When the history of Judah was at its bleakest, Ezekiel was the prophet of the moment who ministered during the 70-year time span of Babylonian captivity. While Ezekiel influenced the mindset of others with similar agendas (such as Jeremiah), he focused on God’s eventual restoration and salvation for his people other than the death and destruction. In this article, you will learn more about the Book of Ezekiel.
The Book of Ezekiel was written by the namesake, who lived during the days of both Jeremiah and Daniel. It is most likely that the religious text was penned 593 and 565 BC during the time that the Jews were captive of Babylonia.
Who is Ezekiel?
When Ezekiel was 25 years old, he was amongst the 3,000 Jews that belonged to the upper class who had become exiled in Babylon. While living on the bank of the Chebar River in Tel Abib (which was known as the Mound of the Deluge), Ezekiel and his wife were visited by Judaic people who sought after his prophetic messages. In the ninth year of his exile, his wife died quite young.
In 592 BCE, Ezekiel was 30 years old when he recognized his calling to become a prophet after having an encounter with God, who rode upon a chariot led by Cherubs. He would spend the next five years endlessly prophesizing that Jerusalem and its temple would be destroyed. Because of this, he attracted opposition. Unfortunately, the prophecy came true and Ezekiel witnessed the fulfillment when Jerusalem was sacked by the Babylonians in 587 BCE. One thing that was different was the timing that the prophecy was fulfilled ”“ it did not agree with the timing stated in Ezekiel’s prophecy.
It was Ezekiel’s hope that when he wrote his text, he would be able to persuade Judah to end their sinful and treacherous ways. He hoped they would quickly repent ”“ fearing a future of consequences, but they did not listen. Ezekiel taught readers that:
”¢ God works through human messengers
”¢ Even in defeat and despair, God’s people need to affirm God’s sovereignty
”¢ God’s Word never fails
”¢ God is present and can be worshiped anywhere
”¢ People must obey God if they expect to receive blessings
”¢ God’s Kingdom will come
The book offers key points within four sections. From chapters 1 to 24, you will encounter the prophecies that describe the ruin of Jerusalem. Prophecies of God’s judgment on nearby nations are mentioned from chapters 25 to 32. A last call for repentance is made to Israel in chapter 33. From chapters 34 to 48, prophecies concerning the future restoration of Israel are introduced.
In the second installment of the article titled, “Old Testament Summaries: Book of Ezekiel,” you will encounter some of the passages that highlight the word of the religious text, as well as interesting facts regarding the Book.