And he said to me, Son of man, have you seen this? Then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)To return to the brink.—The angel, having called the prophet’s attention to this marvellous increase, now causes him to return along the bank to observe other things. The word brink in this verse and bank in the next are the same in the original. The prophet does not return to the brink, for he had not left it, but is told to pass along it.Ezekiel 47:6-7. And he said, Son of man, hast thou seen this? — Hast thou considered, or taken notice of, this vision now showed unto thee? To see, often signifies to take notice of what we see: on the contrary, they are said to have eyes and see not, who do not observe what is placed before their eyes. This is an intimation to us, that it is our indispensable duty to consider well what is signified by these waters, and by their increase and effects: namely, to mark well the progress of the gospel in the world, and the process of the work of grace in the heart; to follow and carefully observe these waters, as Ezekiel here did; to attend to the motions and drawings of the blessed Spirit, and walk after them under a divine conduct. It is good to be often searching into the things of God, and trying to discover the depth of them; not only to look on the surface of the waters, but to go as far as we can toward the bottom of them; to be often digging, often diving into the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven, as those who covet to be intimately acquainted with them. If we carefully consider the things of God, we shall find some of them very plain, and easy to be understood, like the waters that came only up to the ankles; others more difficult, and which require a deeper search, as the waters which rose to the knees, or the loins; and some quite beyond our reach, which we can neither fathom nor penetrate into, but, despairing to find their bottom, or measure their depth must be content, with St. Paul, to sit down on the brink, and adore it, crying out with him, O the depth of the riches, both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments, and his ways past finding out! Romans 11:33.
Then he caused me to return by the brink of the river — He made me go along by the river side. Behold, on the bank of the river were very many trees — The words allude to the trees planted in paradise, and designed for man’s food in the state of innocence; and especially to the tree of life which grew there. The reader will observe, that many of the ideas in this chapter are taken from the terrestrial paradise; see Ezekiel 47:12, and compare Revelation 22:1-2, where the same ideas are carried to the celestial paradise by St. John.
Waters to swim in - When under Constantine the Roman empire had become Christian, the Church may be contemplated as the full river, to flow on through time until the final completion of Isaiah's prophecy Isaiah 11:9.
Eze 47:1-23. Vision of the Temple Waters. Borders and Division of The land.
The happy fruit to the earth at large of God's dwelling with Israel in holy fellowship is that the blessing is no longer restricted to the one people and locality, but is to be diffused with comprehensive catholicity through the whole world. So the plant from the cedar of Lebanon is represented as gathering under its shelter "all fowl of every wing" (Eze 17:23). Even the desert places of the earth shall be made fruitful by the healing waters of the Gospel (compare Isa 35:1).
1. waters—So Re 22:1, represents "the water of life as proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb." His throne was set up in the temple at Jerusalem (Eze 43:7). Thence it is to flow over the earth (Joe 3:18; Zec 13:1; 14:8). Messiah is the temple and the door; from His pierced side flow the living waters, ever increasing, both in the individual believer and in the heart. The fountains in the vicinity of Moriah suggested the image here. The waters flow eastward, that is, towards the Kedron, and thence towards the Jordan, and so along the Ghor into the Dead Sea. The main point in the picture is the rapid augmentation from a petty stream into a mighty river, not by the influx of side streams, but by its own self-supply from the sacred miraculous source in the temple [Henderson]. (Compare Ps 36:8, 9; 46:4; Isa 11:9; Hab 2:14). Searching into the things of God, we find some easy to understand, as the water up to the ankles; others more difficult, which require a deeper search, as the waters up to the knees or loins; others beyond our reach, of which we can only adore the depth (Ro 11:33). The healing of the waters of the Dead Sea here answers to "there shall be no more curse" (Re 22:3; compare Zec 14:11).He said, i.e. the man with measuring line in hand.
Seen this; observed and considered this; hast thou well seen this?
Caused me to return: it is not said whether he was gone from the bank, though it be said he returned to the brink, or perhaps it is, he caused me to return along by the brink of the river.
then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river; there to stand and observe the nature of the waters, and the course of them; the multitude of fish in them; and the trees which grew upon the banks of them; of all which some account is given in the following verses.And he said unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen this? Then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)6. to the brink] Perhaps: along the brink. River is brook or wady as Ezekiel 47:5.Verse 6. - Then he... caused me to return to the brink of the river. The difficulty lying in the word "return" has given rise to a variety of conjectures. Hengstenberg supposes the prophet had made trial of the river's depth by wading in (perhaps up to the neck), and that the angel caused him to return from the stream to the bank According to Hitzig, the measuring had taken place at some distance from the stream, and the prophet, having come up to his guide from the bank after making trial of the water's depth, was Once more conducted back to the river's brink. Havernick conceives the sense to be that the prophet, having accompanied the angel to the point where the stream debouched into the Dead Sea was led back to the riverbank. All difficulty, however, vanishes if, either with Schroder we refer וַיְשִׁבֵנִי to a mental returning, as if the import were that the angel, having ascertained that the prophet had "seen" the river's course, now told him to direct his attention to the bank, or, with Keil and Kliefoth, translate עַל by "along" or "on" rather than "to." As the prophet had been led along or on the river's bank to see the increasing breadth and depth of the water, so was he now "caused to return" along or on the same bank to note the abundance of the foliage with which it was adorned.
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