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Friday, July 12th, 2024
the Week of Proper 9 / Ordinary 14
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Bible Commentaries
Ezekiel 34

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-31

  1. Intro:
    1. Last week we talked about the watchman who serves people in times of danger; but this week we take a look at the shepherd who cares for them day after day!
      1. And we need both.
    2. UPS used the 2002 Winter Olympic Games to launch their only 5th Tagline in their 95 year history, “What can BROWN do for you?”
      1. It spoke to service! How can we serve you?
      2. Tonight we are going to witness, “What can GOD do for you?”
        1. Not that He’s your celestial-bellhop waiting to jump at your bidding.
        2. But from the perspective of salvation, “what can you do for your lost self”…absolutely nothing!!!
    3. Look at Jn.10:22-31 – Where did He get this analogy? From our text tonight.
  2. FALSE SHEPHERDS! (1-10)
    1. 1st he lays out the contrast of some bad shepherds.
      1. Not nec religious leaders, but actually leaders in their government.
    2. (3) The 3 staple byproducts of sheep and goats (goats milk/curds; sheep’s wool; meat) are used here to extend the metaphor of the leaders gleaning all the benefits but not fulfilling their responsibilities.
  3. THE TRUE SHEPHERD! (11-31)
    1. Wow! I had this one wrong. Quote pericope in bible.
      1. I thought was contrast of bad shepherds vs. good shepherds.
      2. But actually it contrasts the Good Shepherd Himself!
    2. I like this better, we get to hear from God Himself as He reveals His heart to you & me! [I hate being misunderstood…so does God]
    3. The metaphor goes beyond the normal responsibilities of a shepherd, making sure that the sheep were protected and fed; and focuses on the remedial/corrective duties, like caring for the sick and finding the lost.
    4. (16) Salvation is of the Lord! Jonah 2:9 Or, Salvation belongs to the LORD. Ps.3:8
      1. Sheep Rescue IV !
    5. [1] Lost – The awakened sinner! (Adapted from Spurgeon’s Sermons; Vol.4 pg.123-125.)
      1. Who came to find out that…in Adam he was lost & by his own sins he was utterly ruined.
      2. One of the saddest verses: All we like sheep have gone astray, everyone to his own way!
      3. Yet, He seeks the lost! (leaving the 99)
      4. Turn to Jer.9:22 – Explain (There was Balm/med’s in Gilead; there were physicians there; but the people weren’t coming to the free clinic to be spiritually cured!)
    6. Tonight recognize your “lostness” & follow the direction of the One who knows the way!
    7. [2] Driven away – The backslider!
      1. Driven away by sin! – Strong temptations goading him to follow “his heart/flesh!”
      2. You’ll notice them by how spiritually skinny they are, as they’ve been drive from the pastures.
      3. Yet, He brings back those driven away!
        1. He invites, “Come back prodigal; yes you’ve wasted everything. Yet your Father’s loving eyes saw you when you were a long way off!”
      4. He even went out on cloudy & dark days(vs.12) to seek His own!
    8. Tonight recognize what has driven you away, & let Him bring you back!
    9. [3] Broken – The child of God is often broken.
      1. Maybe broken by trouble; by affliction; by assaults of the enemy; maybe broken by your own sin.
      2. Yet, He will bind up the broken.
      3. Wow, God Himself attending to your wounds. Marvelous surgeon!
        1. God Almighty bowing down from heaven to put His heavenly bandages around your wounded spirit!
    10. 5 broken things in the Bible and the results achieved by them:
    11. 1) Broken pitchers (Judges 7:18, 19) and the light shone out.
    12. 2) A Broken spirit/heart (Psa 51:17) and God will never look down on that.
      1. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart - These, O God, You will not despise
      2. It is not until the pride of our heart is shattered that we will begin to understand the deep things of God.
    13. 3) A Broken alabaster jar (Mark 14:3) and the ointment was poured out.
    14. 4) Broken bread (Matt 14:10) and the hungry were fed.
    15. 5) A Broken Body (I Cor 11:24) and the world was saved.
    16. Tonight what’s broke in your life? Your heart, your emotions, your soul, something physically? Will you let the Great Physician bring you the Balm of Gilead?
    17. [4] Sick - The child of God is often sick.
      1. Their faith is weak.
      2. Their prayers are not so spiritual & fervent as they desire. 3.17.2.1. There’s a chill about them, or a heat of anxiety.
      3. They long for that perfect love that casts out all fear.
      4. Yet, He will give strength to the sick.
      5. David said, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, But now I keep Your word.” Ps.119:67
    18. Tonight recognize where you’re sick & weak. He promises to give you strength.
    19. (26) Blessing!
    20. Sovereign Promise - I will…there shall be – only God can promise this.
    21. Sovereign Rain - I will cause showers to come down– only one voice can speak to the clouds & bid them…rain!
    22. Perfect Timing – in their season– If yours is the season of drought? Congratulations!…that is the season for showers! If yours is the season of great heaviness & black clouds? That is the season for showers! [Deut 33:25 As your days, so shall your strength be.]
    23. Plentiful Grace – shower(s) – It does not say, “I will send them drops” but “showers.”
      1. All God’s blessings go together like links in a golden chain.
      2. If He gives converting grace He will also give comforting grace.
      3. Look up today parched plant, & open your leaves flowers, for a heavenly watering!” (Spurgeon)
    24. Note: He will make “us” the blessing(26a them) Jer. 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked(incurably sick); Who can know it?

