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CHAPTER 32 — Egypt is going down. Verse 10 says: “I will cause many peoples to be appalled at you, and their kings will shudder with horror because of you…” And once again we see the Scripture in verse 15: “THEN they will KNOW that I AM THE LORD.” Commentaries I have read in regards to this chapter say that this could be a dual prophecy…dual in that it was specifically for the time in history we are reading about AND…also for the end times. Notice verses 8-15 … total darkness…vex the hearts of many people…destruction among the nations….other rulers of other nations horribly afraid…..trembling at every moment…multitudes will fall… destruction of all the beasts … deep waters… rivers running like oil…Makes you think doesn’t it!!
CHAPTER 33 — Ezekiel is prophesying IN Babylon to the captives there. God has instructed him to continue to speak to HIS people. Ezekiel’s message as well as the people take a turn in direction here. Ezekiel is appointed as watchman. The purpose of the watchman was to blow the horn to WARN the people of coming disaster, and/or enemy armies approaching, and in the case of Ezekiel to WARN the people that they needed to WAKE UP and RETURN TO GOD!! This was a serious job and God would hold the watchman responsible IF he did not warn HIS people. Ezekiel was a good watchman. He did exactly what he was supposed to do. NOW…would God’s chosen people LISTEN and OBEY??? (BTW….on this side of the Cross, Jesus is the our watchman.) The change in direction in this message is that THIS message is a message of HOPE (Jesus IS our HOPE!!)
In verse 11, we see the heart of God … take a look: “Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for WHY will ye die, O house of Israel?” This is not the first time we see God’s true desire and compassion. I hear so many people saying (and I used to say it myself…hate to admit it but it is the truth): “I just can’t read the OT…..it makes NO sense….and God was so mean…look at all the blood shed…and LOOK at what God did to HIS chosen people…” However, statements of that nature reveal that the person(s) is believing in a LIE…. straight from the pit of hell. The enemy would like nothing better than for people to be afraid of GOD and see HIM as cruel, harsh, and almost relishing in judgement. These type of LIES are fostered by none other than the enemy himself to keep us away from God and HIS WORD. The WORD is FILLED with TRUTH and our enemy does not want us to know the TRUTH!! As we can see from this Scripture in verse 11, our GOD did not and still does not take pleasure in the death of any wicked evil people. THINK about that…. GOD created EACH of us….ALL of us. He REALLY wants ALL to RETURN to HIM without exception. However, God gave us FREEWILL and is such a Gentleman that HE will NOT FORCE us to CHOOSE HIM. God cries to them to TURN BACK TO HIM!!! I praise God that HE is not “just” a God of 2nd chances…..HE is a God of many many many chances! He keeps giving us “do overs” until we get it right. And we are witnesses to God STILL trying to get HIS people to RETURN TO HIM although they are in captivity in Babylon!! Ahhhhhhhhhh!!!!
CHAPTER 34 — Shepherds and their Sheep. God is coming down hard on the many shepherds who were either leading their sheep astray and/or were more concerning about feeding themselves (physically and spiritually) rather than reaching out to the needy. There are soooooo many levels to this. As believers, we are the sheep under the teaching of our Shepherds, our ministers which is why it is CRITICAL to be part of a Bible based church. As believers we are also shepherds to a flock….to our friends, our family…and to all people God places in our lives and have a responsibility to help them to lie down by the restorative, healing, saving water…..the Water of Life….Jesus. And the message here is also a foreshadow of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
I found Ezekiel 34 to be such a refreshing chapter to the depths of my soul. It reminded me of Psalm 23 — “The Lord is my Shepherd, I shall not want…….He leadeth me beside still waters…HE RESTORETH my SOUL!! He tells us in Ezekiel that: “I myself will tend my sheep” … “I will search for the lost and bring back the strays.” “I will bind up the injured and strengthen the weak”.. “I will make a covenant of PEACE with them.”
In my Life Application Study Bible there is a note on “peace.” It states: “Peace here means MORE (I added the caps) than the absence of conflict. It is contentment, fulfillment, and security.”
And we don’t have to wait for this awesome peace. He has come. He has risen. He lives in us. We CAN live in contentment, fulfillment, and security .. regardless of our personal circumstances, or our Nation’s circumstances, or world circumstances, or anything!!! “For I am persuaded to believe NO THING can separate us from the wonderful love of God…” Romans 8:38-39. NOW that is TRULY GOOD News for us!!
Sharing HIS love,