The Book of Ezekiel

                 Chapter 20

Rebellion & Causes

 

     This chapter is addressed to the house of Israel, those 10 Tribes that migrated north over the Caucasus Mountain range and into Europe, the British Isles and eventually Canada and the Americas.

 

     Some people may wonder if they have Jewish blood in their background but there probably isn’t any need to wonder about that, because only the house of Judah is Jewish, so to speak; the other 10 Tribes are of the Hebrew race. (The word Hebrew meaning “from across the river.” That would be the Euphrates River.)

 

     The Tribe of Benjamin pretty much stayed in Jerusalem with Judah and as for the Tribe of Levi…they belonged to all of the Tribes, so they were never considered to be a Tribe of their own. They never received a land allotment as did the other Tribes. Father said that they belonged to Him because they were supposed to be His priests and therefore minister to all the other Tribes by living among them.

 

     So, as a general rule, when Father speaks to the house of Israel, He is, in essence, talking to you and me, and we should take to heart any criticism, correction and/or promises that He gives out to them.

 

     Ezekiel 20:1 And it came to pass in the seventh year, in the fifth month, the tenth day of the month, that certain of the elders of Israel came to inquire of the Lord, and sat before me.

 

     This date: 7th year; 5th month; and 10th day, is in the month of Abib, which corresponds to the latter part of July and the first part of August on our Gentile calendar. Father also put that date there to remind them of the carrying away of Jeconiah, to look forward to the end of the 70 years of captivity.

 

     These elders are the priests or preachers, and although it’s not stated specifically why they came together and called on the Lord God to come talk to them, it was most likely to find out WHY they were having so much trouble in their lives and WHEN it would all come to an end.

 

     Ezekiel 20:2 Then came the word of the Lord unto me, saying,

 

     The way that this verse is worded, Father didn’t begin to speak to THEM, He spoke to Ezekiel, indicating that they weren’t worthy of His personal attention, but rather speaking OF them when talking to Ezekiel.

 

     It’s almost as if they were saying, in effect:

 

     “Hey God, what’s up with all this mayhem in our lives?”

 

     When, in fact, their actions were what prompted the turmoil in their lives. How about you? Do you blame our Father for turmoil in your life? We kind of talked about this earlier, blaming our Father for tragedies and illnesses in our lives. A very dangerous road to travel down. Father may correct us, but it’s always done with love, not with spite or hate.

 

     Ezekiel 20:3 Son of man, speak unto the elders of Israel, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; Are ye come to inquire of me? As I live, saith the Lord God, I will not be inquired of by you.

 

     Are ye come to inquire of me? The indignation of our Father comes through loud and clear, that these people had the cajones to actually sit down as a group and ask HIM why He wasn’t blessing them any longer.

 

     You’ll notice that the word Lord is used in verse 2 and in the Hebrew, it means Yahaveh. In this verse, we have Lord God, which translates as Adonai Yahaveh. Adonai is our Father in His relation to the earth and carrying out His blessings on us.

 

     And Father is asking:

 

     “Are they really going to sit there and ask questions of ME? Are they too stupid to realize that I’m punishing them for what THEY HAVE DONE?”

 

     And there are those three words again: AS I LIVE. He can get no more serious than when He uses those three particular words.

 

     Ezekiel 20:4 Wilt thou judge them, son of man, wilt thou judge them? cause them to know the abominations of their fathers:

 

     Will you judge them, Ezekiel? This word judge could also mean plead. Will you plead their case for them, Ezekiel? In my mind I can see Ezekiel just standing there, kind of at a loss for words and, really, Father’s question was of a rhetorical nature anyway. A question that doesn’t really require an answer from the person that it’s addressed to.

 

     The abominations of their fathers. The sins of their fathers. Sins are committed from one generation to the next if their way of living hasn’t changed. The idols that the fathers worshipped will be the same idols that the children will worship and probably the same physical idols will be passed on as well.

 

     Ezekiel 20:5 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord God; In the day when I chose Israel, and lifted up mine hand unto the seed of the house of Jacob, and made myself known unto them in the land of Egypt, when I lifted up mine hand unto them, saying, I am the Lord your God;

 

     In the day when I chose Israel. His chosen people, those people through which the Messiah would come, the 8th day creation.

