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Bible Commentaries

Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary

Ezekiel 11

Verses 1-13

EZEKIEL - CHAPTER 11

A VISION OF WRATH AGAINST LYING RULERS

Verses 1-13:

Verse 1 continues with the assertion that the spirit lifted Ezekiel up in his vision and placed him at the east gate of the Lord’s house (the temple) facing eastward, v. 24; Ezekiel 3:12; Ezekiel 3:14; Ezekiel 8:3; Ezekiel 10:19. There at the door or entrance of the gate he saw twenty five men, rulers in Jerusalem and Judea. Among them, or in their midst, as if presiding over them, were two princes of kingly lineage, Jaazaniah the son of Azur, and Pelatiah the son of Benaiah. These seem not to be the same 25 men who were worshipping the sun in the same place, as recounted Ezekiel 8:11; Ezekiel 8:16, for they were priests.

Verse 2 declared that these 25 men were devisers, instigators, and perpetrators of mischief and evil counsel in Jerusalem, provoking God to wrath, Ezekiel 10:2.

Verse 3 states that they repeatedly said that "It is not near," or they were not likely to be judged or carried away captive, in spite of former prophecy, Jeremiah 25:11-12; Jeremiah 29:10. They therefore advised progress in building, proceeding as in the past, even as the people of the pre-flood Noah days, Matthew 24:37-39. It appears that the 25 devisers of mischief would have the people build houses so strong that should the enemy come they would no longer be as flesh waiting to be boiled in a cauldron, as described Jeremiah 1:13. They were self-savers, obstinate against God in their idolatrous advocacy, defying their own law, Exodus 20:4-5.

Verse 4 directs Ezekiel therefore to prophecy against them, those yet in Jerusalem, though far away in Babylon, except as. carried to Jerusalem in visions. God would have His dispersed captives to hear from Ezekiel what was yet to befall the rebellious of their remnant in Jerusalem. The repetition is meant to emphasize the earnestness of Ezekiel and certainty of his prophecies, 2 Peter 1:20-21.

Verse 5 recounts Ezekiel’s testimony that the Spirit of the Lord fell heavily upon him, stronger than entered into him, and commanded him to speak up and out about what he had seen and heard, Ezekiel 2:2; Ezekiel 3:24. For until this time he had been silent, hearing and learning of the Lord, as Paul did in Arabia, Galatians 1:15-20; Ezekiel 2:2; Ezekiel 3:24. Ezekiel was told to proclaim to them that God knew what they had said, their scornful jests, and what was in their minds, completely, every one of them, Psalms 139:1-4; Ecclesiastes 12:14; Matthew 12:36.

Verse 6 then describes what these evil princes and governors of Israel, Judea, and Jerusalem had devised. They were charged with wanton murder, in the streets and city of Jerusalem, for which He would hold them responsible, Ezekiel 7:23-24; See also Micah 3:1-3; Jeremiah 39:4-5.

Verse 7 further charges that those whom they had slain were their own flesh, and the city of Jerusalem had been and was their caldron. The slain were those killed at Chaldean invasion against Jerusalem for which God held her rulers responsible. Ezekiel was to make this plain, yet He promised that He would bring the remnant out of Jerusalem, the caldron, Ezekiel 24:3; Ezekiel 24:6; Ezekiel 24:10-11; Micah 3:3.

Verse 8 warns that they of Jerusalem had feared the sword and He would yet surely bring a sword upon them v. 6. Their chastening would yet be full, from Chaldea.

Verse 9 adds that the Lord would bring the remnant out of Jerusalem, delivering them by the sword into the hands of other strangers and heathen, even as they had adopted morals, ethics, and the religions of many idolatrous orders. He would lead them into the plains of judgment, executing judgment.

Verse 10 asserts that they should fall by the sword, as the instrument of Divine retribution for their sins, 2 Kings 25:19-21; Jeremiah 39:6; Jeremiah 52:10. God declared that He would judge them "in the border of Israel," on the frontier, or by a nation nearby, even Chaldea at Riblah where Zedekiah and his sons were executed, Jeremiah 52:9-11. This was to continue until in captivity, Ezekiel 5:8; Psalms 106:30, too late to cry, they would come to recognize and acknowledge that He was Lord, Psalms 9:16, even of all the earth. The chief officers, priests, and 60 men of Jerusalem were also slain, 2 Kings 25:19-21.

