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Grace Lutheran Church Devotional: Ezekiel 37:1–14

By Administrator

May 24, 2024

The hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. 2And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry. 3And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” 4Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. 5Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. 6And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.”

7So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. 8And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them. 9Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” 10So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army.

11Then 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 is lost; we are clean cut off.’ 12Therefore prophesy, and say to them, thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. 13And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people. 14And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.”

In hopelessness Israel cries “Our bones are dried up,” and sometimes we do too. There are times in our lives when, like the exiled Israelites, we feel hopeless. Just consider all the evil in the world around us. The crime rate is growing daily. Immorality of all kinds is promoted and forced upon us. The forces of nature cause destruction and loss of human life. The circumstances in our own lives can bring a sense of hopelessness: illness, death, personal relationships. But it is our sin which truly produces hopelessness. Maybe it is something we did long ago or something we just cannot seem to stop doing causing despair in us. We wonder if there is any hope of forgiveness for us.

God asked, “Son of man, can these bones live?” Logic says, “No.” But God answers “Yes, your dry bones can live.” Only God can give such an answer. God’s Word is a creating Word, “Let there be light, and there was light (Genesis 1:3). God’s Word is a recreating Word; He recreated Israel which was reduced to dust and hopelessness because of sin. Like the exiled people of Israel, we do not deserve to hear this answer since we are dried-up, hopeless, dead-in-our-sins people too. But God comes to us in His grace and gives us life. He gives us this answer through Jesus Christ.

Christ is God’s Word made flesh. He came to suffer and die on our behalf. For your sake, Jesus was forsaken by God (cf. Mt. 27:46). On the cross He became our “dry bones.” Just as He rose from the dead, we too were buried and raised with Him in Baptism. Through the water and the Spirit, we received new life (cf. John 3: 5; Romans. 6:1-11). In Christ, we receive new life.

No matter how deep the valley seems, or how dried-up we feel, God’s Spirit-filled Word brings comfort. During the season of Lent, God’s Word directs us toward Easter and Christ’s resurrection. Daily, the Lord’s Spirit-filled Word points out the certainty of our own resurrection. In the crucified and risen Christ there is always hope. Through the power of His Spirit-filled Word your dry bones can live!

Grace Lutheran Church LCMS
825 North 1st West
Cheyenne Wells, CO, 80810-0728
Sunday Service begins at 9:00AM
Reverend Steven Zandstra

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