Ezekiel 37:1 The hand of the Lord came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord, and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. 2 Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” So I answered, “O Lord God, You know.” 4 Again He said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! 5 Thus says the Lord God to these bones: “Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. 6 I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.” ’ ”
Do you have a something in your life that you doubt will ever change? Maybe it’s a broken relationship that you doubt will ever be restored. Or maybe it’s someone who has fallen into sin and you doubt will ever come back to God. Some things in life seem impossible, yet with God, nothing is impossible. Today’s passage of scripture is both a prophecy and a promise. One day God will cause a valley of dry bones to come alive again.
In 63 BC, the Romans conquered Jerusalem, bringing the Jewish people under its control. In the years following, various groups of Jews tried to drive out their oppressors but failed. In 70 AD the Roman general Titus was sent to Jerusalem to end the rebellion by destroying both the city of Jerusalem and its temple.
Over 1 million Jews were killed during the conflict and many of the remaining were sold into slavery. For the next two thousand years the Jews wandered throughout the earth. But in the latter part of the 19th century, something significant began to happen. A movement known as Zionism started. (Zion is an ancient name for Jerusalem. See 2 Samuel 5:7) The primary goal of the Zionist movement was the return of Jews to their homeland and the reestablishment of Jerusalem as their capital. A milestone in Zionism occurred on May 14, 1948, when the modern state of Israel was officially declared. The valley of dry bones had started to come back to life. But there is more to Ezekiel’s amazing prophecy.
Ezekiel 37:7 So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and suddenly a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 Indeed, as I looked, the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them.
9 Also 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.” ’ ” 10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.
11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. 13 Then you shall know that I am the Lord, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. 14 I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the Lord, have spoken it and performed it,” says the Lord.’ ”
The Bible teaches us that the day is coming when many of the Jews will not only return to Israel as their homeland but to Jesus Christ as their Savior. Prophetically speaking, the bones have started to come together, but they still lack breath. We read from the book of Zechariah – “And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they pierced. Yes, they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn. (Zechariah 12:10) During the time period known as the Tribulation, many of the Jews will receive Christ as their Savior.
How does all of this apply to us today? It reassures us that with God, nothing is impossible. Whether it’s the restoration of a broken relationship or the returning of a rebellious believer – the breath of God can cause the dry bones to come back to life again.
I pray that today’s lesson has been an encouragement to you. Keep praying and keep trusting! God bless you brethren.
* Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture is taken from the New King James Version.