|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
1:12-22 Jerusalem, sitting dejected on the ground, calls on those that passed by, to consider whether her example did not concern them. Her outward sufferings were great, but her inward sufferings were harder to bear, through the sense of guilt. Sorrow for sin must be great sorrow, and must affect the soul. Here we see the evil of sin, and may take warning to flee from the wrath to come. Whatever may be learned from the sufferings of Jerusalem, far more may be learned from the sufferings of Christ. Does he not from the cross speak to every one of us? Does he not say, Is it nothing to you, all ye that pass by? Let all our sorrows lead us to the cross of Christ, lead us to mark his example, and cheerfully to follow him.
Verse 15. - Hath trodden under foot; rather, hath rejected; i.e. hath punished. Comp. Psalm 119:118, 119, where "thou rejectest [same verb as here] all them that wander from thy statutes" is followed by "thou puttest away all the ungodly of the earth like dross," Hath called an assembly; rather, hath proclaimed a festival. When Jehovah summons the instruments of his vengeance, the prophets describe it as the "proclaiming a festival." The Persians or Chaldeans, as the case may be, obey the summons with a holy glee, and destroy the enemies of the true God (comp. Isaiah 13:3). Hath trodden, etc.; rather, hath trodden the winepress for (i.e. to the ruin of) the virgin daughter of Zion. The poet. carries on the figure of the festival. It is a vintage which is to be celebrated, such a vintage as is described in Isaiah 63:3 (comp. Joel 3:13). The choicest youth of Judah are to be cut off like grapes from the vine. "Virgin daughter" is a frequent figure to express inviolate security (so Jeremiah 14:17).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
The Lord hath trodden under foot all my mighty men in the midst of me,.... As a causeway is trodden; or as mire is trodden under foot in the streets; so were the mighty and valiant men, the soldiers and men of war, trodden under foot and destroyed by the Chaldeans in the streets of Jerusalem, and in the midst of Judea; the Lord so permitting it:
he hath called an assembly against me to crush my young men; the army of the Chaldeans, which were brought against Jerusalem by a divine appointment and call; against whom the choicest and stoutest of them, even their young men, could not stand; but were crushed and broken to pieces by them. The word for "assembly" sometimes signifies an appointed time; a time fixed for solemn festivals, and for calling the people to them; and so the Targum here,
"he hath called or appointed a time to break the strength of my young men;''
the time of Jerusalem's destruction by the Babylonians:
the Lord hath trodden the virgin, the daughter of Judah, as in a winepress; in the winepress of his wrath; or however in the winepress of the Babylonians, who are compared to one; into whose hands the Jews falling, were like grapes cast into a winepress, and there trodden by men, in order to squeeze and get out the wine; and in like manner were their blood squeezed out of them and shed. The Targum interprets it of the blood of virginity being poured out, as wine in a press; the virgins of Judah being ravished and defiled by the enemy.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
15. trodden, &c.—Maurer, from Syriac root, translates, "cast away"; so 2Ki 23:27. But Ps 119:118, supports English Version.
in … midst of me—They fell not on the battlefield, but in the heart of the city; a sign of the divine wrath.
assembly—the collected forces of Babylon; a very different "assembly" from the solemn ones which once met at Jerusalem on the great feasts. The Hebrew means, literally, such a solemn "assembly" or feast (compare La 2:22).
trodden … virgin … in a wine-press—hath forced her blood to burst forth, as the red wine from the grapes trodden in the press (Isa 63:3; Re 14:19, 20; 19:15).
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