44:1shut. The prophet had been in the inner court (43:5), but is now taken to the eastern gate. That gate will remain closed because the glory of the Lord had entered the temple through it (v. 2; 43:4; cf. Ps. 24:7–10). That the gate is closed may also imply that the Lord will never leave the temple again (43:7, 9). The so-called Golden Gate in the eastern wall of the Old City of Jerusalem is walled shut. This gate from the Byzantine period (a.d. 300–650) was restored in the Crusader period (a.d. 1000–1100). It is no doubt positioned above the remains of gates from earlier periods. The gate was walled shut during the Muslim rule of Suleiman the Magnificent in the sixteenth century. Since this part of Ezekiel plays a role in Muslim eschatology, it may have provided a reason for walling up the gate. However, all the gates to the south and east of the temple platform were closed at this time in order to control access to the mosques on the platform above.
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