Continued 5 Interpretation: Breath of the Lord

By

Lee Y. Martin, Ph.D., © 2007

 

 
Ezekiel a 1510 Fresc in Cappella Sistina, Vaticano.  MICHELANGELO Buonarroti.   Rendered with respect to artist, by jlvetter
 

Conclusion

The prophet Ezekiel portrays the nation Israel in precisely the same condition as the state of death in a human being – a pile of bones with no covering. The Lord told him to call to life the dried bones which he saw in a valley and which were representative of Israel whose covering had decayed to dust. Until 1948, they were a distinctive group of people without a country, a visual representation of Israel’s existing state of death as a people. Although Jeannette did not see a pile of bones, she did see death in the dense dark blackness she experienced while lying on the floor. She knew she was dead – not just asleep or in a trance, but dead.

In the first fourteen verses of chapter thirty-seven, God announces that He will bring Israel out of death into life by 1) clothing her bones with sinews (muscle strength), flesh, and skin and then 2) breathing life into her. This restoration happens in two steps. The coming together of the corpse – revival from political death –, and the giving of the spark of life – revival from spiritual death.

The first stage has been partially fulfilled today in Israel’s restoration of her civil and corporeal condition in the land. Ezekiel clearly saw this as he watched the bringing together of the bones to form corpses. When he was ordered to prophesy to the wind to bring breath into the reformed bodies, this signified a second step in the process of God’s restoration of Israel to her former glory. This second step will happen when her hardened heart is converted to Christ, and she acknowledges Jesus as her Messiah King and Savior, a state she has yet to experience.

Note the sequence in the following passage of Scripture where God has promised to give Israel a new heart after He has gathered them from the far corners of the earth.

Ezekiel 36:24-28

Step 1:
24 For I will take you from among the heathen, and gather you out of all countries, and will bring you into your own land.
25 Then (afterward) will I sprinkle clean water upon you, and ye shall be clean: from all your filthiness, and from all your idols, will I cleanse you.

Step 2:
26 A new heart also (indicates a second step) will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.
27 And I will put my spirit within you
(her spiritual revival), and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.
28 And ye shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; and ye shall be my people, and I will be your God.

 

 

Replacement Theology

The above passage clearly states in verse 28 that Israel is going to be literally restored to her land where she will be the nation from which God rules earth during the Millennium. God has not replaced Israel with the church of Jesus Christ as some Biblicists teach. Replacement Theology is unmistakably undermined by Scripture in umpteen places. The church and Israel are distinct entities.

The above passage also confirms that Israel’s restoration is in two stages. She is in the process of being regathered now, and it will terminate at the end of the tribulation when Jesus sends His angels to gather them into their land which God gave them.

Genesis 13:14-15

14 And the Lord said unto Abram, after that Lot was separated from him, Lift up now thine eyes, and look from the place where thou art northward, and southward, and eastward, and westward:
15 For all the land which thou seest, to thee will I give it, and to thy seed for ever.

How long will it belong to them? The above says FOREVER. If God had wanted them to have the land for a determined period of time, He could easily have said so. But He didn’t. He said forever.
When will the Jews be restored back to their land? It started in 1948 and will be completed at the end of the tribulation when Jesus will judge the nations as to their treatment of the Jews.

Matthew 25:31-33

31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:
32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats :
33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.

The continuing verses in Matthew 25: 34-46 tell us that the sheep enter the Millennial Kingdom prepared for them from the foundation of the world [v. 34], and the goats are thrown into everlasting fire in hell prepared for the devil and his angels [v. 41,46]. Folks, these are sobering words. We dare not blaspheme God’s Word by holding contempt for Israel. Listen to Jesus’ attitude toward people who say the church is Israel’s replacement.

Revelation 3:9

9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

This Scripture was written to the Philadelphian church in the book of Revelation, the church period representing the true church that is acceptable to God at the end of the Church Age of which many now partake. This shows that the conceptual theological paradigm regarding Israel having been replaced by the church is false and has been decidedly denounced by our Lord Jesus Himself.

The people who say they are Jews and are not are not a part of Jesus’ true church but are patrons of the synagogue of satan. The warning was given to Jesus’ beloved Philadelphians in order to warn them of the danger they face in partaking of this heretical doctrine. The Laodiceans have much greater problems than of anti-Semitism. Anti-Semitism is a hot button issue that divides whereas lukewarmness [Revelation 3:15-18], Jesus’ characterization of the Laodicean church, deceptively blinds people to any real need for God’s help or to stand for the truth.

 

The Set Time of Israel's Renewal

According to the prophecies of both Ezekiel and Jeannette, Israel will have breath and be revived. We know from Scripture that her completed revival will exceed the gloriously lofty and dynamic spiritual life she enjoyed under David’s Kingship [Haggai 2:9]. …(T)he glory of the latter house shall be greater than of the former…, for the Son of David to whom the throne of David is promised will come and reign in everlasting peace and righteousness.

The Ecclesia Of Israel

Restoration implies the existence of a former state of being. Before her temporal death, Israel was as an ecclesia or organization of believers of the Lord – a church if you will because the meaning of church is a group of ‘called out ones’ who have been selected to serve the Lord. This is the crucial point underscoring the meaning of Jeannette’s vision. Israel was God’s elect nation called out from among all the nations. When God allowed for disciplinary reasons her two kingdoms, Israel in the north and Judah in the south, to be dispersed among the heathen, she sank into a collective grave having lost sovereignty as a nation.

