|Matthew Henry's Concise Commentary|
78:40-55. Let not those that receive mercy from God, be thereby made bold to sin, for the mercies they receive will hasten its punishment; yet let not those who are under Divine rebukes for sin, be discouraged from repentance. The Holy One of Israel will do what is most for his own glory, and what is most for their good. Their forgetting former favours, led them to limit God for the future. God made his own people to go forth like sheep; and guided them in the wilderness, as a shepherd his flock, with all care and tenderness. Thus the true Joshua, even Jesus, brings his church out of the wilderness; but no earthly Canaan, no worldly advantages, should make us forget that the church is in the wilderness while in this world, and that there remaineth a far more glorious rest for the people of God.
Verse 48. - He gave up their cattle also to the hall (comp. Exodus 9:19-21, 25). And their flocks to hot thunderbolts (see Exodus 9:24, 28, 29, 34). The "fire which ran along the ground" (Exodus 9:23) must have been caused by electrified clouds of high tension; the highly charged drops of rain meeting the inductively charged earth, and sparking across when within striking distance. This is believed to accompany every thunderstorm, though generally invisible to the eye. When exceptionally severe, it would convey the idea of running fire, and would of course be very destructive of life. It is no wonder that most of the cattle which were left "in the field" died (Exodus 9:21, 25).
Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
He gave up their cattle also to the hail,.... For the hail fell upon man and beast, as well as upon herbs and trees, Exodus 9:22,
and their flocks to hot thunderbolts: which were killed by them: this is to be understood of the fire that was mingled with the hail, and ran upon the ground, and destroyed their flocks, Exodus 9:23. Jarchi, out of the Midrash, interprets the words of fowls which devoured the sheep killed by the hail.
Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary
48. gave … cattle—literally, "shut up" (compare Ps 31:8).
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