Understanding The Bible
STUDY REFERENCE
Clarence E. Mason's
"OLD TESTAMENT PROPHETIC BOOKS"
EZEKIEL
Introduction and Expanded Outline

Dr. Clarence E. Mason, Jr.
Philadelphia College of Bible
1970


OLD TESTAMENT PROPHETIC BOOKS
EZEKIEL: Introduction and Expanded Outline

Ezekiel prophesied from the 5th year of Jehoiachin's captivity (which is also the 5th year of Zedekiah's 11-year reign as final king of Judah) for about 30 years, around 593-560 BC (Whitcomb). He was in Babylon as one of the captives, having been taken there 12 years before the destruction of Jerusalem (33:21; cp. 2 Ki. 24-25;
2 Chr. 36:4-21; Jer. 52). Some see a connection between the letter of Jeremiah to the captives in Babylon (Jer. 29) and the beginning of Ezekiel's ministry. Like Revelation, Zechariah, and Daniel, Ezekiel is largely in the form of visions and symbols, from which Dr. Scofield infers this was God's way of speaking to His chosen people, when they were out of the homeland. Most is addressed to all 12 tribes.

Ezekiel was of priestly descent.

SUMMARY OUTLINE (Boddis, Mason)

Introduction: The time, place, and prophet 1:1-3

  1. THE PROPHET'S PREPARATION AND CALL 1:4-3:27

  2. PROPHECIES OF REPROBATION AND JUDGMENT 4-24

  3. PROPHECIES AGAINST FOREIGN NATIONS 25-32

  4. PROPHECIES OF THE RESTORATION OF ISRAEL 33-39

  5. ISRAEL DURING THE MILLENNIUM 40-48

EXPOSITORY ANALYSIS Introduction:

The time, place, and prophet 1:1-3

  1. THE PROPHET'S PREPARATION AND CALL 1:4-3:27

    1. The visions of God 1:4-28
      A symbolic description of the rule of God in the affairs of men and nations.

    2. The prophet's call and commission 2:1-3:3 (cp. chapter 33)

    3. Jehovah prepares the prophet for his mission 3:4-15

    4. The prophet's commission and responsibility 3:16-27
       

  2. PROPHECIES OF REPROBATION AND JUDGMENT 4-24

    1. The signs of coming judgment 4:1-5:4
      These are:
      The sign of the tile (4:1-3),
      the prophet's physical position (4:4-8),
      the famine and defiled bread (4:9-17),
      and shaving of head and face (5:1-4).

    2. Three messages of denunciation and judgment 5:5-7:27

    3. Visions revealing the condition of Jerusalem and the sins of the people 8-14
      These visions concern:
      The profanation of the temple (8);
      the six men with weapons of destruction, and the spared remnant, which have been marked off (9);
      the coals of fire scattered over the city, picturing the the wrath of God, and another vision of the cherubim (10);
      the wicked ness of the priests and leaders (11:1-13);
      the spared remnant illustrative of the remnant to be saved and spared in "the end time" just before the Lord's return to earth (11:14-20);
      the departure of the cherubim from the east of Jerusalem (Olivet), a signal for judgment on the unrepentant and an illustration of Christ's ascension from Olivet (11:21-25);
      the object lesson, acted out by the prophet, warning that the wicked rulers will not be successful in their attempt to escape (12:1-16);
      and renewed messages of judgment (12:17-14:23).

    4. Parables setting forth the iniquities of Israel 15-24

      1. The vision of the burning vine (fire signifies judgment) 15

      2. The deserted infant and Israel's harlotry 16
        Jerusalem is pictured as a foundling of Jehovah, rescued in grace, only to become a wayward daughter!

      3. The two eagles and the vine 17
        The first eagle, Nebuchadrezzar;
        the second, Pharaoh-Hophr
        the vine, Judah.

      4. God's righteousness vindicated against the proverb of sour grapes 18
        Personal judgment for personal sin.
        The innocent will not be judged for their ancestors' sins.

      5. Lamentation for the princes of Israel 19
        Jehoahaz (2-4),
        Jehoiachin (5-9),
        nation and Zedekiah (10-14).

      6. Jehovah vindicates Himself to the elders by rehearsing His mercies 20:1-32

      7. The purging out of the rebels from Israel in the Tribulation Period 20:33-44

      8. The parable of the forest of the south 20:45-49
        They are fruitless (dry),
        fit for judgment (fire);
        Christ, the true green tree, fruitful for God--but He was burned (judged) for us.
        See Luke 23:31.

      9. The sword of God's judgment is hanging over men 21:1-24

      10. No king (i.e., of David's line) till Messiah 21:25-32

      11. Jerusalem's abominations illustrated by parable of dross in furnace 22

      12. The parable of Aholah (Samaria) and her more wicked sister, Aholibah (Judah) 23

      13. The parable of the boiling pot, pronouncing woe on the bloody city 24:1-14

      14. Ezekiel again a sign to Israel: His wife taken, but he is not allowed to weep 24:15-27
         

  3. PROPHECIES AGAINST FOREIGN NATIONS 25-32

    1. The doom of Ammon, Moab, Edom, and Philistia 25
      These four nations are to be judged because of their attitude toward Judah, but as a result of the judgment a surviving remnant will come to know Jehovah.

