Ezekiel 14:20
Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, said the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
14:12-23 National sins bring national judgments. Though sinners escape one judgment, another is waiting for them. When God's professing people rebel against him, they may justly expect all his judgments. The faith, obedience, and prayers of Noah prevailed to the saving of his house, but not of the old world. Job's sacrifice and prayer in behalf of his friends were accepted, and Daniel had prevailed for the saving his companions and the wise men of Babylon. But a people that had filled the measure of their sins, was not to expect to escape for the sake of any righteous men living among them; not even of the most eminent saints, who could be accepted in their own case only through the sufferings and righteousness of Christ. Yet even when God makes the greatest desolations by his judgments, he saves some to be monuments of his mercy. In firm belief that we shall approve the whole of God's dealings with ourselves, and with all mankind, let us silence all rebellious murmurs and objections.Noah, Daniel, and Job - Three striking instances of men who, for their integrity, were delivered from the ruin which fell upon others. Some have thought it strange that Daniel, a contemporary, and still young, should have been classed with the two ancient worthies. But the account of him Daniel 2 shows, that by this time Daniel was a very remarkable man (compare Ezekiel 28:3), and the introduction of the name of a contemporary gives force and life to the illustration. There is in the order in which the names occur a kind of climax. Noah did not rescue the guilty world, but did carry forth with him his wife, sons, and sons' wives. Daniel raised only a few, but he did raise three of his countrymen with him to honor. To Job was spared neither son nor daughter.19. in blood—not literally. In Hebrew, "blood" expresses every premature kind of death. Their own souls; their person, their life.

By their righteousness; not meriting the deliverance, but yet the justice and mercy of God shall surely keep them from falling in the punishment who were kept from the sin. Though Noah, Daniel, and Job, were in it,.... Who are again mentioned by name, as in Ezekiel 14:14; and are the three men referred to in Ezekiel 14:16;

as I live, saith the Lord God, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; not so much as an only son, or an only daughter, no, not even a single child: the plural number is used before, as in Ezekiel 14:16; here the singular, to show how resolutely determined the Lord was upon the destruction of the land; that even the prayers of the best of men among them should not prevail with him to save a single person, no, not a single infant: they

shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness; See Gill on Ezekiel 14:14.

Though Noah, Daniel, and Job were in it, as I live, saith the Lord GOD, they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
In these verses the divine threat, and the summons to repent, are repeated, expanded, and uttered in the clearest words. - Ezekiel 14:6. Therefore say to the house of Israel, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Repent, and turn away from your idols; and turn away your face from all your abominations. V.7. For every one of the house of Israel, and of the foreigners who sojourn in Israel, if he estrange himself from me, and let his idols rise up in his heart, and set the stumbling-block to his sin before his face, and come to the prophet to seek me for himself; I will show myself to him, answering in my own way. Ezekiel 14:8. I will direct my face against that man, and will destroy him, for a sign and for proverbs, and will cut him off out of my people; and ye shall learn that I am Jehovah. - לכן in Ezekiel 14:6 is co-ordinate with the לכן in Ezekiel 14:4, so far as the thought is concerned, but it is directly attached to Ezekiel 14:5: because they have estranged themselves from God, therefore God requires them to repent and turn. For God will answer with severe judgments every one who would seek God with idols in his heart, whether he be an Israelite, or a foreigner living in the midst of Israel. שׁוּבוּ, turn, be converted, is rendered still more emphatic by the addition of פניכם... השׁיבוּ. This double call to repentance corresponds to the double reproof of their idolatry in Ezekiel 14:3, viz., שׁוּבוּ, to על לב 'העלה גל; and השׁיבוּ פניכם, to their setting the idols נכח פּניהם. השׁיבוּ is not used intransitively, as it apparently is in Ezekiel 18:30, but is to be taken in connection with the object פניכם, which follows at the end of the verse; and it is simply repeated before פניכם for the sake of clearness and emphasis. The reason for the summons to repent and give up idolatry is explained in Ezekiel 14:7, in the threat that God will destroy every Israelite, and every foreigner in Israel, who draws away from God and attaches himself to idols. The phraseology of Ezekiel 14:7 is adopted almost verbatim from Leviticus 17:8, Leviticus 17:10,Leviticus 17:13. On the obligation of foreigners to avoid idolatry and all moral abominations, vid., Leviticus 20:2; Leviticus 18:26; Leviticus 17:10; Exodus 12:19, etc. The ו before ינּזר and יעל does not stand for the Vav relat., but simply supposes a case: "should he separate himself from my followers, and let his idols rise up, etc." לדרשׁ־לו בּי does not mean, "to seek counsel of him (the prophet) from me," for לו cannot be taken as referring to the prophet, although דּרשׁ with ל does sometimes mean to seek any one, and ל may therefore indicate the person to whom one goes to make inquiry (cf. 2 Chronicles 15:13; 2 Chronicles 17:4; 2 Chronicles 31:21), because it is Jehovah who is sought in this case; and Hvernick's remark, that "דּרשׁ with ל merely indicates the external object sought by a man, and therefore in this instance the medium or organ through whom God speaks," is proved to be erroneous by the passages just cited. לו is reflective, or to be taken as a dat. commodi, denoting the inquirer or seeker. The person approached for the purpose of inquiring or seeking, i.e., God, is indicated by the preposition בּ, as in 1 Chronicles 10:14 (דּרשׁ ); and also frequently, in the case of idols, when either an oracle or help is sought from them (1 Samuel 28:7; 2 Kings 1:2.). It is only in this way that לו and בּי can be made to correspond to the same words in the apodosis: Whosoever seeks counsel of God, to him will God show Himself answering בּי, in Him, i.e., in accordance with His nature, in His own way, - namely, in the manner described in Ezekiel 14:8. The threat is composed of passages in the law: 'נתתּי and 'הכרתּי וגו, after Leviticus 20:3, Leviticus 20:5-6; and 'וחשׁמותיהוּ וגו, though somewhat freely, after Deuteronomy 28:37 ('היה לשׁמּה למשׁל). There is no doubt, therefore, that השׁמותי is to be derived from שׁמם, and stands for השׁמּותי, in accordance with the custom in later writings of resolving the Dagesh forte into a long vowel. The allusion to Deuteronomy 28:37, compared with היה in v. 46 of the same chapter, is sufficient to set aside the assumption that השׁמותי is to be derived from שׂים, and pointed accordingly; although the lxx, Targ., Syr., and Vulg. have all renderings of שׂים (cf. Psalm 44:16). Moreover, שׂים in the perfect never takes the Hiphil form; and in Ezekiel 20:26 we have אשׁמּם in a similar connection. The expression is a pregnant one: I make him desolate, so that he becomes a sign and proverbs.
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