صور الصفحة
النشر الإلكتروني

Ezekiel's commission]



AND he said unto me, Son of man, stand upon thy feet, and I will speak unto thee.

2 And the spirit entered into me when he spake unto me, and set me upon my feet, that I heard him that spake unto me.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, I send thee to the children of Israel, to a rebellious nation that hath rebelled against me: they and their fathers have transgressed against me, even unto this very day.

4 For they are impudent children and stiffhearted. I do send thee unto them; and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD.

5 And they, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear, (for they are a rebellious house,) yet shall know that there hath been a prophet among them.

[and instruction.

6 And thou, son of man, be not afraid of them, neither be afraid of

their words, though briers and thorns be with thee, and thou dost dwell among scorpions: be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

7 And thou shalt speak my words unto them, whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear: for they are most rebellious.

8 But thou, son of man, hear what I say unto thee; Be not thou rebellious like that rebellious house: open thy mouth, and eat that I give thee.

9 And when I looked, behold, an hand was sent unto me; and lo, a roll of a book was therein;

10 And he spread it before me: and it was written within and without: and there was written therein lamentations, and mourning, and woe. (C)


the same spirit.-The spirit which directed these mysterious animals was also in the wheels. 5. We should notice the intricate complication of this machinery, which was, as it were, "a wheel within a wheel:" that is, as Archbishop Newcome and others explain it, consisting of rings crossing within each other, as in an armillary sphere, whereby they could move with equal ease and celerity in any direction.-6. The divine operation which guided them-they had "the hands of a man under their wings on the four sides

[ocr errors]

The hand unseen, "Which moves and guides the vast machine."

Above all this mysterious and sublime machinery we have a crystal firmament, and above that firmament a sapphire throne -and on that throne the appearance of a man in glory, who could be no other than the Son of God, in an anticipated human form, surrounded with a radiant flame, and with a brilliant rainbow, as he appeared to the apostle John in the book of Revelations. (Rev. iv. 2, 3. ; x. 1.)

CHAP. 11.

(C) Ezekiel receives his commission, with the roll of prophecies he was to deliver.


The Prophet, having been overwhelmed with the glorious vision in the preceding chapter, is here strengthened and comforted and then commissioned to his office, and encouraged to be resolute and faithful in the discharge of it, although he must expect to be ill received and uncour teously treated. He is addressed by the title "Son of Man," a title applied only to himself and to Daniel, among the prophets, for which, we can assign no reason, unless it were to remind them, that notwithstanding the extraordinary prophetic visions with which they were favoured, they were still but mortal.

In the close of this chapter, a hand appears to the prophet, as it should seem in a vision, holding the roll of a book written on both sides; and when spread out, behold it is covered with "lamentations and mourning and woe," alluding doubtless to the nature of these prophecies. This book he is commanded to eat, a figurative action, meaning, according to Archbishop Secker, "to take in, retain, and digest:" from which we may draw this practical reflection, that it is the duty of ministers themselves, to study and digest whatever they deliver to their people. (Comp. ch. iii. 10.)


CHAP. II. Ver. 2. The spirit entered into me.By this it should seem, that the prophet had been overpowered with the vision, and had fainted. Ver.4. Impudent children—Heb, “Children hard of face,"

Ver. 8. Eat that I give thee-that is, the book, ver. 9, 10. Compare Rev. x. 9.

Ver. 10. It was written within and without-that is, on both sides, which was not usual, except from the abundance of matter.

Ezekiel's roll



CHAP. III. OREOVER he said unto me, Son of man, eat that thou findest; eat this roll, and go speak unto the house of Israel.

2 So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat that roll.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.

4 And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them.

5 For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of an hard language, but to the house of Israel;

6 Not to many people of a strange speech and of an hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, had I sent thee to them, they would have hearkened unto thee.

7 But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are impudent and hard hearted.

8 Behold, I have made thy face strong against their faces, and thy forehead strong against their foreheads.

9 As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they be a rebellious house.

10 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, all my words that I shall speak unto thee receive in thine heart, and hear with thine ears.

