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Ezekiel 21:21 [study!]

American Standard Version (ASV 1901) [2]
— For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he shook the arrows to and fro, he consulted the teraphim, he looked in the liver.
King James Version (KJV 1769)
— For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he made [his] arrows bright, he consulted with images, he looked in the liver.
New American Standard Bible (NASB ©1995)
— “For the king of Babylon stands at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination; he shakes the arrows, he consults the household idols, he looks at the liver.
Webster's Revision of the KJB (WEB 1833)
— For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination; he made [his] arrows bright, he consulted with images, he looked in the liver.
Darby's Translation (DBY 1890)
— For the king of Babylon standeth at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he shaketh [his] arrows, he inquireth of the teraphim, he looketh in the liver.
Rotherham's Emphasized Bible (EBR 1902)
— For the king of Babylon, hath come to a stand, At the parting of the way, At the head of the two ways, To divine a divination: He hath shaken with arrows, He hath asked of the household gods, He hath inspected the liver.
Young's Literal Translation (YLT 1898)
— For stood hath the king of Babylon at the head of the way, At the top of the two ways, to use divination, He hath moved lightly with the arrows, He hath asked at the teraphim, He hath looked on the liver.
Douay-Rheims Challoner Revision (DR 1750)
— For the king of Babylon stood in the highway, at the head of two ways, seeking divination, shuffling arrows: he inquired of the idols, and consulted entrails.
Original King James Bible (AV 1611) [2]
— For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two wayes, to vse diuination: he made his arrowes bright, he consulted with images, he looked in the liuer.
Brenton Greek Septuagint (LXX, Restored Names)
— For the king of Babylon shall stand on the old way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination, to make bright the arrow, and to enquire of the graven images, and to examine [the victims].
Full Hebrew Names / Holy Name KJV (2008) [2] [3]
— For the king of Bavel stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he made [his] arrows bright, he consulted with images, he looked in the liver.

