Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
2 Also, thou son of man, thus saith the Lord God unto the land of Israel; An end, the end is come upon the four corners of the land.
3 Now is the end come upon thee, and I will send mine anger upon thee, and will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense upon thee all thine abominations.
4 And mine eye shall not spare thee, neither will I have pity: but I will recompense thy ways upon thee, and thine abominations shall be in the midst of thee: and ye shall know that I am the Lord.
5 Thus saith the Lord God; An evil, an only evil, behold, is come.
6 An end is come, the end is come: it watcheth for thee; behold, it is come.
7 The morning is come unto thee, O thou that dwellest in the land: the time is come, the day of trouble is near, and not the sounding again of the mountains.
8 Now will I shortly pour out my fury upon thee, and accomplish mine anger upon thee: and I will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense thee for all thine abominations.
9 And mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will recompense thee according to thy ways and thine abominations that are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the Lord that smiteth.
10 Behold the day, behold, it is come: the morning is gone forth; the rod hath blossomed, pride hath budded.
11 Violence is risen up into a rod of wickedness: none of them shall remain, nor of their multitude, nor of any of their's: neither shall there be wailing for them.
12 The time is come, the day draweth near: let not the buyer rejoice, nor the seller mourn: for wrath is upon all the multitude thereof.
13 For the seller shall not return to that which is sold, although they were yet alive: for the vision is touching the whole multitude thereof, which shall not return; neither shall any strengthen himself in the iniquity of his life.
14 They have blown the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle: for my wrath is upon all the multitude thereof.
15 The sword is without, and the pestilence and the famine within: he that is in the field shall die with the sword; and he that is in the city, famine and pestilence shall devour him.
16 But they that escape of them shall escape, and shall be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them mourning, every one for his iniquity.
17 All hands shall be feeble, and all knees shall be weak as water.
18 They shall also gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness upon all their heads.
19 They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord: they shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels: because it is the stumblingblock of their iniquity.
20 As for the beauty of his ornament, he set it in majesty: but they made the images of their abominations and of their detestable things therein: therefore have I set it far from them.
21 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.
22 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.
23 Make a chain: for the land is full of bloody crimes, and the city is full of violence.
24 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.
25 Destruction cometh; and they shall seek peace, and there shall be none.
26 Mischief shall come upon mischief, and rumour shall be upon rumour; then shall they seek a vision of the prophet; but the law shall perish from the priest, and counsel from the ancients.
27 The king shall mourn, and the prince shall be clothed with desolation, and the hands of the people of the land shall be troubled: I will do unto them after their way, and according to their deserts will I judge them; and they shall know that I am the Lord.
I studied Chapter 7, looking for some glimpse of God’s grace, but all I found was His personal and all-encompassing judgment. That’s when God really began to speak to my heart. Because I tend to see grace and judgment as vastly different, I missed seeing the grace of God in His judgment. Over time, I came to understand how judgment can be grace-filled by contemplating my childhood. When my mother disciplined me, her goal was not just to punish. Her goal was the same for me as God’s to Israel—character development and growth.
God’s discipline is gracious because it alerts us to the fact that God takes sin seriously. The judgment that Ezekiel prophesied was not Judah’s eternal judgment. In the midst of the judgment, they had the opportunity to repent and return to the one, true God. As judgment continues today, by God’s grace we too have been given the opportunity to turn from our idols and return to God.
There’s great news of grace in judgment!
Family Ministries Director
Carolina Conference of SDA