Read Ezekiel 37.1-14

                The hand of the LORD came upon me, and he brought me out by the spirit of the LORD and set me down in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. He led me all around them; there were very many lying in the valley, and they were very dry. He said to me, “Mortal, can these bones live?” I answered, “O Lord GOD, you know.”

                Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them: O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD. Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones:

                I will cause breath to enter you, and you shall live.

                I will lay sinews on you, and will cause flesh to come upon you,

                                and cover you with skin, and put breath in you, and you shall live;                                            and you shall know that I am the LORD.”

So I prophesied as I had been commanded; and as I prophesied, suddenly there was a noise, a rattling, and the bones came together, bone to its bone. I looked, and there were sinews on them, and flesh had come upon them, and skin had covered them; but there was no breath in them.

                Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, mortal, and say to the breath: Thus says the Lord GOD:

                Come from the four winds, O breath,

                and breathe upon these slain, that they may live.”

I prophesied as he commanded me, and the breath came into them, and they lived, and stood on their feet, a vast multitude.

                Then he said to me, “Mortal, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, and our hope is lost; we are cut off completely.’ Therefore prophesy, and say to them, Thus says the Lord GOD:

                I am going to open your graves,

                                and bring you up from your graves, O my people;

                                and I will bring you back to the land of Israel.

                And you shall know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves,

                                and bring you up from your graves, O my people.

                I will put my spirit within you, and you shall live,

                                and I will place you on your own soil;

                then you shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken and will act,”

                                says the LORD.


From Rev. Kenneth Hardway, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Wheeling,

and Associate Regional Minister for Youth and Young Adults

“Can these bones live?” A question from the Lord to a people today. Perhaps you have mornings when you wonder the same question? Aging. Sickness. Hopelessness. It’s hard to get up. Its difficult to get moving. Can these bones live?

What if these “bones” make up the Body of Christ? With ideological divisions; a widening chasm between rich and poor; complacency; inward preoccupation; scarcity-mentality driving decisions…Can these bones live?

And yet, these bones will live! God re-creates every sinew and joint and flesh and breath. We look forward daily to death and resurrection…of Christ…ourselves…of the church and creation!

Prophesy, O mortal. God does not do this alone! It is God’s work, for sure, yet God invites us into this work. Just as, in the first creation, God speaks and creation forms, now the Lord invites us to speak; to participate fully in God’s saving work.

We join God in speaking Resurrection; of speaking new life into dead bones. Will these bones live? Speak it. Trust in it. It is the word of the Lord which we speak.


Open our graves, O Lord, and fill us with your Spirit,

so these bones may live to speak your Good News.