Can dry bones live?

This was the question God ask Ezekiel? I’ve often thought that Ezekiel must have felt he was on the hot seat. If he says no, God will point out nothing is impossible and yet Ezekiel knows no way for dry bones to have life. He might want to say no but he doesn’t. “You know God” was his answer. That was a good answer.

These bones were a symbol of God’s chosen people. They were so far removed from serving God that God saw them as dry bones. They had no idea they were dead. The prophets had been warning them for a long time but they weren’t listening. They thought as long as they kept the feast days, made sacrifices and paid their tithe they were alright. After all, they were the chosen people. They kept the Sabbath alright but what they did the rest of the week…caused them to become dry bones. The great thing about this encounter Ezekiel had with God is the knowledge gained that even if the chosen people of God loose their spiritual place, God can renew them. God can give them flesh and life. He can bring about a revival of spirit.

Most of us Christians, like the Jews of Ezekiel’s day, would never see ourselves as dry bones in the desert. After all, we’re the new chosen people and we keep the Lord’s day, including all the acts of worship. We take communion and give of our means. We listen to the sermons and the prayers. We mouth the words of the songs. The question involving dry bones though, is this activity of the spirit? Do we serve out of habit or desire? What about the rest of the week for us. Is it a spirit filled week or a self filled week. Like those Jews of Ezekiel’s day have we forgotten what being God’s chosen people really means?

We may not seek renewal or revival because we don’t see our true selves. We think our bones are fleshed out and the spirit of life is strong when in fact we have forgotten our real purpose as Christians. We might have dry bones because we only participate in the Christ life one day a week. We might have dry bones because we neglect the word or personal prayer. We might have dry bones because we are selfish and fail to give back to God. We might have dry bones because our hearts are not filled with compassion for the poor and for the lost. We might have dry bones because we live for self and not for God. We might have dry bones because we….

This could be a time of renewal for the Christians at Westgate church of Christ. First we need to admit our bones are dry and then pray that God will give them flesh and spirit.

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