God gives to us the precise day when the third Babylonian siege began, in the ninth year of Ezekiel’s captivity, on the tenth month, on the tenth day. The false prophets said this day would never come, but Ezekiel had been warning them all along. The people of Jerusalem were likened to meat in a pot, bones and all, with the fire turned up, covered by scum.
Ezekiel 24:6 (NLT) “Now this is what the Sovereign LORD says: ‘What sorrow awaits Jerusalem, the city of murderers! She is a cooking pot whose corruption can’t be cleaned out. Take the meat out in random order, for no piece is better than another.’”
In the Levitical law the blood of the sacrifice was to be covered with dirt (Leviticus 17:13), but the people disobeyed, they were a bloody city in every way.
Bible Knowledge Commentary, “The cause for the dispersion was repeated (Ezekiel 24:7–8): bloodshed poured out openly on rocks, not…where the dust would cover it. Jerusalem had shed innocent blood and had not even bothered to hide her crimes. That blood was crying out, figuratively speaking, for vengeance (cf. Genesis 4:10; Leviticus 17:13–14; Job 16:18). Because Jerusalem had openly shed the blood of others, God would openly shed her blood on the bare rock.”
It’s absolutely heartbreaking to read about the death of Ezekiel’s wife, she was his “dearest treasure” (Ezekiel 24:16 NLT). But Ezekiel was not allowed to mourn or weep over his wife. This would serve as an illustration to the Jews, that when the Temple was profaned and destroyed, and the citizens of Jerusalem were slaughtered, the people would feel pain inexpressible…so many loved ones – dead. The shock and fact that EVERYONE was hurting, that no one was exempt from the agony, made any mourning insufficient.
Ezekiel was a prophet who only spoke when God told him to speak or allowed him to speak. Apparently there was a time of silence that was broken in Ezekiel 24:27 (see also Ezekiel 3:26; 33:22).
In Ezekiel 25 we have God’s judgment pronounced on the nations of Ammon, Moab, and Edom.
Ammon actually clapped their hands, stomped their feet, and rejoiced in their heart when the Jews were judged (Ezkiel 25:6).
Moab interpreted Judah’s judgment to mean that they were like all the nations, meaning that the LORD their God was nothing special (Ezekiel 25:8). How wrong they were!
Edom also had a “history” of conflict with Israel beginning in the early days when they refused to allow Israel to cross through their land (Numbers 20:14-21). They became a vassal state under David and Solomon, but eventually rebelled (2 Kings 8:20-22) and fought to control various caravan routes. The last straw would be in 588 B.C., Edom then assisted Babylon in their siege upon Judah. God was furious over this and Edom would experience the vengeance of God (see also Psalm 137:7).
Ezekiel 26 describes in incredible detail the judgment of Tyre.
This is such an important prophecy I’ll let Halley’s Bible Handbook give you the details, “A prophecy of Nebuchadnezzar’s siege and Tyre’s permanent desolation. The following year, in 585 B.C., Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Tyre. It took him 13 years to conquer the city.
Tyre, located 12 miles north of the Israeli-Lebanese border, was a double city; part of it was built on an island, part on the mainland, in a fertile and well-watered plain at the western foot of the Lebanon mountain range. It was the great maritime power of the ancient world and reached its zenith from the 12th to the 6th centuries B.C., with colonies on the north and west coasts of Africa, in Spain, and in Britain. Tyre controlled the commerce of the Mediterranean—the wares of all nations passed through its port. It was a city renowned for its splendor and fabulous wealth.
With Nebuchadnezzar’s conquest, Tyre ceased to be an independent power. It was later subdued by the Persians, and again by Alexander the Great (332 B.C.). It never recovered its former glory and has for centuries been a “bare rock” where fishermen “spread fishnets” (Ezekiel 26:4-5, 14), an amazing fulfillment of Ezekiel’s prophecy that it “will never be rebuilt” (Ezekiel 26:14, 21; 27:36; 28:26).”
Our God is an awesome God, who knows the end from the beginning, and every detail in between. Prophecies like this, remind us of that truth. I pray it would comfort your heart to know that God has plans for your life that are in the process of being fulfilled.
Our God is an awesome God, amazing in grace, but He is also holy and therefore must judge sin. We see that in this section. I pray we would come clean and flee all unrighteousness and the consequences therein. These nations had to learn the hard way, for the vast majority, it was way too late!
