The Lord took hold of me, and I was carried away by the Spirit of the Lord to a valley filled with bones. He led me all around among the bones that covered the valley floor. They were scattered everywhere across the ground and were completely dried out. Then he asked me, “Son of man, can these bones become living people again?” Ezekiel 37: 1-3
We often hear about Ezekiels account of the valley of dry bones. It’s one of the most powerful prophetic visions in the old testament. Most of the time we apply the dynamic to ourselves and to the modern church, the body of christ. The concept being that we get ‘dried out’ either through ministry or the cares of the world, and need to get juiced back up and moving again. And that’s a sound interpretation, as far as it goes.
Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to these bones and say, ‘Dry bones, listen to the word of the Lord! This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Look! I am going to put breath into you and make you live again! I will put flesh and muscles on you and cover you with skin. I will put breath into you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’” Ezekiel 37: 4-6
One can easily see, we need to speak to our dry circumstances (prophetic word) and apply what God is showing us. This should put ‘flesh’ back on the bones.
but they still had no breath in them.
Then he said to me, “Speak a prophetic message to the winds, son of man. Speak a prophetic message and say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, O breath, from the four winds! Breathe into these dead bodies so they may live again.’” Ezekiel 37: 9
We need the breath of God to fill us, in order to become fully alive. Notice Ezekiel has to speak prophetically once again before this can take place. There can be no mistaking that we have a part to play in all of this. We are co-laborers with Jesus in this process of re-awakening.
All of this begs the question, however, why we get ‘dry’ in the first place, and is this condition really unavoidable. I have to admit that yes, unfortunately, I’ve had some dry spells in my christian walk. Most believers I know have wrestled with this at one time or another, most of us more than once. Considering that we have the fullness of God dwelling in us, you would think this an unlikely condition to fall into. Never the less, it seems rather common, and I think the causes are probably as varied and different as the Individuals that experience them. The real problem is usually the delayed reaction most of us have in realizing exactly whats become of us. It takes time to recognize the tepid state of our hearts, and then it generally takes a spiritual jolt to fire us back up again.
Herein lies a grave danger. What happens if the dryness, the luke-warm devotion, lasts too long? What happens if the believer has been in this state for so long, they don’t realize their true condition because they’ve gotten used to it? What happens if the bones want to stay dry?
It’s not so far-fetched. We’re creatures who love our comfort zones. We like things to stay the same. We often like the status quo. Why on earth would we want to rock the boat or upset the apple cart? And so we avoid the very things God is bringing to jolt us spiritually back to life.
God wants to breathe his breath into us and make us alive again to live in HIM.
So I spoke the message as he commanded me, and breath came into their bodies. They all came to life and stood up on their feet—a great army. Ezekiel 37: 10
Let’s speak the message as God commands us, receive HIS breath into our lungs, and come alive in Him, a great army born-again of the Spirit, on fire for His kingdom.