What does it mean in Ezekiel 22:30 where it says that no man was found to stand in the gap?
Some have used this Scripture to say that there is no strong leadership in the church(es) of God as a whole at this time. This is an interesting approach to take as it leaves no room for the leadership of Jesus Christ. Many Scriptures point out that Christ is the Head of the Church and that He places people in positions of leadership as He sees fit. 1 Corinthians 12:28-29 clearly states that God ordains the leadership where He wants and as He sees fit. While there are many splinters of the church(es) of God, very few prove to be holding fast, or boldly proclaiming the Gospel into all the world (Please read our free booklet on how to find the true Church ( How to Find the True Church of God ).
As with many parts of the Bible, we must look before and ahead of a particular passage to get the full picture of what a Scripture is saying, as well as looking at the meaning and tying in other Scriptures. This chapter in Ezekiel is highlighting the sins of “Jerusalem.” The sins listed here are varied and wide-ranging, and God says He is very displeased. In verse 17, we see that He is really talking about the house of Israel, meaning that the previous verses are also applicable to the nations that encompass the house of Israel, which can be found today in English-speaking nations (Read more here: The Fall and Rise of Britain and America). Continuing on, we see that God is angry with the so-called leaders, the “princes” (verse 6) of these nations, but even more so with the spiritual leaders, the “prophets” (verse 25) in these countries. They continually lead with false motives and in turn show the “people of the land” that it is ok to live like this. And so, in verse 30-31, God asks: “‘So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before Me on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one. Therefore I have poured out My indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of My wrath; and I have recompensed their deeds on their own heads,’ says the LORD God.”
There are some interesting pieces that we should review here. The word “wall” has different connotations, and another word that is similarly used is “hedge.” The other interesting word is the word “gap” and similarly, the word “breach” can be used.
In the Old Testament, walls were built around cities to protect them and give them safety. It is interesting how many times walls are mentioned in the Bible. Of course, we can think of the city of Jericho whose inhabitants felt safe because of the strength of their walls. But we know that the walls didn’t save the inhabitants but rather fell, leading to the destruction of the city and the downfall of the people. Many battles through the centuries have been around fortified cities. And sometimes the walls withstood, and sometimes they crumbled, and the enemy marched through the breaches.
In many places God is using this analogy of walls to show the lack of strength walls can have; especially, when there is sin. In Deuteronomy 28:52 (this chapter in verses 15-68 is dealing with the consequences of disobedience to God’s laws), we read: “They shall besiege you at all your gates until your high and fortified walls, in which you trust, come down throughout all your land; and they shall besiege you at all your gates throughout all your land which the LORD your God has given you.” Very early on, God warns us that the things in which we place trust and confidence are nothing more than physical and even if they seem strong, like walls, they will be destroyed if they are in opposition to God’s laws and commands.
In Ezra 9:9, it speaks of God giving the Israelites the strength and the opportunity to rebuild the house of God and the walls of Jerusalem. This was God’s gift to the people at that time. And yet Ezra was praying in this chapter because even though the people were brought back from captivity and they were allowed to rebuild, they started once again to turn back to old habits and old sins, and Ezra was deeply disturbed by what he saw.
Lamentations 2:13-14 (King James Version) says: “What thing shall I take to witness for thee? what thing shall I liken to thee, O daughter of Jerusalem? what shall I equal to thee, that I may comfort thee, O virgin daughter of Zion? for thy breach is great like the sea: who can heal thee? Thy prophets have seen vain and foolish things for thee: and they have not discovered thine iniquity, to turn away thy captivity; but have seen for thee false burdens and causes of banishment.” The “breach” or the “gap” is massive. It is so big that it gets to a point where it is impossible to fix.
When turning to Ezekiel 13:1-22, verses 3-5 specifically point out that none of the people who claim to be spiritual leaders have gone up and stood in the gap or the breach in the wall—the wall of Truth that should stand around God’s peoples and His nations. There is a facade of standing in the gap as God points out. There is a type of “truth”, but He points out that it is like untempered mortar (verse 10). It will just fall apart. In Matthew 7:24-27, we see Christ’s example point this out. The ones whose walls are built on sand, with untempered mortar, without being fully engrained in the Truth, will fall and fail. In 1 Thessalonians 5:1-11, it tells us that these times that are being talked about in Ezekiel 22:30 are indeed prophecies for our time. When people in top positions and in so-called positions of “spiritual leadership” are saying peace and safety, we should be very aware of what is TRULY happening. We are called to stand watch—to cry aloud and spare not.
There is a history of people who have stood in the gap, in the breach. These individuals are the spiritual “giants” in the Bible, who, while human and who did sin from time to time, were willing to live God’s Way of Life. They were willing to suffer. They were willing to allow God to lead them. God had a desire for a people who would stand for His Way of Life. There were only a few in comparison with the rest of the people of this world. A minority, if you will. Hebrews 11:1-39 gives us a brief overview of some of these people, but it also shows what they accomplished in their lives.
God has not changed in that desire, and desires such a people, today! You and I have been called at this time, brethren, to stand in the gap for God’s Way. Will we be faithful? Let us pray for one another for the strength and the power, not to let down at this critical time in history; but to be a light in this world of darkness as Satan and his demons are taking every opportunity to see that we fail in this wonderful calling we have received from Almighty God.
There is a cost in this regard. In Matthew 19:27 Peter tells Christ, “See, we have left ALL and followed you.” What are we willing to give up so that we may stand as the people of God at the close of this age? Each of us is responsible for standing up. And those opportunities will come for each one of us. As individuals, we each have different opportunities and qualities. But it is when we stand together that we make the whole even stronger.
The warnings to the houses of Israel and Judah have been going on for centuries. We will continue to proclaim these warnings as God sees fit and as He opens the doors and gives us the opportunities to do so. In Isaiah 58:1-5, we are told to lift up our voice and spare not. This means STRONGLY and BOLDLY proclaiming the Truth as God leads us to do so. Continuing through the chapter, we see that as we turn to God more and more fully, God will use us MORE powerfully. In fact, in verse 12 we read: “Those from among you Shall build the old waste places; You shall raise up the foundations of many generations; And you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, The Restorer of Streets to Dwell In.” Repairers of the breaches! Is that what we wish to be? Do we consider ourselves at this time to be in such a position? God tells us we can be.
In Ephesians 4:7-16 we read: “But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Therefore He says: ‘When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.’ (Now this, ‘He ascended’—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.) And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ— from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”
Our job now is to very strongly proclaim the Truth and to stand up for this Way of Life, all the while looking for and following the lead of Jesus Christ so He can use us as He sees fit in this end time and the terrible events which we are facing.
Lead Writer: Kalon Mitchell