Hebrews 11 is often referred to as the “Hall of Faith.” Here we have example after example of people throughout history who have exhibited a genuine active faith in God. It’s true that faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the Word (Romans 10:17), but have you ever noticed that faith is more “caught” than “taught?” – that it’s contagious. There’s something about being around Christians who REALLY believe – so hang out with them as much as you can, and maybe even hang out here…in this Hall of Faith.
Hebrews 11:1 describes faith as, “attaining the impossible and seeing the invisible.”
Ponder that for a moment.
This whole letter has been about faith – ultimately in Jesus Christ (see Hebrews 10:38). May we never, ever stop believing, knowing that faith is the way we please God, faith is the way we possess every promise along the way. It’s by faith the saints of the past were able to live their lives for the glory of God, and it’s by faith we’re promised that home in heaven.
Faith was the foremost ingredient there at the dawn of history for Abel, Enoch, and Noah. This is how Abel was made righteous, how Enoch was raptured, how Noah found grace in God’s eyes, built an ark, saved his family, and preserved the human race – it was all founded on faith in God’s Word.
Faith was the heart and soul of the patriarch Abraham, who is given the biggest portion in this “Hall of Faith.” Imagine leaving everything behind! That’s what Abraham did, “…and he went out, not knowing where he was going.”
When we walk by faith, we don’t always know where we’re going, but that’s okay because we know the One who’s leading. We give God all the credit and all the glory for His gracious sovereignty, but we must also learn from the way Abraham rose to His responsibility to go out and walk by faith. The truth is, because of His faith, the whole wide world has been blessed (Genesis 12:3).
Your walk and works of faith will make a difference too! It really will.
This psalm is quoted in the New Testament more than any other Psalm.
David is somehow able to eavesdrop on the conversation between the Father and the Son, he’s given this revelation:
Psalm 110:1 (NKJV) “The LORD said to my Lord, ‘Sit at My right hand, till I make Your enemies Your footstool.’”
Jesus would sit at the Father’s right hand until the time of judgment, when the enemies of God are dealt with, put under Jesus’ feet, and King Jesus rules.
In that day of judgment, kings, governmental leaders, and heads of many nations will be executed. During the Tribulation Period death will be everywhere, and dead bodies will fill the Valley of Megiddo in the Battle of Armageddon.
Jesus will rule as King from Jerusalem. This Psalm emphasizes that.
This Psalm also emphasizes the fact that Jesus is the Perfect Priest. Something else David hears (it’s revealed to him)
Psalm 110:4 (NKJV) “The LORD has sworn and will not relent, ‘You are a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.’”
Who could possibly be a priest forever, and what’s this “order of Melichizedek?” The only priesthood the Jews knew was the descendants of Aaron (High Priests) and the descendants of Levi who served as helpers to the High Priest, but what’s this order of Melchizedek?
I believe Melchizedek was a Christophany in the Old Testament (Genesis 14:18) who appeared to Abraham, to whom Abraham gave tithes, and consumed the elements of communion. The New Testament explains that this is the order of Jesus’ Priesthood, Melchizedek, King of Salem, King of Jerusalem, King of Peace (see Hebrews 5, 6, 7).
As High Priest, Jesus is able to reconcile us to God by the blood of His own sacrifice – forever.
As King He will rule, and we will rule with Him, serve Him and live with Him, forever (Exodus 21:6)
Just as a quick side-note, Jesus quoted this verse to force the people consider the fact that David called the Messiah “Lord.” If the Messiah was David’s descendant, and David called Him Lord, he must be much more than a mere man! And that He was! We come to discover that He is God in the flesh (Matthew 22:43-46; Mark 12:35-37; Luke 20:41-44).
Proverbs 27:14 (NKJV) “He who blesses his friend with a loud voice, rising early in the morning, it will be counted a curse to him.”
Blessing your friend is a blessing. And doing it loudly, with enthusiasm, makes it even more of a blessing, right? But, if your friend is still sleeping, if the timing is not right, that blessing is seen as a curse.
Derek Kidner said, “It matters not only what we say, but how, when, and why we say it.”
I still remember when I was a new believer, I was at a men’s retreat and one of the guys came into the room (it was fairly early) and spoke a LOUD blessing over everyone. One of the guys woke up mad and said, “I know there’s a verse in the Bible that says that’s wrong…” but he couldn’t find it.”
Here it is.
If you have any questions or comments on today’s reading, or you’d like to share something the Lord showed you, feel free to leave a reply below. I’d love to hear from you as we grow forward in 2021.