Ezekiel 21:31
Parallel Verses
English Standard Version
And I will pour out my indignation upon you; I will blow upon you with the fire of my wrath, and I will deliver you into the hands of brutish men, skillful to destroy.

King James Bible
And I will pour out mine indignation upon thee, I will blow against thee in the fire of my wrath, and deliver thee into the hand of brutish men, and skilful to destroy.

American Standard Version
And I will pour out mine indignation upon thee; I will blow upon thee with the fire of my wrath; and I will deliver thee into the hand of brutish men, skilful to destroy.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And I will pour out upon thee my indignation: in the fire of my rage will I blow upon thee, and will give thee into the hands of men that are brutish and contrive thy destruction.

English Revised Version
And I will pour out mine indignation upon thee; I will blow upon thee with the fire of my wrath: and I will deliver thee into the hand of brutish men, skilful to destroy.

Webster's Bible Translation
And I will pour out my indignation upon thee, I will blow against thee in the fire of my wrath, and deliver thee into the hand of brutish men, and skillful to destroy.

Ezekiel 21:31 Parallel
Commentary
Keil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament

The sword of the king of Babylon will smite Jerusalem, and then the Ammonites also. - Ezekiel 21:18. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, Ezekiel 21:19. And thou, son of man, make to thyself two ways, that the sword of the king of Babylon may come by them; out of one land shall they both come forth, and draw a hand, at the cross road of the city do thou draw it. Ezekiel 21:20. Make a way that the sword may come to Rabbah of the sons of Ammon, and to Judah into fortified Jerusalem. Ezekiel 21:21. For the king of Babylon is stopping at the cross road, at the parting of the two ways, to practise divination. He is shaking the arrows, inquiring of the teraphim, looking at the liver. Ezekiel 21:22. The divination falls to his right: Jerusalem, to set battering-rams, to open the mouth with a death-cry, to lift up the voice with a war-cry, to set battering-rams at the gates, to heap up a rampart, to build siege towers. - After the picture of the terrible devastation which the sword of the Lord will produce, the last word of God in this prophecy answers the questions, in whose hand Jehovah will place His sword, and whom it will smite. The slayer into whose hand the sharpened sword is given (Ezekiel 21:11) is the king of Babylon, and it will smite not only Judah, but the Ammonites also. Jerusalem and Judah will be the first to fall, and then the arch-enemy of the covenant nation, namely Ammon, will succumb to the strokes of the sword of Jehovah, in order that the embittered enemies of the Lord and His people may learn that the fall of Jerusalem is not, as they fancy, a proof of the impotence, but rather of the omnipotence, of its God. In this way does our prophecy expand into a prediction of the judgment which will fall upon the whole of the world in hostility to God. For it is only as the arch-enemies of the kingdom of God that the Ammonites come into consideration here. The parallel between Israel and the sons of Ammon is carried out in such a way as to give constant prominence to the distinction between them. Jerusalem will fall, the ancient theocracy will be destroyed till he shall come who will restore the right (Ezekiel 21:26 and Ezekiel 21:27). Ammon, on the other hand, will perish, and not a trace be left (Ezekiel 21:31, Ezekiel 21:32).

