Atlanta Bible Students
The Book of Ezekiel

Chapter 17
Go To Verse 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24
This chapter may be broken down into the following segments:
Verses 1-10 – The Riddle
Verses   1-6 – Section I – The First Great Eagle
Verses  7-10 – Section II – Another Great Eagle
Verses 22-24 – Section IV – God's Wrap-up of the Riddle
Verses 11-21 – Section III – The Parable (type – nominal fleshly Israel, and antitype – nominal spiritual Israel)

[1] And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [2] Son of man, put forth a riddle, and speak a parable unto the house of Israel; [3] And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; A great eagle with great wings, longwinged, full of feathers, which had divers colours, came unto Lebanon, and took the highest branch of the cedar: [4] He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it into a land of traffic; he set it in a city of merchants. [5] He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow tree. [6] And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature, whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs.

Verses 1-2  Expanded Bible Comments

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [2] Son of man, put forth a riddle, and speak a parable unto the house of Israel;
QuestionAnswer
In verse 1, who is "me?" Ezekiel, picturing Pastor Russell. – see Son of Man
How is he addressed? As "Son of man."
What is he to put forth? A riddle.
In what manner is he to speak to "the house of Israel?" In a parable.
What does this suggest as to the origin of the message? Matt. 13:34-35; Psa. 78:2 – This is the normal way the Lord gives His messages. They are not designed for the casual hearer/reader. In order to understand them one needs to be guided by the Holy Spirit. – 2 Pet. 1:20-21

A break-down of vss. 3-6

– Note – The wings of this eagle has various colors.

The great eagle with great wings does the following:
 1) Came to Lebanon
 2) Took the highest branch of the cedar
 3) Cropped off the top of his young twigs
a) carried it to a land of traffic
b) set it in a city of merchants
 4) Took the seed of the land
a) planted that tree in a fruitful field
b) put it by great waters
c) set it as a willow tree

This resulted in:
1) The tree became a spreading vine – of low stature
– its branches turned toward the great eagle
– the roots of this vine were under the great eagle
– It BECAME a vine
– It brought forth branches
– It shot forth sprigs.
Begin Here September 11, 2018
Section I – Verses 3-6 Section II – Verses 7-10 Section IV – Verses 22-24
Law Covenant (Added to Abrahamic Covenant)
"Sarah feature" of Abrahamic Covenant
"New (law) Covenant"
[3] And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; A great eagle with great wings, longwinged, full of feathers, which had divers colours, came unto Lebanon, and took the highest branch of the cedar: [4] He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it into a land of traffic; he set it in a city of merchants. [5] He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow tree. [6] And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature, whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs. [7] There was also another great eagle with great wings and many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the furrows of her plantation. [8] It was planted in a good soil by great waters, that it might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might be a goodly vine. [9] Say thou, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Shall it prosper? shall he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without great power or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof. [10] Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper? shall it not utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the furrows where it grew. [22] Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent: [23] In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell. [24] And all the trees of the field shall know that I the LORD have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the LORD have spoken and have done it.

Section I – Verses 3-6 Section II – Verses 7-10 Section IV – Verses 22-24
Great Eagle with great wings full of feathers Great Eagle with great wings many feathers The Lord God (Attribute of Wisdom pictured by Eagle)
Takes highest branch of the cedar. Takes this (already existing) vine. – vs. 6 Takes highest branch of the high cedar.
Cropped off top of young twigs. Will crop off from the top of his young twigs.
Carried to a land of traffic.
Set it in a city of merchants.
Mingled it with the seed of the land.
Planted in a fruitful field, by great waters. Planted in good soil, by great waters. Will plant upon an high mountain.
Set it to be as an eminent tree. Planted in an eminent mountain, the mountain of the height of Israel.
The Lord brings down the high (eminent, willow) tree.
It became a vine of low stature. It might be a goodly vine. It shall be a goodly cedar.
It brought forth branches and shot forth sprigs. It might bring forth branches. It might bear fruit. It shall bring forth boughs (strong branches.) It shall bear fruit.
Branches turned toward him. Her branches were toward him. All fowl of every wing shall dwell in the shadow of the branches.
The roots were under him. Her roots were toward him. (From vs. 9) The vine is plucked up by the roots.

What about Verses 11-21?

