Ezekiel 16:47-50 Yet hast thou not walked after their ways, nor done after their abominations: but, as if that were a very little thing, thou wast corrupted more than they in all thy ways. As I live, saith the Lord God, Sodom thy sister hath not done, she nor her daughters, as thou hast done, thou and thy daughters. Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy. And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.
One of the biggest temptations that our flesh has is comparing ourselves to others. We might justify a weakness we have by saying, “At least I’m not like so and so.” A Pharisee did this very thing in Luke 18:10-14. In that Passage, He compared himself to a publican as he boasted of his good works. However, Jesus appreciated the humility of the publican as he confessed his sins more than the Pharisee who was puffed up in his mind.
There is a sobering comparison that God makes between the children of Israel and the Sodomites in Ezekiel 16:47-50. Though the abomination of the Sodomites is clearly condemned in verse 47, God states that His people were more corrupt than the Sodomites in other areas. These are aspects of our lives that can be easily overlooked if we don’t purposely address them.
· Pride: Though the Sodomites were a proud people, God’s people struggled with pride even more! Pride blinds one to seeing himself as he really is. Because the children of Israel had the wrong self-perception, they could not see their shortcomings and weaknesses—which drew them further apart from God! It is only by humility before Him that Christ could work in us!
· Fulness of Bread: The Sodomites, and even more so the Israelites, were very well off economically speaking. They had more than they could eat and obtained the possessions they desired. Why did God frown upon this? They had lost their dependence on Him! God never supplies wealth or possessions if they deter one from Himself. The Israelite’s “fullness of bread” was gotten by their own hand, and it shifted their priorities from their Lord to their own selves!
· Abundance of Idleness: The phrase that comes to mind here is “Idleness is the Devil’s workshop”! Most of the time, teenagers get into trouble in their times of idleness. Paul even sends out the warning in 1 Timothy about idle widows. God despised the idleness that His people had and still frowns upon it today. It keeps from productivity and fosters wasted, time-consuming entertainment most of the time. God wants diligent people, not idle people!
· Neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy: The most tragic of these corruptions that God’s people had was their failure to help others! They lacked compassion and charity when it came to those who were helpless. May our life purpose as Christians not reflect that of the Israelites in that Passage, but may it be modeled after Christ as He, “saw the multitudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.”
Might we evaluate our life so that these corruptions don’t take root in our lives!
Pastor Esposito would often say, "What we do in moderation, our followers will do in excess".
What clear commands in scripture am I violating that will cost me and my future generations?