Idolaters are Killed

An elderly Christian lady, who was crippled with arthritis, used to hobble to the services of the church on crutches. It was a great ordeal and required of her a considerable amount of toil and pain. A friend of hers observed her regular and faithful attendance and asked, & … More

Faithful

This chapter presents a picture of coming judgment. After Eusocial had seen how corrupt Jerusalem had become, God called one man to spare the small minority who had been faithful (v. 1). Then He called six men to slaughter the wicked people in the city and a scribe  (v. 2). The Lord instructed the scribe to place a mark on the forehead of every faithful person in the city (vv. 3-4). The scribes inkhorn was a long narrow board with a groove to hold the reed brush that was used to write on parchment or dried clay. The board had hollowed out areas for holding cakes of black and red ink that had to be moistened before used.

God told the man with the writer’s inkhorn to put a mark on those who were faithful to God. Their faithfulness was determined by their sensitivity of and sorrow over their nations’s sin. Those with the mark were spared when the six men began to destroy the wicked people. This was a picture of what happened during the Exodus when the Israelites put a mark of blood on their doorposts to save them from death. This will also happen again when God marks the foreheads of those destined for salvation (Rev. 7:3) and Satan will mark his followers (Rev. 13:16-17) who are destined for destruction. When God punishes sin, He won’t forget His promise to His people who can be counted faithful.

He then commissioned the six executioners to mercilessly slaughter everyone who was not so marked, beginning in the temple precincts (vv. 5-7). The spiritual leaders (elders) of Israel promoted their idolatrous beliefs, and the people abandoned God and followed them. It is not surprising, that He  started judgment at the temple and worked outward (I Peter 4:17). This judgment was ordered by God Himself.  When Ezekiel expressed his concern that the whole nation would be wiped out, the Lord reminded him that judgment was well-deserved (vv. 8-10). “The man clothed in linen, with the writing case at his waist, brought back word, saying, “I have done as you commanded me” (v. 11).

Application

“Moreover it is required in stewards that a man be found faithful“ (I Cor. 4:2). It is the desire of my heart that when my life is over this is what the Lord will be able to say about me.

Ezekiel 9:1-11 (English Standard Version)

Then he cried in my ears with a loud voice, saying, "Bring near the executioners of the city, each with his destroying weapon in his hand." And behold, six men came from the direction of the upper gate, which faces north, each with his weapon for slaughter in his hand, and with them was a man clothed in linen, with a writing case at his waist. And they went in and stood beside the bronze altar. Now the glory of the God of Israel had gone up from the cherub on which it rested to the threshold of the house. And he called to the man clothed in linen, who had the writing case at his waist. And the LORD said to him, "Pass through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it." And to the others he said in my hearing, "Pass through the city after him, and strike. Your eye shall not spare, and you shall show no pity. Kill old men outright, young men and maidens, little children and women, but touch no one on whom is the mark. And begin at my sanctuary." So they began with the elders who were before the house. Then he said to them, "Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out." So they went out and struck in the city. And while they were striking, and I was left alone, I fell upon my face, and cried, "Ah, Lord GOD! Will you destroy all the remnant of Israel in the outpouring of your wrath on Jerusalem?" Then he said to me, "The guilt of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great. The land is full of blood, and the city full of injustice. For they say, 'The LORD has forsaken the land, and the LORD does not see.' As for me, my eye will not spare, nor will I have pity; I will bring their deeds upon their heads." And behold, the man clothed in linen, with the writing case at his waist, brought back word, saying, "I have done as you commanded me."

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