Ezekiel 25

Scripture

Ezekiel 25:3-4

Say to them, ‘Hear the word of the Sovereign Lord. This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Because you said “Aha!” over my sanctuary when it was desecrated and over the land of Israel when it was laid waste and over the people of Judah when they went into exile, therefore I am going to give you to the people of the East as a possession. 

Observation – What does it say?

God executed his judgment on his people for their sin and idolatry. Their Ammonite neighbors watched down their noses as the people of Judah were carried off into exile. And, rather than feeling any sense of compassion, they laughed and mocked at Judah’s misfortune. As a result, God was now bringing judgement against Ammon.

Understanding – What does it mean?

Do you ever find yourself lacking compassion?
 
This convicted me this morning particularly in regards to my kids. I’ll often lack compassion. For example, I’ll ask my son not to jump on the couch and he jumps anyway and hits his head. He doesn’t usually get from me a, “Oh bud, I’m so sorry. Are you ok?” More like a, “I told you not to! That’s what you get.” And after a few seconds, “You alright?” I could definitely use a shift from being a bit less like Ammon and a bit more like Jesus.

Don’t make fun of people’s misfortune, even if they deserve it.

Even though Judah deserved it, from God’s perspective it didn’t give the Ammonites the right to mock and rub it in.

In Psalm 1, the godly, successful man is contrasted against the man who “sits in the seat of mockers.”

James 3:9-10 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.

Jesus spoke of those who will be rewarded and said, “I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’ (Matthew 26:36) Then he clarified, “…whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.”

In other words, following Jesus is about bringing your sick co-worker a meal rather than saying, “I’ve been telling them to take better care of themselves.” It’s about visiting those in prison rather than saying, “They committed the crime and deserve to be in there.”  And it’s about offering something to the cardboard sign holder on the corner rather than rolling up the window and making a judgmental comment. 

Life Application

God, forgive my lack of compassion! May we be people who are quicker to love than to judge, quicker to help than to laugh! Make us more like you. Amen.

– Levi Thompson

 

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