The Book of Ezekiel

                 Chapter 17

Babylonian War-Parable

 

     Wow! Father certainly put His feelings out there, in chapter 16, where we all could understand how He felt about this city of Jerusalem, but I hope that you didn’t overlook what the true sin of this city was.

 

     Commercialism, causing them to forget about and ignore our Father. This city began as a small, insignificant village, established by a bunch of heathens and their vile religious practices. It grew into a center of commerce and trade that rivaled other cities of the known world at that time.

 

     But she made bad deals and signed bad contracts with other peoples and nations, almost giving away her products of manufacturing through bad trading.

 

     And this country of ours is doing exactly the same thing. Because of past presidents and many current congressmen and senators, we make deals that benefit other countries and peoples and not the U.S.

 

     Deals like NAFTA, with Mexico, that sent many American companies into that country, thus giving jobs to the Mexican people and taking them away from U.S. workers. Deals like the TPP, the Trans-Pacific Partnership, the imbalance of trade with China, that has gone on for many, many years.

 

     The Kyoto Protocol, that would have allowed other countries to come in and bypass the protections of our own constitution. We’re about to do the same thing with North Korea, promising them many goodies and tons of money for not threatening to blow up the world with their nukes.

 

     Or the Iran nuclear deal, where President Obama loaded up hundred-dollar bills on wood pallets, enough to equal 1.7 BILLION dollars and gave that money to the Iranians and did nothing to stop their nuclear proliferation.

 

     We have taken God out of our schools when we should be reciting the pledge of allegiance and the Lord’s Prayer each and every morning. We cannot post the Ten Commandments in any government buildings or schools any longer, those commandments that made up an essential part of our Constitution.

 

     How can Father bless a country that does such things? He can’t, at least, not to the full extent that He would like.

 

     Thank goodness for President Trump, who appears to be rectifying some of these bad agreements.

 

     On the spiritual side, this is what we should have learned from that chapter, that worldly things, possessions, and the accumulating of them in our lives, can take us away from Him and His love and His blessings. Things of the world can become idols to us. They are made by the hands of men and through advertising, we’re made to think that we just cannot live without some of these toys or trinkets.

 

     Every time I see a commercial on television for a new Lexus, my mouth almost begins to water. But I’m cautious nowadays because I fell into that trap many years ago.

 

     I bought a new Camaro in 1988 and kept that car for 22 years. When I first got it, I washed it 2-3 times a week and waxed it at least once each week. When I got through, I would sit on the porch steps and just stare at her, as she glistened in the sunlight.

 

     I hated to drive it when it was raining because it would put all sorts of road grime and dirt on her. (Notice that I used the feminine pronoun “her” when I referred to that car, much like Father referred to that city of Jerusalem.)

 

     One afternoon, while driving home from work, and only about a mile from the house, I ran into a summer thunderstorm. And there were small hailstones mixed in with the rain. I panicked because I didn’t want the paint to be damaged by the hail nor did I want small dings in the metal.

 

     So, I did what any normal, sane person would do…I drove into a person’s front yard, that had a huge oak tree in the middle of it, and parked right under it, thinking that the leaves would stop some of the hail damage. I even got out and spread-eagled my self across the hood to try to protect it.

 

     That, my friends, is idol worship of today.

 

     Let there be no doubt that cars, homes, boats, jobs, and women, can occupy 99% of our lives, leaving our Father totally out of it. That’s what Jerusalem was doing. They were so caught up in the ways of the world and the pleasures that could be experienced from it, that that was all that was on their minds. They totally forgot about our Father.

 

     And Satan just loves it when we do that.

 

     I probably shouldn't have written all of the above but it's there so I'll leave it. It's not my words that are important, it's our Fathers'.  

 

     This chapter concerns a war that the king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, will wage against Jerusalem and it will be waged in three sieges, three assaults.

 

     As Father teaches us by describing what other people have done, either good or bad, these people becoming types and what He wants us to pick up on is that this is a type of the king of Babylon of the end times. Satan, in his role as the Antichrist.

