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Ezekiel 14

Ezek 14, Eze 14, Ezk 14

Ezekiel 14

1 Then came certain of the elders of Israel unto me, and sat before me.

2 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

3 Son of man, these men have set up their idols in their heart, and put the stumblingblock of their iniquity before their face: should I be enquired of at all by them?

4 Therefore speak unto them, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Every man of the house of Israel that setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to the prophet; I the LORD will answer him that cometh according to the multitude of his idols;

5 That I may take the house of Israel in their own heart, because they are all estranged from me through their idols.

6 Therefore say unto the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Repent, and turn yourselves from your idols; and turn away your faces from all your abominations.

7 For every one of the house of Israel, or of the stranger that sojourneth in Israel, which separateth himself from me, and setteth up his idols in his heart, and putteth the stumblingblock of his iniquity before his face, and cometh to a prophet to enquire of him concerning me; I the LORD will answer him by myself:

8 And I will set my face against that man, and will make him a sign and a proverb, and I will cut him off from the midst of my people; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.

9 And if the prophet be deceived when he hath spoken a thing, I the LORD have deceived that prophet, and I will stretch out my hand upon him, and will destroy him from the midst of my people Israel.

10 And they shall bear the punishment of their iniquity: the punishment of the prophet shall be even as the punishment of him that seeketh unto him;

11 That the house of Israel may go no more astray from me, neither be polluted any more with all their transgressions; but that they may be my people, and I may be their God, saith the Lord GOD.

12 The word of the LORD came again to me, saying,

13 Son of man, when the land sinneth against me by trespassing grievously, then will I stretch out mine hand upon it, and will break the staff of the bread thereof, and will send famine upon it, and will cut off man and beast from it:

14 Though these three men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it, they should deliver but their own souls by their righteousness, saith the Lord GOD.

15 If I cause noisome beasts to pass through the land, and they spoil it, so that it be desolate, that no man may pass through because of the beasts:

16 Though these three men were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither sons nor daughters; they only shall be delivered, but the land shall be desolate.

17 Or if I bring a sword upon that land, and say, Sword, go through the land; so that I cut off man and beast from it:

18 Though these three men were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither sons nor daughters, but they only shall be delivered themselves.

19 Or if I send a pestilence into that land, and pour out my fury upon it in blood, to cut off from it man and beast:

20 Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.

21 For thus saith the Lord GOD; How much more when I send my four sore judgments upon Jerusalem, the sword, and the famine, and the noisome beast, and the pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast?

22 Yet, behold, therein shall be left a remnant that shall be brought forth, both sons and daughters: behold, they shall come forth unto you, and ye shall see their way and their doings: and ye shall be comforted concerning the evil that I have brought upon Jerusalem, even concerning all that I have brought upon it.

23 And they shall comfort you, when ye see their ways and their doings: and ye shall know that I have not done without cause all that I have done in it, saith the Lord GOD.

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Summary and the Meaning of Ezekiel Chapter 14

The fourteenth chapter of the book of Ezekiel in the King James Version (KJV) of the Holy Bible presents a stern and somber message to the people of Israel. Ezekiel, a major prophet of the Old Testament, receives a series of divine revelations from God. These revelations are warnings, admonitions, and prophecies of impending judgement upon the Israelite people for their idolatry and unfaithfulness. The main themes of this chapter include idolatry, repentance, divine judgement, personal responsibility, and the promises of God's mercy to a remnant.

Idolatry and Divine Response

The chapter begins with a group of Israelite elders approaching Ezekiel to seek God's counsel. God, however, rebukes them through Ezekiel, revealing their hearts' idolatrous inclinations. God declares that anyone who has set up idols in their heart and put a "stumbling block of their iniquity before their face" (Ezekiel 14:3) will face divine judgement. The elders' idolatry had become a stumbling block, a spiritual hindrance that led them and others into sin. This is a vital lesson for all generations: God values sincere, wholehearted worship and will not tolerate idolatry.

Repentance and Divine Judgement

God's message through Ezekiel is not only one of judgement but also of a call to repentance. God's desire is for His people to "turn away from their idols" and "repent and turn away from all their transgressions" (Ezekiel 14:6). God's justice and His mercy are both evident here. He is just in punishing sin, yet merciful in offering a way of escape through repentance. However, the people's persistence in their rebellion and idolatry will inevitably lead to divine judgement.

Personal Responsibility

One of the most potent messages in Ezekiel 14 is the principle of personal responsibility. God declares that even if Noah, Daniel, and Job were in the city, they could only save themselves by their righteousness (Ezekiel 14:14). This suggests that each person is accountable for their actions. In God's eyes, no one can rely on the righteousness of others for salvation. Each person must bear the consequences of their actions. This assertion underscores the importance of personal responsibility in spiritual matters.

God's Mercy to a Remnant

Despite the grim warnings of judgement, Ezekiel 14 ends on a note of hope. God promises that a remnant will be spared, a group of individuals who will survive the judgement because of their faithfulness. This remnant will serve as a reminder of the devastation caused by sin and the grace of God in preserving a faithful few. This theme of a faithful remnant is a common one in the scriptures, demonstrating God's mercy and faithfulness even in the face of human rebellion and unfaithfulness.

In conclusion, Ezekiel 14 serves as a powerful reminder of God's holiness, justice, and mercy. It warns against the dangers of idolatry, highlights the importance of personal responsibility, and offers hope in God's promise to preserve a faithful remnant. It underscores the seriousness with which God views sin, particularly the sin of idolatry. Yet, it also highlights His mercy and grace, His willingness to forgive and restore those who repent and turn back to Him. It is a chapter that calls for introspection and self-evaluation, urging us to examine our hearts and turn away from any form of idolatry, to embrace personal responsibility for our actions, and to seek God's mercy and grace.

This article is informed by the King James Version of the Holy Bible, the authors' personal knowledge, considerations and experience, and additional materials and resources available in internet.

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