Skip to main content

Full text of "A critical and exegetical commentary on Haggai, Zechariah, Malachi and Jonah"

See other formats

; v. 





International Critical C0mnuntarg 

0n tin M jSrrituns 0f tlt (0Ifr arctr 



Professor of Theological Encyclopedia, and Symbolics 
Union Theological Seminary, New York 


Regius Professor of Hebrew, Oxford 


Late Master of University College, Durham 

The International 

Critical Commentary 

On the Holy Scriptures of the Old and 
New Testaments 


THERE are now before the public many Commentaries, 
written by British and American divines, of a popular 
or homiletical character. The Cambridge Bible for 
Schools, the Handbooks for Bible Classes and Private Students , 
The Speaker s Commentary, The Popular Commentary (Schaff), 
The Expositor s Bible, and other similar series, have their 
special place and importance. But they do not enter into the 
field of Critical Biblical scholarship occupied by such series of 
Commentaries as the Kurzgefasstes exegetisches Handbuch zum 
A. T. ; De Wette s Kurzgefasstes exegetisches Handbuch zum 
N. T. ; Meyer s Kritisch-exegetischer Kommentar ; Keil and 
Delitzsch s Biblischer Commentar uber das A. T. ; Lange s 
Theologisch-homiletisches Bibelwerk ; Nowack s Handkommentar 
zum A. T. ; Holtzmann s Handkommentar zum N. T. Several 
of these have been translated, edited, and in some cases enlarged 
and adapted, for the English-speaking public ; others are in 
process of translation. But no corresponding series by British 
or American divines has hitherto been produced. The way has 
been prepared by special Commentaries by Cheyne, Ellicott, 
Kalisch, Lightfoot, Perowne, Westcott, and others; and the 
time has come, in the judgment of the projectors of this enter 
prise, when it is practicable to combine British and American 
scholars in the production of a critical, comprehensive 
Commentary that will be abreast of modern biblical scholarship, 
and in a measure lead its van. 


Messrs. Charles Scribner s Sons of New York, and Messrs. 
T. & T. Clark of Edinburgh, propose to publish such a series 
of Commentaries on the Old and New Testaments, under the 
editorship of Prof. C. A. BRIGGS, D.D., D.Litt., in America, and 
of Prof. S. R. DRIVER, D.D., D.Litt., for the Old Testament, and 
the Rev. ALFRED PLUMMER, D.D., for the New Testament, in 
Great Britain. 

The Commentaries will be international and inter-confessional, 
and will be free from polemical and ecclesiastical bias. They 
will be based upon a thorough critical study of the original texts 
of the Bible, and upon critical methods of interpretation. They 
are designed chiefly for students and clergymen, and will be 
written in a compact style. Each book will be preceded by an 
Introduction, stating the results of criticism upon it, and discuss 
ing impartially the questions still remaining open. The details 
of criticism will appear in their proper place in the body of the 
Commentary. Each section of the Text will be introduced 
with a paraphrase, or summary of contents. Technical details 
of textual and philological criticism will, as a rule, be kept 
distinct from matter of a more general character ; and in the 
Old Testament the exegetical notes will be arranged, as far as 
possible, so as to be serviceable to students not acquainted with 
Hebrew. The History of Interpretation of the Books will be 
dealt with, when necessary, in the Introductions, with critical 
notices of the most important literature of the subject. Historical 
and Archaeological questions, as well as questions of Biblical 
Theology, are included in the plan of the Commentaries, but 
not Practical or Homiletical Exegesis. The Volumes will con 
stitute a uniform series. 

The International Critical Commentary 


GENESIS. The Rev. JOHN SKINNER, D.D., Principal and Professor of 
Old Testament Language and Literature, College of Presbyterian Church 
of England, Cambridge, England. [Now Ready. 

EXODUS. The Rev. A. R. S. KENNEDY, D.D., Professor cf Hebrew, 
University of Edinburgh. 

LEVITICUS. J. F. STENNING, M.A., Fellow of Wadham College, Oxford. 

NUMBERS. The Rev. G. BUCHANAN GRAY, D.D., Professor of Hebrew, 

Mansfield College, Oxford. [Now Ready. 

DEUTERONOMY. The Rev. S. R. DRIVER, D.D., D.Litt., Regius Pro 
fessor of Hebrew, Oxford. [Now Ready. 

JOSHUA. The Rev. GEORGE ADAM SMITH, D.D., LL.D., Principal of the 
University of Aberdeen. 

JUDGES. The Rev. GEORGE MOORE, D.D., LL.D., Professor of Theol 
ogy, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. [Now Ready. 

SAMUEL. The Rev. H. P. SMITH, D.D., Professor of Old Testament 
Literature and History of Religion, Meadville, Pa. [Now Ready. 

KINGS. The Rev. FRANCIS BROWN, D.D., D.Litt., LL.D., President 
and Professor of Hebrew and Cognate Languages, Union Theological 
Seminary, New York City. 

CHRONICLES. The Rev. EDWARD L. CURTIS, D.D., Professor of 
Hebrew, Yale University, New Haven, Conn. [Now Ready. 

fessor of Old Testament Literature, General Theological Seminary, New 
York City. 

PSALMS. The Rev. CHAS. A. BRIGGS, D.D., D.Litt., Gradua e Iro- 
fessor of Theological Encyclopaedia and Symbolics, Union Theological 
Seminary, New York. [2 vols. Now Ready 

PROVERBS. The Rev. C. H. TOY, D.D., LL.D., Prof essor of Hebrew, 
Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass. \Now Ready* 

JOB. The Rev. S. R. DRIVER, D.D., D.Litt., Regius Professor of He- 
brew. Oxford. 


fessor of Hebrew, Mansfield College, Oxford. [Now Ready. 

Chaps. LX-LXVI. The Rev. A. S. PEAKE, M.A., D.D., Dean of the Theo 
logical Faculty of the Victoria University and Professor of Biblical Exegesis 
in the University of Manchester, England. 

JEREMIAH. The Rev. A. F. KIRKPATRICK, D.D., Dean of Ely, sometime 
Regius Professor of Hebrew, Cambridge, England. 

EZEKIEL. The Rev. G. A. COOKE, M.A., Oriel Professor of the Interpre 
tation of Holy Scripture, University of Oxford, and the Rev. CHARLES F. 
BURNEY, D.Litt., Fellow and Lecturer in Hebrew, St. John s College, 

DANIEL. The Rev. JOHN P. PETERS, Ph.D., D.D., sometime Professor 
of Hebrew, P. E. Divinity School, Philadelphia, now Rector of St. Michael s 
Church, New York City. 

AMOS AND HOSEA. W. R. HARPER, Ph.D., LL.D., sometime President 
of the University of Chicago, Illinois. [Now Ready. 

Prof. JOHN P. SMITH, University of Chicago; W. HAYES WARD, D.D., LL.D., 
Editor of The Independent, New York; Prof. JULIUS A. BEWER, Union 
Theological Seminary, New York. [Now Ready. 

SMITH and Prof. J. A. BEWER. [Now Ready. 

ESTHER. The Rev. L. B. PATON, Ph.D., Professor of Hebrew, Hart- 
ford Theological Seminary. [Now Ready. 

ECCLESIASTES. Prof. GEORGE A. BARTON, Ph.D., Professor of Bibli 
cal Literature, Bryn Mawr College, Pa. \_A r ow Ready. 

BRIGGS, D.D., D.Litt., Graduate Professor of Theological Encyclopaedia 
and Symbolics, Union Theological Seminary, New York. 


ST. MATTHEW. The Rev. WILLOUGHBY C. ALLEN, M.A., Fellow and 
Lecturer in Theology and Hebrew, Exeter College, Oxford. \N~ow Ready. 

ST. MARK. Rev. E. P. GOULD, D.D., sometime Professor of New Testa 
ment Literature, P. E. Divinity School, Philadelphia. [Now Ready. 

ST. LUKE. The Rev. ALFRED PLUMMER, D.D., sometime Master of 
University College, Durham. [Nt/w Ready. 


ST. JOHN. The Right Rev. JOHN HENRY BERNARD, D.D., Bishop of 
Ossory, Ireland. 

LL.D., Lady Margaret Professor of Divinity, Oxford, and the Rev. WIL- 
LOUGHBY C. ALLEN, M.A., Fellow and Lecturer in Divinity and Hebrew, 
Exeter College, Oxford. 

ACTS. The Rev. C. H. TURNER, D.D., Fellow of Magdalen College, 
Oxford, and the Rev. H. N. BATE, M.A., Examining Chaplain to the 
Bishop of London. 

ROMANS. The Rev. WILLIAM SANDAY, D.D., LL.D., Lady Margaret 
Professor of Divinity and Canon of Christ Church, Oxford, and the Rev. 
A. C. HEADLAM, M.A., D.D., Principal of King s College, London. 

[Now Ready. 

Lord Bishop of Exeter, and Rev. ALFRED PLUMMER, D.D., late Master of 
University College, Durham. [Now Ready. 

II. CORINTHIANS. The Rev. DAWSON WALKER, D.D., Theological Tutor 
in the University of Durham. 

GALATIANS. The Rev. ERNEST D. BURTON, D.D., Professor of New 
Testament Literature, University of Chicago. 

D.Litt., sometime Professor of Biblical Greek, Trinity College, Dublin, 
now Librarian of the same. [Now Ready. 

D.D., Professor of Biblical Literature, Union Theological Seminary, New 
York City. [Now Ready. 

THESSALONIANS. The Rev. JAMES E. FRAME, M.A., Professor of 
Biblical Theology, Union Theological Seminary, New York City. 

[In Press. 

of Keble College and Professor of Exegesis, Oxford. 

HEBREWS. The Rev. JAMES MOFFATT, D.D., Minister United Fret 
Church, Broughty Ferry, Scotland. 

ST. JAMES. The Rev. JAMES H. ROPES, D.D., Bussey Professor of New 
Testament Criticism in Harvard University. 

PETER AND JUDE. The Rev. CHARLES BIGG, D.D., sometime Regius 
Professor of Ecclesiastical History and Canon of Christ Church, Oxford. 

[Now Ready. 

and Divinity Lecturer in King s College, Cambridge. [J n 

REVELATION. The Rev. ROBERT H. CHARLES, M.A., D.D., sometime 
Professor of Biblical Greek in the University of Dublin. 













COPYRIGHT, igi 2 , BY 

Published June, 1913 


THIS volume completes the series of commentaries on 
the Minor Prophets originally undertaken by the late 
William R. Harper. The order of arrangement differs 
from the traditional one only in the case of Jonah, which is 
placed at the end of the series, not only because it was composed 
at a much later date than the traditional order suggests, but 
also because it is of a different character from the other prophets. 
This volume, like the previous one, is composed of three little 
volumes bound in one, because it seemed best on the whole to 
publish the work of the three authors under separate sub-titles 
in this way. 









i. CYRUS 3-14 

2. CAMBYSES 14-17 















3. THE TEXT OF CHAPTERS 1-8 84-97 







(1) THE HOLLOW OF THE MYRTLES . . . 115-130 



(4) AN APPEAL TO THE EXILES .... 140-147 




b. THE ANOINTED or YAHWEH 147-168 

(1) THE ACCUSED HIGH PRIEST . . . . 147-161 



(1) THE FLYING ROLL 168-171 

(2) THE WOMAN IN THE EPHAII . . . . 171-177 

(3) THE FOUR CHARIOTS 177-182 


(1) A SYMBOLIC CROWN 183-190 

(2) ZERUBBABEL AND THE TEMPLE . . . 190-194 
3. A NEW ERA 194-217 



(1) THE TEACHING OF THE PAST .... 199-205 

(2) THE PROMISE OF THE FUTURE . . . 206-209 






2. THE TEXT OF CHAPTERS 9-14 220-231 




a. THE NEW KINGDOM 260-277 



d. THE Two SHEPHERDS 302-320 




INDEX 359-362 






3. ITS STYLE 4-5 

2. THE TIMES 5-9 

3. THE PROPHET 9-11 






i. THE SUPERSCRIPTION ........... 18-19 

2. PROOF OF YAHWEH S LOVE ......... 19-24 






INDEX .................... 87-88 


INTRODUCTION TO JONAH ........... 3-27 




4. THE DATE OF THE BOOK ......... 11-13 

5. THE UNITY OF THE BOOK ......... 13-21 

6. THE PSALM IN CHAPTER 2 ......... 21-24 

7. THE TEXT OF THE BOOK .......... 25 

8. MODERN LITERATURE ........... 25-27 

COMMENTARY ON JONAH ........... 28-65 


THE STORM ON THE SEA ............ 32-34 


THE STILLING OF THE STORM .......... 38-40 

JONAH S DELIVERANCE ............. 41-43 

A PRAYER OF THANKSGIVING .......... 43-49 


IN NINEVEH .............. 50-53 


JONAH S DISPLEASURE ..... ....... 56-59 

YAHWEH S REBUKE OF JONAH . . ....... 59-62 



OF JONAH ..,..., .......... 64-65 







de R. 

Arabic Version. 
Antwerp Polyglot. 
Version of Aquila. 
Armenian Version. 
American Revised 

Authorized Version. 





Baer and Delitzsch s He 
brew text. 

Brescia ed. of the Hebrew 
Bible (1492-94). 

Bohairic ed. of the Coptic 

Complutensian Polyglot. 

de Rossi, Variae Lectiones 
Veteris Testamenti, etc., 
Vol. III. (1786), and 
Scholia Critica in Ve 
teris Testamenti libros 

Ethiopic Version. 
English Version. 

Received Greek Version. 
Sinaitic codex. 
Alexandrian codex. 
Aldine edition. 
Vatican codex. 
Complutensian edition. 
Cursive mss. 
Codex Cryptoferratensis. 


Hexapla mss. 

Heidelberg Papyrus Co 
dex, containing the text 
of Zc. 4-Mal. 4 s ; edited 
and published, with fac 
similes, by A. Deiss- 
mann, in Septuaginta- 
Papyri und andere alt- 
Christliche Texte der 
Heidelberger Papyrus- 
Sammlung (Heidelberg, 



HP. = 


Jerome s translation from 

the Greek. 
Lucianic mss. 
Codex Marchalianus. 
Codex Taurinensis. 
Ginsburg, D.; Biblia He- 

braica, 1894. 

Hebrew consonant text; 

Hebrew of Polyglots. 
Texts of Holmes and Par 


Yahwistic (Judaic) por 
tions of the Hexateuch. 

Kennicott, Benj.; Vetus 
Testamentum Hebrai- 
cum, cum variis lectio- 
nibus (1776-80). 

Kittel, R.; Biblia He* 
braica (1905-6). 



Kt. = 

K c thib, the Hebrew text RV. 

= Revised Version. 

as written. 


= Revised Version, margin- 


Old Latin Version. 

= Syriac Peshitto Version. 

Lond. = 

London Polyglot (1653- 


= Ambrosian codex. 



= Syro-hexaplar readings. 

Lu. - 

Luther s Version. 

& L 

= Lee s edition. 


= Urumian codex. 


Massoretic pointed text. 


= Sonrino eds. of the He 

Mas. = 


brew Bible. 

NT. - 

New Testament. 


Version of Symmachus. 

OT. = 

Old Testament. 


= Targum. 

Par. = 

Paris Polyglot (1629-45). 


= Version of Theodotion. 

Pes. = 

Pesaro eds. of the Hebrew 



= Vulgate Version. 


= Venice eds. of the Hebrew 

Qr. = 

Q e re, the Hebrew text as 




= Versions, ancient. 




= Amos. 


= Ezra. 


= The Wisdom of Jesus 


= Galatians. 

Ben Sira, or Eccle- 


= Genesis. 



= Habakkuk. 

i, 2 Ch. 

= i, 2 Chronicles. 


= Hebrews. 


= Idem, taken together. 
= Colossians. 



= Haggai. 
= Hosea. 

i, 2 Cor. 

= i, 2 Corinthians. 


= Canticles = The Song 


= Isaiah. 

of Songs. 


= Job. 


= Daniel. 


= Jeremiah. 


= Deuteronomy. 


= John. 


= Ecclesiastes. 


= Joel. 


= Ecclesiasticus. 


= Jonah. 


= Ephesians. 


= Joshua. 

i, 2 Esd. 

= i, 2 Esdras. 


= Judges. 


= Esther. 


= Judith. 


= Exodus. 

1,2 K. 

= i, 2 Kings. 




= Idem, taken together. 


Xll 1 


= Lamentations. 




- Luke. 

Rom. = 



= Leviticus. 



i, 2 Mac. 

= i, 2 Maccabees. 

I, 2 S. 

i, 2 Samuel. 


= Malachi. 


Idem, taken together. 


= Micah. 


The books of Samuel 


= Mark. 

and Kings taken to 


= Matthew. 




= Nahum. 
= Nehemiah. 
= Numbers. 

i, 2 Thes. = 
i, 2 Tim. = 

i, 2 Thessalonians. 
i, 2 Timothy. 




= Obadiah. 


Wisdom of Solomon. 


= Peter. 


= Philippians. 




= Proverbs. 




= Psalms. 



= Abarbanel (fiSoS). 


= Baer, S. ; Liber duo 


= AbenEzra(fn67); 

decim Propheta- 


rum (1878). 


= American Journal 


= Baudissin, W. W.; 

of Theology. 

Studien zur se- 

a Lap. 

= a" Lapide, Corneli 

mitischen Relig- 

us; Commentari- 


us in duodecim 


Prophetas Mino- 


= Baumgarten, M. ; 

res (1628). 

Die Nachtge- 


= Andre, Tony; Le 

sichte Sacharias 

Prophete Aggee 




= Brown, Driver 


= Arrianus, Fl.; The 

and Briggs; A 


Anabasis of Al 
exander , ed . 
= A rchiv fur Re 


Hebrew and 
Rnglish Lexicon 
of the Old Testa 
ment (1906). 
= Bechhaus, J. H.; 

ligions wissen- 

Ueber die Inte- 


gritat der proph- 


= Asada, Eiji; The 

etischen Biicher 

Hebrew Text of 

des Alien Bundes 

Zechariah (1899). 











W. H. Bennett; 
The Religion of 
the Post-Exilic 
Prophets (1907). 

Benzinger, I.; He- 
brdische Archd- 
ologie (1894; 2d 
ed., 1907). 

Bertholdt, L.; Ein- 
leitung in . . . das 
Alte und Neue 

Blayney, Benj.; A 
new translation 
of the Prophecies 
of Zee hariah 

Bleek, Fried.; Ein- 
leitung in das 
Alte Testament, 
ed. Wellhausen, 
ed. 5 (1886). 
Das Zeitalter von 
Sacharja Cap. 
9-14; SK. (1852, 

= Bottcher, Fried.; 
Neue Aehrenlese 
zum Alien Tes 
tament (1863- 

Idem, Ausfnhrliches 
Lehrbuch der he- 
braische n 
Sprache (1867- 

Bohme, W.; Zu 
Maleachi und 
Haggai, ZAW. 

Bohmer, Jul.; Hag- 
gal und Sacha- 





Bu. Gcsch - 




C. and HB. 

rja , Neue kirch- 
liche Zeitschrift 

Bredenkamp, C. J. ; 
Der Prophet 
Sacharja (1879). 

Brugsch, Hein.; A 
History of Egypt 
under the Pha 
raohs (1881). 

Bruston, Ch.; His- 
toire Critique de 
la Literature des 
Hebreux (1881). 

Budde, Karl; Zum 
Text der drei 
letzten kleinen 

Idem, Die biblische 
Ur geschichte 

Idem, Geschichte 
der althebrd- 
ischen Litter at ur 

Buhl, Frants; K an 
on u nd Text des 
Alt en Testaments 

Burger, J. D. F.; 
Le Prophet e 
Zacharie (1841). 

Calvin, John; Com 
mentaries on the 
Twelve M i nor 
Prophets, ed. 
Owen (1846). 

Carpenter and 
Harford - Bat- 
tersby; The 



C. and HB. 







= Carpzov, J. C.; 

Critica Sacra 

Veteris Testa- 

menti (1728). 
= Cheyne, T. K.; 

Critica Biblica, 

ii (1903). 
= Chrysostom. 
= Cocceius, J.; T6 







= Conder, C. R.; 
Tent Life in Pal 
estine (1878). 

= Cornill, C. H. ; Ein- 
leitung in die 
Biicher des Alien 
Testaments, ed. 
6 (1908). 

= Corrodi, H.; Ver- 
such einer Be- 
leuchtung der 
Geschichte des 
jild. u. christl. 
Kanons (1792). 

= Cyril of Alexan 
dria (f444); ed - 
Migne, iv. . 

= Davidson, A. B.; 

The Theology of 

the Old Testa 

ment (1904). 
= Idem, Heb. Gram 

= D a t h e, J. A.; 

ProphetcB Mino 

rs (1773). 
= Davidson, Sam l; 

A n Introduction 

to the Old Testa 
ment (1862-3). 

DB. A Dictionary of the 

Bible (1898- 

de D. = de Dieu, Lud.; 

Critica Sacra 

de W. = de Wette, W. M. 

L. ; Einleitung in 
das AT., e d . 
Schrader (1869). 

DHM. = D. H. Miiller; Dis- 

cours de Mala- 
chie sur le rite 
des sacrifices, 
Revue biblique 
internationale, V 
(1896), 535-539 
( = Strophenbau 
und Res pension 
[1898], pp. 40- 

Di. = D i 1 1 m a n n, A.; 

Handbuch der 
lichen Theologie 
Diodorus = Diodorus Siculus; 


Dl. = Delitzsch, Fried.; 

A ssyrisches 
buch (1896). 

Dl.Par. = Idem, Wo lag das 

Paradies? (1881). 

Dr. = S. R. Driver, The 

Minor Prophets 
(The Century 
Bible; 1906). 

Dr. Int - = Idem, Introduction 

to the Literature 
of the Old Testa 
ment, Revised 
ed. (1910). 






Du. Pro - 

) u> Theol. 




Idem, The Use of 
the Tenses in 
Hebrew, e d . 6 

Drake, W.; Haggai 
and Zechariah 
(The Speaker s 
Co m mentary} 

Drusius, Job.; 
Commentarius in 
Prophetas Mino- 
res XII. (1627). 

Duhra, Bernh.; 
Das Buck Jere- 
mia (Kurzer 
Hand - Commen- 
tar) (1901). 

Idem, Die zivolf 
Propheten in den 
Versmassen der 
Urschrift uber- 
setzt (1910); or 
Anmerkungen zu 
den zwolf Proph- 
eten, ZAW., 
XXXI (1911). 

Idem, Die Theolo- 
gie der Prophe 
ten (1875). 

Duncker, Max; 
History of An 
tiquity, from the 
German (1877- 

Encyclopedia Bib- 
lie a (1899-1903). 

Eckardt, R.; Der 
br a uc h von 
Z ac h . , 9-14; 



Eichhorn = 

Eichhorn, J. G.; 
Einleitung in das 





A He Testament, 
ed. 4 (1824). 

Ephraem S y r u s 
(t373); Expla- 
natio in Zacha- 

Ewald, Hein.; Die 
Propheten d e s 
Alt en Bundes 

Idem, A usfuhr- 
liches Lehrbuch 
der heb. Sprache 

Flugge, B. G.; Die 

welche bey den 
Schr ift e n des 
Propheten Zach- 
arias beygebogen 
sind (1784). 

Forberg, Ed.; Com 
mentarius in 
Zacharice vati- 
ciniorum partem 

Furst, Jul.; Der 
Kanon des A It en 

= Smith, G. A.; The 
Book of the 
Twelve Proph 
ets, I (1896); II 

GASm. HG = Idem, The Histori 
cal Geography of 
the Holy Land 

Geiger = Geiger, A.; Ur 

schrift und Ue- 



Geiger Continued. 

bersetzungen der 
Bibel (1857). 

Ges. = Gesenius,W.;Cow- 

mentar uber den 
Jesaia (1821). 

Ges.^ = Gesenius Hebrew 

Grammar, ed. 
K a u t z s c h, 
(I909 28 ); trans. 
Collins & Cow- 
ley (iQio 2 ). 

Gie. = Giesebrecht, Fried.; 

Das Buck Jere- 
mia (Handkom- 
mentar) (1894). 

Gins. Int - = Ginsburg, D.; In 

troduction to . . . 
Hebrew Bible 

Gratz = Gratz, H.; Emen- 

dationes, Fasc. 2 


Gray = Gray, G. B.; He 

brew Proper 
Names (1896). 

Grot. = Grotius,Hugo;^4n- 

notata ad Veins 


Griitzmacher = Griitzmacher, G. 
V ntersuchun 
gen uber den 
Ursprung der in 
Zach. 9-14 vor 
liegenden Pro 
phetien (1892). 

Gunkel = Gunkel, tt.\Scho 

fung und Chao 


= Guthe, H.; Th 
Books of Ezr 
and Nehemia 
(SBOT.) (1901 

H. AH 


lammond = 








Harper, W. R.; 
Amos and Hosea 
(ICC.) (1905)- 
J. Halevy; Le 
prophete Mala- 
chie, Revue se- 
mitique, XVII 
(1909), i-44- 
Hammond, H.; 
Paraphrase and 
upon all the 
Books of the New 


= Hanauer, J. E.; 
Tales Told in 
Palestine (1904). 

= Henderson, E. The 
Book of the 
Twelve Minor 
Prophets (1868). 

= Hengstenberg, E. 
W.; Die Authen- 
tie des Daniel 
und die integri- 
tdt des Sacharja 

= Herodotus ; History, 
ed. Rawlinson 
(3) (i87S). 

= Hitzig, Ferd.; Die 
z w o If kleinen 
Propheten, ed. 
Steiner (1881). 

= Houbigant, C. F.; 
Notae criticae in 
universos Veteris 
Testamenti libros 

=- Wickes; Hebrew 
Poetical Accents. 




= Smith, H. P.; Old 

Testament His 

tory (1903). 


= International Crit 

ical Commentary. 



= O. Isopescul, Der 

Prophet Mala- 

chias (1908). 


= Jastrow, M.; Th 


Religion of Baby 

Ionia and Assy 

ria (1898). 

T7- 1 J 


= Journal of Biblica 




= Jerome (f42o) 



= Josephus, Fl.; An 


tiquities of the 


JOS. A P- 

= 1 d e m , Contra 



= Journal of Theolog 


ical Studies. 


= Jewish Quarterly 




= Schrader, E.; Die 


und das Alte 

Testament, ed. 2 


(1883); ed. 3 

(Zimmern and 

W i n c k 1 e r ) 


Ko. Einl - 


= Kautzsch, E.; Die 

heilige Schrift 

des alien Testa 

ments , e d . 3 




= K eilin s c hrift- 

liche Bibliothek 




= Keil, C. F.; Bib- 

lischer Com men- 

tar iib er die 
zw o If kleinen 

= C. F. Kent; Ser 
mons, Epistles 
and Apocalypses 
of Israel s Proph 
ets (1910). 

= K i m c h i, David 
(fi23o); Com 

= Kidder, Rich. ; 
Demonstration of 
the Messiah 

= P. Kleinert; Die 
Profeten Israels 
in s o zi aler 
B e z i e h u n g 

= Kliefoth, Th.; Der 
Prophet Sacha- 
rjah (1862). 

= Klostermann, Aug.; 
Geschichte des 
V olke s Israel 

= Knobel, A.; Der 
der Hebraer 

leitung in das 
Alte Testament 

: Idem, Syntax der 
hebr dische n 
Sprache (1897). 
Kohler, Aug.; Die 
Propheten (1860- 



Kosters = Kosters, W. H.; 

Die Wiederher- 
stellung Israels, 
from the Dutch 


Koster = Koster, F. B.; 

Meletemata . . . 
in Z a c h a r i a 
Prophetce partem 
posterior e m 
Cap. ix-xiv 

Kraetzschmar = Kraetzschmar, R.; 
Das Buck Eze- 
chiel (Handkom- 
mentar) (1900). 

Kue. = Kuenen, A.; His- 

torisch - kritisch 
Onderzoek naar 
het Ontstaan en 
de Verzamling 
van de Boeken 
des Ouden Ver- 
b ond s, ed. 2 

Kui. =- Kuiper, A. K.; 

Zacharia, ix-xiv 

Lambert = L a m b e r t, M. ; 

Notes Exege- 
tiques; REJ., 
tome 43, pp. 
a68 /. 

Lange = Lange, J. P.; Die 

Propheten Hag- 
gai, Sacharja, 
und Maleachi 

Ley = Ley, J.; Zu Sacha- 

rja 6 19-15. 

Lowe = Lowe, W. H.; The 

Hebrew Student s 
Commentary on 




= Lowth, Wm. ; Com 

mentary upon the 

Prophecy of 

Daniel and the 

XII. Minor 

Prophets (con 

tinuation of Pat 

rick s Commen- 

t a r y, ed. 6) 



= Mahaffy, J. P. ; 

Egypt under the 



A History of Egypt 

iv (1899). See 



= Marck, Joh.; Com- 

mentarius in 

duodecim Proph- 

etas M inores 



= Marti, Karl; Dode- 

kapr o phet on 


Der Prophet Sach- 

arja der Zeitge- 

nosse Zerubbabels 


Zwei Studien zu 

Sacharja; SK. 


Marti Kau 

= Idem, Der Prophet 

Maleachi, in 

Kautzsch s 

Heilige Schrift 

(1910), pp. 97- 



= Matthes, J. C.; 

Hag. 1:9; 2:15- 

19; ZAW. (1903). 







Maurer, F. J. V. 
D.; Commentari- 
us . . . in Vetus 
Testamentum, ii 

Mede, Joseph; Dis- 
sertationum ec- 
triga. Quibus 
accedunt fr a g- 
ment a sacra 

Meyer, Ed. ; Die 
Rntstehung des 
J udent hums 

Geschichte des Al- 
terthums, iii 

Michaelis,J. D., on 
Fliigge s Weis- 
sagungen, etc.; 
Neue orienta- 
lische und exege- 
tische Bibliothek 

Mitchell, H. G.; 
Some Final Con 
structions in Bib- 
li c a I Hebrew 

Montet, E.; Etude 
critique sur la 
date assignable 
aux six dernier 
chapitres de 
Zacharie (1882). 

Moore, T. V. ; Hag- 
gai, Zechariah, 
and Malachi 

Neumann = Neumann, W.; Die 
We i ssag u n % e n 









Now. Arch 

Now. K 




des Sacharja 

Newcome, Wm.; 
The Twelve 
Minor Prophets, 
ed. 2 (1809). 

Nickel, Joh.; Die 
Wi ederherstel- 
lung des jiid. 
wesens nach dem 
Exil (1899). 

sdtze zur per- 
s i s c h e n G e- 
schichte (1887). 

Norzi, J. S.; Se- 
pher arba ah we- 
esrim (Hebrew 
Bible) (1742). 

Nowack, W.; Die 
kleinen Prophe- 
ten (Handkom- 
mentar), 2d ed. 

Idem, Lehrbuch der 
hebrdischen A r- 
chdologie (1894). 

Idem, Duodecim 
Prophetae, in 
Kittel s Biblia 
Hebraica (1906). 

Nordheimer, I.; A 
Critical Gram 
mar of the He 
brew Language 

Oesterley, W. O. 
E. ; Old Latin 
Texts of the 
Minor Prophets; 
JTS., V. 

Olshausen, J.; 
Lehrbuch der he- 



Ok Continued. 

Sprache (1861). 

Oort = Oort, H.; Textus 

Hebraici Emen- 
dationes (1900). 

Or. = vonOrelli, C.; Die 

zwolf kleinen 
(Kurzg efa ss- 
ter Kommentar}, 
3 d ed. (1908); 
(Eng., 1893). 









= Priestly writer of 

= Palestine Explora 
tion Fund. 

= Peiser, F. E.; Zu 
Zacharia; Orien 
talist isc he Liter a- 

= Pemble, Wm.; A 
Short and Sweet 
Exposition upon 
the First 9 Chap 
ters of Zacharie 

= Perowne, J. J. S.;~ 
H a g g a i and 


= Peters, J. P.; Nip 
pur (1897). 

= Petrie, W. M. F.; 
A History of 
Egypt, 111(1905). 

= Piepenbring, C h. ; 
Theology of the 
Old Testament, 
from the French 

= Pinches, T. G.; 
The Old Testa- 

ment in the Light 

of the Historical 

Records of As 

syria and Baby 

lonia (1902). 


== Polybius; Histo 

ries, ed. Shuck- 

burgh (1889). 


= Prasek, J. V.; Ge- 

schichte der Me- 

der und Perser 


PRE. 3 

= Protest antische 


padie, 3d ed. 


= Pressel, W.; Com- 

mentar zu den 

Schrif ten der Pro 

pheten Hag gat, 

Sacharja, und 

Maleachi (1870). 


= Prince, J. D.; A 

Critical Com 

mentary on the 

Book of Daniel 



= Pusey, E. B.; The 

Minor Prophets 



= Rashi (Rab. Shelo- 

mohben Yishak, 




= Revue Biblique. 


= Reinke, L. ; Der 

Prophet Malea 

chi (1856). 

Idem, Der Prophet 

Haggai (1868). 


= Revue des Etudes 



= Reuss, Ed.; Das 

Alte Testament 












= deRibera, F.; Com 
ment arius in li- 

auctore propheta 


\ O / 

SBOT. = Sacred Books of the 

tarum (1581). 

Old Testament, 

= Riessler, P., Die 
kleinen Propheten 

Paul Haupt, Ed 

= Robinson, G. L 
The Prophetic 
of Zecharia 

Schegg .p. Schegg; Die 
Kleinen Proph 
eten, II (1854). 
Seb. = Sebok, Mark; Die 

= Rodkinson, M. L 

syrische Ueber- 

The Babylonia 

setzung der zwdlf 

Talmud in Eng 

kleinen Prophe 

lish (1896-1903) 
= Rogers, R. W.; A 

ten (1887). 
- Seeker, Thos.; 

History of Bab 


ylonia and As 

notes cited by 

syria (1900). 
= Rosenmiiller, E. F 

Sellin = Sellin, Ernest; Se- 

C. ; Scholia in 

rubbabel (1898). 

Prophetas Mi 

Studien zur Ent- 

nor es (1836). 

s t e hun g s g e- 

= Rothstein, J. W.; 

schichte der jud. 

Die Genealogie 

Gemeinde nach 

des Konigs Joja- 

dem bob. Exit 

chin und seiner 


N achkommen 

Siev. = Sievers, Ed.; Me- 


trische Studien, I 

= Records of the Past, 


ed. 2 (1889). 


= Rubinkam, N. I.; 

Miscellen, 4, 

The Second Part 

Zu Maleachi 

of the Book of 

( r 95/0- 


SK- = Studien und Kriti- 



S m - = Smend, R.; Lehr- 

Sanctius (Sanchez), 

buch der alties- 

C.; Commentari- 


us in Prophetas 

Reli gi ons g e- 

Minor es (1621). 

schichte, 26 ed 

Sandrock, H. L.; 


Prioris et posie- 

poer = Spoer, Hans; Some 

rioris Zacharia 

new considera 

Partis vaticinia 

tions towards the 

ab uno eodemque 

dating of the 



Spoer Continued. 

Bk. of Malachi, 

SS. =C. Siegfried and B. 

Stade, Hebra- 
isches W drier - 
buck Zum Alien 
Te s tarn e n t e 


Sta. = Stade, Bernh.; 

rja; ZAW. (1881, 

Sta. = Idem, Lehrbuch der 

h eb r di s c hen 
G r a m m atik 

Sta. GVI = Idem, Geschichte 

des Volkes Israel 

Sta.Theoi. = idem, Biblische 

Theologie des 
Alien Testa 
ments (1905). 

Staerk = Staerk, W.; Unter- 

suchungen uber 
die Composition 
und Abfassungs- 
zeit -von Zach. 
9-14 (1891). 

Stah. = Stahelin, J. J.; Ein- 

leitung in die 
kanonis chen 
Bucher des Alien 

Stei. = Steiner, H.; addi 

tions to Hitzig s 
Kleine Prophe- 

Stek. = J. Z. Schuurmans 

Stekhoven ; D e 
A lexandrijnsche 


Vertaling van 
het Dodekapro- 
pheton (1887). 
Stonard, John; A 
Commentary on 
the Vision of 



Talmud: Tal. B -, 
the Babylonian; 
TaU-, the Jeru 
salem Talmud. 
Theol. Stud. 
Theiner, J. A.; 
Die zwolf kleinen 

Theod. Mops. = Theodore of Mop- 
suestia (t4 2 9) \ 
Quae Supersunt 
Omnia, ed. Weg- 
nern (1834). 

Theodoret (f4S7); 
in duodecim Pro- 
phetas, ed. 1642. 

= C. C. Torrey; The 
Prophecy of Mal 
achi, JBL., 
XVII (1898), 
1-15; and art. 
Malachi in EB., 
Ill (1902). 

Toy, C. H.; The 
Book of the 
Prophet Ezekiel 
(SBOT.) (1899). 
Evil Spirits in the 
Bible, JBL., IX 

Tristram, H. B.; 
Natural History 







Tristram Continued. 

of the Bible 


van H. 


v. Ort. 





= v a n Hoon acker, 
A. ; Les douze 
petits prophetes 

Les chapltres ix- 
xiv d u li v r e 
Zecharie, RB. 

Vatke, \V.; Bib- 
lische Theologie 


= von Ortenberg, E. 
F. J.; Die Be- 
standtheile d e s 
Buches Sacharja 

Wellhausen, J.; 
Die klein e n 
Propheten, ed. 3 

= Idem, Israelitische 
und judische 

Weber, Ferd.; AU- 

Whiston, Wm. ; Es 
say toward re 
storing the true 
text of the Old 

Wickes, Wm.; The 






Hebrew Prose 
Accents (1888). 

Wiedemann, A.; 
Geschichte A e- 
g y p t e n s von 
Psammetik I. bis 
auf A lexander 
den G r o s s e n 

Wildeboer, G.; De 
des Ouden Ver- 
bonds (i&&6; 3d 
ed., 1903). 

Wilson, C. T.; 
Peasant Life in 
the Holy Land 

Winckler, Hugo; 
Maleachi, Altor- 
ientalische For- 
s c hun gen, II 


Wright, C. H. H.; 
Zechariah and 
his Prophecies 

W. Robertson 
Smith; Old 
Testament in the 
Jewish Church. 

Idem, The Proph 
ets of Israel. 

ZAW. , ZATW. = Zeitschrift fur die 

ZDPV. = Zeitschrift des 

deutschen Folds- 





= absolute. 


= defective. 


= abstract. 


= dele, strike out. 


= accusative. 


= dittography. 

ace. cog. 

= cognate ace. 


= dubious, doubtful. 

ace. pers. 

= ace. of person. 


= east, eastern. 

ace. rei. 

= ace. of thing. 

ed., edd. 

= edition, editions. 

ace. to 

= according to. 
= active. 


= for example. 

&ir. or H. X. 

= adjective. 
= adverb. 
= airal; \ey6fj.evov, word 

et al. 

= elsewhere. 
= especially. 
= et aliter, and else 
where, and others. 


or phr. used once. 
= alternative. 


= Ethiopic. 


= always. 


= except. 


= apodosis. 


= and following. 


= Arabic. 


= feminine. 


= Aramaic, Aramean. 


= figurative. 


= article. 


= toward the end. 


= Assyria, Assyrian. 

f. n. 

= foot-note. 


= frequentative. 


= Babylonian. 


= future. 

b. Aram. 

= biblical Aramaic. 


= biblical. 


= genitive. 
= gentilic. 


= causative. 


= Greek. 

ch., chs. 

= chapter, chapters. 


= haplography. 


= circa, about. 


= Hebrew. 

cod., codd. 

= codex, codices. 


= Hiphil of verb. 

col., coll. 

= cognate. 
= column, columns. 


= Hithpael of verb. 


= commentary, com 


= idem, the same. 


i. e. 

= id est, that is. 


= compare. 


== imperfect. 


= concrete. 


= imperative. 


= confer, compare. 


= indefinite. 


= conjunction. 


= infinitive. 


= consecutive. 


= inscription, inscrip 


= construct. 



= construction. 


= intransitive. 


= contrariwise. 


= Introduction 

crit. n. 

= critical note. 


= jussive. 

d. f. 

= daghesh forte. 

1., 11. 

= line, lines. 




= loco citato, in the 


place before cited. 



= literal, literally. 

rd., rds. 


= margin, marginal. 



= masculine. 



= metrical. 



= modern. 


= manuscripts. 



= mount(ain). 


mtr. cs, 

= metri causa = for 


the sake of the 



sf., sfs. 


= north, northern. 



= north-east. 



= north-west. 



= note. 



= New Hebrew. 



= Niphal of verb. 

S. V. 


= object. 



= often. 

om., oms. 

= omit, omits. 

text. n. 

p., pp. 

= page, pages. 



= parallelism. 



= particle. 

V., VV- 


= passive. 



= person. 



= perfect. 

v. i. 


= Piel of verb. 


= plural. 


= pluperfect. 


= Polel. 


= predicate. 



= pregnant. 



= preposition. 

V. S. 


= probable. 


= pronoun. 


= prophet, prophetic. 


= participle. 


?= Pual of verb. 


Qal of verb. 

quod -vide, which see. 

read, reads, 

south, southern. 




suffix, suffixes, 


followed by. 





sub voce. 

times (following a 

textual note, 

verse, verses. 

vide, see. 


vide infra, see below 
(usually t e x t u al 
note on same 

videlicet, namely, to 


vide supra, see above 
(usually general re 
nt a r k on same 

west, western. 











The career of Cyrus was watched with the intensest interest 
from the beginning by all the peoples of western Asia. The bold 
ness and success of his invasion of Media in 550 B.C., and the vig 
our with which he enforced his sovereignty over this great king 
dom, drove Croesus of Lydia and Nabonidus of Babylonia to 
an alliance with each other and with Ahmes of Egypt for their 
common protection. The degree of interest among the Baby 
lonians appears from a chronicle of the period in which there is 
an account, not only of the Median campaign, but of one, three 
years later, in another direction, as well as of that which in 539 
B.C. resulted in the occupation of Babylon and the submission of 
the empire of which it was the capital.* When the conqueror 
finally invaded Babylonia the inhabitants took different attitudes 
toward him. The king and his party, including the crown prince, 
Belshazzar, of course, did what they could to withstand him. 
The priests, on the other hand, whom Nabonidus had offended 
by neglecting the worship of Marduk and bringing the gods of 
other cities in numbers to the capital, favoured him. In fact, they 
betrayed their country into his hands and welcomed him as its 
deliverer.")" There was a similar division among the Jews set 
tled in Babylonia. Some of them, much as they may have heard 
of the magnanimity of the Persian king, dreaded his approach. 

* KB., m, 2, 128 ff.; Pinches, OT., 411. 

t KB., iii, 2, 124 ff., 132 ff.; Pinches, OT., 415 /. 



It is they, perhaps, to whom certain passages in the second part 
of the book of Isaiah were addressed, notably the following: 

9 . "Woe to him that striveth with his Maker, 

a potsherd among the potsherds of the ground! 
"Doth the clay say to the potter, What makest thou? 

or his work, Thou hast no hands? 
. "Thus saith Yahweh, 

the Holy One of Israel, even his Maker: 
"Of future things ask me, 

and concerning the work of my hands command me. 
l2 . "I myself made the earth, 
and man on it I created; 
"My hands stretched out heaven, 
and all its hosts I commanded. 
ls . "I myself aroused him in righteousness, 

and all his ways will I direct; 
"He shall build my city, 

and all my captives shall he release; 
"Not for hire, and not for reward, 
saith Yahweh of Hosts." * 

There was, however, another party. At any rate, the author of 
the lines just quoted was enthusiastic in his faith, not only that 
Cyrus would succeed, but that his success meant deliverance to 
the Jews in exile. He recognised in the Persian king an instru 
ment of Yahweh. Cf. Is. 4i 2 ff - 25 46". Indeed, and he must 
thereby have greatly scandalised many of his countrymen, he 
went so far as to identify Cyrus with the Ideal King for whom 
the Jews had long been praying and looking. Cf. Is. 44 28 45*. 
He was so confident of victory for this divinely chosen champion 
that he boldly foretold the fall of Babylon and exhorted the exiles 
to prepare for their departure. Cf. Is. 46 1 f - 47 1 ff - 48 20 f - 52". 
Finally, he predicted that Cyrus, having released them from cap 
tivity, would rebuild Jerusalem and restore the temple, its chief 
ornament. This last prophecy is so important that it deserves 
to be quoted entire. It runs as follows: 

24 . "Thus saith Yahweh, thy Redeemer, 

and he that formed thee from the womb: 

* Is. 45 9 a -. On the changes and omissions in the passage as here rendered, c). Cheyne, 


"I am Yahweh, that made all things, 
that stretched out heaven alone; 

when I spread out the earth who was with me? 

25. "That thwarteth the signs of the praters, 

and maketh diviners foolish; 
"That confuteth the wise, 

and turneth their knowledge into folly; 

26 . "That establisheth the word of his servants, 

and fulfilleth the counsel of his messengers; 
"That saith of Jerusalem, It shall be peopled 

(and of the cities of Judah, Let them be rebuilt), 
and its ruins will I restore; 
". "That saith to the deep, Be dry, 
and thy streams will I dry up; 
28 . "That saith of Cyrus, My shepherd, 
and all my pleasure shall he fulfil; 
"That saith to Jerusalem, Be built, 
and to the temple, Be founded." * 

Cyrus seems to have more than fulfilled the expectations of his 
Babylonian partisans. The chronicle to which reference has been 
made says, "He gave peace to the city; Cyrus proclaimed peace 
to all Babylonia. Gobryas his lieutenant he appointed governor 
of Babylon." It adds a most significant item, namely, "From 
Kislew onward to Adar the gods of Akkad, whom Nabonidus had 
brought down to Babylon, returned to their cities." f Cyrus, in 
an inscription of his own, refers to the same matter and claims 
further credit for restoring both the gods and the people of cer 
tain districts on the Tigris to their homes. He adds a prayer 
that these gods in return may daily remind Bel and Nebo to 
lengthen his days and bestow upon him their favour.} 

These interesting records must not be misunderstood. They 
do not mean that at this time the Persian conqueror abandoned 
the religion of his fathers and adopted that of the Babylonians; 
but that, being magnanimous by nature, he made it his policy 
to conciliate his subjects. If, however, such was his disposition, 

* Is. 44 24 ff . Duhm and Cheyne omit the next to the last line and transfer the last to v. x , 
but the omission of the fourth line of that verse makes any further pruning unnecessary. On 
the minor changes in the text, cf. Cheyne, SBOT. 

t KB., iii, 2, 134 /. 

t KB., iii, 2 , 126 /.; Pinches, OT., 422. 

On this point Noldeke has some remarks that are well worth quoting. He says: "If in 
these two inscriptions (the Chronicle and Cyrus s Cylinder) Cyrus appears as a pious worship 
per of the Babylonian gods, and indeed, according to the Cylinder, Merodach himself led him 


there is in this fact a warrant for supposing that, unless there were 
reasons for a different course, he favoured the return of the Jews 
to their country. He does not mention them among the bene 
ficiaries of his clemency, nor is there, among the known relics of 
his empire, any record concerning his actual treatment of them. 
The only direct testimony on the subject is found in the Hebrew 
Scriptures and works based on them.* The Chronicler, in a 
passage a part of which is preserved at the end of the second book 
of Chronicles and the whole at the beginning of the book of Ezra, 
recites that, in the first year after assuming the government of 
Babylonia, Cyrus issued a formal proclamation announcing that 
" Yahweh, the God of heaven," had given him "all the kingdoms 
of the earth" and commissioned him "to build him a house in 
Jerusalem"; summoning the Jews who were moved so to dof to 
return to their country and assist in the project; and commanding 
the neighbours of those who responded to the call to provide them 
with "silver, and gold, and cattle, together with a freewill offer 
ing for the house of God ... in Jerusalem." The author adds 
(vv. 5ff -) that these instructions were loyally fulfilled, and that a 
company of exiles under Sheshbazzar "were brought up," with 
"the vessels of the house of Yahweh," "from Babylon to Jerusa 
lem." The number of those who took advantage of this oppor 
tunity to return to Palestine is said to have been 42,360, besides 
their servants and a company of singers. Cf. Ezr. 2 64ff -. 

The release of the Jews, with permission to rebuild their temple, 
is so thoroughly in harmony with the policy of Cyrus that one is 
disposed to accept the Chronicler s account without question. 
When, however, one examines it more closely, there appear rea- 

because he (Merodach) was angry with the native king for not serving him properly, sacerdotal 
diplomacy of this sort should not deceive the trained historian. The priests turned to the ris 
ing sun without regard to their previous relations with Nabonidus. Cyrus certainly did not 
suppress the Babylonian religion, as the Hebrew prophets expected; the splendour of the ritual 
in the richest city in the world probably impressed him. When, however, the priests (by whom 
the inscriptions were prepared) represent him as an adherent of the Babylonian religion, that 
does not make him one, any more than Cambyses and some of the Roman emperors are made 
worshippers of the Egyptian gods by being represented on some of the monuments of the land 
of the Nile as paying them due reverence just like Egyptian kings." APG., 22. 

* i Esd. 2; Jos. Ant -, xi, i. 

t There is no such modifying clause in the Massoretic text of Ezr. i 3 . but it is easily supplied 
from v. 5 and must be restored to complete the meaning. See Guthe, SBOT. 


sons for more or less skepticism. Rosters, as the result of his in 
vestigations, not only doubts the historicity of Cyrus s decree, but 
declares that "in the history of the Restoration of Israel this re 
turn must take, not the first, but the third place"; and that "the 
temple was built and the wall of Jerusalem restored before the 
exiles returned from Babylonia."* Meyer is less radical, but he, 
while he contends for the historicity of the return under Cyrus, 
characterises this account of it as a fabrication.! There are sev 
eral reasons for suspecting its authenticity: i. The language used 
in the decree is not that of a genuine document emanating from 
the king of Persia, but of a free composition from the hand of the 
Chronicler, as in the verses describing the fulfilment of its re 

2. The thought dominant in the decree does not properly rep 
resent Cyrus as he appears in undoubtedly genuine contemporary 
records. Thus, at the very beginning he is made to call Yahweh 
"the God of heaven," and claim that he (Yahweh) has given him 
"all the kingdoms of the earth"; which amounts to a confession 
that the God of the Jews is the ruler of the world and the only 
true God. Now, it is improbable that he would have made any 
such announcement. He could not have done so without seri 
ously offending the Babylonians. Had he not, in the inscription 
already cited, given to Marduk the title "king of the gods," and 
said that it was this Babylonian divinity who predestined him to 
"the sovereignty of the world" ?{ If, therefore, he issued a de 
cree permitting the return of the Jews, it must have been in a differ 
ent form from that which has been preserved by the Chronicler. 

3. Those who deny that the Jews returned to Palestine, in any 
such numbers as are given in Ezr. 2, in the first year of Cyrus, call 
attention to the fact that, in chs. 5 and 6, where this decree is 
cited, the erection of the temple and the restoration of the sacred 
vessels are the only matters to which it is represented as referring. 
Cf. 5 13ff - 6 3ff -. 

4. Although the document reproduced in Ezr. 2, with its vari 
ous classes and precise figures, reads like a transcript from a de 
tailed report of the number and character of the exiles who re- 

* WL, 2. f EJ., 72, 49. t KB., ill, 2, 120 ft. Rosters, WL, 26. 


turned to their country under the terms of the decree attributed 
to Cyrus, a critical examination renders this view untenable. The 
reasons for a different opinion are: (a) that in the title (Ezr. 2 1 ) 
the persons enumerated are described as "children of the prov 
ince" who "had returned to Jerusalem and Judah," that is, were 
settled in the country when the census was made; () that the same 
document, in a somewhat earlier form, is found in Ne. 7, where 
(v. 5 ) it is called "a book of genealogy," that is, a genealogical 
register; (c) that the phrase, "of them that came up at the first," 
here found, is an interpolation,* and the list of leaders in both 
Ezr. 2 and Ne. 7 also evidently an afterthought ;f (d) and that, if 
this list were retained, it could be used as proof of a great return 
in the first year of Cyrus only on the mistaken supposition that 
Sheshbazzar and Zerubbabel are different names for the same 
person. J These considerations oblige one to confess that the 
document in question was not intended for its present connec 
tion, and that therefore it cannot be used to prove that any great 
number of Jews, by permission of Cyrus, returned to their coun 
try soon after the capture of Babylon. 

5. It appears from Zc. 6 10 that the Jews of Babylonia were free 
to return to Jerusalem when it was written, but neither this prophet 
nor Haggai betrays any knowledge of so great a movement as 
that described in the first two chapters of Ezra. In fact, Zc. 
2 10/6ff - J where Zion is exhorted to "flee" from Babylon, indicates 
that no such movement had taken place when this passage was 
written. Cf. also Zc. 6 15 8 7 f -. 

These are the most serious objections to the Chronicler s ac 
count of the return of the Jews under Cyrus. They do not lie 

* It cannot be construed with the preceding context. C}. Guthe. SBOT. 

t Cf. Guthe, SBOT. 

J This view was formerly common, and there are some who still hold it. So Ryle, on Ezr. 
i 8 ; van Hoonacker, PP., 543. The following points, however, seem conclusive against it: (i) 
The Chronicler, who alone has the name Sheshbazzar, gives his reader no hint that it is in 
tended to designate the same person as Zerubbabel. (2) In Ezr. s 16 he represents the lead 
ers of the Jews as using the name in such a way that it cannot fairly be understood as a desig 
nation for one of their own number. (3) If, as Meyer (/., 77) and others claim, the Shenaz- 
zar of i Ch. 3 18 is Sheshbazzar, the author must be reckoned a positive witness against the iden 
tity of the person so called with Zerubbabel. Cf. DB., art. Sheshbazzar. 

In i Esd. 5 the same document appears as a part of an account of a return with Zerub 
babel at the beginning of the reign of Darius. 


against a less spectacular view of the matter, derived, not from 
the prophecies of the Second Isaiah,* but from more nearly con 
temporary sources, i. In the first place, as has already been sug 
gested, the liberality of which Cyrus gives evidence in his memorial 
inscription would prompt him to favour the return of the Jews to 
their country. 2. It would also suit his plans against Egypt to 
have them re-establish themselves on the western border of his 
empire under his protection. 3. Again, the decree cited in Ezr. 
5 13ff -, which makes the impression of a genuine document, al 
though there is no mention of the release of the captives, implies 
that they were by the same instrument, or had been by another, 
permitted to return to Palestine, since it would have been mockery 
to order the restoration of the temple without allowing them to go 
to worship at its altar. 4. Finally, since most, if not quite all, 
of the better class of inhabitants had been carried into captivity 
by Nebuchadrezzar, the fact that at the beginning of the reign of 
Darius there were princes of the house of David as well as priests 
and prophets resident at Jerusalem f shows that a royal edict 
permitting them to return had then been in operation for some 
time. Taking these factors into account, and remembering that, 
according to Ezr. 6 2 , the record of the alleged decree was finally 
found in Ecbatana, it seems safe to conclude that, after settling 
the affairs of Babylonia, the king, early in 538 B.C., retired to 
Ecbatana, whence he issued orders releasing the Jews from cap 
tivity and instructing Sheshbazzar to rebuild their temple and re 
store its sacred vessels; and that from this time onward they could, 
and did, return, as they were moved so to do, to their native 

The Chronicler does not say when the Jews started from Baby 
lonia, or when they arrived in Palestine; but in Ezr. 3 he informs 
the reader that, "when the seventh month was come," they "were 
in the cities," and that on the first of the month Joshua and Zerub- 
babel had rebuilt the altar at Jerusalem, so that they could offer 

* Compare the phraseology of Ezr. i l ff - with that of Is. 4i 2 and 44^. 

t Hg. ii 2 i -, etc. 

t Cf. Meyer, /., 47 f Andre (83 ff.) supposes two distinct expeditions to have been organ 
ised, the first of which left Babylonia under Sheshbazzar soon after the decree was issued, the 
second under the twelve elders, among whom were Zerubbabel and Joshua, somewhat later. 


the daily sacrifice and observe the feasts in their seasons. Now, 
there is nothing surprising in this statement, so far as its main 
features, the restoration of the altar and the resumption of wor 
ship, are concerned, but some of its details seem incredible. In 
the first place, note that Ezr. 3 1 is evidently an adaptation of Ne. 
7 73b and 8 la , while the date for the resumption of worship (v. 6 ) 
seems to have been borrowed from Ne. 8 2 . Again, observe that 
Sheshbazzar, at this time governor of Judea, who had been com 
missioned by Cyrus to rebuild the temple, and who, according to 
Ezr. 5 16 , actually "laid the foundations of the house of God," is 
not mentioned in this connection. Finally, consider how strange 
it is that the Jews should be described (v. 3 ) as urged by the fear 
of "the peoples of the countries," although they must have had 
the protection of the governor and a considerable force of Persian 
soldiers. These discrepancies, especially in view of the phrase 
ology employed,* indicate that here, again, the Chronicler is re 
constructing history, this time in the interest of his favourites, 
Joshua and Zerubbabel, the truth being that the great altar was 
rebuilt by Sheshbazzar, and that this is what is meant by ascrib 
ing to him the foundation of the temple in Ezr. 5 lf .t 

Ezr. 3, from v. 8 onward, is devoted to a description of the lay 
ing of the foundation of the second temple. In this passage, also, 
the Chronicler is composing freely, aided to some extent by ex 
tant materials, including the prophecies of Haggai and Zechariah. 
The phraseology is his{ and the content is characteristic. The 
leader in this case is Zerubbabel. Had not Zechariah (4) said 
that Zerubbabel had laid the foundation of the house ? He is as 
sisted, as one would expect, by Jeshua (Joshua), son of Jehosadak, 
the high priest, whom the prophets named associate with him. 
The date given was probably suggested by that of the actual 
foundation in the prophecies of Haggai and Zechariah. It is the 
second year, not, however, of Darius, but, that the prophecy of 
Is. 44 28 might be fulfilled, of Cyrus. The names of the heads 

* The expressions characteristic of the style of the Chronicler are the following: set up and 
countries, v. 3 ; each day, lit., day with day, v. 4 ; willingly offered, v. 5 ; r}. Driver, LOT. 6 , 535 ft. 

t C\. Meyer, /., 44 /. 

\ r/. house of God and appoint, v. 8 ; hare the oversight, vv. 8 f -; ajler the order, v. 1U ; praising 
and giving thanks, v. u ; further, Driver, LOTS , 4.54 ff. 


of the Levites (v. 9 ) were taken from 2 40 ,* the author overlooking 
the fact that, on his own interpretation, it was not the persons 
bearing these names, but their sons, who were contemporaries of 
Zerubbabel. The functions of the Levites are the same here 
as in other passages in which the Chronicler deals with affairs of 
the temple. Cf. 2 Ch. 24 5 - u 34- 12 . It is characteristic, too, for 
him to introduce music "after the order of David," whenever 
there is an opportunity. Cf. i Ch. i5 16ff - 2 Ch. 5 uff -.f His 
idea seems to have been to make this occasion correspond in its 
significance to that when the ark was brought from Kirjath- 
jearim to Jerusalem by David. Cf. i Ch. 16. Finally, the 
Chronicler describes the effect produced upon "the old men who 
had seen the first house" when the foundation of the new one 
was put into place : the cries of joy and sorrow mingled in a great 
and indistinguishable "noise." This is a clearly an enlargement 
upon Hg. 2 3 . The whole account, then, is simply the product of 
an attempt to bring the facts with reference to the restoration of 
the temple into harmony with an unfulfilled prediction on the sub 
ject, and has no historic value. 

The prolepsis just noted made it necessary for the Chronicler 
to explain why the completion of the temple was so long delayed. 
He had no data for the purpose, but, fortunately, the history of 
the restoration of the wall of Jerusalem suggested a means by 
which he could fill the embarrassing interim. Cf. Ne. 3 s3 ff -/4 1 ff - 
4 iff./7ff. ^iF. j t was t jj e "adversaries" of his people, he says 
(Ezr. 4 4 > ), who hindered the work begun the year after their re 
turn, just as they afterward did that of Nehemiah. Cf. Ne. 
4 5/u . He does not at first divulge who these "adversaries" are, 
but finally he identifies them with the descendants of the hea 
then with whom the king of Assyria, here Esarhaddon, colonised 
northern Palestine after the, overthrow of the kingdom of Israel. 
Cf. 2 K. i7 24ff -. It was they who "frightened" the Jews "from 

* For Judah read Hoduyah. The fourth name, Henedad, seems to be a later addition sug 
gested by Ne. ioi . 

t In 2 Ch. 34 12 , where, according to the Massoretic text, the repairs on the temple would seem 
to have been made to the sound of trumpets and cymbals, the latter half of the verse has prob 
ably been added by a thoughtless scribe. Cf. Nowack, who thinks the latter half of v. 13 also 
is ungenuine. 


building, and hired counsellors against them, to frustrate their 
purpose, all the days of Cyrus, king of Persia, even to the reign 
of Darius, king of Persia." The animus of this story is apparent. 
It breathes the hatred and contempt with which the Jews regarded 
their northern neighbours. Its unreality is equally evident. The 
request put into the mouth of these " adversaries" contradicts, 
not only the term applied to them, but all that is known with ref 
erence to their attitude toward the Jews and their sanctuary.* 
The passage, therefore, does not add to the trustworthiness of 
the preceding account of the foundation of the temple. 

The general statement of Ezr. 4 5 might have sufficed to bridge 
the interval between the date there mentioned and that at which, 
according to the Chronicler, work on the temple was resumed, 
namely, the second year of the reign of Darius. The author, 
however, was not content to leave his readers without details. 
One of the incidents he cites is barely mentioned, the other is 
given in extenso. A certain Rehum and others, of Samaria, it 
seems, made a formal complaint against the Jews, setting forth 
that it would be dangerous to allow them to proceed with the 
operations in which they were engaged. The king, after an in 
vestigation, issued the desired decree, whereupon Rehum and his 
companions "went in haste to Jerusalem unto the Jews, and made 
them cease by force and power. Then," says the writer, " ceased 
the work of the house of God which is at Jerusalem; and it ceased 
until the second year of Darius, king of Persia." Cf. Ezr. 4 23 f> . 
The natural inference from the last clause is that both incidents 
were obstacles to the completion of the sanctuary, and that both 
occurred before the reign of Darius. This, however, is not the 
case; for it is clear from vv. 13ff - that it was the rebuilding of the 
city and its wall against which the Samaritans protested, and it is 
expressly stated that the first complaint was made in the reign of 
Xerxes, the son of Darius, and the second in that of Artaxerxes, 

* Cf. Meyer, GA., iii, 191 /. There is a similar case in Ne. 2 20 , where the Chronicler would 
lead one to infer that the Samaritans had offered to assist Nehemiah in his work: whereas, from 
documents recently discovered, it is clear that, so far from recognising the pretensions of the 
Jerusalemites, they favoured local sanctuaries, and recommended the restoration of the one at 
Elephantine. Cf. Sachau, Report of the Smithsonian Institution for 1907, 603 #.; Lagrange, 
in Revue Biblique, 1908, 325 ff. 


his grandson. In other words, the Chronicler, for the purpose of 
enriching his narrative, here introduces incidents that had nothing 
to do with the temple, and happened, if they are authentic, many 
years after it was completed. They may be of value for the period 
to which they belong, but they have no place in an introduction 
to the prophecies of Haggai and Zechariah.* 

The Chronicler, then, Jias no reliable information concerning 
the Jews, or their condition and relations, for the period from the 
first year after the fall of Babylon to the second of the reign of 
Darius. The annals of Persia are almost as completely silent 
with reference to them and their country. Their neighbours gen 
erally, as vassals of Babylon, had promptly submitted to Cyrus. 
Gaza, probably at the instigation of the king of Egypt, hesitated; 
but it, like the Phoenician cities, finally accepted the new order.")" 
A show of force may have been necessary, but soon, so far as Pal 
estine was concerned, the king was free to devote his energies to 
a war with the Scythians by which, although it cost him his life, 
he greatly extended and firmly established, in the north and east, 
the boundaries of his empire. 

The death of Cyrus took place in 530 or 529 B.c.J By this 
time a considerable number of Jews must have returned to Pales- 

* A suggestion with reference to the text of Ezr. 4 6 10 , however, may not be out of order. It 
is that, in vv. 7 ff -, the author is reporting the transmission by a higher Persian official of the 
substance of a letter received from a subordinate. The interpretation will then be as follows: 
In v. 7 the author says that, in the reign of Artaxerxes, Mithredath (Mithridates), originally the 
only person named, wrote a despatch to the king, of which there was an Aramaic translation. 
In v. 8 he gives the words with which Mithredath introduces the matter of the letter: " Rehum, 
the commandant, and Shimshai, the scribe, have written this letter against Jerusalem to Arta 
xerxes the king, to wit." Then (v. 9 ) follows the list of complainants with which the letter be 
gan: "Rehum, the commandant, and Shimshai, the scribe, and the rest of their associates," 
etc. "And now," says Mithredath (v. n ), by way of introduction to the letter proper, "this 
is the copy of the letter that thy servants, the men beyond the River, have sent to Artaxerxes 
the king"; and he gives his master the contents of the letter. It appears from v. 17 that Rehum 
was an official resident at Samaria. Mithredath, therefore, was probably the incumbent of the 
fifth satrapy, which included Palestine. According to Meyer his residence was at Aleppo. 
Cf. GA., ii, 137. 

t Noldeke, APG., 23; Prasek, GMP., i, 232 /., 235. 

J The latter is the date usually given. So Wiedemann, GA., 224 /.; Noldeke, APG., 26. 
The Ptolemaic Canon, however, places his death in 530, and the contract tablets of the latter 
part of that year bear the name of his successor. C}. Prasek, GMP., 200, 246 /. It is proba 
ble, however, that, when Cyrus started on his unhappy expedition against the Massagetae, he 
placed the regal .authority in the hands of Cambyses, who thus began to reign some months 
before his father s death. Cf. Herodotus, i, 208; vii, 4; Prasek, CM P., i, 242. 


tine. Their condition was not an enviable one. Of this one can 
assure one s self without the help of the Chronicler. In the first 
place, even if the great altar had been rebuilt, it cannot but have 
emphasised the desolation by which it was surrounded. More 
over, those w r ho lived at Jerusalem were constantly reminded by 
the prostrate walls of the present weakness as well as the former 
strength of their city. Finally, some of the returned exiles were 
suffering actual want; for, according to Hg. 2 16 /., when the temple 
was founded, it had been a long time since there was a normal 
harvest. Zechariah (8 10 ) bears similar testimony, referring also to 
the constant annoyance his people had suffered from hostile neigh 
bours. The discouragement that these hard conditions would nat 
urally engender had doubtless found frequent expression. Per 
haps, as some scholars incline to believe,* Is. 63 /. are among the 
literary products of the period. At any rate, the sufferers could 
hardly have put their complaint into more fitting or forceful 
language. The following lines from ch. 64 are especially appro 
priate : 

8 / J . " Be not, Yahweh, very wroth. 

nor remember iniquity forever: 
"Look, see, I pray thee, 
we are all thy people. 

9/1 n. "Thy holy cities have become a desert; 
Zion hath become a desert, 

Jerusalem a waste. 

i"/ 11 . "Our holy and beautiful house, 
where our fathers praised thce, 

hath been burned with fire, 
"And all that was precious to us 

hath become a ruin. 

/ 12 . "And wilt thou still restrain thyself, Yahweh? 
be quiet? nay, greatly afflict us? f 


The successor of Cyrus on the throne of Persia was Cambyses. 
His chief exploit was the conquest of Egypt. It is probable that 

* Bleek, Einl., 346. 

f Baethgen, with more or less confidence, refers to this period the following Psalms : 16, 41, 
56, 57. 59, 6 4, 79, 85, 120, 123, 124, 125, 127, 131 and 137. 


Cyrus had planned the subjugation of this country, and that, at 
his death, he had bequeathed to his son the duty of punishing 
Ahmes for joining Croesus and Nabonidus in a league against him. 
A second reason for undertaking this enterprise was that the king 
of Egypt had shown a good degree of vigour and prudence in the 
recent past. He had compelled the island of Cyprus to pay him 
tribute,* and contracted an alliance with the Greeks of Cyrenef 
and Polycrates the tyrant of Samos,J thus threatening Persian 
dominance in Asia Minor. Finally, there was the Achaemenid lust 
for dominion, which only the conquest of the world could satisfy. 

The immediate cause of the breach between the two powers is 
unknown. Whatever it may have been, it must have arisen early 
in the reign of Cambyses, for by 526 B.C. he was ready for the con 
flict.** In that year he set in motion his army, which, as it neared 
Egypt, was supported by a fleet of Greek, Cyprian, and Phoe 
nician vessels that had been collected at Akka. 

The Jews must have been deeply interested in this expedition, 
and equally impressed by its magnitude, as it passed through 
Palestine. If any of them were disposed to disparage its strength, 
they were speedily disillusioned, for at Pelusium Cambyses routed 
the Egyptian army, and shortly afterward, at Memphis, he cap 
tured Psammeticus III, the son and successor of Ahmes, thus 
completing the conquest of the country.ff 

There is wide disagreement among the authorities with refer 
ence to the treatment of the Egyptians and their religion by the 
conqueror. A nearly contemporary record, the inscription on the 
statue of Uzahor, says that, when Cambyses had established him 
self in Egypt, he took an Egyptian praenomen, Mesut-ra, received 
instruction in the religion of the country, recognised the goddess 
Neit by purging her temple, restoring its revenues and worship- 

* Herodotus, ii, 126. t Herodotus, ii, 181. % Herodotus, iii, 39 fi. 

For the stories with reference to the subject current in the fifth century B.C., cf. Herodotus, 
Ui, i It. 

** Prdsek, GMP., i, 252. There is difference of opinion with reference to the date. Brugsch 
(Hist., ii, 312 ft.) insists that the invasion of Egypt took place in 527 B.C., but Wiedemann (GA. t 
226 ff.) seems to have shown that he misread Serapeum 354, the inscription on which his con 
clusion was based. Petrie, HE., iii, 360, supports Wiedemann. Duncker s (HA., vi, 145) 
date is 525 B.C. 

ft Herodotus, iii, 10 fl. 


ping at the renovated sanctuary, and finally made offerings to all 
the other gods that had shrines at Sais.* The story told by Herod 
otus is very different. He pictures Cambyses as torturing Psam- 
meticus by cruelty to his children, abusing the mummy of the de 
throned king s father, fatally wounding the bull in which Apis 
had recently manifested himself and making sport of the images 
in the temple of Ptah, the tutelar divinity of Memphis. f The 
truth seems to be that at first he was disposed to respect the cus 
toms and prejudices of the conquered people, but that, after his 
return from his disastrous expedition against Ethiopia, he treated 
them and their gods as if they were responsible for its failure. 
Then, according to Uzahor, there happened "a very great calam 
ity" affecting "the whole land," during which he (Uzahor) "pro 
tected the feeble against the mighty." He adds, and this state 
ment shows that the religious interests of the country had thereby 
suffered seriously, that, on the accession of Darius, he was com 
missioned "to restore the names of the gods, their temples, their 
endowments and the arrangement of their feasts forever. "J 

The reign of Cambyses was not so unfortunate for the Jews. 
He seems to have continued toward them the policy adopted by 
his father, a policy which was prudent as well as liberal, in view 
of his designs against Egypt. When he had conquered that coun 
try he gave proof of his favour by sparing their temple at Elephan 
tine^ If, however, they were cherishing dreams of independence 
suggested by the earlier prophets, his reputation for jealousy and 
cruelty must have chilled their ardour and deterred them from 
activities that could be interpreted to their disadvantage. More 
over, being on the route by which the Persian army entered Egypt, 
and by which it had to be re-enforced, they must more than once 
have been obliged to meet requisitions that sorely taxed their 
slender resources. It is not surprising, therefore, that there is no 
evidence, in the Scriptures or elsewhere, that, during the reign of 

* Petrie, HE., iii, 360 ft. 

t Herodotus, iii, 14 //., 27 ft., 37. 

I Cf. Petrie, HE., iii, 362. Jedoniah, in his letter to Bagoses, says that "the temples of 
the gods of Egypt were all overthrown" by Cambyses. Report of Smithsonian Institution, 
1807, 603 ft.; Revue Biblique, 1908, 325 ft. 

Report 0} the Smithsonian Institution, 1907, 603 ft.; Revue Biblique, 1908, 325 if. 


Cambyses, they made any attempt to complete the temple or even to 
put their city into a defensible condition. If there are any psalms 
or other literary remains of the period in the Old Testament, they 
cannot, for obvious reasons, be distinguished from those of the 
latter part of the reign of Cyrus. 

The reckless ways of Cambyses in Eygpt made the name of 
Persia hated in that country. The murder of his own brother, 
Bardes, which he had hitherto succeeded in concealing, now bore 
fruit in the alienation of his own people by the impostor Gomates, 
who seized the throne of Persia and proclaimed himself the miss 
ing son of Cyrus. When the news reached Egypt the king, al 
though he at first shrank from a contest in which success, however 
he achieved it, meant lasting infamy, at length, by the urgent ad 
vice of his counsellors, put himself at the head of his army and 
started for Persia. When he reached Syria, however, his cour 
age failed him, and, calling together the nobles who attended him, 
he first confessed the assassination of Bardes and appealed to 
them to dethrone the usurper, and then committed suicide.* 
Thus, the Jews must have been among the first to learn of an event 
of the greatest significance for them and their interests. 


Cambyses, who had no son, was finally succeeded by Darius 
Hystaspes, representing a collateral branch of the Achaemenids. 
The story of the method by which he obtained the crown, as given 
by Herodotus,f is full of romantic details. The new king him 
self, in the inscription already cited, gives this concise and simple 
account of the matter: 

"There was not a. man, either Persian or Median, or any one of our family, 
who could dispossess of the empire this Gomates, the Magian. The State 
feared him exceedingly. He slew many people who had known the old 
Bardes; for this reason he slew the people, lest they should recognise him as 

* The statement of Herodotus (Hist., iii, 64), that the death of the king was accidental, is 
contradicted by the Behistun inscription, in which Darius says expressly that "Cambyses, 
killing himself, died." RP. Z , i, 114. 

t Hist., iii, 71 ti. 


not being Bardes, the son of Cyrus. There was not any one bold enough to 
say aught against Gomates, the Magian, until I arrived. Then I prayed to 
Ormazd. Ormazd brought help to me. On the tenth day of the month 
Ragayadish, then it was that I slew this Gomates, the Magian, and the chief 
men who were his followers. At the fort named Sictachotes, in the district 
of Media called Nisaea, there I slew him. I dispossessed him of the empire. 
By the grace of Ormazd I became king. Ormazd granted me the sceptre." 

It was one thing to dispose of Gomates, and quite another, as 
Darius soon discovered, to get possession of the power that Cam- 
byses had wielded. One after another the principal provinces 
rebelled, until the whole of the eastern half of the empire, under 
various leaders, was in arms against him. The following is his 
catalogue of the insurgents he had to suppress before he could 
call himself, as he does at the beginning of this Behistun inscrip 
tion,* "the great king, the king of kings, the king of Persia, the 
king of the provinces": 

"One was named Gomates, the Magian. He was an impostor; he said, 
I am Bardes, the son of Cyrus. He threw Persia into revolt. 

"One, an impostor, was named Atrines, a Susian. He thus said, I am the 
king of Susiana. He caused Susiana to revolt against me. 

"One was named Nadinta-belus, a native of Babylon. He was an im 
postor. He thus said, I am Nabochodrossor, the son of Nabonidus. He 
caused Babylon to revolt. 

"One was an impostor named Martes, a Persian. He thus said, I am 
Imanes, the king of Susiana. He threw Susiana into rebellion. 

"One was named Phraortes, a Median. He spake lies. He thus said, I 
am Xathrites, of the race of Cyaxares. He persuaded Media to revolt. 

"One was an impostor named Sitratachmes, a native of Sagartia. He 
thus said, I am the king of Sagartia, of the race of Cyaxares. He caused 
Sagartia to revolt. 

"One was an impostor named Phraates, a Margian. He thus said, I am 
the king of Margiana. He threw Margiana into revolt. 

"One was an impostor named Veisdates, a Persian. He thus said, I am 
Bardes, the son of Cyrus. He headed a rebellion in Persia. 

"One was an impostor named Aracus, a native of Armenia. He thus said, 
I am Nabochodrossor, the son of Nabonidus. He threw Babylon into revolt." 

The courage and vigour that Darius brought to his herculean 
task are amazing; yet these essential qualities would hardly have 
availed him, had he not been loyally supported by several able 
generals, among whom was his own father, Hystaspes. He him- 

* RP:*, i, 126. 


self, having apprehended and punished Atrines for claiming the 
crown of Susiana, turned his attention to Babylonia, where, after 
fighting two battles, he took the capital and put to death the im 
postor, Nadinta-belus. While he was thus engaged the rest of the 
provinces revolted. As soon as he was free to do so he hurried to 
Media to assist Hydarnes against Phraortes, whom he overthrew 
in battle and finally executed. While here he sent a force into 
Sagartia under one of his generals, who defeated Sitratachmes, the 
usurping king, and brought him back a prisoner. Meanwhile, 
with some assistance from him, Armenia had been subdued and 
Hystaspes had restored order in Parthia and Hyrcania. The 
satrap of Bactria had also suppressed the uprising in Margiana. 
Finally, Darius himself saw the end of the second in Persia and 
Arachotia, while Intaphernes was subduing the second in Baby 

The above outline, which is intended merely to indicate the 
probable order of the events mentioned, might convey an errone 
ous impression with reference to the duration of the struggle be 
tween Darius and his adversaries. It really lasted about three 
years. There ought to be no difficulty, with the data given, to 
construct a chronology of his victories; but, unfortunately, although 
he gives the month and the day of the month in almost every case, 
he does not mention the year to which these belong, or arrange his 
narrative so that the omission can always be supplied. Still, it is 
possible, with the help of Babylonian tablets belonging to the pe 
riod, to determine approximately a number of important dates. 
Thus, the impostor Gomates must have set up his claim to the 
throne of Persia in the spring of 522 B.c.f The death of Cam- 
byses occurred late in the summer of the same year.J In the 
following autumn Gomates was overthrown by Darius, who be- 

* RP. 2 , i, 116 #.; Noldeke, APG., 31 /. 

t The time of year is determined by a tablet dated in " Airu [April-May], the year of the be 
ginning of the reign of Bardes, king of Babylon, king of the lands." KB., iv, 294 /. The year 
can hardly have been 523 B.C., as Prasek (GMP., i, 266) asserts, since Cambyses must have been 
informed of the event within a few weeks after it occurred, and must have taken steps to meet 
the usurper very soon after the receipt of such information. He did not, however, according 
to PraSek himself (GMP., i, 267) leave Egypt until the spring of 522 B.C. This, therefore, was 
probably the year of the beginning of Gomates s usurpation. 

t Prasek, GMP., i, 275. Prasek, GMP., i, 282. 


gan his reign before the middle of March, 521 B.C.* Toward the 
end of this year occurred the first revolt in Babylon, which prob 
ably occupied him until the summer of 520 B.c.,t when he went 
to Media to finish the subjugation of that and the adjoining prov 
inces. The second revolt of the Babylonians, which seems to 
have been the latest of these protests against the authority of 
Darius, was probably not suppressed before 519 B.c.J 

If Cambyses died in the summer of 522 B.C. and Gomates was 
overthrown before the end of the year, the first full year of the 
reign of Darius began with Nisan (March-April) 521 B.C., and the 
second with the same month in 520, before he had taken Baby 
lon the first time. Now, "the second year of Darius the king," 
"the sixth month," and "the first day of the month," or about the 
middle of August, is the date on which Haggai approached Zerub- 
babel and Joshua, the then leaders in Jerusalem, with a message 
from Yahweh requiring them to rebuild the temple, and it was 
only a few days later that the work was actually begun. Cf. 
Hg. i 1 - 15 . In other words, the movement among the Jews to 
rebuild the temple took place just when the latest news from the 
East seemed to warrant them in expecting the speedy collapse of 
the Persian empire. This can hardly have been a mere coinci 
dence. It means that, whatever may have been the policy of 
Cyrus, that of his successor had been more or less repressive, and 
that the Jews, who, having one of their own race for governor, 
had now begun to think of autonomy, took the first favourable 
opportunity to provide a rallying-point for patriotic sentiment in 
the growing community. 

There is no intimation in the prophecies of Haggai or Zecha- 
riah that the project they were urging met with any opposition 
from the Persian government. The Chronicler does not claim 
that anything was done to hinder it, but he says that the Jews had 

* This statement is based on a tablet dated the twenty-second of Adar (February-March) 
in "the beginning" of his reign. KB., iv, 302 /. 

t According to Herodotus (iii, 152), the siege of the city lasted a year and seven 

t So Meyer, GA., i, 613 ft. Duncker, following Herodotus, prolongs the first Babylonian 
revolt until the autumn of 519 B.C., making it necessary to suppose that the second was not 
suppressed until 517 B.C. Cj. HA., vi, 239 fl., 249 //., 270 ft. 


no sooner begun work than Tattenai, the governor of the satrapy 
west of the Euphrates, and certain others, appeared and inquired 
who had given them authority to rebuild the sanctuary.* They 
replied that Cyrus had done so in the first year of his reign, and 
that Sheshbazzar had actually laid the foundations of the build 
ing at that time. Cf. Ezr. 5 13 - 16 . Thereupon the governor re 
ported to the king, asking that an examination be made to ascer 
tain whether such a decree had ever been issued. Cf. Ezr. 5 17 . 
The result was that a record to this effect was found at Ecbatana, 
and the governor was instructed not to interfere with the Jews in 
their work, but rather to assist them from the revenues of his dis 
trict, that they might "offer sacrifices of sweet savour to the God 
of heaven, and pray for the life of the king and his sons." Cf. 
Ezr. 6 lff -. 

The authenticity of this account has been disputed by Well- 
hausen, but the tendency, even among the more radical authori 
ties, is to admit that, whether the Chronicler, to whom it owes its 
present form, composed (Schrader), compiled (Kosters) or only 
edited (Kuenen) it, it contains more or less material of a genu 
inely historical character. This opinion is favoured by the fol 
lowing considerations: 

1. The general impression made by the story, as compared, 
for example, with i 1 f> , 4 7ff< or 6 16ff -, is that it is temperate and 

2. The consideration shown the Jews, first by the governor, and 
then by the king, is in harmony with the demands of the historical 
situation. The whole East had revolted against Darius; but as 
yet there had been no trouble in the western part of the empire, 
and it was very desirable that this state of things should continue. 
That the king realised this is clear from his treatment of the case 
of Oroetes, the satrap of Lydia, who was not removed, although 
he was known to be secretly disloyal, until the eastern provinces 
had been reduced to submission.! Probably Tattenai had re- 

* Ezr. s 3 . The text adds a clause rendered (after & 3) in RV. "and to finish this wall"; 
but the vocalisation of NJ"^N indicates that the Jews read NJl?N, fmmdations, as in v. 16 - 
Haupt (SBOT.) regards it as the Aramaic form of asm, an Assyrian word for sanctuary. If 
RV, is correct, the whole clause is probably an accretion. 

t Herodotus, iii, 120 ff. 


ceived instructions to keep a close watch upon his district, but not 
to create unnecessary friction. When the case came before Darius, 
he would naturally make it a point to honour a decree of his great 
predecessor, knowing that, once firmly seated upon his throne, he 
could easily check any abuse of his liberality by the Jews of Jeru 

3. The mention of Sheshbazzar (5 16 ) is significant. It shows 
that the Chronicler, when he introduced it, was borrowing from an 
older source, a source from which, in ch. 3, he found reason for 
differing, and in which, on this account, the reader should have 
the greater confidence. 

4. When the Jews began work on the temple, Media was in re 
bellion; but, by the time the report of Tattenai reached Darius, 
he had regained control of the province, including Ecbatana, 
where the edict of Cyrus was finally discovered. Cf. Ezr. 6 2 . 

5. There are certain features of the rescript in reply to Tatte 
nai (Ezr. 6 6ff -) that speak for its genuineness. Thus, the request 
for an interest in the prayers of the worshippers of Yahweh (v. 10 ) 
reminds one of Cyrus s appeal to the gods that he had restored to 
their shrines to intercede for him and Cambyses with Bel and 
Nebo;* while the warning against tampering with the decree 
(v. ") has a parallel in the conclusion of the Behistun inscription 
where Darius himself says: 

"If, seeing this tablet and these figures, thou shalt injure them, 
and shalt not preserve them as long as thy seed endures, then may 
Ormazd be thy enemy, and mayest thou be childless, and that 
which thou mayest do may Ormazd curse for thee." 

The curse in v. 12 , however, is justly suspected of being an inter 

It must have taken some time, several months, for Tattenai to 
get his instructions. Meanwhile the Jews proceeded with their 
work. At first they wrought with feverish, fanatical energy. On 
the twenty-fourth of the ninth month (December, 520 B.C.), the 
enthusiasm seems to have reached its height. This is the date 
on which Haggai prophesied the destruction of "the strength of 
the kingdoms of the nations." Cf. 3 22 . Later the work began 

* KB. t ill, 2, 126 /. t Meyer, /., 51. 


to drag. At any rate, Zechariah, in 4 f - of his prophecies, pic 
tures the task before Zerubbabel and his associates as a " moun 
tain." If they finally received any assistance from the govern 
ment, it must have been delayed .many months, as such grants 
are apt to be, for, according to the Chronicler (Ezr.6 15 ), the temple 
was not completed until the third of Adar in the sixth year of 
Darius, or February, 515 B.C. 

For some time after the suppression of the great uprising in 
the East Darius was employed in strengthening his hold on his 
vast dominions. To this end he removed ambitious satraps, like 
Oroetes, occupied strategic points in India and Asia Minor and 
thoroughly reorganised the empire. In the course of these activ 
ities he had to devote some attention to Egypt, where Aryandes, 
an appointee of Cambyses, was usurping royal functions and pro 
voking disorder. Perhaps he had already sent Uzahor, an official 
already (p. 1 5) mentioned, to repair some of the damage done to 
the country by his predecessor.* Finally he himself visited 
Egypt. There is no direct evidence bearing on the date of this 
visit, but Wiedemann,t by combining an inscription recording the 
death of an Apis with a notice by PolysenusJ of a reward offered 
by the king for the discovery of another, has made it appear that 
it was, or began, in his fourth year, that is 517 B.C. His first act 
was to depose and execute the satrap. Then he proceeded to re 
store order, institute necessary reforms, and otherwise display his 
wisdom and efficiency as a ruler. The greatest of his undertak 
ings was the canal by which he planned to connect the Nile with 
the Red Sea, and thus open communication by water between 
Persia and the Mediterranean.** 

The presence of Darius in the West was a boon, not only to 
Egypt, but to Palestine. He may have visited Jerusalem as he 
passed through the country and, having personally inspected the 
rising temple, made further provision for its completion. At any 

* The country from which Darius sent Uzahor on this mission, according to Petrie (HE., 
in, 362), was Aram, Syria, but, according to Brugsch (Hist., ii, 305), Elam. 

t GA., 236 /. t vii, n, 7. So also Noldeke, A PC., 41. 

** Wiedemann, GA., 241 /. The project was abandoned because Darius s engineers told him 
that the level of the Red Sea was higher than that of Egypt and that, therefore, if the canal 
were opened the country would be Oooded. 


rate, the latest of Zechariah s prophecies, which is dated in the 
fourth year of Darius (7*), in its tone and content indicates im 
proved conditions. It is evident that, when it was written, the 
Jews, who had previously been almost entirely confined to Jeru 
salem, and constantly annoyed, as they went and came, by the 
"adversary," had begun to occupy the surrounding country and 
enjoy the fruits of order and security. Cf. 8 loff- . Their ideas 
had meanwhile changed with their circumstances. They had laid 
aside, for the time being, their political aspirations, Zerubbabel 
is not mentioned, content that Jerusalem should be, not the capi 
tal of a great, independent kingdom, but, as in the visions of the 
Second Isaiah, a sanctuary for all nations. Cf. 8 22 f \ Note, too, 
the emphasis the prophet, in chs. 7/., lays upon justice, mercy, 
etc., and the clearness with which he teaches that the practice 
of these homely virtues is the condition of the continued enjoyment 
by the individual and the community of the favour of Yahweh. 



The prophet Haggai is known only through his book. True, 
he is mentioned with Zechariah in Ezr. 5 1 and 6 14 , but the state 
ments there found are so clearly based on the book attributed to 
him that they are of no value except to show that a writer about 
the beginning of the third century B.C. believed him to have been 
a historical character. Nor is there any direct information in the 
book of Haggai with reference to the origin or personal history of 
its author. In most other cases the name of the prophet s father 
is given (Is. i 1 ), or that of the place of his birth or residence 
(Am. i 1 ), or both (Je. i 1 ); but here both are omitted. This fact, 
together with the further circumstance that the Hebrew word hag- 
gay* may mean my feasts, gives some plausibility to the hypoth 
esis f that this book, like that of Malachi, was originally an anony 
mous work, and that the name Haggai, more correctly, Haggay, 
was given to it because the prophecies it contained were all dated 
on feast-days. The name Haggai, however, differs from Malachi 
in that, as will be shown in the comments, it can be referred to a 
numerous class having the same form. Moreover, while it is true 
that the first of the prophecies attributed to Haggai was delivered 
on the first of the month, and the second on the seventh day of 
the Feast of Tabernacles, J there is, as Andre himself admits, no 
evidence that the twenty-fourth of the ninth was ever celebrated 
as a festival by the Hebrews. There is, therefore, as good ground 
for accepting the historical reality of Haggai as that, for example, 
of Habakkuk. 

There was current among the early Christians a more or less 

* *<?. t Andre", 8. 

t In the earliest references to this feast it is not dated, but from the time of Ezechiel onward 
it began on the fifteenth of the seventh month. Cj. Ez. 45 ffi ; Lv. 23 ; EB., art. Feasts, n ; 
Nowack, Arch., ii, 180. 



distinct tradition to the effect that Haggai was of priestly lineage. 
It appears in a statement of a certain Dorotheus, whom De- 
litzsch* identifies with a bishop of Tyre of the same name, that, 
when Haggai died, "he was buried with honour near the sepul 
chre of the priests, where the priests were customarily buried; "f 
but it is given in a more complete form by Hesychius, who says 
that the prophet "was buried near the sepulchre of the priests 
with honour, like them, because he was of priestly stock. "J It 
should also be noted as in harmony with this tradition that, in the 
versions, the name of Haggai appears in the titles of some of the 
Psalms. This external testimony is not in itself of so much value, 
but it would deserve more serious consideration if there were 
internal evidence to support it. There are those who claim that 
there is such evidence. They find it, first, in the tone and pur 
pose of the book, which seems to them to betray the personal in 
terest of a priest in the restoration of the worship by which his or 
der had subsisted before the Exile;** and, second, in the prophet s 
familiarity, as displayed in 2 llff -, with matters on which he him 
self represents the priests as the recognised authorities. These 
reasons, however, are not convincing, especially in view of the fact 
that Jewish tradition, although it highly honours Haggai, attrib 
uting to him and Zechariah and Malachi, with whom he is al 
most always associated, various important services, ft does not 
reckon him a member of the sacerdotal order. On the whole, 
therefore, it seems safest to ignore the Christian tradition and re 
gard the prophet as a patriotic Jewish layman of unusual zeal for, 
and therefore, perhaps, unusual acquaintance with, the religion 
in which he had been born and reared. 

* De Habacuci Propheta Vita alque JEtate, 54 if. 

t Maxima Bibliotheca Veterum Patrum, iii, 422 ff. C}. also Epiphanius, De Vitis Prophe- 
tarum, ed. Petavius, ii, 235 ff. 

J Crilica Sacra, viii, Pars, ii, col. 33. 

In (6, 137 (138) and 145-149 (146-149); in g>, 125 /. (126 /.) 145-148 (146-148); in &, 
64 (65); in V, in (112) 145 /. (146 /.). ** Andre, 98 ff. 

ft They are said to have transmitted the Law to the men of the Great Synagogue, assisted 
Jonathan ben Uziel in the composition of his Targum on the prophets, introduced the final let 
ters into the Hebrew alphabet, rendered various sage decisions, etc. For numerous citations, 
cj. Andre", 13 ff. 

J J Marti claims that 2" ff , so far from indicating that Haggai was a priest, favours the con 
trary opinion. 


