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should have passed away.
Rom. 10. 15.
The majesty of God.
His severity against his enemies. CHRIS T storm, and the clouds are the dust of
12 Thus saith the Lord; || Though chekunst about 713. his feet.
they be quiet, and likewise many, yet about 713. 4 He rebuketh the sea, and maketh thus shall they be + cut down, when
| Or, I/they it dry, and dryeth up all the rivers : he shall pass through. Though I would have Bashan languisheth, and Carmel, and have afflicted thee, I will afflict thee beschouwen the flower of Lebanon languisheth.
5 The mountains quake at him, 13 For now will I break his yoke and so should and the hills melt, and the earth is from off thee, and will burst" thy shorn, and he burned at his presence, yea, the bonds in sunder. world, and all that dwell therein. 14 And the Lord hath given a + Heb. ekvin.
6 Who can stand before his indig- commandment concerning thee, that + Heb. stand nation? and who can † abide in the no more of thy name be sown: out
fierceness of his anger? his fury is of the house of thy gods will I cut off
image: I will make thy grave; for 1. Or, strength. 7 The Lord is good, a || strong thou art vile.
hold in the day of trouble; and le 15 Behold upon the mountains c Isai. 52. 7; knoweth them that trust in him. the feet of him that bringeth good
8 But with an overrunning flood tidings, that publisheth peace! o
no more pass through thee; he is
E that dasheth in pieces is Or, disstubble fully dry.
come up before thy face : keep hammer. 11 There is one come out of thee, the munition, watch the way, make that imagineth evil against the Lord, thy loins strong, fortify thy power of a wicked counseller.
mightily. 8. But with an overrunning flood he will make an utter produced such an one. Such were Pul, 2 Kings xv. end of the place thereof,] An army's overrunning a 19; Tiglath-pileser, chap. xv. 29; Shalmaneser, chap. country is often compared to an inundation : see Isai
. xvii. 6; and Sennacherib, chap. xviii. 17 ; xix. 23. Abp. viii. 7, 8; Dan. ix. 26; xi. 10, 22, 40. Thus God Newcome. will bring the great city of Nineveh to utter ruin, 12. Though they be quiet,] Though the Assyrians be so that there shall be no remains of it in aftertimes. secure. Bp. Hall. W. Lowth. See the notes on chap. ii. 6; and chap. iii. 13. For now will I break his yoke from off thee,] The 17-19.
Jews paid tribute to the Assyrians, 2 Kings xviii. 14, 9. — affliction shall not rise up the second time.) I will and the Israelites were under actual captivity among make an utter destruction all at once : When I begin, them at this time. Abp. Newcome. I will also make an end,” as it is expressed i Sam. iii. 12. W. Lowth.
Chap. II. In the next place, Nineveh is called on to 10. For while they be folden together as thorns, &c.] prepare for the approach of her enemies, as instruments While they combine themselves, and plot together in in the hand of Jehovah ; and the military array and wickedness, as thorns are folded up together in a hedge; muster of the Medes and Babylonians, their rapid apand while they are consorting together in their drunken- proach to the city, the process of the siege, the capture ness and excess; then, even then, shall the judgment of the place, the captivity, lamentation, and flight of the of God fall upon them, and devour them as the fire inhabitants, the sacking of the wealthy city, and the consumes the dry stubble. Bp. Hall. Diodorus Sicu- consequent desolation and terrour, are described in the lus, who ascribes the taking of Nineveh, and the sub- true spirit of Eastern poetry, and with many pathetick, version of the Assyrian empire, to Arbaces the Mede, vivid, and sublime images, ver. 1-10. A grand and assisted by Belesis the Babylonian, relates, that while animated allegory succeeds this description, ver. 11, 12: all the Assyrian army were feasting for their former which is explained, and applied to the city of Nineveh, victories, those about Arbaces, being informed by some in ver. 13. Abp. Newcome. deserters of the negligence and drunkenness
Ver. 1. He that dasheth in pieces] An enemy, that of the enemies, assaulted them unexpectedly by night, will break down thy walls, and destroy thine inhabiand falling orderly on them disorderly, and prepared on tants, O Nineveh. W. Lowth. The army of the Babythem unprepared, became masters of the camp, and slew lonians and Medes. Abp. Newcome. many of the soldiers, and drove the rest into the city. -keep the munition, &c.] Strengthen thy garri. Bp. Newton.
sons, guard thy passes, stir up all thy strength and 11. There is one come out of thee,] That is, thou hast I courage. W. Lowth.
