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1. Have you ever been a part of a group where a well-liked leader has resigned or retired? How did the people who remained feel?
2. Have you lived through any climatic transitions, either in your nation’s life or in your own life? Which decade for you was the climax or turning point? Why? As a witness to history in the making, how did you feel about it?
3. As in Chapter 1, Ezekiel sees a vision of God’s glory. From where has the glory of the Lord come (see 1 Kings 8:10, 11)? To where has Ezekiel seen the glory move (see Ezekiel 8:4; Ezekiel 9:3; Ezekiel 10:18, 19; Ezekiel 11:23)? What do you think was symbolized by this departing, hovering glory?
4. What order does the Lord give to the man clothed in linen? What do you think the coals represent (see Genesis 19:24; Amos 7:4)? What do you think his action accomplishes?
5. How does Ezekiel react this time around to this deja vu experience (compare chapter 1:28)? How do you account for his relatively tranquil, matter-or-the-fact response?
6. How do you reconcile the teaching of this chapter, that God is not always present with His people, with the promise of Jesus that He is always with us (see Matthew 28:20)? What is conditional, and what is non-conditional, about God’s presence?
7. If it is conditional, what might be the conditions? What might cause the glory of the Lord to withdraw from a person’s life?
8. Do you sense the presence of God in your life now? How might your life be more welcoming of Him? How would you react if told, “God has left your church”?