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B. C. 594. Ol. XLVI. 3.



Judgments towards them


tempered with mercy. minations more than they, and at the time of thy, y reproach of

• hast justified thy sisters in all the daughters of z Syria, and all Tarquinii Prisci, thine abominations which thou that are round about her, a the Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., hast done.

daughters of the Philistines, which R. Roman., 23. 52 Thou also, which hast judged thy sisters, despise thee round about. bear thine own shame for thy sins that thou 58 - Thou hast borne thy lewdness and hast committed more abominable than they : thine abominations, saith the Lord. they are more righteous than thou: yea, be 59 For thus saith the Lord God; I will thou confounded also, and bear thy shame, in even deal with thee as thou hast done, which that thou hast justified thy sisters.

hast despised the oath in breaking the 53 When I shall bring again their captivity, covenant. u the captivily of Sodom and her daughters, 60 Nevertheless I will & remember my coveand the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, nant with thee in the days of thy youth, and then will I bring again the captivity of thy I will establish unto thee an everlasting captives in the midst of them.

covenant. 54 That thou mayest bear thine own shame,

61 Then i thou shalt remember thy ways, and mayest be confounded in all that thou and be ashamed, when thou shalt receive thy hast done, in that thou art 'a comfort unto sisters, thine elder and thy younger : and I them.

will give them unto thee for a daughters, but 55 When thy sisters, Sodom and her daugh- not by thy covenant. ters, shall return to their former estate, and 62 m And I will establish my covenant with Samaria and her daughters shall return thee; and thou shalt know that I am the to their former estate, then thou and thy LORD: daughters shall return to your former 63 That thou mayest remember, and be estate,

confounded, and never open thy mouth any 56 For thy sister Sodom was not mentioned more because of thy shame, when I am pacified by thy mouth in the day of thy 'pride, toward thee for all that thou hast done, saith

57. Before thy wickedness was discovered, as the Lord God.

* Jer. iii. 11; Matt. xii. 41, 42.- See Isa. i. 9; ver. 60, 61. c Chap. xxiii. 49. d Heb. borne them. — Chap. xvii. 13, Jer. xx. Chap. xiv. 22, 23. — Heb. for a report, or

16. i Deut. xxix. 12, 14.- -& Psa, cvi. 45.- h Jer. xxxii. hearing. - Heb. prides, or ercellencies. -Y 2 Kings xvi. 5; 40; l. 5. -i Chap. xx. 43; xxxvi. 31. - Isa. liv. l; lx. 4; 2 Chron. xxviii. 18; Isa. vii. l; xiv, 28. - Heb. Aram. Gal. iv. 26, &c.- Jer. xxxi. 31, &c. Hos. ii. 19, 20. • Ver. 27. -b Or, spoil.

u Ver. 61. Lo Rom. iii. 19.

ness, and uncharitableness; and these were sufficient the foundation of the world. Among the latter the to sink any city to the bottomless pit.

Gospel was preached, first by Christ and his apostles, Verse 52. They are more righteous than thou] and since by persons raised up from among themselves. yon piyn tetsuddaknah mimmech, “They shall be But not by thy covenant.] This was the ancient justified' more than thou.” They are less guilty in the covenant, the conditions of which they broke, and the sight of God, for their crimes were not accompanied blessings of which they forfeited; but by that new with so many aggravations. This phrase casts light covenant, or the renewal to the Gentiles of that covenant on Luke xviii. 14: “ This man went down to his house that was made originally with Abraham while he was justified rather than the other.". Less blame in the a Gentile, promising that in his seed all the nations of sight of God was attached to him. He always had the earth should be blessed ; that covenant which refewer advantages, and now he was a true penitent ; spected the incarnation of Christ, and was ratified by while the other was boasting of what he had done, and the blood of his cross. what he had not done.

