The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away…
God hath invited us to Him by many blessings, but we would not come; so (to borrow an apt illustration from Bishop Sanderson) we have forced Him to deal with us as Absalom did with Joab: he sent one civil message to him after another, but he would not come; at last he set on fire his cornfield to try whether that would bring him: this course God hath taken with us; we would not be persuaded by messages of kindness (by His many blessings and favours) to return to Him, and therefore hath He sent amongst us the terrible messengers of His wrath.
(J. Tillotson, D. D.)
Parallel VersesKJV: The Syrians before, and the Philistines behind; and they shall devour Israel with open mouth. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.