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If this is your first visit to Modern Apocrypha, I have only two recommendations for continuing on with minimal confusion:

1) Please begin with the first introductory post (found HERE) and work your way forward. Almost all the posts on this blog flow chronologically and will make more sense with the background and context of previous ones. Jumping in anywhere might be disorienting.

2) Please read along in the texts posted off to the right. I try not to summarize too much in the commentary and discussion, and being at least somewhat familiar with what we're discussing or I'm commenting on will be most beneficial and edifying for all involved. Plus, going along with the theme of this blog, any hidden truths to be brought to light will be found within the text itself and not necessarily within my ramblings.

Okay, fine, three recommendations:

3) Please read with an open heart, mind, and spirit. See what truths you can find in these works--ones which speak to you. Namaste : )

Sunday, November 16, 2014


In the 25th year of Judah's Babylonian captivity (572 BC), a 50-year-old Ezekiel receives one of the most amazing visions of the Bible (Ezekiel 40-48), one of the millennial temple at Jerusalem and the Lord's holy city. His tour guide, an angel ("man") with radiant bronze skin, escorts him throughout the temple compound, carefully noting every possible architectural measurement. Biblical scholars have debated whether this overload of architectural minutiae was merely to demonstrate the reality of Ezekiel's vision--that he couldn't have made it all up--or rather, that the Lord wanted it to serve as an actual blueprint for that same future temple and its surroundings--a prophecy, then, with great potential for self-fulfillment.

You can find hundreds of outlines, diagrams, and models of Ezekiel's temple online, and we could go on forever on all of the details and their possible significance. But I'll just post links to a few fun 3D models (except for the glory of God depicted as flying fiery wheels ; ), and add a few comments of interest. (All videos courtesy of Bible Prints.)

Ezekiel 40
Ezekiel 41
Ezekiel 42-43

First off, the temple is going to be quite a substantial construction. With a cubit equalling about a foot-and-a-half (give or take) and a reed equalling about six cubits (give or take), the outer wall of the temple sanctuary will enclose almost 1 1/2 square miles, or roughly the size of Central Park. The central temple compound itself is about 250 yards on each side, or enough area to fit about eight football fields. The chapters don't specify the height of the temple itself, only that it will have three stories of usable rooms; however, the gates of the compound will be about ten stories tall!

Ezekiel mentions in passing the "sons of Zadok", but it's not until Ch 5 (or 44) that their importance is discussed. In that chapter, the Lord chastises the priests of Judah for allowing foreigners, unbelievers, and the unrighteous into the temple. Essentially, the Lord's anointed ones, who should've personally kept the temple clean and pure, had passed the buck and delegated that responsibility to security guards and other temple workers. Apparently, the sons of Zadok were the only ones who cared for their charge and magnified their calling while the rest of Israel and Judah fell into apostasy. It's important to note that Zadok served as the first high priest of Solomon's temple and had previously anointed Solomon as king and aided his father, David, during wartime. The Dead Sea Scrolls speak much about "Sons of Zadok" as leaders in the Qumran community, and there was also a group of Zadok's descendants who immigrated to Egypt during Maccabean times to establish a new temple and righteous community. While all the rest of the priests and Levites followed their own paths, this direct lineage of the high priest seemed to have kept the faith down to intertestamental times, when control of the temple fell into disarray due to conquering foreign empires and internal strife. It is during this time that the Sadducees (Zadokites) gain predominance in both the religious and socio-political realms. However, it is historically doubtful that the Sadducean aristocracy grew from the line of the sons of Zadok; rather, it seems this sect either appropriated the title of Zadok or was founded by a later Zadok who lived in the 2nd century BC. In any case, there will be true sons of Zadok who will have the charge of offering sacrifices again in righteousness in God's millennial temple. (Or in a secondary, more metaphorical interpretation, where Zadok literally means "righteous" (e.g., Melchizedek = "my king is righteousness"), these sons of Zadok could also be simply righteous priesthood holders.)

Another unique feature of the temple will be a river flowing from beneath its foundation out into the Judean desert and emptying into the Dead Sea. This living water will bring life wherever it flows and heal both the desert and the Dead Sea to a point where trees (for food and medicine) and other vegetation will thrive along its banks and the Dead Sea will be full of fish to rival the Mediterranean. John the Revelator (Rev 22) and Zechariah (Ch 14) also saw this river--Zechariah noting that it would split and flow westward into the Mediterranean Sea, as well.

Israel is then divvied up among the twelve tribes, from Dan in the north to Gad in the south. Joseph, as the son of the birthright, is given a double portion (divided between Manasseh and Ephraim), and Levi is subsumed under Judah. The land surrounding the temple sanctuary (upwards of 2500 square miles) is also portioned out to the priests (sons of Zadok), Levites, and the city and farms of Jerusalem. (There is some question as to whether the priests' portion, and thus the temple, will be in the center or north of the plot. In either case, it's interesting to note that the temple will not be within the walls of the city, and the city will cover only half of modern-day Jerusalem.) The extra land on either side of Judah's allocation is given to the Prince, whose identity is left to speculation. Finally, while the King James Version translates the final verse describing the holy city, "and the name of the city from that day shall be, the Lord is there," the Aklatan renders it, "and the name of the city from that day shall be called, Holy; for the Lord shall be there." After scouring dozens of English translations, all were similar to the KJV except for one--Joseph Smith's Inspired Version, which translated it exactly the same as the Aklatan.


  1. Those are some interesting things you shared Brad. I never actually knew how large this structure would be! It's actually pretty amazing to think about. I also think that the connection you found with the JST and the Aklatan was significant.

    1. Yeah, one of the first things I did when I found the Aklatan was check the JST's Ezekiel against it. I can't remember exactly why I did it, but I was surprised, too, at the direct correspondence of that last verse.

    2. Brad, this is amazing and insightful. How interesting to find that the Aklatan and the JST are the same in regards to the naming of the temple. I've read Ezekiel's vision before, but have become so bogged down in the details of what is what and what goes where, that I've given up. Thanks for your clarifications. This is uplifting and education stuff.

  2. I guess I was supposed to add a "comment" instead of a "reply." Oh well. Same content. Also, the CGI material is nifty.Did you run into any IP issues in order to use it? The visuals put the revelation into nice detail.

    1. The videos are free to download at the Bible Prints website and posted on their YouTube page. My understanding is that inking to other sites is a gray area with regard to internet IP, as there's no direct infringement of copyright, unless, in my case, I were to embed the video without a link to their website or recognizing it as their creation, etc. Also as a general rule, it's best to link to sites that would be pleased or indifferent to the link and/or extra traffic to their site. That's my take.