Ezekiel 39 Commentary

Ezekiel 39:1 "And you, son of man, prophesy against Gog and say, 'Thus says the Lord GOD, "Behold, I am against you, O Gog, prince of Rosh, Meshech and Tubal (NASB: Lockman):

And - This conjunction clearly shows us that although there is a new chapter, the subject which began in Ezekiel 38 is being continued.

Matthew Henry - This chapter continues and concludes the prophecy against Gog and Magog, in whose destruction God crowns his favor to his people Israel, which shines very brightly after the scattering of that black cloud in the close of this chapter.

Son of man - Reference is to the prophet Ezekiel.

Son of man - 93x in Ezekiel -

Ezek 2:1, 3, 6, 8; 3:1, 3-4, 10, 17, 25; 4:1, 16; 5:1; 6:2; 7:2; 8:5-6, 8, 12, 15, 17; 11:2, 4, 15; 12:2-3, 9, 18, 22, 27; 13:2, 17; 14:3, 13; 15:2; 16:2; 17:2; 20:3-4, 27, 46; 21:2, 6, 9, 12, 14, 19, 28; 22:2, 18, 24; 23:2, 36; 24:2, 16, 25; 25:2; 26:2; 27:2; 28:2, 12, 21; 29:2, 18; 30:2, 21; 31:2; 32:2, 18; 33:2, 7, 10, 12, 24, 30; 34:2; 35:2; 36:1, 17; 37:3, 9, 11, 16; 38:2, 14; 39:1, 17; 40:4; 43:7, 10, 18; 44:5; 47:6

Prophesy against Gog...Behold I am against you - Behold is an interjection which calls for the hearer to listen carefully, to pay close attention. Here the essence of Ezekiel's message is that God is opposed to Gog!

ESV Study Bible - Ezekiel 38-39 "form a single unit (and) deliver a powerful assertion of God's sovereignty."

Against (05921)(al) means upon, over, against, by, to, for. It is notable that against is the second most common way this Hebrew word is translated in the NAS (536x/1808x). So here al is a marker of opposition, with an implication of hostility toward the object. In English, Webster says the idea of against is opposition to, enmity with or hostility toward another, in this case God at enmity with Gog!

MacArthur - This scene of the army’s ruin adds detail to Ezekiel 38:18-23 such as: 1) the disarming of soldiers (Ezek 39:3); 2) their fall in death (Ezek 39:4, 5); 3) the gorging of birds and beasts on the corpses (Ezek 39:4); 4) fire sent also on others besides the army (Ezek 39:6); and 5) burning of weapons by Israelites (Ezek 39:9, 10).

Introductory Comments - The reader should understand that in my humble opinion Ezekiel 38-39 constitute some of the most difficult (if not the most difficult) prophecies in the entire Bible to interpret with confidence. One difficulty relates to the identity of the major characters in these two chapters, especially Gog and the various countries named. The other major question relates to the timing of these events. Without going into detail, Ezekiel 38-39 are recorded after Israel is reborn (Ezekiel 37), which has been partially fulfilled in our lifetime (May, 1948) and events in Ezekiel 40-48 which are best characterized as a description of the time of the Millennium. That said, the placement of the events in Ezekiel 38-39, suggest that they will occur between these two major events. In short, we certainly could be living in the time period in which the events of Ezekiel 38-39 might transpire. As we discuss these two chapters, our goal will be to observe the objective truths that are obvious. Comments that are more in the realm of "educated speculation" or "contextual supposition" will be interspersed, but must be taken with a healthy Berean-like mindset (Acts 17:11). Care will be taken to avoid dogmatic statements on passages that do not allow for such an interpretation. The reader should be aware that I will use a number of quotes from Joel Rosenberg, a Jewish believer who has written and talked frequently about prophetic events in the Middle East. In my opinion, Rosenberg strives to maintain objectivity and avoid sensationalism.

Ezekiel 39:2 and I will turn you around, drive you on, take you up from the remotest parts of the north and bring you against the mountains of Israel.:

KJV - And I will turn thee back, and leave but the sixth part of thee, and will cause thee to come up from the north parts, and will bring thee upon the mountains of Israel

While this statement in the KJV suggests 5/6 of the invasion force will be destroyed, scholars are not agreed on the meaning of the original Hebrew construction. Most of the modern translations do not have any quantification (i.e., they lack any reference to "the sixth part.") And if one reads Ezek 39:4 literally, it says that 100% of Gog's troops and his allies will fall. In either case, the defeat of Israel's foe (by Jehovah) is complete.

Drive...on - lead along, i.e., aggressively take one by the hand and cause to go to another place

This is a repeat God's message to Gog in Ezekiel 38...

Ezekiel 38:4 "I will turn you about and put hooks into your jaws, and I will bring you out, and all your army, horses and horsemen, all of them splendidly attired, a great company with buckler and shield, all of them wielding swords:

Ezekiel 38:15 "You will come from your place out of the remote parts of the north, you and many peoples with you, all of them riding on horses, a great assembly and a mighty army;

Ezekiel 39:3 "I will strike your bow from your left hand and dash down your arrows from your right hand.:

I will strike your bow - It is as if God stops Gog just as they are getting ready to let the arrows fly at Israel! Yes, God brought Gog, but Gog gladly came of his own volition and thus he is fully responsible for his evil actions. This is the mysterious juxtaposition of Divine Sovereignty and Human Responsibility. God called Nebuchadnezzar His servant in using Babylon to defeat and discipline Judah (Jer 25:9) and yet God still held Babylon responsible for their sinful actions against Israel (cf Jer 50:15, 24, 29, 51:56).

Ezekiel 39:4 "You will fall on the mountains of Israel, you and all your troops and the peoples who are with you; I will give you as food to every kind of predatory bird and beast of the field.:

You will fall - Gog's army will be utterly defeated (all your troops).

Holman Christian Study Bible - Ezekiel 39:4-9 is similar to Rev 19:17-18, perhaps referring to the same event.

Ezekiel 39:5 "You will fall on the open field; for it is I who have spoken," declares the Lord GOD.:

For it is I Who have spoken - Notice the "for" (term of explanation) which explains why Gog's defeat and doom are a done deal!

Ezekiel 39:6 "And I will send fire upon Magog and those who inhabit the coastlands in safety; and they will know that I am the LORD.:

I will send fire upon Magog - The sending of fire is a common expression for divine judgment (Hos 8:14; Am 1:12). Not only are the invading forces destroyed, their homeland is also devastated by fire from God (presumably "fire and brimstone" as this is the only other contextual reference to fire). Send in the Septuagint is apostello which means to send forth and in the NT is used of men who were sent forth with a commission (apostle [apostolos], eg, Mt 11:10 speaks of God's messenger John the Baptist). In a sense the fire is God's "messenger" conveys the truth that He is LORD!

Magog - see comments on Ezekiel 38:2

They will know that I am the LORD - The fire will be viewed as from a supernatural source, not "Mother Earth," but Father God! The fact that they will know suggests that the fire does not bring a complete destruction of the populace of Magog.

Know (yada; Lxx uses = ginosko = know by experience) means the nations will know by observing and reflecting (thinking) and by experiencing these events - they will come to see and understand God is the One and Only Living and True God. This "revelation" of His character to the entire world suggests that this is at the end of this age and at the dawn of the "new age" of the Millennium, which would place these events in the last 7 years (Daniel's Seventieth Week - The Seven Year Period). This is of course not meant to be a dogmatic statement, but is presented for you to ponder.

Will know that I am the LORD - most in Ezekiel - 59x in 59v in NAS - Ex 14:4, 18; Isa 49:23; Ezek 6:7, 10, 13, 14; 7:4, 27; 11:12; 12:15, 20; 13:14, 21, 23; 14:8; 15:7; 17:24; 20:38, 42, 44; 22:16; 23:49; 24:24, 27; 25:5, 7, 11, 17; 26:6; 28:22-24, 26; 29:6, 9, 16, 21; 30:8, 19, 25-26; 33:29; 34:27; 35:4, 9, 15; 36:11, 23, 38; 37:6, 13, 28; 38:23; 39:6-7, 22, 28; Joel 3:17-note

Joel Rosenberg - The Lord also says “I will send fire upon Magog and those who inhabit the coast lands in safety.” (39:6) In other words, parts of Russia and other enemy countries will be devastated by fire from heaven. The Bible does not tell us exactly how this will happen, but it clearly describes a supernatural judgment. This is not a war started by the Israeli Defense Forces. These are not missiles from the Israeli Air Force. There no evidence in the text of Israelis defending themselves. Perhaps they are engaging in diplomacy. Perhaps they are hoping for the U.S. or the U.N. other nations to intervene. Whatever the case, the God of Israel steps in and defends Israel Himself, raining fire and brimstone down on the enemy forces and utterly destroying them.

