God used Ezekiel to tell the people of Judah good news of hope! God showed Ezekiel through a vision of a valley of dry bones that just how those dry bones came to life, there would be hope of God’s people. They would be restored and given new life. Follow along with this devotion, which you can walk through with your family in 10-15 minutes one night this week or review it in 3-5 minutes over the course of the week.
KEY VERSE – DAY ONE:
Review the key verses and hand motions for this unit with your children.
“And I will give them one heart and a new spirit I will put in them … that they may walk in my statutes and keep my rules and obey them. And they shall be my people and I will be their God.” – Ezekiel 11:19-20
BIG PICTURE QUESTION – DAY ONE:
Ask your children the Big Picture Question for this unit: Why should we obey God? We obey God because He loves us.
MAIN POINT – DAY ONE:
Share with your children that this week’s main point is God planned to bring His people back to their land and give them new life.
BIBLE PASSAGE – DAY TWO:
This week’s Bible story comes from Ezekiel 37. This story can be found on page 138 of the Big Picture Interactive Bible Storybook. Take some time now to read these passages with your children or you can refer to the Bible story summary below!
BIBLE STORY SUMMARY:
God had allowed the Babylonians to take over Judah. God’s people were taken to Babylon as slaves. Ezekiel, one of God’s prophets, was in Babylon. God gave Ezekiel visions so he could tell God’s people about the future.
In one vision, God led Ezekiel through a valley filled with old, dry bones. God told Ezekiel, “Can these bones come to life?”
Ezekiel replied, “Lord God, only You know.”
God said, “Speak to these bones for Me. Say, ‘This is what God says: I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am God.’”
Ezekiel spoke to the bones. Suddenly, there was a noise – a rattling sound. The bones were coming together. But there was no breath in the bones.
God said, “Speak to the breath for Me. Say, ‘This is what God says: Breath, come into these bones so that they may live!’”
Ezekiel did what God said, and the breath entered the bones. They came to life, and a vast army stood before Ezekiel.
Then God said to Ezekiel, “These bones are like My people of Israel. I want you to speak to them for Me.”
God told Ezekiel to say, “This is what God says: I am going to bring My people back to the land of Israel. I will put My Spirit in you, and you will live.”
Another message came to Ezekiel. God told him to write on a stick: ‘This stick belongs to Judah and his friends, the people of Israel.’ Then God told Ezekiel to write on a second stick: ‘This stick belongs to Joseph and his friends, the people of Israel.’ The first stick represented the Southern Kingdom of Judah, and the second stick represented the Northern Kingdom of Israel.
God told Ezekiel to hold the sticks together in one hand so they would become one single stick. God explained that His people would be one nation. They would have a new king to rule over them and guide them.
God would make a covenant of peace with His people forever. “I will be with them,” God said. “I will be their God, and they will be My people. Then Everyone will know that I am the Lord.”
REVIEW QUESTIONS – DAY THREE:
After reading the Bible story or going through the summary, ask your children these review questions:
- What did Ezekiel see in the vision God gave him? (old, dry bones)
- What did God tell Ezekiel to do to the bones? (talk to them)
- Who was like the old, dry bones? (God’s people)
- What did God say He was going to do for His people? (bring them back to their land, make them one nation again, and give them a new king)
- Who saw the vision of the valley of dry bones? (Ezekiel)
- What happened to the bones at first? (God caused them to come back together and covered them in flesh and skin)
- When did the restored bodies come to life? (when the breath entered them)
- What did the bones represent? (the people of Israel felt hopeless and dead, but God would restore them and fill them with His Spirit)
- What did Ezekiel write on the two sticks? (“Belonging to Judah” and “Belonging to Joseph”)
- What happened to the two sticks, and what did it mean? (they were joined into one stick by God; God would reunite the two kingdoms under a new King)
WORSHIP – DAY FOUR:
CHRIST CONNECTION – DAY FIVE:
It’s amazing to see how things that happened in the Old Testament are connected to the New Testament and the Gospel – the good news that Jesus came to Earth to die for our sins because of His love for us. These Christ connections show us that God has been preparing us for a relationship with Jesus since the beginning of time.
God showed Ezekiel a valley. It was full of dead bones. When we disobey God, we are like those dead bones. But God gave us Jesus to take away our sin. When we turn from sin and trust Jesus, He gives us life so we can be with God forever.
God showed Ezekiel a valley of dry bones. The dry bones remind us what we are like when we sin. God showed Ezekiel His power to make dead people alive. We see God’s power at the cross. Jesus died to save sinners. God raised Jesus from the dead, and He gives us eternal life.
PRAY – DAY FIVE:
Pray this prayer: God, You never forget Your people. You planned to give Your people a new life. Thank You that You forgive our sin and give us new life when we turn from our sin and trust in Jesus. Amen.