The Christian writers above cited agree in teaching that Haggai 
was born in Babylon. Dorotheus, Epiphanius and others say 
that he was still a young man when he came to Jerusalem.* Au 
gustine, however, had somewhere learned that both Haggai and 
Zechariah had prophesied in Babylon before they and their coun 
trymen were released from captivity.")" The Jewish authorities, 
also, seem to have thought of Haggai as a man of mature, if not 
advanced, age when he arrived in Palestine. Otherwise they 
would not have attributed to him the wisdom and influence for 
which they gave him credit. Ewald and other modern commen 
tators think he may have been among those who had seen the 
temple of Solomon before its destruction. Cf. 2 3 . If so, he must 
have been between seventy and eighty years of age when his 
prophecies were uttered. Perhaps his age explains why his 
prophetic career was so brief. At any rate, it seems to have been 
brought to a close shortly after the foundations of the new sanc 
tuary were laid, while Zerubbabel was still governor of Jerusalem. 


The book of Haggai consists largely of a series of four compara 
tively brief prophecies, all dated, the last two on the same day. It 
is evidently not, in its entirety, from the prophet s own hand; for, 
both in the statements by which the several prophecies are intro 
duced (i 1 2 1 - 10 - 20 ) and in the body of the third (2 12 f -), he is re 
ferred to only in the third person. Moreover, the first prophecy 
is followed by a description of its effect upon those to whom it was 
addressed (i 12 " 15 ) throughout which he is treated in the same ob 
jective manner. There are similar passages in Zechariah; a fact 
which has led Klostermann to conclude that the book of Haggai 
and Zc. 1-8 originally belonged to an account of the rebuilding 
of the temple in the reign of Darius, chronologically arranged and 
probably edited by Zechariah. This thesis, however, cannot be 
maintained; for, in the first place, as will be shown in the com 
ments on i 15 , the point on which Klostermann bases his supposition, 

* For the text of these references, cj. Kohler, 6 /. 

t Enarrationes in Ps. cxli ii. % GVI., 212 /. 


that the combined works of the two prophets once had a chrono 
logical arrangement, is mistaken, and, second, Budde has made 
it pretty clear that the narrative portions of Zc. 1-8, in their pres 
ent form, were not written by the author of the prophecies.* In 
fact, it is possible to go still farther and say that, if Budde is cor 
rect in his analysis, Rothstein s less definite form of this hypoth 
esis")" also becomes untenable, the difference between the narrative 
portions of the books of Haggai and Zechariah being so marked 
that they cannot all be attributed to any single author. While, 
therefore, it is necessary to admit that the book of Haggai is his 
only in the sense that it contains his extant prophecies, it is equally 
necessary to insist that it is, and was intended to be, a separate 
literary production. 

The book is so brief that it seems almost ridiculous to suspect 
its unity. Yet some have not only raised the question, whether 
all the prophecies it contains are correctly attributed to Haggai, 
but actually found reasons for answering it in the negative. The 
most ambitious of these critics is Andre, who claims (24 ff.) to 
have shown that 2 10 " 19 is an interpolation, being, in fact, a prophecy 
delivered by an unknown person on the twenty-fourth of the ninth 
month, not of the second, but of the first, year of the reign of Da 
rius. The following is an outline of his argument for this conten 
tion: i. The passage interrupts the development of the preceding 
discourse, the conclusion of which is found in vv. 21 ~ 23 . 2. The 
point of view in this passage is different from that of the rest of 
the book. 3. This message is addressed to Haggai, not, like the 
others, to the leaders and the people through him. 4. There are 
palpable contradictions between it and other portions of the book. 
5. The vocabulary of these verses is different from that of the rest 
of the book. These statements, if they were all correct and rele 
vant, would be conclusive against the genuineness of the passage 
in question. This, however, is not the case. In fact, in every 
instance either the allegation or the inference from it is mistaken. 
Thus, although 2 21 repeats a clause from v. 6 , the fact that vv. 21 ff 
are addressed to Zerubbabel alone makes it a distinct prophecy, 
which, moreover, could not have been attached immediately to 

*ZAW., 1906, iff. fAV.,46/ 


v. 9 without producing confusion.* The second statement is based 
on an exaggerated notion of the subtlety of the illustration used in 
2 12ff -; which, according to Andre, betrays the priestly legalist. 
It is really, as will be shown in the comments, a figure that might 
have occurred to any Jew zealous for his religion in the days of 
the prophet. The third point touches the style, not of Haggai, 
but of the editor by whom his prophecies were collected. More 
over, as will be shown, the original reading in 2 1 was to, not by 
Haggai, and, when this correction is made, the alleged discrep 
ancy has disappeared. The contradictions to which Andre re 
fers under his fourth head he finds in 2 17< 18 , on the one hand, 
compared with i 10 f - 15 on the other. For the solution of these 
difficulties, see the comments on the passages cited. There are, 
as Andre, fifthly, asserts, differences of phraseology between 2 10 19 
and the rest of the book, but there is not a case having any sig 
nificance in which the word or phrase employed cannot be better 
explained than by calling it a mark of difference in authorship. 

There is really no necessity for discussing the thirteen specifications under 
this head, but perhaps it should be done for the sake of showing how little 
science is sometimes mixed with criticism. The following are the words and 
phrases cited, with the reason, when there is one, for the use of each of them 
in the given connection: 

a. The use of ^n, temple, in 2 15 - 18 for the more general term no, 
house, of i 2 - 14 has no critical significance. It is used in a precisely similar 
connection, and exclusively, four times in Zc. 6 9 - 15 , and with no in Zc. 8 9 . 
b. In 2 U J?M\ which means wearisome toil, and, when the instrument is to 
be expressed, is always followed by *p, palm, as in i 11 , would not have been 

general enough; hence the use of orvp ntryn, work of their hands, c. In 
2 12 oil is called fee 5 , and not, as in i, nnv, because it is regarded as a com 
modity rather than a product of the soil. d. The same explanation applies 
to the use of p, wine, for irwn, must. e. The use of muc, granary, for 
the no, house, home, in a 19 is explained by the fact that the author is here 
thinking of grain in storage, and not, as in i 9 , on its way from the field or the 
threshing-floor. /. The word IJO is the proper one for a single garment. 
Hence it, and not BhaV, which generally means clothing, is used in a 12 , and 
often elsewhere, even in connection with the verb cbS, clothe, of i 6 . Cf. Zc. 
3 3 . g. In 2 14 MJ, nation, is used of Israel, because a synonym is needed for 
D>\ people. Cf. Ex. 33 13 . This is not the case anywhere else in the book. 
Cf. ! 12- 13. u 2 *. h. If in 2" the writer had had a verb denoting fear, he would 

* Andre" claims that vv. *> ab , as well as v. 10 , were added to the text when vv. -i 9 were 

30 HAGGAl 

probably have used ^D instead of JsS for before, just as he does in i 12 . 
i. The omission of D3^D"n~Sj? in 2 15 - 18 is due to the fact that here the verb 
has another object. Cf. i 5 - 7 . k. The use of nim without niNax in 2 14 17 
would have more significance if the last clause of v. 17 were undoubtedly 
genuine and Haggai did not employ the simple name three times (2 4(bls) - 23 ) 
outside the passage under consideration. See also i 13 , an interpolation. 
/. The omission of his title after the name of the prophet in 2 13 f - is just what 
one would expect in a passing reference. Cf. Bohme, ZAW ., 1887, 215. 
Elsewhere the title is used; except in 2 20 , and there, on the testimony of (g, 
it should be. Cf. i 1 - 3 - 12 a 1 , m. The priests appear in 2 11 ff -, because the 
question is one that not only the high priest, but any of his associates, ought 
to be able to answer. In all cases where the high priest is introduced, he, 
like Zerubbabel, is a representative figure. Cf. i 1 - > 2 - I1 2 2 . n. The case 
of, Sx, to, for "P3, by, has already been discussed under point 3, p. 28. 

In view of this showing it is not strange that Andre s hypothesis 
has met with little favour from biblical scholars.* 

There is one other extended passage, 2 20 " 23 , whose genuineness 
has been questioned by W. Bohme (ZAW., 1887, 215^ .). 

He mentions incidentally the omission of the title after the name of the 
prophet in v. 20 , laying the stress of objection upon (i) the use of the con 
struction to (*?N) for by (TO; lit. by the hand of) in the same verse, and (2) 
the unnecessary repetition in v. 21 of a prophecy found in 2 6b - 7a , which, ac 
cording to 2 2 - 4 , Zerubbabel had already heard. These objections, however, 
are easily answered. The missing title is found in (&; the construction with 
to is the one that was originally used in vv. l - 10 ; and the repetition of v. 61 >, 
or rather, v. 6ba , v. 7a is not so literally reproduced, is simply a device for 
connecting the fortunes of Zerubbabel with the same events for which the 
prophet had sought to prepare the people. The weakness of Bohme s argu 
ment is apparent. This, however, is not all. He has overlooked the fact 
that Zerubbabel was removed soon after Haggai ceased to prophesy, and 
that, therefore, his theory, as Marti remarks, implies that this final prophecy 
was added by a writer who knew that it could not be fulfilled. 


The book of Haggai, then, as a whole, may be regarded as a 
genuine collection of the words of the prophet whose name it 
bears. It can hardly contain all that he said on any of the four 
occasions on which he is reported to have spoken, much less all 
that he said during the months when he was labouring for the 
restoration of the national sanctuary. The meagreness of the 

* For a more severe criticism of it, see G. A. Smith on Haggai in The Expositor s Bible. 


remains of his teachings, and the setting in which they have been 
preserved, may be explained by supposing that he himself did not 
commit his discourses to writing, but that a friend or a disciple, 
who had treasured his most striking or important utterances, soon 
after his death * put them into nearly the shape in which they have 
been preserved. It is necessary to use some such qualifying term 
as nearly in any statement with reference to the book, because, 
although, as has been shown, its unity as a literary production is 
perfectly defensible, there can be no doubt that, like other parts 
of the Old Testament, it has suffered more or less in the course 
of the centuries at the hands of careless or ignorant readers or 
transcribers. Some of the resulting additions, omissions, and cor 
ruptions can easily be detected and remedied. In other cases 
changes that have taken place reveal themselves only to the trained 
critic, and by signs that will not always convince the layman, es 
pecially if he is interested in a diverse opinion. This, however, 
is not the place for a further discussion of the subject. It belongs 
in the exegetical, but more especially in the critical, notes, where 
the renderings of the great Versions, as well as the readings of 
the Hebrew manuscripts and editions, will be cited and compared 
and the conjectures of the leading biblical scholars, past and pres 
ent, considered. The most that can be done in this connection 
is to present in tabular form the results reached in the notes for 
the purpose of indicating the condition of the Hebrew text. In 
the first column of the following tables are noted the additions that 
seem to have been made to the book since it was written, in the 
second the words and phrases, so far as they can be recovered, 
that appear to have been omitted, and in the third the cases in 
which the original has been wittingly or unwittingly distorted in 
the course of transmission. 

* The fact that all the prophecies are carefully and, so far as can be determined, correctly 
dated indicates that the book was compiled within a few years, at the longest, after they were 





I, I. 2V 

2. ry l 

N3 for N3. 

3. The entire verse. 


o^na for o^na. 




8. mm -\DN 

hy after i 1 ??. 

DPN3H for Dnx*O; 

n33Ni for nnj^Ni. 


10. D3 Sj; 

n before actf. 

S -)D for nao. 


SD before TJ ; X. 

D^DO for omso. 


nmn^ nns. 
omSx after an^n^x=. 

Syi for SN\ 

13. The entire verse. 


15. tftfa 

The transfer of v. b from 

2 1 . 

2, I. 

no for SN. 


^D before nnNtr. 

^** for h "^ 








J, I, 



a time. 

The whole verse. 


8. said Yahweh. 


aver you. 

The whole verse. 


;. sixth. 

ipon before the moun 

art. before Jieaven. 
all before that. 

pasha of Judah; to them 
after him. 

all before the rest. 

to come for hath come. 

your houses for houses. 

bring for cut; and I shall 
for that I may. 

dew for rain. 

hands for their hands. 

according to for to before 
the words. 

The transfer of v. b from 

2 1 . 

by for to. 

Shaltiel for Shealtiel. 






2,5. v. a entire. 

6. rnx 

m-inn-nxi DTI-JINI 

7. rixux mm ncx 

nirn for n^ion. 


"3 before V. 

9. ~ixsx mm icx 

10 irv TT? Dintr rouo 

va for SN, in some 


ii. r^mm-^xn, 



n before p^. 


15. nS>*oi nrn avn-p 

Sx for Sy. 

16. nma 

onvnn for w nrna. 

17. 2NJ ""7X DOriX~J^X1 

03HX for D33C ; . 



I>M for *^>i; xfe j for 


x>ajn after jn. 



Sx^nSxc p 

22. rnsSoD 8 

n before nWDD 1 

vnx a^na U^N 







2, 5. which thing 

6. once; yea, the sea 

and the dry land. 

7. said Yahweh of 


9. said Yahweh of 

10. in the second year 

of Darius. 

11. Thus said Yahweh 

of hosts. 


15. from this day for 


1 6. winepress. 

17. but ye did not return 

to me, saith Ya- 

before mine. 

art. before o7. 





from the twenty- 
fourth of the 
ninth month. 

kingdoms of the be 
fore nations; each 
by the sword of 
his fellow. 

desire for treasures. 

by for to, in some mss. 

to for upon. 

since they were for 
during the days. 

the prophet after Haggai. 

son of Shealtiel after 

art. before kingdoms. 1 

and until for nor yet. 
has for have borne. 



It has long been the fashion to disparage the book of Haggai, 
and some of the later biblical scholars are almost as severe in 
their criticism of it as were, in their day, Gesenius and de Wette. 

Thus, Marti says of the content of the prophecies: "The temple is to be 
built and salvation is near. From this fundamental thought, especially 
when combined with the prophecies of the Second Isaiah, all of Haggai s 
ideas may easily be derived. It is clear that he does not belong to the orig 
inal men who were able by interior illumination to comprehend the world 
and its condition in their judgments, but to the feebler descendants to whom 
light streams from the words of the earlier prophets." Reuss has a similar 
opinion of Haggai s literary ability. These are his words : " He generally falls 
into the most colourless prose; and if he a couple of times, at the end of the 
second division, and in the fourth, strikes a higher key and rises to poetic 
ally flowery language, one sees that this does not flow from a living spring." 
The mixture of figures into which the critic himself here "falls" rather de 
tracts from his authority in matters of style. Cornill is more appreciative. 
He says: "The little book . . . occupies but a modest place in the prophetic 
literature of Israel. It rises hardly above plain prose, but in its very sim 
plicity and unpretentiousness, because the author speaks from a deeply 
moved heart in an affecting situation, it has something uncommonly attract 
ive and affecting that should not be overlooked." * 

The truth is that there is hardly a sufficient basis for a very 
definite and decisive opinion with reference to Haggai and his 
prophecies. In the first place, let it be noted, the book that bears 
his name, next to Obadiah, is the smallest in the Old Testament; 
secondly, small as it is, only about two-thirds of it can be attrib 
uted to the prophet; and, thirdly, these brief fragments, in passing 
through the hands of an editor, may have lost more or less of the 
impress of Haggai s personality. This being the case, criticism 
should confine itself to the more salient features of the book; for 
the more minute the analysis the further it is likely to be from 
the truth. 

The central thought of the prophet is too prominent to be over 
looked. He was inspired with the irrepressible desire to see the 
temple rebuilt, and he set himself the task of persuading his peo 
ple to restore it. In the pursuit of this purpose he used the same 

* Einl. 6 , 213. 


means that his predecessors had employed, tracing past mis 
fortunes to neglect of a, to him, plain duty, and thus by implica 
tion threatening further calamities if this neglect continued, but 
promising the most tempting blessings if the opposite course were 
taken. This, it is true, is a rather narrow program for a prophet, 
but if, as can doubtless be shown, in Haggai s time the future of 
the little community in Jerusalem and their religion was involved 
in the question of the restoration of the national sanctuary, he 
certainly deserves some credit for seeing this, and more for mov 
ing the people to take appropriate action. He was not an Amos 
or an Isaiah; but must not Amos or Isaiah, in his place, have at 
tempted what he undertook ? and would either of them have been 
more successful? 

The style of Haggai is usually regarded as prosaic. Reuss, it 
will be remembered, pronounces it " colourless." No doubt, it is 
somewhat tame, if the brilliancy of Isaiah or the polish of the great 
poet of the Exile be taken as the standard. Yet, Haggai was not 
without the oriental liking for figures, nor are his prophecies as 
unrhythmical as they have been represented. In describing his 
style prominence has sometimes been given to the frequent re 
currence of "Thus saith Yahweh of Hosts" and u saith Yahweh," 
or "Yahweh of Hosts," and it has been interpreted as a sign of 
"the disappearance of the immediate consciousness of inspira 
tion."* But these expressions are not peculiar to Haggai. In 
fact, when the instances in which they have been interpolated (6) 
are deducted, it will be found that he does not use them as many 
times in his whole book as Jeremiah does in the twenty-third 
chapter of his prophecies.^ It is even more incorre ct to repre 
sent the use of interrogation as characteristic of this prophet. t 
There are in all six cases. But in the second chapter of Jeremiah, 
which contains only thirty-seven verses, there are nineteen, or, 
proportionately, twice as many. There is one expression that may 
safely be regarded as peculiar to Haggai, namely, "take thought" 
(lit., "set your hearts"), which occurs no fewer than five times, 
and, being found in the third as well as the first prophecy, is a 

* So Nowack, in the introduction to his commentary on the book of Haggai. 
t The exact figures are 14 to 21. J Andre. 115. 


proof that the former is not, as Andre contends, an interpolation. 
See pp. 2&ff. It seems to be characteristic of Haggai, too, where 
there is an opportunity, to introduce extended lists of particulars. 
Such series occur in i 6 n and 2 12 - 19 . 

In the first three cases, however, it is possible that the text has been inter 
polated. In i 6 (freely rendered) the arrangement that suggests itself is as 

Ye have sown much, but harvested little; 
Eaten without satisfaction, drunken without exhilaration, clothed 

yourselves without comfort; 
And the hireling earned, -for a leaky purse. 
In i 11 a similar arrangement is possible: 

Yea, I summoned a drought upon the land: 
Even upon the highlands, and the grain, and the must, and the oil; 

And all that the soil produced. 

In 2 12 bread, or pottage, or wine, or oil sounds like another list of specifica 
tions, but it precedes instead of following the general term any food. This 
fact seems unfavourable to the theory of interpolation. Even more so is the 
case of 2 19 , for here the series appears to be necessary to the expression of the 
prophet s thought. It is probable, therefore, that he actually wrote: 

Is the seed yet in the garner? 
Nor have the vine, and the Jig, and the pomegranate, and the olive 

tree borne: 

From this day will I bless. 

If he did, perhaps it is not too much to say that he was apt to express him 
self in this fashion. Not that he did not sometimes put his thoughts into ;i 
more regular form. Take, for example, i 10 (omitting the evidently super 
fluous DO- Sj;), which might be freely rendered: 

Therefore heaven withheld the rain, 

and the earth withheld its fruit. 

This is a fairly good specimen of Hebrew parallelism. It is interesting as 
showing that he had caught the measure, as well as adopted some of the ideas , 
of the Second Isaiah. It is also important, since it furnishes a warrant for 
correcting some of the irregularities in his prophecies, when other considera 
tions point in the same direction. Applied to 2 6 - 9 the metrical principle con 
firms the following analysis. The words in plain type are accretions: 

6 . For thus saith Yahweh of Hosts : 

Yet once a little while, 
And I will shake heaven and earth, 
and the sea, and the dry land; 

7 . yea, I will shake all nations; 

A nd the treasures of all nations shall come, 
and I will Jill this house with wealth, 
saith Yahweh of Hosts: 

8 . For mine is the silver, and mine the gold, 

saith Yahweh of Hosts. 


. Great shall be the wealth of this house, 
the future above the past, 

saith Yahweh of Hosts: 
And in this place I will grant peace, 
saith Yahweh of Hosts.* 

Other illustrations might be cited, but it would probably be 
difficult, without more or less violence to the text, to reduce the 
whole book, or even the prophecies, to a poetical form. Still, too 
much of it is metrical to justify the distinction made by Kohler 
(31) that, "while the method of presentation preferred by the 
older prophets was the poetical, that of Haggai, on the other hand, 
bore an oratorical character." It would be more nearly correct 
to say that the compiler of the book uses prose, and the prophet 
himself at first speaks the language of common life, but that, as 
he proceeds, he adopts to a varying extent poetical forms of 
thought and expression. 

* In every case the ungenuineness of the word or words omitted can be established without 
reference to the metre. For details, see the comments. 


Most of the prophetical books have proper titles. They are of 
varying length, that of Jeremiah being the longest and most com 
prehensive and that of Obadiah, as is fitting, the shortest. The 
book of Haggai, like those of Ezekiel, Jonah and Zechariah, has 
none, the opening verse being merely an introduction to the first 
of a brief series of prophecies of which the two chapters of the work 
are mainly composed. The contents of these chapters naturally 
fall into four sections, each of which has prefixed to it the date of 
the prophecy therein reported. The general subject is the resto 
ration of the temple at Jerusalem. The first subordinate topic is 

SANCTUARY (i 1 - 15 *). 

This topic occupies the whole of the first chapter, in its original 
extent, but the prophet is the speaker only in vv. 2 ~ 11 , the rest of 
the passage being an account of the effect of his message on those 
to whom it was delivered. Hence it will be advisable to discuss 
the chapter under two heads, the first being 


It begins abruptly with the citation of the adverse opinion among 
the Jews with reference to the question of rebuilding the sanctuary 
(v. 2 ). Haggai argues for the contrary, presenting two reasons 
(vv. 4 " 6 ) calculated to appeal strongly to those to whom they were 
addressed. Taking the validity of these arguments for granted, 
he proceeds to exhort his people to act in the matter (vv. 7 f ) ; but, 

4 o 

I 1 - 41 

instead of resting his case at this point, to make sure that his ex 
hortation will be heeded he repeats the second of his arguments 
(vv. 9 " n ), giving it a form so direct and positive that it cannot be 
misunderstood, and so forcible that he who ignores it must take 
the attitude of defying the Almighty. 

1. All the prophecies of Haggai were delivered in the second 
year of Darius. There are two, possibly three, persons, real or 
imaginary, mentioned by this name (Heb. Dareyawesh; Per. 
Darayaya ush) in the Old Testament. The first is "Darius the 
Mede," the mythical conqueror who, according to Dn. 6V5 81 , 
" received the kingdom" of Babylon after the death of Belshazzar. 
The third is "Darius the Persian" (Ne. i2 22 ). 

In Dn. Q 1 Darius is called " the son of Ahasuerus," that is, Xerxes; but, since 
Xerxes belongs to a period (485-465 B.C.) considerably later than that of the 
Persian invasion (539 B.C.), it is impossible that his son, who, moreover, bore 
the name Artaxerxes, had anything to do with that event. It is probable that 
the author of Daniel, having but a confused traditional knowledge of the his 
tory of the East, and being influenced by earlier predictions (Is. i3 17 ff - 2i 2 ff - 
Je. 51" ff- " ff ) to the effect that the Medes would overthrow Babylon, like the 
author of Tobit i4 15 identified the best-known of the Medo-Persian kings with 
Cyaxares, the destroyer of Nineveh, and then made Darius, who actually took 
Babylon twice during his reign, a son of this Median ruler and gave him the 
credit of overthrowing the Babylonian empire. Cf. EB., arts. Darius; Per 
sia, 13; Prince, Daniel, 53 ff. Winckler (KA T. 3 , 288) thinks that Cambyses 
is meant. On the older views, see DB., art. Darius; Prince, 45. 

Winckler (KA T. 3 , 288) identifies Darius the Persian with Darius Hystaspes. 
The more common opinion is that Darius Codomannus, the last of the Per 
sian kings, is the one so designated. So Meyer, EJ., 104; et al. 

The author of Ne. i2 10 ff - begins with a genealogy of the high priests of the 
Persian period (vv. I0 f ), which is followed by a list of the names of the heads 
of the priestly houses for "the days of Joiakim." Cf. w. 12 - 21 . Finally he 
asserts, v. w , where all reference to the Levites should be omitted, that, in the 
source from which he drew, there were similar lists for the period of each of the 
high priests mentioned "until (ij? for Sj?) the reign of Darius the Persian." 
In other words, he makes Nehemiah a contemporary of Eliashib and the king 
he has in mind a contemporary of Jaddua, three generations later, the date 
of Darius Codomannus. This conclusion is not affected however one may 
interpret Ne. i3 28 , that passage being by a different author. Cf. JBL. t xxii, 
97 / 

The king to whom reference is here made is Darius Hystaspes. 
This is clear from Zc. f, where the prophet, who was a contempo 
rary of Haggai, in a message delivered in the fourth year of Darius, 


represents the period of affliction as having lasted seventy years; 
for Darius Hystaspes came to the throne, as has already been de 
scribed (p. 20), in 521 B.C., so that his fourth year was the sixty- 
ninth after the destruction of Jerusalem. Cf. also Zc. i 12 . He is 
here called simply the king, not, as he is by later writers, "king of 
Persia." Cf. Ezr. i 1 Dn. i 10 . His second year corresponded 
roughly to 520 B.C., and the sixth month, according to the Baby 
lonian system, which was adopted by the Jews during the Exile,* 
to the latter part of August and the first part of September. It was 
on the first day of this month, then called Elul (Ne. 6 15 ), when the 
people were enjoying a holiday (Am. 8 5 Is. 66 23 ), that the word of 
Yahweh came, lit., was.] See also v. 3 2 1 - 10 - 20 Zc. i 1 , et pas. 
The message came by, lit., by the hand of, J Haggai the prophet. 
Hitherto it has not been clear who was writing. It now appears 
that it is not Haggai recording his own utterances, but some one 
else reporting what the prophet said on various occasions. This 
becomes more evident in the next section, where the same author, 
presumably, describes the effect of Haggai s preaching. The 
prophet, it seems, when the book was compiled, had already closed 
his career. His message was intended primarily for two persons 
at that time prominent in Jerusalem. The first was Zerubbabel. 
His name, whatever may be its first component, evidently has for 
its second the Hebrew designation for Babylon. The person so 
called is described as a son of Shealtiel, who, according to i Ch. 3 18 , 
was the eldest son of the captive king Jehoiachin (2 K. 24 15 25") 
and governor of Judah. 

< l > The name Haggai was not borne by any other person mentioned in the 
Old Testament, but there are many other names of the same class. Cf. 
Ezbai, Amittai, Barzillai, Zakkai, etc. It is commonly interpreted as a deriv 
ative, in the sense of festal, from m, feast. So Ew. *\ 1G4 ; Ols. 4 217a ; Ges. 
so. 2. 5. j t mav> however, be a mutilated form of rvjn, i Ch. 6s, like 
^nc, Ezr. io 33 , for rvjnp, Gn. 46 16 , of which there is a feminine n^.n. Cf. 
2 S. 3 4 . The Massoretic vocalisation is supported by Gr. Ayycuos and Lat. 
Haggaeus or Aggaeus. 

* Cf. DB., art. Time; EB., art. Year; Benzinger, Arch., iQ9 /. 

t This form of expression is frequent in the prophecies of Jeremiah and later writings. See 
especially the book of Ezekiel, where it occurs about fifty times. 

J This, also, is a late idiom, common from the Exile onward. Cf. Ju. 3" i K. i2 ir> Je. 37?, 
et pas.; also C. and HB., Hex., i, aiga. 

I 1 43 

< 2 > Of the various etymologies for Zerubbabel thus far suggested the most 
attractive is that which makes it a Hebrew modification of Zer-babili, seed of 
Babylon, a name that actually occurs in inscriptions of the time of Darius. Cf. 
Pinches, OT., 425. For others, cf. DB., art. Zerubbabel; Kohler, ir /. The 
Hebrew vocalisation is explained by van Hoonacker (PP.), who translates it 
"Crush Babylon" (S:n :nr) as an instance of paronomasia, intended to 
express at the same time "the hopes that his compatriots based upon the 
scion of the Davidic dynasty and the resentment that they cherished against 

<*) Mt. 1 1 2 makes Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, but according to i Ch. 
3 19 , he was the son of Pedaiah, a younger brother of Shealtiel. A deal of in 
genuity has been expended in trying to harmonise these conflicting genealo 
gies. Thus, Aben Ezra explains that Zerubbabel was reared by his uncle, and 
therefore called the son of Shealtiel. So Dru., el al. Ki. prefers to think that 
Pedaiah was a son, not a brother, of Shealtiel, and that Zerubbabel was called 
the son of his grandfather because the latter was held in higher honour than 
the father. SoHd.,ei al. Some Christian exegetes have undertaken to harmo 
nise this passage and i Ch. 3 19 , not only with each other, but with Lu. 3", where 
Shealtiel is the son, not of Jeconiah, but of Neri, a descendant of David 
through the line of Nathan. Cf. i Ch. 3 8 . Koh. on a 23 does it as follows: 
Jeconiah, as a result of the curse pronounced upon him by Jeremiah (aa 30 ), 
had no grandsons, but his son Assir had a daughter who, in accordance with 
the law for such cases (Nu. 368 * ) married Neri and bore him, first Shealtiel, 
who became the heir of Assir, and was reckoned his son, then six others, 
among them Pedaiah. Next, Shealtiel died, leaving a widow but no children; 
whereupon his brother Pedaiah took his wife and begot Zerubbabel, who, in 
accordance with the law of levirate (Dt. 25* ff ), was the legal son and heir of 
the deceased. Thus Zerubbabel is made to appear the son of both Shealtiel 
and Pedaiah, the grandson of Neri, and a remoter descendant of Jeconiah. 
The flaw in this ingenious scheme is that it is based on a mistaken interpre 
tation of a corrupt passage. It falls to pieces at once when "VDN in i Ch. 3 19 
is properly rendered, not as a proper name, but as an adjective used adverbi 
ally in the sense of when imprisoned. Cf. Ges. $ ll8 - 5 (a >. It is therefore 
necessary to recognise in Shealtiel a son of Jeconiah, and abandon the attempt 
to make the Chronicler agree with Luke. The discrepancy between the 
Chronicler and Haggai, however, can be removed by substituting Shealtiel 
for Pedaiah, as (8 does, in i Ch. 3 19 ; which, moreover, makes the Chronicler 
consistent with himself. Cf. Ezr. 3 2 5 2 Ne. 12*. 

The natural inference is that Zerubbabel was a prince of the 
house of David who had not only been released from captivity, 
but, in accordance with the practice of the Persian kings, appointed 
to administer the affairs of his conquered country under the higher 
official called in Ezr. 5 3 "the governor beyond the River." How 
long he had occupied this position when Haggai began to proph 
esy, there seems to be no means of discovering.* With him was 

* For an apocryphal account of his selection for it, see i Esd. 4 13 ff -. 


associated Joshua* son of Jehosadak. The father, according to 

1 Ch. 5 40 /6 14 , was a son of Seraiah, the chief priest who was put 
to death by Nebuchadrezzar at Riblah after the destruction of 
Jerusalem. Cf. 2 K. 25 18ff< Je. 52 24ff> . Ezra the scribe, accord 
ing to Ezr. 7 1 , was his brother. Jehosadak, as well as Ezra, was 
carried into captivity to Babylon (i Ch. 5 41 /6 l0 ), where Joshua 
seems to have been born and reared. Kosters (WL, 41 f.) ques 
tions whether he "was the grandson of Seraiah, and therefore 
whether he was ever in Babylonia. The Chronicler, he says, 
holding the mistaken opinion that there had been a continuous line 
of high priests from the Exodus to his own time, took for granted 
that Joshua was a lineal descendant of Seraiah and used Jehosa 
dak as a link to connect them. This may be true, but there are 
some considerations that make it possible to believe the contrary, 
(i) Although the Jews had no high priest, in the sense in which 
the term is used in the Hexateuch, before the Exile, such passages 
as 2 K. ii 18 , as well as 25 18 , show that they had a chief over their 
priests, and other passages, like i S. 14^, prove that the office reg 
ularly descended from father to son. Cf. EB., art. Priest, 5; Ben- 
zinger, Arch., 413 /. (2) Since the high-priesthood proper was 
but an extension of this hereditary office, it may be taken for 
granted, unless there is proof to the contrary, that the former was 
the heritage of the family that had enjoyed the latter. (3) The 
importance of the succession was such that there must have been 
records with reference to it from which the Chronicler was able 
to obtain reliable information. In Ne. i2 23 a source of this sort 
is cited. Fortunately, it is not necessary to decide the question 
of Joshua s pedigree, the important thing being that he was the 
high priest when Haggai prophesied, and that this is perhaps the 
oldest instance of the use of the title in the Old Testament.! 

2. The prophet, after a formal announcement, Thus saith Yah- 
well of Hosts, introduces the subject of his discourse by citing the 
prevalent opinion with reference to it. The very first words are 

* In Ezra and Nehemiah, Jeshua, whence the Greek ITJO-OU? and the English Jesus. 

t It occurs in Lv. 2 i 10 Nu. as 25 - 28 Jos. 20" (all P.); as a gloss in 2 K. i2/ 10 22*- 23*; and in 

2 Ch. 34 9 Ne. 3 1 20 is 28 . In the books of Chronicles and Ezra its place is supplied by irion pD, 
the chief priest, or its equivalent. Cf. i Ch. 27 2 Ch. 19" 24*- 26 20 3* 10 Ezr. 7 5 ; also 2 K. 

I 1 45 

ominous, for here, as in Is. 8 6 and often elsewhere, the phrase this 
people betrays impatience and disapproval.* The reason for Yah 
weh s displeasure is that the people say, have said and are still 
saying, The time hath not come for the house of Yahweh to be built, 
that is, rebuilt. At first sight this objection would seem to mean 
that those who made it were waiting for the expiration of the sev 
enty years of Jeremiah s prophecy. Cf. Je. 25". The answer 
given to it shows that it was dictated by selfishness, which mani 
fested itself also in absorption in comparatively trivial personal 
affairs to the neglect of the larger issues that ought to interest all 
the members of the community. Nor did they simply neglect 
the ruined house. The words cited breathe resistance to an appeal 
in favour of rebuilding it. It is probable that the proposal had been 
made or strongly supported by Haggai himself, and that therefore 
the prophecy here recorded was not the first to which he gave ut 
terance. 3. The tone of v. 2 leads the reader to expect an indig 
nant and immediate reply to the excuse given. The present text 
first repeats the announcement of v. 1 , as if the prophet, having 
made the statement of v. 2 , did not proceed until he had received 
further instructions. Any such supposition, however, so weakens 
the force of the prophet s message that it is better to omit this 
verse altogether. See the textual notes. 4. Thus it appears that 
v. 2 was originally immediately followed by the question, 7s it a 
time for you yourselves to dwell in ceiled houses,, while this house is 
desolate? The ceiled, or panelled, houses elsewhere mentioned 
were finished in cedar. The same wood was used in the first 
temple (i K. 6 9 ); also in the dwellings of the rich in the time of 
Jeremiah. Cf. Je. 22 14 . It is hardly possible that this or any other 
costly wood was found in many of the houses of those whom Hag 
gai was addressing; most of them must have been miserably 
poor; but they all had roofs over their heads, while Yahweh as 
yet had no habitation. The temple had now been desolate about 
sixty-seven years, and it was nineteen years since Cyrus had re 
leased the Jews from captivity. 5. The people had now for some 

* The words are rendered additionally forcible by being placed in a semi-independent rela 
tion before the verb, which might be indicated by the rendering, This people, they say. Cf. 
Ges. , 


time been suffering, how and to what extent will appear later. 
Perhaps they had made this an excuse for not rebuilding the temple. 
It had not occurred to them that their misfortunes might be due to 
their neglect of Yahweh. Haggai was decidedly of this opinion. 
He therefore follows the question of the preceding verse with the 
exhortation, take thought on your ways. This, in view of the use of 
the same expression in v. 7 , seems a better rendering than that of 
Wellhausen, Consider how ye have fared. Cf. also 2 15 - 18 . 6. The 
prophet might next have reminded his people how often and how 
widely they had departed from the path of loyalty and righteous 
ness. Perhaps he did so in the original discourse, and these de 
tails have been omitted. In any case, they do not appear in his 
book, but here, taking them for granted, he proceeds to recite 
some of the results of, or, as he would have put it, the penalties for, 
their conduct, and especially for their neglect of the sanctuary. 
Ye have sowed much, he says, and harvested little. He is reminding 
them of the repeated failure of their crops. This is in itself a great 
calamity. It is therefore not probable that, in the details which 
follow, the prophet intends to convey the idea sometimes attrib 
uted to him (Koh.), that food, drink and clothing were deprived 
of their natural properties to increase the suffering from scarcity. 
He means simply that so small were the returns from the soil, 
when those who lived from it ate, there was not enough to still their 
hunger; when they drank wine, they could never drink their///, 
lit., to drunkenness (Gn. 43 34 ); and when they dressed themselves, 
their clothing was so scanty that none of them was warm. Cf. 
v. 9 2 16 . This was the condition of the husbandman. That of the 
labourer was equally, if not more, wretched; for he who wrought 
for wages earned for a leaky purse; that is to say, when he could 
secure employment, which, according to Zc. 8 10 , was rare, his pay 
was so small, in comparison with the prices he had to pay for the 
necessities of life, that it seemed to him as if his wages had disap 
peared through holes in his purse as soon as he had received them. 

There is another interpretation that deserves mention, if for no other 
reason on account of its ingenuity. It is that of Andre. He takes ~\nx in the 
sense of little stone and renders the clause in question, the hireling wrought for 
a little pierced stone. This he interprets as an allusion to a custom that ex- 

I 1 47 

feted in Babylon, where, he says, one who had bought a slave at the market 
hung his seal about the neck of the newly acquired chattel to indicate that he 
or she was his property. He says that as "put in irons" is equivalent to "im 
prison," so "a pierced pebble" means nothing more nor less than "slavery." 
Hence to work for a pierced pebble is in the end, in spite of one s work, to be 
come a slave. The following are some of the objections to this interpretation: 
(i) The usual meaning of ins is bag or purse. Cf. Jb. 14" Gn. 42 M . (2) 
If the prophet had wished to express the idea attributed to him by Andre, he 
would probably have used onin, the proper word for seal. Cf. 2 M Gn. 38 18 
Ct. 8 6 . (3) Although SN is used in the sense of for the sake of (i K. 19 ), the 
more natural interpretation is that it denotes destination after a pregnant 
verb. Cf. Gn. 19". 

7. The representation of the ills the Jews had suffered and were 
suffering as chastisement for their shortcomings was calculated to 
move them to ask what they could do to secure the favour of Yah- 
weh and different treatment from his hands. Haggai next an 
swers this question ; and first, if the text is correct, in general terms, 
by repeating the exhortation of v. 5 , Take thought on your ways; 
by which he means that, as they have offended, so they can appease, 
their God by their behaviour. He does not, however, stop with 
this general suggestion. There is one thing above all others that 
they ought to have done, but have left undone. Their first duty 
is to make good this omission. Go up, he says, speaking for Yah- 
weh, into the mountains and cut timber, and build the house. It is 
not clear to what mountains* he refers. The hills both of Judah 
and Ephraim seem to have been well wooded in ancient times. 
Cf. the name Kirjath-jearim (Jos. 9 17 ; also Jos. i7 14ff - i S. i4 25ff -). 
Carmel was noted for its forests. Cf. Mi. y 14 Ct. f. It is possi 
ble that the prophet had in mind Lebanon, whence the timber for 
the first temple was procured. Cf. i K. 5 15ff 7s ff - The author 
of Ezr. 3 7 evidently thought so, since he says, apparently on the 
basis of this passage, that the Jews, when they first attempted to 
rebuild the sanctuary, employed "the Sidonians and the Tyrians 
to bring cedars from Lebanon to the sea," and thus "to Joppa."f 
Still it is doubtful if, under the circumstances, Haggai would have 
directed his people to seek materials for the new structure at so 

* The noun is singular in the original, but in such a case it frequently means a hilly or moun 
tainous region. C}. Dt. i 7 Is. n 9 . 

t On the authenticity of this passage, see pp. 9 /. 


great a distance. It would have involved too much time and ex 
pense and attracted too much attention. Nothing is said of stone, 
because there was plenty of this material in the ruins of the city, 
if not in those of the former temple. The motive for the action 
required is a double one; first, that I may take pleasure in it.* 
The second clause may be rendered, as it is by the great Versions, 
that I may be glorified, namely, by the worship of the sanctuary, 
or, better, that I may glorify myself, i. e., by a display of glory in 
augurate the Messianic era. So Koh., We., Now., Marti, et al. The 
prophet makes no reference to the political situation, but, as has 
been shown elsewhere, his proposal synchronises too closely with 
the disturbance in the East at the beginning of the reign of Darius 
to permit one to doubt that he intended to take advantage of it to 
attain the object he had at heart. 9. In presenting to the Jews 
the prospect of pleasing Yahweh the prophet was appealing to a 
powerful motive, the universal desire for life and happiness, pe 
culiarly prominent in Deuteronomy. He does not, however, rely 
on this alone, but again recalls their past experience to show what 
are the consequences of disregarding the divine will. Ye have 
looked for much, he makes Yahweh say, and lo, it became, or had 
become, little. Cf. 2 16 . Nor was this all, for he adds, as ye brought 
this little home, I blew upon it. At first thought it seems as if the 
prophet had in mind a sudden and powerful gust of wind, "a blast 
of the breath" of the Almighty (Ps. i8 16/15 ), but perhaps he alludes 
to the superstition still current in the East that the breath may pro 
duce a magical effect upon anything toward which it is directed. f 
It is not, however, necessary, with Wellhausen and others, to sup 
pose that Haggai thought of Yahweh as actually using magic. 
The expression used is in effect a simile illustrating the surprising 
rapidity with which the scanty harvest disappeared. See the 
"leaky purse" of v. 6 . Wherefore? asks Yahweh, and answers 
his own question, for the first time expressly connecting the mis 
fortunes described with the neglect of the temple: Because of my 

* The rendering, 7 will be gracious in it, is less defensible, since, if the prophet had intended 
to express this thought, he would not have omitted the object you. 

t "It is in the highest degree disagreeable to Moslems if any one whistles over a threshing- 
floor heaped with grain. Then comes the devil, they say, in the night and takes a part of the 
harvest." L. Bauer, in Millheilungcn u. Nachrichten des deutschcn Palaslina-Vereins, 1899, 9. 

I 1 49 

house, that is desolate, or Because my house is desolate. Not that 
this state of things would be unpardonable under any circum 
stances. It is, however, to use the words of the text, while ye make 
haste each about his own home. The complaint is the same as in 
v. 4, but here it seems to be directed against a considerable num 
ber of persons who, perhaps because they had recently arrived 
in Jerusalem, were engaged in providing themselves with dwell 
ings. 10. Therefore because his people were more eager to 
get themselves well housed than to provide him with a worthy 
abode Yahweh set in motion the secondary causes that produced 
the condition just described. Heaven at his command withheld 
rain. The text has dew t but there are good reasons for believing 
that this is a copyist s error. One of them is that, although there 
are several passages in which the dew is described as refreshing the 
earth and vegetation (Dt. 33 28 - Gn. 2f 8 - 39 ), there is no other in 
which the suspension of this phenomenon alone is represented as 
producing a drought. On the other hand, the production of a 
drought by withholding rain is repeatedly threatened or recorded. 
Cf. Dt. ii 17 1 K. S 35 , but especially Am. 4 7 .* If in this case it was 
the rain that was withheld in great measure, it is not strange that 
the earth withheld its produce. The rainfall of Palestine has always 
been irregular and unreliable. It is almost entirely confined to 
the months from November to April inclusive, but it varies greatly 
from year to year in amount as well as in its distribution through 
the rainy season. The lowest figures for the years from 1861 to 
1880, for example, were 13.39 inches, and the highest 32.21 inches, 
the average being 23.32 inches. f Whenever the amount threatens 
to fall below 25 inches the people become apprehensive; if it falls 
below 20 inches, they expect to suffer; and if, as was the case in 
1864-66, there is a shortage for two or three years in succession, 
many of them are forced, like the patriarch, to migrate or starve. 
11. The rainfall varies, also, for different parts of the country, 
sometimes to the extent of several inches. Amos, in the passage 
above cited, tells of cases in which it rained upon one city and not 

* For other reasons for the emendation proposed, see the critical notes, 
t DB., art. Rain ; where, however, the average rainfall for the period is incorrectly given as 
"about 20 inches." 


at all upon another, or even upon one of two adjoining fields. The 
drought* to which Haggai here refers was summoned upon the 
earth. That is, as in the preceding verse, the ground. The 
phrase, even upon the mountains, which follows, might be inter 
preted as meaning the more elevated parts of the country, where 
ordinarily the rainfall is heaviest ;t but it is probably here, as in 
Ez. 33 28 , a more exact designation for the Holy Land as a whole. 
On its genuineness, see the critical notes. The grain, the must% 
and the oil were then, as they still are, the principal crops. Cf. 
Dt. ii 14 18 4 , etc. The drought not only affected these but all that 
the soil produced, thus robbing men and cattle of all the labour of 
their hands, the results that are desired and expected from tilling 
and sowing the ground and tending the orchards and vineyards. 

1. BTitf ruisb] For n>ju ; n rutra. Cf. Gn. 47 18 ; Nrd. * 943 - 2 a . 
inx DTO] The word DV, for which <& & have no equivalent, is prob 
ably a later addition. Cf. 2 1 - 10 - 20 , where it is omitted. The later idiom 
occurs also in v. 1S . Cf. Ges. * 134. <R. s^jn] (g adds X^ywv Eiirbv. 
Sm. accordingly inserts ~\DN nDsS. So also We., Now., Marti. Wrongly, 
for these reasons: (i) This reading is not supported by the other great 
Vrss. (2) The added words, as Bu. (ZAW., 1906, 7 /.) has shown, 
are unsuitable with no, which requires that the agent be immediately 
followed, as in the present text, by SN with the names or titles of the per 
sons for whom the message is intended. Otherwise the agent is made to 
address himself, saying, say, etc. This, to be sure, is what he does in 2 1 ; 
but only because in that passage "pa has been substituted for SN to bring 
it into harmony with this one. If Sx be restored, the two passages will 
represent two ways of describing the transmission of a divinely inspired 
message; in one of which Yahweh speaks by or through the prophet to 
others (i 1 ), while in the other he says to the former what he wishes him to 
communicate to the latter (2 1 ). The adoption of <& s reading in this 
case would require the change of 10 to SK; but if this change were made 
it would be impossible to explain how T2, which is an error for Sx in 2 10 
as well as in 2 1 , found its way into either of these passages. It seems nec- 

* The prophet here indulges in paronomasia. The offence consisted in permitting the 
house of Yahweh to lie a^n (.harebh), the penalty is a^n (horebh). It is as if one said in 
English, Because the temple was a ruin, the land was denied rain. 

t ZDPV., xxxii, 80 ft. 

% On the distinction between must and wine, see Mi. 6 1S . The former is only potentially 
intoxicating or injurious. Cf. Ju. p 13 Ho. 4", and, on the latter passage, Marti. 

That the labour is the labour of the cattle as well as their owners appears from the fact 
that the word rp (kaph) means not only the human palm but the sole of the foot of a man or an 

I 51 

essary, therefore, to reject the emendation proposed. Saa-n] Written 
also, and frequently, Saanr. nno] Assy, pahatu, or more fully, bel pa- 
hati, lord of a district. (8, here and in vv. 12 - 14 2 10 - 21 , has K <t>v\T}s, the 
translators apparently taking nno for the equivalent of, or an abbrevia 
tion for, nnfltPDD. So > H . 2. IDN] Lit., hath said, but, since the mes 
sage is now first delivered, it may properly be rendered saith. Cf. Ges. 
ice. 2. 1jn n p N3 D y N sj xhe text as it stands is not unintelligible. It 
would naturally be rendered, It is not a time to come, the time, etc. So 
Marck, Koh., Klo. Many, however, regard this as unnatural. The 
emendations suggested are of three classes. In one the consonants of the 
present text are retained but the vocalisation changed. Thus, some rd., 
with AV., N3 for N3, i. e., The time is not come, the time, etc. So Dru., Hd. 
Others change s3-n# to sa nj?, producing, Not now is the time come, etc. 
So Hi., We., Now., Marti. Neither of these suggestions can be pronounced 
indefensible. In the former, however, if the first ny were the subject of 
a, it would naturally have the article, as in Ez. y 7 - 12 , while in the latter 
nj:= nnj? seems superfluous. A second method of improving the text 
involves consonantal changes. Thus, Oort reads ui n# N3 Tp N 1 ?, The 
time is not yet come, etc., and Andre in ns Ha-n^ vh t the latter simply 
eliminating the second r\y; but for not yet Haggai uses S iy (2 19 ), and 
as for Andre s device, it does not touch the real difficulty. The objec 
tions noted do not lie against a third method, the omission of the first np 
and the substitution of xa for a. The result is a simple, straightfor 
ward text meaning, The time is not come, etc., which, moreover, has the 
support of the Vrss. The case, then, is apparently one of dittog. occasioned 
by the resemblance between N3 and no. mm no] A case of attrac 
tion. For the regular construction, see Gn. 29?; Ko. 4 < 14 . 3. Hi. ex 
plains this verse as a device to remedy the clumsiness of the prophet in 
citing (v. 2 ) the words of the people instead of those of the prophet. Bu. 
replies, and justly, that the clumsiness is all in this verse, which he there 
fore rejects as ungenuine. Cf. ZAW., 1906, 10. Contra, Hi., Now., 
Marti, And. It was doubtless inserted by some one who, like Ki., 
interpreted what follows as a message to the people as distinguished 
from their leaders. The phraseology (no) was borrowed from v. l . 
4. ODN] Emphatic. Cf. Gn. 2734 Zc. 7 5 ; Ges. 135 - 2 <o. Houb. rd. 
nnx. o^ns] So <S B &; but (& A Q & H 2F appear to have had avia. 
The adoption of the latter reading makes an explanation of the omission 
of the article before the adj. following unnecessary. For the opposite 
view, cf. Ges. ll8 - 6 <*>; Ko. zi.__ nrnnonj (gB^ t KOS fyQ^ but H 
is supported by <gN A Q L H &. On the construction with \ cf. Ges. "1.2 
<*>. 5. DoaaS] For oyaaS. Cf. Ges. *>- * < c >. 6. Nam] Inf. abs. in 
continuation of the finite construction. Cf. Ges. 5 in. * (>. joyn] In 
pause, with a lighter distinctive, Ges. 29 - . njrae^] On this and the fol 
lowing fern, inf., cf. Ges. * t <*>; Bo. *o. ! B . nnS] Many mss. and 


edd. rd. oinS. iS] Indef. after an impersonal vb. Cf. i K. i 1 ; Ges. 
\ 144 - 2 ; Ko. 5 324 e > -unferD] Kenn. 150 rd. -onir\ So And., Bu. The 
use of the prtc. in & favours IW. 7. This verse has received special 
attention from recent critics. We., who is followed by Now., Marti, 
om. the latter half of it. The reason given is that the expression used 
is not applicable except to past action or experience; but in 2 15 - 18 prac 
tically the same expression is clearly used, first of the past and then of the 
future, just as, on the supposition that this verse is genuine, it is in this 
section. It has also been proposed to relieve the difficulty with the pres 
ent text by rearranging it. Thus, Van H. transposes vv. 7 and 8 , while 
Bu. inserts the latter after v. ". The objection to these devices is that 
they both leave v. 7 meaningless and indefensible. On the other hand, if 
the present arrangement is preserved, the relation of vv. 7 t to their con 
text will furnish a striking parallel to that of vv. 24 f of Am. 5 to theirs. 
8. by] (& Xc - bAO -, dvdprjTe em = Sy by, the reading of Kenn. i ; yet not 
necessarily, since fat, like &s, in (& sometimes represents the ace. Cf. Ex. 
I7 10 Dt. 3". nnxam] (& Kal Ktyare (x, /cii/ ere); 3C, et ctzdite cnx-ai. 
<& L adds Kal ofcrare making anxam onx-oi, a reading which is favoured 
by Bu., but should be explained as one of the numerous cases in (& in 
which a second rendering based on HI has been added to the original 
translation. This original rendering, on the other hand, since it is easier 
to mistake onxia for onxan than onxan for onxia, probably repro 
duces the genuine Hebrew text. Cf. Jos. i; 15 . npxi] Bo., $ 956 - l e , 
rd. nxnxi. 120x1] Qr. maato. Kt. is explained by the x following. 
Cf. Zc. i 8 ; Bo. * 956 z. The Jews saw in the omission of the n (5) a 
reminder that, as Ra. puts it, "there are five things that were in the first 
sanctuary, but not in the second, viz., the ark, urim and tummim, the fire, 
the shekinah, and the Holy Spirit." Houb. would supply la. IEX] 
The first of three cases in the book in which this word is used instead of 
ON:. Cf. 2 7 - 9 . There are only three more in Zc. 1-8, i 3 7 13 8 14 . In 
Mai., on the other hand, it is so frequent (22 t.) as compared with oxj 
(once), that it may be reckoned one of the prominent characteristics of 
that book. Now, it can be shown that in 2 7 - 9 the clauses in which this 
word is used are interpolations. It seems fair, therefore, to conclude that 
the same is true in this case, unless nnx is here simply a mistake for oxj. 
9. njo] The recurrence of the inf. abs. does not necessarily indicate an 
immediate connection between this verse and v. 6 , since this form of the 
vb. may also begin a new paragraph. Cf. Ges. <*> <o. Houbi- 
gant rd. njo. njrn] (6^4? rd. as if the original had been mm (<J6 A , 
vm), and this reading is said to be required if the S following be re 
tained in the text. So Dru., We., Now., Marti, Kit. It is clear, how 
ever, from Gn. i8 9 that njn can properly be employed in place of the 
vb. even before a preposition. Cf. also If ; Ges. 147 - 2 . anxam] Note 
the tense. The pf. with i is often used in the course of a narrative to in- 


Produce a customary or repeated action. Cf. i S. i 3 . When, as in this 
case, there are two such verbs, the first may be subordinate to the second, 
denoting an act done while another was in progress. Cf. i S. 27 9 , but es 
pecially Am. 7 2 - 4ff -; Ges. 5 112 - 4 < rf >. So Hi., Ew.; contra, Koh., We., 
Now. no ]y> (&, dia TOVTO; an error, but in the right direction. The 
vocalisation of np is best explained, not as due to the preceding prep., 
Koh., or, more specifically, to dissimilation, Ko., i, 19> 2b - 7, but to 
the distance of the word from the principal accent. Cf. Ges. $ ST. i <o. 
For clearer cases of dissimilation, cf. Gn. 4 10 Zc. 7 3 . mxax] Om. &. 
TP3 fJ" 1 ] A construction chosen for the sake of emphasising the subj. 
The introduction of Nin after the relative further enhances the desired 
effect. Cf. K6. * 60 ; Dr. * >". D^] D^ with a (Marti) is less, and 
o^in (Che.) no more, expressive. 10. tt SjTpVp] So U; but & om. 
p hy, (& H Da^Sp. The last is evidently the original reading, p Vy 
being natural and necessary, while D3^JJ, whether rendered over you or 
on your account, is superfluous. The latter s position indicates that it is 
either an imperfect dittog., We., or a gloss on the conj. SI expands 
it into twain Vna, on account of your sins. OTir] Rd., with Kenn. 
150 and <&, DTtrn. Cf. VINH. SttD The text has its defenders, some 
treating D as partitive (Ew., And.), others as privative, de D., Koh., 
Now. ; but the later authorities mostly incline to emend it. The readings 
suggested, Van, We., and, as in Zc. 8 12 , aSa Bu., Now., Marti, are gram 
matically defensible, but there is no positive evidence for either of them. 
A better one was long ago suggested by Dru., viz., IBD, rain, which has 
the support of QJ, needs neither art. nor sf. and, moreover, suits the He 
brew way of thinking. V. Com. 11. ain] (& po^aiav; C, gladium; a 
mistake so natural that it has no critical significance. onnn Sp] Of 
doubtful genuineness. Om. Kenn. 150 and a few Gr. curs. H. V. 
Com. -\tfN] Rd., with 30 mss., <S L <F, "r So. So We., Now., Marti. 
a>SD] Rd., with <S H &, oman. So Bu., Now., Marti. Bu. finds the 
conclusion of this prophecy abrupt. He concludes, therefore, that it 
must originally have been supplemented by another exhortation to re 
build the temple and, in addition, a corresponding promise. Of the lat 
ter he thinks v. 13b a fragment. 


The leaders, Zerubbabel and Joshua, and all the people, being 
impressed by Haggai s message and especially assured of Yahweh s 
assistance in any effort they may make, are encouraged to begin 
work; which they do within a few days of the date of the prophet s 
first recorded appearance. 


12. Then hearkened, listened with attention, interest and sub 
mission, Zerubbabel . . . and Joshua. There has been no further 
reference to them since they were introduced in v. *, the prophet s 
whole discourse having been directed over their heads to the people. 
Perhaps these leaders had already been won for the project of 
rebuilding the temple before Haggai appealed to the people. In 
deed, it is not impossible that they originated it, the prophet acting 
as their ally and mouthpiece in securing for it popular approval and 
necessary assistance. However that may be, all the rest of the people 
now recognised the voice of Yahweh their God in the words of Hag 
gai. Kosters, seeing in the rest the remnant of the population left 
in the land by Nebuchadrezzar "to be vinedressers and husband 
men," uses this passage to prove that no great number had at the 
time returned from captivity. It is more natural, however, to 
suppose that the writer here and in 2 2 has in mind the people as 
distinguished from the leaders just mentioned. If he thinks of 
them as a remnant, it is because they, the actual inhabitants of 
the country, without reference to the question whether they have 
ever been in Babylonia or not, are few in number compared with the 
earlier population. In either case the same persons are meant who 
in v. 14 are called the people, and in 2 4 the people of the land. The 
voice here takes the place of the more common word of Yahweh. 
Both are distinguished from the words of the prophets, who, al 
though they claimed to be moved by the divine Spirit, are careful 
not to make Yahweh responsible for the details of their messages. 
Cf. Je. i 1 f -.* In this case the people listened and feared before 
Yahweh, took a reverential attitude toward him, the first step in a 
new experience. 13. Haggai s vivid review of the situation in 
Judah, and his insistence that it was the fault of the people them 
selves that they were not more prosperous, naturally disposed them 
to do something; but there were obstacles, of which, as one may 
infer from 2 7 ff -, the most serious was their poverty. This being the 
case, one would expect that the next thing would be a note of en 
couragement. It is forthcoming, but whether this verse belongs 
to the original book, or was supplied by a reader who felt that some 
thing had been omitted, is disputed. There is room for two opin- 

* In Am. 8 U the pi. -words is a mistake for the sg. Cf. v. 12 and Vrss. 

i 12 55 

ions. In the first place, Haggai is here called, not "the prophet," 
as in every previous case in which his name has been mentioned 
(w. 1 3 12 ) , but the messenger (angel} of Yahweh. This is not a rare 
title. In fact, it is quite common, especially in the earlier por 
tions of the Old Testament. Cf. Gn. i6 7 , et pas. Regularly, how 
ever, like the rarer "messenger of God," it denotes, as may be 
learned from Is. 63 9 , the manifestation of the personal presence 
of the Deity. It is therefore often but a paraphrase of one of the 
divine names.* The same interpretation must be given to "my 
messenger" and "his messenger," except in one instance (Is. 42), 
where "my messenger" evidently means Israel as a prophetic peo 
ple. This exception is interesting as indicating that as early as 
the Exile, if not before it, the title "messenger of Yahweh" had 
acquired a human, as well as a divine, connotation, while Mai. 2 7 
furnishes a concrete example of this broader usage, for there the 
priest is expressly called "the messenger of Yahweh of Hosts." 
It must therefore be admitted that the compiler of the prophe 
cies of Haggai might, without exciting comment, have called the 
prophet the messenger of Yahweh. Still, it is not probable that, 
having adopted the title heretofore used, he would, without ap 
parent reason, have employed another so strikingly different. It 
seems safe, therefore, to conclude that the whole verse is an inter 
polation.! 14. The special message brought by the prophet had 
the desired effect. Yahweh thereby aroused the word is the same 
that is used in the cases of Cyrus and others (Is. 42 1 Je. $o 9 Ezr. i 15 ), 
whom Yahweh is represented as having chosen to execute his pur 
poses th e spirit of Zerubbabel,who is here again called governor to 
emphasise the importance to the Jews of having the enthusiastic 
support of the civil head of the community in their enterprise. 
For the same reason Joshua is given his title, the high -priest, in 
this connection. The people also were stirred, all of them, so 
that they came with their leaders and did work, gave effect to their 
zeal in service, on the house of Yahweh. % The idiom here em- 

* Cf. Zc. i2 8 ; Davidson, TheoL, 206 fi. ; Piepenbring, Theol., 144 fi. 

t Jer. notes the fact that some had interpreted this passage as teaching that Haggai was an 
angel, but he himself interprets the title given to him as a synonym for "prophet." 

J Calvin finds in this passage support for his doctrine of the will. God, he says, did not 
merely confirm a free volition, but produced the "willing mind" among the people. 


ployed does not imply that the temple was already partly built, or 
even that the foundations had been laid. The preposition ren 
dered on is the same that is found in Zc. 6 15 , where the English 
version has in. This is the literal meaning, but the particle is 
frequently used in constructions in which but a part of the object 
is affected,* and both of these are constructions of this sort. 
Hence the passage in Zechariah may be rendered, "they shall build 
on the temple," or, more freely, "they shall take part in the 
building of the temple"; while this one may be translated as above 
or paraphrased so that it will more clearly include such operations 
as the removal of debris from the site or the accumulation of the 
required materials.f Indeed, in view of the fact that a date im 
mediately follows, it would seem allowable to suppose that the 
writer intended to say that they began work on the house on the 
day specified. 15. The date given is the twenty-fourth day of the 
month. It was therefore only twenty- three days after Haggai s 
exhortation when the people responded to his summons; which 
was perhaps as early as they could have been expected to commence 
operations. For a fuller discussion of the date, see the textual 

12. Baer makes no break, but there is ms. authority for beginning here 
a new section. Cf. Gins., Int., 17. ycir>i] Koh. prefers nDiii, but it 
would anticipate v. 14 . On the construction with 2, cf. Ges. 119 <*> < 2 >. 
SsTiSir] Here and in v. 14 2 2 some mss. have the full form. Add, with 
<& H, the title mrp nns, as elsewhere, except in 2 23 , where it would not 
be in place. Cf. vv. " 2 2 - 21 . S>"i] g> have S, (& B the same con 
struction as for 3. The original must have been Sxi, for which S?i is a 
frequent mistake of copyists in the later books, and one easily made after 
writing it eight times in v. . Cf. 2 K. i8 27 Is. 36 12 . new] So <g $ 2F, 
while & omits the prep. So also 10 Heb. mss. Cf. 2 K. ig 4 . This pas 
sage is noted in the Mas. as one of twelve in which irso = nrs; which 
means that it is a rare and perhaps a corrupt reading. amnSs 2 ] Hi., 
We., Marti rd. omSx; but the recurrence of Yahweh seems to require the 
repetition of Dn^nSs. Cf. Ne. 9 3 . If, therefore, as Now. claims, crr^x is 
even more essential, it follows that the original must have been orpnSx 
DniSx, which is actually found in 5 mss. and reproduced in the Vrss. Cf. 
Je. 43 . The omission of arvSx is easily explained as a case of haplog. 
13. This verse, whose genuineness seems to have been seriously ques- 
* BDB., art. 3, I,. 2, b. t So Ki., Dru., Grotius, Koh., We. 

i" 57 

tioned first by Boh. (ZAW., 1887, 215/0, is now generally treated as an 
interpolation. Ko. (EinL, 363), however, defends it, and Bu. (ZAW., 
1906, 13), as already noted, recognises in v. b a fragment of the lost (?) 
conclusion of vv. 1 - n . Cf. note on v. . The reasons for the prevailing 
opinion are: (i) It disturbs, without reinforcing, the narrative. (2) It is 
not in the manner of the compiler of the book. See mm *]xSn for 
NOjn ii. 12 2 1 - 20 <#> and uyh for oyn SN ji 2 2 , etc. (3) The words 
attributed to Yahweh seem inconsistent with the situation. Cf. Com. 
mm niDNSca] Om. <S A Q m s- & H . If it is by the same hand as the 
rest of the verse, it only adds to the evidence of ungenuineness. Houb. 
reads maxSoa or ma manSca. iDxS Om. &. mms] adds nwas. 
nna] Cf. note on i 1 . 14. nvrnNi 2 ] Some edd. accent with zaq. gad.-, 
but see Baer, Notes, 80; Wickes, HP A., 83. oj?n mistf Sa] (& (CT) ruh/ 
KaraXoiTTuv TTavrbs TOU Xaou = apn Vs nnNtr; but <8> so - Comp., Aid. om. 
7rar6s; which, however, seems as much in place as in v. 12b . 15. This 
verse is the first of ch. 2 in (& 1C Iff &, also in the i| of the Comp., Ant., Par. 
and Lond. polyglots, and some separate edd. This arrangement follows 
the more ancient division of the text into sections, which, however, since 
it brings together two dates that conflict with each other at the beginning 
of the same paragraph, cannot represent the mind of the author. Nor is 
the arrangement approved by the great exegetes Jewish and Christian, 
which is found in JH, more satisfactory; for, as Bu. remarks, "all that 
follows istea is a useless appendage." Marti pronounces the whole 
verse an accretion, the attempt of Klo., et al., to account for it as the date 
of a lost or misplaced prophecy being a failure. A hint of the solution of 
the question might have been found mRoshHasshanah (Rodkinson, BT., 
IV,Part 2, pp.4/., where, however, for ii, 10 one should read i, 15), where 
the latter half of the verse is cited as belonging to both chapters, and a 
still clearer indication in >tftfa, a solecism that can only be explained as 
an interpolation. If, however, this word be dropped, the preceding clause 
naturally attaches itself to v. 14 , while the one following as naturally in 
troduces the next chapter. This is the arrangement adopted in KittePs 
text, and without doubt the correct one. It seems only fair to state that 
the note on ^tsto, with the exception of the last sentence, was written 
before the second volume of Kittel s Biblia Hebraica appeared. DV3] 
Kit. and Now., without ms. or other cited authority, rd. ars; but, 
although the construction with n after *o in the sense of Snn is un 
doubtedly allowable (Ezr. 3"), that with 3 is equally good Hebrew. Cf. 
Ezr. 3 8 2 Ch. 3.iertf3] <g 21 have the equivalent of ^tftfn, but Iff 
support IH, and there is no ms. authority for any other reading. 



This prophecy was designed to meet an emergency arising from 
the despondency that overtook the builders as soon as they 
realised the magnitude of their task and the slenderness of their 
resources. The prophet admits that they cannot hope to pro 
duce anything like the splendid temple some of them can remem 
ber, but he bids them one and all take courage, since Yahweh, 
whose are all the treasures of the earth, is with them and has 
decreed the new sanctuary a glorious future. 

I 15b . It would have been sufficient, in dating this second proph 
ecy, to give the month and the day of the month, but the writer 
chose to use here the same formula as in v. *. A scribe, mistaking 
his intent, connected the first item, In the second year of Darius the 
king, with the preceding date of the commencement of work on the 
temple, and the error has only recently been discovered. It is only 
necessary to read the words quoted with 2 1 to see that such was the 
original connection. 2 1 . It was in the seventh month, Tishri, on 
the twenty-first of the month, that is, early in October, less than a 
month after work on the new temple was begun, that Haggai re 
ceived another message from Yahweh. The date was well chosen, 
being the seventh day of the Feast of Tabernacles, when the people 
were released from labour and assembled at Jerusalem. Cf. Ez. 
45 25 . 2. He is again directed to address himself to Zerubbabel . . . 
and Joshua, the civil and ecclesiastical heads of the community, 
but this time he is expressly instructed to include all the rest of the 
people. 3. It doubtless cost a deal of labour, even if the ancient 
site had been sufficiently cleared to permit the reconstruction of 
the altar and the resumption of sacrifice, to remove the remaining 
ruins of Solomon s temple and its dependencies. While they were 
thus occupied the Jews must more than once have admired the 
stones that they were handling, and their admiration must have 
increased when the plan of the original complex in its generous 
dimensions was revealed. This feeling, however, was succeeded 
by an almost overwhelming discouragement, when they began to 
plan the new structure and realised how unworthy it would be to 

i 15b -2 9 59 

take the place of the one that preceded it. The disparity was most 
keenly felt by a few who were old enough it had been only sixty- 
seven years since it was destroyed to have seen the house of Yah- 
weh in its former wealth* It is these aged men and women who 
are left, having survived the lamentable catastrophe in which the 
kingdom of David was destroyed, whom the prophet now ad 
dresses. The wealth to which he refers is not the original glory 
of the national sanctuary, for it had been plundered more than 
once before any one then living was born. 

1. Those who identify the Darius in whose reign Haggai prophesied with 
Darius Nothus are obliged to interpret the first question as implying that there 
was no one present who had seen Solomon s temple; which makes the second 
question meaningless. 

2. When Shishak came up "against Jerusalem" in the reign of Rehoboam, 
" he took away the treasures of the house of Yahweh" as well as of " the king s 
house" (i K. I4 25 f -). A century later, when Hazael threatened the capital, 
" Jehoash took all the hallowed things that Jehoshaphat, and Jehoram, and 
Ahaziah, his fathers, kings of Judah, had dedicated, and his own hallowed 
things, and all the gold that was found in the treasures of the house of Yah- 
wehand the king s house, and sent it to Hazael king of Syria." C/. 2 K. i2 17 f . 
Still later, Ahaz, having become a vassal of Tiglath-pileser III, sacrificed the 
oxen that supported the great sea in the court of the priests and other brazen 
objects "because of the king of Assyria." Cf. 2 K. i6 17 -. Finally Hezekiah, 
to appease Sennacherib, "gave him all the silver that was found in the house 
of Yahweh." Moreover, "at that time Hezekiah stripped the doors of the 
temple of Yahweh, and the pillars that Hezekiah, king of Judah, had over 
laid, and gave (the gold) to the king of Assyria." Cf. 2 K. i8 15 *. 

The reference is rather to that which it retained before Nebu 
chadrezzar took it the first time and doubtless emptied its coffers, 
although he spared some, at least, of the sacred utensils. Cf. Je. 
27 18 ff -. The statement of 2 K. 24 13 , to the effect that the temple 
was then completely stripped, is contradicted, not only by this pas 
sage from Jeremiah, but by 2 K. 25 13 ffi . It was then, however, in 
the last stage of its history, still rich enough to leave an impression 
on these old people which made the structure now begun seem but 
a sorry imitation. Haggai, therefore, is only voicing their disap 
pointment when he says, And how do ye see it now? what think ye 
of its successor? Is it not as naught in your eyes? 4. The prophet 

* The Chronicler (Ezr. 3 ff -) has an affecting description of their disappointment based on 
this passage. 


did not by these questions intend to increase the prevailing dis 
couragement. They are simply a rhetorical device by which, as 
in i 6 , he sought to bring himself into sympathy with his people, 
that he might comfort them in their unhappy condition. It is 
not strange, therefore, to find that he has no sooner put the ques 
tions than, with the words But now, he completely changes his 
tone and proceeds to bid them be strong, take courage, in spite of 
the gloominess of the present prospect, and work, carry the work 
they have undertaken to completion. Cf. i Ch. 28 20 Ezr. io 4 . 
He adds to the impressiveness of his exhortation by mentioning 
the leaders, Zerubbabel and Joshua, by name, and supplements it 
with the assurance, 7 am with you, saith Yahweh. For the peo 
ple of v. 2 the prophet here uses people of the land, a phrase which 
implies, not, as Kosters claims, that there were no returned cap 
tives among them (WL, 17), but that as yet these persons were not 
recognised as a party. 5. In (& v. 4b is immediately followed by 
the words, and my spirit abideth in your midst. The parallelism 
between the two is complete, abundantly warranting the conclu 
sion that this was the original relation, and that therefore the clause 
which now intervenes is an interpolation. This opinion is con 
firmed by the prosaic character of the clause itself, which thing 1 
promised you when ye came forth from Egypt. The glossator, as 
he read v. 4b , was evidently reminded by the words of Haggai of 
something similar in the history of the Exodus, and made this com 
ment on the edge of his roll; whence it was afterward, by a copy 
ist, incorporated into the text. Cf. Is. 6 3 f- 17 - 20 p 15 14 , etc. There 
are several passages any one of which he may have had in mind, 
but, as there is none that corresponds closely in its phraseology 
to the prophet s statement, and the Jews have always allowed 
themselves great liberty in the matter of references to their Scrip 
tures, it is hardly possible to identify the particular passage or 
passages here meant. The one that most naturally suggests it 
self is Ex. 33 14 , but the covenant between Yahweh and his people 
is more prominent in Ex. iQ 5 and elsewhere. V. Ex. 2p 45 f> , 
where Yahweh promises to dwell in the sanctuary concerning 
which and its worship he has just given directions. This would 
strike a Jewish reader as a particularly appropriate citation under 

I 15b -2 9 6l 

the circumstances. The idea of the prophet, of course, was that 
Yahweh would be present, not to glorify the temple, when it was 
completed, but to assist the people in rebuilding it, an idea which 
is simply repeated in the second member of the distich. Here, 
therefore, the Spirit of Yahweh is not an emanation, as often in 
the Old Testament (Gn. 4 i 28 Ex. 3i 3 Ju. i 3 25 i S. i6 13 i K. io 24 
Is. ii 2 ), but, like "the angel of Yahweh," a manifestation of his 
personal presence.* 

6. Thus far the prophet has been speaking of internal condi 
tions and the means by which they may be improved. The people 
are suffering from repeated failures of their crops. The prophet 
explains the situation as a penalty for neglecting to rebuild the 
ruined temple. He therefore urges them to restore the sanctuary, 
promising them the assistance of Yahweh in the undertaking. At 
this point his vision is so extended that he is able to see the new 
structure, not only completed, but enriched beyond the fondest 
dreams of his generation. Yahweh has decreed it, and he will in 
yet a little while begin to put his benign purpose into execution. 
Haggai s idea seems to be that there will be a startling display of 
the divine omnipotence in the realm of nature. / will shake heaven 
and earth, he represents Yahweh as saying. The prophets all 
believed in the power of God over the physical world. They saw 
a special manifestation of that power in any unusual phenomenon, 
and, when it was destructive, interpreted it as a sign of Yahweh s 
displeasure. The imagery here used was evidently suggested by 
the storms that sometimes sweep over Palestine. It is found in 
the very earliest Hebrew literature. Cf. Ju. 5* f- . The earlier 
prophets adopted it. For fine examples, see Is. 2 12ff> Na. i 3ff *. 
The later prophets employed it with other similar material in their 
pictures of the inauguration of the Messianic era. Cf. Ez. 33 19 ff 
Is. i3 13 24 18ff - Jo. 4/3 15 f -, etc. The extravagance of some of 
these representations makes it probable that they finally became 
merely a literary form for the assertion of the divine omnipotence. 
See the "visions" of these same prophets. The phrase, and the sea 
and the dry land, must be treated as a gloss by a prosaic copyist. 

* Cf. Ps. 1398/7, but especially Is. 6a 9 -" ; also Davidson, Theol., 125 /.; Piepenbring, TheoL, 
156 /. 


This is an improvement in more ways than one. In the first 
place, it permits the transfer of the first clause of v. 7 to this one, 
to form a distich both members of which receive additional sig 
nificance through their union with each other. The first has al 
ready been discussed. The second, yea, I will shake all nations, 
introduces the ultimate purpose of the convulsion predicted, 
namely, to humble the nations. These words were uttered in 
October 520 B.C. They cannot, therefore, be taken as a predic 
tion of the uprising in the East against Darius; it had begun in 
the preceding year; but they must be interpreted as indicating 
the expectation of the prophet with reference to the war then in 
progress. He had probably not yet heard of the capture of Baby 
lon and the energy that Darius was displaying in a second cam 
paign in Media. He therefore, apparently, hoped and believed 
that the conflict would result in the disintegration of the Persian 
empire and the complete liberation of the Jews as well as the other 
subject peoples. For a more detailed description of the catastro 
phe, see v. 22 . 7. A second advantage from the removal of the 
first clause of this verse to end of v. 6 is that it loosens the con 
nection between the clause in question and the following context. 
It surely cannot have been the idea of the prophet that the treasures 
of all the nations were to be shaken from them like fruit from a tree. 
Yet this is the impression that one gets from the text as now 
arranged. Cf. Nowack. Make the change proposed, and the 
oreak between the verses will prevent such an inference and per 
mit the reader to supply an important omission in this brief out 
line of Yahweh s purpose. The prophet, of course, must have ex 
pected that, after the present convulsion, the nations liberated by 
it would be so impressed by the power of Yahweh that they would 
recognise him as the Ruler of the world. He knew that this was 
the oft-avowed object of Yahweh in his government. Cf. Is. 
45 5 - 15> 22 f -, etc. He therefore represents the Deity as saying that 
the things in which the nations delight shall come, i. e., as volun 
tary offerings, to the temple now in process of erection, and that 
by this means he will fill this house with wealth. The older com 
mentators, following the Vulgate (venial desideratus cunctis genti- 
bus), interpreted this verse as referring to the Messiah, citing the 

I 15b -2 9 6 3 

incidents recorded in Lk. 2- 28 as the fulfilment of Haggai s 
prophecy;* but this interpretation is now generally abandoned, for 
it is clear from v. 8 that the wealth, or, as EV. has it, the glory, of 
the last clause is that of silver and gold, and that therefore, as above 
explained, it is not a delightful person, but precious things, that 
are destined to come to the new sanctuary. Cf. Is. 6o 9 - u . 8. 
There can be no doubt of Yahweh s ability to fulfil this promise. 
Mine, he says, is the silver, and mine is the gold, i. e., the whole 
store of these metals, whether current among men or still hidden 
in the bowels of the earth. 9. The offerings brought will be so 
many and valuable that the future wealth of this house not, as 
the Vulgate has it,f the wealth of this latter house will be greater 
than the past. The expression this house here, as in v. 3 , means the 
temple regarded as having a continuous existence (Pres.), in spite 
of its ruined or unfinished condition. By its past (former} wealth, 
therefore, is meant the wealth it possessed before it was burned. 
Yahweh promises, not only to enrich this his abode, but to bless 
Jerusalem. In this place, he says, I will grant prosperity. The 
word rendered prosperity % is used in the Old Testament in the 
sense of quiet, especially as opposed to the unrest of war. Thus, 
by the Prince of Peace (Is. 9 s75 ), as appears from Is. n lff -, the 
prophet doubtless meant a ruler who would introduce tranquillity. 
Cf. Ez. 34 25 Is. 32 17 f> . It more frequently, however, signifies 
welfare, prosperity. Cf. Ps. i22 7ff -. This is the sense of it in 
the familiar salutation, lit., Is there prosperity? which is translated, 
Is it well? Gn. 2Q 6 , et pas., and probably in the corresponding 
benediction. Cf. i S. 25, but especially Nu. 6 26 . This significa 
tion is most noticeable in passages in which the Hebrew word is 
used antithetically. Cf. i S. 2o 7 - 21 Is. 45 7 Je. 23 17 . Now, Jere 
miah in 29", where he foretold the return from exile, used the word 
in this latter sense, assuring his people that Yahweh was cherish- 

* For an elaborate defence of this view, see Pusey, whose quotation from Cicero s letters is 
entirely unwarranted. 

t So, also, Luther, AV., Marck, Cal., Dru., Grotius, Hd., Reuss, And., van H., et al. This 
would require that fnnsn come before, and not, as in the text, a]ler rim. Cf. Ex. 3 3 , etc., 
Ges. 126 - 5 . In 2 Ch. i 10 , where the two attributives appear in the reverse order, the text, as 
one may learn from (6, should be emended to make it conform to the rule. 


ing toward them " thoughts of welfare, and not of evil" in a hopeful 
future; and this, in view of the preceding references to wealth, is 
probably the thought that Haggai here wishes to convey.* 

1. Ta] This form of expression is not in harmony with "IBN of v. ; . If, 
therefore, the latter is retained, as it must be to account for the \4yuv 
dirbvoi i 1 in (&, the former, in spite of the adverse testimony of the mss. 
and Vrss., must be changed to SN. Cf. the notes on i 1 ; also Hu.,ZAW., 
1906, 9. 2. ISN] Not an Aram. impv. (And.), but the regular Heb. form 
shortened (o), as usual before an appended NJ. Cf. Ju. 12 6 Je. i8 n , etc. 
nnfl] Cf. note on i 1 . nnxir] So <E U; but, since there is no reason 
why the same formula should not be used as in i 12 - H , and <& 1C & actually 
have it, it seems safe to conclude that the original reading here also was 
nnNtf *?a. So Now., Marti, Kit; contra, And. 3. -\xc ; jn] Om. < U. 
Hence, although it has the support of U & 2F, its genuineness is not un 
questionable. On the art. cf. Zc. y 6 ; Ges. u. <o . we. i <o r._ 
On no in the sense of how, cf. Gn. 44 6 i S. io 27 , etc. 4. The omission 
of S^n^Ntf p is as noticeable as the occurrence of Snjn pan in direct 
address; yet there is no evidence to warrant the insertion of the former 
or the omission of the latter. Cf. v. 20 Zc. 3 8 . We. in his translation 
omits all but the two names; inconsistently, since in v. 23 he retains p 
^ton^Ntf, and in Zc. 3 8 Svun pan. To nin>i <& L adds TravTWKpdTwp= 
niNax, and H H do the same for nin^. On the other hand, <K.b AQ 
rL omit the rnxax that follows nin^ 3 ; but since the prophet seems to 
have followed no rule in the use of the divine names, and the verses con 
tain many evident errors made in translating or copying them, it does not 
seem safe in either case to reject the Massoretic reading. Cf. v. 23 . 5. 
The first half of this verse is certainly a gloss, (i) As already explained 
in the comments, it breaks the connection between two clauses which were 
evidently meant for a parallelism. (2) No attempt to construe it with the 
context has proven satisfactory. It will not do to make nan PN the obj. 
of ifrj?, expressed,H 5 or understood, Rosenm.; for this vb. does not need an 
obj. (Ezr. io 4 i Ch. 3 10 ), and, if it took one, the thing commanded would 
be, not the fulfilment of Yahweh s promises, but work on the temple. It 
is equally objectionable to couple -ian ns with either oanN, Marck, or -nn, 
Hi., Hd., Koh., since in either case the balance between the parallel 
clauses is destroyed and ian invested with an unnatural meaning. (3) 
The whole clause is wanting in (5 (exc. a few curss.) ffi S> H . These rea 
sons seem convincing. When, however, the relation of the clause to the 
context has been determined, there remains room for difference of opin 
ion about the construction of -on PN. Some would supply a vb. like iar, 

* If this interpretation is correct, it has a bearing on a question that will be found discussed 
at length in the textual notes. 

I 15b -2 9 65 

Ew., others treat the noun as an adverbial ace., EV.; but, as there are 
serious objections to both of these methods of disposing of it, the better 
way is, with de Dieu, to regard it as an appositive of the preceding prom 
ise attracted into the case of the following rel. Cf. Ez. 14"; Ges. 117 - l - 
* 7 ; also the precisely similar construction in the Greek of Ac. io 36 . 6. 
N>n apn nn iv;] The text is evidently corrupt. The best explanation 
of the present reading, We., is that it is the result of the confusion of two 
idioms, one of which is represented by the Yet once of < $1 S. Cf. Heb. 
1 2 26 f -. The emendation proposed by We., following Sm., however, is 
not completely satisfactory. The original, as he suggests, doubtless had 
the idiom with BJ?D. In that case, however, it is not enough to omit firm. 
The pron. son, which refers to it, and in fact has no other function, must 
also be eliminated. The original, then, must have been Bj?D my, which 
is regularly followed by ). Cf. Ex. 17*, etc. That of M may be ex 
plained by supposing that vyn was mistaken for oyo (Ne. i8 20 ) by the 
Greek translators, and that nnx with NTI arose from an attempt to cor 
rect M from d by the use of the idiom of Ex. 3O 10 , etc. DTI nxi 
ru-im PNI] Evidently a gloss, for (i) it not only unduly lengthens one of 
the members of a parallelism, but (2) introduces details inconsistent with 
the context which belong to the field of the later apocalypses. Cf. Jo. 
3 if./ 2 of. i s . 24 lff -, etc. 7. On v. b v. Com. rncn] So B&S; but 
<& 51 have the pi., which is also required by 1x2. Hence the original 
must have been nlnn. Cf. Gn. 27. So Houb., Seek., New., We., Now., 
Marti, Kit.; but Che., CB., suggests nnjD. nwas mm IDN] The rarity 
of this form of expression in Hg. and Zc., as already noted (i 8 ), excites sus 
picion. Here and in v. 9 the fact that it disturbs the rhythm is an addi 
tional reason for pronouncing it an accretion. 8. DNJ]. Three mss., 
Kenn., have in, but in this case it is an error for cw. 9. non ISD 
fwwn rim] U, gloria domus istius novissinuz. V. Com. nifro* mn> IDN] 
Cf. v. 7 . (& adds at the end, ical eiprfvrjv if/vxys fk Trepnroiticriv Travrl T< 
KTt^ovri, TOV dvacTTrjffai rbv vdov TOVTOV even peace of soul unto preserva 
tion to every one that lay eth foundations to erect this temple = mriD 1 ? troi mStri 
n?n So^nn nx ompS ^D^ h^>. These words, however, cannot be a part 
of the original prophecy. Jer. gives the reasons for rejecting them when 
he characterises the passage as "superfluous and hardly consistent," 
and notes that they were not regarded as genuine "among the Hebrews 
or by any exegete." The inconsistency consists in this, that, while the 
thing predicted by Hg., as has been shown, is prosperity, that here 
promised is inward and spiritual tranquillity. It is not probable that 
the prophet went from the one to the other of these conceptions without 
warning and within the brief limits of a single sentence. 


TEMPLE ( 2 10 - 19 ). 

A few weeks after Haggai s second discourse there was occasion 
for a third. The people were disappointed that Yahweh did not 
at once testify his appreciation of their zeal in the restoration of 
his sanctuary. The prophet, after an illustration calculated to 
show them the unreasonableness of the complaint, promises that 
henceforth they shall see a difference. 

10. It was the twenty-fourth of the ninth month, that is, in De 
cember, a little more than two months from the preceding date, 
when Haggai was again moved to address his people. The date is 
not that of any of the regular festivals. Nor is there ground for 
supposing, with Andre, that it was an occasion for special offerings; 
certainly not in v. 14 , for the sacrifices there mentioned belong, not 
to the date of the prophecy, but to a preceding period. 11. This 
time also he begins abruptly, as if interrupting an opponent, 
leaving the reader to imagine what had given rise to the discussion, 
and what had previously been said by each of the disputants. 
The general situation can readily be conceived. The people, if 
they had been stimulated to renewed activity in their work on the 
temple by the inspiring picture of its future glory which the 
prophet had presented to them, were again beginning to lose in 
terest in the enterprise. From the first utterance of Zechariah 
(i 1 ff< ), who had meanwhile begun his career, it appears that some, 
at least, among them were not in a condition to appreciate the re 
ligious significance of the new sanctuary. The excuse that all 
gave for their indifference or discouragement seems to have been 
that, although it had now been three months since they began oper 
ations, Yahweh had as yet given them no token of his approval. 
This seemed to them unjust, but Yahweh, speaking through the 
prophet, defends himself, using an illustration that his hearers 
would readily understand. He takes it from the sphere of cere 
monial, concerning which one would naturally ask the priests for 
instruction. Cf. Zc. f f - Lv. io 10 f \ The fact that the matter is 
referred to them shows, as Wellhausen observes, that the fountain 

2 10 67 

from which flowed much of the Pentateuch was in Haggai s time 
still open. 12. The case is a hypothetical one: If a man, not nec 
essarily a priest, carry holy flesh, flesh that has been offered to 
Yahweh (Je. n 15 ),* in the skirt of his robe, which, if not already 
holy, is thereby rendered holy (Lv. 6 27/2 ), and touch with his skirt, 
not with the flesh in it, bread, etc., not yet offered. The question 
is whether in such a case the food so touched will become holy. In 
other words, is the holiness imparted by a sacred object to another 
transmitted by this second object to a third, when the last two are 
brought into contact? Thus far the command of Yahweh to 
Haggai. Cf. v. 10 . For completeness sake it should be followed 
by a statement that the prophet, thus instructed, put the pre 
scribed question to the priests; for it was the prophet, and not 
Yahweh, to whom the priests answered and said, No. There was 
a reason, and a good one, for this decision, but, since the prophet 
omits it, and it has no importance in the present connection, it 
does not deserve special attention. 13. The lesson Haggai wished 
to teach has two sides to it. His first question was meant to throw 
light upon the negative side. He proceeds to illustrate the posi 
tive by a corresponding question: If one unclean from contact with, 
or proximity to, a dead person, lit., a soul,-\ touch any of these, will 
it, the bread or other food, become unclean ? To this the priests 
reply, // will become unclean. Cf. Nu. ip 22 . In other words, 
uncleanness imparted to a given person or object communicates, 
itself to a third person or object by contact. 14. A glance at this 
verse is enough to convince one that the application of the prophet s 
parable was meant to convey disapproval. The expressions this 
people and this nation give it a sinister tone. Cf. i 2 . When, how 
ever, one looks a little further, one realises that his ultimate object 
is to encourage his people. This conflict of ideas must in some 
way be adjusted. It cannot be done by rendering the verse as a 
description of the actual condition of the Jews when the prophet 
was addressing them, for in that way the contradiction is made even 

* In later times it was largely reserved for the priests (Lv. 6 26 7 6 ), but the worshipper always 
had a share in the peace-offerings. Cf. Lv. 7 15 ff -. 

t The earliest reference to the uncleanness of the dead is found in Ho. g 4 . Cj. also Dt. 26". 
For the later laws see Nu. ig 11 ff -, and for a fuller discussion of the subject, DB., art. Unclean- 
ness; Benzinger, Arch., 480 /. 


more apparent. The only other alternative is to make it refer to 
the past and explain the previous experience of the people. Trans 
late, therefore, So hath it been with this people, and so with this 
nation before me, saith Yahweh. It is clear that the prophet here 
neglects his first question, and confines himself to a direct applica 
tion of the second. If so, what he means is that the Jews in some 
way, he does not here say how, brought themselves into a condi 
tion similar to that of one who has become unclean from contact 
with a dead body. Now, the priests had said that uncleanness 
was contagious. It is natural, therefore, to expect that the prophet 
will here make an application of this important fact, and the next 
clause, yea, so with all the work of their hands, seems to meet this 
expectation. But what is meant by the work or for this is a 
possible rendering works of their hands? This expression in 
one of the earlier prophetical books would be understood as a ref 
erence to the conduct or practices of those who were addressed. 
Cf. Am. 8 7 Je. 25". Such, however, can hardly be the thought 
in this connection. In the first place, since Haggai nowhere else 
alludes to the sins for which his predecessors arraigned their con 
temporaries, it is not probable that he does so in this connection. 
Nor is such an interpretation in harmony with the evident pur 
pose of the prophet, which is to apply the law of the transmission 
of uncleanness. There is another and better. The phrase " work 
of the hands" occurs several times in Deuteronomy in the sense of 
human undertakings, and especially agricultural operations. Cf. 
24 19 28 12 3o 9 . The transition from the operation to the product 
is natural and easy. It is actually made in v. 17 , where "the works 
of your hands" can mean nothing but the crops. Cf. also i 11 . It 
is therefore probable that in this passage the prophet intends to 
say that the people have in some way defiled themselves and com 
municated their uncleanness to the products of their labor, the 
grain they have sowed and reaped and the cattle they have raised. 
Thus it came to pass that what they from time to time offered on 
the altar already erected was unclean. Haggai does not say how 
the people defiled themselves, but it is easy enough to learn what 
he thought on the subject. Their great fault in his eyes was that 
they had neglected to rebuild the temple and thus prevented the 

return of Yahweh and the introduction of the Messianic era. He 
charged them with it at the start (i 4 ), and he alludes to it again in 
the next verse. This it was that had denied them and rendered 
their worship offensive to Yahweh. Haggai does not return to 
his first question. If he had, and had undertaken to complete 
the twofold thought with which he began, he would doubtless have 
said in effect that the meagre worship his people paid to Yahweh 
had been more than neutralised by their selfish and short-sighted 
indifference to the supreme duty of restoring the national sanc 

There have been various attempts to apply Haggai s parable in greater de 
tail. One of the most elaborate is that of Andre, the result of which is as fol 
lows: The man bearing the holy flesh =Israel. The garment in which it is 
borne = Palestine. The skirt of the garment = Jerusalem. The holy flesh 
=the altar. The bread, etc. =the products of the soil. The altar sanctified 
the land, but not its products. The man defiled =Israel. The corpse =the 
ruined temple. The bread, etc. = the products of the soil. The ruined temple 
defiled the sacrifices offered on the temporary altar. 

