The Exile Symbolized (Ezekiel 12)

Scripture Text:

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Ezekiel 12

1. Where do you go when you just want to get away from it all for a day? Why there? What or who do you take with you?

2. Who in your family packs for a week, even though it’s just an overnight trip?

3. What big trips have you taken recently?

4. What are the people like to whom Ezekiel prophesies (verses 1 and 2; also Isaiah 6:9 and 10)?

5. Because they don’t listen or see, what way does God use to communicate His message? Do you think such sign-language will work? Why or why not?

6. In the timing and sequence of this unfolding revelation, what is significant about . . .

  • “the word of the Lord” coming to Ezekiel?
  • Ezekiel’s  unquestioning obedience?
  • Israel’s questioning response? (verse 9)

7. Of all the things God tells Ezekiel to do in verses 3 – 16, what part seems most eye-catching or poignant? What is its symbolic meaning? Read Jeremiah 39:1 – 10 to see to what extent Ezekiel’s words came true.

8. What revelation unfolds next in verses 17 – 20? What do Ezekiel’s symbolic acts mean this time?

9. What proverb does God say are popular in Israel (verses 22 and 27)? What do they mean? How will God put an end to such false visions and human procrastination? How does this prove God is the Sovereign Lord?

10. Why do you think God cares so much that His people understand what He is going to do before He does it? What if God’s revelation consisted of only events without any interpretation? As it is, what part does human response play in the unfolding of divine revelation?

11. Read 2 Peter 3:1 – 3 for another answer to the problem mentioned in verses 22 and 27. Do you find it hard to wait for God to fulfill His promises? Why do you think He delays?

12. Evidently, prophetic signs of the future are meant to grab our attention and prompt us to ask questions. What questions do you have so far about what on earth God is doing (or not doing) to bring about His kingdom?

13. In what ways do Christians play down what God is trying to say to the church in the late 20th and early 21st centuries? What modern prophets do you think speak God’s words but whose message is ignored?

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