The book of Ezekiel takes place in Babylon during the Babylonian captivity. Therefore, Ezekiel is one of the “exilic” prophets. He encouraged the exiles to be faithful during the seventy-year exile. It is a story of glory departed and glory restored. God exiled His people to punish them, but that was not His only objective. He chastised them in order to restore them. Ezekiel’s wife dies in 587 at the beginning of the siege of Jerusalem.
In Ezekiel, God is glorifying Himself through His glory, so that He might demonstrate His superior goodness in the salvation sinners, the damnation of the wicked, and for the preservation of His people for His eternal glory, and their eternal joy.
The author identifies himself as Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi (Ezek. 1:1–3). He was a contemporary of Jeremiah and Daniel.
Ezekiel prophesied from the 5th year of King Jehoiachin’s captivity (590 B.C.) to the 27th year (570 B.C.). Ezekiel does not record Jehoiachin’s release from prison (561 B.C.), making it likely that his book was completed before this event.
“And above the firmament over their heads was the likeness of a throne, in appearance like a sapphire stone; on the likeness of the throne was a likeness with the appearance of a man high above it. Also from the appearance of His waist and upward I saw, as it were, the color of amber with the appearance of fire all around within it; and from the appearance of His waist and downward I saw, as it were, the appearance of fire with brightness all around. Like the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the glory of the Lord.
“So when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.”
“Again He said to me, ‘Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, “O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones: ‘Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the Lord.’ ”’ ”
When did Ezekiel prophesy?
During the Babylonian Captivity.
When was Ezekiel deported?
Probably during the first deportation in 605 B.C.
How old was Ezekiel when he started prophesying?
30 years old (Ezek. 1:1).
Where did he begin his prophetic ministry?
In the land of the Chaldeans, by the River Chebar (Ezek. 1:1, 3).
What title do Ezekiel and Jesus have in common?
Son of Man.
What kind of visions did Ezekiel see?
Visions of God (Ezek. 1:1).
Who did God send Ezekiel to?
The children of Israel (Ezek. 2:3).
What happens to those who do not warn the wicked to turn from their wickedness?
The blood of the wicked is required at their hand (Ezek. 3:18).
What were the sins of Sodom?
Pride, fullness of food, idleness, refusal to help the poor, haughtiness, and committing an abomination (Ezek. 16:49–50).