An Alphabetical Analysis
Volume 8 - Prophetic Truth - Page 153 of 304
There does not appear to be any justification for making this word
'army' mean simply a collective term for a great number.  It appears to mean
'an army' in the military sense of the word, and where other words than this
are used the translation is in keeping, being rendered by words like valour,
valiant, strong, war, host, might, strength, and a number of other variants
of the primitive idea of 'force'.  Added to this, these bones did not
represent simply the dead of Israel but 'the slain' (Ezek. 37:9), a word that
indicates a death by violence (see Ezek. 23:10; 26:6).  The word translated
'valley' (Ezek. 37:2), means 'a plain' as in Isaiah 40:4, and is the word
employed by Zechariah when he speaks of the 'valley of Megiddon' (Zech.
12:11), the scene of Israel's national repentance, as also the scene of the
great battle yet to be fought at 'Armageddon' (Rev. 16:16).
This 'valley' is shown on the map of Palestine as the Plain of
Esdraelon at Megiddo, and lies between Haifa on the Mediterranean coast and
the Jordan.  It is in this valley and near 'The hill of Megiddo' (Armageddon)
that the gathering to battle predicted in Revelation 16 will take place.
There, in Revelation, it is 'the spirits of devils' that call this great army
together.  In Ezekiel it is 'the spirit of God' that is evoked to breathe on
the slain.
The explanation of the symbolism of the dry bones is given.  The whole
house of Israel are thereby represented, and they are reported to have said:
'Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off for our
parts' (Ezek. 37:11).
There is a solemn thought in the fact that the selfsame word is used of
the Messiah Who was 'cut off' out of the land of the living (Isa. 53:8).  Not
only the slain, but the dead are to be raised, and according to Ezekiel 11:17
the scattered of Israel are to be gathered from among the nations and placed
in their own land.  This prophecy of restoration is followed by the symbolism
of the two sticks.  One stick represented the name of Judah and his
companions, the other, Ephraim, the head of the ten tribes.  These two sticks
were to 'become one' in the prophet's hand.  For the Lord declared:
'I will make them one nation in the land upon the mountains of Israel;
and one king shall be king to them all: and they shall be no more two
nations, neither shall they be divided into two kingdoms any more at
all' (Ezek. 37:22).
The prophecy concludes with a great name of the Lord:
'The name of the city from that day shall be, (Jehovah -Shammah) the
Lord is there' (Ezek. 48:35).
Thus, the departed glory returns, the scattered nation returns, and the
times of restoration of all things spoken by the prophets will at last have
Evidence that Ezra - Nehemiah must be treated as one, and that the early
chapters of Nehemiah chronologically precede the book of Ezra