determined to pursue a course of conquest. But he was faced with a choice. He could march against Rabbah in Ammon or turn the fury of his forces upon Jerusalem in Judah. The pagan Babylonian monarch resorted to divination and, as a result of it, Jerusalem became the object of attack.
In considering the account in Ezekiel 21:18-23, it is fitting to realize that the error of the inhabitants of Judah and Jerusalem had become considerable. For that reason Jehovah God had determined to bring destruction upon Jerusalem. So, having the Babylonians besiege that city was in harmony with Jehovah’s will. Fittingly, he saw to it that Nebuchadnezzar chose the road to Jerusalem.
But, would Jehovah God use the demons to accomplish his purposes? Definitely not. He would not move or inspire them to act as his instruments in guiding matters through forms of divination. Yet, the demons are powerless to resist or block God’s will. Jehovah could certainly do what he pleased when Nebuchadnezzar was trying to make a military decision; He would not let the divining process go contrary to His will. The Most High could interfere with divination, if that was necessary. That would be, not a use of demonism, but a thwarting of it. For instance, Jehovah could have made the liver used for divination on that occasion look a certain way, if necessary. God could thus interfere with the divination.
After Jerusalem and Judah had paid for their delinquency, there would be restoration. Of this and of his own supremacy, Jehovah declared: “I am frustrating the signs of the empty talkers, and I am the one that makes diviners themselves act crazily [by his making their forecasts prove false]; the One turning wise men backwards, and the One that turns even their knowledge into foolishness; the One making the word of his servant come true, and the One that carries out completely the counsel of his own messengers; the One saying of Jerusalem, ‘She will be inhabited,’ and of the cities of Judah, ‘They will be rebuilt, and her desolated places I shall raise up.’” (Isa. 44:25, 26) History attests that Jerusalem was rebuilt and that the various cities of Judah were inhabited once again.
We do not know exactly how Jehovah intervened when Nebuchadnezzar applied to divination and it was determined by the way that the diviners read and interpreted things that Babylonian troops should march against Jerusalem instead of Rabbah. It seems sufficient to realize that Jehovah always accomplishes his purposes.—Isa 55:8-11.
Outstanding love for one another identified first-century Christians, and it is still an unmistakable trait of the Christian witnesses of Jehovah in the twentieth century. (John 13:34, 35) Yet their love is not limited to fellow believers; it reaches out to others, moving them to call at the homes of people everywhere to acquaint them with God’s glorious provision of his kingdom in the hands of Jesus Christ. As they share in this work during the month of May they will be offering to interested persons a handsomely bound Bible-study aid, along with a booklet, on a contribution of 50c.
WHAT HOPE IN RELIGION?
In spite of ecumenical conferences and religiously inspired movements toward racial integration, the world situation continues to grow more tense. Brotherhood of nations has long been forgotten and even brotherhood within national boundaries is rapidly disappearing. Why have the world religions failed to bring unity and peaceful cooperation, even among those professing the same faith? Can we conclude that religion has failed? The book What Has Religion Done for Mankind? will give you answers that will strengthen your faith as it reveals the pitfalls facing those who look to religion as their hope for the future. Send for your copy today and receive a free booklet. Postpaid, 50c.
“WATCHTOWER” STUDIES FOR THE WEEKS
June 12: Keeping Your Balance with Many Responsibilities. Page 293.
June 19: Save Both Yourself and Those Who Listen to You. Page 299.