- Centering prayer— Pray for illumination, “Lord, open my heart and mind by the power of the Holy Spirit,” and remain in silence.
- Read slowly, keeping any words or phrase that come to your mind, and mark on them.
- Close eyes and meditate on what you read.
- Take a note if you have question, inspiration.
Read Ezekiel 20
Chapter 20-24 are prophesy against Israel for her sin, and the fall and rise of Israel.
Chapter 20 describes apostasy of Israel throughout her history against God’s salvation.
“In the seventh year, in the fifth month on the tenth day,” indicates August 14, 591 BC, a year after the date when he saw a vision of idolatry in the temple (Ezekiel 8:1).
In response to some elders’ inquiry among the exiles to consult God, Ezekiel was told to judge them, inviting them to identify with God’s judgement for their rebellion chronologically.
He recited Israel’s past as a history of idolatry when God called them first to salvation, first in Egypt, in the desert, in the time in the promised land, and the present time in exile, defiling themselves with all idols. They wanted to be like other nations, doing detestable things before God. Their rebellion provoked the wrath and judgement of God (v.33).
After they repent, they would become a new exodus, then God will restore the people of Israel to Zion (v.40), and their sacrifices will be acceptable. This is the prophecy of restoration.
“the south,” (v45) means Judah, southern kingdom of Israel, which was divided after the death of king Solomon. The oracle against the south is that it will be consumed by the invader from the north, Babylonia (Jeremiah 5:15).
God’s judgement for Israel was God’s invitation to restore her.
1. What does this passage tell you about God?
2. What does this passage tell you about people.?
3. What does this passage tell you about yourself and God’s will for you?