15. And now, says the prophet, as if about to introduce a con 
trast to the previous state of things. He is, but not until he has 
shown the unhappy results of the failure of the people to please 
Yahweh. The subject is an important one. Hence the impres 
sive warning, take thought, as he approaches it. He first reminds 
his people of their condition before a stone was placed upon another 
in the temple of Yahweh, that is, for an indefinite period before 
work was begun on the new temple.* 16. During that unhappy 
period, when one came to a heap of twenty measures, a pile of un- 
threshed or unwinnowed grain from which one would ordinarily 
get this amount, the yield was so light that there were actually only 
ten. The returns from the vineyards were still less satisfactory; 
for, when one came to the winevat expecting to dip off fifty measures 
of must, he found that there were only twenty. Cf. Is. 5. Disap 
pointments of this kind are still so frequent in Palestine that they 
have given rise to the proverb, "The reckoning of the threshing- 
floor does not tally with that of the field." Cf. Wilson, PLHL., 

* The phrase rendered in AV. from this day and upward is purposely ignored. 


The wine-presses in southern Palestine were excavated in the limestone 
which underlies the soil. Cf. Ju. 6 11 Is. 5 2 . They consisted of two vats on 
different levels, the one larger and shallower for the grapes, the other smaller 
and deeper for their juice. They were separated by a partition of native rock 
pierced by a hole by which the juice flowed from the one to the other. There 
was no uniformity in the size of either receptacle. Nor was the number of 
vats always two. There were sometimes three, or even four. Cf. EB., art. 
Wine; PEF., QS., 1899, 4 i/.; ZDPV., x, 146. 

17. There follows a careless or corrupt quotation from Amos 
with additions. The object of it is to explain the failure of the 
crops as just described. It was due to the direct intervention of 
Yahweh. / smote you, he says, with blight and decay. These 
are the precise words of Am. 4 9 . Haggai, if the next clause is 
genuine, adds in a more prosaic style, and with hail all the work oj 
your hands, that is, as in v. 14 , the crops for which they had toiled. 
All this is appropriate enough; but the remainder of the verse, 
which is an imitation or a corruption of the familiar refrain, "yet 
ye returned not unto me, saith Yahweh," used by Amos, 4 6ff> , no 
fewer than five times, is out of place in this connection, the object 
of the prophet being to emphasise, not the stubbornness of the peo 
ple, but the unhappiness of their circumstances. It is probable, 
therefore, that this part of the verse is a late addition made by a 
reader who thought it necessary here, as in the prophecy of Amos, 
to complete the thought. 18. Now, at length, comes the transi 
tion indicated by the And now of v. 15 . The prophet, therefore, 
seeks to revive the impression then produced by repeating the 
warning, take thought. It is the future, however, on which he now 
wishes to focus attention, the period, as he describes it, from this 
time onward. The exact date of this turning-point is given. It 
is the date of the present discourse, the twenty-fourth of the ninth 
month. Cf. v. 10 . So great precision was not necessary for those 
to whom the prophecy was originally addressed or those for whom 
the book of Haggai was finally compiled. Moreover, this date 
rather disturbs the balance of the verse and emphasises an avoid 
able difficulty. It is, therefore, probably an interpolation. When 
it is removed the phrase just used is brought into close connection 
with the clause which was evidently intended to define it. This 
clause is usually translated from the day when the temple was 

2 10 71 

founded, which naturally means that the foundation of the new 
structure was laid on the twenty-fourth of the ninth month ; as the 
glossator expressly teaches. 

The conflict between this inference and the statement of Ezr. 3 8 ff - is evident. 
A favourite method of adjusting it is to suppose that the prophet here refers, 
not to a first movement to rebuild the temple, but to the renewal of one be 
gun in the second year of the reign of Cyrus and after a little suppressed. 
So Dru., de D., Hi., Koh., Or., et al. It is not, however, necessary to adopt 
such an explanation, much less to torture familiar idioms for the sake of bring 
ing this passage into accord with one that has been shown to be unhistorical. 
On the historicity of Ezr. 3 s ff - v. pp. io/.; on the idioms nS> Dl and pV, the 
critical notes. There is more in the objection that, according to i IBa , work 
was begun on the temple three months before the date of this prophecy, and 
that, according to a 3 , at the end of about a month the builders seem to have 
made progress. The usual explanation for this apparent discrepancy is that 
the work begun on the twenty-fourth of the sixth month was that of clearing 
the site and providing materials for the new building. So Dru., de D., Marck, 
Hi., Koh., Sta., We., et al. Now. objects that it could not have taken three 
months to make the preparations named, and argues therefrom that the clause 
above quoted, as well as the date, is ungenuine. The objection is a fair one 
and the conclusion valid against the clause as translated, but there is room 
for doubt whether the rendering above given does justice to the original. 

What is wanted here is a parallel to v. 15b . Now, in that clause 
it is not a date, but a period and the condition of things during that 
period, which are described. Moreover the condition is presented 
as a reason or explanation for a given result. It was when (and 
because) a stone had not been placed upon another in the temple 
of Yahweh that the crops had failed. The construction in this 
case is the same and the connection perfectly analogous. The pas 
sage should therefore be rendered, from the time when the temple 
hath been founded, that is, now that the temple has been founded. 
That this is the prophet s meaning appears because the passage, 
so rendered, (i) furnishes a perfect parallel to v. 15b , (2) presents 
a reason for the blessing promised in v. 19 and (3) harmonises 
i 15b and 2 3 . 19. There was danger that some of those whom 
Haggai was addressing would take his words too literally, suppos 
ing that Yahweh would at once give them a convincing token of a 
change of attitude toward them. The prophet took pains to pre 
vent them from falling into this error. The divine displeasure 
had been manifested by a blight upon agriculture. The prophet 


expected that Yahweh would manifest his favour by giving rain in 
its season and, as a result, abundant harvests. It was now, how 
ever, too early, December, to look for tangible evidence to this 
effect. The grain, to be sure, had been sown, and the fields were 
already green with it, but there would be some weeks before any 
one could tell whether the crop would be great or small, and the 
harvest for the vineyard and the orchard was still further in the 
future. This is the thought that the prophet has in mind when, 
in his abrupt manner, as if again answering an objection, he asks, 
7s the seed, here, as in Lv. 27 30 and elsewhere, the return from the 
grain sown, the crop, already in the granary ? A negative answer 
is expected. In the following clause the negative is found in the 
prophet s statement, nor have the vine, and the Jig, and the pome 
granate, and the olive tree yet borne, that is, had time to bear. In 
other words, there has been no harvest since work on the temple 
was begun. This being the case, the prophet sees no ground for 
discouragement. Indeed he proceeds to transform this negative 
inference into positive assurance. He believes, not only that Yah 
weh has been propitiated, but that he has already decreed a satis 
factory harvest. He therefore closes the discourse by putting into 
his mouth the promise, From this time will I bless. 

10. The transfer of i 15b to this chapter brought the date at the head of 
the chapter into conformity with that in i 1 . At the same time it indi 
cated the type that the author might be expected to follow. The fact 
that the date here given has a different form warrants a suspicion that 
the phrase, Enm 1 ? DT5? nr^3, which, moreover, is unnecessary, has 
been added. Sx] Here there has been a struggle between SN and TO. 
There is authority for both of them, but the former is the one required by 
the context. Cf. hxv, v. X1 . It is also the reading of 80 mss., and, among 
the earliest edd. ; Sonc. 148 - 1488 , Bres., Pes. 1515 - 1517 , Yen. 1517 - >"i. Fi 
nally it has the support of (& % U g H . Cf. Baer, Gins. 11. There is one 
objection to SN, viz., that, if it is adopted, Yahweh is here made to appeal 
to his own authority. This, however, is not serious. Here, as in Zc. 8 18 , 
nixax mm IDS m was used by the prophet or inserted by a copyist as 
a mere formula, without a second thought with reference to its appropri 
ateness in the connection. If it is an interpolation, its history is probably 
involved with that of ma. SNIP] 0, which has ma, consistently renders 
this word as if it were pi. 12. p] The word is usually treated as an 
Aramaism, but, as used here, it is not properly a hypothetical particle. 

2 . 73 

Its force is rather that of a demonstrative calling attention to an act the 
result of which is to be considered. So Ex. 4 1 8 22 / 26 (both J) ; BDB. On 
the accentuation, v. Baer, Notes, 80; Wickes, HP A., 118. IDJS] Kenn. 
30 has rua p:>. So also <& U; and Bu. adopts this reading. It is prob 
able, however, since t>2 is usually omitted, that the repetition of the full 
expression is due to dittog. Cf. Dt. 2^ l /22 30 Ez. i6 8 Zc. 8 28 , etc. ptf] 
Rd., with 18 mss., Kenn., ptfn. Cf. onVn, etc. 13. ^n] On the omis 
sion of xojn, see p. 30. tfflj] For fiD tfoj, lit., the soul of one dead. Cf. 
Lv. 2i Nu. 6 8 , and on the construction, Ges. $ . s <o. Sometimes ^DJ 
is preceded by S. Cf. Nu. 5 2 9 10 . ^32] On the preposition, c/". Ges. \ U9 - 
s <*) (2) ; on So in the sense of any, Ges. I m. 1 <o r - i (o._ ?] For 
Bhp> N 1 ?. C/. v. 13 ; Ges. $ o. 3._i4. nrn oyn pj Boh. om. this clause 
as superfluous, forgetting, apparently, that Hebrew writers often 
resort to repetition for emphasis. Cf. Is i 4 . nfrpc] A cstr. sg., with a 
dependent pi., may itself have the force of pi. Cf. Ges. 124 2 < c >. Hence 
it is not necessary to rd. ^B j?D to account for the pi. in (& H & SF. lanpn] 
The impf., to denote customary action. Cf. Ges. 107. i <*>. (g renders 
the whole clause KO.I os iav lyyia-g ^/cet fjuav6r}<rerai. (& (H) adds at the 
end of the verse, fveKev rdv \-ijn/jLdT(av avruv T&V dpdptv&v dSwyO-fiffovTcu 
atrb irpoff&irov irbvwv avrQv, Kal ^iffeire tv TriJXais ^\^yx VTas > on account 
of their early gains they shall suffer from their labours, and they hate in gates 
one that reproveth. This gloss, the last words of which are from Am. 5 12 , 
seems to have been translated from the Hebrew, rwv dpQpivuv being evi 
dently the result of mistaking inir, bribe, for nnir, dawn. It has no fit 
ness in this connection. 15. nSym nin ovn p] This phrase, when ap 
plied to time, always elsewhere refers to the future. Cf. i S. i6 13 3o 25 . 
Still, the older exegetes, taking the words that follow as an explanation, 
felt forced to interpret it as referring to the past, the period preceding the 
date of this prophecy. So Jer., Ra., Dru., Marck, Hi., Ew., Koh.; also 
Reuss, Sta., Per., Kau. BDB., et al. An ingenious modification of this view 
is that of van H., who renders the whole verse, "Portez votre attention de ce 
jour-ci et au dela, depuis qu on ne plafait pas encore pierre sur pierre dans 
le temple de Jahve," i. e., as he explains, "depuis le premier jour de la 
periode durant laquelle on differa constamment d elever les murs sur les 
fondements deja prets." In other words, he claims that the prophet would 
first lead the minds of his auditors backward to the date on which opera 
tions supposed to have been begun under Cyrus were discontinued, and 
thence onward over the period between that date and the one on which 
he was speaking. The objections to this interpretation are: (i) that it 
takes for granted the historicity of Ezr. 3 8 ff -; (2) that it gives to nSpDi 
a meaning for which there is no authority; and (3) that it makes the whole 
phrase a hinderance rather than an assistance in any attempt to under 
stand the prophet s message. These objections are avoided by giving to 
with Seeker, the meaning that it has elsewhere. If, however, it 


refers to the future, how can this interpretation be harmonised with the 
fact that in the latter half of the verse the prophet is evidently thinking of 
the past ? Pressel meets this difficulty by putting a full stop after nVyci, 
thus making vv. 15b - 16 a parenthesis. So Now., Matthes, Marti, Bu., 
And. The result thus obtained is no doubt in harmony with the proph 
et s idea, but there is a simpler way of reaching it, viz., by treating the 
whole phrase, np^Dl run ovn p, as an interpolation. This method has 
obvious advantages: (i) The prophet is thus relieved of responsibility 
for an awkward and unnatural construction. (2) The attention of the 
reader is called first to the past and then to the future, just as it is in i 5 - 8 . 
(3) It is much more reasonable to suppose that a careless scribe inten 
tionally or unintentionally inserted the phrase, because it occurred in 
v. I8 , than that the prophet himself introduced it before he had any use 
for it. 3-132] The only case in which ana is preceded by p or followed 
by the inf. On Zp. 2 2 , cf. Kit. VN] <g, &r; g> $, S?; H B, supra = s ;. 
16. anrnc] The text is clearly corrupt, but it is not so plain how it 
should be emended. Matthes (ZAW., 1903, I25/.), following (& (rives 
^re) ffi, rds. an^n PID, How was it with you ? So Marti. Bu. prefers 
on" "! ^ as more idiomatic. Cf. Ru. 3 16 Am. y 3 - 5 . Neither of these 
readings is favoured by the other Vrss., which render D^a onrnn as if it 
were a^sa ODnvnn; a form of expression that actually occurs in Gn. 34 25 . 
Thus 31 has cum accaderetis, 0, v ow.coi ^>\fc> ^ and 01, finMrnD 
pSy. Something to this effect is required by the context. The fol 
lowing is suggested as the original reading: ^w nvna, while the days were, 
during the time when. The changes made are all justifiable. The prep. 
2 is required, because the prophet is dealing with a period, and not a 
point, of time. The construction in which a cstr., especially of 3V or ry, 
is followed by a descriptive clause is a familiar one. Cf. Ges. * 155 - 2 (< *> < 3 > 
r - !. In 2 Ch. 24", as in this case, the vb. has an indefinite subj. Cf. 
also Lv. 7 35 Dt. 32 35 , etc. Finally, it should be noted that the reading sug 
gested has the support of several good authorities to the extent that these 
scholars interpret the sf. o as meaning sv or > <| . So Dm., Mau., Hi., 
Koh., Hd., et al. anirjj rrnjj Ss N2] (, ore evefitiXXere et s KV^^\TJV 
Kpidijs etKOffi, where Kpi0Tjs, which is wanting in L, seems to have 
been suggested by the resemblance of cnt y, twenty, to anyr, barley. 
n-ns] The word has been interpreted in two ways: First, as a measure. 
So probably OF, r"OJ, and explicitly Ra. and some later commentators. 
Cf. Mau., Hd., et al. If this interpretation were correct, there would still 
be room for dotibting the genuineness of the word, since there is no more 
need of a measure here than in the first half of the verse. Cf. Ru. 3"; 
GesJ 134 - 3 - r - 3. It is clear, however, from Is. 632 that mis i s not a 
measure, but practically a synonym for ap\ The same objection holds 
good against a modification of this view according to which mis, al 
though it properly means wine-press, here has the derived sense of trough- 

2 10 75 

fuL Cf. Hi., Koh., Ke., And., et al. The second interpretation is that 
required by Is. 63 3 . Those who adopt it, if they retain the word in the 
text, have to supply 3 (Dru.) or p. Cf. AV., Cal., Sm., We., Now., 
van H., et al. The latter, which is now the favourite reading, must be 
rejected for the following reasons: (i) If, as is alleged, this is a case of 
haplog., since the original must have been rnicnD, not miBD, Sm., the 
text ought still to show misn. (2) There is no reason for emphasising the 
thought that the wine was to be drawn from the wine-press, and if there 
were, UDD would answer the purpose. There is no support for either of 
these views in the Vrss. <S5, to be sure, has fjLerprjrds, 1C amphoras, and 
B lagenas, but they have a measure in the first half of the verse also, not 
because M had one, but because the Greek and Latin idioms require 
it. Their testimony, therefore, is valueless. That of is to the effect 
that n-na, for which it has no equivalent, is a gloss to 3p^ which has 
been inserted in the text in the wrong place. So ARV., Matthes, Marti, 
Kit. Houb. rd. roio in the sense of jar. The Standard Revision, also, 
originally had "vessels" in Italics, i.e., omitted rnic; but, to use the 
words of Per., "the mistake (!) has now been corrected." 17. ^man 

p,-n>i ] Taken from Amos, but not necessarily an interpolation, since 

the parallel clause, which should begin with "naai, and not, as in 48, with 
nN, seems to be original. nfcrpn] Cf. v. 14 . ( 30 B OF have the pi. The 
word is in the same construction, ace., as Dsnx. The last clause, also, 
was borrowed from Amos, but not by Haggai; for (i) it is more carelessly 
reproduced than the first one, and (2) it gives to the prophet s thought a 
new and unnatural direction. In any case the text must be emended, 
oanx ps being indefensible; Ko. 270a ; contra, Ew. $ 262d ; and, since f"N 
can hardly be explained except by supposing it to be original, it seems 
better to rd. DD3^ pN, Gins., or ootf orrx, Bu., than Dnatf S, Kit. The 
whole verse is omitted by We., Now., Marti, Bu., Kit. 18. The 
same authorities reject the date in this verse, and the last three the clause 
that follows. The date is no doubt superfluous, p. 70, and the omis 
sion of mm foS would relieve the apparent discrepancy between 

this passage, on the one hand, and jn-isa and 2 3 on the other; but, as has 
been shown in the Com., this latter clause is required to explain why Yah- 
weh should now bless his people, and, when it is properly understood, its 
genuineness can be defended. The force of nSj?Bi is here so clear that 
B, which in v. 15 has et supra, renders it this time et in futurum. So 
Marck, Seek., d.e D., Hi., Koh., et al. Those, however, who maintain 
that the foundation of the temple was laid in the second year of Cyrus, 
and that the last clause of this verse refers to that event, are obliged to 
translate it here, as well as in v. l5 , and backward. So (&, RV., Dru., 
New., Rosenm., Mau., Ew., Ke., Per., van H., et al. Moreover, they must 
do violence to pS, either, with Ew., giving it the force of ijn, or practi 
cally making it do double duty, first pointing the reader to the past and 


then, from a certain date in the past, turning his attention toward the 
present. The former of these methods of treatment entirely ignores He 
brew usage, according to which pS and *ijn, so far from being inter 
changeable, are direct opposites. Cf. Ex. u 7 2 S. 7 6 . On the second, 
which is best represented by van Hoonacker, see v. 15 , notes. The position 
taken in the comments is that p? without "i>i marks the beginning of a 
period extending to the present, and that the foundation of the temple dis 
tinguishes and dominates the whole of it. For other examples, cf. Dt. 
4 32 2 S. 7 11 . If the preceding clause is retained, it is not necessary, with 
<8> &, to connect DDaaS icir with v. 19 . mrr] (5 L adds ira.vTWKpa.Twp = 
nwa*. & adds n * 1 ^&^o^ Jjk^~, of Hosts to be built. Cf. i ? . 
19. m-una] Zeydner (Th. St., 1900, 417 /.) rds. rmjsa, an object 
of fear, the a being a essenticz; but Matthes objects, and justly, that the 
meaning garner suits the context, and that a essentia is not used with the 
article. Cf. De. on Ps. 35 2 . -un] Rd., with < A Q L B Sf, njn. On the 
meaning of vh nj?, c/". Je. 4O 5 2 Ch. so 33 . sc j] (&, (frtpovra = Nirj. So 
Matthes, Marti, but 1C W have the equivalent of iNirj, which would be 
the regular construction. C/. Ges. l46 - 2 ( a >. 113N % ] Houb.rds.o:naN, 
citing ^, which adds at the end of the verse 
nin^ ONJ ODIN. 


(2 20 - 23 ). 

This prophecy is addressed to Zerubbabel alone. In it Haggai 
foretells a great catastrophe by which kings will be overthrown 
and kingdoms destroyed, but after which the prince, unharmed, 
will receive new honours from Yahweh. 

20. In the preceding prophecy Haggai confined his attention 
to internal conditions and the prospect of improvement. Very 
soon after he delivered it, something must have happened to give 
his thoughts a different direction. Perhaps there came news from 
the East, the report of a new outbreak or a battle unfavourable to 
the Persians, which tended to confirm the opinion current in 
Jerusalem that the days of the empire were numbered. At any 
rate, on the twenty-fourth of the ninth month, the word of Yahweh 
came to him a second time, and he prophesied. 21. The message 
is a private and personal one. Even Joshua, who, in the first two 
cases, was recognised as one of the pillars of the new community, 
is now ignored. This fact might give rise to many vain theories; 

2"- 77 

as, for example, that Zerubbabel and Joshua had become es 
tranged, and Haggai had espoused the cause of the governor. A 
simpler explanation, and probably the correct one, is that the 
prophecy was directed to Zerubbabel because he was the one most 
concerned in its fulfilment. It begins with a repetition of the an 
nouncement of v. 6 , I will shake heaven and earth. 22. In v. 7 
the prophet was content with merely indicating in a general way 
what Yahweh meant by threatening to shake heaven and earth, 
viz., political commotion. Here he is bolder. / will overturn, he 
makes Yahweh say, the rule,* lit., the throne, of the kingdoms, and 
destroy the might of the nations. This is a very sweeping prophecy. 
It seems to mean that the prophet expected the commotion then 
rife to result in the total abolition of the absolute power exercised 
by the kings of the earth and their submission to Yahweh as the 
King of Kings. First, however, there must be great carnage; for 
Yahweh will overturn chariots and them that ride therein, and horses 
shall go down, and their riders, to Sheol. Cf. Is. 5". It must not 
be supposed that the Jews are to have any part in this conflict. 
They will merely be witnesses while Yahweh is destroying their 
enemies; or rather, while, by his decree, these enemies are de 
stroying one another; for they will fall each by the sword of his fel 
low. Cf. Ju. y 22 Ez. 38 21 . 23. The prophet closes this his last 
discourse with the boldest of all his predictions. He introduces 
it by a phrase, very common in other books, which, however, he 
has not hitherto employed. It is in that day, by which he means 
the now rapidly approaching time when the divine plan concern 
ing Israel will be consummated and the Messianic era inaugurated. 
The solemnity of the announcement is noticeable. The phrase 
just quoted is followed by a saith Yahweh of Hosts. The same 
expression is used at the end of the verse, while the intervening 
statements are separated by the briefer saith Yahweh. There 
is only one other passage in the book (v. 4 ), in which the prophet 
appears so anxious to be recognised as a veritable ambassador 
from the Almighty. Zerubbabel is directly addressed: I will 

* The word ND3 is frequently used in this signification. Cf. i K. i 37 , et pas. The rendering 
above given seems required by parallelism with prn. Otherwise it might be regarded as an 
example of a common Heb. idiom, the use of the sg. for the pi. in the cstr. before a pi., and trans 
lated thrones. Cf. Ges. 1M - * . 


take thee, says Yah weh . The expression implies selection for an im 
portant service or mission. Thus, Yahweh "took" Abraham, that 
he might be the father of a chosen people (Jos. 24 3 ) ; Israel, that 
they might be his people and he their God (Ex. 6 12 ) ; the Levites, 
that they might serve him at his sanctuary (Nu. 3 12 ) ; David, that 
he might be a prince over Israel (2 S. f) ; and Amos, that he might 
represent him at Bethel (Am. y 15 ). All these, in so far as they ful 
filled the missions for which they were selected, were Yahweh s 
servants. Cf. Gn. 26 24 Is. 4i 8 2 S. 3 18 , etc. Yahweh here calls 
Zerubbabel, partly in recognition of past faithfulness, but also in 
anticipation of greater usefulness in the future, his servant, and as 
such promises him unique distinction. I will make thee as a sig 
net, he says. Now, the signet, or seal-ring, was not a mere orna 
ment, although as such it was sometimes highly valued by the 
Hebrews. Its peculiar importance lay in the fact that it was en 
graved and was used when its owner wished to sign a letter or 
other document. Cf. i K. 2i 8 . It represented him, and, since 
at any time it might be needed for this purpose, he rarely parted 
with it; but wore it, either on a cord about his neck (Gn. 38 18 ), or 
on one of the fingers of his right hand (Je. 22 24 ), everywhere. Thus 
the signet came to be a symbol for one s most precious possession. 
Cf. Je. 22 24 Ct. 8 6 . Such is its significance in this connection, as 
appears from the causal clause, /0r thee have 1 chosen. There can 
be no doubt about this statement. It means that Haggai, for 
getting the inspiring idea of the Second Isaiah, that Israel had now 
inherited the promises made to David (Is. 55 3 ), and become the 
servant ordained to carry the salvation of Yahweh to the ends of 
the earth (Is. 49 6 ), had revived the doctrine of the ideal king and 
identified Zerubbabel with the long-expected son of David. 

20. On the genuineness of this and the following verses, see p. 30. 
un] Add, with Kenn. 250 (6, Naan, as elsewhere, exc. w. 13 f -, where it 
would retard the narrative. Cf. i 1 a 1 - 10 . 21. Saanr] (& adds, and 
doubtless correctly, rbv TOV Sa\a0t^X= l tton l ?Ntf p]. The words KCL! r^v 
6d\a<r(rav /ecu TTJV frpdv (C), at the end of the verse, on the other hand, 
seem to have been borrowed from v. 6 , q. v. 22. nisScD 1 ] <8, paaiXtuv. 
The omission of the art. suggests that perhaps this word was originally fol 
lowed by O -Dyn; but since the line is already long enough, it is better to 
supply the art rn?SD 2 J Om. with Boh. as unnecessary to the sense and 


disturbing to the rhythm. The whole clause is omitted by d N *, but the 
omission is evidently due to the carelessness of a copyist, Greek or Heb. 
nozni] ( A adds Kai Karacrrp^w tra.aa.v rrjv dvva.fji.iv avr&v /cat /cara/3aXw 
ra 8pia avTu>v KCU tvLvytid) rovs ^/cXe/cToi)s fj.ov- doubtless a marginal gloss 
incorporated into its text. n-vi] Gratz suggests n-m; van H. my. 
The present reading, however, is easily defensible if the vb. be taken in 
the natural sense of descending into Sheol which it has in Is. 5 U Ez. 32 19 , 
etc. We. supplies iSs" 1 ; but, since both the sense and the rhythm are 
complete without it, it is better to treat the whole clause as a mistaken 
gloss. omro] Bu. adds ?; but it is possible that the prophet purposely 
omitted it, thus avoiding an anthropomorphism to which Je. 22 24 , saw 
no objection. 


The book of Zechariah consists of fourteen chapters. The first 
eight are universally recognised as the work of the prophet to whom 
they are attributed. The authorship of the last six has long been 
in dispute, but most recent authorities on the question refer them 
to some other author or authors. This opinion, the reasons for 
which will in due time be given, is here taken for granted. The 
subject of this chapter, therefore, more exactly stated, would be, 
Zechariah as he reveals himself in the first eight chapters of the 
book called by his name. 


There is not much to be learned about Zechariah outside of his 
prophecies. As in the case of Haggai, the references to him in 
Ezr. 5 1 6 14 simply reflect an acquaintance with these utterances in 
the time of the Chronicler. When, however, Zc. i 1 is combined 
with Ne. i2 4 the result is the interesting item of information that 
Zechariah was a priest as well as a prophet. The fact is so patent 
that it is not necessary to cite internal evidence in support of it 
(3 7ff )> for example, where one might perhaps detect a special inter 
est in the priesthood.* On the other hand, there would be no use 
in citing f f - or 8 19 to the contrary. Any objection based on them 
would at once be overruled, the answer being that some of the 
severest criticisms of the priests and the form of religion they rep 
resent are by members of their own order. Cf. Je. 5 31 f, etc. 

The recognition of Zechariah as a priest, then, is based on his 
relation to Iddo. But what, precisely, was this relation ? Accord 
ing to Zc. i 1 the former was a grandson of the latter. In Ez. 5 1 
and 6 14 , however, the one is called a son of the other, and this also 
appears to be the meaning of Ne. i2 16 compared with v. 4 , where 

* The casual reader would naturally think 6 11 more convincing, but, as will be shown in the 
proper place, it cannot be cited for the purpose named, for the excellent reason that in its 
present form it does not represent Zechariah, but a sacerdotal reviser. See the comments. 



Zechariah takes the place of Iddo among the chief priests under 
Joiakim the son of Jeshua (Joshua), presumably in the next gener 
ation. It has been taken for granted that these discrepant data 
could be adjusted to one another, and various means to that end 
have been suggested. A favourite conjecture has been that Zech 
ariah was sometimes called a son of Iddo because Berechiah, who 
really was his father, was dead or was a person of comparatively 
little importance. Now, it is true that the word son is sometimes 
in the Old Testament used to denote a descendant of the third or 
an even later generation. Thus, for example, in Gn. 2Q 5 Laban 
is called the son of Nahor, instead of the son of Bethuel as in 24 24 , 
and in Ezr. f Ezra is called the son of Seraiah, although there 
must have been at least three generations between them. Cf. 
i Ch. 5 40 f -/6 14 f *. In the present instance, however, there is a 
simpler and more reasonable solution of the difficulty. It is found 
in the fact that the Jews, disregarding chronological considerations, 
identified Zechariah, the prophet of the Restoration, with the per 
son of the same name mentioned in Is. 8 2 .* In view of this fact 
it is more than probable that the Berechiah of Zc. i 1 is a corrup 
tion of Jeberechiah, the name of the father of Isaiah s associate, 
and that therefore the phrase "the son of Berechiah" is an inter 
polation inserted by some one later than the Chronicler who 
accepted the above identification and took this means of spread 
ing his opinion. The omission of these words makes Zechariah 
the son of Iddo here, as he is in all the other passages in which he 
is mentioned.f 

Tradition, as represented by Pseudo-Epiphanius, Dorotheus, 
and Hesychius, has several items with reference to the life of Zech 
ariah which would be interesting if they could be substantiated. 
Thus, it says that, when he came from Babylon to Palestine, he 
was already well advanced in years and had given proofs of his 
prophetic ability by foretelling various future events and perform 
ing many miracles.J The fact is that these statements are not in 
harmony with the more credible evidence of the Old Testament, 
according to which, as already noted, the prophet came to Pales- 

*Cf. ?wst,KAT., 44 f. 

t Knobel, Proph., ii, 173 /.; Bleek, SK., 1852, 312. 

J For the text of the accounts of Zechariah by these three writers, see Kohler, 10 /. 


tine with his father and probably lived until after the death of the 
high priest Joshua. Cf. Ne. i2 4 - 16 . The safer opinion, then, is 
that Zechariah was a comparatively young man when he came to 
Palestine, and that he was by no means "advanced in years" when 
he published his prophecies. He was doubtless younger than Hag- 
gai, since he seems to have survived that prophet and to have taken 
the second place in the movement to restore the temple, his first 
prophecy being delivered in the eighth month (i 1 ), while Haggai s 
is dated the first of the sixth, in the second year of Darius. On the 
other hand, he continued to prophesy some time after his associate 
had ceased, his last dated utterance being his reply to the men of 
Bethel in the fourth year of Darius. Cf. f s -. In fact Ne. i2 16 , 
where he is among the chief priests under Joiakim the son of 
Joshua, is pretty good evidence that his life was prolonged con 
siderably beyond that date. 

The Versions give Zechariah the credit of being a poet as well as 
a prophet, associating him with Haggai in the authorship of sev 
eral pieces in the book of Psalms.* 

The Christian authors above cited agree in reporting that Zech 
ariah lived to a great age and died a natural death ; but one copy of 
Epiphanius (Cod. Augustanus) says that he was put to death by 
Joash, king of Judah, in other words, identifies him with Zecha 
riah the son of Jehoida, the story of whose martyrdom is told in 
2 Ch. 24 20ff \ It seems incredible that any one should make so 
glaring a mistake, but this is not the only trace of it. The Tar- 
gum to La. 2 20 calls the martyred prophet "Zechariah the son of 
Iddo." Indeed it appears in the New Testament, for when, in 
Mt. 23 s5 , the Evangelist represents Jesus as using the expression 
"from the blood of Abel the righteous to the blood of Zechariah 
the son of Berechiah," he falls into the same error. 

There is no escape from this conclusion. In the first place, the text is un 
assailable, the phrase viou /Sapaxi ou being as clearly genuine as any other part 
of it. There is only one ms. (N) of importance from which it is wanting, and 
that had it originally. As for the conjecture that Jehoida was also called 
Berechiah (Luther), or had a son, the father of Zechariah, of that name 

* The Greek Version has his name in the titles of 137 (138) and 145-149 (146-149); the Old 
Latin in that of in (112); the Vulgate in those of in (112), 145 /. (146 /.); and the Syiiac in 
those of 125 /. (126 /.) and 145-148 (146-148). 


(Ebrard, Krit. der evang. Gesch.-, 422), or that Zechariah the son of Iddo 
actually suffered the same fate as his unhappy predecessor of the same name, 
in which many have taken refuge, there is not the slightest foundation for 

The evangelist is followed, not only by the author of the inter 
polation in Epiphanius, who quotes from Matthew the phrase "be 
tween the temple and the altar," but by Jerome, Chrysostom and 
many others.* It is clear from the above discussion that nothing 
is known of the end of Zechariah. The discussion itself, however, 
by showing that the ancients confounded him with the son of Je- 
hoida, has also given to the conjecture that they also mistook him 
for the son of Jeberechiah, namely, in Zc. i 1 , increased plausibility. 


The genuine prophecies of Zechariah form a tolerably consistent 
and intelligible whole. There is, first, a hortatory introduction (i 1 " 6 ), 
originally, to judge from the date prefixed to it, an independent 
prophecy. The main body of the collection (i 7 -6 23 ) naturally falls 
into two parts, the first of which consists of a series of eight visions, 
each with its interpretation, followed by a supplementary descrip 
tion of a symbolical act which the prophet is commanded to per 
form. The second part, chs. y/., contains only an account of the 
mission of the men of Bethel and the oracle that the prophet was in 
structed to deliver in response to their inquiry, the last paragraph 
of which furnishes a suitable conclusion for the entire collection. 


These chapters have suffered much less at the hands of editors, 
revisers and copyists than the writings of some of the other proph 
ets. Still, it cannot in strictness be said that they have preserved 
throughout their original form and meaning. There is proof of 
this at the very outset. It was evidently a habit with Zechariah to 
introduce his utterances with a statement frequent in the book of 
Jeremiah, namely, "The word of Yahweh (of Hosts) came to me, 
saying." At any rate, it can be shown that he used it whenever 
it was appropriate. Now, however, in certain cases, the first has 

* Luke (n 51 ) omits any reference to the parentage of the prophet. 


given place to the third person. One of them is in i 1 , where the 
editor of the collection, instead of prefixing a title giving the name, 
date, etc., of the prophet, and then leaving him to present his own 
credentials, as did the editor of Jeremiah, has woven a statement 
of his own into that of his author. In i 7 and y 1 , on the other hand, 
where the familiar statement is neither necessary nor appropriate, 
an imitation of it, with the third person, has been inserted, much to 
the confusion of the thoughtful reader. In one case (y 8 ) the same 
sort of a statement has been inserted into the middle of a para 
graph, where it separates a formula of citation from the words 
quoted, the editor being misled by the familiar "Thus saith Yah- 
weh," with which the next verse begins, into supposing that he had 
reached the beginning of a new prophecy. These changes seem 
to have been made when the prophecies were added to the collection 
known as "The Minor Prophets." There are others of a differ 
ent character, to say nothing of mere mistakes that may have been 
made at any time since these oracles became public property. 
Some of them are purely explanatory. A simple example of this 
class is the clause, which is the month Shebat, in i 7 . More im 
portant is the explanation of the filthy garments with which Joshua 
was clothed in 3 4 , and that of the ephah in 5, both of which are 
clearly exegetical glosses. There is another class of cases in which 
the text is expanded by the addition of details or other matter sug 
gested in certain connections. There are a number of examples. 
See the phrase, mounted on a bay horse, in i 8 , and the parenthetical 
clause, and the spirit was in their wings, of 5, but especially in 4 12 
the entirely new feature introduced into the vision of the golden 
lamp. Finally, there are a few cases in which the changes or addi 
tions are of the nature of corrections representing the ideas of the 
reviser rather than of the original author. See 2 2 /i 19 , where Israel, 
at least, is an interpolation, but especially 6 10 , where the name of 
Joshua has been substituted for that of Zerubbabel. These are 
but specimens. The following table is an attempt to show to what 
extent the deliberate modification of the text has been carried, also 
in what degree it has suffered from additions, omissions and dis 
tortions through the fault of careless or ignorant transcribers. The 
reasons in each case will come later. 





I, i. NO^-i [rro-o p] 

2. The whole verse. 

3. msax DNJ 

8. onx 






2 2 /i 19 . a 

2 3 /I 20 . 

2 4 /i 21 . DH 


iSsn after trm 1 

Si-u after f)Sp. 

nrn D"n nnsir S* 

ip at 

the beginning, 
i before SN; n l from 

after mmi. 

after n 


na for 

SN for 

mm IN*??: for 






i, i. [Son of Berechiah] 

2. The whole verse. 

3. saith Hosts. 2 


7. which is the month 

Shebat; came 

8. mounted on a bay 







19 /2 2 . Israel and Jeru 


21 /2 4 . to discomfit them. 

The king after Darius. 

very before angry. 

Call to the remnant of 
this people, at the be 

And before be; from be 
fore your evil deeds. 

In the eighth month for 
on the first of the eighth 
month; to Zechariah 
for to me. 

said for saith. 

The angel of Yahweh for 
the man. 

of Hosts after Yahweh. 

Sir before what 

saying for to me. 






2 4 /I 21 - pp 

U M N for "iit N; 

D^NU JH for o^Nii jnj 

SN for hy. 

V 2 . 

vSs after ^DN\ 


NX 111 for axj. 

V 5 - 

10 / 6 . i before ID:; 

j JiNj for j ? aisa. 

u / 7 . na 

12 / 8 . -unSc 5 inx 

n before 1123. 


u / 10 . 

15 / n . 

^S for iS; 

Tooiri for pt i. 

18 / 1 *. 


mni after ^N*VI. 


IN^D after ICNM. 


I^Scn for nini ^sSn. 

4. W-, 

IHN ebVnifor i. n x iraSm. 

5. 1EN1 

DOVJ after onja. 

is^i:" 1 for ic -ri. 



D^np for D^n,. 







i 21 /2 4 . horn. 

to him after 7 

V 7 . 

V 9 . 

/ 10 . and before flee; 
for Yahweh. 

V 11 . the daughter of. 

V 12 - after the glory he 
sent me. 



before g/ory. 

a man for //*a/; uplifted 
for uplifted themselves; 
to for against. 

was going forth for 
standing there. 

as the four for to the four. 

to me for to /MW; 7 wi// 
dif ell for &e w;*7/ dwell. 

Yahweh before showed. 

the angel of before Yah 
weh. 1 

4. ant? Ae saz d thee. 

5. and 7 saja 1 . 


goodly before garments. 

the angel for /& aw^e/ of 

and clothed thee for and 
clothe him. 

let them put for and put. 

In form. 






3,8. nDX -a 2 
9. njn 









12. The entire verse. 

13. i^xS 






NM for i^s i; nSji for 
nnSji; mpxin ripae i for 

s for ru^D or 

N for DNJ. 
nnx ^ for nx jnx 


123 nTE 1 - 2 for HD3 ."IT. 






3, 8. for; 1 for* Shoot. 

9. /o. 1 

2. seven.* 





12. The entire verse. 

13. saying. 



oil after discharge; into 
the before, and bowl 
after, golden. 

to me after said. 

by my name falsely after 
swear eth. 

he said for I said; in a 
form; seven pipes for 
//&e seven pipes; the 
lights for //e bowl. 

the bowl for i/ or the 

said for saith. 

Who art thou, mountain, 
for For I will make 
the mountain (?). 

thou shalt, for ye shall, 

on one side like it twice 
for how long now. 







6. px~ 



9. 3T2J 




3. OvfSN 



6. H 


iann after 
x after nSx. 


n after 

14. The entire verse. 

15. os^nSs rr>ni 


s;i- 2 for 

XDNn for 
for INX\ 

pS for n^S; nSno for 
nSn PN; PNOI twice 
for PNI; ,-IPN for DPN; 
1X3 for fro. 

pnaj? for rn$j7. 
vSx for on^N. 

for rngpm; 









6. And he said 2 land 

9. and the spirit 




3. strong. 


6. That in which. 

8. me after called. 

10. in that day and 

11. and place priest. 

12. saying twice; and 

upward Yah- 


14. The entire verse. 

15. And it shall God. 

that was speaking with 
me after angel; to after 

to the east country after 
go forth. 

it after place. 

and to Josiah. 

their eye for their in 

to for upon. 

she shall be deposited for 
they shall deposit her. 

have gone forth twice for 

shall go forth, 
the strong for the bay ; 

have gone forth for 

shall go forth. 

In the form of take; from 
Helday for Helday; 
from Tobiah for 7 o- 
biah; from Jcdaiah 
for Jcdaiah; thou for 
with them; hath for 
have., come. 

crowns for crotrn. 
to him for to them. 

throne for right hand. 

and to Hen for even to 




7, i. V?oaa rnnar n>r 

3. 1CK 1 ? 



8. The entire verse. 

9. -ex 1 ? 


12. inna :onan PNI 

13. rn*ax p 




4. i before C"x 


6. ann D>DO 



i before "iD 


Sx after nwax. 
after nirv 


n^a 1 ? for n^aa; nun for 


DT;DNI for D^DM; hy for 







7, I. the word Zecha- 
riah; in Kislew. 


3. saying. 



8. The entire verse. 

9. saying. 


12. even the words; 
through his spir 

and before to speak. 

or before a stranger. 

50 shall Hosts. 





to me after Hosts. 

of Hosts after Yahweh. 

and before each. 

in those days. 

that Bethel sent Shereser 
and Regem-melek and 
his men for that the 
men of Bethel sent. 

to for in before the house; 
abstaining for or ab 

Sign of ace. for these 
after are not. 

a back for their backs. 

1 scattered for he scat 
tered; upon for to be 
fore all the nations. 

9 6 









17. 1E N 



21. ris 

2 3- 









9. the temple to be 


seed for I will sow. 

13. and house of Israel. 

14. said Yahweh of 


16. truth* 

17. which. 



21. even Hosts. 


2 3- 

peaceful for perfect (?). 

In this connection mention should be made of a case in which a passage 
has been transferred from one place to another. The passage in question is 
4 7 - 9 and parts of vv. 6 and 10 , which, as will be explained later, seem to belong 
at the end of ch. 6. 



The analysis, the results of which have been presented in the 
foregoing table, was necessary to a correct and defensible opinion 
with reference to Zechariah as a writer and thinker. Now that it 
has been made, the next step is the discussion of the literary form 
of his prophecies. The first fact that strikes one on taking in hand 
these utterances is that, like those of Haggai, they are all dated. 
True, in two cases the dates are defective, but this, at least in the 
first instance, is not the fault of the prophet. There seems to be 
no reason for doubting the correctness of these dates, which are 
confirmed by incidental references found in the several prophecies. 
Thus, in i 12 the period during which the Jews have suffered from 
the indignation of Yahweh is seventy years, probably, as explained 
in the comments, a round number for the sixty-seven that had actu 
ally elapsed since the beginning of the Captivity. See also 4 9 and 
6 13 , from which it appears that, when these passages were written, 
work on the second temple had been begun, but the structure had 
not been completed; and f, from which it seems fair to infer 
that it was nearing completion, as would have been the case in the 
fourth, if it was finished in the sixth, year of Darius. Cf. Ezr. 6 15 . 

It is also noteworthy that the prophecies of Zechariah, unlike 
those of Haggai, are, or were, all written in the first person. This 
fact is somewhat obscured by editorial additions, which, however, 
are easily detected. Thus, it is evident that in i 7 and f the name 
and parentage of the prophet are secondary. So also f entire. 
In 8 1 , on the other hand, to me has evidently been omitted. This 
direct, personal mode of discourse may therefore be regarded as 
quite as characteristic of Zechariah s style as it is of that of Eze- 
chiel.* It is calculated to excite the interest, and secure the con 
fidence, of the reader. 

A more important feature of the prophecies of Zechariah is the 
number of visions they contain, there being no fewer than eight 
in the first six chapters. Not that this was by any means a new 
method of conveying religious instruction. Amos, the oldest of 

* In Ez. i w. 2 - 3 * have been added, and in v. 3b "upon me" changed to "upon him." Toy, 


the writing prophets, employs them; nor was there a time in the 
history of the chosen people when they were not more or less pop 
ular. Cf. Is. 6. Thus the word "vision" actually became a syn 
onym for prophecy. This method of presentation for it finally 
became a purely literary device is found in its most complete de 
velopment in the book of Ezekiel. It is not Ezekiel, however, from 
whom Zechariah learned to use visions, but Amos. This is clear 
from the way in which he uses them, namely, in groups, and for 
the purpose, not of stimulating in his people great expectations, for 
the future, but of impressing upon them the lessons of the past 
and the urgent demands of the present. Therefore, much as he 
taught by visions, it would be a mistake and an injustice to call him 
a visionary. In fact, there is none of the later prophets who is more 
sane and practical. 

The literary form chosen by Zechariah, in spite of his fondness 
for visions, is not so poetical as that of most of the other prophets. 
In fact it is generally that of ordinary Hebrew prose. Now and 
then, however, especially when he is delivering an express message 
from Yahweh, he falls into a rhythmical movement, and most fre 
quently that of the second Isaiah. In some cases the rhythmical 
passage is so short, containing only one or two lines, that it is doubt 
ful if the prophet was conscious of employing the metrical form. 
In i 4 f> there are two such bits of poetry: 

Be not like your fathers, to whom the former prophets cried, saying: 
Thus saith Yahweh of Hosts, 
Return from your evil ways, 

yea, from your evil deeds; 

but they did not hear, nor did they listen to me, saith Yahweh. 
Your fathers, where are they? 

and the prophets, do they live forever? 

The first of these distichs naturally detaches itself from the con 
text, but the second seems to be a part of the discourse that merely 
happens to be rhythmical. Like this latter are the parallel clauses 
in i 10 2 9/5 4 7 8 12 - 20 . There are other cases in which the whole 
passage is rhythmical, or meant to be. Brief specimens of this 
sort are found in 2 12/8 8 2 (distichs) i 17 (tristrich) 8 3 (tetrastich). 
Those cited from 8 2 f- differ, not only in length, but in measure 


Moreover, the tetrastich is not as symmetrical in form as it is in 
content. In 8 4 f> the author seems to have abandoned the attempt 
to be poetical; but a tristich of long lines could be produced by 
dropping the phrase playing in the streets from v. 5 . There are 
three other passages in which he seems to have intended to follow 
the same measure. They are i 14b 15 3 7 and 6 12b 13 . Each of them 
contains three lines, with a caesura in the middle. In one pas 
sage, 2 14/10 - 17/13 , omitting v. 15/llb , there are three rather tame tris- 
tichs and a final distich. It is thus the longest of the poetical pas 
sages noted. The one in 6 12 f -, however, in its original form is the 
best example of this form of composition from the hand of the 
prophet.* There is not, however, sufficient difference in the qual 
ity of the last four examples to warrant one in attributing them, 
or either of them, to any other than Zechariah. Finally, there are 
not enough of these passages of all kinds and qualities to give him 
a claim to be called a poet. The speeches in Hebrew prose are 
frequently cast in a metrical form. Cf. Gn. 2^- 7 . 

Every writer, even the most prosaic, has his favourite forms of 
expression. Sometimes they are original with himself, but they 
are often borrowed from other authors. In the former case they 
become the trade-mark of the originator, distinguishing him from 
all others; in the latter they may be equally useful for critical pur 
poses. The prophet Zechariah had words, and phrases, and con 
structions that he preferred to others. 

The following are some of them: 

The word of Yahweh came (was) to me is frequent in Jeremiah and Eze- 
chiel. Originally 6 times. Thus saith Yahweh of Hosts occurs sometimes 
in Jeremiah, but is comparatively more frequent in Haggai. Here it is used 
17 times. In i 16 and 8 3 PIN^X (Hosts} has wittingly or unwittingly been 
omitted. Ye shall (thou shall) know that Yahweh of Hosts hath sent me to 
you (thee). Cf. v. 15/11 4 9 6 15 . The infinitive ir^ (saying) is noticeably fre 
quent in these chapters, occurring 29 times. The Lord of the whole earth is 
used only twice, but not at all in the other prophetical books. The rhetorical 
question is frequent in Jeremiah and Haggai. Here it is used 1 1 times. The 
participle is used in certain constructions; with njn, 10, without it, n times; 
adverbially, 7 times. Among the words regarded as characteristic of Zecha- 
riah s style are: the pronoun of the first person; only in its briefer form, ^JN; 
take pleasure, nnu, of Yahweh, 3 times, cf. Is. 14 ; purpose,Qm, of Yahweh, 

* In all the passages cited, except 2 14/1 ff , such expressions as saith Yahweh must be neglected 
as falling outside the metrical scheme. 


3 times, cf. Je. 4 28 ; appease, nVn, 3 times, cf. Je. a6 19 ; proclaim, Nnr>, 4 times, 
cf. Is. 4o 3 - 6 ; remnant, r\i-*\#v, 3 times, c/. Hg. i 12 ; return, IV, is used adverbially 
in the sense of again 3 times, cf. Je. i8 4 ; dwe//, pr, of Yahweh, twice, of men 
once, cf. Ex. 2Q 45 ; midst, "pn, 8 times, c/. Hg. 2 5 . For a fuller list, with some 
doubtful numbers, see Eckardt, ZAW., 1893, 

It is clear from the above list that the language of Zechariah can 
not be called original. His favourite modes of speech are almost 
without exception very familiar to the student of the Old Testament. 
He got them from preceding prophets, being, like Haggai, most 
indebted to Jeremiah. Indeed, he owes his predecessors more 
than these characteristic expressions. He himself more than once 
reminds his people that he is only repeating the message of "the 
former prophets" to their fathers, i 4 f- 12 8 7 , and his prophecies 
show that he was acquainted with nearly all the prophetical books 
and borrowed liberally from several of them. 

The following are the passages in which there is evidence of more or less 
dependence on his predecessors: First there are some in which the prophet re 
produces to a greater or less extent the language of others: i 4 , Return from your 
evil ways, yea, from your evil deeds, cf. Je. 25 5 . i 6 , As Yahweh of Hosts pur 
posed to do to us, . . . so hath he done with us, cf. La. 2 17 . i 17 , Yahweh will 
comfort Zion, cf. Is. 5i 3 . 2 17 / 13 , Silence, all flesh, before Yahweh/ for he hath 
roused himself from his holy abode, cf. Hb. 2 20 . 3 2 , Is not this a brand plucked 
from the fire ? cf. Am. 4". 3 10 , Under the vine and the fig tree, cf.Mi. 4 4 . 8 8 , They 
shall be to me a people,and I will be to them a God, cf. Ez. 1 i 2 3 6 28 37*. 27 . 812, 
The earth shall yield its produce, cf. Ez. 34". 8 14 , / purposed to do you evil . . . 
and did not repent, cf. Je. 4 28 . It is plain from these examples that Zechariah 
took no pains to reproduce the exact words of earlier writers. There is not a 
precise quotation among them. 

In the passages that remain to be cited he pays still less attention to phrase 
ology. Some of them are merely allusions to previous utterances, i 12 he re 
fers to the seventy years of Je. 25", cf. Zc. 7 s . i 15 the zeal of the nations is con 
demned as in Is.47 6 ,c/". Is. 10 f -. i 16 isin substance Is-47 28 ,but there seems also 
to be an allusion to Je. 3188/39. 2 s/4 expands the thought of Je. 3138/39 an d Is. 
49 19 f 5 c f- also Is. 54 2 - 29/5 seems to have been suggested by Is. 4 5 and Hg. i 8 
or 2 7 . 2 6b is a gloss suggested by Ez. s 10 , and 2 12 8 , after the glory he sent me, 
is another gloss suggested by Ez. 2 3 . 2 13/9 , on I will wave my hand,, see 
Is. ii 15 I9 16 . 2 15/u , the phrase, many nations, points to Mi. 4 2 , cf. Is. 2 3 . 
2 16/12 , he will find pleasure in Jerusalem seems to be an adaptation of Is. I4 1 . 
3 8 , the reference to the Shoot is a gloss, but in 6 2 there is a genuine one which 
is evidence of acquaintance with Je. 23 5 . 4 6 is a variation on Hg. 2 5 . 6 8 , on 
the idea of assuaging wrath by punishment, see Ez. 5 13 , etc. 7 9 f , the prophet 
has in mind such passages as Am. s 24 Ho. 6 6 Is. i 16 f Mi. 6 8 Je. f ff -, for the 
phrase true justice, see Ez. i8 8 . 7", a stubborn shoulder may be a reminiscence 
of Ho. 4 16 , and stopped their ears of Is. 6 . 8 3 , on the faithful city, see Is. i 16 . 


S 7 is a reminiscence of Is. 43 5 f . 8 9 - 13 , on let your hands be strong, see Hg. 
2 4 . 8 10 , a reference to Hg. i 6 2 16 f -, or the conditions there described. 8 U f , 
the promise of Hg. 2 18 f - is repeated, cf. Hg. i 10 . 8 19 , the prophet may well 
have had in mind Je. 3i 12/13 . 8 20 ff - again recalls Mi. 4 2 . 8 23 is another way 
of putting the thought of Is. 45". 

The number of passages noted does not at first sight seem large, 
but it must be remembered that chs. 4-6, owing to the character 
of their content, could not be expected to furnish many. In point 
of fact, there are but three to represent them. The showing as a 
whole, therefore, justifies Kohler s remark (25), that "Zechariah 
got his schooling, not from the culture or religion of the Babyloni 
ans, but from the prophets of his own people." 


The indebtedness of Zechariah to his predecessors must be rec 
ognised, but the extent of this dependence may very easily be 
overestimated. That he was not a mere plagiarist or imitator is 
clear from the frankness with which he cites "the former proph 
ets" and the freedom with which he adapts their language to his 
own taste or purpose. It becomes still clearer when an attempt is 
made to master the content of his prophecies. 

Take first the visions. They were apparently, as has been ob 
served, suggested by those of Amos. They remind one, however, 
of the elder prophet, not by any similarity in the scenes portrayed, 
but by the methodical way in which they are handled, the first 
three, as will be shown, picturing the restoration already partially 
accomplished, the next two the organisation of the new community, 
and the last three the removal of sin as a menace to its prosperity, 
even to its existence. The individual visions differ decidedly from 
those of Amos, and, indeed, from those of all the other prophets 
who employ this means of instruction. In the ordinary vision Yah- 
weh appears to his servant and addresses him directly, with or with 
out the aid of symbols. Of the former class are those of Jeremiah, 
as well as those of Amos. Cf. Je. i 11 ff , etc. A good example 
is the impressive theophany of Is. 6. In Ezekiel, also, Yahweh is 
sometimes his own interpreter (i 28 ), but in the latter part of the book 


an angel, according to Kraetzschmar the angel of Yahweh, appears 
in the vision and explains his own movements. Cf. 4o 3 f \ The 
visions of Zechariah mark a further development in the same direc 
tion. In them also the angel of Yahweh represents the Deity, but 
there is another angel, described as "the angel that was speaking 
to me," who takes no part in the action, his sole function being the 
explanation of what goes forward. This interpreter, who is pres 
ent in all the visions, and speaks in all but the fourth (3 1 ff ), is orig 
inal, so far as can be determined, with Zechariah. 

The interpreter is only one of many angels who appear in the 
visions. In the first there are the messengers who report on the 
condition of the earth (i 12 ) ; in the fourth the attendants of the angel 
of Yahweh (3 4 ) ; and in the others additional members of the heav 
enly host, each with his peculiar functions. Not even in the book 
of Daniel are these celestial beings so constantly in evidence. In 
fact, they constitute an order of intermediaries between a tran 
scendent Deity and his mundane creatures, and, as such, are con 
stantly employed in the execution of the divine will. Among them, 
in the fourth vision, appears the Adversary, a being of like rank but 
of very different character. He, also, is a feature of Zechariah s 
prophecies, being, in fact, found here for the first and only time 
in the prophetical literature. On the development of the idea that 
he represents, see the comments. 

There is another feature of these visions that deserves attention : 
there is nothing intentionally mysterious or enigmatical about 
them. The prophet does not hesitate here, as elsewhere, to men 
tion names. Thus, in the fourth (3 3 ) Joshua is expressly named, 
and in the fifth (4") the only reason why both Zerubbabel and 
Joshua are not named is that it is perfectly clear from other pas 
sages who are meant. In thus dealing openly with the men and 
events of his own time Zechariah follows the example of the earlier 
prophets and differs from some other biblical authors. 

In the direct teaching of Zechariah there is nothing very surpris 
ing. Indeed, perhaps the most noticeable thing about it, as a 
whole, is its simplicity and sobriety: which is equivalent to saying 
that the prophet, though not as great as some of his predecessors, 
was well adapted for the task to which he believed himself com- 


missioned. It was a day of small things. In such circumstances 
some would have been provoked to extravagance, as if it were a 
virtue to look for that which there are no grounds for expecting. 
He looked for greater and better things, but he did not allow him 
self or his people to expect them to come over night, or remain, ex 
cept on very prosaic conditions, and it was his sobriety that fitted 
him for leadership during the Restoration. 

His sobriety is seen in the modesty of the dimensions he assigns 
to the restored kingdom. There is no mention of Israel or the 
territory once occupied by the Ten Tribes, for, although the name 
appears twice (2 2 /i 19 ) in the Massoretic text, in both cases it is 
clearly an interpolation. He seems, therefore, to have thought of 
this kingdom as about coterminous with the former kingdom of 
Judah. He saw room enough there, however, for Jerusalem to 
expand into a great city, to which "many peoples and mighty 
nations" would come to worship the true God. Cf. 8 22 . 

Zechariah follows Haggai in recognising Zerubbabel as the Mes 
siah and the restorer of the Davidic dynasty. He differs from his 
associate, however, in his treatment of Joshua. Haggai seems dis 
posed to exalt Zerubbabel at the expense of the high priest, while 
Zechariah assigns to the latter a position and dignity little less than 
royal; for although, as will be explained, it is Zerubbabel who, in 
6 13 , is to "receive majesty and sit and rule on his throne," Joshua 
will occupy a place "at his right hand." This concession was 
required by the increased importance of the priesthood after the 
Exile, but it is one which, to judge from the general tenor of his 
prophecies, Zechariah would have made, even if he himself had 
not belonged to the sacerdotal order. 

The good time coming is described by some of the prophets in 
the most extravagant terms. One of them in Is. 65 20 promises that 
then every one will live at least a hundred years. There is nothing 
of this kind in Zechariah s prophecies. There are old men and 
women in his picture of the future, but they are as natural and 
recognisable as his "boys and girls playing in the streets." Cf. 
8 4 f \ Their happiness, too, is perfectly intelligible. "The vine 
shall yield its fruit, and the earth shall yield its produce, and heaven 
shall grant its dew." Cf. 8 12 . Why, then, should not "the house 


of Judah" even change the fasts of the Exile into occasions of 
"joy and gladness, even pleasant feasts"? Cf. 8 19 . 

Enough has already been said on the subject of Zechariah s 
teaching to show that, in spite of his fondness for visions, he is not 
to be classed with the apocalyptists of the Old Testament. There 
is further evidence to the same effect. It is found in his constant 
regard for, and emphasis on, ethical considerations. He, unlike 
Haggai, makes them prominent from the start; for, in his intro 
ductory message, he tells his people bluntly that their fathers suf 
fered for their sins and that they themselves will be held strictly 
accountable for their conduct. He announces the basal doctrine 
of his prophecies as well as a fundamental principle of the divine 
government when he says, "Return unto me, saith Yahweh of 
Hosts, and I will return unto you." 

This doctrine underlies the last three visions, the first of which 
teaches that, although Yahweh may not again punish his people 
by wholesale banishment from their country, he will see to it that 
the individual sinner gets his deserts. In the second the thought is 
that Yahweh will not tolerate a rival in his own land, and in the 
third that the ultimate fate of such rivals, wherever worshipped, is 

One point more. It concerns the ethical precepts that Zechariah 
lays down in the last chapter. They are not by any means new. 
"The former prophets" also taught them. It is interesting, how 
ever, to compare those here taught with those which Zechariah in 
7 9 f * attributes to his predecessors. The difference is doubtless 
to some extent due to changed circumstances. The Persian gov 
ernment, in spite of its remoteness, seems to have been able to pre 
vent the cruelty to widows and orphans and strangers of which the 
earlier prophets complained. Be that as it may, the emphasis is 
here placed on loyalty to truth and simple justice. In 8 19 he 
comprehends all duty in the brief maxim, "Love truth and 
peace," a maxim in perfect harmony with his ideal of the future, 
when, as he says in 3 10 , his people, blessed with perfect peace and 
unity, will "invite every man his neighbour under the vine and 
the fig tree." 

The primary object of the above discussion was to prepare the 


reader for the sympathetic and appreciative study of the prophecies 
universally attributed to Zechariah; but it is evident that it will 
serve the further purpose of providing the basis for a comparison 
between them and those whose genuineness is questioned in the 
Introduction to the last six chapters of the book called by his name. 


The book of Zechariah has no proper title, but the first verse 
contains, in addition to the date of the opening prophecy, the sub 
stance of such a title. If it had been fully and definitely expressed, 
it would probably have taken the form of that of the book of Joel, 
namely, The word of Yahweh, which came to Zechariah, the son of 
Berechiah, the son of Iddo, the prophet. In that case, however, the 
first verse would have been, in part (the word of Yahweh was to), 
a repetition of the title. This is probably the reason why the edi 
tor by whom the author of the book was identified chose to insert 
the name and pedigree of the prophet into the first verse and thus 
make it answer the purpose of a general title as well as a date for the 
introductory prophecy. The fact that the verse actually serves this 
double purpose makes it proper to discuss further some features of 
it in this preliminary paragraph. The most important is the name 
of the prophet. This name, meaning Yahweh remembereth,* is of 
frequent occurrence in the Old Testament. According to the 
Chronicler it was borne by at least five persons belonging to the time 
of David, t but, since there are only two other names of the same 
form mentioned in the earlier literature, % it is not probable that 
this one is much older than the date of its first appearance in the 
latter half of the eighth century B. c. From that time onward, 
however, like the rest of its class, it became increasingly common, 
especially among the priests and Levites. Indeed it seems to have 
been the prime favourite among the names of the Old Testament, 

* For a discussion of rejected etymologies, see Kohler, i ff. 

t Cf. i Ch. is 18 24 ffi 26 2 - " 2? 21 . So Gray, HPN., 288. McPherson (ZXB.) distinguishes 
seven so designated in this early period. Cf. i Ch. p 37 is 4 . 

J Benaiah, 2 S. 8 18 , and Shephatiah, 2 S. 3*. 

Cf. Is. 8 2 ; also 2 K. i4 9 i8 2 . There is another related class of names, that in which the pf. 
of a verb is preceded, instead of being followed, by rp or w, examples of which occur in the ear 
liest Hebrew records. Cf. Jehoiada (2 S. 8 18 ), Jonathan ( Ju. 8 20 ), etc. These disappear as the 
others increase in frequency. Cf. Gray, HPN., 176 /. 



being borne by no fewer than twenty-nine different persons.* 
The identity, personal history and the literary characteristics of 
the one here meant have already been discussed in the Introduc 
tion. It is hardly necessary to add that it is he, and not his father 
or grandfather, who is here described as the prophet. 

The Title. 1. The reasons for believing that the verse has been re 
cast are as follows: One of the peculiarities of these chapters is the use of 
the first person. It appears repeatedly in the introductory formula, 
Then came the word of Yahweh to me. Cf. 6 9 7 4 8 1 - 18 . In i 7 and y 6 - 8 , as 
will be shown, it is an interpolation. In this case, therefore, it is fair to 
suppose that the original reading was ^N, and that the name and lineage 
of the prophet were substituted for the pronominal suffix. This is a 
simpler and more natural explanation than to suppose, with Bu. (ZAW., 
1906, 5/.), that a once independent title has been absorbed in the first 
verse. Cf. Ez. i 2 f -, where a less skilful hand has attempted the same 
thing and made a botch of it. no-o] Sometimes ? ; v. 7 wana. The im 
possibility of harmonising this passage with Ezr. 5 6 14 Ne. I2 16 , as ex 
plained in the Introduction, makes it necessary to attribute the phrase p 
in>aia to a careless reader who identified the prophet of the Restoration 
with the Zechariah of Is. 8 2 . n;?] Elsewhere in Heb. (v. 7 Ne. i2 4 - 16 ), as 
well as Aram. (Ezr. 5 6 W ), Nny; here also, according to 19 Kenn. mss. 
The form here found, however, is used of other persons (i Ch. 6 6 2 Ch. 
I2 is 1322). (g has viov A88&; Jer. folium Addo. Lowe explains vibv as a 
scribal error for t-iou; but perhaps rov fiapaxlov is a correction based on 
the gloss rvana p; in which case vibv must have been the original read 
ing. N^jn] Om. & A . The Mas. are responsible for the identification 
of the prophet with Iddo, since they accented the text so that it could not 
be interpreted otherwise. 

The contents of these eight chapters, as already intimated, nat 
urally fall into three parts, i. The introduction (i 1 " 6 ). 2. A series 
of visions, with their interpretations (i 7 -6 15 ). 3. A new era (7-8). 

i. THE INTRODUCTION (i 1 - 6 ). 

It consists of an exhortation backed by a reminder of the past 
experience of the Jews, the result of their disregard for the warn 
ings of former prophets. 

* The popularity of the name is equally evident, even if it is sometimes applied by the Chron 
icler to imaginary persons, for he would not have used it so frequently if it had not been very 
common in his generation. C/. Gray, HPN., 188 /. 

I 1 - 109 

1. This introduction, like the main divisions by which it is fol 
lowed, has a date. The date here found, however, differs from 
the other two in being incomplete; for, while the year and the month 
are given, the day is wanting. It may have been omitted intention 
ally, as in Ezr. 3 8 y 8 and elsewhere; but the more common opinion 
is, either that it is implied in the word rendered month, EHPI, which 
is sometimes, for example, 2 S. 2o 5 ff , properly translated new moon, 
or that it has been lost in the process of transcription. The former 
of these views, though adopted by Kimchi and other scholars, must 
be rejected as being entirely without real foundation in Hebrew 
usage. On the other hand there are repeated examples showing 
that the first as well as the other days of the month was indicated 
by a distinct number. Cf. Gn. 8 5 Hg. i 1 , etc. If, therefore, Zech- 
ariah intended to say, as the Syriac Version says he did, that this 
opening prophecy was delivered on the first day of the eighth month, 
the month originally called Bui (i K. 6 38 ), but later March esvan, 
the word or words indicating the day must have been lost in trans 
mission. So We., Now., Marti, Kit. Haggai s first prophecy is 
dated the first of the sixth month in the second year of the reign of 
Darius Hystaspes. If, therefore, the Syrian reading is correct, 
Zechariah began his prophetic career just two months later, 
namely, about the middle of October, 520 B.C. In any case it 
was not three months before this his first prophecy was delivered. 
In recording it he did not, as is done in the present text, use 
the third person, but, as has been shown, the first, so that the 
latter half of this verse should read, came the word of Yahweh to 
me, saying* 

2. The reading suggested is not favoured by the immediate con 
text. If Zechariah actually used the language just attributed to 
him, in this second verse Yahweh should be the speaker and the 
prophet the person addressed. This is not the case, the statement 
made being made, not by, but about, the Almighty, and addressed 
apparently to the people. It will not, however, do to reject the 
proposed reading on that account, as appears when one passes 
from this verse to the one following. It then becomes clear, not 

* C/. 6 9 7 4 8 1 - I8 . On the passages that do not follow this formula (i 7 and 7 1 - 8 ), see the cor 
responding notes and comments. 


only that there is no connection between the two, but that v. 3 has 
precisely the form that this one should have taken. The natural 
inference is that the statement Yahweh was very wroth with your 
fathers is an interpolation. It is not so easy to explain why it 
should have been inserted. Perhaps a copyist, finding the text 
defective, supplied the place of the missing words as well as he 
could from y 12 , where the prophet refers to the wrath of Yahweh 
against the fathers. 

3. In AV. this verse begins with Therefore say, etc., this being 
the only way in which the present text can well be rendered ; but 
so rendered it can hardly convey the thought that the prophet had 
in mind. He would not have represented Yahweh as commanding 
him to deliver the message that follows, a message requiring his 
people to return to him, because he (Yahweh) had been wroth with 
their fathers. Nor is the connection improved by the omission of 
v. 2 ; for the statement the word of Yahweh came to me contains no 
reason for the command given. It must have had its ground in 
something that Yahweh himself had previously said. The same 
result is reached if the connective is translated literally and. In 
other words, as has already been intimated, the text here lacks 
several words, which must be supplied to make it completely in 
telligible. In the first place, there must have been at least one 
preceding verb having the sense of speak, or perhaps, as Budde 
suggests, cry (preach), a favourite with Zechariah (w. 4 - 14< 17 y 7 ); 
and this, if the present text, so far as it has been preserved, is cor 
rect, must have been followed by an indirect object, perhaps this 
people or the remnant of this people (8 6 - n - 12 ), the antecedent of the 
pronoun them. The original reading would thus be, Preach (cry) 
to the remnant of this people and say to them, or something equiv 
alent, which would appropriately follow the statement of v. * and 
introduce the message he has to deliver, Return to me, and I will 
return to you, saith Yahweh. It does not at once appear what is 
meant by this message, in what respect the people have departed 
from God and how they should return to him. The fact that the 
prophecy is dated a little after the appeal by which Haggai, with 
the aid of the Spirit, brought the Jews to undertake the restoration 
of the temple, would lead one to expect such an arraignment for 

I 1 " 8 III 

selfish absorption in private affairs as is found at the beginning of 
the preceding book. Cf. Hg. i 4 - 9 . It appears, however, from 
what immediately follows (v. 4 ), but more clearly from later utter 
ances (y 8 f - 8 16 f> 19 ), that, to Zechariah, although he himself was a 
priest, a temple was not the only, or the greatest, need from which 
his people were suffering; nor was its splendour his measure for 
their future welfare. Here, therefore, the return to Yahweh must 
be interpreted, not merely as the restoration of the national wor 
ship at Jerusalem, but as the resumption of the practice of the social 
virtues, justice, mercy, and the like, on which the main stress was 
laid by the earlier prophets. Cf. Am. 5 15 - 24 Is. i 17 , etc. The 
promise by which the people are encouraged to return to Yahweh 
must be interpreted to correspond to the exhortation; not, there 
fore, as a means of exciting visions of material splendour, but 
of wakening an expectation of universal well-being in a divinely 
ordered community. Cf. 8 3 . 

4. Yahweh, not content with taking the first step toward a re 
union between himself and his people, next seeks, in the most per 
suasive terms, to show them the folly of rejecting his overtures. 
Be not, he pleads, as your fathers, and then proceeds to describe 
those whose example he wishes to prevent them from following. 
They, also, were wanderers from Yahweh, and Yahweh sought 
them. His agents were the former prophets. It is possible to in 
terpret these words too broadly. There would be an apparent 
warrant for so doing if v. 19 were throughout genuine. It is not, 
the name "Israel" in that passage, like "the house of Israel" in 
8 13 , being without doubt an interpolation. The correction of the 
text in these two passages leaves the prophecies of Zechariah with 
out recognisable allusions to the northern kingdom. It is Judah 
and Jerusalem over whose past he grieves (i 12 - 21 ) and for whose 
future he cares. Cf. 2 12 8 19 . The prophets to whom he refers 
must, therefore, be those who laboured in Judah, especially those 
of the closing years of the Jewish monarchy. It was their preach 
ing whose burden was, Return from your evil ways, yea, from your 
evil deeds. He seems to have had more particularly in mind Jere 
miah, who several times uses almost exactly the language here 
quoted. In 25* f< the setting also is the same. The passage reads, 


"And he sent to you all his servants the prophets, sent them early, 
but ye did not hear, neither did ye incline your ears to listen, 
saying, Return, each from his evil way and from the evil of his 
deeds, and dwell on the soil that Yahweh gave to you and your 
fathers for ever and ever." Cf. also 35 15 . Less exact parallels 
are found in iS 1 and Ez. 33". The remaining words of this verse, 
too, were evidently borrowed from Jeremiah, but they are here ap 
plied to Jeremiah s own generation rather than to any that had pre 
ceded it. Cf. especially 36 ff -. 5. One naturally expects the 
prophet s characterisation of the fathers to be followed immediately 
by a description more or less vivid of the fate that their flagrant and 
incorrigible neglect of Yahweh brought upon them; and at first this 
verse seems to answer that expectation. Your fathers, he says, as 
if he were about to make a statement concerning them, then sud 
denly changes the construction and asks, with a brevity that is very 
dramatic, where are they? This question reminds one of Is. 5i 13 , 
"When he taketh his aim to destroy, where is the fury of the op 
pressor?" the author of which, as appears from the next verse, 
meant to convey the idea that the oppressors of the exiled Jews 
would themselves speedily be swept out of existence. A similar 
interpretation in this case would suit the preceding context and 
accord with the facts of history. It was therefore adopted by some 
of the earlier commentators, Jewish and Christian.* It is for 
bidden by the latter half of the verse, and the prophets, do they 
live forever? for it is incredible that Zechariah would have repre 
sented Yahweh as destroying his messengers with those who ig 
nored their message. Jerome attempted to meet this objection by 
identifying the prophets here meant with the false prophets, who 
played an important part in the later history of the kingdom of 
Judah ; but it is clear that in the preceding and following verses they 
are the predecessors of Zechariah, and the connection requires that 
the term here have the same meaning. Cf. also f 12 . Nor is it 
necessary, as in the Targum,f to put the second question into the 
mouths of the people. The two can be harmonised by supposing 
that the prophet is here thinking of the fathers and the prophets 
as merely two classes of men, alike mortal, in comparison with Yah- 

* So Theod. Mops., Dru., Marck. f Sb also van Hoonacker. 

I" "3 

weh and his eternal purposes. 6. The contrast in the mind of the 
prophet is strongly expressed by the adversative But, with which 
this verse begins. It is not a contrast between men and God, but 
between men and the words and decrees, or the words as embodied 
in the decrees, of Yahweh promulgated through his servants the 
prophets. The words of Yahweh seem to be personified here, as is 
" the word of Yahweh " in other parts of the Old Testament. Thus, 
Ps. i47 15 reads, "He sendeth his command upon earth; swiftly run 
neth his word." A more significant example is found in Is. 55", 
where the great prophet of the Exile puts into the mouth of the 
Deity these words: 

So shall it be with my word, 

that goeth forth from my mouth: 
It shall not return to me empty; 

nor until it hath done what I willed, 
and prospered in that for which I sent it. 

Zechariah pictures these punitive decrees of Yahweh as intelli 
gent agents, like the angels, sent forth to execute upon offenders 
the decisions of the divine will. Cf. 5*.* At any rate, with another 
of his rhetorical questions he asks, did they not overtake your fa 
thers? referring, of course, to the calamities, repeatedly predicted 
by Jeremiah and others, which befell the Jews in the overthrow of 
their government and the banishment of the better classes of the 
country to Babylonia. Here, having reached a climax, he might 
have stopped. Indeed, it is only so far that the conduct of the 
fathers is reprehensible, and therefore not to be imitated. The rest 
of the verse, however, has its justification. It adds an item, then 
they returned, which enlarges the scope of the narrative, thereby 
giving it the character of a positive rather than a negative lesson. 
Nor is this all. The words put into the mouths of the fathers are 
at the same time an evidence of a changed attitude toward Yahweh 
and a vindication of Yahweh himself as a God of truth and the 
prophets as his messengers. This is their testimony: As Yahweh 
of Hosts purposed to do to us, according to our ways and according 
to our deeds, so hath he done with us. It is calculated to produce 

* Cf. Piepenbring, Theol., 250; cp. Dillmann, Theol., 345 /. 


the conviction that, as Theodoret of Mopsuestia puts it, "the truth 
of the divine words is beyond question, and these words cannot be 
neglected with impunity." 

1. & inserts after the number of the month ] j * r> | -^ = 
cnnS. This is an allowable arrangement, being actually found in 2 K. 
258; but if it had been that of the original text, the missing phrase would 
hardly have been lost. On the other hand, it is comparatively easy to 
account for the present text on the supposition that the day preceded 
the month here as well as in v. 7 . The first word of a Hebrew book is 
easily overlooked. In this case the loss of inxj would make it neces 
sary to change trifiS to i^ira to render it intelligible. irvnS] Add as in 
7 l Hg. i l - 15 , with H, i^Dn. 2. Bu. attempts to save this verse by re 
moving it to the next and inserting it before iatf, at the same time chang 
ing > i*p to TDXp; but the result of such an emendation would not be 
satisfactory; for the troublesome clause would be almost as difficult to 
construe with v. 3 as in its present position, while the lacuna at the begin 
ning of that verse would be more apparent than it now is. ^xp] Add 
with (& &, STU. On the construction, cf. Ges. ^ m - 2 - R - a . 3. 
The pf . of IDN with i implies a preceding declarative, like 
in the imv. The Heb. of the clause supplied in the comments, SN Nip 
n?n oyn nnxtf, would just fill the space now occupied by v. 2 . Blayney 
suggests (nExS) inxn oy hi SN ncx, as in 7 5 . onSx] For omSx, the 
reading of many mss. x DNJ] Om. with <& N - a - Q <S H & H . DNJ] Not 
a prtc., but a noun. Cf. BDB. Ace. to K6. n. o. d t h e vocalisation 
(___) is due either to a virtually doubled D or the frequency of the word 
in a familiar expression. The latter is evidently the more reasona 
ble supposition. mw] Without n, ace. to Bo. 5 ^ s } on acct. of a fol 
lowing guttural. This explanation is mistaken, since, in all other cases 
(6), the word takes n, even before a guttural. Cf. Ex. 4 18 Ho. 2 9 Mai. 3 7 . 
iCN 2 ] The rarity of this word as a substitute for DNJ has already been 
noted. Cf. Hg. i 8 . It occurs only three times in these chapters, and in 
one at least of them (7 13 ) it is a part of an interpolation. It is therefore 
possible that Kenn. 249, which has CNJ, has preserved the original read 
ing. Kenn. 150 has both, as if it had been corrected. nixax 3 ] Om. <S H 
& H . 4. SN] Rd v with <& &, "?*a oa^SyD] Ace. to BDB., pi., of 
S^J?D; ace. to Koh., Ke., Wri., irr. pi. of rb^hy. Qr. n-SSj;n. So 32 
Kenn. mss., Hi., Lowe, et al. Rd., with 21 mss., (& > 21, o^MjHSD. 
Cf. Baer (Notes, 81), We., Now., Marti, Kit. vctf N^I.] <S B ,\ai ojJ/c 
dff-fjKovaav, which, since I^D % ^ is represented in the final clause, Ka.1 ov irpo- 
afoxov TOV elcrrjKovvai JJ.QV, is probably a duplicate rendering. Hence it is 
not strange that in (g A Q L it should be wanting. Cf. 7" (<g). For u^pn 
"Sx & L has w*JoZ^ by mistake for sAJaJL . A read DIMS at the 

I 7 - 115 

end of the verse. 5. In &, and sometimes in <g, both subjects are in 
cluded in the first question; so also, in Jerome s commentary, in his 
translations from the Greek and the Heb. Such a division of the verse, 
however, does violence, not only to the accentuation, but to the symmetry 
of the passage. cvx^ni] & v*^_QJo = waji. 6. "|N] An adversative, 
cf. Gn. so 12 1 S. 29 . ipm] (& supplies 5^x etr ^ e > which, however, may be 
a mistaken rendering for ipm, taken for inpn, Kal ra vb^ifjA fj.ov being a 
later correction. TPIX. (g adds kv Trve^fj-ari juou = Tin:), after the man 
ner of . Accent, not, with Gins., u 1 ? nnx>i, but, with Baer, accord 
ing to the sense, *? . . . noNM. 

TATIONS (i 7 -6 15 ). 

There are eight of these visions. Some of them are described 
very briefly, others with considerable detail. They are not all 
equally distinct from one another, but fall into three groups, as 
follows: the first three, depicting The return from captivity (i 7 - 
2 17/13 ) ; the fourth and fifth, of which the theme is The anointed of 
Yahweh (chs. 3/., exc. 4 6 ab-ioa). and the last three> which may be 

grouped under the general heading, The seat of wickedness (s 1 ^ 8 ). 
They are supplemented by a section on The prince of Judah (6 9 " 15 
4 <*Mo a) . 

a. The Return from Captivity (i 7 -2 17 / 13 ). 

The visions of the first group, three in number, present successive 
stages in the history of the Restoration and prepare the way for an 
appeal with which the section closes. In the first vision the scene 
is laid in 

(l) THE HOLLOW OF THE MYRTLES (l 7 " 17 ). 

In this vision the prophet sees a person to whom a troop of di 
vinely commissioned messengers report, thus furnishing an occa 
sion for an appeal to Yahweh in behalf of his people and a response 
assuring them of speedy deliverance. 

7. To this vision is prefixed a date, doubtless, as is generally 
admitted, the date of the entire series. The prophet saw these 
visions in the same (Jewish) year in which he uttered the preceding 


prophecy, the second year of the reign of Darius Hystaspes, in the 
eleventh month, and, since the day began in the evening, the night 
before the twenty-fourth day of the month, or toward the middle of 
February in the year 519 B.C. 

In this case some one has added the Babylonian name, Shebat, to the num 
ber of the month. On the names of the rest of the months, cf. Benzinger, 
Arch., 200 f., DB., art. Time. Six more of these names occur in this and other 
late books: Nisan, the first (Ne. 2 1 ); Sivan, the third (Ezr. 8 9 ); Elul, the sixth 
(Ne. 6i5); Kislew, the ninth (Zc. 7"); Tebeth, the tenth (Ezr. 2 16 ); and Adar, 
the twelfth (Ezr. 6i). 

Koh. is disposed to think that the appearance of these visions on the twenty- 
fourth of the month was a recognition by Yahweh of the devotion of his peo 
ple in beginning work on the temple on the twenty-fourth of the sixth, and 
laying the foundation of the new structure on the same day of the ninth month. 
Cf. Hg. i 15 2 10 . Too much, however, should not be made of this coincidence, 
lest some one should make the point that it stamps the chronology of the books 
of Haggai and Zechariah as artificial and unreliable. It should also be re 
membered that, as was shown in the comments on Hg. 2 18 , it is by no means 
certain that the foundation of the new temple was laid on the twenty-fourth 
of the ninth month. 

Dru. justly criticises Jerome for saying that the month Shebat was *7 w 
acerrimo tempore hyemis"; for, although in February the rainy season is not 
yet ended, the weather is often very warm and pleasant and other tokens of 
spring are abundant. 

This date, in the Massoretic text, is immediately followed by the 
introductory clause found in v. 1 , the word of Yahweh came to Zech 
ariah, the son of Berechiah, the son of Iddo, saying. In this case, 
however, it is not enough to recast it, substituting the first for the 
third person. The result, to be sure, would be a formula in the 
style of Zechariah, but one that would here be as useless as that for 
which it was substituted; for it also, if fairly and naturally inter 
preted,* would give the reader the impression that it was Yahweh 
who saw the vision to be described, which surely was not the 
thought of the original author. The only remedy is in dropping 
the disturbing clause altogether and connecting v. 8 directly with 
the date of the vision, as is done in Is. 6 1 .f 8. On the given date 
Zechariah says he saw certain things. The word usedf is the one 
* cj. & 3 - 7 - i4 . 

t If Neumann had done this, it would not have been necessary for him to devote a long para 
graph to explaining how a vision can be called "the word of Yahweh." 

I 7 - 117 

commonly employed to denote perception by means of the organs 
of vision. A literalist might regard this fact as a warrant for hold 
ing that the things and acts described presented themselves as ob 
jects to the physical senses; but there are features of this vision that 
are inconsistent with its objective reality, and, when the attempt is 
made to explain the whole series as literal scenes, the inadequacy of 
that method of interpretation becomes increasingly apparent. Note 
the angels mounted on horses in this, and the various symbolic ob 
jects or actions in the other pictures, especially the fantastic figure 
of the woman in the ephah. Cf. 5 7 . It is impossible also, in 
spite of the fact that Zechariah says the time was at night, to main 
tain that he saw the things described in his sleep. A sufficient 
reason for this assertion is found in the fact that he not only does 
not say, but apparently takes pains not to say, that he was dream 
ing. Even if it were necessary to admit that he intended to repre 
sent his visions as inspired dreams, the ease with which he passes 
from the language of the vision to that of ordinary prophetic dis 
course would dispel the illusion.* There are considerations, also, 
that make it improbable that these visions were produced in an 
ecstatic condition by the direct influence of the divine spiritf or 
under the stimulus of an intense and overpowering conviction. 
There are too many of them, and they too clearly betray fore 
thought and invention. They must, therefore, be classed, with 
those of Am. f ff - Je. i 11 ff - and Ez. 8 ff -, as literary forms in which 
the prophet clothed his ideas, whatever their origin, for the pur 
pose of securing for them prompter attention among those whom 
he sought to instruct and influence. It is only just to add that, as 
will appear in the course of these comments, for attractiveness and 
effectiveness the visions of Zechariah fall below the average of 
those used by his predecessors. The first is rather obscure, but, 
as the scene is laid in the night, the indistinctness of the various 
figures introduced seems natural, if not intentional. Among these 
figures the first to appear is a man. Who the man is, Zechariah 

* Koh. cites Ew. and Hi. as holding the view that the prophet is reporting a succession of 
dreams. Hi. in his commentary is rather ambiguous. Ew., although he refers to the visions 
as " Traumgebilde," adds that they are not really dreams, much as they resemble them, but that 
they were devised in their order for a deliberate purpose. 

t So Koh., Ke., Wri., Or , el al. 


does not explain, but the reader at once suspects that he, like the 
man in Ez. 8 2 * 4o 3ff> , etc., is a superhuman being, and therefore 
is not surprised to find that in a gloss to v. n he is identified with 
"the angel of Yahweh." This view has been questioned, f but it 
is a natural inference from the language used, and, as the evident 
superiority of the person whose identity is in question over all the 
others mentioned points in the same direction, it has been widely 
accepted.! On the title " angel of Yahweh," cf. Hg. i 13 and the 
comments. In this book it evidently denotes a visible manifesta 
tion of Yahweh. He is described, in a gloss which seems to have 
been added by some one who thought it beneath the dignity of the 
angel of the divine presence to be on foot while his attendants were 
on horseback, as mounted on a bay horse, but in a genuine clause 
as standing, or better, in the present connection, waiting, among 
the myrtles. 

The myrtle (Myrtus communis) is not, as one would suppose from the Eng 
lish rendering of Is. 55 13 , a tree, but a shrub that seldom attains a height of 
more than eight feet. It is an evergreen, with fragrant leaves and delicate 
white flowers. It was a favourite among the Hebrews. Hence it is mentioned 
among the trees that testify to the prosperity of the Messianic age. Cf. Is. 
4i 19 55 13 . From it, as from the palm and other trees, they cut branches to 
make booths for the Feast of Tabernacles. Cf. Ne. 8^. In Lv. 23* the wil 
low takes the places of both the myrtle and the olive; a fact which favours the 
opinion that much of the priestly legislation took its final shape outside of 
Palestine. The myrtle is still common throughout Palestine, growing wild 
on the slopes of the hills and along the water-courses (cf. Vergil, Georg., ii, 
122; iv, 124), as well as in the gardens of the inhabitants. Cf. DB., art. 
Myrtle; Tristram, NHP., 365 /. 

The myrtles the prophet has in mind are in a locality especially 
favourable to their growth, a hollow. This depression has been 

* In this passage the correct reading is not "the appearance of fire" (U : N), but " the appear 
ance of a man" (unx). Cf. Toy, SBOT. 

t Koh., Ke., Klie., Wri., Now., et al. 

J So Ra., AE., Cal., Dru., Marck, Lowth, Bla., Ew., Hd., Pres., Or., Reu., et al. Some of 
these at the same time hold that the man is the son of God. This doctrine was widely current 
among the earlier commentators, but it did not pass unchallenged. Theodoret of Mopsuestia 
says in criticism of it, " Full of error and folly, nay, little short of impiety, is the teaching by some 
that he saw the son of God"; and again, in a passage that seems to have been mutilated by a 
more orthodox reader, he declares, " None of the prophets knew anything about the deity of the 
Only Begotten." 

The word rendered bay (D"1N) is used of various shades of colour from pink to reddish- 
brown. Cf. Ct. s 10 2 K. 322 Nu. iQ 2 Is. 6 3 2 Gn. 252. 

I 7 - 119 

identified with the Valley of Kidron, and that part of it about its 
junction with the Valley of Hinnom; and there is something to be 
said for this opinion: (i) This spot is the lowest near the city, and 
therefore most likely to be called "The Hollow." (2) It has al 
ways been a garden, being the site of "The King s Garden" of 
2 K. 25 4 , and even in Zechariah s time the myrtle must have flour 
ished there. (3) If, as some claim, the setting of the last vision 
(6 lff> ) is the same as that of the first, this circumstance also is sig 
nificant, for there is no other locality near Jerusalem that would so 
well suit both cases. Since, however, the prophet is describing, 
not a real, but an imaginary scene, perhaps the most that can be 
said is that the familiar scenery about the Kidron furnished him 
some of the materials for his picture. In this imaginary hollow he 
represents himself as seeing the angel of Yahweh, and not only 
him, but behind him, or, since the angel must be conceived as fac 
ing now one way and then the other, beyond him, a number of 
horses, he does not say how many, some of which are of a bay 
colour, others chestnut*- and still others white. The mention of 
these colours indicates that the horses were divided into troops. 
That they had riders is taken for granted. Who these riders were 
is explained in the next verse. 9. The explanation is given in 
answer to a question by the prophet apparently addressed to the 
person just introduced. There are those who hold that it is he 
who now makes answer, f and this opinion, besides being a natural 
presupposition, is favoured by the seeming identification of the 
two in v. 10 . There are, however, serious objections, (i) The 
descriptive phrase that follows is superfluous as a means of identi 
fying the angel of Yahweh. (2) Nor does it fit this person; for, 
as he has thus far not said anything, he cannot be described as one 
speaking with the prophet. On the other hand, a description is 
necessary for a new character, and this one suits an interpreter, 
especially if it be rendered an angel that was speaking with me. 
Indeed, in the form the angel, etc., it is capable of a similar inter- 

* The derivation of the Heb. word pnr, sarok, from ,mir, shine brightly, would indicate 
that it denotes a bright reddish colour; but whether, with Ges., one should render it as above, 
or, with his latest revisers (BDB.), sorrel, it seems impossible to determine. The rendering 
speckled or dappled, in which the Vrss. agree, has no warrant in 4H. 

t So Theod. Mops., Ra., Marck, Rosenm., Mau., Hi., et al. 


pretation, for, thus translated, it is at the same time a description 
of a second person and an allusion to the familiar figure of the in 
terpreter in the visions of Ezekiel. Cf. 8 2 f - 4O 3ff -, etc. It is 
therefore fair to conclude that the angel here meant is as distinct 
from the one of the preceding verse as he is from the second to ap 
pear in 2 7/3 , and that he has a different function. He immediately 
declares his office. I will show thee, he says, what these are. He 
is here, as elsewhere in these visions,* a monitor and interpreter 
to prevent the prophet from missing anything that he should see 
or failing to understand its meaning. 10. It is not he, however, 
who actually gives the promised information. The reply comes 
from the man that was standing among the myrtles. Here, at first 
sight, seems to be a discrepancy indicating either that the idea of 
distinguishing two angels is mistaken, or, perhaps, that this verse is 
wholly (We.) or in part an interpolation. Neither of these infer 
ences is necessary, as will appear, if due regard be paid to the fol 
lowing considerations: (i) The promise to show what the vision 
means does not require that the interpreter should do so by a 
direct and personal demonstration. (2) It is clear from the other 
visions that the prophet intended to make them as far as possible 
explain themselves. (3) A notable instance of the indirect method 
is found in the third, where the interpreter, instead of addressing 
the prophet, as he would have been expected to do, shows what he 
wishes the prophet to know by a message sent to a third person. 
In view of this example it ought not to seem strange for the prophet 
to put the answer to his own question into the mouth of the princi 
pal figure in the scene described. These, he says, referring, not 
to the horses of various colours, but, as appears from v. 11 , to their 
riders, these are they that Yahweh sent to traverse the eartli. Here 
are two or three points that deserve attention. In the first place, 
it is noteworthy that the angel of Yahweh, the speaker, here as in 
v. 12 and 3 2 distinguishes between himself as a divine manifesta 
tion to his people and Yahweh the God of the whole earth. Ob 
serve, too, that the messengers were apparently all despatched to 
gether, and that at the time to which the vision refers they have 
accomplished their mission. It is therefore clearly useless to seek 

* C). 2 2 /i 19 7 /3 f - 4 1 - < 5 - 5 5 - I0 6* 4 - 5 . 

