Zechariah 2:7
Deliver thyself, O Zion, that dwellest with the daughter of Babylon.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)
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.

EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)
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. Zechariah 2:7The prophecy commences thus in Zechariah 2:6-9 : Zechariah 2:6. "Ho, ho, flee out of the land of the north, is the saying of Jehovah; for I spread you out as the four winds of heaven, is the saying of Jehovah. Zechariah 2:7. Ho, Zion, save thyself, thou that dwellest with the daughter Babel. Zechariah 2:8. For thus saith Jehovah of hosts, After glory hath he sent me to the nations that have plundered you; for whoever toucheth you, toucheth the apple of His eye. Zechariah 2:9. For, behold, I swing my hand over them, and they become a spoil to those who served them; and ye will see that Jehovah of hosts hath sent me." The summons to flee out of Babylon, in Zechariah 2:6 and Zechariah 2:7, is addressed to the Israelites, who are all included in the one name Zion in Zechariah 2:7; and shows that the address which follows is not a simple continuation of the promise in Zechariah 2:4 and Zechariah 2:5, but is intended both to explain it, and to assign the reason for it. The summons contains so far a reason for it, that the Israelites are directed to flee out of Babylon, because the judgment is about to burst upon this oppressor of the people of God. The words nūsū, flee, and himmâletı̄, save thyself or escape, both point to the judgment, and in Zechariah 2:9 the judgment itself is clearly spoken of. the land of the north is Babylon (cf. Jeremiah 1:14; Jeremiah 6:22; Jeremiah 10:22; and for the fact itself, Isaiah 48:20). The reason for the exclamation "Flee" is first of all given in the clause, "for like the four winds have I spread you out," not "dispersed you" (Vulg., C. B. Mich., Koehler). For apart from the fact that pērēs almost always means to spread out, and has the meaning to disperse at the most in Psalm 68:15 and Ezekiel 17:21, this meaning is altogether unsuitable here. For if Israel had been scattered like the four winds, it would of necessity have been summoned to return, not only from the north, but from all quarters of the globe (Hitzig, Kliefoth). Moreover, we should then have לארבּע, into the four winds; and the method suggested by Koehler for reconciling כּארבּע with his view, viz., by assuming that "like the four winds" is equivalent to "as chaff is pounded and driven away from its place by the four winds," according to which the winds would be mentioned in the place of the chaff, will hardly meet with approval. The explanation is rather that the perfect pērastı̄ is used prophetically to denote the purpose of God, which had already been formed, even if its realization was still in the future. To spread out like the four winds is the same as to spread out just as the four winds spread out to all quarters of the globe. Because God has resolved upon spreading out His people in this manner, they are to flee out of Babel, that they may not suffer the fate of Babel. That this thought lies at the foundation of the motive assigned, is evident from the further reasons assigned for the summons in Zechariah 2:8 and Zechariah 2:9.

Zion stands for the inhabitants of Zion, namely the people of God, who are for the time being still yōshebheth bath Bâbel, dwelling with the daughter Babel. As Zion does not mean the city or fortress of Jerusalem, but the inhabitants, so the "daughter Babel" is not the city of Babylon or country of Babylonia personified, but the inhabitants of Babel; and ישׁב is construed with the accusative of the person, as in Psalm 22:4 and 2 Samuel 6:2. What Jehovah states in explanation of the twofold call to flee out of Babel, does not commence with Zechariah 2:9 (Ewald), or with כּי הנּגע in Zechariah 2:8 (Koehler), but with אחר כּבוד וגו. The incorrectness of the two former explanations is seen first of all in the fact that כּי only introduces a speech in the same manner as ὅτι, when it follows directly upon the introductory formula; but not, as is here assumed, when a long parenthesis is inserted between, without the introduction being resumed by לאמר. And secondly, neither of these explanations furnishes a suitable meaning. If the words of God only followed in Zechariah 2:9, עליהם in the first clause would be left without any noun to which to refer; and if they commenced with כּי הנּגע (for he that toucheth), the thought "he that toucheth you," etc., would assign no reason for the call to flee and save themselves. For if Israel is defended or valued by God as a pupil of the eye, there can be no necessity for it to flee. And lastly, it is impossible to see what can be the meaning or object of the parenthesis, "After glory hath He sent me," etc. If it treated "of the execution of the threat of punishment upon the heathen" (Koehler), it would be inserted in an unsuitable place, since the threat of punishment would not follow till afterwards. All these difficulties vanish if Jehovah's words commence with 'achar kâbhōd (after glory), in which case shelâchanı̄ (He hath sent me) may be very simply explained from the fact that the address is introduced, not in a direct form, but indirectly: Jehovah says, He has sent me after glory. The sender is Jehovah, and the person sent is not the prophet, but the angel of the Lord. Achar kâbhōd: behind glory, after glory; not however "after the glory of success" (Hitzig, Ewald, etc.), still less "with a glorious commission," but to get glory upon the heathen, i.e., to display the glory of God upon the heathen through the judgment by which their power is broken, and the heathen world is made to serve the people of God. The manner in which the next two clauses, commencing with kı̄ (for), are attached, is the following: The first assigns the subjective motive; that is to say, states the reason why God has sent him to the heathen, namely, because they have plundered His people, and have thereby touched the apple of His eye. בּבת עין, the apple of the eye (lit., the gate, the opening in which the eye is placed, or more probably the pupil of the eye, pupilla, as being the object most carefully preserved), is a figure used to denote the dearest possession or good, and in this sense is applied to the nation of Israel as early as Deuteronomy 32:10. The second explanatory clause in Zechariah 2:9 adds the practical ground for this sending after glory. The speaker is still the angel of the Lord; and his acting is identical with the acting of God. Like Jehovah, he swings his hand over the heathen nations which plundered Israel (cf. Isaiah 11:15; Isaiah 19:16), and they become (והיוּ expressing the consequence), i.e., so that they become, booty to the Israelites, who had previously been obliged to serve them (cf. Isaiah 14:2). In what way the heathen would serve Israel is stated in Zechariah 2:11. By the execution of this judgment Israel would learn that Jehovah had sent His angel, namely to execute upon the heathen His saving purposes for Israel. This is the meaning of these words, not only here and in Zechariah 2:11, but also in Zechariah 4:9 and Zechariah 6:15, where this formula is repeated, not however in the sense imagined by Koehler, namely that he had spoken these words in consequence of a command from Jehovah, and not of his own accord, by which the "sending" is changed into "speaking."

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