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be secure ; or at any time to boast of our wisdom, strength, or safety. Let us not be high minded, but fear.
3. Observe the power of God over the nations and princes of the earth. When the prophet had described the Egyptian allies as saying, Pharaoh is but a noise, he adds, v. 18. As I live, saith the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts, 80 shall he come. In all these lively descriptions of the preparations, the attack, the conquest, the pursuit, the plunder and destruction of Egypt, the hand of God is mentioned. He drave them, he punished them, he spoiled them : their slaughter was a sacrifice to his justice. War is his sword ; he gives it a commission, whom it shall strike, how far it shall extend, and how long it shall continue ; and it shall exactly fulfil its charge. It is very comfortable to think of this, amidst all the confusion that is in the earth ; it shows how much reason and encouragement there is to pray, that the devouring sword may be sheathed ; and to be thankful for our national blessings and prospects.
CHAP. XLVIII. Contains the judgment of Moab for several corruptions, which was executed by Nebuchadnezzar's army while engaged in the siege of Tyre.
1 AGAINST Moab thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of
11 Israel ; Wo unto Nebo ! for it is spoiled : Kiriathaim
is confounded [and] taken : Misgab is confounded and dismay2 ed. [There shall be) no more praise of Moab : in Heshbon,
its capital city, they have devised evil against it; that is, the Chal. deans, having taken it, shall devise evil there against the rest ;
come and let us cut it off from [being] a nation. Also thou shalt 3 be cut down, O Madmen! the sword shall pursue thee. A voice of
crying (shall be) from Horonaim, spoiling and great destruction. 4 Moab is destroyed ; her little ones have caused a cry to be 5 heard. For in the going up of Luhith continual weeping shall
go up ; for in the going down of Horonaim the enemies have 6 heard a cry of destruction. Flee, save your lives, (this is what
they shall say to one another,) and be like the heath in the wil.
derness, or, like a blasted tree in a solitary place. 7 For because thou hast trusted in thy works, or fortifications,
and in thy treasures, thou shalt also be taken : and Chemosh
thy god, unable to deliver thee, shall go forth into captivity [with] s his priests and his princes together. And the spoiler shall come
upon every city, and no city shall escape : the valley also shall perish, and the plain shall be destroyed, as the Lord bath spoken;
both cities and villuges, farmers and shepherds, shall all be destroy9 ed. Give wings unto Moab, without which it will be impossible to escafie, that it may fee and get away : for the cities thereof 10 shall be desolate, without any to dwell therein. Cursed [be] he
that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully, and cursed [be] he that keepeth back his sword from blood. God had given the command to destroy Moab ; he probably had signified his mind 10 Nebuchadnezzar by Jeremiah, whom he knew and owned to be a propher.
Moab hath been at ease from his youth, that is, hath enjoyed many years of peace, and he hath settled on his lees, like wines kept long on their lees, 10 preserve their strength and flavour ; and hath not been emptied from vessel to vessel, neither hath he gone into captivity : therefore his taste remained in him, and
his scent is not changed ; he is as bad or worse than ever. 12 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will
send unto him wanderers, that shall cause him to wander, or
tilters that shall tilt him down, and shall empty his vessels, and 13 break their bottles. And Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh,
as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel their confidence. 14 How say ye, We Care) mighty and strong men for the war? 15 Moab is spoiled, and gone up (out of] her cities, and his chosen
young men are gone down to the slaughter, saith the King, 16 whose name [is] the LORD of hosts. The calamity of Moab [is] 17 near to come, and his affliction hasteth fast. All ye that are
about him, bemoan him ; and all ye that know his name, that
is, his fame and glory, say, How is the strong staff broken, [and] 18 the beautiful rod ! all his authority, pride, and importance. Thou
daughter that dost inhabit Dibon, come down from (thy) glory, and sit in thirst ; for the spoiler of Moab shall come upon thee, .