+ Heb. a counseller of Belial.
a Isai. 10. 12.
+ Heb, vessels
+ Heb. covering, or, coverer.
| Or, that which was
# Or, discovered.
The fearful and victorious
armies of God against Nineveh. 2 a For the Lord hath turned 8 But Nineveh is || of old like a about 713, away || the excellency of Jacob, as pool of water: yet they shall flee about 712.
the excellency of Israel: for the emp- away. Stand, stand, shall they cry; Or. from the ll'Or, the tiers have emptied them out, and but none shall || look back.
days that she pride of Jacob as the pride of marred their vine branches.
9 Take ye the spoil of silver, take | Or, cause 3 The shield of his mighty men the spoil of gold : || for there is none ther, and | Or, dyed is made red, the valiant men are || in end of the store and glory out of all their infinite
scarlet: the chariots shall be with the + pleasant furniture. ! Or, fiery
|| flaming torches in the day of his 10 She is empty, and void, and of desire. preparation, and the fir trees shall be waste : and the heart melteth, and b Isai. 13. 7, terribly shaken.
the knees smite together, and much 4 The chariots shall rage in the pain is in all loins, and the faces of
streets, they shall justle one against them all gather blackness.
shall seem like torches, they shall run lions, and the feedingplace of the
young lions, where the lion, even the 5 He shall recount his || worthies : old lion, walked, and the lion's whelp, gallants.
they shall stumble in their walk; and none made them afraid ?
for his lionesses, and filled his holes
the LORD of hosts, and I will burn 7 And || Huzzab shall be || led away her chariots in the smoke, and the established, captive, she shall be brought up, and sword shall devour thy young lions : or, there was her maids shall lead her as with the and I will cut off thy prey from the
voice of doves, taberiny upon their earth, and the voice of thy messen-
shall no more be heard. 2. For the Lord hath turned away the excellency of the oracle was fulfilled and the river become an enemy Jacob, &c.] But, notwithstanding all thy preparations to the city, built a large funeral pile in the palace, and, and warlike forces, he shall prevail against thee, O Ni- collecting together all his wealth, and his concubines, neveh ; for if the Lord have turned away the excellency and eunuchs, burnt himself and the palace with them of Jacob and Israel, and hath given it over to the spoil all; and the enemy entered the breach that the waters of the Assyrians, who have destroyed their vineyards, had made, and took the city.” What was therefore how much more will He deface the glory of Nineveh! predicted in the first chapter was literally fulfilled, “with Bp. Hall
. Some translate the words thus : The Lord an overrunning flood He will make an utter end of the hath returned, or will revenge the pride or injurious place thereof,” ver. 8. Bp. Newton. dealings against Jacob, and the pride against Israel ; 7.— Huzzab] By this word the Chaldee understands that is, He will requite the injuries and oppressions, the queen of Nineveh : but it probably means Nineveh which Sennacherib and Shalmaneser, the kings of As- itself
, for it denotes a strong and impregnable fortress. syria, have exercised upon Judah and Israel. W. Lowth. W. Lowth.
