Ezekiel was a very interesting prophet. They all were, but among the prophets, The LORD really had Ezekiel do some off-the-wall things. Today, notice something very early in Ezekiel’s ministry, something that happened to him very near to his calling from God.
"Then the spirit took me up, and I heard behind me a voice of a great earthquake saying, Blessed be the glory of the LORD from His place. I heard also the noise of the wings of the living creatures that touched one another, and the noise of the wheels over against them, and a noise of a great earthquake. So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me." [Ezek 3:12-14]
God’s vision to Ezekiel ends and Ezekiel is back to reality. He has just seen the glory of Almighty God and of the cherubim who surround God’s throne. He has just seen the most glorious and magnificent thing he will ever encounter, and in the very presence of God he is called to be a prophet to the people of Israel in the captivity. But God’s message is not one of grace, it is of judgment. Of “lamentation, mourning, and woe.” The people won’t listen, and they will hate Ezekiel for what he is going to do. God tells him this beforehand. And Ezekiel is bitter and angry because of it. But notice that The Holy Spirit picks him up and The LORD’s hand is strong upon him.
I would probably feel the same way Ezekiel felt. To see the awesome glory of God and to be told I am His messenger, only to find out that God’s messege won’t be received.
But Ezekiel isn’t proclaiming the message, and neither are we, through our own strength. For The Holy Spitit picks us up and God leads us/helps us.
And notice the conditions in which Ezekield is carried off. As The Holy Spirit carries him back to reality, there is a voice of a great earthquake which says “Blessed be the glory of The LORD from His place.” The word for “rushing” means earthquake, and it is used elsewhere in Ezekiel. One of the places speaks of the valley of dry bones. Ezekiel records,
"So I prophesied as I was commanded: and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold an earthquake, and the bones came together, bone to his bone." [Ezek 37:7]
In all other places, this word is used in context of wrath or judgment. And in 1 Kings, when Elijah is in the mount, we see “and after the wind an earthquake; but The LORD was not in the earthquake.” [1 Ki 19:11] Ezekiel, lifted up by The Holy Spirit, is reminded by the angel of the purpose. In the midst of the bitterness and anger, in light of the great “earthquake” of judgment as it were, that God will use Ezekiel to prophesy of, the end goal is clearly proclaimed: BLESSED BY THE GLORY OF THE LORD FROM HIS PLACE.
What ever it is that we are called to do we must remember the goal: that The LORD is glorified through Jesus Christ. It may be a hard thing God has called us to do. People may hate us or not listen, but we have The Holy Spirit dwelling within us, who will pick us up and move us forward.