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Ezekiel 40-41 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

V. The New Israel[a]

The New Temple

Chapter 40

The Man with a Measure. In the twenty-fifth year of our exile, at the beginning of the year, on the tenth day of the month, fourteen years after the city had been captured, on that very day the hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me back there. In a divine vision he brought me to the land of Israel, where he set me down on a very high mountain. In front of me, there was something like a city built on it. He brought me there, and there standing in the gateway was a man whose appearance was like bronze! He held in his hand a linen cord and a measuring rod. The man said to me, “Son of man, look carefully and listen intently. Pay strict attention to everything I show you, for you have been brought here so that I might show it to you. Then you must tell the house of Israel everything you see.” There an outer wall completely surrounded the temple. The measuring rod in the man’s hand was six cubits long, each cubit being a cubit plus a handbreadth;[b] he measured the width of the structure, one rod, and its height, one rod.

The East Gate.[c] Going to the gate facing east, he climbed its steps and measured the threshold of the outer gateway as one rod wide. Each cell was one rod long and one rod wide, and there were five cubits between the cells; the threshold of the inner gateway adjoining the vestibule of the gate facing the temple was one rod wide. He also measured the vestibule of the inner gate, eight cubits, and its posts, two cubits each. The vestibule faced the inside. 10 On each side of the east gatehouse were three cells, all the same size; their posts were all the same size. 11 He measured the width of the gate’s entryway, ten cubits, and the length of the gate itself, thirteen cubits. 12 The borders in front of the cells on both sides were one cubit, while the cells themselves measured six cubits by six cubits from one opening to the next. 13 Next he measured the gatehouse from the back wall of one cell to the back wall of the cell on the opposite side through the openings facing each other, a width of twenty-five cubits. 14 All around the courtyard of the gatehouse were posts six cubits high. 15 From the front of the gatehouse at its outer entry to the gateway of the porch facing inward, the length was fifty cubits. 16 There were recessed windows in the cells on all sides and in the posts on the inner side of the gate. Posts and windows were all around the inside, with palm trees decorating the posts.

The Outer Court. 17 Then he brought me to the outer court,[d] where there were chambers and pavement laid all around the courtyard: thirty chambers facing the pavement. 18 The pavement lay alongside the gatehouses, the same length as the gates; this was the lower pavement. 19 He measured the length of the pavement from the front of the lower gate to the outside of the inner gate, one hundred cubits. He then moved from the east to the north side.

The North Gate. 20 He measured the length and width of the north gate of the outer courtyard. 21 Its cells, three on each side, its posts, and its vestibule had the same measurements as those of the first gate, fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide. 22 Its windows, its vestibule, and its palm decorations had the same proportions as those of the gate facing east. Seven steps led up to it, and its vestibule faced the inside. 23 The inner court had a gate opposite the north gate, just as at the east gate; he measured one hundred cubits from one gate to the other.

The South Gate. 24 Then he led me to the south. There, too, facing south, was a gate! He measured its posts and vestibule; they were the same size as the others. 25 The gate and its vestibule had windows on both sides, like the other windows, fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide. 26 Seven steps led up to it, its vestibule faced inside; and palms decorated each of the posts opposite one another. 27 The inner court also had a gate facing south. He measured it from gate to gate, facing south, one hundred cubits.

Gates of the Inner Court.[e] 28 Then he brought me to the inner courtyard by the south gate, where he measured the south gateway; its measurements were the same as the others. 29 Its cells, posts, and vestibule were the same size as the others, fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide. 30 [f]The vestibules all around were twenty-five cubits long and five cubits wide. 31 Its vestibule faced the outer court; palms decorated its posts, and its stairway had eight steps. 32 Then he brought me to the inner courtyard on the east and measured the gate there; its dimensions were the same as the others. 33 Its cells, posts, and vestibule were the same size as the others. The gate and its vestibule had windows on both sides, fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide. 34 Its vestibule faced the outer court, palms decorated the posts opposite each other, and it had a stairway of eight steps. 35 Then he brought me to the north gate, where he measured the dimensions 36 of its cells, posts, and vestibule; they were the same. The gate and its vestibule had windows on both sides, fifty cubits long and twenty-five cubits wide. 37 Its vestibule faced the outer court; palm trees decorated its posts opposite each other, and it had a stairway of eight steps.

