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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Ezekiel 24

 

 


Verses 1-14

Ezekiel 24. The Last Message before the Fall of the City.

Ezekiel 24:1-14. The Rusty Caldron.—We now reach the last message delivered by Ezekiel before the fall of the city; and, curiously enough, it was delivered on the opening day of the siege (2 Kings 25:1)—an event of which Ezekiel must have known by his gift of second sight. In a probably acted parable, the city is compared to a pot filled with pieces of flesh (=the inhabitants), including choice pieces (= the leaders). But beneath the pot a huge fire is blazing, symbolic of the siege. Then, after boiling, the pieces are taken out in any order, symbolic of indiscriminate dispersion; but, as the pot is rusty, it is set again empty upon the furious fire, to be cleansed of its rust by the flames. The rust is symbolic of the blood, shed in injustice and child sacrifice, and of the moral and ceremonial foulness of the people, already so often described. The blood, which there was no attempt made to hide, cries aloud, according to ancient Semitic ideas, for vengeance (Genesis 4:10*); and the vengeance falls in the shape of the terrible discipline thus symbolically described. (Probably the first clause of Ezekiel 24:12 should be deleted.)

Ezekiel 24:15-27. Death of the Prophet's Wife.—But not only by word and symbol, but in the experience of personal sorrow, is Ezekiel a prophet and a sign to his people. The sudden death of his wife at this time, "the desire of his eyes," for whom he was forbidden to exhibit the customary signs of mourning, is an adumbration to the people of the impending loss of Jerusalem, and especially of the Temple, which was dear to them as his wife was to him—a loss too prostrating to be lamented in ordinary ways, but expressing itself in a certain stupefaction and a numbing sense of guilt. (Ezekiel 24:17 alludes to mourning customs: instead of men should perhaps be read mourning. From Ezekiel 24:21 we learn that in the deportation of 597 B.C. some at least of the children were left behind.)

When the day came that a fugitive would arrive in Babylon with the news of the fall of Jerusalem, Ezekiel's reputation as a prophet would be vindicated, and he would be no more tongue-tied (cf. Ezekiel 33:22).

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Ezekiel 24:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/ezekiel-24.html. 1919.

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Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020
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