Many people in the pit (Ezek 32:27-32:28)

“They do not lie

With the fallen warriors

Of long ago,

Who went down

To Sheol

With their weapons

Of war.

Their swords

Were laid

Under their heads.

Their shields

Are upon their bones.

The terror

Of the warriors

Was in the land

Of the living.

So,

You shall be broken.

You shall lie

Among the uncircumcised.

You shall lie

With those

Who were killed

By the sword.”

Although the fallen warriors of long ago also went down to Sheol, they, however, brought their weapons of war with them. Their swords were laid under their heads. Their shields were placed on their bones. Despite this honor in the shadowy underworld afterlife of Sheol, these good warriors had also brought terror in the land of the living. As for the Egyptians and their allies, they would be broken. They would lie in the bad section with the uncircumcised and those who were killed by the sword.

Lie with the uncircumcised in Sheol (Ezek 32:19-32:21)

“‘Whom do you surpass

In beauty?

Go down!

Be laid to rest

With the uncircumcised!’

They shall fall

Among those

Who are killed

By the sword.

Egypt has been

Handed over

To the sword.

Carry away

Both it

With its hordes!

The mighty chiefs

Shall speak of them,

With their helpers,

Out of the midst of Sheol.

‘They have come down!

They lie still!

The uncircumcised,

Killed by the sword.’”

This section opens with a sarcastic question about who is more beautiful. The response is that they are to go down and lie with the uncircumcised people and those killed by the sword. Egypt with the multitude of their inhabitants has been handed over to death. The mighty chiefs with their helpers will speak to them in the middle of Sheol, the shadowy underworld of the afterlife. They will say that the Egyptians have come down to lie quietly with the uncircumcised and those killed by the sword, which is the worst place in Sheol.

The greetings in Sheol (Isa 14:9-14:11)

“Sheol beneath is stirred up.            

They want to meet you

When you come.

They rouse the shades

To greet you.

All who were leaders of the earth

Greet you.

All who were kings of the nations

Rise from their thrones.

All of them will speak.

They will say to you.

‘You too have become

As weak as we!

You have become

Like us!’

Your pomp

Is brought down to Sheol.

The sound of your harps

Is brought down to Sheol.

Maggots are the bed beneath you.

Worms are your covering.”

This haughty king now descends after his death into the shadowy underworld of Sheol. Everyone there wanted to meet this king. All the former leaders and kings of the world were there to greet this newly deceased Babylonian king. They got up from their thrones and greeted him. Then they reminded him that he had become like them, weak. All his self important pomps were gone in Sheol. There was no harp playing in Sheol. In fact, he would sleep on a bed of maggots with worms as his covering, not a pretty picture.

Death and the fool (Prov 27:20-27:22)

“Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied.

Human eyes are never satisfied.

The crucible is for silver.

The furnace is for gold.

A person is tested by being praised.

Crush a fool in a mortar with a pestle.

Crush him along with crushed grain.

But his folly will not be driven out.”

First we have the insatiable appetite of death, Sheol and Abaddon, the shadowy underworld where people go after they die. This is compared to human eyes that are never satisfied, always looking for new things. Both silver and gold have to go through a crucible furnace. But instead as in chapter 17, here it is praise and not Yahweh that tests the humans. You can try to get the folly out of a fool by putting him in mortar or crushed grain. A pestle is some kind of grinding machine. However, it will be to no avail. You cannot drive the foolishness out of a fool.