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Ezekiel 2:1-3:15: Experiencing the Call of God

For more context before you begin studying, read this introduction to the book of Ezekiel.

Mention the phrase "called of God" and most think of those special few, God's chosen prophets, preachers and missionaries. That was certainly the case under the old covenant (before Christ) even though the people of God as a people were called (Hos 11:1). But under the new covenant every Christian is called in three ways: to belong to God, to live a holy life and to serve God's purposes in the world (Eph 4:1). Ezekiel's call was special, setting him apart from the people as God's spokesperson. But we can learn much from it. In chapter one we see that Ezekiel's call is first to Someone. Then, in chapter two, he is called to something. The order is crucial.

Warming Up to God

What would it be like if God never called us and merely left us to make of our lives what we could?

Read Ezekiel 2:1-3:15

Discovering the Word

  • What indications are there in the passage that Ezekiel heard God's call not only as an obligation but also as an empowering and motivating reality (2:2; 3:12-15)?
  • Why does God want Ezekiel to go on speaking God's word even though the people will not listen (2:5)?
  • What might keep Ezekiel from fulfilling God's call, and how does God deal with this (2:6-8)?
  • In the vision the scroll of God's word is given to Ezekiel. Why would "eating" the scroll (2:8; 3:2) be so important for God's spokesperson?
  • Ezekiel is overwhelmed (3:15). What do you think is happening to this servant of God while he sits among the exiles for seven days?

Applying the Word

  • Why do you think being a missionary to the church (God's people) will be harder than being a missionary to the strangers outside (3:5-9)?
  • Ezekiel found both sweetness and bitterness in being a called person. In what ways is your experience of Christian vocation (or calling) similar?
  • What have you learned that will help you be faithful in witnessing even to those who are obstinately opposed to the gospel or where there is no evident success?

Responding in Prayer

Thank God that he now issues his call through Christ to each and every member of his family. Pray for grace to live out the whole of your life in response to God's call and with the provision of his Spirit.

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