Good morning, mates! I hope you slept well and are ready for today’s dive. Yesterday, we discussed why Israel holds the key to our future, and today we dive right into Ezekiel 36-37, so open your Bibles and here we go!
If you have never read those two chapters in one sitting, I encourage you to do so. Then meet us back here as we look at a few passages from those chapters. The two chapters have been described as God’s preparation of the land for Israel’s return (chapter 36), and the actual return of the people (chapter 37).
Verses 1-4 of Ezekiel 36 describe a barren land of desolate ruins and abandoned cities. Here are before and after pictures of Tel Aviv and the Hula Valley. Indeed, God has made the barren land alive!
From Ezekiel 36:5-12:
- Describe God’s attitude in these verses. Why do you believe He is so adamant?
- Make a list of things God says He will do.
According to verses 16-21, why were the people dispersed from the land to begin with?
Verses 22-38 are precious words of restoration from the Lord!
- For whose sake is He about to act, and why?
- What do you believe is God’s ultimate goal with Israel?
- We are still awaiting fulfillment of verses 25-30. What are God’s promises to the Jewish people in those verses?
- What is the message of verses 32, 36 and 38?
Before being scattered to the ends of the earth, the Jewish people had defiled the land with idols. Just as Hosea was commanded by God to marry a prostitute, so the Lord is bound to a people who spiritually prostituted themselves before Him. Thus, a curse came upon the land. But God’s plan all along was to restore the land for the sake of His Holy Name, and make it suitable once more for His chosen people. That is the message of Ezekiel 36. (Find out more, if you’d like at Ezekiel 36: The Lord Restores Israel for the Sake of His Name.)
Now, we move on to Ezekiel 37. God gave the prophet Ezekiel a vision in verses 1-10, then explained it in verses 11-14.
- Describe that vision.
- According to verse 11, what (or who) do the dry bones represent?
- Thinking about scattered Jews from the year 70 AD until Israel’s rebirth in May 1948, what incredibly horrid event took place during that time?
- What pictures come to mind when you think of the Holocaust?
- Would this prophecy make more or less sense following that traumatic era of history? Why?
Verses 15-23 reference the joining together of Judah and Israel. You may recall in Israel’s history, following King Solomon, the kingdom of Israel was divided into norther (Israel) and southern (Judah) tribes.
- Why do you think this passage is included in this chapter?
- According to verses 21-22, where did God say He would gather His people, and how many nations would they be?
- According to verse 23, what did God say the Jewish people would do upon return to their land? What would God do?
Verses 24-28 look to the future! 2 Samuel 7:8-17 describes a covenant God made with David in which He declared that David’s throne will be established forever! Thus, Ezekiel 37:24-28 provides additional prophecy concerning that time!
- Has this prophecy come to pass yet?
- When do you believe it will occur?
- According to verses 27-28, what will be the signs that the fulfillment has taken place?
What a glorious day that will be, when Israel is sanctified, the nations know that He is our God, and His sanctuary is in our midst forever. Believers, that is Millennial Kingdom talk! Israel is back in the land physically, but is not there yet spiritually. The Bible teaches us that the tribulation is the time of awakening for the Jewish people. There will be national salvation during that horrific time, when all Israel is saved (Romans 11:26), and then we will join together as one in the Millennial Kingdom! (Study more about that in Duel Fulfillment of Ezekiel’s Dry Bones Prophecy)
Every family on earth will be blessed, but ultimately, Israel must be back in the land, they must fulfill their calling, and their destiny must be a national one, not just a spiritual one. They are back physically, let’s pray for their return spiritually, so they and the rest of the world will know that our Lord is God!
Here’s a blessing for you, as we end this beautiful Lord’s Day!