I 7 121 

for the key to the vision in the book of Daniel, or try, as some have 
done, to find in the colours of the horses symbols of any succession 
of events,* or empires.t Finally, it is significant that these horse 
men, unlike those described in the Apocalypse (6), all had one and 
the same mission. This fact forbids the interpretation of the col 
ours of the horses as intended, to use the language of Newcome, 
"to intimate the difference of their ministries. "J Their mission 
was not to slay, burn and conquer, as Kohler explains, but, as ap 
pears from the next verse, to reconnoitre the earth and report on 
its condition. Now, a mission of this sort can evidently be exe 
cuted quite as well and much more expeditiously by a given num 
ber of persons if they are divided into detachments and sent in 
different directions. It is therefore probable, especially in view 
of the unsatisfactoriness of other interpretations, that the prophet 
thought of these scouts as operating in this way and gave the horses 
different colours to distinguish the detachments from one another. 
He made the number three, if this is the original reading, perhaps 
because the sea to the west restricted his vision in that direction. 
See, however, 6 6 f \ 

11. The horsemen do not wait for a direct command, but, on 
being introduced, make their report to the last speaker, who is 
again described as the one who was standing among the myrtles. 
They say, perhaps through a spokesman, We have traversed the 
earth, and lo, the whole earth more exactly the population of the 
various countries of the earth resteth in quiet. This statement at 
first sight seems intended to describe the state of things at the date 
of the vision,** but this can hardly be the correct interpretation. 
It is not probable that the adversaries of Darius were all subdued, 
and the Persian empire reduced to a state of complete tranquillity, 
by the month of February, 519 B.C.; or that, if the struggle for the 
throne was still in progress, the Jews, including Zechariah, were 
so ill informed with reference to matters in the East that they sup- 

* For example, the varied fortunes of the Persian empire; Grot., Hd., et al. 
t The Jews of Jerome s time saw in these colours symbols of the Assyrian, Babylonian and 
Medo-Persian, or the Medo-Persian, Macedonian and Roman empires. So Cyr., Klie., el al. 
I So Bla., Koh. Ke., et al. 
Not, as Luther and others render it, the land. 
** So Dru., Grot., Marck, Lowth, Hd., We., Now., Marti, et al. 


posed it had been decided. There are equally valid objections 
to the view that the prophet is here describing future conditions. 
The Jews in his day were not groaning in bondage and looking for 
deliverance from it, as such an interpretation would imply, but 
their fetters had been broken by Cyrus and they had since been 
free to return to their country and labour for its economic, if not 
for its political restoration. This is perfectly clear from the proph 
ecies of Haggai; also from the last chapters of this collection, es 
pecially 6 9 ff> . A reference to the present and the future being im 
probable, there remains no alternative but, with van Hoonacker, 
to regard the vision as a picture of the past. The use of visions as 
a means of representing historical facts or truths is not without 
precedent in the Old Testament. There is a notable example in 
the book of Amos. The seventh chapter of that book begins with 
a series of three visions one object of which was effectively to por 
tray to the sinning children of Israel the long-suffering of Yahweh in 
his dealings with them. If, therefore, Zechariah is here attempt 
ing to depict a historical situation, he is simply following the ex 
ample of one of the greatest of his predecessors in the prophetic 
office. That this really is his object appears from a comparison 
of the language he uses here and in the following verses with that 
of the Second Isaiah.* The impression thus produced is only 
deepened when the next two visions are taken into account, for 
2 io/eff. no |. on j v su ft s he Babylonian period, but cannot well be 
understood as referring to any other. For details, see below. 
There is one objection to the view proposed, namely, that accord 
ing to v. 12 the angel of Yahweh refers to the indignation of Yah 
weh as having endured seventy years; but see below. The only 
way to avoid the adoption of some such explanation as is there sug 
gested is to reject the date given in v. 7 and refer this and the fol 
lowing chapter to the period of the Exile; but such a course is for 
bidden by the organic relation between these chapters and the next 
four and the evidence that these last were written after the acces 
sion of Darius Hystaspes. On the whole, then, it seems best to 
interpret this first vision as a picture of the past, that is, of the 
period of the Exile. There was a time previous to the appearance 

* Cp. v. " and Is. 14 ; v. 13 and Is. 40 1 ; v. u and Is. 42 13 ; v. 17 and Is. 44 26 si 3 . 

I - 1 123 

of Cyrus as a conqueror when Babylon was apparently so power 
ful that it could fitly be called " mistress of kingdoms" (Is. 47 5 ), 
and its dominion so generally recognised that the Jews could be 
represented as meeting the promises of their prophets with the 
sceptical questions, "Is the spoil taken from the mighty? or the cap 
tive of the terrible delivered ? " and it is probably this period that 
Zechariah had in mind when he put into the mouths of the re 
turned horsemen the report that, wherever they went, they found 
undisturbed quiet. 12. There are various places in the Old 
Testament in which the condition just described is plainly repre 
sented as desirable. Thus, when, in 3" and elsewhere in the book 
of Judges, the land is said to have "had rest" so or so many years, 
it means that a more or less serious conflict had been brought to a 
more or less satisfactory issue and the Hebrews permitted an inter 
val of peace. Cf. also Is. i4 7 . In this case the result was not fa 
vourable to them, but disastrous; and the peace that followed was 
the prize of their enemies. The Jews themselves, to be sure, had 
a kind of rest, but it was the rest of a pygmy in the hands of a giant. 
They could not be satisfied with it, however clearly they might 
come to see that they themselves were to blame for their helpless 
condition. Indeed, the more keenly they realised their culpa 
bility, the more eagerly they longed, and the more earnestly they 
prayed, for the future favour of Yahweh. All this finds expression 
in the pathetic appeal, how long wilt thou not have compassion, or, 
to put it more idiomatically, how long wilt thou refuse to have com 
passion, on Jerusalem and the cities of Judah? The words might 
well have come from the prophet. His curiosity led him in v. 9 
to ask about the horsemen and their significance. It would also 
have been natural for him, on hearing the report that there were as 
yet no signs of the interference of Yahweh in behalf of his afflicted 
people, to inquire how much longer they must wait for deliverance. 
Or, the interpreter might have acted as his spokesman. There 
are those who maintain that it must have been he who made the 
appeal, and that, therefore, either he is identical with the angel of 
Yahweh,* or the angel of Yahweh has been substituted for him,f 
because he is the one to whom the answer is addressed. Cf. v. 13 . 

* So Theod. Mops.. Ra., Marck, Rosenra., Mau., Hi., et al. f So Marti, Kit. 


There are, however, good grounds for rejecting any such conclu 
sion. In the first place, although, it must be confessed, Zechariah 
does not always express himself as clearly as one might desire, 
he seems to have intended to represent the angel who spoke with 
him as a mere interpreter. One would therefore hardly expect 
him to address Yahweh. On the other hand, there are reasons why 
the angel of Yahweh should be the next speaker, (i) It was he to 
whom the report of the horsemen was made. (2) A more convinc 
ing argument is found in the character of this angel as the prophet 
seems to have conceived him. He appears again, and very dis 
tinctly, in the fourth vision, where he rebukes Satan and rescues 
Joshua and his people from serious danger; in other words, he 
acts the part of a champion and defender of the Jewish people. 
In the book of Daniel this office is performed by the archangel 
Michael, whom another angel calls "the great prince who standeth 
for the children of thy people." Cf. Dn. 12*. It must not, how 
ever, on this account be supposed that the archangel is intended.* 
The most that can be said is that Zechariah seems to have adopted 
a conception of the angel of Yahweh which prepared the way for 
the later doctrine according to which each people had its guardian 
angel. This, however, is enough to warrant one in believing that 
Zechariah gave to the angel of Yahweh the place he now occupies 
in this first vision. The angel of Yahweh, then, is the spokesman 
of Zechariah and his people, voicing their plea for mercy on the 
land that Yahweh has cursed with ruin and desolation now seventy 
years. The number seventy, as already noted, seems to contra 
dict the suggestion that this vision relates to the past, being con 
siderably too large for the period from the fall of Jerusalem to any 
date before the close of the Exile, an interval of only 586-538 = 
48 years. This objection, however, can be answered by supposing 
either that, since the prophet evidently had in mind the passage 
from Jeremiah in which the Exile and its duration are predicted 
( 2 5 lff )> ne reckoned from 605 B.C., the date of that prophecy, 
or that, starting from the fall of Jerusalem, he inadvertently 
included the nineteen years that had elapsed since the capture of 
Babylon and the end of the Exile. In either case the result would 

* So Theodorct, a Lap., Grot., tl at. 

I" 125 

be near enough to warrant him in using the round number sev 
enty.* Cf. 7 1 . 

13. The appeal is answered, and, as it seems, by Yahweh in 
person, for the prophet can hardly have meant to represent the 
last speaker as acting two parts in so close connection. ( How, 
then, is he to be understood? Does he mean to convey the im 
pression that at this point the Deity made himself more directly 
manifest than through the angel who had thus far represented him, 
thus adding another to the number of supernal beings present? 
Probably not. A more satisfactory explanation is found by com 
paring this vision with the eighth, w r here Yahweh seems to be pres 
ent, but unseen, namely, in the palace before which the chariots 
are mustered. Thence he gives his agents the command to depart, 
and thence he addresses the interpreter. Cf. 6 8 . It is easy to 
imagine that in the present instance he speaks from the darkness 
round about him to the interpreter, and through him to the prophet, 
the cheerful, comforting words that follow. Cf. Is. 4O 1 . 14. They 
are given in the form in which the interpreter reported them to the 
prophet, commanding him to deliver them to his people. I am 
very jealous. Jealousy implies special interest on the part of one 
person for another. It often presupposes a bond between the 
parties that gives each of them a claim upon the other. The He 
brews represented Yahweh as having a peculiar interest in them ;{ 
as having, in fact, entered into a covenant with them by virtue of 
which he became, in a peculiar sense, their God and they his 
chosen people. They therefore felt that they owed him exclusive 
allegiance and that, in return, they might claim his special pro 
tection. Sometimes, however, a sense of their unworthiness in 
clined them to renounce this claim and throw themselves upon his 
mercy. Hosea goes almost too far in this direction. Cf. 8", 

* For some of the earlier attempts to explain the number seventy, see Bla. and New. Koh. 
and others reckon from the third of Jehoiakim, when, according to Dn. i 1 f -, Nebuchadrezzar 
took Jerusalem the first time; but the passage on which their opinion is based is generally 

f This is Stonard s idea. He says: "Those comfortable words certainly did not proceed from 
the interpreting angel, for to him they were addressed; nor from any of the company of horse 
men, for they were only the messengers sent by Jehovah; still less can they be imagined to have 
come from Zechariah himself; and since no other person but the angel intercessor is described 
to be present, they must have proceeded from him. But he is no other than Jehovah himself." 

J Cf. Am. 3 2 Ho. ni ff. Dt. 4" f 7 6 ff -, etc. Ex. 3410 Dt. 29^9 a. j e . 723, etc . 


etc. In v. 12 the appeal is not for justice, but mercy. Here, there 
fore, the jealousy of God must be regarded, not as a hostile af 
fection,* but as something in him analogous to the feeling en 
kindled in human beings for sufferers and against those who afflict 
them. The object of his ardour on its tender side is Jerusalem, 
even Sion. The name Sion was first, without doubt, applied to 
the comparatively low hill, pierced by the Siloam tunnel, on which 
the ancient city had its beginning, j- The application of it was 
afterward extended over the whole of the ridge of which this hill 
is a part, including the site of the temple (Jo. 2 1 , etc.), and finally 
over the larger city covering other eminences to the west and the 
north. Cf. Is. 52 1 f -, etc. In v. 17 and elsewhere^ Zechariah 
seems to use it as a synonym for Jerusalem. It is therefore prob 
able that it should here be interpreted as meaning the city rather 
than the sacred mountain, and that in the ruined and desolate 
condition in which it was left by the Babylonians. Cf. Is. 44 28 
54", etc. 15. The other side of Yahweh s jealousy reveals itself 
to the oppressors of his people. But I am very wroth, he contin 
ues, against the careless, or arrogant, nations. They are the same 
that are described in v. u as resting undisturbed, enjoying the 
fruits of conquest. The strength by which they won their success 
has given them a reckless confidence that shows itself in boasting. 
This spirit is the one that Isaiah condemned in the Assyrians. 
Cf. io 13 f -. Zechariah is thinking of the Babylonians as por 
trayed in Is. 47 6ffi . Their arrogance would in itself be offensive 
to Yahweh; but the immediate cause of his anger is that, when he 
was only a little wroth with his people, and therefore disposed to 
punish them but lightly, these nations, being employed for the pur 
pose, helped, but for harm. The idea is a familiar one. Thus, 
Isaiah (io 6 f -) rebukes the Assyrian for planning to exterminate 
those whom he was commissioned only to chastise, while the 
prophet of the Exile accuses the Babylonians of treating the Jews 
with such cruelty that in the end they paid double the divinely 
prescribed penalty. Cf. 47 6 4O 2 . Zechariah is here but repeating 
this accusation. 

* So New., Bla., et al. f 2 S. 5 7 i K. 8 1 - 4 , etc. I 2/ 7 - i 4 / 10 8 2 f -. 

There are several exegetes who see a discrepancy between this passage in its most obvious 
meaning and v. 2 , to avoid which they interpret "a little" as a limitation of the duration rather 

I 7 - 127 

16. Therefore introduces the divine purpose based on the facts 
above given. Because he has a special regard for Jerusalem, and 
it has already received from his hand double for all its sins, he 
will return to the city, the place of his former abode. The Sec 
ond Isaiah describes the return of Yahweh as a triumphal proces 
sion, for which a highway is to be made through the desert, and 
at which all the world will wonder.* It would have been folly 
for Zechariah in his vision to copy this glowing prediction; for 
those for whose instruction and encouragement he wrote knew 
that it had not been fulfilled, f They felt, however, that Cyrus was 
as really an instrument of the divine will as Nebuchadrezzar, and 
they were prepared to believe that Yahweh had at last relented, 
so that he would henceforth reveal himself among them in com 
passion. Indeed, the prophet could, and did, go further. Haggai 
had accomplished his mission, and the foundation of the temple 
had been laid. It did not, therefore, require great faith to believe 
that this structure would be completed and the city restored; in 
other words, that the prediction of Is. 44 23 would be fulfilled. The 
prophet, at any rate, believed it, and, in testimony of his confidence, 
put into the mouth of Yahweh the remaining words of this verse: 
My house shall be built therein, and a line, the line used as a 
measure by builders, shall be stretched over Jerusalem. Cf. 2 5/1 ff -. 
Note that the emphasis is here on the material blessings resulting 
from the presence of Yahweh. In 8 3 it is on the spiritual. 17. 
Here was an excellent opportunity for extravagant language such 
as even Haggai (2 7 ) could not altogether repress. Zechariah, how 
ever, as v. 16 has shown, was more temperate than his contempo 
rary. He therefore omits any prediction with reference to the 
future splendour of the new sanctuary. The most he permits him 
self, if the text is correct, is a general prophecy of prosperity. The 
cities, in v. 12 "the cities of Judah, " he makes Yahweh say, shall 
again overflow with good, the temporal blessings which all men 

than the severity of the divine wrath. So Ki., Grot., Marck, Lowth, Ston., Pres., Wri., et al. 
If, however, as has been shown, v. 2 is an interpolation, there is no need of resorting to such 

*Cl Is. 40 3ff- 432", etc. 

t They knew, too, that the overthrow of the Babylonian empire was not so spectacular an 
event as had been expected, and this is the reason why one (GASm.) does not find it predicted 
in this passage. 


crave and which God bestows upon those who please him. This 
general promise is followed by another for the capital in particu 
lar: Yahweh will yet, in answer to the petition implied in v. 12 , 
have compassion on* Sion, and again, as in the days of its pros 
perity, take pleasure in Jerusalem. f 

Here ends the first vision. It is a picture of the past. At first it 
was not clear what Zechariah meant by it; but in the course of the 
above discussion his purpose has become more apparent. The 
Jews had been raised to the highest pitch of expectation by the 
prophecies of the Second Isaiah. The results, to them, of the 
triumph of Cyrus had fallen so far short of their hopes that they 
were grievously disappointed. Some of them must have well- 
nigh lost their faith in the God of their fathers. It was therefore 
time for some one who was sane, sober and practical to put the 
whole matter in a less tragical aspect, showing his people that 
Yahweh had after all really intervened in their behalf, and en 
couraging them to expect his continued assistance. This seems to 
have been Zechariah s object in his first vision. The practical 
effect of the saner view, as he doubtless foresaw, would naturally 
be an increase of interest and energy in the enterprise which he, 
as well as Haggai, probably regarded as the first duty of the 
restored community, the rebuilding of the national sanctuary. 
Cf. v. 16 . 

7. -)vy nety] The later idiom for ic>j? nnx, which occurs only in Gn. 
32 23 37 9 Dt. i 2 ; cp. Dt. i 3 . ear Nin] The reasons for regarding this 
clause as an interpolation are: (i) that neither Haggai nor Zechariah, in 
v. l , adds the name to the number of the month; and (2) that the practice 
of so doing seems to belong to a much later date, being confined, except 
in one instance that requires special consideration, to Est. Cf. 7 . Nit; 1 ] 
For nj?, v. J ; like N)3"\ Ez. 2 64 , for 13-1, i Ch. 29?, and x^pj, Jo. 4 19 , for "p:, 
Ex. 237, etc.; Ew. * 16c . 8. DIN a an] First suspected by Ew., it is 
omitted by We., Now., Marti, Kit. The objections to its genuineness 
are: (i) that the predicates 331 and "toy are hardly compatible with each 
other; (2) that the introduction of this clause produces the impression 
that the angel of Yahweh is the leader of the celestial scouts, and not, as 
in v. , the one to whom they report; (3) that there is no use made of it in 
the subsequent narrative; and (4) that, if the clause were genuine, NVTI, 

* The text has comfort, but see the critical notes. 

t Cf. 2 16 12 a 2 Is. I4 1 - On the rendering take pleasure, see especially Is. 56* s8 5 f 65" 66 s . 

I 7 - 129 

which the later critics without warrant omit, would precede it, the sec 
ond prtc. being introduced by the simple v a^Dinn] <5 NB , r&v bpfav = 
annn; <& A Q and some curss., r(av 5i5o dptwv = onnn ^r. The former 
reading is adopted by Theod. Mops., Theodoret, Che., Marti, van H., 
et al. It is easier, however, to explain these readings by 6 1 than it 
is to account for that of the text on the supposition that it is corrupt. 
nSxca] So Houb., Norzi, Baer, Gins.; for nSixca. Other readings are: 
nSxca, Fiirst, nVxD3,B6., and nVxca, Ew., BDB., all with the general sense 
of in the shadow. Cf. (&, Karafficiuv; &, ,^>\\ftSr>. The rendering in 
the hollowis evidently preferable if the correctness of o Dinn is maintained. 
vnN] Marti suggests vjoS; but that would naturally mean that the 
horsemen were between the angel and the prophet, which can hardly be 
what the latter intended. D piir] <B NABQ have Kal 4>apol Kal TroiicLXoi, a 
reading which, at first sight, favours the view that M originally had 
horses of four colours; but the similarity of the two here named, and the 
omission of the former by ( x - b , some curss., & H , make it probable that 
this one is a gloss to the other. If, therefore, <& has preserved a fourth 
colour in Troiici\oi = oma, it has lost the one represented by D^inr. For 
the latter Marti rds. onnB>, thus bringing this passage into accord with 
6 2 f . It does not, however, seem necessary that the two passages should 
so perfectly agree, or natural that, if Zechariah wrote onntr, this com 
paratively familiar word should have given place to the #. X. of the pres 
ent text. Asada, following (& &, reads D"rnfc i; but the i need not be 
supplied unless omai is added. Cf. Ges. 5 R - . 9. o -\ENM] & 
^*- jJ-cjc ^o ^ v/%<^ |^J1^ |jj^o = >S nDNM o nain ^N^nn ]y>\ 
and this reading seems favoured by w. i-i 3 ; but v. " has the precise for 
mula here used. i^Scn] The art. is properly used whether the thought be 
that the angel is one to whom attention is called for the first time or one 
with whom and his function the reader is supposed to be familiar. Cf. 
Ges. 5 w- *. o] Not in me, with (& $, Jer., Theod. Mops., Marck, Pu., 
et al., but, as in Nu. i2 8 - 8 Hb. a 1 , where the most intimate communion be 
tween God and man is described, with me; the prep, denoting, not instru 
mentality, Ew. a; i. 8> but proximity. Cf. BDB. 89 . non] The pron. 
is not, as Ges. S i implies, and Wright expressly asserts, a substitute for 
the copula, but, as Dr. puts it, "an imperfect anticipation of the subject," 
which here has the force of an appositive. Cf. Dr. % 20t < 2 >; K.6. 3M d . In 
a direct question nVs might come first. Cf. Is. 49 21 . 10. |J?M] This 
verb naturally introduces a speech by one who has been directly ad 
dressed, but, since it may also introduce a speech by any one interested in 
a given subject (cf. v. Gn. 23 l Ju. i8 14 , etc.), its use here proves noth 
ing with reference to the question whether the man among the myrtles 
and the interpreter are the same or different persons. We., who regards 
them as distinct, finds in the fact that the former answers a question put 
to the latter a reason for suspecting the genuineness of the whole verse; 


but such "interference" is a common occurrence to an oriental. 
jro-inn] (g, TUV optuv, as in v. 8 . 

11. mrp IN^D] The person to whom the horsemen report is no doubt 
the angel of Yahweh, but, if he had been so called in the original text, the 
descriptive clause that was standing among the myrtles would hardly have 
been added. We. is therefore probably correct in the surmise that the 
original reading was tf Nn here as in v. 10 . So also Marti, Kit. Now., 
on the other hand, following Hi., omits the descriptive clause. V" 1 ^] 
(gNAB^ Trciffav TT]v yriv; but ( L om. -rrciffav, which, moreover, is easily ex 
plained as a loan from the next clause. nepin] A pred. adj. with the 
force of an adverbial phrase, like niSeh in 7*. 12. mn> i^Sc] A reason 
for retaining this reading additional to those given in the comments is 
that the insertion of the same words in v. u is more easily explained on the 
supposition that the angel of Yahweh was expressly named in this verse. 
nnn] The separate pron. here seems to be used rather for rhythmi 
cal effect than for emphasis. Cf. Ges. 135 - . nncpr] For nej?T. Cf. 
Ges. . 2. R. 3._nr] Not a pron., as <& H, Lu., EV. render it, but an 
adv. Cf. Ges. $ I36 - R - 3 <*>. 13. nirv] <g NAB Q add iravroKpartap, which, 
however, Comp., <!&J er -, Chrys. omit. ^a nain] Ace. to Now. an in 
terpolation; but, since it is the interpreter who delivers the message, it 
would seem most natural that he should receive it. onan 2 ] <& & prefix a 
connective. o^Enj] An abstr. pi. used appositively for gen. Cf. Ges. 
j 124. i (*>; 131. 2 (*). D r< us (n.u. jvsSi oWi-pS] In <S L the names 
are transposed. nSnj nwp] Cf. vv. 2 - 5 ; Ges. in - 2*). 15. ^nj ^xpi] 
Cf. v. ". D jjNiyn] Houb.rds.n- BN^n, That despise it (Jerusalem). To 

nry he would give the force of Ar. *y iv., multiply. IC ; N] Here a 
conj. Cf. Ges. \ 158 . 

16. rnnti] Kenn. 195 adds nixax. So ( A ^, and, since it occurs in 
17 out of 19 similar cases, this may well be the correct reading. na] On 
the daghesh, cf. Ges. 20 - 2 < a > < 2 ). nip] So also i K. 7 23 Je. 3138/39; 
but always Qr. ip. 17. Tj?] (g transfers this word to the preceding 
verse and puts into its place Kal elirev Trpos /x 6 ^776X0? \d\wv tv Ifjol. 
njxian] For nj^icn, the reading of 24 Kenn. mss. Cf. Ges. % " 6 - R . 
Houb. rds. njx^cn. aiDD ^ny] Rd., with ^i &, aiD nnyn or, as in v. 1? , 
3TO min nj?. onji] Rd., with (I (irai AeTj<rei) om), as in v. 1! . So 
Oort., We., Now., Marti, Kit. & has jJLsJo = nja\ which, however, 
Sebok is probably correct in regarding as an error for |*A^JO = onji. 

(2) THE HORNS AND THEIR DESTROYERS (2 1 4 /! 18 " 21 ). 

The second vision attaches itself naturally and closely to the first. 
In it the prophet sees four horns, and, when their significance has 
been explained, as many workmen commissioned to destroy them; 

the whole being a picture of the process by which Yahweh intends 
to fulfil the promise of the first vision. 

2 1 /! 18 . There is no date. None is needed. The relation of 
this vision to the first is such that the date of the one must be the 
date of the other, the twenty-fourth of the eleventh month of the 
second year of the Persian king Darius. Then, says the prophet, 
meaning after the first vision had passed, I lifted up my eyes. Here, 
as in the former case, the language is figurative, since the vision is 
only a literary form for the thought that the prophet wishes to con 
vey. This time there appear, first, four horns. There is nothing 
to indicate the manner of their appearance, whether as attached or 
separate members, but the absence of any reference to animals or 
their movements favours the latter alternative.* They at once re 
call the horns, great and small, of the book of Daniel; but, since 
that book is without doubt a product of the Maccabean period, as 
between the two its author, and not Zechariah, must be regarded as 
the imitator. The origin of the symbol common to them is easily 
traced. To the Hebrews the ox, like the lion, typified strength 
(Ps. 22 13/12 ), and its horns were the feature that they emphasised. 
Cf. Dt. 23 17 . Hence it was natural that Amos (6 13 ) should repre 
sent Israel as boasting of having taken to themselves horns, and 
that Zedekiah, the son of Chenaanah, should wear a pair in the 
tableau by which he pictured the triumph of the allied forces of 
Israel and Judah over the Syrians. Cf. i K. 22 11 . This, however, 
seems to be the earliest instance in which the horn is used to sym 
bolise, not power, but, as will appear, a power, that is, a powerful 
nation. Therein, perhaps, lies the reason why Zechariah is so 
careful to explain the figure. 

2 2 /l 19 . The method of question and answer is continued. The 
prophet inquires of his angelic interpreter, Sir, what are these? re 
ferring to the horns. The angel replies, These are the horns that 
scattered Judah. These words have been variously interpreted. 
Not that there is any difference of opinion concerning their general 
import. It is agreed that the Targum is correct in interpreting 

* The contrary is maintained by J. D. Mich. (Lex. Heb.), who thinks the prophet saw a pair 
of oxen in grass so tali that their horns only were visible. Ston. insists that there must have been 
four animals, " bearing each a single horn, high and pointed, like that of the he-goat in Daniel." 
Similarly Pres., Pu., Wri., Per., et al. 


horns as meaning kingdoms, that, in other words, these horns repre 
sent political powers. The disagreement arises when an attempt is 
made to identify the powers. Now, it is clear that, since the horns 
are described as those that produced a dispersion, the first thing 
to do is to fix the date and circumstances of this event, or series of 
events. The text seems to furnish the necessary data. It says 
that these horns scattered, not only Judah, but Israel. But Israel, 
when used in conjunction with Judah, regularly denotes the north 
ern, in distinction from the southern, kingdom and it is regularly 
so used even by the later prophets.* If, therefore, as one has a 
right to expect, it is used in that sense in this connection, the dis 
persion to which the prophet refers must include that of the north 
ern as well as the southern tribes; in other words, one must reckon 
Assyria as well as Babylonia among the powers involved, f This 
is the natural inference from the text as it reads, but such an in 
ference does not harmonise with the impression derived from the 
preceding chapter. The dispersion to which allusion is there made 
is the dispersion of Judah only, the result of the capture of Jeru 
salem by Nebuchadrezzar. This fact excites doubt concerning the 
genuineness of Israel in the passage under consideration, and the 
doubt thus excited is confirmed by v. 4 , where the horns are again 
introduced, but the name Israel is omitted. It follows that here, 
also, the prophet had the Judean dispersion in mind, and that he 
used the horns to represent the power or powers instrumental in 
that catastrophe. J Rashi recognises only one power, "the Baby 
lonians at the four winds of heaven "; and his view is not without 
a semblance of support in the wide extent of the Babylonian em 
pire under Nebuchadrezzar, by virtue of which he, like the kings 
before and after him, called himself "king of the four quarters."** 
Still, it must be rejected, because the Babylonians, though the 
strongest, were not the only people that helped the Jews to their 

*CL Je. 3 8.n.i8 s u Ez. 9 9 2 7 7, etc. 

t So Jer., Cyr. Ki.. Dru.. Klie., Ston., Pres., Pu., Wri., et al. 

J The adoption of this emendation is greatly to be desired. It will prevent any further vio 
lence to the troublesome name, which has been interpreted, not only as an honorary title, Ke., 
but as a collective title for rural as distinguished from urban, Or., common as compared with 
noble, Neumann and even faithless, as contrasted with faithful Jews, Klie. 

So van Hoonacker. 

** KB., iii, i, 108 /.; 2, 96 /. 



destruction,* as the use of the plural in v. 4 clearly indicates. There 
is equally good ground for rejecting any interpretation which makes 
the horns represent four distinct powers including Babylonia. The 
reply is that, as the Jews had more than four adversaries, but no 
others of the same class with the Babylonians, it is impossible to 
identify the other three, and that, this being the case, the vision 
becomes meaningless. The impossibility of finding a power or 
powers that the prophet can safely be supposed to have had in mind 
makes it necessary to give to the horns a broader interpretation. 
Theodoret of Mopsuestia does so. He says that they designate 
"those who from many sides attacked" God s people, "and sought 
in every way to injure them," the number four being chosen, be 
cause the Hebrews, like others, divided the world into four quar 
ters and naturally represented anything coming from all directions 
as coming from the cardinal points. Cf. "the four winds of 
heaven," 6 5 .f This seems to have been nearly the thought of the 
prophet; but in developing it care must be taken to avoid the mis 
take of including, as many have done, the enemies of both king 
doms, or those of the Jews after the Babylonian period, for these 
horns symbolise the power only of the peoples, especially the Baby 
lonians, who by their hostility contributed to the final overthrow 
of the Jewish state and the banishment of the Jewish people from 
their soil. 

2 3 /l 20 , The vision is not yet complete. Yahweh, says the 
prophet, imitating the phraseology of Amos in the first four of his 
visions (i 1 - 4 - 8 1 ), showed me four workmen. Not that, at this 
point, Yahweh called his attention to something that he had not be 
fore noticed. The figures were now first brought upon the scene. 
They were figures of men of skill and strength, fitted, therefore, 
for any task, able to build, but no less, to use the words of Ez. 
2i 36/31 , "skilful to destroy." On the number of the workmen, see 
below. 2 4 /l 21 . The prophet seems to have conceived of the work 
men as having something distinctive, either in the dress they wore 
or the implements they carried, which made them at once recog- 

* Cf. Je. i2 u Ez. 25 - * 2S 24 as 5 , etc. 

t Similarly, Lu., Cal., Ribera, Marck, New., Rosenm., Hi., Koh., Hd., Burger, Per., We., 
Now., Marti, el al. 


nisable. At any rate, he does not ask who they are, but only, W hat 
are these coming to do? The reply, doubtless from the interpreter, 
first repeats the explanation just given, Those are the horns that 
scattered Judah; adding a clause descriptive of the thoroughness 
with which the hostile forces did their destructive work, so that he, 
meaning Judah, did not, because he could not, uplift his head. The 
condition thus described is the condition of the Jews during the 
Exile, when they dared not believe that they could be taken from 
their mighty conquerors. Cf. Is. 49 24 f -. For a similar figure, see 
Am. 5 2 . Turning now to the workmen, the interpreter explains, 
These are come to cast down. Here again it is easy to mistake the 
prophet s meaning. Just as the prominence of the Babylonians 
in the dispersion of the Jews seems to mark them as the power 
symbolised by the horns, or one of them, so their overthrow by 
the Persians seems to require that these latter be regarded as the 
power, or one of four such powers, represented by the work 
men. In this case, however, as in the preceding, the first impres 
sion is erroneous. Indeed, it will be found, not only that the work 
men do not represent Persia alone or with any number of other 
powers, but that they have a clearly different function. The only 
satisfactory explanation for them is suggested by i 10 f -, and more 
clearly indicated in 6 5ff> . In the latter passage there is evident 
reference to the conquest of Babylonia. In alluding to it, how 
ever, Yahweh ignores human instrumentalities. It is his angelic 
agents who have appeased his spirit in that region. Now, since 
the passage under consideration appears to be a forecast of the 
event described as accomplished in the vision of the chariots, it is 
fair to conclude that here also the prophet, like Ezekiel in his de 
scription of Gog and his followers, is employing the apocalyptic 
method, and that therefore these workmen, as Jerome perceived, 
represent the supernatural means through which Yahweh ac 
complishes his purposes.* They are four in number to indicate 
that the penalty for the injury done Judah will be as comprehen 
sive as the offence was general. They will cast down\ the horns, 
utterly destroy the power, 0/all the nations that uplifted themselves, 

* Similarly, Theod. Mops., Cyr., Theodoret, Lu., Cal., Dru., a Lap., Koh., GASm., et al. 
t Elsewhere horns are "cut off." Cf. Je. 4S 25 Ps. 75" La. 2 3 . 

2 1 - 4 /! 18 - i35 

used violence, against the land of Judah, to scatter it, or, more 
strictly speaking, its inhabitants. 

The tameness of the prophet s language is even more notice 
able in this than in the preceding vision. The reason is the same 
in this case as in the other. He is dealing with comparatively re 
cent history, especially the conquest of Babylonia, an event which, 
although it had great significance for the Jews, was anything but 
spectacular. The capital, so far from resisting the Persian con 
queror, yielded without a blow. In fact, when Cyrus entered the 
city, it greeted him as its deliverer. It would have been worse 
than useless for the prophet, in this vision, to enlarge upon the 
simple fact that the conqueror of Judah had been punished. Hav 
ing presented this to the best of his ability, he passes to the third 
and final phase of his present subject. 

2 1 /! 18 . In 05 B & LU , as in English, this verse and the three that follow 
are reckoned to ch. i. JONI] Here and in v. 5 5" for nxixi, which is 
found 5 6 1 ; here also ace. to 4 Kenn. mss. Cf. Ges. \\ 49 - 2 <*>: " 6 - R - 
< >. 2. nSx ,-ID] Add, with <g &, ^ix, as in i 9 4 4 6 4 . S*nfc^ nx] The 
most convincing reasons for pronouncing this name an interpolation, (i) 
that it does not fit the context, and (2) that it is wanting in v. 4 , have al 
ready been stated. Note in addition, (3) that it is not found elsewhere in 
the book except in 8 13 , where it is as much out of place as in this passage. 
DfahrwQ Om., with Kenn. 180, <S A Q & H . The omission of nx, also, is 
against it. Both names are disregarded by We., Now., Marti, Kit. 3. 
O Bhn] According to Mich, and others to be pointed trchn and rendered 
plowmen; but such a rendering requires too much explanation in v. 4 . 
4. "DKlJ Some mss. have nbxi. mfc j? 1 ?] <& L adds /nJ/ue = >jix, as in 
i 9 4 4 6 4 . nnxS] Rd., with Kenn. 178, <S A Q &, ^Sx. nSx 2 ] Ace. to We. a 
scribal error. Without it the words that follow would read, The horns 
that scattered Judah, so that he did not uplift his head, them to terrify came 
these, etc. This rendering, however, is not satisfactory, (i) The con 
struction IXSM requires that a complete sentence precede it; and (2) the 
phrase anx innnS, on which this emendation is based, as will be shown, 
is itself an interpolation. The pron., therefore, must remain if the words 
following are recognised as genuine. Marti omits them as far as ^ ; xn, 
also nSx 2 , at the same time substituting o>xa for wai, and, at first sight, 
he seems justifiable in so doing; but there are contrary considerations. 
The clause, These are the horns that scattered Judah, is not a mere repe 
tition of the angel s first answer. The addition of the next transforms it 
from a statement of fact into an explanation and a justification of the 


workmen s purpose. The latter clause, however, should be emended by 
inserting TW N before c ;<i s, with Koh. and others, or, with We., substituting 
the former for the latter. Cf. Mai. 2 9 . If the former method be adopted, 
NK J might be pointed as a prtc. TJ s per singulos mros. Et nemo . . . 
appears to be a case of free expansion. (8 takes greater liberty with the 
text, adding the irreconcilable gloss, Ko.1 rbv I<rpar)\ Kar^av. NOM] 
(gss jer. h ave Kal ^\6offav; but <g A Q, Kctl d<Tr)\6ov. oriN nnnn 1 ?] (g, 
6vvou; whence Bla. conjectures that the original reading in M was 
onN. inn.") 1 ?, sharpening their coulter. Gunkel (Schopfung u. Chaos, 
122) suggests DON innS. The coulter, however, does not seem the suit 
able instrument for the purpose of casting down the horns. Nor is it 

probable that nnnnS is a mistake for -|nnnV (<i)*^>, Houb.), annnS 

(Seeker) or annnS (Marti). A verb with any such meaning would come 
more naturally after than before rmS. The same is true of the one 
found in the text, and this is one reason for suspecting the genuineness of 
the whole clause. Another is the use of the masc. for the fern. suf. in 
D-N. Cf. Ex. 27- Ps. 75 11 / 10 . Finally, note the absence of l before nw 1 ?. 
The clause can best be explained as a gloss to BMJH nij-ip nx nw 1 ?, the 
antecedent of the sf. of PN being aMjn. Perhaps, however, the vb. was 
originally nmnV. pp] The word sounds strange with xfe j, the regular 
idiom having ann. Rd., therefore, a>Nfe jn, that uplifted themselves, 
and omit this word. SN % ] Rd., with < H 21, hy. 


In this his third vision the prophet sees a man on his way to 
measure the site of Jerusalem, to whom he afterward hears the 
interpreter send a message foretelling the limitless growth and 
prosperity of the city under the protection of Yahweh. 

5/1 . There has been some difference of opinion with reference 
to the identity of the man with a measuring line. Thus, Rashi, 
Maurer and others think he is the same with the interpreter, ig 
noring the obvious fact that the prophet does not introduce the 
latter until the former has answered his question. It is also a mis 
take to identify him with the angel of Yahweh as Jerome, Keil 
and others have done. The angel of Yahweh, although he, also, 
in i 8 is called a man, always takes the leading part in any scene in 
which he appears. Cf. i 11 3 1 ff> . This is a subordinate figure, like 
the horsemen of the first vision, whose part it is to furnish an oc 
casion for the promise that is to follow. 6/2. A l me lite that 

2 5/l-9/5 

which the man is represented as carrying had various uses among 
the Hebrews. When employed as a symbol, therefore, it might 
have one or another of several different meanings. In the first 
vision (i 10 ), to be sure, when Yahweh said, "A line shall be 
stretched over Jerusalem," the words were a promise that the city 
should be rebuilt; but no Jew could forget that Amos had used the 
same figure of the partition of Samaria among foreigners, and the 
author of 2 K. 2i 13 of the destruction of the Judean capital. The 
fact that the symbol was thus ambiguous, perhaps, is one of the 
reasons why the prophet pictures himself as asking the man, 
Whither art thou going ? Another is his fondness for the interrog 
ative style. The answer is not precisely the one that i 16 would lead 
the reader to expect; for, instead of repeating the promise of that 
passage, the man says he is going to measure Jerusalem, to see how 
wide it is, or is to be, and how long. Nor is it at once apparent what 
he means by these words. Marti sees in them an expression of 
" impatient curiosity" concerning the dimensions of the future 
city. There is, however, little ground for asserting the existence 
of any such sentiment in Zechariah s time. A better interpreta 
tion is suggested by v. 8 . In view of the prediction there made it 
seems best to regard the man with the measuring line as represent 
ing the narrower and more cautious Jews, who, in spite of the 
preaching of Haggai, formed an influential practical party. They 
were patriotic in a way. They wished to see Jerusalem restored. 
They were perhaps doing what they could to rebuild it. But they 
insisted upon caring first for the material needs of the community, 
and planning in this or any other direction only so far as tangible 
resources would warrant. They were the people who, when Haggai 
began his agitation, said that the time had not come to build the 
house of Yahweh. Cf. Hg. i 2 . They doubtless thought it much 
more important that the city should have a wall than a temple,- 
but they would not have approved of a wall of unnecessary dimen 
sions. They might have been called "the party of the measuring 
line." 7/3. At this point the interpreter is again introduced, 
according to the Greek Version, as standing near the prophet. 
At the same time another angel is described as coming toward 
him, namely, the interpreter. This is not the angel of Yahweh, 


the man among the myrtles of the first vision; he would hardly be 
called " another angel" or assigned to an inferior position; but 
apparently a third whose only function is to act as messenger for 
the interpreter. 8/4. The second of the points just made takes 
for granted that the speaker in this verse is the interpreter, and the 
angel his messenger. This has frequently been denied.* The 
question hinges to some extent on the further inquiry with refer 
ence to the person in the command, Run, speak to yonder youth. 
Many have taken this youth for Zechariah himself ,f and drawn im 
portant conclusions from the term by which they supposed him to 
be designated. The more defensible opinion, however, is that he 
should be identified with the man with the measuring line; for the 
term fits him, employed as he was, better than the prophet, and 
the message, though intended for the prophet, would naturally be 
addressed to the one who was making the useless measurements. 
The bearing of this result on the main question is evident. If the 
youth is the man with the measuring line, it must be the interpreter 
who sent him the message, and not the other angel, who would have 
had to take the interpreter from the prophet s side for the purpose. 
Finally, it should be observed that the contrary opinion makes the 
interpreter dependent on the other angel for the very knowledge 
which his office implies. It is the interpreter, then, who sends, and 
the other angel who carries, the message. { It is a rebuke of the 
selfish and faithless opportunism that the youth represented, and a 
protest against permitting "the day of small things" to determine 
the future of Jerusalem. Zechariah, for, of course, it is he who 
is speaking through the interpreter, although, as has been shown, 
he could not ignore facts, had imagination. He shows it here by 
refusing to set a limit to the growth of the city, predicting that it 
will burst all bounds, extend itself indefinitely, and lie open like 
the villages of the country on account of the multitude of men and 
cattle in it. Cf. Je. 4p 31 Ez. 38". 9/4. The prophet did not, in 
the preceding verse, give the ground of his confidence. It now ap 
pears that he based his prediction concerning the future of the city 

* So Jer., Theod. Mops., Dru., Pern., New., Bla., Ston., Ew., Ke., Pu., Reu., van H., el al. 
t So Jer., AE., Cal., Rib., Dru., a Lap., Pern., Bla., Lowth, Rosenm., Ke., Koh., Pres., Pu., 
et al. 

J So Marck, Mau., Hi., Klie., Or., Wri., Per., We., Now., Marti, et al. 

2 5/l-/5 I39 

on the promised presence of Yahweh. The temple was already 
in building. When it was completed, and the service therein re 
sumed, he saw that Jerusalem would no longer be merely a little 
mountain town, the refuge of a few struggling Jews, but would in 
evitably become the religious shrine and capital of a race; and he 
expected that the God of their fathers would again reveal himself 
to them there. Cf. vv. n 15 8 3 . Then, as truly as in the days of the 
Exodus, he would be a wall of fire* round about, a sure defence. 
if any were needed, against their adversaries. Cf. v. 15/u 8 22 f * 
Is. 26*. The prophet also makes Yahweh promise to be a splen 
dour in the city. Haggai had seen a similar vision (2 7 ), but the 
splendour he saw was that of gifts of silver and gold brought to 
the new temple. That seen by Zechariah is the splendour of the 
divine presence symbolised by the fiery cloud which Ezekiel saw 
enter the sanctuary (43 * ff -), but more gloriously manifested in the 
reign of truth and holiness among the fortunate inhabitants of 
the future city. Cf. 8 3 . 

In the foregoing comments it has been taken for granted that, 
while, in the first two visions, Zechariah was dealing with the past, 
in this third he was attempting to forecast the future. There is 
nothing in the text to contradict this supposition. It is confirmed 
by the fact that the prophecy here made, unlike those that have pre 
ceded it, does not harmonise with conditions either before or after 
the time of the prophet. The city did not prosper as he expected, 
and Nehemiah, after nearly three-quarters of a century, was moved 
to rebuild the wall, as the only means of preserving the inhabitants 
from dispersion or annihilation. The three visions thus far ex 
amined, therefore, form a series the object of which was, by a re 
view of the past, to prepare the reader for increased faith in God 
for the future. It was evidently constructed in imitation of that 
in Am. 7. For later parallels, see the visions of chs. 7/. of Daniel, 
and the interpretation of ch. n of the same book. 

5/1. Here begins ch. 2, ace. to < U, also ace. to Ij in the great poly 
glots. N-uxi] 2 Kenn. mss. rd. njoio. Cf. v. . 6/2. IDNI] Add, with 
. . mm] reverses the order. 7/3. NX^] We., 

* Ex. i4 M should read, "When it became dark, it," the pillar of fire between the Hebrews 
and the Egyptians, "lighted the night." C}. We., Hex., Baentsch, Ex. 


following <& (lffT-//KL), rds. -ray. So also Now., Marti, Kit. Better, 
with Asada, MJ. 8/4. iSx] Rd. vS**. Cf. Ges. \ 91 - 2 - R - . 4 Kenn. 
mss. rd. >Ss. <g AB ^ r add \tywv. rSn] For nrSn. C/. Ges. 34. 2. R.I. 
Adverbial ace. = nmsa. Cf. Ges. 118 - 6 < c >; Dr. 161 < 3 >. <g, 
as if from nns, fruitful. Cf. Ez. ig 10 . 9/5. ^xi] Em 
phatic. C/. Ges. * 135 - . 

(4) AN APPEAL TO THE EXILES ( 2 10/6 ~ 17/13 ). 

The rest of the chapter has usually been treated as a part of the 
preceding vision, but this arrangement must be abandoned. The 
reasons are as follows: (i) The speaker is not the same as in v. 9 , 
but the prophet now takes the place of the interpreter. This ap 
pears from his references to himself in vv. 12 f ; also from the fact, 
itself another reason for making these verses a separate para 
graph, that (2) the persons addressed are no longer any of those 
who have appeared in the visions, but the Jews who still remain in 
Babylonia. Finally, (3) these verses are not an enlargement upon 
the third vision, but an appeal based upon the whole trio, in which 
the prophet exhorts his people to separate themselves from the 
nations destined to perish and return to Palestine, there to enjoy in 
a restored community the presence and protection of Yahweh. 

10/6. The prophet does not at first designate by any name those 
whom he is addressing. He simply exhorts them to flee from the 
north country; but it is only necessary to turn to v. n to find that the 
north country is Babylonia and those who are exhorted to flee 
thence exiled inhabitants of Jerusalem. This summons does not, 
as Kosters* claims, imply that previous to this time no Jews had 
returned from Babylonia. The prophet would hardly have pre 
sented the past as he has in the preceding visions if the promises 
there made had not to some extent been fulfilled. It means merely 
that, although, as 6 10 clearly shows, some of those who had been 
carried into captivity, or their descendants, had returned, their 
number was comparatively small, and that those who had the in 
terests of the new community at heart felt the need of further re 
inforcements from the same direction, especially in the work of 
rebuilding the national sanctuary. The exhortation, as already in- 

* Die Wiederherstdlung Israels, 20. 

2 10/8-l7/13 j^j 

timated, is repeated inv. u , but these two members of a parallelism 
are separated by a parenthetical clause which seems to have been 
intended to explain the presence of the Jews in Babylonia. One 
rendering for it is, for to the four winds of heaven have I dispersed 
you. 11/7. Now follows the second member of the parallelism. 
This time, however, as in Is. 5i 16 , the Jews, although they are in 
Exile, are addressed under the familiar name Sion, perhaps orig 
inally daughter of Sion, which occurs Is. 52 2 and La. 4 22 in the same 
sense. That the exiles, and not, as one might at first sight think, 
the actual inhabitants of Jerusalem, are meant, is clear from the 
added phrase dwellers in Babylon. The language used was calcu 
lated to remind them of their birthright. 

12/8. The speaker next proceeds, as if about to give a reason for 
the summons he has issued, but interrupts himself, or is interrupted, 
by a parenthetical statement that has never been satisfactorily ex 
plained. It reads, literally, after glory he sent me. The subject is 
evidently Yahweh. The object, who is undoubtedly the same as 
in w. 13/9 and 15Al , must be the prophet. There is great difficulty 
with the phrase after glory. The English words would naturally 
be taken to denote the purpose of the speaker s mission, namely, 
to obtain for himself or another glory in the sense of renown. It 
does not seem to have occurred to any one to take the word in an 
other meaning frequent in the Old Testament, that of splendour, 
which, when it refers to the Deity, becomes synonymous with the 
manifestation of Yahweh. Cf. Ez. 3 23 . If this sense be given to 
it in the present instance, the troublesome clause will become a 
simple statement, apparently by the prophet, that Yahweh gave 
him the message he is delivering after the vision, or series of visions, 
previously described. It seems to have been suggested by the re 
semblance between the experience of Zechariah and that of Eze- 
kiel as recorded in the first two chapters of his book. In fact, the 
words here used were evidently borrowed from that book. In i 28 
Ezekiel describes the theophany he has just witnessed as having 
the appearance of a rainbow. "This," says he, "was the appear 
ance of the likeness of the glory of Yahweh." Then he proceeds 
(2 1 ff ) to tell how, after this vision, the Spirit set him upon his feet 
and Yahweh said to him, "Son of man, I send thee," etc., which 


he might have condensed, and Zechariah did condense, into the 
brief statement, After the glory (vision) he sent me* The next fol 
lowing words must now be construed with the verb preceding the 
parenthesis, and, since in v. 13/9 Yahweh speaks, not to, but con 
cerning, the nations, the prophet probably intended to say, Thus 
saith Yahweh of Hosts concerning the nations that plunder you. 
He nowhere clearly indicates to which of the nations he refers. 
The only other hint of their identity is in v. 13/!) , and this is easily 
misunderstood. It reminds one of the references in Is. 40 ff. to 
Babylon and its cruelty. Cf. 47 4Q 24 f -, etc. This, however, can 
not be the prophet s thought; for the oppression and deliverance 
of which he is now speaking are subsequent to the fall of that city. 
The key to the problem is found in Ezekiel. In chs. 38 /. of 
that book the prophet describes an invasion of "a land restored 
from the sword" and inhabited by "a people gathered from the 
nations," meaning Palestine, by Gog, the great prince of the North, 
at the head of a polyglot horde of plunderers (38- 8 - 12 ) ; but by the 
help of Yahweh, he says, the chosen people will finally triumph 
and "plunder those who plunder them." Cf. 3Q 10 . It is these 
nebulous followers of Gog on whom Yahweh is about to pronounce 
sentence.f The decree, however, is again delayed, this time by 
a reason for it inserted; apparently, by the prophet, for he that 
toucheth you toucheth the apple of his (Yahweh s) eye.% In other 
words, it is "the jealousy of Yahweh of Hosts" that "will do 
this." Cf. Is. 9 6/7 Zc. i 14 8 2 . On the figure, see Dt. 32 Ps. if. 
13/9. Yahweh, finally permitted to speak, announces his pur 
pose with reference to the nations described. I will wave my hand 
over them, he says. This gesture by the king of Assyria (Is. io 22 ) 
denotes a threat; when attributed to Yahweh (Is. n 5 19), like that 
of stretching forth the hand, which is a favourite with Ezekiel (6 14 , 
etc.), it symbolises the exertion of his omnipotent power. So here, 
the result being that the nations over whom he waves his hand be- 

* Of course, if this clause is a gloss, its value as evidence that in this paragraph Zechariah 
is the speaker is somewhat diminished. Cf. v. / 6 . 

t It is interesting to note that among these nations, according to 38 s , were the Persians; but 
the text and interpretation of that passage being in dispute, it is not safe to lay much stress 
upon it. Cf. Ez. a? 10 . 

t Not, as Ki., Bla., et al. reoder it, his own eye. 

2 10/6-17/13 I43 

come spoil for their servants, especially the Jews. For an extended 
description of the terrors of that day, see Ez. 38 17ffi . Note, also, 
the parallel passage (Ez. 39) already cited. At this point there 
is a slight break in the paragraph. The prophet takes advantage 
of it to speak for himself and claim divine inspiration. He appeals 
to the future. He expects that the prediction just made will be 
fulfilled. When it is, his people, he is confident, whatever they 
may now think of him, will recognise him as a genuine prophet. 
Then, he says, shall ye know that Yahweh of Hosts sent me. This 
form of appeal is peculiar to Zechariah. See v. 15/11 4 6 15 , and 
compare one very common in Ezekiel, "Then shall ye (they) know 
that I am Yahweh" (6 7 - 10 ), etc. 14/10. The prophet takes for 
granted that his summons will be heeded, and that his scattered 
compatriots will return to their country. In fact, he goes much 
further and calls upon the daughter of Sion to sing and rejoice at 
the inspiring prospect. First he puts into the mouth of Yahweh the 
promise, I will come and dwell in thee. Here, as in Is. lo 22 and 
elsewhere, the daughter of Sion seems, strictly speaking, to be the 
city of Jerusalem, rather than its inhabitants; hence the rendering 
in thee; but, since in such cases the writer must always have had 
the people in mind, the exact application of the figure is not of the 
first importance. The prophet is looking forward to the fulfil 
ment of the vision in which Ezekiel (43 1 ff< ) saw the glory of Yah 
weh come from the east and, entering the new temple, fill the whole 
house; and heard a voice from the house, saying, "The site of my 
throne . . ., where I will dwell in the midst of the children of Is 
rael forever." The residence of Yahweh in Jerusalem, however, 
meant more to Zechariah than a splendid spectacle, or even the 
richest material blessings that he could imagine; for in 8 3 he repre 
sents the divine presence as manifesting itself in the transformation 
of the city into the likeness of his faithfulness and holiness. Cf. 
8 8 . 15/11. This is a lofty conception, but narrow withal. The 
Second Isaiah had taught a larger doctrine, especially in those pas 
sages in which he sought to enlist his people in a mission to the 
world. Cf. 42 6 49 6 , etc. His teaching found a faint echo in 
Hg. 2 7 . Zechariah boldly adopts it. Many nations, he says, as 
if he were reproducing Mi. 4 1 ff -, shall join themselves to Yahweh in 


that day. This means more than the homage, tribute or service of 
Is. 45 14 f - 49 2 55 4 -. It means, as the next verse clearly teaches, 
the acceptance of the invitation of Is. 45 22 and the unlimited ex 
tension of the Abrahamic covenant. Cf. Is. 44 5 . And they, the 
other nations, as well as the Jews, the prophet makes Yahweh say, 
shall be to him a people. Zechariah, however, is not a thorough 
going universalist, for he adds, always in the name of Yahweh, and 
he will dwell, not among them, but in thee. In other words, al 
though all nations may now be received into the covenant with 
Yahweh, he cannot be everywhere worshipped; but and this is 
made as clear in 8 20 ff as in Micah the new temple at Jerusalem 
is the shrine, and the only one, of the God of the whole earth. It 
is therefore not strange that in 6 15 the most remote peoples are to 
share the labour and honour of rebuilding the sanctuary. This, 
the attainment of Yahweh s purpose, will also redound to the 
honour of the prophet, as he, thereby disturbing the course of 
his own discourse, reminds the reader. 

16/12. That the interpretation above given is the correct one, 
is shown by the way in which Zechariah dwells on the thought of a 
peculiar relation between Yahweh and Jerusalem. When Yahweh 
returns, he says, he will take possession, or, supplying the adverb 
from the next clause, again take possession, of Judah as his portion 
in the holy soil of Palestine, the rest having been alienated through 
the fault of Israel, and again take pleasure in its capital, and the 
seat of its sanctuary, Jerusalem. Cf. f Is. I4 1 . 17/13. The re 
turn of Yahweh to his sanctuary, as Ezekiel describes it (43 1 ff -), is 
a spectacle calculated to fill the beholder with wonder and rever 
ence. The prophet says that, when he saw the earth aglow with 
the divine splendour, and heard the voice that proceeded from it 
"like the sound of much water," he fell on his face. If, as has 
been suggested, Zechariah had this passage in mind, as he was 
writing, it was natural that he should close the paragraph by requir 
ing that men should greet with awful attention the great event that 
he had predicted. The words he uses are an adaptation of Hb. 
2 20 . The first clause, Silence all flesh before Yahweh, is virtually 
a repetition of the original, but the second is recast, the reason for 
the change being that, while Habakkuk was thinking of God en- 

2 io/e-i7/i3 I45 

throned in heaven, Zechariah wishes to represent him as issuing, 
after a period of inactivity (Is. 42"), from his heavenly temple to 
occupy the earthly sanctuary that his people have prepared for 
him. Hence he says, not "Yahweh is in his holy temple," but 
Yahweh hath roused himself from his holy abode. On the heavenly 
temple, see further Dt. 26 15 Je. 25 30 Ps. 29", etc. 

That Zechariah was interested in the movement to rebuild the 
temple appears on the surface of his prophecies; but the casual 
reader would probably think of him as second to Haggai, both with 
respect to his zeal for the enterprise and his ability to further it. 
The study of the first two chapters of his book ought to have shown 
that any such estimate of him is mistaken. He was thoroughly 
in sympathy with his (presumably) older contemporary. The 
thought of the temple dominates these visions throughout. His 
influence on the more thoughtful among his people must have been 
greater and more lasting than that of Haggai, because he appealed 
to that which was noblest in those whom he addressed. His mes 
sage was, Seek first Yahweh and his vivifying presence, and all 
these things shall be added to you. An appeal of this sort will 
bear unlimited emphasis and repetition. It is therefore probable 
that it was the preaching of Zechariah, rather than that of Hag 
gai, which, after the first enthusiasm had subsided, held the Jews 
to their sacred but laborious task, during the four years that 
elapsed before the temple was completed. 

10/6. tt>ji] Rd., with <& H &, 1DU. y2"No] <&, K ruv 
= j?a-wo, which would have no sense with *nfcnfl in this connec 
tion. For the latter, therefore, (& has ffvvdfa = *nx3p (We.) or TSDN 
(Che.). If these readings be adopted, as they are by the later critics, the 
whole clause becomes a parallel to the one that precedes it. But the latter 
has its proper parallel in v. . This being the case, the one now under 
consideration may pretty safely be regarded as a gloss and interpreted 
with the greater freedom. It seems necessary, however, to emend the 
current text unless it may be supposed that the glossator had in mind 6 5 , 
in its present form, and meant to make Yahweh say he had dispersed his 
people as he was wont to despatch his messengers. The alternative is to 
adopt a reading, J?2"ix3, found in 23 mss. and several of the earliest edd., 
and supported by B and 0. So Dathe, New. This reading, whether 
the prep, be rendered into (to) or by, has a familiar sound. In Je. 49 36 
the two ideas are combined. Here the rendering to seems the more suit- 


able. On the meaning of ^nfrifi, see Ps. 68 15/u . 11/7. 
(g, Ets Seic^ ava<r6fr<r6 (C) = W?sn njvx. So We., Now., Marti. The 
voc., however, is certainly more natural after >in, and B & SI all have 
this construction. Cf. Je. 22 18 . ^on] The accent not being thrown 
back as usual in pause. Cf. Ges. 5 29 - 4 (o note . naj Hi. et al. cite Je. 
46 19 in defence of this word, but the passages are not parallel, for Jere 
miah addresses the people of Egypt, not those who are sojourning with 
them. This seems a pretty clear case of dittography. 12/8. The ren 
dering given to IHN is the only one permissible, the attempts to make it 
denote aim or purpose being forbidden by Hebrew usage. So AE., who 
has the excellent paraphrase, "After sending his glory to me he sent me." 
This explanation renders the emendations of Houb. OjnSfr "naa mx), 
Oort OjnStf iiaD 1 ? -HPK) and Che. (-jnVtf iiaa V">^) unnecessary. -023] 
Better iiaan. On Vs in the sense of concerning, see Is. 37 33 Je. 22 18 , 
etc. The ^y of & 01 represents a prevalent mistake with reference to the 
connection. naaa] Some mss. have naa, a reading that may have been 
suggested by Ps. ly 8 ; where, however, as in La. 2 18 , na is probably a 
gloss. wy is one of the 18 so-called onob ^.tpn, or corrections of the 
scribes, a list of which is given at the beginning of the book of Numbers 
and again at Ps. io6 20 . Tradition says that the original reading was 
TJ?, but that the scribes, thinking it derogatory to the Deity so distinctly 
to attribute to him bodily parts, substituted this one. The implication 
is that the word should be rendered his own eye, but this rendering, which 
has no support in the Versions, except in the sui of some mss. of 21 H, is 
neither necessary nor natural. If, however, the clause is parenthetical, 
and the natural antecedent of the sf. of this word Yahweh, the tradition 
above cited is clearly mistaken. See Nu. i2 12 , where it is impossible to 
believe that, as tradition asserts, the original text had USN and mira. On 
the, cf. Gins. Int -, 347 ff. 13/9. 13] After the parenthesis this 
particle introduces the words of Yahweh. Cf. Ges. 5 157 <*>. onnaj? 1 ?] 
Kenn. 96 has onnai yS, and this is the reading favoured by (& Iff & SF; 
but most of the mss. de Ro. cites 38 and nearly all of the earliest edd. 
treat the word as a noun. So also Norzi, Baer, Gins., Kit. The final 
clause, ace. to Marti, is an editorial addition. His reason for this opin 
ion is that it implies doubt concerning Zechariah s commission, which 
would hardly have arisen in his lifetime. There are, however, consider 
ations that make for genuineness. This appeal to the future, as has al 
ready been noted, is more than once repeated, but not at random. Cf. 
v. 16 4 9 6 15 . In every instance it occurs in a passage supplemental to the 
recital of a vision or other revelation, constituting a feature of such pas 
sages. This being the case, if the given passage has the marks of Zecha- 
rian authorship, it would seem safe to recognise this feature of it as genu 
ine. ijnVfr] Kenn. 150 adds aa^Sx probably because it, or "pVx, appears 
in all the parallel passages. 14/10. in] On the accent, milra\ cf. Ges. 

3 1 " 8 J 47 

*67. s. R. 12 (*). 15/11. i 1 ?] Read, with (5 &, iV, and for >njrch, with 
fr, ptfi. (5 has the clearly mistaken, but easily explained, reading /coi 
KaTaffKTjvAffovffiv = uaeh, the pi. for the sg. The whole of v. I5b is pro 
nounced secondary by Marti, and there is less to be said for the appeal to 
the future here than in v. 13 ; but too much stress must not be laid upon 
the abruptness with which it is introduced, for in Ezekiel the similar ex 
pression, "and ye shall know that I am Yahweh," is repeatedly used with 
little regard to the connection. Cf. Ez. u l - 12 I3 9 - 14 
-nj?j] On the Niph., cf. Ges. % 72 - RR - 6 - 9 . 
\jjyc; U, de nubibus; & LU jiocjio = one; but 

b. The anointed of Yahweh fe V 4 lob 14 ). 

The second group consists of two visions. They have to do with 
the persons and fortunes of the two leaders who represented the 
Jewish community in the time of Haggai and Zechariah. 


In this vision the high priest Joshua, haled before the angel of 
Yahweh by the Adversary, is acquitted (vv. 1-5 ), and endowed anew 
with high functions and privileges (vv. 6 ~ 10 ) . 

(a) The acquittal (vv . 1 ~ 5 ). The prophet first sees the high priest, 
as a culprit, before the angel of Yahweh. The latter rebukes the 
Adversary for his complaint, and then, having released the accused, 
has him stripped of his soiled garments and clothed in becoming 

1. The same form of expression is used in introducing this vision 
as in 2 3 /i 20 , Then Yahweh showed me. The place where the scene 
is laid is not mentioned. One is reminded of similar scenes at the 
court of heaven; for example, that described by Micaiah, when he 
was summoned by Ahab to advise him with reference to a projected 
expedition against Ramoth Gilead (i K. 22 19ff> ), in which Yahweh 
appears seated, "on his throne, with all the host of heaven stand 
ing by him on the right and on the left " ; but especially of that por 
trayed in Jb. i 6ff -, in which "the sons of God" come "to present 
themselves before Yahweh/ the Adversary among them. In both 
of these scenes, however, all the persons represented are celestial 


beings, while in this one of the principal figures is Joshua the high 
priest* Moreover, it is not, in this instance, Yahweh before whom 
the other persons are assembled, but the angel of Yahweh, a (or 
the) manifestation of the Deity in human form, which might be, 
and, according to various passages in the Old Testament, often 
was, called a man. So in i 8 . Now, since the human form was 
assumed for the purpose of communion with men, the presence 
of the angel of Yahweh implies mundane surroundings. Hence, 
the prophet must have conceived of the scene here described as 
taking place on earth, and, indeed, in or near Jerusalem. Wher 
ever it was, the angel of Yahweh was, so to speak, holding court, 
and Joshua was before him.f Cf. v. 3 . Not in the unfinished 
temple, as Theodoret and others have supposed, for there the 
high priest would have been before Yahweh, and hardly in soiled 
clothing. Present also was the Adversary, who was standing at 
his (Joshua s) right hand. The rendering Adversary is much 
preferable in this connection to Satan (EV.), although the latter 
is a literal transcript of the original. In fact, "Satan," in the 
sense in which the modern world has learned from the New 
Testament to use it, would be misleading; for the conception 
of Satan as a definite personality hostile to God and the good 
is the result of a development which had hardly begun when 
Zechariah prophesied. The process can be traced. Thus, in 
the first of the two scenes cited the deceiver is not an angel dis 
tinguished from the rest by a peculiar title or character, but the 
one who, when Yahweh asks, "Who shall deceive Ahab?" seems 
to him to have the best plan for so doing, and goes by divine direc 
tion on his mischievous errand. Cf. i K. 22 20 ff . This immediate 
dependence upon the will of Yahweh makes the latter responsible 
for all physical evil. Cf. Am. 3 Is. 45*, etc. In the book of Job 
the corresponding figure has acquired a title, "the Adversary," 
and a sceptical and censorious character. Moreover, he acts on 
his own initiative (Jb. i 7 2 2 ). Still there are limits to his activity, 
for Yahweh does not allow him to do serious or irretrievable harm 

* For details with reference to him and his office, see Hg. i 1 and the comments thereon. 

t On the expression stand bejore, of a defendant, see further, Nu. 35 12 Dt. ip 17 Jos. 20 

K. s 16 . 

3 1 " 5 149 

to those who are temporarily placed in his power. Cf. Jb. i 12 2 6 . 
By the time of the Chronicler the final stage seems to have been 
reached; for, in i Ch. 21*, the title "the Adversary " has become the 
proper name "Satan," and the character thus designated employs 
his supernatural faculties to tempt man and thwart the purposes 
of God. Cf. EB. (Gray), art. Satan; Smend, AR., 43 if.; Marti, 
SK., 1892, 207 /.; Toy, JBL., ix, iy/.* The Adversary of this 
vision is certainly not the malicious power just described. He is 
more nearly akin to Job s tormentor, but, as will appear, he be 
longs to another period and performs a different function. The 
prophet describes him as standing on Joshua s right hand to accuse 
him. There does not seem to be any special significance in the 
mention of the right hand. The Hebrews frequently used right 
hand in parallelism with (Ps. 2i 10/9 Sp 14713 139 , etc.), or as the 
equivalent of, unmodified hand. Cf. Ps. 4 s 5/4 48 11 / 10 6o 7/5 , etc. 
Hence it is best to interpret at his right hand here as only a more 
definite and pictorial way of saying at his side. It is clearly so 
used in Ps. lOQ 31 , where Yahweh is represented as standing "at the 
right hand of the needy" to defend him. 

2. The prophet does not go into unnecessary details. He notes 
the positions of the parties, and leads one to expect that the next 
thing will be the complaint; but he does not even state that the com 
plaint was brought, much less recite the offence or offences of which 
the high priest was accused. Indeed, he seems to have intended 
to convey the idea that the Adversary was interrupted, not, as in 
the received text, by Yahweh, but by the angel of Yahweh, as he 
was about to present his case. This interpretation certainly har 
monises with the tone and apparent intent of the vision as a whole. 
In any case, the angel of Yahweh silences the Adversary with an 
indignant objurgation, Yahweh rebuke thee, which furnishes an 
other example of the care the Hebrews sometimes took to dis 
tinguish between Yahweh and the angel of his presence. Cf. 

* An idea of the change that had taken place in the views of the Jews on the subject of evil 
may be obtained by comparing i Ch. 2I 1 with the parallel passage 2 S. 24 , where it is not 
Satan, but Yahweh, who incites David to number Israel. Wright cites Ps. log 6 as another in 
stance of the use of pir as a proper name; but the parallelism shows that it is there a synonym 
for J?cn, -wicked. For a still more complete doctrine concerning Satan, see Jude 9 Rev. i2 7 ff , 
in both of which passages there is evident allusion to the scene here described. 


T 10 2 3 /i 20 . The ground of the indignation expressed is found in a 
mixture of two sentiments that have already shown themselves. 
The first reappears in connection with the repetition of the just 
quoted words, where Yahweh is described as the one who delighteth 
in Jerusalem. In other words, it is the partiality for the Judean 
capital asserted in i 14 . The other betrays itself in the question, 
Is not this a brand plucked from the fire? The figure is borrowed 
from Amos (4 n )> who used it of the remnant of Israel after one of 
Yahweh s destructive visitations. The Jewish exegetes find here 
an allusion to the miraculous escape of the high priest from a fur 
nace into which he and the false prophets Ahab and Zedekiah 
had been cast by Sennacherib (sic) ; but there is no ground for 
believing that he ever had any such experience.* It is probable 
that the high priest here represents the survivors from the over 
throw of Judah, and that the question put into the mouth of the 
angel of Yahweh, like the declaration of i 15 , is an expression of 
sympathy with them in their excessive suffering. It is as if he had 
said, "Hath he not already suffered beyond his desert?" Cf. Is. 
4<D 2 .f 3. Meanwhile Joshua , clothed in filthy garments, was stand 
ing before the angel of Yahweh. The filthy garments signify, not 
grief, but iniquity, as the nature of the figure would lead one to 
expect and an explanatory gloss in the next verse expressly teaches. 
The guilt thus symbolised has been supposed to be that of the high 
priest himself as an individual or an official;! but if, as has been 
shown, he here represents the Jewish people, or at least the Judean 
community, the garments he wears must be interpreted as setting 
forth the character and condition of those represented. It is 
therefore safe to conclude that the prophet in this vision intended 
to represent Judah as still, in spite of the penalties endured, guilty 
before God, and so evidently guilty that, as the high priest s silence 

* For the details of the story, see Wright, 51 /. 

t The likeness of the part here taken by the angel of Yahweh to that assigned to Michael 
in Dn. io 13 - 21 i2 l naturally led to their early identification. Cj. Rev. 12 . Of the later com 
mentators Wright has adopted this view. There is, indeed, a relation between the two figures, 
but it is not one of identity; the truth being that Michael represents a later development than 
the angel of Yahweh, and a further differentiation and personification of the powers and 
attributes by which the Deity was brought into a helpful relation with man. Cf. DB., art. 

t The Targum says that Joshua "had sons who took to themselves wives unfit for the priest 

3 - Si 

would suggest, an express accusation was unnecessary and a suc 
cessful defence impossible. What, then, are the function and sig- 
rnificance of the Adversary ? The answer to this question must be 
inferred from the attitude of the angel of Yahweh toward him 
in his relation to Joshua. Now, in v. 2 the angel of Yahweh is 
clearly depicted as the protector of the high priest against the Ad 
versary, an attitude that can best be explained by supposing that 
the function of the latter, in the mind of the prophet, was not to 
prove so much as to recall the iniquity of the former and insist 
upon the infliction of the appropriate penalty. In other words, he 
represents, not, as Marti claims, the doubt and hesitation with ref 
erence to the possibility of the restoration of Judah current among 
the people, but the justice of Yahweh as contrasted with his mercy. 
The reproof of the Adversary by the angel of Yahweh signifies the 
triumph of the milder attribute, that is, that Yahweh has deter 
mined to save his people, because they are his people and their suf 
ferings appeal to his sympathy, by an act of grace in spite of their 
unworthiness. Cf. Ho. n 9 Mi. y 8 f - Is. 43 25ff> . It is from this 
standpoint that the vision becomes, on the one hand, a rebuke to the 
sceptics of Zechariah s day, and, on the other, a solace for those 
who, much as they had suffered and were suffering, as they felt, 
under the divine displeasure, had retained their faith in Yahweh 
and still cherished an ardent hope that he would speedily forgive 
their iniquities and rescue them from destruction. 

4. The angel of Yahweh, having silenced the Adversary, turns 
to those standing before him, not, as Blayney explains, the fol 
lowers of the high priest, but the other members of the heavenly 
train, and commands them to remove from Joshua the filthy gar 
ments, the sign and symbol of the people s unworthiness, and 
clothe him in robes of state befitting his office as the religious head 
and representative of a chosen people. In the Massoretic text 
these two commands are separated by an interpretative passage, 
which, however, as has already been noted, is evidently a gloss. 
It betrays its origin by the disturbance it creates in the order of 
thought. The interpolated statement, See, I have caused thy in 
iquity to pass from thee, may have been intended to mean that the 
iniquity was personal. This is the opinion represented by the 


Targum, which substitutes for a translation of the Hebrew original 
a command to the attendants to direct Joshua to "bring forth the 
wives unfit for the priesthood," that is, unfit to be the wives of 
priests, "from his house." This interpretation seems to have been 
suggested by Ezr. io 18 ff> , but, if it is correct, since the passage thus 
paraphrased is a gloss, it only shows how greatly Zechariah was 
misunderstood. 5. The angel of Yahweh finally commands his 
attendants to put a clean turban on his head. In v. 3 , where the 
appearance of Joshua is described, there was no reference to a 
turban, but the use of the word clean here shows that the prophet 
did not intend to represent him as without a head-dress. The one 
named,* which is mentioned only five times in the Old Testament, 
was worn, not only by priests, but by other persons of rank or 
wealth, women as well as men. Cf. Is. 3 23 62 3 . In Exodus the 
head-dress of the high priest, which, since it had a related name,f 
must have been of a similar form, is described as made of fine 
linen and ornamented with an inscribed plate of gold. Cf. Ex. 
39 28 - 30 f -. The rest of the verse describes the fulfilment of the 
last two commands. In the Massoretic text the order of fulfil 
ment is the reverse of that in which the commands were given; but 
in the Greek it is the same, and it is more than probable that Zech 
ariah wrote that they clothed him in goodly garments and put a clean 
turban upon his head. The adjective goodly is not in the text, but it 
is required to distinguish the garments now put upon the priest 
from those that had been removed, and may therefore properly be 
supplied. It is to be noted that there is nothing to indicate that the 
garments in which Joshua has been arrayed are official robes, as 
Drusius and others have held. The emphasis is all on the fact that 
they are clean, and, as such, signify that Yahweh has for his own 
sake, "independently of any sacrifice or offering whatever" (Ston- 
ard), at last blotted out all the transgressions of his people. The 
account of the ceremony might have ended with the words last 
quoted; but the prophet, for the purpose of giving the scene a more 
vivid reality, adds that, while the attendants were reclothing 
Joshua, the angel of Yahweh stood by to see that his commands 
were obeyed. Cf. Gn. i8 8 Ju. i3 20 . 

t njyxo. 

1. >JK-VI] Add, with <g B, mm, as in i 20 2 3 . It will then be im 
possible to make the mistake of supposing, as Blayney, Henderson and 
others have done, that the subject of the verb is the interpreter. The in 
terpreter explained, but he did not produce, visions. uofrS] On the vocal 
isation (*), cf. Ges. % R - . 2. mmi] Rd., with 0, mm isSc. So 
We., Now., Marti, Kit. 3. x\ jruMrm] A circumstantial clause. Cf. 
Ges. " 2 - l <*> R - . IxScn] Rd., with <<2 &, nin> IN^D. 4. jr 1 ] * 
adds, for the sake of definiteness, \^]L*c. -pi;* IDN- I] A good reason 
for suspecting the genuineness of these words has already been given in 
the comments. The truth is that they disturb the connection of thought 
to such a degree that the situation can easily be made to appear ridiculous; 
for Joshua is left standing unclothed, not only while the angel of Yahweh 
makes this explanation, but until the prophet himself has suggested the 
addition of a turban to his new apparel. Omit this passage, and the 
rest of the verse can easily be brought into harmony with itself and the 
context. The final clause, which has been adapted to the gloss, must 
still be emended, for it also, as appears from v. 5 , was originally ad 
dressed to the attendants. This can easily be done with the help of <&, 
which reads, Kai tv8v<raTe avrbv, i. ., inx iiT oSm. So also 1C. Most 
mss. of (& om. T^ D i but L has air& <rou. It is interesting, as throwing 
light upon the origin of glosses like the one here found, to note that (& Ald - 
and a few curss. have expanded this one into a parallelism: 

ras dvofj.ias <rov, 
xal TOS d/xoprfaj ffov 

Van H. removes it from its present position to the end of v. 5 . 5. into] 
H & have the 3 p.; but <& more correctly om., commencing the verse 
with Kai tirL0eT, i. e., not ID^I, but iD in, without doubt the original 
reading. So also U. The removal of "TONI, a corruption of IDN>I, which 
was inserted to bring the discourse back to the direction of the attend 
ants, makes the following clause, emended as above, a continuation of 
v. 4 , to which it should be attached. -onto] We. regards the word as 
superfluous; but the omission of it would affect the meaning of the vision, 
reducing the emphasis on the previous impurity of the high priest. 
OHJ3 wfrM] The order of fulfilment, as here described, is unnatural 
as well as inconsistent with that of the commands given. In (8 A Q the ar 
rangement is reversed, and the excellence of the Greek readings through 
out this paragraph speaks strongly for this one. D^JJ] Add, with &, 
0013, or, with We., omn3. -ID?] We., et aL, point this word as a pf. 
and connect the whole clause to which it belongs with v. 6 . This method 
of disposing of the clause, however, is certainly mistaken, (i) The vb. 
ID? is very rare in the sense of auftreten, which these scholars give to it. 
Cf. BDB. (2) The thought that they find in the sentence, if this verb 
were employed, would have been expressed by nirv *]xSn icri. (3) If, 


however, for the sake of emphasis Zc. had adopted the present arrange 
ment, he would hardly have repeated the subject which We. and Now. 
suppress in the following sentence. (4) 8> (5 have the participial con 
struction. (5) It is a common one, and there are several cases with the 
prtc. of ID?. Cf. Gn. i8 22 i K. 8 14 i3 24 . Of these objections (2) and 
(5) hold against van H., who attaches v. 4ba to the end of this verse. 
See above. 

(V) The charge (vv. 6 - 10 ). The angel of Yahweh, addressing 
Joshua, promises him personally, on condition of loyalty, an ex 
alted position, and his people forgiveness and prosperity. 

6. The symbolical ceremony completed, the angel of Yahweh 
turns to Joshua and speaks to him for the first time. The prophet 
says he charged him, that is, addressed him in the solemn manner 
and language befitting the occasion. Cf. Dt. 8 19 , etc. This ex 
pression in itself would lead one to expect an utterance having a 
personal rather than a symbolical significance. 7. This expecta 
tion is fulfilled. It does not, however, at first appear that the lan 
guage used has a personal application. The first condition, for 
example, ifthou go in my ways, is one that might be required of any 
Jew, and therefore of the whole people. Nor is the second, ifthou 
keep my charge, really more explicit; for, although the word charge 
oftenest denotes the office or function of the priest, it is also used in 
the sense of a behest laid upon others by the Deity (Gn. 26 5 Nu. 
9 19 - 23 LV. i8 30 , etc.), and the relation between the two conditions 
requires that it should have the latter meaning in the present in 
stance. There is thus far, then, no certain indication that Joshua 
has ceased to be a symbolical figure and resumed his personal char 
acter. The conclusion, however, removes all uncertainty, for the 
promise it contains is one personal to him as the high priest. If he 
is loyal to Yahweh, the God of his fathers, and careful to obey all 
the divine precepts, this is his reward: thou shall rule my house and 
keep my courts. The house, of course, is the temple, now being 
rebuilt, and the courts the enclosures by which, when completed, 
it will be surrounded. The declaration here made, therefore, 
amounts to a charter granting to Joshua and his successors a sole 
and complete control in matters of religion never before enjoyed by 
the head of the hierarchy at Jerusalem. Cf. i K. 2 27 2 K. i6 loff - 

3 - 155 

22 3ff -; Benz., Arch., 410. In fact, it is an advance upon the pro 
gram of Ezekiel (45) in the direction of the priestly legislation of 
the Pentateuch.* It should be noted, however, that the high 
priest s jurisdiction is here confined to the temple and its precincts. 
To this grant of authority is added another promise of great sig 
nificance to the community. The passage has been variously un 
derstood. In the great versions it is rendered as if it referred to 
descendants of the high priest.f It has also been interpreted as a 
promise that Joshua himself shall be given angelic guides to direct 
and defend himj or messengers to keep him in communication with 
heaven. There are, however, reasons, which will appear, why 
all these interpretations must be rejected and the clause be trans 
lated / will give thee access among those that stand here. But who 
are the persons meant ? and when shall the high priest enjoy access 
among them? The first question seems to be answered by v. 4 , 
where, as has been shown, angels are intended. In reply to the 
second it has been taught that the prophet here has in mind the 
future life.** Zechariah, however, nowhere else presents any such 
motive for faithfulness. Hence the chances are that, as most mod- 
ern exegetes agree, in this case it is the privilege of direct and im 
mediate communion with Yahweh with which he is dealing. This 
is a privilege not granted all men (Je. 3O 21 ), but it may fitly be ac 
corded to a faithful high priest. It is also one that has great sig 
nificance for the community, as will appear later in the paragraph. 
Cf. v. 9 . 8. At this point the prophet returns to the symbolic 
method. Yahweh, addressing the high priest, says Thou and thy 
fellows that sit before thee are men of omen. There can be no doubt 
that the persons here called the fellows, or companions, of Joshua 
are his associates in the priesthood. The only question is whether 
Zechariah thought of them as present in his vision. It has some 
times been answered in the afnrmative,ff but the description given 
is certainly calculated to produce the impression that the high 

* Cf. Ex. 28^ f- Nu. 2718 *; Benz., Arch., 318 /., 422 /.; WRS. OTJC2 -, 445 /. 

t Thus <&, I will give thee those moving among them that stand by ; which Theod. Mops. 
explains as meaning that Yahweh will permit Joshua to transmit the honour conferred upon 
him to successors. Similarly H &. 

t So Cyr., Lu., Grot., Ston., Hd., et al. Baumgarten. 

** So QI, Ra., Ki., Pern., Dru., Marck, Lowth, Pu., el al. 

tt So Lowth, Hi., Ew., Brd., van H., et al. 


priest is a solitary and peculiarly pathetic figure. His associates 
are mentioned here because they are a part of the priesthood which 
he primarily represents. On the expression sit before, see 2 K. 6 1 . 
The description of the priests as men of omen recalls a saying of 
Isaiah, "I and the children that Yahweh hath given me are signs 
and tokens in Israel." Now, Isaiah in this passage doubtless re 
ferred to the names he and his children bore, and their significance. 
There is no means of learning the names of Joshua s friends. 
Some, if not many, of them must have had names expressive of 
faith in God and hope for their people. That of the high priest 
himself, according to the current interpretation of it, Yahweh is 
help, was practically the equivalent of Isaiah; a fact which in 
itself was sufficient to suggest to Zechariah an imitation of his great 
predecessor.* In any case, the idea seems to be that these men, the 
priests as a class, are prophetic of good to the community they are 
serving. This thought was not developed as it might have been 
by Zechariah. A reader of a later time, feeling that it was incom 
plete, and not taking pains to examine the context, to see if he under 
stood the drift of the passage, added, as a gloss, for (or that) I will 
bring my servant Shoot. ,f This is Marti s explanation of the ap 
pearance of the Shoot in this connection; and there are good rea 
sons for accepting it. In the first place, as Marti says, for Zecha 
riah the Shoot is Zerubbabel. This, as will appear, was the original 
teaching of 6 12 , which has been recast to make it a prediction of the 
elevation of Joshua. But Zerubbabel was already in Jerusalem; 
had, in fact, for two months been actively engaged in the restora 
tion of the temple. It was therefore impossible for Zechariah to 
speak of him as yet to be brought thither by Yahweh. Indeed, 
and this is a second point, there is no place for him in this con 
nection. The prophet is here dealing with the priesthood and its 
significance. The Shoot represents political power and glory. 
Cf. 6 13 . 9. The omission of the disturbing clause leaves Joshua 
in the centre of the scene. To him Yahweh now directs especial 
attention. Lo, he says, the stone that I have delivered to Joshua. 

* C]. also Ez. i2 6 - 242*- . 

t The word nDS, here translated Shoot, is incorrectly rendered ifaroArJ in (6, and orlens in 
IB; whence the "Day-spring" of Lu. i 78 . 


The opinions with reference to this stone have been many and vari 
ous. It has been interpreted as meaning material for the new 
temple,* the corner-stonef or the topstonej of the edifice, the plum 
met of 4 10 , a precious stone for the prince,** or a number of such 
stones for the high priest, ft To tne nrst four of tnese interpreta 
tions there is the common objection that, according to 4 7 - 9 f> , it is 
Zerubbabel, not Joshua, under whose direction the temple is to be 
erected, and that therefore it would be inconsistent for Zechariah 
to represent Joshua as receiving material for the structure or a 
plummet by which to build it. In considering the second and the 
third it should also be remembered that the corner-stone had al 
ready been laid, and the topstone was not to be put into place until 
a long time after the date of this vision. An additional objection 
to the fourth is that the stone in question is to be engraved. The 
key to the prophet s meaning seems to be in the parenthetical clause 
rendered in AV. upon one stone shall be (RV. are) seven eyes. But 
the "eye" of a stone, according to Ez. i 16 - 22 , is the gleam from it, 
and, since a gleam can only come from a precious stone, and seven 
gleams from as many facets of such a stone, the stone in question 
must have been a single stone with seven facets. This is the in 
terpretation proposed by Wellhausen, but he sees in the stone an 
ornament for Zerubbabel. Cf. 6 10 ff . To the latter feature there 
are strong objections: (i) it destroys the unity of the paragraph ; and 
(2) renders the final clause of this verse unintelligible, there being 
no discoverable connection between the stone, or the name of 
Zerubbabel, which, according to Wellhausen, was to have been en 
graved on it, and the promise, I will remove the iniquity of that land. 
It is much better to regard the stone as an ornament for the cos 
tume of the high priest, for the following reasons: (i) The para 
graph thus acquires the desired and expected unity. (2) The next 
clause, / will grave its inscription, becomes especially significant. 
The word rendered grave\\ is used almost exclusively of engraving 
on precious stones. In Ex. 28, where the costume of the high 

* So Stab., Lowe. 

t So Ra., Ki., Marck, Ston., Thei., Rosenm., Hi., Pres., Hd.,, Wri., el al. 

J Lowth, Mau., Ew., Burger, Stei., Per., Marti, et al. 

AE., Ki. (alt.), Grot. ** We., Now. ft Bredenkamp. 

it nno. 


priest is described, mention is made of no fewer than fourteen en 
graved stones, two for the shoulders (v. 9 ), and twelve for the 
breastplate (v. 21 ), of the ephod. Now, while it would be unsafe 
to claim that this chapter describes the ornamentation of the ephod 
before the Exile, there seems to be reason for supposing that it is 
reliable so far as the character of the ornamentation of the cos 
tume of the chief priest is concerned; in other words, that the head 
of the priesthood then and afterward actually wore an engraved 
stone (or stones) on his vestments. (3) The promise already 
quoted becomes intelligible. On this point, also, the descrip 
tion of Ex. 28 is helpful. In v. 36 of that chapter Moses is directed 
to "make a plate of pure gold, and grave upon it ... Holy to 
Yahweh." There follows (v. 38 ) an explanation in which Yahweh 
says that Aaron shall wear this plate on his forehead in token that 
he bears "the iniquity of the holy things" offered by his people, 
"that they (the people) may be accepted before Yahweh." Here, 
again, it would doubtless be too much to say that the law attrib 
uted to Moses reflects the practice even of the time of Zechariah ; 
the plate of gold seems to forbid such an assumption ; but, if 
this law, like others in the Pentateuch, is the outcome of the devel 
opment of the Hebrew ritual, one must suppose that at that date 
the idea embodied in the law had found more or less adequate ex 
pression, and admit the possibility that it is the idea of Zechariah 
in the passage now under consideration. 

Sellin (Stud., ii, 78 jf.) cites as a parallel to this vision the record of the in 
stallation of a priest of Nebo at Borsippa. It is found in a black stone tablet, 
6x83 in. in dimensions, containing an inscription of a hundred lines. This 
inscription is to the effect that the goddess Nana and the god Ae have, in their 
good pleasure, inducted Nabu-mutakkil, son of Aplu-etir, into the sanctuary 
of Nebo at Borsippa, and granted him a share in the revenues of the temple 
of Ezida, and, "that the appointment may not be contested, have sealed the 
same and delivered it to him forever." Sellin further reports that there are 
engraved on the tablet the figures of the gods who protect the same from vio 
lation, and, among these pictures, "in the middle of the narrow upper edge, the 
seven eyes, evidently a representation of the seven planets, including the moon 
and the sun." He concludes that in this tablet "we ourselves have a stone 
with seven eyes similar to that which Zechariah in the vision saw delivered to 
Joshua." The tablet is published in Mittheilungen der deutschen Orient-Gesell- 
schafl, Jan.-Mar., 1900. There can be little doubt that the figures described 
were intended to represent seven heavenly bodies, but they are not in the shape 
of eyes, the first being plainly a circle and the third a star inscribed in a circle. 

3- 159 

It is hardly safe, therefore, to identify them with the eyes Zechariah had in 
mind, especially since, as the next clause implies, the stone in question was yet 
to be engraved. 

On the supposition that the stone delivered to Joshua was in 
tended for the ornamentation of his official costume, there are one 
or two other points that should be mentioned. In the first place, 
the inscription on the stone would hardly be the name of either of 
the Jewish leaders, but the name of Yahweh, or the "Holy to 
Yahweh" of later times, or something similarly appropriate. 
Note, however, secondly, that, while the stone has been provided, 
it seems, when delivered, not to have been engraved; which prob 
ably means that, although Joshua is the chosen head of the relig 
ious establishment at Jerusalem, he has not entered into complete 
possession of his office, for the reason that there is as yet no temple 
to Yahweh. Meanwhile, and this would be a strong argument 
for the speedy completion of the sanctuary, the land was still suf 
fering for its iniquity. Cf. Hg. i 9 2 14 . When the temple is fin 
ished the curse can, and will, be removed in one day. 10. The 
iniquity of the land is, of course, the iniquity of the people who in 
habit it, inherited in part from their fathers and augmented by 
their own neglect of the obvious duty of rebuilding the temple, on 
account of which the land was cursed with drought and unfruit- 
fulness. Cf. 8 10 . When the people, in response to the appeal of 
Haggai, laid the foundation of the new structure, he promised them 
the favour of Yahweh. Cf. Hg. 2 19 . Zechariah repeats this 
promise in 8 11 f -. He could not, however, guarantee the entire 
removal of their guilt until the sanctuary was completed. On that 
day, that is, from that day onward, they may expect the continu 
ous blessing of Yahweh. The Hebrews pictured this happy con 
dition as one in which every one would sit "under his own vine 
and fig tree." Cf. i K. 4 25 Mi. 4*. Zechariah enlarges the figure 
by adding a touch which shows that, as will later become more 
apparent, he was as much interested in the social as in the eco 
nomic condition of the community. In the good time coming he 
says his people will invite every one his neighbour under the vine 
and under the fig tree. This idyllic condition is more fully de 
scribed in ch. 8. 


