Ezekiel (Ch 7-8)

As Ezekiel continues his visions from God, his prophecy is for the children of Israel at the endtime.

Ezekiel 7

Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, — The Targum expresses it as “The word of prophecy from the Lord.”

“Also, thou son of man, thus saith the Lord God unto the land of Israel: “An end! The end is come upon the four corners of the land. The Targum is, “the punishment of the end, or the punishment determined to come upon the four winds of the earth.” This Targum version recognizes that the Israelites are all over the face of the earth, spread over the four winds!

Now is the end come upon thee, and I will send Mine anger upon thee, and will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense upon thee all thine abominations.

And Mine eye shall not spare thee, neither will I have pity; but I will recompense thy ways upon thee, and thine abominations shall be in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the Lord. the punishments would be so great that “ye shall know who the LORD is,” to whom vengeance belongs; who takes notice of all their sinful actions, and punishes for them.

“Thus saith the Lord God: An evil, an only evil, behold, is come! The Targum is, “evil after evil, lo, it cometh.”

An end is come, the end is come! It watcheth for thee; behold, it is come. the repeating is for emphasis as these words, so often repeated, show the eagerness and concern of the prophet’s mind; the speed and haste destruction was making; and the great stupidity of the people, which required frequent repetition.

The morning is come unto thee, O thou that dwellest in the land; the time is come, the day of trouble is near, and not the sounding again of the mountains. The Targum, “and there is no fleeing or escaping to the tops of the mountains.”

Now will I shortly pour out My fury upon thee, and accomplish Mine anger upon thee; and I will judge thee according to thy ways, and will recompense thee for all thine abominations.

And Mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity. I will recompense thee according to thy ways and thine abominations that are in the midst of thee; and ye shall know that I am the Lord that smiteth.

10 “Behold the day, behold, it is come! The morning is gone forth, the rod hath blossomed, pride hath budded. The Targum is, “a ruler hath budded, a wicked one hath appeared.”

11 Violence is risen up into a rod of wickedness; none of them shall remain, nor of their multitude, nor of any of theirs; neither shall there be wailing for them.

12 The time is come, the day draweth near. Let not the buyer rejoice nor the seller mourn, for wrath is upon all the multitude thereof. upon the whole body of all modern Israelites, high and low, rich and poor, bond and free, buyer and seller; those that are in good circumstances, and those that are in bad ones; so that hereby they were all upon a level, in the same case and condition.

13 For the seller shall not return to that which is sold, although they were yet alive; for the vision is touching the whole multitude thereof, which shall not return; neither shall any strengthen himself in the iniquity of his life.

14 “They have blown the trumpet, even to make all ready; but none goeth to the battle, for My wrath is upon all the multitude thereof. they have blown the trumpet, as an alarm of war, and see what will be the effect of it, but they shall be dispirited, and none come forth for a fight; this parallels another verse: “The children of Ephraim, being armed and carrying bows, turned back in the day of battle” Psalm 78:9.

15 The sword is without, and the pestilence and the famine within. He that is in the field shall die with the sword, and he that is in the city, famine and pestilence shall devour him. — The sword is without — war is throughout the country and pestilence and famine within the city; it shall destroy the whole. He who endeavours to flee from the one shall fall by the other, except a small remnant.

16 But they that escape of them shall escape, and shall be on the mountains like doves of the valleys, all of them mourning, every one for his iniquity. — few shall escape the pestilence, famine, and sword, and flee to the mountains, where they will live a very miserable and uncomfortable life; so that this is no contradiction to the wrath of God being upon the whole multitude.

17 All hands shall be feeble, and all knees shall be weak as water. All hands shall be feeble…. No strength in them, to lay hold on weapons of war to defend themselves, or fight the enemy; no heart nor courage in them, to go forth and meet him; and even afraid to lift up their voice in mourning, lest they should be heard, being pursued, and be taken.

18 They shall also gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness upon all their heads.

19 They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed; their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord. They shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels, because it is the stumbling block of their iniquity. Gold and silver as being of no use unto them to preserve them from famine and pestilence, and as being an hinderance to them in their flight from the enemy. This may also be interpreted of their idols of gold and silver, which shall now be had in contempt by them, and cast away, when they shall find they cannot save them from ruin. Greed and their love for riches were the occasion of their iniquity, covetousness, and idolatry, at which they stumbled, and fell into sin, and so into punishment for it.