 

     In the last chapter we learned that the city of Jerusalem was His most favorite place on earth and within that city, Mount Zion is His most favorite place as well. Satan, in his deception, will also occupy that Mount to further cement, in the minds of the deceived, that he truly is the son of God.

 

     Will you believe him when he comes? Will you believe him when he starts performing miracles in the sight of the entire world? Making lightning come down from the sky, on a clear day, will be one of those miracles, as we find in chapter 13 of Revelation, that chapter known as the beast chapter:

 

     Ref: Revelation 13:13 And he doeth great wonders so that he maketh fire come down from heaven on the earth in the sight of men, KJV

 

     Fire_NT:4442 pur (poor); a primary word; "fire" (literally or figuratively, specifically, lightning):

     You will know the difference between him and the True Christ if you study His Word. And when you believe and understand that the false one does come first, then you will become one of His Election, one of His set-aside ones.

 

     This pretty much guarantees that you will be there in the eternity because once the truth has been implanted IN your mind, no one will be able to remove it. And I should say that that statement comes with a caution because Christ realized that the deception of Satan/Antichrist will be so strong, so convincing, that He shortened the tribulation of that time from seven years to five months.

 

     If He had not done so, it was possible that even His Elect would succumb to those lies and that should show you how important it is for you to begin to study today…today…to build that foundation of truth and have it firmly implanted in your mind.

 

     Those who do not study, with understanding, and those that believe in the lies of the rapture and fly-away doctrines, will certainly fall into his web and the only saving grace will be if Father has put you under that cloak of innocency, ensuring that you will be taught during the Millennium, giving them that chance of understanding that they didn’t receive during this life, this age.

 

     To some, this may seem really unfair. They believed the lies of established religion, Father protects them throughout their life, and then they are taught during those thousand years, without any interference or temptations from Satan.

 

     I believe that it’s wrong to think that way because every soul that is saved from Satan’s grasp should be a reason for celebration, regardless of how they are saved from him.

 

     But, what’s happening here in Jerusalem, at this time? Jeremiah had already prophesied that Jerusalem and her people would go into captivity for a period of 70 years. There were some among the priesthood that didn’t believe Jeremiah and therefore told the people that it would all be over in a couple of years.

 

     We have the same thing today. Some preachers telling lies to the congregation. Telling people that God spoke to them when He says that He never did it. Telling people not to worry because they’ll be raptured out before the tribulation begins.

 

     Study for yourself and don’t let another human being or a supernatural being, Satan, take control of your soul. Don’t live for 70-90 years in these bodies, only to have Father destroy your soul at the end of the Millennium, because you didn’t take the time to understand the truth of His letter to us.

 

     Can your life REALLY be that busy that you cannot find just a little time to study His Letter to us? If nothing else, take that time that you would normally spend in a church that doesn't teach you anything about the Word, and stay at home and study then. At least you'll get something good and positive out of it.

 

     Alright, let’s get into chapter 17 and see what Father has in store for us.

 

     Ezekiel 17:1 And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

 

     Father continues to speak to Ezekiel.

 

     Ezekiel 17:2 Son of man, put forth a riddle, and speak a parable unto the house of Israel;

 

     This word riddle, in the Hebrew, means a puzzle….

 

     Riddle_ OT:2420 chiydah (khee-daw'); from OT:2330; a puzzle, hence, a trick, conundrum, sententious maxim:

 

     And the root word for chiyday is…

 

     Root Word_ OT:2330 chuwd (khood); a primitive root; properly, to tie a knot, i.e. (figuratively) to propound a riddle:

 

     Propound means to put forth. What did Christ say about parables? His disciples asked Him that one day and His answer was that not all are to understand the truth that He teaches. Maybe it’s not the time or the right time for them to understand. Many of them could care less about the truth anyway.

 

     Ref: Matthew 13:10 And the disciples came, and said unto him, Why speakest thou unto them in parables?

