Sep. 5. Jerusalem’s Siege Described

Ezek. 3:22-5:17

As a method of reinforcing His messages to Judah, the Lord took Ezekiel’s speech from him and made him mute except when necessary to convey a message to the people from God.

In contrast to Jeremiah’s messages which were written and spoken mostly in poetic form, Ezekiel was instructed to give graphic visual demonstrations from God. One of those illustrations involved constructing a model of the city upon a clay tablet including the walls and fortifications surrounding it. He was then to show them how Babylon would construct a ramp and mound in order to reach the top of the city wall without the use of ladders. Battering rams would also be used to break the wall down.

Other signs that were given to the prophet depicted the length of time that Israel and Judah would suffer because of their sins. Their diet while under siege was also illustrated to the people.

It was humiliating for a man to have his head and beard shaved. God instructed Ezekiel to do just that to himself with a sharpened sword as a razor. He was then to divide the pile of hair and beard into thirds and burn one third; strike one third with the sword and scatter the other third. A small number would be bound in the edge of his garment. Cannibalism would also be prevalent during the siege.

Jerusalem would be humiliated and disgraced at the hands of Babylon. One third of the population would die of pestilence and famine; one third by the sword and the other third would escape into the countryside, but many of them would also die by the sword. Only a small remnant would survive the terrible destruction.

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