Ezekiel 3

<< Ezekiel III >>

1 And he said unto me, Son of man, eat that which thou findest; eat this roll, and go, speak unto the house of Israel.
2 So I opened my mouth, and he caused me to eat the roll.

1, 3. We read that the prophet Ezekiel also by command ate up the roll of a book, and that in his mouth it was sweet as honey. R. 482.
See Chapter II., 9, 10. E. 222.
He should be instructed in the Word, which in itself delightful, P. P.
1-4. See Chapter II., 8-1. E . 619·
1-4, 10, 17,25. See Chapter II., 1,3,6,8. A.9807.
See Chapter II., 1,3,6,8. L.28.
See Chapter II., 1,3,6,8. E.63.

3 And he said unto me, Son of man, cause thy belly to eat, and fill thy bowels with this roll that I give thee. Then did I eat it; and it was in my mouth as honey for sweetness.
4 And he said unto me, Son of man, go, get thee unto the house of Israel, and speak with my words unto them.

3 The enjoyment of truth Divine as to the external sense is described by honey. The roll stands for truth Divine. That this in external appears enjoyable is signified by the flavor being sweet as honey; for truth Divine, like the Word in external form or in the literal sense, is enjoyable, because it admits of being explained by interpretations in everyone’s favor. Not so the internal sense, however, which is therefore signified by the bitter taste in Revelation X. 9-11, for this sense discloses man’s interiors. A. 5620.
By the roll is meant the same as by the little book in Revelation, namely the Word. By causing the belly to eat and filling the bowels with the roll is signified to explore how the Word is understood in the church which is done by reading and perception thereof. E.622.
See Chapter. II., 3,.6, 8. Q. I. 4-7. Deep of lip is predIcated of the nations which though in falsity of doctrine were yet in charity, and are therefore said to hearken, but they who are not in charity are said to be of a hard forehead and a stiff heart. A. 1286.
He should teach those who have the Word and consequently are able to live according to the Divine commandments, but they do not so live while with others it would be different. P. P.

5 For thou art not sent to a people of a strange speech and of a hard language, but to the house of Israel;
6 not to many peoples of a strange speech and of a hard language, whose words thou canst not understand. Surely, if I sent thee to them, they would hearken unto thee.

5, 6. The tongue as an organ signifies doctrine. Here by tongues in the opposi te sense false doctrines are signified. R. 282.
By a people of strange speech and hard language, whose words cannot be understood, are signified those who are in doctrine which is not intelligible and thence in an abstruse religion, whose dogmas are not perceptible.
Speech signifies doctrine, tongue religion, and words the dogmas thereof. By those people are understood the Gentiles, who have not the Word. E. 455,

7 But the house of Israel will not hearken unto thee; for they will not hearken unto me: for all the house of Israel are of hard forehead and of a stiff heart.

7, 8. The forehead sigiifies heavenly love with the good, with the wicked it signifies infernal love, which is the opposite of heavenly love. The latter is called a hardened forehead in Ezekiel. A. 9936.
By the forehead, in the opposite sense, evil love is signified R. 347.
In the opposite sense the forehead signifes evil love, and thence what is hard, obstinate, impudent, and infernal. E. 427.

8 Behold, I have made thy face hard against their faces, and thy forehead hard against their foreheads.

8, 9. These words are spoken to the prophet, by whom is signified the doctrine of truth and good combating against falses and evils. By his face being strong against their faces is signified the rejection of falsities by truths, and by his forehead being strong against their foreheads is signified the rejection of evil by good. The affection of truth and good becomes as it were obdurate, and hardens outwardly from zeal, otherwise it could not repel what is false and evil. E. 412.
He should not fear their obduracy. P. P.

9 As an adamant harder than flint have I made thy forehead: fear them not, neither be dismayed at their looks, though they are a rebellious house.

9 The reason why hardness is expressed by a rock, is from the correspondence of a rock with truth derived from good. But when truth acts from falsity derived rom good from evil, then it is blunted. Truth without good is also hard, but still it is brittle. E. 411.

10 Moreover he said unto me, Son of man, all my words that I shall speak unto thee receive in thy heart, and hear with thine ears.
11 And go, get thee to them of the captivity, unto the children of thy people, and speak unto them, and tell them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah; whether they will hear, or whether they will forbear.

10 The eye in the internal sense is understanding, and the ear is obedience. Those who are obedient and thence in faith belong to the province of the ear. A. 3869.

11 but should teach them P. P.
11- 27. See Chapter II., 4. D. P., Page 26.
See Chapter II., 4. D. P., Page 56.

12 Then the Spirit lifted me up, and I heard behind me the voice of a great rushing, saying , Blessed be the glory of Jehovah from his place.