 

     If you don’t understand why this special creation came into existence, it may be difficult for you to understand certain parts of His overall Plan, so I’ll go over it very briefly:

 

      All souls created at the same time in the first heaven/earth age.

 

     ✡ The rebellion of Satan/Lucifer in that age, the war in heaven that changed everything.

 

     ✡ Father deciding to put all souls into earthly bodies to choose, once and for all, who they would love more, Him or Satan.

 

     ✡ The beginning of this second heaven/earth age with all the different races created on the sixth day, to populate the earth because ALL souls would come through a woman’s womb.

 

     ✡ Father, understanding how powerful Satan would be in this life, prompting Him to create a special race through which a Savior would come, to give us a way of repenting of our sins and obtaining eternal life.

 

     ✡ The eighth-day creation of the race of people through which our Lord would come. The Hebrew race.

 

     ✡ And lastly, Judgment Day and the beginning of the third heaven/earth age, known as the eternity.

 

     Creation, in this age/life that we’re currently living, wasn’t just a mumble-jumble of different colored people, randomly spread out over the earth, but a carefully formed and executed Plan with perfect order.

 

     And lifted up mine hand unto the seed of the house of Jacob. Lifting up His hand means that He swore before them, swore that He would be with them always.

 

     And made myself known unto them. Israel was aware of Him long before they went to Egypt, of course, but through His deliverance He wanted them to leave their idols behind and depend on Him and He declared His presence before them with His oath: I am the Lord your God.

 

     And in gratitude for their deliverance, they complained constantly for being taken out of Egypt where they had a roof over their head and decent food to eat, where they came out richer then than when they went in, and they believed that He put them in the wilderness to die, eating only manna and quail for 40 years.

 

     Not the God of the heathen nations, yet, but the God of Israel. The Gentiles would be grafted into that Branch at the death of our Lord Jesus Christ, which afforded salvation to ALL of His children, Jew and Gentile alike.

 

     Ezekiel 20:6 In the day that I lifted up mine hand unto them, to bring them forth of the land of Egypt into a land that I had espied for them, flowing with milk and honey, which is the glory of all lands:

 

     The promised land in which Father would place them, this land of milk and honey, it wasn’t a desert wilderness, as they had been used to living in while that generation died off…no, it was inhabited by other peoples, many of them hybrids, being the offspring of the fallen angels.

 

     But there were houses and vineyards and fruit trees and gardens and wells already in place, they didn’t have to start from scratch. You know, it takes many, many years for a grapevine or a fruit tree to mature to the age to where it will produce fruit good enough to eat.

 

     It was already in place, ready for them to take possession of it all and they even messed that up. Father told them to kill all the inhabitants of that area and instead, they made contracts with them, did business with them, protected them.

 

     That may sound harsh, to kill off all the people, but they were all a part of the second influx of the fallen angels, tribes of people called Amorites, Perizzites, Canaanites, Hittites, Girgashites, and Jebusites. They needed to be killed off. The giant that David killed was one of these hybrids.

 

     Ezekiel 20:7 Then said I unto them, Cast ye away every man the abominations of his eyes, and defile not yourselves with the idols of Egypt: I am the Lord your God.

 

     Throw those idols away! Get rid of them! It wasn’t being in Egypt that caused them to worship idols, they had been doing that for years, although they probably incorporated some of the idols that the Egyptians worshipped into their lives.

 

     The abominations of his eyes. Transgressions through the act of seeing. Does that apply today? I think so. Ever heard of the internet and porn sites? Girly magazines? Strip joints and pole dancers? Oh, yeah, we have a ton of opportunities for visual sin that wasn’t available to Israel.

 

     Every man means that everybody was doing it.

 

     Nothing is hidden from our Father except our intentions, which are an extension of our free will. He doesn’t know our decisions until we act on them, else, what would be the reason for going through this life in the first place?

 

     We, ourselves, don’t know what we’re going to be doing five minutes from now until we reach that time and actually do something. It’s the same way with the Father. If He knew how we would all turn out from the beginning, what would be the point of free will?

