2 Kings 25:12
But the captain of the guard left of the poor of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen.
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(12) Of the poor of the land.2Kings 24:14 (Comp. Jeremiah 39:10.)

Husbandmen.—Or, plowmen. The word (Hebrew text, gābîm) occurs here only. Jeremiah 52:16 has a cognate form (yôg’bîm) also unique.

25:8-21 The city and temple were burnt, and, it is probable, the ark in it. By this, God showed how little he cares for the outward pomp of his worship, when the life and power of religion are neglected. The walls of Jerusalem were thrown down, and the people carried captive to Babylon. The vessels of the temple were carried away. When the things signified were sinned away, what should the signs stand there for? It was righteous with God to deprive those of the benefit of his worship, who had preferred false worships before it; those that would have many altars, now shall have none. As the Lord spared not the angels that sinned, as he doomed the whole race of fallen men to the grave, and all unbelievers to hell, and as he spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, we need not wonder at any miseries he may bring upon guilty nations, churches, or persons.There was probably an intention of seating colonists into the country from some other part of the Empire, as the Assyrians had done in Samaria 2 Kings 17:24. 8-18. on the seventh day of the month … came Nebuzar-adan—(compare Jer 52:12). In attempting to reconcile these two passages, it must be supposed either that, though he had set out on the seventh, he did not arrive in Jerusalem till the tenth, or that he did not put his orders in execution till that day. His office as captain of the guard (Ge 37:36; 39:1) called him to execute the awards of justice on criminals; and hence, although not engaged in the siege of Jerusalem (Jer 39:13), Nebuzar-adan was despatched to rase the city, to plunder the temple, to lay both in ruins, demolish the fortifications, and transport the inhabitants to Babylon. The most eminent of these were taken to the king at Riblah (2Ki 25:27) and executed, as instigators and abettors of the rebellion, or otherwise obnoxious to the Assyrian government. In their number were Seraiah, the high priest, grandfather of Ezra (Ezr 7:1), his sagan or deputy, a priest of the second order (Jer 21:2; 29:25, 29; 37:3). No text from Poole on this verse.

And in the fifth month, on the seventh day of the month,.... In Jeremiah 52:12 it is the tenth day of the month; which, how to be reconciled; see Gill on Jeremiah 52:12.

which is the nineteenth year of King Nebuchadnezzar; who, according to Ptolemy's canon, reigned forty three years; Metasthenes (u) says forty five; and from hence, to the end of 2 Kings 25:12 facts are related as in Jeremiah 52:12 whither the reader is referred.

(u) De Judicio Temp. & Annal. Pers. fol. 221. 2.

But the captain of the guard left of the door of the poor of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen.
12. left of the poor [R.V. poorest] of the land] The word was so rendered above in 2 Kings 24:14. Now that the great houses and their inhabitants were gone and the craftsmen also, the life became no better than that of the nomads, and the people left behind could only turn to keeping the land in cultivation. Jeremiah (Jeremiah 39:10) calls them ‘the poor of the people, which had nothing’.

Verse 12. - But the captain of the guard left of the poor of the land. It was inconvenient to deport persons who had little or nothing. In the Assyrian sculptures we see the captives, who are carried off, generally accompanied by their own baggage-animals, and taking with them a certain amount of their own household stuff. Pauper immigrants would not have been of any advantage to a country. To be vinedressers and husbandmen. Jeremiah adds that Nebuzar-adan "gave" these persons "vineyards and fields at the same time" (Jeremiah 39:10). The Babylonians did not wish Judaea to lie waste, since it could then have paid no tribute. On the contrary, they designed its continued cultivation; and Gedaliah, the governor of their appointment, made great efforts to have cultivation resumed and extended (see Jeremiah 40:10, 12). 2 Kings 25:12The rest of the people he led away, both those who had been left behind in the city and the deserters who had gone over to the Chaldaeans, and the remnant of the multitude. ההמון יתר, for which we have האמון יתר in Jeremiah 52:15, has been interpreted in various ways. As אמון signifies an artist or artificer in Proverbs 8:30, and העם יתר has just preceded it, we might be disposed to give the preference to the reading האמון, as Hitzig and Graf have done, and understand by it the remnant of the artisans, who were called והמּסגּר החרשׁ in 2 Kings 24:14, 2 Kings 24:16. But this view is precluded by Jeremiah 39:9, where we find הנּשׁארים העם יתר instead of האמון יתר or ההמון .י These words cannot be set aside by the arbitrary assumption that they crept into the text through a copyist's error; for the assertion that they contain a purposeless repetition is a piece of dogmatical criticism, inasmuch as there is a distinction drawn in Jeremiah 39:9 between בּעיר הנּשׁארים העם יתר העם הןּ and הנּשׁארים העם יתר. Consequently האמון is simply another form for ההמון (ה and א being interchanged) in the sense of a mass of people, and we have simply the choice left between two interpretations. Either בּעיר הנּשׁארים העם יתר means the fighting people left in the city, as distinguished from the deserters who had fled to the Chaldaeans, and האמון equals ההמון יתר in Jeremiah 52:15, or הנּשׁארים העם יתר in Jeremiah 39:9, the rest of the inhabitants of Jerusalem; or בּעיר הנּשׁ העם יתר is the people left in Jerusalem (warriors and non-warriors), and ההמון יתר the rest of the population of the land outside Jerusalem. The latter is probably the preferable view, not only because full justice is thereby done to בּעיר in the first clause, but also because it is evident from the exception mentioned in 2 Kings 25:12 that the deportation was not confined to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, but extended to the population of the whole land. The "poor people," whom he allowed to remain in the land as vine-dressers and husbandmen, were the common people, or people without property, not merely in Jerusalem, but throughout the whole land. הארץ דּלּת equals עם־הארץ דּלּת (2 Kings 24:14). Instead of מדּלּת we have in Jeremiah מדּלּות: the plural used in an abstract sense, "the poverty," i.e., the lower people, "the poor who had nothing" (Jeremiah 39:10). Instead of the Chethb לגבים from גּוּב, secuit, aravit, the Keri has ליגבים from יגב, in the same sense, after Jeremiah 52:16.
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