Therefore shall her young men fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day, said the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Therefore shall her young men fall . . .—The verse is reproduced almost literatim from the prophecy against Damascus in Jeremiah 49:26.Jeremiah 50:28.
in the streets—The Babylonians were so discouraged by having lost some battles that they retired within their walls and would not again meet Cyrus in the field.Jeremiah 49:26 where we met with the same words. Therefore shall her young men fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the LORD.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)30. Repeated from Jeremiah 49:26.Verse 30. - With the exception of "her" in the second clause, a repetition of Jeremiah 49:26. Psalm 141:9, where פּח is also found. ולא , "and thou didst not perceive," i.e., didst not mark it: this is a paraphrase of the idea "unexpectedly," suddenly; cf. Jeremiah 51:8; Isaiah 47:11. This has been literally fulfilled on Babylon. According to Herodotus (i. 191), Cyrus took Babylon by diverting the Euphrates into a trench he had dug. By this stratagem the Persians threw themselves so unexpectedly on the Babylonians (ἐξ ἀπροσδοκήτου σφι παρέστησαν οἱ Πέρσαι), that when the outmost portions of the city had been already seized, those who lived in the middle had not observed at all that they were captured (τοὺς τὸ μέσον οἰκέοντας ου ̓ μανθάνειν ἑαλωκότας). Similarly, when the city was taken under Darius Hystaspes, they were surprised that Zopyrus traitorously opened the gates to the besiegers (Herodotus, iii. 158). Babylon has contended against Jahveh, because, in its pride, it refused to let the people of God depart; cf. Jeremiah 50:29 and Jeremiah 50:33. In Jeremiah 50:25 the sudden devastation of Babylon is accounted for. Jahveh opens His armoury, and brings out the instruments of His wrath, in order to execute His work on the land of the Chaldeans. אוצר, "magazine, treasure-chamber," is here applied to an armoury. The "instruments of His wrath" are, in Isaiah 13:5, the nations which execute the judgment of god-here, the instruments of war and weapons with which Jahveh Himself marches into battle against Babylon. On 'מלאכה וגו, cf. Jeremiah 48:10. The business which the Lord has there regards the chastisement of Babylon for its insolence. For the transaction of this business He summons His servants, Jeremiah 50:26. באוּ־להּ, as in Jeremiah 46:22; Jeremiah 49:9, is substantially the same as באוּ עליה, Jeremiah 49:14; Jeremiah 48:8. מקּץ, "from the end," or from the last hitherwards, the same as מקּצה, Jeremiah 51:31, i.e., all together on to the last; cf. Genesis 19:4; Genesis 47:2, etc. "Open her (Babylon's) barns" or granaries; "heap it up (viz., what was in the granaries) like heaps" of grain or sheaves, "and devote it to destruction," i.e., consume it with fire, because things on which the curse was imposed must be burnt; cf. Joshua 11:12 and Joshua 11:13. All the property found in Babylon is to be collected in heaps, and then burnt with the city. The use of the image is occasioned by the granaries. מאבסיה is ἅπ. λεγ., from אבס, to give fodder to cattle, - properly a stall for fodder, then a barn, granary. ערמה is a heap of grain (Sol 7:3), sheaves (Ruth 3:7), also of rubbish (Nehemiah 3:34). As Jeremiah 50:26 declares what is to be done with goods and chattels, so does Jeremiah 50:27 state what is to be done with the population. The figure employed in Jeremiah 50:26 is followed by the representation of the people as oxen destined for slaughter; in this Jeremiah had in his mind the prophecy found in Isaiah 34, in which the judgment to come on Edom is depicted as a slaughter of lambs, rams, and he-goats: the people of Edom are thus compared to cattle that may be offered in sacrifice. This figure also forms the basis of the expression ירד לטּבח in Jeremiah 48:15, where this style of speaking is used with regard to the youths or the young troops; cf. also Jeremiah 51:40. The פּרים, accordingly, designate not merely the chief among the people, or the men of rank, but represent the whole human population. In the last clause ("for their day is come," etc.), there is a transition in the discourse from the figure to the real subject itself. The suffix in עליהם does not refer to the oxen, but to the men over whose murder there is an exclamation of woe. In like manner, "their day" means the day of judgment for men, viz., the time of their visitation with punishment; see on Jeremiah 46:21. Fugitives and escaped ones will bring to Zion, and proclaim the news of the execution of this fearful judgment, that the Lord has fulfilled the vengeance of His temple, i.e., avenged on Babylon the burning of His temple by the Chaldeans. The fugitives and escaped ones are the Israelites, who were summoned to flee from Babylon, Jeremiah 50:3. On "the vengeance of Jahveh," cf. Jeremiah 50:15 and Jeremiah 51:11.
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