What does obedience look like? It looks like Ezekiel. Ezekiel was faced with a difficult task but it didn’t keep him from obeying the commands of God. There are a couple things we pick up when we read about Ezekiel besides his obedience. We see that every mission he was given after his willingness to obey he was equipped with the power to complete the mission that was given to him by God. Not only was he equipped, he only went where God instructed him to go and everywhere he went God was there….Let that sink in.
Now just imagine this for a second. God tells Ezekiel to go to people that are one rebellious and stubborn who might not listen to what he has to say and even if they do listen their still rebellious people. That’s their character. Then in the midst of telling him about their character he informs him that he (God) is sending him (Ezekiel) where briers and thorns are all around him and that he will be living among scorpions. This is being told to him before he even goes.
4 The people to whom I am sending you are obstinate and stubborn. Say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says.’ 5 And whether they listen or fail to listen—for they are a rebellious people—they will know that a prophet has been among them. 6 And you, son of man, do not be afraid of them or their words. Do not be afraid, though briers and thorns are all around you and you live among scorpions. Do not be afraid of what they say or be terrified by them, though they are a rebellious people.
Now we know when you’re walking through an area with briers which or sharp and prickly and thorns they hurt if you get stuck by them and they usually stick and cause you to get entangled in them. Then consider scorpions the fact that not only just like thorns they pierce with a sharp sting their deadly. But this is where God is sending him warning him not to take on the habit of rebellion like those around him but instead speak the words provided by God.
7 You must speak my words to them, whether they listen or fail to listen, for they are rebellious. 8 But you, son of man, listen to what I say to you. Do not rebel like that rebellious people; open your mouth and eat what I give you.”
Ezekiel was going into a situation where from the jump he would face opposition even though he was called by God to be his watchman and would be told he would be tied up physically and symbolically have to display in his life by his actions what the people of Israel would eventually experience and he was obedient in the midst of what he would have to endure because it was God’s will.
22 The hand of the Lord was on me there, and he said to me, “Get up and go out to the plain, and there I will speak to you.” 23 So I got up and went out to the plain. And the glory of the Lord was standing there, like the glory I had seen by the Kebar River, and I fell face down.
24 Then the Spirit came into me and raised me to my feet. He spoke to me and said: “Go, shut yourself inside your house. 25 And you, son of man, they will tie with ropes; you will be bound so that you cannot go out among the people. 26 I will make your tongue stick to the roof of your mouth so that you will be silent and unable to rebuke them, for they are a rebellious people. 27 But when I speak to you, I will open your mouth and you shall say to them, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says.’ Whoever will listen let them listen, and whoever will refuse let them refuse; for they are a rebellious people.
Sometimes God will call us to do difficult things but like Ezekiel he’ll be with us walking with us through those difficult times and like Ezekiel we’ll be rewarded one day for our obedience but it may not just be here!!!!