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there, as in a waste ground; and the grass and bushes shall grow so rank there, that the beasts shall only crop the tops thereof.
XXVII. ií When the boughs thereof are withered, they shall be broken off : the women come, and set them on fire : for it is a people of no understanding. And when the boughs so browsed on shall wither, they shall be broken down: the very women shall burn them: this must be done ; for it is an ignorant and disobedient people ; so as, for the time, God will be very severe against them.
XXVII. 12 And it shall come to pass in that day, that the LORD shall beat of from the channel of the river unto the stream of Egypt, and ye shall be gathered one by one, 0 ye children of Israel. And it shall come to pass in that day, that, since the house of Jacob is now as a little corn, left in a chaff-heap, the Lord in his threshing floor shall beat off all the dross from that grain of his; and shall call them home, both from the channel of Euphrates, and from the streams of Nilus, out of Assyria and Egypt; and ye shall be gathered, though not all at once, yet one by one, () ye
children of Israel. So verse 13. XXVIII. 1 Woe to the crown of pride, to the drunkards of Ephraim, whose glorious beauty is a fading flower, which are on the head of the fat vallies of them that are overcome with wine ! Woe to the ten tribes of Israel, which are both puffed up with pride, and grown to a shameful excess of surfeiting and drunken. ness; whose garlands upon their heads, withering in the banquets while they are worn, are a just resemblance of their fading glory and beauty, who are the intemperate lands of those rich and plentiful vallies of Israel !
XXVIII. 2 Behold, the Lord hath a mighty and strong one, which as a tempest of hail, &c. Behold, the Lord hath a mighty and strong Assyrian in store, which shall come upon them like a tempest of hail, &c.
XXVIII. 3 The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, shall be trodden under feet : Those proud garlands of the drunken Israelites shall be cast to the ground, and trampled under feet:
XXVIII. 4 And the glorious beauty, which is on the head of the fat valley, shall be a fading flower, and as the hasty fruit before the summer. The rich crop, which crowneth the fat and fertile vallies of Israel, shall be suddenly destroyed; yea, shall be snatched up, before it can have leisure to ripen.
XXVIII. 5 In that day shall the LORD of hosts be for a crown of glory, and for a diadem of beauty, unto the residue of his people, But, as for the tribe of Judah, in that day shall the Lord of Hosts be, as a crown of glory to it, and as a fourishing and beautiful garland to this residue of his people:
XXVIII. 6 And for a spirit of judgment to him that sitteth in judgment, and for strength to them that turn the battle to the gate,
He shall give true judgment and discerning to the judge; and true valour and courage to the soldier, that beats back the enemy, and assails him in his own gate.
XXVIII. 7 But they also have erred through wine, and through strong drink are out of the way; the priest and the prophet have erred through strong drink, they are swallowed up of wine, they are out of the way through strong drink; they err in vision, they stumble in judgment. But yet even they also, for a great part of them, have given themselves unto drunkenness, and have been miscarried through wine; not the baser sort only, but even the priest and the prophet, which should have been examples of holiness and sobriety, &c. So as they have failed, not only in their other carriages and actions, but in those tery visions, which they have received from God, and in those sentences of judgment, which they should have given from God.
XXVIII. 9 IVhom shall he teach knowledge ? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine ? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. To what purpose do we cast away instruction upon an incorrigible people? It is all one, as if God should direct his precepts and counsels to a child new weaned from the breast; so uncapable are they of wholesome doctrine.
XXVIII. 10 For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line ; here a little, and there a little: To them, as unto new weaned children, there must be both leisure and assiduity in teaching, one precept upon another, one rule after another: first, they must be taught to know their letters; then, to spell them: by little at once, must they be taught all that is put into them.
XXVIII. 11 For with stammering lips and another tongue will he speak to this people, So is God forced to deal with this people: he is fain to frame himself to speak unto them, as unto children, in a stammering and imperfect language, such as they can be able to pronounce.