A good example of the method used by the older commentators is seen in 
Stonard s note on this verse, in which he finds an intimation of "the strenu 
ous endeavours of the apostles and other primitive Christians to convert the 
heathen world. . . . They are here figured, while resting in the tranquillity 
and plenteousness of evangelical peace and blessing, as calling to all the way 
faring men who needed such refreshment in the journey through life to par 
take with them in their ease and comfort in the meat and drink that endure 
unto everlasting life." 

7. nijox] & A om. The accentuation requires that the apodosis of 
the conditional sentence begin with TTJI. This is in harmony with the 
Jewish interpretation of the verse, according to which the final clause is a 
promise for the future life. So Ki.; also Or., who, since he does not fol 
low the Jewish interpretation, should, with U g> and most modern exe- 
getes, place the main pause after the first ~cc ; r. 01 divides the verse 
after vn-o and reads DJI as if it were DNI, thus wresting asunder two par 
allel clauses and making a second conditional sentence. o^Snc] Those 
who render the word concretely explain it as an Aramaised form of the 
prtc. Hiph. So Bo. * 1013 - b ; Ko. " I6 . If, however, the prophet had 
wished to use the causative of "|?n, he would naturally have employed 
the regular form here, as he does in 5 10 ; and if he had sought an intran 
sitive form, he would have found the Pi. or the Hithp. ready to his hand. 
Cf. EC. 4 15 , etc. Ols. % 208a derives the word from a supposed noun 7]VnE. 
So, also, Ew., Koh., Wri., Lowe, et al. This conjecture takes for granted 
the correctness of the vocalisation. If that be ignored, there is no diffi 
culty in connecting the given form with T^-!!? which actually occurs in 
the required sense. Cf. Jon. 3 s f - Ez. 42^. The pi., however, would be 
D^Snp. So Sta. % 285 - ; Ges. \ ** * R - 5 . So, also, Marck, Houb., Hi., 
Klie., Pres., Brd., We., Now., Marti, Kit., et al. 8. The accentuation 
would require that nnx and T>n be construed as vocatives, and the fol 
lowing o seems to reinforce this requirement. So <& H & QL Since, 
however, as has been shown, there is no ground for supposing the prophet 
to have thought of Joshua as accompanied by other priests, "o is prob 
ably a dittog., and "p>ni nnx are pendent subjects and the antecedents of 
nnn. This pronoun should properly be in the 2d pers., and & has this 
reading, but the use of the third for the second is sufficiently attested to 
warrant its retention in this instance. Cf. Mi. i 2 3 9 , but especially Zp. 
2 2 ; K6. 338g.h ; Dr. \ *- Obs - 2 . rrax ^]. On the genuineness of 
this clause, see the comments. It is interesting, in view of the rendering 
given to rrax in (& OH H &, that the root from which it comes in Syr. means 
shine. (2 simply substitutes Nrvtfo. On the accentuation of the word, 
see Ges. $ 29 - 4 < a > R -. 9. The accentuation makes v. a a compound nom 
inal sentence, and it has oftenest been so treated. So the Vrss., Dru., 
de D , Marck, Hd., Koh., Wri., et al. If, however, the seven eyes are 
seven facets, as above argued, the mention of them is of so little impor- 

4 l-6aa. lOb-14 l6l 

tance in comparison with the announcement that follows, that it should be 
thrown into a parenthesis. So New., Ew., Ke., Pres., Or., We., Now., 
Marti, et al. The absence of the connective before ->jjn favours this 
arrangement. uwy] The du. for the pi. Cf. Ges. * 88 - 2 - R - On the 
gender, see Ges. 122 - 3 - ^ c) . Here it seems to be masc.; also 4 . 
^n^Di] <&, Kal i^TjXa^Tjcrw, &, >j^aiojo, as if from E E D, touch, examine. 
p>] (& prefixes iraaav = *?D. nrw] &, 001 = inn. 10. N inn ova] 
This expression seems to Marti to betray a late hand ; but it was common 
in the literature with which Zechariah was familiar. Cf. Is. 4 1 Je. 4 9 
Ez. 24". Moreover, it introduces a description of the good time fore 
seen entirely in accord with ideas of Zechariah. Cf. 8 12 . 

(2) THE SYMBOLICAL CANDELABRUM (4 1 6aa lob 14 ). 

The fourth chapter, in its present arrangement, does not admit 
of analysis, but, if vv. 6a ^- 10 - 12 be removed, there remains a simple 
and coherent account of the fifth of Zechariah s visions. In it he 
sees a lamp with seven lights, flanked by two olive trees, and re 
ceives from his attendant an interpretation of the things thus pre 

1. The prophet gives his readers to understand that there was an 
interval between the fourth vision and the one about to be de 
scribed, during which he fell into a state of unconsciousness to his 
surroundings. This seems to have been the case, also, to some 
extent, after each of the first three visions; for, it will be remem 
bered, he had to concentrate his attention upon, or have it directed 
toward, each new vision. Cf. 2 1 - 3 - 5 3*. The terms here used 
confirm one in such an inference. Then, he says, the angel that 
was speaking with me again (lit., returned and) roused me, that is, 
for a second, if not for a fourth time. Not that he was asleep, as 
Aben Ezra and others explain; the comparison he employs, like a 
man that is roused from sleep, forbids such an interpretation. Per 
haps he would have said that he had fallen into a reverie over the 
things previously revealed. Be that as it may, he was thoroughly 
alert, as his questions are calculated to show, when the interpreter 
addressed him. 2. In the preceding visions the prophet, when he 
has spoken at all, has opened the conversation. This time the 
interpreter is represented as stimulating his curiosity by asking, 


What seest thou? In reply the prophet describes a lamp, or, more 
precisely, a candelabrum. It is all gold and has a bowl for oil at 
its top, that is, at the top of the upright shaft that supports the whole 
structure. There are seven lights on it. The prophet does not 
say how these lights are arranged, but it is clear that they could 
not have been placed in a single row, like those of the candelabrum 
described in Ex. 25 31 ff> , without crowding the bowl out of position.* 
The simplest and most natural arrangement would be that in a 
circle about the bowl, on arms of equal length branching at regu 
lar intervals from the central shaft, and this is probably the one 
that the prophet had in mind, since he seems to have thought of 
the lamp as shedding its rays, not, like that of the tabernacle, in 
only one direction, but toward all the points of the compass. Cf. 
v. lob Ex. 40 24 . The lights themselves must have been very simple, 
small, shallow vessels of the shell shape still seen in Palestine, with 
a more or less developed lip at the narrower, outer end, from which 
the wick projected. The lights of the candelabrum of the taber 
nacle were individual receptacles for the oil they burned. The 
one that Zechariah saw had seven pipes for the bowl at its top, by 
which this reservoir was connected with the seven encircling lights, 
and these pipes were independent of the arms on which the lights 
were supported. 3. Finally, there were two olive trees by it, not, 
as in the Massoretic text, by the bowl, for the purpose of supplying 
it with oil, as the later author who inserted v. 12 also teaches, 
an interpretation forbidden by vv. lob - 14 , but, as in v. n , by the 
candelabrum, one on the right of the lamp, and one on the left of it. 
It does not appear whether these trees, also, were made of gold or 
not. In any case, they were probably but diminutive images of 
the things they were intended to represent; for it would not have 
done to make them overtop the candelabrum, as they do in Wright s 
picture. Cf. v. 14 . 

4. The vision, as just explained, makes a simple and intelligible 
picture. The object of the prophet, however, was not to enter 
tain, but to instruct. Hence he represents himself as saying to the 
interpreter, Sir, what are these ? not the olive trees only, but the 
various features of the vision. What do they mean? 5. Hith- 

* See Wright, who places the bowl on an arm extending backward from the top of the shaft. 

4 l-Ca. 10b-14 l63 

erto the interpreter has always responded at once to the prophet s 
desire for information. This time he delays his answer, thus in 
creasing the suspense, by himself asking a question which perhaps 
implies that the prophet should have been able to discover the 
meaning of the vision without assistance, Knowest thou not what 
these are? But the prophet protests his ignorance. 6 aa . Then 
he, the interpreter, answered and said. These words should in 
troduce the explanation desired by the prophet. What follows 
is not such an explanation. In fact, it has no apparent connection 
with the vision, but is a more direct and explicit message on a dif 
ferent subject, received under entirely different conditions. On 
the first point note the expression, "the word of Yahweh came to 
me," in v. 8 , which is regularly used to introduce messages outside 
the visions. Cf. 6 9 f 8 1 - 18 . On the second observe that, while 
this vision was evidently intended to strengthen the hands of both 
the governor and the high priest, in vv. 6a ^- 10a the former com 
pletely eclipses the latter. On the omitted verses, see pp. 190 ff. 
lOb. The reply of the interpreter is not lost. It is contained, as 
was suggested at the beginning of the chapter, in the latter half of 
this verse in the words, These seven are the eyes of Yahweh wan 
dering through the earth. The seven to which the interpreter re 
fers are, of course, the seven lights on the candelabrum. They take 
the place of the horsemen on " horses bay, chestnut and white" 
"sent to traverse the earth," that appear in the first vision, i 8ff> , 
symbolising, like them, the omniscience of Yahweh. Philo (Who 
is the heir of divine things? xlv.) and Josephus (Ant., iii, 6, 7; 7, 7; 
Wars, v, 5, 5) saw in the lights of the candelabrum in the temple 
symbols of the planets, including the sun and the moon. Gunkel 
and others adopt this view, finding here another instance of the 
same symbolism and in both evidence of the dependence of the 
Hebrews on the Babylonians.* The difference between them, 
they say, reflects a variation, otherwise well attested, in the rank 
of the planets in the Babylonian system ; the sun sometimes being 
placed in the middle, and sometimes at the beginning, of the list.f 
Now, it may well be that the candelabrum with seven branches 
had its origin as a symbolical representation of the planets in Baby- 

* Gunkel, Schopjung und Chaos, 130. t Ibid., 127. 


Ionia, the fact that it did not appear among the Hebrews until 
after the Exile* seems to favour that opinion; but it does not by 
any means follow that, when they borrowed it, they adopted with it 
the ideas that it had previously represented. A hint of the con 
trary may be found in the place they gave it in the temple, among 
the furniture of the ante-chamber of their Deity. Cf. Ex. 4o 22ff> . 
Note, also, that Zechariah s candelabrum represents, not a multi 
ple subject, but a single personality in the manifold exercise of one 
of his attributes. It is therefore probable that, if the prophet was 
conscious of using a symbol for the planets, he thought of them as 
objects or powers subordinate to, and dependent on, Yahweh, 
the God of Gods. He certainly gives no hint of their rank as re 
lated to one another, for, as has been shown, he must have thought 
of the lights as forming, not, as Gunkel seems to suppose, a single 
line, but a circle about the main shaft. 

11. The interpreter has thus far confined himself to the candela 
brum. The olive trees on either side of it remain to be explained. 
The prophet therefore asks, What are these two olive trees on the 
right of the lamp and on the left? 12. A reply should follow at 
once, as in the case of the first question, even if the desired in 
formation be delayed. In its place the Massoretic text has a sec 
ond question by the prophet containing elements not in the de 
scription of vv. 2f -. In the first place, there are two branches of 
the olive trees to which special attention is directed. The intro 
duction of this detail, in itself, is enough to excite suspicion with 
reference to the genuineness of the passage. This suspicion is 
confirmed by the evident divergence in thought between it and 
the context. The interpolation seems to have been suggested by 
a mistake concerning the olive trees. In v. 14 they are called "sons 
of oil." The author of this verse, either ignoring the prophet s 
own explanation, or misunderstanding it, apparently took these 
trees for the sources of the oil for the lights of the candelabrum. 
Then, seeing that there was no connection between them and the 
lamp, he remedied this supposed oversight by describing two 
branches, one from each of the trees, as held by, lit., in the hand of, 

* In Solomon s temple the Holy Place was lighted by ten separate a*nd independent lamps. 
Cf. i K. 7 

4 l-6aa. 10b-14 l65 

the two golden spouts that discharge into the golden bowl. The re 
sult is a completely automatic contrivance which probably seemed 
to the glossator a great improvement on the original, but which, as 
will appear, really reverses the thought that Zechariah intended 
to illustrate. 13. This verse is the proper and natural continua 
tion of v. n , corresponding, except in the introductory clause, to 
v. 5 . On the text, see the critical notes. 14. The prophet hav 
ing again protested his ignorance, the interpreter proceeds to ex 
plain the significance of the two olive trees. These trees, then, 
are symbolical, as well as the lamp. The interpreter says, literally, 
that they are sons of oil. This expression belongs to a class of 
orientalisms frequent in the Bible. See "son of might," i K. i4 52 , 
"sons of tumult," Je. 48 45 , etc. In these cases the person or thing 
in question is conceived as an example of the state or quality de 
noted by the dependent noun, the "son of might" being simply a 
mighty man, etc. In Is. 5 1 a hill is called a "son of fatness," 
doubtless because it was peculiarly fertile. The phrase sons of 
oil, therefore, would naturally mean producers of oil; but a He 
brew could use it of any thing or person with which or whom oil 
was associated in his mind. In this case it refers to persons con 
secrated, as kings and priests were among the Hebrews, to the exe 
cution of high functions by being anointed with oil. The inter 
preter does not tell Zechariah who these two anointed ones are, 
but the prophet had no difficulty in identifying them. Nor has the 
modern reader. The fact that there are two immediately sug 
gests the names of Zerubbabel, the hereditary prince, and Joshua, 
the hereditary high priest, both of whom had been, or were to be, 
anointed for their offices.* The descriptive clause, also, fits them, 
for in 3 7 , it will be remembered, Joshua was promised access to 
the immediate presence of Yahweh, and certainly Zechariah did 
not regard Zerubabbel as any less worthy of the divine favour. 
Cf. vv. 7 - 9 Hg. 2 23 . The olive trees, then, symbolise the associated 
leaders, and their position on either side of the lamp with its seven 
lights means that they enjoy the special favour, protection and 

* Mention should be made of the interpretation adopted by Baumgarten and a few others, 
according to which these two sons of oil are the prophets Haggai and Zechariah, since it ap 
pears to be the basis of the allusion to the olive trees in Rev. n 3ff -. 


assistance of Yahweh, to whom is here ascribed omnipotence as 
well as omniscience. The effect of such teaching can easily be 
imagined. It must have greatly encouraged the leaders themselves 
and greatly increased their influence with their followers, thus 
doubly affecting the enterprise then in progress, the restoration of 
the national sanctuary. 

1. 2w ; M] On the adverbial use of this vb., see Ges. ^ 12 - 2 <<*>. 2. lONn] 
So <8 A Q. An evident mistake. Qr., with a multitude of mss., -icxi. So 
(& NBI B j$ <H. mun] The constr. before a dependent nominal sentence. 
Cf. Ges. * 13 ). nS/j This form has been derived from a hypothetical Sj 
= n ?j. So Ki., Mau., Ke., Hd., et al.; but, since Sj does not occur, and 
rhi does, not only in v. 3 , but in EC. i2 6 , it is more than probable that a 
form of the latter was intended. The fact that {& & neglect the sf., which, 
moreover, is not essential, favours the conjecture that the original read 
ing was nSa. So Ew., We., Now., Marti, Kit., et al. Cf. Ges. * 91 1- R - 2 . 
On the other hand it should be noted that, while to the occidental ear 
the sf. sounds superfluous, the Hebrews, as a precisely similar passage 
(Ex. 25 31 ff -) teaches, preferred to use it. It is therefore better, with 
B Sf, to follow the Massoretic tradition that the prophet meant to say 
its bowl, but there is no reason for perpetuating the reading n^J, which 
is probably a scribal error for nnVa. The adoption of the reading just 
suggested requires the retention of the sf. of rpm~u, which is reproduced 
in H , but neglected by <g & and therefore omitted by modern critics. 
So We., Now., Marti, Kit. It requires, also, that rnpxic be made defi 
nite, i. e., that rnpxiD npairi be changed to nipxinn J73iri in accord 
ance with the law for numerals. Cf. Ges. " . Thus far no essential 
change has been made in the text, but now it becomes necessary to do 
something with nyair 2 . This word has caused "great searchings of 
heart" among the commentators. Thus Koh. renders nyzvi 7\ysv four 
teen and explains this number as meaning that the lights were connected 
with the reservoir by seven of the pipes, one for each, and with one an 
other by the other seven. This interpretation is rejected by Ke., who 
shows that, in 2 S. 2i 20 = i Ch. 2o 6 , on which it is based, the numerals 
should be taken distributively. Ston. cites in support of it i K. 8 65 , 
where, however, as appears from (, and indeed from v. 66 , the words 
"and seven days, even fourteen days," are an addition to the original 
text. Ke. says that a lamp constructed on Koh. s plan would be u a 
wonderful and useless contrivance," but what should be said of one with 
seven pipes from the central reservoir to each of the surrounding lights, 
as required by the critic s own exegesis? Yet this interpretation is 
adopted by Ra., Ki., Mau., Klie., Pu., Lowe, et al., and followed in RV. 

4 l-taa. 10b-14 j^ 

To avoid it Hi. omits npatf 1 , and makes npatf* a predicate adj. after 
rvmj. So Wellhausen. This is, in itself, a permissible construction, 
but it is doubtful whether the prophet, if he meant to say what Hi. at 
tributes to him, would have brought the numerals in the two clauses into 
so ambiguous proximity. This objection applies also to the view of Pres. , 
that nyzv 2 is but an emphatic repetition of npatf 1 . A better method of 
emendation, and one by which such objections can be avoided, is, with 
(& H, to omit the second njn;?, leaving the first and third as attributives 
before their respective nouns. So Rib., AV., Dathe, Houb., Ew., Hd., 
Or., Reu., Now., Marti, Kit., van H., et al. New., following (gcomp. 
&, would insert the numeral before nru; but this is forbidden, since 
nruS, if the relative clause that follows is genuine, is an error for rhh. 
van H. inserts nVjn je after nruS. 3. nSjn pB cj This can hardly be the 
original reading, which must have been either munn pc D or simply 
WD^D. The change was probably made when v. 12 was inserted. 4. 
IJJNI] On the form, see Ges. ^ 49< 2 ( & ); 75 - 6 - R - 3 (e) . (&, Kal eTrrjp^Tijffa. 
= SKEW. 5. ^N] <& A om.; <8 NB Q add \y<av. nsn] Cf. i 9 . 6aa. 
jyi] & om. icxS] & om. 6a/3-10a. The view that these verses are 
foreign to this connection, suggested by We., is adopted by Now., Marti, 
GASm., Sellin, Kit. All agree that the passage is from the hand of Zecha- 
riah, but Smith thinks it is somewhat earlier, Sellin that it is somewhat 
later, than the context. For details concerning the text, see pp. 193 /. 
lOb. The punctuation of Itt makes nSx npatf the subject of vicfri 
lioi, leaving the first clause of the verse without a proper apodosis. 
This division is rejected, not only by < H &, but by and the leading 
Jewish commentators, who connect these words with what follows. So, 
also, Cal., Grot., Pern., Dathe, Lowth, New., Theiner, Ew., We., Now., 
Marti, et al. D>i2Bic>r:] The change in the punctuation required by the 
sense makes this word an adverbial ace., which does not need the art. 
Cf. Nu. i6 27 i S. 2 18 , etc.; Ges. * l18 - 6 <&>. -rj?] Masc., as in 3 . nvr] 
<S B om. 12. fj?Ni] Cf. v. *. n-w] An editorial device to introduce an 
addition to the text. Titf-no] The v raphe with the silent shewa. Cf. 
Jon. 4";Baer, Notes, 82; Ko. " 207 f oir] Fern., with a masc. termi 
nation, while nnrux is masc., with a fern, termination. D- pno is there 
fore properly construed by <& & with the latter. nnnax] (& tirap- 
WTpi5as=rnpxio: U, rostra; * ^ -v * ~\ 51, pa npDN; but its connection 

"^ *^ 

with lux, pipe, is too obvious to be mistaken. arvn] The favourite in 
terpretation for this word is that it is used by metonymy for jctf , oil. So, 
following the Jewish authorities, Dm., Pern., Marck, Bla., Hi., Ke., 
Pres., Wri., Lowe, Or., GASm., et al. Others take the word literally: 
Klie., e. g., who says, "The lamp itself is represented as arising, develop 
ing and growing, and the gold from which it develops and grows flows to 
it through the spouts," etc. It is only necessary to recall the object of the 
interpolator to perceive that something is wanting and arrive at a pretty 


safe conjecture concerning the words to be supplied. Now, the object 
was to connect the lights with the olive trees, and, since this could only be 
done through the bowl, it is necessary that this receptacle be mentioned. 
The original reading, therefore, seems to have been, not that of {, (oil) 
into the lamps of gold = anrn nnj Sx (fctr), but (oil) into the golden 
bowl = anrn nSj *?N (?C>). Van H. prefers 2 nrn npsi^S ins in. 13. ncxS] 
Om., with (& &, as in v. z . nc] Some (9) mss. add n^n, as in v. 5 . 
14. ncfoi] Add, with 0, Ss as in v. 2 . 

c. The seat of wickedness (5 1 -6 8 ). 

The third and final group, like the first, consists of three visions. 
They have to do with the subject of sin and the purpose of Yahweh 
concerning it. The first is that of 

(l) THE FLYING ROLL (5 1 " 4 ). 

In this vision the prophet sees a flying roll of which he asks the sig 
nificance. Whereupon the interpreter explains to him that it is 
a curse sent forth by Yahweh to exterminate the thief and the per 
jurer from the land. 

1. When, after the usual interval, the prophet again lifted up 
his eyes and looked, he saw a flying roll. It was what is elsewhere 
in the Old Testament called " a roll of a book," or simply a "book." 
Cf. Je. 36 1 ff \ It was open, for in v. 2 the prophet gives, not only 
its width, but its length, presenting, as it passed through the air, 
the appearance of a great sheet of leather. There was writing on 
it, too, otherwise it could hardly have had the meaning attributed 
to it by the interpreter; but whether, like the symbolical book that 
Ezekiel ate, "it was written within and without," there is no means 
of determining. 2. In answer to the usual question, What seest 
thou ? the prophet further describes the roll by giving its apparent 
dimensions; whose length is twenty cubits and its width ten cubits, 
or, roughly speaking, thirty by fifteen feet. These figures are the 
same as those for the area of the porch of Solomon s temple. Cf. 
i K. 6 3 . Hence, some of the commentators, Christian as well as 
Jewish, have supposed that they were intended to recall that 
structure and through it teach an important religious lesson; but, 

S 1 - 4 169 

unfortunately, the most ingenious among them has not been able 
to furnish an interpretation that is sufficiently obvious to commend 
itself to any one but the inventor. It is therefore hardly probable 
that Zechariah had the porch of the temple in mind when he wrote 
this description, or, if he had, that he adopted its dimensions for 
any other reason than that they appealed to him as a sort of stand 
ard for size and proportion. The Holy Place in the tabernacle, 
it will be remembered, had the same dimensions. Cf. Ex. 26* ff> .* 
3. The interpreter, without waiting to be requested so to do, now 
explains to his charge the meaning of the roll. This, he says, is the 
curse that goeth forth. This explanation, as already intimated, is 
intelligible only on the supposition that the roll contained more or 
. less writing. Nor can there be any doubt about the character of 
its contents. Ezekiel (2 10 ) says of the one that appeared to him 
that " there were written therein lamentation, mourning and woe." 
This one, as Zechariah conceived it, was doubtless inscribed with 
a curse, or, it may be, a series of curses. Cf. Dt. 27 15ff> . The 
Hebrews, as appears from Nu. 5 23ff> , attributed the most baleful 
effects to such instrumentalities. f The prophet, taking advantage 
of this superstition, represents the penalty for sin as an inscribed 
curse that executes itself upon the offender, seeking him wherever 
he may be, over the face of the whole land. The mission of the 
curse marks a new departure in the divine administration. Hith 
erto it has apparently been too lenient \for every one that stealeth, 
how long now hath he gone unpunished ? The thief is cited as 
an example, and the one that sweareth falsely as another. These 
two represent the two great classes to one or the other of which 
sinners may be referred, those who have injured their neighbours 
and those who have dishonoured their God. See the two tables of 
the covenant. None of these has in times past received his just 
deserts, and, because sentence was not speedily executed, they have 
all been confirmed in their evil ways. Cf. Ez. 8 11 . 

4. Thus far the interpreter has been speaking in his own person. 
He now introduces an utterance of Yahweh in which is described 

* It is this sacred area, according to Ke., Klie., Brd., Wri., from which the figures were 

t The modern inhabitants of Palestine have the same fear of written curses. Cj. Hanauer, 
Tales Told in Palestine, 138 /., 220. 


the fatal effectiveness of the winged curse. When it comes to the 
house of one of the offenders it shall abide in his house and con 
sume, i. e., until it has consumed, it with its wood and its stones. 
The complete destruction of a house, of course, implies the de 
struction of its inmates. Cf. Am. 3 15 .* 

In the comments on v. 3 it was noted that the mission of the curse 
was a new departure in the divine administration, and the words 
of the prophet were quoted to show that, for one thing, the change 
meant an increase in severity toward sinners. That, however, can 
hardly be the whole of the lesson that the vision was intended to 
teach. A hint of something further is found in the fact that the 
prophet represents the curse, not only as commissioned to destroy, 
but as attacking the sinner in his own house. The doctrine thus, 
suggested is one that, when Zechariah was prophesying, had been 
more or less boldly professed among the Jews for at least a hun 
dred years. There had been a time when they could, and did, 
believe that a family or community might justly be punished for 
the sin of any of its members ;f but later they first doubted, and 
finally repudiated, the doctrine. J The great problem of the Exile 
was the reconciliation of the new view, in its turn, with the facts of 
experience. It was during this period that some one sought to 
comfort his fellow-captives by making a new application of Gn. 
8 21 f . "This," he represents Yahweh as saying, "is like the matter 
of Noah to me; for, as I swore that the water of Noah should not 
again pass over the earth, so I have sworn that I will not (again) 
be wroth with thee or rebuke thee"; that is, again inflict such a 
penalty as the one they were then suffering. The prophet Zech 
ariah seems to have had the same thought. The gist of the teach 
ing of the vision, therefore, is that Yahweh will not again punish 
the Jews as a people by any such universal calamity as the Exile, 
but will henceforth inflict upon each individual sinner the penalty 
for his personal offences. In other words, it is an announcement, 

* The lesson of this vision has a parallel in the story of Glaucus as told by Herodotus (vi, 
86, 3). That story is to the effect that, when Glaucus inquired at the Delphian oracle whether 
he might safely perjure himself to avoid restoring a sum of money that had been placed in his 
keeping, the priestess replied, " Oath hath a nameless son, who, though handless and footless, 
swiftly pursueth until, seizing, he destroyeth a whole race and an entire house." 

t Cf. Jos. 7 s2 ff - 2 S. 2 4 10 ff -, etc. 

J Cf. Je. 3J2 9 Ez. i8i ff - Dt. 24. 

5 1 " 4 J 7! 

so far as the Jews are concerned, of an era of individualism. Com 
pare van Hoonacker, who thinks the vision refers to the past. 

1. 3i^Ni] Cf. 4 1 . & A om. nSjc] <&, here and v. 2 , 
Aq. 6, dt<t>0tpa; ffi, falcem. 2. nap rte] Ace. to K6., M 10c , an object 
clause, a roll flying. nisio] This idiom alternates with that without the 
prep, in P., i K. 6f. and Ch., but it is used elsewhere only here and in Ez. 
40 s. 21 473. i n Ges. $ 134. s. R. 3 for "otherwise" rd. elsewhere. 3. n?n 
HIM] The words are variously rendered by the Vrss., but there is no 
reason for supposing that even (& (ews davdrov) had a text different from 
M. The meaning depends on the force of nro. This vb. has usually 
been regarded as a prophetic pf . and translated will be punished (<g "H, 
Dru., et a/.), cut off (Ki., de D., New., Mau., et a/.), swept away (Pres., 
Or., et al.), purged out (Marck, Hi., Koh., Ke., Pu., Wri., et al.), etc. 
There is, however, no warrant for such a rendering. The word is a Niph. 
from npj, be clear (&, |al), and since to say that the thief and the per 
jurer shall go unpunished (Lu.) would evidently not be the prophet s 
idea, the only alternative is to translate, with Ra., hath gone unpun 
ished. So We., Now., Marti. Houb.rds.opj. If , however, the vb., as 
a proper pf., refers to the past, there is ground for the suspicion that, as 
We. was the first to suggest, n)D3 HTD is a corruption of nps HTD, or 
better, the no? m, already how long, of 7 3 . So Now., Marti, Kit.-r 
patfjn] Since, according to the Law it was not a sin to swear (Gn. 22 16 
Dt. io 20 ), but only to swear by other gods than Yahweh, or by him to a 
falsehood (Dt. 6 13 * Lv. ig 12 ), it is plain that the original text must have 
had nptfS >D % ^3 here as well as in the next verse. So We., Now., Marti, 
Kit. me:) 2 ] < B om.; but the omission is without significance. 4. 
punNxin] Three mss. have rvnwnm. So (&, ical tol<rw, but wrongly, for the 
curse has already gone forth. n*oi] Pf. with i in the sense of the impf. 
after a pf. Cf. Ges. 112 - (o).-njSi] With ^_ in a toneless syllable in 
stead of __ Here only; Ges. ! - R - . Dathe rds. n^S. wSai] For 
Cf. Ges. k 76 - 8 - R - . nsi 1 ] The i is explicative. Cf. Ges. 

(2) THE WOMAN IN THE EPHAH (5 5 " 11 ). 

In this, the seventh vision, the prophet sees an ephah which, 
when the cover is lifted, is found to contain a woman sym 
bolising wickedness. She is thrust back into the measure and 
two other women with wings bear her away to deposit her in 

5. This paragraph is sometimes connected as a supplement, or 


further development, with the preceding, and the number of vi 
sions thus reduced to seven.* Zechariah, however, notwithstand 
ing his partiality for the perfect number, does not seem to have 
meant that it should be so treated. If he had, the interpreter 
would hardly be represented as returning to the prophet, as if 
after an absence, and, when he came forth, reappeared, command 
ing his charge to lift up his eyes and see, just as at the beginning 
of the other visions. See, the angel says, what this is that cometh 
forth, presents itself as a new object of attention. Whence it came 
the prophet does not say, and it seems idle to conjecture. Cer 
tainly not, as some have held, from the temple, for at this time 
there was no temple. 6. The prophet does not at once recognise 
what it is at which he is looking. Hence his question, What is it ? 
The interpreter is obliged to give it a name. It proves to be an 
ephah. The ephah, like the bath, according to the latest authori 
ties in such matters, contained 36.44 litres, that is, 32.07 English, 
or 38.86 American quarts.f A receptacle of this size would hardly 
satisfy the requirements of the vision. It is probable, therefore, 
that the prophet in tended to represent the object in question, not as 
an ephah, but as something of the same cylindrical shape, and not 
noticeably larger than the familiar measure. J The text has a sec 
ond answer to the prophet s question; but, because it is a second 
answer and anticipates, not only the explanation in v. 8 , but any 
mention of the woman to whom it refers, it is clearly out of place 
in the present connection. It must therefore be a gloss to v. 8 , 
inserted here by a careless copyist. 7. This verse is not a con 
tinuation of the speech of the interpreter. If it were, there would 
be no need of the introductory And he said at the beginning of 
the next. Moreover, it is not properly explanatory, but merely 
descriptive of the ephah and its content. The prophet now sees 
for himself that the measure is covered by a disk of lead. When 
this disk, whose weight is calculated to excite curiosity, is lifted 
enough to permit one to look within, but not so far as to allow 
anything to escape, it appears that there is a woman, lit., one 

* So Ke., Klie., Wii, Or., et at. 

t Cf. EB., art. Weights and Measures; Nowack, Arch., 202 fl. 

t So New., Ston., Koh., Or., et al. 

So de D., Koh., Pres., Lowe,-<rf al. 

5 W 173 

woman, sitting in the ephah* By whom the lid was lifted the 
prophet does not take the trouble to inform the reader. It can 
hardly have raised itself (Brd.), but was probably lifted by the 
interpreter, since, according to v. 8 , it was he who put it back 
into its place. 

8. This woman, the interpreter now explains, is Wickedness. 
The term is unmodified, except by the article, as required by He 
brew usage. This is probably the reason the author of the gloss 
in v. 7 felt moved to explain it. His explanation, however, is not 
very helpful, the word iniquity being quite as inclusive as wicked 
ness. Those who regard this vision as supplemental to the pre 
ceding naturally claim that the prophet is here speaking of sin in 
general, which is to be banished from Judah, but permitted to 
continue its destructive work in Babylonia; but this view makes 
both visions teach too nearly the same lesson. There is a better 
one, namely, that the prophet here has reference more particularly 
to idolatry.-)- It is favoured by several considerations: (i) Idolatry 
is a form of wickedness to which the Hebrews were always ad 
dicted, and for which they believed both of their kingdoms had been 
punished, first with minor calamities, and finally by overthrow. 
Cf. Je. 44 20ff - Ez. 23 lff -. (2) It was practised by the inhabitants 
of Palestine, including some of the Jews, even after the Exile. 
Cf. Ezr. 9 lff - Is. 57 3ff - 65* ff - 66 17 Mai. 2". (3) It is frequently 
in the Old Testament represented as the evil especially offensive 
to Yahweh. Cf. Dt. 4 25 if ff - i K. 2i 25 f -, etc. (4) It is the form 
of offence that a Hebrew prophet would most naturally think of 
banishing. Cf. Dt. 4 15 i S. 2 6 19 Am. 5 26 f -. (5) Ezekiel foretold 
that on their restoration his people would be cleansed from it. 
Of- 33 22ff " 37 21ff> - If Zechariah actually had idolatry in mind, it 
is easy to explain why he represents it as a woman. In so doing 
he simply follows the practice of the older prophets, who repeatedly 
denounce this offence under the figure of prostitution. Cf. Ho. 

* Pressel thinks that the picture presented in the vision as above explained is an 
"awkward" one. He therefore suggests that this verse be rendered, "And lo, a hundred 
weight oj lead was carried, the same being carried by a woman who sat in the ephah." De 
guslibus, etc. ! 

t So Ston., Hd. Jerome in his commentary uses the expression, "iniquilas, quam alio 
nomine idolitriam possumus appellare " ; but this is probably an allusion to Col, 3 6 . 


2 2ff - Je. 23 lff< Ez. i6 lff -, etc.* The woman here pictured is a 
very active figure. No sooner is the cover lifted from the ephah 
than she attempts to escape. The interpreter, however, intercepts 
her, thrusts her back into the ephah and casts the leaden weight 
upon its, not her,^ mouth. 9. When the woman Wickedness has 
thus been securely imprisoned in the ephah, the prophet sees two 
more women coming forth. Much ingenuity has been expended 
in attempts to discover their significance. The outcome is a great 
variety of opinions, some of which are diametrically opposed to 
one another. Thus, for example, Kohler finds in them messen 
gers of Satan, Neumann angels of Yahweh.J They are probably 
to be regarded as the necessary adjuncts of an effective picture. 
They have wings like the wings of the stork, that is, long and strong 
ones, suitable for rapid and prolonged flight. Storks are very 
common in Palestine. ^When they are migrating they pass over 
the country by thousands, and during this season the fields are 
often thickly dotted with them. A full-grown stork of the larger, 
and commoner, white variety measures more than three and a half 
feet in length and twice as much from tip to tip of its black wings.** 
Mounting on such wings, these two women bore the ephah con 
taining Wickedness up and away between heaven and earth. The 
last phrase, like the "in heaven" of Je. 8 7 , is an allusion to the fact 
that the stork always flies very high in its migrations. 

10. The prophet, whose curiosity is now fully aroused, inquires, 
Whither are they moving the ephah? He says the ephah, but, of 

* On this point it is of interest to note further that the word here used for wickedness (nycn, 
rish ah) is a favourite with Ezekiel; that in 2 Ch. 24? the idolatrous queen Athaliah is called 
"the wickedness" (njJCHDn); and that the consonants of the root from which both of these 
names are derived are found in the reverse order in Ashtoreth (mniPJ?), Bab. Ishtar, the name 
of the most popular of the false divinities by whom the Hebrews were seduced from their al 
legiance to Yahweh. Cf. i K. n* 2 K. 23" Je. 7 18 44 15 -. 

t So Theod. Mops., Theodoret, Ra., Rosenm., Wri., el al., who do not seem to have seen 
the ridiculousness of throwing such a mass of lead at so small a mark. 

% Neumann s comment on this passage is a good example of his florid style of exegesis. He 
says, "How full of surprising beauty is the thought in this simple picture 1 The women who 
go forth from the Lord to banish Godlessness raise themselves on bright pinions, wings full of 
love and kindness, wings that care for their own with loving faithfulness and with a devoted 
passion of inspired watchfulness." 

So New., Mau., Brd., Or., et al. 

** Tristram (NHB., 246 /.) seems to teach that the date at which the storks appear in Pal 
estine is always in the latter part of March. This, however, is not correct. At any rate, in 
1902 immense flocks of them passed over Jerusalem on the- ninth of that month. 

5 M 175 

course, it is the woman rather than the measure in whose destina 
tion he is interested. 11. The interpreter does not, strictly speak 
ing, answer the question put to him, but replies as if the prophet 
had asked, not whither, but why, the winged women were moving 
the one in the ephah, saying, To build for her a house. The proper 
interpretation of v. 8 sheds great light upon this passage, for, if 
Wickedness is the personification of idolatry, the house to be built 
is probably not an ordinary dwelling, but a temple more or less 
imposing. Now, it is an interesting fact that the Babylonians 
called their zikkurats, the towers of from three to seven stories 
which they erected in honour of their deities, houses. Thus, the 
one at Nippur they named "E-kur" the house of the mountain, 
the one at Agade, " E-an-dadia," the house reaching to heaven, 
the one at Babylon, " E~temen-an-ki" the house of the foundation 
of heaven and earth, etc.* These zikkurats were the most notice 
able feature of the great cities. Cf. Gn. n lff -. When, therefore, 
the interpreter adds that the house is to be built in the land of 
Shinar, the question naturally arises whether it is not to be one 
of these zikkurats. There certainly is nothing in the passage to 
forbid such an inference. Finally, the interpreter says that when 
it, the house, is prepared, lit., set up, they, presumably the women, 
will deposit her, with the ephah in which she is now confined, there 
in her place, lit., upon her base. Here, perhaps, is an allusion to 
the little room or shrine, which stood on the platform at the top 
of the zikkurat.lf 

There is nothing in the vision as above interpreted incongruous 
with the teaching of other and earlier Hebrew writers. The puri 
fication of the Holy Land from idolatry, as has been noted, was 
predicted by Ezekiel. That the false deities should be deported, 
and not destroyed, is in harmony with the doctrine taught in Dt. 
4 19 29 25/26 , according to which the worship of other gods was per 
missible in foreign countries. That their destination should be 
Babylonia is not surprising when one remembers how long the 
capital of that country had been the centre of the heathen world. 
Cf. Rev. i4 8 , etc. To be sure, Babylon had now lost her suprem- 

* Cf. Jastrow, RBA., 638 ff. 

t Cf. Jastrow, RBA., 621 /.; Peters, Nippur, ii, 122. 


acy. Of this the prophet is perfectly aware. Hence he does not 
stop with the deportation of Wickedness, but adds another vision 
to the series. Compare van Hoonacker, who refers this vision 
also to the past. 

5. nc] So <g^-aL &H. <$X*ABQK om< W e. would add n c >xn. That, 
however, would make the question a request for information, which 
should come from the prophet. Cf. i 9 2 2 /i 19 . This is a parallel to the 
"What seest thou" of 4 2 5 2 . Marti, followed by Kit., substitutes nrrxn 
for na. Both suggestions are based on the assumption that v. 6ba is an 
interpolation. It is not v. 6btt , however, but, as has already been noted, 
v. 6b , that is the interpolation. Consequently the present reading in 
this verse may be retained. nxxivi] The gender conforms to that of the 
word understood. Strictly rendered, the question is, Who is this goer- 
forth? Cp. Ct. 3 6 6 10 , where the prtc. is used adverbially. 6. IDXM I 
jiNxrn ] The whole is omitted by the later critics. If, however, the rest 
of the verse is omitted, this part must be retained as an answer to the pre 
ceding question. HS-NH] An ephah, although it has the art. Cf. Ges. 
126. 4. Ace. to de D. the prtc. has the art. because it is construed 
with nxr. For the reasons for regarding ji "iCN^i 2 a gloss to v. 8 , see the 
comments. ar>*] Rd., with <g &>, DJIJ?. So Houb., New., Bla., Burger, 
Hi., Fiirst, Or., We., Now., Marti, Kit, et al7. nxn] g> om. TNT. Rd. 
rum, with (& B, Dathe, New. and the later critics, or better, xnxi. 
Cp. Ges. 136. R. s. note f _ nnN -j -^ Q ^ as K5 ^ ^ teac h es> t h e e quiv- 

alent of the indefinite art., but a numeral emphasising the solitariness of 
the subject. Cf. Gn. 22 13 Ex. i6 33 , etc. 8. px] <8 L , rb rdXavrov = -133. 
Sx] Better, with &, S>. n>s] It is impossible to tell by inspection 
whether the sf. refers to the ephah or the woman, but as already inti 
mated, a little reflection ought to result in a decision for the former alter 
native. 9. Some mss. begin here a new section. amo^ra nm] This 
clause has all the marks of a gloss, (i) It interrupts the natural flow of 
thought. (2) It introduces an incidental reference to wings before the 
statement that the women were provided with them. (3) It betrays, in 
the masc. sf . of DHIDJO, a more careless hand than that of the original au 
thor, who takes pains to use the proper gender in referring to the women. 
Cf. njnS. For these reasons it is best explained as a marginal gloss, 
suggested by Ez. i 20 f -, which was inserted into the text by a thoughtless 
copyist. It would be less noticeable if it followed the next clause. 
rrvDnn] <S, eTroTros; U, milvi; OT, Nitfj; Aq. 29, epwStou. njtrm] Rd., with 
many mss., njxirm. Cf. Ges. * 74 - 3 - R - 2 . 10. nan] Rd., with Kenn. 
250, de R. 545, run. nisSin] Rd., with many mss., m^SiD. 11. 
nS] Raphe before an accented syllable. Cf. Ges. 2s. 4; 103. 2 (*>._ 
pini] We., after (& (nal erot/xdcrat), jvjnVl. Now. and Kit. omit it 
as a dittog., but the resemblance between it and the next word is not suf- 

6 1 - 8 i77 

ficiently close to warrant such a disposition of it. Moreover, it makes 
good sense with n-o for a subject. On the construction, see Ges. * m - 6 () . 
Van H.rds.n?n for n?N, Akkad. Cf. Gn. io l . nrpjnYJ A mongrel 
form for which there is no reasonable defence. Rd., with (8 &, nn>jn\ 
So Klo., Or., We., Now., Marti., Kit. nrupc] Elsewhere the word has 1 
even in the pi. with sfs. 

(3) THE FOUR CHARIOTS (6 1 8 ). 

In this, the eighth and last, vision the prophet sees four chariots, 
each with horses of a peculiar colour, equipped for the cardinal 
points, whither they are finally despatched. Especial attention 
is called to those that have gone northward, as having assuaged 
the spirit of Yahweh in that region. 

1. When next the prophet lifts up his eyes he sees four chariots. 

The Hebrews did not have chariots in the earlier centuries of their history. 
Their country was so rough that they could not use them to advantage at home 
and they were not strong enough to venture on military expeditions beyond 
their own borders. Cf. Ju. i 19 . When, however, they became united and 
powerful under David, they began to be more aggressive, and, coming in con 
tact with peoples who used chariots, they added this feature to their equip 
ment. Cf. 2 S. 8< i K. io 2 6 ff -. 

The fact that chariots were almost exclusively used in war made 
them a symbol for strife and bloodshed. Is. 22* f - Zc. 9. The 
appearance of chariots in this vision, therefore, leads one to sus 
pect that, to the Jews, it signified war and destruction for some of 
the neighbouring nations. The chariots are represented as com 
ing forth from between (the) two mountains. Where these were, the 
prophet does not tell his readers. They can hardly have been 
Moriah, the temple hill, and the one either to the west* or the 
eastf of it, since he describes them as mountains of bronze. There 
is a hint of their location in v. 5 , where the interpreter speaks of 
the chariots as coming forth from the presence of Yahweh. The 
natural inference from the two passages combined is that these 
mountains were ideal mountains in front of the abode of Yahweh. 
Cf. 2 17 / 13 . Perhaps, however, Zechariah gave them some such ap- 

* The one often incorrectly called Zion. So Dru., Marck, Mau., Pres., et al. 
t The Mount of Olives. So Ki., Pu., Wri., Brd., Or., et al. 


pearance as that of the hills with which both he and his readers 
were familiar. So Marti. If the Greek reading, "mountains" 
for "myrtles," in i 8 - " is correct, the scene of the first vision was 
probably the same that is here described, and equally imaginary. 

The prophet seems here to be borrowing from a popular mythological rep 
resentation according to which the approach to the dwelling of the Deity was 
guarded on either side by a brazen mountain. Had the brazen pillars, Jachin 
and Boaz, in front of Solomon s temple (i K. 7" ff -) any connection with these 
fabled mountains? It seems possible even if, as W. R. Smith (Sent., 468 ff.) 
maintains, these pillars were originally used as "altar candlesticks," like 
those in front of Phoenician sanctuaries. 

2 /. Each of the chariots was drawn by horses, probably, since 
this was the custom in Egypt and Assyria, two in number,* which 
differed in colour from all the others. The first had bay, the sec 
ond black, the third white and the fourth spotted (or speckled) 
horses. On the significance of these colours, see vv. 6 f< . There 
is no reference, here or elsewhere, to drivers for these horses. 
They, like the horsemen of the first vision, seem to be taken for 

4. The prophet makes the usual inquiry, Sir, what are these? 
5. The great Christian Vrss. agree in rendering the first words of 
the reply to this question, These are the four winds of heaven, and 
many of the commentators have adopted this translation, j- citing 
Ps. iO4 4 in support of it. The passage cited, however, is not to the 
point. The Psalmist, it is true, says that Yahweh makes "winds 
his messengers," but the prophet employs the expression the four 
winds, which, with or without the addition of heaven, is a familiar 
designation for the cardinal points of the compass. Thus, in i Ch. 
9 24 the four winds are defined as "the east, west, north and south. 
See also Ez. 37 42 20 Dn. 8 8 . There is only one passage outside 
this book in which it is used in any other sense, and that (Je. 49 36 ), 
being later than Zechariah,J was probably influenced by a mis 
taken interpretation of this passage. There remains the paren- 

* According to Jerome these teams were quadrigae, but he probably had no better authority 
for this opinion than his Jewish teachers, who doubtless, like AE., got it from i K. ic 29 , where 
the price of a chariot is that of four horses. 

t So Marck, Mau., Hi., Koh., Klie., Brd., Or., Reu., et al. 

% Giesebrecht. 

6 1 - 8 i79 

thetical statement in 2 10/6 , which, however, unless emended as sug 
gested, must be pronounced another example of the same sort. 
The expression used, then, indicates that the prophet was not 
thinking of the winds themselves, much less of spirits,* but of the 
principal points from which the winds blow. This being the case, 
it is necessary to translate, with Kimchi, These to the four winds 
of heaven are going forth. f This rendering is confirmed by other 
considerations, the most weighty of which is that, in the following 
verses, where the interpreter is evidently developing the statement 
here made, his language implies that the four winds are the four 
directions in which the chariots are going. Its adoption relieves 
the reader from the necessity of supposing that the prophet is here 
using figurative winds to explain imaginary chariots instead of 
making the chariots, or their drivers, agents of Yahweh correspond 
ing to, but not identical with, the horsemen of the first vision. 
The prophet does not here give the destinations of the several 
chariots, but he informs the reader whence they have come. They 
are going forth from standing before, that is, from the presence of, 
the Lord of the whole earth; from whom they have received in 
structions concerning their movements. They are now awaiting 
a command to depart, each on its mission. 

6. In the preceding verse it was the chariots that were promi 
nent. From this point onward it is, and necessarily, the horses; 
there being no way to distinguish the chariots except by the colours 
of the animals attached to them. Note also that the order in which 
the teams are mentioned is not the same as in w. 2 /. There the 
bay horses came first; here the black ones lead. There seems to 
have been no reason for the first arrangement, for the Hebrews 
had no stereotyped order for the points of the compass. Cf. 
Ez. 42 16ff - i K. y 25 Nu. 34 lff< 35 5 , etc. The change was proba 
bly made because the black horses are the only ones that receive 
further mention. Cf. v. 8 . In this case one can also see a sig 
nificance in their colour. The Hebrew word for the north J indi 
cates that it was conceived as a dark and gloomy region. Hence 
it is fitting that the black horses should be assigned to the north 

* So Cal., Lowth, New., Hd., Pu., el al. 

t So We., Now., Marti. t J1BX (saphon), dark. 


country; which is here, however, not the remote north, but, as in 
2 10/6 , the region of Babylonia. The same cannot be said of the 
second pair, the white ones. Indeed, there is a difference of opin 
ion on the point of the compass to which they are to be despatched. 
The text has a word that is generally rendered after them. It is 
probable, however, that this should be translated to the west of 
them, or emended so that it can be so rendered. It might then be 
interpreted as referring to Asia Minor and Europe, the home of the 
fair peoples. Cf. Gn. io 2ff \* The spotted ones go to the south 
country, but why, there seems to be no means of discovering. f 
7. The statement with reference to the fourth team has been 
only partially and imperfectly preserved, but it can easily be re 
covered. The horses, of course, should be, not, as the Massoretic 
text has it, the strong, but the bay ones, since they are the only 
ones whose destination has not been given. Moreover, the 
statement that they shall go forth should be followed by an in 
dication of the direction, which, now that all the other points 
have been pre-empted, must be that of the east country. Cf. 
Gn. 25 6 4 Thus far the interpreter. The prophet adds that the 
horses, as is the manner of spirited animals, all sought to go to 
traverse the earth, or the parts assigned to them ; that some one, who 
can hardly have been the interpreter, finally gave the command, 
Go traverse the earth; and that, in obedience to this command, 
they traversed the earth. Cf. i 10 f- . 

There is an interval between this scene and the incident described 
in the next verse. The length of the interval it is difficult to de 
termine. The prophet can hardly have meant that the chariots, 
with their horses, not only disappeared, but actually traversed the 
earth before anything further happened within the sphere of the 
vision. At any rate, he proceeds as if almost immediately, while 
he was yet gazing after them, the same person who had given the 
command dismissing them addressed him. 8. Now, the prophet 

* The only son of Yepheth (Japheth ) whose name at all resembles the word for white (pS, 
labhan) is Yawan, the progenitor of the Greeks, and in this case the resemblance is hardly 
close enough to justify suspicion of an attempt at paronomasia. 

t The Hebrew word for spotted ("1112, barodh), to be sure, has an inverse likeness to one 
for the smith (3i~n), but, if the prophet had this word in mind, it is strange that he did not use 
it in place of the one (p P, teman) found in the text. 

% The Hebrew word for red (snx, adhom) is from the same root as Edom. 


would not have put such a command into the mouth of any one 
but Yahweh. Hence, it is probably Yahweh of whom he here 
says, he called and spake to me. This inference is supported by 
the following considerations: (i) The introduction of Yahweh as a 
speaker, though unexpected, is not unlike Zechariah. In the first 
vision, it will be remembered, the Deity interposed with comforting 
words for the encouragement of his servant. Cf. i 13 . (2) The 
prophet says that the speaker, whoever he was, called in the sense 
of cried, when he spoke, that is, spoke in a loud voice. This im 
plies that he was at some distance and points to Yahweh, who, ac 
cording to v. 5 , was within the sacred precincts before the entrance 
to which the prophet saw the chariots. (3) The prophet cannot 
have intended to represent the interpreter as saying of the horses 
that had gone to the north country, they shall assuage my spirit 
in the north country. This is admitted by Marti and others, who, 
however, instead of adopting the obvious alternative, change the 
text to give it the form of a speech by the interpreter. The emen 
dation suggested is ingenious, but, as has been shown under (i) 
and (2), it is unnecessary and, indeed, inadmissible. The speaker, 
then, is Yahweh, and the spirit, or, as Ezekiel * puts it, " the wrath " 
assuaged is his wrath. But why should Yahweh be angry with 
the north country alone or vent his anger only upon that region? 
This question is answered by van Hoonacker by saying that the 
prophet here again, as in 2 1 /! 18 ff , reminds his people of the past, 
and this time of their deliverance from the Babylonians by Cyrus. f 
The following considerations, however, make it more probable 
that he is thinking of the future: (i) The fact that the first three 
visions dealt with the past, and the next two with current interests, 
would lead one to expect that in the last three the author would 
make further progress. (2) The sixth and seventh, as has been 
shown, are capable of an interpretation in harmony with this ex 
pectation. (3) The teaching of the prophet in this series of visions 
would be incomplete without a glimpse into the future of Wicked 
ness. (4) He would naturally find in the second revolt of the 
Babylonians against their Persian conquerors, which occurred 

* Cf. 5 w 2 4 13 , etc. 

t So also Sellin, Stud., ii, 87 /. 


about this time, an occasion for the display of the continued dis 
pleasure of Yahweh. 

1. mas^s] On the vocalisation of the sg. see Ges. 5 ss. <s c*^ 
onnn] Better, with <S, onn. So Houb. 3. oma] S 0, ire\idj>ot. 
D XDX] Om. with . The omission of the art. is significant. How the 
word got into the text it is difficult to imagine, unless it is a corruption of 
O JfiDn, a synonym of o->DnN (Is. 63!) taken from the margin of v. 2 . Cf. 
v. 7 . In its present position it is meaningless. Houb.rds. D^ax, in the 
sense of parti-coloured. 5. "[N^nn] Add, with (& & H , o lain. iSx] So 
< L ; om. <& NAB Q ir . yaix] Rd., with We., et al., yanx 1 ?, or better, since in 
v. 6 Sx is used to indicate destination, jjanx Sx. Note, also, that it is 
easier to explain the omission of Vx than of S after nVx ^x. mxxv] 
The predicate of nSx representing maaiD. The accentuation, there 
fore, is incorrect, o^ns?n should have pashta. ax\nno] (& U om. the 
prep.; j$ both it and nixv. 6. na T^N] Bla. ingeniously suggests that 
a i be prefixed to the relative and both words thus attached to v. 5 ; but it 
is better to explain them as a mistaken addition which defeats the proph 
et s purpose, viz., to bring the horses with their colours into prominence, 
ovw] The context requires that this prtc. have the force of an impf. It 
follows that IN SI in both cases should be replaced, as in 0, by the prtc., 
or, as Ew. suggests, be pointed as the impf. Cf. Ges. 112 - R - 2 . 
onnnx Sx] These words would naturally be translated after them, but, so 
rendered, they are unintelligible in this connection, owing to the improb 
ability that the prophet would represent two chariots as having the same 
destination. We. infers that the text is corrupt, and suggests px Sx 
onpn. If, however, as he himself admits, one of the chariots was de 
spatched to the west, this seems to be the place to find a statement to that 
effect. Ew. claims that the present text may be so rendered, but his ex 
planation is not entirely satisfactory. The sf . of annnx refers, not to the 
white, but to the black horses. Hence the destination of the former is 
west, not of the starting-point, but of the region to which the latter have 
gone. 7. o^XDxn] Rd., with 1$ Aq., as in v. 2 , D>CINH. The text seems to 
have been corrected to make it conform to v. 3 . So Dathe, Houb., Hi., 
Ew., Pres., Or., Marti, et al. INV] Here also rd. either ;TN?P or ix^., 
and add, as the destination of this team, Dip jnN S. Cf. Gn. 25". 
Now. supplies nayn pj< *?N, Kit. nayD p*< Sx. nr 1 ? ?] Om. <8 L & H . 
iSnnn 1 ?] Twelve Kenn. mss. rd. -jSnnm. So <5 A Q F . 8. pym] <g B , Kal 
aveBoi-rjffav. >nx] Om. with ( &. The usual construction is Vx, which 
follows the co-ordinate vb. imn] We. would rd. irvj% and the fact 
that both <g B and & have a connective here seems to favour this; but, 
since the pf. is frequently used for the impf. of acts that are imminent, a 
change in the text seems unnecessary. -nn] Marti, who insists that the 
speaker can only be the interpreter, sees in > an abbreviation for rnrp. 

d. The prince of Judah (6 9 15 4 6a ^ 10a ). 

The rest of ch. 6, although it has a certain connection with the 
visions, falls outside of the series. This is clear from the formula 
with which v. 9 begins. The instruction here given is received, 
not through pictures explained by a third person, but directly from 
Yahweh. The same is true of 4 6a - 10a , which, as has been shown, is 
foreign to its present context, but which finds a more suitable set 
ting after 6 14 . The only objection to this arrangement is that there 
seems to be little connection between these two passages and the 
preceding context. On the other hand, they would quite naturally 
follow the fifth vision. It is possible, therefore, that 5 1 -6 8 once 
preceded the third chapter. In either case these passages would 
close the first division of Zechariah s prophecies, forming two 
paragraphs. The subject of the first is 

(l) A SYMBOLIC CROWN (6 9 14 ). 

The prophet is instructed to take with him certain persons to 
the house of Josiah, the son of Sephaniah, and there fashion a 
crown and predict the appearance of the Messiah. 

9. The prophecy is introduced by the familiar formula, Then 
came the word of Yahweh to me. Cf. 4 y 4 8 1 * 18 . In the third and 
fourth of these passages "Yahweh of Hosts" takes the place of 
" Yahweh." The implication is that the message came soon after 
the last vision; but, since the visions, as has been explained, are 
but literary forms, the point is of no importance. 10. It is im 
portant that this verse be correctly understood, but not easy in 
the present form of the text to discover the prophet s meaning. 
The very first words provoke discussion. The prophet is directed 
to take something from the captivity. At once two questions arise: 
Who for it evidently consists of persons are the captivity ? and 
What is it that is to be taken from them? The word rendered 
captivity commonly refers to exiles in Babylonia. Cf. Je. 29* 
Ez. i 1 , etc. In the book of Ezra, however, "the captivity," or 


"the children of the captivity," means those who have been in 
exile but have returned to their country (4 1 9*, etc.), and this is the 
interpretation that best suits the present context. But what is it 
that Zechariah is directed to take from these returned exiles? In 
the next verse the object of the verb is " silver and gold," and, as 
it is taken for granted that the prophet is there simply repeating 
the thought here expressed, the commentators generally supply 
the same object in this connection. There are, however, objec 
tions to such an interpretation. In the first place, if the prophet 
really intended to say what he is supposed to have said, he could 
easily have arranged the sentence so that the verb and its object 
would come together, and this would have been the natural ar 
rangement. The fact that he did not adopt this arrangement 
casts suspicion upon the interpretation suggested. Secondly, if 
the prophet in v. n had intended to repeat for emphasis or any 
other purpose the thought of this verse, he would not have said 
"take silver and gold," but "take from them silver and gold." 
The clause, as it now reads, attaches itself, not to what precedes, 
but to what follows. Cf. Is. 4y 2 . These considerations make it 
necessary to look elsewhere for the object of the verb take. It 
can only be found in the first three names given. As Blayney says, 
"The prophet is not required to take silver and gold from the per 
sons named, but to take them." True, the text must be emended 
to bring these names into direct subordination to the verb; but, 
since it is agreed that emendation cannot be avoided, and since the 
changes required by this interpretation are less radical than those 
that have been proposed, this is not a serious objection. The read 
ing recommended is, Take from the (returned) captives Heldai, 
and Tobiah, and Jedaiah. Neither of these persons is mentioned 
in the Old Testament outside of this passage. Cf. v. 14 . The 
further instructions given to the prophet, so far as they are con 
tained in this verse, with slight modifications, read, and come with 
them to the house of Josiah, the son of Sephaniah, who (also) hath 
come from Babylon. Rosenmuller suggests that the Sephaniah 
(Zephaniah) here mentioned may be the "second priest" put to 
death by Nebuchadrezzar after the destruction of Jerusalem (2 K. 
2 5 18ff ); but, as that was nearly seventy years earlier and there is 

6 9 - 14 i8s 

no intimation that Josiah belonged to the priesthood, this sugges 
tion is improbable.* 

11. The question now arises why the prophet was directed to 
take the three persons first mentioned to the house of the fourth. 
There are three possible answers. The first to suggest itself, and 
the one that the reviser would probably have given, is that Hel- 
dai and his companions were to furnish the gold and silver for the 
work in hand; but, if this were correct, the materials would have 
been mentioned in v. 10 . There is more to be said for the supposi 
tion that, as Josiah seems to have been a goldsmith who had a 
home and a shop in Jerusalem, the other three were of the same 
trade, but, being among the recent arrivals, had not yet established 
themselves in the city. The idea is that they were all to be em 
ployed to make a crown, that it might be the sooner completed, also 
that they might share the honour of having made it. This, how 
ever, is pure hypothesis. A more reliable explanation (Blayney) 
is that Zechariah took these men with him as witnesses to the sym 
bolic act that he was about to perform. f Isaiah (8 lfL ), at the 
command of Yahweh, took witnesses when he posted his prophecy 
of the destruction of Israel and Syria, and Jeremiah (32" ff< ) when 
he wished to publish his faith in a future for his country. If, 
therefore, Zechariah took means to preserve and transmit the 
memory of his predictions concerning Zerubbabel, he was only 
doing what the greatest of his predecessors had done. The Mas- 
soretic text represents the prophet as further commanded to place 
the crown, when completed, on the head of Joshua the son of Je- 
hosadak the high priest. This, however, cannot have been the 
original reading; for, if he had fulfilled this command, at the same 
time pronouncing the words he is here instructed to speak on the 
occasion, he would in so doing have contradicted his own teach 
ing and Haggai s, which clearly was that the Messianic prophecies 
were fulfilled in Zerubbabel, and that it was he who should build 
the temple of Yahweh. Cf. 4 7 - 9 . If, therefore, a name was men 
tioned here, it must have been that of Zerubbabel. Perhaps, as 
Wellhausen maintains, the latter half of the verse entire is an addi- 

* See further, on the Zephaniah of 2 K. 25 18 ff -, Je. 2I 1 2Q 25 - w 37 3 . 
t So also van Hoonacker. 


tion; which means that the prophet left it to his readers to supply 
the name of Zerubbabel. The present reading is a clumsy at 
tempt, by an anxious scribe, to bring the prophet into harmony 
with history. Neither Zerubbabel nor any other descendant of 
David ever again ruled as king in Jerusalem, but, in process of 
time, the high priest became the head of the entire community. 
It is this condition of things, unforeseen by Zechariah, which the 
changes in the text were intended to justify.* 

12. The crown was expected to create a sentiment for indepen 
dence and stimulate effort toward its achievement. The explana 
tion that follows is calculated to emphasise its significance. Lo, 
a man, says Yahweh, whose name is Shoot. There was a similar 
announcement in 3*, but, as the appearance of the Shoot in that 
connection seemed unnatural, the discussion of his identity was 
postponed. The word first occurs as a Messianic term in Is. 4 2 , 
where, however, it is an appellative denoting the marvellous produce 
of the Holy Land under the blessing of Yahweh. In Je. 23 5 , on 
the other hand, it is used of a scion of the house of David with a 
well-defined character. The prince so named " shall deal wisely, 
and execute justice and righteousness in the land." It is evident 
that Zechariah had this latter passage in mind, his Shoot being 
expressly called a man. Cf. Je. 33 15 . There follows a clause that 
has been variously understood. There are those who take it im 
personally, finding in it a prediction of prosperity like that in 
Is. 4 2 ,f or of the rise from the man in question of a flourishing dy 
nasty ;J but there are objections to both of these views, (i) It is 
doubtful if the compound word which would be literally trans 
lated from under him can properly be interpreted as meaning either 
under his reign or from his root. (2) The following verbs all have 
personal subjects, and the one in this clause would naturally have 
the same construction. Those who construe it in this way, how 
ever, differ in their interpretation of the rest of the clause, the ques 
tion being whether it refers to the region from which the Shoot will 
spring, his lineage** or his condition. ff The difficulty in this 

* Cf. Wellhausen, IJG., 149 ff. t So Lu., Mau., Hi., Ew., Pres., tt al. 

I So We., Now., Marti. So Ki., Dm., et al. 

** So Ra., Pern., Rosenm., Burger, Koh., Klie., Ke., Wri., Brd., et al. 
tt So Marck, Pu., Or., et al. 


i8 7 

question arises from the fact that most of those who have attempted 
to solve it, ignoring the context, have taken for granted that the 
prophet is looking into the remote future, in fact predicting the 
appearance of Jesus of Nazareth. Now, it is only necessary to 
consider that there is but one definite thing that the Shoot is ex 
pected to do, namely, to build the temple of Yahweh, to see that he 
must be a contemporary of the prophet, and when one again re 
members that this is precisely the task which in 4 7 - 9 is assigned to 
Zerubbabel, it becomes clear that this passage is simply a recogni 
tion of him as the Messiah. If, however, Zerubbabel is the Shoot, 
the prediction that he shall shoot can, under the circumstances, have 
nothing to do with the place of his birth or his lineage, but must 
refer to a rapid rise from a comparatively humble position to one 
of greater prominence and influence. Hence, the whole clause 
may be rendered, Upward shall he shoot. The result is more im 
portant than at first appears; for, if the interpretation proposed is 
correct, the clause is a mere play on the name Shoot* the thought 
of which is more worthily expressed in the proper connection in 
the next verse. In other words this clause, like the next one, which 
is wanting in the Greek and Syriac versions, is an interpolation. 

13. The removal of the interpolated clauses brings the intro 
duction of the Shoot into immediate connection with the more 
suitable of the two statements with reference to his mission at the 
beginning of this verse. He, says Yahweh, emphasising the sub 
ject, shall build the temple of Yahweh. Not that the governor has 
thus far had no hand in the work. The expression here used must 
be interpreted in the light of 4 7 - 9 . Thus interpreted it means that 
he will complete the task on which he and his people have now for 
five months been engaged. Thereafter he shall assume majesty, 
attain the rank and honours of royalty, not, apparently, at once, 
but ultimately, as his reward for building the temple of Yahweh. 
Then he shall sit and rule on his throne, exercise the various func 
tions of a king. Now, before the Exile the king was supreme in 
Judah, not only in civil and military, but in religious matters. He 
controlled the temple and its services; the officiating priests, like 

* Sellin finds here a play, not only on Shoot, but on the actual name of the governor, in 
Babylonian Zir-babUi. 


the soldiers on guard, being his servants. Cf. 2 K. i6 loff - 2i 6ff - 
22 3ff -, etc. When the community was reorganised after the cap 
tivity, the religious interests being predominant, the priests nat 
urally acquired a considerable degree of authority. In the vision 
of the lamp (zj. 13 f> ) Zechariah recognises this change by giving to 
Joshua equal importance with Zerubbabel as a servant of Yahweh. 
In this passage, also, although he promises the crown to the latter, 
he makes ample provision for the former, for it is Joshua whom he 
has in mind when he says that there shall be a priest on his (Zerub- 
babel s) right hand. This is as clear as that Zerubbabel is the 
Shoot. There is, therefore, as little need of supplying here the 
name of the high priest as in v. n that of the governor. The posi 
tion at the right hand of the king means power and honour second 
only to those enjoyed by the monarch. But two persons so nearly 
equal are liable to become jealous of, and in the end openly hostile 
to, each other. The prophet does not anticipate any such rupture 
between Zerubbabel and Joshua. There shall be peaceful counsel 
between the two; they will plan in perfect harmony for the best in 
terests of those whom they have been divinely chosen to govern. 
14. There is nothing to indicate that, if Zechariah was instructed 
to crown Zerubbabel, he was to leave the token of future authority 
in the governor s possession. He would naturally make some other 
disposition of it. It is doubtful, however, if this verse in its pres 
ent form correctly represents him. Not that there is anything sus 
picious in the idea of preserving the crown as a memorial, even 
in the temple of Yahweh. There exposed, it would serve as a re 
minder to disheartened patriots of the glorious things it symbol 
ised. It is strange, however, that it should be described as a me 
morial to Heldai and his associates. This implies that they fur 
nished the materials for it,* a thought which, as has been shown, 
was imported into v. 10 by a reviser. It is therefore probable that 
this verse, or at least the names it contains, are by the same hand.f 
The omission of this verse leaves the question of the disposition 
of the crown unsettled. Perhaps it was never made. The prophet 
does not say that it was; and, if he did, there would still be room for 
doubt whether he meant to be understood literally; for, although 

* Cf. Ex. 3 oi6 Nu. 31". t C/. Now., Marti, Kit. 

6 9 - 1 189 

in some instances it may be taken for granted that the action de 
scribed was performed,* Je. I3 1 ff is an exception, and there may 
be others in which the narrative is only a parable, f 

9. The removal of 4-i f rom its place in M leaves this the first clear 
case of the use of the introductory formula, Then came the word of Yahweh 
to me. 10. nipS] The inf. abs. for the imv. Cf. Je. 32"; GesJ 113 - 
(*> a. Perhaps, however, since 9 Kenn. mss. have rip*?, the imv. should 
be substituted for the present reading. HND] In the sense of out of. 
Cf. i4 17 . nSrin] The emendation suggested in the comments requires 
nSn nx, and DNI, instead of PNDI, before each of the other names. 
For -nVn van H. rds. onn. Cf. Ezr. 2 39 . These names are all treated as 
appellatives in (8, nSno being rendered by irapb ruv &PX&VTUV, nuio HND 
by Tiapci. T&V xp no lptov aur^s, and rvjj-p nxn by TrapA T&V tireyvuKdrwv 
a&rriv; but some mss. ((S L ) add a second, correct rendering of fH. PN3) 1 ] 
We. rd. HINDI and omits all between it and mew. Similarly Now., 
Marti, Kit. It is difficult, however, to explain nN3i 2 except as a dittog. 
Besides, nxm 1 is needed with nnx, for which the original seems to have 
been arm. Cf. Ex. i; 5 . So Houb. On the tense of n^oi 1 , see 
GesJ 112 - 3 < c > f. Ninn BI-O] The phrase is unintelligible in this connec 
tion. INS] Rd., with (&>(!,, N3, the subject being Josiah. It was not 
necessary to say that the other three had come from Babylon. So 
Houb. The verse, as above emended, reads, nSn nx nVun TND ncDp 1 ? 
S^an N3 nu^N rrjox p n^N> n>3 DDN nx:n n^T> nxi n^aito nsi. This may 
not be a perfectly correct restoration of the original text, but it is so great 
an improvement, both linguistically and exegetically, on the traditional 
reading that there can be no disadvantage in provisionally adopting it. 
11. ninay] Rd.,with &,nTJj?; So Theod. Mops., Houb., Bla., We., Now., 
Marti, Kit., et al. The same mistake is found in Jb. 3i 36 . nDfcn] Per 
haps for nnciri. As already explained in the comments, the name of 
Zerubbabel must be substituted for that of Joshua or v. b entire omitted, 
the latter being the more defensible alternative. So We., Now., Marti, 
Kit. The attempt of van H. to emend by substituting >:oS for tf *na is not 
commendable. 12. vSx] If v. llb be omitted, this word must also be 
dropped or changed to on>Sx. So We., Now., Marti, Kit. IDS 1 ?!- 2 ] The 
word is not needed after IDS. It is therefore omitted in these chapters, 
except in this passage and another (y 9 ) in which it is clearly an interpola 
tion. So <& 0. The reasons for regarding this verse from vnnnDi on 
ward as of secondary origin, so far as they are exegetical, have already 
been given. There is one further point that deserves mention in this 
connection. The speech beginning with this verse was evidently meant 
to be peculiarly rhythmical, but its symmetry is disturbed by the words 

* Cf. i K. 22" f - Is. 20! ff - Je. 191 ff- a? 2 , etc. t Cj. n< ff - Ez. 4! ff - < $ i 2 > -. 


in question. At first sight it seems impossible to tell whether it is the 
last clause of this verse or the first of the next that should be dropped. & 
favours the former, (& the latter, of these alternatives. The use of the 
emphatic pron. Nin, a frequent means of connecting clauses in Heb., at 
the beginning of v. 13 speaks for the genuineness of the clause that follows. 
Cf. Ju. i3 5 , etc. Sa n] <8, rbv olnov. So also in vv. 13 - " 15 ; in 8 9 only, 
vads. 13. fro] 21, an pa. Ew. supplies jnchrv. So also We., Now., 
Marti, GASm., Kit. The prophet no doubt had the high priest in mind, 
but he did not need to say so, and the absence of the art. with pa is 
proof that neither Joshua s name nor his title was mentioned. INDD hy] 
Rd., with (& (K dei&v avrov), irD> *?J?. 14. A sufficient reason for be 
lieving that this verse is not from the hand of Zechariah has been set 
forth. The variations in the names from those in v. 10 , if they could be 
shown to be intentional, would be significant. mtayni] This word, in 
spite of the fact that 36 mss. have nnBjjrn, like the nntaj; of v. should 
be pointed as a sg. See n>nn; also { &. has Nnnat?n = IDTD, a 
musical term found in the superscriptions of many psalms. Cf. Ps. 3 , 
etc. oSnS] There seems to be no ground for supposing, with AE., et aL, 
that Heldai had a second name, or, with Ew., that his name was changed. 
It is therefore probable that & is correct in reading here, as in v. 10 , Hel 
dai. So Houb., New., Bla., Koh., Or., We., Now., Marti, Kit., et al. 
In i Ch. ii 30 the same name is corrupted to "iSn, and in 2 S. 23 29 to a^n. 
Van H. here, as in v. 10 , rd. ann. pSi] Many, following (&, render the 
nominal part of this word as an appellative. So Theod. Mops., Theodo- 
ret, Mau., Hi., Ew., Koh., Klie., Ke., Brd., Wri., Or., GASm., et al. 
Others explain it as another name for Josiah. So AE., Ki., Dru., Pern., 
Lowth, Rosenm., et al. Still others, with &, rd. rptPtoSi. So Houb., New., 
We., Now., Marti, Kit., et aL The objection to this emendation is that it 
is easier to explain & than to understand how M could have been mis 
taken for it. This objection would not hold against pVi for p pSi, 
an alternative suggested by Houb., or against rnew 1 ?! on^i, from which 
both g> and Ul might easily have arisen. On onSi, see Ges. $ 15 <- note <*>. 
Van H. om. rnjox p pSi entire. p] <8 AO - r , rots ino?s = >jaS; a pal 
pable error. 

(2) ZERUBBABEL AND THE TEMPLE (4 8 - 10a - 6a ^ 7 6 15 ). 

Zechariah receives a second message, in which the governor is 
assured of the divine assistance and promised ultimate success in 
the difficult task of rebuilding the ruined temple. The prophet is 
so confident of his inspiration that he stakes his reputation on the 
fulfilment of this prediction. 

4 8-10a. 6a0-7 515 IQI 

8. On the introductory formula, see 6 9 . 9. In the preceding 
paragraph, as has been shown, the central figure was originally 
Zerubbabel. Here, also, the high priest is ignored. It is the hands 
of Zerubbabel that have laid the foundation of this house, the prophet 
declares. He doubtless means to give the governor credit also for 
the whole conduct of the enterprise since its inception. Moreover, 
he expects him to continue to direct it; he says that his hands shall 
finish it. This prediction is punctuated by an appeal to the future 
first found in 2 13//9 , which, although it seems superfluous at this 
point, may yet, as was said in commenting on 2 15/n , be genuine. 
Indeed, it is difficult to understand why any one else than the 
prophet should have added it. lOa. The prediction concerning 
the completion of the temple implies the prevalence of doubt among 
the Jews on the subject. They knew that their available resources 
were slender, and they felt so deeply that Yahweh was displeased 
with them that they hardly dared expect his assistance. The 
prophet understands the situation. When, therefore, he asks, Who 
hath despised a day of small things ? he does not mean to reproach 
them. The question, in its very terms, admits the complaint. It 
is a day of small things. Cf. Hg. 2 3 . The prophet also takes for 
granted that they who have most deeply felt their poverty would 
most gladly rise above their circumstances. He is trying to help 
them. To this end he pictures a time when they shall see and, of 
course, as loyal Jews, rejoice to see, the plummet in the hand of 
Zerubbabel. The thought is perfectly intelligible, and, on the sup 
position that w. 6a ^~ 7 are to follow, perfectly appropriate in this 
connection. The governor is represented as a builder. The plum 
met in his hand is not only the sign of his calling, but an indication 
that he is actually engaged in the practice of it. To see him, there 
fore, with the plummet in his hand is to see the walls of the temple, 
now hardly begun, rising from day to day under his direction. 
Thus, the verse marks a stage between the beginning and the end 
of the work that Yahweh has commissioned him to do. 6a/3-b. At 
this point there is need of a warning. There is danger lest the flat 
tering assurance that the prophet has just uttered should defeat its 
own object by making Zerubbabel think more highly of himself 
than he should or inducing his people to put too great confidence 


in human ability. To prevent any such mistake the prophet in 
troduces another word of Yahweh, not to, but concerning, Zerub- 
babel, Not by force, and not by strength, but by my Spirit. Not that, 
on the other hand, he intends to teach that in the present instance 
there is nothing to do but trust in Yahweh. He merely wishes to 
remind his compatriots that, as Haggai also taught (2 5 ), the surest 
guarantee of success in the undertaking they have at heart is the 
presence of the divine Spirit in their midst. It is hardly necessary 
to say that, since this passage is not properly a part of the vision of 
the lamp, the attempt to establish a parallel between the Spirit and 
the oil in the lamp by Kohler and others is mistaken and fruitless. 
7. The prophet expects the condition of success to be fulfilled. 
Hence, he believes, as he said in v. 9 , that the temple will be com 
pleted. He recognises that there are difficulties, but he does not 
consider them insurmountable. Who art thou, great mountain ? he 
cries, apostrophising them; before Zerubbabel become a plain, disap 
pear! then shall he, or that he may, bring forth the top stone with 
shouts, Grace, grace to it! The word here rendered grace may mean 
beauty as well as favour, acceptance. Cf. Pr. i 9 i; 8 , etc. Hence, 
the cry with which the topstone is greeted has been interpreted as 
an expression of admiration, // is beautiful, beautiful! * This inter 
pretation, however, would imply that the stone was different in kind 
from the rest in the building, or very richly ornamented, an assump 
tion for which there does not appear to be any authority. It seems 
better, therefore, to suppose that the prophet meant to represent the 
people as showing their interest in the occasion by appealing to 
Yahweh to bless the ceremony of laying the last stone with success 
and thus setting the seal of his acceptance upon the completed sanc 
tuary. 6 15 . There remains the last verse of ch. 6, which, or a part of 
it, will serve as a conclusion to this paragraph. It seems to have been 
left where it stands because it contains no reference to Zerubbabel, 
and therefore does not betray the reviser of the preceding verses. 
It adds a thought necessary to the completion of Zechariah s pic 
ture of the restoration of the sanctuary. Haggai (2 7 ) predicted 
that all the nations would bring their treasures to enrich it. Zech- 
ariah has not hitherto said anything so definite on the subject, but 

* So Ra., Now., el al. 

4 8-10a. 6a0-7 515 

in 2 15/11 he foretells that many nations will attach themselves to 
Yahweh, and this prediction warrants one in supposing that he ex 
pected the nations to assist the Jews in their enterprise, and in at 
tributing to him the prophecy, they shall also come from afar and 
build on, assist in building, the temple of Yahweh. Cf. 8 22 . There 
follows a fourth appeal to the future which provides a fitting close 
for the paragraph. The rest of the verse is but a fragment of a 
sentence, having no connection with what precedes, which appears 
to have been copied from Dt. 28 1 . 

In the paragraph on the symbolic crown no account was taken of 6 15 . 
The reason for neglecting it was that no connection could be found be 
tween it and the preceding context. It has, however, features in com 
mon with 46a0-ioa. p or example, it not only deals with the subject of the 
temple, but contains a repetition of the appeal to the future found in 4 9 . 
It is therefore at least possible that the two passages belong together, that, 
in fact, 48 a/3 -10 a O nce occupied the place now only partially filled by 6 U . 
But 4a0-ioa apparently consists of two parts which for some reason have 
been transposed. If, therefore, these verses be given the new setting, 
the order will be 48-108. 6a0-7 515. Thus arranged the three fragments 
yield a very satisfactory sense. 8. The Massoretes recognised the sig 
nificance of the formula here used by beginning a new paragraph with 
this verse. 9. no\] This word has always been treated as a Pi. pf., but 
Sellin (Stud., ii, 92 /.) makes it a Qal impf., like "vx> for nx", over 
looking the objection that if the prophet had meant to use the impf. he 
would have put this as well as the next vb. into the proper gender. rnan] 
Rd., with 10 Kenn. mss., man n. njpxan] On the retention of __ in 
pause, see Ges. 29 - * <*> R -. nj?-vVJ Rd., with 3 Kenn. mss., <S L B & 8L, 
onp-m. So We., Now., Marti, Kit. lOa. >] The question is equiv 
alent to a condition. Cf. Ex. 24" Ju. 7 3 , etc. It may, therefore, prop 
erly be followed, as it is in this instance, by the pf. with ). Cf. Ges. 
ii3.6 ^) ._ T3 ] with -.-, as if from na. Cf. ra, Is. 4418; Ges. 
i>72. T.R. s. KO. * io yd. ? a>; but the pf. is more expressive. Cf. 
Q es> ioe. 6 (a) t 1Nni j A. co-ordinate vb. with the force of an inf. Cf. 
Ges. 5 o. 2 (). Snan psn] Ace. to We. the object here meant is the 
same as tf nn pan of v. 7 . So Now., Marti. There is less ground for 
any such opinion if the text be transposed so that v. 7 will follow instead 
of preceding this one. On the construction of Vnan, see 2 K. i6 14 ; 
Ges.^ 1 "- < <<*> AX -oa] $, pi. The oriental reading is ^oS. 6a/3-b. 
-DxS] & om. ^na] <& adds ncydXy. >nn] & om. sf. -\DN] Rd. osj, 
as in i 3 . 7. in] The voc. regularly takes the art. Cf. GesJ 126 - 2 <>. 
Nor need it be omitted on account of a preceding n. Cf. 2 K. 6 17 . Per- 


haps other changes should be made. Lambert (ZAW., 1902, 338) for 
the first three words rds. vin ns ^nciri; but the present text could be 
more easily explained as a corruption of inn nx ps o. Houb. rds. 
nnx 13. The accentuation requires that iit^D 1 ? be treated as a sep 
arate clause, rrn being understood; and this division is followed by 
many exegetes. So Bla., Mau., Klie., Ke., Pres., Brd., Or., et at. If, 
however, the present text be retained, the first of four lines should close 
with Snjn. So H, followed by Lu., Marck, Pern., Lowth, Ew., Hd., 
Pu., Wri., We., Now., GASm., et at. Either of the emendations sug 
gested would permit a similar arrangement. nirfon] Qm. the final n, or, 
with van H., change it to a 3 and attach it to the following word. Cf. 
etovi pan, 2 Ch. 3i to . Houb. rds. tfio 1 ?. mxrn] From NIC ; ; without 
3 an ace. of manner. Cf. Ges. ^ I18 - 5 < c >. The Vrss. diverge more or 
less from the thought of HI, but there is no good reason for supposing 
that they had a different text. 6 15 . Why the latter half of the verse was 
inserted at this point, there seems to be no means of determining. Marti 
thinks it may have a bearing on the promises of chs. 7 /. It is more prob 
ably a reminder by a pious scribe that such blessings as are promised in 
the preceding context are conditioned on the faithfulness to Yahweh of 
those who desire them. 

3. A NEW ERA (chs. y/). 

This part of the book consists of the recital of an incident that 
gave Zechariah an occasion for resuming his prophetical activity, 
and a series of oracles setting forth what Yahweh requires of his 
people and what he purposes to do for them in the given circum 

a. An inquiry from Bethel (y 1 " 3 ). 

The people of Bethel send to Jerusalem to inquire of the priests 
and the prophets whether they shall continue to observe the fast of 
the fifth month. 

1. It was in the fourth year of Darius, that is, the year 518 B.C. 
The king had some time previously overthrown his most trouble 
some enemies and was now engaged in strengthening his hold on 
his vast empire. Perhaps, as has been suggested, he was in Egypt 
when the prophecies that follow were wrjtten. Cf. p. 23. More 
precisely, it was the fourth of the ninth month of the given year, or 

7 1 " 3 J 95 

more than two years after work was begun on the temple, when the 
incident to be described took place. Cf. Hg. i 15 . The ninth 
month was later called Kislew (Ne. i 1 ), as the reader is informed 
in a gloss. The clause, the word of Yahweh came to Zechariah, by 
which the month and the day of the month are separated from the 
year to which they belong, is also an interpolation. 2. On the day 
named a person, or persons, sent one or more others on a certain 
mission. The verse has been variously translated, but never very 
satisfactorily. It is doubtful if the present text can be so rendered 
as to avoid objections. Thus, if Bethel be made the subject,* 
there is the objection that places were not personified by the He 
brews, except in poetry. If, on the other hand, this word, either 
as a proper name or an appellative for the temple at Jerusalem, be 
treated as the destination of the mission,-)- the criticism is that there 
was at this time no sanctuary at Bethel, and the one at Jerusalem 
was called the house, not of God, but of Yahweh. Cf. Hg. i 2 Zc. 
7 3 8 9 . This being the case, the later exegetes have resorted to emen 
dation, but thus far they have not proposed a reading that has found 
general acceptance. The most promising place to look for help is 
in 8 18 ff -, where Zechariah gives his answer to the specific question 
that had been propounded. Now, it is interesting to note that, 
in vv. 21 f of this passage, a clause of the verse under consideration 
is twice repeated. This repeated clause, however, is not the most 
important feature of the passage. More significant is the predic 
tion that in the future men will come to Jerusalem to worship the 
God of the Hebrews by cities and nations; for this indicates that 
those addressed were representatives of a place, and that therefore 
the name Bethel is correct and genuine. Moreover, it suggests that 
the original reading was, the men of Bethel sent. The verb does not 
require that its object be expressed. It is possible, therefore, that 
the prophet left it indefinite. The Massoretic text gives two names 
which, if they are genuine, must be interpreted as designating the 
persons chosen to represent the little city. The first, Sarezer, which 
seems to be an abbreviated form of a Babylonian compound,! 

* So Bla., Klie., Ke., Hd., Pres., Brd., Pu., Or., el al. 

t So <& V # , Jer., Lu., AV., Marck, Grot., Seek., Lowth, Rosenm., el al. 

t Cf. 2 K. xgW Je. 39 3 . 


would imply that the bearer of it, if a Jew, was born in Babylonia; 
the second that its owner was of Palestinian birth. Cf. i Ch. 2 47 . 
These two, or others unnamed, were sent, as is taken for granted, 
to Jerusalem, first of all, according to the Massoretic text, to entreat 
Yahweh, that is, to seek his favour by the presentation of the cus 
tomary offering. Now, it is altogether probable that the offering 
was brought. It would please the priests, if it did not affect Yah 
weh. But the absence of a connective at the beginning of v. 3 
leaves room for doubt whether the prophet is responsible for this 
item. Perhaps, however, the missing connective, since the Syriac 
Version has one, should be supplied. 

3. The ultimate object of the mission was to say to the priests 
of the house of Yahweh, the unfinished temple at Jerusalem, and to 
the prophets. Haggai and Zechariah are the only prophets of the 
time whose names have been preserved, but, according to 8 9 , there 
must have been others. These prophets are apparently here placed 
on an equality with the priests. The passage implies also that 
the two classes were on as good terms with each other as they were 
when the Deuteronomic law was promulgated, and that therefore 
they could unite in a decision. The question to be decided is, 
Shall 7 the little city speaks through its envoy or envoys as a unit 
weep in the fifth month, or abstain, as 1 have done now how many 
years ? This question was a natural one. The fast of the fifth 
month commemorated the destruction of Jerusalem and its temple 
by the Babylonians. Cf. 2 K. 25** ff - Je. 52 12 ff -.* It had been ob 
served ever since the Jews went into captivity (v. 5 ), a period of 
nearly seventy years. Now, however, the captivity was a thing of 
the past, and, although their city as yet had no wall, it was begin 
ning to grow and the temple was well on the way to completion. 
These facts called for recognition and gratitude; feelings inconsist 
ent with the continued commemoration of former misfortunes. The 
people of Bethel appear to have been the first to realise what had 
taken place. At any rate, they were the first to move in the matter; 

* These two passages do not exactly agree on the date of the destruction of the city, the 
former putting it on the seventh, the latter on the tenth of the month. The Jews explain the 
discrepancy by saying that the Babylonians entered the temple on the seventh and profaned it 
until the ninth, when they set it on fire and left it to burn until the tenth. Cf. Rodkinson, 
Babylonian Talmud; Taanith, 86. 

- 197 

which was greatly to their credit, for this movement marks the ap 
pearance of a new spirit in Judah, a faith in Yahweh and the future 
which the prophet had long been trying to kindle. The question, 
therefore, though in form a request for instruction, is really a pro 
posal for the abolition of the now meaningless fast. 

1. In i 7 it was found that, for some reason, the formula, "The word of 
Yahweh came to Zechariah," etc., had been inserted between the date 
and the incident to which it belonged. This verse has been expanded in 
the same way, but not to the same extent; for the pedigree of the prophet 
has been omitted, also the meaningless inf. ^DsS. The clause betrays 
its origin, however, not only by its position between the items of the date, 
but by its form, the name of the prophet taking the place of the pron. of 
the first person. Cf. v. 4 8 1 - 18 . iSona] Sometimes (20 mss.) vSoaa. 
For the reasons for regarding this word, like the toa^ chn Nin of i 7 , as 
an interpolation, see the critical note on the latter. In Now. s transla 
tion the latter half of this verse appears in Italics, as if it were of second 
ary origin; but this is doubtless a printer s error, for the author recog 
nises in his comments the genuineness of the entire date. 2. *?Nrna] 
Not *?N-rva, as in most mss. and edd. There is no sense or construction 
in which the house of God could be used in this connection. Cf. BDB. 
On van H. s suggestion, Smfc ma, see 2 2 /i 19 8 13 . The difficulty of con 
struing the word, even as a proper name, has given rise to an attempt to 
explain it as the name of a god and, as such, a component of the name of 
the first of the individuals here mentioned. There was, it seems, a god 
worshipped in western Asia under a name that the Assyrians wrote Ba- 
ai-ti-ili. Cf. Winckler, AF., ii, loff. Zimmern (KAT. 3 , 438) identi 
fies him with the divinity whom Philo Byblius calls patTV\os, the second 
son of Ovpavbs and Vij. We. takes for granted that, since the name -UN-IE , 
Ass. Sar-usur, lacks a subject such as it has, e. g., in N dbu-$ar-usur and 
Nergal-Sar-usur, Sxn^a must be the missing component; in other words, 
that the first name was Baitil- Sar-usur. So also Peiser. This conjec 
ture at first sight seems to be supported by the occurrence in a commer 
cial document of the reign of Artaxerxes I of the (Phoenician) name Bit- 
ili-nuri (Hilprecht, Babylonian Expedition, ix, 60, 76), and it is adopted 
by Marti and Kittel. Cf. DB. There are, however, weighty objections 
to it. In the first place, it assumes that the name Sareser is defective; 
whereas, ace. to Schrader (KAT. 2 , 329 /.), names of the class to which 
this is supposed to belong were sometimes abbreviated by the Assyrians 
and Babylonians, and ace. to 2 K. 19" = Is. 37 38 , this one was believed 
by the Jews to have been in actual use among the Assyrians. Even in 
Je. 39 3 - 13 , where Nergal precedes, the two are not written as one name 
like Nebuzardan and Nebushazban. If, however, secondly, it be granted 


that the name is defective, there is still good ground for denying that 
VNHO is the missing component; for, although it seems to be true that 
the people of the West used Bitili just as the Babylonians did the names 
of their gods in the formation of personal names, it has not been shown 
that they made such hybrid compounds, half Phoenician and half Baby 
lonian as Bit-ili-sar-usur. If, therefore, the two words are retained, they 
must, apparently, be treated as separate names. The case is put hypo- 
thetically because there is some ground for suspecting the genuineness, 
not only of nxsnir, but of n^D OJn. (i) They have the position of ob 
jects, but not the sign (rw) of the definite ace. Cf. Je. 26". (2) They 
suit the following no better than the preceding context. (3) They are 
not necessary to an intelligible rendering for the rest of the clause. There 
is only one objection to accepting the conclusion to which these indica 
tions point, viz., that it seems impossible to account for these names ex 
cept on the supposition that they are genuine. The key to the difficulty 
is found in &, which, for T,Sn DJn, has ^ ^^*^ = JD m, the title given 
to Sareser in Je. 39 3 - 13 . This reading suggests that these names arose 
from a gloss by some one who believed, as did the Jews of the time of 
Jerome, that the inquiry concerning the fast came from Babylon and was 
brought by proselytes, the name and title used being borrowed from Je. 
39. When this gloss, originally "jScn J>D an nxNnir, was inserted other 
changes seem to have been made. The original text was probably nS^l 
Sxma >^JN. ajn] If the original gloss had JD an (van H., an) perhaps 
( (B, Ap/Setre^p; A, A/>/3e<re<r^/>) , which, ace. to Marti, represents ntr? nyanx 
(Aram., nD>an), may have come from the similar title Dno an. 3. 
ncxSi] Rd., with &, -iDSi. maS] Rd., with Kenn. 150, 155, <& g SI, 
rnaa. owajn SNI] It is possible that these words are an addition to the 
text. The prophet did not need any warrant from men for replying to a 
question addressed to the priests. Cf. v. 5 . ncx^ 2 ] Om. with <g L &. 
naaxn] <g has el (AT), or % (Q.), dae\-f)\vdev &5e = no Nan, an evident, 
but none the less interesting error. See also tiroitjaev for Tiiirj?. nun] 
Ace. to Ges. % m , an adverbial inf. abs. Similarly Ew. % 28 w); Ko. % 402e ; 
but < L H & all seem to have read nrjxn. So Houb. ni] Adverbial, 
but not in this case, as Ges. 136 - R - 3 (ft) puts it, an enclitic. Translate 
now or already. Cf. Nrd. 89 - 2 . nra] With -7- in close connection. ( /. 

b. A series of oracles (y 4 -8 23 ). 