Verse 63. When I am pacified toward thee] This Verse 60. I will remember my covenant] That is, intimates that the Jews shall certainly share in the the covenant I made with Abraham in the day of thy blessings of the Gospel covenant, and that they shall youth, when in him thou didst begin to be a nation. be restored to the favour and image of God. And

Verse 61. Thy sisters, thine elder and thy younger] when shall this be ? Whenever they please. They The Gentiles, who were before the Jews were called, might have enjoyed them eighteen hundred years ago ; and after the Jews were cast off, are here termed the but they would not come, though all things were then elder and younger sister. These were to be given to ready. They may enjoy them now; but they still Jerusalem for daughters ; the latter should be converted choose to shut their eyes against the light, and contrato God by the ministry of men who should spring out dict and blaspheme. As they do not turn to the Lord, of the Jewish Church. The former, who were patri- the veil still continues on their hearts. Let their elder archs, &c., profited by the Lamb who was slain from brethren pray for them.

The destruction of


Judea foretold. For a key to the principal metaphors in this chapter, tissue of invective; sharp, cutting, and confounding; the reader is referred to the note on the thirteenth verse, every where well sustained, in every respect richly which, if he regard not, he will neither do justice to merited ; and in no case leaving any room to the dehimself nor to the prophet. The whole chapter is a linquent for justification or response.


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This chapter begins with a new allegory or parable, 1-10; to which an explanation is immediately subjoined,

11-21. In the remaining verses the prophet, by a beautiful metaphor, makes an easy and natural transi-
tion to the Messiah, and predicts the security, increasing prosperity, and ultimate universality of his king-
dom, 22-24. From the beauty of its images, the elegance of its composition, the perspicuity of ils lan-
guage, the rich variety of its matter, and the easy transition from one part of the subject to another, this
chapter forms one of the most beautiful and perfect pieces of its kind that can possibly be conceived in so
small a compass ; and then the unexpected change from objects that presented nothing to the view but gloom
and horror, to a prospect of ineffable glory and beauty, has a most happy effect. Every lowering cloud is
dispelled, and the fields again smile in the beams of midday. The traveller, who this moment trembled as
he looked around for shelter, now proceeds on his way rejoicing.
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ND the word of the LORD he set it in a city of mer-
B. C. 594.

B. C. 594
OI. XLVI. 3. came unto me, saying, chants.

OL. XLVI. 3.
Tarquinii Prisci, 2 Son of man, put forth a riddle, 5 He took also of the seed of Tarquinii Prisci,
R. Roman., 23. and speak a parable unto the the land, and planted it in •a R. Roman, 23.
house of Israel;

fruitful field; he placed it by great waters,
3 And say, Thus saith the Lord God; a A and set it as a willow tree.
great eagle with great wings, long-winged, full 6 And it grew, and became a spreading vine
of feathers, which had divers colours, came 8 of low stature, whose branches turned toward
unto Lebanon, and took the highest branch him, and the roots thereof were under him:
of the cedar ;

so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, 4 He cropped off the top of his young and shot forth sprigs. twigs, and carried it into a land of traffic : 7 There was also another great eagle with




· See ver. 12, &c.

-b Heb. embroidering.-
xxiv. 12.

- 2 Kings Heb. put it in a field of seed.

xliv. 4.

Deut. viii. 7, 8, 9.-'Isa. - Ver. 14.


was the most celebrated of all the cities of the east. Verse 2. Son of man, put forth a riddle) Riddle, Its situation procured it innumerable advantages; its rædsel or rædels; Anglo-Saxon, from areadan, to di- two rivers, the Tigris and Euphrates, and the Persian vine ; a thing that must be curiously investigated and Gulf, gave it communication with the richest and the sifted, to find out the meaning; and hence, riddle, a most distant nations. sort of coarse sieve to clean corn, to separate coarse Verse 5. The seed of the land] Zedekiah, brother chaff and straws from the pure grain. An instrument of Jehoiachin. formerly used for divination. This is not far removed Planted it in a fruitful field) Made him king of from the Hebrew 777'77 chidah, from 777 chad, to pene- Judea in place of his brother. trate; not that which penetrates the mind, but which Placed it by great waters] Put him under the prowe must penetrate to find out the sense.

tection of Babylon, situated on the confluence of the Verse 3. A great eagle) Nebuchadnezzar. See Tigris and Euphrates. Jer. xlviii. 40; xlix. 22; Dan. vii. 4. And see here, And set it as a willow tree] Made him dependent ver. 12, where it is so applied.

on this city of great waters, as the willow is on huGreat wings] Extensive empire.

midity. Long-winged] Rapid in his conquests.

