Ezekiel was one far out dude. I could focus on the wheels, sing about dem dry bones or wish that I could see the beasts of his prophecy in the zoo but I want to step away from the details of Ezekiel’s message. Let’s focus on an aspect of Ezekiel’s life that make’s him another Hupomone Man.
Ezekiel was from a priestly family and like Daniel he was taken from his home in Israel and brought to Babylon. His family was probably prominent and influential. Ryrie places him among the many hostages that Nebuchadnezzar took to ensure the cooperation of his newly conquered land. Unlike Isaiah and Jeremiah, Ezekiel prophesied to the Jews in Babylon.
As I read through Ezekiel this time around, I really tried to keep the words of the prophecies given to him by God out of focus. I did not want to get caught up in the wonder and beautiful detail of Ezekiel’s dreams. I really wanted to get a feel for Ezekiel the man. This is perhaps most difficult to do with Ezekiel among those whom we term the Major Prophets as there is minimal historical detail. With the details out of focus I began to notice a recurring phrase: “Then you will know that I am the Lord”. It takes some different forms, “and then you shall know that I am the Lord.” The Holy Spirit whispered in my ear, “Hupomone Men have purpose.”. Honestly it took me a bit to make the connection (I probably could have used Ezekiel’s help….connecting the bones of the thought together….ok ouch that was bad).
Ezekiel completely understood the purpose of everything that he said and did. Speaking for God is not an abstract activity. The life of the Hupomone Man is not an abstract activity. It has purpose. It really has one overarching purpose. That purpose is to act, speak, write…to live in such a way that those around you can “know that He is the Lord.” Peter put it this way, “Whoever speaks, is to do so as one who is speaking the utterances of God; whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the strength which God supplies, sot that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen” 1 Peter 4:11
As Hupomone Men we can be sure that everything that happens in our lives is some how contributing to this purpose, either for ourselves or for those around us. Ezekiel deeply understood this even as his wife passed away, there was purpose. ( I deal more with this particular story here. ) This is all part of our great assurance that God is in control. We cannot, we must not allow circumstances to impinge on this great Peace that we have as children of God. Ezekiel never lost sight of his purpose through all of the turmoil, through all the circumstances of his life. He demonstrated Major Endurance and certainly earned the title of Hupomone Man.