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Ophir was probably a district in .אוֹפִיר paranormisia with עוֹקִיר
of the parallel epiz, to be taken as the object, “ I visit on the world the wickedness.”
VERSE 12. Most of the Babylonians shall perish, v. 9; so few shall remain, that living men will be as rare as the finest gold.
. a Southern Arabia. Though gold is not found there now, yet we are assured, by many competent authorities, that it was anciently. It is objected, indeed, that Solomon's ships, 1 K. 10: 22, were gone three years; but the voyages of the ancients were very tedious, mostly along the coasts; the ships that now sail between Suez and Djidda, make only one voyage yearly, as the winds in the north part of the Red Sea blow nine months uniformly downwards ; in the south part, nine months upwards; while in the central part they are changeable (Rüppell, Abyss. I. 107). It is conceivable also that the ships of Solomon were compelled to wait a considerable time for the arrival of goods from various parts of India, with which the Arabians early carried on commerce. Winer, art. Ophir.
Verse 13. “Therefore,” on account of this punishment so tremendous, the Divine glory will be fully revealed.
name in the anger, but on account of one which follows, in the time of it, when Jehovah manifests it. Comp. Job 37: 1, My heart quakes and trembles from its place.
Verse 14. The numerous foreigners in Babylon, (collected there for purposes of commerce,) are the subject. In the impending invasion, they flee to their own homes. The strangers in Babylon are mentioned, and their flight, Jer. 50: 37. 177 neuter, it is, it so happens. “ Chased gazelle,” flees with the utmost haste, 2 Sam. 2: 18. Prov. 6: 5. 1987 The Vav often stands in connections where it may
be resolved by the relative. After 783, 01777 may be supplied.1 VERSE 15. Whoever remains in Babylon shall perish. 190) ,
lit. all who are scraped together, i. e. collected, taken in the onset, shall be slain by the sword. Xenophon, Cyrop. vii. 5. B. 31, says : “Cyrus sent off the cohorts of horsemen along the roads; and gave orders that they should slay those whom they found without; but those in the houses should be directed, by such as were acquainted with the Syrian language, to stay within; but if any were taken without, they should be put to death.”
1 Aeschylus (Pers. 51) says of Babylon :
Verse 16. The horrid barbarities of ancient warfare are depicted Hos. 10: 14. Nah. 3: 10. 2 K. 8: 12.
Verse 17. The Medes are here first named. The Persians are not mentioned, since the Medians were the leading power, being far more numerous. They appear as an uncultivated people, like the modern Koords. The invaders esteeming gold and silver of no account, the Babylonians would not be able to ransom themselves. Homer, II. vi. 48:
Χαλχός τε χρυσός τε, πολύκμητός τε σίδηρος.
“Medes, and all present! I kno you well, that neither needing money do you go with me," etc.-Xen. Cyr. 5. 1. 20.
to , תָּחוּס
VERSE 18. The cruelty of the invaders is still further depicted. ninni, bows, then bowmen. Comp. Germ. Degen, English shots. The Median and Persian armies were distinguished for the number and excellence of the archers, Jer. 50:42. Cyrop. ii. 1.7. spare, to be grieved for. Pity is ascribed to the eye ; it expresses itself in the looks.
The beautiful capital of the Chaldeans, vs. 19–22, becomes a perpetual heap of ruins, where only solitary wild beasts lodge.
VERSE 19.3%, beauty, splendor; then roe, gazelle, from its extreme beauty and gracefulness. Thus in relation to Jonathan : "The gazelle, O Israel, on thy mountains slain," 2 Sam. 1: 19. Beauty of the pride," beautiful place; and, as such, the object of the pride and boast of the Chaldeans. The epithets, says Knobel, stand in fine contrast with the miserable ruins into wbich Babylon shall fall. h27?, verbal nominative with the Gen. of the subject and Acc. of the object, Ges. Lehrgb. p. 688. VERSE 20. Description of the most perfect destruction : Babylon
. ? . , tent, to pitch tent, $ 67. R. 2. The Arabians wandered as far as Assyria, Gen. 25: 18, and Babylonia, Strabo, 16. The Nomade tribes of Nortbern and Central Arabia pitch their tents, at the present time, in the vicinity of Baghdad and of the ruins of Babylon. Ker Porter II.
o ,אָהַל fut . Piel from יְאַהֵל for נַהֵל
.shall be an eternal desolation
Only beasts which delight in desolate and ruinous places, shall be found there.
