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Bible Commentaries

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible
Ezekiel 31

 

 


Verse 1

1. Eleventh year, in the third month — According to our reckoning this would be June, 586; about two months before the fall of Jerusalem.


Verse 3

3. The Assyrian — The Hebrew text and all versions read as A.V.; in which case Egypt would be compared to Assyria, a country as great as itself yet now crushed by Nebuchadnezzar. One species of cedar was, however, called Tasshur, and if this is referred to here we could translate, “Behold, there was a cedar on Lebanon.”

Shroud — This refers to the thick foliage. The word is usually rendered forest.

Thick boughs — Rather, as R.V., margin, “clouds;” also in Ezekiel 31:10; Ezekiel 31:14.


Verse 4

4. R.V., “The waters nourished him, the deep made him to grow: her rivers ran round about her plantation; and she sent out her channels,” etc. This could be said more naturally of Egypt than of any other country. (See note Ezekiel 31:3.) The Nile and its canal created Egypt and made it great.


Verse 6

6. Compare Daniel 4:12. This was as true of Egypt as of Assyria. The beasts and fowls (all the people of the earth) looked to it for protection.


Verse 8-9

8, 9. This was the greatest of all trees, its twigs being greater than fir trees (or, cypress; compare Ezekiel 27:5), and its great branches reaching farther than the chestnut (or, “plane,” LXX.; Genesis 30:37). For garden of God and Eden, see Ezekiel 28:13.


Verse 11

11. I have therefore delivered — R.V., “I will even deliver.”

Heathen — R.V., “nations.” Because of unholy pride Egypt will fall before Nebuchadnezzar, as he in turn, for the same reason, must hereafter fall (Daniel iv).


Verse 12

12. Compare Ezekiel 31:6; Ezekiel 28:7; Ezekiel 30:11. The people who once humbly dwelt under its branches have now left the shadowless trunk and broken limbs or else walk over them without honor or fear (Ezekiel 31:13).


Verse 14

14. Neither their trees — Rather, R.V., “nor that their mighty ones.” All of these majestic trees that drink water — these proud kingdoms of men — are soon to fall to the earth and drop into “Sheol.” (Compare Ezekiel 32:17-32.) Their princes have claimed to be divine (Ezekiel 28:2; Ezekiel 28:9; Ezekiel 29:3) and their kingdoms have seemed divine creations, gardens of Eden, but they shall die like men and go down to the realms of dust.


Verse 15

15. The grave — The proper word (as also for “hell” in Ezekiel 31:16-17) is Sheol, the place of the dead. (See note Ezekiel 32:18.) A pall of darkness is spread over the canals, the river, and the sea. All nature, that had rejoiced at its birth and coronation (Ezekiel 31:4), takes part in the funeral of this dead kingdom. (Compare Ezekiel 32:10.)


Verse 16

16. The living nations mourn because they fear a like destruction (note Ezekiel 26:15-16), while the dead monarchies, which once comforted themselves in earthly paradises, now in the cold, shadowy, monotonous existence of Sheol “comfort themselves” that they can welcome another kingdom to their midst. (Compare Ezekiel 32:17, etc.; Isaiah 14:4, etc.).

Eden… Lebanon — The trees of Lebanon were so majestic that they could be called Edenic.


Verse 17

17. They that were his arm — See note Ezekiel 30:21.


Verse 18

18. This is Pharaoh — The great prince, who was so great that he could be compared to no other, shall yet sink into the common pit with all the uncircumcised peoples (Ezekiel 28:10) whom the Egyptians scorned. This is Pharaoh!

 


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Ezekiel 31:4". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/ezekiel-31.html. 1874-1909.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 25th, 2020
the Week of Proper 25 / Ordinary 30
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