Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Vile Fruit

Luk 13:6 He spake also this parable; A certain man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came and sought fruit thereon, and found none.
Luk 13:7 Then said he unto the dresser of his vineyard, Behold, these three years I come seeking fruit on this fig tree, and find none: cut it down; why cumbereth it the ground?
Luk 13:8 And he answering said unto him, Lord, let it alone this year also, till I shall dig about it, and dung it:
Luk 13:9 And if it bear fruit, well: and if not, then after that thou shalt cut it down.

Eze 5:5 Thus saith the Lord GOD; This is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her. 
Eze 5:6 And she hath changed my judgments into wickedness more than the nations, and my statutes more than the countries that are round about her: for they have refused my judgments and my statutes, they have not walked in them.

They were to be witnesses of God, but instead were more evil than the surrounding nations.

Eze 5:7 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye multiplied more than the nations that are round about you, and have not walked in my statutes, neither have kept my judgments, neither have done according to the judgments of the nations that are round about you;
Eze 5:8 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I, even I, am against thee, and will execute judgments in the midst of thee in the sight of the nations.
Eze 5:9 And I will do in thee that which I have not done, and whereunto I will not do any more the like, because of all thine abominations.
Eze 5:10 Therefore the fathers shall eat the sons in the midst of thee, and the sons shall eat their fathers; and I will execute judgments in thee, and the whole remnant of thee will I scatter into all the winds.

As terrible as this sounds, the LORD had warned them in the beginning that this would happen if they were to turn away to false gods.

Deu 28:53 And thou shalt eat the fruit of thine own body, the flesh of thy sons and of thy daughters, which the LORD thy God hath given thee, in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee:
Deu 28:54 So that the man that is tender among you, and very delicate, his eye shall be evil toward his brother, and toward the wife of his bosom, and toward the remnant of his children which he shall leave:
Deu 28:55 So that he will not give to any of them of the flesh of his children whom he shall eat: because he hath nothing left him in the siege, and in the straitness, wherewith thine enemies shall distress thee in all thy gates.

Eze 5:11 Wherefore, as I live, saith the Lord GOD; Surely, because thou hast defiled my sanctuary with all thy detestable things, and with all thine abominations, therefore will I also diminish thee; neither shall mine eye spare, neither will I have any pity.
Eze 5:12 A third part of thee shall die with the pestilence, and with famine shall they be consumed in the midst of thee: and a third part shall fall by the sword round about thee; and I will scatter a third part into all the winds, and I will draw out a sword after them.
Eze 5:13 Thus shall mine anger be accomplished, and I will cause my fury to rest upon them, and I will be comforted: and they shall know that I the LORD have spoken it in my zeal, when I have accomplished my fury in them.

Vile figs

Jer 29:17 Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Behold, I will send upon them the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, and will make them like vile figs, that cannot be eaten, they are so evil.
Jer 29:18 And I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliver them to be removed to all the kingdoms of the earth, to be a curse, and an astonishment, and an hissing, and a reproach, among all the nations whither I have driven them:
Jer 29:19 Because they have not hearkened to my words, saith the LORD, which I sent unto them by my servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them; but ye would not hear, saith the LORD.  

Mat 7:24 Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock:
Mat 7:25 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock.
Mat 7:26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand:
Mat 7:27 And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it

Monday, February 27, 2012

Sign of Judgment

Eze 5:1 And thou, son of man, take thee a sharp knife, take thee a barber's razor, and cause it to pass upon thine head and upon thy beard: then take thee balances to weigh, and divide the hair.
Eze 5:2 Thou shalt burn with fire a third part in the midst of the city, when the days of the siege are fulfilled: and thou shalt take a third part, and smite about it with a knife: and a third part thou shalt scatter in the wind; and I will draw out a sword after them.
Eze 5:3 Thou shalt also take thereof a few in number, and bind them in thy skirts.
Eze 5:4 Then take of them again, and cast them into the midst of the fire, and burn them in the fire; for thereof shall a fire come forth into all the house of Israel.

Translate it: take thee a sharp sword, for a barber's razor thou shalt take it thee. Even if the action were literal, the use of an actual sword would best enforce the symbolic meaning. The "head" represents the chief city, the "hair" the inhabitants - its ornament and glory - the "hair cut from the head" the exiles cast forth from their homes. It adds to the force of the representation that "to shave the head" was a token of mourning Job 1:20, and was forbidden to the priests Leviticus 21:5. Thus, in many ways, this action of Ezekiel "the priest" is significant of calamity and ruin. The sword indicates the avenging power; the shaving of the head the removal of grace and glory; the scales and weights the determination of divine justice. (Barnes)

His hair was divided into three equal parts by weight.

One third was to be burned, famine and pestilence.

