|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
7:23-27 Whoever break the bands of God's law, will find themselves bound and held by the chains of his judgments. Since they encouraged one another to sin, God would dishearten them. All must needs be in trouble, when God comes to judge them according to their deserts. May the Lord enable us to seek that good part which shall not be taken away.
Verse 23. - Make a chain; better, the chain. The word is not found elsewhere, but a kindred form is thus translated in 1 Kings 6:21. Looking to the force of the verbs from which it is formed, its special meaning is that of a coupling chain, such as would be used in the case of captives marched off to their place of exile (Nahum 3:10). All previous sufferings were to culminate in this. The φυρμόν of the LXX. and the fac conclusionem of the Vulgate show that the word perplexed them. Full of bloody crimes. The only passage in the Authorized Version of the Old Testament in which the English noun occurs. Literally, judgments of blood. The words may be equivalent either
(1) to "blood guiltiness" (compare the "judgment" in Jeremiah 51:9), or
(2) to judgment perverted into judicial murder. The latter finds support in Ezekiel 9:9. In either case it is noticeable that Ezekiel points not only to idolatry, but to violence and wrong, as the sins that had cried for punishment (comp. Jeremiah 22:17 as a contemporary witness).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Make a chain,.... To bind them; not the robbers, the Chaldeans, but the Jews; in order either to bring them to the bar to be tried for capital crimes hereafter mentioned, or to be led bound in chains into captivity; see Nehemiah 3:10;
for the land is full of bloody crimes; or, "judgment of bloods" (m); capital crimes, such as are deserving of death, particularly murder, or shedding of innocent blood; so the Targum interprets it of sins of murder:
and the city is full of violence; rapine, oppression, and injury done to the poor, the widow, and the fatherless; meaning the city of Jerusalem, where was the great court of judicature, and where justice ought to have been administered.
(m) "judicio sanguiuum", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Calvin, Polanus, Starckius; "criminibus capitalibus", Piscator; "sanguianariis judiciis", Castalio.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. chain—symbol of the captivity (compare Jer 27:2). As they enchained the land with violence, so shall they be chained themselves. It was customary to lead away captives in a row with a chain passed from the neck of one to the other. Therefore translate as the Hebrew requires, "the chain," namely, that usually employed on such occasions. Calvin explains it, that the Jews should be dragged, whether they would or no, before God's tribunal to be tried as culprits in chains. The next words favor this: "bloody crimes," rather, "judgment of bloods," that is, with blood sheddings deserving the extreme judicial penalty. Compare Jer 51:9: "Her judgment reacheth unto heaven."
Ezekiel 7:23 Parallel Commentaries
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