11 And go, get thee to them of the captivity, unto the children of thy people, and speak unto them, and tell them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear.

[of prophecy.

12 Then the spirit took me up, and I heard behind me a voice of a great rushing, saying, Blessed be the glory of the LORD from his place.

13 I heard also the noise of the wings of the living creatures that touched one another, and the noise of the wheels over against them, and a noise of a great rushing.

14 So the spirit lifted me up, and took me away, and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; but the hand of the LORD was strong upon me.

15 Then I came to them of the captivity at Tel-abib, that dwelt by the river of Chebar, and I sat where they sat, and remained there astonished among them seven days.

16 And it came to pass at the end of seven days, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

17 Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me.

18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.

19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.

20 Again, When a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteousness which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thine hand.


[blocks in formation]

Ver.12. A voice of a great rushing-Heb. "A voice (or sound) of a great rustling. So ver. 13. Compare Isa. vi. 2, 3.

Ver. 13. That touched-Heb. "Kissed." Ver. 14. In the heat of my spirit-Heh. “Ie bot anger."The hand of the Lord.-See chap. i 3

Ver. 15. At Tel-abib-evidently at some distant from his first station, for he was carried thither,— Seven days.-See Job ii. 13.

[blocks in formation]

21 Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he is warned; also thou hast delivered thy soul.

22 And the hand of the LORD was there upon me; and he said unto me, Arise, go forth into the plain, and I will there talk with thee.

23 Then I arose, and went forth into the plain: and, behold, the glory of the LORD stood there, as the glory which I saw by the river of Chebar: and I fell on my face.

24 Then the spirit entered into me, and set me upon my feet, and spake with me, and said unto me, Go, shut thyself within thine house.

25 But thou, O son of man, behold, they shall put bands upon thee, and shall bind thee with them, and thou shalt not go out among them:

26 And I will make thy tongue cleave to the roof of thy mouth, that thou shalt be dumb, and shalt not be to them a reprover: for they are a rebellious house.


[Jerusalem portrayed.

27 But when I speak with thee, I will open thy mouth, and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear: for they are a rebellious house. (D)


HOU also, son of man, take thee a tile, and lay it before thee, and pourtray upon it the city, even Jerusa lem:

2 And lay siege against it, and build a fort against it, and cast a mount against it; set the camp also against it, and set battering rams against it round about.

3 Moreover take thou unto thee an iron pan, and set it for a wall of iron between thee and the city: and set thy face against it, and it shall be besieged, and thou shalt lay siege against it. This shall be a sign to the house of Israel.

4 Lie thou also upon thy left side, and lay the iniquity of the house of


(D) Ezekiel eats the prophetic roll, and finds it sweet in taste, but is warned to expect bitter consequences.-The Prophet in this chapter receives more explicit instructions in his office. At first his views seem to have been raised to expect a ready reception of his message; but he is warned of the perverse character of the persons to whom he is sent to minister, and how ungratefully he would be requited. He is however ordered to persevere in his duty notwithstanding, and is promised all neessary support. He is then carried by the pirit to a neighbouring colony of his capive brethren, where he remains seven days verwhelmed with astonishment; but he roused to the performance of his duty, as spiritual watchman of the house of

Israel, by being informed, that if any perished through his default of warning, he would have to answer for the consequences. But how, it may be asked, is it consistent with the divine character, to lay stumbling blocks in the way of men, as is intimated (ver. 20.) that the Lord himself does? This may be elucidated in the case of the promised Messiah, who, though given as the foundation of our salvation, is expressly called a stone of stumbling (Isa. viii. 14, 15); because the unbelieving Jews, instead of building upon that foundation, stumbled thereon and fell, by taking offence at the doctrine of the cross. Thus not only occasions of sin may be found in the course of providence ; but even the best blessings of grace may be rendered stumbling blocks through man's unbelief.


[blocks in formation]

Babylonian bricks, with the cruciform (or wedgelike) character, are in existence to the present day. See Orient. Lit. No. 1005. Also, Taylor's Calmet, Vol. iv. plate to Gen. ch. xi.

