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related to the ideal subject, i. e., to the speakers, who properly affirm of themselves this inability to dwell with Jehovah. This dative everywhere represents a phrase that affirms an intensive relation to the interests of the speaker: in this place say: who will dwell (we say this in relation to ourselves, in our own interest) with devouring fire, etc.1—opp again only Ps. cii. 4.— *327 on is the beginning of Ps. xv. Moreover the words •erp 1-n sy Thin ver. 15 recall Ps. xv. 2.
Wer. 15. The plural mpts, just facts occurs again in Isa. xlv. 24; 1xiv. 5.-D'ohton "in" comp. Prov. xxiii. 16; the latter word again in Isa. xxvi. 7; xlv. 19.— yx= (comp. Exod. xviii. 21) again in Isa. lvi. 11; lvii. 17. What sort of Josh is meant is explained by the nddition npuyn (oppressiones, again only Prov. xxviii. 16).--Tyl see ver, 9–The construction with p is
b His bread.
* Or, deceits. 6 Heb. %. distances. * Heb. broad spaces, or hands.
• a wide ertended land. * that does not wander.
comp. 1 Sam. xxiv. 1.-nityn, “asylum,” “refuge.”
again only xxv. 12. Ver. 17. The 2 pers. masc. suffix, as in vers. 6 and 20,
refers to the nation regarded as a unit. Ver. 18. Thin, “to think, consider, meditari” (Josh. i.
the nomads. Ver. 21. D" "in corresponds to the negations of ver.
1. Here we have the final and broadest circuit of waves before us. According to ver. 10, Jehovah was about to arise and come to the rescue. IIe has done so. The rescue is accomplished in an astounding fashion. The present passage belongs to time after the rescue. It presupposes it. For it contains glances into the future, that rest upon that deed as their foundation. First the LoRD summons those far and near to give proper attention to what He does (ver. 13). Then the Prophet describes the effect of what has been done on the sinners in Jerusalem. They are terrified: they would flee the neighborhood of this mighty God, for they are ill-at-case in it. Hence they ask: who can abide by this devouring fire 2 (ver. 14). To this is replied: this fire is harmless for the pions, the lovers of truth, the righteous (ver. 15), for such will dwell in Jerusalem in security and abundance (ver. 16); and will see the king of Israel sitting in might and glory at the head of a wide empire (ver. 17). As one thinks of something that has disappeared from memory, so shall men reflect on the time of war's distress (ver. 18), and of the terrific presence of the barbaric nation in the land (ver. 19). Zion will be a secure fortress, a quiet, abiding place of worship, and no more a shifting tabernacle as in the time of the journey through the wilderness (ver. 20). For Jehovah is there Himself in His majesty; protecting waters surround the place (ver. 21), and the Lord Himself as judge, lawgiver and king is the deliverer of His people (ver, 22).
2. Hear—my might—Ver. 13. The piece begins with the cry of a herald that makes known to the whole world the accomplished mighty act.
