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9 I will also vex the hearts of many people, when I shall bring thy destruction among the nations, into the countries which thou hast not known.
10 Yea, I will make many people amazed at thee, and their kings shall be horribly afraid for thee, when I shall brandish my sword before them; and they shall tremble at every moment, every man for his own life, in the day of thy fall.
11 For thus saith the Lord GOD; The sword of the king of Babylon shall come upon thee.
12 By the swords of the mighty will I cause thy multitude to fall, the terrible of the nations, all of them: and they shall spoil the pomp of Egypt, and all the multitude thereof shall be destroyed.
13 I will destroy also all the beasts thereof from beside the great waters, neither shall the foot of man trouble them any more, nor the hoofs of beasts trouble them.
14 Then will I make their waters deep, and cause their rivers to run like oil, saith the Lord GOD.
15 When I shall make the land of Egypt desolate, and the country shall be destitute of that whereof it was full, when I small smite all them that dwell therein, then shall they know that I am the LORD.
16 This is the lamentation wherewith they shall lament her: the daughters of the nations shall lament her: they shall lament for her, even for Egypt, and for all her multitude, saith the Lord GOD.
17 It came to pass also in the twelfth year, in the fifteenth day of the month, that the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
18 Son of man, wail for the multitude of Egypt, and cast them down, even her, and the daughters of the
famous nations, unto the nether parts of the earth, with them that go down into the pit.
19 Whom dost thou pass in beauty? go down, and be thou laid with the uncircumcised,
20 They shall fall in the midst of them that are slain by the sword: she is delivered to the sword: draw her and all her multitudes.
21 The strong among the mighty shall speak to him out of the midst of hell with them that help him: they are gone down, they lie uncircumcised, slain by the sword.
22 Ashur is there and all her company: his graves are about him: all of them slain, fallen by the sword:
23 Whose graves are set in the sides of the pit, and her company is round about her grave: all of them slain, fallen by the sword, which caused terror in the land of the living.
24 There is Elam and all her multitude round about her grave; all of them slain, fallen by the sword, which are gone down uncircumcised into the nether parts of the earth, which caused their terror in the land of the living; yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit.
25 They have set her a bed in the midst of the slain with all her multitude: her graves are round about him: all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword: though their terror was caused in the land of the living, yet have they borne their shame with them that go down to the pit: he is put in the midst of them that be slain.
26 There is Meshech, Tubal, and all her multitude: her graves are round about him: all of them uncircumcised, slain by the sword, though they caused their terror in the land of the living.
27 And they shall not lie with the mighty that are fallen of the uncir
NOTES-Chap. XXXII. Con.
Ver. 9. Vex-Heb. "Provoke.” Ver. 14. Rivers to run like oil-that is, clear and smooth.
Ver. 15. Destitute, &c. Heb. "Desolate from the fulness thereof."
Ver. 17 Of the month - that is," of the first month." Newcome.
Ver.19. Whom dost thou pass (or surpass) in
beauty?—This we think best agrees with ver. 2 and 18 in the preceding chapter. Abp. Newcome, and others, however, on the authority of some ancient versions, render this line very differently, C down from the pleasant waters" meaning those of the Nile, which were the boast of Egypt.
Ver. 21. The strong, &c.-Compare Isa. xiv. 9.10. Ver. 27. The uncircumcised. The priests and
cumcised, which are gone down to hell with their weapons of war: and they have laid their swords under their heads; but their iniquities shall be upon their bones, though they were the terror of the mighty in the land of the living.
28 Yea, thou shalt be broken in the midst of the uncircumcised, and shalt lie with them that are slain with the sword.
29 There is Edom, her kings, and all her princes, which with their might are laid by them that were slain by the sword: they shall lie with the uncircumcised, and with them that go down to the pit.
30 There be the prir.ces of the north, all of them, and all the Zidonians, which are gone down with the slain; with their terror they are ashamed of their might; and they lie uncircumcised with them that be slain by the sword, and bear their shame with them that go down to the pit.
31 Pharaoh shall see them, and shall be comforted over all his multitude, even Pharaoh and all his army slain by the sword, saith the Lord GOD.
