The end of Ezekiel reveals a river flowing from the throne of God.
It starts with a trickle, merely ankle-deep, growing into a rushing river that could not be crossed.
As Ezekiel looks around, he sees many trees (a picture of life) on both sides of the river.
This river of God flows from the throne of God in the temple through the desert, bringing forth life and abundance. It continues down the valley and into the Dead Sea.
The Dead Sea has been a place of death. Nothing survives. Nothing can live there. It’s a place of destruction and despair.
Yet as the river of God descends and meets the Sea, death is destroyed and life abounds.
Ezekiel is told, “and the waters of the sea will be healed” (Ezekiel 47:8). The Dead Sea becomes a body of fresh water where fish flourish.
The Sea that was always dead has been brought to life.
“And by the river on its bank, on one side and on the other, will grow all kinds of trees for food. Their leaves will not wither, and their fruit will not fail. They will bear every month because their water flows out from the sanctuary, and their fruit will be for food and their leaves for healing” (Ezekiel 47:12).
While this prophecy has yet to be fulfilled (the Dead Sea is still a place of death), there is coming a day when people will be able to fish from its banks. Yet while we are awaiting its “healing” and restoration, this is an incredible picture of God’s work in our lives.
We too have been a place of death. All our attempts at living right have been nothing more than filthy rags. We were dead in our tresspasses and sins (Ephesians 2:1).
“But God, being rich in mercy because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with Him, and seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the ages to come He might show the surpassing riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:4-7).
Like the Dead Sea will soon experience life, we too are brought from death to life. Paul goes on to say that our lives are now to swarm with life—”For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them” (Ephesians 2:10).
What an amazing reality we get to experience in Christ Jesus. Let us pause, reflect, and rejoice in the good news of the Gospel!
Know I am praying for you and cheering you ever deeper into Him.
Thoughts to go Deeper
- Examine Exodus 15:22-26 and how God “healed” the bitter waters (water that was “dead”).
- The Ezekiel river flows from the Temple of God. In the New Testament, we are called the temple of the Holy Spirit.
- Jesus says in John 7:38-39, “He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’ But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were going to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Jesus was not yet glorified.” Later in John 19:34 we are told that “blood and water” flowed from the side of Jesus—blood in Jewish culture was a picture of life—thus, a river of life was flowing from the side of Christ in His sacrificial death on our behalf.