Ezekiel 16:35-50 Commentary



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An Allegory of Unfaithful Jerusalem (NIV)
God's Unfaithful Bride (NET)
God's Grace to Unfaithful Jerusalem (NASB)
Jerusalem the Unfaithful (Good News Bible)

Ezekiel 16:1-14 The Lord's Loving kindnesses to Jerusalem
Ezekiel 16:15-34 Unfaithful Jerusalem's Harlotry
Ezekiel 16:35-50 God's Judgment on Jerusalem
Ezekiel 16:51-63 Sodom & Samaria Will be Restored (53-58) (GNB)
Jerusalem Will Be Ashamed (53-58) (CEV)
Covenant that Lasts Forever (59-63) (GNB)


Ezekiel 16:35-50 Commentary
Updated January 5, 2016

Ezekiel 16:35  Therefore, O harlot, hear the word of the LORD  (NASB: Lockman)

Therefore, O harlot (Isa 1:21; 23:15,16; Jer 3:1,6-8; Ho 2:5; Nah 3:4; Jn 4:10,18; Rev 17:5)


Ezekiel's contemporary also described Judah as a harlot -

(Jer 3:1) God says, “If a husband divorces his wife, And she goes from him, And belongs to another man, Will he still return to her? Will not that land be completely polluted? But you are a harlot (Zanah - 02181)  with many lovers; Yet you turn to Me,” declares the LORD.

(Jer 3:6-8) Then the LORD said to me in the days of Josiah the king, “Have you seen what faithless (KJV = backsliding) Israel did? She went up on every high hill and under every green tree, and she was a harlot (Zanah - 02181) there ("to prostitute herself there"). 7 “And I thought, ‘After she has done all these things, she will return to Me’; but she did not return, and her treacherous sister Judah saw it. 8 “And I saw that for all the adulteries of faithless Israel, I had sent her away and given her a writ of divorce, yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear; but she went and was a harlot (Zanah - 02181) also ("prostituted herself").

Therefore - This is a frequent marker of a prophetic address in which God moves from a list of offenses to punishment stage (cp Ezek 11:17, Ezek 13:13, 20, Ezek 17:19)

Harlot (02185)(zonot) is a feminine noun referring to a prostitute.

hear the word of the LORD (Ezek 13:2; 20:47; 34:7; 1Ki 22:19; Isa 1:10; 28:14; Hos 4:1; Am 7:16)

This identical phrase (hear the Word of the LORD) is found 29 times in the OT - 1 Kgs 22:19; 2 Kgs 20:16; 2 Chr 18:18; Isa 1:10; 28:14; 39:5; 66:5; Jer 2:4; 7:2; 9:20; 19:3; 21:11; 22:2, 29; 29:20; 31:10; 34:4; 44:24, 26; Ezek 16:35; 20:47; 25:3; 34:7, 9; 36:1, 4; 37:4; Amos 7:16; Acts 13:44

Thoralf Gilbrant - The OT use of the clause “Hear the word of the Lord” is found in prophetic speeches announcing some divine word of accusation or judgment (e.g., 2 Chr. 18:18, to Ahab; Isa. 1:10, to the rulers of Jerusalem; Jer. 34:4, to King Zedekiah; Hos. 4:1, to Israel). The phrase is found here and elsewhere in Ezekiel with the usual negative context (Ezek 20:47; 34:7, 9), but Ezekiel also used the phrase when a positive message was forthcoming (Ezek 36:1; 37:4). (Complete Biblical Library Commentary)

And now God's prophet speaks forth the sentence on Judah's presumptuous sin and blatant unfaithfulness to her Husband, Jehovah. It is time for "accounts" to be settled and unfortunately the wages of sin is death.

Ezekiel 16:36 Thus says the Lord GOD, "Because your lewdness was poured out and your nakedness uncovered through your harlotries with your lovers and with all your detestable idols, and because of the blood of your sons which you gave to idols,  (NASB: Lockman)

Because your lewdness was poured out (Ezek 16:15-22; 22:15; 23:8; 24:13; 36:25; La 1:9; Zeph 3:1)

Your nakedness uncovered through your harlotries with your lovers (Ezek 23:10,18,29; Ge 3:7,10,11; Ps 139:11,12; Jer 13:22-26; Rev 3:18)

Because of the blood of your sons which you gave to idols (Ezek 16:20,21; Jer 2:34) This undoubtedly refers to the practice of human (child) sacrifice to the horrid idol Molech for Judah "built the high places of Baal that are in the valley of Ben-Hinnom to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire to Molech, which I had not commanded them nor had it entered My mind that they should do"

This represents a recapping of the previous charges against Judah, especially in Ezek 16:15-34.

Your lovers - Israel’s lovers were all the nations with which there was an alliance and from which there was a syncretistic appropriation of pagan religious ideals and practices.

Ezekiel 16:37 therefore, behold, I will gather all your lovers with whom you took pleasure, even all those whom you loved and all those whom you hated. So I will gather them against you from every direction and expose your nakedness to them that they may see all your nakedness.  (NASB: Lockman)

NIV:  therefore I am going to gather all your lovers, with whom you found pleasure, those you loved as well as those you hated. I will gather them against you from all around and will strip you in front of them, and they will see all your nakedness.
NLT: this is what I am going to do. I will gather together all your allies—these lovers of yours with whom you have sinned, both those you loved and those you hated—and I will strip you naked in front of them so they can stare at you.
NJB: for all this, I shall assemble all the lovers to whom you have given pleasure, all the ones you liked and also all the ones you disliked; yes, I shall assemble them round you and strip you naked in front of them, and let them see you naked from head to foot.

Amplified  making you, Israel, an object of loathing and of mockery, a spectacle among the nations

I will gather them against you - God in a twist of bitter irony would use the pagan nations with which Judah had prostituted herself to inflict His righteous wrath.

They shall see all your nakedness (Ezek 23:9,10,22-30; Jer 4:30; 13:22,26; 22:20; La 1:8,19; Hos 2:3,10; Hos 8:10; Nah 3:5,6; Rev 17:16)

Net Bible Notes "Harlots suffered degradation when their nakedness was exposed (Jer 13:22, 26; Hos 2:12; Nah 3:5).

MacArthur - Public exposure of profligate women and the stoning of them were well-known customs in ancient Israel, making them a shameful spectacle.

Ezekiel 16:38  Thus I will judge you like women who commit adultery or shed blood are judged; and I will bring on you the blood of wrath and jealousy.  (NASB: Lockman)
NKJV: And I will judge you as women who break wedlock or shed blood are judged; I will bring blood upon you in fury and jealousy.
NJB: I shall pass on you the sentence that adulteresses and murderesses receive; I shall hand you over to their jealous fury

I shall judge you, like women who commit adultery (Ezek 16:40; 23:45-47; Ge 38:11,24; Lev 20:10; Dt 22:22-24; Mt 1:18,19; Jn 8:3-5)

How were they judged? Moses writes...

If there is a man who commits adultery with another man's wife, one who commits adultery with his friend's wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. (Lev 20:10)

If a man is found lying with a married woman, then both of them shall die, the man who lay with the woman, and the woman; thus you shall purge the evil from Israel. If there is a girl who is a virgin engaged to a man, and another man finds her in the city and lies with her, then you shall bring them both out to the gate of that city and you shall stone them to death; the girl, because she did not cry out in the city, and the man, because he has violated his neighbor's wife. Thus you shall purge the evil from among you. (Dt 22:22-24)

shed blood are judged and and I will bring on you the blood of wrath and jealousy (Ezek 16:20,21,36; Ge 9:6; Ex 21:12; Nu 35:31; Ps 79:3-5; Jer 18:21; Zeph 1:17; Nah 1:2; Rev 16:6)

Wrath (02534) (chemah/hemah from yaham = to be hot) describes that which is hot and figuratively refers to hot displeasure, indignation and wrath. Chemah is used most often to describe God's anger against His unfaithful wife Israel

Jealousy - This is a term between lovers. God had abundantly showered His love upon His chosen people. Instead of reciprocating, they rebelled, thus incurring His jealous anger.

