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Sunday, November 15 2015
Ezekiel 22: The Two Ways That Israel Rose To The Top
"The house of Israel is to me become dross: all they are brass, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are even the dross of silver"
"The cream rises to the top" is a mechanical milk-separation term that has become an analogy in the business, political or sports world for having the most-qualified and best-suited people in positions of leadership. The logic of it is sometimes valid.
Israel too was the "cream of the crop" of humanity, not because they were superior human beings (they were literally created from the nations around them; see The Origin Of Israelites And Jews), but because, when they obeyed and lived by the Word of God, they were blessed in all ways. Unfortunately, cream can spoil, or be spoiled, but even then the analogy holds for what happened to the Kingdoms of Israel, from the united Kingdom of Israel under King Solomon (see What Caused Solomon's Idolatry?), to the divided Kingdom of Israel (see Israel In History and Prophecy: The Lost Ten Tribes) and the Kingdom of Judah (see Israel In History and Prophecy: Kingdom Of Judah). They all did it.
When they became corrupt, another natural rising could be used to describe their decadent political and religious state (see Iniquity In History And Prophecy and Decadence In History And Prophecy). In metal refining, the slag, or dross, the impurities, rise to the top. The Kingdoms of Israel and Judah experienced both kinds of rising.
The LORD's (see The Identity Of The LORD God and The LORD God Our Saviour) declaration of condemnation (pun intended - condemn nation) was starkly similar to what He declared about all of humanity just before the Flood (see Why Did The Flood Happen?).
"22:1 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
The LORD then used the "slag," or dross, term for what Israel and Judah had chosen to make of and for themselves: "The house of Israel is to me become dross."
"22:17 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Fact Finder: Is the day surely coming when "For, behold, the day cometh, that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble: and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the LORD of hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch"?
This Day In History, November 15
655: The Battle of Winwaed; Oswiu of Northumbria defeated Penda of Mercia. The battle is regarded by some historians to be the largest military confrontation between the early northern and southern divisions of the Anglo-Saxons in Britain.
1315: Swiss forces defeated invading Austrians at the Battle of Morgarten.
1532: Following the Caribbean-area voyages of Christopher Columbus (see the map of the Spain-sponsored voyages of Columbus at Thanksgiving In History and Prophecy), Spanish conquistadors (conquerors) under Hernando de Soto encountered Inca leader Atahualpa for the first time outside Cajamarca.
1533: Spanish conquistador Francisco Pizarro arrived in Cuzco, the capital of the Inca Empire that Pizarro later conquered.
1630: German astronomer Johannes Kepler died. He established what are now known as Kepler's Laws of Planetary Motion (see also What Can You See In The Firmament Of The Heavens?).
1660: The first kosher butcher, Asser Levy, was licensed in New Amsterdam (later renamed New York City after the British captured it from the Dutch). New York is today the largest Jewish-population city in the world (see also Jews - Three Tribes and Three Meanings).
1688: The "Glorious Revolution" began when William of Orange landed at Brixham.
1859: The first modern restoration of the Olympic Games took place in Athens, Greece.
1864: During the U.S. Civil War, Union general William Sherman departed on his "march to the sea," leaving much of the city of Atlanta burning into ashes.
1889: Brazil was declared a republic by Marshal Deodoro da Fonseca. Emperor Pedro II was deposed in the military coup.
1920: The first League of Nations session opened, in Geneva, Switzerland. After the League of Nations failed to stop the Second World War from happening (listen to our Sermon The European World Wars), it was reborn as the United Nations in 1945.
1939: Adolf Hitler's Nazis began the mass murder of Warsaw Jews (see also Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).
1943: Nazi official Heinrich Himmler ordered that Gypsies in Nazi Germany were to be put "on the same level as Jews and placed in concentration camps."
1948: MacKenzie King retired as Canada's 10th Prime Minister; he was succeeded by Louis St. Laurent.
1957: Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev bragged that Russian missiles were more accurate, and challenged U.S. President Dwight Eisenhower to a rocket-range shooting match.
1969: During the Vietnam War, 500,000 protestors in Washington staged a peaceful "March Against Death."
1971: Intel released the world's first commercial single-chip microprocessor, the 4004.
1984: A human infant, "Baby Fae," died 20 days after receiving a baboon heart transplant in Loma Linda, California.
2007: Cyclone Sidr struck Bangladesh; it killed 5,000 people and destroyed the world's largest mangrove forest.