|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
11:14-21 The pious captives in Babylon were insulted by the Jews who continued in Jerusalem; but God made gracious promises to them. It is promised, that God will give them one heart; a heart firmly fixed for God, and not wavering. All who are made holy have a new spirit, a new temper and dispositions; they act from new principles, walk by new rules, and aim at new ends. A new name, or a new face, will not serve without a new spirit. If any man be in Christ, he is a new creature. The carnal heart, like a stone, cannot be made to feel. Men live among the dead and dying, and are neither concerned nor humbled. He will make their hearts tender and fit to receive impressions: this is God's work, it is his gift by promise; and a wonderful and happy change is wrought by it, from death to life. Their practices shall be agreeable to those principles. These two must and will go together. When the sinner feels his need of these blessings, let him present the promises as prayers in the name of Christ, they will be performed.
Verse 21. - But as for them, etc. We note the peculiar phraseology. The heart of the people walks not simply after their detestable things, but after the heart of those things. There is, as it were, a central unity in the evil to which they unite themselves, just as the heart of man turns to the heart of God when the two are in their ideal relation to each other. For those who did this, whether in Jerusalem or among the exiles, there was the prospect of a righteous retribution. The words close the message which Ezekiel heard in the courts of the temple in his visions, but which he was to deliver (ver. 25) to them of the Captivity.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
But as for them,.... Who remained in Jerusalem, and were not carried captive, but continued in their, own land, and worshipped idols, the same as in Ezekiel 11:15;
whose heart walketh after the heart of their detestable things and their abominations; not images of gold and silver, which cannot be said to have a heart; but devils and evil spirits worshipped in them, who are well pleased and delighted with the worship given them; so that the hearts of the devils worshipped, and the hearts of the idolatrous worshippers, were alike and agreed; wherefore their hearts were very different from those before mentioned; so far from having one heart, that their hearts were double and divided, partly after God, and partly after their idols; and so far from walking in the statutes of the Lord, that they were walking after the will of their idols, and in the worship of them; which were abominable and detestable to God, and all good men. The Targum is,
"and after the worship of their idols, and of their abominations, their heart wanders.''
I will recompense their ways upon their own heads, saith the Lord God, that is, punish them according to their deserts, by the sword, famine, pestilence, and captivity.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
21. whose heart … after … heart of … detestable things—The repetition of "heart" is emphatic, signifying that the heart of those who so obstinately clung to idols, impelled itself to fresh superstitions in one continuous tenor [Calvin]. Perhaps it is implied that they and their idols are much alike in character (Ps 115:8). The heart walks astray first, the feet follow.
recompense … way upon … heads—They have abandoned Me, so will I abandon them; they profaned My temple, so will I profane it by the Chaldeans (Eze 9:10).
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