English Standard Version
You looked for much, and behold, it came to little. And when you brought it home, I blew it away. Why? declares the LORD of hosts. Because of my house that lies in ruins, while each of you busies himself with his own house.
King James Bible
Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that is waste, and ye run every man unto his own house.
American Standard Version
Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith Jehovah of hosts. Because of my house that lieth waste, while ye run every man to his own house.
You have looked for more, and behold it became less, and you brought it home, and I blowed it away: why, saith the Lord of hosts? because my house is desolate, and you make haste every man to his own house.
English Revised Version
Ye looked for much, and, lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of mine house that lieth waste, while ye run every man to his own house.
Webster's Bible Translation
Ye looked for much, and lo, it came to little; and when ye brought it home, I did blow upon it. Why? saith the LORD of hosts. Because of my house that is waste, and ye run every man to his own house.
Haggai 1:9 Parallel
CommentaryKeil and Delitzsch Biblical Commentary on the Old Testament
With Nahum 2:1 the prophecy turns to Nineveh. Nahum 2:1. "A dasher in pieces comes against thee. Keep thy fortress! Look out upon the way, fortify the loins, exert thy strength greatly! Nahum 2:2. For Jehovah returneth to the eminence of Jacob as to the eminence of Israel; for plunderers have plundered them, and their vines have they thrown to the ground." על־פּניך cannot be addressed to Judah, as in Nahum 1:15 (Chald., Rashi, etc.). It cannot indeed be objected that in Nahum 1:15 the destruction of Asshur has already been announced, since the prophet might nevertheless have returned to the time when Asshur had made war upon Judah, in order to depict its ruin with greater precision. But such an assumption does not agree with the second clause of the verse as compared with Nahum 2:2, and still less with the description of the approaching enemy which follows in Nahum 2:3, since this is unquestionably, according to Nahum 2:5, the power advancing against Nineveh, and destroying that city. We must therefore assume that we have here a sudden change in the person addressed, as in Nahum 1:11 and Nahum 1:12, Nahum 1:13 and Nahum 1:14. The enemy is called מפיץ, "a dasher in pieces;" not a war-hammer (cf. Proverbs 25:18), because עלה, the standing expression for the advance of a hostile army, does not agree with this. על־פּניך, against thy face, i.e., pitching his tent opposite to the city (there is no good reason for altering the suffix into פּניך, as Ewald and Hitzig propose). Against this enemy Nineveh is to bring all possible power of resistance. This is not irony, but simply a poetical turn given to the thought, that Nineveh will not be able to repulse this enemy any more. The inf. abs. nâtsōr stands emphatically for the imperative, as is frequently the case, and is continued in the imperative. Metsūrâh is the enclosure of a city, hence the wall or fortification. צפּה־דרך, looking watchfully upon the way by which the enemy comes, to repulse it or prevent it from entering the city. הזּק מ, make the loins strong, i.e., equip thyself with strength, the loins being the seat of strength. The last clause expresses the same thought, and is merely added to strengthen the meaning. The explanatory kı̄ in Nahum 2:2 (3) does not follow upon Nahum 2:1 in the sense of "summon up all thy strength, for it is God in whose strength the enemy fights" (Strauss), but to Nahum 2:1 or Nahum 1:15. The train of thought is the following: Asshur will be utterly destroyed by the enemy advancing against Nineveh, for Jehovah will re-establish the glory of Israel, which Asshur has destroyed. שׁב (perf. proph.) has not the force of the hiphil, reducere, restituere, either here or in Psalm 85:5 and Isaiah 52:8, and other passages, where the modern lexicons give it, but means to turn round, or return to a person, and is construed with the accusative, as in Numbers 10:36; Exodus 4:20, and Genesis 50:14, although in actual fact the return of Jehovah to the eminence of Jacob involves its restoration. גּאון יעקב, that of which Jacob is proud, i.e., the eminence and greatness or glory accruing to Israel by virtue of its election to be the nation of God, which the enemy into whose power it had been given up on account of its rebellion against God had taken away (see at Amos 6:8). Jacob does not stand for Judah, nor Israel for the ten tribes, for Nahum never refers to the ten tribes in distinction from Judah; and Obadiah 1:18, where Jacob is distinguished from the house of Joseph, is of a totally different character. Both names stand here for the whole of Israel (of the twelve tribes), and, as Cyril has shown, the distinction is this: Jacob is the natural name which the people inherited from their forefather, and Israel the spiritual name which they had received from God. Strauss gives the meaning correctly thus: Jehovah will so return to the eminence of His people, who are named after Jacob, that this eminence shall become the eminence of Israel, i.e., of the people of God; in other words, He will exalt the nation once more to the lofty eminence of its divine calling (כּ used in the same manner as in 1 Samuel 25:36). This will He do, because plunderers have plundered (bâqaq, evacuare) them (the Israelites), and destroyed their vines, cast them to the ground; that He may avenge the reproach cast upon His people. The plunderers are the heathen nations, especially the Assyrians. The vines are the Israelites; Israel as a people or kingdom is the vineyard (Isaiah 5:1; Jeremiah 12:10; Psalm 80:9.); the vines are the families, and the branches (zemōrı̄m from zemōrâh) the members.
Treasury of Scripture Knowledge
Ye looked. They had used all proper means in the cultivation of their lands, and had sown much; but when they rationally entertained the most sanguine expectations of a large increase, they were strangely disappointed; and even what they had brought home was unaccountably wasted, as if the Lord had blown upon it, and driven it away! And the reason was, because they neglected the temple, and left it in ruins, whilst they eagerly employed themselves in building and decorating their own houses; therefore they were visited by drought and famine, and by various diseases on man and beast.
blow upon it. or, blow it away.
Because. See on ver.
Sheol and Abaddon are never satisfied, and never satisfied are the eyes of man.
All things are full of weariness; a man cannot utter it; the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.
The grass withers, the flower fades when the breath of the LORD blows on it; surely the people are grass.
And I will pour out my indignation upon you; I will blow upon you with the fire of my wrath, and I will deliver you into the hands of brutish men, skillful to destroy.
"Is it a time for you yourselves to dwell in your paneled houses, while this house lies in ruins?
You have sown much, and harvested little. You eat, but you never have enough; you drink, but you never have your fill. You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm. And he who earns wages does so to put them into a bag with holes.
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