June 29: I Am Israel

You shall fall by the sword. I will judge you at the border of Israel, and you shall know that I am the LORD. This city shall not be your cauldron, nor shall you be the meat in the midst of it. I will judge you at the border of Israel, and you shall know that I am the LORD. For you have not walked in my statutes, nor obeyed my rules, but have acted according to the rules of the nations that are around you.”

(Ezekiel 11:10-12)

My husband uses some really cool logic when exploring how we should look at Old Testement texts. He explains that when reading, it is really easy to compare ourselves to the protagonist of the book. As if David or Samson or Ezekiel represents us. As if we understand and have the closest relationship to God of all who surround us. However, my place in this story is not that of the main character. I am not Ezekiel, pleading with the people to ‘get their act together’ while God smites. I am, in fact the Israelite. I am running, with everything in me, away from the Father, sprinting from His kindness. Then Jesus. Jesus is the true and better Ezekiel. He is the one who could actually make a way for God’s people to come back to Him. He is better because it is His perfection that draws us in. He doesn’t convince us; He simply beckons our hearts. Stop trying to be Ezekiel, Christian. Let’s embrace our rolls as the fearful, running Israelites. The ones who have no power apart from God—who are absolutely nothing without His grace. The ones who God should be punishing big time, like what is done in this text. The ones who know that it is only because of His Son that we get to escape the punishment and run free in His love.

Lord, thank you for taking on Ezekiel’s roll that I might have life and life abundant. I am so inclined to look at myself as some savior to people I come in contact with, representing you and sharing the Gospel. But I am weak. Let me understand my weakness better that I might see your strength only. I love you.

52 Week Reading Plan: Ezekiel 7-12

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