Greater Abominations Than These
15 Then said he unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.
King Nebuchadnezzar laid siege to Jerusalem three times. The first time Nebuchadnezzar came to Jerusalem was while Jehoiakim was king as recorded in Daniel and 2 Chronicles.
In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim king of Judah came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon unto Jerusalem, and besieged it.
2 And the Lord gave Jehoiakim king of Judah into his hand, with part of the vessels of the house of God: which he carried into the land of Shinar to the house of his god; and he brought the vessels into the treasure house of his god.
2 Chronicles 36: 5-8.
5 Jehoiakim was twenty and five years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord his God.
6 Against him came up Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and bound him in fetters, to carry him to Babylon.
7 Nebuchadnezzar also carried of the vessels of the house of the Lord to Babylon, and put them in his temple at Babylon. 8 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoiakim, and his abominations which he did, and that which was found in him, behold, they are written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah: and Jehoiachin his son reigned in his stead.
The second time Nebuchadnezzar came to Jerusalem, Jehoiachin was king in Judah as recorded in Ezekiel and Chronicles.
Ezekiel 1: 1-3.
Now it came to pass in the thirtieth year, in the fourth month, in the fifth day of the month, as I was among the captives by the river of Chebar, that the heavens were opened, and I saw visions of God.
2 In the fifth day of the month, which was the fifth year of king Jehoiachin's captivity,
3 The word of the Lord came expressly unto Ezekiel the priest, the son of Buzi, in the land of the Chaldeans by the river Chebar; and the hand of the Lord was there upon him.
2 Chronicles 36: 8-10.
8 Now the rest of the acts of Jehoiakim, and his abominations which he did, and that which was found in him, behold, they are written in the book of the kings of Israel and Judah: and Jehoiachin his son reigned in his stead.
9 Jehoiachin was eight years old when he began to reign, and he reigned three months and ten days in Jerusalem: and he did that which was evil in the sight of the Lord.
10 And when the year was expired, king Nebuchadnezzar sent, and brought him to Babylon, with the goodly vessels of the house of the Lord, and made Zedekiah his brother king over Judah and Jerusalem.
It is at this point that we are introduced to the prophet Ezekiel, in his Babylonian captivity at the river of Chebar or the canal of Khebar.
Ezekiel is first shown the Glory of the Lord and the Living Creatures in chapter 1. In chapter 2 Ezekiel receives his official call to ministry as a prophet in exile. And by chapter 3 he receives his commission. Ezekiel’s ministry comes to light after Judah has shown the most decided rebellion in the history of a nation thus far and God is showing him it will not end here. Jehoiakim has done evil in the sight of the Lord.
The Lord’s reproof through Jeremiah has been rejected. Nebuchadnezzar comes as God has ordained and takes Jehoiakim captive and some of the children of Israel.
Knowing the prevailing circumstances and the calamity that have now befallen Judah, Jehoiachin does no different and he also is taken into captivity. His brother Zedekiah was made king and he rebels also, thus his sons were killed in front of him and then the Chaldeans dug out his eyes. These men’s heart were so hard that not even the threat of death made them submissive, to the will of God.
The Lord pronounced judgement on Judah because of the sins of Manasseh.
Jeremiah 15:4. And I will cause them to be removed into all kingdoms of the earth, because of Manasseh the son of Hezekiah king of Judah, for that which he did in Jerusalem.
It was in third and fourth generation after the reign of Manasseh, that the destruction of Jerusalem was completed the first time.
Exodus 20: 4-6.
4 Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image, or any likeness of any thing that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth.
5 Thou shalt not bow down thyself to them, nor serve them: for I the Lord thy God am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me;
6 And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.
- Manasseh - Amon 1st generation
- Amon - Josiah 2nd generation. Judah’s Revival
- Josiah - Jehoahaz/Jehoiakim 3rd generation
- Jehoiakim - Jehoiachin/Zedekiah 4th generation.
Zedekiah is the last king of Judah to go into captivity.
Even though the Lord had shown Judah that their captivity was inevitable, he still caused a revival to take place among them. The revival did not change what was to come but if it was heeded with the whole heart it would have prepared them for what was to come.
Josiah’s revival was the greatest revival ever and yet it could not turn the tide of woe that was to come upon Jerusalem.
2 Chronicles 34: 22-28.
22 And Hilkiah, and they that the king had appointed, went to Huldah the prophetess, the wife of Shallum the son of Tikvath, the son of Hasrah, keeper of the wardrobe; (now she dwelt in Jerusalem in the college:) and they spake to her to that effect.
