Ezekiel 37

Study the Inner Meaning

English: Basic English Bible         

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1 The hand of the Lord had been on me, and he took me out in the spirit of the Lord and put me down in the middle of the valley; and it was full of bones;

2 And he made me go past them round about: and I saw that there was a very great number of them on the face of the wide valley, and they were very dry.

3 And he said to me, Son of man, is it possible for these bones to come to life? And I made answer, and said, It is for you to say, O Lord.

4 And again he said to me, Be a prophet to these bones, and say to them, O you dry bones, give ear to the word of the Lord.

5 This is what the Lord has said to these bones: See, I will make breath come into you so that you may come to life;

6 And I will put muscles on you and make flesh come on you, and put skin over you, and breath into you, so that you may have life; and you will be certain that I am the Lord.

7 So I gave the word as I was ordered: and at my words there was a shaking of the earth, and the bones came together, bone to bone.

8 And looking I saw that there were muscles on them and flesh came up, and they were covered with skin: but there was no breath in them.

9 And he said to me, Be a prophet to the wind, be a prophet, son of man, and say to the wind, The Lord has said: Come from the four winds, O wind, breathing on these dead so that they may come to life.

10 And I gave the word at his orders, and breath came into them, and they came to life and got up on their feet, a very great army.

11 Then he said to me, Son of man, these bones are all the children of Israel: and see, they are saying, Our bones have become dry our hope is gone, we are cut off completely.

12 For this cause be a prophet to them, and say, This is what the Lord has said: See, I am opening the resting-places of your dead, and I will make you come up out of your resting-places, O my people; and I will take you into the land of Israel.

13 And you will be certain that I am the Lord by my opening the resting-places of your dead and making you come up out of your resting-places, O my people.

14 And I will put my spirit in you, so that you may come to life, and I will give you a rest in your land: and you will be certain that I the Lord have said it and have done it, says the Lord.

15 And the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

16 And you, son of man, take one stick, writing on it, For Judah and for the children of Israel who are in his company: then take another stick, writing on it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and all the children of Israel who are in his company:

17 Then, joining them one to another, make them one stick, so that they may be one in your hand.

18 And when the children of your people say to you, Will you not make clear to us what these things have to do with us?

19 Then say to them, This is what the Lord has said: See, I am taking the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel who are in his company; and I will put it on the stick of Judah and make them one stick, and they will be one in my hand.

20 And the sticks with your writing on them will be in your hand before their eyes.

21 And say to them, These are the words of the Lord: See, I am taking the children of Israel from among the nations where they have gone, and will get them together on every side, and take them into their land:

22 And I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king will be king over them all: and they will no longer be two nations, and will no longer be parted into two kingdoms:

23 And they will no longer make themselves unclean with their images or with their hated things or with any of their sins: but I will give them salvation from all their turning away in which they have done evil, and will make them clean; and they will be to me a people, and I will be to them a God.

24 And my servant David will be king over them; and they will all have one keeper: and they will be guided by my orders and will keep my rules and do them.

25 And they will be living in the land which I gave to Jacob, my servant, in which your fathers were living; and they will go on living there, they and their children and their children's children, for ever: and David, my servant, will be their ruler for ever.

26 And I will make an agreement of peace with them: it will be an eternal agreement with them: and I will have mercy on them and make their numbers great, and will put my holy place among them for ever.

27 And my House will be over them; and I will be to them a God, and they will be to me a people.

28 And the nations will be certain that I who make Israel holy am the Lord, when my holy place is among them for ever.

← Ezekiel 36   Ezekiel 38 →
   Study the Inner Meaning
From Swedenborg's Works

Main explanations:

The Inner Meaning of the Prophets and Psalms 160


Other references to this chapter:

Arcana Coelestia 149, 666, 1038, 1292, 1888, 2547, 2916, ...

Apocalypse Revealed 3, 306, 343, 350, 510, 664, 774, ...

Divine Love and Wisdom 383

The Lord 28, 43, 47

Sacred Scripture 79

True Christian Religion 310, 534, 594, 844


References from Swedenborg's unpublished works:

Apocalypse Explained 19, 183, 205, 222, 365, 409, 418, ...

