Judah’s Captivity Portrayed

A 12-year-old girl in rural Ethiopia was kidnapped from her family. Her captors yelled at her, beat her, and almost raped her during her seven-day ordeal. They wanted to force her into marriage by selling her to the highest bidder; who knows what kind of situation she would … More


Ezekiel played the role of a captive being led away to exile, portraying what was about to happen to King Zedekiah and the people remaining in Jerusalem (vv. 1-6). The exiles knew exactly what he was doing because only six years earlier they had made similar preparations as they left Jerusalem for Babylonia. This was to show the people that they should not trust the king or the capital city to save them from the Babylonian army and only God could do that. Ezekiel’s graphic demonstration was proven correct to the last detail. But when he warned them they refused to listen.

Ezekiel performed the actions as he was commanded (v. 7). Next morning God spoke to him again, this time asking him if the exiles inquired what he was doing (v. 8). Evidently the people’s curiosity was aroused (v. 9). Once Ezekiel had their attention he could deliver God’s message. God explained that this message concerned King Zedekiah) and the whole house of Israel who were there, in Jerusalem, v. 10). This first part of Ezekiel’s sign pictured how they will go into exile as captives (v. 11). Those at ease in Jerusalem would soon be exiles whose only possessions could be held in small sacks flung over their backs.

The second part of Ezekiel’s sign pictured Zedekiah’s vain escape attempt (vv. 12-16). He would try to escape at dusk from Jerusalem through a breach in the city wall. However, he would be caught in God’s snare. Zedekiah’s escape attempt would fail because God would make sure he was captured. The final destiny of Zedekiah was grim. I will bring him to Babylonia, and there he will die. His troops, who would try to escape with him, would be pursued and killed by the sword.


It is my desire that my every thought can be brought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.

Ezekiel 12:1-16 (English Standard Version)

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