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II. 3 Israel was holiness unto the Lord, and the firstfruits of his increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith the Lord.
Israel was then consecrated to the Lord, and set apart for his service; as the firstfruits are wont to be sequestered and devoted to God; so as all that devour them bring evil upon themselves.
II. 8 The priests said not, Where is the Lord? and they that handle the law knew me not: the pastors also transgressed against me, and the prophets prophesied by Baal.
The very priests, which should be the leaders of mv people, do not inquire after the Lord, but after their own profits and occasions; and they, that handle the law, do not acknowledge me, and give me that observance, which they ought; and the prophets turn from God to Baal, and prophesy in his name.
II. 10 For pass over the isles of Chit tun, and see; and send unto Kedar, and consider diligently, and see if there be any such thing.
Look about, where ye please; take view of any whatsoever foreign nation, Grecians, Arabians, or whom else soever; and see if you find the like inconstancy and impiety amongst them.
II. 11 Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? Is there any one of them, that hath been induced to change those deities, which they have professed to adore, and yet they are no gods at all?
II. 14 Is Israel a servant? is he a homeborn slave? why is he spoiled?
What dost thou make of thyself, O Israel? Dost thou go for a son, or for a slave rather, that thou art thus spoiled?
IL 15 The young lions roared upon him, and yelled, and they made his land waste.
Thy enemies have come fiercely upon thee; and have roared and ramped upon thee, like lions, &c.
II. 16 Also the children of Noph and Tahapanes have broken the crown of thy head.
Yea, not only those lion-like Assyrians have come upon thee, but the weak effeminate Egyptians have risen up, and prevailed against thee.
II. 18 And now what hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of Sihor? or what hast thou to do in the way of Assyria, to drink the waters of the river?
And now, what hast thou to do with ambassages to Egypt; what vain confidence is this, that thou puttest in treaties of aid with them? Or, wherefore dost thou send other ambassadors to Assyria, and cravest their friendship and succour, as if the waters of Jordan were not for thee, but thou must drink of Nilus and Euphrates?
II. 21 Yet I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed. I bestowed much care and cost upon thee, in my first choice of thee: then thou wert a peculiar and holy people unto me.
II. 22 For though thou wash thee with nitre, and take Vieewuch soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord God. And now, O Israel, thou art so foul, that, by no human means -whatsoever, which thou canst reach unto, it is possible far tliee to cleanse and wash off the filthy spots of thine iniquities before me.
II. 23 See thy way in the valley, know what thou hast done: thou art a swift dromedary traversing her ways i
See what thou hast done in the valley of Benhinnon; and in those other dales, where thou hast sacrificed by the brooks: thou hast been eagerly set upon thine idolatries; and hast run to them with no less haste and speed, than the dromedary is wont to rid the way: II. 24 A wild ass used to the wilderness, that snuffeth up the wind at her pleasure i in her occasion who can turn her away? all they that seek her will not weary themselves; in her month they shall find her.
Yea, thou hast been utterly unreclaimable, like to a wild ass in the wilderness, which runs wild and loose, snuffing up the wind; scorning to be either bridled, or turned in her course: all they, that, pursue after her, do but weary themselves in vain; until the time come, that, upon her impregnation, the burden of her womb shall force her to rest.
II. 25 Withhold thy foot from being unshod, and thy throatfrom thirst: but thou saiast, There is no hope: no; for I have loved strangers, and after them will I go.
Refrain thyself, at last, from thine abominable prostitutions, wherein thou hast laid thyself naked to the fornications of thine idolatry; and quench this wicked thirst of thy sinful lasts: bat thou continuest obstinate, and sayest secretly, There is no hope of my reclaiming: no; I have taken a deep affection to the strange gods of the Gentiles, and I will go after them.
II. 30 In vain have I smitten your children; they received no correction: your own sword hath devoured your prophets, like a destroying lion.
In vain have I bestowed my chastisements upon you, for ye have not made any good use of my corrections: you have been the murtherers of God's prophets amongst you; even as a fierce lion, have ye devoured them.
II. 31 O generation, see ye the word of the Lord. Have I been a wilderness unto Israel? a land of darkness? wherefore say my people, We are lords; we will come no more unto thee? O ye unthankful generation, attend to this word of the Lord: Have I been barren of my favours to you? have I yielded you no variety of comfortable fruits? have I not enlightened you with the knowledge of my name, and my laws? and now, when I have brought thee into thy promised land, and settled thee there, thou art ready to say, in thy presumption, We are Lords, and have gotten to ourselves these dominions; we will regard thee namore! - II. 33 Why trimmest thou thy way to seek love? therefore hast thou also taught the wicked ones thy ways.
What profit canst thou expect, by seeking the friendship and aid of the Egyptians, and trimming up thyself for their acceptation? Thou art both infected by their wickedness, and hast corrupted others by the wickedness wherewith thou art infected.
II. 34 Also in thy skirts is found the blood of the souls of the poor innocents: I have not found it by secret search, but upon all these. Thou art plainly found guilty of the blood of my prophets, which thou hast cruelly shed: there needs no secret search, for the finding out of this murther of thine; it is open, and apparent to the eyes of the world.
II. 36 Why gaddest thou about so much to change thy way? thou also shalt be ashamed of Egypt as thou wast ashamed of Assyria. Why goest thou about to alter thy dependence; and, instead of Babylon, to rely upon Egypt? That trust shall fail thee: thou shalt be ashamed of this vain confidence of thine, as Ahaz was of his trust in the Assyrian.
II. 37 Yea, thou shalt go forth from him, and thine hands upon thy head.
Tbou shalt go forth from him with extreme mourning and lamentation.