They are four in number. All of them but the third are intro 
duced by the characteristic formula, "Then came the word of 
Yahweh of Hosts to me." The general subject is the restoration 
of Judah to the favour of Yahweh. The first deals with 

i 9 9 


The prophet holds that fasting is valueless as compared with 
the social virtues, and that the neglect of these latter was the cause 
of the banishment of his people from their country. 

4. The statement, Then, lit., and, came the word of Yahweh of 
Hosts to me, would naturally be interpreted as meaning that this 
oracle was delivered soon, if not immediately, after the arrival 
of the deputation from Bethel, that is, on or about the fourth of the 
ninth month. There are those, however, who hold that the ques 
tion must have been suggested by the approach of the fast men 
tioned and laid before the priests and the prophets previous to the 
date on which it was to be observed, the seventh or the tenth of the 
fifth month. So Wellhausen, who therefore treats the given date 
as that, not of the appearance of the deputation, but of Zechariah s 
reply to their inquiry. To this interpretation there are at least two 
serious objections: (i) It is forced and unnatural; and (2) it is easier 
to explain the appearance of the deputation from Bethel four 
months after the fast than the discussion of their mission by Zech- 
ariah that long after it had been accomplished. The prophets were 
usually the first to express themselves on any matter that interested 
the community. If further explanation is needed, perhaps it will 
be found in the supposition (Nowack) that there had arisen at 
Bethel, on the occasion of its last recurrence, a dispute over the 
propriety of longer observing a fast commemorating the destruction 
of the temple, and that, after much discussion, the parties had 
agreed to submit the question to the authorities at Jerusalem. 5. 
The message received by the prophet is addressed, not to the priests 
alone, or the inhabitants of Bethel, but to all the people of the land. 
It runs like a passage from one of the older prophets. When ye 
have fasted and lamented in the fifth month, and in the seventh 
month, now seventy years, was it for me, pray, that ye fasted ? The 
fast of the seventh month, according to tradition, was observed on 
the second of the month* as a memorial of the bloody day on which 

* The tradition is that Gedaliah was murdered on the first of the month, but, as this was a 
feast-day, the fast was appointed for the second. This tradition, however, is evidently based 
on the inference that, because in 2 K. 25 and Je. 41 the day of the assassination is not given, 
tt in is to be rendered "new moon." Cf. i 1 . The Karaites are said to have celebrated this fast 
on the twenty-fourth of the month, basing their custom upon Ne. 9 . 


Gedaliah, whom Nebuchadrezzar had appointed governor of Judea 
after the destruction of Jerusalem, was assassinated and the Jews 
fled to Egypt. Cf. 2 K. 25^ Je. 41* ff -. This fast, also, seems to 
have been mentioned here because, having occurred during the 
progress of the discussion at Bethel, it could not well be overlooked. 
Both of these fasts had been observed since the beginning of the 
Exile, or since Jerusalem was taken in 586, and the date of this 
oracle is 517 B.C., now about seventy years. This fact, however, 
did not commend the fasters to the favour of Yahweh, because the 
abstinence they practised and the lamentations they uttered showed 
no promise of betterment, being an expression, not of godly sorrow 
for past offences, but of selfish regret for the loss of their country 
and their liberty. They pitied themselves, but they had not 
learned to fear Yahweh. 6. This being the case, it did not matter 
whether they ate or refrained from eating. This verse completes 
the thought. The prophet, speaking for Yahweh, has just said 
in substance, " Ye have fasted for yourselves"; he now adds, and 
when, or if and whenever, henceforth, ye eat and drink, instead of 
fasting, is it not ye that are eating and ye that are drinking ? and 
he might have added, for it is what he meant, "to fill your own 
bellies." Cf. i Cor. 8 8e . 

7. This, as has already been remarked, is a familiar doctrine. It 
is not strange, therefore, that Zechariah should cite the older proph 
ets in this connection. Are not these, he asks, the things that Yah 
weh proclaimed by the former prophets ? The things in question are 
not, as one might carelessly infer, the things already said, but those 
he has yet to say. Cf. vv. n ff -. They had been said many times 
when Jerusalem was peopled and secure, also its cities round about 
it. The period to which the prophet refers is, of course, that be 
fore the destruction of Jerusalem and the devastation of the sur 
rounding country by the Babylonians. Indeed, it is probable that 
he was thinking of conditions some time before that melancholy 
event, for it was when the Shephelah, the hilly region that separates 
the Judean highlands from the Philistine plain, and the Negeb, the 
rolling country south of Hebron, belonged to Judah and were in 
habited.* 8. The message of the former prophets should imme- 

* For a graphic description of the Shephelah and its history, see GASm., HG., 201 ff.; of the 
Negeb, 278 ff. 

7 4 - 1 201 

diately follow, as, without doubt, it did in the original oracle. Now, 
however, there intervenes another introductory clause inserted by 
some one who was misled by the "Thus saith Yahweh of Hosts" 
of the next verse to suppose that the prophet was still speaking in 
his own person. This clause betrays its secondary character, not 
only by the interruption of the prophet s thought, but by the form 
in which it appears. Zechariah would have said, not to Zechariah, 
but to me. 9. Nowack and others regard the Thus saith Yahweh 
of Hosts with which this verse begins, also, as an addition to the 
original text, but Wellhausen retains it, and with reason, for the ci 
tation from the prophets here, as in i 4 , needs such an introductory 
formula, as a part of it, to give it the desired solemnity. The mes 
sage proper consists of two parts. First, certain duties growing out 
of social relations are enjoined. The first of these is true, equal, 
justice, especially in the conduct of judicial proceedings; the least 
that could be required of members of the same community, yet 
a requirement which, to judge from the denunciations of the proph 
ets, was almost always flagrantly disregarded among the Hebrews. 
The second is kindness, the good-will that prompts one to meet one s 
fellows more than half-way. The third is compassion, active sym 
pathy with those in any species of misfortune. 10. These posi 
tive injunctions are followed by a pair of admonitions. The first 
is equivalent to a repetition of the injunction concerning compas 
sion, with an application of it to different classes of unfortunates. 
Oppress not a widow, or an orphan, or a stranger, or a sufferer, the 
last term including the poor, the sick, etc. The second is more gen 
eral, but at the same time more radical, nor devise evil one toward 
another in your hearts. It is a negative putting of the Golden Rule, 
the observance of which is the sum and substance of social moral 
ity. Cf. 8 17 . This, according to Zechariah, was the teaching of 
the former prophets. He does not pretend to say that all or any of 
them expressed themselves in the precise language that he employs, 
but that this was the gist of their instruction on the subject with 
which he is now dealing. He could easily have substantiated such 
a statement; for there is hardly one of the prophets before the Ex 
ile who does not condemn the tendency to ritualism among his peo 
ple and insist on the practice of the social virtues.* The same posi- 

* Cf. Am. 2 6ff - 521 ff - Ho. 6<ff- Is. ii ff - Mi. a* 6 6 ff - Jc. ?i ff - Ez. i8 5 ff -. 


tion is taken by the author of Is. 58 1 " 12 vv. 13 f - teach a different 
doctrine, who, like Zechariah, gives especial attention to fasting 
as a religious exercise. 

11. The prophet, having indicated what his predecessors taught, 
proceeds to describe the way in which their instruction was re 
ceived. This he does in a succession of figures which produce a 
climax. In the first place, he says the people refused to listen, took 
an entirely negative attitude. Cf. i 4 . This is the first stage in the 
development of obstinacy.* They next stubbornly turned their 
backs, showed positive disrespect to the messengers of Yahweh.f 
Thirdly, they stopped, lit., dulled their ears, so as not to hear, ren 
dered futile the best efforts of the prophets to instruct them.J 12. 
These manifestations, at first the occasional and temporary ebul 
litions of an unstable temper, finally became the uniform expression 
of an utterly rebellious character, the people having, in the words 
of the prophet, made their hearts as adamant. It was their de 
liberate and unchangeable purpose not to hear the instruction that 
Yahweh of Hosts had sent them. The text unnecessarily identifies 
this instruction with the words of v. 7 , saying that these words 
were sent through his (Yahweh s) Spirit. No doubt Zechariah be 
lieved that his predecessors were divinely inspired; but since, like 
Haggai (2 5 ), he elsewhere (4* 6 8 ) seems to refer to the Spirit of 
Yahweh as if he were thinking of Yahweh himself, and, except in 
the visions, represents Yahweh as communicating immediately 
with his messengers (i 6 6 9 , etc.), one is warranted in suspecting the 
genuineness of this phrase also, and reading, as in v. 7 , simply by, 
lit., by the hand of, the former prophets. When it became evident 
that his people were only confirmed in their evil ways by his efforts 
through these successive messengers to save them, his patience, to 
speak after the manner of men, became exhausted, and there was 
great wrath from Yahweh of Hosts. 13. The result was disas 
trous to the objects of this wrath. // came to pass that, because, 
when he (Yahweh) called, they (the fathers) did not hear, There 
follows as an apodosis in the Massoretic text, so shall they call, and 
I will not hear, said Yahweh, but there are several reasons for re 
garding these words as a gloss, two or three of which may be given 

*C/. Je. 5 3 8 5 9 5 / 6 ni. f C/. Ho. 4 16 Je. S 23 623. J C/. Is. 6"> Je. 5 a . 

Cf. Ex. 8 5 p s . Q5 7 i.. a i so O f t h e neck, 2 K. 17" J e . 19" Ne. Q 16 29 . 

7" 2 3 

in this connection, (i) They obstruct the natural course of thought 
without adding anything essential to the passage; (2) they are by 
Yahweh, and not about him; and (3) they can easily be explained 
as a reminiscence of Pr. i 24ff \ Cf. especially v. 28 . For further 
details, see the critical notes. 14. The original apodosis is found 
in this verse. It reads, not "I," like the preceding, for the subject 
should be the same as that of the verb call, but he, scattered them 
to all the nations, the many nations, that they had not known, in the 
foreign countries to which they were deported by the Babylonians. 
On the phraseology, see Dt. 28 36 Je. i6 13 , etc. Thus the land be 
came so desolate behind them, after their removal, that none went to 
and fro, and they made a pleasant land a waste. Cf. Ju. 5 Je. i2 10 
Ez. 35 7 . The prophet probably did not expect to be taken liter 
ally; there must have been a few who remained in the country; 
but it is clear from Je. 40 ff. that it was pretty nearly stripped of its 

4. niNas] & 2F om., as in 4 8 6 9 ; but see 8>- 18 . 5. -MDDI] The inf. 
abs. for the impf. with "> Cf. Ges. * *>. nn] Rd., with 9 Kenn. mss., 
ft g> <, nr. So We., Now., Marti, Kit. ijnnx] For wnox, the read 
ing in 25 Kenn. mss. One of three cases of the use of a sf. with pf. 2 
pi. Cf. Ges. \ 59 - l *>. On the construction, see Ges. m. . R. 3. ^JN] 
An emphatic addition to the sf. Cf. Ges. $ 135 - 2 <>. 6. D SaNn] When 
the relation of a nominal predicate to the subject is that of the general to 
the particular, it wants the article; but when, as in this case, the two are 
of equal connotation, the predicate may take an art. or a sf . to mark its 
definiteness. Cf. v. 7 as emended; Ges. 126 - z <*> R -; Dr. 135 a). 7. 
n] This word has been treated as a sign of the emphatic nominative. So 
de D., Dru., New., Rosenm., Lowe, el al. The passages cited to support 
this opinion, however, are mostly of doubtful application. Those in this 
and the preceding book, Hg. 2 5 - 17 Zc. 8 17 , can all be explained in other 
ways. Nor is it necessary in this case to supply a vb. such as jrv, nf j? 
or J?BB*, as many have done. So Marck, Pern., Mau., Hi., Ew., Koh., 
Ke., Pres., Pu., Brd., Wri., et al. It is better, with (& &, to rd. n 1 . 
So Seek., We., Now., Marti, Kit. Cf. Ges. m. i. R. ?. atfVJ For DOB*, 
the regular construction. Cf. Ges. - ; Ko. *. 8. This verse is 
omitted also by Oort, Or., We., Now., Marti, Rothstein (Jojachin, 38). 
Note that nwa* is omitted, as in v. 1. Cf. 8 1 - 1S . 9. On the genuine 
ness of mxax na, see the comments. "^nx 1 ?] Om., with Kenn. 4, 201, 
(gNA& g^ h ere as j n 512^ the only other place where it appears in Zechariah 
after nox na. itceB , ipy^n] Pausal forms. Cf. Ges. 29 - 4 ( &>. o^onn] 


On the pi., see Ges. 5 124 - R - <&>. 10. ij] Rd., with 22 mss., < H & <F, 
-ui. VPN irx] This idiom has already occurred twice (v. 9 3 ), but both 
times in so simple a form that it did not require explanation. In both 
cases K^N was used distributively in apposition with the subject of the 
clause in which it stood; the most frequent construction. There are 
cases in which its relation to the context is difficult to determine. One of 
the most difficult is in Gn. i5 10 , which Bu. (Urgeschichte, 285), translates, 
"He laid each (animal), its one part over against the other." The con 
struction is probably to be regarded as elliptical. Supply the pi. suf. 
after p% and the result is, "He placed (them) each with one part over 
against the other," U"N being an appositive of the object of the vb., as in 
8 10 . The peculiar construction found here occurs only once elsewhere, 
viz., Gn. g 5 , where vns tf N TO is generally rendered, as in AV., "at the 
hand of every man s brother." So De., Di., Wri., Dr., et al. Bu. ob 
jects to this rendering because, he says, it means only that all men are 
brothers. He insists on the reciprocal significance of the idiom, explain 
ing it as only a later and more compact form of vnx TO r\*<. He 
therefore translates the whole clause, " From every beast will I demand it 
(your blood), and from men, from one another (from men reciprocally) 
will I demand the soul of men." Cf. Urgeschichte, 288. Similarly 
Gunkel, Holzinger. This translation, in spite of the parenthetical para 
phrases, is not entirely clear. The phrase "from men reciprocally" is 
especially perplexing. It cannot, of course, mean that the reciprocity is 
to be between God and men. If, however, it is to be among men, the 
only idea suggested is that men are to require of one another the blood 
of a slain fellow, the parties being the avenger and the murderer. Now, 
this may have been the thought of the Heb. author, but, if it was, he contra 
dicted himself in the effort to express it; for, if rnN B">N TC = ITIN *va t^N, 
Yahweh says in the main clause that he will make requirement for blood, 
but in the phrase in question that men will do so. In other words the 
distributive I^N is treated as if the vb. were not u ; -nx, I will demand, but 
vcn-p, they (men) will demand. The contradiction can be remedied, on 
the supposition that the above equation is correct, by removing the phrase 
to the end of the clause, or treating it as a marginal gloss to the whole of 
it. Then B"N will be an appositive of onsn 2 , and, like it, in the gen.; 
and the whole will read, " From the hands of men will I demand the lives 
of men (one s life from the hand of another)." The object of the gloss- 
ator was to call attention to the fact that, while in the first instance the 
slayer and the slain are widely unlike, in the second they belong to the 
same species. The construction of v*x is that in which it is found, with 
out vnx, in Gn. 42", which should be rendered, not as it is by Bu. (/. c., 
285), "to return their money to each one into his sack," but, "to return 
their money, each one s (money) to his sack." The object of this dis 
cussion was to determine whether ITIN K"N VD could be treated as the 

7 4 1 205 

equivalent of vnx TO tr<N. If, as has been shown, it can, in the proper 
position, there is reason for supposing that Zechariah, although in 8 17 he 
uses mjn njn nx IT^N, here preferred the more concise VHN E^N njn. 
There can be no question but that the meaning is the same in both cases. 
The difference between the two is no greater or more significant than that 
between "evil one against another and "evil against one another." 
Nor can one find any fault with the construction, since, if the regular 
form were substituted for the one actually used, U"N could be construed, 
as it frequently is, as an appositive of the subject of the clause. Cf 
Ges. $ 139 - <>. & has the equivalent of, vrw Sj? C^N njn, but <B s ren 
dering favours fH. See also 3L 

11. iro] Rd., with <S L & QT, ocro. jnntfo] So as not. Cf. Ges. 119 
3. (d) a). 12. -vcr] A second ace. Cf. Ges. 5 * <*>. n-nrn] (5, 
rou y6/iou ^tou, a case of dittog. in the translation. Cf. irvev/MiTa aurou. 
anann nxi] The object of this gloss evidently was to prevent the reader 
from interpreting minn in the sense of instruction, and require him to dis 
tinguish between "the Law" and "the Prophets"; which, of course, is 
contrary to the teaching of Zechariah. inna] This expression, too, must 
be considered a gloss because it, like the similar additions of <, removes 
Yahweh further from his people than Zechariah represents him. 13. Tni] 
The Gk. and Syr. translators were misled by the gloss at the end of 
the verse, the former into rendering this vb. by the fut, and the latter into 
translating fop as if it were in the i sg. See also the Eng. Vrss. It is 
evident, however, that the prophet is here giving the result of the obdu 
racy of his people. Now, that result, as appears from v. 14 , when the 
prophet wrote, was a matter of history. Hence TPI must have its usual 
meaning, while the vbs. that follow should also refer to the past. Those 
of the latter part of the verse cannot be so rendered. Contra New. 
This fact in itself is sufficient to confirm the opinion already expressed 
in the comments, to the effect that the passage to which they belong is 
an interpolation. See also -icx for ON:, which, as has elsewhere been 
noted (i 3 4 6 ), is an indication of ungenuineness. Nip] & adds a pro 
nominal object to this vb., and <S NA Q- rL do the same for ipntr, but such 
additions are not required by the Heb. idiom. Cf. Pr. i 24 On the 
vocalisation of the latter vb., see Ges. <*>. 14. O-^DNI] Since the 
next vb. is a pf., the i of this one should be pointed as i cons., and since 
in the protasis the speaker was the prophet, the original here must have 
been D^JTDM. The person was changed to bring this vb. into harmony 
with J?CE>N of the interpolated passage preceding. There is, therefore, 
no necessity for discussing the peculiar vocalisation of 4H. Cf. Ges. 

$M. 3. R. 2; B2.2 (c) R. 2._ Sy] Rd., with <g (&), S. 3)J?T] Bu. justly 

claims that the main dichotomy of the verse should be at this point. 
n;c] On p privative, see Ges. u9 - 8 *> < l >. no^S] On the use of 
V instead of the ace., see Ges. % " <> <>. 


(2) THE PROMISE OF THE FUTURE (8 1 " 8 ). 

The prophet announces that Yahweh will presently return to 
Jerusalem to bless it with wonderful prosperity, and that thence 
forth there will be an unbroken covenant between him and its in 
habitants. The paragraph consists of five declarations, each of 
which is introduced by a Tims saith Yahweh of Hosts. 

I/. The usual introductory foimula is followed by a very em 
phatic assertion of the divine jealousy. In i 14 f> this sentiment was 
found to have a twofold reference, manifesting itself in sympathy 
or compassion on the one side, and in anger or vengeance on the 
other. Here, also, both sides appear, but they are not so clearly 
distinguished. First Yahweh says, I have been very jealous for 
Sion; by which he means that he has been anxious and eager to 
help it because it is the home of his chosen people. At the same 
time his indignation has been stirred against the unnamed oppres 
sors who have devastated it. Very furious, he declares, has been 
my jealousy concerning it. Cf. i 15 . 3. From this point onward 
Yahweh, forgetting his indignation, reveals only the tender side of 
his jealousy. He begins by saying that he will now, after an ab 
sence of seventy years, return to Sion, and the form of the verb indi 
cates that he intends to do so speedily, that, in fact, his return is as 
good as accomplished. Moreover, this is to be a final reunion be 
tween him and his people, for he is careful to say that he will abide, 
make his permanent home, in Jerusalem. The latter half of the 
verse describes in the briefest terms the character and condition of 
the Jerusalem of the future. First, says Yahweh, it shall be called 
the faithful city. Isaiah (i 21 ) described the faithful city as "full of 
justice, where righteousness dwelt." Zechariah, to judge from the 
preceding chapter, doubtless had the same idea. Neither of them, 
however, considered this a complete definition. The latter would 
have included all the virtues the lack of which had brought the 
wrath of Yahweh upon the fathers. In vv. 16 f- 19 he specifies truth 
fulness and peacefulness as additional requirements. It is safe, 
therefore, to infer that, when he put this name into the mouth of 
Yahweh, he was giving expression to his faith that the time was 

8 1 -* 207 

coming when the people of Jerusalem and Judah would not only 
worship Yahweh alone, but loyally observe all the precepts he had 
given them for the regulation of their conduct toward one another. 
There follows another name the application of which is easily mis 
understood. The sentence in which it occurs, so far as its structure 
is concerned, is evidently parallel with the one just discussed. If, 
therefore, it were complete, it would read, the mountain of Yahweh 
of Hosts shall be called the holy mountain. It is not so clear what 
is meant by the mountain of Yahweh. At first sight one might take 
it as meaning the hill on which the new temple was being erected ; 
but there is not so much to be said for this interpretation as might 
be expected. The name given to the mountain cannot be cited in 
its favour. By "the holy mountain," or its equivalent, is generally 
meant, not Mount Moriah,* as it is sometimes called, but either 
Jerusalem, as a hilly city (Is. 27" 66 20 , etc.) or the whole hilly 
region of Judea. Cf. Is. 1 1 9 Je. 37 13 , etc. It is therefore necessary 
to take it in one of these senses in this connection, and, in view of 
the fondness of the Hebrews for parallelism, it is more than prob 
able that the former is the one in which the prophet intended 
that it should be taken. His idea, then, is that, when the temple 
has been completed and Yahweh has returned to it, the whole 
city will be sanctified and preserved inviolate by his presence. 
Thus the two names are only another way of putting the famil 
iar promise of v. 8 , "they shall be my people, and I will be their 

4. The presence of Yahweh will secure to his people peace and 
prosperity. One result of such conditions will be that there shall 
again, as in the best period of their history, sit in the streets of 
Jerusalem, enjoying the ease as well as the respect to which they are 
entitled, old men and women, each with his (or her) staff in his (or 
her) hand, a sign and symbol of that best of Yahweh s blessings, 
from the Hebrew s stand-point, multitude of days. Cf. Ex. 2o 12 
Dt. 4 40 Is. 65 20 Pr. 3 2 , etc. The picture is true to the habits of the 
inhabitants of Palestine, both ancient and modern. Cf. i Mac. 
i4 9 . Their houses are, and always have been, so dark that they 
have been accustomed to do their work and seek their pleasure in 

* So Jer., Dm., Rosenm., Ke., Brd., Wri., el al. 


the open air. 5. The prophet completes the peaceful picture by 
describing the city as full of boys and girls playing in the streets. 
It is clear that he is here predicting an era of large families. This, 
however, is not the whole thought. There will not only be many 
children, but conditions will be such that they will be able to spend 
their early years in ideal freedom from untimely burdens. Mean 
while, according to 3 10 , those of middle age will divide their time 
between labour and the enjoyment of the fruits of their exertions. 
6. It was difficult for the people of Zechariah s time, pinched as 
they were by poverty, and harassed by their neighbours, to believe 
that such blessings were in store for them and their country. Yah- 
weh rebukes them for their lack of faith. If it is difficult, lit., -won 
derful, in the eyes of the remnant of this people, he says, in my eyes 
also it will be difficult!? The last clause is usually treated as a 
simple question, but in the original the construction indicates that 
the prophet intended to give it an ironical turn. See further the 
critical notes. 7. In his final declaration Yahweh more fully re 
veals his plan for increasing the population of Judea. He will not 
only bless those already there with sons and daughters, but he will 
reinforce them from the regions to which he scattered their fathers. 
I will save my people, he says, from the country of the rising, and 
from the country of the setting sun. The eastern country, of course, 
is Babylonia. The western is probably Egypt. Cf. Is. 1 1 11 * 2y 13 , 
etc. 8. From both he will bring back the exiled Jews and they 
shall abide, dwell without further disturbance, and he with them, 
in Jerusalem and the surrounding country, f A guarantee for the 
permanence of the new order is found in the renewed covenant to 
which reference has already been made. They shall be to me a 
people, says Yahweh, and I will be to them a God, in faithfulness 
and righteousness."^ Note that the terms are the same for both 
parties. They are both bound to remain steadfast to the relation 
now established forever, and, that it may never be severed, to ob 
serve without ceasing all the requirements that this relation im 
plies. This, whether in God or man, is Righteousness. 

* In this passage only the first two names belong to the original prophecy. In both Assyria 
must be interpreted as meaning Babylonia, the then world power, 
t Cf. Ho. 2 23 . Ez. iiM 3 6 28 . t Cf. 2i</io gs Ex. 2 9 . 



1. niN3x] Add, with 42 mss., & W, ^N, as in all the other instances of 
the use of this formula. 2. nifox] Omitted, but wrongly, by fi>. Cf. 
w. 4. s. 7. 9. Twp] (5 adds TTJV lepovffXijfA Kal from i 14 . nnm] A word 
of kindred meaning substituted for the proper internal object. Cf. Ges. 
117. 2. R. (a). 3. mm] Add, with 8 Kenn. mss., (gcomp. $ nW 3X, 
as in all similar cases in this chapter. 4. C^NI] The % which is unneces 
sary, is omitted by Kenn. 150, <&. In & it is retained and a vb. very 
properly inserted in the clause which follows. 5. wSc\] Masc. after a 
fern. subj. Cf. Ges. h i- 7 <ft> R - 3 . On the gender of the subj., cf. 
BDB. D pnfrD] Masc. with nouns of both genders. Cf. Ges. % 132 - R - 3 . 
6. ^3] A conditional particle, comparatively frequent in legal pas 
sages. According to BDB. it usually represents the case supposed as 
more likely to occur than ex. Cf. Ex. 2i 2 - 7 - 1S , etc. ann 0^3] These 
words can only be rendered in those days; but, so rendered, they have no 
meaning in their present setting. They must therefore be regarded as 
a gloss, perhaps, to the next clause. DJ] Ew. % zu & and Ges. $ 15 - l ex 
plain the omission of the interrogative particle in this case as due to the 
emphatic arrangement of the sentence. This, however, is a mistake, 
since it can be shown that the ratio of cases in which the arrangement is 
irregular, among sentences usually classed as questions, is as great for 
those that have the particle as for those from which it is omitted. The 
truth is that, when the particle is intentionally omitted, the clause which 
it would introduce is generally not a simple question, but contains an ele 
ment of incredulity, irony, sarcasm or repugnance which it would not so 
much denote as conceal. Cf. i S. 21" / l5 22? Hb. 2" Jb. 2 10 u 3 3718 3 g 18 
4o 30 /4i 6 La. 3 36 . There are many passages equally ironical, however, 
especially in the book of Job, in which the particle is employed. Cf. 
Nrd. 1098 - 4 - *; also Old Testament and Semitic Studies, ii, 115 /. 7. 
tfairn N13D mrc] We. would read Ni3D tfctfn mro. Cf. Mai. i 11 
Ps. 5 1 H3 3 . This, no doubt, would be more elegant, but, since mro is 
often used alone in the sense of the east, the present reading is perfectly 
defensible. Cf. Am. 8 12 etc. 8. BHN] (S L adds et s rrjv yijv air&v. 
<&, KaraffKijvwffu, as in v. 3 ; but Comp. 


The prophet recalls the want and suffering through which his 
people have passed, assuring them that henceforth Yahweh will 
bless them with abundance and happiness, yet only on condi 
tion that they contribute to this end, not by observing fasts and 
other formalities, but by obeying faithfully the demands of right 


9. The section begins with an exhortation, Let your hands be 
strong. It reminds one of Hg. 2 4 and the work on which the Jews, 
under the leadership of Zerubbabel, were then, and had for many 
months been, engaged, the erection of the second temple. Zecha- 
riah, too, had this in mind; for those for whom the exhortation is 
intended are addressed as ye that hear in these days these words, the 
words above written, from the mouths of the prophets that were, and 
prophesied, at the time when the foundation of the house of Yahweh 
of Hosts was laid. This is an unmistakable reference to Haggai 
and his unknown associates and the glowing predictions by which 
they sought to encourage the people, first to undertake, and then 
to continue, their sacred task. Cf. Hg. 2 6ff \ These inspiring 
utterances Zechariah claims merely to be repeating. 10. There 
follows a more detailed presentation of the reason why the work 
in hand should be courageously and vigorously prosecuted. It 
is found in the contrast between the conditions preceding the com 
mencement of these operations and those that are now promised, 
Before those days, in those former days, before the foundation of 
the temple, hire for men was not paid, lit., did not become, and hire 
for cattle there was none, because, as Haggai puts it, Yahweh had 
commanded a drought that fell like a blight "upon men and cattle, 
and upon all the labour of their hands." Cf. also Hg. 2 16f -. There 
were other troubles to which Haggai does not refer. The little 
community then, as in the later days of Nehemiah (Ne. 4 1/7 ), was 
almost constantly harassed by gentile neighbours; nor -was there 
peace for one that went or came, on account of the adversary. More 
over, there was so frequent and general strife among the Jews them 
selves that it seemed as if Yahweh by an evil spirit had moved, lit., 
sent, all men one against another. Thus they were rendered less 
capable of enduring the other ills by which they were afflicted. 

11. It was Yahweh who sent all these misfortunes. He was 
angry with his people, and this was his way of showing his dis 
pleasure. But now that a new temple is rising on the site of the 
old one, the prime cause of his anger has been removed. He says, 
therefore, / am not as informer days, before the new structure was 
begun, toward the remnant of this people, the little colony in and 
about Jerusalem. Here, again, Zechariah follows Haggai, who, 

8 9 - 211 

it will be remembered, predicted (2 18 ) that a new era of prosperity 
would begin with the foundation of the house of Yahweh. 12. 
There is further evidence of the dependence of Zechariah on his 
predecessor in the language in which Yahweh now describes the 
effect of the change in his attitude toward his people. Thus, the 
promise of Yahweh that he will sow peace, or prosperity, if this 
is the original reading, has its parallel in Hg. 2 9 , where Yahweh 
says, "In this place (Jerusalem) I will grant prosperity. Cf. Mai. 
3 20 /4 2 . The details that follow also remind one of Haggai. 
Perhaps the first clause, the vine shall yield its fruit, was not sug 
gested by the earlier prophet, but the next two are an adaptation of 
Hg. i 10 . The future, according to Zechariah, is to differ from the 
recent past in that the earth shall yield, not withhold, its produce, 
because heaven, instead of refusing, shall grant its dew. These are 
great blessings, but the best of all is that they are to be permanent. 
I will cause the remnant of this people, says Yahweh, to inherit, as 
a lasting possession, all these things. 13. Finally, Zechariah ex 
pands the brief sentence with which Haggai closes the parallel 
passage (2 19 ) with an antithetical statement in which he again sets 
the past and the present over against each other. In the first place 
Yahweh reminds his people of their late unfortunate condition. 
Ye were a curse among the nations. This does not mean that they 
were a source or occasion of misfortune to their neighbours, but that 
the other nations, seeing their unfortunate condition, recognised in 
it the hand of Yahweh, and, as they would have cast a stone at the 
grave of a malefactor, added to the divine penalty their reproaches 
and execrations.* The other member of the antithesis must be 
similarly interpreted. This is clear from the clause, I will help 
you, by which it is introduced. The fact that the Jews are to be 
the object of Yahweh s help makes it necessary, when he adds, and 
ye shall be a blessing, to understand this as meaning that they will 
henceforth be blessed by him, and universally recognised as the 
special objects of the divine favour, so that when men wish for 
themselves or others, they will be able to conceive of no greater 
felicity than that which the Chosen People enjoy.f For a similar 
antithesis, see Dt. 28 63 Je. 31" f> . The prospect of so complete a 

* Cf. Dt. 2i23 Je. 2 5 i 8 2 6 6 , etc. t Q. On. 12* * Ps. 72". 


change in their fortunes is good ground for encouragement. Hence 
Yahweh repeats the exhortation with which the paragraph began, 
Fear not; let your hands be strong. 

14. In this verse and the next Yahweh repeats the assurance 
just given, employing the same means as before, antithesis, to give it 
emphasis. In the first place he recalls the past, including the dark 
gap in the history of Judah. / purposed to do you, as a people, 
evil, he says, referring to the threats of which the messages of the 
earlier prophets largely consisted, when, and because, your fathers 
provoked me, by neglecting the instruction they had received. The 
provocation was so serious and persistent that, although, even at 
the last moment, he would gladly have spared them, he did not re 
pent, but gave them into the hands of their enemies. 15. This 
purpose having been fulfilled, Yahweh has conceived a new pur 
pose, suggested by love rather than anger and fraught with salva 
tion instead of destruction. So, he declares, have I again in these 
days purposed to do good to Jerusalem and the house of Judah. To 
make the parallel between these two verses and the one preceding 
more complete, he adds the reassuring words, fear not. 16. At 
first sight vv. 16 f> seem a useless repetition. They are, indeed, 
a repetition, but by no means one devoid of significance. The 
prophet wished to add an important modification to the thought of 
w. u - 13 , but, if he had attached it immediately to v. 13 , the effect 
would have been to weaken the impression already made without 
obtaining for the new thought the attention it deserved. It was 
better, therefore, to take a fresh start and make the added thought 
the principal one in a new connection, repeating the one to be quali 
fied by way of introduction. This latter is the restoration of Yah 
weh J s favour. His people, however, must not be allowed to sup 
pose that his new purpose is arbitrary, and its fulfilment uncondi 
tioned; or that the only condition is the maintenance of the temple 
and its worship. To prevent any such mistake he again reminds 
them, as in 7 f> , that they have duties to one another which they 
may not leave undone. These, he says, are the things that ye shall 
do; and he proceeds to enumerate them. The first of these require 
ments, that they speak the truth one to another, is not mentioned in 
7 f> , but the second, deal peaceful justice in your gates, is found 

8-" 213 

there in a slightly different form. By peaceful justice is doubtless 
meant a justice so impartial that none can quarrel with it. See the 
"peaceful counsel" of 6 13 . The reference to the gates recalls the 
fact that in an oriental town the gate, or the open space near it, has 
always been the place where men were most accustomed to gather, 
and therefore where justice, or a pretence of it, was administered. 
Cf. Gn. iQ 1 Am. 5 10 - 12 , etc. 17. The prophet could hardly have 
omitted the broad principle enunciated in y 10 . He therefore again 
adjures his people, Do not devise evil one against another in your 
hearts. Finally, he adds a new precept, which, however, is familiar 
enough to the reader of the Old Testament, being embodied in the 
third of the Ten Commandments, nor love a false oath* The final 
clause, if interpreted strictly, would refer only to the last two items 
in the preceding enumeration; for, of course, Zechariah did not in 
tend to say that Yahweh hated truth and justice. It is probable, 
however, that the prophet, when he added this statement, was 
thinking, not of these virtues, but the neglect of them; otherwise he 
would hardly have used the word all of the things hated. Three 
of the things here mentioned are among the seven "abominations" 
enumerated in Pr. 6 16 ff ; but there does not seem to be any connec 
tion between the two passages. The prophet certainly did not 
borrow from the sage. 

9. nuanS ~\vx\ The whole clause is rejected as an addition to the 
original by Marti; but there are good reasons for retaining all but the last 
two words, (i) It seems necessary to make the reference to the prophets 
easily intelligible; and (2) it is required by ann o>D>n of v. 10 , which would 
be meaningless without it. There is room for doubt, however, about 
ova, for which (g & seem to have had DVD, a reading which some critics 
have adopted. So Ew., Hi., Now., Marti. On the other hand, 4H is 
supported by the fact that the words in question are evidently those 
spoken by Haggai and others at or about the time when the movement to 
rebuild the temple was started. Cf. Hg. i 6 ff - 2 15 ff -. The last two 
words, nuanV S:rnn, seem to have been added by some one who, fol 
lowing the Chronicler, wished to remind the reader that this was the sec 
ond attempt of the kind. 10. onn D>DTI] Marti would read nSxn a>D^n; 
but he is forced to emend by his rejection of the latter part of v. 9 . If 
the alleged gloss be retained, it will appear that the prophet distinguished 
three points or periods of time, these days, the time when the foundation, 

* Cf. Dt. s 4 Ex. 23? Dt. iQ 16 ff , etc. 


etc., and here the period before these days, i. e., before the temple was be 
gun. rpnj] <& has the future here and throughout the verse, except in 
some curs, mostly of L. nWxi] Dr. (k note 2) classes this among 
the exceptions to the rule that i cons, takes __ before the i sg. impf . ; but it 
may be simply a mistake for nSrxi, or, as Da. ^ 51 - R - 6 suggests, the 
vb. may be a frequentative. The former alternative is favoured by 
Now., Marti, Kit. 11. O>DO] For 2 + 0. Cf. Ges. ^ s 118 - 6 <*>. IJN] 
Some mss. have the pausal form IJN. 12. oiWn jnr] These words can 
only be rendered, as in B, the seed of peace or prosperity. The phrase 
has sometimes been connected with the following context, JDJ being con 
strued as an appositive of jnr. So Ew., Hi., Ke., Koh., Wri., et al. 
There seems to. be no reason, however, why the vine should be so dis 
tinguished. Hence, others have preferred to emend by reading n>"u 
DiSr, its seed, or, more exactly, the increase of its seed, shall be sure, pros 
perous. So Klo., Now. To this suggestion there is the objection that it 
is not sufficiently evident to what the sf. of the subj. refers, and when one 
is informed that the antecedent is nnxir of v. ", the combination thus 
produced is confusing. It is much better, with We., to change >ir to 
njnrx, thus getting the intelligible thought, I will sow prosperity. Cf. 
Ho. 223/21 Je. 31" f -. So also Marti, GASm., Kit. 13. Vaosr] This 
name has occurred once before in these prophecies, viz., in 2 2 /n 19 . It 
was found, however, by a comparison of that verse with 2 4 /i 21 that it (the 
name) was an interpolation. The same is the case here. In the next 
four verses the persons addressed are the same as in this passage. But in 
v. 15 , where the prophet has occasion to give them a name, he calls them 
simply " the house of Judah." In other words, Zechariah did not predict 
the return of Israel, but some one familiar with such passages as Je. 23* ff 
Ez. 37 15 ff -, missing any reference to the northern kingdom, supplied the 
name here without noticing that from his stand-point v. 15 also needed 
emendation. Both names are omitted by We., Now., Marti, Kit. 14. 
iCN 2 ] A third case of this use of the word where one would expect sx:, 
and in a passage that only disturbs the connection. Cf i 3 7 13 . xSi] The 
negative is omitted by j$ in Par. and Lond. 15. \-ICCT] (8 & have a 
connective, but the fact that both have the pf . shows that it was wanting 
in the original. On this construction, see Ges. * 12 - 2 <*>. 16. injn nx] 
Seven mss. have injn Sx. So also <&. nrx 2 ] A gloss to oV?i? sug 
gested by 7 9 . Om. < A( 2 L <& H & H . So New., Now., Marti, Kit mSr. 
Two mss. prefix i. So also &. It is possible that the original was oW, 
which would practically be a synonym of ncx. Cf. 7 Dt. 25 15 Ru. 2 12 . 
17. ji c ; >x] See note on 7 10 . nc x] Om., with 5 mss., <& g>. So Bla., 
We., Now., Marti, Kit. This method of disposing of the word relieves 
one from the necessity of attributing to nx 2 entirely unwarranted mean 
ings or functions. Cf. Ges. % 117 - R - 7 ; Da. 5 . R. 4. The insertion of 
the relative was probably due to oversight of the sign of the ace. nw] 

8 18 " 2i 5 

(g & add P1S2X, whether correctly or incorrectly, it is impossible to de 
cide, since Zechariah writes mrv alone, even at the end of the verse. Cf. 


The fasts will all be transformed into seasons of rejoicing, and 
the nations, seeing the blissful change in the condition of the Jews, 
will come to worship their God, that they may share his favour. 

18. The introductory statement is regular, as in the case of the 
first two oracles. 19. The people of Bethel, in their message to the 
priests and the prophets, mentioned only one fast, that of the fifth 
month. Cf. f. Zechariah in f refers to another, that of the 
seventh month. It now appears that there were no fewer than four, 
the first of which fell in the fourth month, Tammuz. It also com 
memorated an incident in the final struggle at Jerusalem, for it was 
on the ninth day of the fourth month, that is, toward the end of 
June, when the breach was made in the wall and the Babylonians 
entered the city.* On the origin of the fasts of the fifth and seventh 
months, see f- 5 . That of the tenth, Tebeth, was instituted as a 
reminder of the date, the tenth of that month, that is, toward the 
end of December, on which the forces of Nebuchadrezzar arrived 
at Jerusalem and began the siege of the city.f These days may 
still be celebrated, but not, as heretofore, with fasting and mourn 
ing. They are to be transformed into occasions for joy and gladness, 
even cheerful festivals. % This picture was calculated to make those 
for whom the message was intended forget the past with all its 
suffering. The prophet evidently feared that it might make them 
forget their responsibilities. That they may not he adds an exhor 
tation, obedience to which will insure the fulfilment of their most 
sanguine expectations, But love truth and peace. The latter, of 
course, includes the things that make for peace. Cf. v. 18 . 20. 
The prophet has already (2 15 / 11 ) intimated that the time would 
come when other nations would participate in the blessings prom 
ised to the Chosen People. He now resumes this thought for the 
purpose of making it the climax of his presentation of the divine 

* Q. 2 K. 25 3 t. Je. 39 2 f . t Cf. 2 K. 25 Je. 39 1 . 

I Cf. Am. 8i Je. 


program. Speaking for Yahweh, he says, There shall yet come 
peoples, peoples now hostile or indifferent to the Jews, even the in 
habitants of many cities, the cities of the just mentioned peoples. 
Cf. Is. 2 3 Mi. 4 2 . 21. There will be so general eagerness among 
these peoples that the inhabitants of one city shall go to another, 
saying, Let us by all means go to entreat Yahweh. The final words 
are not a continuation of the same speech, but apparently the reply 
of the one addressed, I also will go. 

22. The result of this universal interest will be that many peoples 
and mighty nations shall come to seek Yahweh of Hosts in Jerusalem, 
and to entreat Yahweh. The means by which they will seek to 
appease him and secure his favour is no doubt the presentation of 
sacrifices in the new temple; which, indeed, they are to assist in 
building. 23. Zechariah concludes with a picture that seems to 
have been suggested by Is. 45" ff -. The great exilic prophet, also, 
looked forward to a time when the gentiles would recognise Yah 
weh as the true God and the Jews as his peculiar people, and he 
undertook in the passage cited to portray them in their new rela 
tion. The result was hardly worthy of him. His Egyptians, Ethi 
opians and Sabaeans, as they come, bringing their costly gifts and 
casting themselves in chains at the feet of the servants of Yahweh, 
too evidently betray racial pride and resentment in the delineator. 
Zechariah is less extravagant. The events of the last twenty years 
have taught him respect, if not friendliness, for the nations. Still, 
he cannot deny his religion or abandon his faith in the final triumph 
of Yahweh over all false deities. In those days, he says, ten men of 
all the tongues of the nations shall seize the skirt of a Jew, saying, 
We will go with you, for we have heard that God is with you. Note 
the pains he takes to use the name God in this connection. In 
this he imitates his exilic teacher. Cf. Is. 45". The speech is a 
confession by the gentiles that they have finally found the Power 
after whom they have hitherto been blindly and vainly groping, 
the only Saviour, in the God of the Hebrews. 

18. -insS. <&NB onii n , n vj Probably the correct reading. Only 2 
mss. have the pi. On the sg. after a pi. subj., see Ges. 5 ne. 2 (). 
D^IE] (& adds KCU eiKppavd^a-ea-de = onnci: \ So & H , but there seems to 
be no warrant for this reading. 20. iy] H rds. i;*, (& & 21 iy. {&& ignore 

glS-23 2iy 

nE>N, which, if retained, must be construed as introducing a subject, not 
an object clause. Cf. v. n EC. $ 4 ; BDB., art. T^N, 8. a^oy] Kenn. 
150 adds oon. So (8. >3E"i] &, by omitting i, makes the prtc. an 
appositive of a^DJ?. 21. nns 1 ] ( B 9, TT^TC 7r6Xeis, (& N *, 7r6Xts ?r6Xas /cal 
(rui eXe&roi Te KaTot/cotfj/rcus Tr^ire ?r6Xets. "pSn] The inf. abs. after a 
finite vb. C/. Ges. 112> 3 (i) . nirp PN] C5 has TOI) Trpcxr&Trov Kvplov = 
nin^ >JD nx both here and in v. 22 . r Ji nnSs] GI introduces this reply by 
1D jn 1 ? pi, TM 5 one will say to that one. Ew. divides the verse after 
mrr 1 , thus making the second inf. tfpa*? dependent on roSs. The 
whole clause niiox tfpaSl, which should precede mSnS, is probably a 
gloss. Cf. v. 22 . 22. B DWj; DMJ] C5, e^m TroXXa; , ^2nai paSo, as in 
Je. 25" 27 7 . 23. ntt N] See note on v. 20 . tpnnni] Resumptive, after 
the long intervening subject. Cf. Dr. % m - note . aany 1 ] C5 & render 
the sf. as if it were sg., but at the end of the verse (exc. <S A ) have the pi. 
IJJ?DIP] Add "o, with 2 mss. and (S HI U* S. 


The book of Zechariah, so called, contains, besides the eight 
chapters universally attributed to the prophet of that name, six the 
origin and authorship of which have long been in dispute. The 
questions when and by whom they were written must therefore be 
discussed and, if possible, settled; but first it seems necessary to 
take a preliminary survey of the content of the chapters as a whole, 
and especially to inquire into the condition of the text as it has been 
transmitted by the Massoretes. 


The ninth chapter begins with a word, St^D, sometimes rendered 
burden, but more correctly utterance, which frequently appears in 
titles, especially in the book of Isaiah. Cf. I3 1 I5 1 , etc. It has 
generally been regarded as so used in this case, and, since another 
occurs in I2 1 , as the title, or a part of it, of chs. 9-11. Thus it has 
been customary to divide Second Zechariah, as it is called, into 
two parts, each of which has three chapters, and, probably by acci 
dent rather than design, the same number (46) of verses. The 
genuineness of 12*, however, is now pretty generally questioned. 
In its present form it is quite indefensible. Moreover, since the 
time of Ewald there have been those who have claimed that i3 7 " 9 
is the conclusion of i i 4ff \ One cannot, therefore, take for granted 
the correctness of the Massoretic arrangement, but must reopen 
the case and make one s own analysis. 

It must be remembered that the question concerns the arrange 
ment, and not the authorship, of these chapters. If this distinc 
tion is kept in mind, there will not be much difficulty in deciding 



that, whatever may be the case with the others, or any part of them, 
the first three chapters form a group with noticeable points of con 
tact and connection. Thus the " also " of 9" clearly indicates that, 
whoever may have written the preceding verses, the author of this 
one intended to connect them with what follows. The connec 
tion between 9 llff - and lo 1 -!! 3 is unmistakable; for, besides the 
references to Israel in both passages, there is the peculiar metrical 
form in which they are cast to mark them as parts of one composi 
tion. The rest of ch. 1 1 has not the same form, in fact, most of it 
is plain prose, and there is room for doubt whether it is the work 
of the same author as the first verses; but it evidently owes its pres 
ent position in the book of Zechariah to the fact that, like io 3 , it 
has for its subject worthless shepherds, and 13 7 " 9 should be, and no 
doubt originally was, attached to it for the same reason. 

Thus far there has been a traceable unity. Here, however, 
there comes a break, and from this point onward the marks that 
have been noted are conspicuously absent. The author of i2 l , 
therefore, whoever he was, was justified in introducing a new title. 
It suggests several questions. The only one germane to the present 
discussion is whether this title covers the rest of the book, i3 7 " 9 ex- 
cepted, or, rather, whether there is a connection between the parts 
of this latter half similar to that which has been traced through the 
first three chapters. There seems to be such a connection. At 
any rate, Jerusalem is prominent throughout as a centre of interest 
and anticipation. In i3 2 ~ 6 this central point is for the time being 
lost sight of, but the passage can hardly be explained except as 
suggested by 12*, where "the house of David and the inhabitants 
of Jerusalem" are expressly mentioned. This being the case, one 
may still separate Second Zechariah into two divisions, the first 
consisting of chs. 9-11 and i3 7 " 9 , and the second of I2 1 -i3 6 and 14. 

In the first division the first break naturally comes after 9 10 . 
The place for the second is not so easy to determine. There are 
those who find none before the end of ch. io. It is usual, however, 
to make one at the end of ch. 9 or after io 2 . Hitzig makes one at 
each of these two points. So also We., Now., Marti, et al. The 
matter is well put by Keil: "The close connection between v. 2b 
and v. 3 shows that with v. * there commences a new line of thought, 


for which, however, Q 17 prepares the way." The third section, then, 
begins with ic 1 . It includes n 1 " 3 , for (i) these last verses have the 
same metrical form as the preceding, and (2) they lose all signifi 
cance unless they are so connected. The same may be said of i3 7 9 
in relation to n 4 " 17 . In this case the fact that, as v. Ortenberg 
points out,* ii 16 is a parallel to Ez. 34* and i3 7 to Ez. 34 5 confirms 
the inference from form and subject. It is suggested that the 
transfer of i3 ?ff - to its present position in the Massoretic text was 
occasioned by a fancied relation between it and ch. 14. f Per 
haps the reviser thought that the capture and destruction of Jeru 
salem foretold in I4 1 was the fiery trial of i3 9 . Whatever may have 
been the reason for it, the opinion that such a change has been 
made is widely held among biblical scholars.! The remainder, 
after the removal of i3 7fft , naturally divides itself into two sec 
tions, I2 1 -i3 6 and 14. 

2. THE TEXT OF CHS. 9-14. 

The text of the second, like that of the first, part of the book of 
Zechariah has undergone various changes, intentional or unin 
tentional, some of which are of considerable importance. There 
seem to be more of them in the first two chapters than in the remain 
ing four; but this may be only because the regularity of the rhythm 
in p/. makes it easier to detect those that have been made than in 
the prose, or less regular poetry, of the other chapters. There are 
here, as in First Zechariah, a number of cases in which more or 
less significant explanations have been added. See the phrase " the 
house of Judah " in io 3 . The last words of 9 1 are of this character, 
and probably, also, the phrase "against the sons of Greece" in 
9 13 and the statement "a tiller of the soil am I" in i3 5 . The in 
stances of expansion are much more numerous. In some cases 
whole verses have been added. The following are good examples: 
in 9", "in which there is no water"; in io 8 , "for I have redeemed 
thee"; in is 2 , "and over Judah will he be also in the siege against 
Jerusalem." There are not many apparent corrections. The 

* Die Bestandtheile des Buches Sacharja, 53 /. 

t v. Ortenberg, BBS., 55. % So Sta., We., Now M Marti, Kit., et aL 


most notable is in i2 10 , where, as will be explained in the critical 
notes, some one has undertaken to remedy an error by a copyist. 
The following table contains all the changes that have been noted, 
arranged in such a way as to show how the text should be restored 
when necessary. 





2. nx 






8. The entire verse. 


11. 13 D- D px. 

12. TJQ avn DJ : 

13. |v 1^3 hy 

14. ^JINI 

15. : iS3$o 



17. The entire verse. 


n> after JNXD; ncn 
after n?j. 


D"ix pj? for DIN np. 

vm for 101 (?); 
I^ND for iSa. 
naxn for roso. 

n-\om for nnam. 

lair for ia Eh. 
1^3 for ^3. 

irm for D^DX 
o for 3. 







9, i. and all the tribes of 

2. Tyre. 






8. The entire verse. 


11. with no water in it. 

12. for trouble ; to-day, 

also, I declare. 

13. against the sons of 


14. yea, the Lord. 

15. of Hosts; devour 

and ; like a bowl. 


17. The entire verse. 

the eye of man for the 
cities of Aram. 

will he feed ; 
they (shall 
after crown. 

they be) 

pi. of blood for sg.; chief 
for family. 

from an army for an 

he will, for I will, de 

return (imv.) for and 
shall return. 

Thy sons for the sons of 

and they shall rage for 

for for like. 






10, i. unpSn nj?a 

2. pnnr mn 

3. no TN -. 

4. The entire verse. 

6. DJ>?N1 "ON "O 


8. o^nno >D 

10. pjai. 

11. D^J DO noni 

12. The entire verse. 

n, i. 

8. nns 


amatyirn for an attfni. 
SJP for SJL 

for DITNI; 
vm for vm 


ini for iSVnn^. 

nn-ns for ornjno. 
-nSx for "Ss. 

^DNi for IICN 11 ; 

for TW^NI; orvjn for 
in^ -i. 

>^jy pS for "waS; o^Sah 
for a^San. 






10, i. in the time rain. 

2. Yea, they speak 


3. of Hosts; the house 

of Judah; in 

4. The entire verse. 

6. for I am them. 


8. for I have re 

deemed them. 

9. and they shall rear 


10. and Lebanon. 

11. And he will smite 


12. The entire verse. 

n, i. 

2. Wail, cypress de 


8. and I destroy ed- 


moved for were scattered. 

in mire for as it were 

An ambiguous word for I 
will even restore them. 

shall exult for and shall 

sowed for scattered; live 
for rear. 

and I will make them 
mighty for and their 
might (shall be); walk 
for make their boast. 

glory for pasture, 
my God for to me. 

says for say ; abnormal 
form of vb. be rich; 
their, mas. for fem. 

tlterefore the poorest of 
for the traders in; 
binders for bonds. 






II, IO. 

"von? for "ifln?. 


"JJ? p for "jpja. 


J 3- 

nsiTi for -i|iN,n, twice; 

ripi for nnp>. 


"71N for 7MN. 



nnnajn for mnajn; n; % jn 


for nyjni; naxjn for 

nasjni or najnm ; 

w^fli for in^-iai 


SB after ain. 

? ?Nn for 7^)Nn. 

J 3> 7- I"I1N3X ONJ 

in for H3N or nisn with 

out ns; D-^in for 



ij?U for lyui. 

9- , 

12, I. 7frniJ" Xt^D 

i before vnoN. 

Sy for SN. 

2. 071PW DJ1 

3. nnn-wDwi 

4. rp Sjn 


^C7X for ^07X1 >3^ >7 
. . - 

for a^ 1 ?. 

6. (oStfwa) natfM 

^flSw for ^C^N. 
\ * * 


rw*o3 for nj^x-o; a^ 

for oa ? \ 


a^> for <ae^. 



a^ for ^ac*^ ^7N for Ss; 

"^!Dni for nDn\ 






II, IO. 




13, 7. saith Hosts. 

12, i. An oracle Israel. 

2. and over Judah 


3. and there shall be 

gathered earth. 

4. and upon the 

house eyes. 

6. but Jerusalem 
(in Jerusalem). 


10. Sign of the ace. 

shall fall after sword. 

Then before will I say. 

Irregular form of inf. 

Then the poorest of for 

the traders in. 

potter for treasury. I 
have, for thou hast, 
been valued. 

Irreg. form of adj. (fool 

Those that are, for the one 
that is, being destroyed; 
the young for and the 
one that is wandering ; 
the one that surviveth 
for and the one that sur 
viveth or hungereth; 
hoofs for legs. 

worthless (of worthless- 
ness) for foolish. 

smite for I will smite; 
prtc. for adj. (little 

and before die. 

against for to. 

chiefs for families; 
strength for me the in 
habitants for strength 
for the inhabitants. 

chiefs ior families. 

first for as at first , inhab 
itant for inhabitants. 

inhabitant for inhabi 

inhabitant for inhabi 
tants ; me for him ; inf. 
for fin. vb. (grieve). 






12, II. 


naS Dn^u ji after naS 1 . 

PinflC 2 for rncu D twice. 


nhsc D for nncrc twice. 

2. D1N3X 


nj? after iirbS\ 


5. ^ 

"ojpn OTN for >j>jp nmx. 




4. Tii N : Ninn 010 

p-p for "ins. 
ova for IDJ. 

5. mim-ono* 

i before So. 

onpji 1 for onpji; nn NU 
forpnij; SXN for iSxx; 
inSN for T-"iSx; c>u -p 
for vuhp; ID^ for ID>\ 


IIN for iiy; nnp 11 for 
nnpi; pNflp> for pNspi. 

7. mrpS sin 

9. The entire verse. 
10. ptp>nn npi 

aiD 11 for aoi (?); Vnjci for 

ii. na la^i 






12, II. 

and their women alone 
after themselves. 1 

2. of Hosts. 


4. when he prophe- 


5. A tiller I. 

longer before wear. 


4. in that day; which 

eastward; the 
mount of Ol 
ives. 2 

5. Ye shall flee 


and before all. 


7. it is known to 

9. The entire verse. 

10. to the site of the 

first gate. 

11. and they shall 

dwell in it. 

from before the tower. 

families by themselves 
for each family by 

families by themselves 
for each family by 

Const, for abs. of sin. 

man hath sold me for 
the soil hath been my 

thy hands for thy sides. 

as in the day for as. 

ye shall flee by the gorge 
of my mountains for 
Gihon shall be stopped; 
A sal and for the side 
of it; my God for thy 
God; the holy ones for 
his holy ones ; with 
thee for with him. 

light for longer; precious 
things shall contract 
for cold and frost. 

And at the beginning 
changed to preforma- 
tive of the impf. 





14, 12. 

pnn for pan; anica for 


in;n T for injna. 

14. aoD 

f)DNi for HDDXI. 



18. xS -u:>x : xSi 2 

So before D^n 

nso xSi for nx^i or xSi 





S]? for ^ 







14, 12. 

14. round. 


1 8. then before on 
them ( ?) ; the 
following not; 
that come tab 



all before the nations. 

Hiph. for Niph.; their, 
inf. pi. for distributive. 

A faulty construction of 

there shall be collected for 
they shall collect. 

have not presented them 
selves for present them 
selves or present not 

on for all. 



The object of the above attempt to restore the original text of 
the chapters under examination was to furnish a reliable basis for 
further inquiry. There are several questions that demand con 
sideration. The first is whether these chapters are the work of the 
same author as the preceding eight. Tradition says that they all 
came from Zechariah the son of Iddo, and this was for centuries 
the unanimous belief among both Jews and Christians. In this 
case, as in that of the Pentateuch, the impulse to criticism was 
given by a defender of the Scriptures. More than a hundred 
years before Astruc published his famous Conjectures, Joseph 
Mede (f 1638), in explanation of Mt. 27 f -, where a quotation 
from Zc. ii 12 is attributed to Jeremiah, ventured to question tra 
dition. These are his words: "Nay, indeed, there is reason to sus 
pect that the Holy Spirit [through Matthew] desired to claim these 
three chapters, 9, 10, u, for their real author. For there are a great 
many things in them which, if one carefully consider them, seem 
not to suit the time of Zechariah as well as that of Jeremiah."* 
This modest suggestion did not at once attract attention, but finally, 
in 1700, it was adopted and extended by Bishop Kidder, who said 
of chs. 12-14, "This is certain, that such things are contained in 
these chapters as agree with the time of Jeremiah, but by no means 
with that of Zechariah." f He was followed by William Whiston 
in a workj denounced as "a monstrosity" by Carpzov, who 
thus inaugurated a controversy which has had more than two 
sides, and still remains unsettled. 

There was a time when the title at the beginning of the book of 
Zechariah was considered a sufficient guarantee of its unity, but 
since it has been generally recognised that many of the prophecies 
once attributed to Isaiah were written by another person or per 
sons of a much later period an argument of this sort has ceased to 
be convincing. It is the internal evidence, if there is any, on which 

* Dissertationum ecclesiast. Iriga, 1653. 

t The Demonstration of the Messiah, ii, 199. 

% An Essay Towards Restoring the True Text of the Old Testament, 1722. 

Crit. Sac., 781. 


a safe conclusion must be based. When, therefore, the question 
arises whether the prophet who wrote the first eight chapters of 
Zechariah is the author of the last six also, the way to settle it is 
to compare the two parts the one with the other in their most 
noticeable features. In this case, since the peculiarities of the 
style and content of the first part have already been noted, it is 
only necessary to examine the second to see if the same features, 
or any considerable number of them, are reproduced in these last 
chapters. If they are not, that is, if the author who reveals him 
self there is not recognisable as the son of Iddo, the unity of the 
book called by his name must be abandoned. 

The first thing noted concerning the prophecies attributed to 
Zechariah was that, like those of Haggai, they were all dated, and, 
moreover, that they contained references to persons and events 
which made it possible to verify the dates given. Now, there are 
no dates in the last six chapters, nor is there an open reference 
to any person or event by which a date can be fixed. Indeed, 
the author, if there be but one, seems at times purposely to have 
avoided the mention of names, thus making his utterances rid 
dles to his modern, and doubtless to some of his earliest readers. 
See especially n 4ff \ 

In view of what has just been said, one does not expect to find 
the first person used here as it is in the first eight chapters. There, 
it will be remembered, the regular form of introduction was, "Then 
came the word of Yahweh of Hosts to me." Here the first person 
occurs only in n 4ff> , where the introductory formula (v. 4 ) is a 
strange cross between the one heretofore used and another favour 
ite with Zechariah, the result being, "Thus said Yahweh to me."* 
See also "Then said Yahweh to me" in vv. 13 - 15 . 

The fondness of Zechariah for visions was found to be one of 
his prominent characteristics. There are no visions in the last 
six chapters, and this fact has sometimes been cited as proof that 
these chapters were not written by him; unfairly, however, since 
the absence of visions from chs. 7 and 8 is not regarded as a mark 
of ungenuineness, and their occurrence in chs. 9-14 would not mean 
that Zechariah wrote these chapters, unless it could be shown that 

* The Massoretic text has " my God." 


the given visions were used in the manner, and for the same pur 
pose, traceable in the first part of the book. If they revealed an 
apocalyptical tendency, since, as has been shown, Zechariah was 
by no means visionary, they would have a contrary significance. 

The next point to be considered is the literary form in which are 
cast the last six chapters as compared with the first eight. It was 
found that in the earlier chapters the prophet wrote in rather mo 
notonous prose, only now and then, sometimes apparently almost 
unconsciously, adopting a more or less regular rhythmical move 
ment. The ninth chapter at first promises little better, but, by 
supplying a few words that have evidently been lost and omitting 
more that have just as evidently been added, vv. 1 " 10 are trans 
formed into a succession of double tristichs almost as regular as 
the lines of Second Isaiah. There are six of these stanzas. The 
first part of the poem, in form as well as in content, strongly re 
calls Am. i 3 ff -; for, if the introductory phrase and the useless gloss 
"of iron" in v. 3 be omitted, there will remain in the judgment on 
Syria nine regular lines, or, as Harper divides them, three tris 
tichs.* In vv. 6 " 8 there are three more.f The remaining judg 
ments are not so regular, in the form in which they have been trans 
mitted, but each of them has at least one tristich. It is this pre 
vailingly triple arrangement which the author of Zc. Q 1 " 10 follows, 
and that with a regularity which would probably not have been 
attempted by a more original writer. 

With p 11 , as has been explained, begins a new section, and from 
this point onward there is a different literary form. Not that the 
writer, if the same, here passes from poetry to prose. He still 
measures his words, and, indeed, by the three-toned rule, but he 
now puts four lines, instead of twice three, into a stanza, and this 
arrangement is continued as far as v. 3 of the eleventh chapter. 
These are significant facts, and they admit of but one interpreta 
tion. It is clear that, if Zechariah wrote the first eight chapters of 
the book called by his name, he cannot have written the sections 

* Harper, by including the introductory formula and the above-mentioned gloss, gets one 
irregular stanza of five lines. 

t In this case there is another gloss "to deliver to Edom," besides a "Thus saith the Lord 
Yahweh" at the beginning, and a "saith the Lord Yahweh" at the end, of the section to be 


(9 1 -!! 3 ) that have just been described. They constitute an elab 
orate poem; he in his undoubted writings never attempted to put 
together a dozen lines. 

The next section (n 4 17 and i3 7 " 9 ) consists mainly of a prose nar 
rative, to which are added a few lines in a movement somewhat 
different from that of chs. 9 and 10. These lines, which are vari 
ations on a six-toned model, form four tristichs, one at the end of 
ch. n, the others in the transposed passage. The fact that they 
resemble one another in structure shows that i3 7 " 9 should follow 
ch. n, but since the same measure appears in 3 7 , the use of it 
here is favourable rather than unfavourable to the authorship of 

The conclusion with reference to chs. 12 and 14 must be 
that, although they are on the whole more rhythmical than 
the first eight, there is no sustained movement, like that in chs. 
9 and 10, which by its regularity forces itself upon the reader s 

Marti says of i2 ! -i3 6 , "It is impossible to discover in this section a single 
and consistent metrical form. The description of the lamentation in i2 ll - M 
is a repetition of the same words so stereotyped that numerical prevail over 
poetical considerations, and the statement concerning the prophetic order in 
i3 3 - 6 follows in the language of prose. The rest seems modelled after the type 
of the tristich, but the lines in the tristichs are not throughout of the same 
length." He then proceeds, by additions and omissions, often arbitrary and 
sometimes inconsistent, to adjust the text to his theory. In point of fact, al 
though it is possible in this way to produce a succession of approximately equal 
lines, there are only a few places in ch. 12 where there is any ground for sup 
posing that the author consciously measured his words as he wrote. One of 
these is v. 4 , where, strangely enough, Marti throws the measure into con 
fusion by including the introductory formula, and substitutes an evident gloss 
for an equally evident parallel to the main proposition. See the comments; 
also on vv. 6 - 8 - 10 - 12 *-. 

In ch. 14 Marti discovers a scheme of tetrastichs. Three of these he con 
structs out of the first five verses by rejecting the whole of v. 3 , nearly half of 
v. and more than half of v. 5 , and leaving a lacuna to be supplied in each of 
the last two verses; but it will puzzle most readers to find traces of poetical 
form, except at the beginning and the end of the passage, and here it seems to 
be unintentional. The same is true of the occasional lines in the remaining 
verses of the chapter. 

The comparison between the first and second parts of Zecha 
riah as respects literary form must now be supplemented by a more 


minute inquiry, namely, whether the forms of expression charac 
teristic of Zechariah as the author of chs. 1-8 recur in the last six 
chapters under similar circumstances. 

The following are the facts: 

"The word of Yahweh came to me," the formula by which the prophet 
regularly introduces his messages, does not occur in these chapters. In n 4 
the corresponding formula is, "Thus said Yahweh to me." 

"Thus saith (said) Yahweh," with (17) or without (2) "of Hosts," is also 
conspicuous by its absence, the case just cited not being parallel. 

"Saying," which is noticeably frequent (29 t.) in the first eight chapters, 
and would naturally have been used in n 4 ff -, occurs neither there nor else 
where in the last six. 

The appeal to the future, "Then shall ye know," etc., is used 4 t. in the first 
part of the book, but not at all in the second. 

"The Lord of the whole earth" is a title for God that would have suited the 
thought of these last chapters, but it is not used, "the King, Yahweh of 
Hosts," being substituted for it. 

Zechariah makes large use of rhetorical questions, but there is only one 
question of any sort after the eighth chapter. 

The use of the participle, with or without a preceding behold,* or in 
an adverbial sense, is frequent (29 t.) in chs. 1-8. Here it is used in all 
only 12 t. 

A number of words were found to be characteristic of Zechariah. They are 
the following: ->JN, the shorter form of the pron. of the first person singular, 
is used exclusively in the first, but only 2 out of 6 t. in the second, part of the 
book. -\m, in the sense of take pleasure, is not found where it might be ex 
pected, even in ch. 14. ojtt, purpose, also, is wanting, nhn, appease, might 
have been used in i4 18 - 18 , but nvintfn was preferred. X"^p is not found in the 
sense of proclaim in these chapters. nnNtr, remnant, is wanting, irn being 
used in i4 2 in its place, ait?, return, where it might be used adverbially in 
the sense of again, is replaced by Tij?. ptr, dwell, is used like 3i?\ of both God 
and men in chs. 1-8. In chs. 9-14 only the latter occurs, and that 12 t. fir 1 , 
midst, very common in chs. 1-8, does not occur in 9-14, 3ip being employed 
in its place. 

Various other words are cited by Eckardt,f but these are enough 
to show that the vocabulary of chs. 9-14 differs appreciably from 
that of 1-8 in respects in which they ought to agree, if they were 
written by the same perrson. 

In the examination of chs. 1-8 it was noted that Zechariah re 
peatedly referred to "the former prophets." There are no such 
references in chs. 9-14. This, however, does not mean that there 

njn. t ATF.,- 1893, 


are no points of contact between these chapters and other prophetic 
writings. There are, and more of them than there are in the first 
part of the book. 

The following is a list, based on those by Stade and others, of passages in 
the case of which there may be any kind or degree of dependence, with the 
passages to which the first are related (Stade, ZAW., 1881, 41 ff.; Kuiper, 
Zach. ix-xvi, 101 ff.\ Staerk, Untersuchungen, i8jf.): 

9 1 , if it is "the word" that is on the land of Hadrak, has a parallel in Is. 
9 8 / 7 . 9 2 in its original form contained no reference to Tyre, yet there is evi 
dently a relation of dependence between it and Ez. 28 3 . g 3 f has the same sub 
ject, the same measure and the same number of lines as Am. 9 f . The vari 
ations from the latter passage are in harmony with Ez. 28 48 . 9 5 7 is just as 
clearly related to Am. i 6 - 8 . The phrase "to deliver them to Edom" in v. , 
like "to Edom" in v. 9 , is an explanatory gloss suggested by Ez. 35 5 . Comp. 
Harper. There are also reminders of Is. 2o 5 Je. 25 20 . 9 9 has behind it a long 
course of development. The passages of which its phraseology first reminds 
one are Je. 2^ Zp. 3" Is. 61 62". Cf. also Is. 49* So 7 ff -. 9 10 . The 
language is that of Mi. 5 9 / 10 , but the thought is more nearly in harmony with 
4 3 . 9" f - recall Is. 42% but especially 6I 1 - 7 . On v. 12 , see Is. 40 . For 
trouble" is a gloss bringing the passage into closer harmony with its parallel. 
9 14 describes a theophany, but it does not resemble that of Ex. i9 16 ff - so much 
as that of Jos. io l f - or that of i S. 7 10 . 9 16 ff -. Yahweh is frequently repre 
sented as a shepherd by the prophets, but the most elaborate of these passages, 
and the one most nearly related to this one, is Ez. 34" ff -. io ! . The suc 
cession, lightning, rain, herbage is found also in Jb. 3S 25 ff -. Cf. also 28 26 . 
io 2 . If 9 16 betrays dependence on Ez. 34" f , it is probable that this verse was 
influenced by Ez. 345 *. Cf. also Je. 23 1 f -. io 3 combines Je. 232 and Ez. 
34 l - l7 . At the end one is reminded of Jb. 39 I9ff -. io 5 . If the following 
verses betray acquaintance with Is. n 11 ff -, this one will be only another way 
of putting the thought of ii 14 . io 6 . If io 3 was in part suggested by Je. 23 2 , 
this verse must be a reminiscence of Je. 23" Is. u 12 f -. io 8 continues the 
thought of Je. 23 3 . Cf. also Is. 7 18 27 13 . io 9 f -. The thought is more than 
once expressed in earlier writings. Cf. Je. 238 Ho. n 1 Is. n 11 Mi. 7" f -. 
io 11 has a strong resemblance to Is. u 15 . n 1 - 2b . The representation of 
great men or nations by great trees is a common figure. The passage most 
resembling this one is Is. 2 13 . Cf. also Ju. 9 15 . n 3 looks like an imitation 
of Je. 25 36 - 38 . On the "pride of the Jordan," see Je. i2 5 . 

ii 4 . On "the flock for slaughter," see Je. i2 3 . n 5 combines features of 
Ez. 34 3 Je. so 7 Ho. i2 9 / 8 . n 7 . If n 5 was suggested by Ho. i2 9 8 , probably 
"the traders" of this verse are from Ho. i2 8 / 7 . For the "staves," see Ez. 
37 15 ff -. ii 9 looks like an imitation of Ez. 34 3 . Cf. also v. 16 . n. Cf. 
v. 7 . ii 12 . The amount is the same as in Ex. zi 32 . n 16 . Cf. v. 9 . n 17 . 
The language is that of Je. 5O 35 ff -, but the thought seems to be that of Ez. 3o 21 . 

13 7 has the thought of Ez. 34 7ff> , with various additions. Cf. also Is. i 25 . 

13 8 resembles in form Ez. 5 12 . i3 9 . "I will smelt thee" recalls Is. i 25 ; also 
48">. The latter half of the verse is more like Ho. a*/ 23 . Cf. Ez. 36" 


is 1 , in part almost Is. 51", more freely reproduces a part of 42 5 . ia 2 . 
"The cup of reeling" is a familiar figure. In this case the writer combines 
the thought of Je. 5i 7 and 252 ff -. i2 4 . The three nouns are found in Dt. 
28 28 . i2 6 recalls Is. 919/20. I2 s. The thought is that of Is. 31 f -. Cf. also 
Dt. 4 37 ; perhaps Is. 63" ff -. i2 9 , if it refers to the protection of the city, 
furnishes a parallel to Is. 3i 8 or i; 12 ff -. i2 10 - The Spirit works reformation, 
as in Ez. 36 26 f -. Cf. also Je. 6 26 . 13! also reminds one of Ezekiel. Cf. 
3 62s. 17. I3 2 recalls Ez. 36 25 ; also Ho. 2 19 /i7. 133 has points of resemblance 
with Dt. 136 ff - 

14*. The peculiar expression "a dry to Yahweh" occurs Is. 2 22 Ez. 3o 3 . 
i4 2 . There are various features which ch. 14 has in common with Ez. 38. 
This verse corresponds to v. 16 of that passage rather than Jo. 4/3 12 . Cf. also 
Ez. 39 2 . i4 4 f -. This theophany strongly resembles that of Dt. 33 2 . The 
whole follows v. 3 as Ez. 38 19 f - follow v. I6 . 14? is only another way of put 
ting the thought of Is. 3o 26 and 6o 19 f - i4 8 . Another form of the picture of 
Ez.47iff-. C/. also Jo. 4/318. 141. Like Mi. 41 (Is. 2 2 ), but more literal. Cf. 
also Je. 3 1 38 . i4 11 . The first clause in a modified form is found in Je. 33 16 , 
but the thought is more fully elaborated in Ez. 34 2 - 2 . i4 2 . An enlargement 
on the "pestilence" of Ez. 38 22 . i4 13 is the equivalent of Ez. 38 2! . 14" cor 
responds to Ez. 39 l . i4 16 holds a middle position between Mi. 41 ff - (Is. 
2 2 ff -) and Je. 3", on the one hand, and Is. 66 23 on the other. i4 20 f -. The 
sanctity of Jerusalem is repeatedly predicted in the earlier prophetical writ 
ings: for example, Je. 3i 40 . On the legend quoted, see Ex. 28 36 . Cf. also 
Jo. 4/3 17 - 

In the remarks accompanying the above list care has been taken to avoid 
the question whether the passages cited from chs. 9-14 are dependent on those 
that they more or less closely resemble or vice versa. 

This is not the place to discuss the relative date of these chap 
ters. It is proper, however, to note at this point some facts with 
reference to the list as compared with that in the Introduction 
to chs. 1-8. 

The first thing that one will naturally notice is that this list is 
nearly twice as long as the other. This fact, however, has not so 
much significance as might at first sight be supposed, since so much 
of the first part is occupied by the visions that it really furnishes only 
about half as large a field for possible reference to other writings 
as the second. The most interesting feature of this list, therefore, 
is not the number of points of contact with other books it contains, 
but the distribution of the passages to which those cited may with 
more or less reason be regarded as parallels. The facts are as fol 
lows : There are none from Haggai. There are relatively fewer from 
Micah, Jeremiah and Second Isaiah, and only about as many from 
Amos and First Isaiah ; but there are twice as many from Hosea and 


almost three times as many from Ezekiel. Note also that in this list 
Job appears twice and Deuteronomy three times. These are inter 
esting items. One of them has a bearing on the present object. It 
is the absence of any apparent acquaintance with Haggai; which 
certainly is not favourable to the opinion that Zechariah is the 
author of these as of the first eight chapters. 

The comparison between the first and second parts of the book 
can, and should, be carried beyond mere externals. In doing so 
it will be necess ry again to refer to the visions, not, however, this 
time, as literary devices, but as a source of information concerning 
the ideas directly or indirectly taught by Zechariah. In the In 
troduction to the first eight chapters it was noted that the prophet 
not only describes himself as receiving instruction through an an 
gelic interpreter, but that he represents Yahweh as generally hid 
ing himself from human eyes and employing angels to deliver 
and execute his decrees among men. In chs. 9-14 there is a differ 
ent conception of God s ways. It shows itself in 9", where, in 
deed, "the holy ones" are mentioned, but as the attendants, not 
the messengers, of Yahweh. In fact, this chapter is an excellent 
example of biblical apocalyptic, the most prominent features of 
which are the sudden and terrific appearance of the Deity to rescue 
his people in their extremity and the immediate transformation of 
existing conditions for their benefit. As such it is unlike anything 
in the first eight chapters. 

Apocalyptic has other striking characteristics. Charles (DB., 
art. Apocalyptic Literature) mentions three. In the first place, 
it "despises the present." Such pessimism finds expression es 
pecially in ii 6 - 9 , where the writer warns his people that the best 
of them must still go through fiery affliction, and 14*, where even 
the capture of their holy city is predicted. There is nothing of 
this kind in chs. 1-8. Zechariah, it is true, acknowledges that 
his present is a day of "small things," but he sees hope in it, 
and expects the change to come, not by an external fiat, but 
through internal improvement. Indeed, in ch. 8 he already finds 
the good time coming, and encourages his people to recognise it 
by transforming their fasts into seasons of "joy and rejoicing." 
Cf. v. 19 . 


Another characteristic of apocalyptic is "an indefinitely wider 
view" than is usual in prophecy. Here it sees, first, "all the peo 
ples round" (i2 4 ), and then "all the nations" (i4 2 ), gathering 
against the insignificant city of Jerusalem, only to be repulsed 
and overthrown at sight of Yahweh. This also is unlike Zecha- 
riah. There is no hint of it in any of his recognised prophecies. 
In fact, by the time the last of them was written, or uttered, he 
knew that no such riot among the nations as Ezekiel pictures was 
possible. He seems to have been content if his people might en 
joy, as they did, the semblance of self-government under the aegis 
of the king of Persia. 

Finally, according to Charles, apocalyptic is characterised by 
"ruthless cruelty" in the fate predicted for the enemies of the 
Chosen People. He does not refer to the "fire" and the "sword" 
with which the prophets generally threaten their own as well as 
surrounding nations, but to tortures which are the hideous and 
dreadful reflection of the things the Jews suffered from their op 
pressors. There is a trace of such cruelty in p 15 and n 7 , but it is 
most apparent in i4 12< 15 , where, as in Is. 66 24 , the writer seems to 
gloat over the agonies described. This certainly is not the spirit 
that dictated the twice-given exhortation, "Devise not evil one 
against another in your hearts" (y 10 8 17 ), and which represents 
the nations as flocking to Jerusalem, not from fear of a threatened 
plague (i4 7 ), but because they have heard that God has revealed 
himself there. Cf. 8 23 . 

The last point recalls a term used in the Introduction to the first 
eight chapters to indicate one of the most noticeable characteris 
tics of Zechariah and his utterances. It was sobriety. It certainly 
cannot be used of these last chapters as a whole. The term ex 
travagance would better suit some, at least, of them. Nor is the 
cruelty displayed the only evidence to this effect. It appears in 
the writer s picture of the future. In the matter of the extent of 
the Messianic kingdom the data are conflicting. Thus, from chs. 
9/. it would appear that the writer claimed as the final heritage 
of his people all that was ever promised them, from the land of 
Hadrak in the north to the desert south of Gaza (p 1 " 7 ), so extended 
a domain, and more, being required because the tribes of Israel as 


well as Judah are to be restored to their country. Cf. io 6 - 10 . In 
chs. 12-14, as in the first eight, nothing is said of Israel, but in 
i4 10 the land of which Jerusalem is the capital is described as ex 
tending only from Geba on the north to Rimmon on the south of 
the city, that is, as including only the territory of the earlier king 
dom of Judah. These two forecasts are irreconcilable the one 
with the other. Moreover, if Zechariah wrote chs. 1-8, he can 
hardly be the author of either of them. 

The teaching of chs. 9-14 differs from that of the first eight with 
reference to the head of the future kingdom. Zechariah declares 
the promise concerning him fulfilled in Zerubbabel, a prince al 
ready born and present in the community. Cf. 4 9 6 12 f \ From 
9 1 " 10 , on the other hand, one learns that he has not yet appeared, 
that, in fact, he will not appear until the country over which he is 
destined to rule has been subdued for him. There are no other 
references to him; for n 4ff< is anything but a Messianic prophecy, 
while in ch. 12 it is the whole house of David, and not any particu 
lar member of it, who is to be "like God" and "like the angel of 
Yahweh" before the people. 

The modesty of Zechariah s expectations concerning conditions in 
general in the future has been noted. He promises his people only 
that they shall have a peace and prosperity that permits long and 
happy lives. In ch. 9 also peace is promised, but here the prom 
ise includes "the nations." Thus far there has been no serious 
divergence, but according to ch. 14 when Yahweh comes to the 
relief of Jerusalem all things will become new. The sun will hover 
over Judea, banishing cold and darkness and making an endless 
summer day. At the same time the rugged and often barren hills 
will smooth themselves into a plain through which eastward and 
westward will flow perennial streams to fructify the soil. Even 
if this picture is to be taken figuratively, there is still difference 
enough between it and the idyllic description of ch. 8 to warrant 
one in hesitating to attribute both to the same author. 

Finally, it remains to compare the emphasis on ethical matters 
in the first, and the lack of it in the second, part of the book. In 
his insistence on justice and other social virtues, as has been shown, 
Zechariah in the undoubted prophecies is a worthy follower of 


Amos and Isaiah. The same cannot be said for the author, or 
authors, of chs. 9-14. In fact, although there are a few passages 
from which one may infer a regard for justice and kindness, es 
pecially toward Jews, there are no ethical precepts. On the other 
hand, the matter of sanctity, in the sense of exclusive devotion to 
Yahweh and freedom from ceremonial uncleanness, is prominent, 
and the motto of the new order, according to i4 20 is not mutual 
good-will, but " Holiness to Yahweh," even in the bells of the horses. 
It is clear that Zechariah, though a priest, after having written ch. 8, 
would hardly in his last message to his people have put so much 
stress upon externals. 

The conclusion to which this comparison points is unmistakable; yet, be 
fore closing the case, it is only fair to consider the arguments for the Zecharian 
authorship of chs. 9-14 with which Robinson concludes his discussion. (The 
Prophecies of Zechariah, 87 ff.) He claims (i) that "the fundamental ideas 
of both parts are the same," giving certain specifications, (a) "An unusually 
deep, spiritual tone." The passages cited from chs. 9-14 are 9? io 12 12 
I4 8. ao f .. Of these io 12 is an addition to the text and i4 8 a description of one 
of the physical features of the new Judah. The others reveal, it is true, a 
zeal for religion, but in only one of them (i2 10 ) is there any indication of spir 
itual experience, (b) "A similar attitude of hope and expectation, notably 
concerning (a) the return of the whole nation." This, as has been shown, is 
a prevailing idea in chs. 9-11, but nowhere else is there a genuine reference 
to Israel. (/3) "Jerusalem shall be inhabited." Note, however, that, as has 
been explained, the Jerusalem of 14 , perched aloft over an unbroken plain, 
is not the Jerusalem of chs. 1-8. (7) "The temple shall be built." It is only 
in the first part that the temple is still in process of erection. In i3 3 it is evi 
dently already completed; nor is there, either in this passage or elsewhere in 
the second part, anything to forbid the assumption that worship therein has 
long since been resumed. (5) The "Messianic hope is peculiarly strong." 
This is true, but, as has been shown, the "king" of ch. 9 is not the "Shoot" 
of the first part, (c) "Peace and prosperity are expected." This also is 
only partially correct; for io 17 has the only reference in chs. 9-14 to the mate 
rial benefits for which Zechariah looked, and it is an adddition to the text, 
(f) "The idea of God s providence as extending to the whole earth." Note, 
however, as has been shown, that the method by which he governs the world 
is by no means the same in both parts, (c) "The prophet s attitude toward 
Judah." See the criticism on (b) (ct). (d) "The prophet s attitude toward 
the nations." It has been shown that the tone of the second part, especially 
chs. ii and 14, is much more stern and cruel than that of chs. 1-8, and that, 
whereas in ch. 8 the nations are drawn to Jerusalem, according to ch. 14 they 
are driven thither. 

(2) Robinson claims further that "there are peculiarities of thought com 
mon to both parts." The specifications are as follows: (a) "The habit of 


dwelling on the same thought." The passages cited from chs. 1-8 are 
2 w f./io f. 512. 13 s. 6- a. ; which, however, do not justify the statement based 
on them, for in both 2 14 f -/ 10 f - and 6 12 { - one of the identical clauses is an ac 
cretion, in 8 4 f - the scenes described are not the same and in 8 21 the clause 
"and to seek," etc., is probably a gloss borrowed from v. , while in this latter 
verse the repetition of "to appease Yahweh" is not a peculiarity of Zechariah, 
but a familiar feature of Hebrew composition of which there are several ex 
amples in the first chapter of Genesis, (b) "The habit of expanding one 
fundamental thought into the unusual number of five parallel clauses." 
This, too, is entirely mistaken. The first case cited from chs. 1-8 is 6 13 , where 
there are indeed five lines, but the last five of a stanza of six, the first having, 
through the carelessness of the Massoretes, been attached to the preceding 
verse. Cf. 3 7 . In i 17 the five clauses are not parallel, the first two being 
merely introductory and the last three a complete tristich. In 3 8 the latter 
half of the verse is a gloss, and in the next verse the arrangement is evidently 
accidental. In the passages cited from chs. 9-14 there is still less support for 
the supposed peculiarity, (c) "The habit of referring to a thought already 
introduced" is only another name for the tendency to favour certain ideas 
or expressions. It can have no bearing on the question at issue unless the 
thoughts or expressions are the same. Since, therefore, Robinson makes 
this claim in only three instances (3 and i3 2 ; 3 and i4 16 ; 5 2 and i4 10 ), and in 
all of them unwarrantably, the point can hardly be regarded as well taken, 
(d) "The use made of the cardinal number two." It is plain that such a 
usage can be called a peculiarity only when it is more or less arbitrary, which 
it is not in any of the cases cited except p 12 , where the writer is borrowing from 
a predecessor, (e) "The resort to symbolic actions"; a favourite method of 
instruction with the prophets, of which there are only two examples in each 
part of the book, (f) "The habit of drawing lessons from the past." The 
passages cited from chs. 1-8 which really illustrate this point all contain refer 
ences to "the former prophets," of which, as has been shown, there is no in 
stance in chs. 9-14. 

(3) Another indication of unity in the book of Zechariah, according to 
Robinson, is found in "certain peculiarities of diction and style." Under 
this head he first quotes a list of words common to both parts from Eckardt, 
to which he adds twelve words and phrases. Cf. ZAW., 1893, 104. Two of 
those given by Eckardt, pj and ~\iy, are omitted by Robinson. Of these 
twelve one, ir% with nx, is used only in the first part, one, men, is an error of 
the first part, and five, >in, jn,nj?t?. nD\ ins, are differently used in the two parts, 
while four, pn* hy, JVX D3, noiN, nD, of the remaining five are so common 
that their absence would be more noticeable than their appearance in either 
part. Of the original list Eckardt himself says that these points of contact 
"which are, in fact, not more numerous than those between Zechariah and 
any other prophet, are insignificant in comparison with the differences be 
tween him and the author of the second part of the book"; and he follows this 
statement with a longer list of words used in different senses or instead of each 
other in the two parts. In conclusion he says, "These differences would be 
enough to prove that chs. 9-14 cannot have come from the same author as 
chs. 1-8." In this conclusion Robinson refuses to concur; but his reasons are 
not convincing. For example, in two of the three cases in which he finds 
similar modes of expression in both parts his arguments are based on inter- 


polations; of the fifteen vocatives cited from the two parts only nine are clear 
cases of apostrophe; and of the examples of clumsy diction, those (3) of the 
second part are all from is 12 - 14 , where formal repetition is in order. Penally, 
in view of the variations in the use or neglect of the vowel letters, it is hardly 
safe to regard the occurrence of nine cases of inconsistency in the first part 
of the book and five in the second, all of which may be mistakes of copyists, 
as "one of the strongest evidences that it was all written by one hand." 

(4) The next argument is that "Zc. 1-8 shows familiarity with the same 
books of prophecy so often quoted by the author of chs. 9-14"; the answer to 
which is that, as has been shown, although most of the books with which 
parallels may be found are the same, the number of coincidences with some 
of them is very different. 

(5) The final argument used by Robinson, "the variety of critical opin 
ion," is obviously weak, since the critics, however widely they may differ 
from one another on the date of chs. 9-14, are almost unanimous in denying 
that they can have been written by Zechariah. 

Having thus shown the weakness of the arguments for the tra 
ditional view with reference to the authorship of the book of Zech 
ariah, it is time to consider the critical opinions that have been 
reached by modern scholarship. 

Mede, the first to break with tradition, attributed chs. 9-11 to 
Jeremiah, his reasons being (i) that there is really no scriptural 
authority for insisting that Zechariah wrote them, but (2) that there 
is such authority in Mt. 2y 9 for attributing them to Jeremiah, and 
(3) that their content is of a character to justify the belief that he 
was their author. Mede s earliest followers differed from him 
only in applying his reasoning to the remaining chapters of the 
book, but Archbishop Newcome* made a new departure, main 
taining that chs. 9-14 must be divided, chs. 9-11 being consid 
erably earlier than the rest. This is his statement: 

"The last six chapters are not expressly assigned to Zechariah; are un 
connected with those which precede; the three first of them are unsuitable in 
many parts to the time when Zechariah lived; all of them have a more adorned 
and poetical turn of composition than the eight first chapters; and they mani 
festly break the unity of the prophetical book. I conclude from internal 
marks in c. ix. x. xi. that these three chapters were written much earlier 
than the time of Jeremiah, and before the captivity of the ten tribes. Israel is 
mentioned, c. ix. i, xi. 14; Ephraim c. ix. 10, 13, x. 7; and Assyria c. x. 
10, u. ... They seem to suit Hosea s age and manner. . . . The xiith, 
xiiith, and xivth chapters form a distinct prophecy, and were written after 
the death of Josiah; c. xii. n. . . . I incline to think that the author lived 
before the destruction of Jerusalem by the Babylonians. See on c. xiii. 2-6." 

* The Twelve Minor Prophets, 1785. 


The view thus stated found a friendly reception on the Conti 
nent, where the way had been prepared for it by Fliigge s more 
radical hypothesis, by Doederlein and others. 

Flugge, Die Weissagungen welche bey den Schriften des Propheten Sacharjas 
beygebogen sind, 1784. 

