A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Ezekiel

A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Ezekiel

A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Ezekiel

A Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the Book of Ezekiel

Excerpt

It is many years ago since Dr. Briggs and Dr. Driver, now passed to their rest, invited me to undertake the commentary on Ezekiel in this series. The task has lasted longer than I expected, owing to the claims of other work; but I do not regret the delay, for it has enabled me to take into account the latest contributions to the study, and to mature my own judgement.

In recent years the study of Ezekiel has undergone something like a revolution. When Cornill's great edition appeared in 1886 the main problem was the textual one; now the problem is concerned with wider issues, those of the higher criticism, and there is every reason to welcome the advance. It is no longer possible to treat the Book as the product of a single mind and a single age. Our superficial impression of its unity must give way under a more searching analysis, and we are told to revise our whole conception of the prophet's personality and teaching. The student finds himself torn in opposite directions. On the one hand he is shewn a prophet reduced to insignificance, and completely dwarfed by the redactor; the so-called prophecies turn out to be vaticinia ex eventu, the redactor deals merely in conventional phrases and worn-out ideas; and this representation is based upon a logic which seems irrefutable, and upon an array of evidence from which there seems to be no escape. On the other hand, the student, while determined to go where the facts lead him, begins to doubt whether this representation does justice to all the facts; he asks himself whether a mechanical logic can be trusted as a guide through a region of mystery: the . . .

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