“Wild beasts," inhabitants of my a wild, waste; used of beasts, except in Isa. 23: 13. Ps. 72: 9. found only here; derived, by Ges., from nos, a root not in use; comp. Latin ulula. “Ostrich," lit. daughter of greediness, used here Érıxoivos of both sexes; they inhabit the desert and utter a wailing
“ Wild goats;" lit. hairy; then, he-goat; then, as many suppose, wood-demons, satyrs; a fabulous animal, half human, with which superstition is wont to people a wild region ; but here it is, perhaps, unnecessary to go beyond the conmon meaning of the term he-goat.
VERSE 22. As a waste, Babylon is an abode of jackals, Jer. 9: 10. 10:22. Instead of ", lit. howler, in, the common expression, is used. noy Sing. with a Plur. $144. a. In ning for 9, as is very often the case; see the lexicons. The Suffix probably refers to the Chaldean king, who lived in the palace. The jackal is noted for its melancholy scream at night, resembling the crying of a child.
Cuap. XV., VERSE 1. This destruction shall take place for God "shall choose Israel again." In exile, the Jews had served foreign masters, to whom Jehovah had given them up; but now he chose them once more as his own, as he did anciently in Egypt. na with ?, to be pleased with, to delight in. From from 173, $ 71. R. 9. “Strangers,” such as the Canaanites who remained in the land, a part of whom were carried into exile, Ez. 14: 7, a part were left in the land, Ezra 9: 1. Many had become proselytes and zealously kept the law, Num. 15: 14. Isa. 56: 6.
Verse 2. But it shall fare hardly with those nations that had carried the Jews into exile. As their own land is wasted, they must seek a new home ; they shall accompany the Jews to Palestine and become their slaves. The Jews shall then hold captive their captors. Isa. 6:10, bmnn to appropriate to one's self, used actively. See Lehrgb. 248.
Verse 3. This shall take place when Jehovah gives his people rest from all their troubles. 2 for 777, “which service one has made thee serve.” en is Acc. and refers to aizs, $ 139. 3. a, b). The exiles may have been used as serfs.
Verse 4. The first joyful exclamation of the freed exiles! How has come to an end the oppressor, i. e. the Chaldean king. Bei satirical poem, song of derision. 72 ah ! how ! ironical.
? Onu hey., denominative from Aram. 5777 = 571, exactress of gold; or, if the participle is used abstractly, exaction of gold. But all the ancient versions seem to have read it na???, oppression ; so, also, ed. Thessalon. 1600, which corresponds better with the parallelism.
VERSE 5. Jehovah has broken the heavy yoke of the rulers, i. e. oppressors.
Verse 6. The subject is wa, i. e. the Babylonian power, represented by the king. The common reading 7777 is a verbal from Hophal; hence persecution, oppression, in the Acc., with a persecution that knows no intermission. Döderlein, however, suggests 1979
Notes. dominion, domination, as the parallelism demands a derivative from 17. This reading is acquiesced in by Maurer, Gesenius, Knobel, and others. mon in the preceding member, corresponds to re, lit. striking a strike. For the construct form, see $ 114. 3. Tiems, which he did not restrain.
Verse 7. After Babylon is destroyed, the whole earth is at rest, no longer exposed to the assaults of that cruel and ambitious Power. anyp“ the inhabitants break out into singing," § 135. R. 2. Verse 8. Even inanimate nature rejoices at thy downfall.