32 For I have caused my terror in the land of the living: and he shall be laid in the midst of the uncircumcised with them that are slain with the sword, even Pharaoh and all his multitude, saith the Lord GOD. (K)
AGAIN the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, speak to the children of thy people, and say unto them, When I bring the sword upon a land, if the people of the land take a man of their coasts, and set him for their watchman:
3 If when he seeth the sword come upon the land, he blow the trumpet, and warn the people;
4 Then whosoever heareth the sound
(K) A Lamentation for Pharaoh and for Egypt.-Pharaoh is here compared to the lion, the monarch of the forest; aud to the crocodile, the tyrant of the Nile: t is yet declared that he shall be taken in he snare of the Almighty (for even lions and crocodiles may be snared), and his lesh given to the meaner beasts;—that is, is kingdom divided into petty states, and is riches plundered by the roving tribes f Arabia, properly compared to birds of
The king of Babylon is, however, the rimary instrument of this judgment, and is army is described as consisting of "the errible among the nations;" and such is e terror inspired by them, that not only the country immediately deserted, both man and beast, but the lights of heaven e poetically represented as extinguished, ad the skies clothed with blackness.
In another prophecy, introduced ver. 17., the fall of Egypt is related in terms very similar to those used by Isaiah (ch. xiv.) in describing the subsequent fall of Babylon. This lamentation opens in terms very similar to those in the preceding chapter (ver. 2); "Whom art thou like in thy greatness?" So here "Whom dost thou pass (that is, surpass) in beauty?" However great, however beautiful, "Go down" to the grave, "and be thou laid with the uncircumcised' in the field of battleunpitied and unburied.-The king is then introduced below the grave, into the region of shades, to take his station among the mighty shades of former ages; where their weapons of war, now done with, are laid in silence beneath their heads. But wherefore are they here deposited? Is it not as the witnesses of their crimes.? They "bear their shame," and their iniquities lie ❝ upon their bones" till the great day of retribution.
ncipal persons among the Egyptians, it may ollected, practised circumcision. They are ne down to heil (Sheol) with their weapons of war Heb. The weapons of their war;" the proper ository of such weapons!
bid. They have laid their swords under their ds." In Mingrelia" (which Bochart considers
the country of Meshec and Tubal, v. 26.) SirJ. Chardin says, "They all sleep with their swords under their heads; and they bury them in the same manner." Orient. Cust. No. 322.
CHAP. XXXIII. Ver. 4. Whosoever heareth – Heb." He that hearing heareth."
of the trumpet, and taketh not warning; if the sword come, and take him away, his blood shall be upon his own head.
5 He heard the sound of the trumpet, and took not warning; his blood shall be upon him. But he that taketh warning shall deliver his soul.
6 But if the watchman see the sword come, and blow not the trumpet, and the people be not warned; if the sword come, and take any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at the watchman's hand.
7 So thou, O son of man, I have set thee a watchman unto the house of Israel; therefore thou shalt hear the word at my mouth, and warn them from me.
8 When I say unto the wicked, O wicked man, thou shalt surely die; if thou dost not speak to warn the wicked from his way, that wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thine hand.
9 Nevertheless, if thou warn the wicked of his way to turn from it; if he do not turn from his way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
10 Therefore, O thou son of man, speak unto the house of Israel; Thus ye speak, saying, If our transgressions and our sins be upon us, and we pine away in them, how should we then live?
11 Say unto them, As I live, saith the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O house of Israel?
12 Therefore, thou son of man, say unto the children of thy people, The righteousness of the righteous shall not deliver him in the day of his trans
[of God's ways.
gression: as for the wickedness of the wicked, he shall not fall thereby in the day that he turneth from his wickedness; neither shall the righteous be able to live for his righteousness in the day that he sinneth,
13 When I shall say to the righte ous, that he shall surely live; if he trust to his own righteousness, and commit iniquity, all his righteousnesses shall not be remembered; but for his iniquity that he hath committed, he shall die for it.