Verses 1-31

  1. Intro:
    1. Last week we talked about the watchman who serves people in times of danger; but this week we take a look at the shepherd who cares for them day after day!
      1. And we need both.
    2. UPS used the 2002 Winter Olympic Games to launch their only 5th Tagline in their 95 year history, “What can BROWN do for you?”
      1. It spoke to service! How can we serve you?
      2. Tonight we are going to witness, “What can GOD do for you?”
        1. Not that He’s your celestial-bellhop waiting to jump at your bidding.
        2. But from the perspective of salvation, “what can you do for your lost self”…absolutely nothing!!!
    3. Look at Jn.10:22-31 – Where did He get this analogy? From our text tonight.
  2. FALSE SHEPHERDS! (1-10)
    1. 1st he lays out the contrast of some bad shepherds.
      1. Not nec religious leaders, but actually leaders in their government.
    2. (3) The 3 staple byproducts of sheep and goats (goats milk/curds; sheep’s wool; meat) are used here to extend the metaphor of the leaders gleaning all the benefits but not fulfilling their responsibilities.
  3. THE TRUE SHEPHERD! (11-31)
    1. Wow! I had this one wrong. Quote pericope in bible.
      1. I thought was contrast of bad shepherds vs. good shepherds.
      2. But actually it contrasts the Good Shepherd Himself!
    2. I like this better, we get to hear from God Himself as He reveals His heart to you & me! [I hate being misunderstood…so does God]
    3. The metaphor goes beyond the normal responsibilities of a shepherd, making sure that the sheep were protected and fed; and focuses on the remedial/corrective duties, like caring for the sick and finding the lost.
    4. (16) Salvation is of the Lord! Jonah 2:9 Or, Salvation belongs to the LORD. Ps.3:8
      1. Sheep Rescue IV !
    5. [1] Lost – The awakened sinner! (Adapted from Spurgeon’s Sermons; Vol.4 pg.123-125.)
      1. Who came to find out that…in Adam he was lost & by his own sins he was utterly ruined.
      2. One of the saddest verses: All we like sheep have gone astray, everyone to his own way!
      3. Yet, He seeks the lost! (leaving the 99)
      4. Turn to Jer.9:22 – Explain (There was Balm/med’s in Gilead; there were physicians there; but the people weren’t coming to the free clinic to be spiritually cured!)
    6. Tonight recognize your “lostness” & follow the direction of the One who knows the way!
    7. [2] Driven away – The backslider!
      1. Driven away by sin! – Strong temptations goading him to follow “his heart/flesh!”
      2. You’ll notice them by how spiritually skinny they are, as they’ve been drive from the pastures.
      3. Yet, He brings back those driven away!
        1. He invites, “Come back prodigal; yes you’ve wasted everything. Yet your Father’s loving eyes saw you when you were a long way off!”
      4. He even went out on cloudy & dark days(vs.12) to seek His own!
    8. Tonight recognize what has driven you away, & let Him bring you back!
    9. [3] Broken – The child of God is often broken.
      1. Maybe broken by trouble; by affliction; by assaults of the enemy; maybe broken by your own sin.
      2. Yet, He will bind up the broken.
      3. Wow, God Himself attending to your wounds. Marvelous surgeon!
        1. God Almighty bowing down from heaven to put His heavenly bandages around your wounded spirit!
    10. 5 broken things in the Bible and the results achieved by them:
    11. 1) Broken pitchers (Judges 7:18, 19) and the light shone out.
    12. 2) A Broken spirit/heart (Psa 51:17) and God will never look down on that.
      1. The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit, A broken and a contrite heart - These, O God, You will not despise
      2. It is not until the pride of our heart is shattered that we will begin to understand the deep things of God.
    13. 3) A Broken alabaster jar (Mark 14:3) and the ointment was poured out.
    14. 4) Broken bread (Matt 14:10) and the hungry were fed.
    15. 5) A Broken Body (I Cor 11:24) and the world was saved.
    16. Tonight what’s broke in your life? Your heart, your emotions, your soul, something physically? Will you let the Great Physician bring you the Balm of Gilead?
    17. [4] Sick - The child of God is often sick.
      1. Their faith is weak.
      2. Their prayers are not so spiritual & fervent as they desire. 3.17.2.1. There’s a chill about them, or a heat of anxiety.
      3. They long for that perfect love that casts out all fear.
      4. Yet, He will give strength to the sick.
      5. David said, “Before I was afflicted I went astray, But now I keep Your word.” Ps.119:67
    18. Tonight recognize where you’re sick & weak. He promises to give you strength.
    19. (26) Blessing!
    20. Sovereign Promise - I will…there shall be – only God can promise this.
    21. Sovereign Rain - I will cause showers to come down– only one voice can speak to the clouds & bid them…rain!
    22. Perfect Timing – in their season– If yours is the season of drought? Congratulations!…that is the season for showers! If yours is the season of great heaviness & black clouds? That is the season for showers! [Deut 33:25 As your days, so shall your strength be.]
    23. Plentiful Grace – shower(s) – It does not say, “I will send them drops” but “showers.”
      1. All God’s blessings go together like links in a golden chain.
      2. If He gives converting grace He will also give comforting grace.
      3. Look up today parched plant, & open your leaves flowers, for a heavenly watering!” (Spurgeon)
    24. Note: He will make “us” the blessing(26a them) Jer. 17:9 The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked(incurably sick); Who can know it?
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Ezekiel 34". "Bell's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/cbb/ezekiel-34.html. 2017.
 
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