|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
36:25-38 Water is an emblem of the cleansing our polluted souls from sin. But no water can do more than take away the filth of the flesh. Water seems in general the sacramental sign of the sanctifying influences of the Holy Ghost; yet this is always connected with the atoning blood of Christ. When the latter is applied by faith to the conscience, to cleanse it from evil works, the former is always applied to the powers of the soul, to purify it from the pollution of sin. All that have an interest in the new covenant, have a new heart and a new spirit, in order to their walking in newness of life. God would give a heart of flesh, a soft and tender heart, complying with his holy will. Renewing grace works as great a change in the soul, as the turning a dead stone into living flesh. God will put his Spirit within, as a Teacher, Guide, and Sanctifier. The promise of God's grace to fit us for our duty, should quicken our constant care and endeavour to do our duty. These are promises to be pleaded by, and will be fulfilled to, all true believers in every age.
Verse 38. - The people who should occupy the land of Israel in the coming age should be as the holy flock - literally, as the flock of holy things, or beasts; i.e. of sacrificial lambs - as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts; literally, in her appointed times; i.e. her festal seasons (comp. Micah 2:12), referring to the three well-known annual occasions when the male population of the land came to the sanctuary (Deuteronomy 16:16), and when in consequence the flocks and herds poured into the metropolis were well-nigh past reckoning (see 2 Chronicles 29:33; 2 Chronicles 35:7; and comp. Josephus, 'Wars,' 6:9. 3). Perhaps in addition to the idea of the multiplication of the people, that of their dedication to the service of Jehovah is suggested by the prophet's language.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
As the holy flock, as the flock of Jerusalem in her solemn feasts,.... Like flocks of sheep, which were consecrated and set apart for holy uses, for sacrifices; even like the flocks of sheep, which were brought to Jerusalem to be offered in sacrifice at the three solemn festivals in the year; especially at the passover, when the Jews came from all parts of the country to slay and eat their passover; and every family had a lamb, which in all must be a great number: we read of thirty thousand lambs and three thousand bullocks given at one time for this service by King Josiah, besides what was given by the princes, 2 Chronicles 35:7. The Targum is,
"as the holy people, as a people that is cleansed, and comes to Jerusalem at the feasts of the passover:''
or, "as the flock of the Holy Ones" (q); either of the holy God, Father, Son, and Spirit; or of holy men, who are made holy or sanctified by the Spirit of God:
so shall the waste cities be filled with flocks of men; or with men that are like sheep for meekness, harmlessness, patience, cleanness, society, and usefulness; and not with such as are comparable to unclean beasts, or beasts of prey; so it denotes both the quantity of persons that shall inhabit Judea, and dwelt both in the cities and churches there, and the quality of them.
(q) "sicut oves sanctorum", Vatablus, Gussetius, Starckius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
38. As the holy flock—the great flock of choice animals for sacrifice, brought up to Jerusalem at the three great yearly festivals, the passover, pentecost, and feast of the tabernacles.
Ezekiel 36:38 Parallel Commentaries
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