Lament and Judgment

Ezekiel 19 – Lament Over The Fall Of Jerusalem’s Kings
Ezekiel 20:1–44 – Apostate Israel Purged And Renewed Through Judgment
Ezekiel 20:45–21:32 – Babylonia, God’s Sword Of Judgment
Ezekiel 22 – The Sins For Which Jerusalem Is Judged
Ezekiel 23 – Jerusalem And Samaria Allegorized As Adulterous Sisters

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One Reply to “Lament and Judgment”

  1. Ezekiel 19 – “This is a lament and is to be used as a lament” (Ezekiel 19:14b) is the tag line after the poem about Israel, the once strong and mighty now “uprooted in fury and thrown to the ground” (19:12).

    Ezekiel 20:1–29.  Perhaps this section should be subtitled, “They Desecrated My Sabbaths” since this phrase is repeated five times in these few verses. The Sabbath, the fourth commandment, is rather simple in concept, but apparently much more difficult for self-centered people. I’m not sure I have it right, but I am working to keep a Sabbath day for the Lord and pray that this will get better with time. Even more, I hope I can teach this through example (not just words). The verse that caught my eye in this section was this: “Also I gave them my Sabbaths as a sign between us, so they would now that I the Lord made them holy” (20:12). Have you ever thought of the Sabbath as a gift? Thank you Lord for your gift of the Sabbath. Teach us to honor you in all days, but especially on whatever day of the week we call Sabbath.

    Ezekiel 20:30-44. Even though Israel would have such rebellious and indignant people, God renews his promise to restore those who honor his ways. “I will purge you of those who revolt and rebel against me” (20:38). As I read the many details of the Old Testament, my heart is drawn to the Jewish people of modern times. I’m becoming more empathetic to their strong hold onto as many laws and decrees as possible and I understand their reluctance to embrace Jesus as Lord and Savior. They have been misled throughout history and such strong words must ring loud in the halls of the synagogues today. “With a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with outpoured wrath” (20:33), the Lord Almighty will judge his people for their own good.

    Go and serve your idols, every one of you! But afterward you will surely listen to me and no longer profane my hold name with your gifts and idols. Ezekiel 20:39

    My parents used to say, God would “give them enough rope to hang themselves” in this context, just enough rope. These people were not stupid or ignorant. Just the opposite I would propose. When I look at the fine jewelry, the goldsmiths, the bronze and iron fabrications — all from an age that have no industrialization — these were an amazing people, full of talent and sharp minds. That doesn’t mean they always made good choices. Some things never change, it is our fallen nature. As much as I dislike that phrase, I find it hard to dismiss it. Lord open our eyes to our modern idols! Surely if we would see them clearly we would not continue this way!

    Ezekiel 20:45–21:32. Groan Ezekiel, groan and let them know of the prophesy against them for their foolishness. “Every heart will melt with fear and every hand go limp; every spirit will become faint and every leg will be wet with urine. It is coming! It will surely take place, declares the Sovereign Lord” (21:7). Ok, that’s pretty intense, “every leg will be wet with urine,” seriously. “You will be taken captive” (21:24) and “The crown will not be restored until he to whom it rightfully belongs shall come; to him I will give it” (21:27).

    Ezekiel 22 – Ezekiel shamelessly reveals some of the worst sins for which Jerusalem is judged, as a people, they all failed. I’ve heard Wilfred de Jesus speak at Exponential and have his book, In the Gap: What Happens When God’s People Stand Strong, though I have yet to read it myself. I bought it because of the outline, nine people in the Bible who stood in the gap, who heard the calling of the Lord and did not shy away from the challenge.  The intro to the book includes a quote from this section,

    I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.  Ezekiel 22:30

    Pastor Wilfred is a passionate man of God who works tirelessly in inner city Chicago. God provided him with a special call, a discerning heart. I believe we are each called in our own ways, we simply have to put away our worldly vision and adopt a worldview that is Christ centered, that is holy and Godly. Feast on the Bible each day, what joy fills my heart each morning as I get to read God’s word, as I get to visit with the Lord Almighty over coffee and in the quiet place of my home. This is without a doubt the best hour of the day! Thank you Lord for meeting with me. Show me the gap. Equip me to stand firm for your kingdom.

    Ezekiel 23 – Jerusalem And Samaria Allegorized As Adulterous Sisters. The words of this chapter must have stirred outrage among the people, such pointed, sharp words of disgusting acts of prostitution, clearly spoken to portray the nations around them. We give the Bible to our children to read…I wonder if I ever read this section as a child with the slightest understanding. The Bible is not a book for the weak, there is no holding back, strong words meant to get our attention. Lord I hope we haven’t become so desensitized that we ignore your stern words.

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