Verse 22. "Shall hear the corn, and the wine" - When they seem to express a desire to supply the wants of man.
"And they shall hear Jezreel." - The destitute people who are in want of the necessaries of life.
This most elegant gradation in the exertion of the influences of nature, for the supply of the wants of man, may be considered thus:-
1. There is a concord, harmony, and mutual influence, which God has established in the parts of created nature, in reference to the support and preservation of the human race.
2. God alone is the author of all this; and unless he give his command, communicate his energetic influence to the different parts of nature, these effects will not, cannot be produced.
3. Jezreel, the people who have been dispersed for their iniquities, and now about to be sown or planted in their own land, will require the most fostering care. See on ver. 23.
4. They are heard in desiring oil, wine, and corn. These are necessary to the support and comfort of life; and to those the desire of animal life naturally aspires.
5. These products are looked for from the EARTH. On it, and by it, grass grows for the cattle, and corn for the service of man.
6, The seeds or germs, whence proceed corn, wine, and oil, live and grow in the earth; but cannot come to perfection, unless the earth be impregnated with the dews and rains from the clouds. They are therefore represented as imploring the heavens to collect their clouds, to pour down their fructifying moisture upon it.
7. The clouds, or materials of which they are composed, not being able to arrange themselves, nor aggregate themselves so as to meet those demands, prevent drought, and maintain an effective vegetation, are represented as calling upon the heavens to form, arrange, and supply them with the requisite quantity of moisture.
8. God, who is the author of all being and all bounty, dependent on nothing, comes forward and says, I will hear the heavens, the clouds which are gathered in the atmosphere; he will arrange the particles, saturate those that are light, till they become sufficiently impregnated with the necessary fluid; and then direct them In his providence where to deposit their contents. And, 9. When brought to the proper place, he will shake them with his winds, or strike them with his thunder, so as to cause them to fall down in drops to fertilize the earth with their showers.
1. God works upon the heavens.
2. In them the clouds are collected.
3. The clouds drop their moisture upon the earth.
4. The earth exerts its vegetative influence upon the germs which it contains.
5. They expand, increase, and become matured, under the genial influences of the heavens, sun, air, water, from the clouds, &c.
6. Man receives and applies those bounties of Providence, and variously prepares them for the support and comfort of life.
Take all this in still fewer words:-
As Jezreel or the Israelites are here considered as perishing for want of food, all inanimate nature is represented as invoking God in their behalf.
1. The heavens have prayed that they be stored with clouds, that they may drop down fatness upon the earth.
2. The Lord answers the heavens, and clouds are formed.
3. The earth invokes the clouds, that they may drop down their fatness into its bosom.
4. The bottles of heaven are, consequently, unstopped for this purpose.
5. Then the corn, wine, and olive, implore the earth to put forth its vegetative energy.
6. The earth answers; and corn, wine, and oil are produced.
7. Jezreel cries for the necessaries of life, and the abundance of the above supplies all his wants.
All these are dependent on each other, as the links are which constitute a chain; and God has the government of the whole; and he manages all for the benefit of man. How wondrous is this providence! How gracious is this GOD! Here is a series of prosopopoeias together. Corn, wine, oil, the earth, the clouds and their contents, the heavens, sun, moon, &c., are all represented as intelligent beings, speaking to and influencing each other. GOD is at one end of the chain, and MAN at the other; and by means of the intermediate links the latter is kept in a state of continued dependence upon the former for life, breath, and all things.
Verse 23. "I wili sow her" - Alluding to the import of the name Jezreel, the seed of God. Then shall it appear that God hus shown mercy to them that had not obtained mercy. Then the covenant of God will be renewed; for he will call them his people who were not his people; and they shall call Jehovah their God, who before had him not for the object of their worship.
It does not appear that these promises have had their fulfillment among the Jews. They must either be understood of the blessings experienced by the Gentiles on their conversion to God by the preaching Of the Gospel, or are yet to be fulfilled to the Jews on their embracing the Gospel, and being brought back to their own land.
The sentences in the latter part of this verse are very abrupt, but exceedingly expressive; leaving out those words supplied by the translators, and which unnerve the passage, it stands thus: I will say to NOT MY PEOPLE, THOU MY PEOPLE; and they shall say, MY GOD.