23 And she answered them, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel, Tell ye the man that sent you to me,
24 Thus saith the Lord, Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, and upon the inhabitants thereof, even all the curses that are written in the book which they have read before the king of Judah:
25 Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their hands; therefore my wrath shall be poured out upon this place, and shall not be quenched.
26 And as for the king of Judah, who sent you to enquire of the Lord, so shall ye say unto him, Thus saith the Lord God of Israel concerning the words which thou hast heard;
27 Because thine heart was tender, and thou didst humble thyself before God, when thou heardest his words against this place, and against the inhabitants thereof, and humbledst thyself before me, and didst rend thy clothes, and weep before me; I have even heard thee also, saith the Lord.
28 Behold, I will gather thee to thy fathers, and thou shalt be gathered to thy grave in peace, neither shall thine eyes see all the evil that I will bring upon this place, and upon the inhabitants of the same. So they brought the king word again.
Judah was indeed a rebellious nation and thus the judgements of God were upon them after four generations.
Ezekiel’s visions given to him by God, didn’t determine what the people of Judah would be, but rather it revealed who they were. It revealed their true condition as repulsive as it may seem, they were exposed by the faithful and true witness.
5 And from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the prince of the kings of the earth. Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood,
Most don’t like to be told about their areas of improvement or where they have erred. Many shone reproof and correction.
14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God;
Laodecia represents the last period of God’s church. This period started on October 22 1844. If we take a generation as forty years according to Numbers 14: 29-38, we are living in the toe nails of earth’s history.
Ezekiels visions are acts of mercy.
God warning his people of the coming danger. Even when the revival did not do its complete work. Even in captivity God again tries to stir the heart of his people.
And so God calls Ezekiel to prophesy to his people. Now that we understand the background of Israels calamity and Ezekiel’s message we can now appreciate that such a message is one that should be embraced and not rejected. When we examine Ezekiel chapter 8, God shows the prophet what was taking place inside his house. While Ezekiel was taken in the second siege God gave the prophet a vision of what was to happen at the third siege of Jerusalem.
Ezekiels vision was given, because false prophets were deceiving the people of an early deliverance from babylon which would not be the case. Whilst the ancient men, the senior men were worshiping idols in the temple of the Lord, God was giving a message of mercy to those who would hear. While imminent destruction was upon them and they were indifferent and unaware the message of mercy was being given, but who would hear.
Ezekiel 3: 1-11.
Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel.
2 So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll.
3 And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.
4 And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them.
5 For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of an hard language, but to the house of Israel;
6 Not to many people of a strange speech and of an hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, had I sent thee to them, they would have hearkened unto thee.
7 But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hardhearted.
8 Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads.
9 As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.
10 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, all my words that I shall speak unto thee receive in thine heart, and hear with thine ears.
11 And go, get thee to them of the captivity, unto the children of thy people, and speak unto them, and tell them, Thus saith the Lord God; whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear.
Quote from - Prophets and Kings
While Jeremiah continued to bear his testimony in the land of Judah, the prophet Ezekiel was raised up from among the captives in Babylon, to warn and to comfort the exiles, and also to confirm the word of the Lord that was being spoken through Jeremiah. During the years that remained of Zedekiah's reign, Ezekiel made very plain the folly of trusting to the false predictions of those who were causing the captives to hope for an early return to Jerusalem. He was also instructed to foretell, by means of a variety of symbols and solemn messages, the siege and utter destruction of Jerusalem. PK 448.1.
In the sixth year of the reign of Zedekiah, the Lord revealed to Ezekiel in vision some of the abominations that were being practiced in Jerusalem, and within the gate of the Lord's house, and even in the inner court. The chambers of images, and the pictured idols, “every form of creeping things, and abominable beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel”—all these in rapid succession passed before the astonished gaze of the prophet. Ezekiel 8:10. PK 448.2.
Those who should have been spiritual leaders among the people, “the ancients of the house of Israel,” to the number of seventy, were seen offering incense before the idolatrous representations that had been introduced into hidden chambers within the sacred precincts of the temple court. “The Lord seeth us not,” the men of Judah flattered themselves as they engaged in their heathenish practices; “the Lord hath forsaken the earth,” they blasphemously declared. Verses 11, 12..
