God promised to wash away all the evil Israel had done. Despite their stubbornness and rebellion, despite their fickleness and unfaithfulness, God promised to forgive them. God planned to rebuild their broken lives and cause them to flourish again.

Everyone would notice the change. “And they will say, ‘This land that was desolate has become like the garden of Eden, and the waste and desolate and ruined cities are now fortified and inhabited’” (Ezekiel 36:35).

Ezekiel painted an appealing portrait of a transformed nation. No longer enslaved by sinful behavior, shame, and guilt, the people would live productive, free, and beautiful lives. Even so, God had a bigger picture in mind than just rescuing Israel.

“Then the nations that are left all around you shall know that I am the Lord; I have rebuilt the ruined places and replanted that which was desolate. I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it” (Ezekiel 36:36).

In the same way, God cleanses us from our sins for a purpose. God doesn’t simply save us. Rather, he uses our remade lives to declare his power and his grace to the world.

Our transformed lives fulfill God’s purpose, when everyone around us sees how God has changed us. Our lives reveal Jesus as Lord. As followers of Jesus, we now bear his name. When we obey God’s commands through the Holy Spirit’s power and give up our wills and our ways to instead walk in God’s way, we bring him glory.

Heavenly Father, thank you for cleansing me from all my sins. As you rebuild my life, may everyone around me see the difference and praise your holy name. Amen.

Go Deeper — Think back on the past week. In what ways did you bring God glory by walking in his ways? What ways did you not? Ask God’s forgiveness and to help you walk a bit better in his Truth this week.



Tags: Ezekiel Ezekiel 33
Photo Credit: Alice Donovan Rouse