Ver 3. An iron pan-Marg. "A flat plate of iron." Probably such as cakes were baked on. This might represent the outer wall of the city, against which he was directed to set his face, as if he were an enemy, and to besiege it. See Newcome.

Ver. 4. Lie thou upon thy left side.-This lying

[blocks in formation]

Israel upon it: according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon it thou shalt bear their iniquity.

5 For I have laid upon thee the years of their iniquity, according to the number of the days, three hundred and ninety days: so shalt thou bear the iniquity of the house of Israel.

6 And when thou hast accomplished them, lie again on thy right side, and thou shalt bear the iniquity of the house of Judah forty days: I have appointed thee each day for a year.

7 Therefore thou shalt set thy face toward the siege of Jerusalem, and thine arm shall be uncovered, and thou shalt prophesy against it.

8 And, behold, I will lay bands upon thee, and thou shalt not turn thee from one side to another, till thou hast ended the days of thy siege.

9 Take thou also unto thee wheat, and barley, and beans, and lentiles, and millet, and fitches, and put them in one vessel, and make thee bread thereof, according to the number of the days that thou shalt lie upon thy side, three hundred and ninety days shalt thou eat thereof.

10 And thy meat which thou shalt eat shall be by weight, twenty shekels a day from time to time shalt thou eat it.


[signs and actions.

11 Thou shalt drink also water by measure, the sixth part of an hin: from time to time shalt thou drink.

12 And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight.

13 And the LORD said, Even thus shall the children of Israel eat their defiled bread among the Gentiles, whither I will drive them.

14 Then said I, Ah Lord GOD! be hold, my soul hath not been polluted: for from my youth up even till now have I not eaten of that which dieth of itself, or is torn in pieces; neither came there abominable flesh into my mouth.

15 Then he said unto me, Lo, ! have given thee cow's dung for man's dung, and thou shalt prepare thy bread therewith.

16 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, behold, I will break the staff of bread in Jerusalem: and they shall eat bread by weight, and with care; and they shall drink water by measure, and with astonishment:

17 That they may want bread and water, and be astonied one with another, and consume away for their iniquity. (E)


(E) The sin of Jerusalem foretold by the type of a painted tile. "The Prophets taught

by actions as well as by words, thus Ezekiel delineates Jerusalem [upon a large tile] and [in the same manner] lays

NOTES-Chap. IV. Con.

mpon first one side and then the other, could not, we may naturally suppose, refer to his rest at night, for the house of Israel were not likely to witness this; but, as it was customary for all that could get the opportunity, to take rest in the middle of the day. especially during the hot season: if he thus retired under the shade of a tree, or a tent, many would be likely to notice it in him, as a public character. Say the punishment--that is, "Declare that you thus represent the punishment." Newcome.

Ver. 5. Three hundred and ninety days-beginning, says a note in the margin of our public version, about 975, and ending 585 years before Christ.

Ver. 6. Each day for a year-Heb. "A day for a year, a day for a year."

Ver. 7 Thine arm uncovered Mr. Harmer thinks this might be to show the bruises he had given him. self, as emblems of the effects of war: but to "make bare the arm," in Scripture, implies rather the exertion of strength; Isa lii 10. He was to prophesy, as it were, with all his might, and, as Bp. Chandler thirks, with his arm extended toward Jerusalem,

Ver. 8. I will lay hands-that is, I will order thee to be bound. See chap. iii. 25.

Ibid. From one side to another-or rather," the other;" Heb." From thy side to thy side," or, as we say." from side to side."

Ver. 9. Fitches-Marg. " Spelt," an inferior kisd of grain all these ingredients were to forin a coarse kind of bread.

Ver. 1. Twenty shekels-"Not ten ounces" Newcome."

Ver. 11. Water....the sixth part of an hin-little more than a pint and a half. These measures denote great scarcity.

Ver. 12. Thou shalt bake, &c.-Newcome," With dung, that cometh out of man, shalt thou bake it in their sight." The usual fuel in the East, is the dried dung of cattle and camels; but Mr. Sandys (the traveller) mentions that the lowest classes in Egypt use human dung to bake with. See Orient Lit. No. 1007, 1008.

