Ezekiel 16:15–29

Read the passage.

The queen that represents Jerusalem has been pampered and riches have been lavished upon her. But instead of being grateful to the One who put her in such a privileged position, she indulges in her base wants with anyone and everyone she can find. What should have been reserved for God alone (that is, worship) has instead been given away wantonly. Everything the Lord has given her is turned to this pursuit. The elegant clothes are made into bedsheets. The gold and silver become idols. Even the choice food she ate became offerings. And not only the flour, oil, and honey, but even the children that God caused her to have were sacrificed as a burnt offering. The metaphor wears thin here because all of these things literally happened in Israel and Jerusalem.

As if this weren’t already bad enough, the queen Jerusalem makes something like billboard advertisements for her beauty, offering herself even further afield than before. Partnering with the Egyptians provoked God’s jealousy and He caused some of the land to be taken by enemies. These foreign alliances were an indication that the people failed to trust in the Lord for national security, something He had promised to them if they had been faithful to Him.

He had in fact promised great blessings, on the condition that Israel would be faithful to keep the laws and commands He had set out for them. As Paul explains in Romans, this was an impossible task for them, and they needed to rely on God to hold up both His end of the covenant and theirs at the same time. But for the most part, they didn’t even try.

You treat kindly with sinners who have been unfaithful to their Creator when they repent of their sins against You.

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