Ezekiel 39:7 "My holy name I will make known in the midst of My people Israel; and I will not let My holy name be profaned anymore. And the nations will know that I am the LORD, the Holy One in Israel.:

GOD'S HOLY NAME
See: The Name of the LORD Summary

My holy Name I will make known in the midst of My people Israel - So not only is God's Name glorified among the pagans but also among His Chosen People. How will His Name be made known among the nations? God's supernatural defense of Israel will be a clear demonstration to the watching world of His omnipotence over the power of men and nations.

God's supernatural deliverance of Israel out of Egypt caused the pagan nations to know His fame and His Name...

But I acted for the sake of My name, that it should not be profaned in the sight of the nations among whom they lived, in whose sight I made Myself known to them (HOW?) by bringing them out of the land of Egypt. (Ezek 20:9)

I will not let My holy name be profaned anymore - God's great Name will never again be profaned (Ezek 39:25; 20:9; 36:20-23; Ezek 43:7-9). Notice that the word anymore is an expression of time. It follows that this is an interesting prophetic promise by Yahweh, because it suggests that the events described in Ezekiel 38-39 will occur at the end of this age because only after this age will the Name of God not be profaned anymore. In other words in the Millennial reign God's Name will be the only Name. In other words if the battle of Gog were to occur prior to Daniel's Seventieth Week - The Seven Year Period, this statement would be invalid because God's name is clearly blasphemed during that seven year period and especially the last 3.5 years (The Great Tribulation).

Name - "Unlike man's popular use of the term "name" as a label of reference, God's very essence is bound up in His "name." The invader, by his attack upon an innocent people, is profaning God's "name." Because of their helplessness, the people will know that God is their deliverer." (W A Criswell)

Profaned (chalal - see word study) means to treat (something sacred) with abuse, irreverence, or contempt. The English word "profane" is derived from the Latin profanus which means "outside the temple, not sacred" and in turn is derived from pro- ‘before’ + fanum = ‘temple’.

The Septuagint (Lxx) uses bebeloo (BDAG = "to cause something highly revered to become identified with the commonplace, violate sanctity, desecrate, profane." Bebeloo evolves from “accessible,” then “what may be said publicly,” then in the LXX “what may be used freely,” then “of a profane disposition”). The verb Bebeloo is derived from bebelos (see word study). Bebelos refers to a disregarding what is to be kept sacred or holy desecrate, violate, ritually defile. The meaning of this adjective is nicely conveyed by our English word profane which describes that which disregards what is to be kept sacred or holy. Bebelos thus describes that which is accessible to everyone and therefore devoid of real significance. Bebelos can thus describe that which is worldly as opposed to having an interest in transcendent (existing apart from and not subject to the limitations of the material universe) matters.

To help you discern how God's Name was profaned, study the passages which mention God's Name and profane - Lev 18:21, Lev 19:12, Lev 20:3. Lev 21:6, Lev 22:2, Lev 22:32 (see context = Lev 22:31, Pr 30:9NLT, Jer 34:16 (Read context regarding breaking of a covenant - Jer 34:15, 17-20), Ezek 20:9 (see context Ezek 20:8), Ezek 20:14, 22, 39, Ezek 36:20, 21, 22, 23, Ezek 39:7, Amos 2:7.

The nations will know that I am the LORD - Know is (yada; Lxx uses ginosko = know by experience) means the nations will know by observing and reflecting (thinking) and by experiencing these events - they will come to see and understand God is the One and Only Living and True God.

Ezekiel 39:8 "Behold, it is coming and it shall be done," declares the Lord GOD. "That is the day of which I have spoken.:

Behold (02005) (Hebrew = hen; Lxx uses idou = 2nd person singular aorist imperative, middle voice of eidon = perceive, look at) is an interjection demanding attention, "look!" "see!" It is used to emphasize the information which follows it.

It is coming - The prophecy of Gog's attack on Israel.

It shall be done - The prophecy will be fulfilled just as it has been recorded.

Ezekiel 39:9 "Then those who inhabit the cities of Israel will go out and make fires with the weapons and burn them, both shields and bucklers, bows and arrows, war clubs and spears, and for seven years they will make fires of them.:

AN IRONIC REVERSAL:
ISRAEL PLUNDERS THE PLUNDERERS!

Then - This word is an important expression of time, especially in prophetic passages where it serves to marks what is next in order of time. The idea of then often is "soon afterward." After that. In the present context it is after Gog's attack has been squashed by God, now He enlists Israel's help for the first time. Israel is called to conduct a "mopping up" exercise as it were.

Make fires - This recalls other passages where weapons of war were burned...

Isa 9:5 For every boot of the booted warrior in the battle tumult, And cloak rolled in blood, will be for burning, fuel for the fire.

HCSB adds that this burning of remains of weapons and warriors "also harkens back to when the Israelites burned all that belonged to the Canaanites at the time of the conquest (Dt 7:2; 20:16-18; Jos 6:24)."

Inhabit the cities of Israel - This fact is quite fascinating. Israel has just experienced a devastating earthquake and yet the cities have not crumbled to the ground. Our God is able to defend and shield His Chosen People from great devastation. David knew this attribute of His character declaring...

For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; In the secret place of His tent He will hide me; He will lift me up on a rock. (Ps 27:5)

How blessed is he who considers the helpless; The LORD will deliver him in a day of trouble. (Ps 41:1)

Indeed God tells all His children...

And call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me. (Ps 50:15)

Dr Henry Morris - Remarkably, the earthquake and the storm will be so providentially controlled by the Lord that it will destroy Gog's armies while leaving the cities of Israel virtually unaffected. No wonder the people of Israel and the other nations will recognize the hand of God.

Seven years - While this might be interpreted by some as symbolic (seven is number of completion), there is no reason to not interpret it as a literal seven years. The number of enemy weapons burned defies one's imagination and indicates a vast army (cf "a great assembly and a mighty army" - Ezek 38:15). This also shows that men's weapons (no matter how great the quality or quantity) are of no value against the omnipotent weapons of the Almighty!

There is another seven-year period described in Daniel 9:27, however the relationship if any is unclear.

When does this seven year burning begin? One cannot be dogmatic. If you believe (as does John MacArthur) that the battle described in Ezekiel 38-39 corresponds with the battle Revelation 16:16 and Revelation 19:19-21, then the burnin g would extend into the Millennium.

Ezekiel 39:10 "They will not take wood from the field or gather firewood from the forests, for they will make fires with the weapons; and they will take the spoil of those who despoiled them and seize the plunder of those who plundered them," declares the Lord GOD.:

DIVINE REVENGE:
God's Chosen People are finally, fully vindicated.

Plunder...plundered (0962)(bazaz, Lxx uses skuleuo -see below) means to loot, plunder, spoil, rob.

Bazaz - 39v - Gen 34:27, 29; Num 31:9, 32, 53; Deut 2:35; 3:7; 20:14; Josh 8:2, 27; 11:14; 1Sam 14:36; 2Kgs 7:16; 2Chr 14:14; 20:25; 25:13; 28:8; Esther 3:13; 8:11; Ps 109:11; Isa 10:2, 6; 11:14; 17:14; 24:3; 33:23; 42:22, 24; Jer 20:5; 30:16; 50:37; Ezek 26:12; 29:19; 38:12-13; 39:10; Amos 3:11; Nah 2:9; Zeph 2:9.

NAS translates Bazaz as - booty(1), completely despoiled(1), despoiled(1), looted(3), pillage(1), plunder(11), plunder of those who plundered(1), plundered(6), plunderers(1), prey(2), seize(4), seize the plunder(1), seize their as plunder(1), take(3), take as booty(1), take spoil(1), taken booty(1), taking(1), took(3), took as our booty(1), took as their plunder(1).

