Ezekiel 12:1
The word of the LORD also came unto me, saying,
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
Ezekiel 12:1-2. The word of the Lord also came, &c. — This is supposed to have happened in the sixth year of Zedekiah, and five years before the siege of Jerusalem: and the prophecies contained in the following chapters, to the twentieth, are thought to be of the same year. Thou dwellest in the midst of a rebellious house — “He was among them of the captivity in Chaldea, as appears from Ezekiel 12:10, Ezekiel 11:24; Ezekiel 14:22, and Ezekiel 24:2. And these seem to have disbelieved the prophecies that Jerusalem should be smitten and burned, and its inhabitants scattered abroad: see Ezekiel 4:2; Ezekiel 9:5; Ezekiel 10:2; Ezekiel 11:9.” — Newcome. They saw Jerusalem still inhabited, and under the government of its own king. And as they who were left in Judea thought themselves much more highly in God’s favour than those who had been carried away captives, so those who had been made captives repined at their lot, and thought those who remained in their own country were in a much better condition than themselves; therefore the following symbolical representations were designed to show, that they who were left behind, to endure the miseries of a siege, and the insults of a conqueror, would be in a much worse condition than those who were already settled in a foreign land: see Lowth. Which have eyes to see, and see not, &c. — Who will not make use of that sense and understanding which God has given them, nor learn from those examples and incidents which have happened, and by which God intended they should be instructed.

12:1-16 By the preparation for removal, and his breaking through the wall of his house at evening, as one desirous to escape from the enemy, the prophet signified the conduct and fate of Zedekiah. When God has delivered us, we must glorify him and edify others, by acknowledging our sins. Those who by afflictions are brought to this, are made to know that God is the Lord, and may help to bring others to know him.The mountain which is on the east side of the city - The Mount of Olives. The rabbis commenting on this passage said the Shechinah retired to this Mount, and there for three years called in vain to the people with human voice that they should repent. On that mountain, Christ stood, when He wept over the fair city so soon to be utterly destroyed. From that mountain he descended, amid loud Hosannas, to enter the city and temple as a Judge. CHAPTER 12

Eze 12:1-28. Ezekiel's Typical Moving to Exile: Prophecy of Zedekiah's Captivity and Privation of Sight: the Jews' Unbelieving Surmise as to the Distance of the Event Reproved.

1, 2. eyes to see, and see not, … ears to hear, and hear not—fulfilling the prophecy of De 29:4, here quoted by Ezekiel (compare Isa 6:9; Jer 5:21). Ezekiel needed often to be reminded of the people's perversity, lest he should be discouraged by the little effect produced by his prophecies. Their "not seeing" is the result of perversity, not incapacity. They are wilfully blind. The persons most interested in this prophecy were those dwelling at Jerusalem; and it is among them that Ezekiel was transported in spirit, and performed in vision, not outwardly, the typical acts. At the same time, the symbolical prophecy was designed to warn the exiles at Chebar against cherishing hopes, as many did in opposition to God's revealed word, of returning to Jerusalem, as if that city was to stand; externally living afar off, their hearts dwelt in that corrupt and doomed capital.Under the type of Ezekiel’s removing of his household stuff is showed the captivity of Zedekiah and his people, Ezekiel 12:1-16. Under another type of his eating and drinking with trembling and anxiety is signified the consternation of the people and desolation of the land, Ezekiel 12:17-20. The prophet reproveth the presumptuous proverb of the Jews, Ezekiel 12:21-25. He repeateth the reproof, Ezekiel 12:26-28.

A Divine prediction of what was both sure and near to come to pass.

Came unto me, in the sixth and seventh years of Jeconiah’s captivity, and of Zedekiah’s reign; in the latter end of the three hundred and eighty-seven of Ezekiel’s lying on his side, three years before the fatal siege began.

