There I stood in a place full of dry, old bones all around me! Everywhere I looked and walked there were very dry bones that had been dead for a long time! I was asked if I thought the bones could ever live again. What? I didn’t know but the one asking me should and did. This one speaking to me told me to instruct the bones to hear our words and receive breath and live. As I kept instructing the bones as I was told to do there came a rattling sound all around me! The bones were rattling and moving where they laid. It was a most disturbing sight! Then the rattling began to get louder and louder and the bones started coming together bone by bone by bone… I kept doing as I was told and all of a sudden tendons, muscles and skin started to grow on the bones right before my eyes!… The flesh started to grow on the rattling bones skewered with tendons. Then the one speaking to me told me to instruct breath to come into the slain bones… as I did this instruction they came to life standing before me like an exceedingly great army… Then the one speaking explained to me…
“Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Yet they continue to say, “Our bones are dried up, our hope is lost and we are completely done for!” Therefore prophesy. Say to them, thus says the Lord God: Take note! I will open your graves, raise you from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. You shall know that I am the Lord when I have opened your graves. I will put My Spirit within you, and you shall live.” I don’t know about you but I would have been shaking and rattling in MY bones if I had been the one to witness this! I would have been full of fear and ready to run!
I once heard it said, “We get our energy and power from hope, not batteries, gas, Powerade, or vitamins.” And our only living hope comes from God, through His son, Jesus! What do we get from this story from Ezekiel 37:1-14? We get the reassurance that no matter how far gone we’ve gotten toward the wrong side, nor how far away from spiritual things, people, church, and God that we have drifted, we are not dead! We may merely be dormant, inactive, broken down to our bones. But we can be active again! We do have hope contrary to what Israel is feeling in verse 11. When we have God we therefore have His hope and power! And we also and more importantly see the prophecy of Jesus Himself, our living hope, from verses 12-13. How can we doubt that hope or that truth as prophecy is, of Jesus being the Son of God when it is told in this story written so long ago between 593 and 565 B.C.
This story shows us nothing is hopeless with God. God showed Ezekiel how much power he had with God’s help and we learn and understand we have it too and there’s nothing we can’t do! I love this story, especially at Halloween! I wouldn’t necessarily want to assemble and put life into old, dry bones. I wouldn’t necessarily want to even be standing where Ezekiel was. But I do love the song “Dry Bones.” Remember that old childhood song… “The toe bone connected to the heel bone, the heel bone connected to the foot bone, the foot bone connected to the leg bone…” Interestingly, this song was inspired by this passage in Ezekiel 37. It started as a spiritual song in 1928 but I remember singing it mostly at Halloween. I never thought of Halloween as having anything spiritual but I never thought of the Bible as having anything bone chilling!