So that the face of a man was toward the palm tree on the one side, and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on the other side: it was made through all the house round about.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Ezekiel 1:1 note ...
Every cherub had two faces - Not as in Ezekiel 1, "four faces." Convenience of delineation upon a wall may have suggested the alteration. The cherubic devices on the curtains of the tabernacle Exodus 26:1; Exodus 36:8 were no doubt like the cherubim over the ark, of which we have no reason to suppose that each had "two faces." The symbolic character here admitted of the deviation.The face of a man, this one face, the other
of a young lion. Now as to the aspect, it was thus; the cherub between two palm trees looked towards both trees, towards the one a man’s face, towards the other a young lion’s face, looked. And thus it was through the whole house round about, and from bottom to top, as Ezekiel 41:20. Ezekiel 10:20 and the same with John's four beasts or living creatures in Revelation 4:7 and he being the last that wrote concerning them, gives the clearest account of them; and by which the best judgment may be formed about them; and from which it appears that they are men redeemed by the blood of Christ; and as they are on the one hand distinguished from angels, so on the other from the four and twenty elders, or common Christians, Revelation 4:8 and plainly design the ministers of the word, and who are everywhere to be understood by them: their having the face of a man shows they are men, and have to do with men, and should be humane, kind, and tender, knowing and understanding as men; See Gill on Ezekiel 1:10, and their face being
towards the palm tree shows that they should be upright and sincere in their doctrine, ministry, and conversation; that they should bear all weights and pressures laid upon them patiently; and rise up heavenwards in their affections and desires, and in their expectation of help and assistance in their work, and triumph in Christ, through whom they are conquerors; the palm tree being an emblem of these things:
and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on the other side; this face of the cherubim denotes the strength of Gospel ministers they have from Christ to do their work, defend the Gospel, withstand gainsayers, and support the weak, and bear with their infirmities; as also their boldness, courage, and intrepidity, in preaching the Gospel of Christ without fear of men; of this their face, and the other two not mentioned here; see Gill on Ezekiel 1:10,
it was made through all the house round about; that is, the cherubim and palm trees were carved or portrayed in the form and order here described throughout the holy of holies, as Jarchi interprets the house; and signifies that Gospel ministers shall have a place, and peculiar honour done them, in the New Jerusalem state, who will be particularly rewarded then, Revelation 11:18.So that the face of a man was toward the palm tree on the one side, and the face of a young lion toward the palm tree on the other side: it was made through all the house round about.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
Ezekiel 39:1-8. General announcement of his destruction. - Ezekiel 39:1. And thou, son of man, prophesy against Gog, and say, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah, Behold, I will deal with thee, Gog, thou prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal. Ezekiel 39:2. I will mislead thee, and conduct thee, and cause thee to come up from the uttermost north, and bring thee to the mountains of Israel; Ezekiel 39:3. And will smite thy bow from thy left hand, and cause thine arrows to fall from thy right hand. Ezekiel 39:4. Upon the mountains of Israel wilt thou fall, thou and all thy hosts, and the peoples which are with thee: I give thee for food to the birds of prey of every plumage, and to the beasts of the field. Ezekiel 39:5. Upon the open field shalt thou fall, for I have spoken it, is the saying of the Lord Jehovah. Ezekiel 39:6. And I will send fire in Magog, and among those who dwell in security upon the islands, that they may know that I am Jehovah. Ezekiel 39:7. I will make known my holy name in the midst of my people Israel, and will not let my holy name be profaned any more, that the nations may know that I am Jehovah, holy in Israel. Ezekiel 39:8. Behold, it comes and happens, is the saying of the Lord Jehovah; this is the day of which I spoke. - The further description of the judgment with which Gog and his hosts are threatened in Ezekiel 38:21-23, commences with a repetition of the command to the prophet to prophesy against Gog (Ezekiel 39:1, cf. Ezekiel 38:2-3). The principal contents of Ezekiel 38:4-15 are then briefly summed up in Ezekiel 39:2. שׁבבתּיך, as in Ezekiel 38:4, is strengthened by שׁשּׁתיך, שׁשׁא, ἁπαχ λεγ.., is not connected with שׁשׁ in the sense of "I leave a sixth part of thee remaining," or afflict thee with six punishments; but in the Ethiopic it signifies to proceed, or to climb, and here, accordingly, it is used in the sense of leading on (lxx καθοδηγήσω σε, or, according to another reading, κατάξω; Vulg. educam). For Ezekiel 39:2, compare Ezekiel 38:15 and Ezekiel 38:8. In the land of Israel, God will strike his weapons out of his hands, i.e., make him incapable of fighting (for the fact itself, compare the similar figures in Psalm 37:15; Psalm 46:10), and give him up with all his army as a prey to death. עיט, a beast of prey, is more precisely defined by צפּור, and still further strengthened by the genitive כּל־כּנף: birds of prey of every kind. The judgment will not be confined to the destruction of the army of Gog, which has invaded the land of Israel, but (Ezekiel 39:6) will also extend to the land of Gog, and to all the heathen nations that are dwelling in security. אשׁ, fire, primarily the fire of war; then, in a further sense, a figure denoting destruction inflicted directly by God, as in Ezekiel 38:22, which is therefore represented in Revelation 20:9 as fire falling from heaven. Magog is the population of the land of Magog (Ezekiel 38:2). With this the inhabitants of the distant coastlands of the west (the איּים) are associated, as representatives of the remotest heathen nations. Ezekiel 39:7, Ezekiel 39:8. By this judgment the Lord will make known His holy name in Israel, and show the heathen that He will not let it be blasphemed by them any more. For the fact itself, compare Ezekiel 36:20. For Ezekiel 39:8, compare Ezekiel 21:12, and for היּום, see Ezekiel 38:18-19.
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