Bible Study - Commentary by Jim Melough
2003 James Melough
47:1. “The word
of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Philistines, before
that Pharaoh smote
The Wycliffe Bible
supplies the following instructive facts relative to the Philistines, “The
many campaigns fought in the Philistine Plain from the Assyrian period through
the time of Alexander the Great caused the gradual attrition of the
Philistines. Those who were left were conquered by the Maccabees (second half
of the second century BC) and absorbed into the Hebrew people.”
The Egyptians’ destruction
of Gaza is generally believed to have occurred in 609 BC, so that Jeremiah
received this communication before then.
saith the Lord; Behold, waters rise up out of the north, and shall be an
overflowing flood, and shall overflow the land, and all that is therein; the
city, and them, that dwell therein: then the men shall cry, and all the
inhabitants of the land shall howl.”
It was the Babylonians who
were described as the flood waters from the north overflowing all the land and
destroying everything in their path, the devastation being so great that the
men would cry like women, and the whole land would mourn.
47:3. “At the
noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong horses, at the rushing of his
chariots, and at the rumbling of his wheels, the fathers shall not look back
to their children for feebleness of hands.”
The confusion and terror
would be so great that fathers trying to escape wouldn’t even look back to see
what was happening to their children. The feebleness of hands speaks of their
utter helplessness against the invading Babylonians.
of the day that cometh to spoil all the Philistines, and to cut off from Tyrus
and Zidon every helper that remaineth; for the Lord will spoil the
Philistines, the remnant of the country of Caphtor.”
It was God Who had appointed
the day of the Philistines’ destruction, as well as that of Tyre and Zidon, so
there was no possibility of escape.
Caphtor was the ancient name
of Crete from which the Philistines are believed to have come originally.
is come upon Gaza;
is cut off with the remnant of their valley: how long wilt thou cut thyself?”
“... remnant of their
valley” is also translated, “O descendants of the Anakim,” -
The Anakim were a race of giants, note, for example, the Philistine giant
slain by David.
“... how long wilt thou cut
thyself?” implies that their time of mourning would be long, so great would be
47:6. “O thou
sword of the Lord, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? put up thyself into
thy scabbard, rest, and be still.”
This continues to indicate
the terrible nature of the judgment that would fall upon the Philistines.
47:7. “How can
it be quiet, seeing the Lord hath given it a charge against Ashkelon, and
against the sea shore? there hath he appointed it.”
It is impossible to escape
the judgment of God. He had decreed the destruction of Ashkelon and the
coastal towns, nor would His judgment cease until that decree had been carried
Inasmuch as the Philistines
represent apostate Christianity, the lesson being taught in their destruction
is that the great harlot travesty masquerading as the true Church, will also
be destroyed, her destruction occurring in the Great Tribulation.