ezekiel

The prophet Ezekiel is known for writing one of the longer books of the prophets- the book of Ezekiel.  Ezekiel lived during the time of the Babylonian invasion of Jerusalem.  He prophesied many warnings towards the people of Israel prior to this attack, and begged them to repent of their wickedness and disobedience to God’s laws.  He and Jeremiah were two of the few prophets that were able to witness some of their prophecies actually happen in their lifetime.  We can see in his book evidence of a people that had gone out after idols, and no longer regarded the God of Israel.  There is even mention of idols in the tabernacle.  I can only imagine the anger and fury of the Creator, which would end in a very harsh judgment upon this people.  He warns that because of their constant wickedness, destruction will come upon them:

And I will give it into the hands of the strangers for a prey, and to the wicked of the earth for a spoil; and they shall pollute it. My face will I turn also from them, and they shall pollute my secret place: for the robbers shall enter into it, and defile it. Make a chain: for the land is full of bloody crimes, and the city is full of violence. Wherefore I will bring the worst of the heathen, and they shall possess their houses: I will also make the pomp of the strong to cease; and their holy places shall be defiled. Destruction cometh; and they shall seek peace, and there shall be none.” ~ Ezekiel 7:21-25

In all your dwellingplaces the cities shall be laid waste, and the high places shall be desolate; that your altars may be laid waste and made desolate, and your idols may be broken and cease, and your images may be cut down, and your works may be abolished. And the slain shall fall in the midst of you, and ye shall know that I am the Lord.” ~ Ezekiel 6:6-7

One of these abominations is extremely interesting.  Ezekiel mentions their worship of the pagan god Tammuz.  For those that don’t know, Tammuz was a god worshipped by the ancients, and his birthday (which was celebrated by the pagans) would later be known as December 25th on the Roman calendar.  The Romans decided to later make this the birthday of Jesus to appease the pagan masses and their pagan worship traditions.  Today still, Christians pay homage to the god Tammuz, in the celebration of Christmas, without even knowing it.  Christmas has no roots in biblical testimony, rather its roots are in idolatry:

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“He said also unto me, Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations that they do. Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the Lord’s house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz. Then said he unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.” ~ Ezekiel 8:13-15

Ezekiel also prophecies that this people would be scattered through the countries:

“Yet will I leave a remnant, that ye may have some that shall escape the sword among the nations, when ye shall be scattered through the countries. And they that escape of you shall remember me among the nations whither they shall be carried captives, because I am broken with their whorish heart, which hath departed from me, and with their eyes, which go a whoring after their idols: and they shall lothe themselves for the evils which they have committed in all their abominations. And they shall know that I am the Lord, and that I have not said in vain that I would do this evil unto them.” ~ Ezekiel 6:8-10

This scattering among the countries happened not once, but twice.  It first happened in the Babylonian invasion, where Jerusalem was destroyed and the Israelites were taken into slavery in Babylon.  Some were able to escape to other lands as well.  The second scattering of the Jews among the nations of the world came at the destruction of Jerusalem and the 2nd Temple by the Romans in 70AD.  At this time, many were slaughtered, and the remainder of the Jews were scattered throughout the world without a homeland.  Ezekiel also prophesies of a time when God would gather this people again into the land of Israel, and he prophesies of a New Covenant where the Holy Spirit would be given to men, and they would obey the statutes and ordinances of God from the heart and do them.  We now know that this New Covenant came with the death of the Messiah Yeshua/Jesus:

“Therefore say, Thus saith the Lord God; Although I have cast them far off among the heathen, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come. Therefore say, Thus saith the Lord God; I will even gather you from the people, and assemble you out of the countries where ye have been scattered, and I will give you the land of Israel. And they shall come thither, and they shall take away all the detestable things thereof and all the abominations thereof from thence. And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh: That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God. But as for them whose heart walketh after the heart of their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their way upon their own heads, saith the Lord God.” ~ Ezekiel 11:16-21

So here you can see that the New Covenant requires us to walk in God’s statues, keep His ordinances and do them.  Ezekiel explains to us how every man will be judged.  You can see that we will not be judged based upon the sins of our family, father, son, etc.  Rather every man will be judged individually based upon whether they sin (disobey God’s commandments) or they obey God.  The soul that sins will die, and the soul that keeps God’s statutes will live:

“Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: the soul that sinneth, it shall die. But if a man be just, and do that which is lawful and right, And hath not eaten upon the mountains, neither hath lifted up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, neither hath defiled his neighbour’s wife, neither hath come near to a menstruous woman, And hath not oppressed any, but hath restored to the debtor his pledge, hath spoiled none by violence, hath given his bread to the hungry, and hath covered the naked with a garment; He that hath not given forth upon usury, neither hath taken any increase, that hath withdrawn his hand from iniquity, hath executed true judgment between man and man, Hath walked in my statutes, and hath kept my judgments, to deal truly; he is just, he shall surely live, saith the Lord God.” ~ Ezekiel 18:4-9