Verse 11 adds that "this city," of Jerusalem should not be their caldron, their place to die. Nor should they. long be the flesh or life of the city of peace. Then it is again asserted that He would judge them in the border or "border area" or frontier of Israel, alluding again to the final siege of captivity that would also carry them away into Babylon, v. 3, 4. This was done as described, Ezekiel 39:4-5.

Verse 12 declares that they should then comprehend that He was the Lord, Master of the universe, and that they had not either walked in the way of His statutes or executed His judgments. But they would then know that they had embraced and walked after the ways of their heathen neighbors, nations about them, as forewarned Deuteronomy 12:30-31.

Verse 13 recounts that as Ezekiel, overwhelmed by the Spirit, spoke those words of fiery judgment to the two princes and 25 rulers or governors in Jerusalem, Pelatiah, the son of Benaiah, believed to be leader of the scorners, v. 1, of the two princes, fell down dead, like Ananias, Acts 5:5. So moved was Ezekiel in the vision, yet enraptured, that he fell down in painful bitterness of soul and cried out with a loud voice, "Oh Lord God! wilt thou make a full end of the remnant of Israel?" Ezekiel 9:8. He spoke as if he had forgotten all hope in the covenant promise of God to preserve Israel until the Redeemer should come, Genesis 49:10; See also Deuteronomy 9:18; Joshua 7:6; Joshua 7:9; 1 Chronicles 21:16-17; Psalms 106:23; Psalms 119:120.

Verses 14-16

THE PLEDGE TO SPARE THE REMNANT

Verses 14-16:

Verse 14 recounts that the word of the Lord came again to Ezekiel, in response to his cry to the Lord, when Pelatiah the prince fell down dead before him, and the 25 rulers, before the eastern gate in the city of Jerusalem. The Lord confirmed to him that th6 doom of Jerusalem was irrevocable, but the Lord’s people, the few with a broken and contrite heart, would not be despised, Psalms 34:18; Psalms 51:17; Isaiah 57:15; Isaiah 66:2. "Is thy heart right with God?"

Verse 15 indicates that the remnant of Israel yet dwelling in Jerusalem, not having gone into captivity, were haughty, proud, and obstinate against God, considering themselves the true children of the covenant of Israel, though engaging in idolatry, cruel, and oppressing the poor, showing no mercy to their own people. Jeremiah was among those poor whom the proud in Jerusalem had pushed forward to be carried into captivity by the Chaldaeans. They were to be the true vindicators of the Lord, though in captivity, as a type of the Messiah, Deuteronomy 33:9; In that captive land he had been called, lifted up, transported to Jerusalem in a vision, and given a vision of the pollution of Jerusalem, the city of peace, and of the temple, and of the land, so that he could relate the same to the children of the Mosaic covenant, in their captivity, assuring them that through true repentance and obedience they could one day be restored to their own land in peace, Ezekiel 20:33-44; Zechariah 12:8-9. Until then, though despised, they were to be His, 1 Corinthians 1:26-28.

Verse 16 directed Ezekiel to prophesy to the captivity, that He had cast them far off from, out of, and away from their homeland, among the heathen, and later, after they rejected their Messiah, among the countries, other continents of the world, Luke 1:32-33; Luke 21:24. However, He confirmed to them, hope and courage, assuring that He would be to them as a "little sanctuary," a place of retreat for holy and solemn worship, in the countries, nations and continents where they should be scattered, John 4:24; by a penitent, contrite, and broken spirit one may yet find peace and hope in God among them, wherever he be, See Joel 2:32; Isaiah 1:9; Romans 11:5. See also Psalms 90:1; Psalms 91:9; Isaiah 8:14. They shall yet abide in Canaan, their covenant land, in peace, Jeremiah 24:6.

Verses 17-21

ISRAEL TO BE RESTORED TO CANAAN AND CONVERTED Verses 17-21:

Verse 17 recertifies that the Lord, in addition to being a sanctuary to them, would gather them, His covenant people, Israel, from their dispersion among all nations and assemble them again in the land of Israel, Ezekiel 28:25; Ezekiel 34:13; Ezekiel 36:24. It is a prophecy, promise, and pledge yet to be fulfilled, as surely as the sun shines, the wind blows, the rain falls, and the birds sing, to bless the earth, John 4:24; Ezekiel 28:25; Ezekiel 34:13; Ezekiel 36:24; Jeremiah 24:6.

