What a haircut (Ezek. 5:1-4)! The reaction of God to disobedience (5:5-17) plus His prophesied consequences against Israel as the "End" nears (chap. 6, 7,9)! They shall know that I am the Lord (7:27).
Fourteen years after Nebuchadnezzar's initial conquest of the kingdom of Judah, life in Jerusalem seemed to have returned to normal. Consequently, the people would not believe Ezekiel, who was in Babylon, when he prophesied concerning Jerusalem: Your altars shall be desolate. . . . the cities shall be laid waste (Ezek. 6:4,6). Even the Israelites who were captive in Babylon were sure that God would protect Jerusalem and the only Temple on earth where His Presence dwelt and sacrifices were made. But Ezekiel continued to warn them: He that is in the field shall die with the sword; and he that is in the city, famine and pestilence shall devour him (7:15). What a horrifying prophecy!
Fourteen months after his first vision (1:1-2), Ezekiel reported: The Spirit . . . brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem (8:1-3). The prophet then saw in his vision the great abominations (detestable things) that the house of Israel committeth. . . . wicked abominations. . . . there sat women weeping for Tammuz (the Babylonian god of fertility). . . . men, with their backs toward the Temple of the Lord, and . . . they worshipped the sun (8:6,9-14,16). As a result of their disobedience to the Word of God, the Israelites had filled the land with violence (8:17). The people also would not believe his second vision that showed God's reason for the horrifying judgment that was to come upon Judah and Jerusalem. Ignorance of the Word of God is no excuse. Jesus said: It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every Word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4). We face similars situations with our overemphasis on material success and refusals to read the Word of God to learn why He created us, how He expects us to live, and what He expects us to do.
Wealth was never meant to be selfishly accumulated or to be lavished on ourselves. God entrusts people with wealth, that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work (II Cor. 9:8). Having a right attitude of the heart is all important since both rich and poor can lust after more possessions. The Holy Spirit warns: They that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare (trap), and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition (damnation) (I Tim. 6:9).
Thought for Today:
For this shall every one that is godly pray unto Thee in a time when thou mayest be found: surely in the floods of great waters they shall not come nigh unto Him (Ps. 32:6).
By the man clothed in linen (Ezek. 9:2-11) who represents Christ as High Priest, marking His people to be spared from the flaming sword of vengeance. Seeing then that we have a great High Priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast (firmly) our profession (confession) (Heb. 4:14; also Rev. 7:2-3).
5:16 staff =supply; 6:4 images =idols; 7:26 counsel from the ancients =counsel from the aged; 8:12 chambers of his imagery =shrine of his own carved idol.
Pray for International Broadcasts sponsored by Thursday Morning Prayer • Bible Pathway Media Producer: Rick Hash • Government Officials: Sen. Jim DeMint (SC) and Rep. At-Large Earl Pomeroy (ND) • Country: Andorra (78,000) in the eastern Pyrenees between France and Spain • Major languages: Catalan and French • Official freedom of religion • 94% Christian; 4% non-Religious; .6% Muslim; .9% Other • Prayer Suggestion: Bless the Lord at all times regardless of circumstances (Ps. 34:1).
Optional Reading: Revelation 7
Memory Verse for the Week: Romans 8:18