XXVIII. 12 To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing : yet they would not hear. For in his own language they would not hear him: when God said, Lo where you may find true rest, and peace to your own hearts, and ability to comfort others; yet they would not understand him.
XXVIII. 13 But the word of the Lord was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept ; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken. But since the word of the Lord, which was delivered to them, one precept upon another, one rule after another, by a little at once, with all assiduity and leisure, prevailed not with them to their in
struction, it shall be of force to obdure them, and an occasion of their fall and further judgment.
XXVIII. 15 Because ye have said, We have made a covenant with death, and with hell are we at agreement; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, it shall not come unto us : for we have made lies our refuge, and under falsehood have we hid ourselves : Because ye have vainly promised safety and impunity to yourselves, notwithstanding all the judgments threatened against your sins; and have taken the more liberty to your lewdness hereupon, as if ye were at a fee with death and hell; and had said, When the fierce judgments of God shall come upon others, we shall escape well enough, for the very lies we have made shall secure us, and our falsehood shall hide us from vengeance:
XXVIII. 16 Therefore thus saith the Lord God, Behold, I lay in Zion for a foundation a stone, a tried stone, a precious corner stone, a sure foundation : he that believeth shall not make haste. Therefore, thus saith the Lord, What I have said, I will perform ; and, behold, for this purpose, I have appointed my son, the true Messiah, to be the foundation, to be the sure and precious corner stone of the everlasting fabric of my Church, in whom all my promises and judgments shall be fulfilled : he, that believes, shall rest himself contented, with this all-sufficient means of his comfort and salvation; and shall not either basten to look out for other helps, nor be ashamed of trusting to this.
XXVIII. 17 Judgment also will I lay to the line, and righteousness to the plummet : and the hail shall sweep away the refuge of lies. And upon this foundation, and this corner stone, will I raise the structure of my Church ; which shall be built up in judgment and righteousness, with wisdom and integrity : as for those wicked hypocrites, that lurk under the false name and pretence thereof, the just judgments of God shall sweep them away.
XXVIII. 18 And your covenant with death shall be disannulled, and your agreement with hell shall not stand ; when the overflowing scourge shall pass through, then ye shall be trodden down by it. And as for that false security, wherewith ye fond hypocrites pleased yourselves, as vainly boasting of a covenant made betwixt you and death and hell, so as these judgments should not either come near or not hurt you, ye shall find that it shall not hold; but that, contrarily, when the vengeance of God shall seize upon you, ye shall be utterly overwhelmed with it.
XXVIII. 19 From the time that it goeth forth it shall take you : for morning by morning shall it pass over, by day and by night: and it shall be a vexation only to understand the report. After the time that the judgment is once begun, it shall continue without intermission, morning and evening, night and day; and it shall be no small part of affliction, but to hear and understand the report of those calamities,
XXVIII. 20 For the bed is shorter than that a man can stretch himself on it: and the covering narrower than that he can wrap himself in it. These wicked ones shall have small ease, during the continuance of their lewdness: they shall be as a man, that lies upon a bed too short and strait for him ; or that, in a cold night, is allowed a narrow coverlid only, that will not reach to wrap him over : so deficient and unsatisfying shall be all the comforts of the wicked.
XXVIII. 21 For the LORD shall rise up as in mount Perazim, he shall be wroth as in the valley of Gibeon, that he may do his work, his strange work ; and bring to pass his act, his strange act. For the Lord will rise up, and shew his power against these wicked men, as he did against the Philistines, in Baal Perazim ; as he did against the Amorites, in the valley of Gibeon ; that he may glo. rify himself, by doing some strange and marvellous execution upon them.
XXVIII. 22 Now therefore be ye not mockers, lest your bands be made strong : for I have heard from the Lord God of hosts a consumption, even determined upon the whole earth. Do not therefore mock at these fearful denunciations of God's wrath, lest your stubborn struggling against the just proceedings of God entangle you so much more, and make your bands more close and pinching; for, certainly, God hath revealed to me his certain determination, to bring a fearful vastation upon the wbole earth, which hath so grievously corrupted her ways.
