prince evidently means Christ, and the words in ver. 2, may remind us that no other can enter heaven, the true sanctuary, as Christ did; namely, by virtue of his own excellency, and his personal holiness, righteousness, and strength. He who is the Brightness of Jehovah's glory entered by his own holiness; but that way is shut to the whole human race, and we all must enter as sinners, by faith in his blood, and by the power of his grace.
Verses 1-3. - The relation of the prince to the sanctuary. Verse 1. - The gate of the outward sanctuary, the outer gate of the sanctuary (Revised Version) - which looketh toward the east. To this door the prophet was conducted back, by way of the inner north or south gate, from the inner court, in which he had received the measurements of the altar and the instructions for its consecration (Ezekiel 43:5). Whether Ezekiel stood upon the outside of this door as in Ezekiel 43:1, or upon its inside, cannot as yet be determined; but in either ease he observed that it was shut - again, whether on the east side towards the temple precincts, or on the west towards the outer court, is not mentioned, and cannot at this stage be decided. What led the seer to notice that the gate was closed was probably the circumstance that the last time he stood beside it it was open (Ezekiel 43:1), though proof cannot be given that he passed through it (Ezekiel 43:5), conjoined with the fact that it formed the principal entrance to the temple, and as such had been described to him and measured (Ezekiel 40:6).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Then he brought me back the way of the gate of the outward sanctuary,.... The prophet was brought by his divine guide, from the altar of burnt offerings, which stood before the house, where he had given him the dimensions of it, and the ordinances concerning it, to the temple or holy place, called the outward sanctuary, in distinction from the inward sanctuary, or holy of holies; and to one of the gates of it, which was a gate of the inner court:
and which looketh toward the east: the eastern gate, and was the same he had been at before, and therefore is said to be brought back the way of it; see Ezekiel 43:1,
and it was shut; when he was there before, it was open; for he saw the glory of the Lord enter into the house by the way of it; but now it was shut, and for that reason, because he had entered into it; signifying, among other things, that he would never return, or remove from thence any more. The Misnic doctors (d) interpret this of one of the little doors to the great gate of the temple, that had two little doors, one in the north, the other in the south; that which was in the south no man ever entered in by, and this they say is understood here; but it is not a little door, but a gate here spoken of, and that the eastern one; of which more in the following verses.
(d) Misna Middot, c. 4. sect. 2.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
Eze 44:1-31. Ordinances for the Prince and the Priests.
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