The spirit takes Ezekiel to Jerusalem to see God’s reaction to those who still live there. God has full knowledge of men’s minds which is awesome! Ezekiel learns, “But as for those whose heart goes after their detestable things and their abominations, I will bring their deeds upon their own heads, declares the Lord GOD” (11:21).
As usual, all today’s chapters are full of lessons: first Hezekiah, after his life is extended by fifteen years, is succeeded by a twelve-year-old son, Manasseh, who turns out to be a very bad king. We wonder about the role of Hephzibah his mother in this. The spirituality of whom we marry is important. Her name, apparently, is of Phoenician origin, meaning ‘delight of Baal’.
In Luke we read how messengers come to Jesus from John the Baptist. Our Lord has been doing many remarkable miracles, but when he brings to life a young man who is being carried to his burial, “fear seized them all, and they glorified God, saying, ‘A great prophet has arisen among us!’ and ‘God has visited his people!’ And this report about him spread through the whole of Judea and all the surrounding country. The disciples of John reported all these things to him. And John, calling two of his disciples to him, sent them to the Lord, saying, ‘Are you the one who is to come, or shall we look for another?’” (7:16-19).
The way Jesus answers is instructive and challenging. John evidently had certain expectations of the Messiah’s, and what was happening did not fit these. In chapter 4 we see how Jesus quoted from Isaiah in the Synagogue, verse 17-19. It is now instructive to note how Jesus responds to these messengers, “Go and tell John what you have seen and heard: the blind receive their sight, the lame walk, lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, the poor have good news preached to them. And blessed is the one who is not offended by me” (verses 22,23).
He is telling John to check and “believe all that the prophets have spoken”! These are the words of Jesus we will read in chapter 24:25, when, after his resurrection he speaks to two disciples on the road to Emmaus. This is a lesson for us as we anticipate the return of our Lord. We must take a lesson from the quandary of John the Baptist and look to “all that the prophets” have written! Are they not like pieces of a jigsaw! More pieces seem to fit, but there are others we are not sure about: events yet to come, maybe soon, will make the picture more clear.
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