Isaiah 23:5
As at the report concerning Egypt, so shall they be sorely pained at the report of Tyre.
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(5) As at the report concerning Egypt . . .—Better, When the report cometh to Egypt . . . The news of the capture of Tyre would cause dismay in Egypt, partly because the export trade of their corn depended upon it, partly because it had served as a kind of outpost against the Assyrians, who, under Sargon (Records of the Past, vii. 34) and Sennacherib (2Kings 18:21; 2Kings 19:8), were pressing on against the Ethiopian dynasty then dominant in Egypt.

Isaiah 23:5. As at the report concerning Egypt, &c. — “The words, as they stand in our translation, imply, that the Zidonians, spoken of Isaiah 23:4, or in general other neighbouring places, should be as much concerned at the news of the destruction of Tyre as they were at the calamity of Egypt, mentioned chap. 19. But there is a difficulty in admitting this sense, because the destruction of Tyre here spoken of was before that of Egypt, if we mean that calamity of Egypt which is usually joined with the destruction of Tyre in the prophets: see Jeremiah 25:19; Jeremiah 25:22; Ezekiel 29:18-20. Therefore others read this verse thus: As soon as the report of Tyre shall come to, or be heard in, Egypt, they shall be in great pain for it; namely, because they exported their corn to Tyre, and made a gainful trade by it.” — Lowth.23:1-14 Tyre was the mart of the nations. She was noted for mirth and diversions; and this made her loth to consider the warnings God gave by his servants. Her merchants were princes, and lived like princes. Tyre being destroyed and laid waste, the merchants should abandon her. Flee to shift for thine own safety; but those that are uneasy in one place, will be so in another; for when God's judgments pursue sinners, they will overtake them. Whence shall all this trouble come? It is a destruction from the Almighty. God designed to convince men of the vanity and uncertainty of all earthly glory. Let the ruin of Tyre warn all places and persons to take heed of pride; for he who exalts himself shall be abased. God will do it, who has all power in his hand; but the Chaldeans shall be the instruments.As at the report concerning Egypt - According to our translation, this verse would seem to mean that the Sidonians and other nations had been pained or grieved at the report of the calamities that had come upon Egypt, and that they would be similarly affected at the report concerning Tyre. In accordance with this, some (as Jarchi) have understood it of the plagues of Egypt, and suppose that the prophet means to say, that as the nations were astonished at that, so they would be at the report of the calamities that would come upon Tyre. Others refer it to the calamities that. would come upon Egypt referred to in Isaiah 19, and suppose that the prophet means to say, that as the nations would be amazed at the report of these calamities, so they would be at the report of the overthrow of Tyre. So Vitringa. But the sense of the Hebrew may be expressed thus: 'As the report, or tidings of the destruction of Tyre shall reach Egypt, they shall be pained at the tidings respecting Tyre.' So Lowth, Noyes, Rosenmuller, Grotius, Calvin. They would be grieved, either

(1) because the destruction of Tyre would injure the commerce of Egypt; or

(2) because the Egyptians might fear that the army of Nebuchadnezzar would come upon them, and that they would share the fate of Tyre.

Sorely pained - The word used here (יחילוּ yâchı̂ylû) is commonly applied to the severe pain of parturition.

5. As, &c.—rather, "When the report (shall reach) the people of Egypt, they shall be sorely pained at the report concerning Tyre" (namely, its overthrow). So Jerome, "When the Egyptians shall hear that so powerful a neighboring nation has been destroyed, they must know their own end is near" [Lowth, &c.]. According to this translation the sense is, All the neighbouring nations shall be no less terrified at the tidings of lite destruction of Tyrus, than they were of old upon the report of God’s former and dreadful judgments upon the Egyptians, of which see Exodus 15:14-16 Joshua 2:9,11, because they shall despair of resisting that enemy against whom that vast and potent city, which was deemed impregnable, could not defend itself. But the words are by the LXX., and other both ancient and later interpreters, rendered otherwise, and that very agreeably to the Hebrew text, When the report (to wit, of the destruction of Tyre) came, or shall come, (which word is easily understood, as it is above, Isaiah 23:3, and in other texts of Scripture before mentioned,) to the Egyptians, they shall be sorely pained according to the report of Tyre; their grief shall be answerable to the report; as the report is very dreadful, so their grief and anguish shall be very great: or, they shall fear lest they should be destroyed in like manner as Tyrus was destroyed. As at the report concerning Egypt,.... Its future destruction prophesied of, Isaiah 19:1 or what had in times past befallen it when the ten plagues were inflicted on it, and Pharaoh and his host were drowned in the Red Sea; the report of which filled the neighbouring nations with fear and trembling, and put them into a panic; so the Targum,

"as they heard the plague with which the Egyptians were smitten:''

so shall they be sorely pained at the report of Tyre; of the destruction of that; this should have the like effect upon the nations round about them, especially such as traded with them, as the judgments on Egypt had upon their neighbours; for, as for what was to come, the destruction of Tyre was before the destruction of Egypt by Nebuchadnezzar: though some read the words, and they will bear to be read thus, "when the report" was made, or came "to the Egyptians, they will be in pain at", or "according to the report of Tyre" (t);

"when it was heard in Egypt, pain shall take them for Tyre;''

as soon as the Egyptians heard of the taking and ruin of Tyre, they were in pain, as a woman in travail, partly fearing their own turn would be next, Tyre lying in the way of the Chaldeans unto them; and partly because of the loss of trade they sustained through the destruction of that city. In like pain will be the kings or merchants of the earth, at the destruction of Rome, Revelation 18:9 and, according to an exposition mentioned by Jarchi, Tyre here is Edom; that is, Rome, for that with the Jews is commonly meant by Edom.