 

     Ref: Matthew 13:11 He answered and said unto them, Because it is given unto you to know the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it is not given.

 

     Ref: Matthew 13:12 For whosoever hath, to him shall be given, and he shall have more abundance: but whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken away even that he hath.

 

     Ref: Matthew 13:13 Therefore speak I to them in parables: because they seeing see not; and hearing they hear not, neither do they understand. KJV

 

     Fortunately for us, many of the disciples didn’t understand the parables either so when He explained them to them, we also learned the meaning.

 

     Ezekiel 17:3 And say, Thus saith the Lord God; A great eagle with great wings, longwinged, full of feathers, which had divers colours, came unto Lebanon and took the highest branch of the cedar:

 

     This particular great eagle represents Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon and it’s fitting that an eagle is used to represent him because the eagle was the symbol of the Assyrian god, Nisroch.

 

     To bring up a little history, you may remember that Nebuchadnezzar was converted and loved our Father eventually. Father used him to chastise His people, making him, in my mind, one of the Elect. Having a soul that Father could interfere with, because he was justified in the first heaven/earth age.

 

     After his conversion, he wrote the fourth chapter of the book of Daniel, Daniel did not write that chapter.

 

     So, here in this chapter, we’re not talking about the historical king Nebuchadnezzar, we’re talking about Satan and his deception of the end times.

 

     The highest branch of the cedar represents king Jehoiachin. Don’t let this confuse you because Jehoiachin was also called Jeconiah and Coniah. Three different names for the same person.

 

     Nor should you be confused with the last letter of his name, the “N”, Jehoiachin, because his father’s name is almost exactly the same, with the exception of the last letter being an “M”, Jehoiachim.

 

     Jehoiachin was only king of Judah for three months and ten days and began to reign at the age of 18.

 

     Ezekiel 17:4 He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it into a land of traffick; he set it in a city of merchants.

 

     This land of traffick would be Babylon and the word traffick means to be humiliated and being taken captive, along with his mother, their servants, the princes and the officers, to Babylon, certainly that word fits the situation.

 

     Ezekiel 17:5 He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow tree.

 

     He took also of the seed of the land. Zedekiah, who was the uncle of king Jehoiachin, became king of Judah, under Nebuchadnezzar’s direction. Nebuchadnezzar didn’t hate Jerusalem, actually, he liked the city. Zedekiah took an oath to Nebuchadnezzar, vowing to control Jerusalem to his liking.

 

     Ezekiel 17:6 And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature, whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs.

 

     And it grew and became a spreading vine of low stature. Jerusalem, under the protection of Nebuchadnezzar, became prosperous but not elevated in stature.

 

     Whose branches turned toward him. Zedekiah looking up to Nebuchadnezzar because Judah owed its peace and prosperity to him, living as a separate state under him.

 

     And shot forth sprigs. Zedekiah had ten sons, who were killed in front of him before his own eyes were put out. He also had three daughters who, along with the stone upon which Jacob rested his head, using it as a pillow out in that desert when his brother, Esau, was chasing him, to kill him for taking the heritage away from him, eventually made it to the British Isles, where that stone would become known as the Stone of Scone and would rest underneath the coronation chair of many kings of England.

 

     Ezekiel 17:7 There was also another great eagle

 

     This great eagle would be Pharaoh Hophra, king of Egypt.

 

     with great wings and many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the furrows of her plantation.

 

      Hophra is saying to Zedekiah…align yourself with me and I’ll help you defeat the king of Babylon. The only problem is that it was FATHER’S PLAN that Nebuchadnezzar would take Judah captive, He was going to use them to chastise Jerusalem.

 

     And when Nebuchadnezzar found out that Zedekiah had broken to the agreement between them, that’s when it all hit the fan.

 

     The whole point of Father’s riddle or parable is to show us that we need to depend on Him and not other human beings. They will let you down, He will not. His Word is pure and true.

 

     Ezekiel 17:8 It was planted in a good soil by great waters,

 

     That’s the Nile River.

 

     that it might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might be a goodly vine.

