Ezekiel and the Valley of Dry Bones

by Sandy Kirby Quandt

The Bible story of Ezekiel and the valley of dry bones both scared and fascinated me when I first heard it as a child. The thought of Ezekiel walking around a valley full of the bones of dead people, and then watching those same dry bones turn into living human beings once more, was really more than I could comprehend.

God’s people were, as Ezekiel’s vision described them, a valley of very dry bones. They had wandered far from the God who loved them, and in their turning away were punished.

Their hopelessness felt as dry as a valley of bones. They had no life in them. As far as Ezekiel could tell, those bones were wasted and good for nothing.

But God asked Ezekiel a question. He asked if those bones could become people again. To which Ezekiel replied only God knew the answer.

God said he would make the dry bones live and breathe again. He would replace their flesh and muscles and cover them with skin. God would put breath into the bones, and they would live and know God is the Lord. God revived, restored, and made the people usable once more.

Just as God restored the house of Israel and returned his people to him, he can do the same for each of us. God cares about every one of us, and can give us new life, even when our life feels like a valley of  bones.

We may feel dried up, shriveled, and empty, but in the hand of the Creator God, there is hope.

The One who created us and knit us together in our mother’s womb is the One who can revive, restore, and make us usable once more. All it takes is for us to allow God to put his breath into our bones and acknowledge he is Lord.

How does Ezekiel’s story of dry bones coming to life make you feel?

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The power of the Lord was upon me and I was carried away by the Spirit of the Lord to a valley full of old, dry bones that were scattered everywhere across the ground. He led me around among them, and then he said to me: “Son of dust, can these bones become people again?”

I replied, “Lord, you alone know the answer to that.”

Then he told me to speak to the bones and say: “O dry bones, listen to the words of God, for the Lord God says, ‘See! I am going to make you live and breathe again! I will replace the flesh and muscles on you and cover you with skin. I will put breath into you, and you shall live and know I am the Lord.’”

So I spoke these words from God, just as he told me to; and suddenly there was a rattling noise from all across the valley, and the bones of each body came together and attached to each other as they used to be. Then, as I watched, the muscles and flesh formed over the bones, and skin covered them, but the bodies had no breath. Then he told me to call to the wind and say: “The Lord God says: Come from the four winds, O Spirit, and breathe upon these slain bodies, that they may live again.” Ezekiel 37:1-9 (TLB)

I wish you well.


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2 thoughts on “Ezekiel and the Valley of Dry Bones

  1. Sandy, I enjoyed this…… it reminded me of Ezekiel’s efforts to get his people moving and God’s power to restore our “lazy bones”! We tend to forget about those early priests and prophets.


    • Glad you enjoyed the post, Marsha. God’s power to restore his people was exactly what I thought of, too. There is so much we can learn from studying how God used his people throughout the Bible.


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