The Lxx uses skuleuo (for bazaz) which means to despoil a slain enemy of his arms and was used to describe Israel's "despoiling" of the Egyptians when they began their exodus (Ex 3:22, 12:36).

Ezekiel 39:11 "On that day I will give Gog a burial ground there in Israel, the valley of those who pass by east of the sea, and it will block off those who would pass by. So they will bury Gog there with all his horde, and they will call it the valley of Hamon-gog.:

On that day (Ezek 38:10, 14, 18, 19, 39:11) - This is the day Gog is defeated supernaturally.

It will block off those who would pass by - God is saying that mopping up the remains of weapons and warriors will be so massive, it will literally cut off the flow of traffic in this area! The New Living Translation (which I find very helpful after I study a more literal translation like NAS or ESV) says...

And I will make a vast graveyard for Gog and his hordes in the Valley of the Travelers, east of the Dead Sea. The path of those who travel there will be blocked by this burial ground, and they will change the name of the place to the Valley of Gog's Hordes.

HCSB - The name of the valley will be changed to the Valley of Hamon-gog. The only major valley that ran in an east-west direction in Israel was the Jezreel Valley, a vital strategic link on the route from Egypt to Damascus in biblical times.

The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge suggests (although this is somewhat speculative) that this roadway is "Probably the valley near the Sea of Gennesaret (See map of Gennesaret), as the Targum renders, and so called because it was the great road by which the merchants and traders from Syria and other Eastern countries went into Egypt. Perhaps what is now called the plains of Haouran, south of Damascus."

Hamon-Gog (note) - This means "The Multitude of Gog." (Also in Ezek 39:16).

Ezekiel 39:12 "For seven months the house of Israel will be burying them in order to cleanse the Land .

For seven months - Stop for a moment and ponder what God is saying. There will be such overwhelming destruction of human lives that it will take seven months to bury the bodies of the slain! Not to mention the seven years worth of enemy weapons!

Cleanse - See Nu 19:16 Dt 21:23

HCSB - Because corpses were considered unclean (Lev 21:1,11; 22:4; Num 5:2; 6:6-12; 31:19), the Mosaic law required all humans to be given a proper burial (Dt 21:22-23). Numbers 19:11-22 explains not only the contaminating effects of a corpse but also the process by which a person so defiled could be ceremonially cleansed.

The land (Erets) - The Promised Land. Israel. God's land ("My land" - Ezek 38:16) It is notable that Israel is NEVER called "Palestine" in the Bible. Other names of "the Land" include "Canaan" and "the land of Israel."

The Land - This specific phrase 12x in 12v - Ezek 38:2, 8, 9, 11, 16, 18, 19; 39:12, 13, 14, 15, 16 and all but Ezek 38:2 refer to the Land of Israel.

Ezekiel 39:13 "Even all the people of the Land will bury them; and it will be to their renown on the day that I glorify Myself," declares the Lord GOD.:

Someone has tried to calculate seven months worth of bodies! They estimated that if one person buried two bodies a day the total of enemy bodies would likely have been in the millions.

KJV Bible Commentary - This gruesome task would appear to have a very sobering influence spiritually. No doubt it will prove to be one of the means of leading Israel, as well as the Gentiles, to repentance and faith in the Lord.

Ezekiel 39:14 "They will set apart men who will constantly pass through the Land , burying those who were passing through, even those left on the surface of the ground, in order to cleanse it. At the end of seven months they will make a search.:

Ryrie - A group of investigators will be appointed to finish the work of removing the bones (v14), and ordinary people will also help (v15).

Ezekiel 39:15 "As those who pass through the Land pass through and anyone sees a man's bone, then he will set up a marker by it until the buriers have buried it in the valley of Hamon-gog.:

A man's bone - After several days the flesh of the dead bodies would have begun to decay and predators scavenged the remains (Ezek 39:4) leaving nothing but skeletons.

Ezekiel 39:16 "And even the name of the city will be Hamonah. So they will cleanse the Land ."':

Hamon - This means "The Multitude." (see Ezek 39:16).

Ezekiel 39:17 "As for you, son of man, thus says the Lord GOD, 'Speak to every kind of bird and to every beast of the field, "Assemble and come, gather from every side to My sacrifice which I am going to sacrifice for you, as a great sacrifice on the mountains of Israel, that you may eat flesh and drink blood.:

Carnivorous birds and beasts consume the flesh of the fallen enemy. Ezekiel (son of man) is to address the carnivores directly (Ezek 39:17-20)

My sacrifice - The beastly predators will eat the human predators. The image is of a sacrificial meal. And what is especially noteworthy is that the carnivores will eat fat (Ezek 39:19) and drink blood (mentioned 3 times for emphasis - Ezek 39:17, 18, 19!), elements which were reserved exclusively for the Lord when the Hebrews made animal sacrifices (Lev 3:17).

Garland (commenting on Rev 19:18) observes - Normally, men are to offer up animals in sacrifice to God. Here, as when God judges Gog on the mountains of Israel, He reverses the normal roles and offers up men as a sacrifice to animals (Eze. 39:17-20 cf. Isa. 34:6-7). Goliath threatened David, “Come to me, and I will give your flesh to the birds of the air and the beasts of the field!” (1Sa 17:44). David replied, “This day I will give the carcasses of the camp of the Philistines to the birds of the air and the wild beasts of the earth, that all the earth may know that there is a God in Israel” (1Sa 17:46).

We see a similar description in Revelation 19...

Rev 19:17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun; and he cried out with a loud voice, saying to all the birds which fly in mid-heaven, "Come, assemble for the great supper of God; 18 in order that you may eat the flesh of kings and the flesh of commanders and the flesh of mighty men and the flesh of horses and of those who sit on them and the flesh of all men, both free men and slaves, and small and great."...21 And the rest were killed with the sword which came from the mouth of Him who sat upon the horse, and all the birds were filled with their flesh. (Revelation 19:17-18, 21-notes).

Comment: The repetition of the word flesh, occurring five times over, flesh, flesh, is very revealing. The race has walked in carnal enmity against God, living after the flesh, and now the day of His patience is at an end (Donald Barnhouse).

The most graphic portrayal of Christ’s second coming is found in Revelation 19:11-21. In this extended passage Jesus Christ is described as leading a procession of angels and saints or armies in heaven to claim the earth, destroy the armies of the world, and defeat the Antichrist and False Prophet. This passage shows that Christ’s return will be one that entails great physical destruction and many deaths. For those who are not Christ’s own, it will be a terrifying and terrible event. For those of us who know Him as Savior, it will be a time of great joy, vindication, and anticipation. . . . Let us remember that for the believer this present life on Earth is the worst things will ever be for us. But, for the unbeliever, this present life will be the best they will ever experience. (Thomas Ice)

People may indulge their unbelief and passions during these days of forbearance and grace, and see no disadvantages growing out of it. They may be angry at our earnestness, and account us croakers and fools when we put before them the demands and threatenings of the Almighty. But “woe to him that striveth with his Maker!” There is a deluge of bottled fury yet to be poured out on them that refuse to know God, and on the families that call not on his name, from which there is no escape, and from whose burning and tempestuous surges there is no deliverance. God help us to be wise, that we come not into that sea of death! (Seiss)

Ezekiel 39:18 "You will eat the flesh of mighty men and drink the blood of the princes of the earth, as though they were rams, lambs, goats and bulls, all of them fatlings of Bashan.:

NLT: Eat the flesh of mighty men and drink the blood of princes as though they were rams, lambs, goats, and fat young bulls of Bashan!

See comments on Ezekiel 39:17. This is still addressed to the carnivores.

HCSB - The mention of the fattened bulls of Bashan is further confirmation that this is the Lord's sacrificial feast because fat and blood were normally reserved for Him (Ezek 44:15; Lev 3:17). Bashan, east and northeast of the Sea of Galilee, was famous for its fertile land and fat cows (Dt 32:14; Ps 22:12; Am 4:1). (Holman Christian Study Bible - Type in Scripture - under Study Bible click "Read" for full note - very nice!)

Ezekiel 39:19 "So you will eat fat until you are glutted, and drink blood until you are drunk, from My sacrifice which I have sacrificed for you.:

NLT: Gorge yourselves with flesh until you are glutted; drink blood until you are drunk. This is the sacrificial feast I have prepared for you.

