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With New Testament Eyes: 76 - From Nothing to Everything

By Henry Mahan

      Ezekiel 16:1-14

      The great, powerful, and glorious nation of Israel (that arose to such splendor and beauty in the days of David and Solomon) started with one lone man--Abram. And when God called him, he was an idolater in a heathen land (Joshua 24:2-3). Think of it--Abram, well up in years, no children and his wife past the age of child-bearing. From him came this mighty nation--from nothing to everything by the grace of God (Deut. 7:6-8) and by the power of God (Jer. 18:1-6). According to Verses 10-14, their beauty was perfect through his beauty, which he put upon them.

      But our chief business is not with national Israel but to see what this scripture shows us about ourselves, spiritual Israel, and the Kingdom of our Lord. All that the Lord God did in Israel is a picture and type of his grace to us (spiritual Israel) in Christ.

      For 'they which are of faith, the same are the children of Abraham' (Gal. 3:7). 'He is a Jew which is one inwardly' (Rom. 2:28-29).

      1. What we were

      vv. 3-5. I am told that among some of the pagan nations, there was a terrible custom of leaving unwanted, deformed infants in the fields to perish. You will find no better picture of our state at birth in Adam than the story of this infant.

      We were born in sin of fallen parents (Psalm 51:5; 58:3). We did not come into the world as those who might stand or fall but as those who had already fallen.

      Ours was a state of total depravity and total inability (Rom. 5:12). This newborn is helpless, hopeless, and without any power or ability to help itself. All he can do is cry until he perishes (Eph. 2:12).

      No outside help is available (v. 5). 'None eye pitied thee.' The law must condemn, holiness is offended, truth is sworn to testify against us, and justice bares its sword to destroy.

      This is a loathsome sight but a true picture of fallen sinners! As Isaiah said, 'From the sole of the foot even to the head there is no soundness, but wounds, and bruises and putrefying sores' (Isa. 1:6). If there is any help for such awful creatures as we are, it must come from our God (Rom. 3:10-26).

      2. What God did

      vv. 6-7. 'I passed by thee.' We did not seek him; he sought us! We did not choose him; he chose us! We did not come where he is; he came to us where we were! He was mindful of us and set his love upon us before the world began; and he entered into a covenant of mercy on our behalf with Jesus Christ, our surety (2 Thess. 2:13; Eph. 1:3-4; Heb. 13:20-21). He came where we were in the person of his Son (2 Cor. 5:19; Matt. 1:21- 23), took our nature, obeyed the law (Gal. 4:4-5), took our sins and shame upon himself, and redeemed us to God by his blood (1 Pet. 3:18).

      'I saw thee polluted in thy blood.' He saw us as we really are, yet he loved us! Mercy is for the miserable, grace is for the guilty, and salvation is for real sinners (Matt. 9:10-13). 'But God commended his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us' (Rom. 5:6,8,10).

      'I said unto thee, when thou wast in thy blood, live.' In the same way that our Lord stood before the grave of Lazarus (who stinketh) and called him forth to life, he quickens us (dead sinners) and makes us to live in him (Eph. 2:l; John 5:21). When our Lord quickens a sinner to life through his word (James 1:18), death gives way to life, darkness becomes light, inability gives way to strength, and our enemies flee away. The same power that raised Christ from the grave raised us (Eph. 1:19- 20).

      3. What we are now

      vv. 8-14. 'It was the time of love,' not our love for him but his love for us (1 John 4:10). 'We love him because he first loved us.'

      'I covered thy nakedness.' He took away our reproach, our shame, and our guilt and made us righteous and holy in Christ (Jer. 23:5-6; 2 Cor. 5:21).

      'I washed thee with water.' He cleansed us with water and blood.

      'Let the water and the blood,
      from thy wounded side which flowed,
      be of sin the double cure (justify and sanctify),
      save from wrath and make me pure.'

