Then the Spirit lifted me and brought me to the east gateway of the Lord’s Temple, where I saw twenty-five prominent men of the city. Among them were Jaazaniah son of Azzur and Pelatiah son of Benaiah, who were leaders among the people.
The Spirit said to me, “Son of man, these are the men who are planning evil and giving wicked counsel in this city. They say to the people, ‘Is it not a good time to build houses? This city is like an iron pot. We are safe inside it like meat in a pot.’ Therefore, son of man, prophesy against them loudly and clearly.”
Then the Spirit of the Lord came upon me, and he told me to say, “This is what the Lord says to the people of Israel: I know what you are saying, for I know every thought that comes into your minds. You have murdered many in this city and filled its streets with the dead.”
God had abandoned his altar and Temple (Ezekiel 9–11); here his judgment was complete as his glory stopped above the mountain east of the city (Ezekiel 11:23). The city gate was where merchants and politicians conducted business, so the twenty-five men may have represented the nation’s rulers. Because of their leadership positions, they were responsible for leading the people astray. They had wrongly said that they were secure from another attack by the Babylonians. “This city is like an iron pot. We are safe inside it like meat in a pot” (Ezekiel 11:3) means they believed that they were the elite, the influential, the ones who would be protected from all harm.
God knew everything about the Israelites, even their thoughts. He knew their arrogant belief that they were safe. But only he could fully protect them.
God also knows everything about us, even the sins we try to hide. Instead of worrying about people noticing how we look or what we do, we should care about what God thinks, for he sees everything. Trying to hide our thoughts and actions from God is futile. Are you trying to hide something from God? “Secret” sins are never secret from God. The only effective way to deal with sin is to confess it. The forgiveness of God is the ultimate point of “safety.”