Ezekiel's name means. 'God strengthens.' Every time the prophet's name was mentioned, God's people were assured of his help and reminded of his promise to 'blind up the injured and strengthen the week'.
Ezekiel lived in times of great political turmoil and witnessed the final collapse of Judah to the Babylonian empire. His total, unquestioning willingness to do God's will, often at great cost to himself, during the long years of his faithful ministry in exile, is a shining example to Christian workers everywhere.
The message of Ezekiel is one of God's faithfulness to his covenant, both in carrying out judgement on sin and in the restoration and blessing of a remnant through the coming of the Messiah, Jesus Christ. The prophet's final vision looks forward to days of great blessing, encompassing not only the restoration from exile, but the blessings of the new convenant and the final glory of heaven.
Derek Thomas is minister of preaching and teaching at First Presbyterian Church in Columbia, South Carolina. He is editorial director of the Alliance of Confessing Evangelicals and distinguished visiting professor of systematic and historical theology at Reformed Theological Seminary.