Ezekiel 37: Two Visions of Restoration

Old Testament Seminary Student Study Guide, (2002), 173

One of the beautiful things about inspired symbolic teaching is that it can have more than one meaning and apply to more than one time or situation. Ezekiel 37 is a particularly good example of multiple meaning. The Lord gave Ezekiel two “object lessons” about the gathering of Israel in chapter 37. These object lessons also teach and testify of other great truths relating to God’s plan and His kingdom in the last days.

Understanding the Scriptures

Ezekiel 37

Sinews (v. 6)Tendons that hold muscles and bones together and assist in their movements 
Heathen (v. 21)Those who do not believe in God 
Defile (v. 23)Make unclean 
Detestable (v. 23)Disgusting 
Sanctuary (vv. 26, 28)Temple 
Tabernacle (v. 27)Place where God dwells 

Ezekiel 37:15–20—The Stick of Judah and the Stick of Ephraim

Elder Boyd K. Packer said: “In ancient Israel records were written upon tablets of wood or scrolls rolled upon sticks. … The stick or record of Judah—the Old Testament and the New Testament—and the stick or record of Ephraim—the Book of Mormon, which is another testament of Jesus Christ—are … indeed one in our hands. Ezekiel’s prophecy now stands fulfilled” (in Conference Report, Oct. 1982, 73; or Ensign, Nov. 1982, 51, 53).

Ezekiel holding two scrolls Bible and triple combination

Studying the Scriptures

Do activities A and B as you study Ezekiel 37.

Activity A iconFind the Symbol

  1. 1.

    Ezekiel’s vision recorded in Ezekiel 37:1–14 dramatically symbolized the Lord’s promise to gather the children of Israel. Choose a word or phrase that you think represents the following people or conditions: the children of Israel, the spiritually lost condition of the children of Israel, the influence of the Holy Ghost upon the children of Israel, the gradual gathering of the children of Israel.

  2. 2.

    How does Ezekiel 37:1–14 testify of another, even greater “restoration” of the children of Israel? (see also Alma 11:42–45; D&C 138:16–17).

Activity B Scripture Mastery iconScripture Mastery—Ezekiel 37:15–17

  1. 1.

    Draw a picture or diagram of the objects in Ezekiel 37:15–17.

  2. 2.

    The same two sticks, or records, that Ezekiel spoke of are mentioned in 2 Nephi 3:11–12. List what the Book of Mormon says will happen because of the “joining” of these two sticks.

  3. 3.

    As you read on in Ezekiel 37 to verse 22, you realize that these two “sticks” are important in the gathering of Israel. Explain how you think the linking of the Bible and the Book of Mormon help gather the house of Israel. In your answer, consider the message of the Book of Mormon’s subtitle: Another Testament of Jesus Christ.