Ezekiel 3:26
And I will make your tongue sticks to the roof of your mouth, that you shall be dumb, and shall not be to them a reprover: for they are a rebellious house.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(26) I will make thy tongue cleave to the roof of thy mouth.—Here, under another figure, this enforced silence is attributed, not to “the rebellious house,” by whom it was immediately brought about, but to God Himself, whose providence was the ultimate cause by which the prophet was placed in such circumstances. It is a way of expressing strongly the difficulties under which he was to exercise his ministry.

3:22-27 Let us own ourselves for ever indebted to the mediation of Christ, for the blessed intercourse between God and man; and a true believer will say, I am never less alone than when thus alone. When the Lord opened Ezekiel's mouth, he was to deliver his message boldly, to place life and death, the blessing and the curse, before the people, and leave them to their choice.And I will make - Rather, Then will I "make." One action is the consequence of the other. Because the people would silence the prophet, God to punish them will close his mouth (compare Isaiah 6:9; Matthew 13:14). 26. I will make my tongue … dumb—Israel had rejected the prophets; therefore God deprives Israel of the prophets and of His word—God's sorest judgment (1Sa 7:2; Am 8:11, 12). Either by forbidding thee to speak, I will make thee as dumb as if thy tongue did cleave to the roof of thy mouth; or possibly God did suspend his influence, and leave the prophet dumb, as one who could not move his tongue, the use whereof is taken away.

A reprover; a man to reprove (as Heb.); shalt tell them as little of their faults and danger as a dumb man can do. God hereby giving the prophet some respite, signifying the future state of the Jews would be such they should no more dare to mutter or whisper; and punishing the refractory deafness of the Jews with taking away their reprover, &c.

A rebellious house: see Ezekiel 2:5,7. And I will make thy tongue cleave to the roof of thy mouth,

that thou shall be dumb,.... Which is to be understood not literally, as if he was really struck dumb, as Zechariah was; see Ezekiel 4:9; but that such silence should be charged upon him by the Lord, that he should be as if his tongue cleaved to the roof of his mouth, as Kimchi interprets it, and as if he was a dumb man: and so the Septuagint version renders it, "I will bind thy tongue"; lay an embargo upon it, that is, it shall be silent; and this sense is confirmed by what follows:

and shall not be to them a reprover; which was in judgment to them, and a giving them up to their own hearts' lusts; for, though reproofs were disagreeable to them, and they chose to be without them, yet they were necessary for them, and might have been useful to them; but they provoking the Lord, he takes away his word from them, and commands his prophet to be silent, and let them alone, to go on in their sins without control; which was a sore judgment upon them:

for they are a rebellious house; See Gill on Ezekiel 2:5.

And I will make thy tongue {q} cleave to the roof of thy mouth, that thou shalt be dumb, and shalt not be to them a reprover: for they are a rebellious house.

(q) Which declares the terrible plague of the Lord, when God stops the mouths of his ministers and that all such are the rods of his vengeance that do it.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
26. I will make thy tongue cleave] The restraint imposed by the opposition of the people is acquiesced in by God, it is part of his purpose. His providence will meantime be the best teacher of the people. The prophet’s “dumbness,” however, is compatible with much speaking at least by signs to those who will hear. He is “dumb” in the sense of the Psalmist, “I was dumb, not opening my mouth, because thou didst it” (Psalm 39:9; Isaiah 53:7; cf. Ezekiel 24:27; Ezekiel 33:22).After the Lord had pointed out to the prophet the difficulties of the call laid upon him, He prepared him for the performance of his office, by inspiring him with the divine word which he is to announce. - Ezekiel 2:8. And thou, son of man, hear what I say to thee, Be not stiff-necked like the stiff-necked race; open thy mouth, and eat what I give unto thee. Ezekiel 2:9. Then I saw, and, lo, a hand outstretched towards me; and, lo, in the same a roll of a book. Ezekiel 2:10. And He spread it out before me; the same was written upon the front and back: and there were written upon it lamentations, and sighing, and woe. Ezekiel 3:1. And He said to me: Son of man, what thou findest eat; eat the roll, and go and speak to the house of Israel. Ezekiel 3:2. Then opened I my mouth, and He gave me this roll to eat. Ezekiel 3:3. And said to me: Son of man, feed thy belly, and fill thy body with this roll which I give thee. And I ate it, and it was in my mouth as honey and sweetness. - The prophet is to announce to the people of Israel only that which the Lord inspires him to announce. This thought is embodied in symbol, in such a way that an outstretched hand reaches to him a book, which he is to swallow, and which also, at God's command, he does swallow; cf. Revelation 10:9. This roll was inscribed on both sides with lamentations, sighing, and woe (הי is either abbreviated from נהי, not equals אי, or as Ewald, 101c, thinks, is only a more distinct form of הוי or הו). The meaning is not, that upon the roll was inscribed a multitude of mournful expressions of every kind, but that there was written upon it all that the prophet was to announce, and what we now read in his book. These contents were of a mournful nature, for they related to the destruction of the kingdom, the destruction of Jerusalem and of the temple. That Ezekiel may look over the contents, the roll is spread out before his eyes, and then handed to him to be eaten, with the words, "Go and speak to the children of Israel," i.e., announce to the children of Israel what you have received into yourself, or as it is termed in Ezekiel 3:4, דּברי, "my words." The words in Ezekiel 3:3 were spoken by God while handing to the prophet the roll to be eaten. He is not merely to eat, i.e., take it into his mouth, but he is to fill his body and belly therewith, i.e., he is to receive into his innermost being the word of God presented to him, to change it, as it were, into sap and blood. Whilst eating it, it was sweet in his mouth. The sweet taste must not, with Kliefoth, be explained away into a sweet "after-taste," and made to bear this reference, that the destruction of Jerusalem would be followed by a more glorious restoration. The roll, inscribed with lamentation, sorrow, and woe, tasted to him sweetly, because its contents was God's word, which sufficed for the joy and gladness of his heart (Jeremiah 15:16); for it is "infinitely sweet and lovely to be the organ and spokesman of the Omnipotent," and even the most painful of divine truths possess to a spiritually-minded man a joyful and quickening side (Hengstenberg on Revelation 10:9). To this it is added, that the divine penal judgments reveal not only the holiness and righteousness of God, but also prepare the way for the revelation of salvation, and minister to the saving of the soul.
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