What is God's Word of truth on capital punishment? What is the blood of wrath and jealousy? Moses records that...

Whoever sheds man's blood, By man his blood shall be shed, For in the image of God He made man. (Ge 9:6)

Ezekiel 16:39 I will also give you into the hands of your lovers, and they will tear down your shrines, demolish your high places, strip you of your clothing, take away your jewels * and will leave you naked and bare.  (NASB: Lockman)

they will tear down your shrines ("brothel")," (Ezek 16:24,25,31; 7:22-24; Is 27:9)

strip you of your clothing (Ezek 16:10-20; 23:26,29; Is 3:16-24; Ho2:3,9-13) God declares that He will give His faithless wife Judah (Jerusalem) over to her lovers who would take from her everything she had leaving her naked and bare, her original condition (Ezek 16:7, 22)

Ezekiel 16:40  They will incite a crowd against you and they will stone you and cut you to pieces with their swords.  (NASB: Lockman)

They will incite a crowd against you (Hab 1:6-10; Jn 8:5-7)

Crowd - in context pictures Judah's lovers inciting other nations to wage war against her.

cut you to pieces with their swords (Ezek 23:10,47; 24:21; Jer 25:9)

Ezekiel 16:41  They will burn your houses with fire and execute judgments on you in the sight of many women. Then I will stop you from playing the harlot, and you will also no longer pay your lovers.  (NASB: Lockman)

they will burn your houses with fire (Dt 13:16; 2Ki 25:9; Jer 39:8; 52:13; Micah 3:12)

execute judgments on you in the sight of many women (Amp "the nations")" (Ezek 5:8; 23:10,48; Dt 13:11; 22:21,24; Job 34:26)

Cooper comments that "The phrase “in the sight of many women” (v. 41) was a reminder that women were made to watch the judgment of an adulteress so her judgment might be an example and deterrent." (New American Commentary)

I shall stop you from playing the harlot (Ezek 23:27; 37:23; Isa 1:25,26; 2:18; 27:9; Hos 2:6-17; Mic 5:10-14; Zech 13:2; 1Ti 5:20)

Ezekiel 16:42  So I will calm My fury against you and My jealousy will depart from you, and I will be pacified and angry no more.  (NASB: Lockman)

So I shall calm (rest) My fury against you (Ezek 5:13; 21:17; 2Sa21:14; Is1:24; Zech 6:8) - The point is that God's would not rest until He had punished unfaithful Israel

I shall be pacified and angry no more  (Ezek 39:29; Is 40:1,2; 54:9,10)

Although one might say this was in a sense fulfilled by the Babylonian destruction of Jerusalem and 70 years of captivity, this fulfillment was only partial. History is clear testimony to the fact that the Jews have suffered many times over the centuries since this prophecy. And so God's anger against Israel will not fully rest or be fully satisfied until the end of  the "time of Jacob's distress." (Jer 30:7) which describes the Great Tribulation, the horrible time in the last 3.5 years of Daniel's 70th year when the Devil will seek to destroy Israel (see Rev 12:12-17-see notes where "the woman" symbolizes Israel). (See notes on Daniel 9:27)

See Daniel's Seventieth Week

Ezekiel 16:43   Because * you have not remembered the days of your youth but have enraged Me by all these things, behold, I in turn will bring your conduct down on your own head," declares the Lord GOD, "so that you will not commit this lewdness on top of all your other abominations   (NASB: Lockman)

Because you have not remembered the days of your youth (Ezek 16:22)

This verse recalls Ezek 16:22 “And besides all your abominations and harlotries you did not remember the days of your youth, when you were naked and bare and squirming in your blood.

Cooper writes that "The idea of Ezek 16:43 is repeated from Ezek 16:22 as a reminder that all these calamities came because they failed to remember their history and their covenant with Yahweh. Judah was unfaithful and ungrateful for all God had done for the nation. (Ibid)

Related Cross References

Ps 78:42 They did not remember His power, The day when He redeemed them from the adversary,

Ps 106:13 They quickly forgot His works; They did not wait for His counsel,

Jeremiah 2:32 “Can a virgin forget her ornaments, Or a bride her attire (Rhetorical - Of course not!)? Yet (Striking Contrast) My people have forgotten Me Days without number. (I never "forget Him" do I? How about every time I knowing sin?! Do I not experience "spiritual amnesia"!)

Have enraged Me by all these things (Ezek 6:9; Dt 32:21; Ps 8:40; 95:10; Isa 63:10; Am 2:13; Acts 7:51; Eph 4:30)

Enraged is an interesting verb as it means to shake, to tremble, to agitate, to disturb, to rouse up, to rage, to provoke. This term occurs forty-one times in the Old Testament and is utilized most often to express the idea of the physical moving or shaking of someone or something. So the picture is of the Holy God being so angry that He is shaking! Woe! The Septuagint translates ragaz with the verb lupeo, which means to grieve (cf what they did to His heart in Ezek 6:9-note! What do I do to His heart when I presumptuously sin? See what our sin does to the Holy Spirit in Eph 4:30-note) where Paul uses the same verb lupeo.)

I in turn will bring your conduct down on your own head (Ezek 7:3,4,8,9; 9:10; 11:21; 22:31; Ro 2:8,9) What goes around, comes around. This is the law of reaping and sowing - they sowed the wind but would reap the whirlwind! (Gal 6:7-note, Gal 6:8-note , Hos 8:7)

Ezekiel 16:44  Behold, everyone who quotes proverbs will quote this proverb concerning you, saying, 'Like mother, like daughter.'  (NASB: Lockman)

Behold, everyone who quotes proverbs will quote this proverb concerning you, saying, 'Like mother, like daughter.' (Ezekiel 18:2,3; 1 Samuel 24:13) (Ezek 16:3,45; 1Ki 21:16; 2Ki17:11,15; 21:9; Ezra 9:1; Ps 106:35-38)


Like mother like daughter - In this context mother  refers to the Hittites (Ezek. 16:3 says to Judah/Jerusalem - your mother a Hittite). The point of the proverb is that Israel was as lewd and immoral as the original inhabitants of Canaan who were unspeakably debauched as discerned from archeological findings related to this time period (See interesting article - The Religion of the Canaanites and Baalism in Canaanite Religion and Its Relation to Selected Old Testament Texts). By way of practical application every mother should contemplate the far-reaching influence of her lips and her life before her children (fathers, this applies to your influence as well for generally "like father, like sons"! Be careful how you conduct yourself, not as unwise fathers but as wise fathers who are seeking to redeem the few short years of your life on earth for the days are evil.

