Atlanta Bible Students

The Book of Ezekiel

Chapter 22
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 25 26 27 28 29 30 31

[1] Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [2] Now, thou son of man, wilt thou judge, wilt thou judge the bloody city? yea, thou shalt show her all her abominations. [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. [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. [5] Those that be near, and those that be far from thee, shall mock thee, which art infamous and much vexed.

Verse 1  Expanded Bible Comments

Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
QuestionSuggested Answer
In this verse, who is "me?" For literal understanding: Ezekiel. For spiritual understanding: The seventh messenger as indicated in verse 2.
(1) What is it that "came unto me" and (2) of what importance is that to us? (1) "The word of the LORD came unto me."
(2) This tells us that we should pay attention! It also reminds us that the work of "the man clothed with linen, which had the writer's inkhorn by his side" was not a work independant of the Lord but was actually following the LORD's instructions. So much so that at the end of his earthly ministry he could say "I have done as thou hast commanded me."

Verse 2  Expanded Bible Comments

Now, thou son of man, wilt thou judge, wilt thou judge the bloody city? yea, thou shalt show her all her abominations.
QuestionSuggested Answer
In this verse, who is "thou son of man?" Son of Man.
What is the meaning of the word "judge?"
Strong's H8199
שָׁפַט
shâphaṭ
shaw-fat'
A primitive root; to judge, that is, pronounce sentence (for or against); by implication to vindicate or punish; by extension to govern; passively to litigate (literally or figuratively): - + avenge, X that condemn, contend, defend, execute (judgment), (be a) judge (-ment), X needs, plead, reason, rule.
Why does verse 2 repeat "wilt thou judge?" The doubling of a word or phrase indicates a special emphasis. In this case it also clarifies the target of this judgment.
Additionally this may also refer to the judgment of the two primary parts of Christendom, i.e., Religious (1878) and Civil (1914).
What is "the bloody city?" Christendom. See Rev. 6:9-10; Rev. 16:4-7; Nahum 3:1-5
What is the "son of man" told to do, and what does that mean? "Show her all her abominations." This time the job of the 7th messenger is to show to Christendom (falsely so-called) the errors of her ways.
How was this accomplished? By all the various publications and discourses from Pastor Russell (especially the Fourth Volume) and those who carried the message of "present truth" throughout the world.

Begin Here April 12, 2021

Verse 3  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer
Why does this verse begin with "Then say thou" and then follow with "Thus saith the Lord GOD?" At the minimum this is reminds us that while the message was spoken by "thou son of man," it did not originate with him. Instead the message originated from "the Lord GOD" who instructed "thou son of man" to deliver it.
What is "the city that sheddeth blood?" Christendom. See Rev. 6:9-10; Rev. 16:4-7; Nahum 3:1-5
Where was this blood shed and what does that tell us? It was shed "In the midst of it," i.e., in the midst of the city (Christendom – Christ's Kingdom falsely so-called.) This tells us that the shedding of blood (taking of life) was done primarily against its own parishioners.
What is indicated by "that her time may come?" The time of Harvest. Matt. 13:29-30. This is the time of judgment and separation.
What are idols? According to Dictionary.com:
1. an image or other material object representing a deity to which religious worship is addressed.
2. Bible.
2a. an image of a deity other than God.
2b. the deity itself.
3. any person or thing regarded with blind admiration, adoration, or devotion: Madame Curie had been her childhood idol.
4. a mere image or semblance of something, visible but without substance, as a phantom.
5. a figment of the mind; fantasy.
6. a false conception or notion; fallacy.
The primary idols of Christendom were her false doctrines, especially "the abomination that maketh desolate." Dan. 11:31; 12:11; Matt. 24:15; Mark 13:14
How can she "make idols against herself to defile herself." [MKJV] Not only did she make these false doctrines but she caused all within her to worship (practice) these and, like King Nebuchadnezzar (Dan. 3,) commanded that all within her realm fall down and worship these idols (false doctrines.)

Verse 4  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer
"Thou art become guilty.." What does this phrase tell us? That at one time they were not guilty.
"In thy blood which thou has shed." What type of a person would this be describing? A masochist: "a person who is gratified by pain, degradation, etc., that is self-imposed or imposed by others."
How did they defile themselves? In the idols (false doctrines) they made (and worshipped) themselves.
"Thou hast caused thy days to draw near, and art come even unto thy years." What does this mean? Their own actions have caused the LORD to bring upon them His judgments. It would also seem to indicate that there was a set date (number of years) for this judgment to take place. This would then be an example of God excercising His foreknowledge.
"Therefore have I made thee a reproach unto the heathen, and a mocking to all countries." Is this past, present or future? Yes. Past – consider the 1893 World Parliament of Relitions. Present – No one today believes that Christ's Kingdom is currently united with the State in Europe or anywhere else in the "western world." – It will be so in the future when "the knowledge of the LORD shall cover the earth as the waters cover the sea." R5829

Verse 5  Expanded Bible Comments

Those that be near, and those that be far from thee, shall mock thee, which art infamous and much vexed.
QuestionSuggested Answer
Who are those that are (a) near, and (b) far from the city?
What do both the near and far do? They "shall mock thee."
Why do they do it? Because this city (Christendom) was famous as being the city (government) of God, ruling by "divine right." But now it had become infamous.
infamous
adjective
1. having an extremely bad reputation: an infamous city.
2. deserving of or causing an evil reputation; shamefully malign; detestable: an infamous deed.

