King James Bible
with Catholic Commentary by George Leo Haydock

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Ezekiel 48

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1 Now these are the names of the tribes. From the north end to the coast of the way of Hethlon, as one goeth to Hamath, Hazarenan, the border of Damascus northward, to the coast of Hamath; for these are his sides east and west; a portion for Dan.

2 And by the border of Dan, from the east side unto the west side, a portion for Asher.

3 And by the border of Asher, from the east side even unto the west side, a portion for Naphtali.

4 And by the border of Naphtali, from the east side unto the west side, a portion for Manasseh.

5 And by the border of Manasseh, from the east side unto the west side, a portion for Ephraim.

6 And by the border of Ephraim, from the east side even unto the west side, a portion for Reuben.

7 And by the border of Reuben, from the east side unto the west side, a portion for Judah.

8 And by the border of Judah, from the east side unto the west side, shall be the offering which ye shall offer of five and twenty thousand reeds in breadth, and in length as one of the other parts, from the east side unto the west side: and the sanctuary shall be in the midst of it.

9 The oblation that ye shall offer unto the LORD shall be of five and twenty thousand in length, and of ten thousand in breadth.

10 And for them, even for the priests, shall be this holy oblation; toward the north five and twenty thousand in length, and toward the west ten thousand in breadth, and toward the east ten thousand in breadth, and toward the south five and twenty thousand in length: and the sanctuary of the LORD shall be in the midst thereof.

11 It shall be for the priests that are sanctified of the sons of Zadok; which have kept my charge, which went not astray when the children of Israel went astray, as the Levites went astray.

12 And this oblation of the land that is offered shall be unto them a thing most holy by the border of the Levites.

13 And over against the border of the priests the Levites shall have five and twenty thousand in length, and ten thousand in breadth: all the length shall be five and twenty thousand, and the breadth ten thousand.

14 And they shall not sell of it, neither exchange, nor alienate the firstfruits of the land: for it is holy unto the LORD.

15 And the five thousand, that are left in the breadth over against the five and twenty thousand, shall be a profane place for the city, for dwelling, and for suburbs: and the city shall be in the midst thereof.

16 And these shall be the measures thereof; the north side four thousand and five hundred, and the south side four thousand and five hundred, and on the east side four thousand and five hundred, and the west side four thousand and five hundred.

17 And the suburbs of the city shall be toward the north two hundred and fifty, and toward the south two hundred and fifty, and toward the east two hundred and fifty, and toward the west two hundred and fifty.

18 And the residue in length over against the oblation of the holy portion shall be ten thousand eastward, and ten thousand westward: and it shall be over against the oblation of the holy portion; and the increase thereof shall be for food unto them that serve the city.

19 And they that serve the city shall serve it out of all the tribes of Israel.

20 All the oblation shall be five and twenty thousand by five and twenty thousand: ye shall offer the holy oblation foursquare, with the possession of the city.

21 And the residue shall be for the prince, on the one side and on the other of the holy oblation, and of the possession of the city, over against the five and twenty thousand of the oblation toward the east border, and westward over against the five and twenty thousand toward the west border, over against the portions for the prince: and it shall be the holy oblation; and the sanctuary of the house shall be in the midst thereof.

22 Moreover from the possession of the Levites, and from the possession of the city, being in the midst of that which is the prince’s, between the border of Judah and the border of Benjamin, shall be for the prince.

23 As for the rest of the tribes, from the east side unto the west side, Benjamin shall have a portion.

24 And by the border of Benjamin, from the east side unto the west side, Simeon shall have a portion.

25 And by the border of Simeon, from the east side unto the west side, Issachar a portion.

26 And by the border of Issachar, from the east side unto the west side, Zebulun a portion.

27 And by the border of Zebulun, from the east side unto the west side, Gad a portion.

28 And by the border of Gad, at the south side southward, the border shall be even from Tamar unto the waters of strife in Kadesh, and to the river toward the great sea.

29 This is the land which ye shall divide by lot unto the tribes of Israel for inheritance, and these are their portions, saith the Lord GOD.

