|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
14:1-23 The whole plan of Divine Providence is arranged with a view to the good of the people of God. A settlement in the land of promise is of God's mercy. Let the church receive those whom God receives. God's people, wherever their lot is cast, should endeavour to recommend religion by a right and winning conversation. Those that would not be reconciled to them, should be humbled by them. This may be applied to the success of the gospel, when those were brought to obey it who had opposed it. God himself undertakes to work a blessed change. They shall have rest from their sorrow and fear, the sense of their present burdens, and the dread of worse. Babylon abounded in riches. The king of Babylon having the absolute command of so much wealth, by the help of it ruled the nations. This refers especially to the people of the Jews; and it filled up the measure of the king of Babylon's sins. Tyrants sacrifice their true interest to their lusts and passions. It is gracious ambition to covet to be like the Most Holy, for he has said, Be ye holy, for I am holy; but it is sinful ambition to aim to be like the Most High, for he has said, He who exalts himself shall be abased. The devil thus drew our first parents to sin. Utter ruin should be brought upon him. Those that will not cease to sin, God will make to cease. He should be slain, and go down to the grave; this is the common fate of tyrants. True glory, that is, true grace, will go up with the soul to heaven, but vain pomp will go down with the body to the grave; there is an end of it. To be denied burial, if for righteousness' sake, may be rejoiced in, Mt 5:12. But if the just punishment of sin, it denotes that impenitent sinners shall rise to everlasting shame and contempt. Many triumphs should be in his fall. God will reckon with those that disturb the peace of mankind. The receiving the king of Babylon into the regions of the dead, shows there is a world of spirits, to which the souls of men remove at death. And that souls have converse with each other, though we have none with them; and that death and hell will be death and hell indeed, to all who fall unholy, from the height of this world's pomps, and the fulness of its pleasures. Learn from all this, that the seed of evil-doers shall never be renowned. The royal city is to be ruined and forsaken. Thus the utter destruction of the New Testament Babylon is illustrated, Re 18:2. When a people will not be made clean with the besom of reformation, what can they expect but to be swept off the face of the earth with the besom of destruction?
Verse 18. - All the kings of the nations, etc.; i.e. the other kings, speaking generally, died in peace, and had an honorable burial, each one in the sepulcher that he had prepared for himself as his final abode or "house" (comp. Isaiah 22:16). The care taken to prepare tombs was not confined to Egypt, though there obtaining its greatest development. Among others, the Persian kings certainly prepared their own sepulchers; and probably the practice was general.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
All the kings of the nations,.... Of other nations, besides those he governed, and even of those whom he had subdued, at least their ancestors, the greatest part of them however; for the word "all" does not always signify every individual, though by the repetition of it, it here bids fair for such a sense, there being but very few, or scarce any exceptions to this observation; for, on some account or another, both good and bad kings are interred in great state:
even all of them lie in glory; in rich tombs and stately monuments, erected for the honour of them; and where they "sleep", as the word signifies, with their fathers, their ancestors, and are at rest, in the state of the dead, where they will continue to the resurrection:
everyone in his own house; or grave, see Job 30:23 the same with his long home, Ecclesiastes 12:5 or the house of his world: in reference to which, the Targum paraphrases it by the same phrase here; and though their graves were not in their dwelling houses or palaces, yet often near them, and in their own country, and were what had been erected, or caused to be erected by them, in their lifetime.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
18. All—that is, This is the usual practice.
in glory—in a grand mausoleum.
house—that is, "sepulchre," as in Ec 12:5; "grave" (Isa 14:19). To be excluded from the family sepulcher was a mark of infamy (Isa 34:3; Jer 22:19; 1Ki 13:22; 2Ch 21:20; 24:25; 28:27).
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