See comments on Ezekiel 39:17. This is still addressed to the carnivores.

Ezekiel 39:20 "You will be glutted at My table with horses and charioteers, with mighty men and all the men of war," declares the Lord GOD.:

NLT: Feast at my banquet table--feast on horses, riders, and valiant warriors, says the Sovereign LORD.

See comments on Ezekiel 39:17. This is still addressed to the carnivores.

HCSB - In standard sacrificial practices, the human worshiper slaughtered an animal before the Lord and partook of the food. For this present feast, the Lord will slaughter humans, and animals will devour their bodies, in contrast to the standard sacrificial procedure and the future banquet meal that Israel will celebrate on Mount Zion (Isa 25:6-10). The feasting of wild animals and birds recalls the threatened covenant curse (Lev 26:22; Dt 28:26). Although humans were to have dominion over nature, in their pursuit of evil they become victims of the natural order.

Ezekiel 39:21 "And I will set My glory among the nations; and all the nations will see My judgment which I have executed and My hand which I have laid on them.:

Set (nathan) - put, give

My glory among the nations - "Glory" in Hebrew speaks of that which is heavy or weighty, a good word picture of the omnipotent God, Who indeed is "weighty!" The corresponding Greek word (used in this verse for the Hebrew noun kabod) is doxa, which in simple terms speaks of that which gives a proper opinion of something or someone, in this case of God. In other words, God's "glory" will give to the nations a proper opinion of His character, His person, His attributes as seen in the Glorious One, the Messiah, Who Himself will reign on earth. Hallelujah! Maranatha!

My judgment - In context this refers to the defeat of Gog. As discussed these events at the end of Ezekiel 38-39 are such that they strongly suggest that they take place at the very end of this present age and are terminated by the return of the Messiah in glory to take up His glorious throne in Jerusalem for all the nations to behold.

All the nations will see My judgment - This certainly could be at the end of the Daniel's Seventieth Week - The Seven Year Period often referred to as the "Tribulation." At that time the King of kings returns (Rev 19:16-note) in great glory to take up His throne over Israel and all the nations of the world.

ISRAEL'S RESTORATION
Ezekiel 39:21-29

Rosenberg feels that this description "gives us indications that the greatest spiritual awakening in human history will set into motion."

Ezekiel 39:22 "And the house of Israel will know that I am the LORD their God from that day onward.:

Will know that I am the LORD - Unless the LORD God opened the eyes of our heart none of us could know Him as Jehovah! So here we see His Spirit promises to open Israel's heart to see and know and love the LORD as their personal God. This will happen in the day when they repent (which is also a gift - cp Ro 2:4) and believe in their long awaited Messiah (cp Ro 11:26-27-note)

Their God - This is covenant terminology for in the prophecy of Jeremiah Jehovah promises...

this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days (at the end of Daniel's Seventieth Week)," declares the LORD, "I will put My law within them, and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." (Jer 31:33-note)

From that day onward - What day?

Know (yada; Lxx uses ginosko = know by experience) means the nations will know by observing and reflecting (thinking) and by experiencing these events - they will come to see and understand God is the One and Only Living and True God. This "revelation" of His character to the entire world suggests that this is at the end of this age and at the dawn of the "new age" of the Millennium, which would place these events in the last 7 years (Daniel's Seventieth Week - The Seven Year Period). This is of course not meant to be a dogmatic statement, but is presented for you to ponder.

Will know that I am the LORD - most in Ezekiel - 59x in 59v in NAS - Ex 14:4, 18; Isa 49:23; Ezek 6:7, 10, 13, 14; 7:4, 27; 11:12; 12:15, 20; 13:14, 21, 23; 14:8; 15:7; 17:24; 20:38, 42, 44; 22:16; 23:49; 24:24, 27; 25:5, 7, 11, 17; 26:6; 28:22-24, 26; 29:6, 9, 16, 21; 30:8, 19, 25-26; 33:29; 34:27; 35:4, 9, 15; 36:11, 23, 38; 37:6, 13, 28; 38:23; 39:6-7, 22, 28; Joel 3:17

Ezekiel 39:23 "The nations will know that the house of Israel went into exile for their iniquity because they acted treacherously against Me, and I hid My face from them; so I gave them into the hand of their adversaries, and all of them fell by the sword.:

The nations will know - God does not try to hide the sins of His people, but even His hand of discipline is a testimony to His justice and holiness and impartiality.

I gave them into the hand of their adversaries - Indeed, over the centuries the Jews have been subjected to punishment and death by a host of adversaries, most dramatically in Hitler's Holocaust of the Jewish people.

Hid My face - This speaks of His presence and ultimately of communion with Him. In Isaiah we have parallel passages...

"In an outburst of anger I hid My face from you for a moment; But with everlasting lovingkindness I will have compassion on you," Says the LORD your Redeemer. (Isaiah 54:8, cp Isaiah 8:17, Isa 45:15)

"Because of the iniquity of his unjust gain ("covetousness" = KJV; "sinful greed" = NIV) I was angry and struck him; I hid My face and was angry, And he went on turning away ("backsliding" - ESV), in the way of his heart. (Isa 57:17)

Comment: At the heart of idolatry is covetousness (Ep 5:3 Col 3:5). An inordinate desire to possess and control is at the root of our refusal to submit ourselves to God in trust and obedience. Frequently, such self-centered desires are the cause of backsliding, as well (Lk 8:13, 14).

So - The idea is "therefore" a term of conclusion. Based on their iniquity and their treacherous actions which resulted in broken fellowship, Israel was severely disciplined.

Gave up (05414) (nathan; Lxx uses paradidomi = give over to the power of another)

Ezekiel 39:24 "According to their uncleanness and according to their transgressions I dealt with them, and I hid My face from them."' ":

Uncleanness (02932) (tumah from tame = to be or become unclean) means filthy, impurity such as ceremonial uncleanness for a violation of a standard of the covenant (Lev 5:3; 16:16). It is used to refer to the sexual impurity of a woman during the menstrual cycle (Lev 18:19, Num. 5:19; Lam. 1:9). It can refer to dross, foreign particle in a physical mass of metal (Eze 24:11). "It can also denote any unclean thing from which the temple needed to be purified (2 Chr. 29:16). Finally, both ethical and religious uncleanness were dealt with: in the laws referring to proper behavior (Lev. 16:16); and in the heart, referring to an unclean spirit that causes one to lie (Ezek. 24:13)." (Baker)

NAS translates tumah as filthiness(4), impure(2), impurities(3), impurity(3), unclean(1), unclean thing(3), uncleanness(20). The Lxx uses akatharsia for tumah in Ezek 39:24.

Tumah - 31v -

Lev 5:3; 7:20-21; Lev 14:19; 15:3, 25-26, 30-31; 16:16, 19; Lev 18:19; 22:3, 5; Num 5:19; 19:13; Jdg 13:7, 14; 2 Sam 11:4; 2Chr 29:16; Ezra 6:21; 9:11; Lam 1:9; Ezek 22:15; 24:11, 13; 36:17, 25, 29; 39:24; Zech 13:2.

Ezek 22:15 “And I shall scatter you among the nations, and I shall disperse you through the lands, and I shall consume your uncleanness (Lxx uses akatharsia = physical uncleanness in Mt 23:27, moral uncleanness or corruption, especially sexual sins and used with porneia - Gal 5:19-note, Col 3:5-note, Eph 5:3-note) from you.

Ezek 24:13 “In your filthiness (Lxx uses miaino - means to stain and figuratively to defile) is lewdness. Because I would have cleansed you, Yet you are not clean, You will not be cleansed from your filthiness again, Until I have spent My wrath on you.

Ezek 36:17 “Son of man, when the house of Israel was living in their own land, they defiled it by their ways and their deeds; their way before Me was like the uncleanness of a woman in her impurity.

Ezek 36:25 “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness (Lxx uses akatharsia) and from all your idols.

Comment: Filthiness, especially of the immoral variety, and idolatry are repeatedly linked together in Scriptures. When we begin to worship other "gods," we lose a proper respect and fear of God, and seek to gratify self rather than please God.

HCSB - The image of God hiding His face, turning away from Israel and choosing not to help them, also appears in Dt 31:17-18; Ps 13:1-2.

