7. And I did so as I was commanded: I brought forth my stuff by day, as stuff for captivity, and in the even I digged through the wall with mine hand; I brought it forth in the twilight, and I bare it upon my shoulder in their sight.
Here the Prophet relates that he had executed what God had commanded: nor did it escape him that this action would be exposed to many jeers and reproaches. But he esteemed nothing of equal moment with pleasing God: hence we must remark the Prophet's alacrity in executing God's commands. For since to ingenuous natures nothing is more distasteful than reproach, he might reject the burden imposed upon him, because it provoked the laughter of all men. But because God was otherwise pleased he did as he was ordered. He says, therefore, that he carried away his vessels, as it were vessels of captivity, or of migration, and that in the day-time: as if he said that he had prepared whatever was necessary for the journey, as if he saw that a long march, even exile was before him. This then was the reason why he prepared his goods in the day-time. Now it follows, at evening he dug through the wall. This belongs to the second clause, that the Israelites might understand that all egress was blocked up to the Jews, so that no safety remained but in concealed flight. He says also, by the hand, whence it appears to be done suddenly and tumultuously. He says, that he went out in darkness, and carried things on his shoulder -- namely, that he may confirm what we have so often said, that the Jews had no hope of safety except under cover of the night: because they were besieged on every side, and could not move on one side or the other, lest the enemy should seize them. This is the reason why the Prophet says, that he went out in darkness through the wall which had been dug through.
Grant, Almighty God, since thou so wishest us to live in this world, that we may travel onwards till thou gatherest us into thy heavenly rest, that we may truly contemplate that eternal inheritance, and apply to it all our endeavors: and next, that we may so travel in this world that we may not wander nor stray from the way; but being always intent on the mark which thou settest before us, grant us to proceed on our way, until we finish our course, and enjoy that glory which thine only-begotten Son has prepared for us through his own blood. -- Amen.
1 Verbally, "but I dug through a wall for myself." -- Calvin.
2 Or, "I carried forth." -- Calvin.
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