Gosh, y’all, THIS is why we read the Old Testament. I have missed nuggets like this for SO many years because I told myself this part of scripture is boring, obsolete and too hard to understand. But until we (try to) understand the Old Testament, we will continue to miss the depth of God’s character, His faithfulness, His mercy.
Let me back up and just tell you that Ezekiel is an incredibly boring and sad book about the judgment of God’s people. They have turned away from Him (again) and gone so far as to cannibalize their children. (Right?!) God has given many warnings through several prophets, Ezekiel being one of them but they do not believe in the power of our great King.
I can just put myself there, can’t you? Enjoying life and doing my own thing. Living the way I want to live, going with the crowd, not paying any attention to the God that supposedly got us here in the first place. I would have probably heard stories of the Exodus and Egypt all my life, but that’s what they were - stories. I can literally feel the dust between my toes as my mother would have been saying “I remember when…”.
And then there are these prophets telling us about death and destruction if we don’t turn from whatever it is that I find myself doing that day. Not only are they preaching not to do what I’m doing, but also that I needed to start going to the Temple and sacrificing very particular things. Maybe I had been sacrificing to other gods, but of course they weren’t as particular as God.
I imagine rolling my eyes and whispering “they are nuts” to myself. I imagine going right back to idol worship, right back to my own thing because no one is the boss of me (something I actually do tell myself daily). But then here is Ezekiel telling this crazy parable about two eagles and a vine that I will never quite understand. It sounds like the eagle is going to cut off this prominent vine from both ends, rendering it useless.
I picture myself listening to the words of Ezekiel half heartedly, not really taking it all in until he stops and says this :
“All the trees of the field will know that I am the Lord; I bring down the high tree, exalt the low tree, dry up the green tree and make the dry tree flourish. I am the Lord, I have spoken, and I will perform it.” Ezekiel 17:24
Friend, that’ll preach.
God is powerful. He can take what’s dry and bring it back to life, He can take what is high and make it low, whatever is low and make it high. He has control, and boy will He ever exercise control when He needs to. He is going to make Himself known whether we participate or not, but don't you want to? Don't you want to be a part of that?
Dig in to scripture today and learn who God is. Not just JESUS, but God the Father. Lean in to all that He has brought His people through to get to this place of grace and salvation. To the place where we aren't required to do ANYTHING for a relationship with Him. Not one thing! If that's not exciting, I don't know what is!