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Bible Commentaries
Jeremiah 48

Trapp's Complete CommentaryTrapp's Commentary

Verse 1

Against Moab thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Woe unto Nebo! for it is spoiled: Kiriathaim is confounded [and] taken: Misgab is confounded and dismayed.

Against Moab. — That bastardly brood, infamous for their inveterate hatred of God’s Israel, at whom they were anciently irked, fretted, vexed, though no way provoked, Numbers 22:3 whom also they outwitted, by the counsel of Balaam, in the business of Baal-peor, Numbers 25:1-3 ; Numbers 25:16-18 had been plagued and judged by the kings of Israel, by David especially, as also by Sennacherib, Isaiah 15:1-9 ; Isaiah 16:1-14 but were no whit amended; and are therefore here, and Ezekiel 25:9 , threatened with utter destruction by the Chaldeans, and that very much in a scoffing way; like as they were a proud, petulant, scornful people, despisers of all other nations, but especially of the Jews, their near neighbours and allies.

Woe unto Nebo. — Their oracular city, as it may seem by the name. See Isaiah 15:2 .

Kiriathaim is confounded. — It is of a dual form, and so seemeth to have been Bipolis, a double city; as was of old Jerusalem, and as are now Rome, Prague, Craeovia.

Misgab is confounded. — It signifieth the high place, and is the same, say some, with Bamoth, Numbers 21:20 and Selah. Isaiah 16:1

Verse 2

[There shall be] no more praise of Moab: in Heshbon they have devised evil against it; come, and let us cut it off from [being] a nation. Also thou shalt be cut down, O Madmen; the sword shall pursue thee.

There shall be no more praise of Moab. — This may be taken either of a city so called, Ariopolis dicta. or of the whole country, as now Muscovia is oft put for all Russia.

In Heshbon they have devised evil against it. — Or better thus, De Heshbone, … As concerning Heshbon, they, the Chaldees, have devised evil against it. There is an elegant allusion in the original to the names of the places both in Heshben and in Madmen. Alludit fere propheta ad singularum civitatum nomina. - Jun.

Verse 3

A voice of crying [shall be] from Horonaim, spoiling and great destruction.

A voice of crying. — They would not cry for their sins: they shall therefore cry for their miseries with desperate and bootless tears, and yet worse one day.

Verse 4

Moab is destroyed; her little ones have caused a cry to be heard.

Moab is destroyed,i.e., Shall be shortly.

Her little ones have caused a cry to be heard. — While they either are forsaken of their parents, as Jeremiah 47:3 or else see them to be slain or carried away captives.

Verse 5

For in the going up of Luhith continual weeping shall go up; for in the going down of Horonaim the enemies have heard a cry of destruction.

Continual weeping shall go up. — Heb., Weeping with weeping shall go up - i.e., they shall weep abundantly.

Verse 6

Flee, save your lives, and be like the heath in the wilderness.

Flee, save your lives. — Whatever else ye lose.

And be like the heath in the wilderness. — Which is little worth. See Jeremiah 17:6 . Sit there sad and solitary.

Verse 7

For because thou hast trusted in thy works and in thy treasures, thou shalt also be taken: and Chemosh shall go forth into captivity [with] his priests and his princes together.

For because thou hast trusted in thy works. — Thy creature confidence and thine idolatry have undone thee.

Chemosh shall go forth into captivlty. — Chemosh - unde Kωμος - was the Moabites’ god, and is thought to be the same with Bacchus or Priapus. He is here called Chemosh by way of contempt.

Verse 8

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 hath spoken.

And the spoiler shall come,i.e., Nebuchadnezzar.

As the Lord hath spoken. — Who hath given him a commission, and made him his executioner.

Verse 9

Give wings unto Moab, that it may flee and get away: for the cities thereof shall be desolate, without any to dwell therein.

Give wings unto Moab. — Let him flea his utmost - addat timor alas: but the Chaldean eagle will easily overcatch him.

Verse 10

Cursed [be] he that doeth the work of the LORD deceitfully, and cursed [be] he that keepeth back his sword from blood.

Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully. — Or, Slackly, or hastingly, to the halves: Late pater haec sententia. The work of destroying Moab is here mainly meant. But the text taketh in all lawful employments; these are God’s works, and must be done vigorously, with all our might, in obedience to God, and for his greatest glory. Not soldiers only that have a good cause and in a good calling must likewise take a good courage, and do execution lustily, but magistrates also, who are keepers of both tables of the law, must do right to all without partiality, accounting it better to be counted a busy justice than an honest gentleman. Ministers must look to the ministry which they have received of the Lord, to fulfil the same. "Verbi minister es; hoc age": Perkinsi hoc erat symbolum. Every man in his particular place and station must be "not slothful in business, but fervent in spirit, serving the Lord": non tanquam canis ad Nilum, sed ut Cygnus ad Thamesin: in God’s immediate service especially men must stir up themselves to take hold of him, minding the work, and not doing it in a customary, formal, bedulling way. A very heathen Aristides. could say, Ignavia in rebus divinis est nefaria, Dulness in divine duties is abominable. And Numa, king of the Romans, made a law that none should be careless or cursory in the service of God; and appointed an officer to cry oft to the people at such a time, Hoc agite, Mind what ye are about, and do it to your utmost. He that is ambitious of God’s curse, let him do otherwise.

