A Prophetic Picture of Revival
by Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.
- Summary: Ezekiel's spectacular vision of the valley of dry bones coming alive offers great hope to all who feel that you are in a spiritually dry time in your life.
Read Ezekiel 37:1-14
vs. 1 The hand of the LORD was upon me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the LORD and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones.
- •• We discern a nation’s true condition (e.g., the USA or our Rogue Valley) by "the hand of the Lord ... by the Spirit of the Lord.”
- • And what He shows us won’t always be beautiful. Here God showed the prophet Ezekiel a valley of dry bones.
vss. 2-3 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry.  He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?” I said, “O Sovereign LORD, you alone know.”
- •• Imagine his feeling of helplessness, of hopelessness upon seeing all this deadness.
•• “Can these bones live?” What is your feeling?
- • Can the USA experience revival once more and live?
• Can our Rogue Valley come alive in revival?
- •• The correct, humble answer is: “Lord, you alone know.”
- • Absolute dependence on God for revival.
• Our focus on God, not on desperate conditions.
vs. 4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the LORD!
- •• That’s what America needs — to “hear the word of the Lord”!
- • The written word preached, taught, and witnessed
• The prophetic word — suggesting a moving of the Holy Spirit
• The anointed word, not man’s “wisdom”
- •• This will be done through anointed, Spirit-filled vessels:
- • “Prophesy to these bones.”
- •• It must be done even if you look foolish.
- • Prophesy to a valley of dry bones?!!
vss. 5-6 This is what the Sovereign LORD says to these bones: “I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life.  I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the LORD.”
- •• America needs that breath of God!
- • “Breath” (Hebrew) also means “wind” or “spirit”.
• Born again by the Spirit
• Filled/baptized with the Spirit
• “Changed into a different” nation by the Spirit, as Saul was changed personally by the Spirit in 1 Samuel 10:6.
vs. 7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone.
- •• Obedience helps revival to come — “I prophesied as I was commanded” into a bleak situation.
•• As a result, order (bone to bone) began to come out of chaos and deadness.
vs. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them.
- •• Body coming together, but no breath yet.
- • Unity, a “together” body, is a precursor to the valley-reviving breath of God.
vs. 9 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’ ”
- •• We will have a part in any Holy Spirit renewing.
- • “[You] prophesy to the breath ... ‘Come, ... O breath.’ ”
- •• “Come, O breath” — This speaks of prayer, insistent prayer, for God’s breath to blow.
- • Ministry to dry bones will require much beseeching of the Lord for His breath to blow upon our "valley of dry bones".
vs. 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet — a vast army.
- •• Obey ... be a willing vessel in the dry times ... pray and prophesy.
- • The breath of God blows!
• Life comes to the dead! The valley of dry bones becomes a living multitude.
• A vast army stands to its feet!
vs. 11 Then he said to me: “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.’ ”
- •• The army is identified as the “whole house of Israel” = the Church today (Galatians 6:16).
- • Their/our(?) present state is dryness, hopelessness.
vs. 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: ‘This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel.
- •• “Therefore,” in light of this despair, you speak:
- • God will open your graves.
• He will bring you out of your deadness.
• He will bring you back to the Land of Promise.
• Speak a message of hope from God.
vs. 13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them.
- •• Even in the worst of times, even if you feel you are languishing in a valley of dry bones, remember, you are still “my people” to God Almighty.
vs. 14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.
- •• God will pour out His Spirit.
- • the new birth, numerous conversions
• the baptism with the Holy Spirit and the resulting flow of rivers of living water
- •• The final result? — An entire nation will know  that God is the Lord and that  He can and will do great things for His people and will raise them up as “an exceeding great army.”
Some summarizing thoughts:
- • Determine to stay alive if you find yourself in a valley of dry bones.
• Remain a man or woman of the Word.
• Stay under the Holy Spirit's anointing, so you can “prophesy” when God so moves.
• Remain in prayer — “Come, O breath!”
• Obey God’s promptings to speak into dryness.
•• The restoration of natural Israel (that is, their return from Babylon) did not occur in Ezekiel’s lifetime, but a generation later.
•• So you determine, like Ezekiel, to be faithful to God in your lifetime, and leave the timing of God’s reviving, valley-shaking breath to Him.
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©2005, James H. Feeney. Copyright statement.