Ezekiel 39:25 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, "Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel; and I will be jealous for My holy name.:

KJV Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Now will I bring again the captivity of Jacob, and have mercy upon the whole house of Israel, and will be jealous for my holy name;

NET "Therefore this is what the sovereign LORD says: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob, and I will have mercy on the entire house of Israel. I will be zealous for my holy name.

ESV "Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Now I will restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel, and I will be jealous for my holy name.

NIV "Therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will now bring Jacob back from captivity and will have compassion on all the people of Israel, and I will be zealous for my holy name.

NLT "So now, this is what the Sovereign LORD says: I will end the captivity of my people; I will have mercy on all Israel, for I jealously guard my holy reputation!

YLT Therefore, thus said the Lord Jehovah: Now do I bring back the captivity of Jacob, And I have pitied all the house of Israel, And have been zealous for My holy name.

RESTORATION OF THE FORTUNES
OF THE NATION OF ISRAEL

Therefore - Therefore is a term of conclusion, and should always prompt us to pause and ponder the text, asking at least "What's it there for?" "What is being concluded?" "Why now?" "Who is involved?", etc.

Restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel - Note that the mention of the Southern and Northern divisions of the nation of Israel is strong support for this prophecy referring to a time yet future. While Israel was re-born in May, 1948, that rebirth does not fulfill the restoration of Israel's fortunes which awaits the return of her Messiah when "all Israel (all that believe in Jesus = the remnant) will be save." (Ro 11:26-note).

Restore the fortunes = “turning back the captivity” or “turning back the turning”.

Charles Feinberg (in his comments on Jeremiah 30-note) on restore the fortunes - I will bring back from captivity - This sense accords well with the theme of Jeremiah 30-33. However, there are instances - e.g., Job 42:10 (with regard to his misfortunes); Ezek 16:53 (a prediction concerning Sodom) where captivity is not in view. In such eases a derived meaning such as reverse or restore the fortunes fits well. (Expositor's Bible Commentary, 1984 edition)

The NET Note explains the Hebrew idiom restore your fortunes noting first that it can also be translated "I will bring you back from exile.” This idiom occurs twenty-six times in the OT and in several cases it is clearly not referring to return from exile but restoration of fortunes (e.g., Job 42:10; Hos 6:11–7:1; Jer 33:11). It is often followed as here by “regather” or “bring back” (e.g., Jer 30:3; Ezek 29:14) so it is often misunderstood as “bringing back the exiles.” The versions (LXX, Vulg., Tg., Pesh.) often translate the idiom as “to go away into captivity,” deriving the noun from שְׁבִי (shévi, “captivity”). However, the use of this expression in Old Aramaic documents of Sefire parallels the biblical idiom: “the gods restored the fortunes of the house of my father again” (J. A. Fitzmyer, The Aramaic Inscriptions of Sefire [BibOr], 100–101, 119–20). The idiom means “to turn someone’s fortune, bring about change” or “to reestablish as it was” (HALOT 1386 s.v. 3.c). In Ezek 16:53 it is paralleled by the expression “to restore the situation which prevailed earlier.” This amounts to restitutio in integrum, which is applicable to the circumstances surrounding the return of the exiles. (NOTES on Jeremiah 29)

Restore (turn back) (07725)(shub/sub) describes movement back to a point of departure.

In Ezekiel 39:25 shub is translated in the Septuagint (Lxx) with apostrepho which means to cause to turn from incorrect to correct behavior and so to turn back or to change one's belief or behavior. It is also noteworthy that apostrepho is the very verb Paul used to describe the time of national restoration of Israel in Romans writing " thus all Israel will be saved; just as it is written, “THE DELIVERER WILL COME FROM ZION, HE WILL REMOVE (apostrepho) UNGODLINESS FROM JACOB.” (Ro 11:26-note ).

Shub is used in Ps 23:3 when David declared that it is the Good Shepherd Who "restores (Lxx = epistrepho) my soul." Similarly in Ps 19:7 he declared that it is "law of the LORD (which) is perfect, restoring (Lxx = epistrepho) the soul." The Hebrew word shub combines two requisites of repentance - a turn from evil and a turn to good. Shub conveys the idea of a radical change in one's attitude toward sin. It Implies a conscious moral separation and personal decision to forsake sin and enter fellowship with God. We see a striking example in Nineveh in Jonah 3:8 ("turn from his wicked way" = Lxx = apostrepho, same verb used here in Jer 30:3).

The phrase "restore your fortunes" is a Hebrew idiom (2 Hebrew words = shub shebuth - see NET Note above) found over 20 times in the OT. In every usage Jehovah is the Subject, the One doing or carrying out the restoration. The recipient of the restoration is most often Israel (and Judah), but other recipients of restoration include Job, Moab, Ammon, Elam and Egypt.

Deuteronomy 30:3 then the LORD your God will restore you from captivity, and have compassion on you, and will gather you again from all the peoples where the LORD your God has scattered you.

Job 42:10 And the LORD restored the fortunes of Job when he prayed for his friends, and the LORD increased all that Job had twofold.

Psalm 14:7 Oh, that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion! When the LORD restores His captive people, Jacob will rejoice, Israel will be glad.

Psalm 53:6 Oh, that the salvation of Israel would come out of Zion! When God restores His captive people, Let Jacob rejoice, let Israel be glad.

Psalm 85:1 For the choir director. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. O Lord, Thou didst show favor to Thy land; Thou didst restore the captivity of Jacob.

Psalm 126:1 A Song of Ascents. When the LORD brought back the captive ones of Zion, We were like those who dream.

Psalm 126:4 Restore our captivity, O LORD, As the streams in the South.

Jeremiah 29:14 (Read the preceding context Jer 29:11-13) ‘And I will be found by you,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will restore your fortunes and will gather you from all the nations and from all the places where I have driven you,’ declares the LORD, ‘and I will bring you back to the place from where I sent you into exile.’

MacArthur - The Lord would answer their prayer, by returning the Jews to their land, cf. Daniel’s example and God’s response (Da 9:4–27). Fulfillment would occur in the era of Ezra and Nehemiah, and beyond this in even fuller measure after the Second Advent of their Messiah (cf. Da 2:35, 45; 7:13, 14, 27; 12:1–3, 13).

Jeremiah 30:3-note ‘For, behold, days are coming,’ declares the LORD, ‘when I will restore the fortunes of My people Israel and Judah.’ The LORD says, ‘I will also bring them back to the land that I gave to their forefathers, and they shall possess it.’”

Jeremiah 30:18-note “Thus says the LORD, ‘Behold, I will restore the fortunes of the tents of Jacob And have compassion on his dwelling places; And the city shall be rebuilt on its ruin, And the palace shall stand on its rightful place.

Jeremiah 31:23-note Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, “Once again they will speak this word in the land of Judah and in its cities, when I restore their fortunes, ‘The LORD bless you, O abode of righteousness, O holy hill!’

Jeremiah 32:44-note 'Men will buy fields for money, sign and seal deeds, and call in witnesses in the land of Benjamin, in the environs of Jerusalem, in the cities of Judah, in the cities of the hill country, in the cities of the lowland and in the cities of the Negev; for I will restore their fortunes,' declares the LORD."

Jeremiah 33:7-note 'I will restore the fortunes of Judah and the fortunes of Israel and will rebuild them as they were at first.

Jeremiah 33:11-note the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the voice of those who say, “Give thanks to the LORD of hosts, For the LORD is good, For His lovingkindness is everlasting”; and of those who bring a thank offering into the house of the LORD. For I will restore the fortunes of the land as they were at first,’ says the LORD.

Jeremiah 33:26-note then I would reject the descendants of Jacob and David My servant, not taking from his descendants rulers over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. But I will restore their fortunes and will have mercy on them.'"

Jeremiah 48:47 “Yet I will restore the fortunes of Moab In the latter days,” declares the LORD. Thus far the judgment on Moab.

Jeremiah 49:6 “But afterward I will restore The fortunes of the sons of Ammon,” Declares the LORD.

Jeremiah 49:39 ‘But it will come about in the last days That I shall restore the fortunes of Elam,’” Declares the LORD.

