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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, so 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. Shus
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 Chaldeans, 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 wilderness, or, like a blasted tree in a solitary place.
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] 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 villages, farmers and shepherds, shall all be destroy9 ed. Give wings unto Moab, without which it will be impossible
to escape, that it may flee 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 to Nebuchadnezzar by Jeremiah, whom he knew and owned to be a prophet.
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, to 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 [are] 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 broken 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 beasts, and the hands of men, wherewith they defend themselves.
Make ye him drunken: for he magnified [himself] against the LORD: Moab also shall wallow in his vomit, and he also shall be in derision; he shall be brought into the greatest confu27 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 so much to your contempt ? was he found among thieves? had he injured you, and been taken 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 quite extirpated. I know his wrath, saith the LORD; that is, his design to misrepresent Israel to the Chaldeans; or, the designs of the magicians and false prophets to deceive 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 34 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 Horonaim, [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 [shall 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, They that fled 45 the year of their visitation, saith the LORD. stood under the shadow of Heshbon, because of the force or for tifications 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 Thus far refer to the conversion of the gentiles in gospel times. [is] the judgment of Moab.
ET us attend to that awful denunciation, v. 10. Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully, and cursed 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 acquiesce 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 mentioned in various expressions. It is a temper very hateful to God, especially 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 goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall.
Contains a collection of prophecies against several of the neighbouring nations.
thus saith the LORD;
Hath Israel no sons? hath he no heirs? are they quite extinct, 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, O backsliding daughter, (perhaps so called as being descended from Lot) 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 wandereth, afford him shelter and habitation.
And afterward I will bring again the captivity of the children of Ammon, saith the LORD.
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 so 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 [some] 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 Moabites 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 friends came from this country.