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AND the word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying: 2 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: I have been jealous for Sion with a great jealousy, and with a great indignation have I been jealous for her.

Ver. 2.  Jealous for her, treating her as a spouse, (C.) and not neglecting her as one incorrigible.  H.



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3 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: I am returned to Sion, and I will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and Jerusalem shall be called The city of truth, and the mountain of the Lord of hosts, The sanctified mountain.

Ver. 3.  Truth.  Idols and infidelity shall reign there no more.  The Jews were more faithful after the captivity.  But the Church of Christ is alone perfectly chaste.  C.




4 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: There shall yet old men and old women dwell in the streets of Jerusalem: and every man with his staff in his hand through multitude of days.


5 And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls, playing in the streets thereof. 6 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: If it seem hard in the eyes of the remnant of this people in those days: shall it be hard in my eyes, saith the Lord of hosts?

Ver. 6.  Days.  If no prospect of such happiness now appear, is any thing difficult to Omnipotence?  H.  Lu. i. 37.


7 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: Behold I will save my people from the land of the east, and from the land of the going down of the sun.

Ver. 7.  Sun, from Chaldea and the islands.  This chiefly regards the Christian Church.  C.

 

--- Assyria and Chaldea lay to the north.  The promises are too great for the synagogue.  W.


8 And I will bring them, and they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God in truth and in justice.

Ver. 8.  Justice.  I will fulfil my promises, if they adhere to virtue.  C.




9 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: Let your hands be strengthened, you that hear in these days these words by the mouth of the prophets, in the day that the house of the Lord of hosts was founded, that the temple might be built. 10 For before those days there was no hire for men, neither was there hire for beasts, neither was there peace to him that came in, nor to him that went out, because of the tribulation: and I let all men go every one against his neighbour.

Ver. 10.  Hire, or "reward;" merces.  H.

 

--- All their toils proved useless: (C.) the land would not yield her fruit.  H.  See Agg. ii. 16.

 

--- The temple had now been building two years, and then God sent his prophets and many blessings.

 

--- Neighbour.  Civil broils and the enemy rendered all wretched.  1 Esd. iv.


11 But now I will not deal with the remnant of this people according to the former days, saith the Lord of hosts. 12 But there shall be the seed of peace: the vine shall yield her fruit, and the earth shall give her increase, and the heavens shall give their dew: and I will cause the remnant of this people to possess all these things.
13 And it shall come to pass, that as you were a curse among the Gentiles, O house of Juda, and house of Israel: so will I save you, and you shall be a blessing: fear not, let your hands be strengthened.

Ver. 13.  Blessing.  As the nations could wish no greater curse than what you have experienced, so you shall now be regarded as a most happy people.




14 For thus saith the Lord of hosts: As I purposed to afflict you, when your fathers had provoked me to wrath, saith the Lord, 15 And I had no mercy: so turning again I have thought in these days to do good to the house of Juda, and Jerusalem: fear not.


16 These then are the things, which you shall do: Speak ye truth every one to his neighbour: judge ye truth and judgment of peace in your gates.

Ver. 16.  Of peace, or perfect.  Shew no partiality.



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17 And let none of you imagine evil in your hearts against his friend: and love not a false oath: for all these are the things that I hate, saith the Lord.

Ver. 17.  Friend means every neighbour, or all mankind.  Lu. x. 27. 36.  Even thoughts must be guarded.  C.


18 And the word of the Lord of hosts came to me, saying: 19 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: The fast of the fourth month, and the fast of the fifth, and the fast of the seventh, and the fast of the tenth shall be to the house of Juda, joy, and gladness, and great solemnities: only love ye truth and peace.

Ver. 19.  Fast.  They fasted on the ninth day of the fourth month, because on that day Nabuchodonosor took Jerusalem.  Jer. lii. 6.  On the tenth day of the fifth month, because on that day the temple was burnt.  Jer. lii. 12.  On the third day of the seventh month, for the murder of Godolias.  Jer. xli. 2.  And on the tenth day of the tenth month, because on that day the Chaldeans began to besiege Jerusalem.  4 K. xxv. 1.  All these fasts, if they will be obedient for the future, shall be changed (as is here promised) into joyful solemnities.  Ch.

 

--- They had only inquired about the fasts of the fifth and seventh months but the two others were also to be omitted in times of joy.  W.

 

--- The Jews still observe all four.  Basnage v. 16.

 

--- They fast on the seventeenth of the fourth month, because the breach was then made in the walls, (C.) and Moses broke the tables of the law, according to the Jews, in S. Jer.  The ninth of the fifth month is also kept instead of the tenth, on which day the city was taken by the Chaldees; (C.) and the Romans burnt the temple in the same month, as the Israelites had then formerly been sentenced to wander in the desert.  S. Jer.

 

--- It would be difficult for the Jews to prove all these assertions.




20 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, until people come, and dwell in many cities, 21 And the inhabitants go one to another, saying: Let us go, and entreat the face of the Lord, and let us seek the Lord of hosts: I also will go. 22 And many peoples, and strong nations shall come to seek the Lord of hosts in Jerusalem, and to entreat the face of the Lord.

Ver. 22.  Lord.  Many were converted in the days of Esther, (viii. 17.) and the Pharisees were eager to make proselytes in all parts, when Christ preached.  Mat. xxiii. 15.  Acts ii. 11.  Yet we must go to the Church to see this fully accomplished.  C.




23 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: In those days, wherein ten men of all languages of the Gentiles shall take hold, and shall hold fast the shirt of one that is a Jew, saying: We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.

Ver. 23.  Ten men, &c.  Many of the Gentiles became proselytes to the Jewish religion before Christ; but many more were converted to Christ by the apostles and other preachers of the Jewish nation.  Ch.

 

--- Skirt, or hem, by which the Jews were distinguished.  Num. xv. 38.  Mat. ix. 20.  C.


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