|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
40:18-26 Whatever we esteem or love, fear or hope in, more than God, that creature we make equal with God, though we do not make images or worship them. He that is so poor, that he has scarcely a sacrifice to offer, yet will not be without a god of his own. They spared no cost upon their idols; we grudge what is spent in the service of our God. To prove the greatness of God, the prophet appeals to all ages and nations. Those who are ignorant of this, are willingly ignorant. God has the command of all creatures, and of all created things. The prophet directs us to use our reason as well as our senses; to consider who created the hosts of heaven, and to pay our homage to Him. Not one fails to fulfil his will. And let us not forget, that He spake all the promises, and engaged to perform them.
Verse 23. - The princes... the judges; rather, princes, judges. The entire class of such is meant, not any special individuals (comp. Psalm 107:40; Job 12:19-21). As vanity; or, as chaos - the same word that is used in ver. 17.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
That bringeth princes to nothing,.... The great men of the earth, kings, rulers, and nobles, these he brings to the dust; and all their counsels, schemes, and purposes, come to nothing; and their monarchies and kingdoms too in time. Where are now the Babylonish, Persian, and Grecian monarchies, and those great princes that formerly reigned in them?
he maketh the judges of the earth as vanity; their decrees and decisions to stand for nothing, as "tohu" and "bohu", the first of which words is used here; so that they are no more regarded and attended to.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
23. (Ps 107:4; Da 2:21).
judges—that is, rulers; for these exercised judicial authority (Ps 2:10). The Hebrew, shophtee, answers to the Carthaginian chief magistrates, suffetes.
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