Notes & Commentary:
Ver. 1. The valley of vision: Jerusalem. The temple of Jerusalem was built upon Mount Moria, or the mountain of vision. But the city is here called, the valley of vision, either because it was lower than the temple, or because of the low condition to which it was to be reduced, (Challoner) during the captivity. (Worthington) — Vision. Septuagint, “Sion.” (Haydock) — This prophecy regards the devastation caused by Sennacherib, (St. Jerome) Nabuchodonosor, (Sanctius) the Romans, (Eusebius) or by Assaradon, when he took Manasses, 2 Paralipomenon xxxiii. 11., and 4 Kings xxi. 10. — Tops, to weep.
Ver. 2. Battle. He taxes the king with cowardice.
Ver. 4. People. He saw this in spirit, though he might not live to witness it. (Calmet)
Ver. 5. Searching. That day beheld the Assyrians (Haydock) undermining the wall, and behaving with haughtiness (Calmet) on Mount Sion. (Haydock)
Ver. 6. Wall. Arms were frequently hung thereon, Canticle of Canticles ix. 4. (Calmet)
Ver. 8. Covering. Hebrew masac, (Haydock) “shade,” for the convenience of the people, 4 Kings xvi. 18. — Forest, built by Solomon. Ezechias has also procured store of arms, which were now delivered out to the citizens.
Ver. 9. Many, but you have neglected them, (Calmet) till it be too late. (Haydock) — Pool, communicating with Gehon on the west.
Ver. 11. Walls. Manasses enclosed the pool within walls, forming a second town, 4 Kings xxii. 29. — Ago. You have not imitated the piety of Ezechias.
Ver. 13. Die. Thus the pagans encouraged themselves to feast. (Calmet) — Ergo vivamus dum licet esse bene. (Petronius) — This conduct betrayed an entire want of faith. (Calmet) — “Nothing offends God so much….as contempt proceeding from despair.” (St. Jerome)
Ver. 14. Die. The repentance of Manasses, and the piety of Josias, could not avert the storm. Discite justitiam moniti et non temnere divos.
Ver. 15. Temple, in the place of Eliacim. He had been secretary before, (Calmet) and had intruded himself into some office in the temple, which he abused. (Worthington)
Ver. 17. Cock. St. Jerome’s master assured him that the word which is usually rendered a warrior, has this meaning. (Haydock) — The comparison agrees well with a proud man reduced to misery. (Calmet) — Hebrew, “With the captivity of a man, and he will cover thee.” Septuagint, “he will cast out and bruise the man, and will take away thy comely robe, and throw thee into,” &c. (Haydock)
Ver. 18. Lord; Manasses, who hath exalted thee. (Calmet)
Ver. 20. Eliacim, who had been displaced, ver. 15. He acted as regent after the departure of Manasses, who always followed his counsels at his return, Judith iv. 5. The priesthood was not then incompatible with civil and military functions.
Ver. 21. Girdle, the badge of power, Job xii. 18.
Ver. 22. Shoulder. Here the marks of dignity were worn. Eliacim was appointed master of the palace, over all the other servants. (Calmet) — Thus we may gather what power Christ conferred on St. Peter, when he gave him the keys of heaven, Matthew xvi. 19., and Apocalypse iii. 7. (Haydock)
Ver. 23. Peg, on which whatever is placed shall be secure, 1 Esdras ix. 8.
Ver. 24. House. He shall be the ornament of the priesthood. — Music. All affairs in church and state shall be at his disposal.
Ver. 25. Fall. Sobna shall lose all his employments, and ruin others. (Calmet)
Bible Text & Cross-references:
The prophet laments the destruction of Juda. He foretells the deprivation of Sobna, and substitution of Eliacim, a figure of Christ.
1 The burden of the valley of vision. What aileth thee also, that thou too art wholly gone up to the house tops?
2 Full of clamour, a populous city, a joyous city: thy slain are not slain by the sword, nor dead in battle.
3 All thy princes are fled together, and are bound hard: all that were found, are bound together, they are fled far off.
4 Therefore have I said: Depart from me, I will weep bitterly: labour not to comfort me, for the devastation of the daughter of my people.
5 For it is a day of slaughter, and of treading down, and of weeping to the Lord, the God of hosts, in the valley of vision, searching the wall, and magnificent upon the mountain.
6 And Elam took the quiver, the chariot of the horseman, and the shield was taken down from the wall.
7 And thy choice valleys shall be full of chariots, and the horsemen shall place themselves in the gate.
8 And the covering of Juda shall be discovered, and thou shalt see in that day the armoury of the house of the forest.
9 And you shall see the breaches of the city of David, that they are many: and you have gathered together the waters of the lower pool.
10 And have numbered the houses of Jerusalem, and broken down houses to fortify the wall.
11 *And you made a ditch between the two walls for the water of the old pool: and you have not looked up to the maker thereof, nor regarded him even at a distance, that wrought it long ago.
12 And the Lord, the God of hosts, in that day shall call to weeping, and to mourning, to baldness, and to girding with sackcloth:
13 And behold joy and gladness, killing calves, and slaying rams, eating flesh, and drinking wine: *Let us eat, and drink; for to-morrow we shall die.
14 And the voice of the Lord of hosts was revealed in my ears: Surely this iniquity shall not be forgiven you till you die, saith the Lord God of hosts.
15 Thus saith the Lord God of hosts: Go, get thee in to him that dwelleth in the tabernacle, to Sobna, who is over the temple: and thou shalt say to him:
16 What dost thou here, or as if thou wert somebody here? for thou hast hewed thee out a sepulchre here, thou hast hewed out a monument carefully in a high place, a dwelling for thyself in a rock.
17 Behold the Lord will cause thee to be carried away, as a cock is carried away, and he will lift thee up as a garment.
18 He will crown thee with a crown of tribulation; he will toss thee like a ball into a large and spacious country: there shalt thou die, and there shall the chariot of thy glory be, the shame of the house of thy Lord.
19 And I will drive thee out From thy station, and depose thee from thy ministry.
20 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will call my servant Eliacim the son of Helcias.
21 And I will clothe him with thy robe, and will strengthen him with thy girdle, and will give thy power into his hand: and he shall be as a father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and to the house of Juda.
22 *And I will lay the key of the house of David upon his shoulder: and he shall open, and none shall shut: and he shall shut, and none shall open.
23 And I will fasten him as a peg in a sure place, and he shall be for a throne of glory to the house of his father.
24 And they shall hang upon him all the glory of his father’s house, divers kinds of vessels, every little vessel, from the vessels of cups, even to every instrument of music.
25 In that day, saith the Lord of hosts, shall the peg be removed, that was fastened in the sure place: and it shall be broken and shall fall: and that which hung thereon, shall perish, because the Lord hath spoken it.
11: 4 Kings xx. 20.; 2 Paralipomenon xxxii. 30.
13: Wisdom ii. 6.; Isaias lvi. 12.; 1 Corinthians xv. 32.
22: Apocalypse iii. 7.; Job xii. 14.