23:4 Oholah was the name of the older and Oholibah 1 the name of her younger sister. They became mine, and gave birth to sons and daughters. 2 Oholah is Samaria and Oholibah is Jerusalem.
23:44 They had sex with her 7 as one does with a prostitute. In this way they had sex with Oholah and Oholibah, promiscuous women.
1 tn The names Oholah and Oholibah are both derived from the word meaning “tent.” The meaning of Oholah is “her tent,” while Oholibah means “my tent is in her.”
2 sn In this allegory the Lord is depicted as being the husband of two wives. The OT law prohibited a man from marrying sisters (Lev 18:18), but the practice is attested in the OT (cf. Jacob). The metaphor is utilized here for illustrative purposes and does not mean that the Lord condoned such a practice or bigamy in general.
sn Played the harlot refers to alliances with pagan nations in this context. In Ezek 16 harlotry described the sin of idolatry.
4 tn Heb “Assyria.”
5 tn The term apparently refers to Assyrian military officers; it is better construed with the description that follows. See D. I. Block, Ezekiel (NICOT), 1:738.
6 tn Heb “will you judge.” Here the imperfect form of the verb is probably used with a desiderative nuance. Addressed to the prophet, “judge” means to warn of or pronounce God’s impending judgment. See 20:4; 22:2.
7 tn Heb “and they came to her.”