God’s Plan

Ezekiel 48:1–29 (NKJV)

48:1 “Now these are the names of the tribes: From the northern border along the road to Hethlon at the entrance of Hamath, to Hazar Enan, the border of Damascus northward, in the direction of Hamath, there shall be one section for Dan from its east to its west side; by the border of Dan, from the east side to the west, one section for Asher; by the border of Asher, from the east side to the west, one section for Naphtali; by the border of Naphtali, from the east side to the west, one section for Manasseh; by the border of Manasseh, from the east side to the west, one section for Ephraim; by the border of Ephraim, from the east side to the west, one section for Reuben; by the border of Reuben, from the east side to the west, one section for Judah; by the border of Judah, from the east side to the west, shall be the district which you shall set apart, twenty-five thousand cubits in width, and in length the same as one of the other portions, from the east side to the west, with the sanctuary in the center.

“The district that you shall set apart for the Lord shall be twenty-five thousand cubits in length and ten thousand in width. 10 To these—to the priests—the holy district shall belong: on the north twenty-five thousand cubits in length, on the west ten thousand in width, on the east ten thousand in width, and on the south twenty-five thousand in length. The sanctuary of the Lord shall be in the center. 11 It shall be for the priests of the sons of Zadok, who are sanctified, who have kept My charge, who did not go astray when the children of Israel went astray, as the Levites went astray. 12 And this district of land that is set apart shall be to them a thing most holy by the border of the Levites.

13 “Opposite the border of the priests, the Levites shall have an area twenty-five thousand cubits in length and ten thousand in width; its entire length shall be twenty-five thousand and its width ten thousand. 14 And they shall not sell or exchange any of it; they may not alienate this best part of the land, for it is holy to the Lord.

15 “The five thousand cubits in width that remain, along the edge of the twenty-five thousand, shall be for general use by the city, for dwellings and common-land; and the city shall be in the center. 16 These shall be its measurements: the north side four thousand five hundred cubits, the south side four thousand five hundred, the east side four thousand five hundred, and the west side four thousand five hundred. 17 The common-land of the city shall be: to the north two hundred and fifty cubits, to the south two hundred and fifty, to the east two hundred and fifty, and to the west two hundred and fifty. 18 The rest of the length, alongside the district of the holy section, shall be ten thousand cubits to the east and ten thousand to the west. It shall be adjacent to the district of the holy section, and its produce shall be food for the workers of the city. 19 The workers of the city, from all the tribes of Israel, shall cultivate it. 20 The entire district shall be twenty-five thousand cubits by twenty-five thousand cubits, foursquare. You shall set apart the holy district with the property of the city.

21 “The rest shall belong to the prince, on one side and on the other of the holy district and of the city’s property, next to the twenty-five thousand cubits of the holy district as far as the eastern border, and westward next to the twenty-five thousand as far as the western border, adjacent to the tribal portions; it shall belong to the prince. It shall be the holy district, and the sanctuary of the temple shall be in the center. 22 Moreover, apart from the possession of the Levites and the possession of the city which are in the midst of what belongs to the prince, the area between the border of Judah and the border of Benjamin shall belong to the prince.

23 “As for the rest of the tribes, from the east side to the west, Benjamin shall have one section; 24 by the border of Benjamin, from the east side to the west, Simeon shall have one section; 25 by the border of Simeon, from the east side to the west, Issachar shall have one section; 26 by the border of Issachar, from the east side to the west, Zebulun shall have one section; 27 by the border of Zebulun, from the east side to the west, Gad shall have one section; 28 by the border of Gad, on the south side, toward the South, the border shall be from Tamar to the waters of Meribah by Kadesh, along the brook to the Great Sea. 29 This is the land which you shall divide by lot as an inheritance among the tribes of Israel, and these are their portions,” says the Lord God.

This passage describes exactly where each tribe will be designated land in Israel.  In the previous distribution, tribes were given lots according to their size and some requests were made and granted, as in the case of Caleb.  In this distribution, all sections are evenly distributed, with the prince (king), the priests, and the Levites receiving an equal section in the middle of the nation surrounding Jerusalem.  This reestablishes Jerusalem as the holy district, and the nation as a theocracy with a prince ruling them politically.  Some speculate that this is also a type of how the nation will look during the millenial reign.  

A few things come to mind, here.  First, the tribes were given equal shares of land, showing the egalitarian nature of God’s plan.  He did not give some more and others less.  Instead, He gave equally.  I believe this is a shadow of God’s grace given to all people freely.  Second, God is at the center, and chose His spot.  God is fair and gives to all freely, but God is also in control.  Do not presume to ignore God’s will, and definitely do not try to tell Him what that will be.  God is sovereign, and will not be ruled.  Obey Him and love Him and give Him your all, for He will make it good.  God’s plan is good and right.  Live in it!

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