[Ezekiel 15:1] AND THE WORD OF THE LORD CAME UNTO ME, SAYING,
[Ezekiel 15:2] SON OF MAN, WHAT IS THE VINE TREE MORE THAN ANY TREE, OR THAN A BRANCH WHICH IS AMONG THE TREES OF THE FOREST?
Israel is likened to a vine in Psalm 80. The Psalm is actually speaking
mainly about the Lost Ten Tribes ("EPHRAIM AND BENJAMIN AND MANASSEH" 80:2)
and is worth reading: concerning the vine see verses 80:8-16. The boar who
destroys [Psalms 80:13] it is actually Edom. The boar was a favorite symbol
amongst early Celtic (especially on the Continent) and Germanic groups. Some
of these were of Israelite origin and some were not, though they were related.
The gods Essuvus amongst the Celts and some versions of Odin amongst the
Germanics actually represent the ancestor-hero Esau.
<<GIVE EAR, O SHEPHERD OF ISRAEL, THOU THAT LEADEST JOSEPH LIKE A FLOCK;
THOU THAT DWELLEST BETWEEN THE CHERUBIMS, SHINE
<<BEFORE EPHRAIM AND BENJAMIN AND MANASSEH STIR UP THY STRENGTH, AND COME
AND SAVE US. [80:2]
<<TURN US AGAIN, O GOD, AND CAUSE THY FACE TO SHINE; AND WE SHALL BE
<<O LORD GOD OF HOSTS, HOW LONG WILT THOU BE ANGRY AGAINST THE PRAYER OF
THY PEOPLE? [80:4]
<<THOU FEEDEST THEM WITH THE BREAD OF TEARS; AND GIVEST THEM TEARS TO DRINK
IN GREAT MEASURE. [80:5]
<<THOU MAKEST US A STRIFE UNTO OUR NEIGHBOURS: AND OUR ENEMIES LAUGH AMONG
<<TURN US AGAIN, O GOD OF HOSTS, AND CAUSE THY FACE TO SHINE; AND WE SHALL
BE SAVED. [80:7]
<<THOU HAST BROUGHT A VINE OUT OF EGYPT: THOU HAST CAST OUT THE HEATHEN,
AND PLANTED IT. [80:8]
<<THOU PREPAREDST ROOM BEFORE IT, AND DIDST CAUSE IT TO TAKE DEEP ROOT, AND
IT FILLED THE LAND. [80:9]
<<THE HILLS WERE COVERED WITH THE SHADOW OF IT, AND THE BOUGHS THEREOF WERE
LIKE THE GOODLY CEDARS. [80:10]
<<SHE SENT OUT HER BOUGHS UNTO THE SEA, AND HER BRANCHES UNTO THE RIVER.
<<WHY HAST THOU THEN BROKEN DOWN HER HEDGES, SO THAT ALL THEY WHICH PASS BY
THE WAY DO PLUCK HER? [80:12]
<<THE BOAR OUT OF THE WOOD DOTH WASTE IT, AND THE WILD BEAST OF THE FIELD
DOTH DEVOUR IT. [80:13]
<<RETURN, WE BESEECH THEE, O GOD OF HOSTS: LOOK DOWN FROM HEAVEN, AND
BEHOLD, AND VISIT THIS VINE; [80:14]
<<AND THE VINEYARD WHICH THY RIGHT HAND HATH PLANTED, AND THE BRANCH
THAT THOU MADEST STRONG FOR THYSELF. [80:15]
<<IT IS BURNED WITH FIRE, IT IS CUT DOWN: THEY PERISH AT THE REBUKE OF THY
<<LET THY HAND BE UPON THE MAN OF THY RIGHT HAND, UPON THE SON OF MAN WHOM
THOU MADEST STRONG FOR THYSELF. [80:17]
<<SO WILL NOT WE GO BACK FROM THEE: QUICKEN US, AND WE WILL CALL UPON THY
<<TURN US AGAIN, O LORD GOD OF HOSTS, CAUSE THY FACE TO SHINE; AND
WE SHALL BE SAVED>>. [80:19]
[Ezekiel 15:3] SHALL WOOD BE TAKEN THEREOF TO DO ANY WORK? OR WILL MEN TAKE A PIN OF IT TO HANG ANY VESSEL THEREON?
The grapevine is technically a tree. If the vine produces grapes then
it is highly valued and this is the purpose for cultivating it. If the vine
does not fulfill its purpose then it is useless, just a troublesome weed.
Even for the most simple things, such as making a "pin" (i.e. peg or hook)
to hang things on, its wood is useless since it is weak and unmanageable.
Same thing for human beings, same thing for nations: We all have our task
in this world. Equality means doing our own thing and not that of someone
[Ezekiel 15:4] BEHOLD, IT IS CAST INTO THE FIRE FOR
FUEL; THE FIRE DEVOURETH BOTH THE ENDS OF IT, AND THE MIDST OF IT IS BURNED.
IS IT MEET FOR ANY WORK?
[Ezekiel 15:5] BEHOLD, WHEN IT WAS WHOLE, IT WAS MEET FOR NO WORK: HOW MUCH
LESS SHALL IT BE MEET YET FOR ANY WORK, WHEN THE FIRE HATH DEVOURED IT, AND
IT IS BURNED?
The point is that to some degree we all have our own unique task in
life. We have to do what we can with what we have as we are. We cannot look
at other people and say that since they are getting along with what they
are so should we do the same. Some people have been called to do certain
things and this is why they were placed on this earth. A good doctor would
not necessarily succeed if he had to do the job of a plumber and vice versa.
As it is with individuals so it is with nations. The nation of Israel has
its own unique task. The Ten Tribes have their task, Joseph amongst the tribes
also has its unique goal. Judah has its obligation and the national proclivity
that should enable it to fulfill itself. Even if you belief in Judaism that
does not necessarily mean that you have to become Jewish.
Maybe God wants you to stay amongst "Joseph" and fulfill the purpose of your
life in service to other Lost Israelites? It is not always easy to know what
one's purpose should be in this world but we can do our best and God will
[Ezekiel 15:6] THEREFORE THUS SAITH THE LORD
GOD; AS THE VINE TREE AMONG THE TREES OF THE FOREST, WHICH I HAVE GIVEN TO
THE FIRE FOR FUEL, SO WILL I GIVE THE INHABITANTS OF JERUSALEM.
[Ezekiel 15:7] AND I WILL SET MY FACE AGAINST THEM; THEY SHALL GO OUT FROM
ONE FIRE, AND ANOTHER FIRE SHALL DEVOUR THEM; AND YE SHALL KNOW THAT I AM
THE LORD, WHEN I SET MY FACE AGAINST THEM.
[Ezekiel 15:8] AND I WILL MAKE THE LAND DESOLATE, BECAUSE THEY HAVE COMMITTED A TRESPASS, SAITH THE LORD GOD.
On the simple level the Prophet is speaking to the inhabitants of Jerusalem
just before the destruction of the First temple by the Babylonians. Because
the people had sinned and had not fulfilled their national obligation their
Land would be destroyed, many would be killed, and the remainder exiled to
other places. On the prophetic level the prophet is referring to all Israel
and warning us (you and I together) to improve our ways for our own sake
and the sake of others.