Strong's Numbers & Hebrew NamesHebrew Old TestamentColor-Code/Key Word Studies
For x3588
(3588) Complement
כִּי
kiy
{kee}
A primitive particle (the full form of the prepositional prefix) indicating causal relations of all kinds, antecedent or consequent; (by implication) very widely used as a relative conjugation or adverb; often largely modified by other particles annexed.
the king 4428
{4428} Prime
מֶּלֶךְ
melek
{meh'-lek}
From H4427; a king.
of Bävel בָּבֶל 894
{0894} Prime
בָּבֶל
Babel
{baw-bel'}
From H1101; confusion; Babel (that is, Babylon), including Babylonia and the Babylonian empire.
stood 5975
{5975} Prime
עָמַד
`amad
{aw-mad'}
A primitive root; to stand, in various relations (literally and figuratively, intransitively and transitively).
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
at x413
(0413) Complement
אֵל
'el
{ale}
(Used only in the shortened constructive form (the second form)); a primitive particle, properly denoting motion towards, but occasionally used of a quiescent position, that is, near, with or among; often in general, to.
the parting 517
{0517} Prime
אֵם
'em
{ame}
A primitive word; a mother (as the bond of the family); in a wide sense (both literally and figuratively); (like H0001).
of the way, 1870
{1870} Prime
דֶּרֶךְ
derek
{deh'-rek}
From H1869; a road (as trodden); figuratively a course of life or mode of action, often adverbially.
at the head 7218
{7218} Prime
רֹאשׁ
ro'sh
{roshe}
From an unused root apparently meaning to shake; the head (as most easily shaken), whether literally or figuratively (in many applications, of place, time, rank, etc.).
of the two 8147
{8147} Prime
שְׁתַּיִם
sh@nayim
{shen-ah'-yim}
(The first form being dual of H8145; the second form being feminine); two; also (as ordinal) twofold.
ways, 1870
{1870} Prime
דֶּרֶךְ
derek
{deh'-rek}
From H1869; a road (as trodden); figuratively a course of life or mode of action, often adverbially.
to use 7080
{7080} Prime
קָסַם
qacam
{kaw-sam'}
A primitive root; properly to distribute, that is, determine by lot or magical scroll; by implication to divine.
z8800
<8800> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Infinitive (See H8812)
Count - 4888
divination: 7081
{7081} Prime
קֶסֶם
qecem
{keh'-sem}
From H7080; a lot; also divination (including its fee), oracle.
he made [his] arrows y2671
[2671] Standard
חֵץ
chets
{khayts}
From H2686; properly a piercer, that is, an arrow; by implication a wound; figuratively (of God) thunder bolt; (by interchange for H6086) the shaft of a spear.
bright, 7043
{7043} Prime
קָלַל
qalal
{kaw-lal'}
A primitive root; to be (causatively make) light, literally (swift, small, sharp, etc.) or figuratively (easy, trifling, vile, etc.).
z8773
<8773> Grammar
Stem - Pilpel (See H8842)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 19
x2671
(2671) Complement
חֵץ
chets
{khayts}
From H2686; properly a piercer, that is, an arrow; by implication a wound; figuratively (of God) thunder bolt; (by interchange for H6086) the shaft of a spear.
he consulted 7592
{7592} Prime
שָׁאַל
sha'al
{shaw-al'}
A primitive root; to inquire; by implication to request; by extension to demand.
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
with images, 8655
{8655} Prime
תְּרָפִים
t@raphiym
{ter-aw-feme'}
Plural perhaps from H7495; a healer; Teraphim (singular or plural) a family idol.
he looked 7200
{7200} Prime
רָאָה
ra'ah
{raw-aw'}
A primitive root; to see, literally or figuratively (in numerous applications, direct and implied, transitively, intransitively and causatively).
z8804
<8804> Grammar
Stem - Qal (See H8851)
Mood - Perfect (See H8816)
Count - 12562
in the liver. 3516
{3516} Prime
כָּבֵד
kabed
{kaw-bade'}
The same as H3515; the liver (as the heaviest of the viscera).
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary

Ezekiel 21:21

_ _ parting — literally, “mother of the way.” As “head of the two ways” follows, which seems tautology after “parting of the way,” Havernick translates, according to Arabic idiom, “the highway,” or principal road. English Version is not tautology, “head of the two ways” defining more accurately “parting of the way.”

_ _ made ... bright — rather, “shook,” from an Arabic root.

_ _ arrows — Divination by arrows is here referred to: they were put into a quiver marked with the names of particular places to be attacked, and then shaken together; whichever came forth first intimated the one selected as the first to be attacked [Jerome]. The same usage existed among the Arabs, and is mentioned in the Koran. In the Nineveh sculptures the king is represented with a cup in his right hand, his left resting on a bow; also with two arrows in the right, and the bow in the left, probably practicing divination.

_ _ imagesHebrew, “teraphim”; household gods, worshipped as family talismans, to obtain direction as to the future and other blessings. First mentioned in Mesopotamia, whence Rachel brought them (Genesis 31:19, Genesis 31:34); put away by Jacob (Genesis 35:4); set up by Micah as his household gods (Judges 17:5); stigmatized as idolatry (1 Samuel 15:23, Hebrew; Zechariah 10:2, Margin).

_ _ liver — They judged of the success, or failure, of an undertaking by the healthy, or unhealthy, state of the liver and entrails of a sacrifice.

Matthew Henry's Commentary

See commentary on Ezekiel 21:18-27.

John Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Ezekiel 21:21

Stood — The prophet speaks of what shall be, as if it were already. To use — To consult with his gods, and to cast lots. Arrows — Writing on them the names of the cities, then putting them into a quiver, and thence drawing them out and concluding, according to the name which was drawn. He consulted — Perhaps by a divine permission, the devil gave them answers from those images. In the liver — They judged of future events, by the entrails, and more especially by the liver.

