Jeremiah 25:22

22. And all the kings of Tyrus, and all the kings of Zidon, and the kings of the isles which are beyond the sea,

22. Et omnibus regibus Tyri et omnibus regibus Sidonis, et omnibus regibus insulae, quae est (vel, qui sunt; nam verbum nullum ponitur; potest igitur hoc tam ad reges ipsos quam ad insulam referri; qui sunt ergo) ultra mare,


As to the word Island, the number is to be changed; for the Prophet means not one island, but the countries beyond the sea. Some restrict the reference to Cyprus, Crete, Mitylene, and other islands in the Mediterranean; but it is a common way of speaking in Hebrew, to call all countries beyond the sea islands.

"The kings of the islands shall come." (Psalm 72:10.)

The Prophet in that passage calls those the kings of the islands who would come in ships to Judea. So also in this place we may understand by the kings of the islands all those who were beyond the sea.

We now see that kings of one age only are not those summoned to God's tribunal; for why does the Prophet mention all the kings of Tyre and all the kings of Sidon? Was it possible for these two cities to have four or two kings at the same time? But we must bear in mind what I have already stated, -- that the children of God were warned, lest they should entertain a too fervid expectation as to the fulfillment of this prophecy. It is then the same as if he had said, "Though God's vengeance may not come upon the present king of Tyre or of Sidon, it is yet suspended over all kings, and shall be manifested in its time."1 Tyre and Sidon, we know, were cities of Phoenicia, and very celebrated; and Tyre had many colonies afar off, among which the principal was Carthage; and the Carthaginians offered honorable presents to it every year, in order to shew that they were its descendants. And Tyre itself was a colony of Sidon, according to historians; but it so prospered, that the daughter as it were swallowed up the mother. But it appears evident that there were kings there in the time of Isaiah and Jeremiah, though in the time of Alexander both cities were republics; for many changes during that period had taken place in them. Now the Prophet says only, that Tyre and Sidon would be involved in the punishment which he denounced on both kings and people. It follows --

1 The kings of Judah and the kings of other countries are found also mentioned; and the reason seems to be, that the calamities threatened to them did not come at once on one generation, but gradually on successive generations. Such was the case with respect to Judah, and also with other kingdoms; successive attacks were made until they were at last wholly subjugated.

As we find in Isaiah 23:2, the people of Tyre called "the inhabitants of the isle," we may render the verse thus, --

22. And all the kings of Tyre, and all the kings of Sidon, even all the kings of the isle which is by the side of the sea.

This repetition was made on account of the power and wealth of Tyre, a place thought impregnable. See Isaiah 23. -- Ed.