|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
37:1-14 No created power could restore human bones to life. God alone could cause them to live. Skin and flesh covered them, and the wind was then told to blow upon these bodies; and they were restored to life. The wind was an emblem of the Spirit of God, and represented his quickening powers. The vision was to encourage the desponding Jews; to predict both their restoration after the captivity, and also their recovery from their present and long-continued dispersion. It was also a clear intimation of the resurrection of the dead; and it represents the power and grace of God, in the conversion of the most hopeless sinners to himself. Let us look to Him who will at last open our graves, and bring us forth to judgment, that He may now deliver us from sin, and put his Spirit within us, and keep us by his power, through faith, unto salvation.
Verse 2. - And he caused me to pass by them round about. Not over, as Keil, Klie-foth, and Plumptre translate, but round about them, so as to view them from every side. The result of the prophet's inspection of the bones was to excite within him a feeling of surprise which expressed itself in a twofold behold; the first occasioned by a contemplation of their number, very many, and their situation, in the open valley, literally, upon the face of the valley; i.e. not underground, where they could not have been seen, but upon the surface of the soil, and not piled up in heaps, but scattered over the ground; and the second by a discernment of their condition as very dry, so bleached and withered as to foreclose, not the possibility alone, but also the thought of their resuscitation.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
And caused me to pass by them round about,....
Round, round (s); several times round, that he might take exact notice of them, of their number, situation, and condition:
and, behold, there were very many in the open valley; as the Jews were in captivity; and as they will be when they shall be converted; and as the number of Christians will be in the spiritual reign of Christ; and as the dead will be at the time of their resurrection, both of the just and unjust:
and, lo, they were very dry; through length of time they had lain there, exposed to wind and weather; the flesh being wholly consumed from off of them, and the marrow within quite dried up; so that there was no probability or hope, humanly speaking, of their being quickened: these are a fit emblem of men in a state of nature and unregeneracy, who have no spiritual life, but are dead in trespasses and sins; have no sense of sin or danger; no strength to redeem and regenerate themselves, or do anything that is spiritually good; have no spiritual motion; no inward desires after God, or affection to him; no lifting up of the heart to him, or going out of the soul in faith and love to Christ; but in themselves entirely lifeless, helpless, and hopeless.
(s) "circum circa", Pagninus; "undique undique", Montanus.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
2. dry—bleached by long exposure to the atmosphere.
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