30 And these are the goings out of the city on the north side, four thousand and five hundred measures.

31 And the gates of the city shall be after the names of the tribes of Israel: three gates northward; one gate of Reuben, one gate of Judah, one gate of Levi.

32 And at the east side four thousand and five hundred: and three gates; and one gate of Joseph, one gate of Benjamin, one gate of Dan.

33 And at the south side four thousand and five hundred measures: and three gates; one gate of Simeon, one gate of Issachar, one gate of Zebulun.

34 At the west side four thousand and five hundred, with their three gates; one gate of Gad, one gate of Asher, one gate of Naphtali.

35 It was round about eighteen thousand measures: and the name of the city from that day shall be, The LORD is there.

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G Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Ver. 1. Dan. This division is very different from that of Josue, and was never literally executed, being rather of a mystical nature. The limits are not marked out, as each lot was equal. C. See C. xlv. 1. and xlvii. 14. H. — By the twelve tribes all the glorified saints are meant. No cities of refuge occur, because in heaven all are perfect, all secure. S. Jer. W.

Ver. 8. Apart, for the Levitical tribe and the prince. C. — As the first-born and things which spring first, so also the land consecrated to the Lord is called first-fruits. W. — Thousand cubits (C. xlv. 1.) or 12,500 paces, (H.) allowing two cubits for each. This would not reach to the Jordan River. But thrice that space must be reckoned, the king having two of them (C.) on each side of the temple, namely, towards the sea, and on the other side of the Jordan. H.

Ver. 11. Astray, &c. By this we see, that in the worst of times God always preserves some of the priests from going astray; an that the synagogue never fell so universally into idolatry, but that a remnant was still left free from this corruption. Ch.

Ver. 13. Ten. Their city was only 18,000 cubits in circumference. v. 16.

Ver. 15. Profane, where servants of the priests may reside. C. — On the north and south, (H.) 1000 cubits broad and 25,000 long were left for fields, gardens, &c. C.

Ver. 16. Five. Heb. has, “five five hundred:” but one five is properly omitted in several MSS. and in all the ancient versions. Kennicott. — Four thousand five hundred cubits was the length and breadth of the town and temple, which were 18,000 cubits round, (C.) or so many reeds, which would make 36 miles of 1000 paces each. As the earthly Jerusalem was certainly never so large, the modern rabbins assert that the Messias will build it to that extent; but Catholic doctors understand it mystically of the Church. Thus S. John saw the New Jerusalem or Church triumphant. Apoc. xxi. and xxii. W.

Ver. 17. Suburbs, separating the Levites from laics, different from what is mentioned v. 15.

Ver. 18. As the, &c. They shall not be alienated, as some might infer from its being said to be profane, which term is used because it was the habitation of laymen.

Ver. 19. Israel. People from all parts might serve the Levites. This tribe was not to engage in labourious or sordid employments, being attached to the service of the Lord, and bound to instruct others. But this was more perfectly fulfilled in the Christian Church, where the clergy enjoy great immunities, and are forbidden to exercise any trade or employment which may take them off from their more important spiritual concerns, or render their ministry contemptible. See Ex. xix. 6.

Ver. 20. City, where the Levites and their servants, artisans, &c. dwelt. C.

Ver. 21. Thereof. The domains of the prince touched the limits of Juda on the north, and of Benjamin on the south, as the portion of Levi did also. The prince occupied the east and west square of this division. H.

Ver. 28. Inheritance. Heb. nachal, signifies also “torrent;” and S. Jerom seems to prefer this meaning, as he explains it of the torrent which goes by Rhinocorura, and is commonly supposed to be the southern boundary. C.

Ver. 30. Out, or gates. H. — There were three on each of the four sides. C.

Ver. 35. The Lord is there. This name is here given to the city; that is, the Church of Christ; because the Lord is always with her till the end of the world. Mat. xxviii. 20. Ch. — He always adorns the Church triumphant; (Apoc. xxii.) but has deserted the synagogue. Mat. xxiii. 38. W. — Jerusalem certainly never bore this name, nor is it requisite that she should, if the prophecy had been literally understood. It would suffice, if she could justly claim such a prerogative. See Is. vii. 14. and 2 K. xii. 25. The Church of Christ possesses God for ever. C.