One third was to die by the sword of the Chaldeans.

One third would be scattered to the wind, scattered by the sword, carried away and some fleeing to other nations.

A remnant would by tied in his skirt. A part of the remnant would be scattered in the fire and from this a fire would destroy all of Israel.( 2kings 25:1-26)

skirt; kanaph, wing, extremity, corner, shirt

Luk 13:34 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, which killest the prophets, and stonest them that are sent unto thee; how often would I have gathered thy children together, as a hen doth gather her brood under her wings, and ye would not!

If a rebellious people will turn from their sins, then the LORD will turn away his wrath on their sin. Ezekiel, Jeremiah, Micah, Hosea, Isaiah were prophetic voices crying out with illustrations of their messages from the LORD to the people. Are we hearing the voice of God today, through his Bible, his evangelists and preachers? Are we hearing the cry of the prophets of God? Do we want to see the results of rebellion: famine, pestilence and the sword? Arise people of God call upon the name of Jesus and follow him now. Do not believe the lies of those who deny God in our land.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Bread and Water

Eze 4:7 Therefore thou shalt set thy face toward the siege of Jerusalem, and thine arm shall be uncovered, and thou shalt prophesy against it.
Eze 4:8 And, behold, I will lay bands upon thee, and thou shalt not turn thee from one side to another, till thou hast ended the days of thy siege. 

He was to be bound with ropes. He probably was able to get up to eat and to tend to personal matters.

Eze 4:9 Take thou also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentiles, and millet, and fitches, and put them in one vessel, and make thee bread thereof, according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon thy side, three hundred and ninety days shalt thou eat thereof.

Barley was the least of the bread grains. Beans and lentils supplied protein. Millet is found in bird seed and fitches or spelt, was a type of wheat.

Eze 4:10 And thy meat which thou shalt eat shall be by weight, twenty shekels a day: from time to time shalt thou eat it.
Eze 4:11 Thou shalt drink also water by measure, the sixth part of an hin: from time to time shalt thou drink.

Everything was by measure, such as in times of scarcity.It was a vegetarian diet. Daniel preferred vegetables instead of the kings meat.

Dan 1:8 But Daniel purposed in his heart that he would not defile himself with the portion of the king's meat, nor with the wine which he drank: therefore he requested of the prince of the eunuchs that he might not defile himself.

Eze 4:12 And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight.
Eze 4:13 And the LORD said, Even thus shall the children of Israel eat their defiled bread among the Gentiles, whither I will drive them.
Eze 4:14 Then said I, Ah Lord GOD! behold, my soul hath not been polluted: for from my youth up even till now have I not eaten of that which dieth of itself, or is torn in pieces; neither came there abominable flesh into my mouth.
Eze 4:15 Then he said unto me, Lo, I have given thee cow's dung for man's dung, and thou shalt prepare thy bread therewith.

He was allowed to cook with cows dung because as a priest  dung from a man was a defilement. The food illustration was to show that they would not be eating as well as when they were free under their covenant in Jerusalem.  Abundance often brings idleness.

Amo 6:1 Woe to them that are at ease in Zion, and trust in the mountain of Samaria, which are named chief of the nations, to whom the house of Israel came!

Eze 4:16 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, behold, I will break the staff of bread in Jerusalem: and they shall eat bread by weight, and with care; and they shall drink water by measure, and with astonishment:

Lev 26:26 And when I have broken the staff of your bread, ten women shall bake your bread in one oven, and they shall deliver you your bread again by weight: and ye shall eat, and not be satisfied.

Ten women would share one loaf of bread.

Eze 4:17 That they may want bread and water, and be astonied one with another, and consume away for their iniquity.

Lev 26:39 And they that are left of you shall pine away in their iniquity in your enemies' lands; and also in the iniquities of their fathers shall they pine away with them.

The LORD would bring Jerusalem into a famine because of their iniquities. I was thinking about Ezekiel being told to act out these signs to the exiles in Babylon. These were things coming to their beloved city because of sin and idolatry. As exiles they may have been saying why me LORD? I thought you were a God of love? Why be so mean? Well, he is showing them the results of their rebellion. He still loved his people and was showing them his righteous judgement of their sins, according to their covenant. He had done nothing wrong; the evil was brought upon themselves. Truth is to be received for correction and correction received brings about true repentance. God's people are not forgotten.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Sign of the Siege of Jerusalem

1Co 1:22 For the Jews require a sign, and the Greeks seek after wisdom:

Eze 4:1 Thou also, son of man, take thee a tile, and lay it before thee, and pourtray upon it the city, even Jerusalem:
Eze 4:2 And lay siege against it, and build a fort against it, and cast a mount against it; set the camp also against it, and set battering rams against it round about.

