Ezekiel 3:23
Then I arose, and went forth into the plain: and, behold, the glory of the LORD stood there, as the glory which I saw by the river of Chebar: and I fell on my face.
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(23) Went forth into the plain.—As he was now again to see the same vision as at the first, it was fitting that he should leave the thickly-peopled Tel-abib and seek a place of solitude, and in that solitude God promises him, “I will there talk with thee.” The vision reappeared; again the prophet fell on his face, and again the Spirit set him upon his feet, and talked with him.

3:22-27 Let us own ourselves for ever indebted to the mediation of Christ, for the blessed intercourse between God and man; and a true believer will say, I am never less alone than when thus alone. When the Lord opened Ezekiel's mouth, he was to deliver his message boldly, to place life and death, the blessing and the curse, before the people, and leave them to their choice.A fresh revelation of the glory of the Lord, to impress upon Ezekiel another characteristic of his mission. Now he is to learn that there is "a time to be silent" as well as "a time to speak," and that both are appointed by God. This represents forcibly the authoritative character and divine origin of the utterances of the Hebrew prophets. 23. glory of the Lord—(Eze 1:28). Then; so soon as commanded.

The glory of the Lord: see Ezekiel 1:28, with foregoing verses.

Stood there; in the plain whither he is now come.

As the glory which I saw by the river; it overpowered him now as then, and he could bear it no more now than before he could.

Then I arose and went forth into the plain,.... He was obedient to the heavenly vision, which was owing to the hand of the Lord being upon him; the power of the Spirit and grace of God influences and engages to obedience; he went forth where he was ordered, though he knew not what would be said to him, or what he should see there:

and, behold, the glory of the Lord stood there; the glorious Person described in Ezekiel 1:26;

as the glory which I saw by the river of Chebar; Ezekiel 1:1; which vision was repeated for greater certainty, and to confirm the prophecies delivered to him, and to encourage him in the performance of his office:

and I fell on my face; as he did before, when he first saw this glorious object, Ezekiel 1:28.

Then I arose, and went forth into the plain: and, behold, the {n} glory of the LORD stood there, as the glory which I saw by the river of Chebar: and I fell on my face.

(n) Meaning, the vision of the cherubims and the wheels.

Ezekiel 3:23Introduction to the first prophetic announcement. - Ezekiel 3:22. And there came upon me there the hand of Jehovah, and He said to me, Up! go into the valley, there will I speak to thee. Ezekiel 3:23. And I arose, and went into the valley: and, lo, there stood the glory of Jehovah, like the glory which I had seen at the river Chebar: and I fell upon my face. Ezekiel 3:24. And spirit came into me, and placed me on my feet, and He spake with me, and said to me, Go, and shut thyself in thy house. - הבּקעה is, without doubt, the valley situated near Tel-abib. Ezekiel is to go out from the midst of the exiles - where, according to Ezekiel 3:15, he had found himself-into the valley, because God will reveal Himself to him only in solitude. When he had complied with this command, there appears to him there the glory of Jehovah, in the same form in which it had appeared to him at the Chaboras (Ezekiel 1:4-28); before it he falls, a second time, on his face; but is also, as on the first occasion, again raised to his feet, cf. 1:28-2:2. Hereupon the Lord commands him to shut himself up in his house - which doubtless he inhabited in Tel-Abib - not probably "as a sign of his future destiny," as a realistic explanation of the words, "Thou canst not walk in their midst (Ezekiel 3:25); they will prevent thee by force from freely exercising thy vocation in the midst of the people." For in that case the "shutting of himself up in the house" would be an arbitrary identification with the "binding with fetters" (Ezekiel 3:25); and besides, the significance of the address ואתּה בן אדם, and its repetition in Ezekiel 4:1 and Ezekiel 5:1, would be misconceived. For as in Ezekiel 4:1 and Ezekiel 5:1 there are introduced with this address the principal parts of the duty which Ezekiel was to perform, so the proper divine instruction may also first begin with the same in Ezekiel 3:25; consequently the command "to shut himself up in his house" can only have the significance of a preliminary divine injunction, without possessing any significance in itself; but only "serve as a means for carrying out what the prophet is commissioned to do in the following chapters" (Kliefoth), i.e., can only mean that he is to perform in his own house what is commanded him in Ezekiel 4 and 5, or that he is not to leave his house during their performance. More can hardly be sought in this injunction, nor can it at all be taken to mean that, having shut himself up from others in his house, he is to allow no one to approach him; but only that he is not to leave his dwelling. For, according to Ezekiel 4:3, the symbolical representation of the siege of Jerusalem is to be a sign for the house of Israel; and according to Ezekiel 4:12, Ezekiel is, during this symbolical action, to bake his bread before their eyes. From this it is seen that his contemporaries might come to him and observe his proceedings.
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