Geneva Bible Translation Notes

Ezekiel 21:21

For the king of Babylon stood at the parting of the way, at the head of the two ways, to use divination: he made [his] arrows bright, he consulted with images, he looked in (r) the liver.

(r) He used conjuring and sorcery.

Cross-Reference Topical ResearchStrong's Concordance
the king:

Proverbs 16:33 The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof [is] of the LORD.
Proverbs 21:1 The king's heart [is] in the hand of the LORD, [as] the rivers of water: he turneth it whithersoever he will.

parting:
Heb. mother

to use:

Numbers 23:28 And Balak brought Balaam unto the top of Peor, that looketh toward Jeshimon.
Deuteronomy 18:10 There shall not be found among you [any one] that maketh his son or his daughter to pass through the fire, [or] that useth divination, [or] an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch,
1 Samuel 15:23 For rebellion [is as] the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness [is as] iniquity and idolatry. Because thou hast rejected the word of the LORD, he hath also rejected thee from [being] king.
Proverbs 16:10 A divine sentence [is] in the lips of the king: his mouth transgresseth not in judgment.
Acts 16:16 And it came to pass, as we went to prayer, a certain damsel possessed with a spirit of divination met us, which brought her masters much gain by soothsaying:

he made:
Or, as the Vulgate, "he mingled his arrows:" "They wrote on several arrows," says Jerome, "the names of the cities they intended to assault; and then putting them altogether promiscuously in a quiver, they drew then out thence as lots are drawn; and that city whose name was written on the arrow first drawn, was the city they first made war on."

arrows:
or, knives

images:
Heb. teraphim,
Genesis 31:19 And Laban went to shear his sheep: and Rachel had stolen the images that [were] her father's.
Genesis 31:30 And now, [though] thou wouldest needs be gone, because thou sore longedst after thy father's house, [yet] wherefore hast thou stolen my gods?
Judges 17:5 And the man Micah had an house of gods, and made an ephod, and teraphim, and consecrated one of his sons, who became his priest.
Judges 18:14 Then answered the five men that went to spy out the country of Laish, and said unto their brethren, Do ye know that there is in these houses an ephod, and teraphim, and a graven image, and a molten image? now therefore consider what ye have to do.
Judges 18:18 And these went into Micah's house, and fetched the carved image, the ephod, and the teraphim, and the molten image. Then said the priest unto them, What do ye?
Judges 18:20 And the priest's heart was glad, and he took the ephod, and the teraphim, and the graven image, and went in the midst of the people.
Judges 18:24 And he said, Ye have taken away my gods which I made, and the priest, and ye are gone away: and what have I more? and what [is] this [that] ye say unto me, What aileth thee?
2 Kings 23:24 Moreover the [workers with] familiar spirits, and the wizards, and the images, and the idols, and all the abominations that were spied in the land of Judah and in Jerusalem, did Josiah put away, that he might perform the words of the law which were written in the book that Hilkiah the priest found in the house of the LORD.
Hosea 3:4 For the children of Israel shall abide many days without a king, and without a prince, and without a sacrifice, and without an image, and without an ephod, and [without] teraphim:
Hosea 4:12 My people ask counsel at their stocks, and their staff declareth unto them: for the spirit of whoredoms hath caused [them] to err, and they have gone a whoring from under their God.
Zechariah 10:2 For the idols have spoken vanity, and the diviners have seen a lie, and have told false dreams; they comfort in vain: therefore they went their way as a flock, they were troubled, because [there was] no shepherd.
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Chain-Reference Bible Search

Gn 31:19, 30. Nu 23:28. Dt 18:10. Jg 17:5; 18:14, 18, 20, 24. 1S 15:23. 2K 23:24. Pv 16:10, 33; 21:1. Ho 3:4; 4:12. Zc 10:2. Ac 16:16.

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