13 The voice is the Divine truth, and consequently the Word of the Lord. A. 9926.
It was perceived that the state of the church is totally changed in respect to the Word, and in respect to doctrine thence. P.P.
12, 14. In the state of vision the eyes of the prophets were opened as to their spirits, and the eyes of the body shut. They then also appeared to themselves to be carried from place to place, though the body remained in its own place. Ezekiel, Zachariah, and Daniel were sometimes in this state. L. 52.
In a similar state were the prophets, but not when they spoke the Word: they were then not in the spirit but in the body, and heard from Jehovah Himself, that is the Lord, the words which they wrote. These two states of the prophets, when they were in the spirit or in vision, and when they were not in the spirit, but heard from Jehovah Himself have to be carefully distinguished. R. 945.
Ezekiel says that the spirit took him up, and he heard behind him an earthquake. T. 157.
12, 24. Ezekiel also says, when he was in vision or in the spirit, that the spirit took him up, and he heard an earthquake behind him, and other things. R. 36.

13 And I heard the noise of the wings of the living creatures as they touched one another, and the noise of the wheels beside them, even the noise of a great rushing.

13 See Chapter I., 4, 6, 23, 24. A. 8764.
See Chapter I., 23, 24. R. 245.
See Chapter I., 4, 6, 23, 24. E. 283.

14 So the Spirit lifted me up, and took me away; and I went in bitterness, in the heat of my spirit; and the hand of Jehovah was strong upon me.

14 Because the life of man varies according to his state, therefore by spirit is meant the varying affection of life with man. L. 48.
14, 15. that he was indignant because it was so. P. P.

15 Then I came to them of the captivity at Tel-abib, that dwelt by the river Chebar, and to where they dwelt; and I sat there overwhelmed among them seven days.
16 And it came to pass at the end of seven days, that the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying,
17 Son of man, I have made thee a watchman unto the house of Israel: therefore hear the word at my mouth, and give them warning from me.

15, 16. Seven days stand for the beginning of vastation, for after seven days, while Ezekiel sat among those who were in captivity, the Word of Jehovah came to him. A. 728.
16, 17. but that it was for the purpose that he might represent the Word. P. P.

18 When I say unto the wicked, Thou shalt surely die; and thou givest him not warning, nor speakest to warn the wicked from his wicked way, to save his life; the same wicked man shall die in his iniquity; but his blood will I require at thy hand.
19 Yet if thou warn the wicked, and he turn not from his wickedness, nor from his wicked way, he shall die in his iniquity; but thou hast delivered thy soul.
20 Again, when a righteous man doth turn from his righteousness, and commit iniquity, and I lay a stumblingblock before him, he shall die: because thou hast not given him warning, he shall die in his sin, and his righteous deeds which he hath done shall not be remembered; but his blood will I require at thy hand.
21 Nevertheless if thou warn the righteous man, that the righteous sin not, and he doth not sin, he shall surely live, because he took warning; and thou hast delivered thy soul.

18 Natural life is understood in the literal sense of the Word, but spiritual life in the internal sense. and indeed in many passages by saving alive and by life is understood in the literal sense spiritual life itself. A. 5890.
18-21. By “thou shalt surely die” is here signified to perish in eternal death, which is damnation, for it is spoken concerning the wicked. “He shall surely live” stands for the enjoyment of life eternal, which is salvation for it is spoken concerning those who perform the work of repentance, and concerning the just. E. 186.
He would be guilty if he did not reveal their falsities and evils, and not guilty if he would reveal them. P. P.

22 And the hand of Jehovah was there upon me; and he said unto me, Arise, go forth into the plain, and I will there talk with thee.
23 Then I arose, and went forth into the plain: and, behold, the glory of Jehovah stood there, as the glory which I saw by the river Chebar; and I fell on my face.

22, 23. That this should be done according to the literal sense which he was to explain. P. P.
23, 24. The internal man is not reformed by only knowing and understanding the truths and goods by which man is saved, but by willing and loving them, but the external man by speaking and doing the things which the internal man wills and loves. As far as he does this so far the man is regenerated. Before regeneration it is like a man without feet to stand and walk upon. This then is signified by standing upon their feet after the spirit of life from God entered into them. R. 510.
Life when it is in its fulness is sognified by standing upon the feet, and it is then in its fulness when the natural in man lives from the spiritual. E. 666.

24 Then the Spirit entered into me, and set me upon my feet; and he spake with me, and said unto me, Go, shut thyself within thy house.
25 But thou, son of man, behold, they shall lay bands upon thee, and shall bind thee with them, and thou shalt not go out among them:
26 and I will make thy tongue cleave to the roof of thy mouth, that thou shalt be dumb, and shalt not be to them a reprover; for they are a rebellious house.

27 But when I speak with thee, I will open thy mouth, and thou shalt say unto them, Thus saith the Lord Jehovah: He that heareth, let him hear; and he that forbeareth, let him forbear: for they are a rebellious house.

24 See Chapter I., 28. E. 77.
24-27. He must not speak from himself, but from the Lord. P. P.

Author: Emanuel Swedenborg (Compiled by Robert S. Fischer 1925)