Ezekiel 13

Foolish prophets who follow their own spirit 1
False prophets will neither be listed nor enter the land 8
Cry of peace when there is no peace 10
By violent storms God will destroy the plastered wall 13
Woe to women prophets with magic charms 17
God will tear off their charms and free the people 20
Text Comments
.1 ¶ And the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
 2  Son of man, prophesy against the prophets of Israel that prophesy, and say thou unto them that prophesy out of their own hearts, Hear ye the word of the LORD;
 3  Thus saith the Lord GOD; Woe unto the foolish prophets, that follow their own spirit, and have seen nothing!
 3 This is what the Lord has said: A curse on the foolish prophets who go after the spirit which is in them and have seen nothing! (BBE)
.4  O Israel, thy prophets are like the foxes in the deserts.
.5  Ye have not gone up into the gaps, neither made up the hedge for the house of Israel to stand in the battle in the day of the LORD.
.6  They have seen vanity and lying divination, saying, The LORD saith: and the LORD hath not sent them: and they have made others to hope that they would confirm the word.
 7  Have ye not seen a vain vision, and have ye not spoken a lying divination, whereas ye say, The LORD saith it; albeit I have not spoken?
  2 - Against prophets ... own hearts The third warning about false prophecy. For the first see, ez1221. Notice that the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah in verse 1. He was to ask them to hear the word of the Lord. Then in verse 3 Jeremiah begins to give them the Lord's message. In chapter 23, the Lord speaks to prophets around Jerusalem. Some suggest that He here speaks to the false prophets in captivity (verse 9). Being "prophets of Israel" their ministry was recognized by the people of Israel.
  3 - Foolish From nabal which indicates failure in moral quality and not simply a lack of understanding. This Hebrew word is the name of a man David met. See 1sa2502.
  3 - That follow The latter part of the verse reads literally, "who walk after their own spirit and that which they have not seen."
  4 - Like the foxes The picture in verses 4 to 7 seems to be that the false prophets of Israel had taken no more responsibility to fortify the city than were the foxes that ran in and out through the gaps or crumbled places in the city wall. The message is spiritual so we understand the needed fortification to be spiritual strength. On foxes, see lu1332, song0215, la0518.
  5 - Hedge See is0105. "To this people [brought out of Egypt] were committed the oracles of God. They were hedged about by the precepts of His law, the everlasting principles of truth, justice, and purity. Obedience to these principles was to be their protection, for it would save them from destroying themselves by sinful practices. And as the tower in the vineyard, God placed in the midst of the land His holy temple." (Christ's Object Lessons, pp. 287, 288.)
.8  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Because ye have spoken vanity, and seen lies, therefore, behold, I am against you, saith the Lord GOD.
.9  And mine hand shall be upon the prophets that see vanity, and that divine lies: they shall not be in the assembly of my people, neither shall they be written in the writing of the house of Israel, neither shall they enter into the land of Israel; and ye shall know that I am the Lord GOD.
   8 - Against you Spiritual application may be made of these two verses.
  9 - Not in assembly ... written Their being forbidden to enter the land has an end-time significance. We might say that they have committed the unpardonable sin because they will not want to accept or return to truth mt1231. For general comments, see ne0705.
.10 ¶ Because, even because they have seduced my people, saying, Peace; and there was no peace; and one built up a wall, and, lo, others daubed it with untempered morter:   10 - Peace and there was no peace We may expect a similar confidence preached by the massive end-time false religion re1308a-ma. Jeremiah had similarly warned against the false prophets je2712-15.
  10 - Build ... wall ... others daubed Wide support for an idea is not evidence for believing it. The wall of Jerusalem was a major issue in the time of Ezekiel. Here some spiritual lessons use it in a symbolic sense.
 11  Say unto them which daub it with untempered morter, that it shall fall: there shall be an overflowing shower; and ye, O great hailstones, shall fall; and a stormy wind shall rend it.
 12  Lo, when the wall is fallen, shall it not be said unto you, Where is the daubing wherewith ye have daubed it?
  11 - Hailstones ... wind Compare ps01106, ps01813,4, ez3822.
  11 - Overflowing "... such as will at once wash away the mere clay mortar. The three most destructive agents shall co-operate against the wall--wind, rain, and hailstones. These last in the East are more out of the regular course of nature and are therefore often particularly specified as the instruments of God's displeasure against His foes (Ex 9:18; Jos 10:11; Job 38:22; Ps 18:12,13; Isa 28:2; 30:30; Re 16:21). The Hebrew here is, literally, 'stones of ice.' They fall in Palestine at times an inch thick with a destructive velocity. The personification heightens the vivid effect, 'O ye hail stones.' The Chaldeans will be the violent agency whereby God will unmask and refute them, overthrowing their edifice of lies."
  12 - Wall From qir, probably an outside wall. The "wall" in verse 10 is from a different word.
  12 - Fallen ... daubing The verse is serious. Patching the wall was not enough. The city was taken. Herein is a lesson for us. At the end of time the enemy of souls will break down the wall and attempt to set up his own kingdom.
.13  Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; I will even rend it with a stormy wind in my fury; and there shall be an overflowing shower in mine anger, and great hailstones in my fury to consume it.
 14  So will I break down the wall that ye have daubed with untempered morter, and bring it down to the ground, so that the foundation thereof shall be discovered, and it shall fall, and ye shall be consumed in the midst thereof: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
 15  Thus will I accomplish my wrath upon the wall, and upon them that have daubed it with untempered morter, and will say unto you, The wall is no more, neither they that daubed it;
.16  To wit, the prophets of Israel which prophesy concerning Jerusalem, and which see visions of peace for her, and there is no peace, saith the Lord GOD.

