Ezekiel 9:4
Parallel Verses
New International Version
and said to him, "Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of those who grieve and lament over all the detestable things that are done in it."

New Living Translation
He said to him, "Walk through the streets of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of all who weep and sigh because of the detestable sins being committed in their city."

English Standard Version
And the LORD said to him, “Pass through the city, through Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations that are committed in it.”

New American Standard Bible
The LORD said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, even through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst."

King James Bible
And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.

Holman Christian Standard Bible
Pass throughout the city of Jerusalem," the LORD said to him, "and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the detestable practices committed in it."

International Standard Version
The LORD told him, "Go throughout the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of everyone who sighs and moans over all of the loathsome things that are happening in it."

NET Bible
The LORD said to him, "Go through the city of Jerusalem and put a mark on the foreheads of the people who moan and groan over all the abominations practiced in it."

GOD'S WORD® Translation
The LORD said to that person, "Go throughout the city of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of those who sigh and groan about all the disgusting things that are being done in the city."

Jubilee Bible 2000
and the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry out because of all the abominations that are done in the midst of her.

King James 2000 Bible
And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that are done in its midst.

American King James Version
And the LORD said to him, Go through the middle of the city, through the middle of Jerusalem, and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the middle thereof.

American Standard Version
And Jehovah said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry over all the abominations that are done in the midst thereof.

Douay-Rheims Bible
And the Lord said to him: Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem: and mark Thau upon the foreheads of the men that sigh, and mourn for all the abominations that are committed in the midst thereof.

Darby Bible Translation
and Jehovah said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that are done in the midst thereof.

English Revised Version
And the LORD said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof.

Webster's Bible Translation
And the LORD said to him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that are done in the midst of it.

World English Bible
Yahweh said to him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry over all the abominations that are done in its midst.

Young's Literal Translation
And He calleth unto the man who is clothed with linen, who hath the scribe's inkhorn at his loins, and Jehovah saith unto him, 'Pass on into the midst of the city, into the midst of Jerusalem, and thou hast made a mark on the foreheads of the men who are sighing and who are groaning for all the abominations that are done in its midst.'
Parallel Commentaries
Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary

9:1-4 It is a great comfort to believers, that in the midst of destroyers and destructions, there is a Mediator, a great High Priest, who has an interest in heaven, and in whom saints on earth have an interest. The representation of the Divine glory from above the ark, removed to the threshold, denoted that the Lord was about to leave his mercy-seat, and to pronounce judgment on the people. The distinguishing character of this remnant that is to be saved, is such as sigh and cry to God in prayer, because of the abominations in Jerusalem. Those who keep pure in times of general wickedness, God will keep safe in times of general trouble and distress.

Pulpit Commentary

Verse 4. - Set a mark upon the foreheads, etc. The command reminds us of that given to the destroying angel in Exodus 12:13, and has its earlier and later analogues in the mark set upon Cain (Genesis 4:15), and in the "sealing" of the servants of God in Revelation 7:3. Here, as in the last example, the mark is set, not on the lintels of the doorposts, but upon the "foreheads" of the men. And the mark is the letter tau, in old Hebrew, that of a cross + , and like the "mark" of mediaeval and (in the case of the illiterate) of modern usage, seems to have been used as a signature, and is rightly so translated in the Revised Version of Job 31:35. Jewish writers have accounted for its being thus used, either

(1) from its being the last letter of the Hebrew alphabet, and thus denoting completeness, or

(2) from its being the first letter of the word thorah (Law); or

(3) from its standing in the same position in the Hebrew word for "thou shalt live." Christian writers (Origen, in loc.; Tertullian, 'Adv. Marcion,' 3:22) have not unnaturally seen in it a quasi-prophetic reference to the sign of the cross as used by Christians, and it is possible that the use of that sign in baptism may have originated in this passage. That was to be the sign of the elect of God in the midst of a world lying in wickedness. Possibly in older as in later forms of idolatry (as eg. in the cultus of Mithras, Vishnu, Sehiva), the votaries of this or that deity may have been distinguished by some outward note of this kind; but of this, though suggested by Currey, I do not find any evidence. It is clear, however, that there could be no anticipation of the Christian symbolism in the minds of Ezeldel or of his hearers. The "mark" was to be placed on all who were still faithful to the worship of their fathers, though they could show their faithfulness only by lamentation of the national apostasy. Such, of course, were Jeremiah, and Baruch, and Ahikam, and Shaphan, and Gedaliah, and others, and such as these Ezekiel may have had present in his thoughts. Against all others (ver. 5) they were sent forth with unsparing severity.

