Page images

to place them: for I will have mercy upon them; and they shall be as though I had not cast them off: for I am the Lord their God, and will 'hear them. 7. And they of Ephraim * shall be like a mighty man, and their heart shall rejoice as through wine : yea, their children shall see it, and be glad; their heart shall rejoice in the Lord. 8. I will hiss for them, and gather them : for I have redeemed them, and they shall increase, as they have increased. 9. And I will sow them among the people, and they shall remember me in far countries ; for they shall live with their children, and shall return. 10. I will bring them also out of the land of Egypt, and gather them out of Assyria; and I will bring them into the land of Gilead and Lebanon; and it shall not suffice for them. 11. And he shall pass through the sea with affliction, and shall smite the waves of the sea, and all the deeps of the river shall dry up; and the pride of Assyria shall be brought down, and the scepter of Egypt shall depart away. 12. And I will strengthen them in the Lord; and they shall walk up and down in his name, saith the Lord.


Zechariah opens this prophecy with the same imagery that Ezekiel had used before him t. The

They of Ephraim.] “ Ephraim is equivalent here to the ten tribes, as the house of Joseph is, ver. 6." Mr. Lowth in loc.

+ Ezek. xxxiv.
U 2


anger of God is kindled against the shepherds or
governors who had so long troubled his people
Israel : and he threatens to punish the goats, or
those apostate Jews who had joined the party of
Antichrist *; while he promises in general to visit
his flock, and to make them as the goodly horse in
the battle. For this purpose he will bring it to pass,
that, at the time when the infidel confederacy is
overthrown, Judah shall take an active part in the
destruction of his enemies f. Out of him shall
go forth a corner, or a chief commander
him a nail, or the officers next in rank $; out of


; out of

Compare Ezek. xxxiv, 17. + Compare Zechar. xii. 2-6.

I " A community is often expressed by an edifice or building; " and the corresponding parts expressed by the same name. “ Hence, as the largest stones or timbers are used in the angles “ to bind together and strengthen the sides of the building, “ which meet therein as in a common centre ; so the angle or

corner metaphorically denotes the chief personage in a community, on whom its strength and security principally de " pends. Accordingly we find nuD, properly corners, rendered chief in our English version, Judg. xx. 2. 1 Sam. xiv. 38. and “ in Isaiah xix. 13. they that are the stay; in the margin, got' vernors; and by Bp. Lowth, chief pillurs. Therefore by nd here may be understood the commander in chief.Dr. Blayney's Zechariah in loc.

s " inis properly a nail or pin used to fasten the timbers

or parts of a building together; and may therefore serve to “ denote the officers next in command under the chief, by whose

means the common soldiers are united, kept steady, and in “ regular order. Bp. Lowth has two excellent notes on Isaiah

“ xxii.

[ocr errors]

him the bow of battle, or the archers * ; out of him all that draw near together t. And the Lord will give them strength to tread down their foes, and to fight as mighty men even as the riders on horseback.

e xxii. 23, 24. in which are stated the use and importance of * nails, spikes, or wooden pins, and their application to denote

persons eminent in station and power. Such a nail or pin was “ Eliakim to be, the support of his family and friends; and “ such had Shebna, been ; but he, it is said, ver. 25, was to “ be removed, cut down, and to fall, so as to involve in his

ruin all that depended on him. In one of these notes the “ Bishop cites Ezra ix. 8, Grace hath been shewed from the Lord

our God, to leave us a remnant to escape, and to give as a nail in his holy place. That is, says the Bishop, as the margin of

our Bible explains it, a constant and sure abode. But might “ it not rather mean, a person of wisdom and authority to conduct and steady them, and on whom they might lean for support, « after that God had brought them once more to his holy “ place?" Dr. Blayney in loc. See also the Bp. of Killalla on Isaiah xxii. 23.

The bow of battle can only mean the archers in an ariny." Dr. Blayney in loc.

+" In the house or building these words would denote the stones of common use placed contiguous or in close order one by another. “ Correspondently in the army must be meant the close embodied phalanx, or main body of men of war advancing on together in regular order to mcet the enemy. Accordingly was frequently

siguifies to draw nigh towards an enemy for the purpose of

giving him battle, and this both with and without nonkos “ following it. See Jash. viii. 11.-1 Sain. vii. 10.xvii, 16, “ 41).- 2 Sam. X. 13.-Jer. xlvi. 3.-Jocl iii. 9-14." Dr. Blayncy in loc. U 3


[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Nor shall Judah alone be restored : God will save likewise the house of Joseph, though he appears to have long entirely forgotten them. He will hiss for them, and gather them : and, after he hath mightily redeemed them, he will sow them among the people, and they shall remember him in far countries. He will make them as it were the seed of his Millennian church : and cause them to be instrumental in spreading the knowledge of his truth, to the utterinost parts of the earth *. He will bring them moreover out of Egypt, and gather them out of Assyria. The figurative sea of Egypt shall then be smitten, and the river of Assyria shall be dried up; or, as the prophet himself explains this symbolical imagery, the pride of Assyria shall be brought down, and the sceptre of Egypt shall depart away. Nevertheless, while restoring his ancient people and executing vengeance upon his enemies, God will not forget to be gracious. Though he will smite Egypt, and give it up for a season into the hand of Antichrist; yet he will smite it only to heal it: for “they shall return to “ the Lord, and he shall be intreated of them, and " shall heal them.” Assyria shall likewise taste his mercy, after he has gathered his long lost sheep of the house of Israel from out of the midst of her. " In that day shall Israel be the third with Egypt

• Compare Hosea ii. 23.

rs and

" and with Assyria, even a blessing in the midst “ of the land ; whom the Lord of hosts shall bless, saying, Blessed be Egypt my people, and Assyria “ the work of my hands, and Israel mine in" heritance *.”


The miraculous overthrow of the Antichristian

confederacyThe conversion of certain Jews in Jerusalem--The preservation and conversion of the third part of the Antichristian confederacy -The previous sacking of Jerusalem by AntichristThe manifestation of Messiah to destroy AntichristThe extermination of false religion -The destruction of Antichrist-The prevalence of true religion - The nature of the plague, with which the faction of Antichrist will be af flicted--The part, which Judah will act--The final conversion and prosperity of Judah.

Zechariah xii. it. The burden of the word of the Lord. Concerning Israel saith the Lord, which


* Isaiah xix. 22, 24, 25. Compare Isaiah xi. 15, 16, and xxvii. 12, 13.

+ Chup. xii. 1.) Mr. Lowth supposes, like myself, that this prophecy relates to an invasion of Jurlèu at the period of the yet future restoration of the Jews; but he imagines, what I


« PreviousContinue »