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Bible Commentaries

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Ezekiel 46

 

 

Verse 1

Ezekiel 46:1 Thus saith the Lord GOD The gate of the inner court that looketh toward the east shall be shut the six working days; but on the sabbath it shall be opened, and in the day of the new moon it shall be opened.

Ver. 1. Thus saith the Lord God.] In this chapter are set forth rationes et ritus, the laws and rites that were to be observed by prince and people in offering their sacrifices. It is the manner of performance that maketh or marreth any duty. There may be malum opus in bona materia, ill work in a good matter.

The gate of the inner court.] Of the priests’ court.

That looketh toward the east.] That pointeth to Christ, the day spring from on high, the Sun of righteousness, who shineth sweetly upon such as rightly sanctify the Sabbath, and shall much more when they come to rest with him in heaven.

Shall be shut the six working days.] Six days shalt thou labour and do all thy work. Neither doth this hinder holiness, as the abbey lubbers pretend, but further it: (1.) By preventing temptation; (2.) By nourishing experience of God’s bounty and providence; (3.) By filling the heart with objects of heavenly thoughts; (4.) By stirring up to prayer and praise for each day’s mercies.

But on the Sabbath it shall be opened.] That the people may see Christ in the glass of the ceremonies, and call upon his name. We under the gospel have a clearer light and free access, on Lord’s days especially, and other times of holy meetings.


Verse 2

Ezekiel 46:2 And the prince shall enter by the way of the porch of [that] gate without, and shall stand by the post of the gate, and the priests shall prepare his burnt offering and his peace offerings, and he shall worship at the threshold of the gate: then he shall go forth; but the gate shall not be shut until the evening.

Ver. 2. And shall stand by the post of the gate.] Waiting at the posts of the gates of wisdom. [Proverbs 8:34] Constantine the Great stood up constantly at the time of God’s public worship for honour sake. So did our Edward VI.

Then he shall go forth.] And the people come in, [Ezekiel 46:3] whose souls are as precious to God as his.

But the gate shall not be shut until the evening.] The gate is open till the evening; be ready therefore. When the bridegroom is once gone in, the gate is shut, and fools excluded. [Matthew 25:10-12]


Verse 3

Ezekiel 46:3 Likewise the people of the land shall worship at the door of this gate before the LORD in the sabbaths and in the new moons.

Ver. 3. Likewise the people of the land.] The meanest of his subjects, if faithful, may have as near access to God as himself.


Verse 4

Ezekiel 46:4 And the burnt offering that the prince shall offer unto the LORD in the sabbath day [shall be] six lambs without blemish, and a ram without blemish.

Ver. 4. Six lambs without blemish.] This was a larger sacrifice than Moses had appointed [Numbers 28:9] - Christians have more cause than Jews had to sanctify the Sabbath - as that for the new moons [Ezekiel 46:6] was lesser. See Numbers 28:11. Hereby it appeareth that God was about to abrogate the Mosaical worship, and the Levitical priesthood: Lex enim posterior derogat priori. This the Jewish doctors would fain say something to, but cannot tell what. The wit of these miscreants, reprobate concerning the faith, will better serve them to devise a thousand shifts to elude the truth, than their obstinace will suffer them once to yield and acknowledge it.


Verse 5

Ezekiel 46:5 And the meat offering [shall be] an ephah for a ram, and the meat offering for the lambs as he shall be able to give, and an hin of oil to an ephah.

Ver. 5. As he shall be able to give.] Heb., The gift of his hand. Some render it, According as it shall be given unto his hand - i.e., as God shall put into his heart to give; and here he is not tied, as in the law, to such a proportion, but left to his Christian liberty.


Verse 6

Ezekiel 46:6 And in the day of the new moon [it shall be] a young bullock without blemish, and six lambs, and a ram: they shall be without blemish.

Ver. 6. And in the day of the new moon.] Which pointed them to the coming of Christ, by whom all things are become new.

It shall be a young bullock.] It was wont to be two. See on Ezekiel 46:4.

And six lambs and a ram.] To signify, saith Rabanus, that as it is necessary for us to keep the Sabbath; so it is likewise that we rely upon Christ for expiation as of our week days’ sins, so also of those that we fall into even on that holy day.


Verse 7

Ezekiel 46:7 And he shall prepare a meat offering, an ephah for a bullock, and an ephah for a ram, and for the lambs according as his hand shall attain unto, and an hin of oil to an ephah.

Ver. 7. An ephah for a bullock.] This was to shadow out, saith Polanus, the communion of the saints with Christ, and that Christ offereth and presenteth his Church with himself and in himself to God the Father.