For the perfect "notys without doubt designates the act of rescue as accomplished, which verses 1, 3, 10 held in prospect; and we must regard
n): (as often in the Books of Kings, where
Thil and mo's continually stand parallel: 1 Kings xv. 23; xvi. 27; xxii. 46, cte.), in the concrete sense as a display of power, and, because of 'not's, as already come to pass. But the herald's cry would intimate that an event of vast and wide effect has happened, of concern to all men, even to those far remote. For they may know from this who is the true, and therefore also who is their God. For IIe that did what happened to the Assyrian host in the neighborhood of Jerusalem in Hezekiah's time must be God over all gods (comp. xxxvi. 18–20; xxxvii. 10–13) and LORD over all lords. Those near are plainly the Israelites, who had in great part been witnesses of the deed. These should acknowledge the demonstration of the Lord's power. According to their inward condition they should draw from it comfort or warning. 3. The sinners——seeing evil.—Wers. 14–15. The Prophet first presents that mighty deed as a warning to the wicked. Such were the
idolaters who had no joy in a proof so irrefragable of the sole power and divinity of Jehovah. . Therefore these sinners (i. 28; xiii. 9) and the unclean (ix. 16; x. 6; xxxii. 6—there lies in the word a hint at idolatry) in Zion are terrified. Devoid of the right knowledge of God, because they would not, not because they could not have it, the nearness of this almighty, and above all of this holy God is in the highest degree burden-' some to these people. Living in Jerusalem where this God has His fire and His furnace (xxxi. 9) is painful to them. Hence they cry: who among us, etc. It is manifest that by the . devouring fire they mean Jehovah. By the strages Assyriorum He had proved Himself to be such. And shall they ever remain near this power that is as irresistibly present as it is terri. ble? The expression is taken from Deut. iv. 24;
signates here the place where the fire burns, “the hearth.” By calling this everlasting they judge themselves: for they show by that a knowledge, that it is a veritable divine fire, that burns there, not an imaginary one. But just with this they will have nothing to do. The Prophet (ver. 15) replies to their inquiry, that one may dwell very well by this burning fire. But with the IIoly One, one must live holy. The image He o to draw of a holy life is an Old Testament one. The traits of it are chiefly taken from passages in the Psalms (see Tert. and Gram.); Shaking the hands, (thus refraining them) from taking a bribe, is a strong expression for striving to keep and prove the integrity of the hands. 4. He shall dwell——will save us.Vers. 16–22. This is the confirmation that one may dwell happily with the devouring fire. For these verses show what blessings they shall have who live agreeably to the holy being of God. . And since there shall never be wanting such in Zion, the salvation and glory of Zion is assured sor all time. Thus these verses contain the same thought uttered by the Prophet already xxviii. 16 sqq.; xxix. 22 sqq.; xxx. 15, 19 sqq.; xxxi. 6 sq.; xxxii. 1 sqq., 15 sqq., that Israel's deliver. ance depends on an upright and thorough conversion to the LoRD ; that on this condition, however,
it is secure forever. 28) “what is certain, never
deceives expectation, never fails” (comp. ver. 6; Jer. xv. 18; Isa. xxii. 23, 25). As happened vers. 5, 6, so here, for the Prophet the salvation of the near present merges into one with the great, final Messianic period. And so, influenced perhaps by the then oppressed look of the king of Judah, he contemplates the latter beaming with the joy of victory, and at the same time as the type of the Messiah, resplendent in the supremest beauty and glory, whose beauty the author of Ps. xlv. (ver. 3) had also seen prefigured in the appearance of the bridegroom-king whom he cele
brated. That the Prophet's glance penetrates into the Messianic future appears from the expression the land that is very far off (viii. 9; Jer. viii. 19). The expression is too strong to be understood merely of free motion in the land in contrast with the confining siege, or of the normal extending of Israelitish territory according to . Deut. i. 7 ; xi. 24. As royal pomp and beauty adorns the person of the king, so immeasurable extent does his land. ‘p Yos is thus not a far
distant, but a wide extended land. It is the same thought that meets us ii. 2 sqq.; ix. 7; xi. 10; xxv. 6 sqq. The Prophet in vers. 18, 19 connects his glorious image of the future with the mournful condition of the present. For he describes it as a chief blessing of that future, that the bad things of the present will be present to thoughtful contemplation as things that one rejoices to have overcome. El hoc meninisse juvabit. In his graphic way the Prophet gives prominence to particular terrors that must have left a peculiarly deep im
“weigher,” before whom one had to appear and pay tribute, and who then weighed the valuables received, and made a list of them, were certainly persons of terror from whose mouths they had often had experience of the Vae victis (Livy, 5, 48). [“The Apostle Paul in 1 Cor. i. 20, has a sentence so much like this, in the threefold repetition of the question where, and in the use of the word scribe, that it cannot be regarded as a mere fortuitous coincidence.” “It may be regarded as a mere imitation, as to form and diction, of the one before us.”—J. A. ALExANDER, in loc.]. Again it must have made a terrible impression, when from the walls they saw the enemy taking the first steps toward attacking the city by one of the leaders riding around the walls, regarding the towers, counting them and taking notes of his observations (comp. Ps. xlviii. 13). What happiness to be able to call out: “where are they now those fearful men? They have disappeared forever !” What felicity to be quit of the foreign, repulsive o of this enemy; no more to be compelled to see the overweening nation; no more to hear its barbarous sounds! The Israelites will no more hear “ the nation too deep of lip to be understood” and “stammering and jabbering with the tongue (comp. on xxviii. 11; xxxvii. 22) without meaning.” The Prophet having enumerated the bad things, now directs attention to the good that is to be
Tymp onx appears from ver. 15. Israel then has no more a tabernacle, a city for festival gathering (of the people with one another, and with Je. hovah). As such Zion must be especially looked to. And if one looks more narrowly, then the meaning of this designation appears to be that Jerusalem will be a secure, quiet abode (xxxii. 18), of course still a tabernacle, but no longer so in the original, nomadic sense; not like the travelling tent of the wilderness, but one that does not move about. The Prophet signifies that there shall happen to it neither a voluntary nor a violent breaking up of the tabernacle (Pn)
means a violent rending, comp. v. 27, not the usual striking of a tent). This permanent tabernacle shall be attended with a glorious rest for the people of God in the future that is described, that shall be founded on the presence in the midst of them of Jehovah, the highest Majesty. The Lord is called a place of rivers, of course in a figure. In all this figurative description lies the notion of defence, refuge. Hence “a place of rivers” may as appropriately be used of Jehovah, as “rock, tower, shield, horn of salvation,” (Ps. xviii. 3). Iłut commentators are right in saying that the Prophet has in mind cities like Babylon, Nineveh, No-Ammon (Nah. iii. 8), that were defended by great rivers and river canals. The present Jerusalem lacked such defences, but, such is the meaning, Jehovah Himself will be river-defences. Donn) may allude to the cities of Mesopotamia, and D'Ys" to the similarly located cities of Egypt; for Yon is Kat' 'e;olov the Euphrates (viii. 7 ; xi. 15) and ns the Nile (xix. 7, 8; xxiii. 10). Those streams and canals that recede right and left, and thus are very broad, are called D'T' "Brin (comp. Ps, civ. 25; Isa. xxii. 18; Gen. xxxiv. 21; Judg. xviii. 10; 1 Chr. iv. 10; Neh. vii. 4). Neither oared-ship, nor sail-shup shall be able to pass these mighty waters. The Prophet ends with rhymes that make the conclusion sound, like a hymn. Jehovah, Israel's judge (ii. 4; xi. 3, 4), lawgiver (comp. Deut. xxxiii. 21), and king, is also its deliverer.
Recapitulation and Conclusion.
23 "Thy tacklings are loosed;
*They could not well strengthen their mast,
They could not spread the "sail:
Then is the prey of a great spoil divided;
The lame take the prey.
24 And the inhabitant shall not say, I am sick: The people that dwell therein shall be forgiven their iniquity.
TEXTUAL AND Wer. 23. We must take Yijto: Niph. as the passive of the notion missum facere, “to slacken" (comp. Exod. xxiii. 11; Prov. xvii. 14). Expositors take 12 to mean the socket in which the mast sets in the bottom of the ship. But that (the taroměn) is not held by the cables. And when VitriNga says that the cables malum sustinentes thccae succurrunt, that is even not pin. For this word denotes adstringere, firmum reddere, and can only relate directly to the mast, as occurs in the text. Hence Dorchslert would not take cables but the seamen as subject of YDINT"; in which case the negative expression appears strange. Hence I think that 12 here is not the substantive, but the adjective derived from 732,
erectus stetit, which means rectus, and would here be
EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL.
1. We regarded ver. 22, in form and contents, as a conclusion of the prophetic perspective that joins on to the act of deliverance spoken of before ver. 13, and presupposes it. With ver. 23 the Prophet returns into the immediate present distress from which proceeds the entire prophetic cycle of chaps. xxviii.-xxxiii. At ver, 23 we stand again in the period before the overthrow of the Assyrians. With few, yet vigorous and clear lines the Prophet portrays, in the first three clauses of ver. 23, the present distress, using an image suggested by ver. 21. He compares the kingdom of Judah to a ship whose cables hang loose and hold neither flag nor mast [but see comment below]. For then (i.e., in the great moment referred to, vers. 1 and 3, whose approach he had announced as immediate ver. 10, and presupposes ver. 13 sqq.), in this great moment great booty is distributed, and in fact plunder is so easy that the lame themselves can share in it (ver. 23 end). Now Israel is reinvigorated to a healthy, strong life. It has in that deliverance the pledge that God has forgiven its sin, and that is the pledge of all salvation (ver. 24). Thus the prophecy concludes with a brief word as it began. And the pith of it is the same fact to which ver. 1 refers from another side.
2. Thy tacklings—iniquity.—Vers. 23, 24. Expositors down to EwALD, whom DRECHsLER and DELITzsch join [so also BARNES, J. A. ALEXANDER, BIRKs), understand the image of the ship to refer to Assyria, and to form a continuation of the allegory of ver, 21 : did the enemy succeed in crossing those trenches, they would be wrecked, and Israel would divide the spoil. The following considerations conflict with this view: 1) ver. 22 concludes the preceding discourse; 2) according to ver. 21 the hostile ships will not cross over those water trenches; the mention of them is in respect only of plundering and destruction; 3) the description of ver. 23 does not suit a vessel disabled in conflict, but only one badly equipped for battles; 4) what is said of the lame plundering implies a locality that such can reach, they cannot be supposed to take part in a
sea-fight; 5) the feminine suffix in Thin refers to Zion, because Assyria is nowhere else made feminine. For in the sole passage quoted in proof
that it is (xxx. 32) the reading is doubtful, and if the reading Tà be correct, still the suffix must
refer to the land of Assyria, which is impossible in our text. [The Author hardly docs justice to the view he controverts, which, as put by J. A. ALEXANDER, in loc., seems more natural than his own. “There is, at the beginning of this verse, a sudden apostrophe to the enemy considered as a ship. It was said (ver. 21) that no vessel should approach the holy city. But now the Prophet seems to remember that one had done so, the proud ship Assyria. But what was its fate?. He sees * and abandoned to its enemies.” —TR. The ship of the Jewish state presents a desolate spectacle. But patience 1 Then (i.e., in the moment, that is o predicted, partly presupposed in what precedes), spoil will be divided, which implies complete victory. The accumulation of words
meaning booty (TV, *U, 15) denotes the rich abundance of it. What is said of the lame intimates plainly enough that the field of plunder must have been near Jerusalem, and that the enemy had fled. For only then could such reach the camp or venture into it. Manifestly the Prophet has in mind the same fact to which he refers ver.4 (2 Kings xix. 35 sqq.; Isa. xxxvii.36 sqq.). As in vers. 5, 6 the spoiling of the Assyrian is made the pledge of .. other displays of divine grace, so, too, here. The nation that has experienced such salvation from God may comfort itself with the assurance of all support both for the body (24 a) [comp. Jer. xiv. i. and for the soul (24 b). Both hang closely together (comp. Luke v. 20 sqq.). But forgiving sin is the chief matter: for sin separates God and man; and as soon as it is taken away, both are closely united, and the way is opened for blessing men (comp. vers. 5, 6).
DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL.
1. On xxxiii. 1. Per quod quis peccat, per idem punitur et ipse. Jer. xxx. 16; comp. Adonibezek, Judg. i. 5 sqq.; Matth. vii. 2.
2. On xxxiii. 10. God alone knows when the proper moment has come for Him to interpose. Till then He waits—but not a moment longer. Till then it is our part to wait with patience.
But let the right moment come, and let the Lord once say: “Now will I rise,” then what is not of God falls to pieces, then the nations must despair and kingdoms fall; the earth must pass away when He lets Himself be heard (Ps. xlvi. 7). Then the hidden truth of things becomes manifest: what ap strong then appears weak, and the weak strong, that the LoBD alone may be high at that time (ii. 11; v. 15).
3. Ver. 14. Here we get a deep insight into the obstinate and despairing heart of man, and recognize why it will not endure a living and personal God. As Peter said: “Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord” (Luke v. 8), so they would turn the living God out of the world, because they feel themselves to be sinful men, who cannot renounce their sins, because they will not; for did they but earnestly will to do so, then they could also. The inmost reason of all practical and theoretical heathenism is the feeling of the natural man that he and the holy God cannot exist side by side in the world. One or other must yield. Instead of adopting the way and means which God reveals, by which from natural and sinful men we may become holy children of God, we rather deny the living God and substitute either demons (1 Cor. x. 20) or abstractions for Him. But the Prophet here awakens the presentiment that we may become holy children of God (ver. 15); the Son of God, however, in the new covenant teaches us this with perfect clearness (1 Pet. ii. 9 sqq.).
