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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Ezekiel 30

 

 


Introduction

Oracles against Ammon (Ezekiel 25:1-7), Moab (Ezekiel 25:8-11) Edom (Ezekiel 25:12-14), Philistia (Ezekiel 25:17).—All of these petty powers were ancient hereditary enemies of Israel. Their enmity dated back to the days before the monarchy, and in the recent disasters and sorrows of Israel had expressed itself in violent and malicious ways. The Ammonites had instigated the treacherous murder of Gedaliah, the Jew whom the Babylonians had appointed governor of Judah (Jeremiah 40:14). The Edomites had behaved with savage malice in the day of Jerusalem's distress (Psalms 137:7), as also had the Ammonites, who stamped and shouted for joy (Ezekiel 25:3; Ezekiel 25:6). The fate of them all is to be desolation and destruction—in the case of the Ammonites and Moabites at the hands of "the children of the east," i.e. the nomads of the Arabian desert; in the case of Edom, significantly enough at the hands of Israel herself: in the case of the Philistines the agent of the Divine vengeance is left vague. All these nations will thus be taught "that I am Yahweh," the mighty Yahweh, not the weak God they had taken Him to be, as they contemplated the fate of His people. The saying of Moab in Ezekiel 25:8 implies that Judah had claimed a certain pre-eminence (cf. Deuteronomy 4:32 ff.); in her noblest representatives she was beyond all question the spiritual superior of all her neighbours. (In Ezekiel 25:9 read "from the cities of its border to the glory of the land"; the three cities mentioned are all N. of the Amon. Ezekiel 25:13, Teman in north, Dedan in south of Edom. Ezekiel 25:16, Cherethites (p. 56), a Philistine tribe.)

Ezekiel 26-28. Oracle against Tyre.—From Israel's petty neighbours with their petty spite, Ezekiel turns to the great empires of Tyre (Ezekiel 26 ff.) and Egypt (Ezekiel 29 ff.). They too must go. In a passage of great literary power, which reveals the imaginative genius of Ezekiel, he describes the brilliance of Tyre, the range of her commerce, the pity and terror inspired by her (contemplated) fall.

Ezekiel 25-32. Oracles against the Foreign Nations. Ezekiel's denunciations (Ezekiel 1-24) are now over; with the news of the fall of Jerusalem his prophecies of restoration will begin (Ezekiel 33-48). But before Israel is restored, those who are opposed to her, and to the Divine purpose which is so mysteriously bound up with her, must be cleared out of the way. Appropriately therefore, at this point come the oracles against the foreign nations—first the near neighbours who had insulted and harassed her, then those more distant and powerful. These oracles, however, were not written between the beginning and the end of the siege; some of them clearly imply the fall of the city (cf. Ezekiel 25:3). But they are appropriately inserted here, as preliminary to the restoration.


Verses 1-26

Ezekiel 30. The Desolation of Egypt.—The interrupted denunciation of Egypt is resumed. The neighbours and allies will be involved in her ruin, which is to be effected by Nebuchadrezzar and his "terrible" army (Ezekiel 30:1-12). (In Ezekiel 30:5, for "Put and Lud" see Ezekiel 27:10 : for "mingled people" read "Arabians." For "Cub," read "Lub" = Lybians; and for the next clause read "the Cretans.")

The collapse of Egypt is then described in detail, the towns which are singled out for special mention being all of religious, political, or military importance (Ezekiel 30:13-19). (In Ezekiel 30:13, the LXX omits the clause referring to "idols," and rightly reads "magnates" for "images." Noph (Isaiah 19:13*) = Memphis (near Cairo), capital of Lower Egypt. Pathros = Upper Egypt. Zoan (Isaiah 19:11*), on the second easterly arm of the Nile. No (Nahum 3:8*) = Thebes, capital of Upper Egypt. Sin = Pelusium. on eastern frontier. Aven should be On = Heliopolis. Pi-beseth = Bubastis, in Lower Egypt, like On. Tehaphnehes, a fortress near Pelusium. In Ezekiel 30:18, for "yokes" read "sceptres.")

The next oracle (Ezekiel 30:20-26) announces that the threat has already been partially fulfilled. Nebuchadrezzar, who is really Yahweh's servant and wields Yahweh's sword (cf. Ezekiel 21:3) has already broken one arm of Pharaoh, so that it can no longer hold the sword—an allusion apparently to Egypt's unsuccessful attempt to relieve the beleaguered Jerusalem (cf. Jeremiah 37:5). All these experiences are designed to teach Egypt the power and character of Yahweh. (In Ezekiel 30:21, roller = bandage.)

 


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Ezekiel 30:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/ezekiel-30.html. 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, December 2nd, 2020
the First Week of Advent
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