Sunday, October 16, 2011


"But you, prepare yourself; stand up and tell them all that I command you. Do not be terrified on account of them, or I will terrify you before them; For I am the one who today makes you a fortified city, A pillar of iron, a wall of bronze, against the whole land: Against Judah’s kings and princes, its priests and the people of the land. They will fight against you, but not prevail over you, for I am with you to deliver you—oracle of the LORD" (Jeremiah 1: 17 - 19).
The mission laid out for Jeremiah and the manner of its accomplishment reminds me of that of Ezekiel which is reproduced below:
"The voice said to me: Son of man, stand up! I wish to speak to you. As he spoke to me, the spirit entered into me and set me on my feet, and I heard the one who was speaking say to me: Son of man, I am sending you to the Israelites, a nation of rebels who have rebelled against me; they and their ancestors have been in revolt against me to this very day. Their children are bold of face and stubborn of heart—to them I am sending you. You shall say to them: Thus says the Lord GOD. And whether they hear or resist—they are a rebellious house—they shall know that a prophet has been among them. But as for you, son of man, do not fear them or their words. Do not fear, even though there are briers or thorns and you sit among scorpions. Do not be afraid of their words or be terrified by their looks for they are a rebellious house. You must speak my words to them, whether they hear or resist, because they are rebellious." Ezekiel 2: 1-7)
The message in Ezekiel 2: 1 – 7 is very clear.  God is sending His envoy to a very challenging mission.  The target audience has a terrible reputation.  Not only are they very rebellious and obstinate, they are notorious for intimidating and treating badly any ambassador sent to them.  To be forewarned is to be forearmed.  The word of God reveals our true identity to us.  It also reveals our mission.  With a tough mission comes a solid assurance of protection from the Almighty.  “Do not be afraid of their words or be terrified by their looks for they are a rebellious house. You must speak my words to them, whether they hear or resist, because they are rebellious."  With this type of assurance, I too count myself ready to go.
There is no ambiguity in the message.  I remember now the mission of Mary as communicated to her by the Prophet Simeon.   I paraphrase it thus:  Your Son will be a sign of contradiction.  His life and mission will be the cause of the rise and fall of many in Israel.  You will be intimately involved in this titanic battle.  A sword will pierce through your heart but you will survive the mortal blow. 
Why are Ezekiel 2: 1 – 7 and Jeremiah 1: 17 – 19 part of the PL scriptures?  Each time I read or hear them, I take particular notice.  The mirror is an image of the word of God.  What do I see when I look into the mirror of Ezekiel 2: 1 – 7 and Jeremiah 1: 17 – 19?  I wonder whether there is a message for me here.

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