I looked for someone who might rebuild the wall of righteousness that guards the land. I searched for someone to stand in the gap in the wall so I wouldn’t have to destroy the land, but I found no one. ~ Ezekiel 22:30 (NLT)
And being found in appearance as a human being, he (Christ Jesus) humbled himself by becoming obedient to death -- even death on a cross! ~ Philippians 2:8 (TNIV)
It's 6th century BC in Judah. Through the prophet Ezekiel the LORD is explaining to his people why they're subject to judgment at the hands of the Babylonians. The people had given a lot of attention to building walls and armies to protect themselves from invasion -- national security. But they had neglected "the wall of righteousness" (or justice). The leaders and influencers were taking advantage of helpless orphans and widows -- taxing sojourning foreigners -- the poor. According to Ezekiel 22 the people were living immoral lives and neglecting God's laws. All of this was leaving a gap in the security wall.
The LORD says, I looked for someone who might rebuild the wall of righteousness that guards the land. I searched for someone to stand in the gap in the wall...That is, "I looked for some real leaders who would live decent lives and position themselves in the culturally vulnerable spots -- 'the gaps in the wall.' But there was no one."
I'm sure that we're all not so very different. What people or culture is? This problem was not unique to the ancient Hebrews but it is more or less common to all peoples everywhere.
The good news is that finally a righteous leader has been found -- someone who deals with our sin-caused vulnerability -- who stands in the gap for us. God himself has come to stand there on our behalf! So we can stand with him.
Lord God, sometimes we enjoy wallowing in the despair of the world around us. It's kind of fun to think that we're the last faithful person standing. Lord, we need you to help us get past that kind of thinking. In spite of the destruction around us the future is not at all bleak. We acknowledge that you have not left us out here on our own. And for that we're grateful. Amen.