About Jesus Steve Sweetman
are two ways of viewing this chapter.
Some people say that it is the nation of Israel
that will be restored or resurrected while others say it is about
individual Jews coming back to life. I
would suggest that the main emphasis concerning the bones coming to life
in this chapter concerns the nation of Israel.
this, many people over the years believe these bones that come together is
the end time church. Those who
believe in Replacement Theology would believe this.
While being an active member of the Full Gospel Christian Business
Men in the 1970's I often heard this passage interpreted to be in
reference to what they called the last end time revival - the restoration
of the church, not to Jews or
the nation of Israel. This
would have been so because many people in the Charismatic Movement of the
1960's and 1970's were from church denominations that believed in
the mention of the Spirit of the LORD, or the Holy Spirit, in verse 1.
When anyone is used by the Lord in the gift of prophecy, whether in
Old Testament times or New Testament times, the Spirit of God would come
on the person. You will know
when the Holy Spirit comes on you. He
will envelop you and He will use you to speak the Word of the Lord.
I do believe that the gift of prophecy, whether predictive or
non-predictive, is a gift for New Testament times.
I think 1 Corinthians 12 through 14 makes this clear.
That being said, whatever the prophetic word is, it must be in line
with what the Bible says. If
not, it is not the Word of the Lord.
the gift of prophecy, the basic thing we should no is that it is simply
speaking what God has called or asked you to speak.
It can be predictive or encouraging.
It can be a word of warning and admonishment.
Prophecy comes in all forms. It
is more than predicting future events.
1 also states that the Spirit brought Ezekiel into a valley.
Whether the Spirit literally brought Ezekiel into a real valley is
debatable. The text does not
say this was a vision, but it could well be one.
I tend to think that Ezekiel, by means of a spiritual revelation,
was brought into this valley. That
being the case, it was just as real as a real valley.
I think this point is driven home in verse 2 when Ezekiel, in
spirit, literally walked through this valley of very dry bones.
verse 3 the Lord asked Ezekiel if the bones he saw
throughout the valley could live.
The text states that these bones were very dry, as in very dead.
I would suggest that the first thing that would come into anyone's
mind upon hearing this question is, "how can dead and dry old bones
live? That is probably what
Ezekiel thought and for that reason he responded to the Lord by saying,
"O Sovereign Lord, you alone know."
Clearly Ezekiel did not know how to answer this question.
am not sure how Ezekiel felt at this point, but God asked him to prophesy
to the dry bones. God wanted
Ezekiel to talk to a bunch of dead dry bones, as weird as that may sound
to you and I. God always has
reasons for what He does, and His ways of doing things aren't always the
way we would do things. Ezekiel
might have felt a bit strange, but remember, this is a vision.
It is not like chapter 36 where God asked him to speak to
mountains, which I believe in that case was literal mountains.
words that Ezekiel is to speak to the bones is found in verses 4 through
6. We see the words "I
will" over and over again in the Bible when it comes to Israel
at the end of this age, and again, we see these words here.
God will, all by Himself, cause life to come to these bones.
He will join them together, put skin on them
and make these bones into a living body.
This is the Word of the Lord. The
point here is that God alone will do this.
Just how God will do this is debatable.
Some suggest that He will use people to proclaim the Word of the
Lord to the nation of
verse 7 and 8 we see that as Ezekiel spoke the Word of the Lord, the bones
came together. Note that the
text states that the bones came together but as yet there was no life in
them. We know that this
prophecy predicts the future of
second round of prophecy comes in verses 9 and 10. God
tells Ezekiel to prophesy to the breath, (ruwach in Hebrew - meaning
breath, wind, or spirit) so breath can come into the body that has come
together. Once the breath of
life comes into the body, the body of bones comes alive.
I believe the breath is the Holy Spirit.
Ezekiel was to prophesy to the Holy Spirit, encouraging Him to
enter the dry bones of
makes me wonder. Right now as
I type these words in 2018, the bones are coming together, but there is no
Spirit life in national Israel.
the word "slain" in verse 10.
This might be in reference to all of the Jews who have been slain
over the years or it might well be in reference to the Jews who are killed
during the Great Tribulation. Zechariah
13:8 tells us that two thirds of the Jews will be killed during the last
few years of this age.
11 makes it clear what this prophecy is all about.
This prophecy is about the "whole house of
time in which this prophecy is speaking to is a time when there will be no
north and south. There will be
just one Israel. All twelve tribes will be
one nation as we see in the book of Revelation with the one hundred and
forty four thousand preachers, twelve thousand from each of the twelve
repents, you see the Lord's response in verses 12 to 14.
God will bring Israel
back to the land and then He will put life back into them once in their
land. I see a two fold
fulfillment of prophecy here. First
the Jews go back to the land, and then spiritual life is brought back to
them. They are now coming back
to the land. We await the day
when spiritual life will return to Israel.
also should note here and understand
verses 15 through 17 God told Ezekiel to take tw
verse 17 God asked Ezekiel to join the two sticks together in his hand.
This action is prophetic of the day when the northern and the
southern kingdoms of
this point in time, when Ezekiel was prophesying these things the northern
kingdom was not really in existence. It
had been taken over by
21 is important for us who are living today.
God said that He would gather the Jews from "the nations"
in which they had been scattered to and bring them back into their own
land. The word
"nations" is plural, and for that reason is very important in
the understanding of this verse.
Ezekiel's day, Israelis weren't really scattered across the nations of the
world. They were just held
captive for the most part, in one nation, and that was Babylon. I say this because some
people think this prophecy was fulfilled when the Jews were allowed back
into their homeland after their 70 year captivity in Babylon. That can't be so.
It was only in 70 A. D. when Jews began to be scattered throughout
the nations of the world, and it was only in the 19th and 20th century
when God began to bring them back, and only in 1948 did Israel
have a homeland to return to.
is more to this prophecy in the following verses that confirms that God
was not speaking of
22 speaks of
24 says that God's servant David will be king of the Jews.
All Bible scholars say this servant is Jesus.
King David from the Old Testament will not come back to life and be
king. One of the
major trains of Messianic thought in the Bible is that Jesus is a king
like king David. He is in the
lineage of David, and He will inherit the throne of David, a throne in the
literal city of
see the word "forever" in verse 25.
Forever means forever. This
prophecy could not have been fulfilled when
last three verses speak of a new covenant that God will make with Israel. This covenant is not the new
covenant of salvation that Jesus provided all people on the cross.
This is a covenant that has yet to be made and put into place.
Jesus will make this covenant with
will possess the land. Jesus
will be their king. God's
sanctuary, or dwelling place, will be among them, because Jesus will be
among them in the thousand years of His rule.
This prophecy is ultimately fulfilled in the New Jerusalem that
comes down from heaven at the end of the thousand years as recorded in the
last few chapters of the book of Revelation.
chapter speaks of all the tribes
a remnant from each of the tribes of