Ezekiel 20 and Psalm 66-67

In Ezekiel 20, like in Ezekiel 8, the elders come to the prophet for consultation. God is not anxious to share with the elders the direction they seek. D. A. Carson provides an explanation in his commentary,

The first is the sheer glory of God: that is one of God’s driving concerns behind the judgments that have fallen and are about to fall. For the sake of his own name God has done what would keep his name “from being profaned in the eyes of the nations in whose sight [he] had brought them out” (20:14; cf. 20:22). This theme is further developed in chapters 36 and 39. It is so central in Scripture that we are in danger of overlooking it precisely because of its familiarity.1

In Psalm 66, the psalmist offers up praise to God for all of the rich blessings He has given. The biggest impression for me from this psalm comes at the very end (Ps. 66:19-20). It is the praise that I hope to offer some day soon,

But truly God has listened; he has attended to the voice of my prayer. Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer or removed his steadfast love from me!

Psalm 67 is a plea for the blessing of God. “Lord, please make Your face to shine upon us!” (Ps. 67:1). How can God be please with me and happy with me? It is only because of the sanctifying work of Jesus in my life through the Holy Spirit. God is not please with me because of my appearance, because of the charitable works that I have, or because of how blessed my life is; He is pleased with me because of the redemptive work of His Son with my life.

1 D. A. Carson, For the Love of God: a Daily Companion for Discovering the Riches of God’s Word., vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1998), 25.

Ezekiel 19 and Psalm 64-65

The first chapter from Carson’s devotional for today gives a sufficient explanation of Ezekiel 19,

The lament for Israel’s princes (Ezek. 19) is at one level pretty straightforward. The lioness in the opening verses of the psalm is the nation as a whole, which gave birth to the kings. Then as now, the lion was the king of beasts, and so it readily served as a symbol for the royal Davidic line (e.g., Gen. 49:9; Mic. 5:8). In Ezekiel 19:10-14 the nation is the vineyard.1

The fall of a once mighty nation because of it’s sin is sobering. Carson sums it with,

That is neither the first nor the last time that a nation or an institution was destroyed from within. Readers of history may call to mind the Roman Empire, the Russian years under Communism, certain local churches, Christian universities, confessional seminaries, and on and on. They know that human institutions can never be so safely constructed that outcomes are guaranteed. For the heart of the human dilemma is so deeply rooted in personal sin that no structure can finally reform it.2

“Hide Me From the Wicked” is the title summary of Psalm 64 in my Logos Bible. I believe it is David on the run and pleading for God to step in and deal with David’s enemies who pursue him. I, likewise, plead for God (Ps. 64:1) to intervene and subdue my enemy, Satan, and provide me with a place of refuge (Ps. 64:10) which David speaks about frequently in the Psalms.

Psalm 65 speaks of the abundant blessings of God upon His people. I especially like the words of Ps. 65:7,

who stills the roaring of the seas, the roaring of their waves, the tumult of the peoples,

1 D. A. Carson, For the Love of God: a Daily Companion for Discovering the Riches of God’s Word., vol. 2 (Wheaton, IL: Crossway Books, 1998), 25.

2 Carson.