-The Holy Spirit now lifts up Ezekiel the prophet and brings him to the east gate of the LORD’s House (the Temple), which faced eastward. There at that place were 25 men at the entrance of the gate who were leaders of the people. They were described as “the men who devise iniquity and give evil advice in this city (Jerusalem).” The term they used, “This city is the pot and we are the flesh,” can be interpreted to mean that they believed they were the elite, the influential, the ones protected from judgment or harm. In other words, they had no worries and were content in their devices against Yahweh God. They were ready to continue their building program in their own strength and paganistic power (Ezekiel 11:1-3). The LORD says, “Therefore, prophesy against them, son of man (Ezekiel), prophesy!” Then the Spirit fell on the prophet and he spoke the Word of God, “So you think, house of Israel, for I know your thoughts. You have multiplied your slain in this city, filling its streets with them. Your slain whom you have laid in the midst of the city are the flesh and this city is the pot; but I will bring you out of it. You have feared a sword; so I will bring a sword upon you, and I will bring you out of the midst of the city and deliver you into the hands of strangers and execute judgments against you. You will fall by the sword. I will judge you to the border of Israel; so you shall know that I am the LORD. This city will not be a pot for you, nor will you be flesh in the midst of it, but I will judge you to the border of Israel. Thus you will know that I am the LORD; for you have not walked in My statutes nor have you executed My ordinances, but have acted according to the ordinances of the nations around you (Ezekiel 11:4-12)." As Ezekiel prophesied this one of the 25 men, Petatiah son of Benaiah, died causing the prophet to cry out in a panicked-loud voice, “Alas, Lord God! Will You bring the remnant of Israel to a complete end (Ezekiel 11:13)?”
-God answers his honest-desperate question with a promise of future restoration despite the calamity currently being seen. God continued to be the sanctuary of the exiles in their diaspora, and He would guarantee that they would again inherit the land of Israel. And when they come back, they will remove all the detestable things and all the abominations. “And I (the LORD) will give them one heart, and put a new Spirit within them. And I will take the heart of stone out of their flesh and give them a heart of flesh, that they may walk in My statutes and keep My ordinances and do them. Then they will be My people, and I shall be their God (Ezekiel 11:14-20).” The reverse is true for those who choose to keep chasing detestable things and abominations in their hearts. These will find that their own conduct will be brought down on their heads in judgment (Ezekiel 11:21).
-At this point the cherubim lifted up their wings with the wheels beside them (see notes on Ezekiel 10), and the LORD’s glory hovered over them. “The glory of the LORD went up from the midst of the city and stood over the mountain which is east of the city (presumably the Mount of Olives, Ezekiel 11:22-23).” The Holy Spirit then lifted up the prophet and brought him back to the exiles in Chaldea (Babylon). After this return in the Spirit, Ezekiel told the exiles all the things which the LORD had shown him (Ezekiel 11:24-25).
-*Application* Those who have a heart to follow the LORD will find their way. This is ultimately found through Jesus Christ and His abiding presence through the Holy Spirit. He is the One who gives us a new heart in His righteousness, the transformation they we deeply crave and desire as His devoted people of faith (Romans 8; 12:1-2, 2 Corinthians 3:18; 5:17, Hebrews 11:6).