She has been maltreated by thee. Rosenmüller and others understand by fir-trees and cedars, nobles, great men; but this is rendered improbable by the particle es also. The passage may be understood as a lively personification, i. e. the joy at thy downfall is so great, that the objects of nature seem to exult over thee; or,
refer to actual facts, i. e. the trees on Lebanon had been cut down by the invaders; which appears to be the most natural interpretation. In the invasion of Judah by Sennacherib, Isa. 37: 24, the king of Assyria is represented as saying: “By the multitude of my chariots am I come up to the heights of the mountains, to the sides of Lebanon, and I will cut down the tall cedars thereof." So Hab. 2: 17 is to be taken literally, “ for the violence of Lebanon shall cover thee,” i. e. the violence inflicted by thee on Lebanon (Gen. of object), shall return upon thee by the law of retaliation; and “ the destruction of the beasts," i. e. inflicted upon them. See the arguments in favor of the literal interpretation of this passage, in Delitzsch’s Habakkuk, p. 95.
Verse 9. Even Hades, the world of the dead, where else unbroken silence reigns, betrays commotion at thy coming. She is filled with astonishment and joy at an event so unlooked for. This passage, one of the sublimest in the Hebrew Scriptures, has been compared to the celebrated lines in the Diad, xx. 56–65 :
And fearfully thundered the Father of men and of gods
See, also, the Aeneid viji. 241. Ovid. Met. v. 256. Longinus, on the Sublime, 8. 9. 7? either on thy account, or to thee. Bu is of com
mon gender, and is construed with an and is, § 144. R. 1. Lehrgb. 705. Dup?, lit. the weak, kidola xauóvrov, II. 23. 72. From under, contrast with the Chaldee king's coming from above.
VERSE 10. Expression of astonishment at the fate of the mighty monarch: “ Art thou made like to us, and brought down to us?” Const. Praeg. § 133.
VERSE 11. The song, commenced v. 4, is here resumed. A few words from the pale shades would be much more in keeping, than a protracted address. A very brief address only would be expected. Brought down to the grave is thy royal majesty and thy luxurious life. Instead of costly furniture for thy couch, worms are thy coverlet. Toon is substantive and Sing. Lehrgb. 433. *for sen 5 144. a).
VERSE 12. Expression of wonder that the man who was exalted to the highest glory is brought down to Hades. Cicero says of Pompey: deciderat ex astris; and of Antony : collegam de coelo detraxisti. be considered by some Imp. Hiph. from bb, howl ! but it is descriptive here, and not an address. It is a participial noun fronı 3377 to shine shining one. “Son of the dawn," i. e. morningstar. The planet Venus, rising before the sun, is called by Homer xólnoros érino. To it the noblest of earth's kings is likened. Christ is called, Rev. 22: 16, the bright, the morning star. “ Cast down,” praeg. const.“ cast down and destroyed.” The false Messiah, at the time of Hadrian, called himself son of the star.
Verse 13. But this destruction is deserved. In thy pride and impiety, thou didst assume divine honors. Comp. 2 Thess. 2: 4. Stars of God,” stars of heaven, where God dwells.
“ Mount of the congregation,” etc. There seems to be no good reason for deviating from the common view, advocated by Gesenius and others. It is the mons sacer, the Oriental Olympus, the Indian Meru, the Persian el-burj, situated in the farthest regions of the North, under the pole itself, and the seat of the blessed gods. Ges. Thes. in voc.
, recesses, penetralia, of a house, Am. 6: 10; of a ship, Jon. 1: 5; of a cave, of the sepulchre, Isa. 14: 15.
VERSE 14. Many of the Oriental nations were accustomed to call their kings gods. “Thou saidst, I am a God, I sit in the seat of God,” Ez. 38: 2. Virg. Ec. i. 6. deus nobis haec, etc. referring to Augustus.
$ 2. Verse 15. Instead of entering the adytum of the gods, thou art brought down to that of the pit, to the deepest recess of the tomb. Gesenius quotes the verses from Vit. Tim. ji. 494 :
.53 $ אֶתְהַמֶה for אֶבַּמֶה
Oft stands above the heaven a man ; and stands he there?
(Quick) lies he under the grave-stone.