God has given a prophetic pledge of a Millennial New Covenant Temple and of the renewal of physical sacrifices, Ezekiel 40-48; and included in that prophecy was a promise that physical Levites and physical Priests from Zadok [a descendant of Levi] would be called into the New Covenant to serve as a part of the priesthood of Jesus Christ. Ezekiel 40-44: The Millennial Temple and Ezekiel 45-48: The Millennial Temple Please do visit these links which are full of illustrations of the Millennial New Covenant Temple.
That is not a promise of a restoration of all of the priesthood of Aaron! but is a promise to the descendants of faithful Zadok ONLY!
The promise to Zadok is not a promise of the restoration of the Aaronic priesthood, because the promise was not given to Aaron and to all the sons of Aaron, most of whom had not been faithful in their service and fell away time after time!
The promise was given to Zadok and to the descendants of Zadok ONLY! This because of the loyalty of Zadok and his sons during the kingdom of David beginning in 2 Sam 15 and continuing into 1 Kings.
The promise to Zadok does not mean that the Mosaic Covenant will be restored or that they will be Aaronic priests of the Mosaic Covenant! and to think so, one would have to reject the entire book of Hebrews! For Paul tells us several times and in various ways in the book of Hebrews that the Mosaic Covenant with its Aaronic priesthood has ended and has been replaced by the High Priesthood of Jesus Christ!
The promise to the descendants of Zadok means that men who are the descendants of the faithful sons of Zadok, will be called into the New Covenant; and will serve in the Millennial Temple as the priests of the New Covenant officiating over the physical things of the Millennial Temple.
This promise has two distinct meanings:
1 That some of the descendants of Zadok would be among the called out and the Chosen in the resurrection to spirit and be among the spirit priesthood of Jesus Christ in that way,
2 That some of the descendants of Zadok will live on into the Millennial Kingdom and will serve in the Millennial Temple in the physical necessities of the Temple! In BOTH cases they will be priests of the the New Covenant priesthood of Jesus Christ and not priests of Aaronic priesthood!
As David was loyal to God he shall rule Israel forever as a resurrected spirit; and as Zadok and his sons were loyal to God and to David and Solomon, they shall serve God in the Millennial Temple as priests of Jesus Christ in the New Covenant Millennial Temple.
Zadok has a promise from Almighty God, that because of his and his son’s faithfulness [trained up in the faithfulness of Zadok] in service to God under the Mosaic Covenant; his descendants will be called into the New Covenant and will serve in the New Covenant Millennial Temple!
The physical sacrifices of the Mosaic Covenant were an allegory of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ; to teach Israel that the wages of sin is death, and to teach Israel about the need for a better and more perfect sacrifice for sin.
Sacrifices will be restored in the Millennial Temple for the same reason, as a practical demonstration, lesson and teaching method. The descendants of Zadok will officiate in the physical sacrifices and the physical things of the Millennial Temple and will teach these principles. While the resurrected spirit priests and kings will teach the spiritual understandings of these things.
God gave the Mosaic Covenant as an allegory and foundation of the New Covenant.
The New Covenant is merely the Mosaic Covenant with a better sacrifice and better promises and the addition of the Holy Spirit to write the whole Word of God in our minds and on our hearts so that we may keep them.
The New Covenant being a much better Covenant, the old Mosaic Covenant by reason of its weakness has passed away and been replaced by the New as Paul teaches through the whole book of Hebrews.
Jer 31:31 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah:
32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the Lord:
33 But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the Lord, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people.
Jer 33:16 In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely: and this is the name wherewith she shall be called, The LORD our righteousness [The righteousness of the LORD is there]. 17 For thus saith the LORD; David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel [referring to the now spirit and eternal David himself]; 18 Neither shall the priests the Levites [through the descendants of Zadok] want a man before me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice continually
This is a promise that the descendants of Zadok will yet serve God and offer sacrifices in the New Covenant. It is not a promise that the Mosaic Covenant will endure, for Jer 31:31 plainly speaks of a New Covenant; and the Old is replaced by the New as Paul plainly says in Hebrews.
Jer 33:20 Thus saith the LORD; if ye can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season; 21 Then may also my covenant be broken with David my servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne; and with the Levites the priests, my ministers. 22 As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured: so will I multiply the seed of David my servant, and the Levites that minister unto me.
This is NOT speaking of the Mosaic Covenant but is speaking of the New Covenant; the entire context of Jer 33 is the restoration of Israel in the millennium New Covenant Kingdom of God. We know this is speaking of the New Covenant because the gift of the Holy Spirit which was never promised in the Mosaic Covenant and is a promise exclusive to the New Covenant, will be poured out on all flesh Joel 2:8 in the Millennial New Covenant Kingdom of God!
Zadok (a descendant of Aaron (1 Chron 6:50-53) and his sons served in Solomon’s Temple and the son’s of Zadok will serve in Ezekiel’s Temple, in place of the other sons of Aaron! However they will not serve as Mosaic priests, but as physical priests of Jesus Christ of the New Covenant.
1Ch 29:22 And they made Solomon the son of David king the second time, and anointed him unto the LORD to be the chief governor, and Zadok to be priest.
