Jeremiah 48:43
Fear, and the pit, and the snare, shall be upon thee, O inhabitant of Moab, saith the LORD.
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(43)Fear, and the pit, and the snare.—The words are a reproduction of Isaiah 24:17, which had probably passed into something like proverbial use. The sequence in each case shows that each word plays a distinct part in the imagery. First there is the terror of the animal pursued by huntsmen, then the pit dug in the earth that it may fall into it (Psalm 7:15; Proverbs 26:27; Ecclesiastes 10:8); then, if it scrambles out of the pit, the snare or trap which finally secures it.

48:14-47. The destruction of Moab is further prophesied, to awaken them by national repentance and reformation to prevent the trouble, or by a personal repentance and reformation to prepare for it. In reading this long roll of threatenings, and mediating on the terror, it will be of more use to us to keep in view the power of God's anger and the terror of his judgments, and to have our hearts possessed with a holy awe of God and of his wrath, than to search into all the figures and expressions here used. Yet it is not perpetual destruction. The chapter ends with a promise of their return out of captivity in the latter days. Even with Moabites God will not contend for ever, nor be always wroth. The Jews refer it to the days of the Messiah; then the captives of the Gentiles, under the yoke of sin and Satan, shall be brought back by Divine grace, which shall make them free indeed.Surprised - captured by force. 43, 44. (See on [988]Isa 24:17, 18). These three words,

fear, pit, snare, signify no more than a variety of dangers that should be on all sides of them, so as if any escaped one danger, he should presently meet with another, for this was the time when the Lord was resolved to punish all the inhabitants of the land of Moab.

Fear, and the pit, and the snare, shall be upon thee,.... A proverbial expression, showing, that if they escaped one danger, or sore judgment, they should fall into another and greater: the words seem to be taken from Isaiah 24:17; See Gill on Isaiah 24:17;

O inhabitant of Moab, saith the Lord; what in the prophecy of Isaiah is said of the inhabitants of the earth in general, is here applied to the inhabitants of Moab in particular.

{y} Fear, and the pit, and the snare, shall be upon thee, O inhabitant of Moab, saith the LORD.

(y) He that escapes one danger will be taken by another, Isa 24:17.

43, 44. Cp. Isaiah 24:17 f. and probably a proverb in frequent use. We cannot reproduce in English the assonance paḥad vâpaḥath vâpâḥ. See on Lamentations 3:47.

Verses 43-47. - Hence, as the final result, escape is absolutely impossible, for one can get succeeds another in an endless series The last and greatest danger besots those who seek refuge behind the strong fortifications of Heshbon, It is from this very city that the hottest fire of the enemy breaks forth. Chemosh has not saved his people; and yet there is hope for Moab in the future. Verse 43. - Fear, and the pit, and the snare. An alliteration in the Hebrew, which occurs again in Isaiah 24:17. In German it can be represented better than in English - e.g. by Hitzig's "grauen, graben, garn." All primitive poetry delights in such alliterations. Jeremiah 48:43No escape from destruction. - Jeremiah 48:39. "How it is broken! they howl. How hath Moab turned the back, for shame! And Moab becomes a laughing-stock and a terror to all his neighbours. Jeremiah 48:40. For thus saith Jahveh: Behold, he shall fly like the eagle, and spread his wings over Moab. Jeremiah 48:41. Kerioth is taken, and the strongholds are seized, and the heart of the heroes of Moab on that day become like the heart of a travailing woman. Jeremiah 48:42. And Moab is destroyed from being a people, because he hath boasted against Jahveh. Jeremiah 48:43. Fear, and a pit, and a snare, are against thee, O inhabitants of Moab, saith Jahveh. Jeremiah 48:44. He who flees from the fear shall fall into the pit, and he who goes up out of the pit shall be taken in the snare; for I will bring against it, against Moab, the year of their recompense, saith Jahveh."

The subject of חתּה in Jeremiah 48:39 is Moab viewed as a nation. הילילוּ might be imperative, but in this case we would be obliged to take בּושׁ also as an imperative (as Hitzig and Graf do). It is simpler to take both forms as perfects: "they howl...Moab turns the back, is ashamed" ( equals for shame). On היה לשׂחק, cf. Jeremiah 48:26. מחתּה, object of terror, as in Jeremiah 17:17. "All who are round about him," as in Jeremiah 48:17. "For (Jeremiah 48:40) the enemy rushes down upon Moab like an eagle, and seizes Kerioth and all his strongholds." The subject is left unnamed, as in Jeremiah 46:18, but it is Nebuchadnezzar. The figure of the eagle, darting down in flight on its prey, is founded on Deuteronomy 28:49 (on אל- for על, cf. Jeremiah 49:22). Kerioth, the capital, is taken (see on Jeremiah 48:24); so are the other strongholds or fastnesses of the country. The mere fact that קריּות has the article does not justify any one in taking it as an appellative, "the cities;" this appears from a comparison of Amos 2:2 with this verse. No plural of קריה occurs anywhere. Then the fear of death falls on the heroes of Moab like a woman in labour. מצרה, partic. Hiphil from צרר, uterum comprimens, is found only here and in Jeremiah 49:22, where the figure is repeated. Moab is annihilated, so that it is no longer a nation (cf. Jeremiah 48:2), because it has risen up in pride against the God of Israel; cf. Jeremiah 48:26. He who flees from one danger falls into the other. The play on the words פּחד, fear, horror, פּחת, pit, and פּח, spring-trap, as well as the mode in which it is carried out, is taken from Isaiah 24:17., - a prophecy of the judgment on the world; see a similar idea presented in Amos 5:19, but somewhat differently expressed. The Kethib הניס, perfect Hiphil, "he flees," is less suitable than the Qeri הנּס (after Isaiah). The last clause, "for I will bring," etc., is quite in Jeremiah's peculiar style; cf. Jeremiah 4:23; Jeremiah 23:12. אליה belongs to אל־מואב: the noun is anticipated by the pronoun, as frequently occurs; cf. Jeremiah 9:14; Jeremiah 41:3; Jeremiah 43:11.

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