Summary: There are times when the challenges of life overwhelm us and we feel like dry, life-less bones with no hope. But our God is a God who can breathe the Holy Spirit into us and bring the dead back to life. Therefore, we have hope.
Big Idea: It is when we are the least full of ourselves that the Holy Spirit can give us the most life
Opening Question: What helped you get through a time when you were overwhelmed and feeling hopeless?
Background: Ezekiel was a prophet to God’s people during a very tumultuous time. In 605 BC, the Babylonian Empire conquered Judah and took some of her best and brightest people back to Babylon to serve the Empire there. In 597 BC, Ezekiel was taken, along with many others, from Jerusalem and into exile in Babylon with the second group of captives. Four years later, he began sharing the heart-rending, God-given message that Jerusalem would fall. That happened in 586 BC and Ezekiel then began sharing God’s promise of restoration, renewal and a glorious future as the redeemed people of God in this world.
Read: Ezekiel 37:1-14
Observation: What does the passage say?
1. When Ezekiel first sees the bones in the valley, how much life is in them?
2. God told Ezekiel to speak a prophetic message to the bones. What happened after Ezekiel did that?
3. Were those bodies alive at that point?
4. God told Ezekiel to speak a second prophetic message. Who did Ezekiel speak to? What happened after he did that?
Interpretation: What does the passage mean?
5. Who do the bones represent?
6. Why was the hope of the people of Israel all gone?
7. In Ezekiel 22, God lists the wrongdoings of His people that will result in them being taken into exile. Chief among those is revealed in verse 12: And you have forgotten me, declares the Sovereign Lord. Do we also forget God at times? What are some ways that we tend to do that?
8. What promises does God make to His people in this passage? How would those promises bring hope to God’s people?
Application: How does the meaning of this passage apply to me?
9. Read 1 Corinthians 15:20-23. How does the promise of resurrection life through Jesus give us hope?
10. Read John 14:16-17. How does the Holy Spirit’s presence within us give us hope?
11. What are some things that we can do in our lives to make more room for the Holy Spirit?
This Bible Study focuses on the same passage as the sermon on Oct 27/19 from Walnut Grove Lutheran Church, Langley BC.