15. And I will cast you out of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim.
15. Et projiciam vos a facie mea, sicuti projeci omnes fratres vestros, totum semen Ephraim.
He concludes the former verse. The Prophet had indeed sufficiently explained himself; but this confirmation was necessary for a people so refractory. He then alleges nothing new, but only shews that there would be no defense to his own people against God's vengeance any more than to the Israelites: and hence he now calls them their
He calls them the
But we may hence learn this important truth, -- that God had never so bound himself to any people or place, that he was not at liberty to inflict punishment on the impiety of those who had despised his favors, or profaned them by their ingratitude and their sins. And this ought to be carefully noticed; for we see that it is an evil as it were innate in us, that we become elated and proud whenever God deals bountifully with us; for we so abuse his favors as to think that more liberty is given us, because God has bestowed on us more than on others. But there is nothing more groundless than this presumption; and yet we become thus insolent whenever God honors us with peculiar favors. Let us therefore bear in mind what is taught here by the Prophet, -- that God is ever at liberty to take vengeance on the ungodly and the ungrateful.
Hence also it appears how foolish is the boasting of the Papists; for whenever they bring against us the name of the apostolic throne, they think that God's mouth is closed; they think that all authority is to be taken away from his word. In short, they harden themselves against God, as though they had a legitimate possession, because the gospel had been once preached at Rome, and because that place was the first seat of the Church in Italy as well as in Europe. But God never favored Rome with such a privilege, nor has he said that his habitation was to be there. If the Pope and his adherents had what the Jews then possessed, (which really belonged to Mount Sion,) who could bear their fury, I say not, their pride? But we see what Jeremiah says of Mount Sion, of which yet it had been said,
"This is my rest for ever; here will I dwell,
because I have chosen it." (Psalm 132:14)
1 This is hardly correct. The reference is to the state of the Jews at that time. The Jews were formed of two tribes, Judah and Benjamin. They were joined, after the captivity of Israel, by several of the remnants both of Ephraim and Manasseh, and of the other tribes. (2 Chronicles 34:9.) There is indeed mention made of some from the tribes of Ephraim, Manasseh, and Simeon, coming to worship at Jerusalem in the reign of Asa; but we do not read that they settled there.-Ed.
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