[and] he shall destroy thy strong holds ; thou shalt be left to the 19 mercy of the conquerors, and be exposed to hunger and thirst. O
inhabitant of Aroer, stand by the way, and espy ; ask him that fleeth, and her that escapeth, [and] say, What is done ? there
shall be such a terrible alarm, that both men and women shall fly 20 before the conqueror comes. Moab is confounded; for it is brok
en down : howl and cry : tell ye it in Arnon, that Moab is 21 spoiled, And judgment is come upon the plain country ; upon 22 Holon, and upon Jahazah, and upon Mephaath, And upon Dibon, 23 and upon Nebo, and upon Bethdiblathaim, And upon Kiria24 thaim, and upon Bethgamul, and upon Bethmeon, And upon
Kerioth, and upon Bozra, and upon all the cities of the land of 25 Moab, far or near. The horn, that is, the power, of Moab is
cut off, and his arm is broken, saith the LORD ; an allusion to the horns of beasis, and the hands of men, where with they defend
themselves. 26 Make ye bim drunken : for be magnified Chimself] against
the LORD : Moab also shall wallow in his vomit, and he also
shall be in derision ; he shall be brought into the grea!c8t confum 27 sion and disorder, and be bereaved of the aids of reason. For
was not Israel a derision unto thee? what infamous thing was
there in Israel, that should expose him 80 much to your contempt? was he found among thieves ? had he injured you, and been tai ken in the fact ? for since thou spakest of him, thou skippedst
for joy; or, that thou shouldst insult him with all the power of thy 28 words. O ye that dwell in Moab, leave the cities, and dwell in
the rock, and be like the dove [that] maketh her nest in the 29 sides of the hole's mouth. We have heard the pride of Moab,
(he is exceeding proud, this is their prevailing character,) his
loftiness, and his arrogancy, and his pride, and the haughtiness 30 of his heart, and how he hoped to see Israel yuite extirfiated. I
know his wrath, saith the LORD ; that is, his design to misrepre. sent Israel to the Chaldeans ; or, the designs of the magicians and
false prophets to d«ceive them ; but [it shall] not [be] so; his 31 lies shall not so effect [it.] Therefore will I howl for Moab,
and I will cry out for all Moab : (mine heart] shall mourn for 32 the men of Kirheres. O vine of Sibmah, I will weep for
thee with the weeping of Jazer : thy plants are gone over the sea, they reach [even) to the sea of Jazer : the spoiler is fallen upon thy summer fruits, and upon thy vintage ; theirs being a country famous for vineyards, and the enemy invading them about
the time of vintage, and destroying it, their cries on that account 33 shall be heard far and wide. And joy and gladness is taken from
the plentiful field, and from the land of Moab ; and I have caused wine to fail from the wine presses : none shall tread with shouting ; (their) shouting (shall be] no shouting. From the cry of Heshbon (even] unto Elealeh, (and even) unto Jahaz, have they uttered their voice, from Zoar (even) unto Ho.
ronaim, [as] an heifer of three years old lowing after her calf : 35 for the waters also of Nimrim shall be desolate. Moreover I
will cause to cease in Moab, saith the LORD, him that offereth
in the high places, and him that burneth incense to his gods. 36 Therefore mine heart shall sound for Moab like pipes, and mine
heart shall sound like pipes for the men of Kirheres ; I look
upon them with the utmost compassion : because the riches (that) 37 he hath gotten are perished. For every head (sball be] bald,
and every beard clipped : upon all the hands [shall be] cuttings, 38 and upon the loins sackcloth. [There shall be] lamentation
generally upon all the house tops of Moab, and in the streets
thereof: for I have broken Moab like a vessel, wherein [is] no 39 pleasure, saith the LORD. They shall howl, [saying,] How is
it broken down ! how hath Moab turned the back with shame!
so shall Moab be a derision and a dismaying to all them about 40 him. For thus saith the LORD ; Behold, he shall fly as an 41 eagle, and shall spread his wings over Moab. Kerioth is taken,
and the strong holds are surprised, and the mighty men's hearts
in Moab at that day shall be as the heart of a woman in her 42 pangs. And Moab shall be destroyed from [being] a people, 43 because he hath magnified (himself) against the Lord. Fear,
and the pit, and the snare, (shall be) upon thee, O inhabitant of Vol. V.
44 Moab, saith the LORD. He that fleeth from the fear, shall fall
into the pit ; and he that getteth up out of the pit shall be taken
in the snare : for I will bring upon it, [even) upon Moab, 45 the year of their visitation, saith the Lord. They that fled
stood under the shadow of Heshbon, because of the force or fortifications of Heshbon, thinking they should be safe there : but a fire shall come forth out of Heshbon, and a flame from the midst of Sihon, and shall devour the corner of Moab, and the crown of the head of the tumultuous ones ; the Chaldeans shall take it,
lay up their ammunition there and destroy those turbulent creatures 46 with which the country abounds. Wo be unto thee, O Moab !
the people of Chemosh perisheth : for thy sons are taken captives, and thy daughters captives.
Yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab, some of them shall be restored in the latter days, saith the LORD ; which may refer to the conversion of the gentiles in gospel times. Thus far [is] the judgment of Moab.
REFLECTIONS. 1. I ET us attend to that awful denunciation, v. 10. Cursed be
L he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully, and curse'l be he that keepeth his sword back from blood. Though it Be bloody work, yet God commanded it to be done upon those wicked people ; who, to all their other crimes, added, what was peculiarly displeasing to him, rejoicing and insulting over the miseries of others, and of Israel in particular. We are not called out to such work as this: but only to such services as are reasonable and delightful. To do it deceitfully, or negligently, is not to do it to the purpose ; or to pretend to do it out of regard to God, when our only aim is to serve our own interest ; or without that life and zeal, which we ought to discover. The more excellent the work is to which we are called, the more awful will be the curse of doing it deceitfully. Let us therefore be steadfast and immoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord.
2. See what danger there is in prosperity, v. 11. Moab, though so very wicked, enjoyed long prosperity, and that, by their abuse of it, helped to make them more so. This is too common in our day ; because men have no changes, they fear not God, think they are as good as they need to be ; or that God is not displeased with their sins. What little reason have we to be fond of prosperity, or to envy those who enjoy it! This shows us why God chooses an afflicted state for his people ; and how reasonable it is in them to ac• quiesce in it.
3. See how odious pride is to God. This is particularly specified as the predominant sin in Moab, v. 29. it is several times men. tioned in various expressions. It is a temper very hateful to God, cspecially when it shows itself in taking pleasure in the poverty or
calamities of others. The whole of the chapter in this connection, · confirms Solomon's observation, that pride goeih before destruction,
and an naughty spirit o.fore a full.
Contains a collection of prophecies against several of the neighbouring
i MONCERNING the Ammonites, thus saith the LORD ;
W Hath Israel no sons ? hath he no heirs ? are they quite er. tinct, doth not Judah still survive ? why (then) doth their king,
or, Milcom, inherit Gad, and his people dwell in his cities? 2 Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will
cause an alarm of war to be heard in Rabbah, the chief city of the Ammonites; and it shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters, the lesser cities, shall be burned with fire : then shall Israel be heir unto them that were his heirs, saith the Lord ; he shall
take their possessions who have taken his ; which was the case un3 der the Maccabees. Howl, O Heshbon, for Ai is spoiled: cry
ye daughters of Rabbah, gird you with sackcloth ; lament, and run to and fro by the hedges to hide yourselves ; for their king,
that is, Milcom, their god, shall go into captivity, [and] his 4 priests and his princes together. Wherefore gloriest thou in
the vallies, thy flowing, or fruitful valley, () backsliding daugh
ter, (perhaps 80 called as being descended from Lol) that trusted 5 in her treasures, (saying,] Who shall come unto me ? Behold,
I will bring a fear upon thee, saith the Lord God of hosts, from all those that be about thee; and ye shall be driven out every man, right forth ; and none shall gather up him that wander
eth, afford him shelter and habitation. 6 And afterward I will bring again the captivity of the children
of Ammon, saith the LORD. 7 Concerning Edom, or Idumea, thus saith the LORD of hosts ;
(Is) wisdom no more in Teman ? is counsel perished from the
prudent? is their wisdom vanished, for which Edom was once 80 8 famous ?* Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, in caverns, in which
they should hide themselves, O inhabitants of Dedan ; for I will
bring the calamity of Esau upon him, the time [that] I will 9 visit him. If grape gatherers come unto thee, would they not
leave [somel gleaning grapes ? if thieves by night, they will 10 destroy till they have enough, they would leave something. But
I have made Esau bare, this shall be an utter destruction, I have uncovered his secret places, where he hid his treasures, and he shall not be able to hide himself: his seed is spoiled, and his
brethren, and his neighbours, the Moabiles and Ammonites, and 11 he [is] not; there is none left to say, Leave thy fatherless children,
I will preserve [them) alive : and let thy widows trust in me ; 12 though some understand this as God's word to his people. For thus
saith the LORD ; Behold, they whose judgment (was) not to drink of the cup, have assuredly drunken; that is, the Jews did so,
* Job's frieads came from this country.