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2. That sendeth ambassadors by sea,
Even in light vessels' on the face of the waters.
Respecting the nation here meant, our hopes will, perhaps, precipitate our judgment. It is evidently, however, a great seafaring people, whose light sailing vessels cover the ocean. “ A land,” says Bishop Horsley,
spreading wide the shadow of its wings”—“some great people, famous for the protection they should afford.” Perhaps a modern poet might designate such a nation
“ The fond ally, That fights for all."
The situation of this country is, indeed, very obscurely pointed out; “ beyond,” or “on the other side,” or “more remote than the rivers of Cush.” By “the rivers of Cush” has generally been understood the Nile; and it has certainly a good title to be called a river of Cush; for a colony of the Arabian Cushites, passing over the Red Sea, had in very ancient times established a flourishing kingdoin in Ethiopia, the country from whence this river flows into Egypt. This may be one river of Cush, and some more remote river of Africa another, if we are to look in this direction for this protecting nation. It would, then, be far off to the west. But two other celebrated
Literally,“ vessels of papyrus," Basvas, understand “ books," and navigium ex papyro confectum; de consider them as the objects that quo navigiorum genere, v. Pli are sent.–FABER. NIUM, vii. c. 57; vi. c. 22. Com But an anachronism, in respect pare xna nan, Exodus, ii. 3. Some, of the use of papyrus, will, I ima. after the Septuagint, Tictonas Bio gine, be detected here.
* Chap. xviii,
rivers, the Euphrates and the Tigris, have an equal, and perhaps superior claim to be called “the rivers of Cush." For Cush was the father of the famous Nimrod, who founded his kingdom on the former of these rivers; and from thence Ashur “ went out," and erected, on the latter river, the capital of the Assyrian empire. In case we prefer this interpretation, the situation of this protecting country—at least, in some sort, the scene of its power and operations,-must be looked for in the remoter regions of the East; and the ten tribes, if they are the part of Israel intended, are certainly to be looked for in this direction. i
A description follows of the people to whom these messengers, that pass the sea in their swift ships, are
to go :
may ,ירט if derived from ,מורט
1 This I find confirmed by
, Bishop Horsley, in his Biblical be rendered
away," as into Criticism :-“ Unless we can deter the hand of a wicked persecutor, mine, whether it be the African or Job, xvi. 11; or we may render Asiatic land of Cush, of which the “ rashly precipitated.” Compare prophet speaks, we know not in Numbers, xvi. 32. The Arab. 19, which quarter to look for the land
bogo signifies in one of its conjubeyond the rivers of Cush, whether gations" conjecit, præcipitum defar to the west, or far to the east dit in exilium;" and in another, of Palestine.”
lapsus fuit in exitium vel diffiquia will admit of several cultatem.” “ Plucked.” — HORSmeanings,“ bolden and retained," “ drawn away,” or cut in length," Compare the phrase, or “ sprinkled like seed over the sur og'bm77 19778, Ezek. xxxix. 22 ; face of the land," lastly, “ pro “ wonderful from their beginning tracted in hope." See Prov. xiii. hitherto."--HORSLEY. 12.“ Dragged away."--HORSLEY,
To a nation expecting, and expecting, and still trampled
This can hardly describe any other people than the descendants of Israel. The symbolical inundations ? had ruined their country, themselves were dispersed and scattered; but, when gathered from this dispersion, they are to be the object of fear and reverence for eyer.
3. All ye inhabitants of the world, and dwellers upon the earth, As it were, a signal lifted up upon the mountains, shall ye
The attention of the whole world is called to some sign, or summons, that the God of heaven will then give. A similar language has been held before ; * but, probably, the fulfilment alone will discover what is particularly meant.
4. For thus hath Jehovah said to me,
That I should rest, and observe from my station, 3
xia, Arab. l;!,“ subjecit to be denoted by it, “ peoples."sibi.” — Simon. Also, “ fraxit,” “rapuit;" “spoiled.”—Horsley. Comp. Syriac; where the verbs
? “ Rivers," i. e. the armies of are in the second per. imperative. conquerors, which long since have
, spoiled the land of the Jews: and “collegit proprie, decerpendo carpso the passage was understood by sit, decerpsit.”—Simon. Jonathan, who, for the metaphor Bishop Horsley translates “rivers," puts, what he understood these lines :
,ארה may be derived from אור
* Isajah, v. 26; xi, 10.
The metaphor, as I conjecture, is, the observer is to watch for certain well known meteorological signs of the time of the vintage. This will be necessary, because in the vineyard itself every hope and every mark of the ripening harvest will have been destroyed. But, nevertheless, the observer shall not wait the season in vain.
5. For before the vintage, when the bud is perfect,
And the sour grape is set in the blossom;
hooks, And the knife hath removed the superfluous shoots ; 6. They shall be given up together to the birds of the moun
Shall a present be presented to Jehovah Sabaoth :
This language is certainly, to us, at present very ob
“ I will sit still (but I will keep
my eye upon my prepared ha
bitation.) “ As the parching heat just before
the lightning. “ As the dewy cloud in the beat
“ Like the clear heat at the com
ing of daylight, Like the cloud of dew in the beat of harvest."—Bp. STOCK.
095751, “ flagella, i. e. summa partes vitium copiosè propullulantes," &c.--Simon.
scure. It seems to denote the time when this glorious event is to take place, counted, as it were, by the progress of vegetation in the symbolical vineyard before described. After marking the progress of its vegetation, and seeing every preparation made for the ensuing harvest, at that very time,“ in the day of the torrent, or inundation,” should all be swept away, and the vineyard become a desolation. Yet, notwithstanding this disappointment of the hopes of the wasting people of God, at that very season, would God, by other means, be establishing his word, and accomplishing the deliverance of his people. * But there are obscurities in the language, which only the event can explain. It was, however, necessary for us to notice this prophecy, as one of those that trace the approach of the second advent in the future history of Israel.
Remarks on the latter Part of the Nineteenth Chapter.
The burden of Egypt follows next in the prophecy; and it is evident from the conclusion, that the Spirit pursues the history of this country, till with Assyria it is absorbed into the kingdom of Messiah. I should suppose the transition takes place in the sixteenth verse — from that low and helpless condition in which Egypt now lies, to the revolutions of the last times, which end in her eternal emancipation.
* Compare xi. 11.