26. And I will deliver them into the hand of those that seek their lives, and into the hand of Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of his servants: and afterward it shall be inhabited, as in the days of old, saith the LORD.
26. Et dabo illos in manum quaerentium animam ipsorum, et in manum Nabuchadnezer regis Babylonis, et in manum servorum ejus, et postea habitabitur sicut diebus antiquis, dicit Jehova.
Jeremiah pursues the same subject, and continues to speak in God's name, that he might more powerfully impress minds otherwise tardy; I will give them, he says, into the hand of enemies, and those deadly enemies; for we have said elsewhere that to |seek life| is not to spare it. Expressed here then is the cruelty of the Chaldean army, as though he had said that they would be deadly enemies to the Egyptians. And he explains himself more fully, and says, Into the hand of the king of Babylon, and into the hand of his servants, so that not only Nebuchadnezzar was to be victorious over Egypt, but also his servants, which was still more degrading.
A promise is at length added, not to shew favor to that heathen nation, but that God might shew that he would be so far merciful towards the Egyptians as not wholly to destroy them. It shall be inhabited, he says, as in ancient days. Ezekiel says that the kingdom would be small and humble or abject. (Ezekiel 29:14, 15.) But our Prophet seems to promise to Egypt the same prosperity as it had before its overthrow. We have already said that restoration was promised to the Egyptians, not because God was pacified towards them, but because his purpose was that his mercy should be made evident in the judgments he executed even on foreign nations; and further, it served to confirm prophecy, when to Egypt, after having been destroyed, was granted that restoration of which Jeremiah had prophesied. The truth, then, of what the Prophet had said became more evident through the two changes, than if he had only said, |God shall destroy Egypt.| We now, then, perceive why the Prophet spoke of the future condition of Egypt. It follows, --