ADVENT IN THE OLD TESTAMENT—DAY 22
Ezekiel 37:1-6 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”
I said, “O Sovereign LORD, you alone know.”
Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.’”
After the destruction of Jerusalem, the Temple, and the monarchy, it did seem that the promises, the hopes, and the faith of Israel were nothing but dry bones. In this vision, Ezekiel looks forward to the resurrection of Israel, which would culminate in the resurrection of Jesus. In a deeper sense, though, Ezekiel speaks to the wreck of our own dreams, hopes, and even (at times) faith. In Jesus these old dry bones will live again.
Prayer, Dear God, for good reason you have made a wreck of my own dreams, hopes and faith—for these were all centered on me and I held them in rebellion against You. Come and speak your word to me when I feel my life is a valley of dry bones. Breathe your Spirit into me that I may live! Then, with your Spirit in me, set me in the middle of other valleys of dry bones that I may in my turn speak your word over someone else’s bones, that they may also live. In the name of the One who is risen indeed! Amen.