Verse 11

Moab hath been at ease from his youth, and he hath settled on his lees, 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.

Moab hath been at ease from his youth. — And his ease hath destroyed him. as Proverbs 1:32 He dwelleth near the mare mortuum, and is become a very mare mortuum, i.e., a dead sea. Because he hath had no changes, therefore he feareth not God. Psalms 55:19 Sibi constat in facultatibus, …, he is rich and testy. Here is good booty for the soldiers, who should therefore bestir them.

And he hath settled on his lees. — As having never been turned out of his country, which may well be called his mother, as the lees are called the mother of wine. But now his time is come to be transvasated, to be emptied from vessel to vessel, to be carried captive.

Verse 12

Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will send unto him wanderers, that shall cause him to wander, and shall empty his vessels, and break their bottles.

That I will send him wanderers.Peregrinantes qui peregre agant eum; the Chaldean vagrants, as he proudly calleth and counteth them; but they shall make a vagrant of him in good earnest.

And shall empty his vessels, … — Moab abounded with the best wine; but dwelling so near Sodom, his grapes also became grapes of Sodom and clusters of Gomorrah: his manners were Sodomitish too. It was but time therefore to send those that should empty his vessels and break his bottles, carry him into another country, where he might get a new taste, and his scent be changed.

Verse 13

And Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel their confidence.

As the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel. — When their golden calf was carried into captivity.

Verse 14

How say ye, We [are] mighty and strong men for the war?

How say ye, We are mighty?q.d., Ye have great cause to crack, and to stand upon your pantofle. A slipper or sandle. as Jeremiah 48:2 ; Jeremiah 48:29-30

Verse 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, whose name [is] the LORD of hosts.

Moab is spoiled.Quae hucusque, eadem maiore cum luce repetit. The same again, but with more exornations.

Verse 16

The calamity of Moab [is] near to come, and his affliction hasteth fast.

The calamity of Moab is near to come. — See on Jeremiah 48:15 .

Verse 17

All ye that are about him, bemoan him; and all ye that know his name, say, How is the strong staff broken, [and] the beautiful rod!

All ye that are about him, bemoan him. — And that ye may not want a form, say ye, How is the strong staff broken!

Verse 18

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.

And sit in thirst,i.e., In want of all things.

Verse 19

O inhabitant of Aroer, stand by the way, and espy; ask him that fleeth, and her that escapeth, [and] say, What is done?

Stand by the way and espy, … — What brave rhetoric is here? Tenendum quidem, prophetas et apostolos non affectasse artem dicendi: vide tamen quanta etoquentia peroret Spiritus, Sanctus. Egregia est prosopopoeia.

Verse 20

Moab is confounded; for it is broken down: howl and cry; tell ye it in Arnon, that Moab is spoiled,

Moab is confounded. — See on Jeremiah 48:15 .

Tell it in Arnon. — In the cities standing upon that river.

Verse 21

And judgment is come upon the plain country; upon Holon, and upon Jahazah, and upon Mephaath,

And judgment is come upon the plain country. — Such as the most part of Moab was.

Verse 22

And upon Dibon, and upon Nebo, and upon Bethdiblathaim,

And upon Dibon, and upon Nebo. — These cities beyond Jordan belonged to Israel; but Moab had seized them, and now God’s judgment cometh upon them.

Verse 23

And upon Kiriathaim, and upon Bethgamul, and upon Bethmeon,

And upon Kiriathaim. — See on Jeremiah 48:1 .

And upon Bethmeon. — "Baiith" Isaiah calleth it. Jeremiah 15:2

Verse 24

And upon Kerioth, and upon Bozrah, and upon all the cities of the land of Moab, far or near.

And upon Bazrah. — Called also Bezer. Joshua 21:36

Verse 25

The horn of Moab is cut off, and his arm is broken, saith the LORD.

The horn of Moab is cut off,i.e., His strength, power, glory, kingdoms; his sultans and princes, saith the Chaldee.

Verse 26

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.

Make ye him drunk.Ebrietas modis omnibus maledicta. But here is meant a dry drunkenness with the fierce wrath of God. Most things here spoken are to be found in Isaiah, but here more clearly expressed. See Jeremiah 25:17 ; Jeremiah 25:21 .

Moab also shall wallow in his vomit. — As once he did when drunk with wine to the derision of others, so now he shall when drunk with wrath. It will be a woe time with drunkards one day doubtless.

Verse 27

For was not Israel a derision unto thee? was he found among thieves? for since thou spakest of him, thou skippedst for joy.

For was not Israel a derision unto thee?sc., When he was carried captive by Shalmaneser, didst not thou make thyself merry in his misery, and compose comedies out of his tragedies?

Was he found among thieves? — Was he therefore obnoxious because religious? What reason hadst thou to shout after him, as one would do after a thief that is taken stealing?

