Do the righteous need prophets? Do those who claim to be God’s people need to hear God’s rebuke? Does God still raise up voices to watch over God’s people?
Ezekiel was a priest living with the Jewish exiles in Babylon after the taking of Judah and Jerusalem by Babylon, around 580-600 B.C. Ezekiel has visions of God appearing like a Man, yet glowing and dazzling with fire; and, of angelic beings with four faces, wings, hands, and WHEELS within WHEELS that contained all-seeing eyes (Ezekiel 1 and 10; also 8). Like other prophets, Ezekiel says that God is very dismayed by worship of idols and “gods” and at “false prophets” and hypocrites (for example, Eziekiel 7:3; 14:10). (source)
During the time of the Jewish exile to Babylon, God raised up Ezekiel to speak to the righteous, to the people of Israel.
Ezekiel 3:16-19 (NIV) “16 At the end of seven days the word of the LORD came to me: 17 “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. 18 When I say to a wicked person, ‘You will surely die,’ and you do not warn them or speak out to dissuade them from their evil ways in order to save their life, that wicked person will die for their sin, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 19 But if you do warn the wicked person and they do not turn from their wickedness or from their evil ways, they will die for their sin; but you will have saved yourself.”
God appointed Ezekiel to be a watchman for God’s people, Israel. If Ezekiel failed to warn Israel, he would be held accountable.
Ezekiel 3:20-21 (NIV) “20 Again, when a righteous person turns from their righteousness and does evil, and I put a stumbling block before them, they will die. Since you did not warn them, they will die for their sin. The righteous things that person did will not be remembered, and I will hold you accountable for their blood. 21 But if you do warn the righteous person not to sin and they do not sin, they will surely live because they took warning, and you will have saved yourself.”
One of Ezekiel’s famous visions was that of the “dry bones”. This reminds me of the vision God gave to me to see UBF as a skeleton that could once again be covered in flesh and be a living testimony to God’s grace and truth once again.
Valley of the Dry Bones (Ezekiel 37):
In a vision, Ezekiel was carried to a valley of old, dry bones, and Ezekiel spoke the Words of the Lord, whereby the bones came together, became covered with skin, and became alive again. This was a symbol of the Hebrews, with all hope seeming to be gone, returning once again to their own land and thriving. (source)