  14 - Break down the wall ... with untempered morter See v10 above. Most modern religious movements tend to support their errors with ideas that are not from the Scriptures although they use Bible texts. In the final crisis just ahead, their walls will fall.
  15 - The wall is no more The people who follow the popular end-time religious movement re1308 will reap the result of their rebellion re1613,14. See note below.
.17 ¶ Likewise, thou son of man, set thy face against the daughters of thy people, which prophesy out of their own heart; and prophesy thou against them,
 18  And say, Thus saith the Lord GOD; Woe to the women that sew pillows to all armholes, and make kerchiefs upon the head of every stature to hunt souls! Will ye hunt the souls of my people, and will ye save the souls alive that come unto you?
 19  And will ye pollute me among my people for handfuls of barley and for pieces of bread, to slay the souls that should not die, and to save the souls alive that should not live, by your lying to my people that hear your lies?
  17 - Daughters ... which prophesy In this fourth message about false prophecy, women are the prophets. Their prophecies are based on "their own heart" how they think or feel.
  18 - Sew pillows to all armholes The KJV here is a poor translation. See the alternate translation from the NKJV. The women are apparently witches casting spells (v19). They were likely also communicating with evil spirits is0819, 2ch3306.
  18 - Kerchiefs From a word occurring only here. It may mean a cloth worn by those who come to see the lady prophets.
 18  "and say, 'Thus says the Lord GOD: "Woe to the women who sew magic charms on their sleeves and make veils for the heads of people of every height to hunt souls! Will you hunt the souls of My people, and keep yourselves alive? (NKJV).
  19 - Handfuls of barley Perhaps following an old custom of brining a gift when consulting a prophet 1sa0907,8, 1ki1403.. The words "handfuls" and "barley" indicate smallness and inferior (barley is inferior to wheat).
.20  Wherefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, I am against your pillows, wherewith ye there hunt the souls to make them fly, and I will tear them from your arms, and will let the souls go, even the souls that ye hunt to make them fly.
 21  Your kerchiefs also will I tear, and deliver my people out of your hand, and they shall be no more in your hand to be hunted; and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
.22  Because with lies ye have made the heart of the righteous sad, whom I have not made sad; and strengthened the hands of the wicked, that he should not return from his wicked way, by promising him life:
 23  Therefore ye shall see no more vanity, nor divine divinations: for I will deliver my people out of your hand: and ye shall know that I am the LORD.
  20 - Hunt the souls to make them fly The practice of witchcraft involved bringing up supposed spirits of the dead to get information from them, a practice which God had strictly forbidden de1809ff. With the acceptance of the heathen practices, the people also accepted their false idea that the dead are not really dead ge0304.
  22 - Wicked way [strengthened] by promising life. This is a feature of the apostate church da0825.

The 5th of the 5 prophecies are in the next chapter. Click "next" below.

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Study questions - Chapters 12, 13
Sorry we don't have them for the whole commentary.
  1. The city is in trouble and the Lord wants the people to face reality. Prophecies are part of the problem. In 12:21 is the first of five prophecies. You may go to the beginning of chapter 12.
  2. We face similar situations today. What do you believe will help us avoid deception?
  3. Near the end of chapter 12 is a link to Matt. 24. This is especially important for our time.
  4. Unprepared mortar (modern spelling) is mentioned several times in chapter 13 (above). What is the significance? 
Note about the crumbling wall 
   Events are changing to bring about the day of God, which hasteth greatly Zeph. 1:14. Only a moment of time, as it were, yet remains. But while already nation is rising against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, there is not now a general engagement. As yet the four winds are held until the servants of God shall be sealed in their foreheads. Then the powers of earth will marshal their forces for the last great battle.
   Satan is busily laying his plans for the last mighty conflict, when all will take sides. After the gospel has been proclaimed in the world for nearly two thousand years, Satan still presents to men and women the same scene that he presented to Christ. In a wonderful manner he causes the kingdoms of the world in their glory to pass before them. These he promises to all who will fall down and worship him. Thus he seeks to bring men under his dominion.
   Satan is working to the utmost to make himself as God and to destroy all who oppose his power. And today the world is bowing before him. His power is received as the power of God. The prophecy of the Revelation is being fulfilled, that "all the world wondered after the beast." Revelation 13:3.
   Men in their blindness boast of wonderful progress and enlightenment; but to the eye of Omniscience are revealed the inward guilt and depravity. The heavenly watchers see the earth filled with violence and crime. Wealth is obtained by every species of robbery, not robbery of men only, but of God. Men are using His means to gratify their selfishness. Everything they can grasp is made to minister to their greed. Avarice and sensuality prevail. Men cherish the attributes of the first great deceiver. They have accepted him as God, and have become imbued with his spirit.
     But the cloud of judicial wrath hangs over them, containing the elements that destroyed Sodom. In his visions of things to come the prophet John beheld this scene. This demon worship was revealed to him, and it seemed to him as if the whole world were standing on the brink of perdition. But as he looked with intense interest he beheld the company of God's commandment-keeping people.(Testimonies, vol. 6, pp. 14, 15)