Year 3 Day 90
Read - Ezekiel 9:1-4
Message - Alan Burke
The judgment of God here that is before us is not palatable to people, it wasn’t any more palatable to those in Ezekiel’s day as it is in ours, we hear of these things and they leave us reeling, and yes God is love, but God’s love also includes judgement. For what kind of loving God would let sin go unpunished, what kind of love would God have if there were no consequences for our rebellion or sin, He’d be a monster, evil would continue unchecked, sin would increase. But God doesn’t let sin go unchecked, He hates sin, He deals with sin and for us He has dealt with our sin through another, Jesus Christ who took our sin upon himself so that we might we saved from the Judgement that we deserve.
This passage acts as a warning to us of the judgment of God. It also teaches us and warns us that that God can withdraw His glory from the Church today. Knowing that, we need to be careful that we do not fool ourselves into thinking that what matters today is our presbyterian heritage, our buildings, our programs, or attendance or the vestiges of religion, for these things will not save us, what matters is that God is known in this place and that Glory is given to His name in all that we do.
With the people were shouting (8:18), the Lord speaks and the peoples shouts are drowned out by Him, as He calls His executioners. These six men are the executioners of God’s judgment. They are described as men but they are angelic beings who elsewhere in scripture appear as men, (Gen 18:2; 32:24; Dan 10:5). They come from the north in obedience to the Lord from the direction of the upper gate, that’s the gate where the idol that provoked the jealously of God was (8:5,16) and the Lord calls them to dispense His judgement. But there is another man one clothed in linen.
The seven men have two different tasks. The seventh man, the one dressed in linen, is dressed as a priest of the Lord, the writing kit of a scribe and this man is there and will reveal the mercy of God in the midst of the judgment. He is to use the writing kit to put a mark on the forehead of those who have remained faithful, they will be spared, those who have sighed and groaned about the abominations that were committed. This mark is to distinguish the righteous people of God from the wicked who have sinned against the Lord God in the abominable practices.
Even in the midst of this judgment that is coming, God is merciful, those who were truly God’s people would be saved. In the book of Revelation 7(v3), where those who are to be delivered who are the servants of our God, we are told will have a seal on their foreheads, they will be marked out. Likewise in Revelation 14(v1) as John looked and saw the lamb standing on Mount Zion with him the 144,000 figuratively speaking of a great multitude with Him, upon them on their foreheads the name of the Father was written.
Upon God’s people He has placed His mark. Today if you have repented and believed, if you have come to saving faith in the Lord Jesus Christ then you are a child of God and upon you there is a mark, a seal, for you are sealed by the work of God the Spirit. No matter what lies ahead for you, if there is much suffering in this life, if you die for your faith and there are many who in this world do, if you live to a ripe old age, or what ever you face, know that God has placed his mark on you and that eternally you have nothing to fear, for His mark is upon you! Those who hare the Lord’s can have confident hope. For in God’s judgement there will be mercy, there was in Ezekiel’s day and there there will be again when Christ returns to Judge the living and the dead.
Q85 What doth God require of us, that we may escape his wrath and cursedue to us for sin?
To escape the wrath and curse of God due to us for sin, God requireth of us faith in Jesus Christ, repentance unto life, (Acts 20:21) with the diligent use of all the outward means whereby Christ communicateth to us the benefits of redemption. (Prov. 2:1–5, Prov. 8:33–36, Isa. 55:3)