(t) So the Septuagint, Vatbalus, and others.

As at the report concerning Egypt, so shall they be {k} greatly pained at the report of Tyre.

(k) Because these two countries were joined in league together.

5. The verse should be read as in R.V. When the report cometh to Egypt, they shall be sorely pained at the report of Tyre. Assyria being the common enemy of Egypt and Tyre, the report of the latter’s fall is received with the utmost anxiety in Egypt.Verse 5. - As at the report concerning Egypt; rather, when the rumor shall reach Egypt (see the Septuagint, the Vulgate, Gesenius, Knobel, Cheyne, etc.). They shall be sorely pained. The Egyptians bore no great affection towards any foreign nation. They were a people whose charity began and ended at home. But the fall of Tyre was always a shock to them, and was felt to portend evil to themselves. The Asiatic power which was strong enough to capture the island-fortress would be a formidable enemy to Egypt itself, and might be expected at no distant date to attempt the conquest of the Nile valley. Jehovah first of all gives him the blow which makes him tremble in his post, and then pulls him completely down from this his lofty station,

(Note: וּממּעמדך has not only the metheg required by the kametz on account of the long vowel, and the metheg required by the patach on account of the following chateph patach (the latter of which also takes the place of the metheg, as the sign of a subordinate tone), but also a third metheg with the chirek, which only assists the emphatic pronunciation of the preposition, out which would not stand there at all unless the word had had a disjunctive accent (compare Isaiah 55:9; Psalm 18:45; Hosea 11:6).)

in order that another worthier man may take his place. "And it will come to pass in that day, that I call to my servant Eliakim the son of Hilkiah, and invest him with thy coat, and I throw thy sash firmly round him, and place they government in his hand; and he will become a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem and to the house of Judah. And I place the key of David upon his shoulder: and when he opens, no man shuts; and when he shuts, no man opens. And I fasten him as a plug in a fast place, and he becomes the seat of honour to his father's house. And the whole mass of his father's house hangs upon him, the offshoots and side-shoots, every small vessel, from the vessel of the basins even to every vessel of the pitchers." Eliakim is called the "servant of Jehovah," as one who was already a servant of God in his heart and conduct; the official service is added for the first time here. This title of honour generally embraces both kinds of service (Isaiah 20:3). It is quite in accordance with oriental custom, that this transfer of the office is effected by means of investiture (compare 1 Kings 19:19): chizzēk, with a double accusative, viz., that of the person and that of the official girdle, is used here according to its radical signification, in the sense of girding tightly or girding round, putting the girdle round him so as to cause the whole dress to sit firmly, without hanging loose. The word memshaltekâ (thy government) shows how very closely the office forfeited by Shebna was connected with that of the king. This is also proved by the word "father," which is applied in other cases to the king as the father of the land (Isaiah 9:5). The "key" signifies the power of the keys; and for this reason it is not given into Eliakim's hand, but placed upon his shoulder (Isaiah 9:5). This key was properly handled by the king (Revelation 3:7), and therefore by the "house-mayor" only in his stead. The power of the keys consisted not only in the supervision of the royal chambers, but also in the decision who was and who was not to be received into the king's service. There is a resemblance, therefore, to the giving of the keys of the kingdom of heaven to Peter under the New Testament. But there the "binding" and "loosing" introduce another figure, though one similar in sense; whereas here, in the "opening" and "shutting," the figure of the key is retained. The comparison of the institution of Eliakim in his office to the fastening of a tent-peg was all the more natural, that yâthēd was also used as a general designation for national rulers (Zechariah 10:4), who stand in the same relation to the commonwealth as a tent-peg to the tent which it holds firmly and keeps upright. As the tent-peg is rammed into the ground, so that a person could easily sit upon it, the figure is changed, and the tent-peg becomes a seat of honour. As a splendid chair is an ornament to a room, so Eliakim would be an honour to his hitherto undistinguished family. The thought that naturally suggests itself - namely, that the members of the family would sit upon this chair, for the purpose of raising themselves to honour - is expressed by a different figure. Eliakim is once more depicted as a yâthed, but it is as a still higher one this time - namely, as the rod of a wardrobe, or a peg driven high up into the wall. Upon this rod or peg they hang (thâlu, i.e., one hangs, or there hangs) all the câbōd of the house of Eliakim, i.e., not every one who wished to be honoured and attained to honour in this way (cf., Isaiah 5:13), but the whole weight of his family (as in Isaiah 8:7). This family is then subdivided into its separate parts, and, as we may infer from the juxtaposition of the masculine and feminine nouns, according to its male and female constituents. In צאצאים (offshoots) and צפעות ("side-shoots," from צפע, to push out; compare צפיע, dung, with צאה, mire) there is contained the idea of a widely ramifying and undistinguished family connection. The numerous rabble consisted of nothing but vessels of a small kind (hakkâtân), at the best of basons (aggânoth) like those used by the priests for the blood (Exodus 24:6), or in the house for mixing wine (Sol 7:3; Aram. aggono, Ar. iggâne, ingân, a washing bason), but chiefly of nebâlim, i.e., leather bottles or earthenware pitchers (Isaiah 30:14). The whole of this large but hitherto ignoble family of relations would fasten upon Eliakim, and climb through him to honour. Thus all at once the prophecy, which seemed so full of promise of Eliakim, assumes a satirical tone. We get an impression of the favouring of nephews and cousins, and cannot help asking how this could be a suitable prophecy for Shebna to hear.

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