God calls those dead in sin to live before him through the word of God.
This is the point of God's word to Ezekiel in Ezekiel 37:4-6, which says, "Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O dry bones, hear the word of the Lord. Thus says the Lord God to these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live. And I will lay sinews upon you, and will cause flesh to come upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live, and you shall know that I am the Lord,” (ESV).
To prophesy is to speak forth the word of God. Here, Ezekiel was told to speak forth God’s word to dry bones, which seemed to make about as much sense as proclaiming the gospel in a graveyard, but God knew that his word gives life!
If Ezekiel would preach, then God would raise the dead. And Ezekiel obeyed.
Ezekiel says in Ezekiel 37:7, “So I prophesied as I was commanded.” And God was, of course, faithful to his word - the dry bones began to come together!
Preaching, proclaiming, or speaking forth the word of God concerning Jesus seems like foolishness to most people today. Paul said that had been and always would be the case. In 1 Corinthians 1:18, he wrote, “For the word of the cross is folly to those who are perishing...”
Paul also said that the day was coming when people would “not endure sound teaching, but having itching ears they (would) accumulate for themselves teachers to suit their own passions, and (would) turn away from listening to the truth,” (2 Tim. 4:3-4). Can any of us doubt that that day has arrived?
So much of what passes for preaching today is actually false teaching! Many of those who are not false teachers are light-weight preachers with practical tips for your family or your career, but there’s no Christ in their sermons! And if there is no Christ in their sermons, then the word of God has not been preached and the dead won’t be raised!
Men are DEAD in their sins before God and only the word of God by the Spirit of God will give them life!
We as individual Christians and as a body of believers must be absolutely committed to the proclamation of God’s word because God’s word gives life!
Paul wrote in Romans 10:17, “…faith comes from hearing, and hearing through word of Christ.” How is that those dead in sin are brought to new life through faith in Christ? It is through the speaking forth, the preaching, the proclaiming of the word of Christ!
As men hear the gospel, they are convicted of all their blasphemy, all their idolatry, all their irreverence and distrust toward God. They are convicted of their disregard for authority, of their sinful anger, of their lusts, their greed and covetousness and dishonesty!
As they hear the word of Christ, they are brought to understand that everyone of those sins on its own is deserving of eternal death in hell. As they hear the gospel, men feel the danger of God’s wrath bearing down on them and cling to the only salvation that God offers.
In Jesus Christ crucified and resurrected, God has made the way of salvation available to all those who would call on the Name of Jesus for salvation!The good news is that you can be forgiven! God’s wrath can pass over you! You can be brought from death to life through faith in Christ Jesus if you will repent of you sins and give your life to Jesus!
Will you repent today of your disbelief and distrust and disrespect toward God?
Will you call on Jesus to save you?
Christian, will we obey Jesus? Will we be obedient to prophesy like Ezekiel, to speak forth God’s word as he commands?
In Romans 10:14, God asks us, “How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching?”
Will you preach, Christian? Will you speak forth the word of God so that those dead in sin will be born again through faith in Christ? Will you demand that I and every preacher who steps into a pulpit faithfully proclaim the word of God because you know that only God’s word gives life?