This phrase is a declaration that the Lord speaks to Ezekiel multiple times. We know that out of the overflow of the heart, the mouth speaks - so the declaration reveals something hidden in the heart of the Lord.I encourage you to ponder - why would the Lord declare what He will NOT do, rather than simply declare what He is going to do? I believe it is because "sparing" and "mercy" ARE in His heart always! He desires mercy! Mercy is what He longs to give, mercy is His delight, mercy triumphs over judgment. Nevertheless, to the people of Israel in Ezekiel's lifetime, God declares - "My eyes will not spare, neither will I show mercy." I believe God's longsuffering and patience has an end. This is apparent by the Lord's declarations: "the end has come" - "now is the time". These declarations are supported by what the Lord shows Ezekiel. He shows the prophet the actions of the people and as if to make sure the prophet gets the picture, the Lord asks him - "Have you seen what the people are doing?" Then the Lord summarizes the people's actions to support why His eyes will not spare, neither will He show mercy. Ezekiel 9:9 - 9 καὶ εἶπεν πρός με Ἀδικία τοῦ οἴκου Ισραηλ καὶ Ιουδα μεμεγάλυνται σφόδρα σφόδρα (LXX)Translation - "and said to me the unrighteousness of the house of Israel and Judah has become magnified, exceedingly, exceedingly" The Lord is the same, yesterday, today and forever. The Lord knows those who are His, and let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from "UNRIGHTEOUSNESS". All will be condemned who received not the love of the truth so as to be saved, but thought well of UNRIGHTEOUSNESS" The other reason that the Lord gives to support His decision to not spare with His eyes, neither show mercy is the "lawlessness" of the people.Ezekiel 8:17 - καὶ εἶπεν πρός με Ἑώρακας, υἱὲ ἀνθρώπου; μὴ μικρὰ τῷ οἴκῳ Ιουδα τοῦ ποιεῖν τὰς ἀνομίας, ἃς πεποιήκασιν ὧδε; διότι ἔπλησαν τὴν γῆν ἀνομίας, καὶ ἰδοὺ αὐτοὶ ὡς μυκτηρίζοντεςTranslation: - "and said to me "Have you seen, son of man?" Is it a little thing to the House of Judah to do lawlessness as they have done here?" Because they filled the land with lawlessness and behold these are scorners"The Lord follows this description of the actions and attitude of the people with the declaration - "I also will deal with them in wrath; My eye will not spare, neither will I show mercy."There is an end to God's desire to spare and to show mercy. There is a day of the Lord coming for all who refuse to love the truth and take pleasure in unrighteousness. All who work lawlessness will be condemned.As I read the phrase over and over throughout these chapters in Ezekiel, I believe I was hearing God's sorrow for His people. In declaring what He was not going to do, I believe He was revealing what He longed to do, but could not because of the persistent rebellion of the people. I do believe and affirm that God will have mercy upon whom He has mercy, and that He will harden whom He will harden. I also believe that He desires mercy, but there is an end to His longsuffering. Romans 2:But because of your stubbornness and your unrepentant heart, you are storing up wrath against yourself for the day of God’s wrath, when his righteous judgment will be revealed. 6 God “will repay each person according to what they have done.” 7 To those who by persistence in doing good seek glory, honor and immortality, he will give eternal life. 8 But for those who are self-seeking and who refuse to be persuaded by the truth and have been persuaded by unrighteousness, there will be wrath and anger. 9 There will be trouble and distress for every human being who does evil: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile; 10 but glory, honor and peace for everyone who does good: first for the Jew, then for the Gentile. 11 For God does not show favoritism. God will have mercy upon whom He has mercy, and He will harden whom He hardens. His eye will not spare, neither will He show mercy to those who refuse to be persuaded by the truth and choose instead to be persuaded by unrighteousness. mak
_________________Alan and Dina Martin
I felt prompted to add my thoughts upon why the Lord declares multiple times - "the end has come" (perfect tense in the Greek). What time had reached its conclusion or culmination? I believe the "acceptable time" had come to its end. "Now is the acceptable time, today is the day of salvation, today if you hear His voice do not harden your heart." There is an acceptable year of the Lord, a time for mercy and forgiveness, before the day of the Lord comes when He will render to everyone according to their deeds.We are even to consider the longsuffering of the Lord to be salvation, because the Lord is not willing that any should perish. However, the acceptable time for sparing and mercy will come to an end. Then the day of the Lord will be revealed, a day of wrath and judgment that men have been storing up to themselves. A day of judgments so severe that men will long for death that does not come. A day when vials of wrath will be poured out upon the earth and no one repents, because the acceptable time to repent and receive mercy has ended and there is nothing left for them but the severity of God, because they have rejected mercy and squandered away the acceptable time.mak
What time had reached its conclusion or culmination? I believe the "acceptable time" had come to its end. "Now is the acceptable time, today is the day of salvation, today if you hear His voice do not harden your heart." There is an acceptable year of the Lord, a time for mercy and forgiveness, before the day of the Lord comes when He will render to everyone according to their deeds.