3. The shield of his mighty men &c.] Thine enemy as with the voice of doves,] Birds remarkable for of Babylon shall come fiercely upon thee, and with great their melancholy note. Compare Isai. xxxviii. 14; lix. pomp of terrour : the shield of his mighty warriours 11. W. Lowth. shall glitter with brightness; his valiant men shall be – tabering upon their breasts.] Beating on their decked with scarlet. Bp. Hall. This may be under breasts in great anguish, as if they were playing on a stood either of the colour of their shields and clothes, tabret. Harmer. when they were made, or of their being dyed in blood 8. But Nineveh is of old like a pool of water :] So afterwards : compare Ísai. Ixiii. 2. W. Lowth. called perhaps from the multitude of its inhabitants.
the fir trees shall be terribly shaken.] The earth | Grotius. and woods adjoining shall shake with the noise. Bp. 9. Take ye the spoil of silver, &c.] Go then, ye
. Or by “fir trees” are meant the spears and lances bylonians, take ye the spoil of the silver and gold, which made of fir, so long and large that they looked like so the fearful citizens have left behind them. Bp. Hall. many trees. W. Lowth.
The Prophet here promises the enemy much spoil of 5. He shall recount his worthies : &c.] The king of gold and silver : and we read in Diodorus, that Arbaces Nineveh shall muster his choicest troops, but they shall carried many talents of gold and silver to Ecbatana, the be disordered and discomfited. W. Lowth.
royal city of the Medes. Bp. Newton. 6. The gates of the rivers shall be opened, &c.] Ac- 11. Where is the dwelling of the lions, &c.]. Where cording to this, Diodorus informs us, “ that there was now is the place that was the feared dwelling of the lionan old prophecy that Nineveh should not be taken till like Assyrians ? What is become of the place where the the river became an enemy to the city; and in the third old lion, even the tyrants of Assyria, walked, and where year of the siege, the river being swoln with continual his princes made themselves só secure, that nothing rains, overflowed part of the city, and broke down the could affright them? Bp. Hall. wall for twenty furlongs : then the king, thinking that 13. — the voice of thy messengers shall no more be
Before CHRIST about 713.
+ Heb. the
ruin of Nineveh. CHAP. III.
6 And I will cast abominable filth The miserable ruin of Nineveh. upon thee, and make thee vile, and about 713. + Heb. city of
COE to the fa bloody city! it will set thee as a gazingstock.
is all full of lies and robbery; 7 And it shall come to pass, that the prey departeth not ;
all they that look upon thee shall flee 2 The noise of a whip, and the from thee, and say, Nineveh is laid noise of the rattling of the wheels, waste : who will bemoan her? whence and of the pransing horses, and of the shall I seek comforters for thee? jumping chariots.
8 Art thou better than || † populous ! or, 3 The horseman lifteth up both No, that was situate among the rivers, + Heb. No
† the bright sword and the glittering that had the waters round about it, flame of the
spear: and there is a multitude of whose rampart was the sea, and her
9 Ethiopia and Egypt were her
Lubim were + thy helpers.
her great men were bound in chains. 5 Behold, I am against thee, saith 11 Thou also shalt be drunken : c Jer. 25. 17. b. Isai. 47.3; the LORD of hosts; and b I will dis- thou shalt be hid, thou also shalt seek
cover thy skirts upon thy face, and I strength because of the enemy.
sword, and the lightning of the spear.
+ Heb. in thy help.
Ezek. 16. 37.
heard.] Thou shalt no more send ambassadours to dis- charm in them to draw others aside : compare Isai. tant countries, either to encourage thine allies, or to xlvii. 9 ; Rev. xviii. 23. W. Lowth. terrify thine enemies. See Isai. xviii. 2. W. Lowth.
that selleth nations through her whoredoms, &c.]
