Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 33:21-33; 34-36
It seems to me that we start at the lowest point in history for Israel – the fall of the beloved city, Jerusalem! And I seem to hear God’s voice answering the familiar question shot at God constantly – it’s not fair what You do to me! If Abraham was only one person and we are multiple people (more than Abraham) – You owe it to us to bless us! What kind of weird reasoning is this? Did you notice God’s patient answers in His irrefutable logic? He lists the ridiculous things they are doing against Him! He doesn’t owe them! He has been good beyond words and still they are trying to manipulate Him! But then I recall with a sense of shame, that I have treated My precious Saviour sometimes in the same way! Whom am I to find fault with them!
And then God uncovers the deceit of His people – seeming to draw near to God with their lips, but in actual fact – they hear God’s words, but do not put them into practice! And I remember Jesus words in John, “If you loved Me, you would keep My commands!” Does that sound familiar – our theme of this year – putting things into practice!
And then for a person who is older, the passage becomes more painful and personal! Am I as an older responsible person actually just going about life enjoying myself, or am I truly caring for God’s children, His sheep. Am I scattering or seeking the weak and sick, as my Saviour was and still is doing! And then Ezekiel bringing God’s message passes on to talking about how “the Chief Shepherd” Who will not only remove the unfaithful shepherds, but will restore the Nation once again! He is truly the Good shepherd giving His life for the sheep!
I love the new covenant, that we are in with our Saviour – their new covenant has our new covenant’s characteristics – “You are My sheep, the sheep of My pasture…and I am your God”!
And God warms to His subject through Ezekiel, and tells of judgment against His enemies and His people who will be restored and honoured – not because of being in debt to His people, but because of His goodness, His holiness and for His name’s sake!
I think I noticed the expression more than once today, THEN they will know that I am the Lord! And I am filled with joy that I belong to Him alone, and that I can KNOW Him – not only with the head, but with all my heart! I am thinking quietly of what my Sweetheart once said to me, “I chose you, and you hold the key to my heart!” I pray that the same may be true of you and I in our relationship with our Saviour, this side of heaven, before we actually look up into His face and realize more fully, just how much He has always truly loved us despite all we were and all we have done!