14 Again, when I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; if he turn from his ain, and do that which is lawful and right;
15 If the wicked restore the pledge. give again that he had robbed, walk in the statutes of life, without committing iniquity; he shall surely live, he shal. not die.
16 None of his sins that he hath committed shall be mentioned unt him he hath done that which is lawful and right; he shall surely live.
17 Yet the children of thy people say, The way of the Lord is not equal: but as for them their way is not equal
18 When the righteous turneth from his righteousness, and committeth iniquity, he shall even die thereby.
19 But if the wicked turn from his wickedness, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall live thereby.
20 Yet ye say, The way of the Lord is not equal. O ye house of Israel, I will judge you every one after his ways.
21 And it came to pass in the twelfth year of our captivity, in the tenth month, in the fifth day of the month, that one that had escaped out of Jeru salem came unto me, saying, The city is smitten.
Ver. 8. Thou shalt surely die-Heb. " Dying thou shalt die." So ver. 8.
Ver. 13. He shall surely live."- Heb. "Living, he shall live." So ver. 15.
Ver. 14. That which is lawful and right — Heh. "Judgment and justice."
22 Now the hand of the LORD was
Ver. 21. Twelfth year.-Syr. and eight MSS read "eleventh year," which is approved by Dathe, Dederlein, and others.
Ver. 22. Until he came—that is, his mouth cotinued open until, &c.
upon me in the evening, afore he that was escaped came; and had opened my mouth, until he came to me in the a morning; and my mouth was opened, and I was no more dumb.
23 Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
24 Son of man, they that inhabit those wastes of the land of Israel speak, saying, Abraham was one,
and he inherited the land: but we are many; the land is given us for inheritance.
25 Wherefore say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Ye eat with the blood, and lift up your eyes toward your idols, and shed blood: and shall ye possess the land?
26 Ye stand upon your sword, ye work abomination, and ye defile every one his neighbour's wife: and shall ye possess the land?
27 Say thou thus unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD; As I live, surely they that are in the wastes shall fall by the sword, and him that is in the open field will I give to the beasts to be devoured, and they that be in the forts and in the caves shall die of the pestilence.
28 For I will lay the land most desolate, and the pomp of her strength
[of the Jews.
shall cease; and the mountains of Israel shall be desolate, that none shall pass through.
29 Then shall they know that I am the LORD, when I have laid the land most desolate because of all their abominations which they have committed.
30 Also thou son of man, the children of thy people still are talking against thee by the walls and in the doors of the houses, and speak one to another, every one to his brother, saying, Come, I pray you, and hear what is the word that cometh forth from the LORD.
31 And they come unto thee as the people cometh, and they sit before thee as my people, and they hear thy words, but they will not do them: for with their mouth they shew much love, but their heart goeth after their covet
32 And lo, thou art unto them as a very lovely song of one that hath a pleasant voice, and can play well on an instrument for they hear thy words, but they do them not.
33 And when this cometh to pass, (lo, it will come,) then shall they know that a prophet hath been among them. (L)
(L) Prophets, watchmen of the house of Israel, their duty stated and enforced. The same doctrine which had been advanced in chap. iii. is here repeated and amplified. God's ministers are like centinels on the walls of Zion, who, with the trumpet of the Gospel in their hands, are ordered to warn men of their danger, and to guard them against the consequences of
their sin. Not to repeat the observations we have made on the chapter just referred to, we may here remark -1. It is required of a watchman, as well as of a steward (1 Cor. iv. 2.), that he be found faithful; and God's ministers fulfilling both characters, under the New Testament, as well as under the Old, are under a double obligation to fidelity toward their people.-2. Though men are commanded to do works
Ver. 24. They that inhabit those wastes of the kouse of Israel-that is, "those that remained in the land thought they should be suffered to occupy it unmolested." See Newcome, who thinks this was spoken to Ezekiel (ver. 24 to 33) before the messenger came: if so, it must be considered a dist:net prophecy. Indeed these predictions seem to be arranged (as before mentioned) with little or no regard to the order of delivery, which, in many cases, can now be only guessed at.