And he shall set engines of war against thy walls, and with his axes he shall break down thy towers. (Websters)

Eze 4:3 Moreover take thou unto thee an iron pan, and set it for a wall of iron between thee and the city: and set thy face against it, and it shall be besieged, and thou shalt lay siege against it. This shall be a sign to the house of Israel.

Ezekiel was told to write on a tile, perhaps a moist clay tablet used for writing; cuneiform writing is one of the oldest forms of writing, or perhaps it was a brick tile, one by two feet in dimensions. He could have drawn on it with a piece of charcoal, it doesn't say. He was to draw an outline of Jerusalem. He was to show it under siege with an iron pan, or a plate of iron between the city and Ezekiel. This was as a sign to the people. The iron pan was to symbolize that the siege could not be broken.

The Siege

2Ki 25:1 And it came to pass in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, in the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came, he, and all his host, against Jerusalem, and pitched against it; and they built forts against it round about.
Trees were cut down and dirt brought in to build a mount or ramp to get high up where the walls were weaker, then they could erect towers to use catapults or battering rams against the walls to break through.

Ezekiel's life was to be used for signs to the exiles. Hosea was asked to marry a prostitute as a sign to Israel.

Hos 1:2 The beginning of the word of the LORD by Hosea. And the LORD said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the LORD.
So the prophet was not only to speak the word of God, but he was to be an illustration of his message if so required. Are we illustrating what a child of God should be like as we walk among the people of the world?

Eze 4:4 Lie thou also upon thy left side, and lay the iniquity of the house of Israel upon it: according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon it thou shalt bear their iniquity.
Eze 4:5 For I have laid upon thee the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days: so shalt thou bear the iniquity of the house of Israel.

He was to lie on his left side for 390 days, each day standing for a year, according to the iniquity of the house of Israel. For 390 years Israel had been worshipping other gods.

Compare this to Numbers 14:34.

Num 14:34 After the number of the days in which ye searched the land, even forty days, each day for a year, shall ye bear your iniquities, even forty years, and ye shall know my breach of promise.

In this verse Israel was given a year of wandering for every day they spied out the land. They were punished because of their fearful unbelief. They feared the people of the land more than they feared and trusted in the Almighty God of Israel. Ezekiel was to illustrate the sin of Israel by laying on his left side for 390 days, each day standing for a year of their rebellion.

Eze 4:6 And when thou hast accomplished them, lie again on thy right side, and thou shalt bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days: I have appointed thee each day for a year.

After this he was to lay on his right side for forty days, each day standing for a year of Judah's rebellion. This man of God had to endure hardships, as Jesus submitted "not my will but thine be done", so did Ezekiel submit, for he had the Spirit of God in him to accomplish what God required of him. If you are spirit filled, you have what you need to do what God has purposed for you to do. Are we doing God's purpose? That doesn't mean we are to be laying around watching TV. Ezekiel was told to lay down for God's purpose. What is God saying to you and to me?

Friday, February 17, 2012

Thus Sayeth the LORD God

Eze 3:22 And the hand of the LORD was there upon me; and he said unto me, Arise, go forth into the plain, and I will there talk with thee.
Eze 3:23 Then I arose, and went forth into the plain: and, behold, the glory of the LORD stood there, as the glory which I saw by the river of Chebar: and I fell on my face.

I have found that the Lord walks with me in the natural surroundings as I walk by the river. Ezekiel was told to meet the LORD in the plain; a magnificent presence for the glory of the LORD stood there before him and he fell on his face.

Eze 3:24 Then the spirit entered into me, and set me upon my feet, and spake with me, and said unto me, Go, shut thyself within thine house.

The Spirit of the LORD entered into him to do what the LORD required of him. The Spirit was not always with him as he is with a born again believer. After the atonement of Jesus on the cross, Jesus promised to give us the Comforter, the Holy Spirit to dwell with us.

Joh 14:16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
Joh 14:17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

Now, we are led by the Spirit, although we still look for powerful manifestations of his presence.

Rom 8:13 For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live.
Rom 8:14 For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.
Rom 8:15 For ye have not received the spirit of bondage again to fear; but ye have received the Spirit of adoption, whereby we cry, Abba, Father.
Rom 8:16 The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:

This time Ezekiel was told to go into his house.

Eze 3:25 But thou, O son of man, behold, they shall put bands upon thee, and shall bind thee with them, and thou shalt not go out among them:
Eze 3:26 And I will make thy tongue cleave to the roof of thy mouth, that thou shalt be dumb, and shalt not be to them a reprover: for they are a rebellious house.

Ezekiel was told to stay in his house, probably because the people would seek to bind him if he were to be outside at that time. They would resist his message. The LORD said that he was not to speak to them, for they are a rebellious house. There is a time not to speak. We are to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

Eze 3:27 But when I speak with thee, I will open thy mouth, and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear: for they are a rebellious house.