 

      If he knew every decision before we made it, what a colossal waste of time this life would be. We could literally go out and do whatever we chose to do because if He knew what that was beforehand, it would be something that wouldn’t kill us, or we would be dead right now.

 

     So, just go out and do whatever you like, because you’re still alive and it must be okay. What a world that would be to live in.

 

     The traditions of church systems are an abomination and a form of idol worship. You could go to church seven days a week, doing church work, and if that time spent there took away from you being able to study this Word on your own, church work could be an idol to you.

 

     Ezekiel 20:8 But they rebelled against me, and would not hearken unto me: they did not every man cast away the abominations of their eyes, neither did they forsake the idols of Egypt: then I said, I will pour out my fury upon them to accomplish my anger against them in the midst of the land of Egypt.

 

     They kept those idols in spite of what Father was asking them to do. How stubborn are you? What is it that you keep doing that you know you shouldn't?

 

     Getting down on your knees and praying before some wooden idol would become boring after a while if the expectation of being responded to no longer existed. So, idol worship also included the partying, drinking and getting drunk, orgies, and on it goes. Worshipping idols had to be more fun than worshipping our Father or else why do it?

 

     Even today, preachers will tell you that if you teach the Bible, chapter after chapter, verse after verse, book after book, the people will become bored and go do something else. But that’s not true in all cases. There are some that come to this website every day or at least 2-3 times a week, and we study book after book, and etc., and people still come back.

 

     Why? Because they love our Father and want to know what it is that pleases Him, they want to do what’s right, they want the blessings in their lives. They don’t want to be deceived and have their soul be destroyed.

 

     Ezekiel 20:9 But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted before the heathen, among whom they were, in whose sight I made myself known unto them, in bringing them forth out of the land of Egypt.

 

     Father didn’t destroy them because He didn’t want the heathen nations to think of Him as a cruel God. The heathens and Israel were cohabitating in the same area and He knew that they were watching Him and seeing how He treated His chosen people.

 

     Perhaps some would be converted by watching Him and seeing how loving and tolerant He was, but they would also see the punishment when He had His fill of the disobedience.

 

     It was probably the news story of the month when the other nations saw the Israelites leaving Egypt. It would be hard not to notice over a million people going through the Red Sea and beginning to walk across the desert and they probably saw the cloud during the day and the lightning in that cloud at night as it led them away from bondage.

 

     To my mind, that cloud that led them during the daytime, was probably what’s called a towering cumulus cloud. When the air is a stable air mass and the sun heats a certain part of the ground, that heated air rises as a column of air.

 

     And as that heated air rises into the cooler air, it condenses into droplets and that creates the cloud and it may rise up thousands and thousands of feet and it looks just like a column. A tall, skinny cloud that goes up thousands of feet.

 

     And I would imagine that He wouldn’t allow many other clouds in that area, making this particular cloud stand out quite nicely.

 

     Ezekiel 20:10 Wherefore I caused them to go forth out of the land of Egypt, and brought them into the wilderness.

 

     Verse 11.

 

     Ezekiel 20:11 And I gave them my statutes, and shewed them my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them.

 

     This is a quote from Leviticus 18:5…

 

     Ref: Leviticus 18:5 Ye shall therefore keep my statutes, and my judgments: which if a man do, he shall live in them: I am the Lord. KJV

 

     That sounds pretty simple, doesn’t it? Obey My statutes and Commandments, learn from my judgments, and enjoy a long life. Did you notice the word IF? What a powerful word. A word that can change lives if you respond and act on what follows it.

 

     Ezekiel 20:12 Moreover also I gave them my sabbaths, to be a sign between me and them, that they might know that I am the Lord that sanctify them.

 

     I gave them my sabbaths. In the Targum it is written as such: I gave them the days of the Sabbaths.”

 

     Sabbath means rest. On the seventh day of Creation, He rested. Rest and the root word for Sabbath are the same word, shabath, and it means that we are not to exert ourselves. The Israelites took that to heart because they were not to walk further than a mile away from their home on that day.

