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bunches of camels, to a people (that) shall not profit (them ;] the Israelites will send their wealth on asses and camels, as a sub

sidy, or to bribe Pharaoh's ministers and courtiers, through that 7 wilderness which lies between them. For the Egyptians shall

help in vain, and to no purpose : therefore have I cried concerning this, and published it aloud, ihat Their strength [is] to sit

still, in the use of regular means, and a humble, quiet dependence 8 upon God, who alone can help them. Now go, write it before

them in a table, and note it in a book, that it may be for the

time to come for ever and ever ; publish it, and let it be recorded, 9 as a warning to future ages : That this [is] a rebellious people,

lying children, children [that] will not hear the law of the LORD: 10 Which say to the seers, See not ; and to the prophets, Prophe

sy not unto us right things ; this is the true meaning and intent of what they say, while persecuting and bantering the true prophets and encouraging the false ones, speak unto us smooth things,

prophesy deceits ; preach only that which may gratify our humours 11 and our lusts : Get you out of the way, turn aside out of the

path, cause the Holy One of Israel to cease from before us ; do not stop us in our sinful ways; do not preach up such strictness ; do not mention the Holy One of Israel, (with which the prophets

usually introduced their reproofs and warning's ;) we are weary of 12 hearing so much of it. Wherefore thus saith the Holy One of

Israel, whose name you do not like to hear, Because ye despise this

word, and trust in oppression and perverseness, and stay thereon: 13 Therefore this iniquity shall be to us as a breach ready to fall,

swelling out in a high wall, whose breaking cometh suddenly

at an instant ; your trust in Egypt shall be like a bulging wall, 14 that falls suddenly and unexpectedly. And he shall break it as

the breaking of the potter's vessel that is broken in pieces ; he shall not spare : so that there shall not be found in the bursting of it a sherd to take fire from the hearth, or to take water (withal] out of the pit ; there shall not be a piece big enough for any

common use ; this your confidence in Egypt, and yourselves there15 by, shall be shattered to pieces. For thus saith the Lord God,

the Holy One of Israel ; In returning and rest shall ye be saved; in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength; in re. turning to God and your duty, and an humble confidence in his

power, providence and promises, ye shall find strength and salva16 tion : and ye would not. But ye said, No; for we will flee upon

horses ; therefore shall ye flee : and, We will ride upon the

swift ; we will hire horses from Egypt to allack our enemits ; 17 therefore shall they that pursue you be swift. One thousand

[shall flee) at the rebuke of one ; at the rebuke of five shall re flee : till ye be left as a beacon upon the top of a mountain, and as an ensign on an bill; one of your enemies sholl chase a thoile sand, and your whole army shall fice before five, till 80 fe qu' are leje

that you shall stand alone, like a beacon on the top of a hill. 18 And therefore, or nevertheless, will the LORD wait, that he

may be gracious unto you, i!lcxercise fialience toward you, aid

therefore will he be exalted, that he inay have mercy upon you, and exalt his power and glory in humbling and reforming you ; for

the LORD [is] a God of judgment : blessed sare] all they that 19 wait for him. For the people shall dwell in Zion at Jerusalem ;

or the people of Zion shall dwell al Jerusalem; continue there in safe. ty, not withstanding Sennacherib's attempis ; and also afterward return out of Babylon thither again : thou shalt weep no more : he will be very gracious unto thee at the voice of thy cry ; when

he shall hear it, he will answer thee ; happy times shall succeed 30 the drfeat of the Assyrians by Hezekiah's reformation. And

(thougla] the Lord give you the bread of adversity, and the water of athiction, yet shall not thy teachers be removed into a corner any more, but thine eyes shall see thy teachers ; though other afflictions may come, or some be continued, yet the pricsis shall come again 10 Jerusalem, which they could not during the

siege) and you shall have prophets and know how to value them : 21 And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, the admonitions of

85me faithful friend, the dictates of conscience, or the influence of

the Spirit, saying, This is the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn 22 to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left. Ye shall defile

also the covering of thy graven images of silver, and the ornament of thy molten images of gold ; you shall be resolved against sin and destroy the most valuable remains of idolatry, the robes and ornaments of your images, and the costly tents that were about them : thou shalt cast them away as a menstruous cloth, or pol

leted garment ; thou shalt say unto it, with an holy indignation, 23 Get thee hence. Then shall be give the rain ofth¢ seed, or rain

in seed time, that thou shalt sow thy ground withal; and bread of the increase of the earth, and it shall be fat and plenteous ;

the fruits of the earth shall be brought forth in great abundance : 24 in that day shall thy cattle feed in large pastures. The oxen