Verse 6. A spreading vine of low stature) The Full of feathers) Having multitudes of subjects. Jewish state having then no height of dominion, it Divers colours) People of various nations. must abide under the wings or branches of the ChalCame unto Lebanon) Came against Judea.

dean king. The highest branch] King Jehoiachin he took cap- Whose branches turned toward him, and the roots tive to Babylon.

-under him] Zedekiah was wholly dependent on The cedar) The Jewish state and king.

Nebuchadnezzar, both for his elevation to the throne, Verse 4. The top of his young twigs] The princes and his support on it. of Judah.

Verse 7. Another great eagle] Pharaoh-hophra, or
A land of traffic] Chaldea.

Apries, king of Egypt.
A city of merchants) Babylon"; for which this city With great wings] Extensive dominion.

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The destruction of


Jerusalem foretold. A. M. 3410.

great wings and many feathers : 14 That the kingdom might B. C. 594.

B. C. 594. OL. XLVI. 3. and, behold, h this vine did bend be base, that it might not lift Ol. XLVI. 3. Tarquinin Prisci, her roots toward him, and shot itself up, but that by keeping Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 23. forth her branches toward him, of his covenant it might stand.

R. Roman., 23. that he might water it by the furrows of her 15 But the rebelled against him in sending plantation.

his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might 8 It was planted in a good i soil by great give him horses and much people. Shall he waters, that it might bring forth branches, and prosper? shall he escape that doeth such that it might bear fruit, that it might be a things ? or shall he break the covenant, and goodly vine.

be delivered ? 9 Say thou, Thus saith the Lord God; 16 As I live, saith the Lord God, surely win Shall it prosper ? * shall he not pull up the the place where the king dwelleth that made roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that him king, whose oath he despised, and whose it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of covenant he brake, even with him in the midst her spring, even without great power, or many of Babylon he shall die. people to pluck it up by the roots thereof. 17 Neither shall Pharaoh with his mighty

10 Yea, behold, being planted, shall it pros- army and great company make for him in the per? I shall it not utterly wither, when the war, y by casting up mounts, and building forts, east wind toucheth it ? it shall wither in the to cut off many persons : , furrows where it grew.

18 Seeing he despised the oath by breaking 11 Moreover the word of the Lord came the covenant, when, lo, he had given his unto me, saying,

hand, and hath done all these things, he shall 12 Say now to m the rebellious house, Know not escape. ye not what these things mean? tell them, 19 Therefore thus saith the Lord God; As Behold, the king of Babylon is come to I live, surely mine. oath that he hath despised, Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it and the princes thereof, and led them with will I recompense upon his own head. him to Babylon :

20 And I will a spread my net upon him, and 13 . And hath taken of the king's seed, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring made a covenant with him, P and hath 4 taken him to Babylon, and will plead with him an oath of him : he hath also taken the mighty there for his trespass that he hath trespassed of the land :

against me. + Ver. 15.-i Heb. field. *2 Kings xxv. 7. - Chap. xix. 12 Kings xxiv. 20; 2 Chron. xxxvi. 13. Deut. xvii. 16; Isa. 12; Hos. xii. 15. Chap. ij. 5; xii. 9. Ver. 3; 2 Kings xxxi, 1, 3 ; xxxvi. 6, 9.

Jer. xxxii. 5; xxxiv. 3; xxiv. 11-16.—2 Kings xxiv. 17.—p 2 Chron. xxxvi. 13. lii. 11; chap. xii. 13.

