Gaebelein's Annotated Bible
Moreover the spirit lifted me up, and brought me unto the east gate of the LORD'S house, which looketh eastward: and behold at the door of the gate five and twenty men; among whom I saw Jaazaniah the son of Azur, and Pelatiah the son of Benaiah, princes of the people.Ezekiel 11:1-25. The priests and the leaders of the nation were steeped in wickedness, defied God and the judgments His prophets had announced. They devised mischief (or iniquity) and gave wicked counsel. Their wicked counsel consisted in disobedience against Jehovah and His Word. In regard to the judgment they said, “It is not the time to build houses; this is the cauldron and we are the flesh.” They knew of Jeremiah’s letter which he had sent to the elders who were carried away captives. In that letter, Jeremiah, believing God’s Word concerning the long duration of the captivity, gave the advice, “Build ye houses and dwell in them” Jeremiah 29:1-32. They ridiculed that divinely given advice. They still thought themselves safe in Jerusalem. The phrase “this is the cauldron” means the city of Jerusalem; and we are the “flesh” themselves. As the flesh in the cauldron is preserved from the fire by the cauldron itself, so they felt themselves secure in the doomed city. That these wicked leaders were still in the city shows that the judgment in chapter 9 was not a complete judgment. It began at the sanctuary, and the wicked worshippers Ezekiel saw in his vision were smitten first of all, while the man with the inkhorn marked the entire remnant for preservation. Then the Spirit fell upon Ezekiel and he uttered Jehovah’s message.
The message of judgment is followed by a message of mercy. Ezekiel 11:14-21 are yet to be fulfilled in that nation. The final departure of the visible glory of the Lord concludes this chapter. It held its ascension from the Mount of Olives. From the same place, He who is the Lord of Glory and reveals the glory of the Lord, went back to the Father. And when He returns “His feet shall stand upon the Mount of Olives” Zechariah 14:1-21. It will be at that blessed time when Israel and Jerusalem will behold the return of the glory, which Ezekiel beheld departing from city and temple.