Ezekiel 19: A Lament of a Fallen Royal Lineage and a Promise of a King

Biblical poetry is art that ignites our imaginations. Its metaphors and imagery help us better understand its meaning. They reveal insightful messages meant to be clearly grasped by the listener. In today’s chapter we have the imagery of lions and vines. These images are carried into the New Testament. It is a lament of the rise and fall of kings. Yet, they retell the promise God gave David of his Royal Lineage and our Messiah. Let’s dig in…

Ezekiel 19 – A Funeral Song for Israel’s Kings

“Sing this funeral song for the princes of Israel:

“What is your mother?
    A lioness among lions!
She lay down among the young lions
    and reared her cubs.
She raised one of her cubs
    to become a strong young lion.
He learned to hunt and devour prey,
    and he became a man-eater.
Then the nations heard about him,
    and he was trapped in their pit.
They led him away with hooks
    to the land of Egypt.

“When the lioness saw
    that her hopes for him were gone,
she took another of her cubs
    and taught him to be a strong young lion.
He prowled among the other lions
    and stood out among them in his strength.
He learned to hunt and devour prey,
    and he, too, became a man-eater.
He demolished fortresses
    and destroyed their towns and cities.
Their farms were desolated,
    and their crops were destroyed.
The land and its people trembled in fear
    when they heard him roar.
Then the armies of the nations attacked him,
    surrounding him from every direction.
They threw a net over him
    and captured him in their pit.
With hooks, they dragged him into a cage
    and brought him before the king of Babylon.
They held him in captivity,
    so his voice could never again be heard
    on the mountains of Israel.

10 “Your mother was like a vine
    planted by the water’s edge.
It had lush, green foliage
    because of the abundant water.
11 Its branches became strong—
    strong enough to be a ruler’s scepter.
It grew very tall,
    towering above all others.
It stood out because of its height
    and its many lush branches.
12 But the vine was uprooted in fury
    and thrown down to the ground.
The desert wind dried up its fruit
    and tore off its strong branches,
so that it withered
    and was destroyed by fire.
13 Now the vine is transplanted to the wilderness,
    where the ground is hard and dry.
14 A fire has burst out from its branches
    and devoured its fruit.
Its remaining limbs are not
    strong enough to be a ruler’s scepter.

“This is a funeral song, and it will be used in a funeral.”

Ezekiel 19 NLT

What Does it Mean?

  • The lioness is the kingdom of Judah and the lion cubs are its kings.
  • The first lion is King Jehoahaz, son of Josiah, who was deported to Egypt.
  • The second lion is King Jehoiachin who was taken to face the king of Babylon.
  • Both kings were humiliated. Just because a king was of the Royal Davidic lineage didn’t mean he automatically was blessed. Each received judgment based on their actions.
  • The vine first is depicted strong — “strong enough to be a ruler’s scepter”. That symbolized Kings David and Solomon. Solomon’s dynasty was massive. However, it was his marrying too many wives that was his downfall. He married pagan women who brought their detestable idolatry with them. Hence, God uproots the vine and throws it in the desert where it’s burned in fury.
  • Its remaining limbs are not strong enough to rule. Since 586 BC, Israel has not had a king from David’s Royal Lineage. The Herodian kings were puppet kings, set up by Rome, who weren’t even Jewish.
  • When Jesus was born in the City of David, of His Royal Lineage, He fulfilled the Davidic promise of 2 Samuel 7.

Jesus is the vine…

Jesus is the true vine.
Jesus is the true vine.

“I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.

“Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. Anyone who does not remain in me is thrown away like a useless branch and withers. Such branches are gathered into a pile to be burned. But if you remain in me and my words remain in you, you may ask for anything you want, and it will be granted! When you produce much fruit, you are my true disciples. This brings great glory to my Father.

“I have loved you even as the Father has loved me. Remain in my love. 10 When you obey my commandments, you remain in my love, just as I obey my Father’s commandments and remain in his love. 11 I have told you these things so that you will be filled with my joy. Yes, your joy will overflow! 12 This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you. 13 There is no greater love than to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. 14 You are my friends if you do what I command.”

John 15: 1-14 NLT

Jesus is the Lion of Judah

From John’s vision in the Book of Revelation

Then I saw a scroll in the right hand of the one who was sitting on the throne. There was writing on the inside and the outside of the scroll, and it was sealed with seven seals. And I saw a strong angel, who shouted with a loud voice: “Who is worthy to break the seals on this scroll and open it?” But no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll and read it.

Then I began to weep bitterly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll and read it. But one of the twenty-four elders said to me, “Stop weeping! Look, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the heir to David’s throne, has won the victory. He is worthy to open the scroll and its seven seals.”

Revelation 5:1-5 NLT

That’s Our Jesus! He’s our friend, yet He’s the Lion of Judah, King of kings and Lord of lords!

Jesus didn’t suffer torture and die so we could have religion!
He died so He could have a personal Relationship with YOU!

Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart -- let Him in!
Jesus is knocking at the door of your heart — let Him in!

What are you waiting for?!

Invite Jesus into Your Heart and Receive the Gift of Grace, Joy, Peace, and the Confident Hope of Eternal Life…

The Lion and the Lamb

Left Behind After the Rapture Series

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