Ver. 25. Ye eat with the blood.-This was not Only contrary to the Mosaic, but to the patriarchal aw, Gen. ix. 4. which shows their utter neglect of the divine commands.
Ver. 26. Ye stand upon your sword---Newcome, "With your sword." This is supposed to refer to some idolatrous rites performed with swords drawn; or else it means, to govern with the sword; that is, by might, and not by right.
Ver. 28. Most desolate---Newcome, “ Desolation and an astonishment."
Ver. 30. Against thee---Marg. "Of thee." The prophet was a subject of curiosity and conversation, and even of admiration, though his precepts were utterly disregarded.
Ver.32. A very lovely song.---Among the Hebrews, singers generally accompanied themselves upon the harp, as the Greeks did upon the lyre.
A warning against]
AND the word of the LORD came
unto me, saying,
2 Son of man, prophesy against the shepherds of Israel; prophesy, and say unto them, Thus saith the Lord GOD unto the shepherds; Woe be to the shepherds of Israel that do feed themselves! should not the shepherds feed the flocks?
3 Ye eat the fat, and ye clothe you with the wool, ye kill them that are fed but ye feed not the flock.
4 The diseased have ye not strengthened, neither have ye healed that which was sick, neither have ye bound up that which was broken, neither have ye brought again that which was driven away, neither have ye sought that which was lost; but with force and with cruelty have ye ruled them.. 5 And they were scattered, because there is no shepherd: and they be
came meat to all the beasts of the field, when they were scattered.
6 My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and upon every hill: yea, my flock was scattered upon all the face of the earth, and none did search or seek after them.
7 Therefore, ye shepherds, hear the word of the LORD;
8 As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely because my flock became a prey, and my flock became meat to every beast of the field, because there was no shepherd, neither did my shepherds search for my flock, but the shepherds fed themselves, and fed not my flock: 9 Therefore, O ye shepherds, hear the word of the LORD;
10 Thus saith the Lord GOD; Be hold, I am against the shepherds; and I will require, my flock at their hand, and cause them to cease from feeding the flock; neither shall the shepherds feed themselves any more; for I will
EXPOSITION-Chap. XXXIII. Continued.
of righteousness, they are utterly forbidden to trust in them; for as Jeremiah says, (ch. xxiii. 6.) "The LORD is our righteousness;" and as Isaiah teaches "All our us, righteousnesses are as filthy rags." (Isa. Ixiv. 6.)-3. Confidence in our own righteousness leads to a false security, and opens the door to apostacy and ruin. On the other hand, -4. Transgression, however provoking, will not be punished after being repented of and forsaken. Lastly, Punishment, in itself, is so far from affording pleasure to the Almighty, that it is his delight to see sinners turn from their evil ways; and for this end he beseeches and conjures them to repent and to return; but warns them against hypocrisy, in imagining that they are righteous or religious, merely because they are charmed with the eloquence of a preacher, while (alas!) "their heart goeth after covetousness."
It is plain that what is here said of watchmen and of the duty of attending to their warning must have been delivered prior to the fall of Jerusalem: yet the latter part of the chapter, from verse 20, was
evidently subsequent to that event. It is so difficult to account for 17 months elaps ing after that event, ere the news should be brought to Babylon, that some read the eleventh year for the twelfth; but a learned and sensible writer, after remark ing that this address was delivered to the captive Jews in Babylon, adds: “In order then that this address might make the stronger impression on them,....he im mediately subjoins au information which here presents itself, as having been just then received, of the actual capture of Jerusalem, agreeably to his foregoing prophecies against it: the accomplishment of which prediction against the Jews, [with those already fulfilled against the heathen] would completely establish the credit and veracity of his predictions against Egypt and other nations; and also prove, by a maxim, with which he had concluded his conspicuous example, the truth of that late address to the captive Jews—that God will judge every one after his ways, both Jews and heathens." (See Newcome in loc.)
CHAP. XXXIV. Ver. 2. Shepherds of Israelincludes evidently both the rulers and teachers of the people. See verse 4. Also our Note on chap. xxiii. 1.Should not the shepherds feed? &c.-A good king is the father of his people; and it is his