Ezekiel 37:1-38:23, James 1:19-2:17, Psalms 117:1-2, Proverbs 28:1
Today is the 18th day of November, welcome to the Daily Audio Bible I am it’s great to be here with you today as we move forward together one step at a time, day by day. And, so, our next step forward, the one we’re taking today leads us back into the book of Ezekiel. We’re reading from the New International Version this week. Ezekiel chapters 37 and 38 today.
Okay, a couple of things today. We read Ezekiel chapter 37 today and that is the story of The Valley of the dry bones and it’s like a visionary experience that the prophet Ezekiel has. And it’s just…it’s been a poignant passage of Scripture in my life for so very long now. Like, one of the earliest things that really stuck out to me in the early years of Daily Audio Bible, I would look forward to getting to Ezekiel 37 because there’s this valley of dry bones. And yes, this valley of dry bones represents Israel, but just look out across the world today, right? And it feels like we’re…we’re just so beaten down in different areas of our lives. It’s like it’s strewn all across a valley. It’s just these bones. And it’s a visionary experience, but for a valley to be full of dry bones meant probably a battle happened there and, you know, the bones are the people who were the casualties and it’s been a long time because their skeletons now. And, so, they’ve decomposed, and they’ve baked out in the sun, and now their skeletons of dry bones. So, like, that’s as dead as dead gets, right? I think that’s what the imagery is supposed to be telling us. Like this is as dead as dead gets. And the Lord comes to the prophet and says, can these bones live? It’s almost like it’s a trick question. But Ezekiel answers like really well, I think you’re the only one that could possibly know that Lord. And the Lord tells him to prophesy and ultimately tells him to call to the four winds, the breath of life. And that which was as dead as dead gets was restored to life again. That imagery, that hope, that no matter how dry, how we may get in our lives there is always hope to be restored. That has really stuck with me and hopefully it sticks with you. There is always hope. Actually, this is kind of where our coffee brand, Windfarm. I know that’s like such a weird transition, but that term, Windfarm is really inspired by Ezekiel chapter 37 and the prophet calling to the four winds, the breath of life. And I just thought, what if that were happening all of the time. What if it was like a Windfarm calling to the four winds, the breath of life all the time because I was seeing these wind farms all over…well…actually all over the world, but definitely all over the country that I live in here the United States. Gigantic windmills, like so big, and just valleys of them I’ve seen in different places in this country. Hundreds and hundreds of them harvesting from the wind and that’s just always stuck with me. What if we knew that this was available, that we could call to the four winds and ask God to send the breath of life into a world that needs the breath of life’s so badly. And, so, I love when we come to Ezekiel 37 each and every year
We’re also reading other books though. We’re reading through the letter of James and we talked about that yesterday. And James is a butt kicker. If there is a butt kicker in the Bible, James at least to me, is that…well…at least me…my butt gets kicked every year. He’s unflinching. He’s not mean, he’s not arrogant, he’s not abusive, he’s just unflinching. So, today we read from that letter, and I quote, “do not merely listen to the word and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom and continues in it, not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it, they will be blessed in what they do.” I’m pretty sure we get the point. Feasting on the Scriptures and then not incorporating them in any way in life, what good is that? Like, that doesn’t change anything. So, that should allow us to take a step back and pause and reflect upon our lives. Like, are we hearing and not in any way doing? Are we hearing so that we can have knowledge, but it doesn’t actually do anything within us, our lives are not transformed in any way? What good is that? What is the point of accumulating biblical knowledge if it’s not going to be used in any way? James is leading to a point and his point is direct. And I quote, “what good is it, my brothers and sisters, if someone claims to have faith but has no deeds. Can such faith save them? Suppose a brother or sister is without clothes and daily food. If one of you says to them go in peace, keep warm, be well fed, but does nothing about their physical needs, what good is it? In the same way”…in this same way, James says, “faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead, dead faith.” So, do we have this weird letter in the New Testament that is not in sync with everything else in the New Testament? Are we needing to work for our salvation all of the sudden now that we’ve gotten to the book of James? No. You can’t save yourself. Nothing you could possibly do could save you. Only God’s mercy upon you, saves you. But if that happens to you, you have one the…the cosmic victory of victories. You got what everyone is searching for. If that doesn’t change how you live, what is that saying? Because Christ inside of us transforming us through faith should change everything about everything, because we have been made new. Like we are no longer who we were. That person died and was resurrected in Christ, a new creation. Everything should actually be different. Our faith should be borne out by the very actions of our lives. That’s not working to achieve something that is the overflow of a transformed person. If your life completely changes then your lifestyle completely changes as well, which gives us plenty. Like James has looked us in the eyes through this letter and challenged us to reflect upon ourselves very carefully. And maybe not make claims that are not borne out in our lives at all. Can’t get much more direct than that.
