Teach My People the Difference

There is a special role for priests in the plan of God. The priest ministers to the Lord, but also sets an example for the people. It is by this living example that in Ezekiel 44:23 “they will teach my people the difference between what is holy and what is unholy, and the difference between unclean and clean they must show them”. There also is an order, a delegation of certain authority and an assignment of the land and the fruit of the land to support the priests and the princes. This only works when there is an honest economy and everyone contributes their part as in Ezekiel 45:16 “All of the people of the land shall join in to this contribution with the prince in Israel”. 

Teach My People the Difference

Ezekiel 44:22–31
The Lord is describing the role of the priests and begins talking of the “Levitical priests” in Ezekiel 44:15. He describes their service and their manner of dress and the separation they must maintain between the outer and “inner courtyards” in Ezekiel 44:17. It is by their manner of life that in

Ezekiel 44:23 And they will teach my people the difference between what is holy and what is unholy, and the difference between unclean and clean they must show them.

They also will stand as judges in

Ezekiel 44:24 And at a legal dispute they themselves shall stand to judge; employing my judgments they shall judge it, and with respect to my laws and my statutes. All my festivals they shall keep and my Sabbaths they shall consecrate.

And they will have no inheritance in land, as the people do, but the Lord says in Ezekiel 44:28 “I am their inheritance”. And he also says in Ezekiel 44:30 “all of the firstfruits of everything … you shall give to the priest, so that a blessing may rest on your house”. 

Provide a Holy Portion From the Land

Ezekiel 45:1–7
There is a specific allocation of the land and that begins with a portion for the Lord. He describes this in Ezekiel 45:1 as “a holy portion from the land”. We know in

Psalm 89:11 The heavens are yours, the earth yours as well, the world with its fullness, because you founded them.

But the Lord wants us to establish a holy territory, that we recognize as his. By doing this, the Lord establishes the remainder as land given to us as our inheritance in Ezekiel 46. Then there is a portion for the priests in Ezekiel 45:3-4. Then there is a portion for the Levites in Ezekiel 45:5. Then, a portion for the house of Israel as a city in Ezekiel 45:6. And finally, there is a portion for the Princes in Ezekiel 45:7.

All Shall Join in to This Contribution

Ezekiel 45:8–16
But the land is for the people, “the house of Israel according to their tribes”.

The Lord also includes in his rebuke of the “princes of Israel” in Ezekiel 45:9 the requirement for “an honest set of scales”. Our generation is not the first to recognize the tricks of finance with floating currency and inflation and even the most obvious, shrinking packaging while holding the price the same. It is described in

Ezekiel 45:10 There shall be for you an honest set of scales and an honest ephah and an honest bath.

With an honest currency, now, everyone is included in this fixed contribution, all of the people and all of the Princes. There isn’t a separate plan for the people and heads of state. Here all are treated with equality. 

On the Prince Shall be the Responsibility

Ezekiel 45:17–25
There is a position of leadership fulfilled by the Prince and it is not simply as figurehead. There is a flow of provision that comes with this responsibility. Here is a great lesson in leadership in God’s kingdom. Do you want to lead? Then you must provide. Doesn’t Jesus say this about himself in

John 7:37–38 “If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me, and let him drink, 38 the one who believes in me. Just as the scripture said, ‘Out of his belly will flow rivers of living water.’ ”

This statement from Jesus is “A quotation from the Old Testament of uncertain origin; texts most often suggested are Isa 44:3; 55:1; 58:11; Zech 14:8”.1 But in all of these suggested sources, there is the sense that the Lord will “lead … and satisfy your soul” as in Is 58:11. And isn’t this also expected of us as we have received this outpouring of his spirit? Aren’t we the ones the Lord looks to to break the bonds of poverty and wickedness by providing for those in need?

They are to “purify the sanctuary” and this is an annual event in Ezekiel 45:18. This sets the tone for the calendar of the year, for in Ezekiel 45:17″the feasts … New Moon festivals … Sabbaths at all of the assemblies of the house of Israel”.

He Must Not Return by the Way He Came

Ezekiel 46:1–12
The Lord doesn’t do things the way men would. We put dignitaries apart, separating them from the people. The Lord desires that all come into his presence and at the least, requires that they pass by.

Ezekiel 46:9 And when the people of the land come before Yahweh at the festivals, the one coming by way of the gate of the north to bow down must go out by the way of the gate of the south, and the one coming by way of the gate of the south must go out by the way of the gate of the north, so he must not return by the way of the gate by which he came, but before it he shall go out opposite it.

My People Will Not be Driven Away From His Property

Ezekiel 46:13–24
The land is an inheritance forever to the family it belongs to. You cannot give it away and it cannot be taken away.

Ezekiel 46:16 Thus says the Lord Yahweh: “If the prince gives a gift to any one from among his sons, it is his inheritance and it will belong to his sons; it is their possession as an inheritance”.

Study Verses

Today’s Reading

  • Ezekiel 44:22-31
  • Ezekiel 45:1-25
  • Ezekiel 46:1-24


  • 1. Harris, W. H., III, Ritzema, E., Brannan, R., Mangum, D., Dunham, J., Reimer, J. A., & Wierenga, M. (Eds.). (2012). The Lexham English Bible. Bellingham, WA: Lexham Press.