Monday of the Fourth Week of Lent

Today’s Reading: Ezekiel 37:1-14

The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out in the Spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of the valley; it was full of bones.” – Ezekiel 37:1

He hears the mournful cry of vultures circling overhead. Dust kicks up in the wind. The Lord shows His prophet a vision of a valley flooded with dry bones, bodies strewn on the ground left to rot, now scorched and desolate. Ezekiel had been there before, he knew the death of his kinsmen.

The Lord asks an unexpected question, “Son of man, can these bones live?” Ezekiel is astounded. Of course not, these people are dead! Even so, Ezekiel knew the Word. He knew how God had formed man out of the dust of the ground and breathed His own life into him. He knew the one who asked the question.

“O Lord God, you know.” And indeed He did and He does. For us things are tidier; the bones are buried. We drive by the cemetery. We go to the funerals of family and friends. We see our loved ones die. But the question is the same: in this valley of dry bones, can these bones live?

The answer is yes. The answer is new life—born from above—in the waters of Baptism. The answer to the death of the body, is the resurrection of the body. The answer is Jesus.

Prayer: Though around us death is seething, God, His two-edged sword unsheathing, By His Spirit life is breathing through the living, active Word
(Water, Blood, and Spirit Crying, LSB 597:4).

This devotion was written by Rev. Daniel Pool – Pastor of St. John Lutheran in Clinton.

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