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Thursday, November 30th, 2023
the Week of Christ the King / Proper 29 / Ordinary 34
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Bible Commentaries
Ezekiel 13

Smith's Bible CommentarySmith's Commentary

Verses 1-23

Chapter 13

The word of the LORD came unto me saying, Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say unto them that prophesy is out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD; Thus saith the Lord GOD; Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing! ( Ezekiel 13:1-3 )

They're following their own imaginations; they have really seen nothing from God. They are proclaiming their own visions, their own ideas.

O Israel, your prophets are like foxes in the deserts. Ye have not gone up into the gaps, neither have you made up the hedge for the house of Israel to stand in the battle in the day of the LORD. [They have not helped Israel, they have not stood in these gaps.] They have seen vanity and lying divination, saying, The LORD saith: and the LORD hath not sent them: and they have made others to hope that they would confirm the word ( Ezekiel 13:4-6 ).

So here were these false prophets going around. They had not really heard from the Lord, but they were saying, "Well, the Lord says," "Well the Holy Spirit told me," or, "The Holy Spirit showed me," or, "God has shown to me." And then they go around seeking for others to confirm their words.

Now, the tragedy of the church is that there are false teachers and false prophets in the church today doing the same thing. Speaking in the name of the Lord when God hasn't spoken. Saying, "Oh, the Lord says," or, "The Holy Spirit showed me," when they are talking out of their own spirits and their own hearts. Jesus warns about these men. He said, "They are wolves in sheep's clothing. Beware of these false prophets." Paul warned over and over again against these false prophets that were going around deceiving the people, speaking in the name of the Lord. Peter warns against them in a very heavy indictment, as does the little book of Jude. These men who speak in the name of the Lord have been the curse of the church from the beginning, but they've always existed. Clear back into this Old Testament period, there were those false prophets. And God spoke out against them in Jeremiah; God spoke out against them through Isaiah; and God is now speaking out against them here in Ezekiel. They have not really helped the people; they've hurt the people.

Have ye not seen a vain vision, you've spoken a lying divination, whereas ye say, The LORD saith it; albeit [God says,] I haven't spoken? Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye have spoken vanity, and you've seen lies, therefore, behold, I am against you, saith the Lord GOD ( Ezekiel 13:7-8 ).

That's heavy. God just doesn't like you speaking in His name your own ideas, your own thoughts. "Well, the Lord showed me..." I had a fellow one day that was one of those, "The Lord told me" kind, you know. And the Lord told him to go out into the desert and he went out there and the Lord told him this and the Lord told him that, and the Lord told him this, and you know. And he lost all his money, and he lost all this and he got sunburned and dehydrated and everything else, and, "Why would God do that to me? Why would God...?" And it was obvious that the guy was nuts, you know, that God didn't speak to him. If God had told him to do all these things then it wouldn't have, you know, messed up; it wouldn't have ended in a calamity. And then he wants to blame God for all of the misery that he went through. "Well, the Lord told me this." I said, "Well, if the Lord told you to do all those things, then why are you asking me why the Lord would do something? Ask Him if He tells you all that stuff. The Lord didn't tell you to come to me, because I don't have any sympathy for you." But I get tired. How can you argue when a person says, "Well, the Lord told me to do it"? Well then, what can you say? You say, "Oh, man, you're nuts. The Lord didn't tell you that." But, you know, you don't want to say that to a person. But, they don't leave you anywhere to go. We need to be careful about that; "Thus saith the Lord," or, "The Lord said," or you know, "The Lord told me." We've got to be careful about that. I think that we use that much too loosely. God doesn't like that, speaking in His name when He hasn't spoken. And God said, "I'm against you. You that say, 'The Lord saith,' when I haven't spoken."

And mine hand shall be upon the prophets that see vanity, and that divine lies: they shall not be in the assembly of my people ( Ezekiel 13:9 ),

Ho,ho,ho, boy, that is heavy duty. When God's people are assembled together in that heavenly scene, these guys aren't going to be there.

neither shall they be written in the writing of the house of Israel, neither shall they enter into the land of Israel; and ye shall know that I am the Lord GOD. Because, even because they have seduced my people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace; and one built the wall, and, lo, others came along and daubed it with untempered mortar ( Ezekiel 13:9-10 ):

So they built a wall and other guys come along and they daub it with untempered mortar, and thus, it has no strength. It's going to fall in the day of battle. But notice what they were saying. And Jeremiah was saying, rebuking, saying... it was God said through Jeremiah, "Scarcely have you healed the hurt of my daughter Israel, saying, 'Peace, peace,' when there is no peace." Oh, but they were making positive confessions, weren't they? Well, you don't want to say war and desolation, that's terrible, you know. That'll happen to you if you say that. Make a positive confession. Oh, but God says that positive confession is a lie. It's not going to do you any good to go around saying, "Peace, peace," when there is no peace, saith the Lord. And God really rebuked them for those positive confessions, because God had not promised peace and it was hurting the people. They were denying the truth; they were trying to escape the truth and denying the truth. They were actually lying when they were saying, "Peace, peace," and there is no peace. So, they're building a wall that is not going to stand, because one guy will say it and another will come along and confirm it, "Oh yes, thus saith the Lord. The Lord showed me the same thing, brother. Oh hallelujah." Untempered mortar.

