Ezekiel 18:The Soul Who Sins Shall Die
1 The word of the LORD came to me:
2 "What do you mean by repeating this proverb concerning the land of Israel, 'The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set on edge'?
3 As I live, declares the Lord GOD, this proverb shall no more be used by you in Israel.
4 Behold, all souls are mine; the soul of the father as well as the soul of the son is mine: the soul who sins shall die.
5 "If a man is righteous and does what is just and right---
6 if he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbour's wife or approach a woman in her time of menstrual impurity,
7 does not oppress anyone, but restores to the debtor his pledge, commits no robbery, gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment,
8 does not lend at interest or take any profit, withholds his hand from injustice, executes true justice between man and man,
9 walks in my statutes, and keeps my rules by acting faithfully---he is righteous; he shall surely live, declares the Lord GOD.
10 "If he fathers a son who is violent, a shedder of blood, who does any of these things
11 (though he himself did none of these things), who even eats upon the mountains, defiles his neighbour's wife,
12 oppresses the poor and needy, commits robbery, does not restore the pledge, lifts up his eyes to the idols, commits abomination,
13 lends at interest, and takes profit; shall he then live? He shall not live. He has done all these abominations; he shall surely die; his blood shall be upon himself.
14 "Now suppose this man fathers a son who sees all the sins that his father has done; he sees, and does not do likewise:
15 he does not eat upon the mountains or lift up his eyes to the idols of the house of Israel, does not defile his neighbour's wife,
16 does not oppress anyone, exacts no pledge, commits no robbery, but gives his bread to the hungry and covers the naked with a garment,
17 withholds his hand from iniquity, takes no interest or profit, obeys my rules, and walks in my statutes; he shall not die for his father's iniquity; he shall surely live.
18 As for his father, because he practiced extortion, robbed his brother, and did what is not good among his people, behold, he shall die for his iniquity.
19 "Yet you say, 'Why should not the son suffer for the iniquity of the father?' When the son has done what is just and right, and has been careful to observe all my statutes, he shall surely live.
20 The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not suffer for the iniquity of the father, nor the father suffer for the iniquity of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.
21 "But if a wicked person turns away from all his sins that he has committed and keeps all my statutes and does what is just and right, he shall surely live; he shall not die.
22 None of the transgressions that he has committed shall be remembered against him; for the righteousness that he has done he shall live.
23 Have I any pleasure in the death of the wicked, declares the Lord GOD, and not rather that he should turn from his way and live?
24 But when a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice and does the same abominations that the wicked person does, shall he live? None of the righteous deeds that he has done shall be remembered; for the treachery of which he is guilty and the sin he has committed, for them he shall die.
25 "Yet you say, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' Hear now, O house of Israel: Is my way not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?
26 When a righteous person turns away from his righteousness and does injustice, he shall die for it; for the injustice that he has done he shall die.
27 Again, when a wicked person turns away from the wickedness he has committed and does what is just and right, he shall save his life.
28 Because he considered and turned away from all the transgressions that he had committed, he shall surely live; he shall not die.
29 Yet the house of Israel says, 'The way of the Lord is not just.' O house of Israel, are my ways not just? Is it not your ways that are not just?
30 "Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord GOD. Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin.
31 Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel?
32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord GOD; so turn, and live."
Ezekiel 19: A Lament for the Princes of Israel
1 And you, take up a lamentation for the princes of Israel,
2 and say: What was your mother? A lioness! Among lions she crouched; in the midst of young lions she reared her cubs.
3 And she brought up one of her cubs; he became a young lion, and he learned to catch prey; he devoured men.
4 The nations heard about him; he was caught in their pit, and they brought him with hooks to the land of Egypt.
5 When she saw that she waited in vain, that her hope was lost, she took another of her cubs and made him a young lion.
6 He prowled among the lions; he became a young lion, and he learned to catch prey; he devoured men,
7 and seized their widows. He laid waste their cities, and the land was appalled and all who were in it at the sound of his roaring.
8 Then the nations set against him from provinces on every side; they spread their net over him; he was taken in their pit.
9 With hooks they put him in a cage and brought him to the king of Babylon; they brought him into custody, that his voice should no more be heard on the mountains of Israel.
10 Your mother was like a vine in a vineyard planted by the water, fruitful and full of branches by reason of abundant water.
11 Its strong stems became rulers' scepters; it towered aloft among the thick boughs; it was seen in its height with the mass of its branches.
12 But the vine was plucked up in fury, cast down to the ground; the east wind dried up its fruit; they were stripped off and withered. As for its strong stem, fire consumed it.
