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passed by: the deep uttered his voice, and staves the head of his villages : they came lifted up his hands on high.
out as a whirlwind to scatter me: their re11 The sun and moon "stood still in their joicing was as to devour the poor secretly: habitation: "at the light of thine "arrows 15 Thou didst walk through the sea with they went, and at the shining of thy glitter-thine horses, through the heap of great ing spear.
waters. 12 Thou didst march through the land in 16 When I heard, my belly trembled; indignation, thou didst thresh the heathen my lips quivered at the voice : rottenness in anger
entered into my bones, and I trembled in 13 Thou wentest forth for the salvation myself, that I might rest in the day of of thy people, even for salvation with thine trouble : when he cometh up unto the people, anointed; thou woundedst the head out of he will "invade them with his troops. the house of the wicked, by discovering the 17 Although the fig tree shall not blosfoundation unto the neck. Selah.
som, neither shall fruit be in the vines ; the 14 Thou didst strike through with his labour of the olive shall 1'fail, and the fields 18 Or, thine arrows walked in the lighı, &c.
1 Heb. making naked. 15 Heb. were tempestuous
17 Or, cut them in pieces.
il Joshi. 10. 12.
18 Josh. 10.11.
18 Or, mud.
18 Heb. lie.
shall yield no meat; the flock shall be cut 19 The Lord God is my strength, and off from the fold, and there shall be no herd he will make my feet like 'hinds' feet, and in the stalls :
he will make me to walk upon mine high 18 Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will places. To the chief singer on my stringed joy in the God of my salvation.
instruments. 19 2 Sam. 29. 34. Psal. 18. 83.
90 Heb. neginoth. Verse 4. “He had horns coming out of his hand." — The same word (ap keren) denotes both a horn and a ray of lightprobably from the resemblance found between a cone of rays and a horn; and the same word, as a verb, signifies to shine or emit rays. In like manner, the Arabian poets call the rays of the sun its horns. The context in the present verse shows quite plainly that the marginal reading of “beams” is here to be preferred to that of " horns."* Conformably, Newcome renders “ Rays streamed from his hand.” See further on this subject under Exod. xxiv. 29.
9. " Thy bow was made quite naked.”—This means that it was prepared for action; it being, both in ancient and modern times, customary in the East to carry the bow in a case when not required for immediate use.
19. “My feet like hinds' feet... to walk upon mine high places.”—Probably this and the corresponding allusion in the Psalms, is not merely to the swiftness of the hind, but also to the sureness and safety of its tread, which seems to have given occasion for its being styled " brazen footed” by Virgil and other classical poets. Some of the Rabbins imagine, we know not with what reason, that the females stand and tread with a firmer foot than the males; and that for this cause the feet of hinds, rather than of harts, are mentioned here and in Ps. xvii. 34.
The various subjects which supply allusions to the prophet, in this very noble poem, have been so far explained and illustrated on different previous occasions as to supersede the notes which might otherwise be required.
Ζ Ε Ρ Η Α Ν Ι Α Η.
princes, and the king's children, and all such
as are clothed with strange apparel. God's severe judgment against Juduh for divers sins.
9 In the same day also will I punish all
those that leap on the threshold, which fill HE word their masters' houses with violence and deof the LORD ceit. which came
10 And it shall come to pass in that day, unto Ze- saith the LORD, that there shall be the noise phaniah the of a cry from the fish gate, and an howling son of Cu from the second, and a great crashing from shi, the son the hills. of Gedali 11 Howl, ye inhabitants of Maktesh, for ah, the son all the merchant people are cut down; all of Amariah, they that bear silver are cut off. the son of 12 And it shall come to pass at that time, Hizkiah, in that I will search Jerusalem with candles, the days of and punish the men that are 'settled on their Josiah the lees: that say in their heart, The LORD will son of A- not do good, neither will he do evil. mon, king 13 Therefore their goods shall become a
of Judah. booty, and their houses a desolation: they 2 'I will utterly consume all things from shall also build houses, but ®not inhabit off the land, saith the LORD.
them; and they shall plant vineyards, but
the fishes of the sea, and the óstumblingblocks is near, and hasteth greatly, even the voice with the wicked; and I will cut off of the day of the LORD: the mighty man from off the land, saith the LORD.
