|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
13:1-9 Where God gives a warrant to do any thing, he gives wisdom. What they delivered was not what they had seen or heard, as that is which the ministers of Christ deliver. They were not praying prophets, had no intercourse with Heaven; they contrived how to please people, not how to do them good; they stood not against sin. They flattered people into vain hopes. Such widen the breach, by causing men to think themselves deserving of eternal life, when the wrath of God abides upon them.
Verse 9. - Mine hand shall be, etc. After Ezekiel's manner, the thought of ver. 6 is repeated in an altered form in vers. 7, 8. What had been a statement appears as a question to which there could be but one answer. The prophet, as it were, cross examines his rivals. Could they deny the charge? Was not every word of it true? Then, after the statement of the sin of the false prophets, comes the proclamation of the punishment. The hand of Jehovah would be upon them for evil and not for good. In the assembly of my people. The Hebrew word indicates not a large popular gathering, but a secret council of those who deliberate together to carry out their plans (Psalm 89:7; Psalm 111:1; Jeremiah 6:11). The prophets who had acted together, and been looked up to by the people as forming such a council, should lose that position of authority. The words that follow point to a yet lower degradation. They should be in the strictest sense of the word excommunicated. The city of Jerusalem, perhaps every city of Judah, had its register of citizens. In such a register were inscribed also the names of proselytes of other races (Psalm 87:6), and so men came to think of a like register as kept by the King of kings, containing the names of those who were heirs of the "life" of the true Israel (Exodus 32:32; Isaiah 4:3; Daniel 12:1). In neither of those registers, the earthly and the heavenly (but stress is probably laid upon the former), shall the false prophets find a place. Ezra 2:62 gives an example of the use made of such registers on the return from the Captivity. One notes the contrast between the "my people" which recognizes Israel as still the heritage of Jehovah, and the "thy people" used in Ezekiel 3:11 of the rebellious house of the Captivity. For the false prophets there should be no return to the land of Israel such as that which the prophet anticipated for the faithful and the penitent (Ezekiel 37:21; comp. Isaiah 57:13). Here there is no specific mention of the name being struck out. The prophet contemplates a new register, in which their names will never even have appeared.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And mine hand shall be upon the prophets that see vanity, and that divine lies,.... Meaning, by his hand, not the true spirit of prophecy, attended with a divine power and energy, as in Ezekiel 1:3; but the wrath and power of God seizing on them and punishing them. So the Targum,
"and the stroke of my power shall be upon the false prophets, &c.''
The sense is, that they should feel the weight of his hand, and the lighting down of his arm with the indignation of his wrath, by inflicting punishment upon them:
they shall not be in the assembly of my people; shall have no place in the church of God, nor fellowship with the saints; they shall not join with them in religious worship here; but either shall be left by the righteous judgment of God to separate themselves from them, or shall be excluded their communion; and much less shall they stand in the congregation of the righteous hereafter: or, "they shall not be in the secret", or "council of my people" (g); shall not be consulted by them on any account, civil or religious; or not be let into the secret counsels of the Lord, as the Lord's people be, who are his favourites and his friends; see Psalm 25:14. The Targum is,
"in the good secret which is hidden for my people they shall not be:''
neither shall they be written in the writing of the house of Israel; their names shall not be in the roll or register of those that return from captivity, as in Ezra it but shall die in their exile; they shall not be in the list and catalogue of the citizens of any city in the land of Israel, particularly of Jerusalem, the chief city; see Isaiah 4:3; and it should appear that their names were never written in the Lamb's book of life; or that they ever were among the number of God's elect, the true and spiritual Israel of God. So the Targum,
"and in the writing of eternal life, which is written for the righteous of the house of Israel, they shall not be written;''
see Psalm 69:28;
neither shall they enter into the land of Israel; should not return to the land of Israel, when the captives should at the end of the captivity; nor enter into the land of Canaan, the heavenly rest, which remains for the people of God; for into the New Jerusalem state shall nothing enter that makes an abomination, or a lie, as these prophets had done; see Revelation 21:27;
and ye shall know that I am the Lord God; omniscient, omnipotent, true and faithful, holy, just, and good.
(g) "in secreto populi mei non erunt", Montanus; "in arcano", Munster; "in comilio", Junius & Tremellius, Calvin, Polanus; "in concilio", Vatablus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
9. mine hand—My power in vengeance.
not … in … assembly—rather, the "council"; "They shall not occupy the honorable office of councillors in the senate of elders after the return from Babylon" (Ezr 2:1, 2).
neither … written in … Israel—They shall not even have a place in the register kept of all citizens' names; they shall be erased from it, just as the names of those who died in the year, or had been deprived of citizenship for their crimes, were at the annual revisal erased. Compare Jer 17:13; Lu 10:20; Re 3:5, as to those spiritually Israelites; Joh 1:47, and those not so. Literally fulfilled (Ezr 2:59, 62; compare Ne 7:5; Ps 69:28).
neither … enter … land—They shall not so much as be allowed to come back at all to their country.
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