|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
15:1-9 The Divine judgments about to come upon the Moabites. - This prophecy coming to pass within three years, would confirm the prophet's mission, and the belief in all his other prophecies. Concerning Moab it is foretold, 1. That their chief cities should be surprised by the enemy. Great changes, and very dismal ones, may be made in a very little time. 2. The Moabites would have recourse to their idols for relief. Ungodly men, when in trouble, have no comforter. But they are seldom brought by their terrors to approach our forgiving God with true sorrow and believing prayer. 3. There should be the cries of grief through the land. It is poor relief to have many fellow-sufferers, fellow-mourners. 4. The courage of their soldiers should fail. God can easily deprive a nation of that on which it most depended for strength and defence. 5. These calamities should cause grief in the neighbouring parts. Though enemies to Israel, yet as our fellow-creatures, it should be grievous to see them in such distress. In ver. 6-9, the prophet describes the woful lamentations heard through the country of Moab, when it became a prey to the Assyrian army. The country should be plundered. And famine is usually the sad effect of war. Those who are eager to get abundance of this world, and to lay up what they have gotten, little consider how soon it may be all taken from them. While we warn our enemies to escape from ruin, let us pray for them, that they may seek and find forgiveness of their sins.
Verse 6. - The waters of Nimrim shall be desolate. The Wady Numeira is a watercourse running into the Dead Sea from the east, hallway between the promontory called the "Lisan" and the sea's southern extremity. It is fed by "six or seven springs" ('Quarterly Statement' of Palest. Expl. Fatal, October, 1880, p. 254) - "plenteous brooks gushing from the lofty hills" (Tristram), and boasts along its banks a number of "well-watered gardens." There is no reason to doubt the identity of this stream with "the waters of Nimrim." Their "desolation" was probably caused by the enemy stopping up the sources (2 Kings 3:19, 25; 2 Chronicles 32:3, 4). The hay is withered away. There is luxuriant vegetation in the wadys and ghors at the southern end of the Dead Sea, especially in the Ghor-es-Safiyeh, the Wady Numeira, and the Wady el-Mantara ('Quarterly Statement' of Palest. Expl. Fund, October, 1880, pp. 252, 254).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
For the waters of Nimrim shall be desolate,.... Or dried up, through a great drought that should come upon the land at this time; or being defiled with the blood of the slain, as Jarchi: it may denote the well watered pastures about Nimrim, that should become the forage of the enemy, and be trodden under foot by its army, or be forsaken by the proprietors of them. Josephus (m) speaks of fountains of hot water springing up in the country of Peraea, where Nimrim was, of a different taste, some bitter, and others sweet; which, Dr. Lightfoot (n) suggests, might be these waters of Nimrim; and, according to the Jerusalem Talmud (o), Bethnimrah was in that part of the country which was called the valley, and so was very fruitful with springs of water. The word is in the plural number, and may design more places of the same name; and we read of Nimrah and Bethnimrah, Numbers 32:3. Jerom (p) calls it Nemra, and says it was a large village in his time; it seems to have its name from panthers or leopards, of which there might be many in these parts:
for the hay is withered away, the grass faileth, there is no green thing; by which it seems that the desolation spoken of was not merely through the forage and trampling of the enemy's army, but by a drought.
(m) De Bello Jud. l. 7. c. 6. sect. 3. Ed. Hudson. (n) Ut supra (See his Works, vol. 2.) p. 50. (o) T. Hieros. Sheviith, fol. 38. 4. (p) De locis Hebraicis, fol. 93. I.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
6. For—the cause of their flight southwards (2Ki 3:19, 25). "For" the northern regions and even the city Nimrim (the very name of which means "limpid waters," in Gilead near Jordan) are without water or herbage.
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