Exodus 15:4
Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.
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(4) His chosen captains.—Comp. Exodus 14:7, where the same word is used.

Are drowned.—Rather, were drowned.

Exodus 15:4-5. He hath cast — With great force and velocity, as an arrow out of a bow, as the Hebrew word ירה, here used, signifies. The Egyptian cavalry was numerous, formidable, and covered whole plains. It would have required several days to have defeated and cut them to pieces: but God defeated them in an instant, with a single effort, at a blow. He overthrew, drowned, overwhelmed them all, as though they had been but one horse and one rider: The horse and his rider hath he thrown into the sea — Observe the pompous display of what is contained in these two words, horse and rider. 1st, Pharaoh’s chariots. 2d, His host. 3d, His chosen captains. A beautiful gradation! Observe again the amplification. He cast into the sea: They are drowned in the sea: The depths have covered them: They sank into the bottom as a stone! Moses seems here to be desirous of extolling the greatness of the power which God exhibited in a sea which formed part of the Egyptian empire, and was under the protection of the gods of Egypt.

15:1-21 This song is the most ancient we know of. It is a holy song, to the honour of God, to exalt his name, and celebrate his praise, and his only, not in the least to magnify any man. Holiness to the Lord is in every part of it. It may be considered as typical, and prophetical of the final destruction of the enemies of the church. Happy the people whose God is the Lord. They have work to do, temptations to grapple with, and afflictions to bear, and are weak in themselves; but his grace is their strength. They are often in sorrow, but in him they have comfort; he is their song. Sin, and death, and hell threaten them, but he is, and will be their salvation. The Lord is a God of almighty power, and woe to those that strive with their Maker! He is a God of matchless perfection; he is glorious in holiness; his holiness is his glory. His holiness appears in the hatred of sin, and his wrath against obstinate sinners. It appears in the deliverance of Israel, and his faithfulness to his own promise. He is fearful in praises; that which is matter of praise to the servants of God, is very dreadful to his enemies. He is doing wonders, things out of the common course of nature; wondrous to those in whose favour they are wrought, who are so unworthy, that they had no reason to expect them. There were wonders of power and wonders of grace; in both, God was to be humbly adored.Hath He cast - "Hurled," as from a sling. See Exodus 14:27.

His chosen captains - See Exodus 14:7 note.


Ex 15:1-27. Song of Moses.

1. Then sang Moses and the children of Israel—The scene of this thanksgiving song is supposed to have been at the landing place on the eastern shore of the Red Sea, at Ayoun Musa, "the fountains of Moses." They are situated somewhat farther northward along the shore than the opposite point from which the Israelites set out. But the line of the people would be extended during the passage, and one extremity of it would reach as far north as these fountains, which would supply them with water on landing. The time when it was sung is supposed to have been the morning after the passage. This song is, by some hundred years, the oldest poem in the world. There is a sublimity and beauty in the language that is unexampled. But its unrivalled superiority arises not solely from the splendor of the diction. Its poetical excellencies have often drawn forth the admiration of the best judges, while the character of the event commemorated, and its being prompted by divine inspiration, contribute to give it an interest and sublimity peculiar to itself.

I will sing unto the Lord, for he hath triumphed gloriously—Considering the state of servitude in which they had been born and bred, and the rude features of character which their subsequent history often displays, it cannot be supposed that the children of Israel generally were qualified to commit to memory or to appreciate the beauties of this inimitable song. But they might perfectly understand its pervading strain of sentiment; and, with the view of suitably improving the occasion, it was thought necessary that all, old and young, should join their united voices in the rehearsal of its words. As every individual had cause, so every individual gave utterance to his feelings of gratitude.

With great force, like an arrow out of a bow; as the Hebrew word signifies.

Pharaoh's chariots and his hosts hath he cast into the sea,.... Which was done by the Angel of the Lord, who was Jehovah himself, our Immanuel, and man of war, as appears from Exodus 14:17, an emblem of the destruction of antichrist, and all the antichristian states, of which Pharaoh and his host were types:

his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea: who were appointed over his chosen chariots, which all perished in the sea together. In the carnage that will be made by Christ, the warrior and conqueror, among the followers of antichrist, the man of "sin", the antitypical Pharaoh, the flesh of captains is mentioned for the fowls of heaven to feed upon, Revelation 19:18.

Pharaoh's chariots and his host hath he cast into the sea: his chosen captains also are drowned in the Red sea.
4. and his host] Cf. Exodus 14:4; Exodus 14:9; Exodus 14:17; Exodus 14:28.

And his chosen (Heb. the choice of his) knights] See on Exodus 14:7.

Verse 4. - Pharaoh's chariots and his host. The "host" of this passage is not the "army" of Exodus 14:9, though in the original the same word is used, but the whole multitude of those who rode in the chariots, and were drowned in the sea. Hath he cast. Or "hurled." The verb commonly expresses the hurling of a javelin or the shooting of an arrow. His chosen captains. Compare Exodus 14:7. Are drowned. Literally, "were submerged." The word describes the act of drowning, not the state of lying drowned in the depths of the sea. Exodus 15:4"Jehovah is a man of war:" one who knows how to make war, and possesses the power to destroy His foes. "Jehovah is His name:" i.e., He has just proved Himself to be the God who rules with unlimited might. For (Exodus 15:4) "Pharaoh's chariots and his might (his military force) He cast into the sea, and the choice (the chosen ones) of his knights (shelishim, see Exodus 14:7) were drowned in the Red Sea."
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