Chapter 3: A Prophet’s Duty
Ezekiel is commanded to eat the scroll, and it tastes as sweet as honey. Yeah, you read that right! God commands Ezekiel to eat a book!
“MOREVER he said unto me… eat that thou findest; eat this roll [scroll/book], and go speak unto the house of Israel. So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll… cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll… Then did I eat; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.” (Ezekiel 3:1-3)
So here is the question, would you take this to literally mean eating a book? I don’t think so. What we can learn here is that God wants us to indulge in the scriptures, make it part of a daily routine… just like we do with eating! If we stop reading his word, we should feel hungry! If we let it become part of a daily routine, we will be spiritually full!
The chapter goes on to explain that Ezekiel, a prophet is also a watchman. God warns Ezekiel that if he does not warn the wicked, and the wicked die because of their iniquity, Ezekiel is answerable for it! However, if Ezekiel tells them and the wicked do not heed him, he is not answerable. Likewise, Ezekiel is answerable if a righteousness man commits iniquity and is not warned.
See Ezekiel 3:18-21 for the Purpose of Prophets.
Chapter 4: The Famine of Jerusalem
Ezekiel represents Jerusalem with a ‘tile’ (a brick or maybe a rock/stone of some sorts) and uses an iron pan to make a models of a fort and battering rams to signify the forthcoming siege by the Chaldeans.
Ezekiel is then commanded to lie on his left side for 390 days (because the house of Israel has had 390 years of iniquity) and on his right side 40 days (because Judah has had 40 years of iniquity). While Ezekiel is doing this, he is commanded only to eat the worst kinds of grain, and have only cow’s dung for fuel, to represent the scarcity of provisions during the siege of Jerusalem.