According as his hand shall attain unto,] i.e., As he is able and willing, for God straineth upon none.


Verse 8

Ezekiel 46:8 And when the prince shall enter, he shall go in by the way of the porch of [that] gate, and he shall go forth by the way thereof.

Ver. 8. He shall go in by the way of the porch.] This was the prince’s privilege, that, as likewise the priests, he might go in and go out at the same east gate. It is fit that the word and sword should hold together, and that magistrates and ministers should be singular in holiness.


Verse 9

Ezekiel 46:9 But when the people of the land shall come before the LORD in the solemn feasts, he that entereth in by the way of the north gate to worship shall go out by the way of the south gate; and he that entereth by the way of the south gate shall go forth by the way of the north gate: he shall not return by the way of the gate whereby he came in, but shall go forth over against it.

Ver. 9. Shall go out the way of the south gate.] For more easy passage sake, in such a multitude of people. But withal to teach us many things; as (1.) Not to turn our backs upon the holy ordinances; (a) (2.) To "make straight paths for our feet"; [Hebrews 12:13] not looking back with Lot’s wife; [Luke 17:32] not longing for the onions of Egypt, as those rebels in the wilderness, but advancing forward with St Paul, [Philippians 3:13-14] looking forthright, [Proverbs 4:25] having our eye upon the mark, and making daily progress toward perfection; (3.) That our memories are frail, and here we shall meet with many things that will withdraw us from thinking upon God; (4.) That our life is but short; a very passage from one gate to another: where to go back - i.e., to add anything to our lives - it is not granted, since our time is limited, [Job 14:3 Acts 17:26] and we are all hastening to our long home. [Ecclesiastes 12:5] One being asked what life was? made an answer answerless; for he presently went his way.


Verse 10

Ezekiel 46:10 And the prince in the midst of them, when they go in, shall go in; and when they go forth, shall go forth.

Ver. 10. And the prince in the midst of them, &c.] For example sake, Vita Principis censura est, and to see that all things be rightly carried in God’s service. And although the prince hath many weighty occasions, yet he is to be at the public assemblies with the first, and to stay till the last.


Verse 11

Ezekiel 46:11 And in the feasts and in the solemnities the meat offering shall be an ephah to a bullock, and an ephah to a ram, and to the lambs as he is able to give, and an hin of oil to an ephah.

Ver. 11. An ephah to a bullock, and a hin of oil.] A whole ephah, and a whole hin, whereas in the Mosaical service there was required but a certain part only of either; because the Jewish Church was but of a part of mankind, but the Church Christian is universal. (a)


Verse 12

Ezekiel 46:12 Now when the prince shall prepare a voluntary burnt offering or peace offerings voluntarily unto the LORD, [one] shall then open him the gate that looketh toward the east, and he shall prepare his burnt offering and his peace offerings, as he did on the sabbath day: then he shall go forth; and after his going forth [one] shall shut the gate.

Ver. 12. A voluntary burnt offering … one shall then open him the gate, &c.] Here is warrant for our week day lectures, a voluntary service well accepted; provided that afterwards one shut the gate, and men return to their honest labours.


Verse 13

Ezekiel 46:13 Thou shalt daily prepare a burnt offering unto the LORD [of] a lamb of the first year without blemish: thou shalt prepare it every morning.

Ver. 13. Thou shalt daily prepare a burnt offering.] God must be served daily and duly, not on the Sabbath day only. See Psalms 72:15. The Papists are at their mass every morning, and they bind much upon this text for it. They have a proverb also, Mass and meat hindereth no man’s thrift.


Verse 14

Ezekiel 46:14 And thou shalt prepare a meat offering for it every morning, the sixth part of an ephah, and the third part of an hin of oil, to temper with the fine flour; a meat offering continually by a perpetual ordinance unto the LORD.

Ver. 14. The sixth part of an ephah.] This is also different from the Levitical ordinance, [Numbers 15:3-12; Numbers 28:3-5 Exodus 29:40] though R. Solomon here extremely troubleth himself, but to no purpose, to reconcile them.


Verse 15

Ezekiel 46:15 Thus shall they prepare the lamb, and the meat offering, and the oil, every morning [for] a continual burnt offering.

Ver. 15. Every morning.] Understand it of every evening also. {as Exodus 29:38}


Verse 16

Ezekiel 46:16 Thus saith the Lord GOD If the prince give a gift unto any of his sons, the inheritance thereof shall be his sons’; it [shall be] their possession by inheritance.

