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Ezekiel Forty Seven

by Dr. Henry M. Morris

(taken from the Defender's Study Bible)

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Ezekiel 47:1 Afterward he brought me again unto the door of the house; and, behold, waters issued out from under the threshold of the house eastward: for the forefront of the house stood toward the east, and the waters came down from under from the right side of the house, at the south side of the altar.

waters issued out. This unique temple fountain (see also Joel 3:18) is a precursor of the great “river of water of life, ... proceeding out of the throne of God and the Lamb” (Revelation 22:1) in the New Jerusalem.

Ezekiel 47:2 Then brought he me out of the way of the gate northward, and led me about the way without unto the utter gate by the way that looketh eastward; and, behold, there ran out waters on the right side.

Ezekiel 47:3 And when the man that had the line in his hand went forth eastward, he measured a thousand cubits, and he brought me through the waters; the waters were to the ankles.

Ezekiel 47:4 Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through the waters; the waters were to the knees. Again he measured a thousand, and brought me through; the waters were to the loins.

Ezekiel 47:5 Afterward he measured a thousand; and it was a river that I could not pass over: for the waters were risen, waters to swim in, a river that could not be passed over.

river. A great river will emerge from the millennial temple, just as the river from Eden in the primeval world (Genesis 2:10-14). During the geophysical upheavals in the seven-year tribulation period, the antediluvian hydrologic cycle, based largely on subterranean reservoirs, will evidently be reestablished, at least in part.

Ezekiel 47:6 And he said unto me, Son of man, hast thou seen this? Then he brought me, and caused me to return to the brink of the river.

Ezekiel 47:7 Now when I had returned, behold, at the bank of the river were very many trees on the one side and on the other.

Ezekiel 47:8 Then said he unto me, These waters issue out toward the east country, and go down into the desert, and go into the sea: which being brought forth into the sea, the waters shall be healed.

go into the sea. This sea is what we now know as the Dead Sea. The great earthquake at the end of the tribulation period (Revelation 16:18-20; Zechariah 14:4, 8) will release the waters from beneath Jerusalem, dividing into two rivers. The one flowing east will flow so abundantly that the saline waters of the Dead Sea will become fresh, and will support an abundance of fish in its waters and lush growths of trees along its banks (Ezekiel 47:9-12).

Ezekiel 47:9 And it shall come to pass, that every thing that liveth, which moveth, whithersoever the rivers shall come, shall live: and there shall be a very great multitude of fish, because these waters shall come thither: for they shall be healed; and every thing shall live whither the river cometh.

multitude of fish. All of the fish in the ocean will have died in the great tribulation period (Revelation 16:3). Perhaps God will create new fish life for the millennial period, or else (more likely) some of each kind of the freshwater fish will survive to repopulate the rivers, and possibly the seas (Ezekiel 47:10) with fish.

Ezekiel 47:10 And it shall come to pass, that the fishers shall stand upon it from Engedi even unto Eneglaim; they shall be a place to spread forth nets; their fish shall be according to their kinds, as the fish of the great sea, exceeding many.

Ezekiel 47:11 But the miry places thereof and the marishes thereof shall not be healed; they shall be given to salt.

Ezekiel 47:12 And by the river upon the bank thereof, on this side and on that side, shall grow all trees for meat, whose leaf shall not fade, neither shall the fruit thereof be consumed: it shall bring forth new fruit according to his months, because their waters they issued out of the sanctuary: and the fruit thereof shall be for meat, and the leaf thereof for medicine.

new fruit according to his months. This mighty river, growing in size as it flows (probably supplied by many springs or other tributaries along its route, also supplies the nourishment for an amazing stand of trees along its banks. These bear fruit all year long and even their leaves are valuable sources of medicinal substances. Both the river and the trees foreshadow the “pure river of water of life” and the “tree of life” that will flow and grow eternally on the new earth (Revelation 22:1, 2). These great changes in topography, geology, hydrology, and agriculture for life in the millennium may well involve both creative and providential miracles (note Appendix 9).

Ezekiel 47:13 Thus saith the Lord GOD; This shall be the border, whereby ye shall inherit the land according to the twelve tribes of Israel: Joseph shall have two portions.

Ezekiel 47:14 And ye shall inherit it, one as well as another: concerning the which I lifted up mine hand to give it unto your fathers: and this land shall fall unto you for inheritance.

Ezekiel 47:15 And this shall be the border of the land toward the north side, from the great sea, the way of Hethlon, as men go to Zedad;

Ezekiel 47:16 Hamath, Berothah, Sibraim, which is between the border of Damascus and the border of Hamath; Hazarhatticon, which is by the coast of Hauran.

Ezekiel 47:17 And the border from the sea shall be Hazarenan, the border of Damascus, and the north northward, and the border of Hamath. And this is the north side.

Ezekiel 47:18 And the east side ye shall measure from Hauran, and from Damascus, and from Gilead, and from the land of Israel by Jordan, from the border unto the east sea. And this is the east side.

unto the east sea. The border of Israel on the east will be the Jordan River and the Dead Sea. This evidently refers to the lands specifically allotted to living areas for the twelve tribes. According to the Abrahamic covenant, however (Genesis 15:18), Israel's control extends to the Euphrates.

Ezekiel 47:19 And the south side southward, from Tamar even to the waters of strife in Kadesh, the river to the great sea. And this is the south side southward.

Ezekiel 47:20 The west side also shall be the great sea from the border, till a man come over against Hamath. This is the west side.

Ezekiel 47:21 So shall ye divide this land unto you according to the tribes of Israel.

Ezekiel 47:22 And it shall come to pass, that ye shall divide it by lot for an inheritance unto you, and to the strangers that sojourn among you, which shall beget children among you: and they shall be unto you as born in the country among the children of Israel; they shall have inheritance with you among the tribes of Israel.

Ezekiel 47:23 And it shall come to pass, that in what tribe the stranger sojourneth, there shall ye give him his inheritance, saith the Lord GOD.