The Mystical Temple!

Ezekiel 47:1
Then he brought me back to the door of the temple; and behold, water was issuing from below the threshold of the temple toward the east (for the temple faced east); and the water was flowing down from below the south end of the threshold of the temple, south of the altar.

In John 7:38, Jesus declares, “He who believes in Me, as the scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart shall flow rivers of living water.”  The strange thing about this passage is that there is no direct quote in the Old Testament that declares this.  So why does Jesus say that “the scripture has said” it?  The clue comes in John’s other book, Revelation.  There, John has a vision of a heavenly temple just as, 600 years before, Ezekiel had seen a vision of a new temple.  In that vision, John tells us that he saw “the river of the water of life, bright as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb through the middle of the street of the city” (Rv 22:1-2).  In short, John is telling us that Ezekiel’s temple vision was not of a big stone building, but of the Heavenly Temple which is the Church, the Body of Christ.  The water of the Spirit which flowed from the threshold of the temple in Ezekiel’s vision is the living water of the Spirit Jesus promised.  And that water is found in none other than the baptismal font of your local parish.  The mysteries of the Apocalypse are a lot closer than you think!

Mark Shea

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Mark P. Shea is a popular Catholic writer and speaker. The author of numerous books, his most recent work is The Work of Mercy (Servant) and The Heart of Catholic Prayer (Our Sunday Visitor). Mark contributes numerous articles to many magazines, including his popular column “Connecting the Dots” for the National Catholic Register. Mark is known nationally for his one minute “Words of Encouragement” on Catholic radio. He also maintains the Catholic and Enjoying It blog and regularly blogs for National Catholic Register. He lives in Washington state with his wife, Janet, and their four sons.

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