Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Lamentations 1:7 - 1:7

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Keil and Delitzsch Commentary - Lamentations 1:7 - 1:7


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The loss of all her magnificence (Lam 1:7) brings to the remembrance of the sorrowing city, in her trouble, the former days of her now departed glory. "Jerusalem" is not the totality of those who are carried away (Thenius), but the city personified as the daughter of Zion (cf. Lam 1:6). "The days of her affliction," etc., is not the direct object of "remembers," as Pareau and Kalkschmidt assume, with the lxx; the object is "all her pleasant things." If "the days of her affliction" were also intended to be the object, "all her pleasant things" would be preceded by the copula w, which Pareau indeed supplies, but arbitrarily. Moreover, the combination of the days of misery with the glory of bygone days is inappropriate, because Jerusalem feels her present misery directly, and does not need first to call them to remembrance. "The days of her affliction," etc., is the accusative of duration. Living through the times of her adversity, Jerusalem thinks of former happy times, and this remembrance increases her sorrow. מְרוּדִים occurs only here, in Lam 3:19 and in Isa 58:7 : in meaning it is connected with רוּד, vagari, and signifies roaming, - not voluntary, but compulsory, - rejection, persecution; while the adjective מְרוּדִים, found in Isaiah, is, as regards its form, taken from מָרִד, which is cognate with רוּד. מַחֲמֻדִּים or מחמוּדים (Lam 1:11, Kethib) is perhaps used in a more general sense than מַחֲמַדִּים, Lam 2:4 and Lam 1:11 (Qeri), an signifies what is costly, splendid, viz., gracious gifts, both of a temporal and spiritual kind, which Israel formerly possessed, while מַחֲמַדִּים signifies costly treasures. "The days of old" are the times of Moses and Joshua, of David and Solomon. In the words, "when her people fell," etc., the days of misery are more exactly specified. The suffix in רָאוּהָ refers to Jerusalem. צָרִים are the foes into whose power Jerusalem fell helplessly, not specially the escorts of those who were carried away (Thenius). They made a mockery of her מַשְׁבַּתִּים. This word is ἅπ. λεγ. It is not identical in meaning with ,שַׁבָּתֹותsabbata (Vulgate, Luther, etc.), though connected with it; nor does it signify deletiones, destructions (Gesenius), but cessationes. This last rendering, however, is not to be taken according to the explanation of Rosenmüller: quod cessasset omnis ille decor, qui nominatus este ante, principatus et prosper rerum status; but rather as L. Cappellus in his nott. crit. expresses it: quod nunc terra ejus deserta jacet nec colitur et quasi cessat et feriatur, though he does not quite exhaust the meaning. As Gerlach rightly remarks, the expression is "evidently used with reference to the threatenings given in the law, Lev 26:34-35, that the land would observe its Sabbaths, - that it will keep them during the whole period of the desolation, when Israel is in the land of his enemies." We must not, however, restrict the reference merely to the uncultivated state of the fields, but extend it so that it shall be applied to cessation from all kinds of employment, even those connected with the worship of God, which were necessary for the hallowing of the Sabbath. The mockery of enemies does not apply to the Jewish celebration of the Sabbath (to which Grotius refers the words), but to the cessation of the public worship of the Lord, inasmuch as the heathen, by destroying Jerusalem and the temple, fancied they had not only put an end to the worship of God of the Jews, but also conquered the God of Israel as a helpless national deity, and made a mock of Israel's faith in Jahveh as the only true God.