|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
6:9-16 God, having showed how necessary it was that they should do justly, here shows how plain it was that they had done unjustly. This voice of the Lord says to all, Hear the rod when it is coming, before you see it, and feel it. Hear the rod when it is come, and you are sensible of the smart; hear what counsels, what cautions it speaks. The voice of God is to be heard in the rod of God. Those who are dishonest in their dealings shall never be reckoned pure, whatever shows of devotion they may make. What is got by fraud and oppression, cannot be kept or enjoyed with satisfaction. What we hold closest we commonly lose soonest. Sin is a root of bitterness, soon planted, but not soon plucked up again. Their being the people of God in name and profession, while they kept themselves in his love, was an honour to them; but now, being backsliders, their having been once the people of God turns to their reproach.
Verse 14. - Thou shalt eat, etc. The punishment answers to the sin (which proves that it comes from God), and recalls the threats of the Law (Leviticus 26:25, etc.; Deuteronomy 28:29, etc.; comp. Hosea 4:10; Haggai 1:6). Thy casting down shall be in the midst of thee; i.e. thy humiliation, thy decay and downfall, shall occur in the very centre of thy wealth and strength, where thou hast laid up thy treasure and practised thy wickedness. But the meaning of the Hebrew is very uncertain, and the text may be corrupt. The LXX. had a different reading, συσκοτάσει εν σοι, "darkness shall be in thee." The Syriac and Chaldee interpret the word rendered "casting down" (ישח, which is found nowhere else) of some disease like dysentery. It is most suitable to understand this clause as connected with the preceding threat of hunger, and to take the unusual word in the sense of "emptiness." Thus, "Thy emptiness (of stomach) shall remain in thee." Jeremiah (Jeremiah 52:6)speaks of the famine in the city at the time of its siege. Thou shalt take hold; rather, thou shalt remove (thy goods). This is the second chastisement. They should try to take their goods and families out of the reach of the enemy, but should not be able to save them. The LXX. interprets the verb of escaping by flight. That which thou deliverest. If by chance anything is carried away, it shall fall into the hands of the enemy (comp. 2 Kings 25:4, 5; Jeremiah 52:7, 8).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
Thou shalt eat, but not be satisfied,.... Either not having enough to eat, for the refreshing and satisfying of nature; or else a blessing being withheld from food, though eaten, and so not nourishing; or a voracious and insatiable appetite being given as a curse; the first sense seems best:
and thy casting down shall be in the midst of thee; meaning they should be humbled and brought down, either by civil discords and wars among themselves, or through the enemy being suffered to come into the midst of their country, and make havoc there; which would be as a sickness and disease in their bowels. So the Targum,
"thou shalt have an illness in thy bowels.''
The Syriac version is,
"a dysentery shall be in thine intestines;''
a secret judgment wasting and destroying them;
and thou shall take hold, but shall not deliver; and that which thou deliverest will I give up to the sword; the sense is, that they should take hold of their wives and children, and endeavour to save them from the sword of the enemy, and being carried captive: or should "remove" them (p), as the word is sometimes used, in order to secure them from them; or should "overtake" (q); the enemy, carrying them captive; but should not be able by either of these methods to save them from being destroyed, or carried away by them; and even such as they should preserve or rescue for a while, yet these should be given up to the sword of the enemy, the same or another. Aben Ezra and Kimchi interpret this of their women conceiving, and not bringing forth; and, if they should, yet what they brought forth should be slain by the sword (r). But the Targum and Jarchi incline to the former sense.
(p) "et amovebis", Junius & Tremellius, Piscator, Tarnovius; "summovebis", Drusius, so Ben Melech; "et removebis", Burkius. (q) "Assequeris", Syr. (r) R. Sol. Urbin. Ohel Moed, fol. 35. 2.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
14. eat … not be satisfied—fulfiling the threat, Le 26:26.
thy casting down shall be in the midst of thee—Thou shalt be cast down, not merely on My borders, but in the midst of thee, thy metropolis and temple being overthrown [Tirinus]. Even though there should be no enemy, yet thou shalt be consumed with intestine evils [Calvin]. Maurer translates as from an Arabic root, "there shall be emptiness in thy belly." Similarly Grotius, "there shall be a sinking of thy belly (once filled with food), through hunger." This suits the parallelism to the first clause. But English Version maintains the parallelism sufficiently. The casting down in the midst of the land, including the failure of food, through the invasion thus answering to, "Thou shalt eat, and not be satisfied."
thou shalt take hold, but … not deliver—Thou shalt take hold (with thine arms), in order to save [Calvin] thy wives, children and goods. Maurer, from a different root, translates, "thou shalt remove them," in order to save them from the foe. But thou shalt fail in the attempt to deliver them (Jer 50:37).
that which thou deliverest—If haply thou dost rescue aught, it will be for a time: I will give it up to the foe's sword.
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