Son of man - This appellative, so often mentioned in this book, seems to have been given first to this prophet; afterwards to Daniel; and after that to the Man Christ Jesus. Perhaps it was given to the two former to remind them of their frailty, and that they should not be exalted in their own minds by the extraordinary revelations granted to them; and that they should feel themselves of the same nature with those to whom they were sent; and, from the common principle of humanity, deeply interest themselves in the welfare of their unhappy countrymen. To the latter it might have been appropriated merely to show that though all his actions demonstrated him to be God, yet that he was also really Man; and that in the man Christ Jesus dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily. When the acts of Christ are considered, it is more easy to believe his eternal Godhead, than to be convinced that the person we hear speaking, and see working, is also a man like unto ourselves.
I send thee to the children of Israel - To those who were now in captivity, in Chaldea particularly; and to the Jews in general, both far and near.
Nation - literally, as in the margin - the word which usually distinguishes the pagan from God‘s people. Here it expresses that Israel is cast off by God; and the plural is used to denote that the children of Israel are not even “one nation,” but scattered and disunited.
Translate: “I send thee to the children of Israel, the rebellious nation that have rebelled against Me (they and their fathers have transgressed against Me, even to this very day), and the children impudent and stiff-hearted: I do send thee unto them.”
What though earthly powers should be arrayed against Judah? What though Isaiah should meet with opposition and resistance in his mission? He had seen the King, the Lord of hosts; he had heard the song of the seraphim, “The whole earth is full of His glory;” and the prophet was nerved for the work before him. The memory of this vision was carried with him throughout his long and arduous mission. 5T 751.1
Ezekiel, the mourning exile prophet, in the land of the Chaldeans, was given a vision teaching the same lesson of faith in the mighty God of Israel. As he was upon the banks of the river Chebar, a whirlwind seemed to come from the north, “a great cloud, and a fire infolding itself, and a brightness was about it, and out of the midst thereof as the color of amber.” A number of wheels of strange appearance, intersecting one another, were moved by four living creatures. High above all these was “the likeness of a throne, as the appearance of a sapphire stone: and upon the likeness of the throne was the likeness as the appearance of a man above upon it.” “As for the likeness of the living creatures, their appearance was like burning coals of fire, and like the appearance of lamps: it went up and down among the living creatures; and the fire was bright, and out of the fire went forth lightning.” “And there appeared in the cherubims the form of a man's hand under their wings.” 5T 751.2
There were wheels within wheels in an arrangement so complicated that at first sight they appeared to Ezekiel to be all in confusion. But when they moved, it was with beautiful exactness and in perfect harmony. Heavenly beings were impelling these wheels, and, above all, upon the glorious sapphire throne, was the Eternal One; while round about the throne was the encircling rainbow, emblem of grace and love. Overpowered by the terrible glory of the scene, Ezekiel fell upon his face, when a voice bade him arise and hear the word of the Lord. Then there was given him a message of warning for Israel. 5T 751.3Read in context »
The people of every country have their own peculiar, distinctive characteristics, and it is necessary that men should be wise in order that they may know how to adapt themselves to the peculiar ideas of the people, and so introduce the truth that they may do them good. They must be able to understand and meet their wants. Circumstances will arise which demand immediate action, and it will be necessary that those who are right on the field should take hold of the interest, and do the thing that is necessary to be done under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Should they wait in a time of crisis for direction to come from Battle Creek as to what they should do, they might lose much. The men who are handling the work should be faithful stewards of the grace of God. They should be men of faith, and they should be encouraged to look to God, and to trust in Him. TM 213.1
Let God's workmen study the sixth chapter of Isaiah, and the first and second chapters of Ezekiel. TM 213.2Read in context »