The Death Of The Prophet’s Wife
Now this passage in Ezekiel 24 seems cruel in our minds that God would make a faithful righteous man who served him go through this. Yet lets not think harshly about the Lord even though his ways may appear cruel at times. First of all we know Ezekiel is in the Kingdom of the Lord along with those who have gone before us enjoying eternal everlasting happiness and reward.
God was using Ezekiel to show the people that as it happened to him, so also The Lord would be grieved seeing his own sanctuary destroyed- the very symbol of God’s relationship with His people. The temple was God’s dwelling among them yet He allowed His own temple to be destroyed and with that, the relationship between God and this people for a vast span of years was over.
God was almost saying “That’s right, we are over, yes you can go see other gods because if you wanted me as your God then you would have listened when I told you it be over if you kept up your ways. Yes we are done!”
He gave them the choice though to be commited to Him or serve their gods and hold on to their violent ways, practice of deception, cheating other, greed, oppression and the like, the people were commiting adultery with their neighbors wives and husbands, and a whole list of other abominable sins. So God packed his suitcase and took his presence from that temple as a man or woman would who has had it with a spouse that does not take the threat of them leaving seriously. He left his temple, he let His enemies come and burn it to the ground and them to carry of The People he tried to make his own.
Yet he left an opportunity for a repentent remnant to return to the promise land, after 70 years in Babylon. Others however, stayed in Babylon dying their serving their false gods-
As it says “then say to them, ‘It is because your ancestors forsook me,’ declares the Lord, ‘and followed other gods and served and worshiped them. They forsook me and did not keep my law. But you have behaved more wickedly than your ancestors. See how all of you are following the stubbornness of your evil hearts instead of obeying me. So I will throw you out of this land into a land neither you nor your ancestors have known, and there you will serve other gods day and night, for I will show you no favor.’ “However, the days are coming,” declares the Lord, “when it will no longer be said, ‘As surely as the Lord lives, who brought the Israelites up out of Egypt,’ but it will be said, ‘As surely as the Lord lives, who brought the Israelites up out of the land of the north and out of all the countries where he had banished them.’ For I will restore them to the land I gave their ancestors. (Jeremiah 16:11-15)
Under the old covenant- before Jesus Christ made it possible to be faithful to God by the Holy Spirit, God made the Law like a relational code of conduct (Take this analogy- a man says to a woman, ok listen if you show yourself to be a worthy woman I will marry you to myself and commit to you forever) God says to the Israelites, “Keep my laws and decrees and you will be my special people”
Yet how has this failed, Sin, because the Law was unable to be fully kept and the people throughout the generations failed to do it so God got angry with them. Yet by the basis of Abrahamic covenant God had promised this nation from Abraham’s line would be blessed?
Paul says “It is not as though God’s word had failed. For not all who are descended from Israel are Israel. Nor because they are his descendants are they all Abraham’s children. On the contrary, “It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned.” In other words, it is not the children by physical descent who are God’s children, but it is the children of the promise who are regarded as Abraham’s offspring. (Romans 9:6-8)
Hebrews 8 borrows from Jeremiah 31:34
But God found fault with the people and said:
“The days are coming, declares the Lord, when I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel and with the people of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they did not remain faithful to my covenant, and I turned away from them, declares the Lord. This is the covenant I will establish with the people of Israel after that time, declares the Lord. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. No longer will they teach their neighbor, or say to one another, ‘Know the Lord,’ because they will all know me, from the least of them to the greatest. For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more. ”
What is the New Covenant? That we are made right in our hearts toward Jesus Christ by Faith and He puts His Spirit in us to move us to desire to obey God and carry out His commands. Under the Old Covenat God’s presence was in the temple and he would leave if the people sinned and forsook him- yet by faith in Christ Jesus we are born a new into life for real where God’s Spirit does not reside in a literal temple but indwells those who believe the Gospel by faith in Jesus Christ.
Through this: God can now marry Himself to people made new- before this, the requirements of the Old Covenant had to be followed like a written code. The Law is metaphoracally dating where as the life of faith in Christ is guaranteed by the Holy Spirit like that of an engagement ring- in the case of engagements, the ring promises that other you will marry them? Yet human’s can break their word, but if God seals us by the Holy Spirit to guarantee we will be saved on the day of Christ’s return, or when we die. Yet unlike those of prior generations, God could not guarantee Israel he would marry her but under Law he told her she would be his if she kept his stipulations and decrees.
However, “in the hope of eternal life, which God, who does not lie, promised before the beginning of time, and which now at his appointed season he has brought to light through the preaching entrusted to me by the command of God our Savior, (Titus 1:2-3)
Here is the truth, that Jesus Christ is both the appointed Savior of original people/ Israel but also to all the World. Through faith amd turning to Him, He puts in us a new heart and spirit, and washes away our sins. Israel was not saved for obeying the Law but she stumbled over the Law and became aware as a sinner just like the Gentile nations were,
What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage? Not at all! For we have already made the charge that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. All have turned away, they have together become worthless; there is no one who does good, not even one.” “Their throats are open graves; their tongues practice deceit.” “The poison of vipers is on their lips.” “Their mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.” “Their feet are swift to shed blood; ruin and misery mark their ways, and the way of peace they do not know.” “There is no fear of God before their eyes.” Now we know that whatever the law says, it says to those who are under the law, so that every mouth may be silenced and the whole world held accountable to God. Therefore no one will be declared righteous in God’s sight by the works of the law; rather, through the law we become conscious of our sin. But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.