Side Rooms. 38 There was a chamber opening off the vestibule of the gate where burnt offerings were washed. 39 In the vestibule of the gate there were two tables on either side for slaughtering the burnt offerings, purification offerings, and reparation offerings. 40 Two more tables stood along the wall of the vestibule by the entrance of the north gate, and two tables on the other side of the vestibule of the gate. 41 There were thus four tables on one side of the gate and four tables on the other side, eight tables in all, for slaughtering. 42 The four tables for burnt offerings were made of cut stone, one and a half cubits long, one and a half cubits wide, and one cubit high; the instruments used for slaughtering burnt offerings and other sacrifices were kept 43 on shelves the width of one hand, fixed all around the room; but on the tables themselves was the meat for the sacrifices. 44 Outside the inner gatehouse there were two rooms on the inner courtyard, one beside the north gate, facing south, and the other beside the south gate, facing north. 45 He said to me, “This chamber facing south is reserved for the priests who have charge of the temple area, 46 while this chamber facing north is reserved for the priests who have charge of the altar; they are the sons of Zadok,[g] the only Levites who may come near to minister to the Lord.” 47 He measured the courtyard, a square one hundred cubits long and a hundred cubits wide, with the altar standing in front of the temple.

The Temple Building.[h] 48 Then he brought me into the vestibule of the temple and measured the posts, five cubits on each side. The gateway was fourteen cubits wide, its side walls three cubits. 49 The vestibule was twenty cubits long and twelve cubits wide; ten steps led up to it, and there were columns by the posts, one on each side.

Chapter 41

Then he brought me to the nave and measured the posts; each was six cubits wide. The width of the entrance was ten cubits, and the walls on either side measured five cubits. He measured the nave, forty cubits long and twenty cubits wide.

Then he went inside and measured the posts at the other entrance, two cubits wide. The entrance was six cubits wide, with walls seven cubits long on each side. Next he measured the length and width of the room beyond the nave, twenty cubits long and twenty cubits wide. He said to me, “This is the holy of holies.”[i]

Then he measured the wall of the temple, six cubits wide, and the width of the side chambers stretching all around the temple, four cubits each. [j]There were thirty side chambers, chamber upon chamber in three stories; terraces on the outside wall of the temple enclosing the side chambers provided support, but there were no supports for the temple wall itself. A broad passageway led up the side chambers, for the house was enclosed all the way up and all the way around. Thus the temple was widened by the ascent that went from the lowest story through the middle one to the highest story. I saw a raised platform all around the temple, the foundation for the side chambers; the width of this terrace was a full rod, six cubits. The width of the outside wall enclosing the side chambers was five cubits. There was an open space between the side chambers of the temple 10 and the other chambers that measured twenty cubits around the temple on all sides. 11 The side chambers had entrances to the open space, one entrance on the north and the other on the south. The width of the wall surrounding the open space was five cubits. 12 The building[k] opposite the restricted area on the west side was seventy cubits long and ninety cubits wide, with walls five cubits thick all around it. 13 Thus he measured the temple, one hundred cubits long. The restricted area, its building and walls, measured a hundred cubits in length. 14 The temple facade, along with the restricted area to the east, was also one hundred cubits wide. 15 He then measured the building opposite the restricted area which was behind it, together with its terraces on both sides, one hundred cubits.

Interior of the Temple. The inner nave and the outer vestibule 16 were paneled; the windows had recesses and precious wood trim around all three sides except the sill. Paneling covered the walls from the floor up to the windows and even the window sections. 17 Even above the doorway and in the inner part of the temple and outside as well, around all the walls inside and out, 18 were figures of cherubim and palm trees: a palm tree between each pair of cherubim. Each cherub had two faces: 19 the face of a human being looked toward one palm tree and the face of a lion looked toward the other palm tree. Thus the figures covered all the walls around the temple. 20 From the floor to the lintel of the door, cherubim and palm trees decorated the walls. 21 The nave had a square door frame, and inside facing the holy place was something that looked like 22 a wooden altar,[l] three cubits high, two cubits long, and two cubits wide. It had corners and a wooden base and sides. He said to me, “This is the table that stands before the Lord.” 23 The nave had a double door, and the holy place 24 also had a double door; each door had two sections that could move; two sections on one door, and two on the other. 25 Cherubim and palm trees decorated the doors of the nave like the decoration on the walls. Outside a wooden lattice faced the vestibule. 26 There were recessed windows and palm trees on the side walls of the vestibule. The side chambers of the temple also had latticework.