Lamentations 2:14 Your prophets have seen for you False and foolish visions; And they have not exposed your iniquity So as to restore you from captivity, But they have seen for you false and misleading oracles.

Ezekiel 16:53-note “Nevertheless, I will restore their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and her daughters, the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, and along with them your own captivity,

Ezekiel 29:14 “And I shall turn the fortunes of Egypt and shall make them return to the land of Pathros, to the land of their origin; and there they will be a lowly kingdom.

Ezekiel 39:25-note Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, “Now I shall restore the fortunes of Jacob, and have mercy on the whole house of Israel; and I shall be jealous for My holy name.

Hosea 6:11 Also, O Judah, there is a harvest appointed for you, When I restore the fortunes of My people.

Joel 3:1-note “For behold, in those days and at that time, When I restore the fortunes of Judah and Jerusalem,

Amos 9:14 “Also I will restore the captivity of My people Israel, And they will rebuild the ruined cities and live in them, They will also plant vineyards and drink their wine, And make gardens and eat their fruit.

Zephaniah 2:7 And the coast will be For the remnant of the house of Judah, They will pasture on it. In the houses of Ashkelon they will lie down at evening; For the LORD their God will care for them And restore their fortune.

Zephaniah 3:20-note “At that time I will bring you in, Even at the time when I gather you together; Indeed, I will give you renown and praise Among all the peoples of the earth, When I restore your fortunes before your eyes,” Says the LORD.

David Guzik - As this prophecy develops it seems clear that this return from captivity is later and greater than the relatively soon return from the Babylonian exile. This is especially indicated by the last words of this chapter, which tell us that in the latter days you will consider it (Jeremiah 30:24-note). Jeremiah here looked beyond his present day and near future to see the latter days. (Jeremiah 30 Commentary)

Fortunes (07622) (shebuth from shabah = to take captive but some think it originates from shub = to return, restore) is a feminine noun which has two main meanings in the OT, (1) captivity, captives (esp Nu 21:29 referring to Moab), implying control and oppression and (2) fortunes, assets (primarily possessions, materials, and property though not exclusively so which will make life easier and more secure). One could see how both senses are meant in some passages because to restore someone from captivity is tantamount to bringing them into a place of good fortune.

Baker - This word conveys either a state of exile, such as being taken for a spoil of war, or the subjects of such captivity. The chief use was in declaring the liberating power of the Lord in releasing His people from such banishment (Deut. 30:3; Jer. 33:7; Hos. 6:11).

Shebuth - 28 verses (all except Nu 21:29 are listed above under discussion of the Hebrew idion "restore fortunes") - Nu 21:29; Dt 30:3; Job 42:10; Ps 14:7; 53:6; 85:1; 126:1, 4; Jer 29:14; 30:3, 18; 31:23; 32:44; 33:7, 11, 26; 48:47; 49:6, 39; Lam 2:14; Ezek 16:53; 29:14; 39:25; Hos 6:11; Joel 3:1; Amos 9:14; Zeph 2:7; 3:20

Ezekiel 39:26 "They will forget their disgrace and all their treachery which they perpetrated against Me, when they live securely on their own land with no one to make them afraid.:

Note the different interpretation you make when you read the following translations...

HCSB - They will feel remorse for their disgrace and all the unfaithfulness they committed against Me, when they live securely in their land with no one to frighten them.

NET - They will bear their shame for all their unfaithful acts against me, when they live securely on their land with no one to make them afraid.

NLT - They will accept responsibility for their past shame and unfaithfulness after they come home to live in peace in their own land, with no one to bother them.

Comment: The Lxx tends to support these translations rendering the Greek as "they themselves shall bear their reproach." In Zechariah 12:10-note God says "And I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him, like the bitter weeping over a first-born." So clearly the believing remnant of Israel will sense remorse when they see their Messiah face to face.

Disgrace (03639)(kelimmah from kalam to wound, to make ashamed, to humiliate or be humiliated) is a feminine noun which refers to disgrace, shame, humiliation, embarrassment, insult, reproach, ignominy. This word is especially concentrated in the book of Ezekiel (12/29x). The root verb kalam denotes the sense of disgrace which attends public humiliation.

The Septuagint (Lxx) translates kelimmah here in Ezekiel 39:26 with the Greek noun atimia with means dishonor, disgrace, shame (1Cor 11:14). Atimia was "a disaster in Greco-Roman society, in which civic-minded persons placed a high premium on honor (time) and enjoyment of repute." (BDAG)

Webster says shame is a painful emotion caused by consciousness of guilt, shortcoming, or impropriety. Shame is a painful sensation excited by a consciousness of guilt, or of having done something which injures reputation; or by the exposure of that which nature or modesty prompts us to conceal. Shame is particularly excited by the disclosure of actions which, in the view of men, are mean and degrading. Hence it is often or always manifested by a downcast look or by blushes, called confusion of face.

Disgrace is a state or condition of suffering loss of esteem and of enduring reproach. It often implies humiliation and sometimes ostracism.

Kelimmah - 29x - NAS translates as - disgrace(8), dishonor(6), humiliation(7), insults(5), reproach(1), reproaches(1), shame(2).

Job 20:3; Ps 4:2; Ps 35:26; 44:15; 69:7, 19; 71:13; 109:29; Pr 18:13 (Speaking without listening produces shame); Isa 30:3; 45:16; 50:6; 61:7; Jer 3:25; 20:11; 51:51; Ezek 16:52, 54, 63; 32:24-25, 30; 34:29; 36:6-7, 15; 39:26; 44:13; Mic 2:6.

Here are some examples of this word...

Ps 4:2 O sons of men, how long will my honor become a reproach (Lxx uses a rare word = barukardios = slow of heart)? How long will you love what is worthless and aim at deception? Selah.

Isaiah 50:6 (Messiah, the Suffering Servant speaking) I gave My back to those who strike Me, And My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard; I did not cover My face from humiliation (Lxx = aischune = shame, disgrace, embarrassment) and spitting.

Treachery (04604) (maal from the verb maal = to act unfaithfully or treacherously, to violate a legal obligation) is a masculine noun which refers to an unfaithful (not adhering to vows, allegiance, or duty) act, a violation of allegiance (the fidelity owed by a subject to his or her Sovereign God) or of faith and confidence. Most uses of maal reflect violations are against Jehovah (exception = Job 21:34). The NAS translates maal as falsehood (1), treachery (2), trespass (1), trespass* (1), unfaithful (3), unfaithful act (4), unfaithful deeds (1), unfaithfully (6), unfaithfulness (6), very unfaithful (1).

The Septuagint (Lxx) translates maal here in Ezekiel 39:26 with the Greek noun adikia, which depicts a condition that is not right, whether with God, according to the standard of His holiness and righteousness or with man, according to the standard of what man knows to be right by his conscience. In secular Greek adikia referred to unjust acts, or to deeds which caused personal injury. Rather than a general concept of injustice, this word was taken, in the writings of Plato, to mean an unjust act which injures a specific person. Such an act was not necessarily a violation of some specific law, but rather an affront against the just order of society. Among the acts which fell into this category were theft, fraud, and sexual crimes. Later this word came to mean a neglect of duty toward the pagan gods. The Septuagint (Lxx) used this word to describe social sins, those deeds which violated human relations or the political order of society. Among these injustices were deceit, fraud, and lying. "Adikia is the precise opposite of dikaiosune (righteousness), which means justice" (Barclay)

Treachery is that which is untrue to what should command one’s fidelity or allegiance (in this case fidelity to God alone). Furthermore, treachery implies a readiness to betray trust or confidence. Webster's 1828 edition adds "The man who betrays his country in any manner, violates his allegiance, arid is guilty of treachery. This is treason. The man who violates his faith pledged to his friend, or betrays a trust in which a promise of fidelity is implied, is guilty of treachery. The disclosure of a secret committed to one in confidence, is treachery. This is perfidy."

