Say to them which daub it with untempered mortar, that it shall fall: there shall be an overflowing shower; and you, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall rend it.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Great hailstones.—Hail is unusual in Palestine, but its destructive effects were well known. The figure of this prophecy may be compared with the parable of Matthew 7:27.Ezekiel 13:12, the word used is the usual word for the outer wall of a house or city. The fall of the partition wall would perhaps involve the fall of the whole house.
Untempered morter - Or, whited plaster, employed to patch up a wall, so as to give it an appearance (without the reality) of strength and beauty. Compare Matthew 23:27. In the original there is a play upon a word rendered "folly" in Jeremiah 23:13.Unto them; the meaner and less noted, who follow the arch false prophets, and are as under-workers in this wall.
It shall fall; most certainly its fall shall be the shame and loss of the builders, and those that hoped its duration.
An overflowing shower; abundant, violent, and continued showers shall soak into your wall and dissolve the cement; and this shower is the Babylonish invasion, which all your provision shall be no more able to withstand, than mire in a wall can keep the stones together when drenched with showers. I will summon in the storms of hail, which with mighty stones shall beat upon the ruinous wall.
A stormy wind; a whirlwind, to shake the tumbling stones, which without much shaking would ere long drop down; but, to hasten the downfall, soaking showers, storms of hail and violent winds, shall meet; so shall your crazy state, O deceived Jews, come down to ruin.
that it shall fall; the wall they have built and daubed over; the city of Jerusalem shall be taken and destroyed; the predictions of the prophets shall prove lies; and the vain hopes and expectations of the people fail:
there shall be an overflowing shower; that shall wash away the wall with its untempered mortar; meaning the Chaldean army, compared to an overflowing shower of rain, for the multitude of men it, and the force, power, and noise, with which it should come, bearing down all before it; see Isaiah 8:7;
and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; upon the wall, and break it down: or, "ye, O great hailstones, shall cause it to fall" (h); or, "I will give great hailstones, and it shall fall" (i). The word "elgabish", which in some copies is one word, and in others two, as Kimchi and Ben Melech observe, is either the same with "gabish", which signifies a precious stone, and is rendered pearl in Job 28:18; or it may be, as it seems to be, an Arabic word; and Hottinger (k) takes it to be "gypsus", or lime, or the "lapis laminosus", or slate; so the Lord threatens to rain down lime or slate upon them from heaven, which should destroy the wall built with untempered mortar:
and a stormy wind shall rend it; this seems to signify the same as the overflowing shower, the Chaldean army, compared to a strong tempestuous wind; see Jeremiah 4:11; as the hailstones, may signify the king of Babylon, with his princes, nobles, and generals.Say unto them which daub it with untempered morter, that it shall fall: there shall be an overflowing shower; and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall rend it.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)11. and ye, O great hailstones] The apostrophe to the hailstones is rather unnatural. A different pointing gives the sense, and I will cause great hailstones to fall, but the construction is altogether improbable. Jeremiah 8:13, is not in point.
wind shall rent it] Or, a strong wind shall break forth.Verse 11. - In words which would almost seem to have been in our Lord's thoughts in Matthew 7:25, we have the picture of an Eastern storm, torrents of rain passing into hail (LXX., λίθοι πετρόβολοι), accompanied by a tornado of irresistible violence (compare like pictures in Exodus 9:22; Joshua 10:11; Isaiah 30:30; Isaiah 28:2, 17). And when the disaster comes men will turn to those who professed to be master builders and repairers of the breach, with derision, and ask, "Where is the daubing wherewith ye have daubed?" And then men shall see that through all this it is Jehovah's hand that has been working. It is he who "rends" the wall; he who "brings it down to the ground;" he who "accomplishes his wrath" (vers. 13-15). That shall be the end of the false "visions of peace."
The scepticism of the people as to the fulfilment of these threatening prophecies, which had been made still more emphatic by signs, manifested itself in two different ways. Some altogether denied that the prophecies would ever be fulfilled (Ezekiel 12:22); others, who did not go so far as this, thought that it would be a long time before they came to pass (Ezekiel 12:27). These doubts were fed by the lying statements of false prophets. For this reason the refutation of these sceptical opinions (Ezekiel 12:21-28) is followed in the next chapter by a stern reproof of the false prophets and prophetesses who led the people astray. - Ezekiel 12:21. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, Ezekiel 12:22. Son of man, what kind of proverb have ye in the land of Israel, that ye say, The days become long, and every prophecy comes to nothing? Ezekiel 12:23. Therefore say to them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, I will put an end to this saying, and they shall say it no more in Israel; but say to them, The days are near, and the word of every prophecy. Ezekiel 12:24. For henceforth there shall be no vain prophecy and flattering soothsaying in the midst of the house of Israel. Ezekiel 12:25. For I am Jehovah; I speak; the word which I speak will come to pass, and no longer be postponed; for in your days, O refractory generation, I speak a word and do it, is the saying of the Lord Jehovah. - Mâshâl, a proverb, saying current among the people, and constantly repeated as a truth. "The days become long," etc., i.e., the time is lengthening out, and yet the prophecy is not being fulfilled. אבד, perire, to come to nothing, to fail of fulfilment, is the opposite of בּוא, to come, to be fulfilled. God will put an end to these sayings, by causing a very speedy fulfilment of the prophecy. The days are near, and every word of the prophecy, i.e., the days in which every word predicted shall come to pass. The reason for this is given in Ezekiel 12:24 and Ezekiel 12:25, in two co-ordinate sentences, both of which are introduced with כּי. First, every false prophecy shall henceforth cease in Israel (Ezekiel 12:24); secondly, God will bring about the fulfilment of His own word, and that without delay (Ezekiel 12:25). Different explanations have been given of the meaning of Ezekiel 12:24. Kliefoth proposes to take שׁוא and מקסם as the predicate to חזון: no prophecy in Israel shall be vain and flattering soothsaying, but all prophecy shall become true, i.e., be fulfilled. Such an explanation, however, is not only artificial and unnatural, since מקסם would be inserted as a predicate in a most unsuitable manner, but it contains this incongruity, that God would apply the term מקסם, soothsaying, to the predictions of prophets inspired by Himself. On the other hand, there is no force in the objection raised by Kliefoth to the ordinary rendering of the words, namely, that the statement that God was about to put an end to false prophecy in Israel would anticipate the substance of the sixth word of God (i.e., Ezekiel 13). It is impossible to see why a thought should not be expressed here, and then still further expanded in Ezekiel 13. חלק, smooth, i.e., flattering (compare Hosea 10:2; and for the prediction, Zechariah 13:4-5). The same reply serves also to overthrow the sceptical objection raised by the frivolous despisers of the prophet's words. Hence there is only a brief allusion made to them in Ezekiel 12:26-28. - Ezekiel 12:26. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, Ezekiel 12:27. Son of man, behold, the house of Israel saith, The vision that he seeth is for many days off, and he prophesies for distant times. Ezekiel 12:28. Therefore say to them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, All my words shall be no longer postponed: the word which I shall speak shall come to pass, saith the Lord Jehovah. - The words are plain; and after what has already been said, they need no special explanation. Ezekiel 12:20 compare with Ezekiel 12:25.
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