Ezekiel 13English Standard Version, David Cochran Audio Bible
1The word of the LORD came to me: 2 "Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel, who are prophesying, and say to those who prophesy from their own hearts: 'Hear the word of the LORD!' 3Thus says the Lord GOD, Woe to the foolish prophets who follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! 4Your prophets have been like jackals among ruins, O Israel. 5 You have not gone up into the breaches, or built up a wall for the house of Israel, that it might stand in battle in the day of the LORD. 6 They have seen false visions and lying divinations. They say, 'Declares the LORD,' when the LORD has not sent them, and yet they expect him to fulfill their word. 7Have you not seen a false vision and uttered a lying divination, whenever you have said, 'Declares the LORD,' although I have not spoken?"
8Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: "Because you have uttered falsehood and seen lying visions, therefore behold, I am against you, declares the Lord GOD. 9My hand will be against the prophets who see false visions and who give lying divinations. They shall not be in the council of my people, nor be enrolled in the register of the house of Israel, nor shall they enter the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord GOD. 10Precisely because they have misled my people, saying, 'Peace,' when there is no peace, and because, when the people build a wall, these prophets smear it with whitewash, 11say to those who smear it with whitewash that it shall fall! There will be a deluge of rain, and you, O great hailstones, will fall, and a stormy wind break out. 12And when the wall falls, will it not be said to you, 'Where is the coating with which you smeared it?' 13Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: I will make a stormy wind break out in my wrath, and there shall be a deluge of rain in my anger, and great hailstones in wrath to make a full end. 14And I will break down the wall that you have smeared with whitewash, and bring it down to the ground, so that its foundation will be laid bare. When it falls, you shall perish in the midst of it, and you shall know that I am the LORD. 15Thus will I spend my wrath upon the wall and upon those who have smeared it with whitewash, and I will say to you, The wall is no more, nor those who smeared it, 16the prophets of Israel who prophesied concerning Jerusalem and saw visions of peace for her, when there was no peace, declares the Lord GOD.17"And you, son of man, set your face against the daughters of your people, who prophesy out of their own minds. Prophesy against them 18and say, Thus says the Lord GOD: Woe to the women who sew magic bands upon all wrists, and make veils for the heads of persons of every stature, in the hunt for souls! Will you hunt down souls belonging to my people and keep your own souls alive? 19You have profaned me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, putting to death souls who should not die and keeping alive souls who should not live, by your lying to my people, who listen to lies.
20"Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I am against your magic bands with which you hunt the souls like birds, and I will tear them from your arms, and I will let the souls whom you hunt go free, the souls like birds. 21Your veils also I will tear off and deliver my people out of your hand, and they shall be no more in your hand as prey, and you shall know that I am the LORD. 22 Because you have disheartened the righteous falsely, although I have not grieved him, and you have encouraged the wicked, that he should not turn from his evil way to save his life, 23 therefore you shall no more see false visions nor practice divination. I will deliver my people out of your hand. And you shall know that I am the LORD."
Ezekiel, like Jeremiah, was telling about the holiness of God, in His judgement. At the time, they seemed like doomsayers. Their message, while truthful, was unwelcome. A popular set of circumstances in the Scriptures. Man always wants the messages of God to be hopeful. In the middle of all the pending circumstances - Jeremiah at first said - he was an island and therefore exempt. At that point the Lord told Jeremiah then he would share in the judgement of all the people. It was only when Jeremiah would be uncomfortable and be of help to others, that God was willing to promise Jeremiah protection.
To the people of Judah, the falling of a wall was a terrible thing. They took a lot of comfort from the wall around Jerusalem and around the Temple.
For us today, we have the luxury of looking forward to walls of lies being destroyed.
No one goes through life without experiencing a wall. Unemployment. Lack of change. Constant Change. Illness. End of friendship. Time spent apart from a loved one. - You name it - any circumstance that limits us and we feel it will not change soon or there is not much we can do about it.
God says to preach peace when no blessing is in sight is wrong. Yet the whole passage is about the righteousness of God. In adversity or blessing, the correct answer is to trust Him with our prayers, our hopes and to find blessings. He reigns.
Father God, let us always put our trust in You. When life is all we hope, let us praise You. When we have adversity, let us look to You. You reign. Help us to look to you in expectation and in hope. In gratitude in all circumstances. In Scriptures, You tell us not to be surprised and dismayed at fiery trials, You are there with us. And to always remember You chose to walk this life where wild winds sometimes howl. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.