Lamentations 3:7
He hath hedged me about, that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy.
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(7) He hath hedged.—From the darkness of Hades we pass to that of the prison-house, in which the mourner is “hedged” or confined, bound with a heavy chain (literally, brass).

3:1-20 The prophet relates the more gloomy and discouraging part of his experience, and how he found support and relief. In the time of his trial the Lord had become terrible to him. It was an affliction that was misery itself; for sin makes the cup of affliction a bitter cup. The struggle between unbelief and faith is often very severe. But the weakest believer is wrong, if he thinks that his strength and hope are perished from the Lord.The prophet feels as if enclosed within walls, and fettered. 7-9. hedged—(Job 3:23; Ho 2:6).

chain—literally, "chain of brass."

The use of a hedge about an enclosed field is twofold:

1. To keep out other beasts which belong not to the owner of the ground; in this sense God set a hedge sometimes about Canaan, Isaiah 5:5.

2. To keep in those beasts that are within; thus God had now hedged them in, into a barren place where they had no pasture, but were continually pushed at by other beasts with whom they were mixed, and who were stronger than they, and they could not get out. God had dealt with them as with grievous malefactors, who are loaded with heavy chains. He had made their affliction heavy and insupportable.

He hath hedged me about, that I cannot go out,.... When in prison, or in the dungeon, or during the siege of Jerusalem; though the phrase may only denote in general the greatness of his troubles, with which he was encompassed, and how inextricable they were; like a hedge about a vineyard, or a wall about a city, which could not easily be got over:

he hath made my chain heavy; his affliction intolerable. It is a metaphor taken from malefactors that have heavy chains put upon their legs, that they may not make their escape out of prison: or, "my brass" (g); that is, chains, or a chain made of brass; so the Targum,

"he hath made heavy upon my feet fetters of brass.''

(g) Sept. "aes meum, vel chalybem meum", Piscator.

He hath hedged me about, that I cannot get out: he hath made my chain heavy.
7. Cp. Job 19:8; so with Lamentations 3:8, Job 19:7; Job 30:20, and we may perhaps add with Lamentations 3:5, Job 19:12.

Verses 7-9. - Three figures, interrupted by a literal statement of the ill success of prayer. A traveller who finds himself suddenly caged up by a high thorn hedge (comp. Job 3:23; Hosea 2:6). A prisoner with a heavy chain. Again, a traveller suddenly shut up by solid stone walls (comp. Hosea 2:8). Verse 7. - My chain; literally, my brass (comp. Judges 16:21; 2 Kings 25:7). Lamentations 3:7God has hedged him round like a prisoner, cut off all communication from without, so that he cannot escape, and He has loaded him with heavy chains. This figure is based on Job 19:8 and Hosea 2:8. גּדר בּעדי, "He hath made an hedge round me," does not suggest prison walls, but merely seclusion within a confined space, where he is deprived of free exit. "I cannot go out," as in Psalm 88:9. The seclusion is increased by fetters which are placed on the prisoner. נחשׁת, "brass," for fetters, as in German and English, "irons," for iron chains.
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