Ezekiel and The Glory Of The LORD

Ezekiel and The Glory Of The LORD

The glory of the LORD plays an important part in the vision sequence of Ezekiel's book. In the background of this is the glory of the LORD. When God brought Israel into the wilderness, He manifested 'the glory of the LORD unto them' (Ex. 16:7). When they had finished building and sanctifying the tabernacle, the glory of the LORD came and filled the tabernacle (Ex. 40:34-35). When Solomon built the temple we again encountered this phenomenon of the glory of the LORD. When the priests had sanctified it and came out of the Holy Place, a cloud filled the house of the LORD" and "the glory of the LORD filled the house of the LORD" (1Kings 8:10-11).

Such was an indication of the LORD dwelling among His people. This should have inspired their loyalty and faithfulness to Him as their God. This should have encouraged them to have no other gods before Him and to serve no other gods but the LORD. We have seen that such was not the case. In each generation they have abandoned the LORD. They have worshiped and served the gods of the lands. They have even at times turned the temple of the LORD into a place to worship these idols. After hundreds of years of warnings, the LORD has had enough.

In Ezekiel's first vision he is shown the glory of the LORD (chapters 1-3). He sees what some have called the 'war chariot of God' and the creatures that are part of it are described as "…the likeness of the glory of the LORD" (1:28). He is warned to make sure he proclaims the message to these people and to strengthen him in such effort God appears unto him. He describes it as "… the glory of the LORD stood there… I fell on my face.  (3:23)

In the second vision of God's glory, Ezekiel is taken (in a vision) to the temple in Jerusalem (8:1-3).  He sees the city of Jerusalem and the temple "and behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there, like the vision that I saw in the valley" (8:4). Then he is shown the ungodliness and the idolatry that is taking place among the leaders of the people. They were brazen enough to even bring such inside the temple which should have been holy and sacred. In chapter 9 the people doing these abominations are marked for destruction and then Ezekiel then sees the glory of the LORD depart from the temple (11:23). God will no longer dwell among His people. God will now punish and chasten the people for their unfaithfulness.

In the third vision Ezekiel sees a rebuilt temple. This temple was not literally built but was a vision of the holiness of such a temple unto the LORD. When he saw it finished in his vision and the appropriate sacrifices had been offered to cleanse and sanctify it, then "the glory of the LORD entered the temple…" (43:4), and the glory of the LORD filled the temple" (43:5).

Turning to the New Testament we read that "The Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth" (John 1:14). He manifested forth the very glory of God among the people. His name was Immanuel - God is with us. He used his life to glorify the Father. He prayed that the Father would glorify Him with the glory that He had before the incarnation (John 17:5). He suffered and then was raised to enter His glory (1Pet. 1:21).

The church of Christ is the temple of the LORD today. We have been built together as a habitation of God in the Spirit (Eph. 2:21-22). Unto Him will "be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen" (Eph. 3:21). Paul then adds: "I therefore, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called…" (Ephesians 4:1).

As individuals of the body of Christ, we are to live our lives in such a way that the world will see in us the glory of God. We are to be the salt of the earth and lights of the world. We are to fill our lives with good works that the world will see and give glory unto God (Matt. 5:13-16). Jesus said "By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples" (John 15:8). Paul instructs us as God's people to be "filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ, to the glory and praise of God" (Philippians 1:11). 31 So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God" (1 Corinthians 10:31). Peter instructs that " whoever speaks, as one who speaks oracles of God; whoever serves, as one who serves by the strength that God supplies—in order that in everything God may be glorified through Jesus Christ. To him belong glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen" (1 Peter 4:11).

"To the King of ages, immortal, invisible, the only God, be honor and glory forever and ever. Amen" (1 Timothy 1:17).

" … To him be the glory forever and ever. Amen" (2 Timothy 4:18).