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Bible Commentaries

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Ezekiel 22

 

 

Verse 1

Ezekiel 22:1 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Ver. 1. Moreover the word.] See on Ezekiel 18:1.


Verse 2

Ezekiel 22:2 Now, thou son of man, wilt thou judge, wilt thou judge the bloody city? yea, thou shalt shew her all her abominations.

Ver. 2. Wilt thou judge?] Or, Plead for, or excuse? See Ezekiel 20:4.

The bloody city.] The saints’ slaughter house.


Verse 3

Ezekiel 22:3 Then say thou, Thus saith the Lord GOD, The city sheddeth blood in the midst of it, that her time may come, and maketh idols against herself to defile herself.

Ver. 3. In the midst of it.] Publiae et impune.

Against herself.] As a sinner against her own soul.


Verse 4

Ezekiel 22:4 Thou art become guilty in thy blood that thou hast shed; and hast defiled thyself in thine idols which thou hast made; and thou hast caused thy days to draw near, and art come [even] unto thy years: therefore have I made thee a reproach unto the heathen, and a mocking to all countries.

Ver. 4. Thou hast caused thy days.] Thou hast accelerated thy punishment, as the old world did.


Verse 5

Ezekiel 22:5 [Those that be] near, and [those that be] far from thee, shall mock thee, [which art] infamous [and] much vexed.

Ver. 5. Shall mock thee, which are infamous.] This was forethreatened. [Deuteronomy 28:37] Our natures are most impatient of reproach; for there is none so mean but thinks himself worthy of some regard. Gens haec, saith Giraldus Cambrensis of the wild Irish, sicut et natio quaevis barbara, &c.; No nation is so barbarous, but that although they know not what belongeth to honour, yet do they exceedingly affect to be honoured, and will not abide to be reproached.


Verse 6

Ezekiel 22:6 Behold, the princes of Israel, every one were in thee to their power to shed blood.

Ver. 6. Behold the princes of Israel.] Here beginneth the black bill or bed roll. And as in a fish corruption beginneth at the head, so in a nation at the rulers.


Verse 7

Ezekiel 22:7 In thee have they set light by father and mother: in the midst of thee have they dealt by oppression with the stranger: in thee have they vexed the fatherless and the widow.

Ver. 7. In thee have they set light by father and mother.] Whom very heathens honoured as their θεοι εφεστιαι, household gods.

In the midst of thee, &c.] So Jerome complaineth of his country, In mea patria deus venter est, et in diem vivitur, that they were all belly gods, and had no goodness in them. So Bede complaineth of the ancient Britons immediately before their destruction by the Saxons. Bradford crieth out against the iniquity of the times in King Edward’s days. You all know, saith he in a certain letter of his, there was never more knowledge of God, and less godly living, and true serving of God. It was counted a foolish thing to serve God truly; and earnest prayer was not past upon. Preaching was but pastime; communion was counted too common; fasting was far out of use; alms was almost nothing. Malice, covetousness, and uncleanness was common everywhere, with swearing, drunkenness, and idleness. (a) &c.


Verse 8

Ezekiel 22:8 Thou hast despised mine holy things, and hast profaned my sabbaths.

Ver. 8. Thou hast despised mine holy things.] These are all foretokens of a perishing people. Emphasin habet quod dicit sancta mea, Sabbata mea. Shall that which hath the impress of God upon it be slighted, as his sabbaths, sacraments, ordinances? The holy God should in all his holy things be "sanctified in righteousness." [Isaiah 5:16]


Verse 9

Ezekiel 22:9 In thee are men that carry tales to shed blood: and in thee they eat upon the mountains: in the midst of thee they commit lewdness.

Ver. 9. In thee are men that carry tales.] Heb., Men of slanders. [Exodus 23:1 Leviticus 18:16] Whisperers, backbiters, tale bearers - pedlars, the Hebrew word, signifieth such as drop a tale here and another there - are viri latrones, thieves, as the Septuagint here translate, yea, they are murderers. The devil was first a slanderer, and then a murderer. His agents first take away the credit of the Church, and then wound her. [Song of Solomon 5:6] The primitive Christians were first belied, and then cruelly handled; so were the French Protestants before the massacre of Paris. Humphry, Duke of Gloucester was by the people of England, notwithstanding the open showing of his body, and his pretended crimes, thought to be doubly murdered - viz., by detraction and deadly practice - saith the chronicler.


Verse 10

Ezekiel 22:10 In thee have they discovered their fathers’ nakedness: in thee have they humbled her that was set apart for pollution.

Ver. 10. In thee have they discovered their father’s nakedness,] i.e., Carnally known their father’s wives or concubines, Reuben-like. See 1 Corinthians 5:1. {See Trapp on "1 Corinthians 5:1"}

Humbled her,] i.e., Ravished her: which was a double crime. See Leviticus 18:19; Leviticus 20:18; Leviticus 15:25.