3. Law.
   a) deprived of certain rights as a citizen, as a consequence of conviction of certain offenses.
   b) of or relating to offenses involving such deprivation.
What is the meaning of the word "vexed" and how does this apply to "the bloody city?" Vexed
Strong's H4103
מְהוּמָה
mehûmâh
meh-hoo-maw'
From H1949; confusion or uproar: - destruction, discomfiture, trouble, tumult, vexation, vexed.
Vexed means "confusion." Babylon also means "confusion."

[6] Behold, the princes of Israel, every one were in thee to their power to shed blood. [7] In thee have they made light of 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. [8] Thou hast despised mine holy things, and hast profaned my sabbaths. [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. [10] In thee have they discovered their fathers' nakedness: in thee have they humbled her that was set apart for pollution. [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. [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.

Verse 6  Expanded Bible Comments

Behold, the princes of Israel, every one were in thee to their power to shed blood.
QuestionSuggested Answer
Who are "the princes of Israel?" The leaders in Christendom. This seems to incude both civil and religious leaders.
In verse 6, who is "thee?" "Thee" is Christendom.
What does it mean "to shed blood?" Exactly that, to cause someone to bleed. This usually indicates murder. This may also refer to the symbolical shedding of blood as in Rev. 6:9-10.
What is meant by "were in thee to their power..?" Other translations indicate: "according to their power.." - "each one according to his strength.."

Verse 7  Expanded Bible Comments

In thee have they made light of 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.
QuestionSuggested Answer
Reminder question: Who are "they?" "The princes of Israel." (verse 6) – the religious and civil leaders in Christendom.
"They made light of father and mother." Is that really so bad? Exo. 20:12; 21:17; Lev. 19:3; 20:9; Mark 7:9-13
In what manner have "They made light of father and mother?"
How have "they dealt by oppression with the stranger?"
How have "they vexed the fatherless and the widow?"

Verse 8  Expanded Bible Comments

Thou hast despised mine holy things, and hast profaned my sabbaths.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 9  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 10  Expanded Bible Comments

In thee have they discovered their fathers' nakedness: in thee have they humbled her that was set apart for pollution.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 11  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 12  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

[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. [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. [15] And I will scatter thee among the heathen, and disperse thee in the countries, and will consume thy filthiness out of thee. [16] And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself in the sight of the heathen, and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.

Verse 13  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 14  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 15  Expanded Bible Comments

And I will scatter thee among the heathen, and disperse thee in the countries, and will consume thy filthiness out of thee.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 16  Expanded Bible Comments

And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself in the sight of the heathen, and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.
QuestionSuggested Answer

[17] And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [18] Son of man, the house of Israel is to me become dross: all they are copper, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are even the dross of silver. [19] Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye are all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. [20] As they gather silver, and copper, 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. [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. [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.

Verse 17  Expanded Bible Comments

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 18  Expanded Bible Comments

Son of man, the house of Israel is to me become dross: all they are copper, and tin, and iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are even the dross of silver.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 19  Expanded Bible Comments

Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye are all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 20  Expanded Bible Comments

As they gather silver, and copper, 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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 21  Expanded Bible Comments

Yea, I will gather you, and blow upon you in the fire of my wrath, and ye shall be melted in the midst thereof.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 22  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

[23] And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, [24] Son of man, say unto her, Thou art the land that is not cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation. [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. [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 showed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them. [27] Her princes in the midst thereof are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain. [28] And her prophets have daubed them with untempered mortar, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken. [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. [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. [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.

Verse 23  Expanded Bible Comments

And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 24  Expanded Bible Comments

Son of man, say unto her, Thou art the land that is not cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 25  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 26  Expanded Bible Comments

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 showed difference between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 27  Expanded Bible Comments

Her princes in the midst thereof are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 28  Expanded Bible Comments

And her prophets have daubed them with untempered mortar, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith the Lord GOD, when the LORD hath not spoken.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 29  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 30  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Verse 31  Expanded Bible Comments

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.
QuestionSuggested Answer

Chapter 21   Chapter 23