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Ezekiel 17:3

Adam Clarke
Bible Commentary

A great eagle - Nebuchadnezzar. See Jeremiah 48:40; Jeremiah 49:22; Daniel 7:4. And see here, Daniel 7:12, where it is so applied.

Great wings - Extensive empire.

Long-winged - Rapid in his conquests.

Full of feathers - Having multitudes of subjects.

Divers colors - People of various nations.

Came unto Lebanon - Came against Judea.

The highest branch - King Jehoiachin he took captive to Babylon.

The cedar - The Jewish state and king.

Albert Barnes
Notes on the Whole Bible

A great eagle … - Probably the golden eagle, whose plumage has the variety of color here depicted. The eagle (the king of birds) is a natural representative of monarchs (compare, Jeremiah 48:40), and was an Assyrian emblem.

With great wings, Iongwinged - literally, “great of wing, long of pinion,” because he has swept victoriously over widely distant lands - of divers colors, because his subjects are of various races and tongues. Jerusalem is here called “Lebanon” because Lebanon is the proper home of the cedar. The “highest branch” or “topshoot” is Jeconiah, the rightful king of Jerusalem, the “young twigs” are his children and the princes carried by Nebuchadnezzar to Babylon.

Matthew Henry
Concise Bible Commentary
Mighty conquerors are aptly likened to birds or beasts of prey, but their destructive passions are overruled to forward God's designs. Those who depart from God, only vary their crimes by changing one carnal confidence for another, and never will prosper.
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