Isaiah 34:7 MEANING

Isaiah 34:7
(7) And the unicorns shall come down with them . . .--Better, the aurochs, or wild bulls . . . The Hebrew, rem, which meets us in Deuteronomy 33:17; Psalm 22:21, has been identified with the buffalo, the antelope (Antilope leucoryx), and by Mr. Houghton, a naturalist as well as a scholar, on the strength of Assyrian inscriptions, pointing to the land of the Khatti (Hittites) and the foot of the Lebanon as its habitat, and of bas-reliefs representing it, with the Bos primigenius of zoologists (Bible Educator, ii. 24-29). Here, the fierce wild beasts stand for the chiefs of the Edomites. (Comp. Psalm 22:12; Psalm 22:21.) The verb, "shall come down," as in Jeremiah 48:15; Jeremiah 50:27; Jeremiah 51:40, implies going down to the shambles, or slaughtering house.

Verse 7. - The unicorns; Bishop Lowth renders ream by "wild goats;" Mr. Cheyne by "buffaloes." Probably the wild ox, a native of the trans-Jordanic region, is intended (see Mr. Houghton's paper on the animals of the Assyrian bas-reliefs, in the 'Transactions of the Society of Bibl. Archaeology,' vol. 5. p. 336). Shall come down; rather, shall go down; i.e. shall fall and perish (comp. Jeremiah 50:27).

34:1-8 Here is a prophecy of the wars of the Lord, all which are both righteous and successful. All nations are concerned. And as they have all had the benefit of his patience, so all must expect to feel his resentment. The description of bloodshed suggests tremendous ideas of the Divine judgments. Idumea here denotes the nations at enmity with the church; also the kingdom of antichrist. Our thoughts cannot reach the horrors of that awful season, to those found opposing the church of Christ. There is a time fixed in the Divine counsels for the deliverance of the church, and the destruction of her enemies. We must patiently wait till then, and judge nothing before the time. Through Christ, mercy is exercised to every believer, consistently with justice, and his name is glorified.And the unicorns shall come down with them,.... With the lambs, goats, and rams; that is, either the rhinoceros, as some, there being no such creature as the unicorn; or the buffaloes, as (m) others; these "shall fall", as the Septuagint, Syriac, and Arabic versions render it, they shall be slain, as well as the rest; meaning, that along with the common soldiers, and inferior officers, the general officers should fall; and so the Targum,

"and the mighty shall be slain with them.''

R. Abraham Seba says (n) he read in a certain book, that the word here should not be read "unicorns", but "the Romans shall come down", &c.:

and the bullocks with the bulls: or, as the Targum,

"and the rulers with the princes;''

the same with the kings, captains, and mighty men in Revelation 19:18,

and their land shall be soaked with blood, and their dust made fat with fatness; Or, "their land shall be inebriated" (o), or made drunk, with blood; and the dust thereof thickened by it, and made clods of with it, as the parched earth is watered with a plentiful shower, and the dust laid with it: this is a just retaliation to the whore of Rome, who has been made drunk with the blood of the saints, and now blood shall be given her to drink, even her own, with which she shall be filled, and welter and wallow in the clods of it, Revelation 17:6.

(m) So Gussetius understands it of a larger sort of oxen, Comment. Ebr. p. 783. (n) Tzeror Hammor, fol. 47. 3.((o) "et inebriabitur", Pagninus, Montanus, Piscator.

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