13 Now it is planted in the wilderness, in a dry and thirsty land.
14 And fire has gone out from the stem of its shoots, has consumed its fruit, so that there remains in it no strong stem, no sceptre for ruling. This is a lamentation and has become a lamentation
Things to think about…
1.Ezekiel 18 displays God's standards as opposed to the typical fallen human logic of redemption. The comments we hear are 'Surely I am not that bad' or 'Surely God would outweigh the good over the evil'. We know this logic is misinformed. Ezekiel says the sinner will pay for their own sin and not for their father's sin. The NT confirms that righteousness does not come through the law through one's faith, Rom 4:13. "The soul who sins shall die", Ezek 18:4
2.The famous last verse in Ezek 18, 'For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone declares the Lord God; so turn and live" is still true. The Lord gets no pleasure out of seeing anyone being judged for their sin. We were created in the image of God. Fallen humanity tries to reverse this truth. There is very little more frustrating than a hard heart that simply will not turn towards Christ and live. Jesus has paid it all, why would this offer be ignored. Continue to pray that the Lord opens the eyes of the blind of those who know and love, but who are presently outside a relationship with Jesus.
3.Regarding Ezekiel 19:1-9 Matthew Henry says this:- Ezekiel is to compare the kingdom of Judah to a lioness. He must compare the kings of Judah to a lion's whelps; they were cruel and oppressive to their own subjects. The righteousness of God is to be acknowledged, when those who have terrified and enslaved others, are themselves terrified and enslaved. When professors of religion form connections with ungodly persons, their children usually grow up following after the maxims and fashions of a wicked world. Advancement to authority discovers the ambition and selfishness of men's hearts; and those who spend their lives in mischief, generally end them by violence. Would you agree with this statement? Paul in the NT puts it this way, "Bad company corrupts good character", 1Cor 15:33 – this is especially true if the bad company is a parent.
4.The first captivity of Israel was of course in Egypt, Ezek 19:1-4. Israel is described as a lioness where she takes her cubs and raises him in the land of Canaan. But after this cub was raised and was then taken to Egypt. Any hopes of the lioness receiving back her cub were lost. But Ezekiel goes on to describe the second cub being taken into captivity.
5.Ezek 19:10-14 is a picture of the present judgement that was happening to Israel (described as another of her cubs) in Babylon. Israel is also described as a fruitful vine was plucked up and cast into the wilderness. When the Lord sends difficult circumstances your way because of disobedience, what is your immediate reaction? Do you fight against what the Lord has for you, or do you accept His sovereign hand and endeavour to learn from the experience? I am sure as 'good Christians' we would say the latter, but is this how it works out in reality?
CBC's Vision :- To be a growing biblical church community, significantly influencing our city and beyond, through intentional outreach, fulfilling our mission.
Sunday morning's message on "Who do you think you are Jesus" from John 7:1-24.
1.Jesus is being persecuted and some were seeking to kill him. He takes a break in Galilee in the north where He grew up. Why were people seeking to kill Him after doing so many wonderful signs and blessing the people.
2.Even Jesus brothers didn't believe, yet they accepted He did many sings. Miraculous signs don't seem to save, but surely they help people come to faith. What do you think? Discuss.
3.Jesus goes up to the Feast of Booths. Discuss what you recall about this feast. Why was Jesus standing in the temple talking about living waters. Read Zech 14:8-15 and discuss what this passage means for the future.
4.Pray that people we know and love will receive the "living waters" of Christ.
1.Katie Aitchison – Niece of Murray and Rhonda, has a Golden Staph infection. In hospital. Pray for healing.
2.NSW parliament they have passed the lower house to decriminalize abortion laws. Likely to be passed in the upper house. Another very sad day in Australia. But keep praying,
3.More Sunday school teachers
4.Those who are not well – Flu and other conditions. Continue to pray for Andre's heart health.
5.CBC's ministries for this term
6.Our outreach initiatives as well as the Axiom podcast.
7.Next Sunday's messages. John 7"Who do you think you are Jesus" in the morning, "Tell me about yourself…again"– Axiom 6pm.
8.Finish "Bean Redeemed" coffee shop.
9.Church finances to meet our expenses.
10.Recharge – Pray for someone to take over Recharge.
11.Our City and Country – Pray for revival over our city and the leadership of our country.
1.More work done on the coffee shop
2.Encouraging testimonies on Sunday night.
3.New folk at church on Sunday
4.New ministries being considered – Outreach opportunities and Church services
5.Unity, love and peace
1.Backwell group - Hosting morning tea on Sunday morning.
2.Playpatch – Back this week. Carly Backwell leads this ministry.
3.Recharge– back this week. Pete Alback leads high schoolers from 7-9pm Friday nights at church.
4.Kids at Church – Primary school aged children.
5.Mapleton Women's retreat – this Fri August 23rd- Sun Aug 25th. Cost $175. More details here https://www.anewconference.org.au/conferences/mapleton
6.Working Bee at church – Saturday 14th Sept, start at 8am.
This month's catechism question...
Q. 3. What has Christ given us to teach us how to pray?
A. The Lord's Prayer.
Bible Reference – Matt.6:5-15; Luke.11:1-13.
"Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known" Jer 33:3