shall cry there bitterly . 4 I will also stretch out mine hand upon 15 That day is a day of 'wrath, a day of Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jeru- trouble and distress, a day of wasteness and salem; and I will cut off the remnant of desolation, a day of darkness and gloominess, Baal from this place, and the name of the a day of clouds and thick darkness, Chemarims with the priests ;
16 A day of the trumpet and alarm against 5 And them that worship the host of the fenced cities, and against the high heaven upon the housetops; and them that towers. worship and that swear by the LORD, and 17 And I will bring distress upon men, that swear by Malcham;
that they shall walk like blind men, because 6 And them that are turned back from they have sinned against the LORD: and the LORD; and those that have not sought their blood shall be poured out as dust, and the LORD, nor enquired for him.
their flesh as the dung. 7 Hold thy peace at the presence of the 18 "Neither their silver nor their gold Lord God: for the day of the LORD is at shall be able to deliver them in the day of hand: for the Lord hath prepared a sacri- the Lord's wrath; but the whole land shall fice, he hath 'bid his guests.
be "devoured by the fire of his jealousy: for 8 And it shall come to pass in the day of he shall make even a speedy riddance of all the Lord's sacrifice, that I will opunish the them that dwell in the land. · Heb. By taking away I will make an end. $ Heb. the face of the land.
* Or, to the LORD. 5 Heb. sanctified, or prepared. 1 tleb, curded, or thickened. 8'Deut 28, 30, 39. Amos 5. 11 9 Jer. 30. 7. Joel 9. 11 Amos 5. 18.
3 Or, idols.
& Heb. visit upon.
10 Prov 11. 4
Ezek. 7. 19.
1 Chap. 3. 8.
ZEPHANIAH.—The time and parentage of Zephaniah are expressed in the first verse of his prophecy, which affords the only authentic information concerning him which we possess. The pseudo-Epiphanius, with whom Isidore agrees, says that he was of the tribe of Simeon, a native of mount Sarabatha, a place not mentioned in Scripture, and where be died and was buried. In this last particular they are however at variance with the author of the Cippi Hebraici, who states that he was buried at Geba in Lebanon, in a cave shut up-a place where flowing fountains abounded, and whence the clouds never departed : language which appears to mean no more than that it was in an elevated region of Lebanon. With respect to the characteristics of Zephaniah's writings, Bishop Lowth briefly observes, that it is poetical, but that there is nothing very uncommon either in the arrangement of his matter, or the complexion of his style.
Verse 4. “ The name of the Chemarims.”—In 2 Kings xxiii. 5, the word “ Chemarim" (O'90) is rendered “ idola trous priests," as applied to those that were put down by Josiah, in whose reign Zephaniah prophesied ; and probably the very same persons, or certainly the same kind of persons, are here to be understood. The signification is perhaps derived from the Syriac, in which language the analogous word means a priest generally, and of course the Syrian priests were idolaters, and hence its use to express idolatrous priests. Might not the name be particularly employed to denote the priests of the idols borrowed from the Syrians ?
5. " Mulcham"-or, as elsewhere, Milcom, Molech, the god of the Ammonites. The Septuagint translates it, “ By their king;” but it is better to retain the proper name as denoting the idol.
9. " That leap on the threshold."-Instead of " on," we might read “over the threshold ; " when, as the Targum suggests, it may allude to the custom of the priests of Dagon, who, after their idol was broken on the threshold (1 Sam. 5. 4,5), never trod on it, but stepped or leared over it, when entering or leaving the temple. Some however rather, and perhaps better, explain it of persons who, seeing houses rich and full of good things, entered them violently and insolently, taking what they pleased. If this be admitted, there may be no objection to allow the conclusion of Harmer, that the leaping over the threshold, to fill houses with violence and deceit, may refer to the custom for insolent spoilers and oppressors, in the East, to ride into the houses-that is, into the interior courts-of their victims; for which reason, as well as to prevent the interior wealth from being suspected, the gates towards the street are in general purposely made too low to permit a man on horseback to pass through. If the allusion does not exclusively refer to this practice, we may certainly understand it to be included in the general sense of a violent and dishonest entrance into other people's houses.
II.“ Maktesh."--The word means a mortar. Aben Ezra says that it was the name of a street or quarter in Jerusalem; in which opinion many concur. But there is another opinion, that the prophet by this title designates Jerusalem, in the state to which it should be reduced by the Chaldeans, crushed and broken, as in a mortar. But as the word means but only a mortar, but any deep, hollow place, Jerume thinks that the valley of Siloam is intended ; an opinion sanctioned by the Targum, which renders the valley of Kedron,” which was another name for that of Siloam, or for the whole of which it was a part. There seems no deciding between these alternatives.
