Sunday, November 2, 2008
Romans Part II
On my way to Romans this morning, God brought me to Ezekiel. I love to see what the Lord has to say as I open the word, but again the message was solemn. As God often does, He used it to reinforce what He's been teaching me about, Righteousness. Ezekiel chapters 14-18. First of all, I could not even imagine the power and grace that Ezekiel must have been given to even be able to receive a message like this and then pass it on to Israel. I am sure that he was not a popular guy in his time. To list the many sins of Israel and it's people, and reveal God's anger and plan for wrath against her. To liken her to a prostitute of the worst kind.
Righteousness is the outward actions of our faith [my definition]. The proof that the Holy Spirit is working in our lives. Even as the nations fall, God will still judge and spare the righteous individually (Ez14:12-23). Whether this means heaven or physical protection is up to Him. The theme seems to be that we are all going to be held accountable for ourselves. Mothers cannot save their daughters, Fathers cannot save their sons.
Verse 18:20b The righteousness of the righteous man will be credited to him, and the wickedness of the wicked will be charged against him. Ez18:30-31 Therefore, O house of Israel, I will judge you, each one according to his ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, O house of Israel? But again, we are given hope. Even in the midst of His anger towards sin, and because of His righteousness and just nature to atone for sin, we are given a promise. To the righteous God says vs18:21 None of the offenses he has committed will be remembered against him. But to the wicked vs18:4b The soul who sins is the one who will die. The plan of redemption through Jesus appears to be veiled in these passages, yet the hope of salvation is offered.
The gospel accounts give a clearer view of God's plan. For now, the opportunity to understand what sin really looks like to God, his detest for it, and a glimpse of His wrath being poured out is scary at best. I think a healthy fear in this area is good. We are not playing with a Santa Clause in the sky kind of God.It is not very fun to ponder these types of things. One can only decide for themselves what they will do with God's message. It is a view of God that would much rather be ignored, but without it we cannot know all of Him. I think once I have had my fill of myself and my sin, then I will be ready, again, to hear of God's grace and mercy to those He has called according to His purpose. It will be seen in a new light after so much soul searching.