3 November 2017 Bible Reading
In today’s reading from Ezekiel, we read of the coming destruction of the land of Israel, or Judah, (for after the captivity of the ten tribes these terms are often used interchangeably for the Jews in general), on account of the sins of its inhabitants. We also read of the great distress of the small remnant that would escape. Destruction of the temple, which they had polluted with idolatry, is foretold. Ezekiel is directed to make a chain, as a type of that captivity, in which both king and people should be led in bonds to Babylon.
Today’s passage in Hebrews references Psalm 2:7 and Psalm 110:4.
7 Moreover Yahweh’s word came to me, saying, 2 You, son of man, thus says the Lord Yahweh to the land of Israel, An end: the end has come on the four corners of the land. 3 Now is the end on you, and I will send my anger on you, and will judge you according to your ways; and I will bring on you all your abominations. 4 My eye shall not spare you, neither will I have pity; but I will bring your ways on you, and your abominations shall be among you: and you shall know that I am Yahweh. 5 Thus says the Lord Yahweh: An evil, an only evil; behold, it comes. 6 An end has come, the end has come; it awakes against you; behold, it comes. 7 Your doom has come to you, inhabitant of the land: the time has come, the day is near, a day of tumult, and not of joyful shouting, on the mountains. 8 Now will I shortly pour out my wrath on you, and accomplish my anger against you, and will judge you according to your ways; and I will bring on you all your abominations. 9 My eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity: I will bring on you according to your ways; and your abominations shall be among you; and you shall know that I, Yahweh, do strike. 10 Behold, the day, behold, it comes: your doom has gone out; the rod has blossomed, pride has budded. 11 Violence has risen up into a rod of wickedness. None of them shall remain, nor of their multitude, nor of their wealth. There shall be nothing of value among them. 12 The time has come, the day draws near: don’t let the buyer rejoice, nor the seller mourn; for wrath is on all its multitude. 13 For the seller shall not return to that which is sold, although they be yet alive: for the vision is touching the whole multitude of it, none shall return; neither shall any strengthen himself in the iniquity of his life. 14 They have blown the trumpet, and have made all ready; but no one goes to the battle; for my wrath is on all its multitude. 15 The sword is outside, and the pestilence and the famine within: he who is in the field shall die with the sword: and he who is in the city, famine and pestilence shall devour him. 16 But those of those who escape shall escape, and shall be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them moaning, every one in his iniquity. 17 All hands shall be feeble, and all knees shall be weak as water. 18 They shall also clothe themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be on all faces, and baldness on all their heads. 19 They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be as an unclean thing; their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of Yahweh’s wrath: they shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels; because it has been the stumbling block of their iniquity. 20 As for the beauty of his ornament, he set it in majesty; but they made the images of their abominations and their detestable things therein: therefore have I made it to them as an unclean thing. 21 I will give it into the hands of the strangers for a prey, and to the wicked of the earth for a plunder; and they shall profane it. 22 My face will I turn also from them, and they shall profane my secret place; and robbers shall enter into it, and profane it. 23 Make the chain; for the land is full of bloody crimes, and the city is full of violence. 24 Therefore I will bring the worst of the nations, and they shall possess their houses: I will also make the pride of the strong to cease; and their holy places shall be profaned. 25 Destruction comes; and they shall seek peace, and there shall be none. 26 Mischief shall come on mischief, and rumor shall be on rumor; and they shall seek a vision of the prophet; but the law shall perish from the priest, and counsel from the elders. 27 The king shall mourn, and the prince shall be clothed with desolation, and the hands of the people of the land shall be troubled: I will do to them after their way, and according to their own judgments will I judge them; and they shall know that I am Yahweh.
8 In the sixth year, in the sixth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I sat in my house, and the elders of Judah sat before me, the Lord Yahweh’s hand fell there on me. 2 Then I saw, and behold, a likeness as the appearance of fire; from the appearance of his waist and downward, fire; and from his waist and upward, as the appearance of brightness, as it were glowing metal. 3 He stretched out the form of a hand, and took me by a lock of my head; and the Spirit lifted me up between earth and the sky, and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem, to the door of the gate of the inner court that looks toward the north; where there was the seat of the image of jealousy, which provokes to jealousy. 4 Behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there, according to the appearance that I saw in the plain. 5 Then he said to me, Son of man, lift up your eyes now the way toward the north. So I lifted up my eyes the way toward the north, and see, northward of the gate of the altar this image of jealousy in the entry. 6 He said to me, Son of man, do you see what they do? even the great abominations that the house of Israel do commit here, that I should go far off from my sanctuary? But you shall again see yet other great abominations. 7 He brought me to the door of the court; and when I looked, behold, a hole in the wall. 8 Then he said to me, Son of man, dig now in the wall: and when I had dug in the wall, behold, a door. 9 He said to me, Go in, and see the wicked abominations that they do here. 10 So I went in and saw; and see, every form of creeping things, and abominable animals, and all the idols of the house of Israel, portrayed around on the wall. 11 There stood before them seventy men of the elders of the house of Israel; and in the middle of them Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan stood, every man with his censer in his hand; and the smell of the cloud of incense went up. 12 Then he said to me, Son of man, have you seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in his rooms of imagery? for they say, Yahweh doesn’t see us; Yahweh has forsaken the land. 13 He said also to me, You shall again see yet other great abominations which they do. 14 Then he brought me to the door of the gate of Yahweh’s house which was toward the north; and see, there sat the women weeping for Tammuz. 15 Then he said to me, Have you seen this, son of man? You shall again see yet greater abominations than these. 16 He brought me into the inner court of Yahweh’s house; and see, at the door of Yahweh’s temple, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men, with their backs toward Yahweh’s temple, and their faces toward the east; and they were worshiping the sun toward the east. 17 Then he said to me, Have you seen this, son of man? Is it a light thing to the house of Judah that they commit the abominations which they commit here? for they have filled the land with violence, and have turned again to provoke me to anger: and behold, they put the branch to their nose. 18 Therefore will I also deal in wrath; my eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity; and though they cry in my ears with a loud voice, yet will I not hear them.