Thou skippest for joy. — Thou shakest thyself, that is, thy head; or thou laughest till thou art ready to break thy midriff; Impotentissime cachinnaris

Petulanti splene cachinnas.

Verse 28

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 sides of the hole’s mouth.

And be like the dove. — That is glad to creep in at any cranny of the craggy rock, to be hid from the hawk.

Verse 29

We have heard the pride of Moab, (he is exceeding proud) his loftiness, and his arrogancy, and his pride, and the haughtiness of his heart.

We have heard the pride of Moab. — See Isaiah 16:6 . Proud he was then, and the same he is still; no changeling is he.

Verse 30

I know his wrath, saith the LORD; but [it shall] not [be] so; his lies shall not so effect [it].

I know his wrath. — Passion is the eldest daughter of pride. See Isaiah 16:6 .

His lies shall not so effect it. — Heb., His bars. Lies were his refuge, his strength, the bars he trusted to and leaned on.

Verse 31

Therefore will I howl for Moab, and I will cry out for all Moab; [mine heart] shall mourn for the men of Kirheres.

Therefore will I howl.Isaiah 16:7 ; Isaiah 15:5 .

Verse 32

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.

I will weep with thee for the weeping of Jazer. — Or, More than the weeping of Jazer - i.e., saith Junius, more largely and lamentably than Isaiah bewailed Jazer. Isaiah 16:8-9

Verse 33

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 winepresses: none shall tread with shouting; [their] shouting [shall be] no shouting.

And joy and gladness is taken. — See Isaiah 16:10 .

Their shouting shall be no shouting. — Their cheer shall be changed, their note altered from what it was wont to be at their gathering in the vintage. So it shall one day fare with the drunkards and belly gods, whose laetitia vertetur in luctum, plausus in planctum, …, mirth shall be turned into mourning, clapping of hands into wringing of hands, hallooing into howling.

Verse 34

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: for the waters also of Nimrim shall be desolate.

From Heshbon even unto Elealeh. — See Isaiah 15:4-5 ; Isaiah 15:9 .

As a heifer of three years old. — Which at that age beginneth to low after the bull.

Verse 35

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.

Moreover I will cause to cease. — Such a scarcity there shall be of people. See Jeremiah 48:7 Numbers 21:28 .

Verse 36

Therefore mine heart shall sound for Moab like pipes, and mine heart shall sound like pipes for the men of Kirheres: because the riches [that] he hath gotten are perished.

Therefore my heart. — See Isaiah 15:5 ; Isaiah 16:11 .

Verse 37

For every head [shall be] bald, and every beard clipped: upon all the hands [shall be] cuttings, and upon the loins sackcloth.

For every head shall be bald. — This was the doings among the Easterlings, in times of mourning.

Verse 38

[There shall be] lamentation generally upon all the housetops of Moab, and in the streets thereof: for I have broken Moab like a vessel wherein [is] no pleasure, saith the LORD.

There shall be lamentation. — See Isaiah 15:3 .

Like a vessel wherein is no pleasure. — See Jeremiah 22:28 .

Verse 39

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 him.

How hath Moab turned the back with shame? — Heb., Neck.

Submisit tristi colla superba iugo.

Verse 40

For thus saith the LORD; Behold, he shall fly as an eagle, and shall spread his wings over Moab.

Behold, he shall fly as an eagle. — To an eagle Nebuchadnezzar is compared, for his strength, swiftness, and ravenousness.

Verse 41

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 pangs.

Kerioth is taken. — Of this city, some say, was Judas Iscariot.

As the heart of a woman in her pangs. — Which is very low: neither is such a one in case to defend herself.

Verse 42

And Moab shall be destroyed from [being] a people, because he hath magnified [himself] against the LORD.

Because he hath magnified himself against the Lord,i.e., Against his people, who are as the apple of his eye.

Verse 43

Fear, and the pit, and the snare, [shall be] upon thee, O inhabitant of Moab, saith the LORD.

Fear and the pit. — See Isaiah 24:17 .

Verse 44

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, the year of their visitation, saith the LORD.

He that seeth. — See Isaiah 24:18 .

Verse 45

They that fled stood under the shadow of Heshbon because of the force: 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.

Stood under the shadow of Heshbon. — As thinking they had had a good bush on their backs.

But a fire shall come forth out of Heshbon. — As once before it did, Numbers 21:28-29 and became a proverb.

Of the tumultuous ones. — Of those revelling gallants.

Verse 46

Woe be unto thee, O Moab! the people of Chemosh perisheth: for thy sons are taken captives, and thy daughters captives.

Woe be unto thee, O Moab. — See Numbers 21:29 .

Verse 47

Yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab in the latter days, saith the LORD. Thus far [is] the judgment of Moab.

Yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab.Laetiora demum annuntiat. But because this was never that we find fulfilled in the letter, therefore it was a presage of the calling of the Gentiles to an interest in Christ, and benefit by him.

Bibliographical Information
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 48". Trapp's Complete Commentary. https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/eng/jtc/jeremiah-48.html. 1865-1868.
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