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God Will Swallow Up Death Forever

1O Lord, you are my God;
I will exalt you; I will praise your name,
for you have done wonderful things,
plans formed of old, faithful and sure.
2For you have made the city a heap,
the fortified city a ruin;
the foreigners' palace is a city no more;
it will never be rebuilt.
3Therefore strong peoples will glorify you;
cities of ruthless nations will fear you.
4For you have been a stronghold to the poor,
a stronghold to the needy in his distress,
a shelter from the storm and a shade from the heat;
for the breath of the ruthless is like a storm against a wall,
5like heat in a dry place.
You subdue the noise of the foreigners;
as heat by the shade of a cloud,
so the song of the ruthless is put down.

6On this mountain the Lord of hosts will make for all peoples
a feast of rich food, a feast of well-aged wine,
of rich food full of marrow, of aged wine well refined.
7And he will swallow up on this mountain
the covering that is cast over all peoples,
the veil that is spread over all nations.
8He will swallow up death forever;
and the Lord God will wipe away tears from all faces,
and the reproach of his people he will take away from all the earth,
for the Lord has spoken.
9It will be said on that day,
“Behold, this is our God; we have waited for him, that he might save us.
This is the Lord; we have waited for him;
let us be glad and rejoice in his salvation.”
10For the hand of the Lord will rest on this mountain,
and Moab shall be trampled down in his place,
as straw is trampled down in a dunghill.11The Hebrew words for dunghill and for the Moabite town Madmen (Jeremiah 48:2) sound alike
11And he will spread out his hands in the midst of it
as a swimmer spreads his hands out to swim,
but the Lord will lay low his pompous pride together with the skill22Or in spite of the skill of his hands.
12And the high fortifications of his walls he will bring down,
lay low, and cast to the ground, to the dust.


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3. Therefore shall the strong people glorify thee. This is the end which I mentioned; 139139    {Bogus footnote} for if the Lord should destroy the world, no good result would follow, and indeed destruction could produce no feeling but horror, and we would never be led by it to sing his praise; but, on the contrary, we must be deprived of all feeling, when we perceive nothing but wrath. But praises flow from a sense of grace and goodness. It is therefore as if he had said, “Thou wilt not only strike and afflict, O Lord, but wilt cause the chastisements to be not without effect; for by them thou wilt subdue the fierceness of men, so that those who were formerly estranged from thee shall bend their neck to thee.” This passage should lead us to observe how much we need chastisements, which train us to obedience to God; for we are carried away by prosperity to such an extent, that we think that we have a right to do anything, and we even grow wanton and insolent when God treats us with gentleness.

The city of the terrible nations shall fear thee. When the Prophet next mentions fear, he shews that this praise does not consist in words or outward gestures, but in the sincere feeling of the heart. Hence we infer that he now speaks of the entire worship of God; but, as many persons think that they have fully discharged their duty, as soon as they have made a confession with the mouth, he adds, for the sake of explanation, “The nations shall fear thee.” When he calls them strong and powerful, by these epithets he denotes their pride and arrogance; for they were elated by their prosperity. They rebel against God, and cannot be made humble or submissive, unless they have been deprived of all things. To such views, therefore, ought our thoughts to be directed amidst those calamities which we perceive. The fierceness of men must be restrained and subdued, that they may be prepared for receiving doctrine and for rendering true obedience. So long as they shall be blinded by their wealth and vain confidence, they will fearlessly mock at the judgments of God, and will never yield subjection to him.




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