|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
14:12-23 National sins bring national judgments. Though sinners escape one judgment, another is waiting for them. When God's professing people rebel against him, they may justly expect all his judgments. The faith, obedience, and prayers of Noah prevailed to the saving of his house, but not of the old world. Job's sacrifice and prayer in behalf of his friends were accepted, and Daniel had prevailed for the saving his companions and the wise men of Babylon. But a people that had filled the measure of their sins, was not to expect to escape for the sake of any righteous men living among them; not even of the most eminent saints, who could be accepted in their own case only through the sufferings and righteousness of Christ. Yet even when God makes the greatest desolations by his judgments, he saves some to be monuments of his mercy. In firm belief that we shall approve the whole of God's dealings with ourselves, and with all mankind, let us silence all rebellious murmurs and objections.
Verses 12-14. - A new section begins, implying as before an interval of silence. What follows presents a striking parallelism to Jeremiah 15:l, 2. There also we have the "four sore judgments," the declaration that not even the presence of Moses and Samuel would avail to save the people. They were obviously selected by Jeremiah as examples of the power of intercession (Exodus 32:11, 12; 1 Samuel 7:9; 1 Samuel 12:23). Ezekiel's selection of names proceeds on a different footing. He chooses exceptional instances of saintliness that had been powerless to save the generation in which they lived; perhaps, also, such as were well known, not only in the records of Israel, but among other nations. Noah had not saved the evil race before the Flood; Job had not saved his sons (Job 1:18); Daniel, though high in the king's favour, had not been able to influence Nebuchadnezzar to spare the people of Judah and Jerusalem. The mention of this last name is significant, as showing the reputation which even then Daniel had acquired. There is no shadow of evidence for the view of some commentators that an older Daniel is referred to. Had there been such a person, eminent enough to be grouped with Noah and Job, there would surely have been some mention of him in the Old Testament. In ver. 13, for the land, read "a land." For staff of bread, see Ezekiel 4:16. The phrase comes from Leviticus 26:26.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The word of the Lord came again unto saying. At the same time as before, continuing the prophecy, and a denunciation of judgments; for it does not seem to begin a new prophecy. The Targum renders it, the word of prophecy from the Lord.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
12. The second part of the chapter: the effect which the presence of a few righteous persons was to have on the purposes of God (compare Ge 18:24-32). God had told Jeremiah that the guilt of Judah was too great to be pardoned even for the intercession of Moses and Samuel (Ps 99:6; Jer 14:2; 15:1), which had prevailed formerly (Ex 32:11-14; Nu 14:13-20; 1Sa 7:8-12), implying the extraordinary heinousness of their guilt, since in ordinary cases "the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man (for others) availeth much" (Jas 5:16). Ezekiel supplements Jeremiah by adding that not only those two once successful intercessors, but not even the three pre-eminently righteous men, Noah, Daniel, and Job, could stay God's judgments by their righteousness.
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