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Aiden Martinez
Aiden Martinez

The Meaning and Significance of Ezekiel's Cosmic Drama for Today's Readers



Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama




Introduction




Have you ever wondered what it would be like to see visions of God's glory, to hear his voice speaking to you, to witness his power over history and destiny, to experience his judgment and mercy, to hope for his salvation and restoration? If so, then you might want to read Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama.




Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama


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Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama is a book by J. Todd Ferrier that explores the mystical visions and prophecies of one of the most intriguing prophets in the Bible. Ezekiel was a priest who lived in exile in Babylon in the 6th century BC. He was called by God to speak his word to his rebellious people Israel and to warn them of their impending doom. He was also given glimpses of God's ultimate plan for creation, fall and redemption.


In this article, we will examine some of the main themes and messages of Ezekiel's cosmic drama. We will see how he describes God's glorious creation, how he explains God's righteous judgment on sin and evil, how he reveals God's gracious salvation for his people and his world. We will also see how his visions and prophecies are relevant and significant for us today.


The Cosmic Drama of Creation




Ezekiel begins his book with a stunning vision of God's glory. He sees a stormy wind coming from the north, a great cloud with flashing fire and brilliant light. He sees four living creatures with four faces and four wings, each face representing a different aspect of creation: human, lion, ox and eagle. He sees four wheels beside the creatures, full of eyes and moving in all directions. He sees a vault over their heads, sparkling like ice. He sees a throne above the vault, with a figure like a man on it, radiant and dazzling. He hears a voice from the throne, saying: "Son of man, I am sending you to the Israelites" (Ezekiel 1:3).


What does this vision mean? It means that God is the creator and ruler of the heavens and the earth. He is surrounded by his glory and wisdom, which are manifested in the fire, the light, the creatures and the wheels. He is in control of all things, which move according to his will and direction. He is also involved in human history, which is affected by his word and his actions.


Ezekiel also sees another vision of God's creation in chapter 28. He sees a lament for the king of Tyre, who is compared to a cherub, a guardian angel of Eden. He is described as perfect in beauty and wisdom, adorned with precious stones and metals. He is said to have been on the holy mountain of God, walking among the fiery stones. He is also said to have become proud and corrupted by his wealth and splendor, and to have sinned against God and his creation.


What does this vision mean? It means that God created the cherubim as his servants and protectors of his creation. They were endowed with beauty and wisdom, reflecting God's glory and character. They were also given access to God's presence and his holy place. However, they were also capable of falling into sin and rebellion, which led to their expulsion from God's paradise.


The Cosmic Drama of Fall




Ezekiel continues his book with a series of visions and prophecies that expose the origin and nature of evil, and the consequences of sin and rebellion for humanity and creation. He shows how God's judgment falls on Israel and the nations for their idolatry, injustice, violence and immorality.


In chapter 8, he sees a vision of the abominations that are committed in the temple of Jerusalem. He sees idols of animals and foreign gods, worshipped by the elders of Israel. He sees women weeping for Tammuz, a Babylonian god of fertility and death. He sees men facing east and bowing down to the sun. He hears God saying: "Have you seen this, son of man? Is it a trivial matter for the people of Judah to do the detestable things they are doing here?" (Ezekiel 8:17).


In chapter 16, he sees a parable of Jerusalem as an unfaithful wife. He sees how God found her as an abandoned infant, covered in blood and dirt. He sees how God raised her up, clothed her with fine garments and jewels, made her his bride and gave her everything she needed. He also sees how she betrayed him, prostituted herself with other nations, sacrificed her children to idols, forgot his kindness and broke his covenant.


In chapter 23, he sees another parable of Jerusalem and Samaria as two sisters who became prostitutes. He sees how they lusted after their lovers from Egypt, Assyria and Babylon. He sees how they defiled themselves with their idols, their practices and their alliances. He hears God saying: "I will put an end to your lewdness and your prostitution brought from Egypt. You will not look on these things with longing or remember Egypt anymore" (Ezekiel 23:27).


In chapters 25-32, he sees oracles against the nations that surround Israel: Ammon, Moab, Edom, Philistia, Tyre, Sidon and Egypt. He sees how they mocked Israel's calamity, rejoiced over her ruin, plundered her land, oppressed her people or tried to dominate her destiny. He hears God saying: "I will execute great vengeance on them with furious rebukes; and they will know that I am the Lord" (Ezekiel 25:17).


The Cosmic Drama of Redemption




Ezekiel concludes his book with a series of visions and prophecies that reveal God's plan and purpose for salvation. He shows how God promises and signs of restoration and renewal for his people and his world. He envisions a new temple, a new Jerusalem and a new earth.


The Cosmic Drama of Redemption




Ezekiel concludes his book with a series of visions and prophecies that reveal God's plan and purpose for salvation. He shows how God promises and signs of restoration and renewal for his people and his world. He envisions a new temple, a new Jerusalem and a new earth.


In chapter 34, he sees a prophecy about God as the good shepherd. He sees how God will gather his scattered flock from all the countries where they have been exiled. He sees how God will feed them on good pasture, tend them with care, heal their wounds, protect them from predators and enemies. He hears God saying: "I will make a covenant of peace with them and rid the land of savage beasts so that they may live in the wilderness and sleep in the forests in safety" (Ezekiel 34:25).


