Ezekiel 37:23
Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwelling places, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.
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(23) Out of all their dwellingplaces.—This expression can hardly refer to their places of exile and temporary sojourn among the heathen, since these were not especially the places where they had sinned. Their sins were rather committed in their own land; the “lands of their captivity” were the places where those sins were punished. “Their dwelling places” is then to be understood of their own land of Canaan, where they had been led into idolatry and all abominations by the heathen dwelling among them; and the promise is that this land shall be purged, that all evil shall be cast out from it, and the people delivered from the temptations by which they had hitherto been overcome.

37:15-28 This emblem was to show the people, that the Lord would unite Judah and Israel. Christ is the true David, Israel's King of old; and those whom he makes willing in the day of his power, he makes to walk in his judgments, and to keep his statutes. Events yet to come will further explain this prophecy. Nothing has more hindered the success of the gospel than divisions. Let us study to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace; let us seek for Divine grace to keep us from detestable things; and let us pray that all nations may be obedient and happy subjects of the Son of David, that the Lord may be our God, and we may be his people for evermore.One king - The restoration of Israel to their native soil will lead the way to the coming of the promised King, the Son of David, who will gather into His kingdom the true Israel, all who shall by faith be acknowledged as the Israel of God. The reign of the One King David is the reign of Christ in His kingdom, the Church.23. (Eze 36:25).

out of … their dwelling-places—(Eze 36:28, 33). I will remove them from the scene of their idolatries to dwell in their own land, and to serve idols no more.

Defile themselves: idolatry is a very defiling sin, and the Jews in both kingdoms were exceedingly addicted to it, pertinacious in it, to the utter ruin of both kingdoms; but after the return from Babylonish captivity, we find no where that they fell to idolatry.

Their idols: it may refer to the heathen, and then it means, they shall not defile themselves with the idols the heathen did worship; or to the idols of the Jews, their own idols, with which they shall no more be defiled.

Their detestable things; the same with idols, and added to set out the loathsomeness of the sin. Their transgressions; the former obstinate, bold, daring transgressors did that which these shall not defile themselves with: see Ezekiel 36:25,33 11:17,18. I will save them; whilst there I preserved them, and now I will bring them safe out of the places.

Wherein they have sinned; where out of a bad fear, or worse choice, they sinned, as did the heathen with whom they dwelt.

Will cleanse them; both sanctify and make them holy, and justify and give them pardon, Ezekiel 36:29. My people: see Ezekiel 11:20 36:28. Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols,....

With their dung, or dunghill gods (g); either with the idols of the Gentiles, or their own: after their return from the Babylonish captivity, the Jews were no more addicted to idolatry; and the image worship of the Papists is an abhorrence to them at this day, and a stumblingblock to them in their embracing Christianity: and when they are effectually called and converted to Christ; they will no more have respect to the idols, the works of their own hands; or to the idol of their own righteousness, which they have set up, and have gone about to establish, and to make to stand; they will then see it to be as filthy rags, defiling to them, instead of justifying of them; and therefore shall reject it, and no more defile themselves with it; but seek the righteousness of Christ, which justifies from all sin, and renders pure and spotless in the sight of God,

nor with their detestable things; or "abominations" (h); the traditions of the elders, which they have preferred to the word of God, and made the rule of their faith, worship, and conversation; which has made them detestable unto God:

nor with any of their transgressions; particularly their disbelief of Christ and their blasphemy against him; nor shall they indulge themselves in those sins which now prevail among them, as pride, covetousness, uncleanness, fraud, and tricking in their trade and commerce:

but I will save them out of all their dwelling places, wherein they have sinned; as wherever they dwell they do; they are notorious for their wickedness; but God will bring them out of all these places, where they have lived in sin, and been the occasion of it to some, as well as followed the example of others:

and will cleanse them; by sprinkling clean water upon them; by applying the blood of Christ to them, which cleanses from all sin see Ezekiel 36:25,

so they shall be my people, and will be their God; the "loammi" will be taken off, and the covenant of grace shall be renewed with them, and made manifest to them; and the blessings and promises shall be applied to them, and particularly this; see Jeremiah 31:1.

(g) "diis stercoreis suis", Junius & Tremellius, Polanus; "stercoribus suis", Cocceius, Starckius. (h) "abominandis suis", Starckius; "abominationibus", Pagninus, Cocceius.

Neither shall they defile themselves any more with their idols, nor with their detestable things, nor with any of their transgressions: but I will save them out of all their dwellingplaces, wherein they have sinned, and will cleanse them: so shall they be my people, and I will be their God.
23. Cf. Ezekiel 36:25.

all their dwelling places] More probably: out of all their backslidings. So LXX., cf. Ezekiel 36:29.Verse 23. - The dwelling-places wherein they have sinned, from which Jehovah premises to save them, are in accordance with the views expressed above, not, as Hengstenberg and Hitzig conjecture, the dwelling-places of the exile in which the people then were, but the dwelling-places in Canaan in which they had formerly transgressed, but would in future be preserved from transgressing. The idea is, as Schroder suggests, the localization of transgression which is viewed as proceeding from the dwelling-places in which it is committed; or, according to Plumptre, the conception is that, as their habitations had formerly been contaminated by their detestable things, "the worship of teraphim and such like, if not worse," so Jehovah would save them from that contamination. The proposal to alter the text by the transposition of a letter, converting moshbhothehem, "dwelling-places," into meshubhothehem," defections," as in Jeremiah 3:22 (comp. Ezekiel 36:29), though adopted by some ancient versions and favored by Ewald and Smend, is not necessary.
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