Ezekiel 40:4
And the man said to me, Son of man, behold with your eyes, and hear with your ears, and set your heart on all that I shall show you; for to the intent that I might show them to you are you brought here: declare all that you see to the house of Israel.
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40:1-49 The Vision of the Temple. - Here is a vision, beginning at ch. 40, and continued to the end of the book, ch. 48, which is justly looked upon to be one of the most difficult portions in all the book of God. When we despair to be satisfied as to any difficulty we meet with, let us bless God that our salvation does not depend upon it, but that things necessary are plain enough; and let us wait till God shall reveal even this unto us. This chapter describes two outward courts of the temple. Whether the personage here mentioned was the Son of God, or a created angel, is not clear. But Christ is both our Altar and our Sacrifice, to whom we must look with faith in all approaches to God; and he is Salvation in the midst of the earth, Ps 74:12, to be looked unto from all quarters.The appearance of brass - Brightly shining.

A line of flax - For measuring the ground plan.

A measuring reed - For the walls (compare Jeremiah 31:38-39). To measure implied a separation for sacred purposes. The measurements are:

(1) exact, to show that the promise is certain;

(2) equal, to denote harmony;

(3) vast, to mark majesty and grandeur.

3. man—The Old Testament manifestations of heavenly beings as men prepared men's minds for the coming incarnation.


line—used for longer measurements (Zec 2:1).

reed—used in measuring houses (Re 21:15). It marked the straightness of the walls.

The man: see Ezekiel 40:3.

Said unto me; Ezekiel, called here, as in many other places, the

Song of Solomon of man. Behold with thine eyes; diligently view; all accurateness is required here in looking into these things presented to the eye.

Hear with thine ears; like care and attention use also in hearing what shall be spoken: these kind of phrases do bind us to greatest heedfulness.

Set thine heart upon; ponder and weigh with thyself, meditate and study on them. Though here is a supernatural revelation, yet he is required to act the utmost part of a man to know the things revealed.

All; nothing is insignificant here, therefore all must be regarded.

To the intent; this was the reason why thou wast brought hither, and why I am come to meet thee.

Declare; plainly tell them, that they may discern, and tell all, conceal nothing. And the man said unto me, Son of man,.... The glorious and illustrious Person before described, who appeared in a human form, spoke to the prophet, calling him "the Son of man", a title often bestowed upon him in this prophecy; and here used to put him in mind of his original and decent, and of his meanness and unworthiness; thereby teaching him humility, which is necessary in order to receive instruction, and learn the knowledge of divine things: and also he might use this free and familiar way of speaking, both to express his philanthropy or good will to men, and to take off all terror from the mind of the prophet at his appearance; that he might more diligently attend to what he should see and hear, which he next advises him to:

behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears; look with both eyes, and hear with both ears; that is, look wistfully, and hear attentively; for if persons only have a glance or superficial view of anything or hear in a careless and indifferent manner, what they see and hear will make little impression upon them; nor will they retain, but soon forget it, and be incapable of relating it unto others:

and set thy heart upon all that I shall show thee; let thy mind be intent upon it; thoroughly consider it, and ponder it within thy heart; let it engross all thy thoughts and affections; so it will be imprinted upon thy mind, and be remembered by thee; for, unless a man's heart is taken with what he sees and hears, it will soon be gone from him; and besides, these were things of great moment and importance, which were about to be shown the prophet: as Moses had the pattern of the tabernacle shown him in the mount; and as David had the pattern of the temple given him by the Spirit and in writing, which were both typical of the church; and as John had a view of the New Jerusalem; so the prophet here is shown the form and order of the Gospel church in the latter day:

for to the intent that I might show them unto thee art thou brought hither; this was the design of his being brought in a visionary way out of Chaldea into the land of Israel, that he might have a view of the fabric after described; and there it was highly proper that he should diligently view it, and listen attentively to everything that was said to him about it; and the rather, as he was to relate the whole to others, as follows:

declare all that thou seest to the house of Israel; to the people of Israel then in captivity; and to the church of God in every age, to whom this prophecy should come, and by whom it should be read; that the people of God in all succeeding times might know what will be the state and condition of the church of Christ in the latter day; and how far they now come short of Gospel order and discipline; see Ezekiel 43:10. It becomes the ministers of the word faithfully to declare what has been shown them, whether respecting doctrine or practice, even all things, and keep back nothing that may be profitable and useful.

And the man said unto me, Son of man, behold with thine eyes, and hear with thine ears, and set thine heart upon all that I shall shew thee; for to the intent that I might shew them unto thee art thou brought hither: declare all that thou seest to the house of Israel.
4. The man, like the Lord himself, addresses the prophet as “child of man,” cf. Ezekiel 40:3, Ezekiel 44:5. The prophet is commanded to see and hear and lay to heart all that is revealed to him, for he has to declare it to the house of Israel, Ezekiel 43:10.Verse 4. - The threefold summons addressed to the prophet (comp. Ezekiel 44:5) intimated the importance of the communication about to be made, and reminded him of the necessity of giving it the closest attention in order to be able to impart it to the people (comp. Ezekiel 43:10, 11).
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