Jikewise and the young asses that ear, or till the ground, shall eat clean provender, which hath been windowed with the shovel and

with the fan ; there shall be such plenty that the cattle shall car 25 dressed corn, not corn in the straw. And there shall be upon

every high mountain, and upon every high hill, rivers (and) streams of waters in the day of the great slaughter, when the

towers fall, which the Assyrians had raised against Jerusalem. 16 Moreover the light of the moon shall be as the light of the sun,

and the light of the sun shall be sevenfold, as the light of seven
days, in the day that the LORD bindeth up the breach of his people,
and healeth the stroke of their wound; every thing shall put on
a more cheerful face than before, when God pardons their sins and
removes the punishment of thein. Then follows a prophecy of the

destruction of the Assyrians. 27 Behold, the name of the LORD, which the Assyrians have blas

phemed by representing him like the gods of the heathen, comethi from far, burning [with] anger, and the burden (thereof is]

heavy ! his lips are full of indignation, and his tongue as a de28 vouring fire : And his breath as an overflowing stream, shall reach to the midst of the neck, like a great flood which shall destroy the whole army, and reach even to the king, he alone shall escapie, to sift the nations with the sieve of vanity : and (there shall be) a bridle in the jaws of the people, causing [them] to

err ; their allies shall be dispersed, they shall run upon their 29 own destruction, and all their designs be disappointed. Ye shall

have a song, as in the night (when) a holy solemnity is kept ; like that in the evening when the solemn feasts begin : and gladness of heart, as when one goeth with a pipe to come into the mountain of the Lord, to the mighty one of Israel ; referring to the hymns afier the passover, when they went up to the house of

the Lord, and particularly when they brought the first fruits ; 80 30 shall you rejoice in the destruction of the Assyrians. And the

LORD shall cause his glorious voice to be heard, and shall show the lightening down of his arm, with the indignation of Chis) anger, and [with] the flame of a devouring fire, [with] scattering,

and tempest, and hailstones; it shall be done immediately by " the hand of God, and probably was done in the manner here de31 scribed. For through the voice of the LORD shall the Assyrian 32 be beaten down, (which] smote with a rod. And [in] every

place where the grounded staff, or terrible stroke, shall pass, which the LORD shall lay upon him, [it] shall be with tabrets and harps : and in battles of shaking will he fight with it ; they have been a rod to Israel, but they shall be destroyed with

a strong conguering staff, and every place where they fall shall be 33 full of joy and gladness.* For Tophet (a valley near Jerusalem,

where they used to offer their children to Molech, and which Hezekiah had lately cleansed) [is] ordained of old ; yea, for the king it is prepared ; that is, for the glory and strength of the king of Assyria ; he hath made [it] deep [and] large : the pile thereof [is] fire and much wood ; the breath of the LORD, like a stream of brimstone, doth kindle it.f

REFLECTIONS.

W E see here the vanity and guilt of creature dependence,

VV and the necessity of trusting in God in times of danger. What pains and expense were the Israelites at to engage the assistance of Egypt ! but it ended in their shame and disappointment. Thus men try one creature after another, in which they hope to find satisfaction and happiness ; but they only add sin to sin, and trouble to trouble. Let us take a wiser course, and make Gold our refuge ; return to him in the way of duty ; labour to compose every tumultuous passion and anxious fear; avoiding

. Probably they made a procession with musical instraments aod songs of praise to the Assyrian camp, as seeing it would enhance the joy and wonder of the penple for their des liverance.

+ Thereabouts the Assyrians were probably destroyed and their carcasses burned in that valley. Vol. V.

Aa

every sinful method to help ourselves, and seeking direction and help from the Lord of hosts. Thus will our strength be increased, our peace rendered secure, and we shall never be ashamed of our hope.

2. God's holiness is the great terror of sinners. The thought is too weighty, and the expression too serious, for men that choose to go on in their sin ; for, if he be a holy Being, he must hate and punish those that are unholy. Hence they love those ministers that firophesy smooth things, that deal in generals, and give their consciences no alarm. But those that show them the evil of sin, preach searching sermons, and reprove their vices, they dislike. Yet faithful ministers must and will tell sinners, whether they like it or not, that God is an holy Being, of purer eyes than to behold iniquity; and that without holiness no man shall see the Lord. It is better that they should be roused and displeased, than that they should be condemned for impenitence, and their ministers for unfaithfulness.