From 586 B.C.E. until 1948 C.E., she was under the yoke or servitude of the Gentiles. This period of time from her first scattering to today, known as the Diaspora, has been 2,520 years. 4 It is the exact duration of ‘the times of the Gentiles’ spoken of in Scripture, and it can be calculated to be upon us whether using the Jewish Biblical calendar or the Gentile Gregorian calendar.

  Ezekiel’s prophecy of a future restoration was given to him by God during Israel’s first humiliation in exile under the Babylonians in order to instill hope of a resurrection to new life. Daniel prophesied the determined time until Israel’s redemption [Daniel 9:24-27], and Ezekiel filled in some of the details about the manner in which she would receive her awakening to new life. Daniel and Ezekiel were contemporary prophets living in Babylon during the days of their prophecies.
Daniel  a 1511 -Fresco in Cappella Sistina, Vatican.   MICHELANGELO Buonarroti
 

Even though it has taken 2500+ years to reach the first step of their restoration, it appears like the second step is only a matter of seconds of time in comparison. Because the set time has come, Jeannette was given a vision to confirm that the prophecy is about to be fulfilled. Ezekiel explained the mechanics in a metaphorical vision and Jeannette has confirmed it in a simile vision. Let it be clearly understood that the return from the first exile in Babylon was not the fulfilling of Ezekiel’s prophecy because Israel never returned to her former glory and has since been awaiting the fulfillment of the times of the Gentiles prophesied by our Lord [Luke 21:24] and Paul [Romans 11:25].

The Whole House Of The Lord

The body of believers in the Old Testament was a church – an ecclesia of God ‘called out’ from among the entire population of the world to live under law and represent God in a profane world. The body of believers in the New Testament is also a church ‘called out’ from among the entire populace of humanity to live under grace and represent God in a profane world. Keep in mind that the word ‘church’ is a translation of the Greek word ‘ecclesia’ meaning ‘called out’. Therefore, an ecclesia is a group of people selected from an entire population to represent someone. Caesar’s senate in Rome was called his ecclesia because he hand-picked the senators he wanted to serve him and represent him just as the President of the United States of America’s cabinet is handpicked to represent him.

Jesus’ church is an ecclesia for the same reason. He selects or chooses anyone to be in His ecclesia who will make Him Lord of their lives. But only people who will do His will qualify to be chosen. They are selected because they have made a commitment to do His will by living a faith life and learning how to truthfully represent Him as an ambassador of His Kingdom.

No one in either the Age of the Law or Age of Grace has ever been denied opportunity to join either ecclesia of the Old Covenant or that of the New. Whosoever desires can come into the church now [Romans 10:13] as well as they could become a member of Jewry in the Old Testament. Be it a church or synagogue, it is a body of believers. There are some distinctions between the two churches, however, having been formed at different times. The former ecclesia of Jews is regarded in Scripture as the wife of Jehovah God and the latter one is the wife of His Son Jesus known as the bride of Christ. In that regard, there are differences of function in God’s management of His creation. The distinctions between the two explain why God acts toward men in various ways throughout history. The differences are not relevant to this vision, however. But the fact that they represent two distinct houses of the Lord is.

 

The rebuilding of Judah’s cities and the temple under Zerubbabel and Ezra restored Israel’s political order but it did not open the graves. The glory of God never reentered the temple after leaving it prior to its destruction by the Babylonians until Jesus came on the scene 500 years later, nor did Israel have permanent independence from the imperial powers of Gentile nations. We know that the greater portion of the Jews did not return to the land even when Nehemiah was given permission to rebuild Jerusalem under Artaxerxes, King of Persia [Nehemiah 2:1-6 with Daniel 9:25]. So the bones of Israel lay scattered around the world as it is this day.

Nevertheless, the graves are opening. The great aliyah of the last couple of decades has brought millions of Jews back to the land. This is the shaking from the graves bringing the bones of the people back together [Ezekiel 37:7] that the prophets spoke about in their poetic metaphors. Bone by bone the people are coming back. Restoration has begun in earnest for the Israelis but the grand finale of the aliyah will take place when their rejected King Messiah returns at the end of the tribulation and sends His angels out to gather the remnant surviving the greater holocaust of the tribuation from every place on the face of the earth.  

“L'shanah haba'ah biyerushalayim.” which, translated, means, “Next year in Jerusalem!”  Unknown photograph of holocaust prisoners.
“L'shanah haba'ah biyerushalayim.”
The last book of the New Testament, the Book of Revelation, in the next to last chapter, says this: “And I saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband.” (Revelation 21:2)
 

 

Click on next for Continued 5 Interpretation: Breath of the Lord

4
2,520 is the only number which can be divided evenly by every ordinal number from 1 to 9. Hence, it is a special number in Scripture. Because it sets boundaries for historical events which cannot be denied by people antagonistic to the Bible, it authenticates God’s overarching control of temporal matters on earth. (It )
 

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Thursday, August 15, 2013 7:38 PM