 

     The book of 2nd Kings records all of this quite well, if you want to make a special study of it.

 

     Ezekiel 17:9 Say thou, Thus saith the Lord God; Shall it prosper? shall he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without great power or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof.

 

     It won’t take the entire Babylonian army to take Jerusalem, just a small contingent will do because it’s Father’s will that it happens, they will go into captivity for 70 years and after that time they will be freed but it’s written by the hand of our Father and so it shall come to pass. Regardless of what man might try to do to change that Plan.

 

     Ezekiel 17:10 Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper?

 

     No, it won’t prosper, not if it’s against His Plan.

 

     shall it not utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the furrows where it grew.

 

     It’s going to die right where it’s at. That east wind comes in right from off the desert and it’s dry and it’s hot. Spiritually, it’s the Holy Spirit that will do it.

 

     Ezekiel 17:11 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

 

     Father continues…

 

     Ezekiel 17:12 Say now to the rebellious house,

 

     This house is the house of Judah, the kingdom of Israel still being split at this time, the house of Judah and the house of Israel, and will remain that way until the eternity begins. We’ll read of this in the 37th chapter of this book of Ezekiel.

 

     Know ye not what these things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is come to Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and the princes thereof, and led them with him to Babylon;

 

     He’s taken the king of Judah, Zedekiah, and his family, captive back to Babylon.

 

     Babylon is come to Jerusalem. It happened here, and it will happen again in a short period of time. Babylon means confusion but to those that have studied and understand His written Words, there will be light and not confusion.

 

     Nebuchadnezzar may take Zedekiah and his family and household as prisoners, but you have the opportunity to keep yourself and your family free through understanding. But it takes a little work. Father is not just going to touch you and have His truth just pour into your mind and heart.

 

     You have to show Him that you want His truths and you do that by opening His Book and reading it. Sitting in some church for a couple of hours each week will not cut it. Satan and his babel will take you in and not let you go.

 

     Our defense against that is Father and understanding that everything that we need to know to protect ourselves in these end days, has already been written down. All you have to do is take the time to read it and absorb it.

 

     And when you do, His promise is that He will protect you throughout the entire tribulation. You must have faith and understanding. And the words of men, their lies of the rapture and all that comes with it, will fall by the wayside.

 

     Ezekiel 17:13 And hath taken of the king's seed, and made a covenant with him, and hath taken an oath of him: he hath also taken the mighty of the land:

 

     That would be Zedekiah's seed.

 

     Ezekiel 17:14 That the kingdom might be base, that it might not lift itself up, but that by keeping of his covenant it might stand.

 

     Zedekiah had made a covenant or agreement with ‘ole Neb and in return, Nebuchadnezzar would leave them alone. They would be safe and protected but not rise to the stature of a great nation or kingdom.

 

     Ezekiel 17:15 But he rebelled against him in sending his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he prosper? shall he escape that doeth such things? or shall he break the covenant, and be delivered?

 

     The treachery of Zedekiah comes to light here. He’s rebelling against Nebuchadnezzar and talking with Pharaoh Hophra of Egypt. Shall he prosper? No, because He’s going against the Plan of our Father. No, he will not be delivered, in fact, he will die for it.

 

     Ezekiel 17:16 As I live, saith the Lord God, surely in the place where the king dwelleth that made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant he brake, even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die.

 

     Surely in the place where the king dwelleth. That would be Babylon.

 

     Even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die. And he will die in Babylon. He will try to run, be caught, watch his sons be executed and his own eyes will be gouged out. You can read of this in 2nd Kings, as I mentioned before.

 

     Ezekiel 17:17 Neither shall Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company make for him in the war, by casting up mounts, and building forts, to cut off many persons:

 

     Father has already told His children that they will be alright. After the 70 years, they will go back to Jerusalem and they will prosper. That’s our Father’s plan.

 

     Why did Zedekiah go to Pharaoh in the first place? To have the Egyptian armies fight with him against Nebuchadnezzar. Zedekiah should have known what the plan was by listening to Jeremiah, and I feel sure that he did.

