Bible Commentaries

The People's Bible by Joseph Parker

Ezekiel

Book Overview - Ezekiel

by Joseph Parker

Ezekiel

[Note.—"Ezekiel (God will strengthen, or prevail) was, like Jeremiah, a priest as well as a prophet. He was carried captive with Jehoiachin by Nebuchadnezzar, b.c599, eleven years before the destruction of Jerusalem. All his prophecies were delivered in Chaldaea, on the river Chebar (Khabur), which falls into the Euphrates at Carchemish, about two hundred miles north of Babylon. Here he resided ( Ezekiel 1:1; Ezekiel 8:1), and here his wife died ( Ezekiel 24:18). Tradition says that he was put to death by one of his fellow-exiles, a leader among them, whose idolatries he had rebuked; and in the Middle Ages what was called his tomb was shown, not far from Bagdad. Ezekiel commenced prophesying in the fifth year after the captivity of Jehoiachin ( Ezekiel 1:2), that Isaiah, in Zedekiah"s reign, and continued till at least the twenty-seventh year of his own captivity ( Ezekiel 29:17). The year of his first prophesying was also the thirtieth from the commencement of the reign of Nabopolassar and from the era of Josiah"s reform. To one of these facts, or perhaps to his own age (see Numbers 4:3), he refers in chapter i. His influence with the people is obvious, from the numerous visits paid to him by the elders, who came to inquire what message God had sent through him ( Ezekiel 8:1; Ezekiel 14:1; Ezekiel 20:1, etc.). His writings show remarkable vigour, and he was evidently well fitted to oppose "the people of stubborn front and hard heart" to whom he was sent. His characteristic, however, was the subordination of his whole life to his work. He ever thinks and feels as the prophet. In this respect his writings contrast remarkably with those of his contemporary Jeremiah, whose personal history and feelings are frequently recorded. That he was, nevertheless, a man of strong feeling is clear from the brief record he has given of his wife"s death ( Ezekiel 24:15-18)."—Angus"s Bible Handbook.]