XXVIII. 24 Doth the plowman plow all day to sow ? doth he open and break the clods of his ground ? Do ye not know, that God hath his seasons and opportunities, for all his proceedings with men? He is not always taken up with one act. Doth the plowman spend his time altogether in plowing the ground, to prepare it for seed: doth he ever labour in breaking the clods?
XXVIII. 25 When he hath made plain the face thereof, doth he not cast abroad the fetches, and scatter the cummin, and cast in the principal wheat, &c? Hath he not other work to do, after this? When he hath laid the earth smooth and level, doth he not cast the several seeds and grains into the bosom of the earth, in their meet seasons ?
XXVIII. 27 For the fetches are not threshed with a threshing instrument, neither is a cart wheel turned upon the cummin; but the fetches are beaten out with a staff, and the cummin with a rod. When he bath done that, and hath brought these several kinds of grain into the barn, he doth not thresh them out all after one fashion ; for the fetches are not beaten out with the ordinary instrument of threshing, nor is the cummin crushed out with the cartwheel; but lesser force will shake out these seeds, even a staff, or a rod.
XXVIII. 28 Bread corn is bruised ; because he will not ever be threshing it, nor break it with the wheel of his cart, nor bruise it with his horsemen.
But that corn, that is for bread, is bruised out with more force, by the strength of the flail or wheel; because he will not ever be working upon it, to fetch it out of the husks wherein it lies, by those violent means which are used to this purpose.
XXVIII. 29 This also cometh forth from the Lord of hosts, wbich is wonderful in counsel, and excellent in working Since the Lord of Hosts bath given this wit and understanding to plain inen, for the managing of their affairs, in due times and fit ways; how much more shall He, who is infinite in wisdom, contrive his own works, both of mercy and judgment, with men?
XXIX. 1 Wo to Ariel, to Ariel, the city where David dwelt / add ye year to year ; let them kill sacrifices. Woe to the temple of Jerusalem, and thee, () altar; yea, to that whole city of David! let the destruction be a little deferred, from one year to another; and, in the mean time, do ye fearlessly kill and offer your sacrifices, as if ye expected no danger.
XXIX. 2 Yet I will distress Ariel, and there shall be heaviness and sorrow : and it shall be unto me as Ariel. Yet, in my appointed time, I will distress the altar and temple ; and there shall be heaviness and sorrow; and the whole city shall be to me, as an altar inbrued with blood.
XXIX. 4 And thou shalt be brought down, and shalt speak out of the ground, and thy speech shall be low out of the dust, and thy voice shall be, as of one that hath a familiar spirit, out of the ground, and thy speech shall whisper out of the dust. And thou shalt speak hollowly and faintly, out of the low estate of humiliation, into which thou shalt be cast : thou, that badst wont to speak big and loftily, now, so shall thy voice be changed, that it shall sound weakly and hollowly, as one that hath a familiar and speaks inwardly; or, as if it came like some soft whispering sound, out of the crannies of the earth.
XXIX. 5 Moreover the multitude of thy strangers shall be like small dust, and the multitude of the terrible ones shall be as the chaff that passeth away: yea, it shall be at an instant suddenly. Moreover, those hired forces of strangers, to which thou trustest, shall be dispersed, as small dust with the wind; and those powerful and fierce warriors, whereof thou boastest, shall be as chaff, blown away in an instant, suddenly.
XXIX. 6 Thou shalt be visited of the Lord of hosts with thunder, and with earthquakes, &c. For God himself, who is the Lord of Hosts, shall take upon him the execution of these judgments upon thee, and shall testify his displeasure by thunders and earthquakes, &c.
XXIX. 7 And the multitude of all the nations that fight against Ariel, even all that fight against her and her munition, and that distress her, shall be as a dream of a night vision. And the multitude of these nations, that fight against the altar, temple, city of Jerusalem, and that distress her, shall come upon her, in respect of her deep security, as some fearful dream upon a sleeping man.