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Bible Commentaries
Ezekiel 46

Benson's Commentary of the Old and New TestamentsBenson's Commentary


A.M. 3430. B.C. 574.

In this chapter we have,

(1,) Further rules for the worship of the priests and people, Ezekiel 46:1-15 .

(2,) A rule for the prince’s disposal of his inheritance, Ezekiel 46:16-18 .

(3,) A description of the places for the boiling and baking the offerings, Ezekiel 46:19-24 .

Verses 2-3

Ezekiel 46:2-3. The prince shall enter by the way of the porch of that gate without The prince shall go through the outer gate of that court, and so pass to the inner gate, where he may see the whole service performed at the altar. And shall stand by the post of the gate That is, by the entrance of the gate, where there was a seat prepared for him: see note on Ezekiel 44:2. And the priests shall prepare his burnt-offering Or, offer his burnt-offering, as the original word often signifies. And he shall worship at the threshold of the gate By bowing his head, bowing down his face to the ground, or falling down upon the ground, as the posture of divine worship is elsewhere described. But the gate shall not be shut until the evening Because the people were to pay their solemn worship in the same place, as is prescribed in the following verse. Likewise the people shall worship at the door of this gate Here the inner porch of the east gate is assigned for their station, who came to present themselves before the Lord upon the solemn festivals, and they were to come no further into the inner court.

Verses 4-5

Ezekiel 46:4-5. The burnt-offering that the prince shall offer, &c. It was the prince’s part to provide sacrifices for the sabbaths and other festivals: see Ezekiel 45:17. But this was a new ordinance; and the number of the beasts that were to be offered, and the proportions of the meat and drink- offerings, are different here from those prescribed in the law, as will appear by comparing the fourth, sixth, seventh, and fourteenth verses of this chapter, with Numbers 28:9-12; Numbers 28:15. And the meat-offering for the lambs as he shall be able to give The Hebrew is, According to the gift of his hand; that is, as much as he shall think sufficient.

Verses 8-10

Ezekiel 46:8-10 . He shall go in by the porch of that gate To go in at the eastern gate was the privilege of the prince and the priests only; the people were to enter in by the north or south gates, as is mentioned in the following verse. He that entereth in by the way of the north gate, shall go out by the way of the south, &c. These words imply the reason why the people were not to come in at the east gate, because, there being no passage or thoroughfare out of the temple westward, if they had entered in at the east gate, they must have returned back the same way they came in, which would have occasioned a vast throng and hinderance, considering the multitude that came to the temple. And perhaps this order was also designed to take away any superstitious distinction between the several gates of the temple, by commanding that every one should go out the opposite way to that by which he came in, whether it were toward the north or south. And the prince in the midst of them The prince shall pay the same attendance upon God’s worship with the people, since all men are equal in the sight of God.

Verses 12-14

Ezekiel 46:12-14. Now when the prince shall prepare a voluntary offering The foregoing verses gave directions about the sacrifices the prince was enjoined to offer upon solemn days; this gives directions concerning his free-will, or voluntary offerings, concerning which see Leviticus 22:18; Leviticus 22:21. Upon these occasions the eastern gate was to be opened for the prince; but then, as soon as the service was over, and he was gone out, the gate was to be shut, because that gate was not to stand open, but only on the sabbath and festival days. Thou shalt daily prepare The LXX. read, He shall prepare, or make, a burnt-offering, &c., as also all the ancient versions, except the Chaldee. He shall prepare it every morning The daily evening sacrifice is generally supposed to be here implied, according to the prescription of the law, Numbers 28:3. The sixth part of an ephah, &c. In Numbers 28:5, the proportion required is the tenth part of an ephah, and the fourth part of a hin of oil. By a perpetual ordinance unto the Lord The law of the passover is called a perpetual ordinance, Exodus 12:17; and likewise the ordinances about the first- fruits. Leviticus 23:14. The Hebrew word, עולם , is used in each of these places; but it does not always denote perpetuity in a strict sense, but only a long period, or succession of time.

Verses 16-18

Ezekiel 46:16-18. If the prince give a gift, &c. By these verses we learn, that even gifts, or legacies of lands, could only be granted till the year of jubilee, except to a person’s own heirs; for at that period all such gifts or grants devolved again to the original possessors, or their heirs. It shall be his to the year of liberty That is, of jubilee, called the year of liberty, because it freed men’s persons from the service of their masters, and their estates from any engagements by which the right of them was transferred from their proper owners. After it shall return to the prince Or to his heirs, if he be dead. But his inheritance shall be his sons’ for them Or, his inheritance shall belong to his sons; it shall be theirs so as not to be alienated. The prince shall not take of the people’s inheritance As Ahab did, 1 Kings 21:16. That my people be not scattered Lest, being turned out of their own, they be forced to wander up and down the country for a livelihood.

Verses 19-20

Ezekiel 46:19-20. He brought me through the entry A private passage, Ezekiel 42:9, which led to the priests’ chambers, which were on the north side of the inner court, and are described Ezekiel 40:44; Ezekiel 40:46. There was a place on the two sides westward Or, on their sides westward; that is, there was an enclosure on the west side of these chambers. This is the place where the priest shall boil the trespass- offering The flesh of the sacrifices, which were to be eaten, was to be boiled, except the flesh of the passover. Where they shall bake the meat- offering According to the directions given Leviticus 2:4-7. That they bear them not into the outer court, to sanctify the people The flesh of those sacrifices, and the remainder of the meat-offering, were accounted most holy; and consequently, according to the law, were supposed to convey some kind of holiness to those that touched them: see note on Ezekiel 44:19.

Verses 21-24

Ezekiel 46:21-24. Behold, in every corner of the court there was a court At every corner, where the side walls met in right angles, there was another little court. There were courts joined of forty cubits long, &c. These little courts were in the shape of an oblong square, joined with inner walls to the outside walls of the greater court. The marginal reading, made with chimneys, gives a sense which very well agrees with the uses for which the courts were designed. There was a row of buildings round about in them Namely, on the inside of these courts. Then said he, These are the places, &c. As there was a place in the inner court for boiling the trespass and sin-offering, Ezekiel 46:19-20; so these boiling-places might be appointed for boiling the peace-offerings, which were esteemed inferior in holiness to those above mentioned, and therefore, perhaps, were dressed by the Levites, or inferior ministers; whereas the former were boiled by the priests in the court properly belonging to them.

Bibliographical Information
Benson, Joseph. "Commentary on Ezekiel 46". Benson's Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/rbc/ezekiel-46.html. 1857.
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