Swanson - 1. sin, disobedience, i.e., a violation of a standard and so incurring guilt, with a focus on not being steadfast and faithful to a person in a committed relationship (Lev 5:15, 6:2); 2. active voice of adultery, unfaithfulness, i.e., the active voice of a married person having sex with one who is not the partner, with a focus on the breaking of the relationship based on that act. (Nu 5:12) (A Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains- Hebrew)

Maal - 26x -

Lev 5:15; 6:2; Num 5:6, 12, 27; 31:16; Josh 7:1; 22:16, 20, 22, 31; 1Chr 9:1; 10:13; 2Chr 28:19; 29:19; 33:19; 36:14; Ezra 9:2, 4; 10:6; Job 21:34; Ezek 15:8; 17:20; Ezek 18:24; 39:26; Da 9:7

As noted maal is in essence a "description" of sin (missing the mark) in Leviticus...

Lev 5:15 “If a person acts unfaithfully and sins unintentionally against the LORD’S holy things, then he shall bring his guilt offering to the LORD: a ram without defect from the flock, according to your valuation in silver by shekels, in terms of the shekel of the sanctuary, for a guilt offering.

Lev 6:2 “When a person sins and acts unfaithfully against the LORD, and deceives his companion in regard to a deposit or a security entrusted to him, or through robbery, or if he has extorted from his companion,

Israel's unfaithfulness (they chose despicable, lifeless idols and licentious, flesh pleasing worship in lieu of worship of the Most High God!) caused God to remove them from His Land...

Ezek 15:8‘Thus I will make the land desolate, because they have acted unfaithfully,’” declares the Lord GOD.

Ezek 17:20 “And I will spread My net over him, and he will be caught in My snare. Then I will bring him to Babylon and enter into judgment with him there regarding the unfaithful act which he has committed against Me.

The post-exilic writings of Ezra also remind Israel of her base treachery...

Ezra 9:2 “For they have taken some of their daughters as wives for themselves and for their sons, so that the holy race has intermingled with the peoples of the lands; indeed, the hands of the princes and the rulers have been foremost in this unfaithfulness.”

Ezra 9:4 Then everyone who trembled at the words of the God of Israel on account of the unfaithfulness of the exiles gathered to me, and I sat appalled until the evening offering.

When (expression of time) - When is "when?" This must refer to the Millennium, for that is the only time when Israel will live securely on their own land. God finally fully fulfills His covenant promise to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob to give them "the Land" (the "Promised Land") which He promised to them (cf Ge 12:7, 13:15, 17, 15:18, to Isaac = Ge 26:4, to Jacob = Ge 35:12, et al)

Ezekiel 39:27 "When I bring them back from the peoples and gather them from the lands of their enemies, then I shall be sanctified through them in the sight of the many nations.:

When...then - These are both expressions of time and as discussed below would seem to point to the time of the Second Coming when Jesus fulfills all the covenant promises to the nation of Israel (This will be a final, clear refutation to the current widespread teaching of "Replacement Theology"!)

Ezekiel 39:28 "Then they will know that I am the LORD their God because I made them go into exile among the nations, and then gathered them again to their own land; and I will leave none of them there any longer.:

Then - This word is an important expression of time, especially in prophetic passages where it serves to marks what is next in order of time. The idea is often soon afterward. After that. In the present context it is after .

Know (yada; Lxx uses ginosko = know by experience) means the nations will know by observing and reflecting (thinking) and by experiencing these events - they will come to see and understand God is the One and Only Living and True God. This "revelation" of His character to the entire world suggests that this is at the end of this age and at the dawn of the "new age" of the Millennium, which would place these events in the last 7 years (Daniel's Seventieth Week - The Seven Year Period). This is of course not meant to be a dogmatic statement, but is presented for you to ponder.

Ezekiel 39:29 "I will not hide My face from them any longer, for I will have poured out My Spirit on the house of Israel," declares the Lord GOD.:

I will not hide My face from them any longer - The Jews will see their Messiah face to face. When? This certainly seems to correspond to His Second Coming when as Paul puts it in Romans writing...

And thus all Israel will be saved (sozo) ("All" living at that time who place their faith in the Messiah); just as it is written, “THE DELIVERER (rhuomai) WILL COME FROM ZION, HE WILL REMOVE (apostrepho) UNGODLINESS (asebeia) FROM JACOB.” 27 “AND THIS IS MY COVENANT (diatheke) WITH THEM, WHEN I TAKE AWAY (aphaireo) THEIR SINS.” (Ro 11:26-27-note)

Why will Jesus not hide His face from them any longer? Because He desires for them to know Him and His salvation. And then He explains (remember to look for and interrogate the "for" when it is used as a term of explanation) how this is even possible.

For I will have poured out My Spirit on the house of Israel (cp Isa 32:15, 44:3-5, 59:20,21, Joel 2:28-note) - This long-promised regeneration of the nation of Israel by the Holy Spirit will take place only when the nation accepts Jesus as her Messiah, repenting and mourning over their twenty-century rejection of Him.

Ezek 36:25 “Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you will be clean; I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. 26 “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. 27 “And I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.

Block writes that "This, the only occurrence of the notion of "pouring the divine Spirit on" someone in Ezekiel."

The prophet Zechariah foretold of this day in Zechariah 12-14 (which should be read as a unit for this refers to the same event, the return of the Messiah) (See Second Coming)

Zech 12:10-note “And I will pour out (shaphak) on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him, like the bitter weeping over a first-born.

Zech 13:1-noteIn that day (when Messiah returns to defeat His enemies - ???Gog) a fountain will be opened for the house of David and for the inhabitants of Jerusalem, for sin and for impurity.

The full return and salvation of Israel occurs when Christ descends to the earth in triumph (Eze 39:25-29; Zec 14:4,9; Ro 11:26,27; Mt 24:27-31; Rev 19:11-21).

Earlier God had used shaphak of His wrath...

Ezek 7:8 ‘Now I will shortly pour out My wrath on you, and spend My anger against you, judge you according to your ways, and bring on you all your abominations.

Comment: Before the destruction of Jerusalem God had promised to "pour out" (Heb shaphak) His wrath on Israel (Ezek 7:8; 9:8; 20:13,21; 22:22; 36:18). Now in restoring His people He will pour out (Heb shaphak) His Spirit. This reference to the Spirit of God connects the passage in its entirety to chapters 36-37 with its focus on the Spirit. (HCSB)

Pour (08210)(shaphak) means to pour out literally (of fluid - Ex 4:9, Dt 12:16) or blood on the alter (Ex. 29:12; Lev. 4:7; Dt. 12:27). Shaphak describes the casting up of a mound against a city to form a siege ramp for attacking it (2 Sa 20:15; Ezek. 4:2; Da 11:15). A dependent prayer is described as the pouring out of one’s soul (1Sa 1:15; Ps. 42:4), one’s heart (Ps. 62:8; Lam 2:19); or one’s inner parts before the Lord (Lam 2:11).

God poured out both His wrath (Ps. 69:24; Isa. 42:25; Jer. 6:11; Hos. 5:10); and His Spirit and grace on people...

Joel 2:28-29-note (THIS OUTPOURING WILL BE FULFILLED IN THE MILLENNIUM) “It will come about after this That I will pour out My Spirit on all mankind; And your sons and daughters will prophesy, Your old men will dream dreams, Your young men will see visions.  29 “Even on the male and female servants I will pour out My Spirit in those days.

Zech 12:10-note (THIS OUTPOURING WILL BE FULFILLED JUST BEFORE THE MILLENNIUM) “I will pour out on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem, the Spirit of grace and of supplication, so that they will look on Me whom they have pierced; and they will mourn for Him, as one mourns for an only son, and they will weep bitterly over Him like the bitter weeping over a firstborn.