Hello Jade, Yes, I offer these scriptures for your consideration.All of these scriptures have this Greek word συντέλεια - meaning - a completion, a consummation, an end. These references are all taken from the words of our LordMatthew 13:39 Matthew 13:40Matthew 13:49They are all found in the context of our Lord's explanation of the parable of the wheat and the tares. He answered, “The one who sowed the good seed is the Son of Man. 38 The field is the world, and the good seed stands for the people of the kingdom. The weeds are the sons of the evil one, 39 and the enemy who sows them is the devil. The harvest is the end of the age, and the harvesters are angels.40 “As the weeds are pulled up and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of the age. 41 The Son of Man will send out his angels, and they will weed out of His kingdom everything that causes sin and all who do evil. 42 They will throw them into the blazing furnace, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth. 43 Then the righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Whoever has ears, let them hear.The year of the Lord's favor is now, today is the day of salvation, now is the acceptable time. This is what our Lord Jesus knew and declared in the synagogue at Capernaum: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind,to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor....Notice that our Lord did not complete the entire quote from Isaiah. He stopped short of quoting the whole prophecy. Have you ever noticed this? Jesus stopped before quoting - "and the day of vengeance of our God." Why did Jesus stop where He did? I believe it is because of what He said next, with the eyes of everyone upon Him - "Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing."Jesus knew that the day of vengeance was not "today" and was not being fulfilled in their hearing. Jesus knew that His first coming was not to condemn the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He knew that the Father had set a day to judge the world, a day of vengeance, but that day was in the future, not today. There is a "completion of the age". Our Lord associated the completion of the age with the separation of the wicked out of His kingdom and their being thrown into the lake of fire. What do you associate the "completion of the age" with?mak
Hi Mak,PARABLE OF WHEAT AND TARESChrist came to destroy the works of the devil (1 Jn. 3:38), not men. He came not to condemn the world but that the world through Him might be saved (John 3:17). He is Savior of the world (John 4:42, 1 Jn. 4:14). He destroys the wicked old man in Adam to bring in the righteous new man in Himself. In Adam ALL die. In Christ, ALL are made alive.When the works of the devil are destroyed, and all are made anew in Christ……… “Then the righteous will shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father.”Scripture speaks of “Christ the first fruits” (1 Cor. 15:23) and the church “a kind of first fruits” (James 1:18, Rev. 14:4).If the church is called “first fruits” shouldn’t there be the rest of the harvest?And if the church, the first fruits are being gathered in this present age, when would the rest of the harvest be gathered if not in the ages of eternity to come?
This is what our Lord Jesus knew and declared in the synagogue at Capernaum: “The Spirit of the Lord is on me, because he has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners and recovery of sight for the blind,to set the oppressed free, 19 to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor....Notice that our Lord did not complete the entire quote from Isaiah. He stopped short of quoting the whole prophecy. Have you ever noticed this? Jesus stopped before quoting - "and the day of vengeance of our God." Why did Jesus stop where He did?
