Day 31

The Valley of Dry Bones

from the Ezekiel: Come to Life (Lent 2022) reading plan

Ezekiel 36:1-38, Ezekiel 37:1-28, Hosea 6:1-3, John 11:23-26

BY Beth Joseph

During the Lenten season, we slow down, intentionally withdrawing for the purpose of grounding ourselves in the life of Christ. We remember His sacrifice and His resurrection and what it accomplishes for us. In today’s reading, both Ezekiel and Hosea reference resurrection, and contribute to the Old Testament teaching on this topic. 

The vision in Ezekiel 37 is the third one to occur in Ezekiel. In this third vision, God asks Ezekiel a weighty question: “Can these bones live?” (Ezekiel 37:3). Or maybe more easily understood to you and me: “Do you believe in resurrection?” This question hints at the exile’s own view of themselves that is later revealed: “our bones are dried up, and our hope has perished; we are cut off” (v.11). Prior to chapter 37, God had promised to give His people a “new heart” and a “new spirit” (Ezkekiel 36:26). But how is a new heart and a new spirit possible when one’s view of oneself is of dry bones with no hope? God answers this question: “I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them, my people, and lead you into the land of Israel” (Ezekiel 37:12). 

Lent often feels long and kind of dark. While we appropriately mourn our sin, we sometimes forget that the best thing about Lent is Easter—the resurrection! What was happening in the valley of dry bones is the same thing that happens to us during Lent—we “come to life” (v.6). In a season where we anticipate the celebration of Christ’s resurrection, we also give thanks and rejoice over our own.

Do you believe God can breathe new life into you? Into your disappointment, your broken circumstances, your loss or grief? Ezekiel models for us what it means to trust the outcome to God, even when it may seem impossible—“Lord GOD, only you know” (v.3). 

Don’t forget that the best part about Lent is remembering the resurrection to come! God can take anything dead and make it new. We end our reading today with Jesus Christ, the one who invites us to come to life—“the one who believes in me, even if he dies, will live” (John 11:25). The question for you and me today is similar to the question God asked Ezekiel about whether or not these bones could live: “Do you believe this?” (v.26). 

Post Comments (51)

51 thoughts on "The Valley of Dry Bones"

  1. Mary CumbiePrince says:

    Needed this reminder today that God can breathe life even in my grief and hardest seasons. Thank you for God who heals and restores broken things.

  2. Ashlee Hickson says:

    I believe!

  3. Kathy Harkness says:

    Same thing for me today. Needed the extra rest I guess!

  4. Kathy Harkness says:

    I was behind that much too. I just started reading two days at a time, more if I felt lead to, and was able to catch up. I think reading it in order made more sense for me. Just keep opening your Bible and it will be blessed!

  5. Sky Hilton says:

    Only Jesus breathes life into dry bones! We cannot be better people, better vessels, or better children for Him without Him! Jesus is alive and is always guiding us to be better people, breathing life into our dry bones to make us burn for Him. Don’t listen to what anyone else says when they say that there is no life anywhere else. We find Life in our Savior!

  6. Jennifer Anapol says:

    Rachel Davis, no judgement for falling behind. I would just go back to where you left off. I think this book of the Bible is better understood in order. Happy reading!

  7. Jennifer Anapol says:

    I loved this reading so much today. Ezekiel has felt dry and heavy; which is an appropriate reaction to what God was saying to his people. The reading today was a breathe of fresh air. This air was filled with hope and new life. I really have never truly understood this part of Ezekiel, until today. Ezekiel really is a chapter that is better understood if you read it in it’s entirety. I know that God has so often breathed fresh life on the “dry bones” in my life. One situation that comes to mind is when I had lost hope that I would ever find the man God has for me, and that night I met my husband. Even during my lowest moment, God had a plan and hope for my future. I’m so thankful we serve a God of new hope and resurrection!

  8. Jamie T says:

    Oh how this reading and devotional by Beth has given me strength. Struggling today with some random things. When we Trust Him, we are given Hope. Like the Israelites, I have a lot to learn, but everyday I can thank Jesus Christ for saving me.

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