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BEHOLD a king shall reign in justice, and princes shall rule in judgment.

Ver. 1.  King.  Ezechias or Josias, as figures of Jesus Christ, who is meant.  C.

 

--- They and their counsellors only foreshewed the advantages derived from Christ and his apostles in a more abundant manner.  S. Jer.

 

--- Judgment and justice.  These words have a higher meaning than what is assigned to them by philosophers.  In God, the former implies the preparation of the means for man's redemption, as the latter does the execution; and in man, judgment denotes the selection of what is right, and justice implies the putting it willingly in practice.  Thus Christ will fulfill all the he has graciously purposed, with the two other divine persons; and the princes, his pastors, shall discern what is good for their own and people's eternal welfare.  W.


2 And a man shall be as when one is hid from the wind, and hideth himself from a storm, as rivers of waters in drought, and the shadow of a rock that standeth out in a desert land.

Ver. 2.  Land.  Ezechias and Josias were both a defence to their subjects.


3 The eyes of them that see shall not be dim, and the ears of them that hear shall hearken diligently.

Ver. 3.  Dim.  True prophets shall speak, while false ones shall be silent.  C.


4 And the heart of fools shall understand knowledge, and the tongue of stammerers shall speak readily and plain.

Ver. 4.  Plain.  Some parts of the prediction relate literally to the Old Test.  But this alludes to the New, when the mysteries of religion are clearly confessed in the Catholic Church.  W.

 

--- Even the most illiterate are guided with security, if they will but hear the Church.  H.


5 The fool shall no more be called prince: neither shall the deceitful be called great:

Ver. 5.  Deceitful.  Heb. "miser be called liberal."  Lu. xxii. 25.  These good princes are contrasted with Achaz, who had oppressed his subjects.


6 For the fool will speak foolish things, and his heart will work iniquity, to practise hypocrisy, and speak to the Lord deceitfully, and to make empty the soul of the hungry, and take away drink from the thirsty. 7 The vessels of the deceitful are most wicked: for he hath framed devices to destroy the meek, with lying words, when the poor man speaketh judgment.

Ver. 7.  Vessels.  Arms, (C.) or all the words and actions of the miser are bent on evil.  H.

 

--- The ministers of wicked princes resemble them.  M.


8 But the prince will devise such things as are worthy of a prince, and he shall stand above the rulers. 9 Rise up, ye rich women, and hear my voice: ye confident daughters, give ear to my speech.

Ver. 9.  Women.  Great cities.  He announces the impending dangers.


10 For after days and a year, you that are confident shall be troubled: for the vintage is at an end, the gathering shall come no more.

Ver. 10.  Year.  After a long time; or the prophet speaks two years before the arrival of Sennacherib, after the vintage was ended.  C. xxx. 20. and 4 K. xix. 29.  C.


11 Be astonished, ye rich women, be troubled, ye confident ones: strip yen, and be confounded, gird your loins. 12 Mourn for your breasts, for the delightful country, for the fruitful vineyard.

Ver. 12.  Mourn.  Sept. "beat."  H.

 

--- Breasts, suckling infants.  In mourning, women beat and uncovered their breasts, which, on any other occasion, would have been deemed very indecent.  C.  Ezec. xxiii. 34.  Herod. ii. 84.


13 Upon the land of my people shall thorns and briers come up: how much more upon all the houses of joy, of the city that rejoiced?

Ver. 13.  Up.  Being uncultivated for two years.  This was still more the case during the captivity.  C.

 

--- How.  Sept. "from every house joy shall be taken away, thou rich city."  H.


14 For the house is forsaken, the multitude of the city is left, darkness and obscurity are come upon its dens for ever. A joy of wild asses, the pastures of docks,

Ver. 14.  Ever.  Some palaces had been demolished by Sennacherib, though this seems to refer to the Babylonian captivity.


15 Until the spirit be poured upon us from on high: and the desert shall be as a charmel, and charmel shall be counted for a forest.

Ver. 15.  High, as Ezechiel (xxxvii. 10.) saw the dry bones rise again.  Under this idea prosperity is frequently described.  The rest of the chapter may very well be explained of the propagation of the gospel.

 

--- Forest.  Carmel was a fertile spot.  Judea shall flourish, and Assyria shall be laid waste.  The synagogue will be rejected, while the Gentiles, (C.) formerly so barren, shall embrace the faith and true piety.  H.


16 And judgment shall dwell in the wilderness, and justice shall sit in charmel. 17 And the work of justice shall be peace, and the service of justice quietness, and security for ever.

Ver. 17.  Peace.  The just shall enjoy peace, under Ezechias.


18 And my people shall sit in the beauty of peace, and in the tabernacles of confidence, and in wealthy rest. 19 But hail shall be in the descent of the forest, and the city shall be made very low.

Ver. 19.  Hail.  God's judgment shall overtake Babylon, or rather Ninive.


20 Blessed are ye that sow upon all waters, sending thither the foot of the ox and the ass.

Ver. 20.  Waters.  Fruitful soils, abounding with cattle.  C.

 

--- Both Jews and Gentiles shall submit to Christ.  Clem. Strom. vi.  S. Jer.


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