Ver. 16. The staff of bread.-Bread is commonly called the staff of life.

[blocks in formation]

AND thou, son of man, take thee

a sharp knife, take thee a barber's razor, and cause it to pass upon thine head and upon thy beard: then take thee balances to weigh, and divide the hair.

2 Thou shalt burn with fire a third part in the midst of the city, when the days of the siege are fulfilled: and thou shalt take a third part, and smite about it with a knife: and a third part thou shalt scatter in the wind; and I will draw out a sword after them.

3 Thou shalt also take thereof a few in number, and bind them in thy skirts.

4 Then take of them again, and cast them into the midst of the fire, and burn them in the fire; for thereof shall a fire come forth into all the house of Israel.

5 Thus saith the Lord Gon; This

[signs and actions.

is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are

round about her.

6 And she hath changed my judgments into wickedness more than the nations, and my statutes more than the countries that are round about her: for they have refused my judgments and my statutes, they have not walked in them.

7 Therefore thus saith the Lord GoD: because ye multiplied more than the nations that are round about you, and have not walked in my statutes, neither have kept my judgments, neither have done according to the judgments of the nations that are round about you;

8 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I, even I, am against thee, and will execute judgments in the midst of thee in the sight of the nations.

9 And I will do in thee that which


siege to it, as a type of the manner in which the Chaldean army should surround that city. The number of days which the Prophet was to lie on his side, probably during part of each day, denoted-First, The number of years which God bore with the idolatrous practices of the ten tribes; there being just 390 years from the time of Jeroboam's setting up the calves in Dan and Bethel, to the migration of the last gleanings of those tribes in the captivity of Zedekiah. 2dly, The number of years he bore with the excessive sins of Judah, under the forty years of Manasseh's evil reign, or the forty years from the solemn league [or covenant] of Josiah, to the destruction of Jerusalem. And 3dly, The duration of the siege, which was to last a day for every year they had sinned. It appears, indeed, (from 2 Kings xxv. 1-4.) that there were seventeen mouths from the beginning to the end of the siege; but as

it was raised for some time, in order to intercept the forces of the Egyptians (Jer. xxxvii. 5), this intermission probably reduced it to thirteen months, or 390 days.Thus God takes account of all our sins, and thus he numbers all our days.-According to Jerome, both the 390 and the 40 days were typical of the duration of the captivities of Israel and Judah.

"The scanty provision allowed the Prophet during his symbolical siege (being only about ten ounces of bread,) consisting chiefly of the worst kinds of grain and that ill prepared, all tended to denote the scarcity of provision, fuel, and every necessary of life, which the Jews should experience during the siege of Jerusalem.—The scarcity of fuel in the East is often supplied by the dung of animals dried, which is used even in preparing victuals."


CHAP. V. Ver. 1. A sharp knife – Newcome, "Tool, or instrument."

Ver. 2. I will draw out a sword after them.--This may refer to those who fled into Egypt. See Jer. xii. 16; xliii. 11; xliv. 12, 27.

Ver. 3. Skirts Heb. "Wings;" namely, the borders of his outer garment.

Ver. 5. Set it-Newcome," Her," to correspond with ver. 6.-Changed my judgments-that is, the Pagans adhered more closely to their superstitions than the Jews to their religion.

Vet.7. Because ye multiplied — Newcome reads,

Dr. J. Smith.

by conjecture, "changed;" but we think this alteration unnecessary. The word in the present text signifies to be turbulent, noisy, outrageous, like the wares of the sea, (Ps. xiv), 2.) and hence Boothroyd renders it "rebellious," Compare ch. vii ver. 7 and II.

Ibid. Neither have done.-If this reading be retained, it must mean (as Newcome observes) the same as the prece-ling verse; that they had not adhered to their religion like the heathen. It should not be concealed, however, that the last negative in this verse, neither "(in Heb. 19) is

« السابقةمتابعة »