January 22, 2020 – Wednesday
Ezekiel 33:30-32 NIV
30 “As for you, son of man, your people are talking together about you by the walls and at the doors of the houses, saying to each other, ‘Come and hear the message that has come from the Lord.’
31 My people come to you, as they usually do, and sit before you to hear your words, but they do not put them into practice. Their mouths speak of love, but their hearts are greedy for unjust gain.
32 Indeed, to them you are nothing more than one who sings love songs with a beautiful voice and plays an instrument well, for they hear your words but do not put them into practice.
In today’s verses God is speaking to Ezekiel and He is unhappy. God tells Ezekiel twice why He is unhappy. Consider verse 31 My people come to you, as they usually do, and sit before you to hear your words, but they do not put them into practice. Their mouths speak of love, but their hearts are greedy for unjust gain. And then in verse 32 Indeed, to them you are nothing more than one who sings love songs with a beautiful voice and plays an instrument well, for they hear your words but do not put them into practice.
What He is upset with is the fact that His people hear the words they need to hear, but they do not put them into practice and but do not put them into practice. I used boldface for I imagine God speaking very strongly into Ezekiel’s mind, heart, and soul when He makes those final statements in those two verses and the last one even more so.
Think about that, after God had instructed Ezekiel to give the following warning, that’s when He said they are not putting Ezekiel’s words into practice. 27‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: As surely as I live, those who are left in the ruins will fall by the sword, those out in the country I will give to the wild animals to be devoured, and those in strongholds and caves will die of a plague. 28 I will make the land a desolate waste, and her proud strength will come to an end, and the mountains of Israel will become desolate so that no one will cross them. 29 Then they will know that I am the Lord, when I have made the land a desolate waste because of all the detestable things they have done.’
God is speaking to those who thought they had avoided His judgment. They were the ones left behind while the rest of His people were in exile. Jerusalem had finally been conquered and almost everyone was in exile. If that was not bad enough, God was letting them know even greater tragedies awaited them because of their lip service to God while they continued to chase mammon.
Think things have changed? Think again as many modern Christian churches follow the example given in Ezekiel. They attend church, respond greatly to the message and the worship, but when they leave the church they do not put God’s word into practice. When the ‘rubber meets the road’ nothing has changed except they can say they attended church, sang songs of worship, even gave an offering, and maybe even prayed a prayer of sorts. But when they left the church they left all that had been said behind and they did not put God’s words into practice.
For whatever reason their hearts remain set on anything other than Jesus, His Father, and the Holy Spirit and how They would have them live. Their fruits? If John the Baptist were around he would be asking them “Where are the fruits of your repentance?” Or in modern day parlance “Where is the evidence of your changed heart outside of the four walls of your church?”
What are you doing? Putting God’s word into practice or are you still doing anything but that?