A prophecy against Edom.
Verses 1-9 All who have God against them, have the word of God against them. Those that have a constant hatred to God and his people, as the carnal mind has, can only expect to be made desolate for ever.
Verses 10-15 When we see the vanity of the world in the disappointments, losses, and crosses, which others meet with, instead of showing ourselves greedy of worldly things, we should sit more loose to them. In the multitude of words, not one is unknown to God; not the most idle word; and the most daring is not above his rebuke. In the destruction of the enemies of the church, God designs his own glory; and we may be sure that he will not come short of his design. And when the fulness of the Jews and Gentiles shall come into the church, all antichristian opposers shall be destroyed.
Ezekiel 35:1-15 . JUDGMENT ON EDOM.
Another feature of Israel's prosperity; those who exulted over Israel's humiliation, shall themselves be a "prey." Already stated in Ezekiel 25:12-14 ; properly repeated here in full detail, as a commentary on Ezekiel 34:28 . The Israelites "shall be no more a prey"; but Edom, the type of their most bitter foes, shall be destroyed irrecoverably.
2. Mount Seir--that is, Idumea ( Genesis 36:9 ). Singled out as badly pre-eminent in its bitterness against God's people, to represent all their enemies everywhere and in all ages. So in Isaiah 34:5 , 63:1-4 , Edom, the region of the greatest enmity towards God's people, is the ideal scene of the final judgments of all God's foes. "Seir" means "shaggy," alluding to its rugged hills and forests.
3. most desolate--literally, "desolation and desolateness" ( Jeremiah 49:17 , &c.). It is only in their national character of foes to God's people, that the Edomites are to be utterly destroyed. A remnant of Edom, as of the other heathen, is to be "called by the name of God" ( Amos 9:12 ).
5. perpetual hatred--( Psalms 137:7 Amos 1:11 Obadiah 1:10-16 ). Edom perpetuated the hereditary hatred derived from Esau against Jacob.
shed the blood of, &c.--The literal translation is better. "Thou hast poured out the children of Israel"; namely, like water. So Psalms 22:14 , 63:10 , Margin; Jeremiah 18:21 . Compare 2 Samuel 14:14 .
by the force of the sword--literally, "by" or "upon the hands of the sword"; the sword being personified as a devourer whose "hands" were the instruments of destruction.
in the time that their iniquity had an end--that is, had its consummation ( Ezekiel 21:25 Ezekiel 21:29 ). Edom consummated his guilt when he exulted over Jerusalem's downfall, and helped the foe to destroy it ( Psalms 137:7 , Obadiah 1:11 ).
6. I will prepare thee unto blood--I will expose thee to slaughter.
sith--old English for "seeing that" or "since."
thou hast not hated blood--The Hebrew order is, "thou hast hated not blood"; that is, thou couldst not bear to live without bloodshed [GROTIUS]. There is a play on similar sounds in the Hebrew; Edom resembling dam, the Hebrew for "blood"; as "Edom" means "red," the transition to "blood" is easy. Edom, akin to blood in name, so also in nature and acts; "blood therefore shall pursue thee." The measure which Edom meted to others should be meted to himself ( Psalms 109:17 , Matthew 7:2 , 26:52 ).
7. cut off . . . him that passeth--that is, every passer to and fro; "the highways shall be unoccupied" ( Ezekiel 29:11 , Judges 5:6 ).
9. shall not return--to their former state ( Ezekiel 16:55 ); shall not be restored. The Hebrew text (Chetib) reads, "shall not be inhabited" (compare Ezekiel 26:20 , Malachi 1:3 Malachi 1:4 ).
10. So far from being allowed to enter on Israel's vacated inheritance, as Edom hoped ( Ezekiel 36:5 , Psalms 83:4 Psalms 83:12 , Obadiah 1:13 ), it shall be that he shall be deprived of his own; and whereas Israel's humiliation was temporary, Edom's shall be perpetual.
Lord was there--( Ezekiel 48:35 , Psalms 48:1 Psalms 48:3 , Psalms 132:13 Psalms 132:14 ). Jehovah claimed Judea as His own, even when the Chaldeans had overthrown the state; they could not remove Him, as they did the idols of heathen lands. The broken sentences express the excited feelings of the prophet at Edom's wicked presumption. The transition from the "two nations and two countries" to "it" marks that the two are regarded as one whole. The last clause, "and Jehovah was there," bursts in, like a flash of lightning, reproving the wicked presumption of Edom's thought.
11. according to thine anger--( James 2:13 ). As thou in anger and envy hast injured them, so I will injure thee.
I will make myself known among them--namely, the Israelites. I will manifest My favor to them, after I have punished thee.
12, 13. blasphemies . . . against . . . Israel . . . against me--God regards what is done against His people as done against Himself ( Matthew 25:45 , Acts 9:2 Acts 9:4 Acts 9:5 ). Edom implied, if he did not express it, in his taunts against Israel, that God had not sufficient power to protect His people. A type of the spirit of all the foes of God and His people ( 1 Samuel 2:3 , Revelation 13:6 ).
14. ( Isaiah 65:13 Isaiah 65:14 ). "The whole earth" refers to Judea and the nations that submit themselves to Judea's God; when these rejoice, the foes of God and His people, represented by Edom as a nation, shall be desolate. Things shall be completely reversed; Israel, that now for a time mourns, shall then rejoice and for ever. Edom, that now rejoices over fallen Israel, shall then, when elsewhere all is joy, mourn, and for ever ( Isaiah 65:17-19 , Matthew 5:4 , Luke 6:25 ). HAVERNICK loses this striking antithesis by translating, "According to the joy of the whole land (of Edom), so I will make thee desolate"; which would make Ezekiel 35:15 a mere repetition of this.
15. ( Obadiah 1:12 Obadiah 1:15 ).