30. Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them, The Lord shall roar from on high, and utter his voice from his holy habitation; he shall mightily roar upon his habitation; he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth.
30. Et tu prophetabis ad eos (vel, contra eos) omnia verba haec, et dices illis, Jehova ab excelso rugiet, et ex habitaculo sanctitatis suae edet vocem suam; rugiendo rugiet super habitaculum suum; celeusma (clamorem potius generaliter) quasi prementium torcular respondebit super cunctos incolas terrae.
The word ddyh, eidad, is rendered celeusma, a shout; but some render it a mournful singing; and it often occurs when the vintage is spoken of. Celeusma, as it is well known, is the shout of sailors. Its etymology is indeed general in its meaning; for keleu>ein is to exhort, to encourage; and then the noun is exhortation. But as this word is only used as to sailors, I prefer to adopt the word sound, or a loud noise.
Then he says, Prophesy thou against them all these words, and say to them, etc. I have already reminded you that no command was given to the Prophet to go to the heathens and to address each nation among them, or, in other words, to perform among them his prophetic office. But though he did not move a foot from the city, yet the influence of his prophecy reached through every region of the earth. The preaching therefore of Jeremiah was not in vain, for the Jews understood by what happened, that there was in the language of the holy man the power of the Spirit for the salvation of all the godly, and for the destruction of all the unbelieving. It is, then, in this sense that God bids and commands him again to prophesy against all nations, and to speak to them, not that he actually addressed them; but when he taught the Jews, his doctrine had an influence on all nations.
And he says, Jehovah from on high shall roar, and from the habitation of his holiness shall send forth his voice. The metaphor of roaring is sufficiently common. It seems indeed unsuitable to apply it to God; but we know how tardy men are, and how they indulge themselves in their own insensibility, even when God threatens them. Hence God, adopting a hyperbolical mode of speaking, reproves their stupidity, as he cannot move them except he exceeds the limits of moderation. This then is the reason why he compares himself to a lion, not that we are to imagine that there is anything savage or cruel in him; but as I have said, men cannot be moved, except God puts on another character and comes forth as a lion, while yet he testifies not in vain elsewhere, that he is slow to wrath, inclined to mercy and long-suffering. (Psalm 86:5, 15.) Let us then know that the impious contempt, by which most men are fascinated, is thus condemned, when God does as it were in this manner transform himself, and is constrained to represent himself as a lion.
Roar, then, he says, shall Jehovah, from on high, and from the habitation of his holiness shall he send forth his voice. When he speaks of on high, it is probable that heaven is meant; and the habitation of his holiness is often taken for the sanctuary or the Temple; but in other places, when the same words are repeated, heaven is also meant by the habitation of his holiness. There is yet nothing unsuitable, if we say that the Prophet here refers to the Temple, and that he thus refers to it, that he might raise upwards the minds of the Jews, who had their thoughts fixed on the visible Temple: nay, this seems to be required by the context. They indeed foolishly thought that God was bound to them, because it had been said,
"Here is my rest for ever; here will my name and power dwell." (Psalm 132:14)
They strangely thought that there was no God but he who was inclosed in that visible and external sanctuary. Hence was that pride which Isaiah reproves and severely condemns when he says,
"Where is the place for my rest? the heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool; what place then will you build for me?" (Isaiah 66:1.)
The Prophet there does not merely speak, as many think, against superstition; but he rather beats down that foolish arrogance, because the people thought that God could never be separated from the material Temple. And yet it was not for nothing that the Temple had the name of being the royal throne of God, provided vices were removed. So now the Prophet, though he exalts God above the heavens, yet alludes to the visible sanctuary, when he says, "Roar shall Jehovah from on high, and from the habitation of his holiness shall he send forth his voice;" that is, though the Gentiles think that God sits and rests in a corner, yet his throne is in heaven: that he has chosen for himself a terrestrial habitation, is no reason why the government of the whole earth should not be in his hands; and therefore he manifests proofs of his vengeance towards all nations; but for the sake of his Church he will go forth as it were from his Temple: and he repeats again, Roaring he shall roar on his dwelling, or habitation.1 Jerome usually renders the last word ornament, beauty; and yet this passage sufficiently proves that it cannot mean any other thing than habitation, as well as many other passages.
He afterwards proceeds to another comparison, He will respond a shout, as those who tread the wine-press against all the inhabitants of the earth. This repetition and variety confirm what I have said, -- that God hyperbolically set forth the vehemence of his voice in order to fill with terror the secure and the torpid. And the Prophet seems here to intimate, that though there would be none to cheer, yet God's voice would be sufficiently powerful. For they who tread the wine-press mutually encourage one another by shouting; one calls on another, and thus they rouse themselves to diligence. There is also a mutual concord among sailors, when they give their shouts, as well as among the workmen who tread the grapes in the wine-press. But though God would have no one to rouse him, yet he himself would be sufficient; he will respond a shout.2 The Prophet might have used another word; but he says, he will respond -- to whom? even to himself; that is, though all united to extinguish God's vengeance, yet he will come forth a conqueror, nor will he have any need of help. It then follows, --
Roaring he will roar against his own habitation; A shout like that of treaders of grapes Will he respond to all the inhabitants of the earth.
This rendering prevents the necessity of giving an unusual meaning to la, as it is commonly done. Coccius takes this view of the passage. -- Ed.