|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
32:19-25 The revolt of Israel was described in the foregoing verses, and here follow the resolves of Divine justice as to them. We deceive ourselves, if we think that God will be mocked by a faithless people. Sin makes us hateful in the sight of the holy God. See what mischief sin does, and reckon those to be fools that mock at it.
Verses 24, 25. - The evils threatened are famine, pestilence, plague, wild beasts, poisonous reptiles, and war. They shall be burnt with hunger, etc.; render: Sucked out by hunger, consumed with pestilential heat, and bitter plague; I will send against them the tooth of beasts and the poison of things that crawl in the dust. When hunger, pestilence, and contagious disease had wasted and exhausted them, then God would send on them wild beasts and poisonous reptiles. Shall be burnt. The Hebrew word occurs only here; it is a verbal adjective, meaning, literally, sucked out, i.e. utterly exhausted; LXX., τηκομένοι λιμῷ. Tooth of beasts and poison of serpents; poetical for ravenous and poisonous animals ¢cf. Leviticus 26:22). Shall destroy; literally, shall make childless, shall bereave, viz. the land which is thought of as a mother whose children were destroyed. The verb is here sensu prsegnanti, shall bereave by destroying, etc. (cf. 1 Samuel 15:23; Lamentations 1:20; Jeremiah 18:21).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
They shall be burnt with hunger,.... This is the arrow of famine, Ezekiel 5:16; the force of which is such that it makes the skin black as if burnt, Lamentations 5:10; Onkelos paraphrases it,"inflated or swelled with famine,''which is a phrase Josephus (b) makes use of in describing the famine at the siege of Jerusalem. Jarchi observes, that one of their writers (c) interprets the words "hairs of hunger", because he says that a man that is famishing and pining, his hair grows, and he becomes hairy: this judgment was notorious among the Jews, at the siege of Jerusalem, and was very sore and dreadful: See Gill on Deuteronomy 28:53,
and devoured with burning heat, and with bitter destruction; with burning fevers, pestilential ones, with the plague, the arrow of the Lord that flies by day, the pestilence that walks in darkness, and the destruction that wastes at noonday, Psalm 91:5; and which also raged at the siege of Jerusalem, arising from the stench of dead bodies, which lay in all parts of the city, and is one of the signs of the destruction of it given by our Lord, Matthew 24:7,
I will also send the teeth, of beasts upon them, with the poison of serpents of the dust; another of the arrows in the quiver of the Lord of hosts, or of his four judgments, and which he used to threaten the people of the Jews with in case of disobedience, Leviticus 26:22. And such of the Jews who fled to deserts, and caves and dens of the earth, for shelter, could not escape falling into the hands of wild beasts, and of meeting with poisonous serpents that go upon their bellies, and feed on the dust of the earth; and besides, when Titus had taken Jerusalem, he disposed of his captives some one way and some another; and, among the rest, many were cast to the wild beasts in the theatre, as Josephus relates (d); add to this, that both Rome Pagan, and Roman Papal, are called beasts, Revelation 13:1; into both whose hands the Jews fell, and from whom they have suffered much; with which in part agrees the Targum of Jerusalem,
"the teeth of the four monarchies, which are like to wild beasts, I will send upon them;''and particularly the Targum of Jonathan paraphrases it,"and the Greeks, who bite with their teeth like wild beasts, I will send upon them;''but it would have been much better to have interpreted it of the Romans.
(b) , de Bello Jud. l. 5. c. 23. sect. 4. (c) R. Moses Hadarsan. (d) De Bello Jud. l. 6. c. 9. sect. 2. & l. 7. c. 3. sect. 1.
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