5 Jer. lii. 4; chap. 9 Heb. brought him to an oath.-.Ver. 6; chap. xxix. 14. iv. 2. - 1 Chron. xxix. 24; Lam. v. 6. - Chap. xii. 13; * Heb. to keep his covenant, to stand to it.

xxxii. 3.

-6 Chap. xx. 36. And many feathers] Numerous subjects.' They are explained in this and the following

Did bend her roots] Looked to him for support in verses. her intended rebellion against Nebuchadnezzar.

Verse 14. That the kingdom might be base] Have Verse 8. It was planted in a good soil] Though he no political consequence; and at last sink into a misedepended on Babylon, he lived and reigned as Nebu- rable government under Gedaliah. chadnezzar's vicegerent in the land of Judea.

Verse 15. Sending his ambassadors into Egypt] Verse 9. Shall it prosper ?] Shall Zedekiah succeed Zedekiah must have sent his ambassadors into Egypt, in casting off the yoke of the king of Babylon, to between the sixth month of his sixth year, and the fifth whom he had sworn fealty ?

month of his seventh year. Compare chap. viii. 1, Shall he not pull up the roots] Nebuchadnezzar with chap. xx. 1.-See Newcome. will come and dethrone him.

Verse 16. In the midst of Babylon he shall die.) And cut off the fruit] The children of Zede- His eyes were put out; he was carried to Babylon, kidh.

and never returned. The leaves) All the nobles; all shall perish with Verse 18. Seeing despised the oath] This God Zedekiah.

particularly resents. He had hound himself by oath, Verse 10. "Shallutterly wither] The regal govern- in the presence of Jehovah, to be faithful to the covement shall be no more restored. Zedekiah shall be nant that he made with Nebuchadnezzar, and he took the the last king, and the monarchy shall finally terminate first opportunity to break it; therefore he shall not escape. with him.

Verse 20. I will spread my net upon him) See the Verse 12. Know ye not what these things mean?] | note on chap. xii. 13.


- Ver. 9.
- Jer. xxxvii. 7.

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B. C. 594. Ol. XLVI. 3.


The prosperous reign of


the Messiah foretold. 21 And all his fugitives with will I plant it: and it shall bring

A. M. 3410. all his bands shall fall by the forth boughs, and bear fruit, and 01. XLVI. 3. Tarquinii Prisci, sword, and they that remain shall be a goodly cedar: and hunder Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 23. be scattered toward all winds : it shall dwell all fowl of

R. Roman., 23.

every and ye shall know that I the Lord have wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof spoken it.

shall they dwell. 22 Thus saith the Lord God; I will also take 24 And all the trees of the field shall know of the highest a branch of the high cedar, and that I the Lord i have brought down the high will set it; I will crop off from the top of his tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up young twigs

a tender one, and will f plant it the green tree, and have made the dry tree upon a high mountain and eminent :

to flourish : " I the LORD have spoken and 23 . In the mountain of the height of Israel have done it.


c Chap. xii. 14.

d [sa. xi. 1; Jer. xxii. 5; Zech. iii. 8. & Isa. ii. 2, 3; chap. xx. 40; Mic. iv. 1.- See chap. xxxi. 6; e Isa. liii. 2. Psa. ii. 6.

Dan. iv. 12. Luke i. 52. _Chap. xxii. 14; xxiv. 14.

Verse 21. All his fugitives] All who attempted to Verse 24. All the trees of the field shall know] All escape with him, and all that ran to Egypt, &c., shall the people of Israel and of Chaldea. fall by the sword.

I the Lord have brought down the high tree] Hare Verse 22. I will also take of the highest branch of dethroned Jehoiachin. the high cedar] I will raise up another monarchy, Have exalted the low tree] Put Zedekiah, brother which shall come in the line of David, namely, the of Jehoiachin, in his place. Messiah ; who shall appear as a tender plant, as to his Have dried up the green tree] Zedekiah, who had incarnation; but he shall be high and eminent; -his numerous children, but who were all slain before his Church, the royal city, the highest and purest ever eyes at Riblah. seen on the face of the earth.