Br. Perry has supplied the following to help follow these verses:

Ezekiel 17 verse 11.  Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
Verse 12  Say now to the rebellious house, Know ye not what these things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon [Nebuchadnezzar] is come to Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof [Jehoiachin], and the princes thereof, and led them with him to Babylon;
Verse 13  And hath taken of the king's seed [family], and made a covenant with him [Jehoiachin], and hath taken an oath of him [Jehoiachin]: he hath also taken the mighty of the land [the government, and smart people of Israel, e.g., Daniel, Hananiah, Mishael, Azariah] :
Verse 14  That the kingdom [Israel] might be humble, that it might not lift itself up, but that by keeping of his [Israel’s] covenant [with Babylon, and God too] it might stand.
Verse 15  But he [Mattaniah was made “King” of Israel, and renamed “Zedekiah” (by Nebuchadnezzar)] rebelled against him [Nebuchadnezzar] in sending his [Zedekiah’s] ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he [Zedekiah] prosper? shall he [Zedekiah] escape that doeth such things? or shall he [Zedekiah] break the covenant [with Babylon], and be delivered [from Nebuchadnezzar, and God’s wrath, due to the 70 years prophecy of desolation of the land due to…? ]
Verse 16  As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely in the place where the king [of Babylon] dwelleththat made him [Zedekiah] “king” [of Israel] whose oath [with Babylon]  he [Zedekiah] despised, and whose covenant [with Babylon]  he [Zedekiah] brake, even with him [Nebchadnezzar]  in the midst of Babylon he [Zedekiah] shall die.
Verse 17 (CEV)  Even the king of Egypt and his powerful army will be useless to Judah when the Babylonians attack and build dirt ramps to invade the cities of Judah and kill its people.
Verse 18  Seeing he [Zedekiah] despised the oath by breaking the covenant, when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape.
Verse 19  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; As I live, surely mine oath that he [Zedekiah] hath despised [re: Israel’s captivity in Babylon; and 70 years desolation of the land in Israel (to make up for the Jubilees)], and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head.
Verse 20  And I [God] will spread my net upon him [Israel], and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon [11 years after the first group was taken there, (e.g., Daniel, Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego)], and there I will be his judge for the wrong which he has done against me [God]. [KJV & BBE]
Verse 21  And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the sword [Zedekiah’s sons & family killed in his sight], and they that remain [in Jerusalem] shall be scattered toward all winds [e.g., to Egypt]: and ye shall know that I the LORD have spoken it. [about the 70 years desolation of the land etc.]

We make the following suggestion: Verses 3-6 and 7-10 constitute the "Riddle" of verse 2, while verses 11-21 constitute the "Parable." The parable really indicating type and anti-type and applies to both the nominal Jewish house and to the nominal Christian house.

Verse 3  Expanded Bible Comments

And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; A great eagle with great wings, longwinged, full of feathers, which had divers colours, came unto Lebanon, and took the highest branch of the cedar:
QuestionAnswer
Who (or what) is pictured by the "great eagle?" .
What is indicated by its having "great wings?" .
What is pictured by its having "diverse colors?" .
What is pictured by Lebanon? .
What is pictured by the Cedar tree? .
What is pictured by "the highest branch of the cedar?" .

Verse 4  Expanded Bible Comments

He cropped off the top of his young twigs, and carried it into a land of traffic; he set it in a city of merchants.
QuestionAnswer
What is indicated by "He cropped off the top of his young twigs?" .
What is indicated by "a land of traffic?" .
What is indicated by "a city of merchants?" .

Verse 5  Expanded Bible Comments

He took also of the seed of the land, and planted it in a fruitful field; he placed it by great waters, and set it as a willow tree.
QuestionAnswer
Does this indicate taking the seed of the cedar tree? .
Where is it planted? .
What does that mean? .
What next to it in this field? .
What is indicated by "Set it as a willow tree?" .

Verse 6  Expanded Bible Comments

And it grew, and became a spreading vine of low stature, whose branches turned toward him, and the roots thereof were under him: so it became a vine, and brought forth branches, and shot forth sprigs.
QuestionAnswer
Did this "seed of the land" grow up tall and strong like a cedar? .
What happened to its branches? .
What about the roots? .
What happened to this "seed of the land" which was planted in "a fruitful field" by "great waters?" .
What are these verses (3-6) describing? .

[7] There was also another great eagle with great wings and many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the furrows of her plantation. [8] It was planted in a good soil by great waters, that it might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might be a goodly vine. [9] Say thou, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Shall it prosper? shall he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without great power or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof. [10] Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper? shall it not utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the furrows where it grew.

A break-down of vss. 7-10

– Note – There is no mention of colors for this eagle.

ANOTHER Great Eagle (nothing about colors)
 1) The vine (from verse 6) bent her roots toward the 2nd Great Eagle
 2) The vine turned her branches to this 2nd Eagle
– in order to be watered by the 2nd Eagle's "furrows of her plantation."
 3) The vine (as described in vs. 5) was planted by great waters in good soil.
– It had the potential of bearing fruit and becoming "a goodly vine."

The Lord GOD asks:
 1) Sall it prosper?
 2) Will he (1st or 2nd eagle) pull up the roots
And cut off the fruit of the vine – causing it to wither?

God tells what will happen to the vine.
 1) It shall wither "in all the leaves of her spring"
– This happens "even without great power"
and without "many people to pluck it up by the roots"

Fact given in question form (with implied answers)
Being planted, will it prosper? – no
Shall it not utterly wither? – yes
When the east wind touches it? – yes
It will wither in the furrows (verse 7) where it grew.

