This Chapter is but a continuation of the former: the Lord is still expostulating with his people. We have in the middle of the Chapter a gracious promise.
By the mountains of Israel, is meant the higher order of the people of Israel; such as exalted themselves above their fellows, and perhaps prided themselves in being exempt from popular fear and apprehension in the captivity. To such the Lord will speak, and in an alarming voice. The judgments threatened are very awful, and the common level to which the whole kingdom shall be reduced, becomes a full proof, that mountains and valleys with the Lord are the same. The soul that sinneth it shall die. We have a striking prophecy to the same amount, Isaiah 24:2-3.
Reader! do not too hastily pass away from this blessed verse. Behold in it the grace and faithfulness of Jehovah! Recollect what one of the Prophets was commanded to say: and one of the Apostles as fully confirmed. Though thy people Israel (said Isaiah) be as the sand of the sea, yet a remnant of them shall return. Isaiah 10:22; Romans 9:27. And Reader! do not overlook another grand thing here promised, namely, this remnant is the Lord's leaving. Yes! no merit, no foresight, no labour of theirs, in the least contributing to this great salvation. It is very blessed to see our mercies: and doubly blessed when we can trace them to their source, and behold the same Almighty hands which laid the foundation, finishing it also in grace. Zechariah 4:9. And Reader! I pray you yet further to observe, the Lord's design in all this, namely, that the Church may have some that shall escape the general ruin. And what is the cause, but that Jesus may he glorified in his Church, in his redeemed. What would the Lord do for his great name, if the Lord's cause was to be totally lost in the ruin of his people? How would the great head of his Church be glorified, if any of the members of his body perished? Precious, Precious Lord Jesus! how blessed is it to find our safety in thee! Joshua 7:8-9; Exodus 32:11-14; Numbers 14:11-21.
Perhaps there is not a more blessed account of gospel grace, and of that whichever was and ever must be gospel, than what is contained in these and the foregoing verses. In the former we have the whole cause of mercy; namely, Jehovah's sovereign will and pleasure. In these latter, we have the gracious effects of it. Jehovah in his threefold person and character, is the sole cause of all: and his glory the first and ultimate end and design of all: And the con sequence of it, as it concerns the happiness of his people; in grace here and glory hereafter, is linked in the same chain. And Reader! do not fail to remark the sweet properties of his grace, in the hearts of that remnant whom the Lord leaves. They shall remember the Lord; they shall loath themselves; and they shall know Jehovah in his Covenant relation; and they shall most freely and frankly confess, the Lord's justice in all the Lord's dispensations. Reader! here learn the truest evidences of a regenerated heart. Self-loathing, self-abhorring; God-glorifying, God-exalting, these were in Ezekiel's days, as truly as they are in ours, the surest tokens of the soul's real conversion towards God. The Lord give them both to him that writes, and to him that reads! Amen.
It should seem, from what is here said, that the Prophet was to enforce the truths he had to deliver, by action of body as well as expression of mind. Indeed, so solemn a subject might well be supposed to excite animation. Diblath or Diblathaim, as it is called in Numbers 33:46 was the wilderness Moses describes, Deuteronomy 8:15.
READER! amidst numberless subjects, which arise everywhere and in every part of the word of God, some there are, which from their vast importance, arrest the mind more earnestly, and call up the warmest attention. Such in an eminent degree, is what is here said, of the remnant the Lord would leave among his people in the worst of times. It was so in the Church of God in the Prophet's days: and the same is so in ours. Never, I believe, did the waters of the sanctuary run at a lower ebb, than in the present period of the Gospel; but yet, even now the Lord hath not left himself without witness. He hath a seed that serve him: a people near to himself, that dwell alone, and are not reckoned among the nations. And indeed, we may well exclaim with the Prophet, and say, Except the Lord of hosts had left unto us a very small remnant, we should have been as Sodom, and we should have been like unto Gomorrah!
Shall not you and I be anxious to know whether we are of this happy number? Surely it is a momentous concern. Behold here then, in this Chapter, are their characters faithfully and clearly drawn by Jehovah himself. The Lord saith, that they are a remnant among a multitude, and such as have escaped. They are brought into an acquaintance with themselves, and know the plague of their own heart; and from this conviction, they loath themselves for all the evils which they have committed, and for all their abominations. They are brought to remember the Lord also, and are made acquainted with his salvation. And from the grace of Jehovah manifested to them, and the conscious state of their own undeservings; they discover, that their mercy all flows from Jehovah's covenant relations, and in that discovery they learn to know the Lord. My brother! say, hath the Lord thus wrought for his great name's sake in your soul? Oh! the blessedness of God the Holy Ghost's teaching, in convincing of sin, of righteousness, and of judgment. It is thus that all the Lord's remnant are taught of God as his children, and great then is the peace of his children!
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Ezekiel 6". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Third Sunday after Epiphany