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44 Moab, saith the Lord. He that flecth from the fear, shall falíinto 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 fortifîcations 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 ч/i their ammunition there,and destroy those turbulent creature»

46 with which the country abounds. Wo be unto thee, O Moab! the people of Chemosh perisheth: for thy sons are taken captivi-s, and thy daughters captives.

47 Yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab, some of them »hall be restored in the latter days, saith the Loud ; which may refer to the conversion of the gentiles m goajtel limes. Thus far [is] the judgment of Moub.

REFLECTIONS.

t. T ET us attend to that awful denunciation, v. 10. Cursed be I A he that doeth the work of the Lord decei'. fully, and cursed be he that kccfieth his sioord 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 culled 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 siiadfuni ur¡d inuiioveaole, always abounding ¡n the work of the Lord.

1. See what danger there is in prosperity, т/. U. Moab, though »o very wicked, enjoyed long prosperity, und 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 m 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, cotifir'iis Solomon's observation, that/¡n¿f goeíA before d<.mructiunt and an haughty A/iirit before a Jal!.

CHAP. XLIX.

k

Contains a collection of firofihecies against several of the neighbouring

nations.

1 /CONCERNING the Ammonites, thus saith the Lord; V>i 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 Lokd, 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 mho have taken his; which was the case tm

S der the Maccabees. Howl, O Heshbon, for Ai is spoiled: cry ye daughters of Kabbah, 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, (fierhafis 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 wand«reth, 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 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

1 \ he [is] not i 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 fnofile. 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 cuuntiy.

who had not deserved it so much at the Edomitee; and [art] thou he [that] shall altogether go unpunished ? thou shall not go

13 unpunished, but Ihou shall surely drink [of it.] *For I have sworn by myself, saith the Lord, that Bozrah shall become a desolation, a reproach, a waste, and a curse; and all the cities

14 thereof shall be perpetual wastes. I have heard a rumour from the Lord, and an ambassador is sent unto the heathen, [saying,] Gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle: God by his secret influence shall gather them together,

15 if he had sent an ambassador among them. For, lo, I will make

16 thee small among the heathen, [and] despised among men. Thy tcrribleness, that is, thy sicure situation, hath deceived thee, [and] the pride of thine heart, О thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that boldest the height of the hill : though thou shouldst make thy nesl as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from

17 thence, sailh the Lord. Also Edom shall be a desolation: every one that gocth by it shall be astonished, and shall hiss at

18 all the plagues thereof. As in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah, and the neighbour [cities] thereof, saith the Lord, no man shall abide there, neither shall a son of man dwell in it.

19 Behold, he,/Лаг г«, Nebuchadnezzar, shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan, against the habitation of the strong; Kke a lion driven from ils den among the thickets, whenJordan overflowed its banks, and thereby wax rendered more fierce: but I will

suddenly make him run away from her, or, run ufion Лег: and •who [is] a chosen [man, that] I may appoint over her; or, I will give a charge to him that is a choice one (Nebuchadnezzar) against her: for who [is] like me ? and who will appoint me the time? and who [is] that shepherd that will stand before me? who -mill ajifioint a time to contend viith me ? he shall be no more

20 able to do it than a shefiherd to ofifiose an enraged lion. Therefore hear the counsel of the Lord, that he hath taken against Edom; and his purposes, that he hath purposed against the inhabitants of Teman: surely the least of the flock shall draw them out; the least of the soldiers shall ftrevail against and destroy them: surely he shall make their habitations desolate with

21 them. The earth is moved at the noise of their fall, at the cry the noise thereof was heard in the Red sea; the neighbouring

22 cewitry-was astonished. Behold, he shall come up and fly as the eagle, and spread his wings over Bozrah: and at that day shall the heart of the mighty men of Edom be as the heart of a woman in her pangs.

23 Concerning Damascus, the cafiital of Syria, Hamath is confounded, and Arpad: for they have heard evil tidings; they are faint hearted; [there is] sorrow on the sea; as in a storm

24 at sea ; it cannot be quiet. Damascus is waxed feeble, [and] turneth herself to flee, and fear hath 'seized on [her :] anguish

25 and sorrows have taken her, as a woman in travail. How is the

26 city of praise not left, the city of my joy !* Therefore her young men shall fall in her streets, and all the men of war shall be cut

37 oft' in that clay, saith the Loud of hosts. And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Benhadac!, king of Syria.