No matter what they do to stop you from speaking, when I put words into your mouth you will speak. I see from this that we are not to speak our own thoughts to fill the time, but to wait upon the LORD; as he speaks we speak. When I hear from the LORD I am compelled to share regardless of whether it is received or not. Ezekiel with a prophetic ministry was to speak when God told him to speak. Prophesy is for others. We may encourage ourselves with God's word, this is good, but prophesy is for speaking to others a message from God.

Mat 11:15 He that hath ears to hear, let him hear.

He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth; he that rejects the message, let him reject; for they are a rebellious people.

Rev 22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still.

In other words, they are what they are. If we are faithful to what God calls us to do, that is all he requires of us. Those who hear God, will hear his message through us, others will not want to hear.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Their Blood on your Hands

Eze 3:15 Then I came to them of the captivity at Telabib, that dwelt by the river of Chebar, and I sat where they sat, and remained there astonished among them seven days.

Telabib,"mound of the flood" was Ezekiels dwelling place. He sat by the river, stunned and awe struck for seven days.

Eze 3:16 And it came to pass at the end of seven days, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Eze 3:17 Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me.

A prophet watchman hears from God, not with natural hearing, but of the Holy Spirit. He then is to share what he hears to those in which he was sent.

Eze 3:18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

Blood guilt is a serious thing. Pontius Pilate did not want the innocent blood of Jesus on his hands but the people spoke foolishly.

Mat 27:24  When Pilate saw that he could prevail nothing, but that rather a tumult was made, he took water, and washed his hands before the multitude, saying, I am innocent of the blood of this just person: see ye to it. 
Mat 27:25  Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children. 

So much of preaching is to make us feel good or to become prosperous, that is positive but what is God saying? If we do not warn them from God when he speaks to us, then their blood is on our hands. Warn them of their sins and the coming judgement.

Jas 5:19 Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him;
Jas 5:20 Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death, and shall hide a multitude of sins.

Eze 3:19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
Eze 3:20 Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
Eze 3:21 Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.

Paul understood the responsibility given to him to preach the gospel message to the Gentiles.

Rom 1:14 I am debtor both to the Greeks, and to the Barbarians; both to the wise, and to the unwise.
Rom 1:15 So, as much as in me is, I am ready to preach the gospel to you that are at Rome also.
Rom 1:16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.
Rom 1:17 For therein is the righteousness of God revealed from faith to faith: as it is written, The just shall live by faith.

1Co 9:16 For though I preach the gospel, I have nothing to glory of: for necessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I preach not the gospel!

A final thought; what of those who respond to our message of salvation in our day? Do we put their names somewhere and leave them to their own way? We shake the dust off our sandals at those who will not receive our message, but do we shake off those who receive our message too? There is a responsibility to disciple these who come to the Lord. Ezekiek was calling Israel to repentance. They had always had a temple, but it was to be destroyed. A new faith was required in the God of the temple; a personal trust in him. For today we trust God and believe in Jesus as our savior. How will they make it in perilous times if they are not taught to trust in his promises? To ignore their growth could be as blood on our hands. To be born again is the blood of Jesus covering them and his spirit with them to guide them into all truth. It is important to have guidance from the church to keep them from the cults. They must be given the mind of Christ. We have a responsibility to the babes in Christ.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Righteous Anger

Eze 3:10 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, all my words that I shall speak unto thee receive in thine heart, and hear with thine ears.

Mat 10:27 What I tell you in darkness, that speak ye in light: and what ye hear in the ear, that preach ye upon the housetops.

Joh 16:13 Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

Ezekiel having heard from God and believing with his heart, was ready to go where he was sent.

Eze 3:11 And go, get thee to them of the captivity, unto the children of thy people, and speak unto them, and tell them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear.

Rom 10:14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

Eze 3:12 Then the spirit took me up, and I heard behind me a voice of a great rushing, saying, Blessed be the glory of the LORD from his place.
Eze 3:13 I heard also the noise of the wings of the living creatures that touched one another, and the noise of the wheels over against them, and a noise of a great rushing.
Eze 3:14 So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me.

Ezekiel was given righteous anger against sin. There is plenty of sin to be angry and concerned about. This is righteous anger, but we are not to let it turn into bitterness.

Eph 4:26 Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
Eph 4:27 Neither give place to the devil.

The LORD is angry against sin.

