Read: Ezekiel 7:1-9
- Sidewalk prophets have stalked the land for centuries carrying their placards announcing, “The end is near.” You can ignore a sidewalk prophet—they rarely know what they are talking about. This, however, is no sidewalk prophet. This is God clearly announcing, “The end! The end has come.”
- People honestly believe that a delay in consequences is a sign that “they’ve gotten away with it.” What they don’t know is that the opposite is true. Delay is God’s grace giving humanity opportunity to reflect, repent, and respond. But the consequences are inevitable. Evil must be addressed. Detestable practices must be punished.
- God does have limits. His love is unlimited. His capacity and willingness to forgive is unlimited. But, His willingness to tolerate and forbear is not. He reaches a limit and then He follows through on His promises of justice and judgment. The final line underscores the fact that we “know it is I the Lord who strikes the blow.” For many, it’s hard to see God dealing out justice. Seems too harsh. Truthfully, failing to deliver justice is what is harsh. Allowing people to get away without consequences is merciless and unkind beyond words.
- Describe your reaction to seeing a sidewalk prophet. What do you think?
- How do you explain to non-Christians that God has a “hard side”?
- What are the long term results of not holding people accountable for their actions?
Pray: Keep praying for those on your list needing Jesus. Ask God to help us trust His wisdom and believe in His ability to judge justly. Pray that we are open to His correction in our lives.