Ezekiel 5:5-12 Video Devotional

“Thus says the Lord God: This is Jerusalem. I have set her in the center of the nations, with countries all around her. And she has rebelled against my rules by doing wickedness more than the nations, and against my statutes more than the countries all around her; for they have rejected my rules and have not walked in my statutes. Therefore thus says the Lord God: Because you are more turbulent than the nations that are all around you, and have not walked in my statutes or obeyed my rules, and have not even acted according to the rules of the nations that are all around you, therefore thus says the Lord God: Behold, I, even I, am against you. And I will execute judgments in your midst in the sight of the nations. And because of all your abominations I will do with you what I have never yet done, and the like of which I will never do again. Therefore fathers shall eat their sons in your midst, and sons shall eat their fathers. And I will execute judgments on you, and any of you who survive I will scatter to all the winds. Therefore, as I live, declares the Lord God, surely, because you have defiled my sanctuary with all your detestable things and with all your abominations, therefore I will withdraw. My eye will not spare, and I will have no pity. A third part of you shall die of pestilence and be consumed with famine in your midst; a third part shall fall by the sword all around you; and a third part I will scatter to all the winds and will unsheathe the sword after them.” (Ezekiel 5:5-12)

Going back to Abraham, God gives him a very particular promise that fits in with a particular blessing. Abraham would be blessed so that he could bless the nations around him (including the nation that would come from him). We know the full intent of this blessing is the coming of Christ into the world to save the world and that all nations would be blessed through Christ. However, as it fits with God’s nature, he sets up a “preview” of Christ’s blessing as the example of the people of Israel. They are to be a blessing to the nations around them. They are to bring people in (such as the foreigner and the sojourner) and live as examples of God’s blessing to them.

Obviously, they didn’t do it. As the above passage explains, the Israelites were no better (even worse!) than the nations around them and in no way showed or shared the blessing that God charged them with. So God acts (again) with an exile. They were scattered because they were not being the blessing they were supposed to be. In this story, forcing them to scatter wasn’t to force them to be that blessing (in a lot of ways, the nation seemed to refuse to be that blessing), but as direct punishment and, I believe as a chance for them to turn it around. A redirection, so to speak. Looking throughout history we can see quite easily that when people have it easy, they tend to get lazy. Be getting put back into a difficult situation is usually enough to get someone to shake the dust off and get back to work.

This was meant as a refining time for the Israelites; get them to remember their calling and get back to work. This holds a good warning for us as well, today. If we are going to continue to allow entitlement and expected power be our security blanket, I wouldn’t be surprised for God to shuffle things up under our feet. Who knows? Maybe even the current pandemic could be a version of that. The point is, though, again that God is all about getting His blessings out to everyone. If we aren’t doing our part (which includes actively being involved in sin and ignoring the call), we should expect to be shaken up and forced back on to our feet – because, as we pray, His will WILL be done.