Ezekiel 7:19
They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the LORD: they shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels: because it is the stumblingblock of their iniquity.
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(19) Cast their silver in the streets.—As in the rout of an army the soldier throws away everything, even his most valuable things, as impediments to his flight and temptations to the pursuing enemy, so the Israelites in their terror should abandon everything. Their riches will be utterly unavailing. The expression in the original is even stronger: their gold shall be to them “an unclean thing,” “filth,” because they shall perceive that it has been to them an occasion of sin.

7:16-22 Sooner or later, sin will cause sorrow; and those who will not repent of their sin, may justly be left to pine away in it. There are many whose wealth is their snare and ruin; and the gaining the world is the losing of their souls. Riches profit not in the day of wrath. The wealth of this world has not that in it which will answer the desires of the soul, or be any satisfaction to it in a day of distress. God's temple shall stand them in no stead. Those are unworthy to be honoured with the form of godliness, who will not be governed by its power.Shall be removed - literally, "shall be an unclean thing" Leviticus 20:21; their gold shall be unclean and abominable in their eyes.

The stumblingblock of their iniquity - See Ezekiel 3:20. Their gold and silver used in making images was the occasion of their sin.

19. cast … silver in … streets—just retribution; they had abused their silver and gold by converting them into idols, "the stumbling-block of their iniquity" (Eze 14:3, 4, that is, an occasion of sinning); so these silver and gold idols, so far from "being able to deliver them in the day of the Lord's wrath" (see Pr 11:4), shall, in despair, be cast by them into the streets as a prey to the foe, by whom they shall be "removed" (Grotius translates as the Margin, "shall be despised as an unclean thing"); or rather, as suits the parallelism, "shall be put away from them" by the Jews [Calvin]. "They (the silver and gold) shall not satisfy their souls," that is, their cravings of appetite and other needs. They shall cast their silver; either,

1. The Jews themselves, that they be the lighter to flee, and might stop the pursuer, whom they hope silver may stop a while, and give them some space to get away; or, might occasion quarrels among soldiers of fortune, which might set them one against another till the distressed Jews could get away from them all. Or,

2. The Chaldeans, who in this day of their own rage and God’s wrath against the Jews did (as the Medes and Persians shall, Isaiah 13:17) not regard silver or gold, Proverbs 11:4. Or, 3. Because Nebuchadnezzar might possibly reserve it all to himself, having those vast thoughts of enlarging his empire by arms; which could not be done without great treasures.

Removed; carried away into Babylon, to the royal treasury; or laid aside as despised, when offered a ransom of their life; or hid by the Jews in polluted places, which perhaps the Jew might think would be securest from searching, forasmuch as the Chaldean knew their law forbade them to touch any unclean tiring.

Silver and gold shall not be able to deliver them: this is the sum of it, these treasures shall stand them in no stead. If the self-flattering Jews should think much silver and gold might ransom their life when the city is taken, the prophet removes this confidence, and tells them they should not have enough to buy bread to fill their own bellies.

It is the stumbling-block of their iniquity; this silver and gold they valued too much, coveted immeasurably, abused to pride, luxury, idolatry, and oppression; this that they stumbled at and fell into sin, this now they stumble at and fall into deepest misery and danger.

They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed,.... As being of no use unto them to preserve them from famine and pestilence, and as being an hinderance to them in their flight from the enemy. Kimchi observes that this may be interpreted of their idols of gold and silver, which shall now be had in contempt by them, and cast away, when they shall find they cannot save them from ruin; see Isaiah 2:20;

their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the Lord; these can neither deliver from temporal judgments nor from wrath to come; see Proverbs 10:2; nor idols made of them:

they shall not satisfy their souls, nor fill their bowels; gold and silver cannot be eaten; these will not satisfy the craving appetite, nor fill the hungry belly: the words show that the famine would be so great, that bread could not be got for any money; and therefore gold and silver would be of no avail; since they could not be fed upon, or give any satisfaction to a famishing soul; nor could idols of gold and silver neither:

because it is the stumbling block of their iniquity; what was the occasion of their iniquity, covetousness, and idolatry, at which they stumbled, and fell into sin, and so into punishment for it.