And have made the dry tree to flourish] Have Verse 23. In the mountain of the height of Israel] raised up a rod out of the stem of Jesse, the family He shall make his appearance at the temple, and found of David being then apparently dried up and extinct. his Church at Jerusalem.

This was the promised Messiah, of the increase and Shall bring forth boughs] Apostles, evangelists, government of whose, kingdom and peace there shall and their successors in the Gospel ministry.

be no end ; upon the throne of David, and upon his And bear fruit] Multitudes of souls shall be con- kingdom, to order and establish it with judgment verted by their preaching.

and with justice, from henceforth, even for ever. And under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing] All ThĘ ZEAL OF THE LORD or Hosts WILL PERFORM the nations of the earth shall receive his Gospel.

In the shadow of the branches thereof shall they The high and green tree, says Newcome, refers dwell.] Trust in him alone for salvation, and be saved to Nebuchadnezzar; the low and the dry tree, to in their trusting.

the Jews.



The Jews, in Ezekiel's time, complained of God's dealing hardly with them in punishing them for the sins

of their forefathers, 1, 2; their temporal calamities having been long threatened as the consequence of the national guilt, (Jer. xv. 4, &c. ;) and, from the general complexion of this chapter, it appears that the Jews so interpreted the second commandment of the Decalogue and other passages of like import, as if the sins of the forefathers were visited upon the children, independently of the moral conduct of the latter, not only in this world, but in that which is to come. To remove every foundation for such an unworthy idea of the Divine government, God assures them, with an oath, that he had no respect of persons, 3, 4; strongly intimating that the great mysteries in Providence, (mysterious only on account of the limited capacity of man,) are results of the most impartial administration of justice ; and that this would be particularly manifested in the rewards and punishments of another life ; when every ligament that at present connects societies and nations together shall be dissolved, and each person receive according to his work, and bear his own burden. This is illustrated by a variety of examples : such as that of a just or righteous man, 5-9; his wicked son, 10-13; and again the just son of this wicked person, 14-20. Then a wicked man repenting, and finding mercy, whose former wickedness shall be no impediment to his salvation, 21-23; and a righteous man revolting, and dying in his sins, whose former righteousness shall be of no avail, 24. The conduct of the Divine Providence is then vindicated, 25-29 ; and all persons, without any erception, most earnestly exhorted to repentance, 30, 31 ; because the Lord hath no pleasure in the death of the sinner, 32. As the whole of this chapter is taken up with the illustration of a doctrine nearly connected

B. C. 594.


The children shall not bear

CHAP. XVIII. the iniquity of their fathers." with the comfort of man, and the honour of the Divine government, the prophet, with great propriety, lays aside his usual mode of figure and allegory, and treats his subject with the utmost plainness and per spicuity. A. M. 3410.

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6 d And hath not eaten upon B. C. 594.

THE word of the Lord came OL. XLVI. 3. unto me again, saying, the mountains, neither hath lifted Ol. XLVI.3.

Anno Tarquinii Prisci, 2 What mean ye, that ye use up his eyes to the idols of the Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 23 this proverb concerning the land house of Israel, neither hath de- R. Roman., 23. of Israel, saying, The a fathers have eaten filed his neighbour's wife, neither hath come sour grapes, and the children's teeth are set near to a ‘menstruous woman, on edge ?