Scriptural Confirmations 2, 4, 14, 22, 53, 89

Other New Christian Commentary

  Stories and their meanings:


  Spiritual Topics:


Hop to Similar Bible Verses

Genesis 2:7, 9:16, 48:4

Exodus 15:17, 25:8

Leviticus 26:11

Deuteronomy 6:1

2 Samuel 7:13, 16

1 Kings 12:19

2 Chronicles 11:12

Job 17:15

Psalms 31:23, 88:5, 11, 104:30

Isaiah 11:11, 13, 26:19, 32:15, 60:21

Jeremiah 3:18, 16:15, 23:3, 31:16, 17, 31, 32:39

Lamentations 3:18

Ezekiel 8:1, 11:18, 20, 24, 16:60, 17:24, 20:12, 24:19, 28:25, 34:13, 23, 24, 25, 36:10, 24, 25, 27, 28, 29, 39:28, 43:7, 9, 48:35

Hosea 3:5, 13:14

Joel 3:5

Amos 9:15

Micah 5:2

Zephaniah 3:15, 20

Zechariah 11:14

Matthew 27:52

John 17:17

Acts of the Apostles 1:6, 26:8

2 Corinthians 6:16

Hebrews 8:10, 13:20

Revelation 1:10, 7:1, 11:11, 21:3

Word/Phrase Explanations

hand
In Genesis 27:22, 'voice' relates to truth, and 'hand,' to good.

the Lord
The Bible refers to the Lord in many different ways, which from the text seem indistinguishable and interchangeable. Understood in the internal sense, though, there...

lord
The Lord, in the simplest terms, is love itself expressed as wisdom itself. In philosophic terms, love is the Lord's substance and wisdom is His...

Put
'To put' has reference to order, arrangement, application, and influx.

Middle
'Middle' denotes what is primary, principal, or inmost.

Full
'To satiate' relates to the extent of a person's will, for good or evil.

Bones
Bones are strong and supportive, providing a framework for our bodies and making motion and action possible. They are also the least "alive" part of...

a
A help-meet for him,' or 'a help as before him,' as mentioned in Genesis 2:18, signifies proprium, or what is one's own. However, whereas the...

Round about
'Round about' denotes the things most distant from the middle, or from good and truth.

saw
The symbolic meaning of "seeing" is "understanding," which is obvious enough that it has become part of common language (think about it; you might see...

face
“The eyes are the windows of the soul.” That’s a sentiment with roots somewhere in murky antiquity, but one that has become hopelessly cliché because...

Son
'A son,' as in Genesis 5:28, signifies the rise of a new church. 'Son,' as in Genesis 24:3, signifies the Lord’s rationality regarding good. 'A...

son of man
The Lord, in some places, calls Himself 'the son of God,' at other times, 'the son of man (ἄνθρωπος).' This is always according to the...

the Word
In general, we tend to be very aware of how knowing what's true leads to doing what is good. That starts as children, with parents...

Word
'Word,' as in Psalms 119:6-17, stands for doctrine in general. 'The Word,' as in Psalms 147:18, signifies divine good united with divine truth. 'Word,' as...

Breath
'Breath' is the life of the body corresponding to spiritual things, just like the motion of the heart is the life of the body corresponding...

come
Coming (Gen. 41:14) denotes communication by influx.

flesh
'A sinew' signifies truth, because truths are in good like sinews in flesh. This is what is being described in Ezekiel 37:6, 8.

Skin
'Skin' corresponds to truth or to falsity in the extremes. 'The skin,' as relates to the grand human, means the natural self. There are spirits...

wind
Because a nearer and stronger divine influx through the heavens disperses truths among the wicked, 'wind' signifies this dispersion of truth and the resulting conjunction...

four
The number "four" in the Bible represents things being linked together or joined. This is partly because four is two times two, and two represents...

winds
In the Bible, the wind represents the power of the Lord working on us through the heavens. The Lord is love itself, and by extending...

came
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “come” in the Bible is highly dependent on context – its meaning is determined largely by...

feet
Our feet are the lowest and most utilitarian parts of our bodies, and in the Bible they represent the lowest and most utilitarian part of...

