Surviving a Death Valley
And he said unto me, Son of man, can these bones live? And I answered, O Lord God, thou knowest. ~Ezekiel 37:3
Death Valley is a desert area located in Eastern California’s Mojave Desert. It is 282 feet below sea level, thus making it the hottest spot in all of North America. The hottest temperature on record of 134 degrees F occurred on July 10, 1913. Death Valley has had many numerous record hot temperatures. The greatest number of consecutive days with a maximum temperature of 100 °F (38 °C) or above was 154 days in the summer of 2001. The summer of 1996 had 40 days over 120 °F (49 °C), and 105 days over 110 °F (43 °C). The summer of 1917 had 52 days where the temperature reached 120 °F (49 °C) or above with 43 of them consecutive. Death Valley can be a very dangerous place if one goes there unprepared or ignorant about its geography and climate. This morning we want to see a place in the Bible that was a “death valley”.
Consider the startling revelation.
In Ezekiel 37:1, God takes Ezekiel to a valley area filled with bones. Valleys in the Bible are typically a picture of trials and testings. This particular valley had a sight that was depressing. The entire landscape was filled with bones. It was a sight that showed signs of death. All of these bones signified a large number of people had died in the valley. Life had been there, but now it showed signs that there was death. It is startling to see a church that once was alive and on fire for God become a church that is doing nothing and barely surviving. It is startling to see a Christian that is on fire and making a difference for God become a Christian who has backed off of everything and is doing little now and shows signs of spiritual sickness and death.
Consider the standard remedy.
God told Ezekiel to prophesy life into these bones. He prophesied a message as he was commanded of the Lord. He said as he prophesied, there was a noise, and behold a shaking, and the bones came together, bone to his bone. The needed remedy for a church or a Christian who shows signs of spiritual death is a strong continuous diet of the preaching of God’s Word. Preaching is used of God to stir us. Preaching is used of God to convict us. Preaching is used of God to deal with us. Preaching is used of God to revive us. One of the first signs of spiritual death is a backing off or a reduction of preaching in our lives.
Consider the spiritual resuscitation.
The bones, sinews, and flesh were coming together. A body was taking shape again. However, Ezekiel saw there was no breath in them. Where there is no breath, there is no life. Ezekiel was then told to prophesy to the winds to breathe upon these slain, that they would live. He prophesied as he was commanded, and the breath came into them. Just like these that were slain that needed breath in them, all of us need the breath of the Spirit of God upon us. We just don’t need preaching: we need Spirit anointed preaching. We just don’t need to be preached to: we need to be inspired and convicted to spiritual life again. The slain needed to live again. Christians who are inactive, non involved, indifferent and unconcerned are in need of the breath of Heaven in their lives. They need spiritual resuscitation.
Consider the substantial restoration.
The breath came into them and they lived! They took form again as an exceeding great army. They looked like they did when they previously went to battle.
Are you in a “death valley” in your spiritual life? Are you languishing in your praying and spiritual desires? Are you feeling “lifeless” and without direction? Maybe it’s time you wait on the Lord and allow the breath of His Spirit to invigorate you with renewal and revival.
Have a refreshing God morning!
Bible Reading Schedule: Judges 8-9