Ezekiel 5

1 You, son of man, take a sharp sword; You shall take it as a barber’s razor to you, and shall cause it to pass on your head and on your beard: then take balances to weigh, and divide the hair. 2 A third part you shall burn in the fire in the middle of the city, when the days of the siege are fulfilled; and you shall take a third part, and strike with the sword around it; and a third part you shall scatter to the wind, and I will draw out a sword after them. 3 You shall take of it a few in number, and bind them in your skirts. 4 Of these again you shall take, and cast them into the middle of the fire, and burn them in the fire; from it shall a fire come out into all the house of Israel. 5 Thus says the Lord GOD: This is Jerusalem; I have set her in the middle of the nations, and countries are around her. 6 She has rebelled against my ordinances in doing wickedness more than the nations, and against my statutes more than the countries that are around her; for they have rejected my ordinances, and as for my statutes, they have not walked in them. 7 Therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Because you are turbulent more than the nations that are around you, and have not walked in my statutes, neither have kept my ordinances, neither have done after the ordinances of the nations that are around you; 8 therefore thus says the Lord GOD: Behold, I, even I, am against you; and I will execute judgements amongst you in the sight of the nations. 9 I will do in you that which I have not done, and which I will not do any more the like, because of all your abominations. 10 Therefore the fathers shall eat the sons in within you, and the sons shall eat their fathers; and I will execute judgements on you; and the whole remnant of you will I scatter to all the winds. 11 Therefore as I live, says the Lord GOD, surely, because you have defiled my sanctuary with all your detestable things, and with all your abominations, therefore will I also diminish you; neither shall my eye spare, and I also will have no pity. 12 A third part of you shall die with the pestilence, and with famine shall they be consumed within you; and a third part shall fall by the sword around you; and a third part I will scatter to all the winds, and will draw out a sword after them. 13 Thus shall my anger be accomplished, and I will cause my wrath towards them to rest, and I shall be comforted; and they shall know that I, the LORD, have spoken in my zeal, when I have accomplished my wrath on them. 14 Moreover I will make you a desolation and a reproach amongst the nations that are around you, in the sight of all that pass by. 15 So it shall be a reproach and a taunt, an instruction and an astonishment, to the nations that are around you, when I shall execute judgements on you in anger and in wrath, and in wrathful rebukes; (I, the LORD, have spoken it;) 16 when I shall send on them the evil arrows of famine, that are for destruction, which I will send to destroy you: and I will increase the famine on you, and will break your staff of bread; 17 and I will send on you famine and evil animals, and they shall bereave you; and pestilence and blood shall pass through you; and I will bring the sword on you: I, the LORD, have spoken it.

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Questions about today’s reading? See if Matthew Henry can help.
Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary, 1706

Verses 1-4

The prophet must shave off the hair of his head and beard, which signifies God’s utter rejecting and abandoning that people. One part must be burned in the midst of the city, denoting the multitudes that should perish by famine and pestilence. Another part was to be cut in pieces, representing the many who were slain by the sword. Another part was to be scattered in the wind, denoting the carrying away of some into the land of the conqueror, and the flight of others into the neighbouring countries for shelter. A small quantity of the third portion was to be bound in his shirts, as that of which he is very careful. But few were reserved. To whatever refuge sinners flee, the fire and sword of God’s wrath will consume them.

Verses 5-17

The sentence passed upon Jerusalem is very dreadful, the manner of expression makes it still more so. Who is able to stand in God’s sight when he is angry? Those who live and die impenitent, will perish for ever unpitied; there is a day coming when the Lord will not spare. Let not persons or churches, who change the Lord’s statutes, expect to escape the doom of Jerusalem. Let us endeavour to adorn the doctrine of God our Saviour in all things. Sooner or later God’s word will prove itself true.

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