August 8, 2023

“Look! God is abandoning your house to you, leaving it desolate.” Matthew 23:38 CJB




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Desolation. Abandonment. Rejection.


Every single time. Whenever the WORD of GOD recounts the departure of the GLORY or the Presence of the LORD, the result is desolation…abandonment…rejection.


It is very weighty and sobering to even think that the GLORY of the LORD would depart from HIS dwelling place. Why would it event come to this point – where the GOD of Israel HIMSELF would abandon HIS Holy Place?


Let’s examine Ezekiel 8-11, where the prophet Ezekiel is taken in visions to Jerusalem. He experiences, in precision, the progressive departure of the GLORY of the LORD from the Temple in Jerusalem.


· Phase 1: The GLORY is enthroned between the cherubim above the Ark of the Covenant (Ezekiel 8:4).


· Phase 2: The GLORY rises from between the cherub and pauses over the threshold of the Temple (Ezekiel 9:3; Ezekiel 10:4).


· Phase 3: The GLORY leaves the threshold of the Temple and stands over the angels that are standing at the entrance of the East Gate of the Temple (Ezekiel 10:18-19).


· Phase 4: The GLORY of the LORD leaves the city and stands over a mountain east of the city (Ezekiel 11:22-23).


It is a very sad day indeed when the GLORY of the LORD departs. But again, why did it come to this point – why did HIS GLORY leave HIS dwelling place?


Very simply: Idolatry and sin.


“‘And many nations will pass by this city, and every man will say to his neighbor, “Why has the Lord dealt thus with this great city?” And they will answer, “Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord their God and worshiped other gods and served them.”’” Jeremiah 22:8-9 ESV


GOD’s Holy Place had become unholy. Idolatry had been welcomed into the land, such that it invaded not only the towns and the cities and the countryside of Israel…but even was so bold as to invade the very Temple of GOD HIMSELF.



In Ezekiel 8, we see:

· The “idol that provokes jealousy” was standing at the entrance of the north gate of the Temple, and women were mourning the false god at the entrance.

· Wall paintings of unclean animals and idols were near the entrance to the court of the Temple. In fact, 70 elders / leaders of Israel were offering incense to the idols there!

· In the inner court of the Temple, about 25 men were bowing down to the sun. Not only that…they had turned their backs on the Temple of GOD (literally!) and were bowing to the sun in the east! At the very door of the Temple!!!


“So He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’s house; and there, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about twenty-five men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east, and they were worshiping the sun toward the east.” Ezekiel 8:16


And yet, even with all this idolatry, the departure of the GLORY was progressive…and paused at each phase. What would have happened if there had been true repentance and cleansing at any of these pauses?


You see, this is not something that happens overnight. No – it happens when people, priest, prophet, pastor, leader have rejected the LORD, have betrayed HIM, and have followed other “gods.”


“When they come with their flocks and herds to offer sacrifices to the Lord, they will not find him, because he has withdrawn from them. 7 They have betrayed the honor of the Lord, bearing children that are not his. Now their false religion will devour them along with their wealth.” Hosea 5:6-7 NLT


And, because people, priest, prophet, pastor, leader reject the LORD and engage in willful harlotry (i.e., idolatry), it is then necessary for the GLORY of the LORD to depart for HE must maintain HIS own honor and holiness.


And what follows? Desolation…abandonment…rejection. Every single time.


What has happened to the “Church” today? Generations and generations of false doctrine, the spirit of religion, and spiritual harlotry (i.e., idolatry) have invaded our societies, our churches, our people, priests, prophets, pastors, leaders. How much longer will the LORD have mercy before HE removes HIS GLORY, HIS Presence from among us…with ensuing desolation, abandonment, rejection?


Brothers and sisters, judgement has already started. A brief look at the news will show leaders who have fallen dead for “no reason,” before “their time.” The LORD will not strive with man forever (Genesis 6:3).


Now let’s make it personal. What about us, HIS Body, HIS Temple? Are there areas of your life in which you have set up idols? Are there areas in your life where you continue to engage in rebellion, holding on to the spirit of religion, committing spiritual harlotry (i.e., idolatry)? Is there anything that comes even remotely close to competing with GOD in your life? Does GOD have reason to be jealous?


The time is now to renounce these idols and turn to GOD in full repentance, lest HE remove HIS GLORY.


“The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.” 2 Peter 3:9-10 ESV


Today, pray that the HOLY SPIRIT will reveal areas of our lives that are in need of a spiritual cleansing, such that HIS GLORY will remain with us, and HIS Presence will go before us to give us peace, rest, and victory. In JESUS’ Name.


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*All Scriptures are in the New King James Version (NKJV) of the Bible, unless otherwise noted.


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