God cleanses us
1 Again in the ninth year, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 2 Son of man, write the name of the day, this very day: the king of Babylon set himself against Jerusalem this very day. 3 And utter a parable to the rebellious house, and say to them, The Lord God says this; Set on a pot, set it on, and pour water into it: 4 Gather the pieces into it, every good piece, the thigh, and the shoulder; fill it with the choice bones. 5 Take the choicest of the flock, and also burn the bones under it, and make it boil well, and let them boil its bones in it. 6 Therefore the Lord God says this; Cries of grief to the bloody city, to the pot whose rust is in it, and whose rust has not gone out of it! Bring it out piece by piece; let no lot fall on it.
- The whole city was about to be judged.
- If lots were cast on it some would be spared and some killed.
- God said none would be spared.
7 For her blood is in the midst of her; she set it on the top of a rock; she did not pour it on the ground, to cover it with dust; 8 That it might cause fury to come up to take vengeance; I have set her blood on the top of a rock, so that it would not be covered. 9 Therefore the Lord God says this; Cries of grief to the bloody city! I will make the pile for the fire great. 10 Heap on wood, kindle the fire, consume the flesh, spice it well, and let the bones be burned. 11 Then set it empty on its coals, that its brass may be hot, and may burn, so that the filthiness of it may be melted in it, to consume its rust.
- Cast iron pots and self-cleaning ovens are cleansed this way. The fire becomes so hot that it burns off all the rust, scum and debris.
- Deuteronomy 4:24 For the LORD your God is a consuming fire, even a jealous God.
12 She has wearied herself with lies, and her great rust did not go out of her: her rust will be in the fire. 13 In your filthiness is lewdness: because I would cleanse you, and you were not cleansed, you will not be cleansed from your filthiness any more, until I have caused my fury to rest on you. 14 I, the LORD, have spoken it: it will come to pass, and I will do it; I will not go back, neither will I spare, neither will I repent; according to your ways, and according to your doings, they will judge you, says the Lord GOD.
- God had been longsuffering toward His People.
- The end of His patience had come. Even in this He was just going to let be done to them what they did to others.
- God was furious at the needless suffering and loss caused by their idolatries.
- He wanted to give them great abundance and blessing.
- God tried to clean them through easier means.
- John 15:3 Now you are clean through the word which I have spoken unto you.
- Hebrews 12:6 For whom the Lord loves he chastens, and scourges every son whom he receives. 7 If you endure chastening, God deals with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father does not discipline? 8 But if you are without chastisement, of which all are partakers, then you are bastards, and not sons. 9 Furthermore we have had fathers of our flesh that corrected us, and we gave them reverence: will we not much rather be in subjection unto the Father of spirits, and live? 10 For they truly for a few days corrected us after their own pleasure; but he for our profit, that we might be partakers of his holiness.
15 Also the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 16 Son of man, behold, I take away from you the desire of your eyes with a stroke: yet you will neither mourn or weep, Your tears will not run down. 17 Groan silently, make no mourning for the dead, bind the turban on you, and put your shoes on your feet, and do not cover your lips, and do not eat the bread of men. 18 So I spoke to the people in the morning: and at evening my wife died; and in the morning I did as I was commanded. 19 And the people said to me, Will you not tell us what these things are to us, that you do this? 20 Then I answered them, The word of the LORD came to me, saying, 21 Speak to the house of Israel, The Lord God says this; Behold, I will profane my sanctuary, the excellency of your strength, the desire of your eyes, and that which your soul pities; and your sons and your daughters whom you have left will fall by the sword.
- Ezekiel’s wife was the desire of his eyes in verse 16.
- God gave them a living illustration of what was going to happen.
22 And you will do as I have done: you will not cover your lips, or eat the bread of men. 23 And your turbans will be on your heads, and your shoes on your feet: you will not mourn or weep; but you will pine away for your iniquities, and mourn one toward another. 24 This is how Ezekiel is a sign to you: according to all that he has done you will do: and when this comes, you will know that I am the Lord GOD.
- God went to great lengths to correct His people so that they could live and not die.
- They stubbornly refused His corrections over centuries.
- Deep in their hearts the people trusted false gods
and things that the world said are the answer to life’s problems and result in happiness.
- 'You will know that I am the Lord,’ says to them I alone am the source of life and blessing.
- Deuteronomy 10:16 Circumcise therefore the foreskin of your heart, and be no more stiff-necked.
