|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
46:1-24 The ordinances of worship for the prince and for the people, are here described, and the gifts the prince may bestow on his sons and servants. Our Lord has directed us to do many duties, but he has also left many things to our choice, that those who delight in his commandments may abound therein to his glory, without entangling their own consciences, or prescribing rules unfit for others; but we must never omit our daily worship, nor neglect to apply the sacrifice of the Lamb of God to our souls, for pardon, peace, and salvation.
Verse 2. - The reason for the opening of this inner east gate should be that the prince might enter it as far as its threshold, and stand there worshipping by the posts of the gate, while his burnt offerings and his peace offerings were being prepared by the priests, who, rather than the prince, were the proper ministers for conducting the sacrificial ceremony. The prince should reach his station at the threshold of the inner gate, by the way of the porch of that (or, the) gate without; but whether this signified that he should pass through the eastern gate of the outer court, and so advance towards the inner east gate, as Ewald, Keil, Kliefoth, and Plumptre assume, or, as Hengstenberg, Schroder, and Smend suppose, that he should enter the inner gate by the way of the porch of the gate, i.e. from the outside, from the outer court into which he had previously entered through either the north or the south outer gates, cannot be decided. In favor of the former may be urged the consideration that it seems more natural to apply מִהוּצ to the outer gate than to the outer court, since no, one could enter the inner gate except from the outer court, unless he were already in the inner court; but in favor of the latter is
(1) the stringent character of the language in Ezekiel 44:1-3, which expressly declares that the outer east gate should not be opened, and that no man should enter in by it, thus scarcely admitting of an exception; and
(2) the statement in vers. 9, 10 of the present chapter, that in the "appointed feasts" the prince and the people alike should enter the outer court either by the north or the south gate, since, if any of these "feasts" fell upon a sabbath, this regulation would not be practicable, if the prince and the people were required to enter by different doors. The question, however, in itself is immaterial. The points of importance are that the prince should worship in the porch of the inner gate, and that, on finishing his worship, he should retire, and that the gate should not be shut; until the evening.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And the prince shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate without,.... That is, by the way of the porch of the eastern gate, even the outermost gate of the porch; for, as every gate had a porch, so every porch had two gates, one at one end, and the other at the other; now this was the outermost gate of the porch, which looked to the outward court, and not that which led into the inner:
and shall stand by the post of the gate; this denotes the presence of Christ, the Prince with his people waiting at Wisdom's gate, and watching at the posts of her door. The allusion seems to be to the king's pillar in the temple, where he used to stand, 2 Chronicles 23:13. Some understand this of Christ's incarnation, of his entrance into the world, and his standing before his Father, and praying for his people, as he did in the garden, and a little before his death, as recorded John 17:1.
and the priests shall prepare his burnt offerings, and his peace offerings; that is, shall offer them. The meaning is, that the ministers shall preach Christ and him crucified, who, by his sacrifice, has made atonement for sin, and peace for his people; though some interpret this of the concern the priests had in the crucifixion and death of Christ:
and he shall worship at the threshold of the gate; of the other gate that led into the inner court, and where he could see all that was done in it: or bow (i); which it is observed he did, when he fell prostrate in the garden, and when he expired on the cross, and was at the threshold of the gate of heaven launching into eternity: worship and adoration, or bowing, be ascribed to Christ as man; see John 4:22,
then shall he go forth; out of this world to his Father, and be seen no more, until the restitution of all things; though this and the preceding may be understood of Christ's mystical worshipping; or of his people, who are one with him; and of their departure from public worship, when it is over:
but the gate shall not be shut until the evening; of the sabbath, or new moon; or the evening of the world, the second coming of Christ; the Gospel ministry and ordinances will continue till then, and no longer; and this is owing to his powerful and prevalent intercession in heaven, whither he is gone then the door will be shut, and not before, Matthew 25:10.
(i) "incurvaverit se", Junius & Tremellius, Polanus; "incurvato se", Piscator.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. The prince is to go through the east gate without (open on the Sabbath only, to mark its peculiar sanctity) to the entrance of the gate of the inner court; he is to go no further, but "stand by the post" (compare 1Ki 8:14, 22, Solomon standing before the altar of the Lord in the presence of the congregation; also 2Ki 11:14; 23:3, "by a pillar": the customary place), the court within belonging exclusively to the priests. There, as representative of the people, in a peculiarly near relation to God, he is to present his offerings to Jehovah, while at a greater distance, the people are to stand worshipping at the outer gate of the same entrance. The offerings on Sabbaths are larger than those of the Mosaic law, to imply that the worship of God is to be conducted by the prince and people in a more munificent spirit of self-sacrificing liberality than formerly.
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