Ezekiel 37

Study the Inner Meaning

English: Darby Version         

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1 The hand of Jehovah was upon me, and Jehovah carried me out in the Spirit, and set me down in the midst of a valley; and it was full of bones.

2 And he caused me to pass by them round about; and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and behold, they were very dry.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, Shall these bones live? And I said, Lord Jehovah, thou knowest.

4 And he said unto me, Prophesy over these bones, and say unto them, Ye dry bones, hear the word of Jehovah.

5 Thus saith the Lord Jehovah unto these bones: Behold, I will cause breath to enter into you, and ye shall live.

6 And I will put sinews upon you, and will bring up flesh upon you, and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and ye shall live: and ye shall know that I [am] Jehovah.

7 And I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and behold a rustling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone.

8 And I looked, and behold, sinews and flesh came up upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them.

9 And he said unto me, Prophesy unto the wind, prophesy, son of man, and say to the wind, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.

10 And I prophesied as he had commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood up upon their feet, an exceeding great army.

11 And he said unto me, Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. Behold, they say, Our bones are dried, and our hope is lost: we are cut off!

12 Therefore prophesy and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, I will open your graves, and cause you to come up out of your graves, O my people, and bring you into the land of Israel.

13 And ye shall know that I [am] Jehovah, when I have opened your graves, and have caused you to come up out of your graves, O my people.

14 And I will put my Spirit in you, and ye shall live, and I will place you in your own land: and ye shall know that I Jehovah have spoken, and have done [it], saith Jehovah.

15 And the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying,

16 And thou, son of man, take thee one stick, and write upon it, For Judah, and for the children of Israel, his companions. And take another stick, and write upon it, For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim and all the house of Israel, his companions.

17 And join them one to another into one stick; and they shall become one in thy hand.

18 And when the children of my people speak unto thee, saying, Wilt thou not declare unto us what thou meanest by these?

19 say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, I will take the stick of Joseph, which is in the hand of Ephraim, and the tribes of Israel his companions, and will put them with this, with the stick of Judah, and make them one stick, and they shall be one in my hand.

20 And the sticks whereon thou writest shall be in thy hand before their eyes.

21 And say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Behold, I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, whither they are gone, and will gather them from every side, and bring them into their own land:

22 and 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.

23 And they shall not defile themselves any more with their idols, or with their detestable things, or with any of their transgressions; and I will save them out of all their dwelling-places wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them; and they shall be my people, and I will be their God.

24 And David my servant shall be king over them; and they all shall have one shepherd: and they shall walk in mine ordinances, and keep my statutes, and do them.

25 And they shall dwell in the land that I have given unto Jacob my servant, wherein your fathers have dwelt; and they shall dwell therein, they, and their children, and their children's children for ever: and David my servant shall be their prince for ever.

26 And I will make a covenant of peace with them: it shall be an everlasting covenant with them; and I will place them, and multiply them, and will set my sanctuary in the midst of them for ever.

27 And my tabernacle shall be over them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people.

28 And the nations shall know that I Jehovah do hallow Israel, when my sanctuary shall be in the midst of 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 Christianity 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.

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

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

pass
'To pass,' as in Genesis 31:52, signifies flowing in. 'To pass the night,' as in Genesis 24:54, signifies having peace. 'To pass through,' as in...

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

many
Intellectual things – ideas, knowledge, facts, even insight and understanding – are more separate and free-standing than emotional things, and it’s easier to imagine numbering...

Open
To open,' as in Revelation 9, signifies communication and conjunction.

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...

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...

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...

say
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...

hear
'To hearken to father and mother,' as mentioned in Genesis 28:7, signifies obedience from affection. 'To hearken,' as mentioned in Genesis 30:22, signifies providence. See...

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...

enter
All changes of place in the Bible represent changes in spiritual state. “Entering” – usually used as entering someone’s house or “going in unto” someone...

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

know
In a general sense, men represent things of the intellect – facts, ideas, knowledge, everything from the deepest truths to the most pernicious falsities about...

commanded
To command is to give an order that something must be done, and is directed to an individual, or a group. It is an imperative,...

noise
'A voice crying,' and 'the voice of a cry,' are common expressions in the Word, and are applied whenever there is a noise or disturbance,...

bone
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...

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...

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

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...

slain
'To slay a man to his wounding,' means extinguishing faith, and 'to slay a young man to his hurt,' signifies extinguishing charity, as in Genesis...

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...

stood
'To stand,' and 'come forth' as in Daniel 7:10, refers to truth. In Genesis 24:13, it signifies a state of conjunction of divine truth with...

feet
The foot, as in Deuteronomy 33:3, signifies an inferior principle. To set the right foot on the sea and the left on the earth, as...

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;...

army
Forces denote the power of truth.

house
A "house" is essentially a container - for a person, for a family, for several families or even for a large group with shared interests...

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...

dried
'Withering and drying up,' as in Ezekiel 17:10, referring to the east wind, signifies when there is no good or truth.

graves
A grave, as in Psalm 88:5, signifies hell. ‘To come forth out of the grave,’ as in John 5:29, signifies to come forth out of...

bring
As with common verbs in general, the meaning of “bring” is highly dependent on context, but in general it represents an introduction to a new...

own
In many cases, the spiritual meaning of "own," both as a verb and as an adjective, is relatively literal. When people are described as the...

spoken
Like "say," the word "speak" refers to thoughts and feelings moving from our more internal spiritual levels to our more external ones – and ultimately...

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...

write
In John 8:2-11, the Lord wrote twice on the ground, when the woman taken in adultery was brought to him, which signifies the condemnation of...

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.

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....

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...

declare
'To tell' signifies perceiving, because in the spiritual world, or in heaven, they do not need to tell what they think because they communicate every...

us
Angels do give us guidance, but they are mere helpers; the Lord alone governs us, through angels and spirits. Since angels have their assisting role,...

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.

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...

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

idols
Idols of stone signify worship from falsities of doctrine. Idols of wood signify worship from evils of doctrine. Idols of silver signify worship from what...

Transgressions
'Transgressions' or 'trespasses' denote such evils as are done against the truths of faith.

save
To be saved or rescued means getting true ideas that we can hold to even in the face of a storm of false thinking. Sometimes...

dwelling
Habitation, as mentioned in Genesis 27:39, signifies life. The habitation of holiness signifies the celestial kingdom. The habitation of honorableness signifies the spiritual kingdom, as...

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...

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...

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...

shepherd
The Writings tell us that shepherds represent those who lead and teach others, using knowledge and true ideas to help people reach the goodness of...

walk
To walk in the Bible represents living, and usually means living according to the true things taught to us by the Lord -- to "walk...

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...

statutes
'Ordinances' in the prophets, signify changes relative to spiritual and celestial things, both in general and particular, which are also compared to the changes of...

dwell
Many people were nomadic in Biblical times, especially the times of the Old Testament, and lived in tents that could be struck, moved and re-raised...

given
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...

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...

dwelt
Inhabitants,' in Isaiah 26:9, signify the men of the church who are in good of doctrine, and thence in the good of life.

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...

everlasting
'Perpetual' in the literal sense, means to the end of one’s life, after death, and eternity.

multiply
'Spreading themselves on the earth,' as in Genesis 8:17, signifies the internal self operating on the external.

hallow
'To sanctify' denotes being led by the Lord. 'To sanctify' denotes being incapable of being violated.

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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