Daniel was anxious (Dan 7:15-7:15)

“As for me,

Daniel,

My spirit

Was troubled

Within me.

The visions

Of my head

Terrified me.”

Thus, Daniel, the great interpreter of dreams, was terrified and troubled by his own dreams. Could he make any sense of these visions or dreams in his head?

The vision of the glory of God (Ezek 8:2-8:4)

“I looked.

There was a figure

That looked

Like a human being.

Below what appeared

To be his loins

It was fire.

Above his loins

It was like

The appearance of brightness,

Like gleaming amber.

He stretched out

The form of a hand.

He took me

By a lock

Of my head.

The Spirit lifted me up

Between earth and heaven.

He brought me,

In visions of God,

To Jerusalem,

To the entrance

Of the gateway

Of the inner court

That faces north.

I went to the seat

Of the image of jealousy

That provokes jealousy.

The glory

Of the God

Of Israel

Was there,

Like the vision

That I had seen

In the valley.”

Ezekiel continued in the first person singular as he explained his vision. The description of the human figure and the fire is like that of chapter 1 of this book. There was a fire below his loins, with bright amber above his loins. Once again this Holy Spirit stretched out his hand. He lifted Ezekiel up by the hair on his head and brought him to Jerusalem in a vision. Ezekiel was at the entrance to the gateway of the inner court that faced north. He was put on the seat of jealousy. There the glory of the God of Israel appeared just as he had appeared in chapter 1 in the valley by the River Chebar.

The lost hunted one (Lam 3:52-3:54)

Cade

“My enemies,

Without cause,

Have hunted me

Like a bird.

They flung me

Alive

Into a pit.

They hurled stones

On me.

Water closed

Over my head.

I said.

‘I am lost.’”

This personal story continues. The author’s enemies have hunted him down like a bird, even though there was no reason to do so. They have flung him alive into a pit and threw stones over him. Then water closed over his head in this pit. He finally said that he was lost with no way out. This is reminiscent of Jeremiah in the cistern well under King Zedekiah in Jeremiah, chapter 38. These three verses start with the Hebrew consonant letter Cade in this acrostic poem.

Yahweh clothes himself with righteousness (Isa 59:15-59:17)

“Yahweh saw this.

It displeased him

That there was no justice.

He saw that there was no one.

He was appalled

That there was no one to intervene.

Thus his own arm brought him victory.

His righteousness upheld him.

He put on righteousness

Like a breastplate.

He put on a helmet of salvation

Upon his head.

He put on garments of vengeance

For clothing.

He wrapped himself in fury

As a mantle.”

Yahweh saw all this evil. He was displeased since there was no justice. He was appalled that no one had intervened in that situation. Thus he was going to bring victory with his mighty arm. Righteousness would be his breastplate out front. He would wear the helmet of salvation on his head. His garments would be for vengeance. His fury would be in his mantle coat. Yahweh, according to Third Isaiah, was dressed like a warrior ready for battle wearing the proper upright clothes.

The actions of the enemy (Sir 12:16-12:18)

“An enemy speaks sweetly

With his lips.

But in his heart,

He plans to throw you

Into a pit.

An enemy may weep

With tears in his eyes.

But if he finds an opportunity,

He will never have enough of your blood.

If evil comes upon you,

You will find him there ahead of you.

He will pretend to help.

But he will trip you up.

He will shake his head.

He will clap his hands.

He will whisper much.

He will show his true face.”

Beware of the enemy who speaks sweetly, but is actually planning to throw you into a pit. He may weep in front of you, but he is looking for an opportunity to kill you. If something evil happens to you, he will pretend to help. However, he is actually trying to trip you up. He will shake his head, clap his hands, and whisper much until he shows his true face.

The plague on the righteous (Wis 18:20-18:25)

“The experience of death

Touched also the righteous.

A plague came upon the multitude

In the desert.

But the wrath did not long continue.

A blameless man was quick

To act as their champion.

He brought forward the shield of his ministry.

He brought forth prayer.

He brought forward propitiation by incense.

He withstood the anger.

He put an end to the disaster.

He showed that he was your servant.

He conquered the wrath

Not by strength of body,

Not by force of arms,

But by his word

He subdued the avenger.