Ver. 16. If the prince give a gift unto any of his sons.] As Jehoshaphat did cities to every one of his sons; though they long enjoyed them not, through the barbarous cruelty of their elder brother Jehoram. Christ, the Church’s king, giveth all his children gifts of great price; such as the world can neither give nor take from them, "spiritual blessings in heavenly" things and "places"; [Ephesians 1:3] yea, he bestoweth himself upon them, and is therefore called "The gift," [John 4:10] and "The benefit." [1 Timothy 6:2]


Verse 17

Ezekiel 46:17 But if he give a gift of his inheritance to one of his servants, then it shall be his to the year of liberty; after it shall return to the prince: but his inheritance shall be his sons’ for them.

Ver. 17. But if he give a gift of his inheritance to one of his servants.] As Alexander the Great, who, going to subdue a great part of the habitable world, gave away to his servants almost all he had, and when one of his officers asked him what he would leave for himself? he said, Hope. Messiah the prince, besides his choicest gifts ( Dona throni) to his dear children, giveth gifts unto men, even to the rebellious also; [Psalms 68:18] these are common gifts ( Dona scabelli), temporal favours, external privileges. See Matthew 7:22-23; Matthew 25:14-30, Luke 19:12-27, &c. But as "the servant abideth not in the house for ever," as the son doth; [John 8:35] so these gifts to servants, but for the behoof and benefit of his sons, are but till the year of liberty, or jubilee, till the last day at utmost. [Leviticus 25:10] Then shall the wicked give a dreadful account of all, with the whole world flaming about their ears.


Verse 18

Ezekiel 46:18 Moreover the prince shall not take of the people’s inheritance by oppression, to thrust them out of their possession; [but] he shall give his sons inheritance out of his own possession: that my people be not scattered every man from his possession.

Ver. 18. To thrust them out of their possession.] Ill accidents attend such princes, as affecting to be absolute in power, will be too resolute in will, or dissolute in life; oppressing their subjects to enrich their servants and parasites.


Verse 19

Ezekiel 46:19 After he brought me through the entry, which [was] at the side of the gate, into the holy chambers of the priests, which looked toward the north: and, behold, there [was] a place on the two sides westward.

Ver. 19. Afterward he brought me.] Here he returneth again to things sacred - viz., to show where the priests should boil and bake.

Into the holy chambers of the priests.] These holy cells or chambers are particular Christian churches, committed to the care of Christ’s faithful ministers (a) [Acts 20:28 1 Peter 5:2]


Verse 20

Ezekiel 46:20 Then said he unto me, This [is] the place where the priests shall boil the trespass offering and the sin offering, where they shall bake the meat offering; that they bear [them] not out into the utter court, to sanctify the people.

Ver. 20. Where they shall bake the meat offering,] i.e., The ministers shall indite or boil good matters in their hearts for the use of the people, and then their tongues shall be as the pen of a ready writer. [Psalms 45:1] They shall not feed their hearers with crude and indigested stuff, but such as is well boiled and baked with the fire of the Holy Spirit, kindled on the hearth of their own hearts; that from the heart they may speak to the heart.

To sanctify the people.] As in promiscuous communions, where all are pell-mell admitted.


Verse 21

Ezekiel 46:21 Then he brought me forth into the utter court, and caused me to pass by the four corners of the court; and, behold, in every corner of the court [there was] a court.

Ver. 21. In every corner of the court there was a court.] And buildings in every of them for the same purpose round about. [Ezekiel 46:22] These served, saith Jerome, to set forth the four parts of the world, out of all which the Church is gathered by ministers, &c. It served also, saith another, to show that in God’s house, which is his Church, there shall always be provision both for his ministers and people. Those that have but from hand to mouth have their bread hot, as it were, from God’s hand, which is best of all.


Verse 22

Ezekiel 46:22 In the four corners of the court [there were] courts joined of forty [cubits] long and thirty broad: these four corners [were] of one measure.

Ver. 22. Courts joined.] Or made with chimneys. Caminata, vaporaria. See on Ezekiel 46:21.


Verse 23

Ezekiel 46:23 And [there was] a row [of building] round about in them, round about them four, and [it was] made with boiling places under the rows round about.

Ver. 23. With boiling places.] Such as the ancients called popinas.

Nolo ego Florus esse,

Latitare per popinas. ”{a}

“I do not wish to be Florus,

to hide in the kitchens.”


Verse 24

Ezekiel 46:24 Then said he unto me, These [are] the places of them that boil, where the ministers of the house shall boil the sacrifice of the people.

Ver. 24. These are the places of them that boil.] Of God’s cooks, who dress spiritual food for the use of his people. See Ezekiel 46:20.

 


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Bibliography Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Ezekiel 46:4". John Trapp Complete Commentary. http://odl.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/ezekiel-46.html. 1865-1868.

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