Ezekiel 9

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1 Then he cried in mine ears with a loud voice, saying, Cause ye them that have charge over the city to draw near, every man with his destroying weapon in his hand.

1 Here vastation is treated of, hence every man has a weapon of destruction. A. 2242.
The day of visitation stands for the coming of the Lord, and enlightenment thence; but with regard to the Jewish nation, as they did not acknowledge it, it is the last time of the representatives of the church with them; for when Jerusalem was destroyed, the sacrifices ceased, and that nation was dispersed. A. 6588.
Hell and the devil are called destruction and destroyer. R. 440.
The visitations of the city are approaching. D. P., Page 86.
1-3. Exploration of the quality of those who are of the church as regards the Word. Visitation and Judgment. P. P.
1, 6. To kill in the Word signifies to destroy souls, which is to kill spiritually. R. 325.

2 And behold, six men came from the way of the upper gate, which lieth toward the north, every man with his slaughter weapon in his hand; and one man in the midst of them clothed in linen, with a writer’s inkhorn by his side. And they went in, and stood beside the brazen altar.

2 As six signifies labor and combat, it also signifies the dispersion of falsities. A. 737.
The truth of the natural is represented as if woven from the pure threads of linen. A. 7601.
As to altars in general they were of the ground, of stones, of brass, of wood, and also of gold; of brass, wood and gold because these signified good. A. 8940.
2-4, 11. Linen signifies Divine truth. R. 671 .

3 And the glory of the God of Israel was gone up from the cherub, whereupon it was, to the threshold of the house: and he called to the man clothed in linen, who had the writer’s inkhorn by his side.

3 See Chapter VIII., 4. A. 7091.
See Chapter I., 28. A. 8427.
See Chapter VIII., 4. L. 39.
See Chapter VIII., 4. R., 629.
See Chapter VIII., 4. T. 93.
3, 4. Linen signifies the truth of the exterior natural, and the exterior natural is what clothes the interiors; therefore that truth is what was represented by linen garments with which the angels were clothed. A. 7601 .
3-5. The Lord is often spoken of as the God of Israel sitting upon the cherubim. A. 308.
3, 4, 11. The reason of the angel clothed in linen was, because they were girded for the ministry. E. 951.

4 And Jehovah said unto him, Go through the midst of the city, through the midst of Jerusalem, and set a mark upon the foreheads of the men that sigh and that cry over all the abominations that are done in the midst thereof.
5 And to the others he said in my hearing, Go ye through the city after him, and smite: let not your eye spare, neither have ye pity;
6 slay utterly the old man, the young man and the virgin, and little children and women; but come not near any man upon whom is the mark: and begin at my sanctuary. Then they began at the old men that were before the house.

4 The Lord distinguished faith in a particular manner in order that it might be preserved. Putting a mark on anyone is to distinguish. A. 396.
A mark signifies a sign of acknowledgment. E. 838.
Separation of the evil and the good. P. P.
4-6. Because the forehead with man corresponds to his love, therefore they who are in celestial love, that is in love to the Lord from the Lord are said to have a mark or sign on their foreheads, by which is signified that they are under the Lord’s protection, because they are in His love. A. 9936.
The forehead signifies the good of love, because the face is the image of man’s affections, and the forehead is the highest part of the face. By sealing upon the forehead is meant to distinguish and separate one from another according to love. R. 347.
Here the separation of the good from the evil is treated of. By being marked on the forehead is signified to be distinguished and separated from the evil, and to be conjoined to the good. The casting out and damnation of the evil are also afterwards treated of. They who are in good are described by the men that cry and that sigh for all the abominations done in the midst of the city of Jerusalem. Crying and sighing signifies aversion and grief. E. 427.
4, 6. Young men signify truths, and virgins the affections for them. R. 620.
The devastation of all things appertaining to the church is described. The old man wisdom, the young man intelligence, the virgin the affection for truth, the infant innocence, the women goods conjoined to truths. To slay to perdition means to destroy altogether. These things were not done, but only seen by the prophet, when he was the spirit. E. 863.
5, 6. By infants is meant innocence, but that it was destroyed. A. 5608.
These words were spoken by the man clothed in linen, or by the angel to other angels, and were heard by the prophet. E. 315.
Destruction of those in whom there is no good or truth. P. P.

5 The subject here treated of is the vastation of the church. By an old man and a young man are understood wisdom and intelligence, by maid the affection for truth and good, by little child innocence, by women goods of the church. To slay them utterly means devastation. The sanctuary at which they should begin signifies the church in regard to the good of love, and the truth of faith, which are the men, the elders who were before the house. E. 270.
By old and young, maids and little children, and women are understood all things pertaining to the church. The word is inwardly spiritual, because it is Divine, wherefore if nothing else were meant but what appears in the literal sense it would be natural and not spiritual. E. 555.

7 And he said unto them, Defile the house, and fill the courts with the slain: go ye forth. And they went forth, and smote in the city.

7 Defiling the house, and filling the courts with the pierced means profaning goods and truths. A. 4503.
Judgment upon the evil. P. P.

8 And it came to pass, while they were smiting, and I was left, that I fell upon my face, and cried, and said, Ah Lord Jehovah! wilt thou destroy all the residue of Israel in thy pouring out of thy wrath upon Jerusalem?
9 Then said he unto me, The iniquity of the house of Israel and Judah is exceeding great, and the land is full of blood, and the city full of wrestling of judgment: for they say, Jehovah hath forsaken the land, and Jehovah seeth not.

8-11. There is no compassion, because there is nothing but what has been profaned. P. P.

10 And as for me also, mine eye shall not spare, neither will I have pity, but I will bring their way upon their head.
11 And behold, the man clothed in linen, who had the inkhorn by his side, reported the matter, saying, I have done as thou hast commanded me.

10 That the craftiness by which they intend and contrive evil for others returns upon themselves is signified by recompensing their way upon their own heads. E. 577·
Whole Chapter mentioned. Such things appeared to the prophets when their interior sight, which is the sight of the spirit, was opened. A. 9457.
See Chapter L, Whole Chapter. S. 97.
See Chapter l., Whole Chapter. R. 239.
The Divine truth and its quality is described. T. 260.

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