Ezekiel 37: 9-14
(9)Then said he unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live. (10) So I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army. (11) Then he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel: behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our parts. (12) Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, O my people, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. (13) And ye shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O my people, and brought you up out of your graves, (14) And shall put my spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I shall place you in your own land: then shall ye know that I the LORD have spoken it, and performed it, saith the LORD (KJV).
Ezekiel received clear instructions from God. In the Hebrew language the word used for wind is ruach (roo ach), which can mean wind, breath, spirit, or the third person of the Trinity the Holy Spirit. When Ezekiel spoke the living Word of God, the breath from God entered the dead bodies and they lived and stood to their feet, renewed and regenerated.
God explains the meaning of the vision. The dead dry bones represent the whole Jewish nation, both Israel and Judah, a divided nation and a dead nation. The Jewish nation was represented by the dry bones on a battlefield. Israel’s situation seemed hopeless, but “with God all things are possible” (Matt. 19:26). The children of Israel will come together, but the nation will not have spiritual life until they see their Messiah, believe on Him, and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The nation will be born again “in a day”. Isaiah 66:7-9 “Before she travailed, she brought forth; before her pain came, she was delivered of a man child. Who hath heard such a thing? who hath seen such things? Shall the earth be made to bring forth in one day? or shall a nation be born at once? for as soon as Zion travailed, she brought forth her children. Shall I bring to the birth, and not cause to bring forth? saith the LORD: shall I cause to bring forth, and shut the womb? saith thy God” (KJV).
This vision is for any individual or ministry that is in need of new life from God. Too often God’s people are like that standing army, life-like but not alive. Where does true life come from? Life comes from the Holy Spirit and proclaiming the Word of God. Charles Spurgeon stated that “Decayed churches can most certainly be revived by the preaching of the Word, accompanied by the coming of the heavenly breath from the four winds”1.
The vision of the valley of dry bones gave hope to the nation of Israel. Hope that they would live again, but also any lost soul can live by God’s grace and power. What a great visual representation we have to remind us that we are surrounded by people who are just like these dry bones, whether they are lost or those in the ministry that need to be lifted up, supported, prayed for, and helped in order the bring life back into those dry bones. Remember the renewing of these old dry bones is possible.
The Silent Preacher
1 Wiersbe, Warren W. Be Reverent: Bowing before Our Awesome God : OT Commentary, Ezekiel. 2nd ed. Colorado Springs, CO: David C. Cook, 2010. Print.