Cooper writes that "The next stage in the judgment of the orphan who became a queen, a harlot, and finally a convicted criminal was the revelation that her story would become a proverb (cf. Ezekiel 14:8). The proverb was, Like mother, like daughter. The point was that if Jerusalem wanted a shocking look at her disgraceful character and her dismal future, she could look at her cultural ancestors the Hittites and Amorites, who had transmitted their heritage of wickedness to Sodom, Samaria, and Jerusalem. In depravity and idolatry Israel had followed the bad example of the Canaanites and thus would be judged like them (Cooper, L. E.  Vol. 17: Ezekiel: The New American Commentary. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers)

The Disciple's Study Bible writes that "Sin is not inherited (Ed: Well, that is not exactly correct - while my father's literal sins do not go on my "account" the "sin virus" he possessed has been passed on to me). I am not guilty because mother was guilty. I do inherit a nature prone to sin from Adam (Ro 5:12, 17- see notes Romans 5:12; 5:17). I am sinful like my parents because all influences on my life give me the tendency to sin and I choose to let their influence outweigh God's on my life. I increase my guilt by condemning my neighbors for their sins when mine are worse than theirs.... Ezekiel described Jerusalem as more corrupt than Israel's favorite example of wicked people: Sodom (Ge 13:13; Genesis 18-19) and Samaria, the capital of the Northern Kingdom exiled and inhabited by a mixed race with a mixed religion (2Ki 17:24-41; Ezra; Nehemiah). Such corruption came because the people of Jerusalem chose to act more corruptly than the other nations ever imagined (Ezek 16:48-note). Their "depravity'' represented one generation's choices, not their inheritance from their ancestors. (Disciple's Study Bible)

Ezekiel 16:45  You are the daughter of your mother, who loathed her husband and children. You are also the sister of your sisters, who loathed their husbands and children. Your mother was a Hittite and your father an Amorite.  (NASB: Lockman)

Gilbrant - The verse returns to the woman’s “lineage” mentioned earlier in v. 3. But in this new twist to the allegory, the whole family is revealed as being dysfunctional as the woman herself: the mother hated her husband and children, and the sisters acted like their mother.

loathed her husband and children (Ezek 16:8,15,20,21; 23:37-39; Dt 5:9; 12:31; Isa 1:4; Zech 11:8; Ro 1:30,31)\

Judah had followed in the idolatrous, pagan practice which the nation had practiced from their early days in the land of promise. They even burned their children like the pagans directly disobeying God's clear warning not to do this = “You shall not behave thus toward the LORD your God, for every abominable act which the LORD hates they have done for their gods; for they even burn their sons and daughters in the fire to their gods." (Dt 12:31).

One wonders what the Holy One thinks of America and the millions of babies who have been sacrificed on the altars of sexual immorality and selfishness? And will the Righteous Judge "wink" at America's sins against the unborn? Woe!

Ezekiel 16:46 Now your older sister is Samaria, who lives north of you with her daughters; and your younger sister, who lives south of you, is Sodom with her daughters.  (NASB: Lockman)
Young's Literal: And thine elder sister is Samaria, she and her daughters, Who is dwelling at thy left hand, And thy younger sister, who is dwelling on thy right hand, is Sodom and her daughters.

Now your older sister is Samaria who lives north of you with her daughters (Ezek 16:51; 23:4,11,31-33; Jer 3:8-11; Mic 1:5)

Samaria who lives north - North is literally "at thy left hand". This is clearly a reference to the northern 10 tribes who had their capital in Samaria. The Northern Kingdom was not older chronologically but was larger and the first to be judged by God in 722BC when she was defeated and taken into exile by the Assyrians.

Your younger sister - Judah whose capital was Jerusalem. Notice they are all referred to in feminine terms. They all fell into spiritual adultery or harlotry. Anyone reading this description who has a daughter has to be gripped by the tragic description. How it must have grieved the Father's heart! We need to recall this to mind the next time we contemplate making provision to commit a sin (see note Romans 13:14). Peter speaks to this point in his first letter writing...

And if you address as Father the One who impartially judges according to each man's work, conduct yourselves in fear during the time of your stay upon earth; 18 knowing that you were not redeemed with perishable things like silver or gold from your futile way of life inherited from your forefathers, but with precious blood, as of a lamb unblemished and spotless, the blood of Christ. (See notes 1 Peter 1:17; 1:18; 1:19)

(Comment: The point is that believers need to be reading and meditating on truths such as found in Ezekiel 16, that they might maintain a healthy, reverential fear of the Lord and of the certainty of reaping the consequences of sinning. This healthy fear is set in the background of recalling the high cost to the Father to provide us with so great a salvation -- His Son's precious blood. Next time you are tempted to get angry, to lash out in hostility at your mate or child, to commit egregious sin, to overtly rebel against Truth, etc -- before you react...Think...Remember...Recall what if cost the Father. Without that provision, that sin you would commit would otherwise be your death sentence [see James 2:10]. Then, instead of reacting in anger, etc, act with an attitude of gratitude and contrition and humility, thankful that you now have the strength of His indwelling Spirit to walk in a manner that pleases your Father rather than grieves Him! Amen.)

Pray Psalm 119:38...

Establish Thy word to Thy servant, As that which produces reverence for Thee.

In his comments on Psalm 119:38 Charles Spurgeon wrote

Make me sure of Thy sure word: make it sure to me and make me sure of it. If we possess the spirit of service, and yet are troubled with sceptical thoughts we cannot do better than pray to be established in the truth. Times will arise when every doctrine and promise seems to be shaken, and our mind gets no rest: then we must appeal to God for establishment in the faith, for he would have all his servants to be well instructed and confirmed in his word. But we must mind that we are the Lord's servants, for else we shall not long be sound in his truth. Practical holiness is a great help towards doctrinal certainty: if we are God's servants he will confirm his word in our experience. "If any man will do his will, he shall know of the doctrine"; and so know it as to be fully assured of it. Atheism in the heart is a horrible plague to a God fearing man, it brings more torment with it than can well be described; and nothing but a visitation of grace can settle the soul after it has been violently assailed thereby. Vanity or falsehood is bad for the eyes, but it is even worse when it defiles the understanding and casts a doubt upon the word of the living God.

Who is devoted to Thy fear, or simply -- "to thy fear." That is, make good Thy word to godly fear: wherever it exists; strengthen the whole body of reverent men. Stablish Thy word, not only to me, but to all the godly ones under the sun. Or, again, it may mean -- "Stablish Thy word to Thy fear," namely, that men may be led to fear thee; since a sure faith in the divine promise is the fountain and foundation of godly fear.

Men will never worship a God in Whom they do not believe. More faith will lead to more godly fear. We cannot look for the fulfilment of promises in our experience unless we live under the influence of the fear of the Lord: establishment in grace is the result of holy watchfulness and prayerful energy. We shall never be rooted and grounded in our belief unless we daily practise what we profess to believe. Full assurance is the reward of obedience. Answers to prayer are given to those whose hearts answer to the Lord's command.

If we are devoted to God's fear we shall be delivered from all other fear. He has no fear as to the truth of the word who is filled with fear of the Author of the word.

Scepticism is both the parent and the child of impiety; but strong faith both begets piety and is begotten of it. We commend this whole verse to any devout man whose tendency is to scepticism: it will be an admirable prayer for use in seasons of unusually strong misgivings. Spurgeon's Note)

your younger sister, who lives south of you, is Sodom (Ezek 16:48,49,53-56,61; Ge 13:11-13; 18:20-33; 19:24,25; Dt 29:23; 32:32; Isa 1:9,10; Jer 23:14; Lam 4:6; Lu 17:28-30; 2Pe 2:6; Jude 1:7; Rev 11:8)

Lives south - literally "dwelling on thy right hand"

Sodom - Used here to symbolize the southern kingdom and Jerusalem. This is the first of the 6 uses of the term Sodom by Ezekiel, all of them in Ezekiel 16.

In the book of the Revelation Jerusalem is again referred to as Sodom ...

And their dead bodies will lie in the street of the great city which mystically is called Sodom and Egypt, where also their Lord was crucified. (From his note on Revelation 11:8 Tony Garland writes "Both Sodom and Egypt typify cities which were opposed and judged by God. Sodom was an exceedingly wicked city which was overthrown for her sins by God’s judgment (Ge 13:13; 19:24). Egypt was the nation which held Israel in bondage and was judged by plagues prior to the Exodus (Ex. 1:13-14; 3:7; 20:2). Jerusalem, in her godless state, is likened to both the wicked city and the wicked nation. Even though the two witnesses exhibit a Jewish ministry located in Jerusalem, they are rejected by the majority of the inhabitants—their fellow Jews.

