(an outtake from Once More, From the Beginning. This is one of the bits that didn’t make it into the book.)
Ezekiel’s dismay at the impending destruction of Jerusalem was alloyed, it must be admitted, with a smidgen of guilty satisfaction. He’d developed a really distasteful habit of visualizing that unfortunate city personified as the lewdest of harlots, and he spent far too many of his lonely midnight hours lasciviously picturing her spreading her legs for every handsome foreign god who wandered by. His eagerness to embrace this new image of her, stripped naked and brutally murdered by her Assyrian paramour was just downright unhealthy.
Perhaps a little uncomfortable with the corollary image of Himself in the undignified role of cuckolded husband to this faithless city, The Lord quickly whipped up yet another vision to distract the over-imaginative prophet. Ezekiel was immediately whisked away to a valley strewn thick with bones. As he watched (it was hard to tear his eyes away!) the bones hopped and scuttled about, sorting themselves into appropriate stacks and rebuilding themselves into human skeletons. After a few mismatched limbs hurriedly located their assigned locations, flesh and skin was laid on in a most realistic fashion and the wind breathed life into the lot. The Lord hovered nearby, touchingly proud of this impressive bit of illustrative drama.
This time he was barely disappointed when Ezekiel failed to perceive the underlying symbolism. “How can you not grasp this?” he groaned. “It’s crystal clear! My long-term goal – not anytime soon, you understand, but when the time is right for best dramatic effect – is to open the graves of the ages and bring the dead back into Israel!”
The prophet felt somewhat ambivalent about this particular scheme . . . who wouldn’t be? But he hid his reservations, and applauded supportively.