This prediction is exhibited to the eye by means of a sign. The prophet is to make two ways, i.e., to prepare a sketch representing a road leading from a country, viz., Babylon, and dividing at a certain spot into two roads, one of which leads to Rabbath-Ammon, the capital of the kingdom of the Ammonites, the other to Judah, into Jerusalem. He is to draw the ways for the coming (לבוא) of the sword of the king of Babylon. At the fork of the road he is to engrave a hand, יד, i.e., an index. בּרא signifies in the Piel to cut away (Joshua 17:15, Joshua 17:18), to dig or hew (Ezekiel 23:47), here to engrave written characters in hard material. The selection of this word shows that Ezekiel was to sketch the ways upon some hard material, probably a brick or tile (cf. Ezekiel 4:1). יד does not mean locus spatium, but a hand, i.e., an index. ראשׁ , the beginning of the road, i.e., the fork of the road (Ezekiel 16:25), is explained in Ezekiel 21:21, where it is called אם, mother of the road, inasmuch as the roads start from the point of separation, and ראשׁ שׁני הדּרכים, beginning of the two roads. דּרך עיר, the road to a city. For Rabbath-Ammon, which is preserved in the ruins of Ammn, on the Upper Jabbok (Nahr Ammn), see the comm. on Deuteronomy 3:11. The road to Judah is still more precisely defined by בּירוּשׁלים בּצוּרה, into fortified Jerusalem, because the conquest of Jerusalem was the purpose of Nebuchadnezzar's expedition. The omission of the article before בּצוּרה may be explained from the nature of the participle, in which, even in prose, the article may be left out after a definite noun (cf. Ewald, 335a). The drawing is explained in Ezekiel 21:21 and Ezekiel 21:22. The king of Babylon is halting (עמד, to stand still, stop) to consult his oracles, and inquire which of the two roads he is to take. קסם, to take in hand, or practise divination. In order that he may proceed safely, he avails himself of all the means of divination at his command. He shakes the arrows (more strictly, the quiver with the arrows). On the practice itself Jerome writes as follows: "He consults the oracle according to the custom of his nation, putting his arrows into a quiver, and mixing them together, with the names of individuals inscribed or stamped upon them, to see whose arrow will come out, and which state shall be first attacked."

(Note: The arrow-lot (Belomantie) of the ancient Greeks (Homer, Il. iii. 324, vii. 182, 183) was similar to this; also that of the ancient Arabs (vid., Pococke, Specim. hist. Arab. pp. 327ff., and the passages from Nuweiri quoted by Reiske, Samml. einiger Arab. Sprichwrter von den Stecken oder Stben, p. 21). Another kind, in which the lot was obtained by shooting off the arrows, was common according to the Fihrist el Ulum of En-Nedm among the Hananian Ssabians (see Chwolsohn, Ssabier, ii. pp. 26 and 119, 200).)

He consults the Teraphim, or Penates, worshipped as oracular deities and gods of good fortune (see the comm. on Genesis 31:19 and my Biblical Archaeology, 90). Nothing is known concerning the way in which these deities were consulted and gave their oracles. He examines the liver. The practice of ἡπατοσκοπία, extispicium, in which signs of good or bad luck, of the success or failure of any enterprise, were obtained from the peculiar condition of the liver of the sacrificial animals, was a species of divination to which great importance was attached by both the Babylonians (vid., Diod. Sic. ii. 29) and the Romans (Cicero, de divin. vi. 13), and of which traces were found, according to Barhebr. Chron. p. 125, as late as the eighth century of the Christian era among the Ssabians of Haran.

The divination resulted in a decision for Jerusalem. בּימינו היה is not to be translated "in his right hand was," but "into his right hand there came." היה: ἐγένετο (lxx), נפיל (Chald.), קסם does not mean lot (Ges.), but soothsaying, divination. ירוּשׁלים is connected with this in the form of a noun in apposition: the divination which indicated Jerusalem. The right hand is the more important of the two. The meaning of the words cannot be more precisely defined, because we are not acquainted with the king of divination referred to; even if we were to take the words as simply relating to the arrow in this sense, that an arrow with the inscription "Jerusalem" came into his right hand, and thus furnished the decision, which was afterwards confirmed by consulting the Teraphim and examining the liver. But the circumstance itself, that is to say, the fact that the divination coincided with the purpose of God, must not be taken, as Hvernick supposes, as suggesting a point of contact between Hebraism and the soothsaying of heathenism, which was peculiar to Ezekiel or to the time of the captivity. All that is proved by this fact is, that even heathenism is subject to the rule and guidance of Almighty God, and is made subservient to the accomplishment of the plans of both His kingdom and His salvation. In the words, to set bettering rams, etc., the substance of the oracle obtained by Nebuchadnezzar is more minutely given. It is a double one, showing what he is to do: viz., (1) to set bettering rams, i.e., to proceed to the siege of Jerusalem, as still further described in the last portion of the verse (Ezekiel 4:2); and (2) to raise the war-cry for storming the city, that is to say, to take it by storm. The two clauses 'לפתּח וגו and 'להרים וגו are synonymous; they are not "pure tautology," however, as Hitzig affirms, but are chosen for the purpose of giving greater emphasis to the thought. The expression בּרצח creates some difficulty, inasmuch as the phrase "ut aperiat os in caede" (Vulg.), to open the mouth in murder or ruin, i.e., to put to death or lay in ruins, is a very striking one, and could hardly be justified as an "energetic expression for the battle-cry" (Hvernick). ב does not mean "to," and cannot indicate the intention, all the less because בּרצח is parallel to בּתרוּעה, where תרועה is that in which the raising of the voice expresses itself. There is nothing left then but to take רצח in the sense of field-or war-cry, and to derive this meaning either from רצח or, per metathesin, from צרח.

