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Ezekiel 6:3-7

Context
6:3 Say, ‘Mountains of Israel, 1  Hear the word of the sovereign Lord! 2  This is what the sovereign Lord says to the mountains and the hills, to the ravines and the valleys: I am bringing 3  a sword against you, and I will destroy your high places. 4  6:4 Your altars will be ruined and your incense altars will be broken. I will throw down your slain in front of your idols. 5  6:5 I will place the corpses of the people of Israel in front of their idols, 6  and I will scatter your bones around your altars. 6:6 In all your dwellings, the cities will be laid waste and the high places ruined so that your altars will be laid waste and ruined, your idols will be shattered and demolished, your incense altars will be broken down, and your works wiped out. 7  6:7 The slain will fall among you and then you will know that I am the Lord. 8 

Ezekiel 6:12-13

Context
6:12 The one far away will die by pestilence, the one close by will fall by the sword, and whoever is left and has escaped these 9  will die by famine. I will fully vent my rage against them. 6:13 Then you will know that I am the Lord – when their dead lie among their idols around their altars, on every high hill and all the mountaintops, under every green tree and every leafy oak, 10  the places where they have offered fragrant incense to all their idols.

1 tn The phrase “mountains of Israel” occurs only in the book of Ezekiel (6:2, 3; 19:9; 33:28; 34:13, 14; 35:12; 36:1, 4, 8; 37:22; 38:8; 39:2, 4, 17). The expression refers to the whole land of Israel.

sn The mountainous terrain of Israel would contrast with the exiles’ habitat in the river valley of Babylonia.

2 tn The introductory formula “Hear the word of the sovereign Lord” parallels a pronouncement delivered by the herald of a king (2 Kgs 18:28).

3 tn Heb “Look I, I am bringing.” The repetition of the pronoun draws attention to the speaker. The construction also indicates that the action is soon to come; the Lord is “about to bring a sword against” them.

4 tn The Hebrew term refers to elevated platforms where pagan sacrifices were performed.

5 tn Thirty-nine of the forty-eight biblical occurrences of this Hebrew word are found in the book of Ezekiel.

sn This verse is probably based on Lev 26:30 in which God forecasts that he will destroy their high places, cut off their incense altars, and set their corpses by the corpses of their idols.

6 tc This first sentence, which explains the meaning of the last sentence of the previous verse, does not appear in the LXX and may be an instance of a marginal explanatory note making its way into the text.

7 tn The Hebrew verb translated “wiped out” is used to describe the judgment of the Flood (Gen 6:7; 7:4, 23).

8 sn The phrase you will know that I am the Lord concludes over sixty oracles in the book of Ezekiel and indicates the ultimate goal of God’s action. The phrase is often used in the book of Exodus as well (Exod 7:5; 14:4, 18). By Ezekiel’s day the people had forgotten that the Lord (Yahweh) was their covenant God and had turned to other gods. They had to be reminded that Yahweh alone deserved to be worshiped because only he possessed the power to meet their needs. Through judgment and eventually deliverance, Israel would be reminded that Yahweh alone held their destiny in his hands.

9 tn Heb “the one who is left, the one who is spared.”

10 sn By referring to every high hill…all the mountaintops…under every green tree and every leafy oak Ezekiel may be expanding on the phraseology of Deut 12:2 (see 1 Kgs 14:23; 2 Kgs 16:4; 17:10; Jer 2:20; 3:6, 13; 2 Chr 28:4).



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