25 Also, you son of man, will it not be in the day when I take from them their strength, the joy of their glory, the desire of their eyes, and that on which they set their minds, their sons and their daughters, 26 That he that escapes in that day will come to you, to cause you to hear it with your ears? 27 In that day your mouth will be opened to him who has escaped, and you will speak, and no more be dumb: and you will be a sign to them; and they will know that I am the LORD.
- John 17:3 And this is life eternal, that they might know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom You have sent.
The Lord stretches out His hand with vengeance on those who harm His people
1 The word of the LORD came again to me, saying, 2 Son of man, set your face against the Ammonites, and prophesy against them; 3 And say to the Ammonites, Hear the word of the Lord GOD; The Lord God says this; Because you said, Aha, against my sanctuary, when it was profaned; and against the land of Israel, when it was desolate; and against the house of Judah, when they went into captivity; 4 Behold, therefore I will deliver you to the children of the east for a possession, and they will set their palaces in you, and make their dwellings in you: they will eat your fruit, and they will drink your milk. 5 And I will make Rabbah a stable for camels, and the Ammonites a resting place for flocks: and you will know that I am the LORD.
- Almighty God from his heavenly throne pronounced judgment on five nations for their spite and vengeance against God’s people.
- God teaches the nations that He is LORD over ALL.
- Often He must do this by judgments, doing to them what they have done to others.
- Genesis 12:3 And I will bless them that bless you, and curse him that curses you: and in you all families of the earth will be blessed.
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
6 For The Lord God says this; Because you clapped your hands, and stamped with the feet, and rejoiced in soul with all your spite against the land of Israel; 7 Behold, therefore I will stretch out my hand on you, and will deliver you for a plunder to the heathen; and I will cut you off from the people, and I will cause you to perish out of the countries: I will destroy you; and you will know that I am the LORD.
- They worshipped false gods. The Lord showed them that He alone is God.
- Jeremiah 10:10 But the LORD is the true God, he is the living God, and an everlasting king: at his wrath the earth will tremble, and the nations will not be able to abide his indignation.
8 The Lord God says this; Because Moab and Seir say, Behold, the house of Judah is like all the nations; 9 Therefore, behold, I will open the shoulder of Moab from the cities, from his cities that are on his frontiers, the glory of the country, Beth-jeshimoth, Baal-meon, and Kiriathaim, 10 to the men of the east with the Ammonites, and will give them in possession, that the Ammonites may not be remembered among the nations. 11 And I will execute judgments on Moab; and they will know that I am the LORD.
- God always gave long, patient warnings before judgment was executed. He gave plenty of time to turn from bad actions.
- 2Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any perish, but that all come to repentance.
12 The Lord God says this; Because Edom has dealt against the house of Judah by taking vengeance, and has greatly offended, and revenged himself on them; 13 Therefore the Lord God says this; I will stretch out my hand on Edom, and will cut off man and beast from it; and I will make it desolate from Teman; and those of Dedan will fall by the sword. 14 And I will lay my vengeance on Edom by the hand of my people Israel: and they will do in Edom according to my anger and according to my fury; and they will know my vengeance, says the Lord GOD. 15 The Lord God says this; Because the Philistines have dealt by revenge, and have taken vengeance with a spiteful heart, to destroy it for their concealed hostility; 16 Therefore the Lord God says this; Behold, I will stretch out my hand on the Philistines, and I will cut off the Cherethims, and destroy the remnant of the sea coast. 17 And I will execute great vengeances on them with furious rebukes; and they will know that I am the LORD, when I will lay my vengeance on them.
- Romans 12:19 Dearly beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath: for it is written, Vengeance is mine; I will repay, says the Lord.
1 And it happened in the eleventh year, in the first day of the month, that the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 2 Son of man, because Tyre has said against Jerusalem, Aha, the gateway of the peoples is broken: it has opened to me: I will be filled, now she is laid waste: 3 Therefore the Lord God says this; Behold, I am against you, O Tyre, and will cause many nations to come up against you, as the sea causes its waves to come up. 4 And they will destroy the walls of Tyre, and break down her towers: I will also scrape her dust from her, and make her like the top of a rock. 5 It will be a place for the spreading of nets in the midst of the sea: for I have spoken it, says the Lord GOD: and it will become a plunder to the nations. 6 And her daughters that are in the field will be slain by the sword; and they will know that I am the LORD.
- Tyre was the super mall of the ancient world: an island in the Mediterranean Sea, ships brought goods to her from all over the world.
