|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
3:1-20 The prophet relates the more gloomy and discouraging part of his experience, and how he found support and relief. In the time of his trial the Lord had become terrible to him. It was an affliction that was misery itself; for sin makes the cup of affliction a bitter cup. The struggle between unbelief and faith is often very severe. But the weakest believer is wrong, if he thinks that his strength and hope are perished from the Lord.
Verse 15. - With bitterness; literally, with bitternesses; i.e. bitter troubles. A reminiscence of Job 9:18. With wormwood; i.e. with a drink of wormwood (comp. Jeremiah 9:15; Jeremiah 23:15). We are slightly reminded of Psalm 69:21, "They gave me gall for my meat."
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He hath filled me with bitterness,.... Or "with bitternesses" (m); instead of food, bitter herbs; the allusion perhaps is to the bitter herbs eaten at the passover, and signify bitter afflictions, sore calamities, of which the prophet and his people had their fill. The Targum is,
"with the gall of serpents;''
see Job 20:14;
he hath made me drunken with wormwood; with wormwood drink; but this herb being a wholesome one, though bitter, some think that henbane, or wolfsbane, is rather meant, which is of a poisonous and intoxicating nature; it is no unusual thing for persons to be represented as drunk with affliction, Isaiah 51:17.
(m) "amaritudinibus", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Michaelis, "amaroribus", Cocceius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
15. wormwood—(Jer 9:15). There it is regarded as food, namely, the leaves: here as drink, namely, the juice.
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