The soul that sinneth, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him. But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he hath committed, and keep all my statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die. All his transgressions that he hath committed, they shall not be mentioned unto him: in his righteousness that he hath done he shall live.” ~ Ezekiel 18:20-22

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“Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, saith the Lord God. Repent, and turn yourselves from all your transgressions; so iniquity shall not be your ruin. Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: for why will ye die, O house of Israel? For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth, saith the Lord God: wherefore turn yourselves, and live ye.” ~ Ezekiel 18:30-32

These passages describe the basic “conditions” of forgiveness which is summed up with the principle- repent and change walking in obedience to God’s law, statutes, and ordinances.  Ezekiel indicates that we can choose to live, or choose to die:

“When I shall say to the righteous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it. Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his sin, and do that which is lawful and right; If the wicked restore the pledge, give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shall not die. None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unto him: he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.” ~ Ezekiel 33:13-16

Even a righteous person can err and fall into sin (sin means to disobey God’s law- Romans 7:7, 1 John 3:4) with the result of death.  In the same respect, the wicked sinner can turn from his wicked ways and walk in the statutes of God resulting in eternal life.  His sins won’t be remembered.  This basic principle is one that is lost today in Christianity.  Many believe we aren’t required to be obedient to the laws of God, or they believe that we are only required to obey certain laws that they have hand selected (acknowledging only some of God’s laws with the typical exceptions being the law of the Sabbath, New Moon, Food Laws, the Feasts and Laws against Idolatry).  Many Christians uphold the 10 commandments except that of the Sabbath, and the commandment against Idolatry that was removed by Rome (See Exodus 20 for the true 2nd commandment).  Ezekiel tells us that in the final Kingdom that will come which will be ruled by David (Jesus the Messiah); all flesh will obey the statutes and ordinances of God:

“And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all. Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God. And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them. And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children’s children for ever: and my servant David shall be their prince for ever. Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore. My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people. And the heathen shall know that I the Lord do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore.” ~ Ezekiel 37:21-28

Today many must still learn that the laws, statutes and ordinances of God remain in effect.  There are false teachings on these matters that are widely accepted today by most Christians.  Jesus tried to make it clear in Matthew 5:18-19 that until heaven and earth pass away, not even a tiny piece of the law will pass away- yet many haven’t truly heard His message.  The law lives!  A change of heart in obedience to the ordinances of our Creator motivated by love and faith must come about, yet the time is short.  Ezekiel also tells us that Sabbaths, New Moons, and Feasts/Holy Days will still be ordinances in the 3rd and final tabernacle that is to come when the Messiah returns:

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“And it shall be the prince’s part to give burnt offerings, and meat offerings, and drink offerings, in the feasts, and in the new moons, and in the sabbaths, in all solemnities of the house of Israel: he shall prepare the sin offering, and the meat offering, and the burnt offering, and the peace offerings, to make reconciliation for the house of Israel. Thus saith the Lord God; In the first month, in the first day of the month, thou shalt take a young bullock without blemish, and cleanse the sanctuary: And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering, and put it upon the posts of the house, and upon the four corners of the settle of the altar, and upon the posts of the gate of the inner court. And so thou shalt do the seventh day of the month for every one that erreth, and for him that is simple: so shall ye reconcile the house. In the first month, in the fourteenth day of the month, ye shall have the passover, a feast of seven days; unleavened bread shall be eaten. And upon that day shall the prince prepare for himself and for all the people of the land a bullock for a sin offering. And seven days of the feast he shall prepare a burnt offering to the Lord, seven bullocks and seven rams without blemish daily the seven days; and a kid of the goats daily for a sin offering. And he shall prepare a meat offering of an ephah for a bullock, and an ephah for a ram, and an hin of oil for an ephah. In the seventh month, in the fifteenth day of the month, shall he do the like in the feast of the seven days, according to the sin offering, according to the burnt offering, and according to the meat offering, and according to the oil.” ~ Ezekiel 45:17-25

If you have questions about new moons and Sabbaths, please see the “God’s Calendar” page of this site, and become committed to studying these things.  Many of the same or similar warnings have been given to us not only by Moses and the Prophets, but by the Messiah himself and His Apostles.  They all brought the message- “Repent!”  They all tell us that the statutes and ordinances of God remain even in the new kingdom ruled by the Messiah himself.  We beg that you please study these writings and warnings of the prophets.  Take the time to truly learn them, it will be one of the most important things you do in this life- to understand the Word of God.  Please, please consider the warnings of the prophets.  Consider their testimony and Repent, the Kingdom of God is at hand!

“And he said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets, neither will they be persuaded, though one rose from the dead.” ~ Luke 16:31 (Jesus)

Remember the warnings from the book of Revelation for our time:

“And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of God, and have the testimony of Jesus Christ.”  ~ Revelation 12:17

“Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.” ~ Revelation 14:12

Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” ~ Revelation 22:14

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