Where is the most unlikely place you experienced God’s presence? (Bernie’s death last night)
“If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast. If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.” (Ps. 139:8-12) Ezekiel was far from his roots…in exile, in Babylon. So where was God…? There! Talking through him!
- Who He Was
- Name means “God will strengthen, God makes hard”
- Started one place (Jerusalem) ended up in another (Babylon)(2 Kings 24:14-16)
- Called to be a prophet when he was 30 (Ezek. 1:1-2)
- Ministry lasted over 20 years
- Was a prophet at the same time as Daniel and Jeremiah
- A teacher building schools and teaching OT in Babylon
- Recognized by Islam as a prophet
- Advised Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego to resist idol worship
- What He Saw
- Cherubim (Ezekiel 1, Revelation 4)
- Gog and Magog (Ezekiel 38, Revelation 20)
- Eating the scroll (Ezekiel 3, Revelation 10)
- River of Living Water (Ezekiel 47, Revelation 22)
- The New Jerusalem (Ezekiel 40-48, Revelation 22)
- What He Did
- unable to talk (Ezek. 3:26) – no warning for this rebellious people
- lying on his left side for 390 days (Ezek. 4:4) – ruin of Jerusalem
- Lying on his right for 40 days more (Ezek. 4:6) – ruin of Judah
- Shaving his head (Ezek. 5:1-4) burned, cut by sword, scattered by wind
- Packing a bag and pretending to go into exile (Ezek. 12:3) – exile coming
- Not mourning for his dead wife (Ezek. 24:17) – severe grief in exile
- What It Means Today
- God moves us “like chess pieces” (Pat-ism) (Acts 16:6-7)
- God calls at any age to serve Him (1 Cor. 7:17)
- God redeems and restores regardless of condition (Joel 2:25 cf. 1 Pet. 1:7)
- God uses the wicked to “mold” His children (Hab. 1:2-4 cf. 3:13)
- Revival comes individually then as a nation (2 Chron. 7:14)
- The driving theme of the book is “Yahweh is there” (Ps. 11:4-7)
Verses for Ezekiel – Gods Message from Exile
2 Kings 24:14-16
He carried all Jerusalem into exile: all the officers and fighting men, and all the skilled workers and artisans—a total of ten thousand. Only the poorest people of the land were left. Nebuchadnezzar took Jehoiachin captive to Babylon. He also took from Jerusalem to Babylon the king’s mother, his wives, his officials and the prominent people of the land. The king of Babylon also deported to Babylon the entire force of seven thousand fighting men, strong and fit for war, and a thousand skilled workers and artisans.
In my thirtieth year, in the fourth month on the fifth day, while I was among the exiles by the Kebar River, the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God. On the fifth of the month—it was the fifth year of the exile of King Jehoiachin—
I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be silent and unable to rebuke them, for they are a rebellious people.
“Then lie on your left side and put the sin of the people of Israel upon yourself. You are to bear their sin for the number of days you lie on your side.
“After you have finished this, lie down again, this time on your right side, and bear the sin of the people of Judah. I have assigned you 40 days, a day for each year.
“Now, son of man, take a sharp sword and use it as a barber’s razor to shave your head and your beard. Then take a set of scales and divide up the hair. When the days of your siege come to an end, burn a third of the hair inside the city. Take a third and strike it with the sword all around the city. And scatter a third to the wind. For I will pursue them with drawn sword. But take a few hairs and tuck them away in the folds of your garment. Again, take a few of these and throw them into the fire and burn them up. A fire will spread from there to all Israel.
“Therefore, son of man, pack your belongings for exile and in the daytime, as they watch, set out and go from where you are to another place. Perhaps they will understand, though they are a rebellious people.
Groan quietly; do not mourn for the dead. Keep your turban fastened and your sandals on your feet; do not cover your mustache and beard or eat the customary food of mourners.”
Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia. When they came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to.
1 Corinthians 7:17
Nevertheless, each person should live as a believer in whatever situation the Lord has assigned to them, just as God has called them. This is the rule I lay down in all the churches.
“I will repay you for the years the locusts have eaten—the great locust and the young locust, the other locusts and the locust swarm—my great army that I sent among you.
1 Peter 1:7
These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.
How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen? Or cry out to you, “Violence!” but you do not save? Why do you make me look at injustice? Why do you tolerate wrongdoing? Destruction and violence are before me; there is strife, and conflict abounds. Therefore the law is paralyzed, and justice never prevails. The wicked hem in the righteous, so that justice is perverted.
You came out to deliver your people, to save your anointed one. You crushed the leader of the land of wickedness (Babylon), you stripped him from head to foot.
2 Chronicles 7:14
if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.
The Lord is in his holy temple; the Lord is on his heavenly throne. He observes everyone on earth; his eyes examine them. The Lord examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion. On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot. For the Lord is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face (anywhere).