|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
10:5-19 See what a change sin made. The king of Assyria, in his pride, thought to act by his own will. The tyrants of the world are tools of Providence. God designs to correct his people for their hypocrisy, and bring them nearer to him; but is that Sennacherib's design? No; he designs to gratify his own covetousness and ambition. The Assyrian boasts what great things he has done to other nations, by his own policy and power. He knows not that it is God who makes him what he is, and puts the staff into his hand. He had done all this with ease; none moved the wing, or cried as birds do when their nests are rifled. Because he conquered Samaria, he thinks Jerusalem would fall of course. It was lamentable that Jerusalem should have set up graven images, and we cannot wonder that she was excelled in them by the heathen. But is it not equally foolish for Christians to emulate the people of the world in vanities, instead of keeping to things which are their special honour? For a tool to boast, or to strive against him that formed it, would not be more out of the way, than for Sennacherib to vaunt himself against Jehovah. When God brings his people into trouble, it is to bring sin to their remembrance, and humble them, and to awaken them to a sense of their duty; this must be the fruit, even the taking away of sin. When these points are gained by the affliction, it shall be removed in mercy. This attempt upon Zion and Jerusalem should come to nothing. God will be as a fire to consume the workers of iniquity, both soul and body. The desolation should be as when a standard-bearer fainteth, and those who follow are put to confusion. Who is able to stand before this great and holy Lord God?
Verse 16. - Therefore shall the Lord... send among his fat ones leanness. A continuation of ver. 12, showing what the nature of Assyria's punishment shall be. The prophet expresses it by two images - first, that of a wasting sickness; and secondly, that of a fire. The first image expresses that gradual decay of national spirit which saps the vital strength of a nation; the second is more suited to denote some external attack under which the weakened nation should succumb. There are traces, in the later history of Assyria, both of increasing internal weakness through luxury and effeminacy, and of violent external attacks culminating in the combined Median and Babylonian invasion, before which her power collapsed (Abyden. ap. Euseb., 'Chronicles Can.,' pars i.e. 9; Syncell., 'Chronograph.,' p, 210, B; Tobit 14:15).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Therefore shall the Lord, the Lord of hosts,.... Because of the pride, and arrogance, and vain boasting of the Assyrian monarch, which was resented by the Lord, he is threatened with what follows; and in order to humble him, and to show that God is above him, these titles are used; "the Lord", the Lord of the whole earth, and the King of kings, and Lord of lords; "the Lord of hosts", of armies above and below, of more and greater armies than what the king of Assyria was lord of; and therefore he might be assured that what is hereafter threatened would be fulfilled, namely,
send among his fat ones leanness; the Targum is, among his princes, who abounded in riches and honour; or his army, and the chiefs in it, the mighty and strong; and by "leanness" is meant destruction and death, which came upon his army, and the great men of it, immediately from the hand of God; see Psalm 106:15 compared with Numbers 11:33,
and under his glory he shall kindle a burning, like the burning of a fire; that is, under his army, which was great and glorious, very numerous, and well accoutred with clothes and arms, and made a very splendid and glittering show, and of which the Assyrian monarch gloried; this army the Jews say was destroyed by fire, and that the bodies of the men were burnt, and their clothes untouched; but Jarchi interprets this glory of their garments, which give a man glory, and says these were burnt; the Targum calls them their vessels of glory; perhaps meaning their glittering arms, which were burnt along with them.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
16. fat ones—(Isa 5:17). The robust and choice soldiers of Assyria (Ps 78:31, where "fattest" answers in the parallelism to "chosen," or "young men," Margin).
leanness—carrying out the image on "fat ones." Destruction (Ps 106:15). Fulfilled (Isa 37:36).
his glory—Assyria's nobles. So in Isa 5:13, Margin; Isa 8:7.
kindle—a new image from fire consuming quickly dry materials (Zec 12:6).
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