June 2021

June 2021


 “I will give you a new heart and a new spirit I will put within you”

Ezekiel 36.26 (ESV)


Despite some of God’s people being in exile, and with those who remain in the nation still facing God’s judgement, the book of Ezekiel is encouraging. It shows that however far God’s people had moved from Him, He never gives up on them. He still seeks to repair the relationship between Him and His people even when they had violated His original covenant.  Here we see a picture of a God who will go to extreme lengths to enter into a new covenant with His people, despite their unfaithfulness.  As such, the theme of grace is well illustrated in Ezekiel as it shows God as initiating His people’s spiritual return to Him. This theme has obvious New Testament parallels in the life and work of Jesus Christ.


God desires life, not death, provided His people mend their ways; He reaffirms His promise to the exiles that Israel will be once again His people and serve Him in the land that he had made his own. He will take away their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh, endowing them with a new spirit that will respond to His word.  He is saying to them “I will take out your stony stubborn heart and will give you a tender, responsive heart”.


In John 3.3-6 Jesus tells Nicodemus when he comes to Him at night that he must be born again, born of water and the Spirit, referring to a spiritual birth which cleanses from sin and brings spiritual transformation and renewal. When we are baptised we become members of the Christian community, an integral part of the body of Christ. In Jesus we are a new creation, ready to live our lives in Christ.


God’s love is constant and irrevocable: our part is to be open to the outpouring of His love.  In our times of contemplative prayer and stillness, we seek to open our mind, heart and will in order to receive the riches of God’s Words, that are “Spirit and Life” (John 6.63). In our work of intercession we pray for all those on our hearts and indeed for the renewal of all humanity and creation.  “I will give you a new heart and a new spirit I will put within you”.


A Watchword might be “I will give you a new heart”