- Material goods do not sustain life or give eternal life.
- Life is not buying things or making money from selling goods.
- Many things happen in this world so that people know who is the LORD, the controller and sustainer of all things and who are the liars and imposters among the gods.
- False gods lead to eternal death. That is worse than simple murder; that is eternal murder.
7 For the Lord God says this: Behold, I will bring on Tyre Nebuchadrezzar, king of Babylon, a king of kings, from the north, with horses, with chariots, with horsemen, companies, and many people. 8 He will kill with the sword your daughters in the field: and he will make a fort against you, cast a siege ramp against you, and raise up a large shield against you. 9 And he will set machines of war against your walls, and he will break down your towers with his axes. 10 Because of the abundance of his horses their dust will cover you: your walls will shake at the noise of the horsemen, and of the wheels, and of the chariots, when he enters into your gates, as men enter into a city in which a breach is made. 11 With the hoofs of his horses he will tread down all your streets: he will kill your people by the sword, and your strong pillars will go down to the ground. 12 And they will make plunder of your riches, and make a prize of your merchandise: and they will break down your walls, and destroy your pleasant houses: and they will lay your stones, your timber, and your dust in the midst of the water.
- God’s warnings are given so that people will have a chance to turn from their evil, seek the Lord and be spared.
13 And I will cause the noise of your songs to stop; and the sound of your harps will no longer be heard. 14 And I will make you like the top of a rock: you will be a place to spread nets upon; you will be built no more: for I, the LORD, have spoken it, says the Lord GOD. 15 The Lord God says this to Tyre; Will not the islands shake at the sound of your fall, when the wounded cry, when the slaughter is made in the midst of you? 16 Then all the princes of the sea will come down from their thrones, and lay away their robes, and take off their embroidered garments: they will clothe themselves with trembling; they will sit on the ground, and tremble at every moment, and be astonished at you. 17 And they will take up a lamentation for you, and say to you, How are you destroyed, that was inhabited by seafaring men, the famous city, which was strong in the sea, she and her inhabitants, which cause their terror to be on all that haunt it! 18 Now the islands will tremble in the day of your fall; yes, the islands that are in the sea will be troubled at your passing.
- Ancient Tyre can be seen today, a barren pile of clean smooth rocks where fisherman spread their nets.
- Like Babylon of Revelation 18, the nations gathered, trembled and grieved for the loss.
- Psalm 37:16 A little that a righteous man has is better than the riches of many wicked.
19 For the Lord God says this, When I make you a desolate city like the cities that are not inhabited; when I bring up the deep on you, and great waters cover you; 20 When I bring you down with them that descend into the pit, with the people of ancient times, and set you in the low parts of the earth, in places desolate of old, with them that go down to the pit, that you be not inhabited; and I will set glory in the land of the living; 21 I will make you a terror, and you will exist no more: though you are sought for, yet you will never be found again, says the Lord GOD.
- Isaiah 26:9 With my soul have I desired you in the night; yes, with my spirit within me I will seek you early: for when your judgments are in the earth, the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.
- Habakkuk 2:14 the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.
1 The word of the LORD came again to me, saying, 2 Now, son of man, take up a lamentation for Tyre; 3 And say to Tyre, O you that sit at the entrance of the sea, a merchant of the people for many isles, The Lord God says this; O Tyre, you have said, I am of perfect beauty. 4 Your borders are in the midst of the seas, your builders have perfected your beauty. 5 They have made all your planks of fir trees of Senir: they have taken cedars from Lebanon to make masts for you. 6 They have made your oars of the oaks of Bashan; the daughter of the Ashurites has made your benches of ivory brought from the coasts of Cyprus. 7 You spread out fine linen with embroidered work from Egypt to be your sail; you were covered with blue and purple from the isles of Elishah. 8 The inhabitants of Zidon and Arvad were your mariners: your wise men, O Tyre, that were in you, were your sailors.
- This chapter is God’s judgment against the god of commerce, against the shopping mall of the nations—Tyre.
- She had the best of everything: the best materials, craftsmen, sailors and merchandise from all over the world.
- Perfect beauty is also temporary.