When Moses sang a song predicting the apostasy of Israel upon entering the Promised Land after his death, he referred to the Jewish nation as a nation void of counsel whose vine is of the vine of Sodom and of the fields of Gomorrah (Dt. 32:28-32). Isaiah used a similar analogy when describing God’s rejection of Israel’s insincere sacrifices:

Hear the word of the LORD you rulers of Sodom; give ear to the law of our God, you people of Gomorrah: ‘To what purpose is the multitude of your sacrifices to Me?’ (Isa. 1:10).

The sin of Jerusalem is said to be as the sin of Sodom in that it was flaunted openly (Isa 3:8).6 Even the apostate prophets are likened to the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah (Jer 23:14). When rejected by the cities of the lost sheep of the house of Israel, Jesus indicated that the cities which did not receive the apostles or their words would be considered worse off than Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment (Mt 10:14-15; Luke 10:12). Although Jerusalem is here referred to as Sodom, Isaiah also indicated that Babylon’s eventual overthrow would be like that of Sodom and Gomorrah (Isa. 13:19). Elsewhere, Ezekiel describes the Northern Kingdom (Samaria) and the Southern Kingdom (Jerusalem) as idolatrous sisters, both of which committed harlotry in their youth while in Egypt (Ezekiel 23:2-4, 19, 27). Comparison with Egypt recalls the idolatrous golden calf which Israel made upon departure from Egypt (Ex. 32:4, 24).

with her daughters (Ezek 16:27; 26:6; Ge 14:8; 19:29; Hos 11:8)

Daughters - In context this term appears to be a figurative description of other cities in the Northern and Southern Kingdom who also went "whoring" after other gods that are really no gods at all.

Ezekiel 16:47  Yet you have not merely walked in their ways or done according to their abominations; but, as if that were too little, you acted more corruptly in all your conduct than they.  (NASB: Lockman)

Yet you have not merely walked in their ways or done according to their abominations; but, as if that were too little, you acted more corruptly in all your conduct than they.


Jesus taught that there would be different "degrees" of punishment. Greater light brings greater judgment and greater condemnation.

Matthew records for example that Jesus "began to reproach the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent. Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. Nevertheless I say to you, it shall be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment, than for you. And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You shall descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. Nevertheless I say to you that it shall be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you."  (Mt 11:20-24)

as if that were too little (Ezek 8:17; 1Ki 16:31)

you acted more corruptly in all your conduct than they (Ezek 16:48,51; 5:6,7; 2Ki 21:9,16; Jn 15:21,22; 1 Cor 5:1) The point is that Judah's moral depravity and idolatry exceeded that Israel and even of Sodom whose sin is described as "exceedingly grave." (Ge 18:20)

The Amplified version says "for your sin, as those taught of God, is far blacker than theirs."

Ezekiel 16:48  As I live," declares the Lord GOD, "Sodom, your sister and her daughters have not done as you and your daughters have done  (NASB: Lockman)

As I live," declares the Lord GOD, "Sodom, your sister, and her daughters, have not done as you and your daughters have done. (Mt 10:15; 11:24; Mk 6:11; Lu 10:12; Acts 7:52)

As I live - Is the formula for introduction of an oath. This formula is used 26x in the OT with most of the uses in Ezekiel - Nu 14:21, 28; Deut 32:40; Ps 63:4; 104:33; 116:2; Isa 49:18; Jer 22:24; 46:18; Ezek 5:11; 14:16, 18, 20; 16:48; 17:16, 19; 18:3; 20:3, 31, 33; 33:11, 27; 34:8; 35:6, 11; Zeph 2:9

Ezekiel 16:49  Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had arrogance, abundant food and careless ease, but she did not help * the poor and needy  (NASB: Lockman)
Amplified: Behold, this was the iniquity of your sister Sodom: pride, overabundance of food, prosperous ease, and idleness were hers and her daughters’; neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.  (Amplified Bible - Lockman)


Behold, this was the guilt of your sister Sodom: she and her daughters had arrogance (Ezek 28:2,9,17; 29:3; Ge 19:9; Ps 138:6; Pr 16:5,18; 18:12; 21:4; Isa 3:9; Isa 16:6; Da 4:30,37; 5:23; Ob 1:3; 1Pe 5:5)

Ryrie explains that "Sodom's sin did not end with its sensuality and unnatural acts, but reached to the "pride" which had come with material prosperity. This "pride" had lifted them above moral law in their own eyes. Like Sodom, Israel in her wealth and pride forgot and neglected the poor. For Israel this crime was more serious because she had received specific commands concerning the poor (cf. Deut. 15:7, 11). This concern for the poor and needy is echoed in the N.T. (cf. Matt. 26:11; 1 John 3:17)

Abundant (overabundance of) food and careless (prosperous) ease (and idleness)" (Ge 13:10; 18:20; Dt 32:15; Isa 22:13,14; Am 6:3-6; Lu 12:16-20; Lu 16:19; 17:28; 21:34)

She did not help (strengthen the hand of) the poor and needy." (Ezek 18:12; Pr 21:13; Isa 3:14,15; Amos 5:11,12; 8:4-6; Micah 3:2-4; Lu 16:20,21)

Criswell - Sodom's sin did not end with its sensuality and unnatural acts, but reached to the "pride" which had come with material prosperity. This "pride" had lifted them above moral law in their own eyes. Like Sodom, Israel in her wealth and pride forgot and neglected the poor. For Israel this crime was more serious because she had received specific commands concerning the poor (cf. Deut. 15:7, 11). This concern for the poor and needy is echoed in the N.T. (cf. Matt. 26:11; 1 John 3:17).

Ezekiel 16:50  Thus they were haughty and committed abominations before Me. Therefore I removed them when I saw it. (NASB: Lockman)

Thus they were haughty and committed abominations before Me (Ge 13:13; 18:20; 19:5; Lev 18:22; Dt 23:17; 2Ki 23:7; Pr 16:18; Pr 18:12; Ro 1:26,27; Jude 1:7)

Abominations (08441)(toebah) refers to an abominable custom or thing. Loathsome. Detestable thing. Something or someone who is loathsome and abhorrent.

Baker notes that toebah "is primarily understood in the context of the Law. It identifies unclean food (Dt. 14:3); the activity of the idolater (Isa. 41:24); the practice of child sacrifice (Dt. 12:31); intermarriage by the Israelites (Mal. 2:11); the religious activities of the wicked (Pr 21:27); and homosexual behavior (Lev. 18:22). In a broader sense, the word is used to identify anything offensive (Pr 8:7)." (The Complete Word Study Dictionary: OT)

Therefore - term of conclusion

I removed them when I saw it. (Ge 19:24; Dt 29:23; Job 18:15; Isa 13:19; Jer 20:16; 49:18; 50:40; Lam 4:6; Amos 4:11; Zeph 2:9; 2Pe 2:6; Rev 18:9) The point is that Samaria and Sodom's sins did not escape the LORD's notice nor His hand of righteous judgment.

Ezekiel 16:51 "Furthermore, Samaria did not commit half of your sins, for you have multiplied your abominations more than they. Thus you have made your sisters appear righteous by all your abominations which you have committed.  (NASB: Lockman)

Samaria (KJV): Lu 12:47,48 Ro 3:9-20
(KJV): Jer 3:8-11 Mt 12:41,42

You have multiplied your abominations - As if "addition" were not enough they multiplied evil the product of which was abominable to the LORD.

