21. How long shall I see the standard, and hear the sound of the trumpet?
21. Usquequo videbo vexillum? audiam vocem (vel, clangorem) tubae?
He concludes that part of his discourse, which, as we have said, he embellished with figurative terms, in order more fully to rouse slow and torpid minds: but he confirms what he said at the beginning of the last verse
|Distress has been summoned upon distress.|
He indeed repeats in other words the same thing, How long shall I see the standard, he says, and hear the sound of the trumpet? that is, |You are greatly deceived, if ye think that your enemies, after having for a short time marched through the land, will return home: for the evil of war will for a long time afflict you, and God will protract your calamities, so that the sound of trumpets will continue, and the standard will often, and even every day, be exhibited.|
We now then perceive the Prophet's meaning: He first shews, that though their enemies were afar off, they would yet come suddenly, and that the horses of God would be, according to what he said yesterday, swifter than eagles. He afterwards refers to the continued progress of the war; for it was necessary to shew to the Jews, that as they had long heedlessly despised God, so his vengeance would not be momentary, but would lie on them, so as to be without end.
Now we ought to know that at this day there is no less dullness than among the Jews. It is therefore not enough to summon the ungodly and the wicked before God's tribunal, but such metaphorical language ought to be employed as may strike terror, and constrain them to fear, though they may endeavor in every way to harden their own consciences and stupefy themselves, so as to be capable of easily despising God. It is then necessary, that at the present day the servants of God should also speak more strongly and vehemently, that they may rouse hypocrites and the obstinate from their torpor. It then follows --