Search Engine

Provide a keyword or phrase below to find blog entries relevant to your search:

Results For

No Results
©Michael Player (Hezekiah's Tunnel)

Chapter 37:1-14 (ESV)

Posted on March 31, 2023  - By Chris LaBelle  

Chapter 37:1-14 (ESV) - The hand of the Lord was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the Lord and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones. And he led me around among them, and behold, there were very many on the surface of the valley, and behold, they were very dry. And he said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” And I answered, “O Lord God, you know.” Then he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord.”

So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I prophesied, there was a sound, and behold, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. And I looked, and behold, there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them. But there was no breath in them. Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, Thus says the Lord God: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.” So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived and stood on their feet, an exceedingly great army.

Then he said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are indeed cut off.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord God: Behold, I will open your graves and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will bring you into the land of Israel. And you shall know that I am the Lord, when I open your graves, and raise you from your graves, O my people. And I will put my Spirit within you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it, declares the Lord.”

Question to consider: How does Ezekiel typify Jesus as the son of man in this passage?

There are a number of lenses in which we can view this particular vision given to Ezekiel. The first is in light of this expression of doom given by Ezekiel’s contemporaries, “Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are indeed cut off.” The very God who formed man out of the dust and gave him life could provide hope to a people whom He had cut off from their land in judgment. Not only would God revive them by drawing them out of captivity at the end of their exile, but He would unite the two kingdoms, for the bones made up the “whole house of Israel.” This would be a tremendous encouragement to those who were in exile and longed to be reunited with one another in the land, and of course, this was fulfilled during the days of Nehemiah, seventy years into their exile.

The second is in light of the hope of resurrection. The Sadducees in 1st century AD Jerusalem rejected the notion of resurrection because they did not believe that the prophets beyond Moses spoke the true word of the Lord. Other than the fact that the books of Moses established the priesthood in which they held, I’d be curious to know why they rejected the prophets and Psalms. It’s possible that the false prophets and corrupt kings of that time sullied their view of the words and actions of all prophets and kings. The other sects of Judaism saw passages like this one as proof that one day God would raise all of Israel from their graves and bring them into the land promised to Abraham where they would remain forever by the hand of the Lord. This was most likely the view of ones like Martha in John 11:17-24, “Now when Jesus came, he found that Lazarus had already been in the tomb four days. Bethany was near Jerusalem, about two miles off, and many of the Jews had come to Martha and Mary to console them concerning their brother. So when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary remained seated in the house. Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that whatever you ask from God, God will give you.’ Jesus said to her, ‘Your brother will rise again.’ Martha said to him, ‘I know that he will rise again in the resurrection on the last day.’”

This leads to the third lens in which Ezekiel prophesied to the bones as the “son of man” which pointed to the true Son of Man, Chris Jesus. Jesus told Martha, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live, and everyone who lives and believes in me shall never die.” (John 11:25) Not only will Jesus raise up all of the dry bones on the last day, but He is the resurrection and the life. As Paul wrote to the church in Rome, “Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life.” (Romans 6:3-4)

The army in this vision corresponds to the multitude in Revelation, “After this I looked, and behold, a great multitude that no one could number, from every nation, from all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’” (Revelation 7:9-10) The “whole house of Israel” in this sense included not only the two kingdoms but all who would be clothed in the righteousness of Christ.


Dear Lord, we look forward to the day when You will prophesy to all the bones at the resurrection. May we look to You for our salvation so that our resurrection can be one of rejoicing rather than despair. For You have the words of eternal life. Amen.