The LORD spoke to Ezekiel in Chapter 22 of the book of Ezekiel, listing Jerusalem’s sins that will cause Him to punish. It is the famous “standing in the gap” speech where the LORD said He looked for even one righteous person willing to stand up for Him (pray, in the gap) and found none. The proportions of a population’s ratio of righteousness to cravenness just prior to judgment is an interesting topic for another time.
In reading the list of sins God lists for the prophet to report, it strikes me…they are exactly the same as America’s now. Are we on bended knee?? No.
–Shedding blood in her midst
–Defiles herself by making idols,
–They have treated father and mother with contempt;
–Oppressed the alien
–Mistreated the fatherless and the widow.
–You have despised my holy things
–Desecrated my Sabbaths.
–Slanderous men bent on shedding blood
–Eat at the mountain shrines and commit lewd acts.
–Dishonor their fathers’ bed
–Violate women during their period, when they are ceremonially unclean.
–Commits a detestable offense with his neighbor’s wife
–Defiles his daughter-in-law
–Violates his sister, his own father’s daughter.
–Men accept bribes to shed blood
–Take usury and excessive interest
–Make unjust gain from your neighbors by extortion.
–And you have forgotten me, declares the Sovereign LORD.
–There is a conspiracy of her princes within her like a roaring lion tearing its prey; and they devour people
–Take treasures and precious things and make many widows within her.
–Her priests do violence to my law and profane my holy things
–They do not distinguish between the holy and the common
–They teach that there is no difference between the unclean and the clean;
–They shut their eyes to the keeping of my Sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them.
–Her officials within her are like wolves tearing their prey; they shed blood and kill people to make unjust gain.
–Her prophets whitewash these deeds for them by false visions and lying divinations. They say, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says’-when the LORD has not spoken.
–The people of the land practice extortion and commit robbery; they oppress the poor and needy and mistreat the alien, denying them justice.
That’s what the people did. The LORD said several times that they brought it on themselves: ” You have brought your days to a close, and the end of your years has come.”… bringing down on their own heads all they have done, declares the Sovereign LORD.”
This is what the LORD promised to do because of their persistent sins:
–I will make you an object of scorn to the nations and a laughingstock to all the countries.
–Those who are near and those who are far away will mock you,
–I will put an end to your uncleanness.
–I will surely strike my hands together at the unjust gain you have made…
–I will disperse you among the nations and scatter you through the countries;
–When you have been defiled in the eyes of the nations, you will know that I am the LORD.’
–I gather you in my anger and my wrath and put you inside the city and melt you.
–I will gather you and I will blow on you with my fiery wrath, and you will be melted inside her.
–You will know that I the LORD have poured out my wrath upon you.’ So I will pour out my wrath on them and consume them with my fiery anger…
Take heed, nations! Take heed, America!