And the rest of the trees of his forest shall be few, that a child may write them.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)And the rest of the trees of his forest shall be few.—To number the host of an army, to count killed and wounded after a battle, was commonly the work of the royal scribe, who appears so often as in that employment in Assyrian sculptures. Here the survivors (the “remnant” as before) were to be so few (literally, a number) that even the boy who could hardly count but on his fingers would be skilled enough to number them.
That a child may write them - That a child shall be able to number them, or write their names; that is, they shall be very few. A child can number or count but few; yet the number of those who would be left, would be so very small that even a child could count them with ease. It is probable that a few of the army of Sennacherib escaped (see the note at Isaiah 37:37); and compared with the whole army, the remnant might bear a striking resemblance to the few decaying trees of a once magnificent forest of cedars.
his forest—same image as in Isa 10:18, for the once dense army.
child … write—so few that a child might count them.The rest of the trees of his forest; the remainders of that mighty host.
That a child may write them; that they may be easily numbered by the meanest accountant. A child may be their muster-master.
that a child may write them; count them, and take down their names; and it may be understood of a military muster, and the sense be, that the army should be reduced to so small a number by this stroke upon them, that there would be no need of an able muster master to take the account of them, a child would be equal to such a task. The Targum is,
"and the rest of his warriors shall fail, that the people shall be a small number, and shall be reckoned a weak kingdom.''And the rest of the trees of his forest shall be few, that a child may write them.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Verse 19. - The rest of the trees; i.e. these that escape the burning - shall be few; literally, a number; i.e. so few that their number shall be apparent.
(Note: Thronende, lit., those who sat (on thrones).)
like a bull. And my hand extracted the wealth of the nations like a nest: and as men sweep up forsaken eggs, have I swept the whole earth; there was none that moved the wing, and opened the mouth, and chirped." The futures may be taken most safely as regulated by the preterites, and used, like German imperfects, to express that which occurs not once merely, but several times. The second of these preterites, שׁושׂיתי, is the only example of a poel of verbs ל ה; possibly a mixed form from שׁסס (poel of שסס) and שהסה (piel of שסה). The object to this, viz., ‛athidoth (chethib) or ‛athudoth (keri), is sometimes used in the sense of τὰ μέλλοντα ; sometimes, as in this instance, in the sense of τὰ ὑπάρχοντα . According to the keri, the passage is to be rendered, "And I, a mighty one, threw down kings" (those sitting on thrones), cabbir being taken in the same sense as in Job 34:17, Job 34:24; Job 36:5. But the chethib câ'abbı̄r is to be preferred as more significant, and not to be rendered "as a hero" (to which the Caph similitudinis is so little suitable, that it would be necessary to take it, as in Isaiah 13:6, as Caph veritatis), but "as a bull," 'abbı̄r as in Psalm 68:31; Psalm 22:13; Psalm 50:13. A bull, as the excavations show, was an emblem of royalty among the Assyrians. In Isaiah 10:14, the more stringent Vav conv. is introduced before the third pers. fem. The Kingdoms of the nations are compared here to birds' nests, which the Assyrian took for himself ('âsaph, as in Habakkuk 2:5); and their possessions to single eggs. The mother bird was away, so that there was not even a sign of resistance; and in the nest itself not one of the young birds moved a wing to defend itself, or opened its beak to scare the intruder away. Seb. Schmid has interpreted to correctly, "nulla alam movet ad defendendum aut os aperit ad terrendum." Thus proudly did Asshur look back upon its course of victory, and thus contemptuously did it look down upon the conquered kingdoms.
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