 

     Instead of trusting in our Father, Zedekiah is trusting in another man. And Pharaoh was a powerful king, with a powerful army but even if they decided to fight with Zedekiah, the power of our Father was much greater and His will would be done.

 

     Ezekiel 17:18 Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant,

 

     The covenant that Zedekiah made with Nebuchadnezzar.

 

     when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape.

 

     He went back on his word and he will die for it and that would be a physical death, we don't know about the spiritual.

 

     Ezekiel 17:19 Therefore thus saith the Lord God; As I live, surely mine oath that he hath despised, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head.

 

     As I live, is the most solemn oath that can be taken in this world. That is Father swearing on Himself, that what He is about to say or do will actually be said or done. No change of heart or mind, it will be done.

 

     Zedekiah, breaking his promise, Father promises to Zedekiah that it will come back on his own head.

 

     Spiritually, it was 70 years with THIS king of Babylon but in the end time it started out as 7 years of tribulation and was subsequently reduced to 5 months, as we found out in Revelation.

 

     I don’t think that people realize just how convincing Satan/Antichrist will be during this time. And just because you might attend some church, it’s not the entire church that will be saved at one time, it will be the individuals within that church that will be judged.

 

     So, partnering up with a bunch of other people is not going to benefit you one bit on judgment day. Judgment is an individual thing.

 

     Ezekiel 17:20 And I will spread my net upon him, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon, and will plead with him there for his trespass that he hath trespassed against me.

 

     Father speaking here…Zedekiah may have broken an agreement with Nebuchadnezzar, but it will be the Father that will bring judgment upon him.

 

     Ezekiel 17:21 And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the sword,

 

     The soldiers that went with him when he ran.

 

     and they that remain shall be scattered toward all winds: and ye shall know that I the Lord have spoken it.

 

     A part of those that remain were the three daughters of Zedekiah. And, Father leading them, they eventually made their way into the British Isles, carrying with them the stone that Jacob used for a pillow, and that stone rested under the coronation chair of Britain for the crowning of many kings and queens.

 

     Ezekiel 17:22 Thus saith the Lord God; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar,

 

     That would be our Father.

 

     and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one,

 

     A tender twig, a branch, and that would be our Lord. Father referred to Himself as a great fir tree in one place and it was prophesied by Jeremiah that our Lord would be that Branch.

 

     Ref: Jeremiah 23:5 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth. KJV

 

     and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent:

 

     That would be Mount Zion.

 

     Ezekiel 17:23 In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell.

 

     Through His crucifixion, He will open the door of heaven and the eternity to all who would love Him and believe on Him. Regardless of how badly you might have lived your life or how many sins there were logged against you in the Book of Life, repentance would erase all of that and your spiritual life would be restored to you.

 

     Too many people think that they can live like they want to and just before the end, repent of their sins and get their butts into heaven. And they will have missed out on so many blessings.

 

     And because no one knows the moment of our physical death, they’re playing Russian roulette with their soul and they’re gambling in Satan’s house, so the odds are in his favor in taking your soul into the lake of fire with him.

 

     Ezekiel 17:24 And all the trees of the field shall know that I the Lord have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the Lord have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the Lord have spoken and have done it. KJV

 

     Repeated twice in this verse so that you don’t miss it. Miss what? Miss the fact that He is in control of everything that happens on this earth. You don’t have to believe that and many don’t but it doesn’t change anything.

 

     Believe it or not, it doesn’t change anything.

 

     Satan exalted himself higher than the highest tree in the first heaven/earth age and look where it’s going to take him.

 

     What was the plan of our Father that Zedekiah wanted so desperately to change? The chastisement of Judah by the Babylonian captivity. And Father laid it all out pretty clear to them at the outset…it will only last for 70 years and then you can go back to Jerusalem and rebuild it and live your lives in prosperity.

 

     How’s your life going to today? Have you forgotten about Him?

 

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__20 May 2018__

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