He divides chs. 9-14 into nine distinct prophecies, as follows: 9; lo 1 ; 
Io s-i2j ui-3j n4-i7j igi- 9 ; i2 10 -i3 6 ; i3 7 9 ; 14; to which he assigns various dates. 
He explains their appearance in the book of Zechariah by supposing that they 
were preserved by this prophet, or given their present place in the collection 
to which his book belongs by some one else before Malachi was added. His 
reasons for separating them from chs. 1-8, as compiled by Burger (119), are: 
the testimony of Matthew; the absence of dates; the space between chs. 8 and 
9 in Kenn. 195; a difference of style; the absence of allusions to the former 
prophets; the absence of symbolism, except in ch. n; the absence of angels, 
except in i2 8 ; the appearance of parallelism; a difference in content; the ri 
valry between the two kingdoms; the unsuitableness of heralding a king under 
Persian rule; the absence of a motive for predicting evil to Tyre, Sidon, etc. 

Later it was somewhat modified by Bertholdt,* who attributes 
chs. 9-11 to Zechariah, the son of Jeberechiah, a contemporary of 
Isaiah (Is. 8 2 ), and 12-14 to an author of the period just before the 
fall of the Judean monarchy; and from his time onward it has had 
more defenders than that which attributes chs. 9-14 to a single 
author. Among those who have adopted it are Gesenius, f Maurer, 
Hitzig, Ewald,J Bleek, v. Ortenberg,** Davidson,f| Reuss, Brus- 
ton,Jt Orelli, Konig, and Griitzmacher.*** The arguments in 
support of it are largely drawn from statements and allusions that 
are supposed to point to the dates above mentioned, or others pre 
vious to the Exile. The question now is whether the inferences 
drawn from the given data are correct. 

First, it is claimed that the appearance of the names Hadrak, 
Damascus and the principal cities of Phoenicia and Philistia in 
9 1 10 implies that the peoples inhabiting them were autonomous, 
and that, since they were subdued by Tiglath-pileser III, and 
thenceforward formed parts of the Assyrian, Babylonian or Per 
sian empire, this prophecy antedates 734 B.C. Indeed, Ewald and 

* Em/. 4 , 1697 ft. t Isaiah, 327. J Proph., i, 248 ft., ii, 52 /. 

Einl.*, 440 ft. ** Bestandtheile des Buches Sacharja, 68 ft. 

tt Introd., iii, 329 ft. tt Histoire de la Litterature Prophelique, 116 ff. 

Einl., 366 ff. *** Untersuckungen, 45 ft- 


others, including Grutzmacher, regard it as a prediction of the 
invasion of Palestine by the Assyrian king in that year. This, at 
first sight, seems a plausible suggestion, but it will not bear exami 

In the first place, as is proven by the woes pronounced against some of the 
cities here mentioned in Je. 47 and elsewhere, the little states in and about 
Palestine were not lost in the shadows of the great powers on which they were 
dependent, but, so long as they were of any importance, remained individual 
objects of interest to the Hebrew prophets. (The clause "before Pharaoh 
smote Gaza" in v. l is a gloss. Giesebrecht.) If, therefore, Zc. Q 1 10 , was 
written by a contemporary of Isaiah, the proof to that effect must be sought 
elsewhere than in the mere mention of the threatened cities. The truth is 
that it cannot be found, but that such evidence as there is points to a later 
origin. Note, for example, that, while Ephraim is mentioned in v. l , the 
Hebrew capital is Sion, that is, Jerusalem; in other words, that the author 
cherishes a prospect of reunion among the twelve tribes for which there was 
no warrant until the northern kingdom had been overthrown. Again, ob 
serve that the king described in vv. 9 * is not the conquering hero of Is. 
gi/z B. t Du t a composite character with a decided resemblance to the Servant 
of Yahweh of Is. 40 ff. Finally, there is unmistakable evidence of develop 
ment in the fact that, while Amos predicts the destruction of Damascus and 
the rest, the author of this passage expects some, at least, of the Philistines to 
be spared and incorporated into the new Hebrew commonwealth. 

A second point on which stress is laid by the defenders of a com 
paratively early date, at least for chs. 9-11, is that in io 10 Egypt 
and Assyria represent the remotest regions to which the Hebrews 
have been scattered, and in v. n these countries are threatened; 
from which facts it is argued that ch. io must have been written 
before the end of the seventh century B.C., when the Assyrian em 
pire was overthrown. This, if the other indications pointed in the 
same direction, would be a legitimate conclusion; but when the 
usage of the Old Testament with reference to the name Assyria is 
examined, It becomes very doubtful, the fact being that, as will 
appear later, "Assyria" is actually employed to designate, not 
only the empire properly so called, but Babylonia, Persia and 
even Syria. 

Thus far attention has been given only to allusions in chs. 9-14 
to contemporary peoples. There are others to internal conditions 
as they existed when these chapters were written. The references 
to Ephraim, as distinguished from Judah, have been considered 


significant. One, that in 9, has already been cited. The others 
are in Q 13 io 6 (Joseph) io 7 n 14 (Israel).* In the case of 9 10 it was 
found that Ephraim and Judah (Jerusalem) were not two indepen 
dent states existing when the passage was written, but components 
of the Messianic kingdom of the future, and this, in view of the 
fact that the references to Ephraim or Joseph are connected with a 
promise of restoration from exile, is the interpretation that must 
be given to Q 13 and io 6 f -.f Moreover, those who refer n 4ff - to 
the same author as 9 u -n 3 will have to admit that the "brother 
hood between Judah and Israel" of n 14 is a bond of the restored 

The passages in which mention is made of idols and false proph 
ets, also, are cited as proof of the pre-exilic origin of the prophecies 
in which they occur. Those who thus use them, assuming that the 
Hebrews were cured of their tendency to disloyalty to Yahweh by 
the Exile, claim that io 2 reflects the same state of things as Hosea s 
prophecies, and i3 2 ff that of the time of Jeremiah. 

There are several things to be said in reply. In the first place, it is incor 
rect to allege that the Hebrews were free from idolatry after the Restoration, 
or secure from the mischievous teaching of unauthorised prophets. The hos 
tility of Ezra and Nehemiah to marriages with foreign women and the meas 
ures they took to prevent or undo them can only be explained by supposing, 
not only that these marriages exposed the husbands to temptation (Ne. 
i3 23 ff> ) Dut that they sometimes resulted in apostasy from Yahweh. As to 
false prophets, Nehemiah testifies that one of them, in the service of his ene 
mies, attempted to turn him from his great work. See Ne. 6 10 ff -; also v. 7 , 
where Sanballat accuses Nehemiah of having some in his employ. If, there 
fore, io 2 , of which only the first two clauses and the last two are original, had 
reference to the time of the author, the mention therein of teraphim and di 
viners would not determine his date. It is clear, however, from the latter 
part of the verse that the writer is thinking of the past, and that between him 
and the period to which these things belong a dynasty has been overthrown 
and a people scattered. It is not so easy to identify the dynasty or the peo 
ple. At first sight v. 3 seems to furnish a key to the difficulty, but since the 
phrase "the house of Judah" is undoubtedly a gloss, it settles nothing. 
From v. 6 , however, it appears that the flock of Yahweh includes both 
Ephraim and Judah, and that therefore the author of v. 3 in its original form 
must have written after both of these kingdoms had been overthrown. Cf. 
Ho. 3 8 , a gloss of the same period. 

* In g 1 Israel evidently includes Judah, while in ia> it seems to have practically the same 
t In io s "the house of Judah" is a gloss. 


Some of those who refer chs. 9-11 to the eighth century B.C. 
find in n 8 a confirmation of their opinion, claiming that the three 
shepherds of that passage are three kings who came to the throne 
of Israel during the troubled period that succeeded the death of 
Jeroboam II. If they refer chs. 12-14 to the same period, I2 11 may 
be cited against them; for, as will be shown, the most natural in 
terpretation of that passage is that which makes it an allusion to the 
universal grief caused by the untimely death of the good king 
Josiah at the battle of Megiddo. In either case it is a valid ob 
jection that no one has ever yet been able to name three kings of 
Israel " destroyed," as the text requires them to have been, within 
the space of a single month. Finally, it must be taken into ac 
count that, as will be shown, the first clause of n 8 is a gloss and 
therefore may not represent the stand-point of the original author. 

A reference to the earthquake in the reign of Uzziah, such as is 
found in i4 5 , might, of course, have been made at any time after 
the death of this king, but, since no one thinks of separating ch. 
12 from 14, it is plain that this one cannot be earlier than that to 
the death of Josiah in I2 11 . In point of fact, it is later, being, like 
the reference to the three shepherds in n 8 , an interpolation. 

Those who adopt a pre-exilic date or dates for chs. 9-14 generally 
base their opinion on the historical background as they mistakenly 
conceive it. Grutzmacher, however, dwells at some length on the 
ideas most prominent in this part of the book of Zechariah, claim 
ing that they, too, support this position. 

Thus, he says (34) that "the representation of the Messiah contained in 
Zc. 9 9 ff - fits only the period before the Exile, and is inexplicable if assigned to 
a postexilic date." With reference to the conversion of the Gentiles he says 
(36), "The views expressed in ch. 14 do not suggest a postexilic author, but 
find their natural explanation in the assumption that this prophecy originated 
before the Exile." Both of these points were anticipated in the discussion 
of p 1 - 10 and the places there enumerated. It is only necessary in this connec 
tion to call attention to the irrelevancy of Griitzmacher s arguments in sup 
port of them. He says (33) that the idea of the Messiah found in 9 9 - 11 (more 
correctly, 9 9 f -) "witnesses against the postexilic origin of Zc. 9-14, because 
we nowhere find a view similar to that here expressed, except in Is. 9 5 / 6 ff - 
and n 1 ff -, and Mi. 5 1 ff - and 2 13 ." The assumption that the Messiah of 9" f - 
is the same as, or similar to, the one in the passages cited from Isaiah and 
Micah is, as has already been shown, mistaken. Hence, the conclusion 
based on it is without foundation. 


The contention that the attitude of the author of chs. 12-14 
toward the Gentiles favours the opinion that he wrote before the 
Exile is equally baseless. It is not enough to show, as Griitzmacher 
undertakes to do, that the idea of the participation of the heathen 
in the ideal kingdom of the future is found in Jeremiah and Second 
Isaiah. The question is, whether it is found there in the same, or 
nearly the same, stage of development as in the last chapters of 
Zechariah. The fact that in g 7 , which Griitzmacher overlooks, 
the stand-point of the author is more advanced than that of any 
known pre-exilic or exilic writer shows that even this passage is of 
postexilic origin. If, therefore, as Griitzmacher maintains, chs. 
12-14 ar e later than 9-11, how can chs. 12-14 have been written 
in the time of Jeremiah ? 

It remains to consider the relation of the author, or authors, of 
chs. 9-14 to the other prophets. 

Those who refer these chapters to the period before the Exile, not being 
agreed on a precise date or dates, naturally differ also on this question. 
Thus, v. Ortenberg (71), who thinks that 9 1 - 10 antedates Amos, cannot but 
regard Am. i 3 ff - as an imitation of that passage. Griitzmacher, on the other 
hand, says (25), "It is very probable that the author of Zc. g/. had the proph 
ecies of Amos before him and used them." The latter is no doubt correct, 
but he does not tell the whole story, for the influence of Amos does not ac 
count for all the familiar features of 9 1 - 10 . There is the term "hope" or "ex 
pectation," in the sense of an object of confidence or reliance, in v. 6 , a term 
used elsewhere only in Is. 2o 5 . More striking still is the parallelism between 
w. 2 f - and Ez. 28 3 f - 8 , where the wisdom and wealth of Tyre are described 
and its fate decreed. Finally, as has twice already been noted, the picture 
of the Messiah in v. 9 is a composite one, as if the spirit of the Servant of 
Yahweh were stamped on the features of Isaiah s Ideal King. Cf. Is. 9 6 / 7 f 
49 4 5o 7 ff . Now, in the first of these three cases, if it were the only one, the di 
rection of the dependence would be difficult to determine; but in the last two it 
seems clear that the author of Zc. 9 MO is the debtor, it being more reasonable 
to suppose that in vv. 2 * he borrowed the substance of his brief oracle from 
Ezekiel than that Ezekiel expanded those two verses into a chapter, and that 
in w. 9 f. he combined two familiar ideals than that the Great Unknown of 
the Exile dissected his composite character for the materials from which the 
Servant of Yahweh was developed. The inference is obvious. If the author 
of 9 1 - 10 , which is generally recognised as the oldest section of the second part 
of Zechariah, borrowed from Ezekiel and the Second Isaiah, neither he nor 
the author of any subsequent section can have written before the Exile. 

Two points have now been established: first, that chs. 9-14 were 
not written by Zechariah, and second, that they were not written 


before or during the Exile. They must, therefore, have origi 
nated after the Exile. It remains to determine to what part or 
parts of the latter period they belong. 

The first question naturally is whether they may not have come 
from one or more of Zechariah s contemporaries. This is not 
probable. One reason for doubting it is the fact that they are at 
tached to the genuine prophecies of Zechariah, the example of the 
book of Isaiah strongly favouring the presumption that such addi 
tions are later, and usually considerably later, than the original 
work. See also Amos and Jeremiah. A second reason is found 
in the fact that when Zechariah first began to prophesy the hopes 
of the Jews were centred on the actual governor, Zerubbabel, and 
after his removal they seem for a time to have abandoned their 
Messianic expectations. 

The first to propose to assign chs. 9-14 to a date or dates later 
than that of Zechariah was not, as Robinson (n) tells his readers, 
Grotius, who in his commentary repeatedly attributes them to 
Zechariah,* but Corrodi, who, in 1792, f as v. Ortenberg puts it, 
"took refuge in the desperate assumption that ch. 9 was written 
in the time of Alexander, ch. 14 in the time of Antiochus Epiph- 
anes." A similar view was finally adopted by Eichhorn in 
1824,1 an d later by others, the most important being Vatke, 
Geiger** and Bottcher.ft For some years after the publication 
of Bottcher s work the view held by the above-mentioned scholars 
found no new defenders, but in 1881 StadeJJ undertook an exhaus 
tive study of the subject, reaching the conclusion that chs. 9-14 
are the work of one author, who wrote "during the second half 
of the period of the wars of the Diadochi," or between 306 and 
278 B.C. The influence of Stade soon began to show itself. In 
the first place he kindled a fresh interest and discussion concerning 
his Deutero-Zechariah, and secondly, he compelled a new align 
ment among those who have since written on the subject. Most 

* Thus, on Q 12 , he adds to the statement "I declare" "by Zechariah," and on n 1 , to "my 
God" *. e., Zechariah s," etc. He insists, however, that p 8 is a prediction of the invasion of 
Palestine by Alexander the Great, and that other passages have reference to much later events. 

t Versuch einer Beleiiclming der Geschichte des jud. u. christl. Bibelkanons, i, 107. 

J EM. 4 , iv, 427 #., 444 ff. Biblische Theologie, 1834, f, 553. 

** Urschrtft u. Uebersetzung, 1857, 55 /., 73 /. ft Aehrenlese, 1863-64, ii, 2157. 

tj ZAW., 1881, i#.; 1882, 151 g. t 2jsfi. 


of them agree in referring the chapters in question to a period after 
Zechariah. Even Kuenen,* who clings to the pre-exilic origin of 
"fragments" in 9-11 and i3 7 " 9 , admits that these remains of the 
eighth century B.C. "have been arranged and enriched with addi 
tions from his own hand by a post-exilic redactor." See also 
Staerkf and Eckardt.J The following agree with Stade in main 
taining the unity as well as the post-Zecharian date of chs. 9-14: 
Wildeboer, Wellhausen,** Marti, Kuiper,ft and Cornill. ft These 
find in them traces of plural authorship during the same period ; 
Driver, Nowack and Rubinkam.*** Of recent writers who have 
resisted this general drift the most important are Griitzmacher, 
who, as has been explained, contends for a dual authorship before 
the Exile, and Robinsonftt an d van Hoonacker, who adhere to the 
traditional opinion that the whole of the book was written by the 
prophet whose name it bears. 

It is not necessary to dwell on the variations from the conclusions 
of Stade represented by the authors cited as agreeing with him in 
assigning chs. 9-14 to a period later than Zechariah. A better 
method will be to treat the question of date and authorship pos 
itively in the light of the discussion that has been aroused, but on 
the basis of the data which the chapters themselves supply. In 
so doing it is important, if possible, first to fix the date of 9 1 " 10 . 
This is a distinct prophecy, as is shown (i) by its poetical form, a 
succession of twenty-four three-toned lines divided into four double 
tristichs. The tristich gives place to the tetrastich in v. u , where 
(2) the language also indicates the commencement of a new proph 
ecy. This second point may have further significance. It may 
mean that v. n not only begins a new section, but introduces a new 
author, in other words, that the author of 9" ff has here preserved 
an earlier utterance of another prophet and made it a sort of text 
for his own predictions. This suggestion is favoured by the fact 
that some of the features of vv. wo are entirely ignored in the 

* Onderzoek, il, 411. t Untersuthungen, 72, 100. J ZAW., 1893, 102, 109. 

Letterkunde des Ouden Verbonds, 1896, 417. 

** Die kleinen Propheten, 1892; ed. 3, 1898. 

tt Zacharia ix-xiv, 1894, 163. 

EM*, 1905.1 Itrod*, 348 ff. 

*** The Second Part of the Book of Zechariah, 1892, 83 /. 

ttt The Prophecies oj Zechariah, 1896. 


following context, and, indeed, throughout the remainder of the 
book; for example, the coming king and the salvation of the hea 
then. The possibility that these verses form an independent proph 
ecy frees one from the necessity of seeking a date for them, as Stade 
must, between 306 and 278 B.C., and permits one to reopen the 
whole subject, inquiring first, not what historical event corre 
sponds to this prediction, but what circumstances would naturally 
furnish an occasion for it. There can be no doubt that oppression 
would create a desire for deliverance, but the oppressed would 
hardly dare comfort one another with promises of relief, unless there 
was a possible deliverer in sight. If, however, there can be found 
a time in the history of the Jews after the Restoration when these 
conditions were fulfilled, the fact that they were then fulfilled will 
speak strongly for that time as the date of this prophecy. Now, a 
serious objection to the dates, 301, 295 and 280, to which Stade 
restricts himself is that, although in each case there was a movement 
against Palestine from the north by Seleucus I, or Antiochus I his 
son, in neither case was the movement formidable or the Jews in a 
condition to welcome it. They always preferred the sovereignty 
of Egypt to that of Syria until, after a century, the Ptolemies for 
got the wisdom and tolerance that had previously characterised 
the dynasty* and lent themselves to schemes for plundering their 
dependent neighbours. It is more probable that such a prophecy 
as this would be written before or after, than during, the period in 
question; for before it, when, in 333 B.C., Alexander, having de 
feated Darius III at Issus, moved southward, and after it, when, 
in 220, Antiochus III returned from the East flushed with victory 
and resumed his attempt to get possession of Palestine, the Jews 
were ready for a change and really had a prospect of deliverance.! 
The former of these dates seems favoured by the description of Tyre 
(v. 3 ), from which one would infer that, when it was written, the 
city had never been taken, as it had not been when Alexander at- 

* Mahaffy explains this attitude as the result of (i) the comparative humanity of the Egyp 
tians when they occupied Palestine, and (2) the policy of the Ptolemies in accordance with 
which they planted Jewish colonies in Egypt instead of Egyptian colonies in Palestine. Egypt 
under the Ptolemies, 88 ft. 

t Of the latter Polybius (xv, 37) says: "King Antiochus, at the beginning of his reign, was 
thought to be a man of great enterprise and courage and great vigour." 


tacked it. There is another indication pointing in the same direc 
tion. It is found in v. 8 . This verse, as will be shown, is an in 
terpolation, and, as such, has not the same value as it would have 
if it were a part of the original text; but it has a value as an indica 
tion how the earliest Jewish readers understood the prophecy. The 
one who inserted it was doubtless familiar with the story that, when 
Alexander was on his way to Egypt, he not only spared the Jews, 
but treated them with great consideration, and he naively added 
what seemed to him a neglected detail to bring prophecy and ful 
filment into more perfect harmony. 

Josephus says (Ant., x, 8, 4) that Alexander, after taking Gaza, made a 
visit to Jerusalem, where, having been received by a great procession, "he 
offered sacrifices to God according to the high priest s direction" and be 
stowed upon the Jews certain important privileges, at the same time promis 
ing any who would enlist in his army that "they should continue in the laws 
of their fathers and live according to them"; and there is nothing incredible 
in the story in this its unembellished version. 

These considerations make it probable that Kuiper is correct 
in concluding that p 1 " 10 in its original form was written in 333 B.C., 
just after the battle of Issus.* 

The prophecy in g 1 " 10 , as preserved, is a part of a larger whole, 
namely, 9-11 and i3 7 " 9 , which is bound together by a common rec 
ognition of Ephraim as co-heir with Judah to the good things of 
the future. The other two parts, however, as can be shown, be 
long to a later stage in the Greek period. The passage on which 
an argument for such a date would naturally be based is p 13 , where 
the enemies over whom the sons of Sion are promised victory are 
called " sons of Greece." If this passage could be taken at its face 
value, the case would be a clear one, for evidently the author, who 
ever he was, could not refer to the Greeks until they came within 
the Jewish horizon, and would not refer to them as enemies until 
his people had suffered at their hands. The matter, however, is 
not so simple. The truth is that, as any one with an ear for rhythm, 

* The oppressor to whom allusion is made in v. 8 would thus be Artaxerxes III (359-338 
B.C.), who, within a few years, on the occasion of a revolt in which the Jews were implicated, 
had invaded and devastated the country and carried many of its inhabitants into captivity 
to Hyrcania. 


on reading the passage in the original, will perceive, the words " thy 
sons, O Greece" are another gloss; that, therefore, they may not 
represent the mind of the original author. This fact makes it 
necessary, as in the case of 9 1 " 10 , to examine the original text and 
determine, if possible, at what date in the Greek period the con 
ditions described or implied existed. This at first sight seems not 
very difficult. It is at once (9") evident that many of Sion s chil 
dren are captives in other lands. Later (io 10 ) it appears that they 
are not all in the far East, but that some of them have been carried 
to Egypt. At the same time one learns that their case is not hope 
less, that they expect to be restored to their country, and, indeed, 
to some extent by their own efforts. In other words, one sees a 
national spirit asserting itself. From n 4 onward, however, there 
is a greatly changed tone. Hope is not, it is true, entirely quenched, 
but it is a "hope deferred," and there is mingled with it a bitter 
ness, the effect of positive oppression, of which there is no trace 
in 9 u -n 3 . These conflicting indications cannot be reconciled. 
They can only be explained by supposing that n 4 ff> and i3 7 " 9 were 
written at a different time, or, at any rate, by a different author, 
from 9 u -n 3 . 

This inference is strengthened on a closer examination of the first two of these 
sections. The most striking peculiarities in their diction are the substitution 
of prose for poetry and the employment of the first person as if in imitation of 
Zechariah. There is another reminder of that prophet in the expression 
(v. 4 ), "Thus said Yahweh," the original of which is the same as that of the 
"Thus saith Yahweh" of the first eight chapters. Note also that in u 14 
"Israel" takes the place of the "Ephraim" of 9 13 and io 7 and "the house of 
Joseph" of io 6 ; and that in n 6 the verb "rescue" (Sxj, Hiph.) is used instead 
of the "save" ()?l?% Hiph.) of 9 6 and io 6 , while in n 31 the word for "glory" is 
different from the one in v. 3 (lIN instead of mix) . Finally, there are certain 
rare words, forms and meanings that confirm the impression already made: 
NXD, Hiph., surrender, n 6 ; nro, Pi., crush, n 6 ; DJ?J, delight, u 7 ; SpD, staff, 
u 7ff -; Sna. loathe, n 8 ; nntf, watch, ii; ip", price, n 13 ; 2XJ, Ni., survive, 
ii 16 ; 37J7, with ^ - compaginis t n 17 ; ^n>Dj; "OJ, my companion, i3 7 . 

The evidence seems conclusive: 9 u -n 3 and n 4 " 17 with i3 7 " 9 
come from different authors. The next step is to inquire whether 
in the Greek period there are to be found corresponding conditions. 
The history of this period, so far as the relations of Palestine to the 
neighbouring countries is concerned, is briefly as follows: Alex- 


ander, as has already been observed, was friendly to the Jews. 
After his death Seleucus and Ptolemy vied with each other to 
secure their goodwill and allegiance. In the struggle between the 
two the Jews naturally suffered severely from both parties, but 
they always preferred Egyptian to Syrian supremacy. The reason 
is obvious. Josephus says* that, although Ptolemy took Jerusalem 
by guile and carried many of the inhabitants of the country into 
captivity, he treated them so well that "not a few other Jews went 
into Egypt of their own accord, attracted by the goodness of the 
soil and the liberality of Ptolemy." This king cannot, however, 
have given them all "equal privileges as citizens with the Mace 
donians," if the historian is correct in saying, as he does in another 
place, f that many of them did not receive their freedom until the 
reign of Ptolemy II (Philadelphus, 285-247 B.C.). The latter 
further commended himself to the Jews by taking an interest in 
their Scriptures, the first part of which, the Law of Moses, is said 
to have been translated into Greek under his patronage. 

The earliest extant account of this translation is found in the famous 
pseudograph called The Letter of Ar is teas, the text of which is published in an 
Appendix to Swete s Introduction to the Old Testament in Greek. For Jose- 
phus s version of the story, see Ant., xii, 2; for an estimate of its historical 
value, Buhl, Kanon u. Text des A. T., in/. 

Ptolemy III (Euergetes, 247-222 B.C.) at first seems to have 
followed the example of his predecessors,! but he finally adopted 
or permitted a different policy. At any rate, in his reign the taxes 
paid by the Jews, which had not hitherto been burdensome, were 
greatly increased and the collection of them put into the hands of 
an unscrupulous adventurer, Joseph, son of Tobias, who enjoyed 
the profits of the office for twenty-two years. Cf. Josephus, 
Ant., xii, 4, i /. 

The account of Joseph given by Josephus is chronologically contradictory. 
The reigning king of Egypt is first identified with the one (Ptolemy V) to 
whom Antiochus III gave his daughter Cleopatra, and a little later called 
Ptolemy Euergetes (III). It is the latter, as Wellhausen (7/G.) has shown, 
who was ruling at the time. In the reign of Ptolemy V Palestine was an 
nexed to the Syrian empire, and, of course, paid tribute to Antiochus III. 

* Ant n xii, 2, i. t Ant., xii, 2, 3. J Josephus, Cent. Apion, ii, 3. 


Meanwhile a fourth Ptolemy (Philopator, 222-205 B.C.) had 
come to the throne of Egypt. Polybius says of this king that 
"he would attend to no business," being "absorbed in unworthy 
intrigues and senseless and continual drunkenness." The Jews 
also give him a bad character. The third book of Maccabees is 
entirely devoted to an account of him and his relations with his 
Jewish subjects. It says that after the battle of Raphia (217 B.C.) 
he went to Jerusalem, entered the temple and attempted to invade 
the Holy of Holies. Being providentially prevented, on his re 
turn to Egypt he undertook "to inflict a disgrace upon the Jewish 
nation." He therefore ordered "that those who did not sacrifice 
[according to his directions] should not enter their temples; that 
all the Jews should be degraded to the lowest rank and to the con 
dition of slaves,"* etc.; and, when most of the Jews refused to 
obey his mandate, he made proclamation that they should "be 
conveyed, with insults and harsh treatment, secured in every way 
by iron bands, to undergo an inevitable and ignominious death." f 
The details of this marvellous story are evidently in large measure 
fictitious, but its origin and currency among the Jews cannot be 
explained except on the supposition "that Philopator earned the 
hostility of that people and that they looked back upon his reign 
as one of oppression and injustice." { 

The above sketch does scant justice even to Jewish interests 
in the Greek period. It is sufficient, however, for the present pur 
pose. It shows that the Jews, fostered and encouraged, first by 
Alexander, and then by the Ptolemies, finally, under Philadelphus, 
began to feel their importance and demand larger concessions. 
This is precisely the situation to give rise to dreams of a new 
Exodus and a revival of the glory of the Jewish race like those of 
9 n -n 3 . It also explains the "liberality" of Philadelphus, who 
never attempted by force anything that he could accomplish by 
diplomacy. His successors, as has been shown, adopted a different 
policy, thus creating a situation which would naturally give rise 
to such utterances as are found in n 4 " 17 and i3 7 " 9 . 

There is one possible objection to the second of the above iden- 

* 3 Mac. 2 27ff-. t 3 Mac. 3*. 

J Mahaffy, Egypt under the Ptolemies, 270; History of Egypt, iv, 145. 


tifications. It is found in the oft-cited statement concerning the 
three shepherds in 1 1 8 . Not that this can refer to any trio of kings 
or pretendants in the history of the kingdom of Israel. If it is 
by the same hand as the context, it is still without doubt later than 
Zechariah. If, however, as seems the case, it is a gloss, it may have 
been suggested by Dn. n 20 , the three kings being Antiochus the 
Great, Seleucus IV and the usurper Heliodorus. For details, see 
the comments. The question would then be, whether the glossa- 
tor was correct, in other words, to which of two situations 1 1 4 17 
and i3 7 9 more nearly correspond, the one above outlined or the 
somewhat later one (220 B.C.) created by the interference of Anti 
ochus the Great and his success in finally securing possession of 
Palestine. The prominence of "the traders," apparently tax- 
collectors, favours the former alternative. 

The defenders of the pre-exilic origin of chs. 9-14, as has been explained, 
have usually felt themselves compelled to accept the theory of plural author 
ship. On the other hand, those who refer them to the postexilic period, be 
ing relieved from any such necessity, incline with Stade to attribute the whole, 
or at least all but g 1 - 10 , to a single author. So We., Marti, Eckardt, GASm., 
Cor. and others. There is room, however, from their stand-point for a differ 
ent opinion. It is true, as Stade has observed (ZAW ., 1881, 86), that there 
is a correspondence between chs. 9-11, with i3 7 - 9 , and chs. 12-14, without 
i3 7 - 9 , but it is a correspondence with a difference, and the difference is suffi 
cient to warrant the conclusion that the latter division was written by an 
author different from either of those who produced the former. There is 
not so much difference in language, because all three belong to the same 
school and draw largely on the same resources, especially Ezekiel. For a 
list of common words and expressions, see Eckardt, ZAW., 1893, loof. 
There are, however, some peculiarities: rrnw mantle, 13*; in n 3 , glory, for 
which i2 7 has n&nsn; pj, protect, with njra, ia 8 but with Sj? g"; aur\ dwell, 
of Jerusalem, i2 6 i4 10 - ; oStyw 0)3C\ in}iabitant(s) of Jerusalem, i2 8 - 
7. s. 10 I3 i. , Mf aS) 9 i5 I0 2. 7. s t no t in chs. 12-14; |V, SioH, 9- is, not in chs. 
12-14; H 05 *, gather, i2 3 142- 14 , but pp. io 8 - 10 . 

More significant is the difference in literary form, the halting, 
uncertain measure, when there is any attempt at rhythm, compared 
with the regularity in 9 u -n 3 , which makes the hypothesis that 
the same person may have written both divisions at different stages 
in his life ridiculous. 

These are merely formal distinctions. There is also a difference 
of content. In the first place, it is noticeable that in chs. 12-14 


(without i3 7 " 9 ) the writer, as in the genuine prophecies of Zecha- 
riah, confines his attention to Judah, the northern tribes, never 
overlooked in chs. 9-11, being entirely ignored. Indeed, as if he 
were afraid of being misunderstood, he gives (i4 10 ) the dimensions 
of the Holy Land of the future with Jerusalem as its centre. The 
repeated references to David or the house of David, too, are worthy 
of notice. Compare the silence of the author of 9 n -n 3 , after hav 
ing reproduced p 10 f- , with reference to the royal family. At the 
same time pains is here taken to remind the reader of the claims 
of the house of Levi. Nor is this the only indication of the sym 
pathy of the writer with the priests and their interests. His last 
thought is of the temple crowded with worshippers of all nations. 
It is not impossible that sacerdotal jealousy prompted i3 3 " 6 . Be 
that as it may, this interesting passage can hardly be by the same 
author as n 4ff> , which is anything but hostile to the prophetic 
order. Finally, the last division of chs. 9-14 is distinguished, not 
only from 1-8, but from 9-11 and i3 7 9 by an apocalyptic tone and 
teaching the characteristics of which have already been discussed. 
See pp. 239 /. 

It is clear that, if the relation between the main divisions of chs. 
9-14 has been correctly defined, 12-14 (exc. i3 7 " 9 ) must be later 
than 9 u -ii 3 and i3 7 " 9 . How much later it is there seems to be 
no means of learning. The general impression one gets from read 
ing it, and especially the similarity of the situation implied in 
I4 1 ff - to that in 13** f -, indicates that the interval was not a long 
one. Indeed, it is possible that these prophecies should be ex 
plained as the differing views of unlike persons on the same situ 
ation, namely, that in the interval between the battle of Raphia 
(217 B.C.) and the death of Ptolemy IV (204 B.C.), when Anti- 
ochus the Great was waiting for an opportunity to renew his 
attempt on Palestine. 

The following, then, is the result of the discussion of the date 
and authorship of chs. 9-14. The introductory verses (9 1 " 10 ) are 
a distinct prophecy written soon after the battle of Issus (333 B.C.). 
This was made the text for a more extended utterance (9 n -n 3 ) 
which dates from the reign of Ptolemy III (247-222 B.C.). A third 
writer, soon after the battle of Raphia (217 B.C.), supplemented this 


combined work by a pessimistic picture (n 4 " 17 with i3 7 " 9 ) of the 
situation as he saw it. About the same time a fourth with apoca 
lyptic tendencies undertook to present the whole subject in a more 
optimistic light, the result being I2 1 -i3 6 and 14. It is possible 
that p 1 " 10 was originally an appendix to chs. 1-8, and that the rest 
were added in their order. Since, however, there is no clear ref 
erence in any of them to chs. 1-8, it seems safer to suppose that 
no part of the last six chapters was added to the book of Zechariah 
until they had all been written. 



The last six chapters of the book called after Zechariah natu 
rally fall into two divisions, separated by the title at the beginning 
of ch. 12, or more exactly, as has already been explained, consist 
ing of chs. 9-11, with the addition of i3 7 9 and chs. 12-14 without 
the verses specified. The general subject of the first division is 

i. The revival of the Hebrew nation (g^-n 17 i3 7 " 9 ). 

This division contains three sections, the contents of which come 
from as many authors, writing at different dates and representing 
more or less divergent lines of thought and expectation. The first 
deals with 

a. THE NEW KINGDOM fo 1 10 ). 

This section must be viewed from two stand-points. Origi 
nally, as has been explained, it was probably a separate prophecy, 
written soon after the battle of Issus by some one who saw in Alex 
ander the divinely appointed and directed instrument for the de 
liverance of his people and the restoration of the Hebrew state. 
The author who gave it its present setting meant that it should be 
taken differently, viewed as a picture, not of the time of Alexander, 
but of a period still future when the highest hopes of his people 
would be realised. Two thoughts may be distinguished, the first 

(i) The recovery of the Promised Land (g 1 8 ). When the Hebrews 
invaded Palestine they were not able to obtain possession of the 
whole country. Nor did their kings, the greatest of them, succeed 
in bringing it entirely under their dominion. They believed, how 
ever, that the conquest would one day be completed. This proph- 


9 1 - 8 261 

ecy is a picture of the final occupation of those parts of the country 
that the Hebrews had not been able to subjugate. The general 
movement is from north to south, that is, from "the River" Eu 
phrates toward "the ends of the earth" (v. 10 ) ; but the writer does 
not follow the precise order in which the points mentioned would 
naturally be reached by an invader traversing the country in that 
direction. Thus, Damascus precedes Hamath, and the cities of 
Philistia follow one another apparently without reference to their 
relative location. Compare Isaiah s spirited sketch of the advance 
of the Assyrians in io 27 ff . The paragraph closes with a promise 
not in the original prophecy, that Yahweh will protect his people 
in the enjoyment of their increased possessions. 

1. The prophecy begins with a word, KfefD, literally meaning 
something uplifted, and hence, not only burden (Ex. 23 5 ), but, since 
the Hebrews "uplifted" their voices in speaking, utterance, oracle. 
Cf. 2 K. p 25 .* Jeremiah, in 23^, taking advantage of this ambi 
guity, produced one of the best examples of paronomasia in the Old 
Testament. f Here it must be rendered oracle and, since it is not 
used absolutely, connected with the following phrase, thus produc 
ing at the same time a title, An oracle of the word of Yahweh, and 
the first line of the first tristich. This title being required for the 
completion of the tristich, must always have been connected with 
the following context, but it originally covered only vv. wo . The 
editor or compiler who inserted the corresponding title in I2 1 seems 
to have intended that this one should cover the intervening chap 
ters. Cf. Mai. i 1 . If the title constitutes a line, the words in the 
land of Hadrak must be another, or the remains of one. The lat 
ter is the more defensible alternative, since, although the author 
evidently intended that this clause and the one following should 
correspond, they are now but imperfectly parallel. The need of 
another word is apparent, but it is not so clear what should be sup- 

* Wrongly rendered in the English version, "the LORD laid this burden upon him," the 
correct translation being, "Yahweh uttered this oracle against him." 

t The figure is greatly obscured by a curious error in JM, the words in one place having been 
wrongly divided by a careless copyist. For Nt O nn PN, "What burden?" read Njron OPN 
and translate the whole verse, " When this people, or a prophet, or a priest asketh, saying 
What is the ma ssa (oracle) of Yahweh ? thou shalt say to them, Ye are the mas sa (burden). 
and I will cast you off." 


plied. The answer to this question depends on the interpretation 
given to the next clause, whether it is Yahweh or his word whose 
resting-place is to be in Damascus. Stade and others adopt the 
former view and, in accordance with it, supply Yahweh, but this 
can hardly have been the thought of the prophet. To say that 
Yahweh was about to seek a place of rest in Syria would denote 
peculiar favour, whereas, as the next verses abundantly show, the 
message of the prophet as a whole menaces violence and destruc 
tion for the time being to the surrounding peoples. It must there 
fore be the word of Yahweh that is the subject in both of these 
clauses, his decree, or, still more precisely, the evil decreed. The 
missing word was perhaps the one used in a precisely similar case 
by Isaiah in 9 7/8 , the whole clause reading, in the land of Hadrak 
shall it fall. The land of Hadrak is not elsewhere mentioned 
in the Old Testament, but there can be no doubt about its rela 
tive location, for from the next verse it appears that it bordered 
upon Hamath. This being the case, Schrader is probably correct 
in identifying it with Hattarik(k)a, a city and country several times 
mentioned in the cuneiform inscriptions, which Delitzsch, on the 
basis of these references, locates "a little north of Lebanon."* 
The country so called must have been one of considerable extent 
and importance; otherwise the Assyrians would not have had to 
make three expeditions against it between 772 and 755 B.C. to 
subdue it and hold it in subjection.f Hence it is not strange to 
find it here representing the northern part of the Promised Land. 
In this land of Hadrak the word of Yahweh will begin its destruc 
tive work, but Damascus also shall be its resting-place, one of the 
places on which the divine displeasure will fall. This interpreta 
tion harmonises not only with the context, but with the constant 
attitude of the Hebrews toward the kingdom of Syria, which was 
always one of hostility. Cf. Am. i 3 Is. 17* ff> , etc. No Jew of the 
time of the author would have entertained the idea that Yahweh 
would find a resting-place at Damascus. 

* Cf. HAT?, 482 ft.; Dl.Par.. 278 f. ; also KAT. 3 , map. We. identifies it with the region of 
Antioch the capital of the Syrian empire. Pognon finds the city of Hadrak mentioned under 
the Aram, name Hazrak in a proclamation by one Zakir, a king of Hamath. RB., 1907, 
555 If. 

tC/. KAT. 2 , 482 #. 

9 1 - 8 2 6 3 

It seems strange that any of the later Jews should have adopted this opin 
ion; yet it is found in 21 and some later authorities. A quotation from one of 
these shows how they contrived to defend it. A rabbi says: "I take heaven 
and earth to witness that I am from Damascus, and that there is there a place 
called Hadrak. But how do I justify the words, and Damascus shall be his 
resting-place? Jerusalem will one day extend to Damascus; for it says, and 
Damascus shall be his resting-place, and his resting-place, according to the 
Scripture, this is my rest forever, is none other than Jerusalem." R. Jose in 
Yalkut Shimeoni, i, fol. 258. 

The line just quoted closes the first tristich. The next clause, 
in its original form, carries the same idea forward to a second and 
connected one; for this clause should read, not, as in the Masso- 
retic text, toward Yahweh is the eye of man, which is meaningless 
in this connection, but, as Klostermann has acutely conjectured, 
to Yahweh are the cities of Aram, that is, Syria. These cities are 
his in the sense that they lie within the limits of the territory that 
he has promised to his people. Cf. v. 10 Gn. i5 18 , etc. The claim 
of Yahweh to Damascus and the rest of the cities of Syria was 
expressly set forth because it had been, and still was, contested. 
There was no such reason for asserting his right to the territory 
actually occupied by the Hebrews, but some one, mistaking the 
original author s purpose, for the sake of completeness and in defi 
ance of metrical considerations, has added and, or, more freely ren 
dered, as well as, all the tribes of Israel. 

2. The continuation, therefore, of the original thought is found 
in the introduction of Hamath. The Hebrews did not always lay 
claim to this region. They were never able to extend their con 
quests beyond Dan. See 2 S. 24 5ff - and the expression "from Dan 
to Beersheba" (Ju, 20 1 i S. 3 20 , etc.). Ezekiel does not promise 
them anything beyond these limits, for, in his outline of the boun 
daries of the new state (47 15ff -), as in Nu. i3 21 (P), "the entrance 
to Hamath" seems to be the southern end of the great valley of 
Lebanon. There is, however, a series of Deuteronomic passages 
in which the writer (or writers) carries the northern boundary of 
his country to the Euphrates.* This is evidently the thought of 
the words now under consideration, whose author reckoned Ha- 

* These passages are Gn. 15" Ex. 23* Dt. i 7 n 24 Jos. i 4 is 5 Ju. s 3 - In the last two "the 
entrance to Hamath" is clearly located at the northern end of the valley of Lebanon. Cf. 
Moore, Judges, 80. 


math also a part of the Promised Land. The earliest mention of 
Hamath in the Old Testament is that in Am. 6 2 , where it is repre 
sented as a thriving kingdom; but it appears in an Assyrian in 
scription as an ally of Israel and Damascus in 854 B.C.* From that 
time onward, with intervals of revolt, it paid tribute to the king of 
Assyria until, in 720 B.C., Sargon finally crushed and repeopled it.f 
The city of the same name, however, being very advantageously 
situated on the Orontes, could not be lastingly destroyed. In the 
Syrian period it had become of sufficient importance to induce 
Antiochus IV to rename it, after himself, Epiphania. It still sur 
vives, under the name Hama, in spite of its unhealthy location, 
an important commercial centre with 50,000 inhabitants. There 
were other cities in northern Syria, but the three whose names are 
given were deemed sufficient to represent that region. Phoenicia 
is represented by two. In the Massoretic text they both appear 
in this verse, and, indeed, in the same line. The name of Tyre, 
however, is superfluous, and, as will appear from grammatical 
and metrical considerations, an interpolation. Its appearance 
here is explained by the fact that in Ez. 28 3 ff - it is Tyre, and not 
Sidon, that is famed for its wisdom. The author of the gloss, re 
membering this, doubtless thought that the former name should 
be substituted for the latter, or the two cities should divide the 
contested honour. The original reading was and Sidon, although 
it is very wise. The wisdom here attributed to the mother of 
Phoenician cities was proverbial. The author might have quoted 
the words addressed to the younger city by Ezekiel: "Thou art 
wiser than Daniel; there is no secret that is hid from thee. By thy 
wisdom and thy understanding thou hast won thyself wealth, and 
brought gold and silver into thy coffers." It is the practical 
shrewdness of the successful trader, which the Phoenicians also 
applied in diplomacy. By its aid they were generally able to bribe 
their enemies, or use them one against another, and thus escape 
dangerous complications. Sometimes, however, their wisdom 
failed them. Thus, for example, when, in 351 B.C., after having 
worn the Persian yoke for a hundred and fifty years, the Sidonians, 

* Rogers, History of Babylonia and Assyria, ii, 75 ff.; KAT. 2 , 193 ff.; KB., i, 172 ff. 
t Rogers, HBA., ii, 154 ff.; KB., ii, 56 ff. 

9 1 - 8 26 5 

seeing that the days of the empire were numbered, headed a move 
ment for independence, they found that they had underrated the 
resources of Artaxerxes III and overestimated the courage and 
loyalty of their own ruler, and they saw their city destroyed with 
thousands of its inhabitants.* The writer may have had this un 
happy event in mind. His message to the Sidonians is that with 
all their boasted shrewdness they cannot prevent its repetition. 

3. Tyre, like Sidon, originally stood on the mainland, where the 
skill and courage of its people were constantly taxed to defend it; 
but in process of time it took possession of a little group of islands 
half a mile from the shoref and there built itself a stronghold .J 
The new site, according to Menander, was greatly enlarged and 
beautified by Hiram the friend of David and Solomon. It was 
so easily defensible that for centuries the city defied the most pow 
erful adversaries. The Assyrians for five years, and the Baby 
lonians under Nebuchadrezzar for thirteen, besieged it in vain. 

"Hiram raised the bank in the large place and dedicated the golden pillar 
which is in the temple of Zeus. He also went and cut down timber on the 
mountain called Libanus for the roofs of temples; and when he had pulled 
down the ancient temples, he built both the temple of Hercules and that 
of Astarte." Quoted by Josephus, viii, 5, 3. 

All that is known of the siege by the Assyrians is derived from Menander, 
who says: "The king of Assyria returned and attacked them (the Tyrians) 
again, the Phoenicians furnishing him with three-score ships and eight hundred 
men to row them. But, when the Tyrians sailed against them in twelve ships, 
and dispersed the enemies ships, and took five hundred prisoners, the reputa 
tion of all the citizens of Tyre was thereby increased. Then the king of As 
syria returned and placed guards at their river and aqueducts, to hinder the 
Tyrians from drawing water. This continued for five years, and still the Tyr 
ians held out, and drank of the water they got from wells which they dug." 
The king of Assyria at that time, according to Josephus, from whose Antiqui 
ties (ix, 14, 2) the above quotation is taken, was Shalmaneser; but since, 
according to Menander, the king of Tyre was Elulaeus, and this was the name 
of the one that was reigning when Sennacherib invaded the country (KB., 
ii, QO/.), it is possible that, as has been suggested, the Jewish historian "made 
a mistake and ascribed to Shalmaneser a siege of Tyre which was really made 
by Sennacherib." Cf. Rogers, HBA., ii, 146. 

Josephus cites (Ant., x, n, i) Philostratus as his authority for the length 
of this siege. That it resulted in failure, although Ezekiel at first (26^ ff -) 

* Diod. Sic., xvi, 40 ff. 

t Thereafter the original city was called Old Tyre. Cf. Josephus, Ant., ix, 14, 2; Diod. 
Sic., xvii, 40. 

J The original has a play on the name of the city. 


expected it to succeed, is clear from Ez. 29" ff -, where the prophet acknowl 
edges that Nebuchadrezzar "had no wages, nor his army, for Tyre, for the 
service that he had served against it," but promises him the land of Egypt "as 
a recompense." 

In fact Tyre was never taken until Alexander connected it by a 
causeway with the mainland and brought his engines to bear upon 
its walls. Meanwhile its merchants traversed all seas, exchanging 
their manufactures for the products of other countries, to the ends 
of the earth. Thus, in the words with which Ezekiel closes his 
description of its activities (2y 25 ) this great emporium was re 
plenished and made very glorious in the heart of the seas." The 
present writer uses language quite as picturesque and forcible, 
if not so elegant, as Ezekiel s. He says that, when he wrote, the 
city had heaped up silver like the dust, and gold like the mud of the 
streets. 4. Tyre was very prosperous when this passage was writ 
ten, but the author of it did not expect its prosperity to continue. 
Indeed he predicts the reverse. Lo, he says, Yahweh will despoil 
it. The next clause is capable of more than one interpretation, 
the crucial word, rendered power in EV., having several meanings; 
but the fact that the emphasis, thus far, has been on the wealth 
of the city seems to require that the text should say, Yea, he will 
smite into the sea, not its might* or its bulwark,^ but its wealth, in 
the sense not only of gold and silver, but all the luxuries that these 
precious metals represent. J This is in harmony, too, with the pre 
diction of Ezekiel (37"), that the riches of the city shall "fall into 
the heart of the sea." Nor is this all. The city itself, the temples 
of its gods, the factories and storehouses of its commerce and the 
dwellings, great and small, of its inhabitants shall be devoured by 
fire. Thus the miserable remnant of its population will be left 
on "a bare rock," "a place to spread nets in the midst of the sea." 
Cf. Ez. 2 6 4 f - 

5. Philistia has four representatives, and only four, Gath being 
omitted here as it is in Am. i 6fft . Nor is this the only point of 
resemblance between the two passages. There are two or three 
expressions in this one that betray acquaintance with, but not sla- 

* So Jer., Theod. Mops., New., Rosenm., Burger, Koh., Ke., Brd., Or., Reu., Sta., et al. 
t SoMau.,Hi., We., Now., Marti, GASrn., etal. 
t So Ew., Hd., el al. 

9" 267 

vish imitation of, the other. They differ entirely with respect to 
the order in which the cities are introduced. Amos takes them 
in the order of their importance. This author follows the arrange 
ment of Je. 25 20 . His first, therefore, is Ashkelon. He predicts 
that this ancient city, situated on the coast, about thirty miles 
south of Jaffa, shall see and fear, that is, when it sees the devasta 
tion wrought in Phoenicia, will be smitten with fear in anticipa 
tion of a like fate. Gaza, whose position on the edge of the desert 
made it the most important place in southern Palestine long before 
the Philistines appeared in the country, and explains its survival, 
with a population of 35,000, Gaza, he says, will be similarly and 
even more powerfully affected ; it shall be in great anguish. Ekron 
also, on the northern boundary of Philistia, will share the prevail 
ing consternation, because its hope, that is, as the use of the same 
word in Is. 20 5 f - would indicate, the place to which it has been 
looking for support, hath been put to shame. This is clearly a ref 
erence to Tyre, which implies that the city was in alliance with 
Ekron and probably with the other cities of Philistia when it was 
written. The fears of these communities will be realised. There 
shall cease to be a king in Gaza; it will lose its independence and be 
incorporated into a larger political whole. A still worse fate is in 
store for Ashkelon, for it shall not remain* or better, shall not be, 
that is, shall cease to be, inhabited.^ These two lines betray the 
influence of Amos (i 8 ) ; but the order of thought is reversed, while 
Gaza has taken the place of Ashkelon, and Ashkelon that of Ash- 
dod. 6. Thus far no mention has been made of Ashdod, next to 
Gaza the most important city of Philistia, and famous for having in 
the seventh century B.C. sustained the longest (27 years) siege on 
record.J The prediction with reference to it belongs at the end of 
the preceding verse, or rather, it and the last two clauses of the pre 
ceding verse should have been grouped together in a verse by them 
selves. This city is not to be deserted like Ashkelon, but its native 
inhabitants, or the better class of them, are to be replaced by mon 
grels, lit., a bastard. Cf. Dt. 2^ /2 . Here, apparently, is an allu- 

* So Hi., Ew., Burger, Brd., el al. t Is. I3 20 Je. i? 6 5 13 39 Ez. 29". 

J Cf. Herodotus, ii, 157. Petrie suggests that this siege took place during the Scythian in 
vasion and represents the long struggle in which Psammetichus I finally defeated the barba 
rians. HE., ii. 331 /. 


sion to the deterioration of the population of Palestine during and 
after the Captivity, as pictured in Ne. i3 23 > , or the mixed char 
acter of the people with whom the country had been colonised by 
its conquerors.* There follows a stanza, only the first line of 
which appears in this verse, describing the discipline by which 
Yahweh purposes to prepare the remnant of the Philistines and 
their successors for incorporation among his people. The transi 
tion is marked by a change from the third to the first person. 
Thus will 7, says Yahweh, destroy the pride of the Philistines; not 
any object of which they boast (Am. 8 7 ), but a disposition prompt 
ing them to follow the "devices and desires" of their own hearts 
without reference to the will of Yahweh. Cf. io n Is. i6 6 Je. 13 f -, 
etc. 7. The new inhabitants, the despised mongrels, will not be 
of this spirit, but will submit to have Yahweh remove their blood 
from their mouths, that is, forbid them to eat blood, which the He 
brews were commanded (Dt. i2 16 - 23 f< ) to "pour upon the ground 
like water," but which it was the custom of the Philistines and other 
Gentiles to eat with the flesh of their sacrifices. Cf. Ez. 33 25 . He 
will also remove their abominations from between their teeth; these 
abominations being animals forbidden by the Mosaic law (Dt. 
i4 3ff< Lv. n lff -), such as dogs, swine and mice, which the Phil 
istines sometimes sacrificed to their false gods and ate at their festi 
vals. Cf. Is. 65* 66 3 - 17 . The abandonment of such meats, with 
all that it implies, by the Philistines is the condition of their con 
tinuance in the Holy Land. Having accepted this condition, how 
ever, they will be enrolled among the Chosen People. Cf. 2 11 S 23 . 
Yea, says the prophet, returning to the third person, and applying 
to these aliens a term full of the tenderest significance, they shall 
become a remnant to our God. 

"Just as in the case of Israel, after they had by the penalty of deportation 
been winnowed, cleansed and refined, there remained a remnant that now 
serves Jehovah faithfully, so also the Philistine people, when Jehovah s 
punitive visitation has passed over them, will not be wholly annihilated, but 
survive in a remnant of its former being, and indeed a remnant for Israel s 
God; thus the Philistines also will then have become a willingly submissive 
and active servant of Jehovah." Kohler. 

* When Alexander took . Gaza, the men of the city having been killed, "he sold the women 
into slavery and repeopled the city from the neighbouring settlers." C\. Arrianus, ii, 27. 

9" 26 9 

Then there will be presented another instance of a process many 
times repeated in the early history of the Hebrews; for the Phil 
istines shall be like a family in Judah, even Ekron like the Jebusites, 
the Jebusites being the early inhabitants of Jerusalem, who were 
not destroyed, but gradually absorbed by their Hebrew con 
querors.* The prophet does not say what will become of the 
surviving Syrians and Phoenicians, but he would probably have 
admitted them to the same privileges, on the same conditions, as 
the Philistines. 

8. The plain of Philistia lay on the route between Egypt and the 
regions north and east of Palestine. When, therefore, there was 
war between Asia and Africa the armies of the contending powers 
passed to and fro over it, sometimes made it the scene of conflict. 
At such times the Hebrews suffered only less than the Philistines. 
It would evidently have been for their advantage if they had been 
strong enough to occupy the approaches to the plain and hold 
them against all comers. The Jews believed that Alexander had 
been restrained from attacking them by Yahweh, and that he could 
always protect them. This verse was added for the purpose of 
giving expression to a prevailing faith as well as bringing the proph 
ecy to which it is attached into closer harmony with history. Then 
will I, Yahweh is made to say, encamp over against my house, an 
outpost, that none may pass to or fro. The words betray their sec 
ondary origin, not only by their prosaic form, but by their con 
tent; for the kingdom described in v. 10 would hardly need even 
figurative fortifications. The most significant thing about them, 
however, is the phrase my house. Now, the house of Yahweh is 
generally the temple at Jerusalem. Cf. i 16 3*, etc. In Ho. 8 1 9 15 
and Je. i2 7ff -, however, it is the Holy Land, and since the author 
of the gloss clearly has in mind the protection of the people rather 
than the sanctuary of Yahweh, this seems to be what is here meant 
by it. On this supposition the next clause, so shall there not pass 
over them again an oppressor, becomes more intelligible. The pro 
noun them refers to the people of the land and the whole clause 
is an assurance that the hardships which the Jews have endured 

* In i K. Q 20 there is a different, but less probable, representation of their condition. Cf. 
HPS., 158. 


from their rival masters are ended. Cf. Jo. 4/3 17 . It is these 
hardships to which Yahweh refers when he adds, for now have I 
seen with my eyes. On the relation of this verse to the subject 
of the date of vv. 1 " 7 , see p. 253. 

1. NITC] (g, \TJ/j./j.a; $, onus; > om. On the varieties of construction, 
see 2 K. 9 25 Is. 151 Pr. 311 Is. I3 1 . rnn] <8 NB , 2e5/><x; <S AO -, SeSpdfc; but 
some curss. have Adpdx, also Aq. S 0; <, Ncm, ^e South. Stade s pro 
posal to repeat the name mn> has been discussed in the comments and, 
for what seem good reasons, rejected. The emendation suggested by Is. 
9 7 / 8 requires the insertion of SDJI before or SCP after Tnn jnNa. innp] 
(, Bvffla avrov = innjp, a serious but natural error, explained by the 
absence of vowels in the original text. The reading is forbidden by the 
measure, which requires that this word have two beats. Cf. v. 7 . 
DIN pj? nw 1 ?] These words have generally been rendered in one of two 
ways. The first is that of <g 01, which makes them mean that Yahweh 
hath an eye on man or something equivalent. So Cyr., Grot., de D., Dru., 
Marck, Pern., New., Rosenm., Mau., Hi., Ew., Burger, Ke., Koh., Reu., 
Sta., We., Now., GASm., et al. This rendering, if it were grammatically 
justifiable, would not suit the connection; for, especially if the next clause 
be retained, it would naturally imply a favourable attitude on the part 
of Yahweh, while the tone of the prophecy is for the time being hostile to 
the gentiles. The other rendering, toward Yahweh is the eye of man, 
namely, in adoration, which is favoured by Jer., AE., Ra., Ki., Cal., Bla., 
Rib., Hd., Klie., Brd., Pu., et al., is grammatically somewhat less ob 
jectionable, but it is so foreign to the context that one must choose be 
tween rejecting it and pronouncing the whole clause of secondary origin. 
If, however, as has been shown, the next line is a gloss, this one must be 
retained to complete the measure. It will therefore be necessary to 
adopt the emendation of Klo., DIN ny for DIN yy, until a better has been 
suggested. Those of Mich. (DIN ry) and Ball (aix oj?) are less attrac 
tive. The metrical scheme on which the rest of the prophecy is con 
structed requires that this verse and the next together have only six lines. 
It is therefore necessary to omit one, and since, as has been shown in 
the comments, the last of this verse is superfluous, it is the one to be 
omitted. 2. rcn] <g NB , tv E^d<9. (g A( 2, however, omit the prep., and 
rightly, since this name, like (original) n>" of the preceding verse, is the 
subject of the sentence, and not the object of a 3 to be supplied. Sajn] 
The rel. is to be supplied. Cf. Ges. * ws . a (* > u >. Houb. would rd. nnSaja, 
in its border. ns] The argument against this name runs as follows: The 
line is overfilled. The vb., being singular, requires but one subject, and 
since this one lacks a connective and, moreover, is entirely unnecessary, 
it must be the gloss. On *a in the sense of though, cf. Mi. 7 s ; BDB., art. 

*a, 2, b (b). nnan] 05, t<j>p6viiffav = man which We., ef aL, ignoring met 
rical considerations, regard as the original. 3 . IVSD nx] A good example 
of paronomasia, like Tyre a tower. pnm] <& A Q insert the vb. ffvv/iyayev 
after the connective, but there is no room for one in the original. 4 . ijns % ] 
19 Kenn. mss., and many others collated by de R., rd. nw, which, 
since the word here found does not occur elsewhere in these chapters, 
may well be the original reading. nwn] In the expression here used the 
word seems to have been definite without the art. At any rate the art. 
is always (5 t.) omitted. Cf. io 5 . D>a] The position of this word, im 
mediately after the vb., indicates that it was intended to mark, not the 
place where, but the one whither, the wealth will be smitten. 

5. NT?] Sometimes pointed Nnn, with the accent, which seems to have 
been thrown forward, in this case as in Gn. 4i 33 and Mi. 7 , to distribute 
the emphasis, still on the ultima] The form is jussive, but the use of the 
simple impf . of the co-ordinate vb., STIH suggests that the significance of 
this fact might easily be exaggerated. Perhaps this form was chosen in 
anticipation of the co-ordinate N-pn, in other words, furnishes another ex 
ample of paronomasia. On the form and accent, see Ges. 75. 6. RR . 3 u 
and rr; O n the meaning, Ges.* 109 - 2 <*>; Bo.* 961 - 7 ; Dr. * 58 . train] For 
B^an, from isha. Cf. Ges. * 78 . Hiph. in the sense of Qal. For other ex 
amples, see io 5 - n ii 5 12 1 I4 5 . ntaap] On the vocalisation for ___, see 
Ges.^ 9 - ; 27 - 3 <*> R - 2 <*>. We. rds. nnoan; also Now., GASm., but 
Marti justly objects, that, in view of Is. 2O 5 *-, where the same form is 
found, there is no warrant for emendation. iai] Note that with the be 
ginning of the latter half of the double tristich the author returns to the 
regular usage with reference to the succession of vbs. atfn] Here pas 
sive. Cf. Is. 132 Je. ly 6 25 , etc. It is a late usage, frequent in the Mish- 
na. Cf. Holzinger, ZAW., 1889, 115; Ko. * 98 . Cp. v. 6 2 8 /<> i2 6 i4 10 . 
6. The first clause of this verse, as explained in the comments, be 
longs with the last two of v. 5 . The mention of Ashdod is postponed by 
the second references to Gaza and Ashkelon, that it may at the same time 
close the enumeration and the double tristich devoted to the cities of 
Philistia. *VDD] A collective, from I;D, be bad; hence something vile, 
contemptible; &, j,^o Che. rds. -n; : D, Ass. mindidu, tax-gatherer; EB., 
art. Scribe, 4. 7. >morn] Here begins a new stanza, the third, on 
the Philistines as a whole. vm] If, as the use of nxptf in the next line 
would indicate, the blood here meant is that of animals, this is the only 
place in which the pi. of m is used in that sense. Yet there is no ap 
parent reason why it should not be so used, especially if the writer wished 
to convey the impression that there was a large quantity from a great 
number of victims. Perhaps, however, the original reading was 101 as 
in Kenn. 30. See also (i, which in eight of the eleven cases in which the 
pi. occurs in the Minor Prophets follows the Heb. idiom, but in this one 
has the sg. The sf. is collective. Hence the word should be rendered 


their, not his, blood. Render also their mouths, their abominations and 
their teeth. Cp. EV., where the translators have obscured the sense 
by following the Heb. idiom. Cf. Ges. ^ 124 2 to R . vxptf] Here only 
in the sense of Y\?.V, forbidden food, which does not occur in the pi. I^NJ] 
The noun, pointed as it is here, generally means chief, but, when thus 
pronounced in the sg., it always elsewhere has i. Moreover, the mean 
ing chief is not the one required in this connection. Hence Ort. 
and others rd. iSsu in the sense of family. Cf. Ju. 6 15 i S. io 19 - 21 . So 
Sta., We., Now., Marti, Kit. The last line, like the third of the first 
stanza, has only two words, but the second has two beats. Cf. v. l . 
van H., because he thinks that the sfs. in this verse refer to ITDD, rear 
ranges the lines in vv. 6 f - as follows: vv. 7e 6a 7a - d 6b , but the prophet 
would hardly close with a threat of destruction. This verse furnishes 
an instance of the way in which the text sometimes lends itself to the 
most fantastic treatment. Houb. renders f|Ss an ox, and by a slight 
change in Dia^ (IDIUN) provides him with his stable. 8. naxD] Qr. Naso; 
also some mss., UJ, and many exegetes. The prep, supposed to be rep 
resented by D is sometimes rendered on account of (Dru., Hd.), but more 
frequently against, or the like. So Ra., Ki., Marck, Grot., Rosenm., 
Mau., Hi., Burger, Ke., Pres., Kui., Rub., We., et al. It seems best, 
however, to retain the present text, pointing it, not with <& 0, naxE, but, 
as in i S. i4 12 , naxo. So Bo., Ort., Koh., Brd., Sta., Now., Marti, 
GASm., et al. On atfm iaj7D, see 7". 

(2) The future ruler (g 9 ft ). The coming king is announced, 
and his character and mission described; also the extent of his 

9. In the preceding prophecy, as originally written, there was 
no reference to the territory occupied at any time by the Hebrews. 
It was taken for granted that it would be restored to them as a 
united people. This implies the resumption by Jerusalem of its 
ancient pre-eminence as the national capital. It is natural, there 
fore, that here the scene should be laid in the Holy City, or, to adopt 
the author s figure, that she should welcome the promised king. 
The prophet bids her exult, yes, shout, giving unrestrained expres 
sion to her joy. He calls her, first, literally, daughter Sion, the 
word daughter being little more than a sign of personification as a 
female; which, however, for the sake of greater definiteness may 
be rendered fair or comely. The reason for exultation is found in 
the announcement, Lo, thy king shall come to thee, which completes 
the sense and closes the first tristich. The rest of the verse con- 

9 273 

stitutes another the theme of which is the character of the king. 
He is just. This term has various shades of meaning. Thus, it 
denotes the impartiality that should characterise the ideal judge; 
and at first sight, it seems as if here, as in Is. n 4 and Je. 23 5 , this 
were the quality attributed to him.* The king of this passage, 
however, differs greatly from the one predicted by the other two 
prophets. The writer was evidently acquainted with the Servant 
of Yahweh as pictured by the Second Isaiah. Indeed, he seems 
here to have undertaken to combine this conception with that of 
a royal conqueror. 

It was the difficulty of combining the two that finally led the Jews to accept 
the doctrine that there would be two Messiahs, a son of David who would live 
and reign forever, and a son of Joseph who must precede the other and "by 
his death provide atonement and expiation for the sins of Israel, opening to 
the regal Messiah and his people the way to the creation of the glorious king 
dom" for which they waited. Cf. Weber, Altsynagogale palastinische The- 
ologie, 346 /. 

It is probable, therefore, that, in calling his king just, he had 
in mind the vindication promised the suffering Servant. Cf. Is. 
S 8 S3 11 f - This sort of justness is closely related to salvation, 
deliverance. In Is. 45 8 62* and elsewhere they are treated as sub 
stantially synonymous. This being the case, it is not surprising 
to find that the second term here used, which is rendered victo 
rious, as it should be also, for example, in Dt. 33 29 , is really a pas 
sive participle which, in another connection, might properly be 
translated saved or delivered. In other words, the person here 
described, though still a king, is not the proud and confident figure 
of the earlier prophecies. See Is. p 5 / 6 Mi. 5 3/4 , etc. He is vic 
torious, not in himself or anything that he personally commands, 
but by the grace, and in the might, of the God of Israel. Cf. 
Ps. 20 7/6 33 16 . His triumph, therefore, is the triumph of the faith 
of the Servant of Yahweh. Cf. Is. 49* 5o 7fft . A triumph of this 
kind, while it forbids pride, ought not to produce an effect in any 
sense or degree unhappy. Therefore, although the third epithet 
is generally best rendered by afflicted or one of its synonyms, it is 
better in this case, as in Ps. i8 28/27 , for example, following the 

* So Mau., Ke., Or., Reu., el al. 


Targum and the Greek and Syriac versions, to translate it humble* 
This rendering harmonises with the following context, where the 
king is described as manifesting his humility by making his entry 
into his capital mounted, not on a prancing horse suggesting war 
and conquest, but on an ass.-f With the picture here presented 
compare Je. 22 4 , with its "kings riding in chariots and on horses." 
The difference between the two shows how great a change took 
place in the ideals and expectations of the Jews during and after 
the Exile. 10. A king of the character described could not be 
expected to take any pleasure in arms. The writer is consistent, 
therefore, in giving him no part in the subjugation of the hitherto 
un conquered portions of his kingdom; also in predicting that on 
his accession he will destroy the chariot from Ephraim, and the 
horse from Jerusalem. It is a mistake to infer from these words 
that the kingdoms of Israel and Judah were in existence when they 
were written; and equally erroneous to suppose that chariots were 
then used only in the northern, and horses only in the southern, 
part of the country. The words are arranged as they are to satisfy 
the Hebrew fondness for parallelism. What they mean is that the 
king will banish both chariots and horses for military purposes 
from his entire dominion. If the name Ephraim has any special 
significance, it must have been intended to remind the reader that 
in the good time coming all the tribes would be reunited. Cf. 
Je. 3 18 23, etc. In that day not only chariots and horses, the more 
imposing paraphernalia of militarism, but the war bow, the bow so 
far as it is used in war, shall be destroyed. In Mi. 5 9/1 f - horses 
and chariots are devoted to destruction because they, like witches, 
idols, etc., are offensive to Yahweh. Here, however, as in Ho. i 7 
and 2 20/18 , both of which are postexilic, it is because they are no 
longer needed, Yahweh, who has wrought the restoration of his 
people, being their sufficient protection. Cf. 2 9/5 . Nor will the 
reign of peace be confined to the Promised Land. The king to 
be, the Prince of Peace of Is. g 5 / 6 , will also speak peace to the 
nations. This statement, in the light of Is. 42 2 , where the Servant 

*Mt. 2 1 5 , of course, follows the Greek. Jn. ia 15 does not reproduce this part of the 

t Note that the prophet does not, as Mt. 2i 7 would lead one to suppose, predict the use of 
two asses, but, as Jn. i2 12 puts it, a single young animal. 

9 9 f 2 75 

of Yahweh is represented as bringing forth justice for the nations, 
seems to mean that he will act as arbiter among the peoples, and 
by the justice of his decisions make appeals to arms unnecessary. 
"One nation shall" then "not uplift the sword against another, 
neither shall they learn war any more." Cf, Mi. 4 3 (Is. 2 4 ) Is. 
42 1 - 4 . The final clause further defines the nature and extent of 
the king s authority. He shall rule, it says, from sea to sea, and 
from the River to the ends of the earth. The terms used are not 
without ambiguity. For example, it is not clear whether from 
sea to sea has, as some assert, the same force as "from the rising 
of the sun to its setting" (Ps. 50*)* or refers to definite bodies of 
water. The latter view has in its favour the following considera 
tions: (i) The operations preparatory to the advent of the king, 
as described in the preceding prophecy, are confined to a limited 
area. (2) The Hebrews are elsewhere taught to expect final pos 
session of a country with definite, if not always the same, limits. 
Cf. Ex. 23 31 Nu. 34 lff - Ez. 4 y 15ff -. (3) The northern boundary 
here given, clearly the Euphrates, being the same as in various 
other passages, it is reasonable to suppose that the seas correspond 
to those by which, according to the same passages, the territory 
described was to a great extent enclosed, namely, the Dead Sea and 
the Mediterranean. True, on the fourth, or south, side there is 
no definite limit, but this is not strange in view of the nature of the 
country, there being no great obstacle to expansion in that direc 
tion. The teaching of the passage, therefore, seems to be that, 
while the coming king, like Solomon (i K. lo 1 ff> ) and the Servant 
of Yahweh (Is. 49 7 ), will exert an influence upon, and receive hom 
age from, the nations of the earth, his proper kingdom will be west 
ern Palestine in its ideal dimensions. For a later and more ex 
travagant form of this prophecy, see Ps. 72 8 " 12 . 

There can hardly be a question about the relation of this to the 
preceding prophecy. They have the same poetical form, and were 
therefore doubtless intended to supplement each other. As a 
whole they admirably illustrate the persistence of the Messianic 
hope among the Hebrews. The author, apparently, as soon as 
Alexander appeared on his horizon, saw in the young Greek, not 
only the conqueror of Asia, but the forerunner of a ruler who would 

* So Jer., Theodoret, Rosenm., Burger, Koh., Ke., Hd., Brd., et al. 



restore the kingdom of David and make it the admiration of the 
world. The first part of the prophecy was fulfilled in a measure 
when Alexander took possession, one after another, of the cities 
named and many others. The second part was not fulfilled, but 
it furnished an ideal, faith in which was only less comforting and 
edifying than its realisation. 

9. ^>j] With the accent on the ultima. Cf. 13 7 ; Ges. ^ 72 - 7 - R - 3 . 
I 1 ?] For T^ N ; n t common. Cf. 2 S. i2 4 Am. 6 , etc.; BDB., art. S, 
i. g >. This word closes the first tristich, and therefore should have 
received athnach. P^x] Not an accusative after NI:T, but, like j?ehJ a 
predicate of the pronoun xin. yipv] New., following (& H (<r<ifwj*) f rds. 
B D, Kit. the fuller form jrishD; but, as appeared in the comments, the 
present text is supported by usage. >:> ] In the sense of vy. So <& Aq. 
(n-pavs) & (] n * ^o) (3 (jnuj-). The confusion between the two arose 
from the development in the signification of the former. Cf. DB., art. 
Poor; Rahlfs, ^p und u>? in den Psalmen, 89. There are eight pas 
sages in which the Mas. corrected the text, five (Ps. Q 13 /i2 Io i2 Pr. 324 3^21 
i6 19 ) in which they point D"jy with the vowels of o^uy, and three (Am. 8 4 
Is. 32 7 Ps. 9 18 / 17 ) in which they have made the reverse change. Syi] The 
l is explicative. Cf. Gn. 4 4 , etc.; Ges. note w); Ko. ^ S75 . nunx] 
A pi. of species best translated by the sg. Cf. Gn. 38 17 i S. i; 7 Is. 50*, 
etc.; Ges. * 124 - R - 2 ; Ko. ^ 264a . The evangelists in citing this passage 
treated it with unusual freedom, as can be seen by a comparison between 
Mt. 2 1 5 and Jn. 12" on the one hand and the Heb. or Greek of Zechariah 
on the other: 





jvx ru 
na M?nn 2 

dtiyarep Setti?. 

run 3 

pnx 4 

nion Sj? 

nuns p 

tSoti 6 /SaeriXetfs <rou 
e/j^eTat <rot 



I5oi) 6 /SacrtXeiJs (roi; 

icai TrwXov 


^TJ dJj OJ 

A aJ 



9"- 277 

It will be observed that neither of the evangelists quotes the first (met 
rical) line, but that Matthew borrows an altogether different clause from 
Is. 62 ll , while John seems to have had in mind Is. 54 4 , where, although 
the name does not occur, the daughter of Sion is addressed as clearly 
as in 52 ff -. Both omit lines 2 and 4, and John condenses 5 and 6 
into a single clause, the result being that Matthew has a stanza of 
four and John one of three lines in the original measure. Note also 
that Matthew quotes the original as far as he goes, while John follows 
neither it nor (&. 10. ^mam] The change of subject disturbs the flow 
of thought. In < & it remains the same. Rd., therefore, nnam, 
and he, etc. So Houb., New., Sta., We., Now., Marti, Kit., van H. 
a:n] Observe that the art. with n is not found in vv. -"> and that it oc 
curs only 4 t. without this consonant. The entire omission of it with this 
and the two following nouns may be due to the poetical character of the 
passage, Ges. ^ 126 - 2 <*> R -; Ko. $292*: or this may be another case like 
the iSn of v. 4 , a chariot being equivalent to every chariot. Cf. Ho. 3*. 
nn-oji] < Br , to\edpefoTai = nnam; so &; but ( N * A Q U &H have 
the passive. DiSo -am] <g, Kal TT\^OS Kal elp-^vrj = OlSttn :ni. -injDi] 
One of five instances in which nnj, when it means the Euphrates, 
wants the art. The others are Is. 7 20 , where, according to Che., napa 
inj should be injn n^a, Je. 2 18 , where Kenn. i has nnjn, Mi. 7 12 , and 
Ps. 72 8 , the last, according to Baethgen, copied from this passage. 

The prophecies of vv. 1 " 10 were written for the Jews of the latter 
part of the fourth century B.C., but in their present form they serve 
a new purpose, namely, to introduce a series of oracles of a con 
siderably later date, the first of which deals with 

b. A promise of freedom and prosperity (g 11 " 17 ). 

Yahweh promises to restore the exiled Jews, inspire them with 
courage to meet their oppressors, assist them in the conflict and 
thenceforward bestow upon them his favour and protection. 

11. The prophet, having, by means of the borrowed passage 
(vv. 1 " 10 ), given the reader a glimpse of Yahweh s ultimate purpose, 
returns to the present and addresses Sion in her actual condition. 
O thou, he begins,/0r the blood of thy covenant I will also release thy 
prisoners from the pit. The prisoners in question are the Jews still 
in exile. The Persian as well as the Babylonian empire has been 
overthrown, yet many of the children of Sion remain scattered in 
other countries. Yahweh declares that he has released them, or 


is on the point of releasing them, and gives his reason for so doing. 
It is found in the blood of a covenant which is described as Sion s; 
but, since a covenant requires two parties, and in this case the 
second is the speaker himself, thy covenant is clearly equivalent 
to my covenant with thee. The blood of this covenant is naturally 
the blood of the sacrifices with which it was sealed. When did the 
ceremony occur ? There are those who find here an allusion to the 
covenant at Sinai. Cf. Ex. 24 5ff \* Others deny that there is 
a reference to any historical event, claiming that the sacrifice is the 
daily offering of the temple.f It seems still better, since the rela 
tion of the Jews to their country is concerned, to suppose, with 
Pemble, that the writer had in mind the original covenant between 
Yahweh and Abraham described in Gn. i5 9 " 12 - 17 f> , on which they 
based their title to Canaan and of which the one at Sinai was only 
a repetition and the daily sacrifice a reminder. It was their neg 
lect of this covenant that moved Yahweh to drive them from the 
country, and it is his faithfulness to it that explains the prom 
ise of a restoration. Cf. Je. 34 17ff -, where there is an unmis 
takable allusion to the ceremony at Hebron. On the circum 
stantial phrase, with no water in it, which is clearly a gloss, see 
the critical notes. 12. The writer gives the exiles, or some of 
them, the credit of having an interest in their own country and 
a readiness to return to it under favourable conditions. He be 
lieves that the time is ripe for such a movement, and therefore, 
according to the original reading, represents Yahweh, not as 
inviting these exiles to return, but as promising that the, not 
merely hopeful, but expectant, prisoners shall return. The Masso- 
retic text, as generally rendered, directs them to return to the fort 
ress. There are, however, metrical reasons, which will be ex 
plained in the critical notes, for suspecting the correctness of this 
reading. Moreover, it is unintelligible. Sion is here personified. 
It is therefore inconsistent, in a speech addressed to her, to repre 
sent her exiles as returning to a fortress. These difficulties can 
best be avoided by rejecting the troublesome phrase, since, whether 

* So AE., Ra., Rosenm., Mau., Hi., Ew., Burger, Hd., Koh., Ke., Brd., Wri., Or., Kui., 
et al. 
t So Du., TheoL; Now., Marti. 

9 "- 279 

rightly or wrongly translated, it evidently has no place in this con 
nection. At the same time it is necessary to omit certain other 
words with which the measure has been overloaded. The coup 
let of which the verse originally consisted will then read, 

The expectant prisoners shall return; 
Twofold will I restore to thee. 

The recompense here promised includes not merely a great increase 
in population, like that predicted in Is. 54 lff> , but an abundance 
of everything that produces genuine prosperity and happiness; all 
this, according to the gloss wrongly rendered to the fortress, will be 
given in exchange for trouble, the suffering of the past. On this 
gloss and the parenthetical clause, this day also I declare, see Is. 
6 1 7 . 13. This will be the result. There will be opposition to its 
achievement, but Yahweh will triumph, using as his instrument the 
people he has chosen. Note, now, the tone and temper of the dis 
course as compared with vv. 9 f \ I will bend me Jiidah, use them 
as a bow, he says, and this bow will I set, lit., Jill, as with an arrow, 
with Ephraim. The long-sundered tribes will be united in a single 
weapon. Cf. Is. n 12ff -. In the latter half of the verse, which 
should form a second couplet, the same idea is repeated with varia 
tions. In the first place, the speaker, Yahweh, resumes the form 
of direct address, the one addressed being Sion. In the Masso- 
retic text Greece (Yawan), also, is in the vocative, but this is 
certainly an error. Indeed, the whole clause to which the name 
belongs must for metrical reasons be pronounced an interpola 
tion. Thus emended the second couplet reads, 

/ will arouse thy sons, Sion, 

And I will make thee like the sword of a mighty man. 

The mention of Greece in this connection, even in a gloss, is not 
without significance, for it doubtless embodies the authorised 
Jewish interpretation of an early date. Jerome says that in his 
time the Jews interpreted it as a reference "to the times of the 
Maccabees, who conquered the Macedonians, and, after a space 
of three years and six months, cleansed the temple defiled by idol 
atry"; and Rashi in his paraphrase makes Yahweh say, "After 


Antiochus takes the kingdom from the hand of the king of Persia, 
and they ill-treat you, I will bend Judah, that they may be to me 
like a war bow, and they shall make war against Antiochus in the 
days of the Hasmoneans." It must, however, be remembered, that 
this gloss is earlier than the Greek Version, and that when it was 
inserted Egypt as well as Syria was a Greek kingdom. 

14. In the midst of the conflict Yahweh will appear in person. 
Here, as in other places in the Old Testament, he is represented as 
coming in a storm. Cf. especially Na. i 3 Ps. i8 8/7 ff - 2Q 3 ff -. This 
being the case, it is more probable that the writer intended to say 
that Yahweh would appear above them than on their account, for 
their defence. From his cloud chariot his arrow shall go forth as 
lightning. Cf. Hb. 3 n Ps. i8 15 / 14 77 18 / 17 i 44 6 , etc. Meanwhile, 
as earthly warriors blow the trumpet (Ju. 7 19ff> ) he will send forth 
dreadful blasts of thunder to terrify his and his people s enemies 
(Ps. i8 14/13 29 3ff -) as he comes in the tempests of the South. The 
original abode of Yahweh was in the South; hence the poets repre 
sent him as coming from that direction. Cf. Ju. 5 4 Dt. 33 2 Hb. 3 3 ; 
also Ex. 3 18 i K. 19, etc. 15. Yahweh of Hosts, the God of 
battles, will be present, not only to frighten and destroy the enemy, 
but to protect, as with a shield,* his people, so that missiles hurled 
at them will fall harmless at their feet, and they shall trample on 
sling-stones, like leviathan turn them into " stubble." Cf. Jb. 
4 1 20 / 28 ; also Is. 54 17 . Thus protected, they will riot in slaughter, or, 
in the figurative language of the (corrected) text, drink blood like 
wine, and be filled, drenched, with it like the corners of an altar. 
The latter figure is an allusion to the custom of sprinkling more or 
less of the blood of sacrifices upon the altar. Cf. Ex. 24** Lv. i 5 , 
etc. This was done, according to tradition, by dashing the blood 
from the bowl in which it had been caught against two opposite 
corners in such a way that it would spatter the adjacent sides. The 
thought seems to be that, just as the altar dripped with the blood 
of the sacrifices, so these warriors, with the help of Yahweh, will 
drench themselves in the blood of their enemies. Cf. Is. i 15 Ez. 
9, etc. Some one who took the term Jill too literally has added a 
second simile, like a bowl, that is, one of the large vessels in which 

* Cf. Gn. is 1 Ps. i8 3 /2. a/so; etc. 

1 - 


the blood of slaughtered animals was caught. Cf. Am. 6 6 ; DB., 
art. Bason. 

16. This wild and bloody picture, which seems to have been 
suggested by Ez. 39" ff -, warrants one in expecting a conclu 
sion equally thrilling and terrible. Cf. Am. 2 2 f \ This expecta 
tion is not realised. Suddenly the sun of peace bursts forth, the 
traces of the recent struggle are effaced and the scene becomes 
wholly idyllic. The beauty of the picture, as the writer conceived 
it, is marred by the changes that have been made in the text, and 
the occidental reader is further prevented from appreciating it by 
his unfamiliarity with oriental scenery. The first two lines, with 
the necessary emendations, the omission of the phrase in that day 
and the restoration of the verb feed, read, 

Thus will Yahweh their God save them, 
Like a flock will he feed his people. 

The remaining lines of the verse are usually rendered and inter 
preted as a second and independent simile. Thus AV. has the 
stones of a crown lifted up as an ensign above his land, which was so 
inconsistent and unintelligible that the Revisers substituted the 
simpler rendering, the stones of a crown lifted on high over his land, 
at the same time placing in the margin, as an alternate for lifted 
on high, the reading shimmering upon. Recent critics, failing to 
find, even in the latter, anything to connect this comparison with 
the preceding, and ignoring metrical considerations, incline, with 
Wellhausen, to reject the whole clause, with the exception of the 
words on his soil. If they had ever seen one of the little plains of 
Palestine in the spring, dotted with sheep, white and brown, gra 
zing under a brilliant oriental sun, they could understand why the 
writer, after comparing his people to a flock, added, as he seems 
to have done, 

Like stones for a crown shall they be, 
Glittering on his soil. 

17. The prophecy as originally written closed with v. 16 . One 
feels, as one reads it, that it should end there. This verse, there 
fore, at once strikes the critical reader as superfluous. On exam- 


ining it he finds that both in form and content it is inconsistent with 
those that precede. In the first place, it contains only three lines, 
while all the other verses have four. Then, too, the author of it 
is of a different mind from his predecessor. To him the ideal life 
is not that of the shepherd, but that of the tiller of the soil, and the 
ideal condition that when grain causeth youths, and must causeth 
maidens, to flourish. Not that the grain is for the young men and 
the must, when fermented, for the young women, but that both in 
abundance are required by an increasing population. On the 
fruitfulness of the Palestine of the coming age, see Is. 4 2 3O 23 fg Ez. 
34 26 Am. 9 13 Ps. y2 16 , etc. 

The structure of vv. n - 17 is not so regular as that of vv. - 10 , but there is 
no difficulty in perceiving that the tristich has given place to the tetra 
stich, and that there are five such divisions more or less distorted by er 
rors and glosses in this prophecy, the first and the last having suffered 
most severely. In fH the section to which these verses belong begins 
with v. 9 and closes with io 2 ; but vv. 9 f - are in a different measure and 
lo 1 - 2 are needed to prepare the way for what follows. 11. aj] The 
person here addressed is the same as in v. 9 . The particle, therefore, 
applies not so much to the subject as to the thought of the entire sen 
tence. Hence, it is properly rendered also in connection with the vb. 
Cf. Ges. * 153 . If the prophecy that begins at this point is later than vv. - 10 , 
the particle is doubly appropriate. nx] Rib. accuses the Jews of hav 
ing tampered with the text of this verse, dropping a n from the pro 
noun and changing the sf. of inn a and T>TDX from the masc. to the fern, 
gender; but, since it is clear from the context that, as has just been ob 
served, the writer had Sion in mind, and not its future king, the charge 
must be dismissed. The pronoun is an independent subject anticipat 
ing the just-mentioned sf. Cf. Gn. g 9 ; Ges. * 143 < z > <>. ana] The 
prep, has a causal significance, as in Gn. i8 28 Dt. 24 16 . Cf. BDB., art. 
2, iii, 5. inna] <S A Q om. the sf., <S NB B & follow IK. The sf. is 
an obj. gen., since only on this interpretation can there be found in the 
covenant in question a motive for divine action. Cf. Ges. ^ 128 - 2 (*>. 
nn ?^] (& H &, misled by nx, have the 2 sg. masc., but HI is sup 
ported by the context. Cf. a^x, v. 12 . On the tense, the pf . denoting the 
imminence of the given act, see Ges. * IM. <>. u D "D j*x] Clearly a gloss, 
(i) It disturbs the measure. (2) It adds a thought unnatural in this con 
nection. (3) It is easily explained as a reminiscence of Gn. 37 24 or Je. 38*, 
probably, since the Jews interpreted iia as meaning Egypt, the former. 
It is merely an example of misapplied rabbinical learning. 12. mir] 
Four Kenn. mss. have latr, from ar>, doubtless the reading from which 

9 11 - 283 

<& got Ka6^fffff0 and & o^. This reading, however, does not suit the 
context, which requires a form of 3ic : ; not, indeed, the imv. of the text, 
although it is supported by $ 8f, but iaiir>, or better, for this requires 
merely the transposition of the first two letters of the present text, lain. 
So Marti. P"^ 1 ?] Here only. Whether the first word of this verse be 
an imv. or a pf . with i, it requires, to complete it, the third and the 
fourth, and these three make a line corresponding to the two in the pre 
ceding verse. In other words, fnsaS is superfluous, at least in this con 
nection. This being the case, there are two ways of disposing of it, 
either to transfer it to the next line or to remove it entirely. But the first 
method is impracticable, because the next line is already much too long. 
There seems, therefore, nothing to do but pronounce it a gloss; unless it 
be to find an explanation for it. The following is suggested: In Ps. 9 
and 10 there occurs the word rnsa in the sense of trouble. It is certainly 
possible that jnxa is a mistake for this word, or an Aramaic form of it, 
that jnxaS was first a marginal gloss to ;n njtfo, and that it was inserted 
where it now stands by a careless copyist. "PJO cvn DJ] These words 
also must be of a secondary character, (i) They disturb the metrical 
scheme of the original author. (2) They are parenthetical and explan 
atory. (3) They seem to have been intended to recall Is. 6i 7 . The 
subject of TJD, the pron. of the first person, is to be supplied. Cf. 
Ges. * 116 - 5 (c > R - 3 ; Bo. ^ 997 - 4 - B ; Ko. ^ 324n . 13. ntfp] The Vrss. con 
nect this word with the first line. So also Theod. Mops., Lu., Hi., Ew., 
Burger, Koh., Ke., Klie., Or., We., Now., et al. The measure and the 
accentuation, however, require that it be attached to what follows. So Jer., 
Ra., Marck, Dru., New., Rosenm., Mau., Ort., Hd., Brd., Pu., Lowe, 
Marti, et al. The objection by Now., that if it were the object of TN^D 
it would have the art., ignores the fact that the art. is repeatedly omitted 
in this prophecy where the prose idiom would require it. Cf. ^iac, v. ; 
uaj, v. 13 ; j- Spi v. 15 ; narn, v. 15 . The recognition of the Massoretic punc 
tuation carries with it the rejection of various interpretations for the words 
that follow, for it is clear that, if it belongs to the second line, it must 
be the object of ^nxSn while ones can only be an ace. of that with which 
the object is filled. Cf. Ges. 5 m. 4. R. 4 >. >rn-njn] This vb., in Po., 
most frequently has the meaning arouse, but it is also used in the sense of 
brandish, and Wright so renders it in this instance. Now. objects, but 
his points are not well taken. In the first place, the word, when used in 
the latter sense, is not always followed by mjn. See Is. 10", where the 
object is wiir, a scourge. It is therefore not necessary to supply n>jn in 
this instance and thus "put into the mouth of the prophet two mutually 
exclusive figures "; but, just as in the immediately preceding couplet the 
weapon which is the object of comparison in the first must be supplied 
from the second line, so here as a sword may be borrowed, to complete 
the thought, from the parallel clause. While, therefore, it may be best, 
as a concession to occidental taste, to render the vb. in question arouse, it 


is more than probable that the author really thought of Yahweh as 
brandishing his people against their enemies. Cf. Ez. 32 10 , where it is 
possible that ^DDiya should be emended to n-npa. jv -pa hy] As has 
already been intimated, the words from >m-nyi onward evidently con 
tain a parallelism. When, however, an attempt is made to arrange them 
symmetrically they refuse to be so assorted. Indeed, when they are di 
vided according to the sense, even if, with <& Aq. S, -pa 2 be changed to 
^a, the first line has nearly twice the length of the second. Marti at 
tempts to correct this discrepancy by omitting both jvx and -pa 2 . So 
Kit. This is only partially satisfactory, since, by the removal of fvx, the 
sf. of "pa 1 loses its antecedent and becomes less easily intelligible. If, 
however, this name is retained, it completes the first line, and the only 
way to restore the symmetry of the couplet is to drop jr -pa hy, or, as 
Marti and others read it, fv "oa ^y. So van H. "pnrcM] One would 
expect o^ncfc i. If the present reading is retained, it must be explained 
as a case of attraction. 