In chapter 36, he sees a prophecy about God's cleansing and renewal of his people and his land. He sees how God will sprinkle clean water on them and make them clean from all their impurities and idols. He sees how God will give them a new heart and a new spirit, and put his Spirit in them. He hears God saying: "I will save you from all your uncleanness. I will call for the grain and make it plentiful and will not bring famine upon you. I will increase the fruit of the trees and the crops of the field, so that you will no longer suffer disgrace among the nations because of famine" (Ezekiel 36:29-30).


In chapter 37, he sees a vision of the valley of dry bones. He sees how God brings him to a valley full of bones that are very dry. He hears God asking him: "Son of man, can these bones live?" (Ezekiel 37:3). He sees how God tells him to prophesy to the bones and say: "I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life" (Ezekiel 37:5). He sees how the bones come together, are covered with flesh and skin, and receive breath from God. He hears God explaining to him: "These bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.' Therefore prophesy and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign Lord says: My people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel'" (Ezekiel 37:11-12).


In chapters 38-39, he sees a prophecy about God's final victory over Gog and Magog, two symbolic names for the enemies of God and his people. He sees how God will summon Gog from the land of Magog, along with many nations, to attack Israel. He sees how God will intervene with fire, hailstones, earthquakes and plagues to destroy Gog and his allies. He hears God saying: "I will display my glory among the nations, and all the nations will see the punishment I inflict and the hand I lay on them" (Ezekiel 39:21).


In chapters 40-48, he sees a vision of the new temple, the new Jerusalem and the new earth. He sees how God brings him to a very high mountain where he sees a man whose appearance is like bronze. He sees how the man measures the temple area with a measuring rod and shows him all its details: its gates, its courts, its chambers, its altar, its furnishings. He hears God saying: "Son of man, this is the place of my throne and the place for the soles of my feet. This is where I will live among the Israelites forever" (Ezekiel 43:7).


He also sees how God allocates the land among the twelve tribes of Israel, each with its own portion and border. He sees how God designates a special district for himself, his temple, his priests, his city and his prince. He sees how God names the city: "The Lord is There" (Ezekiel 48:35).


He also sees how God restores life to his creation. He sees a river flowing from under the threshold of the temple toward the east. He sees how wherever the river flows everything will live. He sees how the river flows into the Dead Sea and makes its water fresh. He sees how along the banks of the river grow all kinds of fruit trees, whose leaves are for healing and whose fruit are for food. He hears God saying: "This water flows toward the eastern region and goes down into the Arabah, where it enters the Dead Sea. When it empties into the sea, the salty water there becomes fresh. Swarms of living creatures will live wherever the river flows. There will be large numbers of fish, because this water flows there and makes the salt water fresh; so where the river flows everything will live" (Ezekiel 47:8-9).


Conclusion




In this article, we have explored some of the main themes and messages of Ezekiel's cosmic drama. We have seen how he describes God's glorious creation, how he explains God's righteous judgment on sin and evil, how he reveals God's gracious salvation for his people and his world. We have also seen how his visions and prophecies are relevant and significant for us today.


Ezekiel's cosmic drama invites us to marvel at God's glory and wisdom, to repent of our sin and rebellion, to trust in his word and his actions, to hope for his restoration and renewal. It also challenges us to live as his faithful people, to worship him in spirit and truth, to serve him with justice and mercy, to witness to him with courage and love.


What do you think of Ezekiel's cosmic drama? How does it inspire you, convict you, comfort you or transform you? Let us know in the comments below.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions about Ezekiel's cosmic drama:


Q: Who wrote Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama?




A: Ezekiel: A Cosmic Drama is a book by J. Todd Ferrier, a British theologian and founder of the Order of the Cross, a Christian mystical movement. He wrote the book in 1931 as a commentary on the book of Ezekiel in the Bible.


Q: What is the main message of Ezekiel?




A: The main message of Ezekiel is that God is sovereign over all creation, history and destiny. He judges sin and evil, but he also saves and restores his people and his world. He reveals his glory and his plan through his visions and prophecies.


Q: What are some of the symbols and images used by Ezekiel?




A: Some of the symbols and images used by Ezekiel are: fire, light, wind, cloud, throne, wheel, cherub, eagle, lion, ox, human, dry bones, valley, river, tree, fruit, temple, city, mountain, shepherd, flock, bride, prostitute, sword, plague.


Q: How is Ezekiel related to other books in the Bible?




A: Ezekiel is related to other books in the Bible in several ways. For example: he shares some themes and visions with Isaiah and Jeremiah; he anticipates some aspects of Daniel and Revelation; he echoes some stories and laws from Genesis and Exodus; he complements some psalms and proverbs.


Q: How can we apply Ezekiel to our lives today?




A: We can apply Ezekiel to our lives today by: acknowledging God's glory and wisdom in creation; confessing our sin and rebellion against God; trusting in God's word and his actions for our salvation; hoping in God's restoration and renewal of his people and his world; living as God's faithful people in worship, service and witness. 71b2f0854b


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