God's Spirit Poured Out

An Explicit Promise, made in Ezekiel 37, to this day Remains Unfulfilled. Nothing could be more Insightful than this Outpouring of God’s Spirit upon the Entire House of Israel. Do we appreciate its Significance?

  © Rich Traver,  81520-1411,  5-19-07  [ 116 ]    www.goldensheaves.org 

Being generally unfamiliar with the identities of all of the peoples of Israel, religious organizations see Ezekiel 37 as a reference to an event which they are unable to adequately explain.  To them, this reference is speaking of the Jews, despite ample internal evidence that the two houses, Judah and Israel, are to the present day distinct and separate peoples.  The true identities of the peoples of Israel who aren’t Jews isn’t commonly understood, accepted or taught.

Another obstacle to correctly understanding this extraordinary passage is the time setting during which this event will take place.  Not understanding the various ages in which God will deal with His people, then with the rest of mankind, and the various resurrections prophesied to happen, why they are to occur and what their ultimate purposes are, religianity is left having to speculate without having an adequate field of perception.

Ezekiel 37 presents a vast ‘valley of dry bones’, a scene well-known for its graphic imagery, which represents the entire long-deceased house of Israel. When resurrected and brought back to a conscious state, these lament their politically divided national condition, something God intends to then correct.

Reviewing Ezekiel 37

The hand of the LORD was upon me, and carried me out in the spirit of the LORD, and set me down in the midst of the valley which was full of bones, 2: And caused me to pass by them round about: and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; and, lo, they were very dry. … 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.

Re-Unifying the Nation

15: The word of the LORD came again unto me, saying,  16: Moreover, thou son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel his companions: then take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel his companions:   17: And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thine hand.  18: And when the children of thy people shall speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not shew us what thou meanest by these?  19: Say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his fellows, and will put them with him, even with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in mine hand.  20: And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thine hand before their eyes.  21: And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the heathen, whither they be gone, and will gather them on every side, and bring them into their own land:  22: And I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two nations,  neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at all:  23: Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling-places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.  24: And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: they shall also walk in my judgments, and observe my statutes, and do them.  25: And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, even they, and their children, and their children's children for ever: and my servant David shall be their prince for ever.  26: Moreover I will make a covenant of peace with them; it shall be an everlasting covenant with them: and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for evermore.  27: My tabernacle also shall be with them: yea, I will be their God, and they shall be my people.  28: And the heathen shall know that I the LORD do sanctify Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of them for evermore.

We can glean a number of important facts from this narrative.  1. First, that they will all be resurrected together,  2. The state of their existence will be physical,  3. That they will be reunified as a nation, (something not seen since after the end of the reign of King Solomon),  4. They will again be restored to the true worship of their true God,  5. That their prevalent religious practices are detestable,  6. God will place His Spirit within them, a condition not seen at any time prior!  (It’s this situation that’s the main focus of this article),  7. They will be sanctified nationally8. God’s sanctuary will be among them, and 9. Non-Israelites will be living among them and will bear witness of this!  To this we could add a 10. that they all will become acutely aware of their ethnic identities, as descendents of the tribes of Israel, a teaching specifically shunned in most Christian denominations, who for the most part identify the Jews as being what is meant by the term: ‘Israel’ despite the obvious evidence of the ‘House of Israel’ and of ‘Judah’ being distinct and separate houses up through the post-Millennial age!

A Post-Millennial Age?

Where in the teachings of ‘heaven and hell’ and the typical ‘end of the world’ predictions is this scenario even remotely explainable?   It takes a good understanding of God’s Master Plan developed out through the Millennial Age and the post-Millennial Age, as illustrated in His Holydays, to begin to be able to place these events.  It speaks of an age in which true worshippers and ‘heathen’ [1] will co-exist, with a special focus among them, then living, on these who are awarded God’s Spirit en-masse!  Basing our understanding on the clear scriptures that only the deceased Saved are to be resurrected prior to the Millennium, we’re left to conclude that the event described in Ezekiel 37 is post-Millennial!

 We can easily discern from Ezekiel 37 the intention on God’s part to provide these people a lengthy period of time in which to continue living.  Why? If this resurrection was just a ‘sentencing event’, what would be the point of re-uniting the nations into a single house, under the rule of their resurrected King David? [2]  These people are restored not only to life, but to the land of Israel, and live there for quite some period of time.  Not only that, but that God’s Sanctuary will be set in their midst from that point onward!  (v.28)  (Continuing even beyond physical mankind’s tenure on Earth.).