Say unto them that are daubing it with that untempered mortar, that it shall fall: there shall be an overflowing shower; and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall tear it. Lo, when the wall is fallen, shall it not be said unto you, Where is the daubing wherewith ye have daubed it [where are those prophesies that you gave us]? Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; I will even tear it with a stormy wind in my fury; and there shall be an overflowing shower in my anger, and great hailstones fury to consume it. So will I break down the wall that ye have daubed with untempered mortar, and bring it down to the ground, so that the foundation thereof shall be discovered, and it shall fall, and shall be consumed in the midst thereof: and ye shall know that I am the LORD ( Ezekiel 13:11-14 ).

That phrase over and over and over again, sixty-two times in this book, "And ye shall know when I bring My judgments, when I bring My word, when My word comes to pass," and that, of course, is the purpose of prophecy. Is when the prophecy comes to pass that ye shall know that He is the Lord. That it is God who has spoken and that God can speak of things before they happen. And sixty-two times God spoke and spoke of when it was fulfilled, "ye will know that I am the Lord."

Thus will I accomplish my wrath upon the wall, and upon them that have daubed it with untempered mortar, and will say unto you, The wall is no more, neither they that daubed it; To wit, the prophets of Israel which prophesy concerning Jerusalem, and which see visions of peace for her, and there is no peace, saith the Lord GOD. Likewise, thou son of man [talking to Ezekiel], set your face against these daughters of your people, which are prophesying out of their own heart; and prophesy against them ( Ezekiel 13:15-17 ),

Now, there were these gals there in Jerusalem also who took the title of a prophetess and they were prophesying out of their own hearts.

And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Woe unto the women that are sewing pillows to all the armholes, and making kerchiefs upon the head of every stature to hunt souls! Will ye hunt the souls of my people, and will ye save the souls alive that come unto you? ( Ezekiel 13:18 )

Now it sounds like they are in some kind of witchcraft, occultist kind of practice, in the sewing of these pillows onto the armholes and putting these little bonnets on, that is for every size of head, every stature, so for every size head they were making little bonnets that they could wear.

Will you pollute me among my people for hands full of barley ( Ezekiel 13:19 )

In other words, they were divining for anything, you know, "Give me a handful of barley and give me your wheat and I'll tell you your fortune, ya know. Cross my palm with a dollar, deary, and I'll a tell you what's going to come, you know." And so, God is speaking out against them.

who pollute me among the people for a hand full of barley or piece of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies? ( Ezekiel 13:19 )

Now, they were slaying the souls by telling them, "Hey, things are going to be all right. You've got a bright future. There's going to be a handsome man that's going to come into your life and you're going to live happily ever after." And these people were not listening to the word of God and the warnings of God because of the comfort that they were receiving.

Wherefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against your pillows, wherewith ye there hunt the souls to make them fly, and I will tear them from your arms, and will let the souls go, even the souls that hunt to make them fly ( Ezekiel 13:20 ).

Seems like they were probably into setting up curses, you know, against people, going into these little incantations, putting pins in the dolls, and this kind of thing, in trying to create a fear in the minds of the people, "Oh, they put a hex on me."

Your kerchiefs also will I tear, and deliver my people out of your hand, and they shall be no more in your hand to be hunted; and ye shall know that I am the LORD. Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad ( Ezekiel 13:21-22 ),

And, of course, the righteous people, when they see this kind of junk it hurts. You think, "Oh God, you know, how long You going to let them go?

whom I have not made sad; and you've strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life ( Ezekiel 13:22 );

You're comforting those that are dying in their wickedness, and because of the comfort you are giving they are not repenting; they are not turning away from it. It's much like many of those ministers today who stand in the pulpits and say, "There's no hell, you don't have to worry. Every day and in every way the world is getting better and better and better. We're on the verge of the glorious millennium, the glorious age is about to be ushered in." And people are attracted. And it's interesting to me that in this religious science and spiritism and so forth, that most of the practitioners are women. Did you ever notice that? In this theosophy, religious science and all of these metaphysical type of things, most of them teaching and all are women. And so the Lord really has a word against them here.

Therefore ye shall see no more vanity, nor divine divinations: for I will deliver my people out of your hand: and ye shall know that I am the LORD ( Ezekiel 13:23 ). "

Bibliographical Information
Smith, Charles Ward. "Commentary on Ezekiel 13". "Smith's Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/csc/ezekiel-13.html. 2014.
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