5. And the streets of the city shall be full of boys and girls playing in the streets thereof.
5. Et plateae urbis plenae erunt pueris et puellis, ludentibus in plateis ejus.
He repeats and confirms the same thing by another representation -- that boys and girls would play in the streets and on the public roads, which could not be during the troublous time of war; for when arms clatter, the sound of trumpets is heard, and assaults of enemies are dreaded, every one keeps his children at home, and in public there is sad confusion, and few are found abroad; in short there is no cheerfulness even in children when fear is hanging over them. We hence see, that what is here promised is a state of quietness to Jerusalem; for God would keep off the onsets of enemies -- not that Jerusalem was ever exempt from all evils, but that God's defense was so effectual as to render them safe amidst many and various dangers.
It is not needful here anxiously to raise the questions -- Whether it is lawful to play during times of peace? for the Prophet here took his language from the common habits of men, and even from the very nature of things; for we know that men give way to cheerfulness when no fear lays hold on their minds, and that play and sport are allowed to children. The Prophet meant only this, that though the Jews might then have something to do with various enemies, they would yet be in a state of peace and safety. He afterwards adds --