Brethren the Government have the power to remove us from the building but they can’t stop us from having church. Remember wherever 2 or 3 are gathered God is in the midst to bless. Brethren this covid-19 was not given for us to live aimlessly or indifferent. God placed us in a position to hear his word and examine it for ourselves, to know what is truth and make it our own. For years we were sleeping, thinking we were having church, but the time has come for us to wake up. Will you go back to doing what you were doing before.
Many of the children of Israel followed the leaders blindly and by doing so, they disobeyed the Word of the Lord. The messages of mercy were discarded as doom and gloom and ultimately rejected. When the prophet opened his mouth they set their faces against him with disdain.
Brethren, why do you think men don’t like to preach the messages of Ezekiel? We look down on it with disdain and we say, preach love, but brethren this was the last message of mercy before the final destruction. Before they would have to eat their children because of the siege and no food could be found. Before they would have to use human dung as fuel to cook their food. Just imagine they closed their ears.
Now is not the time to follow men but rather follow Jesus in the sanctuary. While some of the children of Israel were in captivity the leaders were offering incense to idols. Brethren I don’t even want anyone to put their trust in me. Put your trust in God. Everything, that I say take your bible and see if it is so. As a leader in God’s house, if I am not modeling Christ before you I am in idolatry. Today idols are not made of stone, but anything men put before God is an idol. Status, influence, power, money, worldly goods and honor take the place of God today. And whilst men and women are dying those in position of responsibility are squabbling over the insignificant and the ungodly.
Whilst the ancient men were offering incense to idols, the women were weeping for tammuz.
Ezekiel 8: 10-14.
10 So I went in and saw; and behold every form of creeping things, and abominable beasts, and all the idols of the house of Israel, pourtrayed upon the wall round about.
11 And there stood before them seventy men of the ancients of the house of Israel, and in the midst of them stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan, with every man his censer in his hand; and a thick cloud of incense went up.
12 Then said he unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen what the ancients of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his imagery? for they say, the Lord seeth us not; the Lord hath forsaken the earth.
13 He said also unto me, Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations that they do.
14 Then he brought me to the door of the gate of the Lord's house which was toward the north; and, behold, there sat women weeping for tammuz.
These women that were weeping for tammuz did it in a lewd and idolatrous manner. Instead of sighing and crying for the abominations that were taking place in the house of the Lord they were weeping for a false God.
We must understand what is taking place here. With the destruction of Jerusalem still forth coming, famine was supposed to accompany it as prophesied by Ezekiel. And yet the weeping of tammuz which was a yearly festival was taking place in Jerusalem.
Every year it was believed that this deity would die and when he died the crops, the pastures and the streams would dry up. This was marked by a ritual of weeping and mourning and festivity. He was believed later on to be awakened and upon his awakening he was supposed to cause the vegetation to flourish again.
Brethren this was going on in the house of the Lord. So they had no reason to worry about famine. The prophet was a mad man. They have nothing to fear, when they could weep for tammuz and everything would be restored. Such was the deception. However if you think this was bad, think again because the Lord tells Ezekiel that he was to see greater abominations than these.
15 Then said he unto me, Hast thou seen this, O son of man? turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.
Now what could be considered a greater abomination than the idol worship by the ancient men in the temple and the weeping for a false god.
16 And he brought me into the inner court of the Lord's house, and, behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men, with their backs toward the temple of the Lord, and their faces toward the east; and they worshipped the sun toward the east.
Now brethren let’s break this down and see what is going on here.
2 Chronicles 8:12.
12 Then Solomon offered burnt offerings unto the Lord on the altar of the Lord, which he had built before the porch,
2 Chronicles 15:8.
And when Asa heard these words, and the prophecy of Oded the prophet, he took courage, and put away the abominable idols out of all the land of Judah and Benjamin, and out of the cities which he had taken from mount Ephraim, and renewed the altar of the Lord, that was before the porch of the Lord.
So the altar of burnt offering was before the porch of the Lord. So you had to pass the altar on your way to the temple. Before you could enter the temple you had to enter the porch and then enter the temple doors.
Now let’s examine what was expected to take place between the porch and the altar.
12 Therefore also now, saith the Lord, turn ye even to me with all your heart, and with fasting, and with weeping, and with mourning:
13 And rend your heart, and not your garments, and turn unto the Lord your God: for he is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, and of great kindness, and repenteth him of the evil.
14 Who knoweth if he will return and repent, and leave a blessing behind him; even a meat offering and a drink offering unto the Lord your God?