Footnotes:

  1. 40:1–48:35 This lengthy vision of a new Temple and a restored Israel is dated in v. 1 to April 28, 573 B.C. The literary form of the vision is sometimes compared to a mandala, a sacred model through which one can move symbolically to reach the world of the divine. Ezekiel describes the Temple through its boundaries, entrances, and exits in chaps. 40–43; by its sacred and profane use and space in 44–46; and by its central place within the land itself in 47–48. The prophet could not have expected a literal fulfillment of much of what he described. The passage doubtless went through several editorial stages, both from the prophet and from later writers.
  2. 40:5 A cubit plus a handbreadth: a great cubit. The ordinary cubit consisted of six handbreadths; the great cubit, of seven. In measuring the Temple, a rod six great cubits long was used. The ordinary cubit was about one and a half feet, or, more exactly, 17.5 inches; the large cubit, 20.4 inches.
  3. 40:6–16 The gate facing east, leading into the outer court of the Temple, is described more fully than the north and south gates, which, however, have the same dimensions. On the west side of the outer court there is a large building instead of a gate (cf. 41:12).
  4. 40:17 The outer court: the court outside the Temple area proper, which had its own inner court (vv. 28–37).
  5. 40:28–37 The gates leading into the inner court of the Temple area correspond to the gates leading into the outer court, with the exception that their vestibules are on the outer rather than the inner side.
  6. 40:30 The reference to vestibules all around is uncertain, and the verse may have arisen as a partial repetition of v. 29.
  7. 40:46 Sons of Zadok: descendants of the priestly line of Zadok; cf. 2 Sm 15:24–29; 1 Kgs 1:32–34; 2:35.
  8. 40:48–41:15 The description of Ezekiel’s visionary Temple closely follows the description of the Temple of Solomon (1 Kgs 6), along with some crucial differences.
  9. 40:49–41:4 Vestibule…nave…holy of holies: the three divisions of the Temple building in progressing order of sanctity. The last is called “the inner sanctuary” in 1 Kgs 6.
  10. 41:6 The description of the three stories of rooms surrounding the Temple building can be compared with Solomon’s Temple in 1 Kgs 6:6; there a step-like or terraced retaining wall supported the Temple building so no beams or nails from these chambers would enter the Temple wall itself.
  11. 41:12 The building: the function of this structure behind the Temple is never specified.
  12. 41:22 A wooden altar: the altar of incense, standing in the nave at the entrance to the holy of holies.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Ben Sira 36:1-16 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 36

A Prayer for God’s People[a]

Come to our aid, O God of the universe,
    and put all the nations in dread of you!
Raise your hand against the foreign people,
    that they may see your mighty deeds.
As you have used us to show them your holiness,[b]
    so now use them to show us your glory.
Thus they will know, as we know,
    that there is no God but you.

Give new signs and work new wonders;
    show forth the splendor of your right hand and arm.
Rouse your anger, pour out wrath;
    humble the enemy, scatter the foe.
10 Hasten the ending, appoint the time,
    and let people proclaim your mighty deeds.
11 Let raging fire consume the fugitive,
    and your people’s oppressors meet destruction.
12 Crush the heads of the hostile rulers
    who say, “There is no one besides me.”

