|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
55:9-15 No wickedness so distresses the believer, as that which he witnesses in those who profess to be of the church of God. Let us not be surprised at the corruptions and disorders of the church on earth, but long to see the New Jerusalem. He complains of one that had been very industrious against him. God often destroys the enemies of the church by dividing them. And an interest divided against itself cannot long stand. The true Christian must expect trials from professed friends, from those with whom he has been united; this will be very painful; but by looking unto Jesus we shall be enabled to bear it. Christ was betrayed by a companion, a disciple, an apostle, who resembled Ahithophel in his crimes and doom. Both were speedily overtaken by Divine vengeance. And this prayer is a prophecy of the utter, the everlasting ruin, of all who oppose and rebel against the Messiah.
Verse 13. - But it was thou, a man mine equal; literally, a man according to my valuing; i.e. one of my social rank, with whom I was on familiar terms. My guide; or, "my companion." But the LXX. have ἡγέμων. And mine acquaintance. "My confidant" (Kay); "my familiar friend" (Cheyne, and Revised Version).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
But it was thou,.... The Targum is, "but thou Ahithophel"; of whom the words are literally to be understood, and so they are in the Talmud (u); and mystically and typically of Judas;
a man mine equal; "a man", and not a beast, nor a devil; but a man, from whom humanity, kindness, and tenderness might have been expected; though both Ahithophel and Judas acted the part of a devil; and the latter is expressly called one, John 6:70; "mine equal"; or like unto me; as the Targum. Ahithophel was not equal to David in dignity, as the king of Israel; nor in gifts, as the sweet psalmist of Israel; nor in grace as he; but as a man, a mortal dying man: kings and subjects are of the same blood, equally liable to death, and in the grave will be manifestly on a level: or rather the sense is, that he was in his esteem and affliction as himself; he was his friend that he loved as his own soul: so Judas could not be in every sense equal to Christ who is Jehovah's fellow, and thought it no robbery to be equal with God. Indeed as a man he was like unto him; a frail, mortal man, though not sinless as Christ. The word may be rendered "according to my appointment" (w), ordination, or constitution; Judas being a man appointed and ordained to be an apostle of Christ with the rest: or, "according to my esteem" (x); being had in great esteem and familiarity with Christ: or, "according to my order" (y), rank and class; being taken into his family, admitted to his table, where be sat down and ate with him, as if he was his equal;
my guide: or "governor" (z). Ahithophel was not governor over David; but was made a governor by him: he was one of his dukes or nobles, as the word is rendered in Genesis 36:15, was raised to great dignity by him; perhaps was chief minister of state: it is certain he was his counsellor, and his counsel was with him as the oracle of God, 1 Chronicles 27:33; he was his guide in civil affairs; he was directed by his advice, and it may be was president of his privy council. Judas was not only the guide of them to Christ who took him, Acts 1:16; but when the apostles were sent out two by two before the face of Christ, to preach where he himself should come, Judas was sent also, Mark 6:7;
and mine acquaintance: one well known to him, as Ahithophel was to David, and Judas to Christ, his friend and companion, in whom he confided, and who ate of his bread; and all these characters are so many aggravations of his treachery and wickedness.
(u) T. Bab. Sanhedrin, fol. 106. 2. Pirke Abot, c. 6. s. 3.((w) "Secundum dispositionem, sc. ordinationem et constitutionem meam", Calvinus in Michaelis. (x) "Juxta estimationem meam", Vatablus, Gejerus, Michaelis; "qui par mihi estimatus est", Piscator. (y) "Secundum ordinem meum", Mollerus. (z) "dux meus", Pagninus, Tigurine version, Junius & Tremellius, Piscator; "princeps meus", Cocceius.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
13. guide—literally, "friend" (Pr 16:28; 17:9).
acquaintance—in Hebrew, a yet more intimate associate.
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