God is Setting All Things Right. So I am Blogging Through the Bible in a Year.

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

September 4 - Ezekiel 24-27: God Prevents Israel's Mourning; Punishes Judah's Neighbors

Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 24-27

The Message

English Standard Version

Thought to Guide Your Reading

The people who laughed at Israel and Judah would be punished, too.

Summary in 100 Words or Less

"Ezekiel, Jerusalem's murderers have stoked my vengeance. I will purify the city—no more compassion.
Ezekiel's wife died. People asked why he was not mourning. "You will be unable to mourn when God destroys the Temple and your children are murdered."
"When that day happens, Ezekiel, I will allow mourning and through that they will see I am God."
"Ammon, Moab, Edom, and Philistia laughed at Judah and their plight. They treated My Chosen People without mercy. They will be punished. Tyre cheered Jerusalem's downfall. Nebuchadnezzar will smash them into a bare rock. Ezekiel will hold a funeral for them."

How Today’s Reading Contributes to the Gospel: God is Setting All Things Right

God would not allow Ezekiel to mourn the loss of his wife to show Jerusalem how bad life could be if they did not surrender.

One important part to remember as we read this section is that Ezekiel is not prophesying alone. Jeremiah is prophesying at the same time to the same people. Jeremiah's message is to surrender and survive. Since Judah cared little for God they were unwilling to listen and God was forced to punish them to the fullest extent. But at the moment they were completely defeated, God would allow Ezekiel and Israel to mourn.

The surrounding nations would be punished for not helping their ailing neighbor.

Most of my life I assumed God only cared for Israel during the Old Testament's time. Little did I realize how much the surrounding nations were mentioned. If God wants to set all things right on the earth, then all nations are rewarded or punished for their actions. Ammon, Moab, Edom, Philistia, and Tyre would be taken over because they would not help Judah and laughed at God because Judah was taken into captivity.

Do you rejoice at the downfall of your hated neighbor or do you try to help first?

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