13 Gather all the tribes of Jacob,[c]
16     that they may inherit the land as in days of old.

Footnotes:

  1. 36:1–22 A prayer that God hasten the day for the gathering of the tribes of Israel, and Zion once more be filled with the divine glory. All the earth will then know that the Lord is the eternal God.
  2. 36:4 Show…holiness: this cultic language is used to indicate God’s liberation of his people; cf. Ez 20:41; 28:25.
  3. 36:13 This verse marks the end of a major dislocation in the Greek text of Sirach (which is followed here) at the head of chap. 33. The verse numbers 1–13 come from the placement of these verses in Greek. Verse 13 here is the first half of a bicolon, the matching half of which is numbered in the Greek 36:16b. Thus although the numbering for vv. 14–15 is not used, none of the text is missing.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

Revelation 5 New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Chapter 5

The Scroll and the Lamb.[a] I saw a scroll[b] in the right hand of the one who sat on the throne. It had writing on both sides and was sealed with seven seals. Then I saw a mighty angel who proclaimed in a loud voice, “Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?” But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to examine it. I shed many tears because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to examine it. One of the elders said to me, “Do not weep. The lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David,[c] has triumphed, enabling him to open the scroll with its seven seals.”

Then I saw standing in the midst of the throne and the four living creatures and the elders a Lamb[d] that seemed to have been slain. He had seven horns and seven eyes; these are the [seven] spirits of God sent out into the whole world. He came and received the scroll from the right hand of the one who sat on the throne. When he took it, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell down before the Lamb. Each of the elders held a harp and gold bowls filled with incense, which are the prayers of the holy ones. They sang a new hymn:

“Worthy are you to receive the scroll
    and to break open its seals,
    for you were slain and with your blood you purchased for God
    those from every tribe and tongue, people and nation.
10 You made them a kingdom and priests for our God,
    and they will reign on earth.”

11 I looked again and heard the voices of many angels who surrounded the throne and the living creatures and the elders. They were countless[e] in number, 12 and they cried out in a loud voice:

“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain
    to receive power and riches, wisdom and strength,
    honor and glory and blessing.”

13 Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and in the sea, everything in the universe, cry out:

“To the one who sits on the throne and to the Lamb
    be blessing and honor, glory and might,
    forever and ever.”

14 The four living creatures answered, “Amen,” and the elders fell down and worshiped.

Footnotes:

  1. 5:1–14 The seer now describes a papyrus roll in God’s right hand (Rev 5:1) with seven seals indicating the importance of the message. A mighty angel asks who is worthy to open the scroll, i.e., who can accomplish God’s salvific plan (Rev 5:2). There is despair at first when no one in creation can do it (Rev 5:3–4). But the seer is comforted by an elder who tells him that Christ, called the lion of the tribe of Judah, has won the right to open it (Rev 5:5). Christ then appears as a Lamb, coming to receive the scroll from God (Rev 5:6–7), for which he is acclaimed as at a coronation (Rev 5:8–10). This is followed by a doxology of the angels (Rev 5:11–12) and then finally by the heavenly church united with all of creation (Rev 5:13–14).
  2. 5:1 A scroll: a papyrus roll possibly containing a list of afflictions for sinners (cf. Ez 2:9–10) or God’s plan for the world. Sealed with seven seals: it is totally hidden from all but God. Only the Lamb (Rev 5:7–9) has the right to carry out the divine plan.
  3. 5:5 The lion of the tribe of Judah, the root of David: these are the messianic titles applied to Christ to symbolize his victory; cf. Rev 22:16; Gn 49:9; Is 11:1, 10; Mt 1:1.
  4. 5:6 Christ is the Paschal Lamb without blemish, whose blood saved the new Israel from sin and death; cf. Ex 12; Is 53:7; Jn 1:29, 36; Acts 8:32; 1 Pt 1:18–19. This is the main title for Christ in Revelation, used twenty-eight times. Seven horns and seven eyes: Christ has the fullness (see note on Rev 1:4) of power (horns) and knowledge (eyes); cf. Zec 4:7. [Seven] spirits: as in Rev 1:4; 3:1; 4:5.
  5. 5:11 Countless: literally, “100,000,000 plus 1,000,000,” used by the author to express infinity.
New American Bible (Revised Edition) (NABRE)

Scripture texts, prefaces, introductions, footnotes and cross references used in this work are taken from the New American Bible, revised edition © 2010, 1991, 1986, 1970 Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, Inc., Washington, DC All Rights Reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, without permission in writing from the copyright owner.

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