Live or Die (Ezekiel 18-19)

30 “Therefore I will judge you, O house of Israel, every one according to his ways, declares the Lord God. Repent and turn from all your transgressions, lest iniquity be your ruin. Ezekiel 18:30

Imagine standing in front of your captors and facing a choice. Your choice will determine if you live our die. The choice is simple: Recant your faith and follow false gods or stick with your faith and die with Jesus. This choice seems easy for we who live without persecution, but for those in persecution, the choice is really life or death.

As I consider the illustration, my mind turns to Ezekiel who was placing before his own people life or death. The people had chosen to follow a sinful path that would lead to certain earthly and eternal death. But it did not have to be this way.

Now, it seems that some were blaming God for their circumstance. In their view, their parents raised them to be sinners and they were just following in their parents footsteps. But God said, you will not be judged by what your parents did. Here is a summary of Ezekiel 18:

  • The soul that sins shall die (18:4).
  • The soul that turns to God shall live (18:20).

Brothers and sisters, God was not happy with their choice to live in death. God was not content to let the world die in sin. God had zero pleasure in the death of the wicked. God desired and still desires that each person would turn from their sin and embrace the way of life.

31 Cast away from you all the transgressions that you have committed, and make yourselves a new heart and a new spirit! Why will you die, O house of Israel? 32 For I have no pleasure in the death of anyone, declares the Lord God; so turn, and live.”

God so wanted this that He made the supreme sacrifice of sending His Own Son (John 3:16). All who come to Him are made new, forgiven, given a new heart and a new life.

Today, every person can choose life. Paul writing to Titus gave this wonderful news:

11 For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, 12 training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, 13 waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, 14 who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works. Titus 2:11-14

Through grace sinners are brought to life.

In grace sinners turn from the old life.

In power sinners live a new life.

2 questions:

  1. What type of life will you live today?
  2. Who will you rescue from death today?

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