Ezek. 11:1-25; 13:1-15:8
During Ezekiel’s vision, he was taken by the Spirit to the East Gate of the temple. There he saw twenty-five men among whom were two princes, Jaazaniah and Pelatiah. Those two princes represented the false prophets of the day. As the prophet was speaking, Pelatiah died. At that point, Ezekiel asked God if that meant the end of the remnant of Israel. Again, the Lord reassured the prophet that those who put the detestable things (idol gods) away from them, He would restore to the land of Israel. Ezekiel was then taken back to Babylon where his vision ended. He spoke those comforting and reassuring words of God to the captives who were already there.
False prophets claimed to be speaking for God, but had not really seen anything from Him. They had hoped that their words would be confirmed by actually coming to pass. The Lord used an analogy of a wall plastered with untempered plaster to refute them. They had falsely prophesied peace when there was no peace. Destruction would be soon, but they had denied God’s warnings. He would come as flooding rain, great hailstones and stormy wind to destroy their shoddy workmanship. Their prophecies would be exposed as the lies that they were. There were also women who were false prophets. Ezekiel was sent to pronounce God’s woe upon them. They would suffer the same fate as the men who had falsely spoken for Him.
A group of idol worshipping elders from Israel/Judah went to Ezekiel. The Lord could see the love of idols in their hearts and spoke to the prophet concerning them. God repeated the warnings that He had made to the leaders of His people many times earlier. He stated that they were estranged from Him because of their idols. Repentance and salvation were still possible as the Lord spoke, “Repent, turn away from your idols…”
The word of the Lord spoken to Ezekiel also condemned persistent unfaithfulness. In addition to the worship of idols, Judah was guilty of general disobedience to God and an unwillingness to repent. He stated that even if Noah, Daniel and Job were present, their sons and daughters would not be spared from His wrath of famine, wild beasts, sword and famine. Those three men had been faithful men of God. Noah’s life and time are well documented. There are questions as to when Job lived. The identification of Daniel and his lifetime is also uncertain. Even though it is possible, scholars doubt that the prophet Daniel is named by God in Ezekiel’s prophecy. However, there would be a remnant saved from the brutal destruction.
Jerusalem was compared to a vine in the forest. It is worthless in the making of any kind of structure or furniture—only to be burned in the fire. The city of Jerusalem would be burned in fire just at the worthless vine.