Holy Spirit come into that, come into that, come into the places where we are hearers, but not doers and come into the places that are just valleys of dry bones within us. You have promised that You are making all things new, which means You are putting things back together again, and that includes us. May we not interfere and may the very gratefulness of our hearts be borne out in the way that we care for one another, in the way that we treat each other, in the way that we treat our world, and in the way that we treat ourselves. Come Holy Spirit we pray into all of this we ask in the name of Jesus. Amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayer and Praise:
Hey…sorry…hey DAB family. So, I have been struggling with losing my two aunts from a year ago. I can’t get over the fact that they both died around the same time. One was closer but I had a strong connection with both. And I want you to pray for me to help me overcome the fear of them dying and me losing other people. Thank you so much. You are amazing and I love listening to you guys. So, love you.
Hi, this is Sunshine and I’m just calling. I just got through doing all of my listening and I’ve been listening probably for two years now. I’ve called in a couple of times. I’m Sunshine. I’m just going through a really hard time in my life. I have been for the last, gosh, five years. My husband has…has left and been living in the wilderness for years now and I’ve been raising our children. They’re adult children. There’s five of them. But it’s been very difficult. They’ve been so full of pain, and they don’t understand their dad and why he’s doing what he’s doing and living a very sinful lifestyle with another. And I’m just standing and asking the Lord to just intervene. And I feel like I’m in the middle trying to pray for his heart to love the Lord as well as pray for my children and to pray for my stand and justice, to love him and forgive him and to forgive others. And also just trying to find joy in…regardless of my circumstances, trying to teach my children conservative morals and first of all faith and to love the Lord because He’s victorious and faith is…is #1 as well as love. So, if I could just ask for you guys to for your prayers for restoration…
Hey guys this is Brooke from Texas. I was just calling in to ask for prayer. I’ve been just kind of in a rut with a Lord for about the past five years, which was kind of spurred on from just a really bad and confusing breakup that just led to a lot of questioning. And I’ve always been someone that has struggled with anxiety and fear and it just feels like in these past few years any fears and anxieties I’ve felt like I’ve conquered in the past have just kind of come back in different ways and a little bit stronger. And it’s just been really hard to…to trust in the Lord. And I don’t know, I just feel like I’m getting everything wrong or I don’t even know but just being riddled with…with fear and anxiety. And the other night I actually woke up after a horrible nightmare and having a bit of a panic attack and I put on the Sleep resource from Brian and I just remember hearing Psalm 34 four through five which says I pray to the Lord and He answered me. He freed me from all my fears. Those who look to Him for help will be radiant with joy. No shadow or shame will darken their faces, which was actually the verse of the day that I saw the next morning. And that’s just my prayer right now. And if you guys could just join me in praying that over me that I would be freed from all of these fears and just be able to live in freedom and in joy with the Lord. Thanks.
Good morning DABC family, this is Rodney from Atlanta. Blessings to all of you. And I want to pray for the lady that called in about the little baby that was sick. She’s very sick apparently. The baby’s name is Storm. I want to pray for that little child. Jesus really concerned about children. He told the disciples, let the children come to me. Forbid them not. Because He is concerned about children. He loves children. I wanna encourage the young lady that called in, maybe talk to the parents and ask them to consider not calling her Storm. The Bible says we have what we say. Maybe consider changing the name or calling her by another name and maybe the deliverance will come. But I want to pray. Father, I thank the Lord right now for touching this baby. Lord lay your nail scarred hands on that baby now. They put 39 stripes on your back. You were wounded for our transgression, You were bruised for our iniquity. The chastisement of our peace was upon You and with Your stripes you are healed. Heal that baby now from the crown of her head to the soles of her feet. I curse the spirit of cancer to die in her body. And God raise this baby up for your glory for a great testimony that she will have in the name of the Lord Jesus. Touch the parents. Give them wisdom Father in how to minister this baby. And Lord we praise you in advance for what you’re going to do. We know you are concerned about children. You love children. So, God heal this little baby. Touch her, heal her. Raise her up for your glory. And God we will praise you in advance. It’s in the matchless, the mighty, the marvelous, and majestic name of Jesus I pray. Amen.
Hello, this is iris from Sun City AZ and I’m calling on behalf of John from Florida who has lost everything in the terrible hurricane. Lord God, I pray that You would come through for John and You would send him help in Jesus’ wholly powerful and precious name. Amen.