23 Concerning Kcdar, and concerning the kingdoms of Hazor, which Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon shall smite, thus saith the Lord; Arise ye, go up to Kedar, and spoil the men of the

29 east; that is, fiare of Arabia. Their tenta and their flocks shall they take away ; they shall take to themselves their curtains, and all their vessels, and their camels; and they shall cry unto them, Fear [is] on every side; thtre shall be a universal fianick.

SO Flee, get you far off, dwell deep, O ye inhabitants of Hazor, saith the Lord; for Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath taken counsel against you, and hath conceived a purpose against

31 you. Arise, ye Chaldeans, get you up unto the wealthy nation, that dwelleth without care, saith the Lord, which have neither gates nor bars, [which] dwell alone; like shepherds in tents.

32 And their camels shall be a booty, and the multitude of their cattle a spoil: and I will scatter into all winds them [that are] in the utmost corners; and I will bring their calamity from all

33 sides thereof, saith the Lord. And Hazor shall be a dwelling for dragons, [and] a desolation forever; there shall no man abide there, nor [any] son of man dwell in it; itsinhabit-mts,if not A/uiw, shall be totally driven out of their country.

34 The word of theLoRD thatcametoJeremiah the prophet against Elam, the Persians, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah,

35 king of Judah, saying, Thus saith the Lord of hosts; Behold, I will break the bow of J-Aam, famous for its archers, the chief of

36 their might. And upon Elam will I bring the four winds from the four quarters of heaven,! and will scatter them toward all those winds; and there shall be no nation whither the outcasts

37 of Elam shall not come. For I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies, and before them that seek their life: and I will bring evil upon them, [even] my fierce anger, saith the Lord; and I will send the sword after them, till I have con

38 sumed them. And I will set my throne, the throne of Nebuchadnezzar, in Elam, and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the Lord.

39 But it shall come to pass in the latter days, [that] I will bring again the captivity of Elam, saith the Lord ; accordingly the Persiana viere afterwards famous under Cyrus, conquered Uabyloti, and became a powerful nation.

• Tîlesenre the wnnls of the people, or of Jeremiah, who might have mide a visit there, and been pk;ised with the place.

t Thcv «hall be invaded by many enemiet, the Scythian* and Chaldeans in particular, at the »me time, as history inforini us that they we«.

REFLECTIONS.

l. Т Т ТЕ are taught from hence, that God observe« and resents V V the injustice of men to one another ; as in the case of the Ammonites, who seized the land of the Jews, and for that reason were dispossessed of it again. He marks the injustice of those who defraud persons of their substahce ; or even their heirs, though they know it not, and cannot right themselves. Fraud in the least instances is displeasing to him ; and he will punish them that deal deceitfully.

2. How absurd is it for those who forsake God, to glory in their possessions, like the Ammonites, -v. 4. who had a fruitful country and great treasures, while they were refractory and wicked. Many thus boast of their families, their honours and wealth, and make these their confidence, while they are destitute of religion: but God will bring a fear and terror upon them, which all their abundance cannot silence.

3. The eleventh verse suggests a comfortable lesson to widows and orphans. It intimates, that though it is a blessing and comfort to heads of families to have relations and friends who will take care of their dependents, when they are dead and impoverished; yet that God will take care of them, provide for them, and preserve them; that is, if they serve the God of their fathers, and trust in him.

4. If God sees it good to afflict his people, what have not his enemies to fear! v. 12. His design is only to correct and improve them; and if his corrections are so painful, and their cup of affliction so bitter, how dreadful must that be which he will put into the hands of the wicked? We may learn hence, what an evil thing and bitter sin is, and how angry God is with it.

5. From the whole chapter we are taught, how vain it is to think of escaping the judgments of God. Who can oppose his designs, or resist his power, when he will punish a wicked nation? not the fortifications of Rabbah, nor the wisdom of Edom, nor the palaces of Damascus, nor the obscurity of Kedar, nor the bows of Elam: He can appoint whom he will to execute his vengeance. Various as the characters, circumstances, situations, and religions of these several countries were, God appears as their supreme Lord and disposer. We should therefore seek his favour, and trust only in him, in whose hand is the fate of nations.

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