Ezekiel 21:31 Parallel Commentaries

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

pour

Ezekiel 7:8 Now will I shortly pour out my fury on you, and accomplish my anger on you: and I will judge you according to your ways...

Ezekiel 14:19 Or if I send a pestilence into that land, and pour out my fury on it in blood, to cut off from it man and beast:

Ezekiel 22:22 As silver is melted in the middle of the furnace, so shall you be melted in the middle thereof...

Nahum 1:6 Who can stand before his indignation? and who can abide in the fierceness of his anger? his fury is poured out like fire...

I will blow

Ezekiel 22:20,21 As they gather silver, and brass, and iron, and lead, and tin, into the middle of the furnace, to blow the fire on it...

Psalm 18:15 Then the channels of waters were seen, and the foundations of the world were discovered at your rebuke, O LORD...

Isaiah 30:33 For Tophet is ordained of old; yes, for the king it is prepared; he has made it deep and large: the pile thereof is fire and much wood...

Isaiah 37:7 Behold, I will send a blast on him, and he shall hear a rumor, and return to his own land...

Isaiah 40:7 The grass wither, the flower fades: because the spirit of the LORD blows on it: surely the people is grass.

Haggai 1:9 You looked for much, and, see it came to little; and when you brought it home, I did blow on it. Why? said the LORD of hosts...

brutish. or, burning
and skilful

Isaiah 14:4-6 That you shall take up this proverb against the king of Babylon, and say, How has the oppressor ceased! the golden city ceased!...

Jeremiah 4:7 The lion is come up from his thicket, and the destroyer of the Gentiles is on his way...

Jeremiah 6:22,23 Thus said the LORD, Behold, a people comes from the north country, and a great nation shall be raised from the sides of the earth...

Jeremiah 51:20,21 You are my battle ax and weapons of war: for with you will I break in pieces the nations, and with you will I destroy kingdoms...

Habakkuk 1:6-10 For, see, I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty nation, which shall march through the breadth of the land...

Cross References
Psalm 18:15
Then the channels of the sea were seen, and the foundations of the world were laid bare at your rebuke, O LORD, at the blast of the breath of your nostrils.

Psalm 79:6
Pour out your anger on the nations that do not know you, and on the kingdoms that do not call upon your name!

Isaiah 30:33
For a burning place has long been prepared; indeed, for the king it is made ready, its pyre made deep and wide, with fire and wood in abundance; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of sulfur, kindles it.

Jeremiah 4:7
A lion has gone up from his thicket, a destroyer of nations has set out; he has gone out from his place to make your land a waste; your cities will be ruins without inhabitant.

Jeremiah 6:22
Thus says the LORD: "Behold, a people is coming from the north country, a great nation is stirring from the farthest parts of the earth.

Jeremiah 6:23
They lay hold on bow and javelin; they are cruel and have no mercy; the sound of them is like the roaring sea; they ride on horses, set in array as a man for battle, against you, O daughter of Zion!"

Jeremiah 51:20
"You are my hammer and weapon of war: with you I break nations in pieces; with you I destroy kingdoms;

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