2Ch 6:36 If they sin against thee, (for there is no man which sinneth not,) and thou be angry with them, and deliver them over before their enemies, and they carry them away captives unto a land far off or near;
2Ch 6:37 Yet if they bethink themselves in the land whither they are carried captive, and turn and pray unto thee in the land of their captivity, saying, We have sinned, we have done amiss, and have dealt wickedly;
2Ch 6:38 If they return to thee with all their heart and with all their soul in the land of their captivity, whither they have carried them captives, and pray toward their land, which thou gavest unto their fathers, and toward the city which thou hast chosen, and toward the house which I have built for thy name:
2Ch 6:39 Then hear thou from the heavens, even from thy dwelling place, their prayer and their supplications, and maintain their cause, and forgive thy people which have sinned against thee.

Confession of sin and repentance are required for restoration. Today we know that Jesus is the way of forgiveness and restoration. We are not to live in the past under the law of sin and death. Jesus has come to set us free.

Rom 10:8 But what saith it? The word is nigh thee, even in thy mouth, and in thy heart: that is, the word of faith, which we preach;
Rom 10:9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
Rom 10:10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.

Believe in your heart and confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord. Put away anger, forgive as you have been forgiven by God, then His anger is removed and we dwell in his love. Hear as Ezekiel heard from the LORD, and believe in your heart and follow his words to you.

Joh 15:12  This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. 

Monday, February 13, 2012

Forehead of Flint

Eze 3:4 And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them.
Eze 3:5 For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of an hard language, but to the house of Israel;

Eze 3:6 Not to many people of a strange speech and of an hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, had I sent thee to them, they would have hearkened unto thee.

That still holds true for today. The word of God is often more readily received in some distant land. Would they receive someone dressed like John the Baptist? Another thought, do they come to us because of Christ? or because we have wealth to share? Not everyone who responded to Jesus was interested in spiritual things, but that is true in much of the church today. Many seek things from God instead of a desire to be his disciples.

Eze 3:7 But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted.

Jesus came and was rejected too

John 1:11 He came unto his own, and his own received him not.

Mat 23:29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
Mat 23:30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
Mat 23:31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.

Eze 3:8 Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads.
Eze 3:9 As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

An adamant, a sharp stone harder than flint have I made thy forehead:

Eze 2:6 And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

Let's look back to the wilderness journey of Israel, where some of these words were used.

Deu 8:15 Who led thee through that great and terrible wilderness, wherein were fiery serpents, and scorpions, and drought, where there was no water; who brought thee forth water out of the rock of flint;

Jesus is the rock of flint and the serpents and scorpions in the spiritual rhelm are the rebellious people with the evil spirits sent by satan. We all have seen hard faces, for example Clint Eastwood in his movies. People often take on hard emotionless faces to intimidate or to say, do not mess with me. We see popular T- shirts with skulls and terrible demonic images with the implied message, you should fear me. The flint-like face of Ezekiel and our faces should show the presence of Jesus, a determined face willing to go into the enemies camp with a message of hope. 

Moses had a face when in the presence of God that the sinful people could not look upon. He had to wear a vail in their presence. vail; tsa`iyph, a wrapper, shawl, a veil.

Exo 34:33 And till Moses had done speaking with them, he put a vail on his face.
Exo 34:34 But when Moses went in before the LORD to speak with him, he took the vail off, until he came out. And he came out, and spake unto the children of Israel that which he was commanded.
Exo 34:35 And the children of Israel saw the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses' face shone: and Moses put the vail upon his face again, until he went in to speak with him (the LORD).

Isaiah was given a face like flint too

Isa 50:7 For the Lord GOD will help me; therefore shall I not be confounded: therefore have I set my face like a flint, and I know that I shall not be ashamed.

If the LORD sends you, then go in spite of the hard headed people, the stone faces of stubborness. Be determined to give the message of God. May our faces be the face of Jesus Christ.

1Jn 4:4 Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is he that is in you, than he that is in the world.  

Be faithful and determined to serve God as Ezekiel was called to be determined, by the power of God; the filling of the Holy Spirit. He is with you and all things are possible with God. There is no holding back.

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Eat the Word

Eze 2:6 And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

Ezekiel was to go to where he would not be received, it would be hard dealing with these hard faced people. Jeremiah had a similar ministry.

Jer 1:8 Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.

Eze 2:7 And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious.
Eze 2:8 But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee.

The LORD spoke: Be thou not rebellious. How is it that he or we could be rebellious? By not eating the word, by not preparing our hearts, and by serving with no bread in your basket. Eat the word, keep it fresh, the fresh manna from the voice of God. Eat what I give you, chew it, swallow it, digest it, so that you may obey me.

Isa 55:11 So shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth: it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which I please, and it shall prosper in the thing whereto I sent it.

Some go to places where they were not sent by God and fail in their flesh efforts. Others like Jonah were determined to go far away from where God had called him to serve, but circumstances sent by the LORD brought him to where he needed to be. The calling of God should compel us to fulfill his purpose for us. 

