Ezekiel 12

Ezekiel 12 has the prophet acting out another message for the rebellious people in Jerusalem.  They didn’t believe the message of coming doom.  So Ezekiel is instructed to demonstrate what would happen.  “Son of man, you live in the midst of the rebellious house, who have eyes to see but do not see, ears to hear but do not hear; for they are a rebellious house”.  It wasn’t that the people were incapable of hearing God and obeying – it was a choice they were making.  Rebellion is intentional and is exactly what sin is all about.  We choose to disobey God.

God tells Ezekiel to “prepare for yourself baggage for exile and go into exile by day in their sight; even go into exile from your place to another place in their sight. Perhaps they will understand though they are a rebellious house”.  He’s to make a point as publicly as possible.  God wants the people to see exactly what is coming because they chose to disobey.  “Load the baggage on your shoulder in their sight and carry it out in the dark….I have set you as a sign to the house of Israel”.  Ezekiel’s daytime act was to gather a few belongings that an exile could carry with him and set off into the country. His nighttime act was a little different. He dug through the wall of his home, then tried to escape with his bundle of belongings into the night.

God is trying to send a message to His people. Ezekiel was to tell them “I am a sign to you. As I have done, so it will be done to them; they will go into exile, into captivity”.  This was a picture of the captivity of the Babylonians.  God does have a plan in the midst of this catastrophe – He will save a remnant of those who are repentant.  He tells us why this is happening, and then the reality that in the midst of His punishment, there is still hope. “They will know that I am the Lord when I scatter them among the nations and spread them among the countries. But I will spare a few of them”.

Many of the exiles doubted the truth of the messages that Ezekiel announced. They argued that days, months, and even years passed, but they did not see his prophecies fulfilled.  God responds with a reply.  The waiting is over.  “For I the Lord will speak, and whatever word I speak will be performed. It will no longer be delayed, for in your days, O rebellious house, I will speak the word and perform it”.  God warns them that action is coming and there would be no more delay.  What He said is going to happen.  It would have been best to not challenge God on this, but now His people will see Him take action.

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