Gilbrant shāphakh has a variety of literal meanings, coming from the basic sense of "pouring a liquid," such as water (Exo. 4:9) or broth (Judg. 6:20). Many of its uses involve sacrificial blood (Exo. 29:12) and drink offerings (Isa. 57:6). Also, the term applies to the emptying of a vessel filled with dust (Lev. 14:41), ashes (1 Ki. 13:3) or dirt for siege mounds (Ezek. 4:2). Shāphakh is also used with a symbolic or metaphoric sense. Murder is said to be the pouring out of a person's blood (Lev. 17:4). The psalmist referred to intense prayer as pouring out his soul (Ps. 42:4). Joel promised that one day God's Spirit would be poured out upon people (Joel 2:28f-note). Zechariah saw a pouring out of God's grace and supplication in the time of the Messiah's appearing (Zech. 12:10-note). The most common metaphorical usage is that of God's anger being poured out upon his rebellious people (e.g., Jer. 6:11). (Complete Biblical Library Hebrew-English Dictionary)

Vine - In its first use in the OT shaphak is part of the general principle concerning the taking of human life (Gen. 9:6 - shedding of blood, cp 1Ki 2:31, esp innocent - 2Kgs. 21:16; Pr. 6:17). While it is frequently used in this sense of “shedding” or “pouring out” blood, the word is commonly used of the “pouring out” of the contents of a vessel, such as water (Ex 4:9; 1Sa 7:6), plaster or dust (Lev. 14:41), and drink offerings to false gods (Isa 57:6). In its figurative use, shaphak indicates the “pouring out” of God’s wrath (Hos 5:10), of contempt (Job 12:21), of wickedness (Jer. 14:16), and of the Spirit of God (Ezek 39:29). The psalmist describes his helpless condition in this picturesque phrase: “I am poured out like water” (Ps. 22:14, kjv; neb, “My strength drains away like water”; jb, “I am like water draining away”).

TWOT - A common idiom is the use of shāpak in connection with the building of siege ramps (2 Samuel 20:15; Isaiah 37:33; Jeremiah 6:6; Ezekiel 4:2). This usage may derive from the fact that soldier workmen carried dirt in baskets to the designated spot, then poured the dirt out. In the category of metaphoric uses, that of the outpouring of God's wrath is most frequent. Thus in Isaiah 42:25 God is depicted as pouring out on Israel the heat of his anger. The symbolism is certainly obvious but nonetheless intensely sobering, and underlies the imagery of the bowls or vials of wrath in Revelation. The expression "pour out your harlotries on every passer-by" (Ezekiel 16:15; Ezekiel 23:8) describes Israel's promiscuous idolatry. Pouring out one's heart or soul is an expression still commonly used and well understood. Lastly there is the wonderful promise of the outpouring of the Spirit of God on his people, a lavish and blessed provision on God's part of his Spirit of grace which will bring about a startling change in men's hearts, lives and condition (Joel 2:28-29-note; Zech. 12:10; Ezek 39:29

Herbert Wolf - OT The root שָׁפַךְ is the most common word for pour out. It overlaps with יָצַק but is not used of anointing with oil or of casting metal. On the other hand יָצַק never refers to shedding blood.

1. Several times שָׁפַךְ appears in contexts where eating blood is forbidden. The Israelites were commanded to drain out blood before eating the meat (Lev 17:13; Deut 12:16; 15:23). Ironically, when Moses poured out the water of the Nile, it turned into blood and was unfit to drink (Exod 4:9). Twice the vb. is used of the Israelites’ immoral liaisons with foreigners, who poured out their lust upon her (Ezek 16:15; 23:8).

2. Often שָׁפַךְ refers to bloodshed in the contexts of either murder or warfare. As early as Gen 9:6 murder is condemned on the basis that human beings are created in the image of God. To take someone’s life is to show contempt for God and to pollute the land, and atonement can be made only “by the blood of the one who shed it” (Num 35:33). Reuben urged his brothers not to shed Joseph’s blood (Gen 37:22), and Abigail warned David against taking Nabal’s life needlessly (1 Sam 25:31). Scripture distinguishes between murder and bloodshed in battle (cf. 2 Sam 3:27–29; 20:10), but as a consequence of David’s participation in warfare he could not build the temple (1 Chron 22:8; 28:3).

3. Like יָצַק, שָׁפַךְ can be used to describe the pouring out of blood at the base of the altar in connection with the sin offering (Exod 29:12; Lev 7:4, 18). Fresh water was poured over “some ashes from the burned purification offering” and sprinkled to purify an unclean person (Num 19:17). In an unusual ceremony, water was poured before the Lord by Samuel, perhaps symbolizing deep repentance and humility (1 Sam 7:6; 2 Sam 23:16 is similar but uses the vb. נָסַךְ; cf. Youngblood, EBC 3:608). In Judg 6:20 Gideon poured out broth as a kind of offering to the angel who appeared to him. Drink offerings were poured out to idols in Isa 57:6. On Mount Carmel the prophets of Baal slashed themselves with swords and spears “until their blood flowed,” in a vain attempt to rouse their god (1 Kgs 18:28).

4. The hitp. refers to the ebbing away of the lives of children during the final siege of Jerusalem (Lam 2:12). The chosen people were being “scattered” on the streets like sacred gems (Lam 4:1; cf. Job 30:16).

5. Metaphorically the vb. is used of pouring out one’s heart or soul to the Lord in earnest prayers, usually amid tears and deep discouragement. Hannah prayed for a son from the depths of her soul (1 Sam 1:15), and the people of Jerusalem cried out in agony over the destruction of their city (Lam 2:11, 19). The psalmist’s cry, “I am poured out like water,” represents a total loss of physical strength and courage in the face of intense opposition and even possible death (Ps 22:14; cf. Ps 42:4; Ps 142:2).

6. More than 10× the OT speaks of God’s pouring out his anger and wrath in judgment. God’s burning anger came like fire against Israel and its leaders as warfare came to the gates of Jerusalem (Isa 42:25; Lam 2:4). The pouring out of God’s wrath is linked with the shedding of blood (Ezek 21:31–32. In Hos 5:10 the Lord’s wrath is compared to a flood. Jeremiah declares that eventually the pagan nations will also experience God’s wrath (Jer 10:25).

7. The prophets also anticipate the day when the Lord will pour out his Spirit on Israel, restoring them from exile and showering his blessing upon them (Ezek 39:29). The messianic age is in view when the Lord pours out “a spirit (or the Spirit) of grace and supplication” on his people, and they will look on “the one they have pierced” (Zech 12:10). Joel looks ahead to the day when God will pour out his Spirit “on all people,” regardless of sex, age, or status (Joel 2:28–29-note).

8. The nom. שֶׁפֶךְ occurs only in Lev 4:12, where parts of the bull presented as a sin offering are burned outside the camp on the ash heap. (NIDOTTE 4:222-23)

Lxx uses ekcheo in Ezek 39:29 for shaphak. Ekcheo literally is used of fluids poured out (Rev 16.1), of wine spilt (Mt 9.17) of blood shed (Mt 23.35; Ro 3.15) and figuratively to pour out, shed abroad, give generously (Of the Holy Spirit - Ro 5:5, Acts 2:17, 18; 10:45; Titus 3:6; Joel 2:28, 29;-note Zech. 12:10)

Shaphak - 110v (Note 32/110 uses are in Ezekiel!) - NAS translated shaphak - cast(5), cast up a siege(1), dump(1), gushed(1), pour(34), poured(26), pouring(1), pours(5), raise(1), shed(29), shedding(5), sheds(2), slipped(1), throw(2).

Ge 9:6; 37:22; Ex 4:9; 29:12; Lev 4:7, 18, 25, 30, 34; 14:41; 17:4, 13; Num 35:33; Deut 12:16, 24, 27; 15:23; 19:10; 21:7; Jdg 6:20; 1 Sam 1:15; 7:6; 25:31; 2 Sam 20:10, 15; 1Kgs 2:31; 13:3, 5; 18:28; 2Kgs 19:32; 21:16; 24:4; 1Chr 22:8; 28:3; Job 12:21; 16:13; 30:16; Ps 22:14; 42:4; 62:8; 69:24; 73:2; 79:3, 6, 10; 106:38; 107:40; 142:2; Pr 1:16; 6:17; Isa 37:33; 42:25; 57:6; 59:7; Jer 6:6, 11; 7:6; 10:25; 14:16; 22:3, 17; Lam 2:4, 11-12, 19; 4:1, 11, 13; Ezek 4:2; Ezek 7:8; Ezek 9:8; Ezek 14:19; Ezek 16:15, 36, 38; Ezek 17:17; Ezek 18:10; Ezek 20:8, 13, 21, 33-34; Ezek 21:22,31; Ezek 22:3-4, 6, 9, 12, 22, 27, 31; Ezek 23:8, 45; Ezek 24:7; Ezek 26:8; Ezek 30:15; Ezek 33:25; Ezek 36:18; Ezek 39:29; Da 11:15; Hos 5:10; Joel 2:28-29-note; 3:19; Amos 5:8; 9:6; Zeph 1:17; 3:8; Zech 12:10.

Ezekiel 38

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