Ears prick up at the thought of an inheritance. Solomon had very great wealth (2 Chronicles 9) and obviously left a great inheritance. But it largely came to nothing because of the foolishness of his son who failed to seek the wisdom of God, as his father had done, to wisely rule the nation.

In Ezekiel we read how God gave the prophet a vision in intricate detail of a great temple. It is interesting to note how long it was that the prophet had to wait to receive this vision. Taken into captivity 11 years before Jerusalem was destroyed, he had spent time warning the exiles that their hopes to return were futile. Why?

The spiritual immorality in Jerusalem was only getting worse. The leaders there were abusing the use of the temple Solomon had built. They had lost the vision of the true God. In Ezekiel 33:21 we read how they received the tragic news of the destruction of Jerusalem and the Temple. The next date we have was at the beginning of chapter 40 where we learnt that over 13 years more have now passed since that tragedy.

Probably in this period Ezekiel received the messages about the future recorded up to the end of chapter 39. Now, “in visions of God” (40:2) he is brought to Israel and “he set me down on a very high mountain” and is told “set your heart on all that I shall show you … declare all that you see to the house of Israel” (verse 4).

This vision of a glorious future temple was written down in detail to inspire the exiles; visions to give them purpose to overcome their sense of hopelessness. However, what is striking in chapter 44 is the blessing on the priests “the sons of Zadok” who had not gone astray, but “who kept the charge of my sanctuary” (verse 15). Note the words carefully, “This shall be their inheritance: I am their inheritance … I am their possession” (verse 28) is what God says.

That is the ultimate inheritance, not gold or silver, but to belong to God, to “be equal unto the angels” (Luke 20:36). The opening of Revelation says Jesus has “made us a kingdom, priests to his God and Father, to him be glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” (1:5). May we all be interested in this kind of inheritance! What a contrast to what this world offers today.