    2. The judgment upon Tyre and Zidon 26:1-28:24
      The "king of Tyre" is evidently Satan, who energizes the "prince of Tyre," the earthly ruler 28:1-10
      The "king" fell through pride (28:15).
      The "prince" and "king" are fused in 28:17-19.
      (See New Scofield note on 28:12 and 28:19.)

    3. The future regathering of Israel foretold 28:25-26

    4. Prophecy of the doom of Egypt 29-32
      Babylon will overcome Egypt (30:10). There are seven prophecies here. There is an imaginative scene picturing Pharaoh and the dead in the underworld (included in the lamentation for the fall of Pharaoh and his people, v.32).
       

  4. PROPHECIES OF THE RESTORATION OF ISRAEL 33-39

    1. The watchman and the shepherds 33-34

      1. The renewed call of Ezekiel as watchman! 33:1-20
        The responsibility of the watchman and offer of forgiveness. It is the outward ceremonial righteousness of the bringing of sacrifices, etc., and not the righteousness of saving faith, which is the righteousness that will "not be remembered, " if one in outward covenant relationship with God should turn to idols. True believers are not in view. Anyway, physical death here on earth is the judgment in view, rather than eternal punishment.

      2. Ezekiel's mouth opened after Jerusalem's fall 33:21-33 (cp. 3:26-27)

      3. Message against the "shepherds" (rulers) of Israel 34:1-19

      4. Messiah, the True Shepherd, and restoration promised 34:20-31 (cp. Isaiah 53:2-7)

    2. The message against Mount Seir (i.e., Edom or Idumea) 35

    3. The restoration and conversion of Israel 36

    4. The rebirth of a re-united Israel 37
      Two signs:
      The resurrected multitude in valley of dry bones and
      the two sticks.
      Most expositors understand the gathering of the bones and formation of the bodies to be the national, political restoration (already taken place as of May, 1948). The breathing of life into them is the spiritual restoration awaiting the return of Christ to the earth.

    5. Israel's enemies overthrown in last days: Gog and Magog 38-39
      Not the same as Gog of Revelation 20 (which is at the end of 1, 000 year reign of Christ). This attack is before the Millennium. Most Bible scholars identify this invader as the King of the North, i,e., Russia and Germany.

      This passage should be compared with the king from the north who comes "like a whirlwind" (Dan. 11:36-45, esp. v.40) and the syllabus on Daniel. He takes Jerusalem (Dan. 11:45; Zech. 14:1-2; 12:9). He has the "king of the South" as an ally (Dan. 11:40; Ezk. 38:5), i.e., the nations of Africa--"Ethiopia and Lybia"--never included in the Roman Empire. These nations attack Egypt, a part of the Roman Empire as it was and as it will be revived.

      The result to the northern invader is that the Lord will fight for the remnant of Jews who trust Him (Zech. 12:8; 14:3) and will destroy 5/6ths of his army on the mountains of Israel as he heads back home after taking Jerusalem (Ezk. 39:2-4). It will take seven months to bury the slain (Ezk. 39:11-16).
       

  5. ISRAEL DURING THE MILLENNIUM 40-48

    1. The temple 40-42
      A description is given. The measurements are larger than the present site of the temple, but no doubt the earthquake of Zechariah 14 will enlarge the area. This is introduced by the vision of the man with the measuring reed (40:1-4). Then follows a description of the gate toward the east (40:5-16), the outer and inner courts (40:17-37), the tables for the offerings, the chambers for the inner court (40:38-47), the porch of the house (40:48-49), the holy place and the most holy (41:1-4), the side chambers (41:5-11), the hinder buildings and interior (41:12-26), the priests' chambers in the inner court (42:1-14), and final measurements (42:15-20).

    2. The temple worship 43-46
      The glory of the Lord, which departed (11:21-25), now returns and fills the temple (43:1-12). A description of the altar and offerings follows (43:13-27). The sacrifices are not antagonistic to the teaching of the book of Hebrews, because they are not for the purpose of remission of sin, but are evidently a symbolical remembrance of Christ's atoning blood in terms with which Jews were familiar, much as we Christians remember Christ's death in the Lord's Supper. Following this, there are: the gate of the Prince (44:1-8); the priests of the temple (44:9-31); the portion of land for the Lord and for the Prince (45);
      and the worship of the temple (46).

    3. The division of the land 47-48
      The healing waters (47:1-12); the division of the land (47:13-48:9); sacrifice for the sanctuary, city, and prince (48:10-29); the city's gates and the new name (Jehovah Shammah = "The Lord is there") (48:30-35)


 

 

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