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

And the Lord said unto him,.... This shows that a divine Person is meant by the glory of the God of Israel:

go through the midst of the city; that is, as it is next explained,

through the midst of Jerusalem; the city the six men had the charge over or against, Ezekiel 9:1;

and set a mark upon the foreheads; not the Hebrew letter as some say, because in the form of a cross, and so signifying salvation by the cross of Christ; for this letter has no such form, neither in the characters used by the Jews, nor by the Samaritans, at least in the present character; though Origen and Jerom on the place say that the letter "tau" had the form of a cross in the letters the Samaritans used in their time; and this is defended by Walton (t), who observes, that Azariah in his Hebrew alphabet gives a double figure, one like that which is in present use, and another in the form of a cross, called St. Andrew's cross, and as it appears in some shekels; and in the Vatican alphabet, which Angelus E Roccha published, the last letter has the form of a cross; as have the Ethiopic and Coptic alphabets, which, it is certain, sprung from the ancient Hebrew; and so Montfaucon says (u), in some Samaritan coins, the letter "thau" has the form of a cross; which, if Scaliger had met with, he says he would never have opposed the testimonies of Origen and Jerom; though, after all, it seems to be no other than the form of the Greek "x"; and so the Talmudists say (w) the high priest, was anointed on his forehead in the same form: some think this letter was the mark, because it is the first letter of the word "the law"; as if it pointed out such who were obedient to it; or of the word "thou shall live". It is a Rabbinical fancy, mentioned by Kimchi (x), that Gabriel had orders to write the letter in ink upon the foreheads of the righteous, and in blood upon the foreheads of the wicked; in the one it signified "thou shall live", and in the other "thou shall die"; but, as Calvin observes, rather, if this letter could be thought to be meant, the reason of it was, because it is the last letter of the alphabet; and so may signify, that the Lord's people marked with it are the last among men, or the faith of the world; or that such who persevere to the end shall be saved: but the word signifies, not a letter, but a mark or sign; and so it is interpreted in the Septuagint version, and by the Targum, Jarchi, Kimchi, and others; and denotes the distinction the Lord had made by his grace between them and others; and now by his power and providence in the protection of them; for the, Lord knows them that are his, and will preserve them. The allusion is either to the marking of servants in their foreheads, by which they were known who they belonged to, Revelation 7:3; or to the sprinkling of the posts of the Israelites' houses with blood, when the firstborn of Egypt were destroyed, Exodus 12:22;

of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the midst thereof; the abominations were those abominable idolatries mentioned in the preceding chapter, and those dreadful immoralities hinted at in Ezekiel 9:9; all which were grieving and distressing to godly minds, because they were contrary to the nature and will of God; transgressions, of his righteous law; and on account of which his name was dishonoured, and his ways blasphemed and evil spoken of; for these they sighed and groaned in private, and mourned and lamented in public; bearing their testimony against them with bitter expressions of grief and sorrow, by groans, words, and tears; and such as these are taken notice of by the Lord; he comforts those that mourn in Zion, and preserves them.

(t) Supplementum de Sicl. Formis, p. 37. 3. Prolegom. 3. de lingua Hebr. sect. 36. (u) Palaeograph. Graec. l. 2. c. 3.((w) T. Bab. Ceritot, c. 1. fol. 5. 2.((x) Vid. T. Bab. Sabbat, fol. 55. 1.

Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

4. midst of … city … midst of Jerusalem—This twofold designation marks more emphatically the scene of the divine judgments.

a mark—literally, the Hebrew letter Tau, the last in the alphabet, used as a mark ("my sign," Job 31:35, Margin); literally, Tau; originally written in the form of a cross, which Tertullian explains as referring to the badge and only means of salvation, the cross of Christ. But nowhere in Scripture are the words which are now employed as names of letters used to denote the letters themselves or their figures [Vitringa]. The noun here is cognate to the verb, "mark a mark." So in Re 7:3 no particular mark is specified. We seal what we wish to guard securely. When all things else on earth are confounded, God will secure His people from the common ruin. God gives the first charge as to their safety before He orders the punishment of the rest (Ps 31:20; Isa 26:20, 21). So in the case of Lot and Sodom (Ge 19:22); also the Egyptian first-born were not slain till Israel had time to sprinkle the blood-mark, ensuring their safety (compare Re 7:3; Am 9:9). So the early Christians had Pella provided as a refuge for them, before the destruction of Jerusalem.

upon the foreheads—the most conspicuous part of the person, to imply how their safety would be manifested to all (compare Jer 15:11; 39:11-18). It was customary thus to mark worshippers (Re 13:16; 14:1, 9) and servants. So the Church of England marks the forehead with the sign of the cross in baptizing. At the exodus the mark was on the houses, for then it was families; here, it is on the foreheads, for it is individuals whose safety is guaranteed.

sigh and … cry—similarly sounding verbs in Hebrew, as in English Version, expressing the prolonged sound of their grief. "Sigh" implies their inward grief ("groanings which cannot be uttered," Ro 8:26); "cry," the outward expression of it. So Lot (2Pe 2:7, 8). Tenderness should characterize the man of God, not harsh sternness in opposing the ungodly (Ps 119:53, 136; Jer 13:17; 2Co 12:21); at the same time zeal for the honor of God (Ps 69:9, 10; 1Jo 5:19).