9 The ancients of Gebal and its wise men repaired your seams: all the ships of the sea with their mariners were with you to handle your merchandise. 10 Those of Persia and of Lud and of Phut were in your army, your men of war: they hanged the shield and helmet in you; they displayed your splendor. 11 The men of Arvad with your army were on your walls round about, and the Gammadims were in your towers: they hanged their shields on your walls round about; they have made your beauty perfect. 12 Tarshish was your merchant because of the multitude of all kind of riches; they traded in your bazaars with silver, iron, tin, and lead. 13 Javan, Tubal, and Meshech, they were your merchants: they traded slaves and articles of bronze in your market. 14 Those of the house of Togarmah traded horses, horsemen, and mules in your bazaars.
- Togarmah was in Russia. Traders from the farthest corners of the earth brought their goods to Tyre to be sold or traded.
15 The men of Dedan were your merchants; many islands were the merchandise of your hand: they brought you horns of ivory and ebony for a gift. 16 Syria was your merchant because of the multitude of the wares of your making: they added emeralds, purple, embroidered work, fine linen, coral, agat, horns of ivory, and ebony to your goods. 17 Judah, and the land of Israel, they were your merchants: they traded in your market wheat from Minnith, cakes/sweet pastries, honey, oil, and balm. 18 Damascus was your merchant in the multitude of the wares of your making, for the multitude of all riches; in the wine of Helbon, and white wool. 19 Dan and Javan, going to and fro, added to your bazaars, bright iron, cassia, and calamus in your market. 20 Dedan was your merchant in loose clothes for riding. 21 Arabia, and all the princes of Kedar, they filled with you with lambs, rams, and goats: in these things they were your merchants. 22 The merchants of Sheba and Raamah, they were your merchants: they filled your bazaars with best of all spices, with all precious stones, and gold. 23 Haran, Canneh, Eden, the merchants of Sheba, Assur, and Chilmad were your merchants. 24 These were your merchants in all sorts of things, in blue clothes, embroidered work, and in cedar chests of rich clothing, bound with cords, among your merchandise.
- Clothes do not make the person nor does commerce make a rich society.
- God’s blessing makes rich and adds material things as well.
- We now focus or ‘occupy’ ourselves with shopping malls and wall street rather than the source of our blessings.
- Revelation 18 shows us the final downfall societies where commerce is god.
- Proverbs 23:7 For as he thinks in his heart, so is he.
- Matthew 16:26 For what is a man profited, if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? or what can a man give in exchange for his soul?
- Romans 11:36 For of him, and through him, and to him, are all things: to whom be glory forever. Amen.
25 The ships of Tarshish sang of you in your market: and you were replenished, and made very glorious in the midst of the seas. 26 Your rowers have brought you into great waters: the east wind has broken you in the midst of the seas. 27 Your riches, your bazaars, your merchandise, your mariners, your pilots, your repairers if seams, your dealers in merchandise, all your soldiers, that are in you, and in all your company which is in the midst of you, will fall into the midst of the seas in the day of your ruin. 28 The waves will shake at the sound of the cry of your sailors. 29 And all that handle the oar, the mariners, and all the sailors of the sea, will come down from their ships, they will stand on the land; 30 And cause their voice to be heard against you, and will cry bitterly, and cast dust on their heads, they will wallow themselves in the ashes: 31 And they make themselves utterly bald for you, and gird themselves with sackcloth, and they will weep for you with bitterness of heart and bitter wailing. 32 And in their wailing they will take up a lamentation for you, and lament over you, saying, What city is like Tyre, like the destroyed in the midst of the sea? 33 When your wares went out on the seas, you filled many people; you enriched the kings of the earth with the multitude of your riches and of your merchandise.
- Commerce and materialism do not fill the emptiness in the heart of man.
- Man was made in the image of God to have an eternal relationship with Him
34 In the time, when you are broken by the seas, in the depths of the waters, your merchandise and all your company in the midst of you will fall. 35 All the inhabitants of the islands will be astonished at you, and their kings will be very afraid, they will be troubled in countenance. 36 The merchants among the people will hiss at you; you will be a terror, and will exist no more.
- Matthew 6:25 Therefore I say to you, Take no thought for your life, what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor for your body, what you will put on. Is not the life more than food, and the body more than clothing? 32 (For the nations seek after all these things:) for your heavenly Father knows that you have need of all these things. 33 But seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things will be added unto you.
- Luke 12:19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, you have much goods laid up for many years; take it easy, eat, drink, and be merry. 20 But God said to him, You fool, this night your soul will be required of you: then, whose will those things be that you have provided? 21 So is he that lays up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.
SUMMARY: Ezekiel 24-27
- God cleanses us
- The Lord stretches out His hand with vengeance on those who harm His people
- He judges empty things
- He alone fills our hearts