They shall cast their silver in the streets, and their gold shall be removed: their silver and their gold shall not be able to deliver them in the day of the wrath of the LORD: they shall not satisfy their souls, neither fill their bowels: because it is the stumblingblock of their iniquity.
19. Amidst the famine they cast their silver and gold away in the streets, it cannot procure them food. On the horrors of famine during the siege of Jerusalem, comp. Lamentations 4:4; Lamentations 4:8-10; Lamentations 2:11-12; Lamentations 2:19-20; Lamentations 1:11.

gold shall be removed] Rather: shall be a thing unclean, lit. uncleanness. The term refers properly to female impurity, and is the strongest expression for “object of abhorrence;” cf. ch. Ezekiel 36:17, where the people’s idolatries are in Jehovah’s eyes as a woman’s impurity. Leviticus 20:21.

is the stumblingblock] hath been. Their gold and silver has been to them something on which they have stumbled and fallen, i.e. a cause of their sinning; cf. ch. Ezekiel 14:3, Ezekiel 44:12.

Verse 19. - They shall cast their silver, etc. The words remind us of Isaiah 2:20 and Isaiah 30:22, with the difference that here it is the silver and gold as such, and not the idols made of them, that are to be flung away. They had made the actual metal their idol, and their confidence in it should be powerless to deliver them (Zephaniah 1:18). Their gold shall be removed; better, with the Revised Version, as an unclean thing. The word implies the kind of impurity of Ezekiel 18:6; Ezekiel 22:10; Ezekiel 36:17; Isaiah 30:22. Instead of gloating, as they had done, over their money, men should shrink from it, as though its very touch brought pollution. The Vulgate gives in sterquilinium, "to the dunghill." They shall not satisfy their souls. In the horrors of the siege, with everything at famine prices (2 Kings 6:25), and little or nothing to be had for them, their money would not stop the cravings of hunger. It is characteristic that he applies to riches as such the very same epithet, stumbling block of their iniquity, as he had applied before (Ezekiel 3:20) to actual idolatry (comp. Colossians 3:5). Ezekiel 7:19Third strophe

Thus will they fall into irresistible destruction; even their silver and gold they will not rescue, but will cast it away as useless, and leave it for the enemy. - Ezekiel 7:15. The sword without, and pestilence and famine within: he who is in the field will die by the sword; and famine and pestilence will devour him that is in the city. Ezekiel 7:16. And if their escaped ones escape, they will be upon the mountains like the doves of the valleys, all moaning, every one for his iniquity. Ezekiel 7:17. All hands will become feeble, and all knees flow with water. Ezekiel 7:18. They will gird themselves with sackcloth, and terrors will cover them; on all faces there will be shame, and baldness on all their heads. Ezekiel 7:19. They will throw their silver into the streets, and their gold will be as filth to them. Their silver and their gold will not be able to rescue them in the day of Jehovah's wrath; they will not satisfy their souls therewith, nor fill their stomachs thereby, for it was to them a stumbling-block to guilt. Ezekiel 7:20. And His beautiful ornament, they used it for pride; and their abominable images, their abominations they made thereof: therefore I make it filth to them. Ezekiel 7:21. And I shall give it into the hand of foreigners for prey, and to the wicked of the earth for spoil, that they may defile it. Ezekiel 7:22. I shall turn my face from them, that they defile my treasure; and oppressors shall come upon it and defile it. - The chastisement of God penetrates everywhere (Ezekiel 7:15 compare with Ezekiel 5:12); even flight to the mountains, that are inaccessible to the foe (compare 1 Macc. 2:28; Matthew 24:16), will only bring misery. Those who have fled to the mountains will coo - i.e., mourn, moan - like the doves of the valleys, which (as Bochart has correctly interpreted the simile in his Hieroz. II. p. 546, ed. Ros.), "when alarmed by the bird-catcher or the hawk, are obliged to forsake their natural abode, and fly elsewhere to save their lives. The mountain doves are contrasted with those of the valleys, as wild with tame." In כּלּם המות the figure and the fact are fused together. The words actually relate to the men who have fled; whereas the gender of המות is made to agree with that of כּיוני. The cooing of doves was regarded by the ancients as a moan (hâgâh), a mournful note (for proofs, see Gesen. on Isaiah 38:14); for which Ezekiel uses the still stronger expression hâmâh fremere, to howl or growl (cf. Isaiah 59:11). The low moaning has reference to their iniquity, the punishment of which they are enduring. When the judgment bursts upon them, they will all (not merely those who have escaped, but the whole nation) be overwhelmed with terror, shame, and suffering. The words, "all knees flow with water" (for hâlak in this sense, compare Joel 4:18), are a hyperbolical expression used to denote the entire loss of the strength of the knees (here, Ezekiel 7:17 and Ezekiel 21:12), like the heart melting and turning to water in Joshua 7:5. With this utter despair there are associated grief and horror at the calamity that has fallen upon them, and shame and pain at the thought of the sins that have plunged them into such distress. For כּסּתה פלּצוּת, compare Psalm 55:6; for אל־כּל־פנים בּוּשׁה, Micah 7:10; Jeremiah 51:51; and for קרחה 'בּכל־ראשׁ, Isaiah 15:2; Amos 8:10. On the custom of shaving the head bald on account of great suffering or deep sorrow, see the comm. on Micah 1:16.

