Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 14-16
Today’s Reflection: Ezekiel 16:62-63
62) I will establish my covenant with you, and you shall know that I am the LORD, 63) that you may remember and be confounded, and never open your mouth again because of your shame, when I atone for you for all that you have done, declares the Lord GOD.”
Throughout the book of Ezekiel, God has revealed through His prophet the punishment He will bring against Israel and Judah because of their sins against His laws and His covenant with them. Repeatedly He states after each vivid description of oppression, war, sickness and death that after these things occur, ‘Then they will know I am the Lord’.
In Ezekiel 16 God compares Israel to a maiden He lovingly rescued from death as an infant, nutured and raised to maturity, and took as a pure bride. But then Israel committed adultery, giving herself away to the pagan and idolatrous gods and peoples of Canaan. The virgin bride so kindly tended to by the Lord chose to become a prostitute, spiritually speaking.
After describing the cause of His righteous anger God says once again ‘Then they will know I am the Lord’. But there’s a difference this time. This time God says He will restore Israel and re-establish His covenant with them. This time God says He will atone for their sinful acts and deeds. After THIS they will know He is the Lord.
God’s punishment always has a purpose, the same purpose He has for everything He does in our lives—to win us back to Him. We may listen to His pleas. We may only respond to His punishments. But His desire is to restore, rebuild relationship, reunite in covenant, and take us as part of His people, Christ’s spiritual bride to be united in God’s kingdom for eternity.
Revelation 19:7 – Let us rejoice and exult and give him the glory, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his Bride has made herself ready.