Verse 18 assures the exiles of Israel in Babylon and their children, that their people shall one day return to their city, their temple area, and their land and sanctify it, removing all detestable things, perhaps even the mosque of Omar, where Mohammed is now worshipped, rather than Jesus Christ; For it is stated that His people will, after their return and assembly, remove all abominations, all God-offending objects of worship, all idolatry from the city and place of their worship, as they did before Jesus came, Haggai 2:9. The day seems to be now, very near at hand, Daniel 9:26-27; Luke 21:24.

Verse 19 is a pledge from the Lord that in that future day of Israel’s repentance, return, and restoration to their covenant-­promised land He will give to them both a (new) heart (of affection) and unity, and a new spirit (attitude or disposition), Ezekiel 36:26; Jeremiah 32:39; Zephaniah 3:9. He also pledges to take away from them the stony, obstinate, and rebellious heart, out of their flesh, and give them an heart of flesh, or an heart of sensitive affection toward truth and right, Ezekiel 18:31; Psalms 51:10: Jeremiah 31:33; Jeremiah 32:39; Zechariah 7:12.

Verse 20, declares that such is given that (in order that) they of converted Israel might - 1) walk in harmony with His statutes, 2) keep or guard His ordinances, and 3) be doers of them, James 1:22. Then, it was certified, they would be, or exist as, His people, and He would be (exist as) their God, Ezekiel 14:11; Ezekiel 36:28; Ezekiel 37:27; Jeremiah 24:7. Regeneration is shown by holy fruit, Galatians 5:22; Galatians 5:25. God will then claim Israel as His people, Zechariah 13:9.

Verse 21 bears with the previous promises, a dark shadow. The warning is that those of them whose heart yearned after detestable and abominable things, leading them to walk in Godless paths, would all and each be personally chastened, judged, or recompensed for his chosen path of behavior before God, Psalms 115:8. For the Lord had repeatedly warned all Israel, that they were without excuse, Numbers 32:23; Psalms 1:4-6; Galatians 6:7-8.

Verses 22-25

VISION OF JERUSALEM’S DEPARTING GLORY

Verses 22-25:

Verse 22 describes the rising of the cherubims, with the lifting of their wings, with the wheels that had accompanied them to destruction upon Israel and Judah. As they profaned His temple, so He would lead them to be profaned by the Chaldeans, Ezekiel 9:10. The

glory of the God of Israel, the Shechinah light hovered above them to lead them away, Ezekiel 10:16-17; Such is further described 1 Kings 8:5-11; Ezra 3:12; Ezekiel 43:2-5.

Verse 23 explains that the glory of the Lord then went up from where it hovered over the city, at the east gate of Jerusalem, and stood or rested on the top of the mount of Olives, from which our Lord ascended into heaven, when he was about to send judgment on the Jews, as He predicted Matthew 24:3. And to which it is prophesied that He would one day return, Luke 24:50-51; Acts 1:8-11; Ezekiel 8:4; Ezekiel 9:3; Ezekiel 10:4; Ezekiel 10:18; Ezekiel 43:4; Zechariah 14:4.

Verse 24 relates that following this vision scene the spirit of God took Ezekiel up and way from Jerusalem, before the 70 elders, Ezekiel 8:1; Ezekiel 8:3, where he had been transported in a vision, and returned him to Chaldea, to them of the captivity, among whom he lived. Then the vision which he had seen and related in this prophecy went up and away from him, back to God who sent it, Ezekiel 8:3.

Verse 25 then affirms that Ezekiel faithfully prophesied to Israel in their captivity, all the things that the Lord had shown him, 2 Peter 1:20-21. What a witness! So should His children be in faithful obedience today, Matthew 5:13-16; Acts 1:8; Ephesians 2:10; James 1:22; 1 Corinthians 15:28. He was a prophet to them, Ezekiel 2:5; He was an instructor regarding right and wrong, Ezekiel 3:17; He had taken the place of a mediator, Ezekiel 11:15. So should we.

Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of Blessed Hope Foundation and the Baptist Training Center.
Bibliographical Information
Garner, Albert & Howes, J.C. "Commentary on Ezekiel 11". Garner-Howes Baptist Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/ghb/ezekiel-11.html. 1985.