Verse 11

Ezekiel 22:11 And one hath committed abomination with his neighbour’s wife; and another hath lewdly defiled his daughter in law; and another in thee hath humbled his sister, his father’s daughter.

Ver. 11. And one hath committed.] So the poet -

Hic thalamum invasit natae, vetitosque Hymenaeos,

Ausi omnes immune nefas, ausoque potiti, ”& c.

- Virg. Aen., lib. vi.


Verse 12

Ezekiel 22:12 In thee have they taken gifts to shed blood; thou hast taken usury and increase, and thou hast greedily gained of thy neighbours by extortion, and hast forgotten me, saith the Lord GOD.

Ver. 12. Thou hast taken usury and increase.] Usura quasi propter usum rei, saith one, and foenus quasi funus. Such money to necessity, is like cold water to a hot ague, that for a time refresheth, but prolongeth the disease. It is like the timber worm, which is wonderfully soft to touch, but hath teeth so hard that it eateth the timber. See on Ezekiel 18:13.

And hast greedily gained of thy neighbour.] Sept., Thou has consummated the consummation of thy wickedness in oppression.

And hast forgotten me.] All the forementioned evils are resolved into this as the root and origin of them. (a) See the like, Romans 3:18.


Verse 13

Ezekiel 22:13 Behold, therefore I have smitten mine hand at thy dishonest gain which thou hast made, and at thy blood which hath been in the midst of thee.

Ver. 13. I have smitten my hand.] In token of utmost indignation, as Numbers 24:10.

At thy dishonest gain which thou hast made.] The Jewish doctors observe, that, whereas twenty-four different abominations are here reckoned up, the destruction of the city is attributed chiefly to covetousness. Lycurgus foretold his Lacedaemonians that filthy lucre would be the overthrow of their city, and it proved so. (a) The same is reported of Constantinople, of Babylon, the seat of the great Caliph, taken and sacked by Haalon, brother to Mango the great Khan of Tartary, who starved to death the rich but wretched Caliph in the midst of his hoards; (b) 1ike as the Roman soldiers first slew Ruffinus, who affected to be co-emperor with Arcadius, and then cutting off his right hand, carried it up and down the city, crying out to the people, Date stipem viro avaritiae inexplebilis, (c) Give an alms to a man of insatiable covetousness.


Verse 14

Ezekiel 22:14 Can thine heart endure, or can thine hands be strong, in the days that I shall deal with thee? I the LORD have spoken [it], and will do [it].

Ver. 14. Can thine heart endure, or can thine hands be strong?] Interrogatio continens latentem ironiam - q.d., Misella superbula, erisne ferendo mala futura? Thou pour, proud thing of nought, canst thou make thy party good with me? Canst thou either in mind or body bear my wrath? will not thine heart soon fall into thy heels, and thine hands be enfeebled when I shall grapple with thee, and take thee to do?

And will do it.] Thou thinkest, likely, that all these are but terrible words, devised on purpose to frighten silly people, but I will do it.


Verse 15

Ezekiel 22:15 And I will scatter thee among the heathen, and disperse thee in the countries, and will consume thy filthiness out of thee.

Ver. 15. I will scatter thee.] Deuteronomy 4:27; Deuteronomy 28:25; Deuteronomy 28:64.

And will consume thy filthiness.] By thy captivity and misery I will refine and reform thee (a) [Zechariah 13:9]


Verse 16

Ezekiel 22:16 And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself in the sight of the heathen, and thou shalt know that I [am] the LORD.

Ver. 16. And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself,] q.d., I will abandon thee. Or, Thou shall be profaned and polluted.

And thou shalt know that I am the Lord.] Thou shalt know me by my punishments, whom thou wouldst not know by my benefits.


Verse 17

Ezekiel 22:17 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Ver. 17. And the word of the Lord] See Ezekiel 18:1.


Verse 18

Ezekiel 22:18 Son of man, the house of Israel is to me become dross: all they [are] brass, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are [even] the dross of silver.

Ver. 18. The house of Israel is to me become dross.] Recrementum argenti; offal stuff. Silver they were once, but now nothing less. Haec ad nos quoque transferenda sunt. This is even our case; we are quite degenerate, and altogether unlike our zealous progenitors.

Heu! pietas ubi prisca! profana O tempora! Mundi

Faex, vesper, prope nox! O Mora! Christe veni. ”

All they are brass.] See on Isaiah 1:22.


Verse 19

Ezekiel 22:19 Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD Because ye are all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem.