9 Then he cried in my ears with a loud voice, saying, Cause those who are in charge of the city to draw near, every man with his destroying weapon in his hand. 2 Behold, six men came from the way of the upper gate, which lies toward the north, every man with his slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man in the middle of them clothed in linen, with a writer’s inkhorn by his side. They went in, and stood beside the bronze altar. 3 The glory of the God of Israel was gone up from the cherub, whereupon it was, to the threshold of the house: and he called to the man clothed in linen, who had the writer’s inkhorn by his side. 4 Yahweh said to him, Go through the middle of the city, through the middle of Jerusalem, and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry over all the abominations that are done within it. 5 To the others he said in my hearing, Go through the city after him, and strike: don’t let your eye spare, neither have pity; 6 kill utterly the old man, the young man and the virgin, and little children and women; but don’t come near any man on whom is the mark: and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the old men that were before the house. 7 He said to them, “Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain. Go out!”
They went out, and struck in the city. 8 While they were killing, and I was left, I fell on my face, and cried, and said, “Ah Lord Yahweh! will you destroy all the residue of Israel in your pouring out of your wrath on Jerusalem?”
9 Then he said to me, “The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great, and the land is full of blood, and the city full of perversion: for they say, ‘Yahweh has forsaken the land, and Yahweh doesn’t see.’ 10 As for me also, my eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity, but I will bring their way on their head.”
11 Behold, the man clothed in linen, who had the inkhorn by his side, reported the matter, saying, “I have done as you have commanded me.”
5 For every high priest, being taken from among men, is appointed for men in things pertaining to God, that he may offer both gifts and sacrifices for sins. 2 The high priest can deal gently with those who are ignorant and going astray, because he himself is also surrounded with weakness. 3 Because of this, he must offer sacrifices for sins for the people, as well as for himself. 4 Nobody takes this honor on himself, but he is called by God, just like Aaron was. 5 So also Christ didn’t glorify himself to be made a high priest, but it was he who said to him,
“You are my Son.
Today I have become your father.”
6 As he says also in another place,
“You are a priest forever,
after the order of Melchizedek.”
7 He, in the days of his flesh, having offered up prayers and petitions with strong crying and tears to him who was able to save him from death, and having been heard for his godly fear, 8 though he was a Son, yet learned obedience by the things which he suffered. 9 Having been made perfect, he became to all of those who obey him the author of eternal salvation, 10 named by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek. 11 About him we have many words to say, and hard to interpret, seeing you have become dull of hearing. 12 For although by this time you should be teachers, you again need to have someone teach you the rudiments of the first principles of the revelations of God. You have come to need milk, and not solid food. 13 For everyone who lives on milk is not experienced in the word of righteousness, for he is a baby. 14 But solid food is for those who are full grown, who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern good and evil.
105 Give thanks to Yahweh! Call on his name!
Make his doings known among the peoples.
2 Sing to him, sing praises to him!
Tell of all his marvelous works.
3 Glory in his holy name.
Let the heart of those who seek Yahweh rejoice.
4 Seek Yahweh and his strength.
Seek his face forever more.
5 Remember his marvelous works that he has done;
his wonders, and the judgments of his mouth,
6 you offspring[a] of Abraham, his servant,
you children of Jacob, his chosen ones.
7 He is Yahweh, our God.
His judgments are in all the earth.
8 He has remembered his covenant forever,
the word which he commanded to a thousand generations,
9 the covenant which he made with Abraham,
his oath to Isaac,
10 and confirmed the same to Jacob for a statute;
to Israel for an everlasting covenant,
11 saying, “To you I will give the land of Canaan,
the lot of your inheritance”;
12 when they were but a few men in number,
yes, very few, and foreigners in it.
13 They went about from nation to nation,
from one kingdom to another people.
14 He allowed no one to do them wrong.
Yes, he reproved kings for their sakes,
15 “Don’t touch my anointed ones!
Do my prophets no harm!”
28 A lying tongue hates those it hurts;
and a flattering mouth works ruin.