17:1 The a burden of b Damascus. Behold, Damascus is taken
away from [being] a city, and it shall be a ruinous heap.
(a) )Read Geneva "Isa 13:1")
(b) The chief city of Syria.
17:2 The cities of c Aroer [are] forsaken: they shall be for
flocks, which shall lie down, and none shall make [them]
(c) It was a country of Syria by the river Arnon.
17:3 The fortress also shall cease from d Ephraim, and the
kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria: they shall
be as the e glory of the children of Israel, saith the
LORD of hosts.
(d) It seems that the prophet would comfort the Church in
declaring the destruction of these two kings of Syria
and Israel, when as they had conspired the overthrow
(e) The ten tribes gloried in their multitude and alliance
with other nations: therefore he says that they will be
brought down and the Syrians also.
17:4 And in that day it shall come to pass, [that] the glory of
f Jacob shall be diminished, and the fatness of his flesh
shall become lean.
(f) Meaning, of the ten tribes who boasted themselves of
their nobility, prosperity, strength and multitude.
17:5 And it shall be as when the reaper gathereth g the grain,
and reapeth the heads with his arm; and it shall be as he
that gathereth heads in the valley of h Rephaim.
(g) As the abundance of corn does not fear the harvest men
that would cut it down: no more will the multitude of
Israel make the enemies shrink, whom God will appoint
to destroy them.
(h) A valley which was plentiful and fertile.
17:6 Yet gleaning grapes shall i be left in it, as the shaking
of an olive tree, two [or] three berries in the top of the
uppermost bough, four [or] five in the outmost fruitful
branches of it, saith the LORD God of Israel.
(i) Because God would have his covenant stable, he promises
to reserve some of this people, and to bring them to
17:7 At that day shall a man look to his k Maker, and his eyes
shall have respect to the Holy One of Israel.
(k) He shows that God's corrections always bring fruit, and
cause his to turn from their sins and to humble
themselves to him.
17:9 In that day shall his strong cities be as a forsaken bough,
and an uppermost branch, which l they left because of the
children of Israel: and there shall be desolation.
(l) As the Canaanites left their cities when God placed the
Israelites there, so the cities of Israel will not be
able to defend their inhabitants any more than bushes,
when God will send the enemy to plague them.
17:10 Because thou hast forgotten the God of thy salvation, and
hast not been mindful of the rock of thy strength,
therefore shalt thou plant pleasant plants, and shalt set
it with foreign m slips:
(m) Which are excellent and brought out of other
17:11 In the day shalt thou make thy plant to grow, and in the
morning shalt thou make thy seed to flourish: [but] the
harvest [shall be] a heap in the day n of grief and of
(n) As the Lord threatens the wicked in his law,
17:12o Woe to the multitude of many people, [who] make a
noise like the noise of the seas; and to the rushing of
nations, [that] make a rushing like the rushing of mighty
(o) The prophet laments, considering the horrible plague
that was prepared against Israel by the Assyrians, who
were infinite in number, and gathered from many
17:13 The nations shall rush like the rushing of many waters:
but [God] shall p rebuke them, and they shall flee far
off, and shall be chased as the chaff of the mountains
before the wind, and like a rolling thing before the
(p) He adds this for the consolation of the faithful who
were in Israel.
17:14 And behold at the time of evening q trouble; [and]
before the morning he [is] not. This [is] the portion of
them that plunder us, and the lot of them that rob us.
(q) He compares the Assyrians to a tempest which rises
overnight and in the morning is gone.