7 And the coast shall be for the remnant | An exhortation to repentance. 4. The judgment of the house of Judah ; they shall feed thereof the Philistines
, 8 of Moab and Ammon, 12 of upon: in the houses of Ashkelon shall they Ethiopia and Assyria.
lie down in the evening : "for the LORD their GATHER yourselves together, yea, gather God shall visit them, and turn away their together, O nation 'not desired;
captivity. 2 Before the decree bring forth, before the 8 9 I have heard the reproach of Moab, day pass as the chaff, before the fierce anger and the revilings of the children of Ammon, of the LORD come upon you, before the day whereby they have reproached my people, of the LORD's anger come upon you,
and magnified themselves against their bor3 Seek ye the LORD, all ye meek of the der. earth, which have wrought his judgment; 9 Therefore as I live, saith the Lord of seek righteousness, seek meekness : it may hosts, the God of Israel, Surely Moab shall be
ye shall be hid in the day of the LORD's be as Sodom, and the children of Ammon as anger.
Gomorrah, even the breeding of nettles, and 4 | For Gaza shall be forsaken, and Ash- saltpits, and a perpetual desolation : the kelon a desolation : they shall drive out residue of my people shall spoil them, and Ashdod at the noon day, and Ekron shall be the remnant of my people shall possess
them. 5 Woe unto the inhabitants of the sea 10 This shall they have for their pride, coasts, the nation of the Cherethites ! the because they have reproached and magniword of the LORD is against you; O Canaan, fied themselves against the people of the the land of the Philistines, I will even de- LORD of hosts. stroy thee, that there shall be no inhabitant. 11 The LORD will be terrible unto them :
6 And the sea coast shall be dwellings for he will 'famish all the gods of the earth; and cottages for shepherds, and folds for and men shall worship him, every one from flocks.
his place, even all the isles of the heathen. 1 Or, nyl desiruus.
*Or, when, &c.
3 Heb. muke lean.
12 | Ye Ethiopians also, ye shall be slain sing in the windows; desolation shall be in by my sword.
the thresholds : "for he shall uncover the 13 And he will stretch out his hand cedar work. against the north, and destroy Assyria; and 15 This is the rejoicing city that dwelt will make Nineveh a desolation, and dry carelessly, that said in her heart, *I am, and like a wilderness.
there is none beside me: how is she become 14 And flocks shall lie down in the midst a desolation, a place for beasts to lie down of her, all the beasts of the nations : both in! every one that passeth by her shall hiss, the ocormorant and the bittern shall lodge and wag his hand. in the upper lintels of it; their voice shall • Or, pelican.
* Isa. 34. 11. • Or, knups, or, chapiters. 7 Or, when he hath uncovered. 8 Isa. 47.8.
Verse 4. " Gaza shall be forsaken."—Accordingly, the Gaza which existed in the time of the prophet did become forsaken, ruined, and desolate. But, in due time another town arose on or near its site, which still remains a place of some consideration. But of all this we have written fully under Judges xvi., and have now the satisfaction of introducing an engraving representing the modern town of Gaza.
“ Ashkelon.”—This place has been considered under Judges xiv. ; and of it also we are now enabled to furnish a pictorial representation. There is a particular propriety in thus introducing Gaza and Ascalon together, as the two places are much associated in the Scriptures. The Mohammedan writers also distinguish these two cities as “the Two Brides.” Mohammed is reported to have said, “ Happy is he who takes up his dwelling place with one of the Two Brides, Ascalon and Gaza." Another tradition reports him to have said, “Ascalon is one of the Two Brides, whom God will raise up, sanctify, and glorify, in the day of judgment. Here will be seventy thousand martyrs, who will come forward together as ambassadors unto God." Jalal-Addin, the Arabian author of the History of the Temple,' lately translated by the Rev. James Reynolds, mentions a collection of a Portion of the Wondrous Virtues of Ascalou, by the historian Ibn Asákir, in which the various traditions concerning it are discriminated according to the degreo of credit to which they are supposed to be entitled. Jalal-Addin, who wrote about the middle of the fifteenth century, makes a statement rather adverse to the laudatory traditions which he cites :-“ Ascalon is said to be given to excess in eating, drinking, and adultery. The intelligent say that the cause of this is to be found in the fact that Ascalon is a dépôt for sacred cavalry, a frontier town, ever guarding against the attacks of the enemy. Even now, in these days, although many sacred cavalry quota contributions are to be found in other places, yet it is far from being no longer a point of attacks by the enemy.”