Jeremiah 51:48
Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for Babylon: for the spoilers shall come to her from the north, said the LORD.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
(48) Then the heaven and the earth . . .—The prophet, following in the track of Isaiah (Isaiah 44:23), thinks of the whole creation as rejoicing in the righteous judgment of Jehovah on the guilty city, and in the liberation of His people. They sing, as it were, their Te Deum over the fall of Babylon under the attack of the Medo-Persian armies “from the North.”

51:1-58 The particulars of this prophecy are dispersed and interwoven, and the same things left and returned to again. Babylon is abundant in treasures, yet neither her waters nor her wealth shall secure her. Destruction comes when they did not think of it. Wherever we are, in the greatest depths, at the greatest distances, we are to remember the Lord our God; and in the times of the greatest fears and hopes, it is most needful to remember the Lord. The feeling excited by Babylon's fall is the same with the New Testament Babylon, Re 18:9,19. The ruin of all who support idolatry, infidelity, and superstition, is needful for the revival of true godliness; and the threatening prophecies of Scripture yield comfort in this view. The great seat of antichristian tyranny, idolatry, and superstition, the persecutor of true Christians, is as certainly doomed to destruction as ancient Babylon. Then will vast multitudes mourn for sin, and seek the Lord. Then will the lost sheep of the house of Israel be brought back to the fold of the good Shepherd, and stray no more. And the exact fulfilment of these ancient prophecies encourages us to faith in all the promises and prophecies of the sacred Scriptures.Therefore - The exiles were to note these things as signs of the approach of God's visitation.

Confounded - Or, ashamed.

48. heaven … earth … sing for Babylon—(Isa 14:7-13; 44:23; Re 18:20). All the creatures in heaven and earth. shall rejoice at the vengeance which God shall take upon Babylon, which had been the destroyer of so many of their people. The Median soldiers are those here called spoilers from the north. Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein,

shall sing for Babylon,.... At the destruction of her, rejoicing at it; not at the ruin of fellow creatures, simply considered; but relatively, at the righteousness of God in it, and the glory of his justice, and the deliverance of many by it from tyranny and bondage. This seems to be a figurative expression often used, in which the heavens and the earth are brought in as witnesses, approvers, and applauders, of what is done by the Lord. Some indeed interpret it of the angels, the inhabitants of the heavens, and of the Jews, dwellers on earth; and others of the church of God, in heaven and in earth; which, of the two, seems best; the like will be done at the fall of mystical Babylon, Revelation 18:20;

for the spoilers shall come unto her from the north, saith the Lord; the Medes and Persians that should and did spoil and plunder Babylon; and who came from countries that lay north to it.

Then the heaven and {c} the earth, and all that is in them, shall sing for Babylon: for the spoilers shall come to her from the north, saith the LORD.

(c) All creatures in heaven and earth will rejoice and praise God for the destruction of Babylon the great enemy of his Church.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
48. shall sing for joy over Babylon] shall rejoice over her fall.Verse 48. - From the north. The same statement as in Jeremiah 50:3, 9, 41. Description of the fall. The sea that has come over Babylon and covered it with its waves, was taken figuratively, even by the Chaldee paraphrasts, and understood as meaning the hostile army that overwhelms the land with its hosts. Only J. D. Michaelis was inclined to take the words in their proper meaning, and understood them as referring to the inundation of Babylon by the Euphrates in August and in winter. But however true it may be, that, in consequence of the destruction or decay of the great river-walls built by Nebuchadnezzar, the Euphrates may inundate the city of Babylon when it wells into a flood, yet the literal acceptation of the words is unwarranted, for the simple reason that they do not speak of any momentary or temporary inundation, and that, because Babylon is to be covered with water, the cities of Babylonia are to become an arid steppe. The sea is therefore the sea of nations, cf. Jeremiah 46:7; the description reminds us of the destruction of Pharaoh and his host in the Red Sea. On Jeremiah 51:43, cf. Jeremiah 48:9; Jeremiah 49:18, Jeremiah 49:33., Jeremiah 50:12. The suffix in בּהן refers to "her cities;" but the repetition of ארץ is not for that reason wrong, as Graf thinks, but is to be explained on the ground that the cities of Babylonia are compared to a barren land; and the idea is properly this: The cities become an arid country of steppes, a land in whose cities nobody can dwell.
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