Ezekiel 5:5

5 “This is what the Sovereign LORD says: This is Jerusalem, which I have set in the center of the nations, with countries all around her.

Read Ezekiel 5:5 Using Other Translations

Thus saith the Lord GOD; This is Jerusalem: I have set it in the midst of the nations and countries that are round about her.
"Thus says the Lord GOD: This is Jerusalem. I have set her in the center of the nations, with countries all around her.
“This is what the Sovereign LORD says: This is an illustration of what will happen to Jerusalem. I placed her at the center of the nations,

What does Ezekiel 5:5 mean?

John Gill's Exposition of the Bible
Ezekiel 5:5

Thus saith the Lord God, this [is] Jerusalem
A type or sign of it; it may refer to both the former and latter type. It is the city of Jerusalem that is designed by the city portrayed upon the tile; and the same is signified by the head of the prophet that was to be shaved; that being not only the chief city of Judea, but of the whole world, as follows: I have set it in the midst of the nations;
as the chief of them; and distinguished it from them by peculiar favours and blessings, natural and spiritual; being seated in a land flowing with milk and honey; and having the house and worship of God in it; and where were the symbols of his presence, and his word and ordinances; and therefore should have excelled them in true religion, devotion, and holiness, and set an example to them. The Jews generally understand this of the natural situation of Jerusalem. Jarchi interprets it of the middle of the world; as if it was mathematically placed in the centre of the earth. Kimchi says it was in the midst of the continent; and so its air was better than others; and these sort of writers F14 often speak of the land of Israel being in the navel or centre of the earth; they say F15 that the sanhedrim sat in the middle of the world; and therefore is compared to the navel, ( Song of Solomon 7:2 ) ; because it sat in the temple, which was in the middle of the world; but the former sense is best; though Jerom gives in to the latter: and countries [that are] round about her:
this is a proposition of itself; fire former clause being distinguished from it by the accent "athnach"; and should be rendered thus, "and the countries [are]", or "[were], round about her" F16; on the east was Asia, on the west Europe on the south Africa and Libya, and on the north Babylon, Scythia, Armenia, Persia, and Pontus; and was mere conspicuous, eminent, and honourable than them all, having greater privileges, prerogatives, and excellencies; and therefore should have exceeded them in its regard to the laws and statutes of God, which she did not; hence this is said, in order to upbraid her for her ingratitude, as appears by the following words.


F14 Kimchi in Ezek. xxxviii. 12.
F15 T. Bab. Sanhedrin. fol. 37. 1. & Gloss. in ib.
F16 (twura hytwbybow) "et circa eam [erant] terrae", Cocceius.
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