2Ch 31:10 And Azariah the chief priest of the house of Zadok answered him, and said, Since the people began to bring the offerings into the house of the LORD, we have had enough to eat, and have left plenty: for the LORD hath blessed his people; and that which is left is this great store.
God promises that the descendants of the priests who remained faithful when the other Mosaic priests went astray, shall serve in the physical things of the Millennial Temple.
This is not a promise of a continuing Mosaic Covenant and it does not mean that they shall be Aaronic priests of the Mosaic Covenant.
Most of the physical priesthood of Aaron was rejected for their continual rebellion against God; while Zadok and his sons were faithful and have a promise from God that for their faithfulness, their descendants will serve as physical priests of the New Covenant in the Millennial Temple.
Eze 44:15 But the priests the Levites, the sons of Zadok, that kept the charge of my sanctuary when the children of Israel went astray from me, they shall come near to me to minister unto me, and they shall stand before me to offer unto me the fat and the blood, saith the Lord GOD:
In the consecration of the New Covenant altar, blood is the means by which it is purified and atoned for:
Lev 8:15 And he slew it; and Moses took the blood, and put it upon the horns of the altar round about with his finger, and purified the altar, and poured the blood at the bottom of the altar, and sanctified it, to make reconciliation upon it.
The Millennial Temple will also be sanctified by the blood of sacrifices and the Millennial Temple will be a place of sacrifice. Therefore it is needful that physical priests of the New Covenant serve in the Millennial Temple.
Eze 43:20 You are to take some of its blood and put it on the four horns of the altar and on the four corners of the upper ledge and all around the rim, and so purify the altar and make atonement for it.
The sacrifices to be offered in the Millennial Temple in the New Covenant, are the same as those offered in the Mosaic Covenant, as recognized in this list:
Eze 45:17 And it shall be the prince’s part to give burnt offerings, and meat offerings, and drink offerings, in the feasts, and in the new moons, and in the sabbaths, in all solemnities of the house of Israel: he shall prepare the sin offering, and the meat offering, and the burnt offering, and the peace offerings, to make reconciliation for the house of Israel.
The personal offerings for cleansing/atonement for impurity and sin are also New Covenant offerings: regarding the Millennial temple Ezekiel writes:
Eze 44:25 And they shall come at no dead person to defile themselves: but for father, or for mother, or for son, or for daughter, for brother, or for sister that hath had no husband, they may defile themselves. 26 And after he is cleansed, they shall reckon unto him seven days. 27 And in the day that he goeth into the sanctuary, unto the inner court, to minister in the sanctuary, he shall offer his sin offering, saith the Lord GOD.
Eze 40:39 And in the porch of the gate were two tables on this side, and two tables on that side, to slay thereon the burnt offering and the sin offering and the trespass offering.
From the formula for the trespass offering from Leviticus:
Lev 5:16 and the priest shall make an atonement for him with the ram of the trespass offering, and it shall be forgiven him.
These physical priests that perform the sacrificial services, are physical helpers of the New Covenant priesthood of Jesus Christ, serving in the physical things of the Millennial Temple and are not priests of the Mosaic Covenant, but are converted into the New Covenant!
These physical priests of the New Covenant priests will also be teaching: which is what offering sacrifices really is:
Lev 10:8 And the LORD spake unto Aaron, saying, 9 Do not drink wine nor strong drink, thou, nor thy sons with thee, when ye go into the tabernacle of the congregation, lest ye die: it shall be a statute for ever throughout your generations: 10 And that ye may put difference between holy and unholy, and between unclean and clean; 11 And that ye may teach the children of Israel all the statutes which the LORD hath spoken unto them by the hand of Moses.
Ezekiel speaks of the physical priests of the New Covenant, the descendants of Zadok; as teachers also.
Eze 44:21 Neither shall any priest drink wine, when they enter into the inner court [Millennial Temple]. 23 And they shall teach my people the difference between the holy and profane, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean.
Moses prophesies of the New Covenant in this manner.
Deu 30:1 And it shall come to pass, when all these things [specifically the great tribulation] are come upon thee, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before thee, and thou [they shall remember the whole Word of God to keep it] shalt call them to mind among all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath driven thee, 2 And shalt return unto the LORD thy God, and shalt obey his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; 3 That then the LORD thy God will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither the LORD thy God hath scattered thee. 4 If any of thine be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will the LORD thy God gather thee, and from thence will he fetch thee:
Deu 30:5 And the LORD thy God will bring thee into the land which thy fathers possessed, and thou shalt possess it; and he will do thee good, and multiply thee above thy fathers. 6 And the LORD thy God will circumcise thine heart, and the heart of thy seed, to love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, that thou mayest live. 7 And the LORD thy God will put all these curses upon thine enemies, and on them that hate thee, which persecuted thee.
Deu 30:8 And thou shalt return and obey the voice of the LORD, and do all his commandments which I command thee this day.
Which is a prophecy of the New Covenant Kingdom of God.
As a matter of interest the Temple Faithful consist of one core family who are preparing to serve in the coming Millennial Temple. They are filled with zeal to serve in the Millennial Temple which will be built by Messiah after he comes. Could they be the descendants of Zadok who will serve in the new Millennial Temple after they have been brought into the New Covenant when Messiah comes?