Zechariah 2:7
Deliver yourself, O Zion, that dwell with the daughter of Babylon.
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2:6-9 If God will build Jerusalem for the people and their comfort, they must inhabit it for him and his glory. The promises and privileges with which God's people are blessed, should engage us to join them, whatever it costs us. When Zion is enlarged to make room for all God's Israel, it is the greatest madness for any of them to stay in Babylon. The captivity of a sinful state is by no means to be continued in, though a man may be easy in worldly matters. Escape for thy life, look not behind thee. Christ has proclaimed that deliverance to the captives, which he has himself wrought out, and it concerns every one to resolve that sin shall not have dominion over him. Those who would be found among God's children, must save themselves from this world, see Ac 2:40. What Christ will do for his church, shall be an evident proof of God's care and affection. He that touches you, touches the apple of his eye. This is a strong expression of God's love to his church. He takes what is done against her as done against the tenderest part of the eye, to which the least touch is a great offence. Christ is sent to be the Protector of his church.Dwellest with the daughter of Babylon - The unusual idiom is perhaps chosen as expressive of God's tenderness, even to the people who were to be destroyed, from which Israel was to escape. 7. O Zion … daughter of Babylon—Thou whose only sure dwelling is "Zion," inseparably connected with the temple, art altogether out of thy place in "dwelling with the daughter of Babylon" (that is, Babylon and her people, Ps 137:8; Isa 1:8).

After the glory—After restoring the "glory" (Zec 2:5; Isa 4:5; Ro 9:4) of Jehovah's presence to Jerusalem, He (God the Father) hath commissioned ME (God the Son, Isa 48:16, the Divine Angel: God thus being at once the Sender and the Sent) to visit in wrath "the nations which spoiled you." Messiah's twofold office from the Father is: (1) to glorify His Church; (2) to punish its foes (2Th 1:7-10). Both offices manifest His glory (Pr 16:4).

toucheth … the apple of his eye—namely, of Jehovah's eye (De 32:10; Ps 17:8; Pr 7:2). The pupil, or aperture, through which rays pass to the retina, is the tenderest part of the eye; the member which we most sedulously guard from hurt as being the dearest of our members; the one which feels most acutely the slightest injury, and the loss of which is irreparable.

Deliver thyself: the proclamation for free return is published; up, then, and be gone.

O Zion; O ye people who should dwell in Zion, ye daughters of Zion.

Dwellest; keepest in Babylon when thou mightest go to Jerusalem.

With the daughter of Babylon: perhaps this intimates that which kept many Jews in Babylon, wives or mistresses. Deliver thyself, O Zion,.... Or make thy escape, you that belong to Mount Zion, the city of the living God, and ought to have your abode there, and not in Babylon: flee from thence,

that dwelleth with the daughter of Babylon; in any of the antichristian states, who are the daughters of Babylon, the mother of harlots, Revelation 17:5 so it may be rendered, "that inhabits the daughter of Babylon" (k); dwells in any of the cities, towns, and villages, belonging to it.

(k) , , Sept.; "habitatrix filiae Babel", Pagninus, Montanus, Drusius; "vel inhabitans filiam Babel", De Dieu.

{h} Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon.

(h) By fleeing from Babylon, and coming to the Church.

