The Remnant of Israel
In Ezek 11:13-25, Ezekiel learned of God’s plans for the remnant of Israel. Though he was concerned that they would all be destroyed, God told him they would be safe and return.
You might remember from our prior lesson that the residue of the people left in Jerusalem thought they were safe. They imagined Jerusalem as a caldron to protect them. The Lord showed them, instead, that he would deliver them into the hands of strangers who would slay them with the sword, Ezek 11:8-10.
After Ezekiel prophesied their destruction, Pelatiah died, Ezek 11:13. He was one of the two princes that Ezekiel named in verse 1. When he died, Ezekiel fell down upon his face, and cried out to God. In this he was like Moses and Aaron in Num 16:44-45.
Ezekiel questioned whether God would make a full end of the remnant. Many were already in captivity in Babylon. The six men in Ezek 9:2 had slain many with the slaughter weapons in their hands. And now Pelatiah was dead. When Ezekiel asked this same question in Ezekiel 9:8, the answer was, “Mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity,” Ezek 9:10.
The Inhabitants Were Not Safe in Jerusalem
In Ezek 11:14-15, the Lord replied to Ezekiel’s question. He began by mentioning that the inhabitants of Jerusalem were saying to the captives of the house of Israel, Get you far from the Lord. “Get you” means to cause to move or be removed. They were saying to the rest of Israel who were in Babylon, be removed far from the Lord. This implied that the captives in Babylon had moved far from the Lord by surrendering to go into captivity. There was a lot of opposition in Jerusalem to surrendering, Jer 38:2-4.
The inhabitants in Jerusalem were also saying, Unto us is this land given. That is, this is our land, we have not abandoned it, the Lord has given it to us. They were implying that the Lord would protect them in Jerusalem, like the metaphor of the caldron suggested, v.3. Of course, they were wrong.
Look down at Ezek 11:21. The Lord said he would recompense those whose hearts walked after detestable things and abominations. See Jer 16:18 and Ezek 9:10. They had been ignoring the Lord’s warnings. When the Lord warns you, you better believe him.
The Remnant Was Safe in Captivity
In Ezek 11:16, the Lord agreed that he had cast them far off and scattered them among the countries. Nevertheless, he would be a little sanctuary to them where they were. That is, he was with them, rather than those who had stayed in Jerusalem. The ones in Jerusalem were the ones who were far from the Lord.
The Remnant of Israel Will Return to Jerusalem
In Ezek 11:17, the Lord said he would eventually gather the outcasts from the lands where he scattered them. And he would give them the land of Israel upon their return. This is exactly the opposite of what the inhabitants were saying.
The Remnant of Israel Will Be Given a New Heart
In Ezek 11:18, when they return they will take away all the detestable and abominable things that the inhabitants still had. They won’t let this happen again.
Furthermore, in Ezek 11:19-20, the Lord said he would give them one heart and a new spirit and he would take their stony heart out and give them an heart of flesh. See this again in Ezek 36:26-28. With these changes they will walk in his statutes and keep his ordinances. They will be his people and he will be their God.
The Remnant of Israel Will Inhabit the Land
You saw this in Ezek 36:28. You see it also in Jer 32, when Jeremiah bought Hanameel’s field. Look what the Lord said about the return of the captives in Jer 32:37-44.
The Glory of the Lord Moved and Ezekiel Returned
In Ezek 11:22-23, the glory of the Lord moved from the city to the mount on the east side of the city. This is the Mount of Olives, where Jesus will dismount at the 2nd Advent, Zech 14:4.
In Ezek 11:24-25 after the Lord’s glory moved, the Spirit brought Ezekiel back to the captives in Chaldea. The vision went up from him and he told them all things the Lord showed him. No doubt, Ezekiel and the captives were comforted to know that the Lord would be with them in captivity.