|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
2:10-22 Causes for lamentation are described. Multitudes perished by famine. Even little children were slain by their mother's hands, and eaten, according to the threatening, De 28:53. Multitudes fell by the sword. Their false prophets deceived them. And their neighbours laughed at them. It is a great sin to jest at others' miseries, and adds much affliction to the afflicted. Their enemies triumphed over them. The enemies of the church are apt to take its shocks for its ruins; but they will find themselves deceived. Calls to lamentation are given; and comforts for the cure of these lamentations are sought. Prayer is a salve for every sore, even the sorest; a remedy for every malady, even the most grievous. Our business in prayer is to refer our case to the Lord, and leave it with him. His will be done. Let us fear God, and walk humbly before him, and take heed lest we fall.
Verse 18. - Their heart cried unto the Lord, etc. "Their heart" can only mean "the heart of the people of Jerusalem." For the expression, comp. Psalm 84:2, "My heart and my flesh cry aloud to the living God." To avoid the rather startling prosopopoeia in the next clause, Thenius supposes a corruption in the group of letters rendered "wall," and attaches the corrected word to the first clause, rendering thus: "Their heart crieth unto the Lord in vain; O daughter of Zion, let tears run down," etc. Another resource, which also involves an emendation, is that of Ewald, "Cry with all thy heart, O wall of the daughter of Zion." O wall, etc. The prosepopoeia is surprising, but is only a degree more striking than that of ver. 8 and Lamentations 1:4. In Isaiah 14:31 we find an equally strong one, "Howl, O gate." Most probably, however, there is something wrong in the text; the following verses seem to refer to the daughter of Zion. Bickell reads thus: "Cry aloud unto the Lord, O virgin daughter of Zion." Like a river; rather, like a torrent. Give thyself no rest. The word rendered "rest" means properly the stiffness produced by cold.
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Their heart cried unto the Lord,.... Either the heart of their enemies, as Aben Ezra; which cried against the Lord, and blasphemed him; or rather the heart of the Jews in their distress, when they saw the walls of the city breaking down, they cried unto the Lord for help and protection, whether sincerely or not; no doubt some did; and all were desirous of preservation:
O wall of the daughter of Zion! this seems to be an address of the prophet to the people of Jerusalem carried captive, which was now without houses and inhabitants, only a broken wall standing, some remains and ruins of that; which is mentioned to excite their sorrow and lamentation:
let tears run down like a river, day and night; incessantly, for the destruction and desolation made:
give thyself no rest; or intermission; but weep continually:
let not the apple of thine eye cease; from pouring out tears; or from weeping, as the Targum; or let it not "be silent" (b), or asleep; but be open and employed in beholding the miseries of the nation, and in deploring them.
(b) "non taceat", Pagninus, Montanus, Vatablus; "ne sileat", Calvin, Michaelis.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
18. wall—(La 2:8). Personified. "Their heart," that is, the Jews'; while their heart is lifted up to the Lord in prayer, their speech is addressed to the "wall" (the part being put for the whole city).
let tears, &c.—(Jer 14:17). The wall is called on to weep for its own ruin and that of the city. Compare the similar personification (La 1:4).
apple—the pupil of the eye (Ps 17:8).
Lamentations 2:18 Parallel Commentaries
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