|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
16:1-5 God tells sinners what they may do to prevent ruin; so he does to Moab. Let them send the tribute they formerly engaged to pay to Judah. Take it as good advice. Break off thy sins by righteousness, it may lengthen thy quiet. And this may be applied to the great gospel duty of submission to Christ. Send him the lamb, the best you have, yourselves a living sacrifice. When you come to God, the great Ruler, come in the name of the Lamb, the Lamb of God. Those who will not submit to Christ, shall be as a bird that wanders from her nest, which shall be snatched up by the next bird of prey. Those who will not yield to the fear of God, shall be made to yield to the fear of every thing else. He advises them to be kind to the seed of Israel. Those that expect to find favour when in trouble themselves, must show favour to those in trouble. What is here said concerning the throne of Hezekiah, also belongs, in a much higher sense, to the kingdom of Jesus Christ. Though by subjection to Him we may not enjoy worldly riches or honours, but may be exposed to poverty and contempt, we shall have peace of conscience and eternal life.
Verse 3. - Take counsel, execute judgment, etc. According to most critics, these are the words of the Moabites, or of a Moabite ambassador at Jerusalem, and are a call on Judaea to give shelter to the fugitives from Moab. Some, however, as Dr. Kay, maintain that the words are the prophet's, addressed to Moab, calling on her to treat kindly fugitives from Judaea. Make thy shadow as the night (comp. Isaiah 4:6). In the hot land of Moab the sun is an enemy, and "the shadow of a great rock" a welcome refuge.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Take counsel, execute judgment,.... This refers either to what goes before, that they would take the counsel given, and do that which was just and right, by paying tribute to the king of Judah; or to what follows, that they would enter into a consultation, the king of Moab with his nobles, and resolve upon what was right, and do it, by protecting and harbouring the distressed Jews, who would flee unto them from the enemy:
make thy shadow as the night in the midst of the noonday; a time of the greatest heat, to which the Assyrian army, for its force and fury, and the mischief done by it, is compared: and the Moabites they are advised to make a shadow, as large and as strong as the dark night, that is, to protect the Jews in their distress, and to refresh and comfort them under it; see Isaiah 4:6,
hide the outcasts; such as were driven out of their land through the fury and persecution of the enemy, receive and conceal, as Rahab did the spies:
bewray not him that wandereth; from his native place, as a bird from its nest, being forced to it; such an one, or as many as may be, in such a case, do not discover them where they are, or betray them, and deliver them up into the hands of their enemy.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
3-5. Gesenius, Maurer, &c., regard these verses as an address of the fugitive Moabites to the Jews for protection; they translate Isa 16:4, "Let mine outcasts of Moab dwell with thee, Judah"; the protection will be refused by the Jews, for the pride of Moab (Isa 16:6). Vitringa makes it an additional advice to Moab, besides paying tribute. Give shelter to the Jewish outcasts who take refuge in thy land (Isa 16:3, 4); so "mercy" will be shown thee in turn by whatever king sits on the "throne" of "David" (Isa 16:5). Isaiah foresees that Moab will be too proud to pay the tribute, or conciliate Judah by sheltering its outcasts (Isa 16:6); therefore judgment shall be executed. However, as Moab just before is represented as itself an outcast in Idumea, it seems incongruous that it should be called on to shelter Jewish outcasts. So that it seems rather to foretell the ruined state of Moab when its people should beg the Jews for shelter, but be refused for their pride.
make … shadow as … night … in … noonday—emblem of a thick shelter from the glaring noonday heat (Isa 4:6; 25:4; 32:2).
bewray … wandereth—Betray not the fugitive to his pursuer.
Isaiah 16:3 Parallel Commentaries
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