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Eze 33:1-33. RENEWAL OF EZEKIEL'S COMMISSION, NOW THAT HE IS AGAIN TO ADDRESS HIS COUNTRYMEN, AND IN A NEW TONE.
Heretofore his functions had been chiefly threatening; from this point, after the evil had got to its worst in the overthrow of Jerusalem, the consolatory element preponderates.
2. to the children of thy people--whom he had been forbidden to
Eze 24:26, 27,
till Jerusalem was overthrown, and the "escaped" came with tidings of
the judgment being completed. So now, in
the tidings of the fact having arrived, he opens his heretofore closed
lips to the Jews. In the interval he had prophesied as to foreign
nations. The former part of the chapter, at
seems to have been imparted to Ezekiel on the evening previous
being a preparation for the latter part
imparted after the tidings had come. This accounts for the first part
standing without intimation of the date, which was properly reserved
for the latter part, to which the former was the anticipatory
3. the sword--invaders. An appropriate illustration at the time of the invasion of Judea by Nebuchadnezzar.
6. his iniquity--his negligence in not maintaining constant watchfulness, as they who are in warfare ought to do. The thing signified here appears from under the image.
8. thou shalt surely die--by a violent death, the earnest of everlasting death; the qualification being supposed, "if thou dost not repent."
10. be upon us--that is, their guilt remain on us.
11. To meet the Jews' cry of despair in Eze 33:10, Ezekiel here cheers them by the assurance that God has no pleasure in their death, but that they should repent and live (2Pe 3:9). A yearning tenderness manifests itself here, notwithstanding all their past sins; yet with it a holiness that abates nothing of its demands for the honor of God's authority. God's righteousness is vindicated as in Eze 3:18-21 and Eze 18:1-32, by the statement that each should be treated with the closest adaptation of God's justice to his particular case.
15. give again that he had robbed--
17. The way of the Lord--The Lord's way of dealing in His moral government.
21. twelfth year . . . tenth month--a year and a half after the capture of the city (Jer 39:2; 52:5, 6), in the eleventh year and fourth month. The one who escaped (as foretold, Eze 24:26) may have been so long on the road through fear of entering the enemy's country [HENDERSON]; or, the singular is used for the plural in a collective sense, "the escaped remnant." Compare similar phrases, "the escaped of Moab," Isa 15:9; "He that escapeth of them," Am 9:1. Naturally the reopening of the prophet's mouth for consolation would be deferred till the number of the escaped remnant was complete: the removal of such a large number would easily have occupied seventeen or eighteen months.
22. in the evening--(see on
Thus the capture of Jerusalem was known to Ezekiel by revelation before
the messenger came.
24. they that inhabit . . . wastes of . . .
Israel--marking the blindness of the fraction of Jews under
Gedaliah who, though dwelling amidst regions laid waste by the foe,
still cherished hopes of deliverance, and this without repentance.
26. Ye stand upon your sword--Your dependence is, not on right and
equity, but on force and arms.
27. shall fall by the sword--The very object of their confidence
would be the instrument of their destruction. Thinking to "stand" by it,
by it they shall "fall." Just retribution! Some fell by the sword of
Ishmael; others by the Chaldeans in revenge for the murder of Gedaliah
28. most desolate--
(Jer 4:27; 12:11).
30. Not only the remnant in Judea, but those at the Chebar, though
less flagrantly, betrayed the same unbelieving spirit.
31. as the people cometh--that is, in crowds, as disciples flock to
32. very lovely song--literally, a "song of loves": a lover's song.
They praise thy eloquence, but care not for the subject of it as a real
and personal thing; just as many do in the modern church
33. when this cometh to pass--when My predictions are verified.