Ezekiel 37:13 And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves,
14 And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD.
We have been looking at the fact that God gives His people understanding of the times. In Bible times, God gave certain people visions and dreams to guide them. He gave some people prophecies to speak to the people and to record for future generations. God chose the nation of Israel to be His chosen people who should show the rest of the nations the importance of knowing the true God and following Him. Israel failed God in this matter. God blessed them greatly in the past, but by the time of our text in Ezekiel, Judah was in captivity in Babylon. God showed Ezekiel that the problem was that the nation was spiritually dead. God also showed Ezekiel that He would bring about a revival in the nation in the future. Ezekiel was not told when this would happen and we know it did not happen in his life time. We also know it has not happened to this day. However, God made the promise and He keeps His Word.
The first part of God’s prophecy has been fulfilled. Israel is back in their land and they are developing the land. They are able to grow enough food for themselves and also able to export food to other countries. They have also been blessed by God with the ability to develop some defensive weapons that have been able to keep much of the enemy attacks from harming them. They are currently under increasing attacks from terrorists who come into the country and shoot or stab Jews to death. This trouble will increase in the future and will be a constant problem for them until they turn to God in repentance and acknowledge the Lord Jesus Christ as their Messiah. He is the only Messiah and Saviour.
As we see in our text for today, God’s design is that Israel would know that He is the LORD.
Isaiah 42:8 I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.
As we have mentioned before, the word LORD is the name Jehovah. That name describes God as the self existence of God. He is not dependent upon anyone to feed or guide Him. He knows all things and He will do exactly what He says He will do.
Israel has had a problem with idolatry for many years. They may not openly worship any particular idol today, but they are still intent on worshipping false gods such as humanism, rather than the true God. They are hurting themselves by their rebellion and one day they will turn to God and know His forgiveness and peace.
As we see in verse 13, God declared that He would raise them up again and in verse 14 we see again that He would save them as well.
The Bible teaches that there will be two resurrections. There will be the resurrection of the saved and the resurrection of the lost. The saved will be blessed with a home in heaven. They will be given new bodies that will be free from disease. They will never grow old either. Heaven will be a wonderful place. It is a place reserved for those who are saved.
The lost will be raised up again and be reunited with their souls as well. They will face Jesus’ judgment and will be cast into the lake of fire for all eternity. There will be no escaping that dreaded place after death. The time for salvation is now.
In verse 14 God promised to put His spirit in the revived nation of Israel. The only way to have eternal life, is through the new birth and the indwelling presence of the Holy Spirit. Most of the Jews of Ezekiel’s day were lost people. Many were killed by the invasion of Babylon into the south. Many had already been killed by the invasion of the Assyrians into the north earlier. Those that would receive God’s spirit would be those who would acknowledge Him as their LORD.
God is not talking about giving the Jews that have died a second chance at salvation.
As we have already seen, God is speaking in a spiritual sense of the nation being revived. Most Jews today are not taught the truth and they go through the motions of the Passover and the Seder services, but they do not accept the fact that Jesus Christ is the Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world.
Due to the suffering that Israel will face during the Tribulation, there will be some of those Jews who will turn to God in humility and accept the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour. It is to that body of Jews that God is speaking here in the prophecy of Ezekiel. He is talking of a national revival.
God has already placed Israel in their land but they do not recognize His hand upon them. They still want to go their own way. Israel is currently one of the leading nations in the promotion of sodomy. That is a terrible thing to be known for. God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of that sin. The tribe of Benjamin was just about wiped out in the days of the Judges because of their defence of that sin.
God is longsuffering and He is protecting Israel from destruction because He made a promise to Abraham. God does not break His promises. He is faithful to Himself.
II Timothy 2:13 If we believe not, yet he abideth faithful: he cannot deny himself.
God judges sin. He never condones sin. He never whitewashes sin. It must be confessed, forgiven and forsaken. Only the blood of Jesus Christ can forgive sin. The Jews that die in their sin are doomed to an eternity in hell just like lost Gentiles are. The Jews that are saved during this current dispensation will be raised up together with the saved Gentiles at the Rapture. The Old Testament saints will be raised up at the end of the Tribulation time. The Jews that survive through the Tribulation and turn to God and are saved through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ will be the nation that will enter the Millennium. They will testify to the glory and goodness of the LORD. They will know that He is the true God and they will gladly serve Him.
God gave Ezekiel this prophecy during a low time in the nation of Israel. Ezekiel was a true believer in God, but he had been taken captive by the Babylonians. He was a contemporary to Daniel and his three friends. They were not being punished for their sins. They were in a different location, but they still had the blessing of God on their lives. They had the opportunity to encourage their fellow Jews with God’s truth. They could also be a testimony of God’s righteousness and power to the nation of Babylon and beyond.
Today, we can read and study the Word of God that was given to holy men like Ezekiel. We can be blessed by the truth as well. We can know that God is true to Himself and that we can be a blessing to others around us if we know the Lord Jesus Christ as our own personal Saviour. If He is the Lord of our lives we will be able to help others to know the truth. That is greatly needed in this time of rebellion against truth that we live in.