15 Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly:
16 Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.
17 Let the priests, the ministers of the Lord, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O Lord, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?
18 Then will the Lord be jealous for his land, and pity his people.
19 Yea, the Lord will answer and say unto his people, Behold, I will send you corn, and wine, and oil, and ye shall be satisfied therewith: and I will no more make you a reproach among the heathen:
20 But I will remove far off from you the northern army, and will drive him into a land barren and desolate, with his face toward the east sea, and his hinder part toward the utmost sea, and his stink shall come up, and his ill savour shall come up, because he hath done great things.
21 Fear not, O land; be glad and rejoice: for the Lord will do great things.
It is between the porch and the altar that the Leaders, the priest and the ministers of the Lord was to cry for deliverance. It was here that God would meet and answer his people if they humbled themselves with a contrite heart. If any calamity could face the children of Israel, they could find abundant help in their God.
But instead of finding the leaders crying out for their God between the porch and the altar, they have turned their backs to the temple and their faces are now towards the sun.
In the face of upcoming danger, in the face of imminent destruction men no more called upon the name of the Lord in his house but on the gods of their choosing so that the question could be asked now as it was asked then...
2 kings 1:6.
6 And they said unto him, There came a man up to meet us, and said unto us, Go, turn again unto the king that sent you, and say unto him, Thus saith the Lord, Is it not because there is not a God in Israel, that thou sendest to enquire of Baalzebub the god of Ekron? therefore thou shalt not come down from that bed on which thou art gone up, but shalt surely die.
Is it because there is not a God in Israel? Are we any different today. The signs all tell of an incoming danger, church and state will once more unite to exterminate the people of God. Our rights are constantly being eroded, before our very eyes, whilst we are powerless to do anything about it. Are we weeping between the porch and the altar for our God to hear us, to strengthen us and to keep us, or are we weeping between the porch and the altar with our backs to the temple and our faces to the sun.
The visions of the prophets were for their time but for our time as well. Who or what is our focus in this time. How many of us going by baal for physical and spiritual healing when there is a God in Israel.
Now is the time to heed the words of the prophet.
The 25 men seen weeping between the porch and the altar would most likely be priests. The number 25, represents the 24 courses of the priest and the high priest making 25.
The leadership in this time brethren instead of warning the people to get ready for the coming destruction to surrender their lives to God, were themselves leading the people into idolatry by their very practice. Nebuchadnezzar was on his way to visit Jerusalem for the last time and they did not know the hour of their visitation.
In chapter 9 we see the Lord could do no more, than that was already done.
Ezekiel 9: 1-11.
He cried also in mine ears with a loud voice, saying, Cause them that have charge over the city to draw near, even every man with his destroying weapon in his hand.
2 And, behold, six men came from the way of the higher gate, which lieth toward the north, and every man a slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man among them was clothed with linen, with a writer's inkhorn by his side: and they went in, and stood beside the brasen altar.
3 And the glory of the God of Israel was gone up from the cherub, whereupon he was, to the threshold of the house. And he called to the man clothed with linen, which had the writer's inkhorn by his side;
4 And the Lord said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.
5 And to the others he said in mine hearing, Go ye after him through the city, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity:
6 Slay utterly old and young, both maids, and little children, and women: but come not near any man upon whom is the mark; and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the ancient men which were before the house.
7 And he said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth. And they went forth, and slew in the city.
8 And it came to pass, while they were slaying them, and I was left, that I fell upon my face, and cried, and said, Ah Lord God! wilt thou destroy all the residue of Israel in thy pouring out of thy fury upon Jerusalem?
9 Then said he unto me, The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceeding great, and the land is full of blood, and the city full of perverseness: for they say, The Lord hath forsaken the earth, and the Lord seeth not.
10 And as for me also, mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity, but I will recompense their way upon their head.
11 And, behold, the man clothed with linen, which had the inkhorn by his side, reported the matter, saying, I have done as thou hast commanded me.
Quote from - Letter 126, 1898 par.4
What is the seal of the living God, which is placed in the foreheads of His people? It is a mark which angels, but not human eyes, can read; for the destroying angel must see this mark of redemption. The intelligent mind has seen the sign of the cross of Calvary in the Lord’s adopted sons and daughters. The sin of the transgression of the law of God is taken away. They have on the wedding garment, and are obedient and faithful to all God’s commands.
