Ezekiel opens a series of prophecies against various nations for their sins.
Ezekiel Chapter 25
Lessons from the text
Vengeance Is Mine In this chapter, both the Edomites and Philistines are rebuked for taking vengeance on Israel. This is because Scripture is clear that only God is to judge and take vengeance for wrongdoing (Rom. 12:19, Deut. 32:35). Whenever someone commits a sin against us, we are to forgive that person; we are not to hold a grudge or try to get even with that person. God alone will judge the actions of others. We are to concern ourselves only with our personal actions and make sure that we are following God’s will for our lives. If someone else mistreats us, hates us, or even abuses us, we are to forgive that person no matter how grievous the sin is against us. We can forgive because we know that one day that person will pay the full penalty for the choices that person has made in the great judgment day of God where all those who have done evil and not repented of that evil will be caste into the lake of fire to burn for all eternity. This confidence in God to take vengeance for us allows us to move past whatever harm is inflicted on us in this life and be concerned for that person’s soul. We can all strive to be like Stephen who was able to earnestly pray for the well-being of the souls of the very men who were murdering him: “Lord, lay not this sin to their charge” (Acts 9:60).
Verse from Verse Commentary
1-6 The Ammonites were the result of the sinful relationship between Lot and his younger daughter (Gen. 19:35-38). Rather than caring for the calamity of their brothers, the Ammonites were glad to see the Jews distressed. This sorely displeased God, revealing that God is displeased when one takes delight in another’s difficulties. As punishment, God will allow the same judgment that fell on Israel to fall on Ammon. See also Ezekiel 21:18-24 and Jeremiah 49:1-16.
7 God states again that the purpose of judgment is to make both the one being judged and those watching the judgment aware that He is the true god. See Ezekiel 6:7-14, 7:7-9, 7:27, 11:10-12, 12:20, 13:21-23, 14:8, 15:7, and 23:49.
8-10 Moab was Ammon’s brother born from Lot and his elder daughter (Gen. 19:35-38). The Moabites look down on the Jews; they fail to acknowledge that the Jews are God’s chosen people. For this, they will suffer the wrath of God, but not to the extent of the Ammonites; the Ammonites will be completely destroyed but the Moabites will have a remnant that will survive (Isa. 15:5, 16:14).
11 God repeats that His judgments are meant to bring knowledge of His sovereignty (v. 7).
12-14 Edom was Jacob’s older twin brother (Gen. 25:21-26). According to the prophesy given before their birth, both Edom and Jacob (Israel) inherited a kingdom. Edom and Israel began military combat in Saul’s day; at that time, Edom is described as an enemy of Israel (I Sam. 14:47). The point is that instead of remembering their blood relationship, the Edomites bore resentment against their Jewish brothers. In response, God will destroy them.
15-17 The Philistines have been an enemy to Israel ever since the Exodus. At that time, God gave Israel the land of the Canaanites all the way to the boarders of the Philistines and the territory of five Philistines lords (Josh. 13:2-3). As a result, the two nations have been fighting ever since. Noteworthy is that God punished the Philistines to hanging on to an old grudge; it is important for one to be able to forgive transgressions and let go of the desire for vengeance.
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