Cooper - So reprehensible were the sins of Judah that Sodom and Samaria appeared more righteous by comparison. This was a cutting indictment filled with irony since the name Sodom was not even spoken by Jews of Judah out of contempt for its evil example. (Ibid)

Ezekiel 16:52 "Also bear your disgrace in that you have made judgment favorable for your sisters. Because of your sins in which you acted more abominably than they, they are more in the right than you. Yes, be also ashamed and bear your disgrace, in that you made your sisters appear righteous. (NASB: Lockman)

which hast (KJV): Eze 16:56 Mt 7:1-5 Lu 6:37 Ro 2:1,10,26,27
bear thine
(KJV): Eze 16:54,63 36:6,7,15,31,32 39:26 44:13 Jer 23:40 31:19 51:51 Ho 10:6 Ro 1:32 6:21
they are more
(KJV): Ge 38:26 1Sa 24:17 1Ki 2:32

You acted more abominably - Samaria and Sodom had great sin and great judgment but God says Judah committed even more abominable sin!

Ezekiel 16:53 "Nevertheless, I will restore their captivity, the captivity of Sodom and her daughters, the captivity of Samaria and her daughters, and along with them your own captivity (NASB: Lockman)

I will restore - Eze 16:60,61 29:14 39:25 Job 42:10 Ps 14:7 85:1 126:1 Isa 1:9 Jer 20:16 31:23 48:47 49:6,39 Joe 3:1
With them - Isa 19:24,25 Jer 12:16 Ro 11:23-31


Contrast this promise with the description of punishment in Ezekiel 16:35-43.

When will God restore their captivity? This has not occurred but awaits return of Messiah to establish His Millennial kingdom on earth.

Ezekiel 16:54 in order that you may bear your humiliation and feel ashamed for all that you have done when you become a consolation to them. (NASB: Lockman)

You may bear - Eze 16:52,63 36:31,32 Jer 2:26
When you become - Eze 14:22,23

When you become a consolation to them - Cooper says "Had God not severely punished Judah, Sodom and Samaria could have received comfort (Ezek 16:54) by pointing to Judah, justifying themselves and accusing God of violating his righteousness...Because Judah had exceeded the sins of Sodom and Samaria, any hope of restoration also must include them, since God is just." (Ibid)

Ezekiel 16:55 "Your sisters, Sodom with her daughters and Samaria with her daughters, will return to their former state, and you with your daughters will also return to your former state. (NASB: Lockman)

And you with your daughters -  Eze 16:53 36:11 Mal 3:4

Ezekiel 16:56 "As the name of your sister Sodom was not heard from your lips in your day of pride (NASB: Lockman)

Was not -  Isa 65:5 Zep 3:11 Lu 15:28-30 18:11

Constable notes that "Many people of Jerusalem did not even speak of the Sodomites because they were such great sinners. Yet in the future the people of Edom and the Philistines, Israel’s ancient enemies, would not speak of the Jerusalemites because they were such great sinners."

Ezekiel 16:57 before your wickedness was uncovered, so now you have become the reproach of the daughters of Edom and of all who are around her, of the daughters of the Philistines--those surrounding you who despise you.  (NASB: Lockman)

Your wickedness: Eze 16:36,37 21:24 23:18,19 Ps 50:21 La 4:22 Ho 2:10 7:1 1Co 4:5
Reproach: 2Ki 16:5-7 2Ch 28:5,6,18-23 Isa 7:1 14:28
Edom:  Ge 10:22,23 Nu 23:7
the daughters: Eze 16:27
Despise:  Jer 33:24

Uncovered (01540)(galah) means to be revealed or disclosed. It is interesting that galah is used in the expression to uncover the nakedness of, which often implies sexual relations (Lev. 18:6). The main idea of this verb is to bring about stark exposure of their wickedness (such that they cannot hide even as when one is naked!)

Reproach (02781)(herpah) is feminine noun meaning reproach, scorn, taunt. The term can be used for a taunt hurled at an enemy (1 with an individual such as barrenness (Gen. 30:23); uncircumcision (Gen. 34:14); and widowhood (Isa. 54:4).

A reproach is an expression of disapproval, rebuke or censure.

Despise (07590)(sat) is a verb which describes a strong dislike, a loathing, a feeling of contempt, a deep repugnance and/or a total disrespect. This verb is used only 3x in the OT- Ezek 16:57, 28:24, 28:26.

Cooper - The irony of this was that Judah had become a byword (Ezek 16:56–57) to its pagan neighbors such as Edom and Philistia for destruction and judgment

Ezekiel 16:58 "You have borne the penalty of your lewdness and abominations," the LORD declares. (NASB: Lockman)

You have: Eze 23:49 Ge 4:13 La 5:7

Constable - The Jerusalemites were bearing the penalty of their lewdness and abominations; the Babylonian’s were threatening to destroy them completely.

Lewdness (02154)(zimmah) refers to loose conduct most often with regard to illicit sexual conduct
(see first use in Lv 18:17) Webster says lewdness is inclined to, characterized by, or inciting to lust or lechery; lascivious.

Abominations (08441)(toebah) refers to an abominable custom or thing. Abomination. Loathsome. Detestable thing. Something or someone who is loathsome and abhorrent.

Ezekiel 16:59 For thus says the Lord GOD, "I will also do with you as you have done, you who have despised the oath by breaking the covenant.  (NASB: Lockman)

I will (KJV): Eze 7:4,8,9 14:4 Isa 3:11 Jer 2:19 Mt 7:1,2 Ro 2:8,9
(KJV): Eze 17:13-16 Ex 24:1-8 De 29:10-15,25 2Ch 34:31,32 Isa 24:5 Jer 22:9 31:32

Constable - The Lord promised to deal with them as they had dealt with Him. They had despised His covenant, and now He would despise them.

Despised (0959)(bazah is from a root meaning to accord little worth to something) means to disdain or to hold in contempt. Bazah is used in a number of places to mean “despise” in the sense of treating someone or something as totally insignificant or worthless. Bazah means to raise the head loftily and disdainfully, to look down one's nose at something (so to speak)! The idea is that one undervalues something or someone which implies contempt for that thing or person (in this case God's covenant!)

DESPISE = look down on with contempt or aversion; regard as negligible, worthless, or distasteful; may suggest an emotional response ranging from strong dislike to loathing

DISDAIN = implies an arrogant or supercilious aversion to what is regarded as unworthy; look on with scorn; refuse or abstain from because of disdain; to treat as beneath one’s notice or dignity, may or may not include overt feelings of contempt or scorn; feeling of contempt for what is beneath one

CONTEMPT = the act of despising : the state of mind of one who despises; lack of respect or reverence for something; willful disobedience to or open disrespect of a court, judge, or legislative body

Covenant (01285)(berit/berith/beriyth) refers in this context to the Mosaic Covenant (the Law), the covenant which was conditioned on obedience.

Cooper adds that "Judah, the wife, was unfaithful to Yahweh, the husband. Judah broke her marriage covenant (v. 59), which probably was a reference to the covenant at Sinai (Ex 19:1–8). According to Hebrew law, when adultery was discovered a husband could not ignore it. He was compelled by law to take action against his wife for her promiscuity. Likewise, God was obligated to punish Judah for breaking the covenant (v. 59).(Ibid)

Ezekiel 16:60 "Nevertheless, I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you.  (NASB: Lockman)

I will remember (KJV): Eze 16:8 Lev 26:42,45 Ne 1:5-11 Ps 105:8 106:45 Jer 2:2 33:20-26 Ho 2:15 Lu 1:72
I will establish
(KJV): Eze 37:26,27 Isa 55:3 2Sa 23:5 Jer 31:31-34 Jer 32:38-41 50:5 Ho 2:19,20 Heb 8:10 12:24 13:20


Nevertheless - Praise God for this word. God is speaking and says in spite of their unfaithfulness, God remains faithful to His unconditional, immutable covenant promises made initially to their fathers Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. (See Covenant: Abrahamic versus Mosaic and Covenant: Abrahamic vs Old vs New)

I will remember - God has a perfect memory regarding His covenant! We see this same phrase in Gen 9:15; Lev 26:42; Jer 31:3.

