Scriptures

Ezekiel 22

Introduction

The sins of Jerusalem and Israel

Blood guiltiness of Jerusalem, and the burden of its sin. Ezekiel 22:1-16.

Principle accusation: bloodshed and idolatry. Ezekiel 22:1-5.

A multitude of sins committed in Jerusalem. Ezekiel 22:6-12.

The Lord enrages; Judah to be scattered among the heathen. Ezekiel 22:13-16.

Refining of Israel in the furnace of besieged Jerusalem. Ezekiel 22:17-22.

Immediate cause of destruction: the corrupt state of all classes in the kingdom. Ezekiel 22:23-31.

Summary

A catalogue of every type of sin in Jerusalem. Every type of person was involved in sin. They are condemned as dross to the fire. All are found guilty.

‘The word of the LORD came to me: ‘Son of man, will you judge her? Will you judge this city of bloodshed? Then confront her with all her detestable practices and say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: You city that brings on herself doom by shedding blood in her midst and defiles herself by making idols, you have become guilty because of the blood you have shed and have become defiled by the idols you have made. You have brought your days to a close, and the end of your years has come. Therefore, I will make you an object of scorn to the nations and a laughingstock to all the countries. Those who are near and those who are far away will mock you, you infamous city, full of turmoil. ‘See how each of the princes of Israel who are in you uses his power to shed blood. In you they have treated father and mother with contempt; in you they have oppressed the foreigner and mistreated the fatherless and the widow. You have despised my holy things and desecrated my Sabbaths. In you are slanderers who are bent on shedding blood; in you are those who eat at the mountain shrines and commit lewd acts. In you are those who dishonour their father’s bed; in you are those who violate women during their period, when they are ceremonially unclean. In you one man commits a detestable offense with his neighbour’s wife, another shamefully defiles his daughter-in-law, and another violates his sister, his own father’s daughter. In you are people who accept bribes to shed blood; you take interest and make a profit from the poor. You extort unjust gain from your neighbours. And you have forgotten me, declares the Sovereign LORD. ‘I will surely strike my hands together at the unjust gain you have made and at the blood you have shed in your midst. Will your courage endure, or your hands be strong in the day I deal with you? I the LORD have spoken, and I will do it. I will disperse you among the nations and scatter you through the countries; and I will put an end to your uncleanness. When you have been defiled in the eyes of the nations, you will know that I am the LORD.’ Ezekiel 22:1-16

The Bloody City

An apt title for this section which outlines the amount of blood shed by the people of God in the city of God. Here is the absolute corruption in Jerusalem. The phrase, ‘In you’ is repeated 12 times throughout. The prophet is authorised to judge the Bloody city, city of blood, the cities crimes were bloody crimes Ezekiel 7:23.

She makes idols against herself, her time of judgment has come. God has allowed them enough time that they have become a laughing stock. Children set alight by father and mother. They enrich themselves by wronging the poor. A city known for its holiness now polluted by lewdness. The real problem You have forgotten your God, I will scatter them.

‘Then the word of the LORD came to me: ‘Son of man, the people of Israel have become dross to me; all of them are the copper, tin, iron and lead left inside a furnace. They are but the dross of silver. Therefore, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: ‘Because you have all become dross, I will gather you into Jerusalem. As silver, copper, iron, lead and tin are gathered into a furnace to be melted with a fiery blast, so will I gather you in my anger and my wrath and put you inside the city and melt you. I will gather you and I will blow on you with my fiery wrath, and you will be melted inside her. As silver is melted in a furnace, so you will be melted inside her, and you will know that I the LORD have poured out my wrath on you.’ Ezekiel 22:17-22

In the Melting Pot

The figure of a man using a furnace putting all these different metals in the pot. God is going to do this with them, creaming off the dross as He purifies His city. The wretched degeneracy of the house of Israel is described.

In David’s and Solomon’s time it had been a head of Gold, when kingdoms are divided they are arms of silver, and now that degeneration has taken place they are seen as the bases of metal. They need to be refined. They had fled for safety to Jerusalem now they will be destroyed.

‘Again, the word of the LORD came to me: ‘Son of man, say to the land, ‘You are a land that has not been cleansed or rained on in the day of wrath.’ There is a conspiracy of her princes within her like a roaring lion tearing its prey; they devour people, take treasures and precious things and make many widows within her. Her priests do violence to my law and profane my holy things; they do not distinguish between the holy and the common; they teach that there is no difference between the unclean and the clean; and they shut their eyes to the keeping of my Sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them. Her officials within her are like wolves tearing their prey; they shed blood and kill people to make unjust gain. Her prophets whitewash these deeds for them by false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says’—when the LORD has not spoken. The people of the land practice extortion and commit robbery; they oppress the poor and needy and mistreat the foreigner, denying them justice. ‘I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land, so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one. So, I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger, bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign LORD.’ Ezekiel 22:23-31

The Extent of the Sin

Four groups are isolated again probably to represent the sin of the whole people:

1. Priests.

2. Princes.

3. Prophets.

4. People.

A general idea given of the land of Israel, how well it deserved the judgments coming to destroy it and how much it needed these judgments to refine it, let the prophet tell her plainly. The prophets, who pretended to make known the mind of God, not only were they deceivers but devourers.

God is said to be unable to find one righteous man to prevent the judgement. This is not literal, for we know there were at least two, Jeremiah and Baruch, Jeremiah 36:1ff. God is saying there is not enough righteousness to prevent destruction. Ezekiel 14:14.

Go To Ezekiel 23

 

DAILY BIBLE VERSE

"For we are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."

Ephesians 2:10

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