He appealed to the oaths given to our ancestors.

He appealed to the covenants given to our ancestors.

When the dead had already fallen on one another in heaps,

He intervened.

He held back the wrath.

He cut off its way to the living.

On his long robe

The whole world was depicted.

The glories of the ancestors

Were engraved on the four rows of stones.

Your majesty was on the diadem upon his head.

The destroyer yielded to these.

The destroyer feared these.

Merely to test the wrath was enough.”

This section takes part of the Exodus story in chapters 32 and the Numbers presentation in chapter 17 and combines them into one episode. In other words, the righteous (δικαίων) were not free from the wrath of God. A plague came upon them in the desert (ἐν ἐρήμῳ) that nearly killed 15,000 of them because the Israelites had rebelled against Moses and Aaron. However, Moses instructed Aaron to make reparation by prayer (προσευχὴν) and incense. The blameless man was Aaron, and not Moses, but there is no indication of his explicit name here since in the Exodus story Aaron had rebelled also. This blameless man subdued the avenger by his prayerful sacrificial actions. He remembered the oaths and covenants that his ancestors had made. The use of the robe is definitely the Levitical robe of Aaron from Exodus, chapter 28. His lovely robe had 4 rows of stones. He also had a diadem on his head (διαδήματος κεφαλῆς αὐτοῦ). Obviously, this is from the time of the settled Israelites, but it was enough to scare off this destroyer. The Israelites learned from this episode.

Destruction for the wicked (Ps 141:5-141:7)

“Let the righteous strike me!

Let the faithful correct me!

Never let the oil of the wicked anoint my head!

My prayer is continually against their wicked deeds.

When they are given over to those who shall condemn them,

Then they shall learn that my words were pleasant.

Like a rock that one breaks apart,

Like a rock that shatters on the land,

So shall their bones be strewn

At the mouth of Sheol.”

David said that the righteous and faithful ones should strike and correct him. However, he would never let the wicked ones anoint his head with oil or praise him in any way. In fact, he prayed continually to avoid wicked deeds. The results for the wicked were condemnation and unpleasant words. David wanted their bones to be like rocks breaking apart and being shattered all over the land so that they would end up at the mouth of the deadly underworld of Sheol.

David is sick (Ps 38:3-38:4)

“There is no soundness in my flesh

Because of your indignation.

There is no health in my bones

Because of my sin.

My iniquities have gone over my head.

They weigh like a burden too heavy for me.”

David or the psalmist was sick. There was no health in his flesh or body. There was no health in his bones. He was sick to the bone. The reason for this was the indignation of Yahweh because David had sinned. He admitted his own sinfulness as his iniquities had gone over his head. They were a heavy burden on him that he could not bear.

David was in mourning (Ps 35:11-35:14)

“Malicious witnesses rise up.

They ask me about things

That I do not know.

They repay me evil for good.

My soul is forlorn.

But as for me,

When they were sick

I wore sackcloth.

I afflicted myself with fasting.

I prayed with head bowed on my bosom.

I grieved as like for a friend or a brother.

I went about

As one who laments a mother.

I was bowed down.

I was in mourning.”

This seems to be something more family orientated. There were malicious witnesses against David who turned his good deeds into evil. He was forlorn and wore sackcloth in mourning for their illness. He fasted and bowed his head in prayer. He grieved as if it was his friend, his brother, or his mother. Somehow someone did not appreciate all his care and mourning.

Yahweh blesses David (Ps 21:3-21:7)

“You meet him with rich blessings.

You set a crown of fine gold on his head.

He asked you for life.

You gave it to him.

You gave him length of days forever and ever.

His glory is great through your help.

You bestow on him splendor and majesty.

You bestow on him blessings forever.

You make him glad with the joy of your presence.

The king trusts in Yahweh.

Through the steadfast love of the Most High

He shall not be moved.”

David was blessed by Yahweh so that this seems like a psalm about David rather than from him. Yahweh gave him rich blessings, a crown of fine gold for his head, as well as a long life. He helped David by bestowing on him splendor and majesty with eternal blessings. Yahweh made David glad in his presence because the king trusted Yahweh. The steadfast love of the most high one will not be moved.