That makes whole nations a prey to their enemies, by Chap. III. In this chapter the Prophet denounces teaching them the arts of softness and effeminacy, and war against Nineveh for her perfidy and violence ; and so rendering them weak and defenceless. « Families." strongly places before our eyes the number of her cha- are equivalent to kingdoms : see the note on Jer. i. 15; riots and cavalry, her burnished arms, and the great and and compare Amos iii. 2 ; Zech. xiv. 18. W. Lowth. unrelenting slaughter which she spread around her, ver. 5. – I will discover thy skirts &c.] See the note on 1-3. He assigns her idolatries as one cause of her! Jer. xiii. 22. ignominious and unpitied fall, ver. 4—7. He describes 8. — populous No,] Or No Amon, as in the margin ; No Amon, her rival in populousness, confederacies, and a city of Egypt. See Ezek. xxx. 14, 15; Jer. xlvi. 25. situation, as sharing a like fate with herself, ver. 8—11; Bochart thinks it Diospolis near Mendes, which appears and beautifully illustrates the ease with which her strong from Strabo to have been situated near lakes. Herodoholds should be taken, ver. 12; and the feebleness of tus says, that the Egyptians called Jupiter by the name her people during the siege, ver. 13. He pronounces of Amon. Channels of water from the Nile may have that all her preparations, her numbers, her opulence, her passed through this city. Lakes are called “seas" by multitude of chief men, would be of no avail, ver. 14—, the Hebrews. Abp. Newcome. See the note on Jer. 17. He foretells that her tributaries would desert her, xlvi. 25. ver. 18. He concludes with a triumphant exclamation, her wall] Her waters were as strong a defence the topicks of which are the greatness and incurableness to No, as the proud walls of Nineveh were to her. Dr. of her wound, and the just triumph of others over her, Stokes. on account of her extensive oppressions, ver. 19. Abp. 9. — Put] The African Nomades are here meant. Newcome.
Abp. Newcome. See the map of the dispersion and Ver. 1. the prey departeth not;] They are still car- settling of nations. rying on their conquests, and never cease to get new 10. Yet was she carried away,] The Prophet may spoils from such as they newly conquer. Dr. Wells. refer to a past taking of No by Sennacherib. Dear
3. — their corpses ;] The dead bodies slain by them. Prideaux. These three verses are a description of Nineveh, as it was 11. Thou also shalt le drunken : thou shalt be hid] in the time of the Prophet. Abp. Newcome. Or else Even so thou also, O Nineveh, shalt drink deep of the they are prophetical of the enemy coming against it : cup of God's vengeance; thou, that wast once renowned and then the sense will be, Vengeance is near thee : I over the world, shalt be glad to be wrapped up in obdo already hear the noise of the Babylonian whips, in scurity and forgetfulness. Bp. Hall. the hands of the charioteers, driving furiously against 12. All thy strong holds shall be like fig trees &c.) As thee, &c. Bp. Hall. See chap. ii. 3, 4 ; and compare ripe figs drop off when they are shaken, so shall thy Jer. xlvii. 3. W. Lowth.
strong holds fall into the hands of the enemy, upon the 4. — the mistress of witchcrafts,] The arts of luxury first assault. W. Lowth. The image, though a comare called “witchcrafts,” because they have a sort of mon one, is very lively and expressive. Abp. Newcome.
Before CHRIST about 713.
ruin of Nineveh. they be shaken, they shall even fall the cankerworm || spoileth, and fleeth about 713. into the mouth of the eater.
away. 13 Behold, thy people in the midst 17 Thy crowned are as the locusts, of thee are women: the gates of thy and thy captains as the great gras- spreadeth land shall be set wide open unto hoppers, which camp in the hedges in thine enemies: the fire shall devour the cold day, but when the sun ariseth thy bars.
they flee away, and their place is not 14 Draw thee waters for the siege, known where they are. fortify thy strong holds: go into clay, 18 Thy shepherds slumber, O king and tread the morter, make strong of Assyria: thy || nobles shall dwell ! Or, valiant the brickkiln.
in the dust : thy people is scattered 15 There shall the fire devour thee; upon the mountains, and no man gathe sword shall cut thee off, it shall thereth them. eat thee up like the cankerworm: 19 There is no † healing of thy Heb;
wrinkling. make thyself many as the canker bruise; thy wound is grievous: all worm, make thyself many as the that hear the bruit of thee shall clap locusts.
