Is Jesus the “Prince” of Ezekiel 40-48?

What Time Period Is Ezekiel 40-48?

Here’s an interesting question a friend asked on Ezekiel 40-48:

Knowing you have studied most Bible prophesy, to which time period(s) do you attribute these 9 chapters?  Who is the prince mentioned?  Note HIS sin sacrifice 45:22 and after.  Also “his sons” 46:16 (If you want to do it as a Facebook blog I can read it there.  Thanks Bro)

It is well known that Ezekiel 40-48 are prophecies of the Millennium (and beyond). The temple referred to there is therefore called the Millennial Temple, not to be confused with the next temple, the Third Temple. Ezekiel 40-46 describes the Millennial Temple, the priesthood and sacrifices there. To most Christians it’s shocking that sacrifices are coming back until they understand the purpose of the sacrifices.

Who is “The Prince?” at the Millennial Temple?

Also strange is how there are several mentions of “the prince” in these chapters. You would think these verses refer to Jesus at the temple:

Ezekiel 44:3 — It is for the prince; the prince, he shall sit in it to eat bread before the LORD; he shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate, and shall go out by the way of the same.

Ezekiel 45:22 — And upon that day shall the prince prepare for himself and for all the people of the land a bullock for a sin offering.

Ezekiel 46:16 — Thus saith the Lord GOD; If the prince give a gift unto any of his sons, the inheritance thereof shall be his sons’; it shall be their possession by inheritance.

However as noted in the question above, there are clear problems with this. For example, Jesus has no sons and is sinless needing no sacrifice. The New American Commentary agrees:

Equally intriguing is the “prince” who may sit inside the gate to “eat in the presence of the Lord,” probably meaning to eat a communal meal. Not even the prince used the entrance of the gate. When he entered it, he entered by the porch (v. 3).

Because of the messianic associations with the eastern gate, some have identified the “prince” as the Messiah, since 37:25 says, “David my servant will be their prince forever.” In spite of this reference, two important details suggest that the “prince” of 44:3 is not the Messiah. First, the prince is not a priest but has priests who minister for him. The Messiah is portrayed in Old Testament prophecy as the coming Priest-King (Zech 6:13). The offices of priest and king are always kept separate because the Messiah is to be the only one in whom these two offices are combined (2 Chr 26:16–21). Second, the prince is required to offer a sin offering for himself (Ezek 45:22) every day for seven days during feasts (45:23). By contrast, the Messiah was the sinless sacrifice for all people and a perfect High Priest (Heb 9:22–28).

If the prince is not the Messiah, then who is he? Some have identified the prince as David resurrected and serving in the temple during the millennium. More likely the prince is a special representative of the Messiah who will serve as an administrator of the temple, temple area, and sacred district. Such a conclusion is suggested by Levenson, who sees the prince as an apolitical messianic leader or a David-like administrator.

What else you want to know? =)

Update: Someone asked if the fact that “the prince” has to atone for his sins means he’s not a glorified saint but a physical man. I think that’s right. He’s not Jesus, David or any glorified saint. (Plus not only will David be glorified, but he will be king over Israel and Judah, not a prince.)

12 thoughts on “Is Jesus the “Prince” of Ezekiel 40-48?

  1. Interesting take on this topic. Please send me more insights on this issue. I’d like to hear your input.

  2. There is one “prince” mentioned who comes before Messiah.

    The Messiah is Messiah ben David who fulfills the symbolic prophecy of “Joshua” in the books of Haggai and Zechariah. The name “Jesus” is Greek but translated to English is “Joshua”. He is the Son who sits in heaven as a High Priest at the right hand of the Father waiting for restoration. He had to come “first” to remove iniquity. Read Acts 3:26.

    Now second comes messiah ben Joseph (or Ephraim) who fulfills the symbolic prophecy of “Zerubbabel” in the books of Haggai and Zechariah. He is the messenger who prepares the way for THE Messiah and delivers the children of Israel. He is the angel Michael sent by the Lord to be born as a male child in end-time Babylon for the name Zerubbabel means “seed of Babylon” referring to a child conceived and born in Babylon. He must “restore all things” and will be given great authority to accomplish it for he is one of the two olive trees / witnesses.

    Many do not ask how does Michael the prince fulfill what is prophesied of him in Daniel 12. If the Son of God can be manifested in the flesh, then why can’t an angel which is lower be manifested in the flesh if the Lord wills? Read Revelation 22:16.

  3. Jesus obviously doesn’t need to make sacrifices for sin. Glorified saints, Old Testament or New, will not need to make sacrifices for sin. IMHO, the prince, whoever he is, will have a physical body and be from the line of David in fulfillment of God’s promises to David that he will always have a descendant on the throne.

  4. I think John has the closest take on it. Except it’s Cherub/Candlestick/Wild OliveTree/Prophetess/Priestess/Joshua/Michael/Elijah/Female Witness and Cherub/Candlestick/OliveTree/Zerubabbel/Prince David of Ezekiel/Moses /Male Witness…G-d is amazing!

  5. The Prince sounds like the principal character. If Christ will rule the nations with a rod of iron… how is He going to do this? He must be the ruler during the millennial. A physical person of some sort? Will He need to be priest during this time? Who shall declare His generation? Does Christ take on a physical millennial body during this time and complete His “cut off” life span? The fact that the prince offers sacrifices for himself and separates himself from the priesthood, is this to show how this political appointment should be handled in relation to God in all aspects of its authority to teach mankind during this time how it was meant to be? The fact that the man… Christ Jesus, returns… can he then have offspring as a man??

  6. Jesus is so holy that man will insist that will go stag to every event for all eternity?
    so if it is not ok for first Adam to be alone , then why it is ok for second Adam to be alone?
    the great Gift God gave man was EVE , to loved and chosen .. and to think his people out such love for Our son of man .. would deny him the right to a help mate ?

    Did anyone ever think that just maybe the son of David might want maybe one wife ? Maybe that is even one reason he died maybe there was someone in Sheol that he liked maybe he even loved her. that is such a mystery of a man dying for a woman he loved. so you all want to say that Second Adam can’t have a second EVE.. that man chose to die to give you life and to bring all men and women..to where he isand what he is .. the Son of David a man by the way, was too holy to love just one woman? he is a man guys ? maybe he was always capable of sin but chose to not sin for our sakes.. to bring back our glory.
    and God gave man the greatest gift to be chosen and loved by a help mate to have children that cherish him. but man that claims ot Love our redeemer will deny God’s right arm and our redeemer that same love ? that greatest gift he gave man … to have love and a family.. the son of David the older Brother of Solomon is too holy for love? or just that kind of love ? He has to Go stag forever and always, and dance alone with his crowns if he bothers to show up at all.
    I mean his brother Solomon had thousands and his dad had nearly a thousand wives .
    but because King David’s son , raised by God himself to be our savior . His people love him so very much we will make our King sit with his crown on a throne and dance alone for all time.. yep that sounds like a plan. we can call him King Pope Nope You Can’t .

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