7. Deliver thyself] Lit. “Ho, Zion, deliver thyself: thou that dwellest with, &c.” The reason for this urgent call to escape, viz. the impending judgment upon Babylon, follows immediately, Zechariah 2:8-9. In like manner Jeremiah (Jeremiah 50:8; Jeremiah 50:10; Jeremiah 51:6; Jeremiah 51:45), and before him Isaiah (Jeremiah 48:14; Jeremiah 48:20), connects the punishment of Babylon with the escape of Israel. The immediate reference of those prophecies is to the taking of Babylon by Cyrus, which preceded and led to the return from the 70 years’ captivity. But the prophecies reach on, in the largeness of their terms, to the final and utter destruction of Babylon, and include such later calls to escape as that of Zechariah here. The immediate reference here would appear to be to one or both of those occasions in the reign of Darius, on which Babylon “had risen against the Persians and made an effort to regain its independence”. “What these dangers were may be seen from the great inscription of Darius cut into the rock at Behistun, and supposed by Sir H. Rawlinson to have been executed in the fifth year of the reign of Darius (two or three years after this prophecy was uttered). That inscription records two great rebellions in Babylonia, and two captures of the city of Babylon, one effected by Darius in person, the other by one of his generals. The Jews in Babylon who did not listen to the prophetic warning suffered no doubt severely in the confusions of that period; while those who returned to Palestine, and obeyed the command to flee out of Babylon, delivered their souls, that is their lives, and were not cut off in her iniquity.” Rev. C. H. H. Wright, Bampton Lectures, 1878.Verse 7. - Deliver thyself. Escape from the danger. O Zion. The exiled Jews are thus designated. Septuagint, Αἰς Σιὼν ἀνασώζεσθε "Go to Zion, and save yourselves." That dwellest (thou that dwellest) with the daughter of Babylon. The inhabitants of Babylon are called "the daughter of Babylon," in analogy with the common phrases, "the daughter of Zion," "the daughter of Jerusalem" (comp. Jeremiah 46:19). There is soma reproach implied in the clause, as if these Jews were content to dwell and remain in this heathen city. The immediate danger that menaced Babylon arose from two severe rebellions, in the course of which the city was twice taken. The first revolt was headed by Nidinta-Bel, B.C. 519, who was slain by Darius at Babylon. The second took place under Arakha, B.C. 514; he was defeated by a general of Darius, named Intaphernes, taken prisoner and crucified. A record of these occurrences is found in Darius's inscription on the rock at Behlstun, translated in 'Records of the Past,' vol. 1. The merciless Persians would doubtless treat the inhabitants of the captured city with their wonted cruelty. The second woe is pronounced upon the wickedness of the Chaldaean, in establishing for himself a permanent settlement through godless gain. Habakkuk 2:9. "Woe to him who getteth a godless gain for his house, to set his nest on high, to save himself from the hand of calamity. Habakkuk 2:10. Thou hast consulted shame to thy house, destruction of many nations, and involvest thy soul in guilt. Habakkuk 2:11. For the stone out of the wall will cry, and the spar out of the wood will answer it." To the Chaldaean's thirst for robbery and plunder there is attached quite simply the base avarice through which he seeks to procure strength and durability for his house. בּצע בּצע, to get gain, has in itself the subordinate idea of unrighteous gain or sinful covetousness, since בּצע denotes cutting or breaking something off from another's property, though here it is still further strengthened by the predicate רע, evil (gain). בּיתו (his house) is not the palace, but the royal house of the Chaldaean, his dynasty, as Habakkuk 2:10 clearly shows, where בּית evidently denotes the king's family, including the king himself. How far he makes בּצע for his family, is more precisely defined by לשׂוּם וגו. קנּו, his (the Chaldaean's) nest, is neither his capital nor his palace or royal castle; but the setting up of his nest on high is a figure denoting the founding of his government, and securing it against attacks. As the eagle builds its nest on high, to protect it from harm (cf. Job 39:27), so does the Chaldaean seek to elevate and strengthen his rule by robbery and plunder, that it may never be wrested from his family again. We might here think of the buildings erected by Nebuchadnezzar for the fortification of Babylon, and also of the building of the royal palace (see Berosus in Hos. c. Ap. i. 19). We must not limit the figurative expression to this, however, but must rather refer it to all that the Chaldaean did to establish his rule. This is called the setting on high of his nest, to characterize it as an emanation from his pride, and the lofty thoughts of his heart. For the figure of the nest, see Numbers 24:21; Obadiah 1:4; Jeremiah 49:16. His intention in doing this is to save himself from the hand of adversity. רע is not masculine, the evil man; but neuter, adversity, or "the hostile fate, which, so far as its ultimate cause is God (Isaiah 45:7), is inevitable and irreversible" (Delitzsch). In Habakkuk 2:10 the result of his heaping up of evil gain is announced: he has consulted shame to his house. יעץ, to form a resolution. His determination to establish his house, and make it firm and lofty by evil gain, will bring shame to his house, and instead of honour and lasting glory, only shame and ruin. קצות, which has been variously rendered, cannot be the plural of the noun קצה, "the ends of many nations," since it is impossible to attach any intelligent meaning to this. It is rather the infinitive of the verb קצה, the occurrence of which Hitzig can only dispute by an arbitrary alteration of the text in four different passages, and is equivalent to קצץ, to cut off, hew off, which occurs in the piel in 2 Kings 10:32 and Proverbs 26:6, but in the kal only here. The infinitive construct does not stand for the inf. abs., or for לקצות, exscindendo, but is used substantively, and is governed by יעצתּ, which still retains its force from the previous clause. Thou hast consulted (resolved upon) the cutting off, or destruction, of many nations. וחוטא, and sinnest against thy soul thereby, i.e., bringest retribution upon thyself, throwest away thine own life. On the use of the participle in the sense of the second person without אתּה, see at Habakkuk 1:5. חטא, with the accusative of the person, as in Proverbs 20:2 and Proverbs 8:36, instead of חטא בנפשׁו. The participle is used, because the reference is to a present, which will only be completed in the future (Hitzig and Delitzsch). The reason for this verdict, and also for the hōi which stands at the head of this strophe, follows in Habakkuk 2:11. The stone out of the wall and the spar out of the woodwork will cry, sc. because of the wickedness which thou hast practised in connected with thy buildings (Habakkuk 1:2), or for vengeance (Genesis 4:10), because they have been stolen, or obtained from stolen property. The apparently proverbial expression of the crying of stones is applied in a different way in Luke 19:40. קיר does not mean the wall of a room here, but, as distinguished from עץ, the outside wall, and עץ, the woodwork or beams of the buildings. The ἁπ. λεγ. כּפיס, lit., that which binds, from כפס in the Syriac and Targum, to bind, is, according to Jerome, "the beam which is placed in the middle of any building to hold the walls together, and is generally called ἱμάντωσις by the Greeks." The explanations given by Suidas is, δέσις ξύλων ἐμβαλλομένων ἐν τοῖς οἰκοδομήσασι, hence rafters or beams. יעננּה, will answer, sc. the stone, i.e., join in its crying (cf. Isaiah 34:14).
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