"Then they will know that I am the Lord" is a key phrase in these chapters. You might want to mark it. It occurs 65 times in the book of Ezekiel.
In these two chapters, there are two messages from the Lord:
1) Idolatry had defiled the land and the temple
You may recall that part of God's covenant promise involved the land. If they followed the covenant, He would bless them in it (26:1-13). If they did not, he would punish them (Leviticus 18:24-30). Their worship of foreign idols had caused judgment to come on them because they had defiled that land that He had given them. The high places with idols on the mountains were particularly abominable.
2) The nature of the judgment - utter devastation of the nation and its land
Even though there would be devastation, He gives mercy to the remnant once again (6:8-10).
REFLECTION (written in 2012)
God's purpose in judgment is not because He gets thrills out of revenge. His purpose is so that we will know that He is the Lord! He wanted His people to know that they could not rely on their idols, prosperity or possessions.
Neither can we.
Today money, sex, and power have become idols for many. Punishment will come upon all who put other things ahead of God. It is easy to forget that the Lord alone is God, the supreme authority and the only source of eternal love and life. Remember that God may use the difficulties of your life to teach you that he alone is God.
(The Life Application Bible, Ezekiel 6:14, p. 1409)My husband has usually had jobs that rely on "soft" research money that comes and goes. But even the time he had a job from a major Fortune 500 company did not give us financial security! Most people work there for life, but he was cut in the first wave in 2008 during the economic recession. Now, he is back to "soft" money, and he informed me two days ago that he had a 20% reduction in pay.
We have never had "job security" because the Lord wants us to always be aware that our security is in Him. He is the one holding the purse strings. I have been through 22 years of marriage with so many job changes! He was even unemployed when we became engaged, but we have lacked nothing.
Whenever we begin to trust in jobs, the economy, a political system, or military might for our security we put God in the back seat.
(ibid, Ezekiel 7:12, 13, p.1409)I am so glad He is not allowing us to put Him back there. God, here are the car keys. Would you please drive the car?
Praise God for the pay cut!
2014 Update: God has abundantly provided for our every need.
Lay your money out before the Lord and give it back to Him.
It is His anyway. If you are holding on to it, you stole it from Him.
GIVE IT BACK and MOVE OVER AND LET HIM DRIVE.
(Now you can sit back and enjoy the ride.)
Lord, we want to know, beyond a shadow of doubt, that You are the LORD! We lay all that we have before You. We give it all back to You. We commit ourselves to steward Your gifts for Your glory. Amen.