Quote from - Letter 12, 1886 par.3
The angel with the writer’s inkhorn is to place a mark upon the foreheads of all who are separated from sin and sinners, and the destroying angel follows this angel..
Quote from - Manuscript 173, 1902
The work in Battle Creek is after the same order. The leaders in the sanitarium have mingled with unbelievers, admitting them to their councils, more or less; but it is like going to work with their eyes shut. They lack the discernment to see what is going to break upon us at any time. There is a spirit of desperation, of war and bloodshed, and that spirit will increase until the very close of time. Just as soon as the people of God are sealed in their foreheads—it is not any seal or mark that can be seen, but a settling into the truth, both intellectually and spiritually, so they cannot be moved—just as soon as God’s people are sealed and prepared for the shaking, it will come. Indeed, it has begun already; the judgments of God are now upon the land to give us warning, that we may know what is coming. Brethren we are to keep our eyes wide open, we are not to trust in the arm of men, the hour is too late. Israel woes didn’t start with babylon it started with the leaders. Those who were suppose to be warning the people but by their very practice lead them away from the Lord..
Quote from - Prophet and Kings
Through Jeremiah the Lord had declared of the wicked men who presumptuously dared to stand before the people in His name: “Both prophet and priest are profane; yea, in My house have I found their wickedness.” Jeremiah 23:11.
In the terrible arraignment of Judah as recorded in the closing narrative of the chronicler of Zedekiah's reign, this charge of violating the sanctity of the temple was repeated. “Moreover,” the sacred writer declared, “all the chief of the priests, and the people, transgressed very much after all the abominations of the heathen; and polluted the house of the Lord which He had hallowed in Jerusalem.” 2 Chronicles 36:14. PK 449.2.
The day of doom for the kingdom of Judah was fast approaching. No longer could the Lord set before them the hope of averting the severest of His judgments. “Should ye be utterly unpunished?” He inquired. “Ye shall not be unpunished.” Jeremiah 25:29. PK 450.1.
Even these words were received with mocking derision. “The days are prolonged, and every vision faileth,” declared the impenitent. But through Ezekiel this denial of the sure word of prophecy was sternly rebuked. “Tell them,” the Lord declared, “I will make this proverb to cease, and they shall no more use it as a proverb in Israel; but say unto them, The days are at hand, and the effect of every vision. For there shall be no more any vain vision nor flattering divination within the house of Israel. For I am the Lord: I will speak, and the word that I shall speak shall come to pass; it shall be no more prolonged: for in your days, O rebellious house, will I say the word, and will perform it, saith the Lord God. PK 450.2.
7 Some trust in chariots, and some in horses: but we will remember the name of the Lord our God.
I do believe that God has given us this time as a people to receive the messages that are most essential for our preparation. God removed the people from Jerusalem in order to save them. And whilst God did that work, there were those who fought against it. Brethren more important than Jerusalem was the condition of the heart. Jerusalem could be rebuilt but a heart once destroyed by sin, leads to eternal ruin.
Like the days of Ezekiel while God is doing his work we must focus on him. Trinidad may have a potential community spread. The possibility exists that the lock down this time could be worst than before. What will we do then. Where is our focus.
My brothers and sisters the time has come to search for God with all your heart, for there will come a time when he will not be found.
A California church is suing Gov. Gavin Newsom for banning all indoor worship services, including Bible studies, and singing, saying the restrictions violate their religious freedom..
https://www1.cbn.com/cbnnews/us/2020/july/ca-gov-bans-home-bible-studies-the-governor- is-not-the-high-priest-over-all-religions https://www.foxnews.com/us/california-church-newsom-coronavirus-worship-ban.
Churchgoers sued California Gov. Gavin Newsom over his ban on indoor services in several counties, including in-home Bible studies.. https://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2020/jul/20/gavin-newsom-sued-over-ban- against-home-bible-stud/.
11 Behold, the days come, saith the Lord God, that I will send a famine in the land, not a famine of bread, nor a thirst for water, but of hearing the words of the Lord:
12 And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east, they shall run to and fro to seek the word of the Lord, and shall not find it.
Every man must stand on his own. Everyone must make Jesus Christ the rock, his true foundation. If you will choose this day to follow men, the elders the ministers and the leaders, then you must meet with destruction like Israel of old. Let God’s word by paramount, let the prophecies for this time be before us. Let us put away every sin that we may stand spotless before our God. Now is the time for Christ to do his greatest work in us.