 

     Hebrews, chapter 4, tells us that our Lord became our Sabbath. We are to rest in Him, taking comfort that we can have eternal life through Him, if we will just believe on Him. Remember John 3:16.

 

     Dealing with the world and all that comes with it should be easier to bear if we remind ourselves that there is something much greater coming when this life is over. But you have to think about it once in a while, that’s why He called it a sign.

 

     It is on that day that we are supposed to put the world behind us and contemplate on Him and what He has done for us. People don’t do that that much today. Used to be, the family got together, a really good meal was cooked, and everybody relaxed, at times, reading from the Scriptures.

 

     How are we sanctified, which means clean? We are made spiritually clean through repentance; our soul being cleansed of all sin.

 

          Ezekiel 20:13 But the house of Israel rebelled against me in the wilderness: they walked not in my statutes, and they despised my judgments, which if a man do, he shall even live in them; and my sabbaths they greatly polluted: then I said, I would pour out my fury upon them in the wilderness, to consume them.

 

     Which if a man do, he shall even live in them. If you understand His statutes and you live by them every day of your life, it will even bring eternal life to you.

 

     Father got disgusted with them. All they did was cry and moan about how bad they had it. He fed them manna and quail; their clothing and sandals never wore out for that 40 years and while Moses was up on that mountain, they melted all their gold and silver and made an idol out of it.

 

     Their excuse was that they thought that Moses had died, that’s what was taking him so long to return. So, they partied and got drunk and had wild orgies and made a pig out of their gold and silver to worship while Father Himself was writing out the Ten Commandment on two pieces of granite with His forefinger.

 

     They lost sight of what was important, they gratified self, and acted like pagan human beings. How are you doing today?

 

     Father didn’t punish them, Moses did. He made them grind up that golden image into dust and made them eat it.

 

     As a side note and to show you that Father has a sense of humor…the people had been moaning that all they had to eat was manna and they wanted some meat, so He gave them quail:

 

     Ref: Numbers 11:31 And there went forth a wind from the Lord, and brought quails from the sea, and let them fall by the camp, as it were a day's journey on this side, and as it were a day's journey on the other side, round about the camp, and as it were two cubits high upon the face of the earth. KJV

 

     Now, picture this group of around one million people and when the quail began to fly over them, they suddenly fell from the sky and dropped to the earth. Dead. And it didn’t just fall on the people where they were standing, the quail fell a distance of a day’s walk OUTSIDE the perimeter of all these people.

 

     And two cubits high meant that the quail were stacked on top of one another to a depth of over three and a half feet. They couldn’t walk for all the quail that fell on them, quail up to their knees. And why would Father make it fall that far out away from them, a day’s journey?

 

     Well, you know that out of all those people, there had to be a couple of yahoo’s that thought they could escape all those falling quail and outrun the deluge and get away from it, but they couldn’t run fast enough to be able to run a day’s journey before it was all over.

 

     And how far is a day’s journey? At a normal gate, a person will walk around two miles an hour and let’s just say that a “day” would be eight hours, so a day’s journey would be about 16 miles.

 

     Nobody was going to escape the quail. It would probably be a long time before they cried for meat again.

 

     And if you think that my number of one million is a bit exaggerated then read this:

 

     Ref: Exodus 12:37 And the children of Israel journeyed from Rameses to Succoth, about six hundred thousand on foot that were men, beside children.

 

     Ref: Exodus 12:38 And a mixed multitude went up also with them; and flocks, and herds, even very much cattle. KJV

 

     600,000 men, not including the women and children. And then throw in a bunch of other people from the surrounding nations to boot. One million might be a conservative number. And some of you might be wondering how they all went to the bathroom. They didn’t have porta-potties back then.

 

     Well, their clothing and sandals never wore out for 40 years, I would reckon Father had a plan for that function as well. And to put one million people into perspective, that would be twice the population of the city of Atlanta, Georgia.

 

     All right, back to Ezekiel..

 

     Ezekiel 20:14 But I wrought for my name's sake, that it should not be polluted before the heathen, in whose sight I brought them out.

 

     This word wrought means to work or to do. He worked at controlling His anger so that the heathen nations wouldn’t be able to say:

 

     “Well, there He goes again. Lost His temper and killed them all.”