Remember (02142)(zakar) means bring to mind or think of again (an image or idea from the past into the mind), recall information or events, keep in mind for attention or consideration with a focus on responding in an appropriate manner, (Ex 6:5 Dt 25:17) The first occurrence is in Ge 8:1 with God as the subject: “God remembered Noah."

Some things God remembers (zakar) - His covenant and delivers His people (Ex 2:24) preserving them (Lev 26:44, 45), All their wickedness. (Hos 7:2), Hezekiah's past faithfulness => healing (2 Ki 20:3); Noah =>made waters to subside (Ge 8:1). Not to remember iniquity = forgive/withhold judgment (Ps 79:8-9)

Charles Feinberg on God's gracious remembrance - God can no more help being gracious than He can cease being God. He is the God of all grace, and He always finds a covenant basis on which He can exercise His grace.

Cooper - In spite of the inevitability of judgment, God declared he indeed would restore Judah with its sisters, Sodom and Samaria. The assurance in v. 60 contrasts with v. 59 by the use of an emphatic “I”—Judah had forgotten Yahweh’s covenant, but “I myself will remember it.” God pledged to remember the former broken covenant and to make a new, everlasting, and therefore unbreakable covenant (cf. Exod 2:24; Lev 26:42–45). This new covenant would not only be permanent but it would be the basis for Judah’s sense of conviction and sorrow for sin (cf. 20:43; 36:31; Zech 12:10–14). (Ibid)

Scofield sees this as referring to two covenants - Scofield - It must ever be a source of encouragement to God's people to have the assurance from His Word that He remains faithful even when they themselves are unfaithful (2Ti 2:13). There could be no hope of salvation were this not true. (Lev 26:42-45; Ps 106:45) In its first use in this verse, the word "covenant" alludes to the Palestinian Covenant (see Deut 30:3, note); in its second usage, to the New Covenant (see Heb 8:8). Isa 55:3; Jer 32:40; 50:5; Ezek 37:26

I agree with John MacArthur that the covenant...in the days of your youth refers not to the Davidic but to the Abrahamic Covenant. But the phrase and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you is a prophetic promise of the New Covenant described in Jeremiah 31:31-34 and which will be finally and fully fulfilled to Israel and Judah at the return of the Messiah Who will then set up His Messianic Kingdom (Millennium).

See Covenant- New Covenant in the OT  
See especially Study the Prophetic Promises of the New Covenant to Israel in the OT

Everlasting (Eternal, Forever) (05769)(olam) is a masculine noun which according to some authorities is derived from 'alam (05956) which means to conceal, hide, be hidden, be concealed, be secret (2Ki 4:27, Ps 10:1). (others say the origin is uncertain) Gesenius feels olam refers to that which is hidden, especially "hidden time" the beginning or end of which is either uncertain or undefined = eternity, perpetuity. The most common associations of "everlasting" (olam) are Everlasting covenant = 15x and Everlasting lovingkindness = 44x.

The phrase everlasting covenant is used 16x in the OT where context determines the specific covenant...

Genesis 9:16 "When the bow is in the cloud, then I will look upon it, to remember the everlasting covenant between God and every living creature of all flesh that is on the earth."

Genesis 17:7 "I will establish My covenant between Me and you and your descendants after you throughout their generations for an everlasting covenant, to be God to you and to your descendants after you. (The New Covenant is in a sense the "extension" of the Abrahamic Covenant).

13 "A servant who is born in your house or who is bought with your money shall surely be circumcised; thus shall My covenant be in your flesh for an everlasting covenant.

19 But God said, "No, but Sarah your wife will bear you a son, and you shall call his name Isaac; and I will establish My covenant with him (Isaac) for an everlasting covenant for his descendants after him.

Leviticus 24:8 "Every sabbath day he shall set it in order before the LORD continually; it is an everlasting covenant for the sons of Israel.

Numbers 18:19 "All the offerings of the holy gifts, which the sons of Israel offer to the LORD, I have given to you and your sons and your daughters with you, as a perpetual allotment. It is an everlasting covenant of salt before the LORD to you and your descendants with you."

2 Samuel 23:5 "Truly is not my house so with God? For He has made an everlasting covenant with me, Ordered in all things, and secured; For all my salvation and all my desire, Will He not indeed make it grow?


MacArthur - The promise given by the Lord to David recorded in 2Sa 7:12–16 is here referred to as a “covenant,” a binding agreement from the Lord that He will fulfill. In spite of the fact that David and his own household had failed (2Samuel 9–20), David rightly believed that the Lord would not fail, but would be faithful to His promise of hope for the future in the descendant of David, the Eternal King, the anointed one), who would establish a kingdom of righteousness and peace forever.

1 Chronicles 16:17 He also confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, To Israel as an everlasting covenant,

Psalm 105:10 Then He confirmed it to Jacob for a statute, To Israel as an everlasting covenant, (Referring to the  Abrahamic Covenant promises that the descendants of Abraham would multiply, and they would possess the Land.)

Isaiah 24:5 The earth is also polluted by its inhabitants, for they transgressed laws, violated statutes, broke the everlasting covenant. (The identification of this covenant is difficult but probably refers to the Abrahamic).

Isaiah 55:3 "Incline your ear and come to Me. Listen, that you may live; And I will make an everlasting covenant with you, According to the faithful mercies shown to David. (This refers to the New Covenant that God will give to Israel - Isaiah 54:8; 61:8; Jer 31:31–34; 32:40; 50:5; Ezek 16:60; 37:26; Heb 13:20).


MacArthur on the faithful mercies to David - The Davidic Covenant promised David that his seed would be ruler over Israel in an everlasting kingdom (2Sa 7:8, 16; Ps 89:27–29). Paul connected the resurrection of Christ with this promise (Acts 13:34), since it was an essential event in fulfilling this promise. If He had not fully satisfied God by His atoning death, He would not have risen; if He had not risen from the dead, He could not eventually sit on David’s earthly throne. But He did rise and will fulfill the kingly role (Isa 55: 4). Cf. Jer 30:9; Eze 34:23, 24; 37:24, 25; Da 9:25; Hos 3:5; Mic 5:2. The whole world will come to Him as the Great King (Isa 55:5). (MacArthur Study Bible)

Isaiah 61:8 For I, the LORD, love justice, I hate robbery in the burnt offering; And I will faithfully give them their recompense And make an everlasting covenant with them. (A reference to the New Covenant of Jer 31:31-34)

Jeremiah 32:40 "I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me. (A reference to the New Covenant of Jer 31:31-34)


MacArthur - The ultimate fulfillment of a future in the Land was not fulfilled in the Ezra/Nehemiah return. This occurs in the time when God gives the people of Israel a new heart in eternal salvation along with their return to the ancient land (cf. Jer 33:8, 9, and Ezek 36:26).

Jeremiah 50:5 "They will ask for the way to Zion, turning their faces in its direction; they will come that they may join themselves to the LORD in an everlasting covenant that will not be forgotten. (A reference to the New Covenant of Jer 31:31-34)

Ezekiel 16:60 "Nevertheless, I will remember My covenant with you in the days of your youth, and I will establish an everlasting covenant with you. (A reference to the New Covenant of Jer 31:31-34)

Ezekiel 37:26 "I will make a covenant of peace with them; it will be an everlasting covenant with them. And I will place them and multiply them, and will set My sanctuary in their midst forever.

