Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 34-35
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Key Verses: Ezekiel 34:11, 13
For thus says the Lord God: “Indeed I Myself will search for My sheep and search them out…And I will bring them out from the peoples and gather them from the countries, and will bring them to their own land; I will feed them on the mountains of Israel, in the valleys and in all the inhabited places of the country.”
Because of unfaithful and self-centred leaders, the shepherds of Israel, God’s people, have fallen into the hands of their enemies and have been scattered, and the land God gave them has been desecrated. In Ezekiel 34, God, through Ezekiel, rebukes the leaders. They were to lovingly guide and build the nation in a responsible manner. The opposite was true. This resulted in God backing off until the offending generation of “shepherds” had passed off the scene, and new leaders such as Daniel, Ezra, and Nehemiah became the shepherds of Israel. God, Himself, assures those in Babylonian captivity, through Ezekiel, that He personally will be their Shepherd, bringing them back to good pasture on the mountains of Israel. Ezekiel reminds the people of the great shepherd king, David, who had died hundreds of years before. There is a descendant of David who referred to Himself as “The Good Shepherd!” Read John 10:11-15 for a New Testament meditation.
Ezekiel 35 shows God’s desire to turn around for good the people of Mt. Seir. These are Edomites, descendants of Esau, the brother of Jacob (whose name God changed to “Israel”). Edom, too, shall know Who is the true Shepherd…”that I am the Lord” (35:15b).
PRAYER FOR TODAY:
Lord God, as one of Your sheep, I pray that I will, as Jesus said, recognize Your voice and follow You closely. I’m experiencing Your promised “showers of blessing!” (34:26b). May I never stray away from You, Good Shepherd. In Jesus’ Name, Amen!!!
100 PERSONAL WORDS:
An excellent biography writer I’ve been reading lately is Eric Metaxas. He has written a number of books about various “shepherds” who have helped to lead people in the right direction. One of his books, Amazing Grace, is the story of William Wilberforce, the man God used to free the slaves throughout the British Empire. The publication of this book brought him to Canada as a guest on the 100 Huntley Street program. Again, he traveled to Canada for a TV appearance regarding his book, Bonhoeffer, the German Pastor who stood up to Hitler and exposed the evils of his regime. Click here for info about Eric’s books, which I highly recommend!
Yours for communicating the Good News of Jesus in the most effective way possible to new generations of precious never-dying souls, all of whom need Jesus,