|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
24:13-15 There shall be a remnant preserved from the general ruin, and it shall be a devout and pious remnant. These few are dispersed; like the gleanings of the olive tree, hid under the leaves. The Lord knows those that are his; the world does not. When the mirth of carnal worldlings ceases, the joy of the saints is as lively as ever, because the covenant of grace, the fountain of their comforts, and the foundation of their hopes, never fails. Those who rejoice in the Lord can rejoice in tribulation, and by faith may triumph when all about them are in tears. They encourage their fellow-sufferers to do likewise, even those who are in the furnace of affliction. Or, in the valleys, low, dark, miry places. In every fire, even the hottest, in every place, even the remotest, let us keep up our good thoughts of God. If none of these trials move us, then we glorify the Lord in the fires.
Verse 13. - When thus it shall be; rather, for so shall it be. In the time described the condition of the earth shall be like to that of an olive-ground when the beating is done, or of a vineyard when (he grapes are gathered. That is, a small and scattered remnant of inhabitants shall alone be left, like the few grapes and olives that were the portion of the gleaners (cf. Isaiah 17:6). There shall be. These words are not needed, and should be erased. The nexus is, "so it shall be as the shaking [rather, 'beating'] of an olive tree."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
When thus it shall be in the midst of the land among the people,.... When the above judgments shall be executed, the city of Rome shall be destroyed, and the vials of God's wrath are poured but on all the antichristian states, on all the followers of the beast, throughout the whole Romish jurisdiction:
there shall be as the shaking of an olive tree, and as the gleaning of grapes, when the vintage is done; as when an olive tree is shaken, or beaten with a staff, which was the usual way of gathering olives, and which the word (t) here signifies, there are some few left upon the uppermost or outermost branches, which cannot be reached; and as, after the vintage is got in, there are some grapes to be gleaned and gathered from the vines; see Isaiah 17:6 so it is here insinuated that there should be some, though but a few, a remnant, according to the election of grace, that should escape the above calamities, and be preserved as a seed for the church of God; and so it will be, that just before the destruction of mystical Babylon, the Lord's people will be called out of her, that they partake not of her sins, and of her plagues, Revelation 18:4. The Targum is,
"for now shall be left alone the righteous in the midst of the earth, among the kingdoms, as the shaking of olives, as the gleaning of grapes after the vintage;''
and to olives and grapes are these gracious persons fitly compared, for the goodness, loveliness, and fruitfulness of them, through the grace of God.
(t) "similes olivis destrictae oleae", Junius & Tremellius; "tanquam strictura oleae", Cocceius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
13. the land—Judea. Put the comma after "land," not after "people." "There shall be among the people (a remnant left), as the shaking (the after-picking) of an olive tree"; as in gathering olives, a few remain on the highest boughs (Isa 17:5, 6).
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