the hands over thee: for
whom 16 Thou hast multiplied thy mer- hath not thy wickedness passed con
chants above the stars of heaven : tinually. 13. — the fire shall devour thy bars.] See chap. i. 5 ; foretells the total and entire destruction of this city. ii. 6. According to these prophecies the city was to be The Prophet Zephaniah likewise in the days of Josiah destroyed by fire and water : and we see in Diodorus king of Judah, foretells the same sad event, chap. ii. 13 that by fire and water it was destroyed. See the note -15. But what probability was there, that the capital on chap. ii. 6. Bp. Newton.
city of a great kingdom, a city which was sixty miles in 14. Draw the waters for the siege, &c.] Go to then, circumference, a city which contained so many thousand furnish thyself with provision for a siege; fill thy cis- inhabitants, a city which had walls, according to Diodoterns with water; fortify thy strong holds ; make ready rus Siculus, a hundred feet high, and so thick that store of bricks, to repair thy battered walls. Bp. Hali. three chariots could go abreast upon them, and fifteen Though the wall of the city bordered on the river, hundred towers at proper distances in the walls of two it might not be safe to water there within reach of hundred feet in height : what probability was there the enemy's missile weapons and engines. Abp. New- that such a city should ever be totally destroyed ? And
yet so totally was it destroyed, that the place where it 15. it shall eat thee up like the cankerworm :] Either, was situated is hardly known. the enemy shall eat thee up as easily as the cankerworm The city was taken and destroyed by the Medes and eats the green herb; or, thou shalt as soon be devoured Babylonians: and what probably helped to complete its as cankerworms are destroyed by storms, rain, fire, or ruin and devastation was the enlarging and beautifying change of weather. Poole.
of Babylon soon after by Nebuchadnezzar. From that 16. Thou hast multiplied thy merchants) Neither art time no mention is made of Nineveh by any of the thou any better for those multitudes of merchants, that sacred writers : and the most ancient of the heathen pertain unto thee : for they, like to those cankerworms, authors, who have occasion to say any thing about it, when they have spoiled what they may in their deceitful speak of it as a city that was once great and flourishing, trade, fly away from thee, and leave thée destitute. So but now destroyed and desolate. Great as it was foralso ver. 17. Bp. Hall.
merly, so little of it was remaining, that authors are not 17. Thy crowned are as the locusts,] Thy rulers. Bp. agreed even about its situation : probably we may conHall
. The word appears to signify the officers in the clude, from the general suffrage of ancient historians Ninevites' army. These the Prophet compares to lo- and geographers, that it was situated upon the river custs and grashoppers. W. Lowth. On cold days the Tigris : but yet no less authors than Ctesias and Diolocusts lie inactive in the inclosures of fertile spots : but dorus Siculus represent it as situated on the river on the shining of the sun, which dries their wings and Euphrates. Lucian, who flourished in the second cenenables them to fly, they disappear. The word “gras- tury after Christ, affirms, that Nineveh was utterly hoppers,” though not accurate, we are obliged to use for perished, and there was no footstep of it remaining, nor variety. The Hebrews have many names for the dif- could you tell where it was once situated : and the ferent species of locusts. Abp. Newcome.
greater regard is to be paid to Lucian's testimony, as he 18. Zhy shepherds slumber, o king of Assyria :) Dio- was a native of Samosata, a city upon the river Eudorus Siculus, speaking of the siege in which Nineveh phrates ; and coming from a neighbouring country, he fell
, says, that when the enemy had shut up the king must in all likelihood have known whether there were in the city, many nations revolted, each going over to any remains of Nineveh or not. There is at this time a the besieger, for the sake of their liberty : that the king city called Mosul, situate upon the western side of the despatched messengers to all his subjects, requiring Tigris, and on the opposite eastern shore are ruins of a forces from them to assist him : and that he thought great extent, which are said to be the ruins of Nineveh. himself able to endure the siege, and remained in ex- But it is more than probable, that these ruins are the pectation of the armies which were to be raised through remains of the Persian Nineveh, built between the third out the empire ; relying on an oracle, that the city could and the seventh century after Christ, and not of the not be taken till the river should become its enemy. Assyrian. Even the ruins of old Nineveh have been, as Abp. Newcome.
