A Rebirth Through The Valley of Dry Bones – Part 2

a street image of charlotte NC with traffic coming out of downtown

LITERARY CONTEXT

The beginning of the passage starts with Eze 37:1 which states that the hand of the lord was upon Ezekiel which is the indication that the vision was about to begin. Previous to our scripture God explains to Ezekiel what has happened and why the nation of Israel had been punished. God explained his wrath against the nation using this illustration Eze 36:17  “Son of man, when the house of Israel was living in their own land, they defiled it by their ways and their deeds; their way before Me was like the uncleanness of a woman in her impurity” (NASB). Israel was being punished because they had turned from worshiping God to worshipping Idols and leaning away from the covenant the nation had between themselves and God. God further states that he will vindicate his name to the nations. Israel’s time of punishment is drawing to a close.

The passage ends at Eze 37:14 with God telling Ezekiel that he would put his spirit “within him” to aid him in his ministry. Following this passage is the hope and promise for the reuniting of the nation of Israel as God’s holy people. That the things of the past would be laid aside and the nation would be as it once was under King David. The future attack against Israel by Gog is also predicted following our passage. It reads “Eze 38:22-23 “With pestilence and with blood I will enter into judgment with him; and I will rain on him and on his troops, and on the many peoples who are with him, a torrential rain, with hailstones, fire, and brimstone.  (23)  “I will magnify Myself, sanctify Myself, and make Myself known in the sight of many nations; and they will know that I am the LORD” (NASB).

The text is labeled as an apocalyptic text. Apocalyptic texts are defined in many ways the one that matches the current conditions of Ezekiel are “all reflect some kind of dissatisfaction with the present world and seek salvation in a new world to come or another world beyond” (Achtemeier, 39). The intention of this paper is to interpret the passage through its key verse Eze. 37:11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel; behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope has perished. We are completely cut off (NASB). This one passage is the key to interpreting the entire prophetic dream. Israel had lost all hope of restoration with God and thru the prophetic dream, God shows Ezekiel that what is impossible for man to do is not impossible for God. He can recreate his creation, in the same way, the bones were made whole so can God once again make the nation of Israel whole.

The passage is structured in a resurrection type of pattern: from “dry bones, to a dead army, to the living army” (Wiersbe, 230-31). It has also been termed structured Ezekiel reported the vision and then interpreted it (Walvoord, 1298). In either case, the structure of the passage illustrates that what man looks at and declares impossible to overcome God can overcome that obstacle. In some of the most hopeless-seeming cases such as addictive behaviors, divorce, and domestic violence where a man would say there is no hope God can bring hope. When a man is asked if these bones could live, to God our only answer can be “though knowest” because by man’s abilities and standards it would be impossible but nothing is impossible when God places his touch, his word, and his love in the middle of the situation.

_____________________________

Click one of the links below to to read the other parts
of this article.

A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 1
A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 2
A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 3
A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 4
A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 5
A Rebirth through the valley of dry bones – part 6

 

Author: Chris Flees

I am an artist, art promoter, and art marketing professional who specializes and blogs primarily about art topics and the “behind the scenes” of my subject and images. Occasionally I blog about Christian topics.

One thought on “A Rebirth Through The Valley of Dry Bones – Part 2”

Comments are closed.