Until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Isaiah 36:2, and it is probable that he purposed to take some other of the unsubdued towns in that part of Palestine.
And take you away - It was common for conquerors in ancient times to remove a vanquished people from their own country. They did this either by sending them forth in colonies to people some unsettled region, or by removing the body of them to the land of the conqueror. This was done for various purposes. It was sometimes to make slaves of them; sometimes for the purposes of triumph; but more commonly to secure them from revolt. In this manner the ten tribes were removed from the kingdom of Samaria; and thus also the Jews were carried to Babylon. Suetonius says (chapter xxi.) of Augustus. that he removed the Suevi and the Sicambri into Gaul, and stationed them on the Rhine. The same thing was also practiced in Egypt, for the purpose of securing the people from revolt Genesis 47:21.
A land like your own land - A fertile land, abounding in the same productions as your own.
come out—surrender to me; then you may remain in quiet possession of your lands till my return from Egypt, when I will lead you away to a land fruitful as your own. Rab-shakeh tries to soften, in the eyes of the Jews, the well-known Assyrian policy of weakening the vanquished by deporting them to other lands (Ge 47:21; 2Ki 17:6).
a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards; corn for bread, and vineyards for wine, and both for food and drink; such a land was the land of Judea. The description agrees with Deuteronomy 8:8. Rabshakeh was well acquainted with the land of Judea; and this seems to confirm the conjecture of the Jews, that he was one of their people, since he could speak their language, and describe their land so well; all this he said to sooth and persuade them to a voluntary surrender.Until I come and take you away to a land like your own land, a land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)17. But only for a time! The Rabshakeh does not conceal from them that their ultimate fate will be deportation; although he tries to present it in an attractive light. The parallel verse in 2 Kings (2 Kings 18:31) contains these additional words “a land of oil olive and of honey, that ye may live, and not die; and hearken not unto Hezekiah.”Verse 17. - Until I come and take you away. It was so much thee usual policy of Assyria to remove to a new locality a conquered people, which had given them trouble, that Rabshakeh felt safe in assuming that the fate in store for the Jews, if they submitted themselves, was a transplantation. Sargon had transported the Israelites to Gozan and Media (2 Kings 18:11), the Tibarcni to Assyria, the Commageni to Susiana ('Ancient Monarchies,' vol. 2. p. 423). Sennacherib himself had transported into Assyria more than two hundred thousand Aramaeans (ibid., p. 430). It might be confidently predicted that, if he conquered them, he would transplant the Jews. Rabshakeh tries to soften down the hardship of the lot before them by promises of a removal to a land equal in all respects to Palestine. To a land like your own land. This was certainly not a general principle of Assyrian administration. Nations were removed from the far north to the extreme south, and vice versa, from arid to marshy tracts, from fertile regions to comparative deserts. The security of the empire, not the gratification of the transported slaves, was the ruling and guiding principle of all such changes. A land of corn and wine, a land of bread and vineyards. The writer of Kings adds, "a land of oil olive and of honey." (On the productiveness of Palestine, see Numbers 13:27; Numbers 14:7; Deuteronomy 1:23; Deuteronomy 8:7-9; Deuteronomy 11:11, 12.) Nehemiah 13:24, more especially as there may have been a far greater dialectical difference between the popular speech of the northern and southern kingdoms, than we can gather from the biblical books that were written in the one or the other. Aramaean ('arâmı̄th), however, appears to have been even then, as it was at a later period (Ezra 4:7), the language of intercourse between the empire of Eastern Asia and the people to the west of the Tigris (compare Alex. Polyhistor in Euseb. chron. arm. i. 43, where Sennacherib is said to have erected a monument with a Chaldean inscription); and consequently educated Judaeans not only understood it, but were able to speak it, more especially those who were in the service of the state. Assyrian, on the contrary, was unintelligible to Judaeans (Isaiah 28:11; Isaiah 33:19), although this applied comparatively less to the true Assyrian dialect, which was Semitic, and can be interpreted for the most part from the Hebrew (see Oppert's "Outlines of an Assyrian Grammar" in the Journal Asiatique, 1859), than to the motley language of the Assyrian army, which was a compound of Arian and Turanian elements. The name Sennacherib (Sanchērı̄bh equals סן־אסהי־ירב, lxx Sennachēreim, i.e., "Sin, the moon-god, had multiplied the brethren") is Semitic; on the other hand, the name Tartan, which cannot be interpreted either from the Semitic or the Arian, is an example of the element referred to, which was so utterly strange to a Judaean ear.
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