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FRAMEWORKS: Ezekiel

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FRAMEWORKS: Ezekiel 9: Judgment on the Idolaters

 

[Preliminary Comment: The chapter, [perhaps a natural follow on to the awful things of the previous chapter], is one of instructing destruction of all in Jerusalem, except the faithful remnant.]

v.1,2 The Lord calls in the executioners and a recorder

v.3,4 God's glory prepares to leave as he instructs the scribe to identify the faithful

v.5-7 The Lord sends the executioners

v.8 Ezekiel pleads for Jerusalem

v.9-11 The Lord replies only those who deserve it will die

 

 

v.1,2 The Lord calls in the executioners and a recorder

 

v.1  Then I heard him call out in a loud voice, “Bring near those who are appointed to execute judgment on the city, each with a weapon in his hand.” 

v.2  And I saw six men coming from the direction of the upper gate, which faces north, each with a deadly weapon in his hand. With them was a man clothed in linen who had a writing kit at his side. They came in and stood beside the bronze altar. 

 

[Notes: The Lord calls for six executioners and a recorder.]

 

 

v.3,4 God's glory prepares to leave as he instructs the scribe to identify the faithful

 

v.3   Now the glory of the God of Israel went up from above the cherubim, where it had been, and moved to the threshold of the temple. Then the LORD called to the man clothed in linen who had the writing kit at his side 

v.4   and said to him, “Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it.” 

 

[Notes: Then comes the first of a number of moves of the glory of the Lord, from above the cherubim where it resided in the most holy place, to the threshold or entrance of the temple, a clear indication of the Lord's intent to depart. The recorder was told to mark all the faithful ones still in Jerusalem. Note that v.3 is the first reference to ‘cherubim', first found in scripture in Gen 3:24 and only later two formed in gold over the ark – Ex 25:18, always assumed as angels serving God.]

 

 

v.5-7 The Lord sends the executioners

 

v.5  As I listened, he said to the others, “Follow him through the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion. 

v.6  Slaughter the old men, the young men and women, the mothers and children, but do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary.” So they began with the old men who were in front of the temple. 

v.7  Then he said to them, “Defile the temple and fill the courts with the slain. Go!” So they went out and began killing throughout the city. 

 

[Notes: The judgement is to come on all in city who do not have the mark.]

 

 

v.8 Ezekiel pleads for Jerusalem

 

v.8   While they were killing and I was left alone, I fell facedown, crying out, “Alas, Sovereign LORD! Are you going to destroy the entire remnant of Israel in this outpouring of your wrath on Jerusalem?” 

 

[Notes: The response of Ezekiel [rather like that of Moses on Sinai and Abraham overviewing Sodom] was to plead for the faithful remnant.]

 

 

v.9-11 The Lord replies only those who deserve it will die

 

v.9  He answered me, “The sin of the people of Israel and Judah is exceedingly great; the land is full of bloodshed and the city is full of injustice. They say, ‘The LORD has forsaken the land; the LORD does not see.' 

v.10  So I will not look on them with pity or spare them, but I will bring down on their own heads what they have done.” 

v.11  Then the man in linen with the writing kit at his side brought back word, saying, “I have done as you commanded.”

 

[Notes: The Lord insists the judgment will continue but the return of the recorder suggests the faithful will be spared.]

 

[Concluding Note: After the terrible pictures of pagan worship taking place within the very temple precincts in chapter 8, it should come as no surprise that this chapter is full of a picture of the Lord sending judgment from heaven on all in Jerusalem. Nevertheless He does require that the faithful remnant are marked out and spared.

    

   

Continue to Chapter 10