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FRAMEWORKS: Ezekiel 11: God's Sure Judgment on Jerusalem


[Preliminary Comment: The vision eventually ends [see v.24,25] but before it does Ezekiel is shown two of the leaders in Jerusalem with false security in their idolatry, and the Lord warns them and the other leaders, that they will flee the city but be killed for their idolatry. But then He turns and encourages the exiles that eventually they will be returned to the Land with changed hearts. Finally he is shown the presence of God leaving the city. The implications are terrible.]



v.1-4 The Spirit returns Ezekiel, still in the vision, to the temple


v.1 Then the Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the gate of the house of the LORD that faces east. There at the entrance of the gate were twenty-five men, and I saw among them Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, leaders of the people. 

v.2 The LORD said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who are plotting evil and giving wicked advice in this city. 

v.3  They say, ‘Haven't our houses been recently rebuilt? This city is a pot, and we are the meat in it.' 

v.4 Therefore prophesy against them; prophesy, son of man.” 


[Notes: The focus of the vision returns to the twenty-five idolaters of 8:16 and two of the leaders mentioned in 8:11, who thought they were secure in what they were doing.]



v.5-13 The Spirit enables Ezekiel to prophesy against leaders in Israel


v.5,6 The Lord challenges these leaders and what they have done

v.5 Then the Spirit of the LORD came on me, and he told me to say: “This is what the LORD says: That is what you are saying, you leaders in Israel, but I know what is going through your mind. 

v.6 You have killed many people in this city and filled its streets with the dead. 


v.7-11 They will flee Jerusalem but we caught and destroyed

v.7 “Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: The bodies you have thrown there are the meat and this city is the pot, but I will drive you out of it. 

v.8 You fear the sword, and the sword is what I will bring against you, declares the Sovereign LORD. 

v.9 I will drive you out of the city and deliver you into the hands of foreigners and inflict punishment on you. 

v.10  You will fall by the sword, and I will execute judgment on you at the borders of Israel. Then you will know that I am the LORD. 

v.11 This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be the meat in it; I will execute judgment on you at the borders of Israel. 


v.12 When this happens they will realize the truth

v.12  And you will know that I am the LORD, for you have not followed my decrees or kept my laws but have conformed to the standards of the nations around you.” 


v.13 One of the men dies and Ezekiel cries for the people

v.13 Now as I was prophesying, Pelatiah son of Benaiah died. Then I fell facedown and cried out in a loud voice, “Alas, Sovereign LORD! Will you completely destroy the remnant of Israel?”


[Notes: This very specific prophecy is directed at specific idolatrous leaders in Jerusalem and in the vision [still – see v.24,25] he sees one of them die and it creates in Ezekiel an anguish for God's people.]



v.14-20 The Lord Promises Israel's Return


v.14,15 The Lord speaks now to the exiles

v.14  The word of the LORD came to me

v.15  “Son of man, the people of Jerusalem have said of your fellow exiles and all the other Israelites, ‘They are far away from the LORD; this land was given to us as our possession.' 


v.16 Although He has causes them to be exiles, He had [and will] protect them there

v.16 “Therefore say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Although I sent them far away among the nations and scattered them among the countries, yet for a little while I have been a sanctuary for them in the countries where they have gone.' 


v.17-20 The Lord's future activity on behalf of His exiled people

v.17  “Therefore say: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: [i] I will gather you from the nations and bring you back from the countries where you have been scattered, and [ii] I will give you back the land of Israel again.' 

v.18  [iii] “They will return to it and remove all its vile images and detestable idols. 

v.19  [iv] I will give them an undivided heart and put a new spirit in them; [v] I will remove from them their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh. 

v.20 Then [vi] they will follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. They [vii] will be my people, and I will be their God. 


[Notes: The Lord reassures the exiles that though the people still in the Land disparage them, there will come a time in the future when the Lord will bring them back to the Land again. Moreover the ‘work' of the exile will be to change their hearts to truly become again the people of God.]



v.21 Judgment will fall on those who continue in idolatry


v.21 But as for those whose hearts are devoted to their vile images and detestable idols, I will bring down on their own heads what they have done, declares the Sovereign LORD.” 


[Notes: Those, however, presumably in the Land, who insist on continuing to worship their idols will suffer the judgment.]



v.22,23 The Glory of the Lord leaves the city


v.22 Then the cherubim, with the wheels beside them, spread their wings, and the glory of the God of Israel was above them. 

v.23 The glory of the LORD went up from within the city and stopped above the mountain east of it


[Notes: The presence of God in the vision is seen to not only leave the Temple but also the city.]



v.24,25 The Spirit returns Ezekiel


v.24 The Spirit lifted me up and brought me to the exiles in Babylonia in the vision given by the Spirit of God. Then the vision I had seen went up from me, 

v.25 and I told the exiles everything the LORD had shown me.


[Notes: The Spirit-enabled vision comes to an end and Ezekiel is able to share with the elders with whom he was sitting [see 8:1] all he had seen.]


[Concluding Note: This is a chapter of both severe warnings for leaders in Jerusalem but also encouragement for the exiles.]



Continue to Chapter 12