“Wail, Woe to the day! For the day is near, Even the day of the Lord is near; It will be a day of clouds, the time of the Gentiles.” – Ezekiel 30:2-3
Many of us, when driving, have gone to make a lane change and read these words in the mirror, “Caution: Objects in mirror are closer than they appear.” This was the message Ezekiel was given to carry to the Egypt and its allies.
When Ezekiel spoke these words, Egypt was established. The pyramids that were a symbol of the great achievements of Egypt stood proud and tall and had already stood there for two thousand years. Even in today’s standards, these were great achievements. And here comes Ezekiel, a prophet who has been in exile with a floundering country whose future was in doubt. And he has the nerve to tell this proud nation that his God, the God of Judah, will bring judgment on Egypt.
Egypt was a proud people and a proud land. It was a beautiful land that was filled with resources that were plentiful. Just read Ezekiel chapter 31 to see how it was described. But, it was because of that pride that God would bring them low. Their trust was in the land and in what they had built. The issue was not in the bounty of the land itself, the problem was in the heart of the people. Their “heart was lifted up in its height” (Ezekiel 31:10).
Throughout the Bible, we see duration’s when nations experience significant moral decay. Many times pride sets in and a nation becomes a place where it is believed, foolishly, that God is no longer needed. As a result, many mistake God’s patience for God’s approval and do not believe that one day judgment will come.
If God were to grade the morality of our nation today, I wonder what He would say. Is the heart of our nation lifted up with pride and turned away from God? Laws and rules will not change a country, a change of heart will. Knowing Jesus changes hearts and spares from judgment. May we know Jesus today because “Objects are closer than they appear.”
“The human heart is ever prone to put off the judgment of God, easily finding solace in the unfounded thought that if God’s visitation be postponed long enough, it may never occur at all.” – (Guzik on Feinberg)