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Salmanasar, and Sennacherib. The third agrees with Grotius in principle; but differs from him in the application of the prediction. He observes, in explaining Chap. ii. Ver. 20, that the northern one means the Assyrians and Chaldèans, who came from the north; and adds, that the term northern is here used to shew that the prophet does not intend real locusts, but symbolical ones. His reasoning is just; though his application is, I think, wrong
Real locusts do not come from the north, but breed in the warm regions of the south *. They are used therefore with singular propriety by St. John, who (as Mede and Bp. Newton justly observe) has borrowed many particulars of his description from Joel, to typify the vast armics of the Saracens. In the Apocalypse however the antitypical locusts come, like their types, from the south and south-east : consequently the Apostle had no occasion to specify the particular quarter of the liçavens; that point, nothing being said to
Speaking of the remarkable accordance of the apocalyptic locusts with the Saracens, Mr. Daubuz observes, that, “ the Su..
racens have made inroads into all those parts of Christendom “ where the natural locusts are wont to be seen and known to “ do mischief, and no where else: and that too in the same
proportion. Where the locusts are seldom secu, there the “ Sarucens stayed little; where the natural locasts are often
seen, there the Saracens abode most: ald, where they breed “ most, there the Saracens had their beginning, and greatest “ power.” Nir. Mede observes, like Mr. Daubur, that the locusts bred much in Arabia.
the contrary, would be sufficiently determined by the natyral history of the symbol * But Joel wished to describe a horde of rapacious northern invaders under the same imagery. Hence both the decorum of the type, and the right understanding of the prediction, required, that he should particularly specify that the locusts should come from the north ; thus tacitly, though plainly, insinuating, that he meant not any literal locusts.
Here then Chandler has a fresh difficulty to encounter : and in what manner does he endeavour to remove it? Kimchi, who like himself supposes the locusts to be literal ones, somewhat unthinkingly adopts the natural and obvious interpretation of the passage; and says, that the prophet calls the locust the northern one, because it came to them from the northern quarter. But this exposition is by no means satisfactory, because real locusts do not come from the north. Chandler therefore adopts the gloss of Bochart, who had before him understood the locusts of Joel in a literal sense, and who must also before him have felt the refractoriness of this passage. “ northern one,” says he, “ is that part of the “ locusts, which is on the northern side of the city; “ and the barren and dry land, into which the
* In a similar manner, he symbolizes the various irruptions of the northern nations by a storm of hail, without specifying from what quarter that storm came, because the north is the region'of snow and hail,
" Lord will drive them, is Arabia which lies to the " south of Judèa, and where they would die for “ want of food." Are we to suppose then, if literal locusts be intended, that there were none on the south side of the city? And if, as common sense obliges us to conclude no less than the
very full and ample description of the prophet, there undoubtedly were; why are those on the northern side alone noticed, while nothing is said respecting those on the southern side? Nor is this all: the two seas, as both Bochart, Kimchi, and Chandler, allow, are the dead sca* and the Mediterranean
How then could the locusts be between these two seas, if they were driven far into the desarts of Arabia t? In short, I can consider such an interpretation in no other light than that of a mere struggle to get quit of a difficulty. The northern one is evidently a sweeping expression, denoting either the king of the locusts at the head of his armies, or the rehole body of the locusts themselves: And I am persuaded, that any one, who reads the passage unbiassed by system, will conclude, that the northern locusts, which lay waste the whole land of Judèa, are certain locusts, which come out of the north; and that, when he recollects that locusts are ordinarily bred in the south, he will say with Jerome, that the epithet northern is added to shew that the prophet did not intend real locusts.
* Kimchi thinks, perhaps also the lake of Gennesareth.
+ The land barren and desolate is certainly the land between the seas, or Palestine; not Arabia. This land had been made barren and desolate by the ravages of the locust-army. The removing to a distance must be taken in a qualified and limited sense ; for the place, to which the symboličal ločusts are to be femoved, is between the seas of Palestine, no less than the glorious holy mountain itself (compare Dan. xi. 45.). We learn from St. John, that this place is Megiddo, descriptively termed by Joel the valley of the Lord's judgment ; which is about forty miles from Jerusalein, and which, though it may be con. sidered as lying between the dead sea and the Mediterranean, is (to speak with more geographical accuracy) situate between the Mediterranean and the sea of Gennesareth.
Supposing then that the locusts, caterpillers, canker-worms, and palmer-worms, which composed the vast army described by Joel, are to be understood, not literally, but symbolically; the next point to be considered is the period to which we are to assign this tremendous invasion of Judda. Grotius think's, as we have seen, that the successive invasions of Phul, Tiglathphilasar, Salmanasar, and Sennacherib, are intended *. · St. Jerome supposes,
I think him no less wrong in this part of his opinion, than in his application of the prophecy to a period during which Judah was existing as a kingdom. These four tribes of animals are plainly represented as composing only one army, the different divisions of which, after they have jointly entered Palestine, spread themselves over the face of the whole country, and rival each other in mischievousness and rapacity. “ That “ which the palmer-worm hath left, hath the locust eaten; and " that which the locust hath left, hath the canker-worm eaten;
and that which tlie çanker-worm hath left, hath the cater
“ piller that the Chaldèans and Assyriaus are the symbolical locust army. Mr. Mede adopts the opinion of Jerome * Abarbanel conjectures, that not only the Chaldeaus, who carried away the ten tribes, are meant; but likewise the Babylonians, who destroyed the first temple, and the Romans, who destroyed the second t. Kimchi observes, that some of the Rabbies expound the verse, in which the destruction of the locust-army is foretold, as relating to the days of the Messiah: and he thinks, that the Chaldee Paraphrast interprets the locusts to mean princes, and people, and kingdoms, because he apprehended
* piller eaten-A fire devoureth before thens; and behind them
'a flame burneth : the land is as the garden of Eden before 3 them, and behind theny a desolate wilderness; yea, and no* thing shall escape them.” The ravages of a hostile army, sometimes advancing in one great body, and sometimes dividing itself into detachments, could not have been painted more to The life. There cannot be a better comment upon the prophecy than the conduct of the locusts of Antichrist is the course of their various campaigns. Every part of the European continent within their reach. has been plundered and laid waste by them. They have been uniformly subsisted at the expence of the wretched inhabitants. And I doubt not, whenever their appointed time for invading Palestine shall arrive, that the same deeds of havoc and barbarity will be tbere also re-acted, Could the poet, who wished to describe the universal conluct of the French, have pitched upon more apposite images to symbolize those barbarians, than locusts, caterpillers, canker. worms, and palmer-worms? See my Dissert. on the 1260 years, Chap. xi. Sect. 1. Comment on Vial iii.
* Comment. Apoc. p. 467.