Ezekiel 37:1-14 Selected Verses (NIV) The Valley of Dry Bones
1The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by
the Spirit of the Lord and set me
in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 3 He asked me,
“Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”
4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! 5 This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’”
7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them,… 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army. 11 Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the people of Israel.
Ezekiel got to witness God’s resurrection of dry bones. The people of Israel were brought back to life before his eyes by God’s power through his prophesy. That which was dead came alive through the Lord God Almighty. Would you like to witness such a miracle?
Sometimes, when you read something, it gives you a good idea of what was or is happening in a certain area. A good writer can bring you to where the story is taking place. You are transported to another time and place. There were many good writers in the Bible and they were inspired by the Holy Spirit. Even so, reading the story is not everything. Seeing it yourself changes things.
I went to Israel this past week. Coming here has put flesh on the bones of the Bible. I have read the stories and can remember many of them on my own. The first time I saw the Sea of Galilee and the places Jesus walked, things changed. At first, it was surreal, like watching a video. I knew where I was and I saw things and heard Abraham, our guide, explain what we were seeing. I was baptized in the Jordan river as was Jesus. But when we crested the Mt. of Olives and saw Jerusalem across the Kidron Valley, the dry bones came to life. I was now walking in the Bible. These were no longer stories. As I walked down the path Jesus would have walked from Bethany as He went to the Temple, I began to live the stories. As I walked the path, stood in a Jewish Cemetery, visited the Garden of Gethsemane and touched the rock on which Jesus prayed for you and me, something changed. I felt the power of those prayers two thousand years ago. In John 17, Jesus said 20 “My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, 21 that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you.” I felt that prayer! There was flesh coming on to the bones of what I had read in the Bible. I felt Jesus pray for me. But it is not just for me. He prayed for you too.
Israel is a special place. The Lord God Almighty destined His nation to go and live there. He called Abram out of Ur and started the series of events that would yield His Chosen People and the plan that would redeem us and draw us back to him. I’m sure you have your copy of the Bible and have read many of the stories. Come to Israel and live the stories. Come to understand how much God loves you that He would do these things for you. John 1:14 says “14 “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” God took on human form to give Himself up in exchange for you. He redeemed you. That is why He did all these things which speak to you as you walk through the Holy Land.
Lord, thank You for the blessing of Israel and the opportunity You have given me to walk where You walked and witness Your amazing love for us. Thank you for Your protection of each of us and of all Israel. May the opportunity present itself to those who will read this story and share it with their friends. Thank You for demonstrating Your incredible love for us then and now. May everyone who reads this be blessed by it and You. May they hear the rattling sound of their bones coming alive in You. In Your name I pray!