      'I clothed thee, I decked (adorned) thee, I put a beautiful crown on your head; you became mine!' By his grace, through the merits of our Lord Jesus, he has brought us from death to eternal life, from the pit of corruption and sin to perfect righteousness in him (Jude 24-25). Salvation is of the Lord from the beginning to eternal glory.

      Verse 14 declares, 'Your beauty is perfect through my comeliness, which I have put upon thee.' C. H. Spurgeon once said, 'The whole of the work whereby a lost sinner is lifted from the dunghill of sin, washed in the blood and made righteous, exalted to eternal life and glory is of the Lord and of him only.'

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See Also:
   Foreward & Acknowledgements
   1 - The Fall
   2 - Abel's Offering
   3 - The Ark Of Noah
   4 - Sarah and Hagar; Law and Grace
   5 - The Lord Will Provide
   6 - A Bride for the Heir
   7 - Bethel - The House of God
   8 - Peniel - The Face of God
   9 - Joseph Opens the Storehouses
   10 - Joseph and His Brothers
   11 - Shiloh
   12 - The Passover
   13 - The Manna
   14 - Water from the rock
   15 - The Blood Before the Lord
   16 - The Ram of Consecration
   17 - The Day of Atonement
   18 - Caleb - The Faithful Dog
   19 - The High Priest Intercedes
   20 - The Brazen Serpent
   21 - A Prophet Like Moses
   22 - The Cities of Refuge
   23 - Joshua
   24 - The Scarlet Line in the Window
   25 - The birth of Samson
   26 - The Kinsman Redeemer
   27 - The Song of Hannah
   28 - Give us a King
   29 - Saul's Great Sin
   30 - David and Mephibosheth
   31 - Why God Permitted David to Fall
   32 - Comfort from God's Covenant
   33 - I Will Not Offer to God that which Cost me Nothing
   34 - The Queen of Sheba Comes to Solomon
   35 - Three Examples of Faith
   36 - Where is the Lord God of Elijah?
   37 - Empty Vessels Filled
   38 - Naaman, the Leper
   39 - Open his Eyes that He may See
   40 - Four Lepers Teach us a Lesson
   41 - Nehushtan--A Piece of Brass
   42 - Bringing Back the Ark
   43 - Uzziah's Great Transgression
   44 - Four Things Learned in Trouble
   45 - How Can Man be Just With God?
   46 - Three Vital Questions
   47 - I Know that my Redeemer Liveth
   48 - Now Mine Eye Seeth Thee
   49 - The Psalm of Messiah the King
   50 - God's two great books
   51 - The Psalm of the Cross
   52 - The Lord is my Shepherd
   53 - True God - True Israel - True Redeemer
   54 - Eight Great Precepts
   55 - My Hope is in Thee
   56 - Many, O Lord, Are Thy Wonderful Works
   57 - A Song of Love
   58 - The Sinner's Prayer
   59 - My Rock and my Salvation
   60 - Our Lord's Sufferings for Our Sins
   61 - Mercy and Truth are Met Together
   62 - The Victory of the Messiah
   63 - Bless the Lord, O my Soul
   64 - Let the Redeemed of the Lord Say So
   65 - The King-Priest
   66 - The Chief Cornerstone
   67 - The Observer and the Observed
   68 - Praise the Lord O my Soul
   69 - Wisdom in Christ
   70 - The Conclusion of the Whole Matter
   71 - Remember Now Thy Creator
   72 - My Beloved is Mine and I am His
   73 - What is Thy Beloved more than Another Beloved?
   74 - The Lord Our Righteousness
   75 - The Believers Hope
   76 - From Nothing to Everything
   77 - Lost, Driven Away, Broken, Sick
   78 - Can These Bones Live?
   79 - Four Things God Taught Nebuchadnezzar
   80 - Thy God Will Deliver Thee
   81 - Hosea--Type of Christ
   82 - A Famine to be Feared
   83 - Salvation is of the Lord
   84 - A Fountain Opened for Mourners
   85 - The Messenger of the Covenant


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