great
The word "great" is used in the Bible to represent a state with a strong degree of love and affection, of the desire for good;...

children
A child is a young boy or girl in the care of parents, older than a suckling or an infant, but not yet an adolescent....

israel
'Israel,' in Jeremiah 23:8, signifies the spiritual natural church. The children of Israel dispersed all the literal sense of the Word by falsities. 'The children...

give
Like other common verbs, the meaning of "give" in the Bible is affected by context: who is giving what to whom? In general, though, giving...

says
As with many common verbs, the meaning of “to say” in the Bible is highly dependent on context. Who is speaking? Who is hearing? What...

one
A company might have executives setting policy and strategy, engineers designing products, line workers building them, managers handling personnel and others handling various functions. They...

writing
If knowing what’s right were the same as doing what’s right, we would all be thin, healthy, hard-working, law-abiding, faithful to our spouses and free...

judah
City of Judah,' as in Isaiah 40:9, signifies the doctrine of love towards the Lord and love towards our neighbor in its whole extent.

Joseph
'The tribe of Zebulon' signifies the conjunction of people in the third heaven with the Lord, 'the tribe of Joseph,' the conjunction of people in...

Ephraim
Ephraim was the second son born to Joseph in Egypt and was, along with his older brother Manasseh, elevated by Jacob to the same status...

Us
Because people are governed by angels and spirits, in Genesis 1:26 it says 'let us make man into our image.' But because the Lord alone...

tribes
In general, 'the twelve tribes' signify every aspect of the doctrine of truth and good, or of faith and love. Truth and good, or faith...

Sticks
The two sticks, in Ezekiel 37:16-22, signify the celestial and spiritual kingdom of the Lord.

eyes
'Pairs of hands, eyes, etc.' relate to the will and understanding, or to good and truth. The right side to the will or good, and...

nations
'Nations' signify people who are in the good of love and charity from the Lord. Two nations in the womb,' as in Genesis 25:23, signify...

side
'Side' signifies good or spiritual love.

land
'Lands' of different nations are used in the Word to signify the different kinds of love prevalent in the inhabitants.

mountains
In Isaiah 40:12 'to weigh the mountains in a balance, and the hills in scales,' signifies that the celestial aspects of love and charity are...

two
The number "two" has two different meanings in the Bible. In most cases "two" indicates a joining together or unification. This is easy to see...

unclean
'Pollution' denotes the truth of faith defiled.

Images
'Images' denote things fashioned from man’s own intelligence.

sins
'Bound up transgressions,' as in Lamentations 1:14, stands for falsities coming up towards interior or rational things.

god
The Lord is love itself, expressed in the form of wisdom itself. Love, then, is His essence, His inmost. Wisdom - the loving understanding of...

servant
“Servant” literally means “a person who serves another,"" and its meaning is similar in reference to the spiritual meaninngs of the Bible. Our lives in...

david
David is one of the most significant figures in the Bible. He was a musician, one of history’s greatest poets, the boy warrior who killed...

keep
"Keeping" in the Bible generally has to do with controlling the actual actions of life, though in some cases it can mean holding something away...

Jacob
Jacob is told twice that his name will now be Israel. The first time is when he wrestles with an angel on his journey to...

fathers
Father in the Word means what is most interior, and in those things that are following the Lord's order, it means what is good. In...

peace
In ordinary life, we tend to think of "peace" as essentially "a lack of conflict." As a nation, if we're not at war, it's a...

eternal
In many cases, the use of “eternity” in the Bible is pretty literal, simple meaning forever. This is especially true when the text is referring...

Numbers
All numbers in the Word signify things or states, according to the relationship they have to other numbers. When two multiples of a number, which...

Resources for parents and teachers

The items listed here are provided courtesy of our friends at the General Church of the New Jerusalem. You can search/browse their whole library at the New Church Vineyard website.


 Dry Bones
Spiritual tasks offer a reflection on a Biblical story and suggest a task for spiritual growth.
Activity | Ages over 18

 New Beginnings
Worship Talk | Ages over 18

 The Valley of Dry Bones
Worship Talk | Ages 7 - 14


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