3. See what a blessing the means of grace are, and how highly they should be valued. God promises his people that though they should be assicted, reduced to famine and straits, yet they should have their teachers continued ; and those who know the value of the word, its instructions, warnings, and counsels, will look upon this as a great favour, sufficient to sweeten the bread of adversity ; though it is to be feared that many had rather be without teachers and means of grace, than lose their substance, or be in straits. It is a blessing to have faithful friends, to admonish us, a tender conscience, that will check us when doing evil, and the spirit of God, to impress the warnings of the word and the convictions of conscience. We are all in danger of inistaking our way ; of turning to the right hand or to the left; of going into one error or other ; let us therefore reverence the word of God, esteem his faithful ministers in love, and attend to that friendly admonition, from whom. soever it comes, This is the way, walk ye in it.

4. With what joy should we celebrate our spiritual deliverances! The Israelites went with gladness and songs to celebrate their resene from the Assyrians ; and have we not much greater reason, rvith gladness of heart, to celebrate in the house of the Lord our deliverance from Satan, sin, and death ; those enemies of our souls and their eternal welfare ? Let us rejoice in it, and give God the glory of it ; but rrjeice with trembling, lest our enemies should gain the dominion over us, and drive us down to hell ; of which Tophet was but a faint image, though our Lord chooses by it to describe the horrors of the infernal world, even that lake which burneth with fire and brimstone ; where the aorm dieih not, and the fire is noi quenched.

1!.

CHAP. XXXI, XXXII.

This prophecy is a continuance of the former. The first part of the

thirty second chapter seems to refer to the beginning of Hezekiah's reign ; from the ninth to the fifteenth verse, 10 the troubles in the middle of il ; and the conclusion, to the prosperity of the latter end.

O to them that go down to Egypt for help ; and VV stay on horses, and trust in chariots, because they are] many ; and in horsemen, because they are very strong ; but

they look not unto the Holy One of Israel, neither seck the · 2 Lord ! Yet he also [is] wise, and will bring evil, and will not

call back his words : but will arise against the house of the evil doers, and against the help of them that work iniquity : a severe irony ; as if he had said, You boast of the wisdom of your politics, but God has some wisdom, and is as able to help as they, therefore

10 show your folly he will punish you for your evil doings, and the 3 Egyptians your helpers for their iniquity. Now the Egyptians

[are] men, and not God; and their horses flesh, and not spirit ; they have no more strength and swiftness than common creatures, and are liable to be frighted, wounded, and destroyed : when the LORD shall stretch out liis hand, both he that helpeth shall

fall, and he that is holpen shall fall down, and they all shall fail 4 together ; but God is a swer defence. For thus hath the LORD

spoken unto me, Like as the lion and the young lion roaring on his prey, when a multitude of shepherds is called forth against him, [he] will not be afraid of their voice, nor abase himself for the noise of them : so shall the Lord of hosts come down to fight for mount Zion, and for the hill thertof; all the noise of the Assyrian army is no more to him than a parcel of shepherds shouting

against a lion, whom they dare not go near, he minds it not, neither 5 looses his prey, nor carries it off with grrater speed. As birds fly.

ing speedily to their nests to secure their young, or to drive away an enemy, so will the Lord of hosts defend Jerusalem ; defending also he will deliver [it ; and) passing over he will preserve [it.] It is the same word as is used for fassinig over the Israel. ites' houses in Egypt, and has reference to their former deliverance;

Jerusalem shall first be reformed, and then saved. 6 Turn ye unio (him from] whom the children of Israel have 7 deeply revolted. For in that day every man shall cast away his

idols of silver, and his idols of gold, which your own hands have made unto you (for) a sin ; though they were the work of your own hands, the materials valuable, and you had worshipped them,

yet being the occasion of sin you shall cast them atay. 8 Then shall the Assyrian fall with the sword, not of a mighty

man, who smites openly ; and the sword, not of a mean man, who smites secretly, shall devour him : but he shall flee from the

sword of the angel, and his young men, or choice ones, shall be 9 discomfited. And he, that is, the king, shall pass over to his

strong hold for fear, and his princes shall be afraid of the ensigo,

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