In this state of anguish they will throw all their treasures away as sinful trash (Ezekiel 7:19.). By the silver and gold which they will throw away (Ezekiel 7:19), we are not to understand idolatrous images particularly - these are first spoken of in Ezekiel 7:20 - but the treasures of precious metals on which they had hitherto set their hearts. They will not merely throw these away as worthless, but look upon them as niddâh, filth, an object of disgust, inasmuch as they have been the servants of their evil lust. The next clause, "silver and gold cannot rescue them," are a reminiscence from Zephaniah 1:18. But Ezekiel gives greater force to the thought by adding, "they will not appease their hunger therewith," - that is to say, they will not be able to protect their lives thereby, either from the sword of the enemy (see the comm. on Zephaniah 1:18) or from death by starvation, because there will be no more food to purchase within the besieged city. The clause 'כּי assigns the reason for that which forms the leading thought of the verse, namely, the throwing away of the silver and gold as filth; מכשׁול עונם, a stumbling-block through which one falls into guilt and punishment; צבי עדיו, the beauty of his ornament, i.e., his beautiful ornament. The allusion is to the silver and gold; and the singular suffix is to be explained from the fact that the prophet fixed his mind upon the people as a whole, and used the singular in a general and indefinite sense. The words are written absolutely at the commencement of the sentence; hence the suffix attached to שׂמהוּ, Jerome has given the true meaning of the words: "what I((God) gave for an ornament of the possessors and for their wealth, they turned into pride." And not merely to ostentatious show (in the manner depicted in Isaiah 3:16.), but to abominable images, i.e., idols, did they apply the costly gifts of God (cf. Hosea 8:4; Hosea 13:2). עשׂה, to make of (gold and silver); ב denoting the material with which one works and of which anything is made (as in Exodus 31:4; Exodus 38:8). God punishes this abuse by making it (gold and silver) into niddâh to them, i.e., according to v. 19, by placing them in such circumstances that they cast it away as filth, and (v. 21) by giving it as booty to the foe. The enemy is described as "the wicked of the earth" (cf. Psalm 75:9), i.e., godless men, who not only seize upon the possession of Israel, but in the most wicked manner lay hands upon all that is holy, and defile it. The Chetib חלּלוּה is to be retained, notwithstanding the fact that it was preceded by a masculine suffix. What is threatened will take place, because the Lord will turn away His face from His people (מהם, from the Israelites), i.e., will withdraw His gracious protection from them, so that the enemy will be able to defile His treasure. Tsâphuun, that which is hidden, the treasure (Job 20:26; Obadiah 1:6). Tsephuunii is generally supposed to refer to the temple, or the Most Holy Place in the temple. Jerome renders it arcanum meum, and gives this explanation: "signifying the Holy of Holies, which no one except the priests and the high priest dared to enter." This interpretation was so commonly adopted by the Fathers, that even Theodoret explains the rendering given in the Septuagint, τὴν ἐπισκοπήν μου, as signifying the Most Holy Place in the temple. On the other hand, the Chaldee has ארעא בּית שׁכינתי, "the land of the house of my majesty;" and Calvin understands it as signifying "the land which was safe under His (i.e., God's) protection." But it is difficult to reconcile either explanation with the use of the word tsâphuun. The verb tsâphan signifies to hide, shelter, lay up in safety. These meanings do not befit either the Holy of Holies in the temple or the land of Israel. It is true that the Holy of Holies was unapproachable by the laity, and even by the ordinary priests, but it was not a secret, a hidden place; and still less was this the case with the land of Canaan.We therefore adhere to the meaning, which is so thoroughly sustained by Job 20:26 and Obadiah 1:6 - namely, "treasure," by which, no doubt, the temple-treasure is primarily intended. This rendering suits the context, as only treasures have been referred to before; and it may be made to harmonize with בּאוּ בהּ which follows. בּוא ב signifies not merely intrare in locum, but also venire in (e.g., 2 Kings 6:23; possibly Ezekiel 30:4), and may therefore be very properly rendered, "to get possession of," since it is only possible to obtain possession of a treasure by penetrating into the place where it is laid up or concealed. There is nothing at variance with this in the word חלּל, profanare, since it has already occurred in Ezekiel 7:21 in connection with the defiling of treasures and jewels. Moreover, as Calvin has correctly observed, the word is employed here to denote "an indiscriminate abuse, when, instead of considering to what purpose things have been entrusted to us, we squander them rashly and without selection, in contempt and even in scorn."

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