|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:1-11 Ezekiel was to receive the truths of God as the food for his soul, and to feed upon them by faith, and he would be strengthened. Gracious souls can receive those truths of God with delight, which speak terror to the wicked. He must speak all that, and that only, which God spake to him. How can we better speak God's mind than with his words? If disappointed as to his people, he must not be offended. The Ninevites were wrought upon by Jonah's preaching, when Israel was unhumbled and unreformed. We must leave this unto the Divine sovereignty, and say, Lord, thy judgments are a great deep. They will not regard the word of the prophet, for they will not regard the rod of God. Christ promises to strengthen him. He must continue earnest in preaching, whatever the success might be.
Verse 8. - I have made thy face strong; literally, as in the Revised Version, hard. Ezekiel's name was at once nomen et omen. Hard as Israel might be, he could be made harder, i.e. stronger, than they, end should prevail against them (compare the parallels of Isaiah 1:7; Jeremiah 1:18; Jeremiah 15:20). The boldness of God's prophets is a strictly supernatural gift. Whatever persistency there may be in evil, they will be able to meet it, perhaps to overcome it, by a greater persistency in good.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Behold, I have made the, face strong against their faces,.... Not that the prophet should have the same sort of impudence and confidence they had; but that God would "give" (n) him such a face, as it is in the Hebrew text, such spirit and courage, that he should neither be ashamed of the words of the Lord, nor afraid to speak them to this people; so that he should be a match for them; they should not be able to outface him, or look him out of countenance; he should behave with an undaunted spirit, and with great intrepidity, amidst all opposition made to him: the Lord fits his ministers for the people he sends them to, and gives them courage and strength proportionate to the opposition they meet with; as their day is, their strength is; and all that invincible courage, boldness, and strength, with which they are endowed, it is all from the Lord, and a gift of his:
and thy forehead strong against their foreheads; which is the same thing in different words.
(n) "dedi faciem tuam", V. L. Vatablus, Cocceius, Starckius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
8. Ezekiel means one "strengthened by God." Such he was in godly firmness, in spite of his people's opposition, according to the divine command to the priest tribe to which he belonged (De 33:9).
Ezekiel 3:8 Parallel Commentaries
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