Aug. 8, 2016 (Ezek 1:2-5, 24-28c)

Today we begin a series of readings from one of the major Prophets, Ezekiel, the only prophet called by God to be a prophet while not in Palestine. He was one of the first to deported to Babylon. His Book is very mysterious and hard to interpret. He was by birth a priest. His major themes include: the glory and “otherness” of God, God’s glory and holiness, individual versus collective responsibilty and punishment for sins, and final restoration by God. He, pretty much, invented “apocalyptic literature” in his many visions as he served as God’s “watchman” for the House of Israel. He often used the image of the “son of man” which Jesus will use for Himself. Today, we hear of his call and his first vision. Be ready for a “roller coaster” ride over the next several days at weekday mass. The Book had a hard time getting in the Hebrew canon and the rabbis forbade anyone under the age of 30 to read it! It is hard to translate and interpret.

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