Ezekiel 35-36

The Sovereign Lord.

“But remember, says the Sovereign Lord, I am not doing this because you deserve it. O my people of Israel, you should be utterly ashamed of all you have done!” – Ezekiel 36:32 NLT

Over and over again in this book, God refers to Himself as “the Sovereign Lord.” And it is usually in reference to something He is about to do. He begins each declaration of intent with the phrase, “The Sovereign Lord says…” It is a statement of certainty based on the authority and power of God. He is the ruler of all things and everything is under His control. His words are always true. His predictions as good as done. All because He is sovereign. Associated with His claim to be the Sovereign Lord are His repeated promises that begin with the words, “I will…” In the case of Judah and her enemies, He says, “I will…” To Edom God says, “I will raise my fist against you to destroy you completely” (Ezekiel 35:3 NLT). “I will demolish your cities and make you desolate” (Ezekiel 35:4 NLT). To the land of Israel He says, “I will greatly increase the population of Israel” (Ezekiel 36:10 NLT). “I will bring people to live on you once again” (Ezekiel 36:11 NLT). “I will make you even more prosperous than you were before” (Ezekiel 36:11 NLT).

To the people of Israel He says, “I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean. Your filth will be washed away, and you will no longer worship idols. And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations” (Ezekiel 36:25-27 NLT). God repeatedly says that He will do these things and that they will happen. All because He is the Sovereign Lord. He is in control. What He says, will happen. And it will happen in spite of all that Israel has done to offend Him. He will do all these things in order to protect the holiness of His name, not because of anything Israel has done to deserve it. God is not only the Sovereign Lord, He is the Holy One. His name has value and worth. It is an extension of His character and He will protect the integrity of His name. He says, “I will show how holy my great name is—the name on which you brought shame among the nations. And when I reveal my holiness through you before their very eyes, says the Sovereign Lord, then the nations will know that I am the Lord” (Ezekiel 36:23 NLT). He tells the people of Israel, “I am bringing you back, but not because you deserve it. I am doing it to protect my holy name, on which you brought shame while you were scattered among the nations” (Ezekiel 36:22 NLT). God will do what He has promised, not because anyone deserves it, but because His holy name requires it. He must be true to His name, to His character. He is a faithful, promise-keeping God. He had chosen the people of Israel and set them apart as His own. He had made promises to them that He is bound to keep. But when He does, He wants it to be known that He is doing so because of His name, not because of any worth or merit on the part of Israel. He will because He is – holy, just, righteous, faithful, and true. He will because He is – sovereign, powerful, mighty, and Lord of all.

God is the Sovereign Lord. He is in control. He will show us mercy. He will extend to us His grace. Not because we deserve it, but because He is holy, righteous, just, loving, merciful, kind and ultimately, fully capable to do what He has promised to do.

Father, never let me forget that You are the Sovereign Lord – as much today as You were during the time of Ezekiel. You are powerful and capable of doing all that You have promised to do – for Israel and for me. When You say, “I will,” You will. Because You can. Amen

Ken Miller
Grow Pastor & Minister to Men