Ver. 19. I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem.] Velut catinum fusorium, as into a red hot furnace, or fiery crucible. [Ezekiel 24:10]


Verse 20

Ezekiel 22:20 [As] they gather silver, and brass, and iron, and lead, and tin, into the midst of the furnace, to blow the fire upon it, to melt [it]; so will I gather [you] in mine anger and in my fury, and I will leave [you there], and melt you.

Ver. 20. As they gather silver and brass.] The righteous perish with the wicked; but either it is temporally only, or else the seemingly righteous, who are no better than "reprobate silver."

And I will leave you there.] A terrible threat. God will bring his enemies into the briers and there leave them. See Ezekiel 29:5. His own he will not leave, or at least not forsake. He will be with them in the fire and water, &c. "Lord, leave us not," saith the Church. [Jeremiah 17:17]


Verse 21

Ezekiel 22:21 Yea, I will gather you, and blow upon you in the fire of my wrath, and ye shall be melted in the midst thereof.

Ver. 21. And ye shall be melted in the midst thereof.] As in a fiery furnace. Such was anciently Egypt; [Deuteronomy 4:20] afterwards Babylon; and in the year 1453, Constantinople, where cruelly perished by the hand of the Turks a very great multitude of Christians.


Verse 22

Ezekiel 22:22 As silver is melted in the midst of the furnace, so shall ye be melted in the midst thereof; and ye shall know that I the LORD have poured out my fury upon you.

Ver. 22. As silver is melted.] The same again for better fastening. Tam diligenter de his malis concionatus est, ut conciones eius vix sine taedio legantur aut recitentur. (a)


Verse 23

Ezekiel 22:23 And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,

Ver. 23. And the word.] See Ezekiel 18:1.


Verse 24

Ezekiel 22:24 Son of man, say unto her, Thou [art] the land that is not cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation.

Ver. 24. Thou art the land that is not cleansed.] From thy filthiness, and the fire of my judgments.

Nor rained upon.] Non compluta; no mercy shown thee, no good done upon thee by all.


Verse 25

Ezekiel 22:25 [There is] a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made her many widows in the midst thereof.

Ver. 25. There is a conspiracy of her prophets.] They are all agreed to deceive the people and to persecute the true prophets. Here we have a lively description of the present Popish clergy.


Verse 26

Ezekiel 22:26 Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned mine holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they shewed [difference] between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.

Ver. 26. Her priests have violated my law.] (a) By infringing, and enforcing it to speak what it never meant; to go two miles when it would go but one, &c.

They have put no difference.] They have not taken out the precious from the vile, but made it open tide, and admitted all pellmell, as they say.

And have hid their eyes from my Sabbaths,] i.e., Either framed excuse that they might themselves break it; or else connived at others that have.


Verse 27

Ezekiel 22:27 Her princes in the midst thereof [are] like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, [and] to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain.

Ver. 27. Her princes in the midst thereof.] Lupis ferociores et voraciores erant. There was in this state, as physicians say there is in some diseases, corruptio totius substantiae, a general defection: and here they are particularly told of it; so, as Isocrates saith in his oration to Philip King of Macedonia, That which is spoken to all is spoken to none. See Micah 3:11, Zephaniah 3:3.


Verse 28

Ezekiel 22:28 And her prophets have daubed them with untempered [morter], seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken.

Ver. 28. And her prophets have daubed them.] Similes iis qui parietem incrustant luto friabili et solubili. See Ezekiel 13:4, &c.


Verse 29

Ezekiel 22:29 The people of the land have used oppression, and exercised robbery, and have vexed the poor and needy: yea, they have oppressed the stranger wrongfully.

Ver. 29. The people of the land have used oppression.] Or, Deceit. Eadem hodie fiunt: charitas refrixit; omnia iniuriis, calumniis, rapinis plena sunt.


Verse 30

Ezekiel 22:30 And I sought for a man among them, that should make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.

Ver. 30. And I sought for a man among them,] i.e., A competent company of holy men, as once at Sodom; [Genesis 18:23-32] at Jerusalem. [Jeremiah 5:1]

That should make up the hedge.] Which sin had thrown down.

And stand in the gap.] By his piety and prayers. The Primum Mobile, say astronomers, turneth about with such swiftness, that but for the counter motion of the planets and other spheres all would be fired; so would this wicked world but for the saints, who keep a constant counter motion to the corrupt practices thereof.


Verse 31

Ezekiel 22:31 Therefore have I poured out mine indignation upon them; I have consumed them with the fire of my wrath: their own way have I recompensed upon their heads, saith the Lord GOD.

Ver. 31. I have consumed them with the fire.] Since thou wouldst not be cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation. [Ezekiel 22:24]

 


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Bibliography Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Ezekiel 22:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/ezekiel-22.html. 1865-1868.

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