God’s judgment was coming upon His beloved city, Jerusalem. Ezekiel was to groan “with breaking heart and bitter grief” before the eyes of his countrymen until they asked him about his sadness. In this way the Lord would bring very important news to His people. They would soon face the “sword” of the Almighty coming against them.
The people had not paid attention to earlier episodes of divine correction. Like difficult children they had “despised the rod.” What could God do to get their attention and to turn them from their dangerous rebellion? He would use the Babylonians to discipline His chosen nation and her king.
Idol worshipers from the east would employ “divination” to make their final choices regarding plans for conquest. The king of Babylon would look for pagan signs in order to determine where he would lead his armies. Every foolish test would point to an assault against Jerusalem rather than an immediate attack against “Rabbah of the Ammonites.” Yet it would be the Lord God who would rule over every detail in the created order. His assessment of His chosen ones was very plain. “In all your deeds your sins appear.”
The king in the line of David would have to “take off the crown.” For an appointed time the Jews would be without a successor to Zedekiah. The city of the Lord’s holy sanctuary would experience a great disaster. “A ruin, ruin, ruin I will make it.”
Only God Himself could bring His wrath to the best fulfillment, and He would do so one day in the future when He would raise up a chosen leader from among the descendants of David. The Lord Jesus came at just the right time to take the sword of the Lord upon Himself for the sake of His elect. He will come again in glory to judge all the nations of the earth.
The very best plan for all who look for the return of our Messiah would be to receive His training today with a submissive heart. We must not resist the Word that Jesus speaks. He who died for us now lives forever to intercede for all who put their trust in Him.
Prayer from A Book of Prayers
Merciful Lord, we cannot face Your sword of judgment. Will all Your people be destroyed? We groan because of Your wrath and because of the sins of Your church. Trouble is coming against us. Pagan armies do what they think to be the directives of their gods. Yet You work out every detail of Your will. Surely You will help us. We are weak, and we need You even now.