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Bible Commentaries

Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ezekiel 47

Verse 1

Waters. These waters are not to be understood literally, (for there were none such that flowed from the temple) but mystically of the baptism of Christ, and of his doctrine and his grace; the trees that grow on the banks are Christian virtues; the fishes are Christians, that spiritually live in and by these holy waters; the fishermen are the apostles, and apostolic preachers; the fenny places, where there is no health, are such as by being out of the Church are separated from these waters of life. (Challoner) --- It is not probable that real water or fishes were found, ver. 9. But this must be explained of the Church and of baptism, in a higher and more proper sense. (Worthington) --- Joel, (iii. 18.) before the captivity, and Zacharias, (xiv. 8.) after that event, speak of fountains as still to appear, and of course not in either temple, though Pilate made aqueducts for the purpose, (Josephus, Jewish Wars ii. 13.) which Tacitus, (An. v.) Maundrel, (p. 148.) and others mention. But the prophets allude not to them, but to Christ, the fountain of water springing up unto life eternal, John iv. 14., and vii. 38. (Calmet) --- Villalpand understands it of waters brought into the temple to wash the victims; but it seems to refer more to the grace and doctrine of Christ. (Menochius)

Verse 2

East. This gate was shut, and therefore he went out at the north gate. (Calmet)

Verse 8

The. Hebrew, "the east country," (Protestants; Haydock) or "the frontiers (Gelilah) eastward," by which some improperly suppose that one rivulet went to the sea of Galilee. --- And shall. Hebrew, "the sea of the going out," where the Jordan River empties itself into the Dead Sea; or, the second rivulet ran into the Mediterranean, Zacharias xiv. 8. But this passage relates to the Dead Sea alone, (ver. 18.) and Gelilah is a place near it, where the Israelites erected an altar of union, Josue xxii. 10. (Calmet) --- Healed. No fish can live in the sea of Sodom. (Solin xxxviii.) --- Yet, let the place be ever so noxious, this water shall cure it; (see 4 Kings ii. 19.; Calmet) which must be taken in a mystical sense. (Haydock)

Verse 10

Engallim, or "the fountain of Gallim," in the tribe of Benjamin, Isaias xxv. 44.

Verse 11

Salt, or bitumen pits. Schismatics and bad Christians, who do not live by the spirit of Christ, are meant. (Calmet)

Verse 12

First-fruits, or most excellent. (Haydock) --- St. John saw such (Worthington) a tree of life, Apocalypse xxii. (Haydock) --- The doctrine of the gospel, and the study of the sacred books, have the most salutary effects; while the very leaves, or the example of the saints, heal the soul. No more shall the deceitful fruits near Sodom be seen (Calmet) beautiful, but full of nothing but ashes. (Tacitus, An. v.) --- Where Christ instructs, a torrent of grace and glory is presently formed. Like the mustard seed growing into a large tree, in which the birds rest, its origin in mean; yet its progress is grand and astonishing.

Verse 13

Double portion. Literally, "cord." (Haydock) --- His two sons would each have a share, as Levi was better provided for. (Worthington) --- He had no portion of the land assigned to him by Josue, but here one part is appointed (Calmet) for the sacred ministers and the prince, chap. xlv. 1.

Verse 14

Brother. The seven tribes to the north have each an equal share, as the five who lay to the south of the Levites had with respect to each other, though their portion must have been only about half of what the former possessed, according to the map, chap. xlv. 1. (Haydock) --- Under Josue, the numbers of each tribe were considered. The present mysterious equality shews, perhaps, that there is no distinction of Jew or Gentile in the Church, and that Christ would come to redeem all. (Calmet) --- Lifted. People taking an oath acted in this manner. (Menochius)

Verse 15

Sedada. These places are not well known. They seem to be near the highest mountain specified, (Numbers xxxiv. 7.) west of Emesa.

Verse 16

Berotha, conquered by David, 2 Kings viii. 8.

Verse 17

Emath was about the middle of the northern limits, between the Mediterranean Sea and the Euphrates River.

Verse 18

Auran. Hence a line must be drawn through Damascus over Mount Galaad to the eastern or Dead Sea, to form the eastern borders. (Calmet) --- The Jordan River flowing from Genesareth to Sodom marked out this side, (Menochius) or rather was in this division; though the land as far as Galaad was to belong to Israel, as it had been before the captivity. Protestants, "by Jordan from the border unto," &c. (Haydock)

Verse 19

Thamar. Engaddi is sometimes understood: but it lay near Jericho, as this (Calmet) Thamar was to the south of the Dead Sea. (Ptolemy) --- Torrent, Besor. (Haydock)

Verse 20

Emath, not that it was on the sea: but a line was to be drawn over against this city, eastward from the Mediterranean Sea. Septuagint, "to opposite the entrance of Emath, as far as its entrance." But the territory extended farther, Numbers xxxiv.

Verse 22

Strangers. This was never done by the Jews. It signifies that Christ would give an inheritance, in the true land of promise [in heaven], (Calmet) to all nations which should practice his religion, Romans x. 12. (Haydock)

Verse 24


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Bibliographical Information
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Ezekiel 47". "Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". 1859.