Verse 7  Expanded Bible Comments

There was also another great eagle with great wings and many feathers: and, behold, this vine did bend her roots toward him, and shot forth her branches toward him, that he might water it by the furrows of her plantation.
QuestionAnswer
Who is this other "great eagle?" .
What did "this vine" do? .

Verse 8  Expanded Bible Comments

It was planted in a good soil by great waters, that it might bring forth branches, and that it might bear fruit, that it might be a goodly vine.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 9  Expanded Bible Comments

Say thou, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Shall it prosper? shall he not pull up the roots thereof, and cut off the fruit thereof, that it wither? it shall wither in all the leaves of her spring, even without great power or many people to pluck it up by the roots thereof.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 10  Expanded Bible Comments

Yea, behold, being planted, shall it prosper? shall it not utterly wither, when the east wind toucheth it? it shall wither in the furrows where it grew.
QuestionAnswer

[22] Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent: [23] In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell. [24] And all the trees of the field shall know that I the LORD have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the LORD have spoken and have done it.

Verse 22  Expanded Bible Comments

Thus saith the Lord GOD; I will also take of the highest branch of the high cedar, and will set it; I will crop off from the top of his young twigs a tender one, and will plant it upon an high mountain and eminent:
QuestionAnswer

Verse 23  Expanded Bible Comments

In the mountain of the height of Israel will I plant it: and it shall bring forth boughs, and bear fruit, and be a goodly cedar: and under it shall dwell all fowl of every wing; in the shadow of the branches thereof shall they dwell.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 24  Expanded Bible Comments

And all the trees of the field shall know that I the LORD have brought down the high tree, have exalted the low tree, have dried up the green tree, and have made the dry tree to flourish: I the LORD have spoken and have done it.
QuestionAnswer

[11] Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [12] Say now to the rebellious house, Know ye not what these things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is come to Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and the princes thereof, and led them with him to Babylon; [13] And hath taken of the king's seed, and made a covenant with him, and hath taken an oath of him: he hath also taken the mighty of the land: [14] That the kingdom might be base, that it might not lift itself up, but that by keeping of his covenant it might stand. [15] But he rebelled against him in sending his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he prosper? shall he escape that doeth such things? or shall he break the covenant, and be delivered? [16] As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely in the place where the king dwelleth that made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant he brake, even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die. [17] Neither shall Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company make for him in the war, by casting up mounts, and building forts, to cut off many persons: [18] Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape. [19] Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; As I live, surely mine oath that he hath despised, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head. [20] And I will spread my net upon him, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon, and will enter into judgment with him there for his trespass that he hath trespassed against me. [21] And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the sword, and they that remain shall be scattered toward all winds: and ye shall know that I the LORD have spoken it.

Verse 11  Expanded Bible Comments

Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
QuestionAnswer

Verse 12  Expanded Bible Comments

Say now to the rebellious house, Know ye not what these things mean? tell them, Behold, the king of Babylon is come to Jerusalem, and hath taken the king thereof, and the princes thereof, and led them with him to Babylon;
QuestionAnswer

Verse 13  Expanded Bible Comments

And hath taken of the king's seed, and made a covenant with him, and hath taken an oath of him: he hath also taken the mighty of the land:
QuestionAnswer

Verse 14  Expanded Bible Comments

That the kingdom might be base, that it might not lift itself up, but that by keeping of his covenant it might stand.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 15  Expanded Bible Comments

But he rebelled against him in sending his ambassadors into Egypt, that they might give him horses and much people. Shall he prosper? shall he escape that doeth such things? or shall he break the covenant, and be delivered?
QuestionAnswer

Verse 16  Expanded Bible Comments

As I live, saith the Lord GOD, surely in the place where the king dwelleth that made him king, whose oath he despised, and whose covenant he brake, even with him in the midst of Babylon he shall die.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 17  Expanded Bible Comments

Neither shall Pharaoh with his mighty army and great company make for him in the war, by casting up mounts, and building forts, to cut off many persons:
QuestionAnswer

Verse 18  Expanded Bible Comments

Seeing he despised the oath by breaking the covenant, when, lo, he had given his hand, and hath done all these things, he shall not escape.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 19  Expanded Bible Comments

Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; As I live, surely mine oath that he hath despised, and my covenant that he hath broken, even it will I recompense upon his own head.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 20  Expanded Bible Comments

And I will spread my net upon him, and he shall be taken in my snare, and I will bring him to Babylon, and will enter into judgment with him there for his trespass that he hath trespassed against me.
QuestionAnswer

Verse 21  Expanded Bible Comments

And all his fugitives with all his bands shall fall by the sword, and they that remain shall be scattered toward all winds: and ye shall know that I the LORD have spoken it.
QuestionAnswer

Chapter 16   Chapter 18