1 Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 2 Now, son of man, will you judge, will you judge the bloody city? Yes, you will show her all her abominations. 3 Then say, The Lord God says this, The city sheds blood in the midst of it, that her time may come, and makes idols against herself to defile herself. 4 You have become guilty by the blood that you have shed; and have defiled yourself in your idols that you have made; and have brought your days near, and have come to your years: therefore I have made you a reproach to the nations, and a mocking to all countries.
- The days drew near for God to end the nation because of its violence, murder, and idolatry.
- In Acts 17:24-28 we are told that God set the boundaries of the nations and the times they would exist.
- Nations in idolatry destroy themselves by behavior that is unacceptable to God.
5 Those that are near and those that are far from you will mock you, you of ill repute and in much turmoil. 6 Behold, the princes of Israel have been in you each according to their power to shed blood. 7 In you have they set light by father and mother: in the midst of you they have dealt by oppression with the foreigner: in you they have wronged the fatherless and the widow. 8 You have despised my holy things, and have profaned my sabbaths. 9 In you are men that slander to shed blood: and in you they eat on the mountains: in the midst of you they commit lewdness.
- This long list of offences the nations had committed toward God made them unfit to remain as nations.
- Slander to shed blood is illustrated by Jezebel when she had two men lie about Naboth and his sons.
- Naboth and his sons were executed as blasphemers (though innocent) so that king Ahab could have his property for an herb garden (1 Kings 21).
10 In you they have uncovered their fathers’ nakedness: in you they have humbled her that was unclean in her menstrual impurity. 11 And every one has committed abomination with his neighbor’s wife; and another has lewdly defiled his daughter in law; and another in you has humbled his sister, his father’s daughter. 12 In you have they taken gifts to shed blood; you have charged interest and increase, and you have greedily gained from your neighbors by extortion, and have forgotten me, says the Lord GOD.
- “uncovering nakedness,” ‘defiling,’ and ‘humbling’ are sex.
- ‘Gifts to shed blood’ is hiring killers, assassins.
- They were having sex with their mothers, daughter’s in law, sisters, and hiring killers to get rid of the innocent.
God will deal with their evil doings; He will consume their filthiness
13 Therefore, behold, I strike my hand at your dishonest gain that you have made, and at your bloodshed that has been in the midst of you. 14 Can your heart endure, or can your hands be strong, in the days that I deal with you? I the LORD have spoken it, and will do it. 15 And I will scatter you among the heathen, and disperse you in the countries, and will consume your filthiness out of you. 16 And you profane yourself in the sight of the nations, and you will know that I am the LORD.
- God judges like this to reform us.
- Leviticus 26:23 And if you will not be reformed by me by these things, but will walk contrary to me; 24 Then I will also walk contrary to you, and will punish you seven times more for your sins. 25 And I will bring a sword on you, that will avenge the quarrel of my covenant: and when you are gathered together within your cities, I will send the pestilence among you; and you will be delivered into the hand of the enemy.
17 And the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 18 Son of man, the house of Israel has become to me like dross: all they are brass, tin, iron, and lead, in the midst of the furnace; they are the scum of silver. 19 Therefore the Lord God says this; Because you have all become dross, behold, therefore I will gather you into the midst of Jerusalem. 20 As they gather silver, and brass, and iron, and lead, and tin, into the midst of the furnace, to blow the fire on it, to melt it; so I will gather you in my anger and in my fury, and I will leave you there, and melt you.
- God is angry because of the pain and waste that their lives caused.
- He made life to be blessed and beautiful and they have made it awful for themselves and those around them.
- Their ways lead others to eternal death.
21 Yes, I will gather you, and blow on you in the fire of my wrath, and you will be melted in the midst of it. 22 As silver is melted in the midst of the furnace, so you will be melted in the midst of it; and you will know that I, the LORD, have poured out my fury on you. 23 And the word of the LORD came to me, saying, 24 Son of man, say to her, You are the land that is not cleansed, nor rained on in the day of indignation. 25 There is a conspiracy of her prophets in the midst of it, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made many widows in the midst of it.
- They made many widows by killing their husbands.
26 Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned my 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 of it are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain. 28 And her prophets have smeared whitewash on them, seeing vanity, and divining lies to them, saying, The Lord God says this, when the LORD has not spoken.
- The pastors were saying ‘God says’ when it was really evil that was speaking.
- They didn’t give the people God’s word or show them God’s holiness or their sinfulness. Without that people will not change.