Jer 15:16 Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts.

Psa 19:7 The law of the LORD is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple.
Psa 19:8 The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes.
Psa 19:9 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the LORD are true and righteous altogether.
Psa 19:10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb.

Eze 2:9 And when I looked, behold, an hand was sent unto me; and, lo, a roll of a book was therein;
Eze 2:10 And he spread it before me; and it was written within and without: and there was written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe.

The scriptures were in rolls of parchment; this roll was written on two sides. There was no room to add to it. We are not to add to the word of God, but how often people take one verse to teach a different doctrine then what is meant if read in it's context. This scroll spoke of lamentations, and mourning , and woe. Jerusalem was to be destroyed.

Eze 3:1 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel.
Eze 3:2 So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll.
Eze 3:3 And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.

Sweet to the taste; sweet to the soul but bitter too.

Psa 119:103 How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!
Psa 119:104 Through thy precepts I get understanding: therefore I hate every false way.

Rev 10:9 And I went unto the angel, and said unto him, Give me the little book. And he said unto me, Take it, and eat it up; and it shall make thy belly bitter, but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.
Rev 10:10 And I took the little book out of the angel's hand, and ate it up; and it was in my mouth sweet as honey: and as soon as I had eaten it, my belly was bitter.
Rev 10:11 And he said unto me, Thou must prophesy again before many peoples, and nations, and tongues, and kings.

We must first be prepared by "eating" the word. Read the word and hear the word until it is part of us. Then be led by the spirit, not to a pig pen but to where God sends you.  Go where God leads you and speak His word by the Holy Spirit. Jesus is the sweetest name I know. Share the good word and warn the people of coming perils.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Ezekiel Receives His Calling

Eze 2:3 And he said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against me: they and their fathers have transgressed against me, even unto this very day.
Eze 2:4 For they are impudent children and stiffhearted. I do send thee unto them; and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD.
Eze 2:5 And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them.

Thus sayeth the Lord God; Lord: Adonay, God; Yehovih, Jehovah or Yahweh. Ezekiel heard from Adonay Jehovah. In the book of Ezekiel his name is spoken 217 times. Ezekiel was sent as a priest and a prophet to the children of Israel and Judah to warn them and to call them to repentance, but they were impudent children. Impudent; qasheh, hard hearted, stubborn, stiff-necked, and paniym ; face. They were hard in face, stubborn and defiant children. They were also stiffhearted, chazaq, hard and leb, inner man, the will, the heart, in understanding. They were hard in face, stiff-necked and hard of heart. Now how would you like to be called to preach to these people? We have seen people like this, strong willed, arrogant, full of evil, rebellious and often they aggressively oppose the word from God and yet we warn them with God's word.

Israel had a history of rebellion against God.

Moses spoke of their rebellion

Deu 31:27 For I know thy rebellion, and thy stiff neck: behold, while I am yet alive with you this day, ye have been rebellious against the LORD; and how much more after my death?

The prophet Isaiah spoke of them

Isa 65:2 I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts;

Why was Ezekiel sent to such a hard hearted people? I suppose because God is long suffering.

2Pe 3:9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.

Another reason for sending Ezekiel is that God does nothing without first telling his people. They may not respond and repent "yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them." Learn from this when you go to witness to a people; you are called to speak his word. The response is up to them. We are called to deliver the word of God clearly, if they oppose God, they will oppose you. Be faithful and he will bring the increase.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Hear, Stand and Receive

Eze 2:1 And he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee.

Angels do not like us to bow to them. It was the message of the Spirit of God delivered by angels.
Ezekiel was called "Son of man", 93 times, calling attention to his humanity. Jesus referred to himself as the Son of man showing his human connection to the throne of David, but he also was the only begotten Son of God.

Heb 2:1 Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let them slip.
Heb 2:2 For if the word spoken by angels was stedfast, and every transgression and disobedience received a just recompence of reward;
Heb 2:3 How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him;
Heb 2:4 God also bearing them witness, both with signs and wonders, and with divers miracles, and gifts of the Holy Ghost, according to his own will?

Angels come with messages. Usually some action is required so let us stand up and be ready to serve when we hear from the LORD.

Was it an angel that spoke to me that day in the hospital following radical cancer surgery as I lay in a bed connected to tubes, unable to swallow, unable to sit up? A voice spoke to me "if you do not drink water, you will die". Immediately I set up in bed and drank a glass of water. I had heard from God Not only that, but something changed inside. I began witnessing with boldness in the hospital to others to trust in God . God will be your help and your strength. I knew the name of Jesus and little else about that name, but God touched me. Later I was saved in a Christian church and baptized and filled with the spirit. Like Ezekiel I believe I was given the Holy Spirit when God spoke to me and called me.

