Monday, September 08, 2008

Complete Restoration

September 8: Ezekiel 38-39

25 “Therefore thus says the Lord God: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel, and I will be jealous for my holy name. 26 They shall forget their shame and all the treachery they have practiced against me, when they dwell securely in their land with none to make them afraid, 27 when I have brought them back from the peoples and gathered them from their enemies' lands, and through them have vindicated my holiness in the sight of many nations. 28 Then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, because I sent them into exile among the nations and then assembled them into their own land. I will leave none of them remaining among the nations anymore. 29 And I will not hide my face anymore from them, when I pour out my Spirit upon the house of Israel, declares the Lord God.”
Ezekiel 39:25-29

Complete Restoration

Ezekiel 38 and 39 are filled with the prophecies of Gog and Magog coming down from the north with their armies to totally destroy the nation of Israel.

14 “Therefore, son of man, prophesy, and say to Gog, Thus says the Lord God: On that day when my people Israel are dwelling securely, will you not know it? 15 You will come from your place out of the uttermost parts of the north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great host, a mighty army. 16 You will come up against my people Israel, like a cloud covering the land. In the latter days I will bring you against my land, that the nations may know me, when through you, O Gog, I vindicate my holiness before their eyes.
Ezekiel 38:14-16

In the end, there is no battle, for God fights for His people.

18 But on that day, the day that Gog shall come against the land of Israel, declares the Lord God, my wrath will be roused in my anger. 19 For in my jealousy and in my blazing wrath I declare, On that day there shall be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. 20 The fish of the sea and the birds of the heavens and the beasts of the field and all creeping things that creep on the ground, and all the people who are on the face of the earth, shall quake at my presence. And the mountains shall be thrown down, and the cliffs shall fall, and every wall shall tumble to the ground. 21 I will summon a sword against Gog on all my mountains, declares the Lord God. Every man's sword will be against his brother. 22 With pestilence and bloodshed I will enter into judgment with him, and I will rain upon him and his hordes and the many peoples who are with him torrential rains and hailstones, fire and sulfur. 23 So I will show my greatness and my holiness and make myself known in the eyes of many nations. Then they will know that I am the Lord.
Ezekiel 38:18-23

But, what of the nation Israel? What happens to them? God promises to them complete restoration. He says, I will leave none of them remaining among the nations anymore. And I will not hide my face anymore from them, when I pour out my Spirit upon the house of Israel, declares the Lord God.

I noticed something very interesting in today's Bible reading. In Ezekiel 38:16 it says,

In the latter days I will bring you against my land, that the nations may know me.

Verse 33 continues,

So I will show my greatness and my holiness and make myself known in the eyes of many nations. Then they will know that I am the Lord.

Then, in Ezekiel 39:28 we read,

Then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, because I sent them into exile among the nations and then assembled them into their own land.

I find it interesting that God will bring Gog and Magog against Israel so that the nations would know that He is God. He then shows His greatness and holiness in the destruction of the armies from the north so that they will know that He is the Lord. Finally, He returns the Israelites to their own nation so that they will know that He is the Lord their God.

Think about that for a moment. The next time something bad (or good) happens and you wonder why, think about this passage in Ezekiel. God has a greater reason for everything that happens than just what we see from our perspective. People may call themselves agnostics or atheists and may rage against the Bible, but in the end, everyone will know who God is, and will bow the knee before Him.

For the Christians, the promise of complete restoration brings joy to our hearts. When God brings all of His children home to be with Him forever, not one will be left behind!

Praise God, from whom all blessings flow!

God Bless You,
Linda

All Scriptures are from the English Standard Version of the Bible.

No comments: