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Little moment, until the indignation be overpast. 21. For, behold, the Lord cometh out of his place to visit the iniquity of the inhabitants of the earthi upon them : the earth also shall disclose her blood, and shall no more cover her glain.
xxvii. 1 *. In that day, the Lord, with bis welltempered and great and strong sword, shall punish Leviathan the serpent that darteth rapidly along, even Leviathan the winding serpent; he shall even slay the monster that is in the sea.
2. In that day, to the beloved vineyard sing ye a responsive song t. . .
3. JEHOVAH. It is I, the Lord, that preserve her: I will water her every moment; I will take care of her by night; and by day I will keep guard over her.
! stroying angel was to pass through the land of Egypt. So “ here God promises to be a hiding-place to his people in the -66 midst of those terrible judgments which should destroy his “ adversaries. This probably may be meant of those days of “ extraordinary trouble at the end of the world, spoken of
in Dan. xii. 1. and Matt. xxiv. 21.” Mr. Lowth in loc.
* “ This chapter treats of the same subject with the two “ former, and describes that happy state of the Church, when “ Satan and his agents shall be subdued, the Church shall be “ enlarged and purged from idolatry, and the Jews shall be “ restored , all which are circumstances attending those glo“ rious days, which the prophets often foretell shall come to “ pass at or near the end of the world.” Mr. Lowth in loc.
+ A responsive song.) “ That 7jo 'to answer,” says Bp. Lowth, " signifies occasionally to sing responsively, and that " this mode of singing was frequently practised among the “ ancient Jews, see De Sacra Poesi Heb. Præl. xix, at the 66 beginning."
4. VINE4. VINEYARD. I have no wall for my defence :: O that I had a fence of the thorn and brier!. · J. Against them should I march in battle, I should burn them up together. 5. Ah! let her rather take hold of my protection. . i . : V. Let him make peace with me! peace let him, make with me.!. : .,. .
6. J. They that come from the root of Jacob shall flourish, Israel shall bud forth; and they shall fill the face of the earth with fruit..
7. Hath he smitten him, as he smiteth those that smote him? Hath he slain him, as he slayeth those that slew him? 8. In just measure, when thou inflictest the stroke, wilt thou debate with her: he will deeply deliberate, even in the midst of his violent blast, in the day of the east-wind. 9. Wherefore by this shall the iniquity of Jacob be purged; and this shall take away all the fruit of his sin; when he maketh all the stones of the altar as stones of rubbish beaten to pieces, when the groves and images rise up no more.
10. At the time when the defenced city shall be · desolate, the habitation forsaken and left like a wilderness; when the calf feedeth there, and lieth down there, and consumeth the branches thereof; 11. IVhen women break off the branches thereof as soon as they are withered, coming and setting them on fire (for it is a people of no understanding; therefore their Maker doth not love them, neither doth he who formed them shew 'himself gracious unto them): 12. In that day it shall come
to pass, that the Lord will beat as with a threshing instrument * from the stream of the river unto the river of Egypt; and ye shall be gathered one by one, O ye children of Israel: 13. Even in that day it shall come to pass, that it shall be blown with the great trumpet t, and they that were lost in the land of Assyria, and they that were thrust into the land of Egypt, shall come, and shall worship the Lord, in the holy mount, in Jerusalem.
COMMENTARY. These chapters, like those which were last considered, form one continued prophecy, treating of the very same subjects, and occasionally in almost the very same words.
Isaiah begins with predicting, in terms studiously minute, the dispersion of the Jews and the desolation of their country. He asserts, that all these judgments should come upon them, because they have transgressed the laws of God, changed the ordinance, and broken the everlasting covenant, even the covenant of the Messiah. Yet, as he
* The Lord will beat us as with a threshing instrument. I * This relates to the restoration of the Jews in the latter » times.” Mr. Lowth in loc.
+ It shall be blown with the great truniper.] “A general " alarm or summons shall be given. Compare Matt, xxiv. ** 31, which place some understand of this very restoration of " the Jews the prophet here speaks of.” (Mr. Lowth in loc.). Compare also Isaiah xviii. 3. The sounding of the trumpet most probably denotes, as Bp. Horsley thinks, the general preaching of the Gospel.
had had already foretold *, so he now repeats it, that,* notwithstanding the general dispersion, a few straglers should remain in the land, like the gleanings of a vine or an olive-tree. o. ' '..
In the midst however of this desolation, they should, in God's appointed season, break forth into songs of praise, and shout from the sea ; they should glorify. the Lord, as in old times, by Urim and Thummimt, and should magnify his name in the isles of the $ca ; insomuch that songs should be heard from the uttermost parts of the earth, even glory to that righteous one whom they had so long rejected.
The prophet here seems to allude to the restora, tion of the converted Jews by that great maritime nation of faithful worshippers, which he had already so amply described. It is worthy of notice, that what is translated in our common English version they shall shout from the sea, may with equal propriety be rendered they shall shout from the wesit. Now the isles of the sea or the west,
* Isaiah xvii. 6.
+ I have not ventured to depart from the Hebrew reading, though Bp. Lowth's conjectural emendation certainly renders this passage much more clear than it is at present. Instead of Bursa by Urim, he supposes we ought to read Ona in the išles. In this he is supported by two M.S.S. of the Lxx; but, it does not appear, by any of the original Hebrew.
I Bp. Lowth translates the passage, The waters shall resound with the exaltation of the Lord; instead of, They shall exult in the majesty of the Lord, they shall shout from the sea, or from the west. The words of the prophet, so far as the letters are
as I have already observed, commonly mean, in the language of Scripture, the western regions of Europe, because to the mariners who sailed into those countries from Tvre and Sidon, they appeared to be literally islands. Hence it is most reasonable to conclude, that the maritime power beyond the rivers of Cush, called to by the prophet in the 18th chapter, must be some one of the kingdoms of Europe; and, from the whole tenor of the predictions relative to the destruction of the infidel king, the beast, and the false prophet, some one of those kingdoms which hare separated themselves from the mystic harlot and have embraced evan-gelical protestantism.
Yet, in the midst of his restoration by this great people, Judah is constrained to lament his leanness, and to complain that he has experienced treachery from the treacherous dealers. I know not why Judah should lament his leanness, unless it be on
concerned, will undoubtedly bear this version; though not, if the points be taken into the account : for sin, according to its punctuation, will either signify from the sea, or the waters. I cannot see any reason for altering the present version; nevertheless, even if it be altered, the general sense of the passage will remain much the same. In that case the usaters will symbolically mean peoples ; and those peoples are heard to praise the Lord in the isles of the sea, or the maritime regions of Europe : hence, with reference to Judèa, the sound will of course come from the West.