The word of the Lord came unto me, saying. The word of prophecy, as the Targum; the vision of the cherubim being over, this, very likely, immediately followed upon the former; though the exact time of the prophecy cannot be fixed, because the date is not given; it must be between the sixth month of the sixth year of Jehoiachin's captivity, Ezekiel 8:1; and the fifth month of the seventh year, Ezekiel 20:1. The word of the LORD also came unto me, saying,
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Verse 1. - The word of the Lord, etc. This formula, so familiar in Isaiah and Jeremiah, appears for the first time in Ezekiel, but occurs repeatedly afterwards, especially in this chapter (vers. 8, 17, 21, 26. and again Ezekiel 13:1; Ezekiel 14:2, et al.). The teaching by "the visions of God" ceases, and that of direct message or symbolic acts is resumed. In each case the point aimed at was the same. The people who heard the one or saw the other were to be taught how utterly groundless was the hope that Jerusalem could hold out against its enemies. The interval between the two was probably a short one, and the new teaching, we may conjecture, had its starting point in the prophecies of a speedy deliverance which were current both at Jerusalem and among the exiles at Babylon. Ezekiel 12:1Symbol of the Emigration

Ezekiel 12:1. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, Ezekiel 12:2. Son of man, thou dwellest amidst the refractory generation, who have eyes to see, and see not; and have ears to hear, and hear not; for they are a refractory generation. Ezekiel 12:3. And thou, son of man, make thyself an outfit for exile, and depart by day before their eyes; and depart from thy place to another place before their eyes: perhaps they might see, for they are a refractory generation. Ezekiel 12:4. And carry out thy things like an outfit for exile by day before their eyes; but do thou go out in the evening before their eyes, as when going out to exile. Ezekiel 12:5. Before their eyes break through the wall, and carry it out there. Ezekiel 12:6. Before their eyes take it upon thy shoulder, carry it out in the darkness; cover thy face, and look not upon the land; for I have set thee as a sign to the house of Israel. Ezekiel 12:7. And I did so as I was commanded: I carried out my things like an outfit for exile by day, and in the evening I broke through the wall with my hand; I carried it out in the darkness; I took it upon my shoulder before their eyes. - In Ezekiel 12:2 the reason is assigned for the command to perform the symbolical action, namely, the hard-heartedness of the people. Because the generation in the midst of which Ezekiel dwelt was blind, with seeing eyes, and deaf, with hearing ears, the prophet was to depict before its eyes, by means of the sign that followed, the judgment which was approaching; in the hope, as is added in Ezekiel 12:3, that they might possibly observe and lay the sign to heart. The refractoriness (בּית מרי, as in Ezekiel 2:5-6; Ezekiel 3:26, etc.) is described as obduracy, viz., having eyes, and not seeing; having ears, and not hearing, after Deuteronomy 29:3 (cf. Jeremiah 5:21; Isaiah 6:9; Matthew 13:14-15). The root of this mental blindness and deafness was to be found in obstinacy, i.e., in not willing; "in that presumptuous insolence," as Michaelis says, "through which divine light can obtain no admission." כּלי גולה, the goods (or outfit) of exile, were a pilgrim's staff and traveller's wallet, with the provisions and utensils necessary for a journey. Ezekiel was to carry these out of the house into the street in the day-time, that the people might see them and have their attention called to them. Then in the evening, after dark, he was to go out himself, not by the door of the house, but through a hole which he had broken in the wall. He was also to take the travelling outfit upon his shoulder and carry it through the hole and out of the place, covering his face all the while, that he might not see the land to which he was going. "Thy place" is thy dwelling-place. כּמוצאי : as the departures of exiles generally take place, i.e., as exiles are accustomed to depart, not "at the usual time of departure into exile," as Hהvernick proposes. For מוחא, see the comm. on Micah 5:1. בּעלטה differs from בּערב, and signifies the darkness of the depth of night (cf. Genesis 15:17); not, however, "darkness artificially produced, equivalent to, with the eyes shut, or the face covered; so that the words which follow are simply explanatory of בּעלטה," as Schmieder imagines. Such an assumption would be at variance not only with Ezekiel 12:7, but also with Ezekiel 12:12, where the covering or concealing of the face is expressly distinguished from the carrying out "in the dark." The order was to be as follows: In the day-time Ezekiel was to take the travelling outfit and carry it out into the road; then in the evening he was to go out himself, having first of all broken a hole through the wall as evening was coming on; and in the darkness of night he was to place upon his shoulders whatever he was about to carry with him, and take his departure. This he was to do, because God had made him a mōphēth for Israel: in other words, by doing this he was to show himself to be a marvellous sign to Israel. For mōphēth, see the comm. on Exodus 4:21. In Ezekiel 12:7, the execution of the command, which evidently took place in the strictness of the letter, is fully described. There was nothing impracticable in the action, for breaking through the wall did not preclude the use of a hammer or some other tool.

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