MacArthur sees this as a reference to all the everlasting covenants - The everlasting nature of the Abrahamic (cf. Ge 17:7), Davidic (2Sa 23:5), and New (Jer 50:5) Covenants are joined together in the redeemed who experience the millennial kingdom “forever” (used 4 times in Ezek 37:25–28). The Heb. word for “everlasting” may refer to a long time or eternity. It is also true that these covenants will continue to be fulfilled after the Millennium in the eternal state.

Ezekiel 16:61 "Then you will remember your ways and be ashamed when you receive your sisters, both your older and your younger; and I will give them to you as daughters, but not because of your covenant.  (NASB: Lockman)

Remember (KJV): Eze 16:63 20:43 36:31,32 Job 42:5,6 Ps 119:59 Jer 31:18-20 50:4,5
when (KJV): Eze 16:53-55 Song 8:8,9 Isa 2:2-5 11:9,10 Ho 1:9-11 Ro 11:11 Ro 15:8,9,16 Ga 4:26,27 Eph 2:12-14 3:6
I will (KJV): Isa 49:18-23 54:1,2 60:4 66:7-12 Ga 4:26-31
but not (KJV): Jer 31:31-40 John 15:16 Heb 8:13

Then - always be alert to this "time sensitive" word as it reflects that which is next in sequence.

Not because of your covenant - Because they broke it. He would give based on grace, not on merit!

Ezekiel 16:62 "Thus I will establish My covenant with you, and you shall know that I am the LORD,  (NASB: Lockman)

I will (KJV): Eze 16:60 Da 9:27 Ho 2:18-23
and thou (KJV): Eze 6:7 39:22 Jer 24:7 Joel 3:17

Cooper - Ezek 16:62 uses the same emphatic construction (literally) “I myself” as Ezek 16:60. Though Israel despised and broke the covenant, God himself would establish it and restore his relationship with them....God’s establishing his covenant with his rebellious people will be based on his all-important work of atonement, not overlooking but covering their sin by his marvelous grace. Israel’s departure from God had come because they had failed to remember who they were in relationship to him (Ezek 15:2). But as a result of his atoning work, they would remember and return in humility and gratitude. The grace of God always is available to those who repent. God will remove the guilt of sin and will heal, forgive, and save people and nations (Ezek 16:59–63; cf. 2 Chr 7:14).

Know that I am the LORD - This is a key passage in Ezekiel  occurring approximately 63 times-  Ezek 6:7, 10, 13f; 7:4, 27; 11:10, 12; 12:15f, 20; 13:9, 14, 21, 23; 14:8; 15:7; 16:62; 17:24; 20:12, 20, 26, 38, 42, 44; 22:16; 23:49; 24:24, 27; 25:5, 7, 11, 17; 26:6; 28:22ff, 26; 29:6, 9, 16, 21; 30:8, 19, 25f; 32:15; 33:29; 34:27; 35:4, 9, 15; 36:11, 23, 38; 37:6, 13, 28; 38:23; 39:6f, 22, 28; Joel 3:17

This promise echoes God's prophetic promise to Israel through Moses in Deuteronomy 30 --

Dt 30:1-6 “So it shall be when all of these things have come upon you, the blessing and the curse which I have set before you, and you call them to mind in all nations where the LORD your God has banished you (DISPERSION - This has been fulfilled), 2 and you return to the LORD your God and obey Him with all your heart and soul according to all that I command you today, you and your sons (RETURN - This has NOT been fulfilled), 3 then the LORD your God will restore you from captivity, and have compassion on you, and will gather you again from all the peoples where the LORD your God has scattered you (DISPERSION). 4 “If your outcasts are at the ends of the earth, from there the LORD your God will gather you, and from there He will bring you back. 5 “And the LORD your God will bring you into the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it (DON'T MISS THIS PROMISE OR TRY TO SPIRITUALIZE IT - God is promising that Israel will one day possess the Land of Israel in fulfillment of the promise of the covenant given to Abraham passed on to Isaac and finally passed on to Jacob or Israel = Ge 12:7; 13:15; 15:18-21; 17:8 . This promise is NOT given to the Church!); and He will prosper you and multiply you more than your fathers. 6 “Moreover the LORD your God will circumcise your heart (See Excursus on Circumcision of the Heart - Ro 2:28-29-note, Col 2:11-note) and the heart of your descendants, to love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, in order that you may live.

Ezekiel 16:63 so that you may remember and be ashamed and never open your mouth anymore because of your humiliation, when I have forgiven you for all that you have done," the Lord GOD declares.   (NASB: Lockman)

Remember (KJV): Eze 16:61 36:31,32 Ezr 9:6 Da 9:7,8
And never
(KJV): Job 40:4,5 Ps 39:9 La 3:39 Ro 2:1 3:19,27 9:19,20
(KJV): Ro 5:1,2 1Co 4:7 Eph 2:3-5 Titus 3:3-7

NET -  Then you will remember, be ashamed, and remain silent when I make atonement for all you have done, declares the sovereign LORD.'"

Be ashamed (0954)(bosh) means to “to become pale” “to blush.” When failure or sin occurs, there is a disconcerting feeling, a flushing of the face. The word often occurs in contexts of humiliation and shattered human emotions. It is the feeling of public disgrace. The confusion, embarrassment, or dismay when things do not turn out as expected. Conveys the idea of shame of an utter defeat pervades the mood. Disillusionment and a broken spirit follow (Ezra 9:6; Isa 1:29; 30:5; Jer 2:36; 9:19).

The Lxx translates bosh here with aischune which  means disgrace (loss of reputation as the result of a dishonorable action) or ignominy (a deep personal humiliation). Aischune describes shame resulting from exposure of one’s weaknesses or sins. It is not a feeling one has but an experience which comes to someone.

Bosh - 113v - Gen 2:25; Ex 32:1; Jdg 3:25; 2 Sam 19:5; 2 Kgs 2:17; 8:11; 19:26; Ezra 8:22; 9:6; Job 6:20; 19:3; Ps 6:10; 14:6; 22:5; 25:2f, 20; 31:1, 17; 35:4, 26; 37:19; 40:14; 44:7; 53:5; 69:6; 70:2; 71:1, 13, 24; 83:17; 86:17; 97:7; 109:28; 119:6, 31, 46, 78, 80, 116; 127:5; 129:5; Prov 10:5; 12:4; 14:35; 17:2; 19:26; 29:15; Isa 1:29; 19:9; 20:5; 23:4; 24:23; 26:11; 29:22; 30:5; 37:27; 41:11; 42:17; 44:9, 11; 45:16f, 24; 49:23; 50:7; 54:4; 65:13; 66:5; Jer 2:26, 36; 6:15; 8:9, 12; 9:19; 10:14; 12:13; 14:3f; 15:9; 17:13, 18; 20:11; 22:22; 31:19; 46:24; 48:1, 13, 20, 39; 49:23; 50:2, 12; 51:17, 47, 51; Ezek 16:52, 63; 32:30; 36:32; Hos 2:5; 4:19; 10:6; 13:15; Joel 1:11; 2:26f; Mic 3:7; 7:16; Zeph 3:11; Zech 9:5; 10:5; 13:4.

NAS translation = Usage: acted shamefully(1), acts shamefully(3), ashamed(60), ashamed at all(1), became anxious(1), become dry(1), been confounded(1), been put(8), been put to shame(8), been shamed(1), brings shame(1), covered with shame(1), delayed(1), disappointed(2), feel...shame(1), put me to shame(1), put them to shame(1), put to shame(32), shame(1), shamed(3), shameful(1), shames(1), utterly dejected(1), utterly put(1), utterly put to shame(1).

Humiliation (03639)(kelimmah from kalam = to be humiliated or ashamed especially public humiliation)  denotes the sense of disgrace or shame which attends public humiliation.  In thirty cases the root is used in parallel with bosh "to be ashamed" (q.v.). Any distinction between the meanings of the two roots is therefore small.  It can convey the meaning of embarrassment. The fact that the Arabic cognate means "to wound" suggests the idea of a "wounded" pride.