III. 1 They say, If a man put away his wife, and she go from him, and become another man's, shall he return unto her again? shall not that land be greatly polluted? but thou hast played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to me, saith the Lord.
O my people, thy wickednesses are many and great; and yet, such is my mercy, I could be content, upon thy repentance, to pardon them. Thou art my wife, and hast committed whoredom; thou hast betaken thyself to another husband, and therefore hast made thyself uncapable of my reacceptance, bv the law: yet, return again to me, and I am ready to receive thee, saith the Lord.
III. 2 Lift up thine eyes unto the high places, and see where thou hast not been lien with. In the ways hast thou sat for them, as the Arabian in the wilderness-.
Thou hast frequently committed spiritual fornication in thy high places: yea, thou hast tempted others to these idolatrous practices, and hast been ready to solicit and draw on this sin with them; waiting for these opportunities of thine idolatries, as the Arabian waits for a prey in the wilderness.
III. 3 Thou hast a whore's forehead.
III. 4 Wilt thou not from this time cry unto me. Yet wilt thou not, after so many and grievous afflictions, begin to recollect thyself, and to acknowledge me, &c.
III. 11 And the Lord said unfome, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah. Israel and Judah are both shamefully wicked; and yet, of the two, Judah is worse than Israel: her treachery is so much more, as she had more favours from me.
III. 12 Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel.
Go and proclaim these words, even to those Israelites; which are now captived amongst the Medians in the north; and, since Judah will not hear, say to them, Return, thou backsliding Israel.
III. 14 For f am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion. For I had made a holy covenant with you; and will, upon your repentance, call some of you back again to your land, and to my temple.
III. 16 They shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of the Lord: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. They shall no more trust to the outward formalities of God's worship, and to the fashionable profession of religion, as if the very name and presence of the Ark were enough to save them; neither shall their thoughts be upon these outward helps, as allsufficient and acceptable.
III. I7 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of the Lord; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it. Atthiit day, they shall acknowledge the true Church of God, as holy, and as the seat of God's spiritual government; and the Gentiles shall, together with them, flock unto it.
ni. 18 And they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto yourfathers. They shall both come together out of their spiritual captivity, into the bosom of my Evangelical Church.
III. 19 But I said, How shall I put thee among the children, and give thee a pleasant land, a goodly heritage of the hosts of no'tions? and I said, Thou shalt call me, My father; and shall not turn away from me.
But I said, How shall it come about, that thou, which deservedst not the name of a servant, shalt become a dear son unto me; and shalt have a pleasant and happy inheritance bequeathed unto thee, even a blessed room in my Church? And I answered myself again, It is by the means of thy faithful invocation of me, and of thy true repentance and holy obedience, that this shall be effected.
ni. 21 A voice was heard upon the high places, weeping and supplications of the children of Israel: for they have perverted their way, and they have forgotten the Lord their God. Even in those high places, where the offence was committed, a voice was heard of weeping and supplication of the children of Israel; lamenting their former wickedness; and calling for mercy, to that God, whom they had forgotten.
III. 23 Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills, and from the multitude of mountains.
In vain is deliverance and salvation hoped for from those idols, which we have worshipped on the hills and high places.
III. 24 For shame hath devoured the labour of our fathers from our youth.
. This shameful idolatry is that, which hath undone both our late forefathers and us.
IV. 3 Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns. Hitherto, O my people, your hearts have been like to a rough, thorny, uncultured ground; but now, break up this fallow ground of yours, by an unfeigned repentance, and root up these thorns of your corruptions.
IV. 4 Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskins of your heart.
As ye are outwardly circumcised, so also dove cutoff the foreskin of those inward corruptions, which your heart is defiled with.
IV. 5 Declare ye in Judah, and publish in Jerusalem; and say, Blow ye the trumpet in the land: cry, gather together, and say, Assemble yourselves, and let us go into the defenced cities. Make proclamation in Judah and Jerusalem, and muster your forces together: assemble yourselves, and, for fear and expectation of the enemy, agree to go up into the defenced cities.
IV. 6 Set up the standards toward Zion: retire, stay not: for I will bring evil from the north. 'Draw your troops toward Jerusalem, and make haste; for I will bring evil upon you from the Babylonians,
IV. 7 The lion is come up from his thicket, and the destroyer of the Gentiles is on his way.
The Chaldean is come forth, like a fierce lion out of his thicket or den, even Nebuchadnezzar, the great conqueror of the Gentiles, is upon his way.
IV. 10 Then said I, Ah, Lord God! surely thou hast greatly deceived this people and Jerusalem, saying, Ye shall have peace; whereas the sword reacheth unto the soul.
Then said I, Ah, Lord God, surely this people and Jerusalem will be ready to cast upon thee the imputation of deceiving them; in that those, which have pretended to prophesy in thy name, have said, Ye shall have peace, whereas there is nothing but slaughter and vastation.
IV. 11 A dry wind of the high places in the wilderness toward the daughter of my people, not to fan, nor to cleanse. Nebuchadnezzar came, like a boisterous wind upon the bleak hills, up against Jerusalem; not to fan or winnow my people, but to blow them quite away.
IV. 13 Behold, he shall come upas clouds, and his chariots shall be as a whirlwmd.
Behold, he shall come up, as some black cloud that threatens a tempest; and his chariots shall come rattling swiftly, as a whirlwind.
IV. 15 For a voice declareth from Dan, andpublisheth affliction from mount Ephraim.
I do already hear a voice from the remotest parts of the land, which runs along towards Jerusalem, proclaiming, with much horror and astonishment, the coming in of the enemy.
IV. 16 Make ye mention to the nations; behold, publish against Jerusalem, that watchers come front a far country, and give out their voice against the cities of Judah.
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