What do you associate the "completion of the age" with?
Dear Jade,I can see how you are seeking to harmonize the passages about Christ work and the fruits that follow from it.It would be helpful to me to know your thoughts on the Second Death. I assume you have somehow come to some understanding of what happens to those who experience the second death. Revelation 21:8But for the cowardly and unbelieving and abominable and murderers and immoral persons and sorcerers and idolaters and all liars, their part will be in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.”The Second Death occurs after the resurrection of the dead - Revelation 20:12-14And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. 13 The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. 14 Then Death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15 And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.Can you explain your own understanding of the process you believe happens after the second death.Jade, I hope this is in time for you to address this question as well. In the first passage in Revelation 21, the restoration of all things appears to have taken place. The New Heaven is present, the New Jerusalem is present, and in contrast with this - the distinction between those cast into the lake of fire and those who are present in the New Heaven is set forth. In your understanding of how all things have been fully reconciled and every work of the devil destroyed. How do you understand the presence of the separation in the introduction of the New Heaven and the New Jerusalem.mak
A sobering scripture to consider from Our Lord:Notice the words "everlasting" and "eternal" in verse 46. Obviously the acts of injustice toward the Savior were done on earth as it mentions earthly needs. The consequences are everlasting.Mat 25:41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels: Mat 25:42 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me no meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me no drink: Mat 25:43 I was a stranger, and ye took me not in: naked, and ye clothed me not: sick, and in prison, and ye visited me not. Mat 25:44 Then shall they also answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, or athirst, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not minister unto thee? Mat 25:45 Then shall he answer them, saying, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these, ye did it not to me. Mat 25:46 And these shall go away into everlasting punishment: but the righteous into life eternal.
As a young person this passage gripped my heart and soul with what I now recognize as the fear of the Lord which is the beginning of wisdom:Mar 9:43 And if thy hand offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter into life maimed, than having two hands to go into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: Mar 9:44 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. Mar 9:45 And if thy foot offend thee, cut it off: it is better for thee to enter halt into life, than having two feet to be cast into hell, into the fire that never shall be quenched: Mar 9:46 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. Mar 9:47 And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out: it is better for thee to enter into the kingdom of God with one eye, than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire: Mar 9:48 Where their worm dieth not, and the fire is not quenched. I have only heard of one person physically carrying out in a literal way the suggestion of Jesus here, but Jesus is making a case for the never ending nature of the punishment of those who give in to temptation.The case that I heard of came from Foxe's book of Martyrs I believe. The Christians were being hauled into town square demanding that they either sign a decree denying Christ or they would be burned alive publicly. This man signed the decree and went away free, but all night his conscience tormented him! "How could I have denied my Lord who bought me?"... The next day as the proceedings continued, he stood before the crowd and stated: "cursed be this hand that would sign such a thing denying my precious Savior who died to save me... (something along those lines). He then went over to the blazing fire and stuck that hand into the fire to watch it burn in front of everyone. They then put the rest of him into the fire. He died in the flames but then met The Lord who had paid the penalty for his sins.
SO MANY scriptures come to mind when I meditate on this subject.Rev 14:9 And the third angel followed them, saying with a loud voice, If any man worship the beast and his image, and receive his mark in his forehead, or in his hand, Rev 14:10 The same shall drink of the wine of the wrath of God, which is poured out without mixture into the cup of his indignation; and he shall be tormented with fire and brimstone in the presence of the holy angels, and in the presence of the Lamb: Rev 14:11 And the smoke of their torment ascendeth up for ever and ever: and they have no rest day nor night, who worship the beast and his image, and whosoever receiveth the mark of his name.
SO MANY and SO MANY MORE ....Rev 22:10 And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. Rev 22:11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. Rev 22:12 And, behold, I come quickly; and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be. Rev 22:13 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. Rev 22:14 Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. Rev 22:15 For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.