Ezekiel 9:4 Additional Commentaries
Context
Slaughter of the Idolaters
3Then the glory of the God of Israel went up from the cherub on which it had been, to the threshold of the temple. And He called to the man clothed in linen at whose loins was the writing case. 4The LORD said to him, "Go through the midst of the city, even through the midst of Jerusalem, and put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst." 5But to the others He said in my hearing, "Go through the city after him and strike; do not let your eye have pity and do not spare.…
Cross References
2 Corinthians 1:22
set his seal of ownership on us, and put his Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.

Galatians 6:17
From now on, let no one cause me trouble, for I bear on my body the marks of Jesus.

2 Timothy 2:19
Nevertheless, God's solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: "The Lord knows those who are his," and, "Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness."

Revelation 7:2
Then I saw another angel coming up from the east, having the seal of the living God. He called out in a loud voice to the four angels who had been given power to harm the land and the sea:

Revelation 7:3
"Do not harm the land or the sea or the trees until we put a seal on the foreheads of the servants of our God."

Revelation 9:4
They were told not to harm the grass of the earth or any plant or tree, but only those people who did not have the seal of God on their foreheads.

Revelation 14:1
Then I looked, and there before me was the Lamb, standing on Mount Zion, and with him 144,000 who had his name and his Father's name written on their foreheads.

Genesis 4:15
But the LORD said to him, "Not so; anyone who kills Cain will suffer vengeance seven times over." Then the LORD put a mark on Cain so that no one who found him would kill him.

Exodus 12:7
Then they are to take some of the blood and put it on the sides and tops of the doorframes of the houses where they eat the lambs.

Exodus 12:13
The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are, and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt.

Psalm 119:53
Indignation grips me because of the wicked, who have forsaken your law.

Psalm 119:136
Streams of tears flow from my eyes, for your law is not obeyed.

Jeremiah 13:17
If you do not listen, I will weep in secret because of your pride; my eyes will weep bitterly, overflowing with tears, because the LORD's flock will be taken captive.

Ezekiel 6:11
"'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: Strike your hands together and stamp your feet and cry out "Alas!" because of all the wicked and detestable practices of the people of Israel, for they will fall by the sword, famine and plague.

Ezekiel 9:5
As I listened, he said to the others, "Follow him through the city and kill, without showing pity or compassion.

Ezekiel 9:6
Slaughter the old men, the young men and women, the mothers and children, but do not touch anyone who has the mark. Begin at my sanctuary." So they began with the old men who were in front of the temple.

Ezekiel 21:6
"Therefore groan, son of man! Groan before them with broken heart and bitter grief.

Amos 6:6
You drink wine by the bowlful and use the finest lotions, but you do not grieve over the ruin of Joseph.

Zephaniah 1:12
At that time I will search Jerusalem with lamps and punish those who are complacent, who are like wine left on its dregs, who think, 'The LORD will do nothing, either good or bad.'

Zephaniah 3:18
"I will remove from you all who mourn over the loss of your appointed festivals, which is a burden and reproach for you.
Treasury of Scripture

And the LORD said to him, Go through the middle of the city, through the middle of Jerusalem, and set a mark on the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry for all the abominations that be done in the middle thereof.

set a mark [heb] mark a mark

Exodus 12:7,13 And they shall take of the blood, and strike it on the two side posts …

Malachi 3:16 Then they that feared the LORD spoke often one to another: and the …

2 Corinthians 1:22 Who has also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.

Ephesians 4:30 And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby you are sealed to …

2 Timothy 2:19 Nevertheless the foundation of God stands sure, having this seal, …

Revelation 7:2,3 And I saw another angel ascending from the east, having the seal …

Revelation 9:4 And it was commanded them that they should not hurt the grass of …

Revelation 13:6,7 And he opened his mouth in blasphemy against God, to blaspheme his …

Revelation 14:1 And I looked, and, see, a Lamb stood on the mount Sion, and with …

Revelation 20:4 And I saw thrones, and they sat on them, and judgment was given to them…

that sigh

Ezekiel 6:11 Thus said the Lord GOD; Smite with your hand, and stamp with your …

2 Kings 22:13,19,20 Go you, inquire of the LORD for me, and for the people, and for all …

Psalm 119:53,136 Horror has taken hold on me because of the wicked that forsake your law…

Isaiah 57:15 For thus said the high and lofty One that inhabits eternity, whose …

Jeremiah 13:17 But if you will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places …

2 Corinthians 12:21 And lest, when I come again, my God will humble me among you, and …

2 Peter 2:8,9 (For that righteous man dwelling among them, in seeing and hearing…

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