29 The people of the land have used oppression, and exercised robbery, and have wronged the poor and needy: yes, they have oppressed the foreigner wrongfully. 30 And I sought for a man among them, to make up the hedge, and stand in the gap before me for the land, that I not destroy it: but I found none.
31 Therefore I have poured out my indignation on them; I have consumed them with the fire of my wrath: their own way I have repaid on their heads, says the Lord GOD.
- The chapter shows that they destroyed others first before it happened to them (Galatians 6:7).
- God looked for a man to stand in between them and God, and pray for them. He could not find one to intercede for them.
- Romans 8:27 And he that searches the hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because he makes intercession for the saints according to the will of God.
- Ezekiel 33:11 Say to them, As I live, says the Lord GOD, I have no pleasure in the death of the wicked; but that the wicked turn from his way and live: turn, turn from your evil ways; for why will you die, O house of Israel?
The Lord is jealous
1 The word of the LORD came again to me, saying, 2 Son of man, there were two women, the daughters of one mother: 3 And they committed whoring in Egypt; they committed whoring in their youth: there their breasts were pressed, and there they bruised their virgin bosoms. 4 And their names were Aholah the elder, and Aholibah her sister. They were mine, and they bore sons and daughters. Their names were this; Samaria is Aholah, and Jerusalem Aholibah.
- God always explains what He is talking about.
- Aholah means my tabernacle; Aholibah means my tabernacle is in her (Ephesians3:17-19 explains that God desires to live in the midst of His people.).
- Pressing the breasts was to stir up fleshly sexual desire without love in the heart. It parallels stirring up desire to worship false gods that do not love them and cannot fulfill them.
5 And Aholah played the harlot when she was mine; and she doted on her lovers, on the Assyrians her neighbors, 6 Who were clothed with blue, captains and rulers, all of them desirable young men, horsemen riding on horses. 7 She did this, committed her whoring with them, with all the choice men of Assyria, and with all on whom she was exceedingly fond of: she defiled herself with all their idols. 8 She did not forsake her whoring brought from Egypt: for in her youth they lay with her, and they bruised her virgin bosom and poured their lust on her.
- Abraham’s family went to Egypt and stayed there 400 years.
- Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, and Joseph believed in the only true God, Maker of heaven and earth but some of their descendants turned to the false gods of Egypt.
- Then, after God miraculously delivered from Egyptian slavery and established them in the best land on earth as their own, they still turned to nothing gods, statues they made and turned to other nations for help.
9 Therefore I have delivered her into the hand of her lovers, into the hand of the Assyrians, upon whom she doted. 10 These uncovered her nakedness: they took her sons and her daughters, and killed her with the sword: and she became famous among women; for they executed judgment on her. 11 And when her sister Aholibah saw this, she was more corrupt in her inordinate love than she, and in her whoring, more than her sister in her harlotries. 12 She doted on the Assyrians, her neighbors, captains and rulers clothed most gorgeously, horsemen riding on horses, all of them desirable young men. 13 Then I saw that she was defiled, that they both took one way, 14 And that she increased her whoring: for when she saw men portrayed on the wall, the images of the Chaldeans portrayed with vermilion, 15 Girded with girdles on their loins, with overflowing turbans on their heads, all of them princes to look at, after the manner of the Babylonians of Chaldea, the land of their nativity: 16 And as soon as she saw them with her eyes, she doted on them, and sent messengers to them into Chaldea. 17 And the Babylonians came to her into the bed of love, and they defiled her with their whoring, and she was polluted with them, and her mind was alienated from them. 18 So she uncovered her whoring, and uncovered her nakedness: then my mind was alienated from her, like my mind was alienated from her sister.
- The two sisters are the northern kingdom of Israel first under Jeroboam, called Samaria, and the southern kingdom of Judah first under Solomon’s son, Rehoboam.
19 Yet she multiplied her whoring, in calling to remembrance the days of her youth when she had played the harlot in the land of Egypt. 20 For she lusted after their lovers whose flesh is as the flesh of asses, and whose issue/semen is like the issue of horses. 21 Thus you called to remembrance the lewdness of your youth in bruising your breasts by the Egyptians for the bosom of your youth. 22 There, O Aholibah, the Lord GOD says this; Behold, I will raise up your lovers against your, from whom your mind is alienated, and I will bring them against you on every side.
- When love from the heart stimulates physical desire then love-making is fulfilling. The bruising of the breasts is a purely physical stimulation that leaves the heart lacking and empty.