I may say, long ago ruined and destroyed ; such an 19. There is no healing of thy bruise ;] In this pas utter end” hath been made of it, and such is the truth sage, as well as in chap. i. 8, and ii. 11, 13, the Prophet of the Divine predictions ! Bp. Newton.
H A B A K K U K.
SOME writers, whose relations are probably founded on traditionary accounts, describe Habakkuk as a native of
Bethzakar ; and affirm, that he was of the tribe of Simeon. Some suppose him to have flourished in the reign of Manasseh ; others in that of Josiah; and some have placed him so late as Zedekiah : but the most approved opinion is, that he prophesied under Jehoiakim, who ascended the throne in the year of the world 3395, and
reigned over Judah eleven years. As the Prophet makes no mention of the Assyrians, and speaks of the Chaldean invasions as near at hand, chap.
i. 5; ii. 3 ; iii. 2, 16-19, he probably lived after the destruction of the Assyrian empire in the fall of Nineveh, in the year of the world 3392, and not long before the devastation of Judea by the victories of Nebuchadnezzar. Habakkuk was then nearly contemporary with, and predicted the same events as Jeremiah ; and he probably lived to witness the completion of that part of his prophecy which related to the afflictions of his country. Dr.
of his prophecy, its diction, imagery, spirit, and sublimity, cannot be too much admired. Abp. Newcome.
chapter, as well as from the word Selah, which occurs three times in the chapter, that the Prayer was set to musick ; and perhaps performed in the service of the temple; and it was possibly delivered in a kind of measure. The style of the whole book is poetical ; but more especially this beautiful and perfect ode, which is decorated with every kind of imagery and poetical embellishment. Habakkuk is imitated by succeeding Prophets, and is cited as an inspired person by the Evangelical writers, Heb. x. 37, 38; Rom. i. 17; Gal. iii. 11; Acts xiii. 41; compared with Hab. i. 5. Dr. Gray.
Before CHRIST about 626.
Before CHRIST about 626.
Fulfilled 2 Chron. 36.
before me: and there are that raise CHAP. I.
up strife and contention.
4 Therefore the law is slacked, and 1 Unto Habakkuk, complaining of the iniquity judgment doth never go forth : for
of the land, 5 is shewed the fearful venge, the a wicked doth compass about the a Job 21,7. ance by the Chaldeans., 12 He complaineth righteous; therefore || wrong judg-1 Or, wrested.
be who are far worse.
5 Behold ye among the hea- b Acts 18. 41.
vellously: for I will work a work in
that bitter and hasty nation, which 6.
ance? for spoiling and violence are places that are not their’s. Chap. I. ver. 2. O Lord, how long shall I cry, and that, which I will bring to pass by their hands against thou wilt not hear!) The Prophet proposes the common you, even a work, which to your incredulity and selfobjections against Providence, taken from the prospe- confidence will appear incredible. Bp. Hall. rity of the wicked, and the oppression of the righteous, 6.- I raise up the Chaldeans, that bitter and hasty which has been a stumbling block even to good men. nation,] Who shall make several incursions into Judea, Sze Jer. xii. 1 ; Job xii. 6 ; xxi. 7; Ps. xxxvii. and and at last utterly conquer it. See 2 Kings xxiv, xxv, Ixxiii. W. Lowth.
They are here said to be cruel in their temper, and 5. Behold ye among the heathen, &c.] But, to take vigorous in their warlike enterprises ; compare ver. 8. away the ground of all this complaint, behold, O ye W. Lowth, degenerated people of the Jews, and look upon those The Prophet, having set forth the deplorable state of heathens whom ye hate and contemn; and wonder at his nation by reason of their incorrigible sins, here pro