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15 June, 2017

Search The Scriptures —Study 14 — Ezekiel 20: 45 – 21:32

Study 14 From the Book of Ezekiel is: Ezekiel 20: 45 – 21:32

The prophet is bidden to prophesy (a) against the south (of Palestine) 20:45-49), and (b) against Jerusalem and the land of Israel (21:1-17). The sword of the Lord is drawn from its sheath (21:1-7), sharpened and polished (21: 8-13), and smites repeatedly in its deadly work (21:14-17).  In 21:18-27, the explanation is given.  The king of Babylon is seen, standing at the parting of the ways, seeking guidance by divination----Ammon or Jerusalem? The decision falls for Jerusalem, the city is taken, and the king (Zedekiah) slain.  The closing verses of the chapter (verses 28-32) are a short prophecy of utter doom upon Ammon as well.
1.     Who kindles the fire? Whose sword is drawn? Yet it was by a heathen king that the judgment was effected. What does this teach us concerning God’s methods of accomplishing His purposes of judgment in the world? Cf. Je. 25:9 (‘my servant’); Is. 25: 1-4.
2.     When human leaders and confidences all fail and are overthrown, where can we still look for the establishment of a reign of peace? See 21:25-27; cf. Ps. 2:6-9; Lk. 21:25-28.
Notes
1.     21:21 refers to three well-known forms of divination practiced by the Babylonians: drawing marked arrows from a quiver (or throwing them in the air to see how they fall); consulting the teraphim, the ancestral household gods, in some form of necromancy; and studying the marks on the entrails of sacrificial victims.
2.     21:27. ‘Whose right is’: i. e., the Davidic Messiah who is entitled to the kingship. Cf. Gn. 49:10