- Jeremiah 2:19 Your own wickedness will correct you, and your backslidings will reprove you: know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter, that you have forsaken the LORD your God, and that my fear is not in you, says the Lord GOD of hosts.
23 The Babylonians, and all the Chaldeans, Pekod, Shoa, Koa, and all the Assyrians with them: all of them desirable young men, captains and rulers, great lords and renowned, all of them riding on horses. 24 And they will come against you with chariots, wagons, wheels, and with an assembly of people, who will set against you buckler and shield and helmet round about: and I will set judgment before them, and they will judge you according to their judgments. 25 And I will set my jealousy against you, and they will deal furiously with you: they will take away your nose and your ears; and your remnant will fall by the sword: they will take your sons and thy daughters; fire will devour your survivors.
- God’s love is so great that He feels all our dissatisfaction, pain, affliction (Isaiah 63:9). Most pain of this life is unnecessary.
- Exodus 34:14 You will worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.
26 They will also strip you out of your clothes, and take away your beautiful jewels. 27 By this I will make you stop your lewdness and your whoring brought from the land of Egypt: so that you will not lift up your eyes to them or remember Egypt any more. 28 For the Lord God says this; Behold, I will deliver you into the hand of those that you hate, into the hand of those from whom your mind is alienated: 29 And they will deal with you hatefully, and will take away all your labor, and will leave you naked and bare: and the nakedness of your whoring will be uncovered, both your lewdness and your whoring. 30 I will do these things to you, because you have gone whoring after the nations, and because you are polluted with their idols.
- Psalm 96:5 For all the gods of the nations are idols: but the LORD made the heavens.
31 You have walked in the way of your sister; therefore I will give her cup into your hand. 32 The Lord God says this; You will drink of your sister’s cup deep and large: you will be laughed to scorn and had in derision; it contains much. 33 You will be filled with drunkenness and sorrow, with the cup of astonishment and desolation, with the cup of your sister Samaria. 34 You shall drink it and drain it, and gnaw its fragments, and pluck off your own breasts: for I have spoken it, says the Lord GOD. 35 Therefore the Lord God says this; Because you have forgotten me, and cast me behind your back, therefore bear your lewdness and your whoring.
- Deuteronomy 32:4 He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.
36 Moreover the LORD said to me; Son of man, will you judge Aholah and Aholibah? Yes, declare to them their abominations; 37 That they have committed adultery, blood is in their hands. With their idols have they committed adultery, and have also caused their sons, whom they bore to me, to pass for them through the fire, to devour them. 38 Moreover this they have done to me: they have defiled my sanctuary in the same day, and have profaned my sabbaths. 39 For when they had slain their children to their idols, then they came the same day into my sanctuary to profane it; and, behold, they have done this in the midst of my house.
- These acts are inspired and empowered by evil (Deuteronomy 32:17).
- Instead of their hearts eating from the tree of life, which is knowing and loving God, their Maker, they chose to follow the serpent and his ways.
40 And furthermore, you have sent for men to come from far, to whom a messenger was sent; and, behold, they came: for whom you washed yourself, painted your eyes, and decorated yourself with ornaments, 41 And sat on a stately bed, and a table prepared before it on which you have set my incense and my oil.
- Exodus 30 describes the making of this incense and holy anointing oil. It was sacred, reserved for God with a strong warning against common use.
- Exodus 30:33 Whoever compounds any like it, or whoever puts any of it on a foreigner, will be cut off from his people.
42 And a voice of a multitude being at ease was with her: and with the men of the common sort were brought, Sabeans/drunkards from the wilderness, who put bracelets on their hands, and beautiful crowns on their heads. 43 Then I said to her that was old in adulteries, Will they now commit whoring with her, and she with them? 44 Yet they went in to her, as they go in unto a woman that plays the harlot: so they went in unto Aholah and to Aholibah, the lewd women. 45 And the righteous men, they will judge them after the manner of adulteresses, and after the manner of women that shed blood/murder; because they are adulteresses, and blood is in their hands. 46 For the Lord God says this; I will bring up a company on them, and will give them to be removed and spoiled. 47 And the company will stone them with stones, and dispatch them with their swords; they will kill their sons and their daughters, and burn up their houses with fire. 48 By this I will cause lewdness to cease out of the land, that all women may be taught not to do after your lewdness. 49 And they will put your wickedness on you, and you will bear the sins of your idols: and you shall know that I am the Lord GOD.
SUMMARY: Ezekiel 22-23
- God will deal with their evil doings
- He will consume their filthiness
- The Lord is jealous