HOMILETICAL HINTS. 1. Vers. 2–6. Help in great distress. 1) On what
condition (believing prayer, ver. 2); 2) Its ground a. the grace of God (ver, 2a); b. the power of God (ver. 3b, v. 5 a.); 3) Its two sides, in that it is a corporal (vers. 3, 4); b. spiritual (vers. 5, 6). 2. [Ver. 5. When God's enemies and ours are overthrown, both He and we are glorified. “1. God will have the praise of it (ver. 5 a.); 2. His Kio. will have the blessing of it (ver. 5 b).” . HENRY].
3. Vers. 10–13. The Lord's acts of deliverance. 1. They come at the right moment (ver. 10). 2. They are thorough in their effects (vers. 11, 12). 3. They teach us to know and praise God.
4. [Ver. 14. “1. The hypocrites will be greatly alarmed when they see punishment come upon the open and avowed enemies of God. 2. In such times they will have none of the peace and quiet confidence which His true friends have. 3. Such alarm is evidence of conscious guilt and hypocrisy. 4. The persons here spoken of had a belief in the doctrine of eternal punishment—a belief which hypocrites and sinners always have, else why should they be alarmed? 5. The punishment of hypocrites in the church will be dreadful.” A. BARNEs].
5. [The character of a righteous man (ver. 15). The reward of the righteous (ver. 16 sqq.). See M. HENRY and BARNEs in loc.—TR.]
6. Vers. 20–22. Comfort for the church in adversity. The church of the Lord stands fast. For 1. It is the last and highest institution of God (ver. 20). 2. The Lord Himself is mighty in it, a. as Judge, b. as a Master (Teacher), c. as Ki (vers. 21, 22).
THE CON CLUSION OF PART FIRST. CHAP, XXXIV.-XXXV.
Chapters xxxiv., xxxv. are the proper conclusion of the first part of Isaiah's prophecies. For chaps. xxxvi.-xxxix. are only an historical sup
lement, though a very important one. Hence ". not think that chaps. xxxiv., xxxv. are only the finale of chaps. xxviii.-xxxiii.; for that we have already found in chap xxxiii. Rather chaps. xxxiv., xxxv. form a conclusion of the first half of the book that sums up and finishes the announcements of judgment and salvation of the first part, and prepares for and introduces those of part second. For we notice already in these chapters the language of xl.-lxvi. First of all the Prophet carries us in chap. xxxiv. to the end of days. As if to make an end corresponding to the beginning, i. 2, he summons the earth and all its inhabitants to notice the announcement of the final judgment that is to comprehend heaven and earth (xxxiv. 1–4). But he is not in condition to represent the how of the world's destruction. As remarked in the introduction to xxiv.–xxvii., he can only paint that remote judgment in colors of the present. He gives at once a vivid and an agreeable picture of it by representing it as a judgment against Edom. For the negative base
of Israel's hope of salvation is that its enemies shall be destroyed. That the Prophet means here to conclude all announcement of judgment against their enemies appears from the demand of ver. 16 that they shall search “the book of the LoRD,” and compare the prediction there with the fulfilment. We shall try to show that this appeal to “the book of the LoRD’’ implies the entire foregoing book.
In chap. xxxv. the Prophet presents the other side of the judgment of the world, viz., the final redemption of Israel. It appears as a return home to Zion out of exile. Not a word intimates that the Prophet has in mind only the return from Babylon. He names no land; he speaks only of return (Þo, ver. 10) in general. Already in Deut. xxx. 3 sqq. it is promised that the Lond will gather the Israelites and bring them back out. of all lands, even though driven out to the end of heaven, thence too the LoRD will fetch them. On the ground of this passage Isaiah had already held out a similar prospect (xi. 11 sqq.; xix. 23 sq.; xxvii. 12 sq.), ...}. him Jeremiah especially deals much in this particular of the glorious last