20 “As for the beauty of his ornament, he set it in majesty; but they made the images of their abominations and of their detestable things therein; therefore have I set it far from them.

21 And I will give it into the hands of the strangers for a prey and to the wicked of the earth for a spoil, and they shall pollute it.

22 My face will I turn also from them, and they shall pollute My secret place; for the robbers shall enter into it and defile it.

23 “Make a chain, for the land is full of bloody crimes, and the city is full of violence. or, “judgment of bloods,” capital crimes, such as are deserving of death, particularly murder, or shedding of innocent blood, gun violence especially in the United States today.

24 Therefore I will bring the worst of the heathen, and they shall possess their houses. I will also make the pomp of the strong to cease, and their holy places shall be defiled. many refugees, Afghans, Syrians, Iraqis, Palestinians, Mexicans are now in American cities. Would some of them or their children turn into extremists like the Chechens did at the Boston attack and their plan to travel to Times Square in New York to unleash more mayhem and bombs?

25 Destruction cometh; and they shall seek peace, and there shall be none.

26 Mischief shall come upon mischief, and rumor shall be upon rumor. Then shall they seek a vision of the prophet, but the law shall perish from the priest and counsel from the ancients. — Vision shall perish from the prophet, the law from the priest, and counsel from the ancients. The priests and even those who give counsel wouldn’t be able to give wise counsel, for law shall perish from them. The wise men of the land, the senators and celebrated statesmen, devise foolish schemes; and thus, in endeavouring to avert it, they hasten their national ruin.

27 The king shall mourn, and the prince shall be clothed with desolation, and the hands of the people of the land shall be troubled. I will do unto them according to their way, and according to their deserts will I judge them; and they shall know that I am the Lord.” Shall be troubled; hang down, and melt away. I will no more forbear what they have deserved, I will repay, and they shall know my vengeance. All these judgments are to make them know the only Lord God of this universe, who is omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent.

Ezekiel 8

In this chapter the prophet is carried in vision to Jerusalem. Here begins a new scene of prophecy extending to the twelfth chapter containing but one vision. This, according to Archbishop Usher, was the sixth year of Ezekiel’s captivity.

And it came to pass in the sixth year, in the sixth month, on the fifth day of the month, as I sat in mine house and the elders of Judah sat before me, that the hand of the Lord God fell there upon me. that the hand of the Lord fell there upon me; which the Targum interprets of the spirit of prophecy, which came with power upon him: it denotes the energy and efficacy of the Spirit of God upon him, and revealing to him the things he did; which are related in the following verses.

Then I beheld, and lo, a likeness as the appearance of fire: from the appearance of His loins even downward, fire, and from His loins even upward, as the appearance of brightness, as the color of amber. The Septuagint version renders it, “behold the likeness of a man”; reading איש, “a man”, for אש, “fire.” The Targum renders both the one and the other part of the description thus, “and I saw. . . a likeness the look of fire, the look of glory, which the eye cannot see, nor is it possible to look upon it; and beneath the look of fire, and the look of glory, which the eye cannot behold, nor is it possible to contemplate it; and above, as the look of brightness.”

There are many variations interchanging between fire and man among all the English versions of the Bible. Here is one great example, the Message Bible:

In the sixth year, in the sixth month and the fifth day, while I was sitting at home meeting with the leaders of Judah, it happened that the hand of my Master, God, gripped me. When I looked, I was astonished. What I saw looked like a man—from the waist down like fire and from the waist up like highly burnished bronze. He reached out what looked like a hand and grabbed me by the hair. The Spirit swept me high in the air and carried me in visions of God to Jerusalem, to the entrance of the north gate of the Temple’s inside court where the image of the sex goddess that makes God so angry had been set up. Right before me was the Glory of the God of Israel, exactly like the vision I had seen out on the plain.

