Read Ezekiel 6
Focus on verse 14
As the details of the Brussels Airport terrorist attack are being made known, it is being postulated that there were some people in in positions of authority, who had been warned that this sort of thing might occur, yet they did not heed the warning. If this is so, I would suspect that there may well be some wringing of hands and deep regrets among that group who now wish they had been more proactive.
There seems to be something within our human nature that causes us to ignore warning signs until it is too late to prevent calamity. On a more personal level we see this occur, particularly among men, when they begin to have early signs of heart problems. It is not that there are no signs; it is that we choose not to do anything about it until the pain is so severe that we can no longer function. At this point it becomes a life or death emergency, while if we had heeded the early signs and asked a doctor do appropriate tests – perhaps the emergency might have been avoided all together.
In today’s reading we see this sort of thing happening on a national level in ancient Israel. God has sent the people numerous warnings and alerts regarding their spiritual condition. He sent messenger after messenger declaring that if they would not change their ways calamity would follow. It would appear that Israel was as stubborn as the average American male who denies that he has a heart condition until the day he keels over from a massive heart attack. What will it take for the people of Israel to acknowledge that God is their Lord? “And I will stretch out my hand against them and make the land desolate and waste, in all their dwelling places, from the wilderness to Riblah. Then they will know that I am the Lord.” (v. 14) Apparently, according to this verse, it will take a calamity not unlike full-scale cardiac arrest! The key phrase here is “Then they will know that I am the Lord.” God just wants them to acknowledge the truth and give up living a lie!
On a more personal level, what will it take for you and I to understand that God is the Lord? Will we wait until the warning meter reaches full-on calamity? Or will we respond to the warnings that we have already heard? It would seem to me that it might be less disruptive to our lives to make the adjustment now even though it can be a humbling experience, which involves admitting that we have been arrogant fools. Considering that the alternative will ultimately prove that we have been arrogant fools in a much more humiliating way it may end up being a small price to pay in comparison.