We can also see that in their previous existence, they weren’t converted.  Had they been, it would represent a ‘second chance’, which isn’t afforded to anyone!   Those who have God’s Spirit in the era before Christ’s return, and who successfully ‘finish the course’ as Paul referred to it, are changed from mortal flesh to immortal Spirit at Christ’s return!  (Rev. 20:5)  Either from their graves or from life directly. (1st Thessalonians 4:16-17)   Those who had God’s Spirit, but who ‘spurned it’ or failed to ‘stay the course’ in some way, have the sure and dire situation described in Hebrews 10:26-29 awaiting them. (Which describes an irreversible condition!)

This risk helps explain why God is careful and specific as to whom He gives His Spirit.  Israel for the most part has been kept blinded from a full understanding all these generations for a very specific reason. [3]  In the present age, God limits opportunity to those He deems ‘convertible’.  No man CAN come to Him without having been extended the opportunity by being specifically called of the Father!  “No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day”. (John 6:44)   Not only is the availability of God’s Spirit limited presently to those specifically called, but the motivation for the desire for it also is God-inspired.

Not so the post-Millennial age.  There, His Spirit will be poured out openly upon them all.  From this, some pose a ‘universal salvation’ concept, by presuming, perhaps somewhat understandably, that this means they are fully converted as a result of the receipt of God’s Spirit.  The lessons of the present age, as well as during the ‘whosoever will’ climate of the Millennial Age, should inject the obvious.  Not all who are given God’s Spirit remain faithful stewards of their treasure or ultimately end up converted.  Quite a number ‘jump ship’ or ‘make shipwreck’. [4]  An ever present danger!  There are those who ‘quench’ Gods’ Spirit, and those whose neglect is irreversible.  No less the case in that age.  

What we will see is the God-imposed veil over the eyes of the majority of His chosen peoples being lifted.  They will awake from their graves with the long-held theological stumbling blocks removed from their consciousness.  Their former rigid theological positions which blocked a true understanding will be gone!  That will be the primary difference.  It will remain for them to ‘work with’ what they are then given to effect full and ultimate conversion. (Conversion being an ongoing process then just as it is now! [5] )

Being in possession of God’s Spirit, resurrected Israel will be restored to a condition like they should have had, had they not rejected the terms of the original Covenant.  That time though, they’ll have the ability to see the spiritual intent of it clearly. They will then be the model nation God intended they be.  With God’s Spirit will be the emplacement of His Laws within, as is the case today with ‘Spiritual Israel’, who have God’s Laws written in their hearts, not just upon stone tablets which outward Jews purport to so fervently revere.

“But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people. (Rom. 10:21)  For God hath concluded them all in unbelief, that he might have mercy upon all. (Rom. 11:32) …my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: Who are Israelites; to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Christ came, who is over all, God blessed for ever. Amen. Not as though the word of God hath taken none effect. For they are not all Israel, which are of Israel:  Neither, because they are the seed of Abraham, are they all children: but, In Isaac shall thy seed be called. That is, They which are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God: but the children of the promise are counted for the seed. (Rom. 9:3-8)  But Israel, which followed after the law of righteousness, hath not attained to the law of righteousness. Wherefore? Because they sought it not by faith, but as it were by the works of the law. For they stumbled at that stumblingstone;  As it is written, Behold, I lay in Sion a stumblingstone and rock of offence: and whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed. (Rom. 9:31-33)  For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh: But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God.(Rom. 2:28-29)   National Israel too will have their day when they’ll be brought under the New Covenant!   This is the message of Ezekiel 37    



Article Footnotes:

[1]  Heathen in the sense of being ethnically non-Israelite, not necessarily unconverted or unconvertible.  Keep in mind, this is the ‘opportunity period’ for all, but we see Israel being favored with a wholesale outpouring of His Spirit without their specifically having requested it!

[2]  Another ‘problem area’ with this statement is when David will be resurrected?  Other prophecies suggest he will come-up in the first resurrection.  That does not preclude David, having been in-training during the Millennial Age, from becoming their King in the post-Millennial Age.  His expertise, both from his historical experience with them enhanced with his Millennial experience will be inestimable.

[3]  That a greater number can ultimately be saved!  Romans 11:25-26.  Two articles address this situation: And So, All Israel Shall be Saved” and “The Early and the Latter Rains”

[4]  1st Timothy 1:19,   1st Thessalonians 5:19

[5]  Philippians 2:12    See my article What Must I Do?”


Related Topics:  (available from this author)


  “The Resurrections from the Dead” 12

  “The Rejected Resurrection” 43

  “Understanding the THREE Resurrections” 104

  “The Hope of the Last Great Day” 51

  “And No Place was Found for Them” 107

  “All Israel Shall be Saved”  77

  “The Incorrigibly Wicked”  109

  “The Harvests of the World”  16

  “The Early and the Latter Rains” 110