April 23rd - Chapter Eight

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April 23rd - Chapter Eight

Post by James on Thu Apr 23, 2015 2:28 am

Its seems as if the number four is a recurring theme within Ezekiel.
The visions within chapter eight commence when Ezekiel looks as sees a figure like that of a man.
And as the "Spirit lifted him" (Once again, it seems as if Ezekiel is constantly "moved" by the Spirit within his visions which also physically moves him as well) between earth and heaven, the Spirit took Ezekiel to Jerusalem.

The four examples of idolatrous worship is shown within chapter eight.
It takes place within verses 5, 10, 14, and 16.
And after Ezekiel is shown these examples, God always remembers to state that he will see things that are even more "detestable" to God's eyes.
Immediately reading that, we can assume that God is trying to show Ezekiel how displeasing it is to witness Israel and Judah.
v.5 speaks about an image of jealousy, which causes God to feel jealous.
As the idol itself is not named here, I think that it is significant as it isn't named - almost as if God wouldn't even want to name it, rather just an idol of jealousy (which clearly illustrates the fact that an idol is an idol and nothing more, even the name doesn't matter!)
v.10 speaks about the pictures upon the walls within the chamber, with its entrance being a hole in a wall (verse Cool.
My study bible shares that these pictures were probably from an Egyptian influence as they practiced polygamy through many gods of animals.
v.14 speaks about women sitting before the entrance to the north gate of Jerusalem, as they would mourn over Tammuz.
My study bible states that this was the Babylonian fertility/vegetation god.
Apparently the women of Jerusalem would mourn over his death at the peak of the summer heat (which symbolized his death) because they thought that this caused the annual disruption within the vegetation during the summer.
Immediately reading this, I thought about how ridiculous this was. Israel was so influenced by her surrounding countries such as Egypt, Assyria, and Babylon. Their idols were adopted into God's kingdom... and reading these scriptures that Ezekiel would see things that were even more detestable really portrays God's anger and wrath.
Lastly, v.16 speaks about how there were people at the entrance to the temple but their backs toward the "temple of the LORD" and their faces towards the sun as they had bowed to the east.

Therefore I will deal with them in anger; I will not look on them with pity or spare them.
Although they shout in my ears, I will not listen to them.


All of these examples remind me of how we also build idols within our lives.
This also reminds me of Hosea as we commit this "spiritual adultery" against God.
That God is so faithful with us, and in the midst of His wrath, He allows us to wrestle with Him and reason with him.
Our God is a relational and intimate God - He wants us to turn to Him, and He knows the doubt we may face and recognizes them.
He wants us to settle the doubt with Him, so that we could reason with Him.
The Israelites within Ezekiel's time in ministry thought as if God didn't hear them and thought that He had forsaken them.
'They say, "The LORD does not see us; the LORD has forsaken the land.'" (v.12)

"Come now, let us reason together,"
says the LORD.
"Though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be as white as snow."
-Isaiah 1:18.

James
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Re: April 23rd - Chapter Eight

Post by StephenRYUUUU on Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:43 pm

Chapter 8 gives reason as to why the Israelites are in need of God to punish them. We once again see the Spirit move Ezekiel and God shows him this vision of Jerusalem. All the things God shows Ezekiel are of the idols that they are worshipping. God says the things they are doing are "utterly detestable things". They worship all these idols and things that keep them away from looking at God. All these worldly temptations and idols are being put way before God and thus God is provoked. In this chapter, reading about how in the inner court of the House of the Lord, the men face towards the east and bowing to the sun rather than to God stuck out to me. How often do we face these temptations and idols in our lives that keep us away from God. Yet God is so loving that He forgives us constantly. He wants us to run back to Him. As we are living on this earth, there are so many temptations, objects, and things that the world tells us to have and want, yet when God is not our first priority in everything and when we put them higher than God, they become idols.
They do the "detestable".
I think what we can see in God's character is how He is a jealous God. He is jealous for me. He wants to be the one and only God in our lives and is angered when we have these idols over Him. Because in the end, these idols are nothing in our lives and are things that are only so temporary.
It really reminds me of when Jesus tells us to store our treasures in Heaven over earth.
Yet through it all, our God still loves us and wants us back and to choose into Him.
This chapter really challenges me to prioritize God above all else and not to place value in things over Him.

StephenRYUUUU

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