Wednesday, July 20, 2011

THE RIVER OF LIFE

The prophet Ezekiel was given an incredible vision. Scripture says the hand of God carried him to a very high mountain, where a man appeared to him “whose appearance was like the appearance of brass” (Ezekiel 40:3)

Of course, the man was none other than Christ himself. He ushered Ezekiel to the door of God’s house where he gave the prophet the amazing vision of the future of God’s people. It revealed what the body of Christ will become as the end-times draw to a close. “He brought me again unto the door of the house [the temple]; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward…” (Ezekiel 47:1).

Images of water in the Bible almost always represent the Spirit of God. This vision clearly reveals a mighty outpouring of the Holy Spirit in the last days. The vision was so overwhelming in scope, Ezekiel couldn’t comprehend it. He couldn’t even comment on its meaning; all he could do was report it. In fact, before the vision was finished, the Lord stopped and asked Ezekiel, “Hast thou seen this?” God was asking, “Do you grasp the magnitude of what you’re seeing? Do you see what these rising waters speak of? I know this revelation is awesome and mind-boggling to you, but I don’t want you to miss the true meaning. The waters indicate the way all things will end.”

The prophet Isaiah had a glimpse of the same river that appeared in Ezekiel’s vision. Yet Isaiah saw even more. According to Isaiah, in the last days God’s people will enjoy great protection against all satanic attack: “No galley with oars, neither shall gallant ship pass thereby” (Isaiah 33:21).

Isaiah is speaking here of slave-driven warships. He’s giving us a picture of the enemy, the devil, as he tries to launch an attack on all who swim in the river. And it’s a picture of total confusion.

God is making it clear to us in these passages that his living waters are off- limits to Satan. As the psalmist testifies, “Let them be confounded and put to shame that seek after my soul; let them be turned back and brought to confusion that devise my hurt…let the angel of the Lord chase them…let the angel of the Lord persecute them” (Psalm 35:4-6).