Eze 2:2 And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me.

Ezekiel was filled with the Holy Spirit so that he could hear from and speak from the voice of God. The Holy Spirit is our connection and source of power from God.

Joh 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

We must "drink the water" of his word, so that it may be springs of living water flowing from us by the power of the Holy Spirit.

David had seen the Spirit removed from Saul

Psa 51:11 Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me.

The woman at the well

Jonh 4:10  Jesus answered and said unto her, If thou knewest the gift of God, and who it is that saith to thee, Give me to drink; thou wouldest have asked of him, and he would have given thee living water. 

The Spirit of God helps the workmen

Exo 31:2 See, I have called by name Bezaleel the son of Uri, the son of Hur, of the tribe of Judah:
Exo 31:3 And I have filled him with the spirit of God, in wisdom, and in understanding, and in knowledge, and in all manner of workmanship,
Exo 31:4 To devise cunning works, to work in gold, and in silver, and in brass, Exo 31:5 And in cutting of stones, to set them, and in carving of timber, to work in all manner of workmanship.

The Holy Spirit will give us power and abilities from God to serve him in all ways of our life. We will be better workmen, anointed artists and craftsmen, because of his presence. We are to be living testimonies of God as he is seen in us and through us. Ezekial seeing the visions was told to stand up and to hear the voice of God. He was filled with the Holy Spirit and was about to receive his calling from God. Do you know your calling and your gifts? We are to be servants and witnesses to bring others to God through his Son Jesus Christ who has paid the price for our reconciliation. Believe the message of God and do what he says. Stand up for Jesus.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Visions of the Throne

Eze 1:22 And the likeness of the firmament upon the heads of the living creature was as the colour of the terrible crystal, stretched forth over their heads above.
Eze 1:23 And under the firmament were their wings straight, the one toward the other: every one had two, which covered on this side, and every one had two, which covered on that side, their bodies.
Eze 1:24 And when they went, I heard the noise of their wings, like the noise of great waters, as the voice of the Almighty, the voice of speech, as the noise of an host: when they stood, they let down their wings.

Eze 1:25 And there was a voice from the firmament that was over their heads, when they stood, and had let down their wings.

The firmament above was a crystal, glorious, but terribly so. That which we take to be a dark cloud, is to God clear as crystal, through which he looks upon all the inhabitants of the earth. When the angels had roused a careless world, they let down their wings, that God's voice might be plainly heard. The voice of Providence is to open men's ears to the voice of the word. Sounds on earth should awaken our attention to the voice from heaven; for how shall we escape, if we turn away from Him that speaks from thence.(Matthew Henry)

The Voice of God

Psa 93:1 The LORD reigneth, he is clothed with majesty; the LORD is clothed with strength, wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished, that it cannot be moved.
Psa 93:2 Thy throne is established of old: thou art from everlasting.
Psa 93:3 The floods have lifted up, O LORD, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their waves.
Psa 93:4 The LORD on high is mightier than the noise of many waters, yea, than the mighty waves of the sea.
Psa 93:5 Thy testimonies are very sure: holiness becometh thine house, O LORD, for ever.

Eze 1:26 And above the firmament that was over their heads was the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it.
Eze 1:27 And I saw as the colour of amber, as the appearance of fire round about within it, from the appearance of his loins even upward, and from the appearance of his loins even downward, I saw as it were the appearance of fire, and it had brightness round about.
Eze 1:28 As the appearance of the bow that is in the cloud in the day of rain, so was the appearance of the brightness round about. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the LORD. And when I saw it, I fell upon my face, and I heard a voice of one that spake.

Visions of the throne

Rev 4:3 And he that sat was to look upon like a jasper and a sardine stone: and there was a rainbow round about the throne, in sight like unto an emerald.

Rev 10:1 And I saw another mighty angel come down from heaven, clothed with a cloud: and a rainbow was upon his head, and his face was as it were the sun, and his feet as pillars of fire:

Psa 45:6 Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: the sceptre of thy kingdom is a right sceptre.
Psa 45:7 Thou lovest righteousness, and hatest wickedness: therefore God, thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.

Psa 47:1 To the chief Musician, A Psalm for the sons of Korah. O clap your hands, all ye people; shout unto God with the voice of triumph.
Psa 47:2 For the LORD most high is terrible; he is a great King over all the earth.
Psa 47:3 He shall subdue the people under us, and the nations under our feet. 

Psa 47:4 He shall choose our inheritance for us, the excellency of Jacob whom he loved. Selah.
Psa 47:5 God is gone up with a shout, the LORD with the sound of a trumpet.
Psa 47:6 Sing praises to God, sing praises: sing praises unto our King, sing praises.
Psa 47:7 For God is the King of all the earth: sing ye praises with understanding.
Psa 47:8 God reigneth over the heathen: God sitteth upon the throne of his holiness.
Psa 47:9 The princes of the people are gathered together, even the people of the God of Abraham: for the shields of the earth belong unto God: he is greatly exalted.

