A riddle about two eagles and a vine. A proverb about sour grapes. A lamentation for the princes of Israel. A confrontation with the elders of Israel. A drawn and sharpened sword. The bloody city. So many pictures of a rebellious and treacherous people, a people who desired to be like the nations rather than a people set apart for God. But the Lord says, “As I live, declares the Lord God, surely with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out I will be king over you. I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out. . . . I will make you pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant” (20:32-34,37).
I think of God and his people, how they turn against him and how he constantly disciplines them and also fights for them and reaches out to them. The Lord is jealous for his people. I am reminded of a mother bear ferociously fighting for and protecting her cubs. The Lord says, “I WILL be king over you! I WILL bring you into the bond of the covenant!”
The Lord will not forsake His bride who bears His name and splendor;
Against His church no foe can stand—He rises to defend her.
His zealous people go
To herald and to show
The glory of His grace
To ev'ry tribe and race,
That all might love and praise Him. --Eric Schumacher & David L. Ward