Monday, August 8, 2016

Glory Returns

TODAY’S SPECIAL: Ezekiel 43:1-5

TO CHEW ON: "Then the Spirit lifted me up and brought me into the inner court, and the glory of the Lord filled the temple." Ezekiel 43:5

It was September of 592 B.C. when Ezekiel had his first vision of the temple. Everything about that vision was horrible. As God took him to Jerusalem he saw an idol of the goddess Asherah set up right in the temple. He saw priests offering animal sacrifices God had never commanded. Women were mourning the death of the Sumerian idol god Tammuz. Men worshiped the sun. Then he saw God’s glory cloud lift and move out of the temple and away from Jerusalem (Ezekiel 8, 9, 10).

Now it was about twenty years later. Ezekiel was getting old. Maybe he wondered if things would ever change for the Israelites in Babylon. Would they ever go home again? Would they ever experience God’s glory again? One day God gave him hope in another vision of the temple.


Like the first time, Ezekiel felt like he was physically there. The temple was rebuilt. As God showed him around it, Ezekiel measured each room and gateway. Finally he came to the east gate. He looked at the sky and noticed a cloud. It got bigger and brighter and he heard a sound coming from it, like a waterfall. He recognized this was God’s glory cloud. It went into the temple. Again the temple was filled with God’s presence!


Is there something in your life that feels as disappointing as Ezekiel’s glory-forsaken temple? Maybe you can no longer play a favorite sport because of an injury. Maybe someone has abused you so your innocence is gone. Maybe your dad or mom walked out on your family. Whatever your disappointment, bring it to God. He can restore old dreams like he restored the temple in Ezekiel’s vision. He can bring back the glory!

PRAYER: Dear God, please bring Your glory back to the places in my life that are filled with disappointment. Amen.


MORE: Glory Sightings
Other Bible characters also saw God’s glory. Match the people who saw God’s glory with how it looked or felt.

1. Israelites (Exodus 24:17)
2. Priests (1 Kings 8:11)
3. Shepherds (Luke 2:9)
4. Stephen (Acts 7:55)


A. God’s glory shone around angels
B. God’s glory looked like fire on top of a mountain.
C. He saw heaven, God’s glory and Jesus just before he died.
D. God’s glory felt so powerful they couldn’t do their jobs.

ANSWERS

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Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from THE HOLY BIBLE, NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION®, NIV® Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.


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