Ezekiel 18:30-32

Ezekiel 18:30-32

30 “Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall. 31 Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. Why will you die, people of Israel? 32 For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

First of all this is an amazing chapter. Everyone should read the whole chapter as there are many changes in how God approaches the people of Israel and the individuals of Israel. For instance, note verse thirty above

“Therefore, you Israelites, I will judge each of you according to your own ways, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent! Turn away from all your offenses; then sin will not be your downfall.

While addressing the entire nation of Israel in exile – you Israelites – God states He will judge everyone individually – I will judge each of you according to your own ways – and although this is near the end of the chapter it is not new. It is something He has stated throughout the chapter.

14 “But suppose this son has a son who sees all the sins his father commits, and though he sees them, he does not do such things … 17 … He keeps my laws and follows my decrees. He will not die for his father’s sin; he will surely live.
18 But his father will die for his own sin …

God goes even further in verse thirty-one saying Rid yourselves of all the offenses you have committed, and get a new heart and a new spirit. This harkens back to David asking God for a new/pure heart in Psalm 51 when he acknowledged his sin and repented.

10 Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me

While Israel is in exile, God shows Israel and each individual how to have eternal life plus stating His desire not to condemn anyone in verse thirty-two.

For I take no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Sovereign Lord. Repent and live!

God even says a person may have eternal life by turning away from sin (implied by faith) to a life following God, he will have righteousness imputed to him, meaning God with justify him – find him guiltless.

21 “But if a wicked person turns away from all the sins they have committed and keeps all my decrees and does what is just and right, that person will surely live; they will not die. 22 None of the offenses they have committed will be remembered against them. Because of the righteous things they have done, they will live.

It is a wonderful thing to have such a loving and forgiving God who wants us to live by faith in such a way He will choose to justify anyone who does so. For clarification living by faith does not equal righteousness. Righteousness can only result from justification from God. An abbreviated definition of justification is provided additional understanding.

Justification denotes “the act of pronouncing righteous, acquittal;” its precise meaning is determined by the verb dikaioo, “to justify” it is used to signify the determination of a person as just by acquittal from guilt. In the New Testament Romans 4:25 the phrase “for our justification,” is, literally., “because of our justification” (parallel to the preceding clause “for our sins,” and means, all that was necessary on God’s part for our “justification” had been accomplished by the death of Christ. On this account He was raised from the dead.