8“And you, mortal, heed what I say to you: Do not be rebellious like that rebellious breed. Open your mouth and eat what I am giving you.” 9As I looked, there was a hand stretched out to me, holding a written scroll. 10He unrolled it before me, and it was inscribed on both the front and the back; on it were written lamentations, dirges, and woes. Ezekiel 2/8-10 Tanakh JPS 1985.
1He said to me, “Mortal, eat what is offered you; eat this scroll, and go speak to the House of Israel.” 2So I opened my mouth, and He gave me this scroll to eat, 3as He said to me, “Mortal, feed your stomach and fill your belly with this scroll that I give you.” I ate it, and it tasted as sweet as honey to me. Ezekiel 3/1-3 Tanakh JPS 1985.
7But the House of Israel will refuse to listen to you, for they refuse to listen to Me; for the whole House of Israel are brazen of forehead and stubborn of heart. 8But I will make your face as hard as theirs, and your forehead as brazen as theirs. 9I will make your forehead like adamant (shamir), harder than flint. Do not fear them, and do not be dismayed by them, though they are a rebellious breed.” Ezekiel 3/7-9 Tanakh JPS 1985.
14A spirit seized me and carried me away. I went in bitterness, in the fury of my spirit, while the hand of the Lord was strong upon me. Ezekiel 3/14 Tanakh JPS 1985.
24And a spirit entered into me and set me upon my feet. And He spoke to me, and said to me: “Go, shut yourself up in your house. Ezekiel 3/24 Tanakh JPS 1985.
25As for you, O mortal, cords have been placed upon you, and you have been bound with them, and you shall not go out among them. Ezekiel 3/25 Tanakh JPS 1985.
4“Then lie on your left side, and let it bear the punishment of the House of Israel; for as many days as you lie on it you shall bear their punishment. 5For I impose upon you three hundred and ninety days, corresponding to the number of the years of their punishment; and so you shall bear the punishment for the House of Israel. 6When you have completed these, you shall lie another forty days on your right side, and bear the punishment of the House of Judah. I impose on you one day for each year. Ezekiel 4/4 Tanakh JPS 1985.
8Now I put cords upon you, so that you cannot turn from side to side until you complete your days of siege. Ezekiel 4/8 Tanakh JPS 1985.
12“Eat it as a barley cake; you shall bake it on human excrement before their eyes. 13So,” said the Lord, “shall the people of Israel eat their bread, unclean, among the nations to which I will banish them.” 14Then I said, “Ah, Lord God, my person was never defiled; nor have I eaten anything that died of itself or was torn by beasts from my youth until now, nor has foul flesh entered my mouth.” 15He answered me, “See, I allow you cow’s dung instead of human excrement; prepare your bread on that.” Ezekiel 4/12-15 Tanakh JPS 1985.
“Mortal, eat what is offered you; eat this scroll, and go speak to the House of Israel.”
I am the righteous servant of God in Isaiah 53 who makes the many righteous by his knowledge. I also serve as the messenger of Malachi 3 who arrives with the angel of the covenant. The covenant of sin forgiveness for a time to come for the Jewish people when they will never be exiled from Israel again announced by God in Jeremiah 31.
And that messenger is Elijah who must reconcile the Jewish people to one another through Judaism and knowledge of the God of Jacob. So I have been told by God to eat many a scroll. And it is sweet to learn and write and see how powerful these writings are. But the fact is He uses the teachings and writing to change and refine my soul and spirit and human ego and will. Eating scrolls is no fun though a sweet time it is.
I will make your forehead like adamant (shamir), harder than flint. How will HaShem make Ezekiel suitable for His purpose, making him as hard as the House of Israel? By crushing, punishing, bruising and chastising him just as he does with the righteous servant of Isaiah 53 to remove his will and refine and cleanse his soul and remove the infuriation of his spirit. All this makes Ezekiel more suitable for G-d’s purpose with him to prosper, so that Ezekiel will do and say whatever he is commanded to do and say by G-d without hesitation.
“As for you, O mortal, cords have been placed upon you, and you have been bound with them, and you shall not go out among them. And “Now I put cords upon you, so that you cannot turn from side to side until you complete your days of siege.”
These are not references to physical ropes. In the first Ezekiel is being constrained from leaving his house. And the second has to do with the punishment for the House of Israel and House of Judah that God is punishing Ezekiel for and these cords of God’s power are preventing him from turning from side to side. For 430 days.
And the Jewish people where not vicariously relieved of their punishment. The complete fall of Jerusalem and final deportation occurs in Ezekiel’s lifetime. It is really just speech between God and Ezekiel. Ezekiel a Priestly man who followed the laws of a kosher diet and probably all God’s laws and commandments would be beside himself at such a seemingly unrighteous punishment. But that is the point. God treating you as you could never imagine is very humbling and causes great change to your spirit and soul when it is a one on one encounter.
It can be seen in this discussion between God and Ezekiel “Then I said, “Ah, Lord God, my person was never defiled; nor have I eaten anything that died of itself or was torn by beasts from my youth until now, nor has foul flesh entered my mouth.” He answered me, “See, I allow you cow’s dung instead of human excrement; prepare your bread on that.”
I know what Ezekiel is going through in this punishment. I have experienced it. I cannot describe exactly what Ezekiel went through during those 430 days but I do know what 5 days was for me.
In the second year after the person of the spirit of G-d alighted upon me and G-d first spoke to me in 2007 everything changed when G-d told me I was going to sacrifice for 5 days. I had not experienced any crushing, bruising, chastisement or punishment before this. And those are the very words from Isaiah 53.
As I lay in bed the cords of G-d’s power enveloped me. I simply could not move. G-d never stopped talking to me and was explaining to me everything that was happening. He showed me how His power could slowly crush my chest until I could not breath and He let the fear of that overwhelm me.
He used this example to teach and discuss with me Jonah on the bottom of the ocean. He also gave me tremendous visions related to death by suffocation and was showing me that He could keep me alive without air.
This only took a few hours of the five days. G-d is very creative and there was very little let up in this method of teaching me of His power, the scripture, the Jewish people, fear of Him and the level of pain He would lay on me.
It changed our relationship, how I thought of Him and took a lot of the fight out of my soul. And this process has continued in many ways and experiences over the years. It is how I learned about creation, the scripture and mysteries of heaven while being made suitable for the purposes of G-d.