And He put forth the form of a hand, and took me by a lock of mine head; and the Spirit lifted me up between the earth and the heaven, and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem, to the door of the inner gate that looketh toward the north, where was the seat of the image of jealousy, which provoketh to jealousy. and brought me in the visions of God to Jerusalem; so it was represented to him in a true vision, which was of God, that he was carried from Chaldea to Jerusalem; not that he really was, for he was still in Chaldea; and here in vision was he brought again, and found himself to be when that vision was over.

And behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there, according to the vision that I saw in the plain. Is this the Shekinah? And, behold, the glory of the God of Israel was there…. In the temple, between the cherubim, where the Shekinah or the glory of the divine Majesty dwelt. Shekinah Glory is a visible manifestation of God on earth, whose presence is portrayed through a natural occurrence of clouds and fire. The word shekinah is a Hebrew name meaning “dwelling” or “one who dwells.” Shekinah Glory means “He caused to dwell,” referring to the divine presence of God.

Then said He unto me, “Son of man, lift up thine eyes now the way toward the north.” So I lifted up mine eyes the way toward the north, and beheld northward at the gate of the altar this image of jealousy in the entry.

He said furthermore unto me, “Son of man, seest thou what they do, even the great abominations that the house of Israel committeth here, that I should depart far off from My sanctuary? But turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations.” — even a greater abominations than the house of Israel committeth in His sanctuary?

And He brought me to the door of the court; and when I looked, behold, a hole in the wall.

Then said He unto me, “Son of man, dig now in the wall”; and when I had dug in the wall, behold, a door.

And He said unto me, “Go in, and behold the wicked abominations that they do here.” and behold the wicked abominations they do here; the idolatries there committed, wicked in themselves, and abominable to God.

10 So I went in and saw; and behold, every form of creeping things and abominable beasts and all the idols of the house of Israel portrayed upon the wall round about.

11 And there stood before them seventy men of the ancients of the house of Israel, and in the midst of them stood Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan, with every man his censer in his hand; and a thick cloud of incense went up. Gill: seventy men of the ancients of the house of Israel; the whole sanhedrim, or great court of judicature among the Jews, as Kimchi; or at least there is an allusion to that number, which were appointed in Moses’ time to be officers over the people, and govern and direct them. . . . Jaazaniah the son of Shaphan; who was either the prince of the sanhedrim, or at least a person of great note and esteem.

12 Then said He unto me, “Son of man, hast thou seen what the elders of the house of Israel do in the dark, every man in the chambers of his images? For they say, ‘The Lord seeth us not. The Lord hath forsaken the earth.’”

13 He said also unto me, “Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations that they do.”

14 Then He brought me to the door of the gate of the Lord’S house which was toward the north; and behold, there sat women weeping for Tammuz.

15 Then said He unto me, “Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.”

16 And He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’S house, and behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshiped the sun toward the east.

Gill: The word rendered “worshipped” is compounded of two words; one signifying to “corrupt”, the other to “worship”: showing that, by worshipping the sun, they corrupted themselves, and the house of God; and so the Targum renders it, “and, lo, they corrupted themselves, worshipping in the east the sun;”

and so it is explained in the Jerusalem Talmud, “they corrupted the temple, and worshipped the sun.”

“their backs toward the temple of the Lord” — turned their backs to the most holy place; which is an aggravation of their impiety; casting the utmost contempt on God, his worship, and the place of it.

Today, following the sun-worshipping Samaritans, most Church of God Communities are showing their contempt for God by having their “wavesheaf offering” and Pentecost on a Sunday. And these are supposedly in God’s sanctuary, but God says He is a jealous God, so these pretentious Christians could be spewed out of His mouth!

17 Then He said unto me, “Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Is it a light thing to the house of Judah that they commit the abominations which they commit here? For they have filled the land with violence and have returned to provoke Me to anger; and lo, they put the branch to their nose.

18 Therefore will I also deal in fury. Mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity; and though they cry in Mine ears with a loud voice, yet will I not hear them.” — yet will I not hear them; as they turned their backs on him, he will turn a deaf ear to them, and not regard their cries. The Targum is, “they shall pray before me, with a great voice, and I will not receive their prayer.”

~ by Joel Huan on September 7, 2021.

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