Kelimmah is used by David in the imprecatory prayers when he asked for his adversaries' to receive humiliation and dishonor (Psalm 35:26, 71:13, 109:29, cp Jeremiah 20:11) Kelimmah described Judah's disgrace when profane pagans enter the House of the Lord, from which He had departed because of their spiritual harlotry and idolatry (Jer 51:51). However the Ezekiel prophesied of a better day for Israel (The Messianic Age) when "they will not endure the insults (Lxx = oneidismos = reproach brought upon one's self) of the nations anymore." (Ezek 34:29, cp Ezek 36:6-7, 15).

To humiliate means to make (someone) feel ashamed and foolish by injuring their dignity and self-respect, especially publicly.

To dishonor is to bring shame or disgrace on. Synonyms: disgrace, shame, discredit, bring into disrepute, humiliate, degrade, debase, lower, cheapen, drag down, drag through the mud, blacken the name of, give a bad name to; sully, stain, taint, besmirch, smear, mar, blot, stigmatize

says the root verb kalam "seems to refer to 1) wounding of the body (2) wounding of the spirit through public humiliation, and 3) wounding of the spirit because of defeat and captivity."


The Lxx translates kelimmah in this verse with the noun atimia which describes  a state of dishonor or disrespect. Atimia is used of the unseemliness and offensiveness of a dead body.


Kelimmah - NAS Usage: disgrace(8), dishonor(6), humiliation(7), insults(5), reproach(1), reproaches(1), shame(2).


Kelimmah (note frequency in Ezekiel) - 29v -


Job 20:3 "I listened to the reproof which insults me, And the spirit of my understanding makes me answer.

Psalm 4:2 O sons of men, how long will my honor become a reproach? How long will you love what is worthless and aim at deception? Selah.

Psalm 35:26 Let those be ashamed and humiliated altogether who rejoice at my distress; Let those be clothed with shame and dishonor (Lxx = entrope = literally a turning towards and figuratively a state of being ashamed as caused by a sense of failure) who magnify themselves over me.

Psalm 44:15 All day long my dishonor (Lxx = entrope = literally a turning towards and figuratively a state of being ashamed as caused by a sense of failure) is before me And my humiliation has overwhelmed me,

Psalm 69:7 Because for Your sake I have borne reproach; Dishonor (Lxx =
oneidismos = reproach brought upon one's self) has covered my face.

19 You know my reproach and my shame and my dishonor; All my adversaries are before You.

Psalm 71:13 Let those who are adversaries of my soul be ashamed and consumed; Let them be covered with reproach and dishonor (Lxx = entrope = literally a turning towards and figuratively a state of being ashamed as caused by a sense of failure), who seek to injure me.

Psalm 109:29 Let my accusers be clothed with dishonor (Lxx = entrope = literally a turning towards and figuratively a state of being ashamed as caused by a sense of failure), And let them cover themselves with their own shame as with a robe.

Proverbs 18:13 He who gives an answer before he hears, It is folly and shame (Lxx = oneidos = "loss of standing connected with disparaging speech" - BDAG) to him.

Isaiah 30:3 "Therefore the safety of Pharaoh will be your shame And the shelter in the shadow of Egypt, your humiliation (Lxx = oneidos = "loss of standing connected with disparaging speech" - BDAG).

Isaiah 45:16 They will be put to shame and even humiliated, all of them; The manufacturers of idols will go away together in humiliation.

Isaiah 50:6 I gave My back to those who strike Me, And My cheeks to those who pluck out the beard; I did not cover My face from humiliation and spitting. (Messianic Prophecy)

Isaiah 61:7 Instead of your shame you will have a double portion, And instead of humiliation they will shout for joy over their portion. Therefore they will possess a double portion in their land, Everlasting joy will be theirs.

Jeremiah 3:25 "Let us lie down in our shame, and let our humiliation cover us; for we have sinned against the LORD our God, we and our fathers, from our youth even to this day. And we have not obeyed the voice of the LORD our God."

Jeremiah 20:11 But the LORD is with me like a dread champion; Therefore my persecutors will stumble and not prevail. They will be utterly ashamed, because they have failed, With an everlasting disgrace that will not be forgotten.

Jeremiah 51:51 We are ashamed because we have heard reproach; Disgrace has covered our faces, For aliens have entered The holy places of the LORD'S house.

Ezekiel 16:52 "Also bear your disgrace in that you have made judgment favorable for your sisters. Because of your sins in which you acted more abominably than they, they are more in the right than you. Yes, be also ashamed and bear your disgrace, in that you made your sisters appear righteous.
54 in order that you may bear your humiliation and feel ashamed for all that you have done when you become a consolation to them.
63 so that you may remember and be ashamed and never open your mouth anymore because of your humiliation, when I have forgiven you for all that you have done," the Lord GOD declares.

Ezekiel 32:24  "Elam is there and all her hordes around her grave; all of them slain, fallen by the sword, who went down uncircumcised to the lower parts of the earth, who instilled their terror in the land of the living and bore their disgrace with those who went down to the pit.
25 "They have made a bed for her among the slain with all her hordes. Her graves are around it, they are all uncircumcised, slain by the sword (although their terror was instilled in the land of the living), and they bore their disgrace with those who go down to the pit; they were put in the midst of the slain.
30  "There also are the chiefs of the north, all of them, and all the Sidonians, who in spite of the terror resulting from their might, in shame went down with the slain. So they lay down uncircumcised with those slain by the sword and bore their disgrace with those who go down to the pit.

Ezekiel 34:29 "I will establish for them a renowned planting place, and they will not again be victims of famine in the land, and they will not endure the insults (Lxx =
oneidismos = reproach brought upon one's self) of the nations anymore.

Ezekiel 36:6 'Therefore prophesy concerning the land of Israel and say to the mountains and to the hills, to the ravines and to the valleys, "Thus says the Lord GOD, 'Behold, I have spoken in My jealousy and in My wrath because you have endured the insults of the nations.'
7 "Therefore thus says the Lord GOD, 'I have sworn that surely the nations which are around you will themselves endure their insults. (Lxx =
atimia = dishonor, shame)
15 "I will not let you hear insults (Lxx =
atimia = dishonor, shame) from the nations anymore, nor will you bear disgrace from the peoples any longer, nor will you cause your nation to stumble any longer," declares the Lord GOD.'"

Ezekiel 39:26 "They will forget their disgrace  (Lxx =
atimia = dishonor, shame) and all their treachery which they perpetrated against Me, when they live securely on their own land with no one to make them afraid.

Ezekiel 44:13 "And they shall not come near to Me to serve as a priest to Me, nor come near to any of My holy things, to the things that are most holy; but they (those Levites who "went astray from Me after their idols" Ezek 44:13) will bear their shame (Lxx =
atimia = dishonor, shame) and their abominations which they have committed.

Micah 2:6 'Do not speak out,' so they speak out. But if they do not speak out concerning these things, Reproaches (Lxx = oneidos = "loss of standing connected with disparaging speech" - BDAG) will not be turned back.

When I have forgiven you - MacArthur writes that "This looks to the cross of Christ (cf. Is 53:1-12), by which God’s just wrath on sin was satisfied so that He could grant grace to all who believe (cf. 2Co 5:21)."

Forgiven (03722)(kapar)   means to make atonement, to make reconciliation (to reconcile), to purge, to make propitiation (to propitiate), to pacify, to cancel. There are two main ideas regarding the meaning of kapar - (1) Kapar means to cover over sin (2) A number of resources however favor the idea that kapar means to wipe away. (See discussion)

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Last Updated February 21, 2015