7 And hath not s oppressed any, but hath 3 As I live, saith the Lord God, ye shall restored to the debtor his " pledge, hath spoiled not have occasion any more to use this proverb none by violence, hath i given his bread to the in Israel.

bungry, and hath covered the naked with a 4 Behold, all souls are mine; as the soul of garment; the father, so also the soul of the son is mine: 8 He that hath not given forth upon kusury, the soul that sinneth, it shall die.

neither hath taken any increase, that hath with5 But if a man be just, and do e that which drawn his hand from iniquity, 'hath exécuted is lawful and right,

true judgment between man and man,

a Jer. xxxi. 29 ; Lam. v. 7. b Ver. 20; Rom. vi. 23. Heb. b Exod. xxii, 26; Deut. xxiv. 12, 13. - Deut. xv. 7, 8; Isa. judyment and justice.---d Chap. xxii. 9.- Lev. xvii. 20; xx. lviii. 7; Matt. xxv. 35, 36. —- Exod. xxii. 25; Lev. xxv. 36, 10. Lev. xviii. 19; xx. 18.

—Exod. xxii. 21; Lev. xix. 37; Deut. xxiu. 19; Neh. v. 7; Psa. xv. 5. Deut. i. 16; 15; xxv. 14.

Zech. viii. 16.



paid them no religious adoration ; has trusted in them Verse 2. The fathers have eaten sour grapes, and for nothing, and has not made prayer nor supplication the children's teeth are set on edge ?] We have seen before them. this proverb already, Jer. xxxi. 29, &c., and have con- 3. Neither hath defiled his neighbour's wife) Has sidered its general meaning. But the subject is here had no adulterous connexion with any woman; to proposed in greater detail, with a variety of circum- which idolatrous feasts and worship particularly led. stances, to adapt it to all those cases to which it should 4. Neither hath come nigh to a menstruous woman) apply. It refers simply to these questions : How far Has abstained from the use of the marriage-bed during can the moral evil of the parent be extended to his off- the periodical indisposition of his wife. This was abspring? And, Are the faults and evil propensities of solutely forbidden by the law; and both the man and the parents, not only transferred to the children, but the woman who disobeyed the command were to be put punished in them? Do parents transfer their evil na- to death, Lev. xx. 18. For which Calmet gives this ture, and are their children punished for their offences ? reason: “It has been believed, and experience confirms

Verse 3. As I live, saith the Lord God, ye shall not it, that the children conceived at such times are either hare occasion any more to use this proverb in Israel.] leprous, or monsters, or deformed by their diminutiveI will now, by this present declaration, settle this ques- ness, or by the disproportion of their members." There tion for ever. And hence God has sworn to what fol- are other reasons for this law, should those of the lows. After this, who will dare to doubt the judgment learned commentator be found invalid. pronounced !

Verse 7. 5. Hath not oppressed any] Has not used Verse 4. All souls are mine] Equally so ; I am the his power or influence to oppress, pain, or injure another, Father of the spirits of all flesh, and shall deal impar- 6. Hath restored to the debtor his pledge) · Has tially with the whole.

carefully surrendered the pawn or pledge when its The soul that sinneth, it shall die.] None shall die owner came to redeem it. As the pledge is generally for another's crimes ; none shall be saved by another's of more worth than that for which it is pledged, an unrighteousness. Here is the general judgment relative principled man will make some pretence to keep it ; to the righteousness and unrighteousness of men, and which is highly abominable in the sight of God. the influence of one man's state on that of another; 7. Hath spoiled none by violence] Either by robparticularly in respect to their moral conduct.

bery or personal insult. For a man may be spoiled Verse 5. If a man be just, and do that which is law- both ways. ful and right] If he be just or holy within, and do 8. Hath given his bread to the hungry] Has been what is according to law and equity. What is meant kind-hearted and charitable; especially to them that are by this, is immediately specified.

in the deepest want. Verse 6. 1. Hath not eaten upon the mountains] 9. Hath covered the naked with a garment] Has Idolwrous worship was generally performed on moun- divided both his bread and his clothing with the necestains and hills; and those who offered sacrifices feasted sitous. These are two branches of the same root. on the sacrifice, and thus held communion with the idol. Verse 8. 10. Hath not given forth upon usury] 2. Neither hath lifted up his eyes to the idols] Hasina x5 quia beneshech lo yitten. Je nasach signifies

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