They shall also gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be on all faces, and baldness on all their heads.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Deuteronomy 14:1. They seem, however, in later times to have adopted the custom of foreign nations in this matter, not without permission. Compare Isaiah 22:12.
baldness—a sign of mourning (Isa 3:24; Jer 48:37; Mic 1:16).
Horror; either dreadful apprehensions of growing evils, or continued shakings from impressions of what formerly they felt, according to Leviticus 26:16,36.
Cover them; be on every side, no side safety, or quiet, and confidence. Shame of disappointment, which breeds consternation; and shame of conscious guilt and unbecoming deportment, which fills the countenance as much with blushing as it fills the conscience with guilt and sin.
Baldness; either by pulling off the hair amidst their sorrows, or cutting off their hair in token of greatest mourning, Isaiah 15:2 Jeremiah 7:29 48:37 Amos 8:10. Genesis 37:34;
and horror shall cover them: either the horror of a guilty conscience, or the perpetual dread and terror of the enemy:
and shame shall be upon all faces; because of their sins and transgressions, which they shall now be convinced of; or because of their desolate condition, their sins had brought them into:
and baldness upon all their heads; through the plucking off of the hair of their heads in their distress; for to make baldness as a token of mourning for the dead was forbidden the Jews, Deuteronomy 14:1.They shall also gird themselves with sackcloth, and horror shall cover them; and shame shall be upon all faces, and baldness upon all their heads.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)18. horror shall cover them] Or, trembling, terror, Job 21:6. It shall take such hold of them that it shall be all over them, like a garment covering them. Cf. Isaiah 59:17, he was clad with zeal as a cloke; Psalm 55:6.
baldness] A sign of mourning: Isaiah 15:2, On all heads shall be baldness; Mic: Micah 1:16, Enlarge thy baldness like the vulture. This tonsure in token of mourning, common among many nations of antiquity, was confined among the Hebrews to shaving the front part of the head (Deuteronomy 14:1), and was forbidden by the Law in the case of priests (Leviticus 21:5, cf. Ezekiel 44:20), and of the whole people (Deuteronomy 14:1), cf. Amos 8:10; Jeremiah 16:6; Leviticus 19:27.Verse 18. - They shall also gird, etc. The words become more general, and include those who should remain in the city as well as the fugitives. For both there should be the inward feelings of horror and shame, and their outward symbols of sackcloth (Genesis 37:34; 2 Samuel 3:31, 32; 2 Kings 6:30; Isaiah 15:3; Jeremiah 4:8, et al.) and baldness (Isaiah 3:24; Isaiah 15:2; Isaiah 22:12; Amos 8:10). Ezekiel 7:2-4, arranged in four strophes: Ezekiel 7:5-9, Ezekiel 7:10-14, Ezekiel 7:15-22, Ezekiel 7:23-27. - The first strophe depicts the end as a terrible calamity, and as near at hand. Ezekiel 7:3 and Ezekiel 7:4 are repeated as a refrain in Ezekiel 7:8 and Ezekiel 7:9, with slight modifications. Ezekiel 7:5. Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: Misfortune, a singular misfortune, behold, it cometh. Ezekiel 7:6. End cometh: there cometh the end; it waketh upon thee; behold, it cometh. Ezekiel 7:7. The fate cometh upon thee, inhabitants of the land: the time cometh, the day is near; tumult and not joy upon the mountains. Ezekiel 7:8. Now speedily will I pour out my fury upon thee, and accomplish mine anger on thee; and judge thee according to thy ways, and bring upon thee all thine abominations. Ezekiel 7:9. My eye shall not look with pity upon thee, and I shall not spare; according to thy ways will I bring it upon thee, and thy abominations shall be in the midst of thee, that ye may know that I, Jehovah, am smiting. - Misfortune of a singular kind shall come. רעה is made more emphatic by אחת רעה, in which אחת is placed first for the sake of emphasis, in the sense of unicus, singularis; a calamity singular (unique) of its kind, such as never had occurred before (cf. Ezekiel 5:9). In Ezekiel 7:6 the poetical הקיץ, it (the end) waketh upon thee, is suggested by the paronomasia with הקּץ. The force of the words is weakened by supplying Jehovah as the subject to הקיץ, in opposition to the context. And it will not do to supply רעה (evil) from Ezekiel 7:5 as the subject to הנּה באה (behold, it cometh). באה is construed impersonally: It cometh, namely, every dreadful thing which the end brings with it. The meaning of tzephirâh is doubtful. The only other passage in which it occurs is Isaiah 28:5, where it is used in the sense of diadem or crown, which is altogether unsuitable here. Raschi has therefore had recourse to the Syriac and Chaldee צפרא, aurora, tempus matutinum, and Hvernick has explained it accordingly, "the dawn of an evil day." But the dawn is never used as a symbol or omen of misfortune, not even in Joel 2:2, but solely as the sign of the bursting forth of light or of salvation. Abarbanel was on the right track when he started from the radical meaning of צפר, to twist, and taking tzephirâh in the sense of orbis, ordo, or periodical return, understood it as probably denoting rerum fatique vicissitudinem in orbem redeuntem (Ges. Thes. p. 1188). But it has been justly observed, that the rendering succession, or periodical return, can only give a forced sense in Ezekiel 7:10. Winer has given a better rendering, viz., fatum, malum fatale, fate or destiny, for which he refers to the Arabic tsabramun, intortum, then fatum haud mutandum inevitabile. Different explanations have also been given of הד הרים. But the opinion that it is synonymous with הידד, the joyous vintage cry (Jeremiah 25:30; Isaiah 16:10), is a more probable one than that it is an unusual form of הוד, splendor, gloria. So much at any rate is obvious from the context, that the hapax legomenon dh̀ is the antithesis of מהוּמה, tumult, or the noise of war. The shouting of the mountains, is shouting, a rejoicing upon the mountains. מקּרוב, from the immediate vicinity, in a temporal not a local sense, as in Deuteronomy 32:17 ( equals immediately). For כּלּה , see Ezekiel 6:1-14;12. The remainder of the strophe (Ezekiel 7:8 and Ezekiel 7:9) is a repetition of Ezekiel 7:3 and Ezekiel 7:4; but מכּה is added in the last clause. They shall learn that it is Jehovah who smites. This thought is expanded in the following strophe.
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