Anytime I study a Book of the Bible, or write a new Series of Studies on the Website … I look for “outstanding” portions of Scripture, “remarkable.” Maybe a better word is “unique.”
Well, to me, Ezekiel chapter 12 fits that category.
So much happens in those 28 verses!
If I ever preach a week of Revival Sermons from the Book of Ezekiel, chapter 12 will be one of the target “texts!”
We are back to the Prophet’s “action sermons.”
“Acted-out Presentations of God’s Truth.” (All being the Lord’s idea, I might add!)
First … Ezekiel was told to pack a small amount of bare necessities and tie them in a bundle! (Like captives are told to do by an invading, fierce army!) Ezekiel did that and (with crowds watching) marched out of the city, as if under arrest by an invading horde! Well, I said “marched,” but really God told him “to dig” his way out! Right through the city wall!
Illustrating the effects of the coming Babylonian advance (attack) on Jerusalem, an event that happened in finality no more than six years later! Nearly everyone brutally taken … and force marched hundreds of miles to Babylon! With a pitiful knapsack on their backs or heads. (Containing all their earthly possessions!)
This act was also partly directed against the (illegitimate) King Zedekiah, wicked ruler of Judah, who tried to escape the city exactly as Ezekiel foretold by his actions! (Ezekiel even refuses to acknowledge Zedekiah as “King,” merely calling him “prince!” See verse 12.)
This could be labeled “Ezekiel’s knapsack Sermon.”
God later in chapter 12 tells Ezekiel “how” to eat! “Eat thy bread with quaking, and drink thy water with trembling and with carefulness (worry).” Verse 17, further predicting the looming disaster about to fall on Jerusalem! Famine, dearth, a siege that lasted months and months! They even (history tells us now) ate the flesh of other citizens, neighbors, who had died in the conflict! Their water source was eliminated, too!
God has Ezekiel “tackle” a (false) proverb that had made its way into Jewish life. “Son of man, what is that proverb that ye have in the land of Israel, saying … THE DAYS ARE PROLONGED, AND EVERY VISION FAILETH?” Verse 22, “much time has passed, many years are gone … and no sermon (vision) yet has been fulfilled!”
In other words, “God is NOT going to do what He says!”
“Thus saith the Lord GOD; I WILL MAKE THIS PROVERB TO CEASE, and they shall no more use it as a proverb in Israel; but say unto them, THE DAYS ARE AT HAND, and THE EFFECT (IMPACT) OF EVERY VISION (SERMON).” Verse 23, God just informed them: “The waiting is over! The time (for judgment) is now!” And sure enough, within a few months nearly all Judah was in Babylon!
Here’s a Preacher attacking a “false truth” floating in a land! (Reminds me of Paul’s great words “Casting down strong holds, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God.” Amazing!)
Again, God in verse 28: “There shall none of my words be prolonged any more, but the word which I have spoken SHALL (IMMEDIATELY) BE DONE, saith the Lord GOD.”
The judging Hand of God!
The world will see it again, folks. Mark my words.
— Dr. Mike Bagwell
I have not today “detailed” every movement in the chapter. Too much there! But I have given you the “essence” of its material. I would suggest (if time allows) that you read all 28 verses thoroughly … to get the “feel” of the entire context.