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Bible Commentaries
Ezekiel 32

Layman's Bible CommentaryLayman's Bible Commentary

Verses 1-32


Ezekiel 25:1 to Ezekiel 32:32

The second major division of the prophecy is the natural outgrowth of the expansive vision which opened the ministry of Ezekiel and of the great theme which underlies his writing. God-who can no longer be identified with Palestine alone, who can be met in the Mesopotamian mudflats in a summer storm, who can withdraw from Jerusalem to go where he will — is a God who by his very nature relates himself to all nations.

These oracles serve to establish two concepts very clearly: first, all mankind is morally and spiritually responsible to Almighty God; second, no nation will escape the responsibility to obey the common laws of humanity. Neither imperial greatness (Tyre and Egypt) nor insignificant powerlessness (Ammon, Edom, and the like) could mean that judgment would be withheld.

Verses 1-16

Dirge Over Pharaoh and Egypt (32:1-16)

Chapter 32 returns to the motif of the river monster which appeared in Ezekiel 29:3-5, accusing Pharaoh of being a dragon in the waters which he troubles and fouls with his feet. Much as in chapter 29, the dragon is doomed to be caught in God’s net and cast upon the open field where the beasts and birds gorge themselves on his dead flesh (vss. 3-4). The flesh of the monster will be strewn over the mountains and his blood will flow in the valleys (vss. 5-6). Verses 7-8 describe the cataclysmic effect of Egypt’s destruction on nature and are representative of the emerging prophetic language used to describe nature’s reaction to the Lord’s intervention in history.

A prose section (vss. 9- 12a) describes the effect upon nations who hear that the monster has fallen. Once again the description, though stylized, is an accurate representation of the troubled reaction which arose among the nations at Egypt’s fall.

The poem or lament resumes with verse 12b, where the extent of the destruction is related. Waters which have been troubled and fouled by Egypt will run clear again once this troublemaker is banished from the face of the earth.

Verse 16 explains that the lamentation (vss. 2-8, 12b-15) will be sung by the daughters of the nations over prostrate Egypt. Not only will Egypt fall; she also will become the subject of a sorrowful lament.

Verses 17-32

Descent Into Sheol (32:17-32)

Like Tyre before her, Egypt will go into Sheol, the land of darkness and shadowy existence. Her beauty will be brought to the depths reserved for the uncircumcised, and her multitudes will be sent into Sheol (vss. 17-21). Among the inhabitants who have preceded Egypt to Sheol is Assyria, whose graves are in the uttermost parts of the Pit because they "spread terror in the land of the living" (vss. 22-23). Elam is there also (vss. 24-25), as are Meshech and Tubal (Asia Minor cities); and Edom has been brought into the same Pit. Princes from the north (that is, Armenia) and the Sidonians are among the ghostly company. Pharaoh joins this infamous aggregation whose crime is against humanity (they "spread terror in the land of the living"). Because of this they will be consigned to Sheol and will no longer be privileged with life, which they had made so miserable for others. The inexorable law and purpose of God are at work in all places, with no exception made for the allegedly great.

Bibliographical Information
"Commentary on Ezekiel 32". "Layman's Bible Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/lbc/ezekiel-32.html.
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