Sefer Yechezkel
Teacher Title תקציר Course
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #01: Introduction The Book of Yechezkel covers a fateful period of some 22 years in the history of the Jewish People: beginning with year five of the exile of King Yehoyakhin (593 B.C.E.), and ending fifteen years after the Destruction of the First Temple (571 B.C.E.). Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #02: The Chariot and the Journeys of God's Glory (chapter 1) At the beginning of his Book, Yechezkel describes how "the heavens were opened and I saw visions of God." Chapter 1, described by Chazal as the "ma'aseh merkava" ("workings of the Divine Chariot"), is one of the most difficult chapters to understand in all of Tanakh. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #03: Yechezkel’s Prophetic Mission (2:1 – 3:21) Chapters 2:1-3:21: Yechezkel reluctantly accepts his prophetic mission. The core of his message is twofold: while they live in an age of national tragedy (Destruction of the Temple, and exile of the nation), still every individual bears personal responsibility for his own actions. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #04a: Symbolic Actions and Their Meaning (3:22 – 5:17) Among the many symbolic actions that God commands Yechezkel to perform as part of his prophecy, one is to bind himself up with cords and remain silent. Some commentators view this as an extended period of actual mandated silence; others, as a symbolic act, for example illustrating the people’s lack of belief in Yechezkel’s prophecy. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #4b: – Symbolic actions and their meaning (3:22 – 5:17) (continued) Yechezkel performs a number of symbolic prophetic actions that illustrate elements of the upcoming siege and Destruction and the suffering that follows. The most dramatic of these are: eating bread baked by animal dung fuel, severely limiting his food and water consumption, and shaving, scattering and burning his hair and beard. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #04c: The Meaning of the Metaphor: God’s Actions (5:5-17) Assuming the chapters in Sefer Yechezkel follow in chronological order, then Yechezkel's symbolic actions actually represent the first encounter between the prophet, in his Divinely-appointed role, and the nation. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #05: The Biblical Background to the Nation’s Sins (6:1-10) Chapters 6 and 8 of Sefer Yechezkel are each devoted in their own way to describing, in detail, the sins that ultimately led to the Destruction and the exile. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #06 The End is Near! (6:11-7:27) Neither the inhabitants of Jerusalem nor the exiles can accept that the Destruction of Temple and Jerusalem is imminent. Both Yechezkel’s language and actions serve to concretize the “end” of Jerusalem. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #07: The Deeds of the People in the Temple (Chapter 8) In a vision, Yechezkel is transported to Jerusalem where he describes in detail four forms of idolatry committed by the people. There are many links between this chapter and Devarim 4. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #07b: The Deeds of the People in the Temple (Chapter 8) The Temple is destroyed because the people are guilty of chamas - "violence" of a form both religious and social. Yechezkel also warns repeatedly of the defilement that idolatry causes: of the people, of the land and of the Temple. We conclude this shiur with a comparison of the idolatry described in Devarim 4 and Yechezkel 8. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #08a: The Departure of God’s Glory from the Temple (chapters 9-11) Yechezkel, while in Babylonia, is transported by Divine vision to witness the Destruction of Jerusalem. This vision holds the leaders responsible, and shows the people to be complacent, and shows God’s response: fury. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #08b: The Departure of God’s Glory from the Temple (chapters 9-11) In his vision of the Destruction of Jerusalem, Yechezkel sees a number of noblemen, some mentioned by name, which illustrates the responsibility of the leaders for the Destruction of Jerusalem. There is some consolation in the promise of the future return of the people to the Land, but this consolation is muted because this return will occur without repentance. And the audience to this vision in Babylonia is deaf to its significance. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #09a: Tzidkiyahu (12:1-20; 17) In chapter 12, Yechezkel prophesies and criticizes “the prince” – who, based on other Biblical texts we identify as Tzidkiyahu, the last king of Yehuda. Yechezkel also performs another symbolic act representing the exile of the nation and its rebelliousness. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #09b: Tzidkiyahu (12:1-20; 17) (continued) Yechezkel continues his criticism of Tzidkiyahu by means of a parable in chapter 17. Israel (a vine), by disobeying God and abandoning Bablylonia (one great eagle) for Egypt (another great eagle), seals its fate. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #10: The Fate of the Kings of Yehuda (19) Yechezkel presents a parable in chapter 19 about the last kings of Yehuda and their misdeeds. In this shiur we will compare this chapter with the other Biblical references that describe the historical events in the parable. This parable is unusual and noteworthy in that it does not contain any divine names, and because the prophet does not explain its meaning. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #11: Prophecy and Prophets (12:21-14:11) Yechezkel confronted many false prophets in his time, which we begin in see in this shiur. Some are described as prophets, and so may have been true prophets at other times (or qualified to be). Another type we encounter in this shiur is women who offer prophecies of false comfort in exchange for food. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #12: “And You Shall Know That Not Without Cause Have I Done” (14:12-23) Yechezkel warns of four punishments awaiting the city: famine, wild beasts, the sword and plague. But as a consolation, there will be some survivors, who will live in order to inform the Jews in exile of what happened. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #13: “He speaks in allegories” (Ch. 15-16) At chapter 15, Yechezkel begins to employ parables in his prophecies. Jerusalem is a dry vine consumed by fire, an ungrateful orphan who betrays her benefactor, and a harlot who ignores her husband for the strangers around her. These are examples of how women are a recurring (and negative) motif throughout the book. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #14: “The soul that sins – it shall die” (18) In Chapter 18, Yechezkel focuses on the social, interpersonal sins that led to, and continued after, the Destruction. He also repeatedly emphasizes individual responsibility in the face of the inevitable Destruction. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #15: “The abominations of their fathers” (Chapter 20) In chapter 20, Yechezkel summarizes the repeating cycle of Jewish history: God gives commands, the nation rebels, the nation deserves to be destroyed but God saves them for the sake of His name. Related to the Jewish People’s role as God’s people, Yechezkel stresses emphatically the importance of Shabbat. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #15b: “The Abominations of Their Fathers” (Chapter 20) (continued) Yechezkel castigates the people for child sacrifice, which in no way does God countenance. The nation’s misdeeds lead the prophet to again emphasize that the people will only be redeemed because God’s name is desecrated by their exile. Their actions do not merit redemption. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #16a: The Beginning of the End: God’s Sword in the Hand of the King of Babylon (Chapter 21) Chapter 21 contains prophecies made right around the time of the Destruction. Not all of the verses are comprehensible, but the overall message is clear: Jerusalem will be ruined; a massacre will occur; and the perpetrators will be acting as God’s agents. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #16b: The Beginning of the End: God’s Sword in the Hand of the King of Babylon (Chapter 21) (Part 2 of 2) This shiur provides historical background about the king of Babylonia, Nevukhadnetzar and contrasts how he was seen by the two major prophets of his time, Yirmiyahu and Yechezkel. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #17: The Destruction of the City (22-24:14) In this shiur, we conclude Yechezkel's pre-Destruction prophecies and fittingly these deal with mourning: Yechezkel's mourning for his wife (and the divine command to refrain from mourning her) and how this symbolizes the wider national plight. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)
Dr. Tova Ganzel Shiur #18: Prophecies Concerning the Nations (25) Yechezkel begins the second of three parts of his Sefer with prophecies about the seven nations neighbouring Israel: Ammon, Moav (and Se’ir), Edom, Pelishtim, Tzor, Tzidon, and Egypt. This shiur will focus on the order of these prophecies and will consider the prophecy to Ammon in greater depth. Yechezkel - The Book of Ezekiel (Semester 2)

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