Reflections: Monday of the Seventh Week After Pentecost

July 8, 2024 

Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 2:1-5

Daily Lectionary: Judges 3:7-31; Acts 13:42-52

And he said to me, “Son of man, I send you to the people of Israel, to nations of rebels, who have rebelled against me. They and their fathers have transgressed against me to this very day. (Ezekiel 2:3)

In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. We often consider Biblical figures like Ezekiel as “powerhouse” models of faith and devotion. However, when you stop and look at our reading today, I bet that Ezekiel wasn’t exactly thrilled at what God told him to do. God called Ezekiel to serve as his prophet. However, how God called him seems troubling. It could be described as disheartening. God says, “I send you to nations of rebels who have rebelled against Me.” He warns Ezekiel that they may not listen and not only won’t listen but will be stubborn about it. 

It is easy to point fingers at those who are rebellious or stubborn, but take a long, hard look in your mirror. In your sins, you have been rebellious and even stubborn about it, wanting to have your own way all the time. Paul puts it this way: “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God.” (Romans 8:7-8, NKJV). God doesn’t need to seek you out. He doesn’t need to call you back to Him. In your rebellion, He has every right to fight back and destroy you. Yet, just like Ezekiel, God sends those to seek you out with His forgiveness and restoration. Just as He sent prophets and teachers, today, He sends you pastors to call you to repentance and to be restored by the blood of Christ.

God sent Ezekiel to point His people to the promise of restoration through the Messiah. No matter the response to Ezekiel, God would seek and save His rebellious people. In the Office of the Ministry, your pastor is sent to point you to Jesus. Your pastor places before you Jesus, who comes to you no matter how rebellious or stubborn you are. Through the grace of Jesus, you are brought back into His Kingdom not as a rebel but as a beloved child and heir of everlasting life. In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.

God of the prophets, Bless the prophets’ sons; Elijah’s mantle o’er Elisha cast. Each age its solemn task may claim but once; Make each one nobler, stronger than the last. (LSB 682:1)

-Rev. Kent Schaaf is pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Little Rock, AR.

Audio Reflections Speaker: Pastor Jonathan Lackey is the pastor at Grace Lutheran Church, Vine Grove, Ky.

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