阅读先知书的困难是在于他们常常向神的百姓所宣告的严厉审判。今天的读经再次属于这种范畴，并且有一些宣告是相当难以接受的（结5:10，12）。神对他自己的百姓 “以怒气和忿怒，并烈怒的责备” 施行审判（5:15）。必有饥荒，瘟疫和流血（5:17），并将尸首和骸骨抛散在他们所敬拜的偶像和祭坛面前（6:5）。所有这些都是为了一个目的：“你们就知道我是耶和华”（6:7，10，13，14）。
Ezekiel 4 [Read]
Ezekiel 5 [Read]
Ezekiel 6 [Read]
Hebrews 10:1-23 [Read]
Hiking in the mountains is an enjoyable activity. Besides the beautiful nature displayed by the streams, falls, rocks, and trees, the scenery at the top is often breath-taking. It broadens our heart and humbles our soul by realizing how great God is and how small we are. But hiking can also be dangerous. One can easily get lost in the woods if not following the trail marks, and a misstep on the top can have severe consequences. Therefore, lesson number one for hikers is to revere the mountain, not for its great scenery, but for the potential consequences of irreverence. With such reverence, one may then enjoy the mountain. Proper respect always comes before enjoyment.
The difficult thing in reading the Prophets is the harsh judgment they often announce against the people of God. Today’s reading again falls into such category, and some of the announcements are hard to take (Eze 5:10, 12). God inflicts punishments upon his own people “in anger and in wrath and with stinging rebuke” (5:15). There will be famine, plague, and bloodshed (5:17), and bodies and bones will be scattered before the idols and altars they built for worship (6:5). All of these are for a purpose: “and you will know that I am the LORD” (6:7, 10, 13, 14).
Before leaving the people, Moses admonished them to fear the LORD their God and to walk in all his ways for their good (Dt 10:12-13). After finishing dividing the land, Joshua admonished the people to fear the LORD and serve him with all faithfulness (Jos 24:14). After reluctantly anointing Saul as the king of Israel, Samuel admonished the people to fear the LORD and to serve him faithfully with all their heart (1Sa 12:24). The pattern is very clear. Loving God is based on a true reverence of him, and only those who revere God experience true love from God.
Everyone is seeking love these days. When we can’t get it from one source, we go to another. But there is only one true source of love, and the requirement is to revere that source. God is love, and receiving such endless love begins with reverence through admitting our own sins, through genuine repentance, and through sincere submission to follow him to the Calvary. Fear of God is not only the beginning of wisdom, but it’s also the beginning of a life to love God and to be loved by God.
Keep on reading.