In Ezekiel 28:22-23, God has Jeremiah prophesy against Sidon, “Behold, I am against you, O Sidon, and I will manifest my glory in your midst. And they shall know that I am the Lord when I execute judgments in her and manifest my holiness in her; for I will send pestilence into her, and blood into her streets; and the slain shall fall in her midst, by the sword that is against her on every side. Then they will know that I am the Lord.”
God said he was against Sidon, but he would make his glory appear in Sidon. How does this apply to me? What does it make me think of? Jesus died for me even while I was a sinner. His glory appeared even when I was his enemy and against him.
Romans 5:6-8, 10 – “For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person – though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die – but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us…For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son…”
Why did Jesus die for me while I was a sinner and his enemy? So that “they shall know that I am the Lord.” There’s that phrase that God keeps repeating over and over and over in Ezekiel. Every judgment, every action God takes among the nations, is to show that he is Lord. Whether it is national politics, wars, or illness in our lives, God is working to manifest his glory to us so that we will know that he is Lord. Not everything is from him or caused by him. But, God works it all together for our good to reveal himself to us and cause us to be like Jesus.
It’s easy to read the judgments in the Old Testament and think God is mean and vindictive. Our thoughts get drawn to the judgment and gloss over that everything God does or allows to happen as a result of our sin is to reveal that he is Lord.