Sometimes the prophets just confuse me. We just started reading through Ezekiel and already I feel lost. At the start of the book, Ezekiel gets this amazing vision of the glory of the Lord. He describes it in detail and says there are living creatures, some sort of wheels, and above it all, God’s throne. What does all this mean? Frankly, I have no idea.
However, I think if we focus too much on what all the symbols and images mean or represent we miss the point of the passage. Just as in real estate, location means everything. Ezekiel doesn’t get this vision in the temple. He doesn’t get it in Jerusalem. He doesn’t even get it in Israel. The text says he sees it, “as I was among the exiles by the Chebar Canal…in the land of the Chaldeans…” (Ez. 1:1-3). Ezekiel is sitting in a godless nation with the remnant of God’s people who are being punished for their sin…not exactly a holy place.
However, I think that’s the point. Ezekiel sees the glory of the Lord in the last place he would have expected. God is not constrained by location or even by the presence of sin in the lives of his people. His glory and his grace cannot be held down. Where He wants to work, he will work. He can reach his people at the farthest reaches of the globe in the depth of their sin.
“Where shall I go from your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there! If I make my bed in Sheol, you are there!If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall cover me, and the light about me be night,” even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light with you.” (Ps. 139:7-12)
It doesn’t matter where you are or what you’ve done. God’s Spirit is there. It can be terrifying to think that we cannot outrun God. But, his presence for believers should also bring us incredible comfort. It means we can also never outrun His grace. His presence will never leave us no matter where we are or how far we’ve fallen. His grace has no bounds. He will bring his children home.
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