Today were going to look at a prophecy in Ezekiel 4:1-6 that is very similar to the prophecy in Daniel 9:25 we covered in http://youthapologeticstraining.com/evidence-for-the-divine-inspiration-of-the-bible-05-jesus-prophecies-episode-153-mp3/ If you haven’t listened to episode 153, you may want to check it out first. Like Daniel 9:25, this prophecy predicts the exact amount of time that will elapse before the prophecies fulfillment. This prophecy is a little rough to follow but once you see it, your socks will be knocked clean off.
Ezekiel 4:1-6 Thou also, son of man, take thee a tile, and lay it before thee, and pourtray upon it the city, even Jerusalem: (2) And lay siege against it, and build a fort against it, and cast a mount against it; set the camp also against it, and set battering rams against it round about. (3) Moreover take thou unto thee an iron pan, and set it for a wall of iron between thee and the city: and set thy face against it, and it shall be besieged, and thou shalt lay siege against it. This shall be a sign to the house of Israel. (4) Lie thou also upon thy left side, and lay the iniquity of the house of Israel upon it: according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon it thou shalt bear their iniquity. (5) For I have laid upon thee the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days: so shalt thou bear the iniquity of the house of Israel. (6) And when thou hast accomplished them, lie again on thy right side, and thou shalt bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days: I have appointed thee each day for a year.
430 years of punishment
In Ezekiel 4:1-6 we see that 430 years (390 + 40) of judgment were foretold for God’s people Israel. The punishment that Ezekiel is predicting began when Israel was overthrown and Israel was subject to Babylonian rule. According to Daniel, the captivity would only last 70 years and in 536 B.C. the Jews were allowed to return home. Unfortunately, only a small remnant chose to repent and return home. Most of the Jews had learned to love the pagan culture of the Babylonians and thus had decided they would rather turn their backs on God and stay in Babylon. In other words the Jews chose to continue living in sin, which was the reason they had been judged in the first place.
As you follow this prophecy forward you find that at the end of the 360 remaining years of punishment prophesied nothing happened. Israel was still not an independent nation and most of the Jews were dispersed throughout the world. God’s people had chosen to continue in their sinful ways.
Did Ezekiel fail in this prophecy?
No! The key thing to remember here is that after 70 years of this punishment of having their nation taken from them, the Jews had refused to learn from their judgment. What happens when God’s people are punished and they still refuse to repent?
Lev 26:18 And if ye will not yet for all this hearken unto me, then I will punish you seven times more for your sins.
Lev 26:21 And if ye walk contrary unto me, and will not hearken unto me; I will bring seven times more plagues upon you according to your sins.
What happens when we multiply the remaining years after the Babylonian captivity by seven (360X7)? We end up with 2,520 more years of judgment from the LORD. In other words, we should expect to see the Jews dispersed throughout the world with no independent nation for an additional 2,520 after their release in 536 B.C.
As I mentioned in episode 153 on Daniel 9:25, the Jewish year was considered 360 days because they followed a lunar calendar. Our year is 365.25 days. So in order to get a precise number of days for this dispersion we need to multiply 2,520X365.25 for a total 907,200 days.
When you count 907,200 days forward from the Jews release from captivity in 536 B.C. we end up on May 14, 1948, when Israel was declared an independent nation.
Yes…you have to do some crazy math to arrive at the fulfillment of this prophecy. Could this be a coincidence? I don’t think so. I would call this one more evidence of the divine inspiration of God’s Word.