|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
13:1-5 The threatenings of God's word press heavily upon the wicked, and are a sore burden, too heavy for them to bear. The persons brought together to lay Babylon waste, are called God's sanctified or appointed ones; designed for this service, and made able to do it. They are called God's mighty ones, because they had their might from God, and were now to use it for him. They come from afar. God can make those a scourge and ruin to his enemies, who are farthest off, and therefore least dreaded.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The burden of Babylon,.... That is, a prophecy concerning Babylon, as the word is rendered, Proverbs 31:1. The Septuagint and Arabic versions translate it "the vision"; it signifies a taking up (w) a speech against it, and pronouncing a heavy sentence on it, such an one as should sink it into utter destruction; which will be the case of mystical Babylon, when it shall be as a millstone cast into the sea, never to be brought up again, Revelation 18:21. The Targum is,
"the burden of the cup of cursing to give Babylon to drink:''
after some prophecies concerning the Messiah and his kingdom, and the church's song of praise for salvation by him, others are delivered out concerning the enemies of the people of God, and their destruction, and begin with Babylon the chief of these enemies, and into whose hands the people of Israel would be delivered for a while; wherefore this prophecy is given forth, in order to lay a foundation for comfort and relief, when that should be their case; by which it would appear that they should have deliverance from them by the same hand that should overthrow them:
which Isaiah the son of Amoz did see: by a spirit of prophecy; for this he saw not with his bodily eyes, though it was as clear and certain to him as if he had. The Targum is,
"which Isaiah the son of Amoz prophesied.''
(w) a "tollere".
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
Isa 13:1-22. The Thirteenth through Twenty-third Chapters Contain Prophecies as to Foreign Nations.—The Thirteenth, Fourteenth, and Twenty-seventh Chapters as to Babylon and Assyria.
The predictions as to foreign nations are for the sake of the covenant people, to preserve them from despair, or reliance on human confederacies, and to strengthen their faith in God: also in order to extirpate narrow-minded nationality: God is Jehovah to Israel, not for Israel's sake alone, but that He may be thereby Elohim to the nations. These prophecies are in their right chronological place, in the beginning of Hezekiah's reign; then the nations of Western Asia, on the Tigris and Euphrates, first assumed a most menacing aspect.
1. burden—weighty or mournful prophecy [Grotius]. Otherwise, simply, the prophetical declaration, from a Hebrew root to put forth with the voice anything, as in Nu 23:7 [Maurer].
of Babylon—concerning Babylon.
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