Luk 1:30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
Luk 1:31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.
Luk 1:32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:
Luk 1:33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

Isa 6:1 In the year that king Uzziah died I saw also the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up, and his train filled the temple.
Isa 6:2 Above it stood the seraphims: each one had six wings; with twain he covered his face, and with twain he covered his feet, and with twain he did fly.
Isa 6:3 And one cried unto another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.
Isa 6:4 And the posts of the door moved at the voice of him that cried, and the house was filled with smoke.
Isa 6:5 Then said I, Woe is me! for I am undone; because I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips: for mine eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts.

Jer 22:1 Thus saith the LORD; Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word,
Jer 22:2 And say, Hear the word of the LORD, O king of Judah, that sittest upon the throne of David, thou, and thy servants, and thy people that enter in by these gates:
Jer 22:3 Thus saith the LORD; Execute ye judgment and righteousness, and deliver the spoiled out of the hand of the oppressor: and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place.
Jer 22:4 For if ye do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he, and his servants, and his people.

Ezekiel remained on his face until he heard the Spirit speak to him. We should spend time with our faces to the floor praying to God for his direction. Regardless of our stance, we need to hear the voice of God and when we are given direction we are to obey, walking as the Spirit directs us. 

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Wheel in de middle of a wheel

Eze 1:15 Now as I beheld the living creatures, behold one wheel upon the earth by the living creatures, with his four faces.

As I looked at these beings, I saw four wheels touching the ground beside them, one wheel belonging to each. (NLT)

Eze 1:16 The appearance of the wheels and their work was like unto the colour of a beryl: and they four had one likeness: and their appearance and their work was as it were a wheel in the middle of a wheel.

The beryl stone is mentioned as in the appearance of the New Jerusalem, a transparent city of God's making for his Saints.

Rev 21:19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald;
Rev 21:20 The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolite; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst.

One person referred to the book of Isaiah as the picture of a wheel within a wheel. The Bible has 66 books and within it Isaiah has 66 chapters. Interesting facts but it is not a correct interpretation of this verse. Others say it looks forward to jets or other mechanical war machines, I do not see that because these were living creatures with four faces each, with the spirit of God.

Eze 1:17 When they went, they went upon their four sides: and they turned not when they went.

The four of them went on their four sides (one wheel for each?) : and they, the wheels did not turn when they went.

Eze 1:18 As for their rings, they were so high that they were dreadful; and their rings were full of eyes round about them four.
Eze 1:19 And when the living creatures went, the wheels went by them: and when the living creatures were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up.
Eze 1:20 Whithersoever the spirit was to go, they went, thither was their spirit to go; and the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.
Eze 1:21 When those went, these went; and when those stood, these stood; and when those were lifted up from the earth, the wheels were lifted up over against them: for the spirit of the living creature was in the wheels.

The spirit of the living creatures was in the wheels; the same wisdom, power, and holiness of God, that guide and govern the angels, by them order all events in this lower world. The wheel had four faces, denoting that the providence of God exerts itself in all parts. Look every way upon the wheel of providence, it has a face toward you. Their appearance and work were as a wheel in the middle of a wheel. The disposals of Providence seem to us dark, perplexed, and unaccountable, yet are all wisely ordered for the best. The motion of these wheels was steady, regular, and constant. They went as the Spirit directed, therefore returned not. We should not have to undo that by repentance which we have done amiss, if we followed the guidance of the Spirit. The rings, or rims of the wheels were so vast, that when put in motion the prophet was afraid to look upon them. The consideration of the height and depth of God's counsel should awe us. They were full of eyes round about. The motions of Providence are all directed by infinite Wisdom. All events are determined by the eyes of the Lord, which are in every place beholding the evil and the good; for there is no such thing as chance or fortune, (Matthew Henry)

Zekial Saw De Wheel

Wheel, oh, wheel
Wheel in de middle of a wheel
Wheel, oh, wheel
Wheel in de middle of a wheel
'Zekiel saw de wheel of time
Wheel in de middle of a wheel
Ev'ry spoke was human kind
Way in de middle of a wheel
Way up yonder on de mountain top
Wheel in d middle of a wheel
My Lord an' de chariot stop
Way in de middle of a wheel

'Zekiel saw de wheel
Way up in de middle of de air
'Zekiel saw de wheel
Way in de middle of de air
De big wheel run by faith
Little wheel run by de grace of God
Wheel in a wheel
Way in de middle of de air

Wheel, oh, wheel
Wheel in de middle of a wheel