Thoughts and Reflection
Today we read about freedom and sometimes we think that having boundaries will limit our freedom. There is a difference between a license (getting to do whatever we want) and freedom (the power of doing what we ought to do). Interior freedom allows us to love and worship in the way God calls us. If we do not love as we should, this is because we do not have interior freedom.
Ezekiel warns the people against making an alliance with Egypt. God is using the pagan nations, like Babylon, to correct his people. The Lord uses flawed and perhaps evil people to bring about his plan of salvation. During the days of King Josiah, some exchanged Temple worship of God for idolatry. These were places where idol worship and ritual immorality were practiced.
Jeremiah accuses the people of teaching others to sin through a scandal – leading others to sin by one’s sinful example. The effect of. our sins are not confined to us. Our sins not only affect us but also those around us.
About This Project
For the year 2022, I decided that my New Year’s Resolution was to read the whole Bible following the Bible in the Year plan presented by Fr. Mike Schmitz. It is a big and bold undertaking. You can follow along by subscribing. Feel free to look at previous day’s post and comment. It’s something we can all learn from together!
1 ‘If a man divorces his wife and she leaves him and becomes someone else’s, has he the right to go back to her? Has not that piece of land been totally polluted? And you, having played the whore with many lovers, you claim the right to come back to me! Yahweh demands.
2 ‘Lift your eyes to the bare heights and look! Where have you not offered your sex! You waited by the roadside for them like an Arab in the desert. You have polluted the country with your prostitution and your vices:
5 Will he keep up his anger for ever, maintain his wrath to the end?” You say this but still go on sinning, being so obstinate.’
6 In the days of King Josiah, Yahweh said to me, ‘Have you seen what disloyal Israel has done? How she has made her way up every high hill and to every green tree, and played the whore there?
7 I thought, “After doing all this she will come back to me.” But she did not come back. Her faithless sister Judah saw this.
9 And with her shameless whoring, she polluted the country; she committed adultery with stones and pieces of wood.
10 Worse than all this: Judah, her faithless sister, has come back to me not in sincerity, but only in pretence, Yahweh declares.’
11 And Yahweh said to me, ‘Disloyal Israel is upright, compared with faithless Judah.
12 So go and shout words towards the north, and say: “Come back, disloyal Israel, Yahweh declares, I shall frown on you no more, since I am merciful, Yahweh declares. I shall not keep my anger for ever.
13 Only acknowledge your guilt: how you have rebelled against Yahweh your God, how you have prostituted yourself with the Strangers under every green tree and have not listened to my voice, Yahweh declares.
15 I shall give you shepherds after my own heart, who will pasture you wisely and discreetly.
16 Then, when you have increased and grown numerous in the country, Yahweh declares, no one will ever again say: The ark of the covenant of Yahweh! It will not enter their minds, they will not remember it or miss it, nor will another one be made.
17 When that time comes, Jerusalem will be called: The Throne of Yahweh, and all the nations will converge on her, on Yahweh’s name, on Jerusalem, and will no longer follow their own stubborn and wicked inclinations.
19 ‘And I was thinking: How am I to rank you as my children? I shall give you a country of delights, the fairest heritage of all the nations! I thought: You will call me Father and will never cease to follow me.
21 A noise is heard on the bare heights: the weeping and entreaty of the Israelites, for they have gone wildly astray, have forgotten Yahweh their God.
22 ‘Come back, disloyal sons, I want to cure your disloyalty.’ ‘We are here, we are coming to you, for you are Yahweh our God.
25 Let us lie down in our shame, let our confusion cover us, for we have sinned against Yahweh our God, we and our ancestors, from our youth until today, and have not listened to the voice of Yahweh our God.’
1 In the tenth year, on the twelfth day of the tenth month, the word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,
2 ‘Son of man, turn towards Pharaoh king of Egypt and prophesy against him and against the whole of Egypt.
5 I shall drop you in the desert, with all your Nile fish. You will fall in the wilds and not be taken up or buried. I shall give you as food to the wild animals and the birds of heaven,
12 I shall make Egypt the most desolate of countries; for forty years its cities will be the most desolate of wasted cities. And I shall scatter the Egyptians among the nations and disperse them among the countries.
13 The Lord Yahweh, however, says this: After forty years have passed, I shall gather the Egyptians back from the nations where they were dispersed.
14 I shall bring the Egyptian captives back and re-install them in the land of Pathros, in the country of their origin. There they willconstitute a modest kingdom.
17 In the twenty-seventh year, on the first day of the first month, the word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows:
18 ‘Son of man, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon has taken his army in a great expedition against Tyre. Their heads have all gone bald, their shoulders are all chafed, but even so he has derived no profit, either for himself or for his army, from the expedition mounted against Tyre.
19 Since this is so, the Lord Yahweh says this, “Look, I shall hand Egypt over to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon. He will carry off its riches, loot it, put it to the sack; that will be the wages for his army.
21 “That day, I shall raise up a new stock for the House of Israel and allow you to open your mouth among them. And they will know that I am Yahweh.” ‘
1 The word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,
7 “They will be the most desolate of desolate countries, and its cities the most ruined of cities.
17 The young men of On and Pi-Beseth will fall by the sword and the cities themselves go into captivity.
20 In the eleventh year, on the seventh day of the first month, the word of Yahweh was addressed to me as follows,
21 ‘Son of man, I have broken the arm of Pharaoh king of Egypt; you can see that no one has dressed his wound by applying remedies to it, by bandaging it and by dressing it, to make it strong enough to wield the sword.
23 I shall scatter Egypt among the nations and disperse it among the countries.
24 I shall strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon and put my sword in his hand. I shall break Pharaoh’s arms and, confronted with his enemy, he will groan like a dying man.
25 I shall strengthen the arms of the king of Babylon, and the arms of Pharaoh will fall. And they will know that I am Yahweh, when I put my sword into the hands of the king of Babylon and he wields it against Egypt.
13 Even in laughter the heart finds sadness, and joy makes way for sorrow.
15 The simpleton believes any message, a person of discretion treads a careful path.
16 The wise fears evil and avoids it, the fool is insolent and conceited.