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Vengeance on Edom


“Who is this that comes from Edom,

from Bozrah in garments stained crimson?

Who is this so splendidly robed,

marching in his great might?”


“It is I, announcing vindication,

mighty to save.”



“Why are your robes red,

and your garments like theirs who tread the wine press?”



“I have trodden the wine press alone,

and from the peoples no one was with me;

I trod them in my anger

and trampled them in my wrath;

their juice spattered on my garments,

and stained all my robes.


For the day of vengeance was in my heart,

and the year for my redeeming work had come.


I looked, but there was no helper;

I stared, but there was no one to sustain me;

so my own arm brought me victory,

and my wrath sustained me.


I trampled down peoples in my anger,

I crushed them in my wrath,

and I poured out their lifeblood on the earth.”


God’s Mercy Remembered


I will recount the gracious deeds of the L ord,

the praiseworthy acts of the L ord,

because of all that the L ord has done for us,

and the great favor to the house of Israel

that he has shown them according to his mercy,

according to the abundance of his steadfast love.


For he said, “Surely they are my people,

children who will not deal falsely”;

and he became their savior


in all their distress.

It was no messenger or angel

but his presence that saved them;

in his love and in his pity he redeemed them;

he lifted them up and carried them all the days of old.



But they rebelled

and grieved his holy spirit;

therefore he became their enemy;

he himself fought against them.


Then they remembered the days of old,

of Moses his servant.

Where is the one who brought them up out of the sea

with the shepherds of his flock?

Where is the one who put within them

his holy spirit,


who caused his glorious arm

to march at the right hand of Moses,

who divided the waters before them

to make for himself an everlasting name,


who led them through the depths?

Like a horse in the desert,

they did not stumble.


Like cattle that go down into the valley,

the spirit of the L ord gave them rest.

Thus you led your people,

to make for yourself a glorious name.

A Prayer of Penitence


Look down from heaven and see,

from your holy and glorious habitation.

Where are your zeal and your might?

The yearning of your heart and your compassion?

They are withheld from me.


For you are our father,

though Abraham does not know us

and Israel does not acknowledge us;

you, O L ord, are our father;

our Redeemer from of old is your name.


Why, O L ord, do you make us stray from your ways

and harden our heart, so that we do not fear you?

Turn back for the sake of your servants,

for the sake of the tribes that are your heritage.


Your holy people took possession for a little while;

but now our adversaries have trampled down your sanctuary.


We have long been like those whom you do not rule,

like those not called by your name.


11. And he remembered the days of old. This is the design of the chastisement, that the people may be roused from their lethargy, and may call to remembrance those things which they had formerly forgotten; for we are so intoxicated by prosperity that we altogether forget God. And therefore chastisements bring back this thought, which had been defaced in us, “Where is God who bestowed so many benefits on our fathers?” For I refer these things to the past time; and therefore I have translated עולם (gnolam) “of old.” and not “of the age,” which would be unsuitable to this passage, seeing that he mentions those times in which Moses governed the people of God. Wherefore, the true meaning is, that the Jews, being wretchedly oppressed, thought of “the times of old,” in which the Lord displayed his power for defending his people. As to the opinion of some commentators, who refer it to God, as if he contended with the wickedness of the people, because he chose rather to bestow his favors improperly on ungrateful persons, than not to complete what he had begun, it appears to be too harsh and unnatural; and therefore the Prophet rather utters the groans and complaints of a wretched people, when they have learned from chastisements how miserable it is to lose God’s protection.

With the shepherd of his flock. By “the shepherd” he means Moses, and I see no good reason for translating it in the plural rather than the singular number. 177177     Our author refers to a different reading, רעי, (rogne,) the construct plural, instead of רעה, (rogneh,) the construct singular of רעה, (rogneh.)Ed.
“Nearly sixty manuscripts and forty editions read, רעי (rogne) in the plural, which may then be understood as including Aaron, (Psalm 77:20,) and, as Vitringa thinks, Miriam, (Micah 6:4,) or perhaps the seventy elders, who are probably referred to in the last clause as under a special divine influence. (See Numbers 11:17. Compare Exodus 31:3; 35:31” — Alexander.

That put his Holy Spirit in the midst of him. He describes also the manner; namely, that he endowed him with a remarkable grace of the Holy Spirit; for “to put the Spirit in the midst of him” means nothing else than to display the power of his Spirit. Others prefer to view it as referring to the people; and I do not object to that opinion. But when the Lord chose Moses, and appointed him to be the leader of the whole people, in him especially the Lord is said to have “put his Spirit.” Now, he gave his Spirit to him for the benefit of the whole people, that he might be a distinguished minister of his grace, and might restore them to liberty. At the same time, the power of the Spirit of God was seen in the midst of the whole people.

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