27. The king shall mourn, and the prince shall be clothed with desolation, and the hands of the people of the land shall be troubled: I will do unto them after their way, and according to their deserts will I judge them; and they shall know that I am the LORD.
27. Rex lugebit, et princeps induetur desolatione: et manus populi terrae turbabuntur: secundum vias ipsorum faciam iis, et pro judiciis ipsorum judicabo ipsos, et cognoscent quod ego Iehovah.
In this verse the Prophet affirms that God's vengeance should be so common that it should alight equally upon the highest and the lowest. He begins with the king, then he descends to his counselors, then he comprehends the whole people. The king shall lament, he says. But it is his duty to give life to others, and then to devise a remedy for all evils; but when the king has nothing left but grief and sorrow, it is a sign of despair. He metaphorically clothes the elders in a garment of desolation. We know that a garment has two uses; since it fortifies us as a defense against the cold, and then it hides whatever is dishonorable in us. In the opposite sense the Prophet says, shame shall be as a garment to the elders, and then he goes down to the common people. At the same time, he assigns the reason, I, says he, will do to them according to their ways m is here taken causally, according to their ways, therefore, will I do unto them: and in the same sense he adds, in their judgment will I judge you The word |judgment| is used peculiarly here, and contrary to its ordinary sense. For judgment means the same as righteousness; but it is often transferred to transgressions, as if he had said, they shall feel me a just judge though I avenge their sins. Hence their judgments mean perverse abuses, and comprehend not only superstitions but all kinds of iniquities. By these words God intimates that though he should punish the Jews severely, yet it would not be cruelty, because they deserved such treatment. A confirmation follows in the next vision. The vision is, indeed, separate, but as the Prophet had just asserted in God's name that the punishment was just under which the Jews would suffer, he confirms this doctrine by the vision which follows, when he was seized by the Spirit of God and transferred to Jerusalem, where he saw the temple filled with various abominations; because there was no corner which they had not defiled and violated with their idols. But let us come to the words.