Like mother, like daughter?…not us!! Lord have mercy…

Ezekiel 16:44-58

 Because you did not remember the days of your youth, but agitated Me [fn1] with all these things, surely I will also recompense your deeds on your ownhead,” says the Lord GOD. “And you shall not commit lewdness in addition to all your abominations. 

44 “Indeed everyone who quotes proverbs will use this proverb against you: ‘Like mother, like daughter!’ 45 You are your mother’s daughter, loathing husband and children; and you are the sister of your sisters, who loathed their husbands and children; your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite. 

46 “Your elder sister is Samaria, who dwells with her daughters to the north of you; and your younger sister, who dwells to the south of you, is Sodom and her daughters. 47 You did not walk in their ways nor act according to their abominations; but, as if that were too little, you became more corrupt than they in all your ways. 

48 “As I live,” says the Lord GOD, “neither your sister Sodom nor her daughters have done as you and your daughters have done. 49 Look, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: She and her daughter had pride, fullness of food, and abundance of idleness; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. 50 And they were haughty and committed abomination before Me; therefore I took them away as I saw fit. [fn2] 

51 “Samaria did not commit half of your sins; but you have multiplied your abominations more than they, and have justified your sisters by all the abominations which you have done. 52 You who judged your sisters, bear your own shame also, because the sins which you committed were more abominable than theirs; they are more righteous than you. Yes, be disgraced also, and bear your own shame, because you justified your sisters. 

53 “When I bring back their captives, the captives of Sodom and her daughters, and the captives of Samaria and her daughters, then I will also bring back the captives of your captivity among them, 54 that you may bear your own shame and be disgraced by all that you did when you comforted them. 55 When your sisters, Sodom and her daughters, return to their former state, and Samaria and her daughters return to their former state, then you and your daughters will return to your former state. 56 For your sister Sodom was not a byword in your mouth in the days of your pride, 57 before your wickedness was uncovered. It was like the time of the reproach of the daughters of Syria [fn3] and all those around her, and of the daughters of the Philistines, who despise you everywhere. 58 You have paid for your lewdness and your abominations,” says the LORD. 59 For thus says the Lord GOD: “I will deal with you as you have done, who despised the oath by breaking the covenant.

Pasted from <http://www.blueletterbible.org/tools/printerFriendly.cfm?b=Eze&c=16&t=nkjvp>

 “…surely I will also recompense your deeds on your own head,…”

There are consequences for sins and we hear the phrase you reap what you sow in this judgment call made by the Lord God upon Israel whom he has likened to an unfaithful wife.  This passage goes on to describe the qualities that turn on God’s wrath and judgment.  Israel and her ‘sisters’ are described as arrogant, overfed, unconcerned, haughty in one translation and full of pride, full of food, having an abundance of idleness in another translation.  The message is clear, they did not concern themselves with the needs around them, they were engaged in meeting selfish desires and following their own paths, at the expense of others.  Ezekiel relays that:

“…neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy….”

There was no regard for the poor; no desire to help and share with those who were needy.  God counts all this as shameful and an abomination.  The pride-sin caused Israel to look down on her neighbors, the very ones she was emulating.  The Lord says you who judge, bear your own shame…your sins are worse.

“…You who judged your sisters, bear your own shame also, because the sins which you committed were more abominable than theirs;…”

Looking at the term abominable one finds: causing disgust, detestable, loathsome, unpleasant, disagreeable.  This is strong language used to describe the reasons for judgment.  Our sins present in this fashion to the Lord God when we are outside the blood of Jesus.  Israel had scorned the covenant made with the Lord God and this was how he saw her.

The desire to be like everybody else takes us beyond what they do.  And we become more depraved than they.  Lowering the bar ends when it hits the bottom.  How far will we go as a nation, world, society, fellowship?  Where is our standard?  Are we getting it from our peers, our neighbors?  Though the judgment is harsh, the punishment sure, hope is given.  They (Israel)  will be restored.  We have that same hope.  It rests in Christ and God kept his promise. It says in God’s word that we are in the world but not of the world.  We can be separated from the crowd, we do not have to buy into being like everybody else.  When we find our place in Christ we find that we do not think or act like the rest of our world.  We have a higher standard that brings change from the sinful nature.  Change comes, the hope given through Christ frees us from the treadmill of self-made despair.  We no longer find ourselves dependant upon what ‘we’ do but rest upon what he does.  Ezekiel paints a dark picture and sin is dark.  The darkness comes from the absence of the light of the Creator who cannot look upon sin.  We can choose to leave that darkness and enter the light found in Christ.  Consequences fall upon us all, but we do not have to be at the effect of them.  In Christ we can rise above the consequences and experience that peace that cannot be explained. We can be changed from the inside out.

From the Inside out

Let this be our prayer, our covenant with the Lord God:

Hillsong – From The Inside Out – With Subtitles/Lyrics – Mighty to Save DVD

A thousand times I’ve failed
Still Your mercy remains
And should I stumble again
I’m caught in Your grace
Everlasting
Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending
Your glory goes beyond all fame

Your will above all else
My purpose remains
The art of losing myself
In bringing You praise
Everlasting
Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending
Your glory goes beyond all fame

In my heart and my soul
Lord I give You control
Consume me from the inside out
Lord let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

Your will above all else
My purpose remains
The art of losing myself
In bringing You praise
Everlasting
Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending
Your glory goes beyond all fame

In my heart and my soul
Lord I give You control
Consume me from the inside out
Lord let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

Everlasting
Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending
Your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart
Is to bring
You praise
From the inside out
Lord my soul cries out

In my heart and my soul
Lord I give You control
Consume me from the inside out
Lord let justice and praise
Become my embrace
To love You from the inside out

Everlasting
Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending
Your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart
Is to bring
You praise
From the inside out
Lord my soul cries out

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