 

     Father was not just looking out for His own reputation, it would be harder to convert the unbelievers if He was seen as a vengeful God every time someone disobeyed Him, although punishment was deserved in ALL cases with these people. As it is with us if we disobey and don’t live in His statutes and Commandments.

 

      In whose sight I brought them out.  Remember, the heathen nations were watching all of this.

 

     Ezekiel 20:15 Yet also I lifted up my hand unto them in the wilderness, that I would not bring them into the land which I had given them, flowing with milk and honey, which is the glory of all lands;

 

     Lifted up my hand. This phrase is used six times in this chapter and it’s like us swearing on a Bible by raising our right hand. Father is doing the same thing, although He is not placing His hand on the Bible, but He is swearing to them that what He is saying is the absolute truth and you can bet the farm on it. It’s a promise that WILL be fulfilled.

 

     There were other reasons in addition to the ones listed in the next verse. They doubted our Father when they saw that the land of milk and honey was inhabited by many of the geber, even though He promised that He would stand before them and make sure that when they went to war against them, that they would have the victory.

 

     Ezekiel 20:16 Because they despised my judgments, and walked not in my statutes, but polluted my sabbaths: for their heart went after their idols.

 

     I say this many times but only because it’s true: human nature never, ever changes. The thoughts, the feelings, the temptations and the sins of Israel are the same as what we experience today. The only thing that is different is the mechanism that delivers the opportunity for sin.

 

     Even our Father has the same traits that we have. Jealousy, anger, forgiveness, heartache and desire, to mention just a few. He made us in His or their image and that’s not just the outward appearance, it’s the workings of the soul as well. The intellect. Of course, He’s so much more intelligent than we are, that goes without saying.

 

     Israel enjoyed the pleasures of the flesh, as do we. And when we first give in to those temptations we initially feel the guilt because we know that we have offended Him and that right there is what drives us away from repenting because if we don’t acknowledge those sins, we think that maybe He didn’t notice them, so we hide from Him.

 

     We busy ourselves by doing other things, but we act just like Adam and Eve when they acknowledged their sin in the Garden.

 

     “Who told you that you were naked?”

 

     Ref: Genesis 3:10 And he said, I heard thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself.

 

     Ref: Genesis 3:11 And he said, Who told thee that thou wast naked? Hast thou eaten of the tree, whereof I commanded thee that thou shouldest not eat? KJV

 

     Nobody had to tell them, they KNEW instinctively. It’s embedded within us, within our soul. And until you repent and get it off your chest, it will gnaw at you continually. Your soul and spirit won’t let you be until you do. Sometimes it takes the better part of a lifetime to do that.

     Ezekiel 20:17 Nevertheless mine eye spared them from destroying them, neither did I make an end of them in the wilderness.

 

     He almost made an end of us back in Genesis. Instead, He just shortened our lifespan:

 

     Ref: Genesis 6:3 And the Lord said, My spirit shall not always strive with man, for that he also is flesh: yet his days shall be an hundred and twenty years. KJV

 

     He had mercy on us then and He had mercy on those in the wilderness.

 

     Ezekiel 20:18 But I said unto their children in the wilderness, Walk ye not in the statutes of your fathers, neither observe their judgments, nor defile yourselves with their idols:

 

     Did you catch that? He didn’t say to walk in HIS statutes, He said: Walk ye not in the statutes of your fathers.

 

     Don’t listen to the elders, the preachers, when they make up their own laws and statutes and feast days. Their own traditional way of playing church.

 

     Ref: Amos 5:21 I hate, I despise your feast days, and I will not smell in your solemn assemblies.

 

     These were feast days that THEY made up. If they wouldn’t observe the feast days of our Father, they probably didn’t observe their own feast days either.

 

     Ref: Amos 5:22 Though ye offer me burnt offerings and your meat offerings, I will not accept them: neither will I regard the peace offerings of your fat beasts.

 

     Their meat offerings were probably from the lesser part of the herd so that they wouldn’t lose too much money by not selling them and making a profit, but instead offered them to our Father.

 

 

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