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In this Chapter Moab is called to account, and a long and trying account it is. The last verse, however, (and probably in allusion to the Gentiles given to Christ in Moab,) closes with a gracious promise.
The Prophet Jeremiah, whom the Lord when giving him his commission, had set over the nations and over the kingdoms, (see Jeremiah 1:10 ) is here arraigning, trying, and condemning Moab; and an awful condemnation it is. But what I particularly beg to notice in this account is, the cause assigned in this last verse. Moab hath been at ease from his youth. Reader! mark, I beseech you, what the Lord saith. And this is the one fatal cause, both of the destruction of kingdoms and individuals, an unawakened, unregenerated state. Sinners continue sinners. They are at ease in Zion. They have no changes, saith the Psalmist, therefore they fear not God. Psalms 55:19 . As they were born so they continue. Thus they live, and thus they die. Hence the old scent of the old nature remains! An awful state, and according to our Lord's account, impossible ever to enter the kingdom of heaven, John 3:5 .
It would swell our Commentary to a length indeed, to enter minutely into the several branches of the visitations here set forth. Indeed it would only when done, tend to confirm what hardly needs further confirmation. God's foes must be accounted with, and destruction must overtake all the workers of iniquity. Moab as well as the Philistines, and all that oppose God in his purposes, will finally perish. That one blessed declaration sums up and answers all: my counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure, Isaiah 46:10 . Precious consideration to all the people of God!
I have reserved this sweet verse to be read by itself, as containing much mercy in the midst of judgment. Those who read it in reference only to temporal blessings, must own that God is gracious. And those who read it through the medium of spiritual blessings in Christ, may and will discover wonderful events, which may be supposed to be folded up in it, in relation to the Gentile Church. Isaiah 49:6 .
READER! who, but must be struck with holy awe and reverence, that contemplates the Lord's judgments in the earth! And though from a conscious sense of being made a partaker of grace, cannot but find cause to be humbled, under a sense of sin and undeservings, and to rejoice with trembling.
It would be a blessed and sanctified use of all afflictions, judgments, and visitations, that we behold, or hear of, among nations, or families, or individuals: if, while we view the sorrows of others, we duly considered our deserts also. The Lord hath caused it, to be recorded, for the solemn admonition of his Church and people, that a fruitful land is turned into barrenness, for the wickedness of them that dwell therein. And when we see, as that we do now see, nations, like Moab, convulsed and shaken to their very centre, for the wickedness and impiety of the people; surely our British Israel hath reason to humble herself before God, lest she should see also an enemy in her habitation. It will be blessed to him that writes and to him that reads, if Moab's sorrows here threatened, lead the hearts of both in prayer to God in Christ, that our minds may be always deeply affected with the sense, of national sins, and the just apprehension of national judgments. Oh Lord! I would say with the Prophet, spare thy people, O Lord, and give not thy heritage to reproach! Oh! grant that this our British Zion may never see the Golden Candlestick of the Gospel removed out of its place: neither the going down of the sun among our Prophets: but, oh! that the Lord, with whom alone is the residue of the Spirit, would turn to the people a pure language, that they might all call upon the name of the Lord to serve him with one consent. Amen.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Jeremiah 48". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week of Advent