Sept. 3, 2009
Read Ezekiel 10
Highlights In Today's Reading:
Ezekiel foretold that our Creator God is Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and for ever (Heb. 13:8). He has provided a new spirit within you. It is the only way for God to correct us (Ezek. 11:19-20). False prophets are warned that follow their own spirit (not the Holy Spirit) (13:3).
Ezekiel's second vision continued with one man . . . clothed with linen who marked the foreheads of all who remained faithful to the Lord (9:2-7). This marking process points out our individual responsibility. Participating in worship services in the Temple did not distinguish the elect remnant but repentance over sin did. God will judge nations and churches as He did the Seven Churches (Rev. 2:17,26; 3:5,13,21-22). The appeal to each was for personal repentance. Biblical repentance is much more than a change of direction. Godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death (II Cor. 7:10).
Our affections can now be centered upon Christ since we have His spiritual nature and our thoughts can be in harmony with Him. (Comp. John 1:12-13; 3:3,5-7.) I shall bewail many which have sinned already, and have not repented of the uncleanness . . . which they have committed (Ezek. 12:21).
While the wicked majority of Israelites was being judged, the godly minority was being protected.
Concerning Israel's evil leadership, God said: Ye have not . . . executed My judgments (11:12). Consequently, the glory of the Lord went up from the midst of the city (11:23). The Israelites were so involved in their "religious activities" that they were not aware or concerned that God had forsaken them.
Ezekiel had observed the leaders of Jerusalem who appeared to be the chosen ones and the favored people, blessed and called to remain in charge while so many others had been killed or taken captive. In reality, it was those captive in Babylon who learned, through suffering, to repent of their pagan idolatry and trust in the One True God of Israel.
Everything depends on the right action of our will. God gives us the power of choice. We cannot change our heart, but we can choose to repent of our sins and receive Jesus as Lord and Savior (be born again) as the Lord revealed to Ezekiel.
By grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God: not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are . . . created in Christ Jesus unto good works (Eph. 2:8-10).
Thought for Today:
He (God) healeth the broken in heart, and bindeth up their wounds (Ps. 147:3).
As the One who gives a new Spirit (Ezek. 11:19). This is the promise fulfilled when we accept Jesus as Savior and Lord of our lives. God hath sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts (Gal. 4:4-7).
12:3 stuff for removing = belongings to take into exile; 12:23 effect of every vision = fulfillment, every prophecy will come to pass; 13:9 upon = against; 13:18 women that sew pillows to all armholes = false prophetesses who sew magic charms upon the wrists of garments; 13:21 kerchiefs = veils; 13:23 divine divinations = practice witchcraft visions.
Pray for Radio Sri Lanka International Shorwave Broadcasts in memory of Mr. Lester Claussen • Staff: Barbara Bivens • Government Official: Rep. John Olver (MA) • Country: Brunei (400,000) on the northern coast of Borneo • Major languages: Malay and English • Limited religious freedom • 66% Muslim; 19% Chinese religions; 6% animist; 4% Protestant; 4% Roman Catholic • Prayer Suggestion: Let your faith in the Word of God overrule all fears (Ps. 18:30).
Optional Reading: Revelation 8
Memory Verse for the Week: Matthew 11:28