14 . The metrical form is here very regular, but there is one word too 
many in the third line. Omit, therefore, either JINI or the rnn-> follow 
ing, preferably, with Marti, the former. Cf. v. 15 . 15. The text of this 
verse is not in so good condition. In the first place, msax, which occurs 
only once (io 3 ) elsewhere in chs. 9-11, and there as an interpolation, 
should be cancelled. iSsxi] If the line now beginning with this word 
were coupled with the next one, the thought of eating would be in place, 
and it would be worth while to attempt to emend the words that follow 
to bring them into harmony with it. Thus, e. g., for j?Sp jan letoai one 
might suggest D.T>a>N nfraa. Since, however, the line forms a couplet 
with the one that precedes, and makes complete sense without iSaso, 
there can be little doubt that, just as in Is. 2 1 5 some one has supplied the 
vbs. for eating and drinking after a description of the preparation of a 
table, so here a scribe with more zeal for reality than taste for poetry has 
supplied taw to correspond to the inuh of the next line. The alterna 
tive to this method of disposing of the word is, with Klostermann, to 
change it to iSa^i. So Kui., We., Now., Marti, GASm., Kit. ^as 
j?Sp] These words are perfectly intelligible after iBtoai, without taw. 
It is therefore unnecessary to resort to further emendation in this line. 
Fliigge s suggestion, yhp "oa = jv ua, too readily accepted by We. and 
others, must certainly be rejected if the jv ija hy of v. l3 is ungenuine. 
mm] This is the reading preferred by Baer and supported by 20 Kenn. 
and 1 6 de R. mss., but the great majority of the mss. omit the connective, 
and so, apparently, did those from which (& and were made. It is 
more than probable, however, that both are incorrect, and that the key 
to the original reading is found in the rb ctljua atruv of < Nc - c - b A Q rL . 
Not that DDT was indubitably the original reading, as Houb. and the 
later critics maintain. All these seem to have overlooked the fact that 
the sf. of Don, if it were substituted for TOM or iani r would have no ante- 

9 11 285 

cedent, unless, like that of orr 1 ??, it referred to the Jews, which is hardly 
possible. If, therefore, the text, or texts, on which the Greek mss. cited 
were based had am, they should have pronounced it DDT = D>m, and 
rendered it simply afyta, or, after the Heb. idiom, which they sometimes 
followed, afytaTa, without O.VT&V. This is a bold and cruel figure, but the 
next line warrants one in believing that it expresses the thought of the 
author. The last line also is overloaded. The testimony of (& is to 
the effect that n>)?3 is the word that should be omitted, but, since the 
translators evidently misunderstood the passage, their evidence is not 
convincing. Moreover, the fact that, although either could be con 
strued with roro .rous presents a more natural and impressive picture, 
indicates that it is original and that therefore P-TDD is an interpolation. 
So Marti, Kit. 

16. oyuhni] The sf. is superfluous in the present condition of the text, 
and is actually omitted by Kenn. 30; but see below. Drvn 1 ] Here again 
it is necessary to choose between two Greek readings, for although * E 
have this word, in A Q r it is wanting. The former probably represents 
the original text. It certainly completes the line more satisfactorily than 
Ninn ova. If, however, the former is retained, the latter must be sac 
rificed to the requirements of the measure. So Marti, Kit. The first 
line having been restored, it is necessary to find a mate for it. This is 
fortunately not a very difficult task. First, if oy^ini is correct, there 
must have been another vb. to correspond to it. Moreover, it must have 
been one of which Yahweh was the subject and with which the simile 
like a flock could appropriately be employed. These requirements are 
met by n;n, and We. is no doubt correct in inserting the impf. of this 
word, thus producing a second line, my njn* |NX:J, corresponding to the 
one already discovered. He is not so happy in his rejection of the latter 
half of this verse, for, since v. 17 is in a different measure, there must be 
found here two lines to complete the closing stanza. This can be done 
by reading, with We., ^2*0 for ^a 13 and inserting after in the pron. 
ncn, the same being necessary to complete the sense and give the first line 
the required lenglh. On the appropriateness of the simile thus pro 
duced, see the comments. Cf. the radical and unrhythmical revision, 
iny for my pjfi -ON for nu ps and ^nniK for incnN, proposed by van 
H., who claims that the latter part of the verse, from JNXD onward, should 
change places with lo 1 . 17 . Two reasons for regarding this verse as an 
addition to the original text have already been given in the comments. 
They cannot be met by adopting for the latter half Marti s reading, 
viz., na taw Bh*vrn pn, for, although this line would be of about the 
proper length, it would still make discord with the context. Moreover, 
if, as above claimed, the preceding couplet is genuine, this verse, whether 
a distich or a tristich, falls outside the scheme of the author. ww, VD>] 
We. rds. row, nw, the antecedent of the sf. being 


c. The plan of restoration (lo 1 -!! 3 ). 

The prophet in a word points out the cause of past misfortunes, 
then describes the means by which Yahweh purposes to restore his 
people to their country. He will give them strength and courage 
to resist and overcome their oppressors, and finally gather them 
from the remotest regions to which they have been banished. The 
prophecy closes with a lament for the powers that must perish in 
the conflict. 

1 . The discourse opens with a command. This command, how 
ever, is not addressed to any particular person or persons. Like 
certain questions with which the Hebrew prophets sometimes en 
livened their utterances, it is merely a rhetorical device for bring 
ing a truth more forcibly to the attention of those to whom it is 
addressed. In Je. i4 22 the doctrine here taught is actually put 
into the form of a rhetorical question, "Are there among the non 
entities of the nations (any) that can cause rain"? Cf. also 
Jb. 38 25 ff> . When, therefore, the writer here says, Ask of Yahweh 
rain, it is as if he had said in so many words, Yahweh sendeth rain. 
This he himself at once makes clear by adopting the declarative 
form for the parallel clause, Yahweh causeth lightnings. The 
lightnings are here not, as in i 14 , weapons of the Almighty, but the 
accompaniment of welcome showers. Cf. Je. io 13 Ps. 13 5 7 Jb. 
2 g25 ^325 ff . ? etc> j n tne seconc j passage cited from Job this thought 
is developed poetically. There Yahweh is described as cleaving a 
channel for the rain and a way for the lightning, "Causing rain on 
a land where there is no man, On a desert with no men in it." 
The next couplet, "Satisfying waste and desolate ground, And 
causing the thirsty soil to put forth verdure," is in the same key. 
This author is more prosaic, or, perhaps, has a more practical end 
in view, namely, to show from whom all blessings flow. He there 
fore adds, yea, the rain-shower he giveth, not to you, as some, fol 
lowing the Syriac Version, would read, but to them, that is, to men, 
and, as the effect of such abundant moisture, to each herbage in the 
field, that is, in his field. Cf. Je. 5 4 Ps. io 4 13ff - 147" Jb. 5 10 . 2. 
If the teaching of v. * is a general truth, it was as true generations 

lO 1 -!! 3 287 

before as it was when these words were written. As a matter of 
fact, it was clearly taught, in one form or another, by the earliest of 
the writing prophets. Cf. Am. 4 7 ff Ho. 2 8 , etc. The author of 
this prophecy was perfectly acquainted with the fact. Indeed, he 
now proceeds, as if v. *, like f f> , were a quotation from "the former 
prophets," and he had added Ho. 2 5 , "Their mother played the 
harlot; for she said, I will go after my lovers that give me my bread 
and my water, my wool and my flax, my oil and my drink." His 
next words are, but the teraphim spake wickedness, and the diviners 
saw falsehood. The teraphim were idols. This is clear from Gn. 
3 1 30 , where Laban calls those stolen by Rachel his "gods." They 
were, therefore, probably made in the semblance of human beings.* 
They were kept at shrines (Ju. if i8 18ff -), but they were also found 
in private houses.f Here, as in Ez. 2i 26/21 , they are among the 
instruments of the diviners, a class of persons who made a busi 
ness of securing by various, at this time illicit, methods supposed 
information for those who consulted them.J They are all re 
pudiated by the great prophets, but some of them were once con 
sidered perfectly legitimate. Here the diviners are represented 
as clothing their falsehoods in the form of prophetic utterances. 
This idea is further developed, but the change in the tenses, and 
the redundancy of the two clauses devoted to it, indicate that 
they are from a later pen. On the other hand, the latter half of 
the verse, which Marti and others would omit, being a natural 
conclusion to the preceding line of thought as above interpreted, 
must be retained. It describes the result of turning from Yah- 
weh, the real source of all blessings, to the devices of mounte 
banks. Therefore, says the prophet, recalling the overthrow, not 
of Ephraim only, but of both the Hebrew kingdoms, they were 
scattered, suddenly and violently dispersed, like a flock caught in 
a tempest. See v. 6 ; also 7" and Ho. i3 3 , in both of which the 
verb is the one that seems originally to have been used in this 

* The same inference has been drawn from i S. ig 13ff -; but unfairly, for in the original the 
pronouns which in EV. make the teraphim appear a single figure are conspicuous by their 
absence, "at the head thereof" meaning at the head of the bed. 

tC/. Gn. 3 1 3 " i S. iQ 13 . 

t On the different forms of divination, see Dt. ;8 10 f -; EB., art. Divination, 

Cf. i S. i 4 36 ff- jq 3, etc, 


passage. This, however, was but the beginning of a long tale 
of sorrows. Thereafter, in the words of Hosea Q 4 ), they abode 
"many days without king, and without prince, and without 
sacrifice." Indeed, when this prophecy was written, they were 
still without a native head, and many of them were in voluntary 
or involuntary exile. The next line, therefore, is true to the facts, 
whether it be rendered, they wandered because there was, or better, 
they wander because there is, no shepherd, that is, no king. Cf. 
Ez. 34 5 f -. 

3. The term shepherd is a familiar figure for a ruler in the Old 
Testament.* In the preceding verse it denoted a Hebrew king. 
See also Je. 23* ff< 50 Ez. 34 1 ff . In Is. 44 28 , however, Yahweh is 
represented as applying it to Cyrus, and in Je. 25 32ff< and Na. 3 18 
it is used of other foreign monarchs. Here also, since, according to 
v. 2 , the Jews have no king of their own, foreigners must be in 
tended. Moreover, from what follows, it appears that they are not 
merely representatives of other nations, but the actual rulers of the 
Chosen People. If, therefore, the passage belongs to the Greek 
period, since the Jews during most of that period were subject 
either to the Ptolemies or to the Seleucids, the said shepherds must 
be the kings of Egypt, or Syria, or both of these empires. The 
leaders, lit., he-goats, whom Yahweh, in the next line, threatens to 
punish are the same persons under another name. Cf. Is. i4 9 . 
The reason for this outburst of divine wrath is plain. It is found 
in the clause, for Yahweh will visit his flock. The sufferings 
of his people have awakened a sympathy the expression of which 
means the overthrow of their oppressors. Cf. i 14 f 8 2 . The term 
flock is followed by an explanatory phrase, the house of Judah, 
which is clearly a mistaken gloss, being inconsistent with vv. 6 f -, 
where Ephraim is the object of Yahweh s favour as well as Judah. 
Cf. also 9 13 . It is both of these, now as timid and helpless as sheep, 
that he will make like his lusty horse, his war-horse, as described in 
Jb. 39 19ff> . The phrase in battle, which is superfluous, seems to 
have been added by some one who feared that the allusion would 
not be understood. It speaks well for the insight of the author, 

* The Assyrian kings called themselves shepherds. Thus Sennacherib gives himself the 
title re urn itipeSu, wise shepherd. KB., ii, 80 ft. 

10 -I I 3 289 

that, as Wellhausen remarks, "in the Maccabean war this proph 
ecy was remarkably fulfilled." 4. The progress of this revelation 
of the purpose of Yahweh is interrupted by a pronouncement, in a 
different measure, which, moreover, has no particular fitness in 
this connection. It seems to have been suggested by the mention 
of the shepherds in v. 3 . At any rate, it has meaning on the sup 
position that these shepherds were, as has been explained, foreign 
rulers. From this point of view it is a variation on Je. 3o 20 f> , 
where Yahweh first promises to punish the oppressors of Jacob, 
and then adds, "then shall his prince be of himself, and his ruler 
shall go forth from his midst." The scribe who penned the gloss, 
not content with repeating the simple language of Jeremiah, bor 
rows a term from Is. ip 13 and another from 22 23 and produces this 
substitute, From him, Judah, the corner, from him the peg, the 
corner and the peg both meaning the king as the one who bears the 
responsibilities of government. Cf. Ju. 2O 2 i S. i4 38 . It is the 
Messiah, according to the Targum, who is meant. From him, he 
adds, is the bow for war. This is usually interpreted as meaning 
military strength, but it is possible that the bow is here another 
figure for the king. Aben Ezra explains "the bow of Israel" in 
Ho. i 5 as "the kingdom of Zechariah." This interpretation only 
increases the appropriateness of the final clause, from him shall go 
forth all alike that rule. 5. This verse attaches itself naturally to 
v. 3 and continues the subject there introduced, the wonderful 
effect of the presence of Yahweh among his people. There is some 
uncertainty about the text, but the general sense is easily under 
stood. The hitherto peaceful and submissive will be more than a 
match for their oppressors. They shall be like mighty men, tramp 
ling as it were the mire of the streets in battle, that is, trampling their 
enemies like the mire of the streets. Cf. Mi. y 10 . They will not 
quail even before the dreaded cavalry of the powers arrayed against 
them, although they come as "a great company and a mighty 
army" (Ez. 38 15 ); but they shall fight, because Yahweh is with 
them, and the riders on horses, in which Egypt was strong as early 
as the time of Isaiah,* shall be confounded. 

* Cf. Is. 3i. In the battle of Raphia (217 B.C.) Ptolemy IV had 5,000 cavalry. C}. 
Polybius, v, 79. 


6. Attention has already been called to the generosity with 
which, in ch. 9, Ephraim is admitted to a share of the blessings 
promised to Judah and Jerusalem. Cf. 9 13 . Here the same dis 
position manifests itself, indicating that the prophecy as a whole is 
from the author of the one preceding. In this the thought is very 
nearly that of 9 13 . There Judah and Ephraim are the two parts 
of a weapon, "useless each without the other"; here Yahweh 
promises by his aid to make the northern tribes as strong and 
effective in his service as the southern. 7 will make the house 
of Judah mighty, he says; but he immediately adds, and the house 
of Joseph will I deliver, or, in view of the connection, make vic 
torious. Cf. 9. 

The name Joseph, when used as a collective, has more than one significa 
tion. In Gn. 49- ff and elsewhere it includes only the tribes of Ephraim and 
Manasseh. It is sometimes, however, owing to the prominence of these tribes, 
used to designate any coalition or confederation to which they belonged. 
Thus, in Ju. i 22 ff -, it includes only Manasseh, Ephraim, Zebulon, Asher, 
Naphtali and Dan; but in 2 S. ig 16 ff - it comprehends also the tribe of Ben 
jamin. It is not strange, therefore, to find it used, like Ephraim (v. 7 ), 
sometimes, but rarely (7 t.) by the prophets, as a synonym for Israel in the 
narrower sense, that is, for the northern kingdom. It is doubtful if it is ever 
employed in any larger signification. Cf. EB., art. Joseph (Tribe). 

The parallelism between the two lines is unmistakable. They 
therefore belong together; nor can they be separated without vio 
lence to the thought that the author intended to convey. This 
being the case, it is clear that the period which Wellhausen inserts 
after the first must be replaced by a comma. The relation be 
tween these two lines and the next is not so close as their connection 
with each other, but the natural inference is that, when Yahweh 
proceeds to say, 7 will even restore them, he does not mean Joseph 
alone,* but those of both branches of the Hebrew family who were 
wandering among the nations. Thus, there follows a revelation 
of the divine mercy in its real dimensions; of its breadth in the dec 
laration, 7 have compassion on them, namely, Joseph as well as 
Judah, and of its depth in the promise, they shall be as if I had not 
rejected them. There is nothing in the term reject to forbid such an 
interpretation, for the overthrow of Judah was just as complete, 

* So Mau., Hi., Koh., 3rd., We., Now., et at. 

I0 1 -!! 3 291 

for the time being, as that of Israel and the Jews interpreted their 
own misfortunes precisely as they did those of the sister kingdom.* 
All this is poetical and significant. The remaining clause, hav 
ing neither of these characteristics, is doubtless a scribal addition, 
a reminiscence of Is. 4i 17 . Marti calls it "a theological catch 
word." Cf. v. 8 Gn. 49 18 . 7. The interpretation given to v. 6 is 
favoured by the fact that the writer now gives special attention to 
Israel. Then, he says, shall Ephraim be like mighty men, men who 
not only possess strength, but are conscious of its possession and 
delight in its exercise. Cf. Ps. iQ 6 / 5 . So shall their hearts rejoice 
as from wine. Cf. Ju. Q 13 Ps. io4 15 , etc. Their children is some 
times interpreted as the equivalent of Ephraim ;f but this can 
hardly be correct, for, although the author of this prophecy has not 
the originality of his great predecessors, it is too much to suppose 
that he would repeat the same thought three times in three succes 
sive lines with so slight variations. It is better, therefore, to take 
the phrase in its obvious sense, thus making the couplet of which it 
is a part express a desire natural to a Hebrew, and perfectly appro 
priate in this connection, that later generations may see in retro 
spect the great deeds that have been wrought through their fathers, 
and their hearts exult in Yahweh. Cf. Ps. 78 4ff - yp 13 io2 19/18 , etc. 
8. It has been noted as a characteristic of the author of this 
prophecy that he is apt to be carried away by his visions. The last 
verse furnishes an example of this peculiarity. In it the result 
steals a march on the process. The process, therefore, now comes 
lagging. Yahweh goes back to his promise in v. 6 and makes a 
new start. I will shrill to them, he explains, and gather them ; sum 
mon them by a sharp, clear signal such as shepherds use in calling 
their flocks. Cf. Ju. s 16 Is. 5 26 y 18 . They will respond in such 
numbers that they shall be as many as they ever have been.% 
These two declarations are separated, in the Massoretic text, by 
another "theological catch- word" for which there is neither room 
nor occasion. 

* Cf. 2 K. 17" ff- Ps. 4 3 2 44 10 / 9 , etc. t So We., Marti. 

J Two other renderings have been suggested: they shall increase as they increased, scil., in 
Egypt (Ki., et al.), and they shall increase as they increase, i. e., indefinitely ; but if the author 
had intended to express the former thought, he would have contrived to make it clearer, and if 
the second, he would have put the second vb. into the impf. to denote future time. 


9. The exact meaning of the couplet that now follows it is diffi 
cult to determine. It is pretty plain that the text has suffered, but 
not so clear how it should be emended. At this point the question 
might arise whether it was possible to repatriate a people on whom 
the oft-repeated threat to "disperse them among the nations and 
scatter them in the countries"* had been but too literally fulfilled. 
It will be taken for granted that it did present itself, and that 
the words here found were intended to furnish an answer to it. 
On this hypothesis the first clause is most naturally rendered, 
Though I scattered them among the nations. The second should 
be a corresponding declaration. When, however, the rest of the 
verse is examined, there appear to be two such clauses, even in far 
countries shall they remember me, and they shall rear their children 
and they (the children) shall return, either of which will make sense 
with the foregoing, but only one of which can well be original. 
The choice between them must depend on their relative fitness for 
this connection. This being the case, there can be little doubt that 
the latter is the gloss, having apparently been added to adapt a 
promise intended for the prophet s contemporaries to the needs of 
a later generation. 10. Thus far the restoration has been pre 
sented only in outline. It remains to add the details that give to a 
picture its vividness and effectiveness. It is not necessary, how 
ever, to multiply these particulars. Hence, in the present in 
stance, although the preceding verse gave the impression that the 
Hebrews were scattered among many, if not all nations, only two 
are now actually named as contributing to the multitude of exiles 
returning to their country. The first of these is Egypt. I will 
bring them back, says Yahweh,/rom the land of Egypt. The Egyp 
tians more than once came into hostile contact with the Hebrews. 
The most notable of these instances are (i) the invasion of Pales 
tine by Shishak (I), as he is called in the Old Testament, late in the 
tenth,f and the defeat of Josiah by Necho II at Megiddo, toward the 
end of the seventh century B.c.,J on both of which occasions many 
Hebrews must have been carried to Egypt as prisoners. Others, 
doubtless, had gone there voluntarily while the two countries were 

* Cf. Ez. 5 12 I also Lv. 2 6 Dt. 4 27 28** Ez. s 2 12" * 20 2 2 8 , etc. 

t i K. i 4 25f-; Petrie, HE., Hi, 233 ff. J 2 K. 2^ ; Petrie, HE., in, 336. 

lo-II 293 

at peace with each other, and especially when they were in alli 
ance against Assyria or Babylonia. Many from the northern part 
of the country must have taken refuge in Egypt when the kingdom 
of Israel was overthrown. When Nebuchadrezzar finally crushed 
Judah the conquered fled thither in great numbers, the final rem 
nant taking the prophet Jeremiah with them.* These last found 
refuge in Tahpanhes, the Greek Daphnae, now Defneh, just within 
the border; but there were other colonies in various parts of the 
country.f From this time onward there was always a large and 
growing Jewish element in Egypt. It attained its greatest devel 
opment and influence, as was shown in the Introduction, in the 
Greek period, when the Jews not only became leaders in commerce 
and the industries, but rose to the highest civil and military posi 
tions. It has also been noted, however, that under Ptolemy III 
the condition of the Jews, especially in Palestine, became much 
less fortunate, and that this is the period to which belongs the 
prophecy here recorded. It is not strange that at such a time spme 
one should have been moved to preach a new and completer res 
toration than his people had hitherto experienced. The prophet 
not only expects to see his countrymen in Egypt brought home, but 
he puts into the mouth of Yahweh the additional promise, from 
Assyria will I gather them. At first sight the mention of Assyria 
seems to contradict the opinion above expressed with reference to 
the date of this prophecy; but the contradiction is only apparent. 
The name " Assyria," although, of course, it generally denotes the 
great empire whose latest capital was Nineveh, does not, in the Old 
Testament, always have this meaning. It is repeatedly used of the 
powers which one after another took Assyria s place in the his 
tory of the oriental world. Thus, in 2 K. 23 29 , it must be interpreted 
as denoting Babylonia; for the Assyrian empire was overthrown 
before Necho II started on his ill-fated expedition. So also, ac 
cording to Stade, in Je. 2 18 Mi. y 12 La. 5. In the books of Ezra 
and Nehemiah not only Assyria (Ezr. 6 22 ), but Babylonia (Ezr. 5 13 
Ne. i3 6 ), is used for Persia. These and other less obvious ex 
amples show that Assyria and Babylonia were sometimes employed 
by Hebrew writers to designate the existing world-power, or its 

* Cf. 2 K. 25* Je. 43 4 ff . t Cf. Je. 4 3 7 44 1 - 


seat, without reference to their original signification.* This being 
the case, the reader is free to conclude on other evidence that this 
prophecy dates from the Greek period, and explain the term As 
syria in this instance as meaning the empire of the Seleucids.f 
There were Hebrews in great numbers in this direction also, mostly 
the descendants of those whom the Assyrians and the Babylonians 
had carried away captive, f Later the Persians under Artaxerxes 
III, it will be remembered, had added their quota. The prophet 
does not try to picture the meeting between this great multitude 
and the one from the West. He might have applied to it the words 
of Isaiah (y 19 ) with reference to another invasion from the same 
quarters, "They shall come and settle, all of them, in the yawning 
water-courses, and in the clefts of the cliffs, and in all the thorn 
trees, and in all the pastures."** He has not done so, but he has 
left evidence of realising that such a gathering would tax the dimen 
sions of Palestine by providing for an overflow; for this seems 
to be the meaning of the added words, a reminiscence of Je. 5o 19 , 
and to the land of Gilead will I bring them until, lit., and, it shall 
not suffice for them. Cf. Jos. i y 16 . Gilead is here used, not strictly, 
to denote the territory between Moab and Bashan, that is, between 
the Arnon and the Yarmuk (Dt. 3 10 - 12 Je. 5o 19 , etc.), but in the 
larger sense including Bashan, that is, for the entire region east of 
the Jordan once occupied by the Hebrews. Cf. Jos. 22 9 Ju. io 8 
20 1 , etc. The Massoretic text has Gilead and Lebanon, but for 
metrical and other reasons the latter must be omitted. 

11. The last verse supplied certain geographical details that 
made for denniteness. They suggest others that increase its vivid 
ness. Thus, the mention of Egypt recalls the wonderful works 
that Yahweh wrought in the sight of the fathers "in the field of 
Zoan." Cf. Ps. y8 12 - 43 . The author has no more doubt than the 
one who wrote Is. n l5f - that, if necessary, Yahweh will repeat 
these, or perform yet greater miracles, for the deliverance and res 
toration of his people. Yea, he says, tliey shall pass through the 

* The same usage appears in the New Testament, where Babylon means Rome. Cj. Rev. 
148 i6 19 i7 5 i8 2 - 10 - a . So also, according to many, i Pe. s 13 . 

t See also Is. io 23 ff - 27" Ps. 8&/*, according to Stade. 

* Cf. aK. is 29 i? 6 i8 3 2 4 4ff - 25". 

See pp. 264 /. ** Cf. also Ho. 11" Mi. 712. 

TO 1 -!! 3 295 

Egyptian sea, that is, the Red Sea, as did their fathers under Moses. 
A similar miracle will be performed for the benefit of those who 
have to cross the Euphrates. This great river, when the time 
comes, will not merely be " divided," the water being piled up on 
either hand "like a wall," but all the depths thereof shall be dried 
up.* In the Massoretic text the relation between the two lines 
just quoted is obscured by the intervention of another, which, how 
ever, is so clearly a gloss borrowed from 9* that it may unhesitat 
ingly be neglected. The nations named could not be expected to 
acquiesce in the purpose of Yahweh. Like the Pharaoh of old, 
blinded by their pride, they will even presume to resist him. The 
restoration of the Hebrews, therefore, means their humiliation, if 
not their destruction. The sentence pronounced upon the first 
recalls familiar utterances of earlier prophets. The explanation 
is that the oriental world-power through the centuries remained 
so true to its original character that arraignments of it in its vari 
ous manifestations naturally present the same features. This one 
condenses the substance of Isaiah s vivid description of the fate 
of Assyria (io 5ff -) and a successor s sarcastic portrayal of the fall 
of Babylon (Is. i4 12ff -) into a single sentence. The pride of As 
syria, here, as in the preceding verse, Syria, shall be humbled. In 
the parallel line it is predicted that the sceptre of Egypt shall depart, 
which is equivalent to saying that the country will cease to have an 
independent government. Cf. g 5 Gn. 49. 

12. The prophecy might have closed with v. n , but does not, 
for, as a glance at n 1 3 will show, those verses continue the same 
subject. They are a lament over the powers whose doom has just 
been pronounced, which, of course, should immediately follow the 
announcement of their destruction. This verse, therefore, must 
be an interpolation. II 1 . The lament is highly figurative, but 
there can be little doubt about its interpretation. The cedar is a 
familiar figure for anything lofty, while the oak is a symbol of great 
ness and strength.f In Is. zo 33 f the cedar represents Assyria. 
Ezekiel adopts the figure and in ch. 31 applies it in a much more 

* This is only a less direct exhortation to courage and fortitude than the words of Judas 
Maccabaeus to his men just before the battle of Emmaus, "Remember how our fathers were 
delivered in the Red Sea, when Pharaoh pursued them with an army." i Mac. 4 9 - 

t Cf. Am. 2 9 Is. a 13 , etc. 


elaborate form to Egypt.* In the first lines of this lament, Open, 
Lebanon, thy doors, That the fire may devour thy cedars, the use of 
the plural for the trees permits, if it does not require, the reader to 
suppose that both Egypt and Assyria are included. They will 
disappear, as even these gigantic trees must when fire invades the 
forest. Cf. Is. p 17 / 18 Ps. 83 14 . 2. The next couplet immediately 
arouses suspicion with reference to its genuineness. The cypress 
(Cupressus sempervirens) , which is still "found in abundance in 
Lebanon and anti-Lebanon," is repeatedly mentioned in the Old 
Testament with the cedar; so often that, in certain connections, its 
appearance may be expected. 

There is difference of opinion with reference to the tree here intended. It 
has also been identified with a variety of the pine (pin. halepensis; Tristram, 
NHB., 353/.), and the juniper (Juniperus excelsa, DB., art. Fir) . Neither of 
these, however, seems so likely to have been meant as the cypress, for the fol 
lowing reasons: (i) The word here used is generally so rendered in g>, and of- 
tener so than in any other way in <g. (2) The cypress is more valuable 
than any of its rivals for the purposes for which the tree here named was used 
by the Hebrews; viz., for floors (i K. 6 15 ), wainscots (2 Ch. 3 5 ) and doors (i 
K. 6^). So Post, DB., art. Fir. The only alternative to the adoption of 
this view, apparently, is to suppose that the name here used, Ass. burasu, was 
sometimes loosely applied to more than one of the trees above enumerated. 

Here, however, it is hardly in place, (i) The cypress, although 
it is associated with the cedar, is never in the Old Testament rep 
resented as a peer of the latter. It is called the "choice cypress" 
and admired for its foliage rather than for its grandeur. Cf. Is. 3 y 24 
Ez. 3 1 8 . It ought not, therefore, to appear as the chief mourner 
for its stately neighbour, taking precedence of the more stalwart 
oak. (2) Indeed, it ought not to appear at all. If the cedar had 
been felled with the axe, the woodman might have spared the hum 
bler tree, but fire makes no such distinction. Cf. Is. p 17 / 18 . It is 
therefore an inconsistency, after throwing open the doors of Leb 
anon to this destructive element, to call upon the cypress, not, be 
it observed, the cypresses, to wail because the cedar hath fallen. 
The mourners, if there are any, must be sought beyond the reach 
of the flames. These and other considerations warrant one in 

* In m Ez. 3i 3 has "Lo, Assyria a cedar"; but, since the whole chapter is addressed to the 
king of Egypt, and the figure in its entirety is applied to him, the other name is doubtless 
a mistaken gloss. So Toy, Siegfried, Kraetzschmar. 

IO 1 -!! 3 297 

neglecting the line quoted, and with it the next, that the lordly have 
been devastated.* The omission of these lines is an improvement 
both from the metrical and from the exegetical stand-point. The 
measure is improved because without these lines vv. 1-3 fall nat 
urally into two tetrastichs corresponding to those of ch. 10. 
More important is the light thrown on the next two lines by the 
close connection into which they are now brought with v. 1 . The 
oaks of Bashan, whose right it is, at once come to the front as 
mourners because the lofty forest hath come down. It is taken for 
granted that the fallen forest is that of the cedars of Lebanon. 
This inference is unavoidable. The only alternative is to suppose 
that the forest is that of Bashan; in other words, that the oaks of 
that region are summoned to lament their own destruction. If, 
however, the forest is that of Lebanon, and the trees in it represent 
the doomed kingdoms of Egypt and Syria, or their rulers, the oaks 
must be other great powers destined to survive, at least for the 
present, to witness the mighty act of Yahweh.f 

3. The stanza found in w. * f- is complete in itself. It seems to 
have been inspired by the passage from Ezekiel just cited. There 
follows another which has its parallel in Je. 25 34ff \ It contains 
two pictures or parables, in the first of which the kings whom Yah- 
weh has threatened to punish again appear as shepherds. Cf. io 3 . 
Hark! says the prophet, the wail of the shepherds, adding the reason 
for their grief. The Massoretic text says it touches their glory, 
but, since Je. 25 38 has "pasture" and this is the word that is re 
quired to complete the sense, it is probable that the original was, 
because their pasture hath been devastated. Here, as the Targum 
correctly teaches, pasture is a figure for the countries governed by 
the kings pictured as shepherds. In the second parable the kings 
are represented as young lions. Hark ! it says, the roar of the young 
lions, because the pride of the Jordan hath been devastated. The 
Jordan has two valleys, an outer and an inner. The latter is 
much narrower than the former, and so low that it is sometimes 

* The adjective lordly is used of the cedar also in Ez. i? 23 , where EV. has "goodly," and in 
Is. io 34 , where the original reading was either "Lebanon the lordly" or, as in <&, "Lebanon 
with its lordly ones." So Cheyne. 

t Cf. Ez. 3 i>5 f .; also , which renders the last two lines, Wail, rulers of the countries, for your 
strong realm hath been plundered. 


flooded by the river. This narrow, winding strip is naturally very 
fertile, and therefore produces an almost impenetrable mass of 
vegetation, the pride, luxuriance, of the Jordan, which is, and 
always has been, a covert for wild beasts. Cf. i2 5 ; Tristram, 
NHB., io/.; GASm. HG> 484 f \ Among them in ancient times 
were lions. Cf. Je. 49 5o 44 . It is these beasts, driven in terror 
from their lairs by fire or flood, and left without a refuge, that 
furnish the author with his second illustration. Cf. 2$* 8 . No less 
desperate shall be the case of the kings of Egypt and Syria when 
Yahweh takes in hand to punish them. 

1. iSxr] Bla., et al,, point this as a pf., but v. 2 shows that the per 
sons who would then be the subjects of the vb., instead of appealing 
to Yahweh, consulted the diviners. BhpSn npa] A mistaken gloss, un 
naturally restricting the original thought. The author wished to 
teach his people where to look for rain, not when it was most needed. 
It seems to have been suggested by Dt. n 14 , which (& copies verbatim. 
The measure permits no addition. own] Van H. ingeniously sug 
gests S>TMH, the beasts. IBDI] Not necessary, oeu alone satisfying 
the requirements both of the sense and the measure. Marti, there 
fore, omits it. See, however, Jb. 37, where both words are used in 
the reverse order, also a similar expression in Is. 3 12 . ar^] Marti, fol 
lowing &, rds. osS, overlooking the fact that the second line is not a 
promise, but the statement of a truth, and the third a continuation of 
the same thought, the construction being changed by substituting the 
impf. for the prtc. on account of the distance of the second vb. from 
nirp, its subject. Cf. Ges. % 116 - 6 - R - ?. 2. >o] Adversative. Cf. Mi. 6 3 , 
etc.; Ges. * s. i. R.. a^mnn] Here, if nowhere else, a numerical plural. 
Cf. Ges. ^ 124 - < f >. vn] Accented on the penult to prevent the con 
junction of two accented syllables. pcnr moVm] Two reasons for 
suspecting the genuineness of these two lines have been given in the 
comments. Another is that they have no place in the metrical scheme 
of the author, a system of tetrastichs. ninSni] There is difference of 
opinion with reference to the relation of this word to those that fol 
low. Many make it the subj., and xv^n the obj., of na-p. So U <, 
Dru., Rosenm., Hi., Ew., Pres., Sta., Kui., Now., GASm., et al. It is 
better, however, for several reasons, to make it the object of the vb. 
and Niirn the gen. dependent on it: (i) This is the more natural con 
struction. (2) It is favoured by the fact that joirnhas the art., while 
ninSm has none. (3) The vbs. TOT and icnr naturally take a per 
sonal subj. The majority of the authorities, therefore, have adopted 
this construction. So <& &, New., Mau.> Burger, Koh., Klie., Ke., 

IO 1 -!! 3 299 

Hd., Pu., Or., Reu., Rub., We., Marti, et al. icnr] Kenn. 4 ior, 
according to We. "perhaps correctly." The vb. DNJ, however, occurs 
only in Je. 23", and there as a denominative apparently coined for 
the occasion. Besides, We. himself thinks that the present reading 
also suits the connection. p hy] Marti, recognising the division into 
tetrastichs and accepting icnr maSm as genuine, is obliged to omit 
the rest of the verse as an accretion; mistakenly, for there are as 
good reasons for retaining these two lines as for omitting those he 
omits, (i) They are metrically correct. (2) The tenses used corre 
spond to those of the first two lines of the verse. (3) They complete 
the thought with which the writer began and furnish him with a basis 
for the rest of his discourse. Note especially p Sj? and the catch 
word njn. Although these last lines, as a whole, are genuine, there 
are two words about which there is room for doubt as to their cor 
rectness. The first is iyoj. It excites suspicion because, while it 
closely resembles words generally used in such connections, it is itself 
not perfectly appropriate. It denotes a deliberate departure from 
one place for another as on a march or journey. Cf. Nu. 33 ff -. The 
word required is one that implies danger or violence. We. suggests 
ij?j or ipr, from >u, wander. So also Now. This is an improve 
ment, but nj;Dj, from ^ D, scatter (7 14 )> not only suits the connection, 
but furnishes a key to the origin of the present reading. ur] We. 
would om. the word, but the measure favours its retention. Marti 
rds. i:jn, citing (, but Kal tKa.K<j)6i}ffa.v = li^i. GASm. rds. IJ^M. 
This last, or, without the connective, UT, would suit the connection. 
The same is true, however, of 4H, which, so far as the meaning of the 
word is concerned, is supported by the Vrss. It is interesting also 
to note that in Is. 54" the vbs. ~\yo and njj? are associated. 3. mn] 
The pf. with the force of a present tense. Cf. Ges. % l06 - 2 <*>. ipox] 
This vb., with Sj?, denotes hostility, without it, friendliness. See the 
next clause; also Je. 232. npo -o] Perhaps an error for tpD> :>. At 
this point van H., ignoring the indications from form and content that 
have been noted in the Introduction, inserts u 1 - 17 and 13 7 - 9 . nwax] 
Om. with Kenn. 17, although its equivalent appears in all the Vrss. So 
Marti, Kit. mim ma nN] An intrepretative gloss, as prosaic as it is 
unnecessary. Cf. i 7 Is. 7" 8. So We., Now., Marti., Kit. ncnSna] 
Perhaps, as Marti conjectures, a loan from v. 5 . 4. The reasons for 
rejecting this verse have been given in the comments. Marti makes 
a tetrastich of it, but only by disregarding the length of the lines. 
UDO] The antecedent is Judah. has the pi. of the pron. here as 
in the last clause of v. 3 . nrv] After a sg., which, however, has a col 
lective signification. Cp. Marti, who would transfer this word to 
v. 5 in place of vm. vm] ft 1 - oms." 1 , but not AU . Marti s idea is 
that the insertion of this word was rendered necessary by a mistake in 


punctuation which made nrv a part of v. ; but (i) nrv would not 
take the place of vm, which, moreover (2), is precisely in the style of 
the original author. Cf. vv. 6 -. onajs] For D We. rds. 2, render 
ing the whole clause, and they shall tread on heroes. Similarly, Now., 
Marti, GASm., Kit. (The last has by mistake ja for jo ). This, 
however, is inadmissible. If the author had intended to say what is 
attributed to him, he would either have placed D-Dia before onaja or 
anaj before the proper form of rpn. Moreover, he would probably 
have made the noun a direct obj., this being the construction else 
where used after DO. Cf. Is. 630 Ps. 64", etc. In Ez. i6 6 - 22 the a 
is locative. Cf. BDB. J& makes sense if, with 6 Kenn. mss. and 
the critics just cited, for t^toa one reads B tM and translates it as it 
were mire. o^Dia] For o^Da, like D^DIP, 2 K. i6 7 , and taiV, Is. 25 7 . 
Cf. Ges.* 78 - 7 - R - . wonV|. C/. 9 5 . 

6. D^rnatthni] It is a Jewish conceit that this is a composite form 
representing both aw and atf in Hiph., as used in Je. 32", and mean 
ing both return to, and reinstate in, Palestine. So AE., Abar., Ki., 
Dru., Rosenm., Pu., et al. The truth probably is that there were 
two readings and that the Massoretic text resulted from the inability of 
the scribes to decide which was the correct one. The great majority of 
the mss. collated by Kenn. have this mongrel form, but 6 have DTi2;rm, 
which is ambiguous, and 25 a^nauhni, Hiph. from ar\ This latter is 
the one preferred by <&, Ra., Bla., Mau., Klie., Ke., Hd., Ols., Pres., 
Pu., et al.; but, as Koh. observes, if the writer had intended to use the 
Hiph. of ac % he would naturally have added a phrase telling how or 
where they were to dwell. Cf. Je. 32" Ez. 28 25 . The omission of any 
such phrase makes it probable that here, as in v. 10 , it was the Hiph. of 
aw that he intended to use. So IS 5 31, New., Ew., Hi., Koh., Brd., 
Or., Wri., Sta., We., Kui., Now., Marti., GASm., Kit., et al. If the 
original was OTOirrn, as it is in five of the other eight instances in which 
the Hiph. of aw is used, this form would naturally be understood dif 
ferently by different readers, and the zeal of the parties thus arising 
would soon find expression in the text. DTirur] The pf . in the sense 
of a plupf. in a supposition contrary to fact. Cf. Ges. * 10 - ; Dr. % 18 . 
ji IJN 13] These remaining words constitute an entirely indepen 
dent sentence, like the similar clause in v. 8 a superfluous afterthought 
by a pious reader, metrically discordant with the preceding lines. Cf. 
also i2<- 6. 7. vnYJ The pi. with a collective subj. Cf. Ges. ^ 115 - 2 
<">. -najtf] Rd., with <g V 9 &, omaja. f ica] The Heb. regu 
larly uses 3 where the English idiom requires as with a prep. Cf. 12 7 ; 
BDB., art. a, fin.; Ges. * 118 - 6 < rf ). S.T] This word is pointed as a juss. 
and interpreted as implying subjective interest. Cf. Dr. ^ 50 (a >. It 
is better, since <g If S> have a connective, to rd. Sji. 8. oxapto] The 
impf. with the simple i after another impf . is comparatively rare, be- 

lO-!! 301 

ing, as a rule, used only "when it is desired to lay some particular 
stress on the vb." or "in order to combine synonyms." Dr. * l34 . Here 
the intention seems to be to emphasise the personality of the subj. 
owifl *a] An interpolation. Cf. v. 6 . i:n] Kuiper rds. nanx. 

9. DjnTNi] This word, as pointed, contradicts the promise of the 
preceding verse. What the author wishes to say is evidently, Though 
I have scattered them. When, however, the impf. is used of past ac 
tion, a preceding i usually takes the form of i consec. Here, therefore, 
if the vb. is correct, the reading should be Djnw. So Bla., Marti, 
Kit. But the correctness of the vb. is questioned. It is not elsewhere 
used in the sense of scatter of human beings. The word HIT is the 
one regularly used in that signification. See esp. Ez. 2O 23 22 16 2Q 12 
30 23 , where it occurs in the phrase "scatter in the lands," and Ps. 
44 13 / 12 , where the dispersion is described as "among the nations." 
Perhaps, therefore, the original reading, as We. suggests, was 3"v*n. 
So Now., GASm. ^nan trpmoai] Marti oms. these words. It is 
not they, however, but the remaining four, that have been added. On 
the i of crpmoai, see Ges. ^ 154 - note <*). vm] Rd., with (& 0, vrn. 
So Seek., New., Sta., We., Now., Marti, Kit. fuaSYJ One reason, the 
metrical, for considering this word a gloss has been given in the com 
ments. There are others: (2) The region of Lebanon, if it had been 
in the mind of the author, being a part of western Palestine, did not 
need to be mentioned. (3) The presence of the word in the text can 
be explained as a reminiscence of Dt. 3" or Je. 22 6 . NXD^]. The 
subj. is a pron. referring to in**. Cf. Jos. ly 16 . 

11. najn] Rd., with (& %, najn, the subj. being the returning exiles. 
So We., Now., Marti, Kit. m$ DO] <g, ej> 6a\dffffri <rrepj?; R, per 
mare angustum. The phrase has given rise to many and various 
opinions. The word mx has been treated as a proper name (Hi.) ; a 
substantive meaning trouble or adversary, used independently (Koh.) 
or as the subj. of lap (Ki.), or an appositive to o^ (Ke.), or a gen. 
with D> (RV.), or an ace. denoting limit of motion (de D.), or an 
adverbial ace. (AV.); a vb. with the sense of cleave (Hd.). Others 
have attempted to emend the text. Thus Bla. rds. rn x, to Tyre; also 
Klo., Sta. This reading, however, is probably older than Bla., for it 
seems to have suggested the gloss that follows. These attempts to 
construe or emend the passage having proven unsatisfactory, modern 
critics have returned to Seeker s conjecture, that here, as in Is. u 11 
the text should read onsn o-o. So We., Kui., Now., Marti, GASm., 
Kit. a^Sj o>a nam] The secondary character of this clause is evi 
dent, (i) It requires an awkward change of subj. (2) It sepa 
rates two lines that belong together. (3) It adds a fifth line to an 
already complete stanza. (4) It is easily explained as a loan from 
9 4 > suggested by mx, in which the scribe who inserted it found the 


name of Tyre. urani] We., taking for granted the genuineness of 
the preceding clause, rds., with Kenn. 96, <g L , tr ani; but if that line 
be omitted there will be no need of changing this or either of the 
following vbs. This one is explained as a Hiph. used in the sense of 
Qal. Cf. BDB. -w] Generally the Nile, but in the pi. sometimes 
streams other than the branches of that river. Cf. 33 21 Jb. 28 10 . 
Moreover, in Dn. i2 5 ff - it is used of the Tigris. The context, with 
its regular alternations between Egypt and Syria, makes it probable 
that it here means the Euphrates, or is an error for nnjn, the usual 
designation for that river. Cf. Gn. 3i 21 , etc. The mistake would be 
a natural one after the allusion in the first line to the passage of the 
Red Sea. 12. This whole verse is evidently an accretion, (i) It 
breaks with the metrical scheme of the rest of the chapter. (2) It 
disturbs the connection between v. and n l . (3) It is clumsy and 
confusing in its style compared with the preceding verses. The 
last point holds even if, for O ma:n, one read, with We., et al., orn^jn, 
and their might. nwa] <g add their God. luSnn"] Rd., with 
Kenn. 150 and <g &, V?Snn\ So Bla., New., We., Now., Marti, 
Kit. II 1 . inio] The prep, denotes that the action of the vb. will 
be unrestricted; the fire will devour at will among the cedars. Cf. 
Ges. *<*> <>. 2. The first half of the verse, as shown in the com 
ments, betrays its ungenuineness by its content. It is also metrically 
inadmissible, (i) It separates two couplets that are more closely 
related to each other than either of them is to it. (2) It makes the 
stanza in which it is found just so much longer than the others. The 
phraseology betrays dependence on v. 3 . IB^N] Causal. Cf. Ho. 14*. 
Ges. 5 156. jtfa] Usually with the art, which is here omitted, although 
the noun is a vocative. "oxan] Qr., with many mss., "Pion. The 
art. is sometimes found with an attributive adj. when the noun 
has none. Cf. 4 7 i4 10 , etc.; Ges.* 8 - 5 - R - <*>; Dr.* 809 . 3. Sip] With 
the force of hark. Cf. Ges.* 146 - * R - *. nSV ] On the composite 
shewa, see Ges. ^ I0 - " R - A (a >. amis] Rd. orpjnn, as in Je. 25 36 . 
fTvn] Always with the art. in prose, and only twice (Ps. 42 7 / 6 Jb. 
4O 23 ) without it in poetry. 

d. The two shepherds (n 4 - 17 i3 7 " 9 ). 

The section naturally divides itself into two paragraphs, the first 
of which deals with 

(i) The careless shepherd (n 4 " 14 ). The prophet represents him 
self as directed by Yahweh to take charge of a flock of sheep that 
are being reared for the market. He does so, but finally tires of 
his duties and asks to be dismissed ; breaking one of the symbolic 


staves with which he has provided himself when he leaves the 
sheep, and the other when he receives his wages and deposits them 
in the temple treasury. The story is more complete in its details 
than that of 6 9 ff , but the absence of definite persons and places 
and the neglect of the author to keep his narrative throughout dis 
tinct from the ideas symbolised indicate that, whatever one may 
think of the other case, one has here to do with a parable. Cf. 
Ez. 4 lff - s lff - i2 13ff -. 

4. The interpretation of the story as a parable does not deprive 
the introductory statement, Thus saith Yahweh, of significance. 
The author would doubtless have claimed that, although Yahweh 
did not actually command him to perform the acts described, the 
teaching of the parable had the divine sanction. The addition to 
me indicates that this was his conviction. Cf. Is. 8 11 i8 4 , etc. 
Yahweh instructs the prophet to feed, act in the capacity of a shep 
herd to, the flock for slaughter. Cf. Je. i2 3 . Too much stress can 
not be laid upon the fact that the sheep are destined for the sham 
bles. This seems to have been ignored by those who find here a 
representation of a good shepherd, whether Yahweh (Stade) or a 
humane high priest (Wellhausen) . It is clear from v. 6 , where the 
term shepherd is a synonym for king, that the command here given 
requires the prophet to personate a king and illustrate the char 
acter of his government. Who the king is, the author is careful 
not to explain, but, as shown in the Introduction (256), the indi 
cations point to Ptolemy III, king of Egypt from 247 to 222 B.C. 
It is clear from vv. 15 f< that he is the first of two rulers portrayed by 
the same hand. He must therefore have ceased to rule before this 
and the next ten verses were written. In other words, this pas 
sage, like Dn. n 2 -i2 4 , is not so much prophecy as history. 

5. This king is not himself accused of destroying his own sheep. 
It is they that buy them who slay them. The terms here used are 
best explained as applying to the method of collecting the taxes in 
Palestine from the time of Ptolemy III onward. The Jews had 
previously had little reason to complain in this matter. When, 
however, Joseph, a disreputable nephew of the high priest Onias 
II, by cunning and bribery secured the franchise, it became an in 
strument of cruelty as well as a source of enormous profit to its 


possessor and his subordinates, who literally bought and sold the 
people without mercy. They could slay uncondemned, that is, 
without incurring guilt or feeling remorse for their cruelty. Cf. 
Je. 5<D 6 f *. It must be the same who, moreover, are Jews; other 
wise they would not use the language attributed to them that sell 
them, saying in their conceit and hypocrisy, Blessed be Yahweh that 
I am rich! Cf. Ho. i2 7 f- . Meanwhile, their shepherd (not, as the 
word is usually rendered, shepherds), the king whom the prophet 
represents, hath no compassion on them, affords them no protec 
tion. This is precisely what one would expect from that " re 
markable king" Ptolemy III, who, as Mahaffy puts it,* changed 
"from a successful warrior into a good-natured, but lazy, patron of 
politicians, of priests, and of pedants." 6. This verse is treated 
as a gloss by some of the later critics, but that is because they have 
misunderstood the context. If the interpretation above given to 
vv. 4 f> be adopted, it will not be necessary to resort to excision. 
The prophet has been directed to play the part of a shepherd who, 
though careless and unworthy of his office, has his place in the 
divine plan. The present purpose of Yahweh is here revealed. 
I will no longer spare the inhabitants of the earth, he says, but lo, I 
will deliver men, each into the hand of his shepherd (not his neigh 
bour), and into the hand of his king. The scenes enacted in Pales 
tine are to be repeated under other rulers in other parts of the 
earth, until they, these kings, shall crush the earth, allow ruin to 
overtake their lands. All this Yahweh will, for the present, per 
mit. I will not, he declares, rescue from their, these kings , hands. 
In the East as well as in the West the people had long been the 
sport and the prey of their rulers. 

7. These were the prophet s instructions. He proceeded, ac 
cording to his narrative, to execute them. So I fed, he says, the 
flock, the flock destined for slaughter. The Massoretic text of the 
rest of this clause is unintelligible, but it is clear from the Greek 
Version that the original reading was,/0r the traders in sheep, these 
traders being the heartless buyers and sellers who, as above de 
scribed, make a business of killing the sheep. The prophet had 
the usual implements of a shepherd, among which was a staff such 

* HE., iv, 124. 

ii 4 - 1 305 

as David carried. Cf. i S. i; 40 . Indeed, he had two staves. To 
these he gave symbolic names, calling the one Delight, and the other 
Bonds. The symbolic use of these staves seems to have been sug 
gested by Ezekiel s parable of the two sticks. Cf. 37 15ff . In 
this case, in spite of later explanations, the meaning is not easily 
discoverable. In seeking it one must keep constantly in mind that 
the prophet, as a shepherd, represents, not Yahweh, but an earthly 
king. This being admitted, the two staves will naturally symbol 
ise the duties or relations of a shepherd to his flock, and, in the 
higher sphere, of a ruler to his people, or the conditions that result 
from the observance of such relations. Now the ideal attitude of 
a king toward his subjects, as of a shepherd toward his sheep, is 
one of benevolent solicitude for their welfare, and every king, when 
he accepts his crown, explicitly or implicitly obligates himself, so 
long as his subjects remain loyal to him, to devote himself to their 
best interests. The first staff, therefore, is called Delight, a name 
which, in the light of Ps. po 17 and Pr. 24^, may be interpreted as 
denoting the pleasure that accompanies well-being. The breaking 
of this staff, according to v. 10 , is therefore fitly represented as 
equivalent to the repudiation of a covenant guaranteeing the be- 
stowment of the blessings by which the pleasure was induced. 
Secondly, it is the duty of a ruler not only to maintain toward those 
under his authority a disposition and attitude that will promote 
their happiness, but also to provide that their relations with one 
another shall be such as contribute to the same result. He must 
bind them into a harmonious whole; otherwise his own efforts to 
benefit them may arouse discontent and jealousy issuing in the 
most serious internal disturbances. This seems to have been the 
thought of the prophet in naming his second staff Bonds, that is, 
Unity. At any rate, this is in harmony with what he says, in v. 14 , 
that he meant by finally breaking it. Note, however, that the 
staves symbolise simply ideals or obligations. Moreover, the act 
of taking them has a restricted significance. It cannot mean that 
the prophet, as a shepherd, fulfilled the requirements of his office. 
The sequel shows that, although he recognised his obligations, 
he neglected them; and this thought must be supplied when he 
repeats that he fed, took charge of, the flock. 


8. There should now at once follow an account of the prophet s 
experience as a careless shepherd. It is postponed to make room 
for a statement that immediately challenges attention and exami 
nation, / destroyed the three shepherds in one month. The use of the 
article often implies knowledge on the part of the reader which will 
enable him to identify the persons or objects mentioned without 
further description. Hence Wellhausen argues that these shep 
herds must have been introduced in a passage connecting this verse 
with the one preceding which has been lost. Moreover, since there 
seems to be as little connection between the statement quoted and 
what follows, he supposes that there is another lacuna at this point. 
This hypothesis is illogical and unnecessary. The natural infer 
ence from the fact that the statement in question has no connec 
tion with either the preceding or the following context is that it is 
an interpolation, and this inference is confirmed by other consid 
erations. For example, the object of the parable, as already ex 
plained, was to picture conditions as they were not long before it 
was written. From v. 6 it appears that these conditions were in 
accord with the divine purpose for the time being. The author can 
not, therefore, have represented Yahweh, who must be the "I" of 
the sentence, as destroying three other shepherds presumably for 
the same offence that he himself was instructed to commit.* It 
is much more probable that the statement is a gloss by some one 
who thought he saw mirrored in the parable a time when three 
rulers one after another in rapid succession were removed. The 
opinions with reference to these rulers are many and various. The 
latest exegetes incline to identify them with certain high priests of 
the period just preceding the Maccabean uprising; for example, 
Jason, Lysimachus, and Menelaus. Cf. 2 Mac. 4 7ff - 23ff - 29ff - 

So Rub., Marti. This is only one of many different conjectures on the sub 
ject. Rub. enumerates twenty-five. There are at least forty, together cov 
ering the whole field of Hebrew history from the Exodus to the conquest of 
Palestine by the Romans, and including most of the men and institutions 
therein of any importance. Indeed, some have sought these three shepherds 
outside of the Holy Land. The following specimens will indicate how wide is 
the divergence on the subject. The three are identified with Moses, Aaron, 

* This objection is valid, whether the clause be left where it is or, as Marti suggests, placed 
after v. 7 *. 


and Miriam; Jer., etal.: with Zechariah, Shallum and another, perhaps Men- 
ahem; Mau., Hi., Ew., et al.: with Judas Maccabaeus and his brothers Jona 
than and Simon; Abar., et al.: with the kings, priests, and prophets of the 
Hebrews; Theodoret, et al.: with the Pharisees, Sadducees, and Essenes; 
Lightfoot, etal.: with Assyria, Babylonia, and Persia; Klie., et al. Of course, 
most of these conjectures would not have been proposed if their authors had 
not first persuaded themselves that a month might mean any length of time 
from a few days to 210 years. 

Since, however, the interpolator must have seen that throughout 
the parable the shepherd represents a king, he would naturally use 
the term in the same sense. The three shepherds are therefore 
doubtless three kings, and since this gloss is later than the orig 
inal parable, presumably kings of Syria. If so, it is probable that 
they are the three who, according to Dn. y 8 , were "plucked up" 
according to v. 24 of the same chapter they were " put down " 
by Antiochus Epiphanes, and who are plausibly identified with 
Seleucus IV, Heliodorus, a usurper, and Demetrius Soter, son of 
Seleucus and rightful heir to the throne, whom Antiochus Epiph 
anes superseded. Perhaps, however, since Demetrius not only 
was not destroyed, but finally succeeded to the throne, the three are 
Antiochus III, Seleucus IV, and Heliodorus. If it be objected that 
these three were not removed within a month, one may reply that 
although Seleucus ruled nine years, in Dn. n 20 his reign is reck 
oned at "a few days," and, if the author of the gloss took the words 
literally, he could easily persuade himself that they all died within 
the given time. The removal of this gloss clears the way for a 
natural and satisfactory interpretation of the rest of the verse. 
It is a confession by the shepherd that, although he had taken 
upon himself to nourish and protect the sheep committed to his 
charge, he became impatient with them, felt and showed a repug 
nance toward them not in harmony with his calling. Here, again, 
is unmistakable evidence that it is not Yahweh, or any other person 
or persons properly called good, whom the prophet is impersonat 
ing, but some one of a very different character, namely, a fallible 
and recreant human ruler. The repugnance of the shepherd for 
his sheep naturally begot in them a corresponding feeling; their 
souls, he says, also loathed me. 

9. The indifference of the shepherd shows itself in neglect of his 


sheep. Indeed, he goes so far as to repudiate his duties toward 
them. The one that is dying of hunger or disease, he heartlessly 
declares, shall die, for aught he cares, and the one that is being de 
stroyed by wild beasts or other foes shall be destroyed. These two 
clauses are a development of the last of v. 5 in the manner of Eze- 
kiel s arraignment of the shepherds (kings) of Israel in 34 2ff> . 
Cf. also Je. I5 1 f -. The last is a less apparent parallel to 34 17ff> ; 
but in it the author forgets his role and uses language that rather 
recalls Is. p 19 / 20 . He is in reality describing the bitter struggle 
which, growing out of the rise of the Tobiads, rent the nobility in 
twain and brought untold evil upon the Jewish people. They that 
are left, he says, as if the struggle were still future, shall devour, each 
the flesh of its fellow. 10. The shepherd now brings forward the 
first of his staves, the one named Delight, symbol of the happy con 
dition of a people under an ideal ruler. Since he has repudiated 
his obligations as a shepherd, it is fitting that he should cut it 
asunder, for nothing could better represent the abnormal relation 
between him and his charges and its unhappy consequences than 
such a severed and useless instrument. No formal explanation 
would seem to be necessary, yet he gives one, and, in so doing, adds 
a detail that deserves attention. It is found in the clause in which 
he describes the covenant now broken. My covenant, he calls it, 
again deserting his figure, which I had made with all the peoples. 
The words are usually understood as meaning a covenant by which 
the Jews were protected from other nations;* but this is not the 
interpretation that best harmonises with the main thought of the 
parable. The covenant, if represented by the staff, can only be a 
covenant with peoples represented by the sheep, and surely the 
Jews were among them. If, therefore, the shepherd represents 
Ptolemy III, one must infer that not only the Jews, but the peoples 
about them who were tributary to Egypt had just cause of com 
plaint against him as a ruler. If so, it is not strange that a little 
later, when Antiochus the Great undertook the conquest of Egypt, 
he met with almost no opposition until he reached Gaza, the Phoe 
nicians and the Philistines being as ready as the Jews for a change 
of masters. 11. The words and it was broken in that day should 

*So Theod. Mops., Rosenm., Mau., Hi., Evv., Koh., Ke., Hd., Burger, Brd., Pu., Or., 
We., Now., Marti, el al. 

be attached to v. 10 , of which it is properly the conclusion. The 
rest of the verse is very realistic. The prophet, resuming his role, 
reports that, when the traders in sheep who were watching, or, as 
van Hoonacker ingeniously suggests, had hired, him saw him cut 
the staff asunder, they knew that it was the word of Yahweh; that 
the action performed correctly, and to their shame, represented ex 
isting conditions. This is so simple and natural a declaration that 
it suggests the question whether the prophet did not go through a 
pantomimic presentation of his message before he put it into writ 
ing. 12. The shepherd, although he has failed to meet the re 
quirements of his office, presents a claim for wages. The usual 
interpretation makes him address himself to the flock. It would 
seem permissible if the Massoretic text of v. u were correct. If, 
however, as has been shown, it is not the sheep, but the traders in 
them, who are watching the prophet, the natural inference is that it 
is the latter to whom the next speech is addressed. This inference 
is confirmed by the fact that it is these traders, according to v. 7 , 
whom the prophet has been serving. They, then, are the persons 
whom he now approaches, rather hesitatingly, with the request, If it 
be good in your eyes, give me my hire. Then he practically confesses 
his un worthiness of any remuneration by adding, but, if not, refrain. 
The traders respond by paying him, not, apparently, according to 
a previous agreement, but according to their estimate of his value 
as a shepherd. They weighed me, he says, my hire, thirty pieces, 
that is, shekels, of silver; about 4 2$ sterling, or $20 in American 
money, according to Ex. 2i 32 the price of a Hebrew slave. The 
meaning of these words does not at first appear. It is necessary 
to recall whom the shepherd represents, and whom the traders, to 
appreciate their significance. But, when this is done, and one 
realises that it is the king of Egypt who is appraised and the tax- 
gatherers of Syria who appraise him,* the passage becomes one of 
the best examples of sarcasm in the Old Testament. 

13. There follows an episode which, on any interpretation of 
the parable as a whole, it is difficult to understand. In the first 
place, according to the present reading, it is not Yahweh, but the 
shepherd, who has been appraised; and, secondly, there is no dis- 

* Kliefoth and others connect the amount of money paid with v. 8 , but, if v. 8a is a gloss, the 
dependence, if there is any, must be on its side. 


coverable reason why the money should be thrown to the potter in 
the temple or elsewhere. It is therefore pretty generally agreed 
that the text needs emendation, and, indeed, that the command 
addressed to the shepherd should read, put it into the treasury, the 
noble price at which thou hast been valued by them. The term 
noble, of course, is to be understood as ironical. The reference to 
the treasury or storehouse is not explicit enough to make it clear 
to the modern reader where the money is to be deposited. In the 
statement that follows, however, the omission is made good; for 
here the shepherd says that he put the silver at the house of Yahweh 
into the treasury, or, to put it more idiomatically, brought it to the 
house of Yahweh and put it into the treasury. There are several 
references to the treasury of the temple or its contents. Cf. 
Jos. 6 24 i K. i4 26 2 K. 24 13 , etc. It appears from 2 Mac. 3 4 ff - that 
it was a depository for private as well as public funds. When, 
therefore, the shepherd is commanded to put his wages into the 
treasury, it by no means follows that they are to be devoted to 
Yahweh. It is more probable and the irony of the command is 
increased by this interpretation that they are to be placed there 
for security. 

14. In the final verse, which is but loosely connected with those 
that precede, the shepherd tells how he disposed of his second 
staff, Bonds. It, also, he cut asunder, thus, as he explains, sunder 
ing the brotherhood between Judah and Israel. The names Judah 
and Israel are most frequently used of the two kingdoms into which 
after the time of Solomon the Hebrews were divided ; but the later 
prophets sometimes employ them together as a comprehensive des 
ignation for the entire people. Thus, in Je. 23 they are equiv 
alent to "the seed of the house of Israel" of v. 8 . Cf. also Je. 
3i 27ff - Ez. 37 19ff> , etc. The brotherhood of Judah and Israel 
in this sense would be the unity of purpose and effort among the 
Hebrews after the I^xile, especially those that constituted the re 
stored community in Palestine. Now, the most serious rupture 
of this unity occurred, as has already been observed, on the rise 
of the Tobiads, when there began a partisan struggle for the con 
trol of affairs that finally assumed the dimensions of a civil war. 
If, therefore, Ptolemy III is the shepherd of this parable, this rup- 

ii 4 - 3 11 

ture, for which he was indirectly responsible, must be the one sym 
bolised by cutting asunder the second staff. Thus the whole be 
comes a picture of conditions, especially in Palestine, just before 
that country ceased to belong to Egypt and became a part of the 
Syrian empire. 

In Mt. 2j g f - the Evangelist, referring to the purchase of the 
Potter s Field, says, "Then was fulfilled that which was spoken 
through Jeremiah the prophet, saying, And they took the thirty 
pieces of silver, the price of him that was appraised, whom some 
of the sons of Israel appraised, and gave them for the Potter s 
Field as the Lord appointed me." The discussion of this quota 
tion properly belongs in a commentary on the Gospel from which 
it is taken, but two or three points may here be noticed. In the 
first place, there should be no doubt that the Evangelist meant to 
refer to v. 13 of the parable above discussed, the divergence from 
the original being explained by the liberty he allowed himself in 
his quotations. Cf. Mt. 2 23 2i 5 . The appearance of the name of 
Jeremiah for that of Zechariah has received various explanations. 
Among them are the following: (i) That the name is an addition 
to the original text of the Gospel. (2) That the name of Jeremiah, 
or an abbreviation of it, has been substituted for that of Zecha 
riah by a careless copyist. (3) That the name of Jeremiah, whose 
book once stood first among the prophets, is here a title for the 
whole collection. (4) That the words of Zechariah are based on 
Je. 1 8, and are therefore virtually the words of Jeremiah. These 
however, are only so many excuses for refusing to make the harm 
less admission that the Evangelist attributes to the greater and 
better known of two prophets words that belong to the other. 
See Mk. i 2 , where a passage from Malachi is attributed to Isaiah. 
Finally, the incident narrated in the Gospel is the fulfilment of 
the words of the prophet, not in the strict sense of being the event 
he had in mind as he wrote, but only in the loose sense of being an 
event by which the words of the prophet are recalled. Cf. Mt. 
2 15 - 23 , etc. 

4. TI^H] <g, iravTwKpdTwp = niN3X; & LU add s^t. Rd., with Kenn. 
246 (now) >S as in v. 15 . njnnn] A gen., the equivalent of an inf. of pur 
pose. Cf. Is. 53 5 Ps. 44 23 , etc.; Ges.* 128 - 2 <*>>.; Ko.* 336t . & has 


acc. to Sebok an error for j^-^^.^r- . 5. p^p] With a fern. 
pi. sf. because js jf is conceived as a collection of ewes. Cf. Je. 5o 17 . 
pirn] For p:nn>, the reading of 25 Kenn. mss. The ] is the sf. of the 
3 pi. fern. irtr N 11 ^cm] With daghesh orthophonicum to call attention 
to the silent shewa under the preceding guttural. See also ^sns v. G . 
Cf. GesJ 13 - 2 (*>. ncK"] Rd., with (6 B & , noN\ So We., Now., 
Marti, Kit. The loss of the pi. ending is explained by the fact that in the 
clause quoted each of the subjs. speaks for himself. rnrr] <g A adds irav- 
ruKpdrup. nr>Ni] Qr., with 30 Kenn. mss., "vir^si, by syncope for *virj?Ni. 
Cf. J^Ni; Ges. * 19 <*>. The Kt., however, with the pointing TJ^NI is de 
fensible. Cf. Ho. i2 9 /s jb. 1529. The i has a circumstantial force. Cf. 
Gn. i8 18 Ju. i6 15 , etc.; Ges. % 142 - (*> R - . The Vrss. have the equivalent 
of either ntrjui ((8 H) or uviryrn (& SI). arvjn] Rd., with 18 mss. 
& , PTI. So Bla., We., Now., Kit. It is not probable that the au 
thor, having taken pains to use the fern. sf. in p^Jp, would so soon for 
get himself. See also p^Sp. A copyist, however, might carelessly write 
the one for the other. The noun might be either sg. or pi., but, since the 
vb. of which it is the subj. is sg., it must be of the same number. Cf. Na. 
3^; Ges.** 91 - * R - 1 <*> 93 - 3 - R - 3 . 6. OJN] The separate pron. instead 
of a sf. So v. 16 i2 2 ; with a sf., i3 5 . injn] Rd., as required by the par 
allel term, his king, against the Vrss., inyn. So Mich., Sta., We., Now., 
Marti, GASm., Kit. wSn] Van H., contrary to the context, rds. nob. 

7. "jy pS] Many and various attempts have been made to find in 
these words a meaning in harmony with the context, but both of them 
have been tortured in vain. The fact that p reappears in v. " should 
have put any one acquainted with Heb. on the right track. Those who 
consulted the Vrss. had only to turn to (S> to find in its reading ei s TTJV Xava- 
avlriv or ets TTJV yijv Xavdav (L), a waymark to the original, viz., ^.nS 
So Flugge, Bla., Burger, Rub., Klo., Sta., We., Kui., Now., Marti, 
GASm., Gins., Kit. inx 1 ?] Not a cstr., but a sharpened form of the abs. 
used nominally. Cf. 2 S. iy 22 Is. 2y 12 , etc.; Da. ^ 35 - R - 2 . D^San] There 
seems to be no object in insisting on the Massoretic vocalisation against 
the testimony of the Vrss. ; (&, <rxott>i<rfjui; T$,funiculum; &, ]L^**; all of 
which favour D^an. Whether it be rendered Bonds, or, more abstractly, 
Union or Unity, is not of consequence. On the use of the pi. as an ab 
stract noun, see Ges. ^ 124 - R - <*>. JNXH nx n;nsi] This, at first sight, 
seems a useless repetition, but on closer examination it will be found to be 
a justifiable literary expedient. The first time So I fed, etc. looks back 
ward to v. "; here it serves as an introduction to v. 8 . 8. nroNi] Rd., with 
20 Kenn. mss., -vruNi. Dra] The masc. for the fern, sf., because, as the 
writer proceeds, he loses sight of the figure. See a ire 3, and in v. 9 DD3. 

nSm] ATT., the aSmo of Pr. 2o 21 being an error for nSnan. Geiger rds. 
nVjn, citing Je. 3" 3i 32 ; but in 3", acc. to Gie., S?a has its usual sense, 
and in 3i 32 the original was nSp. Gratz suggests nbyi, but, since the 

II*- J 313 

Syriac has preserved a derivative of Sm with the meaning nauseated, 
there seems to be no need of changing the text. 

9. nnon] Moritura; so also the next prtc., while the third must be ren 
dered relictae. Cf. Ges. * 116 - 2 . ncta] Comp. the w<* of v. 6 . 10. -vonS] 
Better ion 1 , the oriental reading, found also in 28 Kenn. mss. It has cir 
cumstantial force, like the pres. prtc. in English. Cf. Ges. ^ l14 - * R - 4 . 
mj] The pf. in the sense of the plupf. Cf. Ges. * 106 - l ( ). -11 . "jp p] 
Rd., as in v. 7 , "#. onotfn] Van H. suggests onsfc n, which would 
make excellent sense. TIN] The prtc., like the tenses, here takes a sepa 
rate pronominal obj. Cf. Ges. * 116 - 3 . 12. inn] Always milra, except in 
Jb. 6 22 , where the preceding word is mil el and the one following a mono 
syllable. The fern., -on, is also naturally milra . Cf. Ru. 3 15 . On the 
other hand run is regularly mil* el. So at the beginning of a verse in Gn. 
1 1 7 Ex. i 10 , and when the preceding word is mil el (Gn. u 3 ); also when it is 
the first word in a speech, even if the preceding word is milra (Gn. n 4 
i S. i4 41 )- The only case in which it has a disjunctive is Gn. u 7 , and the 
only one in which it is itself milra is Gn. 29", where, since the conditions 
are otherwise the same as in Gn. n 4 and i S. i4 44 , the position of its ac 
cent is probably due to the following N. Cf. Ges. % 69 - 2 - R - 2 . For the 
rules governing the accentuation in such cases, see Nrd. ^ 60 f -. vh ONI] 
Elliptical condition. Cf. Ges. * -^. R. 2, -,S-,n] In pause for iV"\n. 
HD3] Strictly an appositive of crSpc understood. Cf. Ges. ** 2 ( r >; 
134. 4. 13. inrrStrn] This word does not, as the ordinary rendering for 
it might suggest, imply contempt or any related emotion. See Gn. 2i 5 , 
where it should be translated bestow. The closest parallel to the present 
instance is found in 2 Ch. 24!, where the author says that, in response to 
a proclamation of King Josiah, "all the princes and all the people gladly 
brought in" the required sum "and put it (13^8^1) into the chest." Cf. 
Ju. 8 25 2 K. 4 41 , etc. -ram] This word, as was observed in the comments, 
is unintelligible in this connection. Yet it is the reading that underlies 
(g S (r6 xuvevT-fipiov), Aq. (rbv irXdo-ryv) , and B (statuarium); also the 
citation in Mt. 27 10 , where the Evangelist reports that the money returned 
by Judas was given et s rbv aypbv rov Kepafifas. &, however, has 1"}^. ut2 
= IXINH nu (Ne. io 39 ) or simply isiNn (Je. 38"), the treasury, the reading 
actually found in Kenn. 530 at the end of the verse. Many have adopted 
the opinion that this was what the prophet intended to say, but they are 
not agreed on the origin of the present reading. Thus, Maurer claims 
that it is not the text, but the interpretation of it, that has suffered, -rsvn 
itself having the sense of treasury; while Eichhorn and others contend 
that the original reading was ixvn, and explain this as an Aramaism for 
nxiNn. So also Hi., Ew., Bo., Sta., Eckardt, et al. The most proba 
ble view is that nxvn is simply a mistake for nxwn, a having been 
carelessly substituted for an N and the vowel of the last syllable changed 
to that of the familiar word for potter. So Ort., Reu , Now., Marti, 


GASm., Kit., et al. We. does not accuse the scribes of tampering with 
the text, but he says that "the incorrect reading may have been pur 
posely retained that nxvn might be interpreted as meaning potter. If the 
rich wage was not worthy of the shepherd, it certainly was too small for 
Yahweh and the sacred treasury." He also calls attention to traces of a 
dual interpretation of this passage in Mt. ay 3 ff -, where the chief priests 
decide not to put the money returned by Judas into "the treasury," but 
expend it for "the potter s field." For another example of confusion of 
N with % see JMT for jxn in i S. 22 18 - 22 . i|vn -nx] For "ij^n "nxn the 
gen. of a noun being used instead of the corresponding adj. Cf. 2 S. 
I2 30 , etc.; Ges. * 128 - 2 <* >. Tnp"] Since the subj. can hardly be the prophet 
(GASm.), rd. rnp\ So We., Now., Marti, Kit., van H. O irStr] A 
numeral, whether before or after a definite noun with which it is in ap 
position, wants the art. Cf. Ges. ^ 134 - 3 - R - 2 . n mn> no inx -pStfsi] 
Construct pregnans for ji ySaw nin> rva inx N-ONI. Cf. Ges. $ 119 - 4 . 
The noun no, therefore, is in the ace. of the limit of motion with xox 
understood. & simplifies the sentence by transposing the phrases no 
mm and nxixn Sx and inserting the prep. 2 before the former. -pen 1 ] 
Rd. nsnV as in v. 10 . mnxn] (8 B , r^v /cardo-xecri^ = mnxn; clearly an 
error. Most Greek mss. have rrjv diadiqicriv. Ssnr 1 ] (g L , Iepov<ra\r]fj.] 
An interesting reading which some recent critics are inclined to adopt. 
So We., Now., Marti, Kit. It can hardly be regarded as the original 
reading unless this passage can be shown to be by the same author as 
chs. 12 and 14. 

(2) A foolish shepherd (n 15 17 is 7 9 ) The prophet is here di 
rected to assume the part of a foolish shepherd, whose treatment of 
his flock is briefly described. Then Yahweh breaks into a denun 
ciation of the shepherd, followed by intimations concerning the 
process of purification by which his people must be prepared for 
final deliverance. 

15. The words with which the prophet represents Yahweh as 
addressing him, Take thee again the implements of a foolish shep 
herd, might be interpreted as meaning that the shepherd now to be 
personated is the same as the one in the preceding paragraph ; but 
this can hardly be the case. The change in tone that reveals it 
self in the succeeding verses is evidence to the contrary. The 
writer s idea would be more clearly expressed by a paraphrase; for 
example, Take thee again the implements of a shepherd, this time 
to play the part of a foolish one. Among these implements were 

ii 15 7 is 7 

a staff (i S. ly 40 ), a pouch (ibid.) and a pipe (Ju. 5 16 ).* The epi 
thet foolish in the Old Testament generally implies moral ob 
liquity. Thus, in Pr. i 7 the persons so described are said to 
" despise wisdom and instruction." What it means when applied 
to rulers is clear from Is. 19" ff- , where, singularly enough, it is the 
princes of Egypt who are so characterised. The foolish ruler is 
one who is blind to the purposes of Yahweh, and helpless in the 
face of their fulfilment. The one here meant is probably Ptol 
emy IV (Philopator), who succeeded his father Euergetes in 222 
B.C. His reputation is unmatched by that of any other member 
of the Ptolemaic dynasty. The Greek historian Polybius de 
scribes him as a drunken debauchee who was not only worthless 
as a ruler, but a constant menace to the prosperity and security 
of his country.f The Jews accused him of the worst excesses ;J 
also of trying to force his way into the temple at Jerusalem, and, 
when he was frustrated, planning a wholesale massacre of their 
countrymen at Alexandria.** These charges, as Mahaffy believes, 
may be exaggerated, but even he admits that the king must have 
given the Jews cause to hate him,ft and that fact is sufficient to ac 
count for the tone of this passage. 16. Yahweh himself explains 
wh at is meant by the instructions given. Lo, I will raise up a shep 
herd in the land. The clause is predictive only in form. The 
verses that follow show that the writer is dealing with actual con 
ditions. He does not repeat the adjective foolish, but substi 
tutes for it a description of the administration of the reigning king. 
It is marked by negligence alternating with cruelty. The language 
used, which is consistently pastoral, is largely borrowed from Ez. 
34 3 f -. Here, however, only four cases are enumerated. First 
comes that of the one that is being destroyed, for example, by wild 
beasts. It the shepherd should, but will not, visit bringing as 
sistance. The second is the one that is wandering; yet he will not 
seek it. The third is the one that is maimed, lit., broken, having met 
with an accident, perhaps, while scrambling over a rocky pasture. 

* It is a ridiculous fancy of some of the commentators, ancient and modern, that the imple 
ments of this shepherd differed from those of the one in the other parable. So Cyr., Lowth, 
Moore, el al. 

t Hist., v, 34. J 3 Mac. 2*. 3 Mac. i 10 ff -. 

** 3 Mac. 31 -. ft HE., iv, 145. 


It he will not take the trouble to heal. The condition of the fourth 
is doubtful. The text reads one that standeth, perhaps surviveth. 
One would expect either the one that starveth or the one that is 
hungry, since the prophet completes the sentence by adding, he 
will not nourish, provide with food. The last clause, also, in its 
present form is only partially intelligible. The Syriac Version 
seems to have preserved the original reading, the flesh of the fattest 
will he eat, and their legs will he gnaw ; a picture which excellently 
portrays the greedy policy Ptolemy IV appears to have followed 
toward the Jews. CJ. Ez. 34 3 . 

17. From this point onward the discourse is really predictive. 
The form, also, is changed, the remaining verses constituting a 
poem in four stanzas, each of which has three double lines. The 
prophet begins by pronouncing a woe upon the shepherd already 
described, who is now, however, called my foolish shepherd. On 
the pronoun, see i$ 7 . His offence is that he leaveth the flock. The 
instrumentality through which he, or rather the king he represents, 
is to be punished is the sword, that is, war. The verse is modelled 
after Je. 50 35 ff , where another writer invokes the sword against the 
Chaldeans.* The writer seems also to have had in mind an oracle 
by Ezekiel against the ruler of Egypt in his time. "Son of man," 
that prophet represents Yahweh as saying to him, "I have broken 
the arm of Pharaoh, king of Egypt." Cf. Ez. 3o 21 . Here the reign 
ing king (Ptolemy IV) is threatened with a blow upon his arm. The 
interpretation of the figure is found in Ez. 3o 22 . The arm of the 
king is smitten to " cause the sword to fall out of his hand," that is, 
to render him and his country defenceless against their enemies. 
Nor is this the extent of the penalty. Yahweh will smite with the 
same sword his right eye, this being another means of disabling 
men for service in war, since the loss of the right eye made a shield 
of little value. The result will be complete: his arm shall wither 
away, and his right eye shall be utterly darkened. 13 7 . The rea 
sons for connecting this and the next two verses with the eleventh 
chapter have been discussed in the Introduction. See pp. 253 /. 
The same subject is continued. Yahweh summons the sword, 

* In Je. so 38 M has :nn, a drought, but, as S> has the sword, and (& originally had the same 
reading, there can be little doubt that the Hebrew author wrote :nn. 



with which he has just threatened the foolish shepherd, to awake 
and perform its office. Cf. Je. 47. Of the person against whom 
it is incited he now uses a Hebrew word that may be rendered, ac 
cording to the vocalisation, either my fellow or my shepherd; but it 
is not difficult to decide in which of these two senses the author in 
tended it to be taken. The former has in its favour the proximity 
of the synonymous expression, my companion. The latter, how 
ever, is preferred because, among other reasons, (i) the person in 
question is really the shepherd ; and (2) without doubt is so called 
in this verse. There is no objection to the expression in itself, for 
in Is. 44 28 Yahweh applies it to Cyrus, and, since the Hebrews be 
lieved that all rulers were under the control and direction of their 
God, they could apply it to a king, even if he were oppressing them 
instead of relieving them from oppression. Here the king of 
Egypt is so called by virtue of his office, because, in spite of his un- 
worthiness, he is still in a sense a shepherd, and as such an asso 
ciate of the Shepherd of Israel. This fact, however, does not pro 
tect him from deserved retribution, or, unfortunately, his subjects 
from the consequences of his unfaithfulness. Smite the Shepherd, 
says Yahweh, and the sheep shall be scattered. The sheep, of 
course, are the subjects of the recreant king, especially, as will ap 
pear, the Chosen People. Cf. Ez. 34 5 f . / will also, Yahweh con 
tinues, draw back my hand, not, as some* have tried to show, to 
spare, but, as the preposition against clearly indicates, to smite, 
the little ones, the lambs of the flock, representing the lowly men 
and women as well as the children slain or dragged into slavery 
by a brutal soldiery. Cf. Je. 49 5o 45 . 8. The result to the Jews 
of this dreadful infliction will be that throughout the land two-thirds 
of them that are in it shall be cut off and die. The work might be 
accomplished in a brief time, perhaps in a single campaign. This, 
however, is not the author s idea. He makes Yahweh say that, 
after the greater part of the inhabitants have been destroyed or de 
ported, the remainder must continue to suffer. Although a third 
shall remain in the land, this third will have to pass through the 
fire ; fire being here, as often elsewhere in the Old Testament, a 
figure for affliction. Cf. 3 2 Is. 43 2 , etc. 9. Thus far there has 

* So Mau., Ke., Hd., Pres., Wri., et al 


been no sign of mercy on the part of Yahweh for his suffering peo 
ple. Now, however, it appears that the fire to which they are to 
be exposed is not the utterly destructive element of Ez. I5 1 ff -, but 
the purifying instrument of Ez. 22 17 ff -. / will smelt them, he says, 
abandoning his original figure for another, as silver is smelted, and 
try them as gold is tried.* The desired result will follow; they shall 
call upon my name, and I will answer tJiem.^ Thus, as was prom 
ised in io 6 , they will be as if they had never been rejected. Then 
Yahweh will say, They are my people, and they shall say, Yahweh, 
my God. In other w r ords, they will come from this furnace of 
affliction to renew the covenant Yahweh made with them when 
they escaped from Egypt. J 

The shepherd of the last three verses is by most exegetes iden 
tified with the Messiah. This interpretation is, of course, for 
bidden, if these verses are a continuation of ch. n. It is not 
warranted by anything in them, even when taken by themselves, 
for the expressions my shepherd and my companion must be inter 
preted in the light of the context, from which it is clear that the 
person so designated is the object of Yahweh s indignation. The 
words quoted from v. 7 by Jesus,** therefore, were not in a strict 
sense he does not say they were fulfilled in his arrest and the 
dispersion of his disciples, but here again an incident suggests a 
passage of which it serves as an illustration. 

15. ^3] Rd., with <& B &, ^3. s SiN] Here only; probably a copyist s 
mistake for SMX. 16. nnrojn] Rd., with 4 Kenn. mss. d>, mrojn, 
the sg. as in the co-ordinated cases. So We., KuL, Now., Marti, Kit. 
nyj] The word is certainly corrupt, but it is not so clear how it should be 
emended. Oort suggests nmjn, the word used in a similar connection in 
Ez. 34 4 , and < (rb t<rKopTri<riJvov) and U (dispersum) favour this read 
ing. So We., Now., Marti. An objection to it is that it does not suffi 
ciently resemble n>j to account for the substitution of the one for the 
other. The same objection cannot be made to nj?jn, which suits the con 
nection as well as the other and has the support of & ( A^JO ) and 5L 
i). So van H. Less attractive is n-nyjn, one of the alternatives 

* Cf. Is. i* 4 8 10 Mai. 32 f .. t Cf. Is. 5 8 9 6 5 Je. 29", etc. 

t Cf. Ho. 2 25/23, but especially Ez. 16* 37*. =*. 

So Jer., Cyr., Theodoret, Lu., Sanctius, a Lap., Dru., Marck, Dathe, Lowth, Burger, 
Ke., Klie., Hd., Wri., et al. 
** Mt. 263 Mk. i 4 . 


suggested by Kit. The original, then, was probably n> jn, or, better, on 
the authority of 33 mss. < &, njum. xo-p] & adds Ittjj j] ^crw^cjo, 
which, ace. to Sebok, is a duplicate rendering for the preceding 
clause. raxjn] Now. suggests nSnjn, but the context requires rojnn, 
or an equivalent, with a connective. PIB* p- DnsV] Rd., with &, p^-oi 
rn>\ 17. jn] The word is usually explained as a cstr. with i com- 
paginis. This explanation takes for granted that the next word is orig 
inal in the text. There is room for doubt on this point. The expression 
used in v. i 5 is Sis njn or, better, S-nx njn. So Houb., Bla. Now, while 
it would be natural for the writer to vary his language to some ex 
tent, he would hardly abandon a thought that was the key-note of the 
prophecy. Nor did he, if the testimony of & QI is of any value, for they 
seem to have had a text with S->ixn. If, however, they had this reading, 
they must have had njn for jn, as have several mss., or, if they had the 
latter and ignored its form, the ending was neither i compaginis, nor, as 
some mss. and edd. point it, the termination of the cstr. pi., but the sf. 
of the first sg. as in 13 7 . So We., Now., Marti, Kit, van H. It is possi 
ble that the original reading was njn, and that it was changed to ^jn 
through the influence of 13 7 . OT> ] The ending is not the termination of 
the cstr. pi., as (& understood it, and as it is pointed in some mss. and 
edd., but i compaginis. Cf. Ges. ^ 90 - 3 < a >. & renders the word ^ " *"*>-* 
and oms. ann, thus getting to whose arm I have left the flock. ain] Not 
aih, drought, as Dru., Bla., Ort, Pres., Sta., Rub., Kui., et al., point it; 
but, as in ill, ann, sword, (i) It is so rendered in (5 TIT u,. (2) In 
137, where this prophecy is continued, the sword is evidently intended. 
(3) In Je. 5o 38 , on which this passage is based, ain, as has already 
been noted, must be an error for ain. After this word SD> seems to 
have been lost. 13 7 . mj?] With the accent on the ultima. Cf. 9"; Ges. 
72. 7. R. s. ,jp] Add to the reasons for retaining M given in the com 
ments that 9 Kenn. mss. have j?n. \-noj;] Always elsewhere (n t. in 
Lv.) concrete, and in Lv. i9 17 clearly masc. Here, therefore, doubtless 
an appositive of iaj, the genus with the species. Cf. i K. 7", etc.; Ges. 
mi . <>; KO. * 290d._ x , ONJ ] An addition that disturbs the measure and, 
on the restoration of this and the following verses to their original place 
after n 17 , becomes superfluous. So Marti. Kit. removes the clause to 
the end of the verse, where there is still less room for it. "p] The word, 
is generally treated as an imv. It is so rendered in Vrss. If, however, it 
is an imv., it must be co-ordinate with mj? and should have the fern, end 
ing. Since it has not the ending, and is followed by the pf. with i, some 
have claimed that the original must have been HDN. Cf. Mt. a6 31 . So, 
among the older exegetes, New., Bla., Hd., and among the later, We., 
Kui., Now., Marti, Kit. This is not entirely satisfactory. Perhaps for 
ns "p one should read rnnn, the inf. cstr. for the abs., as a substitute 
for the finite vb., as in 2 K. 3 24 . Cf. Ges. ^ 75 - 6 - R - : us. 4 c*^ 


that riN is omitted before n\ pxiom] For rup)XO)srn. On the form, 
see Ges. * 47 - 3 - K - iS-- on the construction, 165 - >. an->j?xn] The word, 
with the Massoretic vocalisation, is tiir., and apparently indefensible. Rd., 
with <& B, D>i>;xn. (& A Q r have roi>s -rroi^vas /juKpobs, but iroi^va.^ is merely 
interpretive. So also the JT\S\, shepherds, of , and the jorjn, un 
derlings, of 01. 8. T-INH V^n] <S A Q F , fy TT? ^/tfyp ^cei j/Tj; a mistake, since, 
with this reading na would have no antecedent. (S 1 - has both. DT^ ^c] 
In Dt. 2 1 17 2 K. 2 9 a double portion, here two-thirds ; construed as a collec 
tive. ijnr] Rd., with <S B , IJMJI. Kit. omits. n>r^rm] With the 
art. because the third that is left is a definite portion. nnv] The accent 
is thrown back before the following monosyllable. The original, how 
ever, was probably, as appears from v. 9a , nrv. Cf. Ges. ^ 145 - 2 <^. 
9. l D ^ n n s ] Note the use of rx, showing that the obj. of the inf., when 
a noun, is an ace. Nin] The sg. for the pi.; perhaps a reminiscence of 
Ho. 2 25 /23 } where the antecedent is ay \-noK] Rd., with Ho. 2/ <& & 
TI-CXI. So Marti, GASm., Gins., Kit. nirp] Wanting in some mss., 
but required by the construction. On the other hand, in Ho. 2 25 / 23 , 
where inSx is a voc., it is properly omitted. 

2. The future of Judah and Jerusalem (i2 1 -i3 G 14). 

This division of the book of Zechariah has a title of its own. 
In the Massoretic text it reads, An oracle of the word of Yahwek 
concerning Israel. The subject, however, is not Israel, nor is 
the name so much as mentioned from this point to the end of 
the book. For this reason it is necessary to substitute for Israel 
the more suitable name Jerusalem, or better, for concerning, to 
read to, as in Mai. i 1 , thus making the title introduce a message 
to the Jewish world. There are two well-marked sections. 
The first deals with 


This in turn may be subdivided into three paragraphs, the topic 
of the first being 

(i) A power in Palestine (I2 1 " 8 ). The Jews in the strength of 
Yahweh triumph over their enemies, and dwell safely under his 

1. The paragraph opens with the briefest possible announce 
ment of a divine oracle, Saith Yahweh^ This is followed by a 

I2 J 


couplet in the same style, and with substantially the same content, 
as Is. 42 5 , Who spread out heaven, etc. Cf. Am. 4 13 5 f- . The 
object of such descriptions of the divine power is to impress the 
hearer or reader with the ability of Yahweh to do the thing prom 
ised or threatened. On the text, see the critical notes. 2. In this 
case it is a promise that has to be reinforced. I will make Jeru 
salem a bowl to cause reeling, says Yahweh, to all the peoples round. 
The figure by which wine is made to represent the wrath of Yah 
weh is a familiar one;* but in most cases nothing is made of the 
instrument by which Yahweh administers the draught. In Je. 
5i 7 , however, Babylon is called "a golden cup in the hand of Yah 
weh." In this case it is Jerusalem through which he purposes to 
make drink of his wrath all the peoples round. The peoples the 
writer has in mind are so designated, not because they are gathered 
with hostile intent about the Jewish capital, but because they in 
habit the regions adjacent to that which the Jews occupy. The 
picture here presented, therefore, is very like that of Is. n 14 , where 
it is promised that Judah and Ephraim united "shall pounce upon 
the shoulders of the Philistines," "despoil the children of the East," 
"lay hands upon Edom and Moab," and bring it to pass that "the 
sons of Ammon shall obey them." If, however, this was the 
thought of the author, it does not seem probable that he would im 
mediately entertain the prospect of an extended siege of Jerusalem, 
or, if he did, would use the remaining words of the verse as ordina 
rily translated. Take, for example, the rendering of RV., and upon 
(marg. against] Judah, also, shall it be in the siege against Jerusalem, 
which, so far as it is at all intelligible, contradicts the context. 
Nor have the attempts to emend resulted in anything more satis 
factory. A defensible rendering is suggested by 9", where Yahweh 
is represented as appearing over hfs people in battle. If the writer 
intended to express the same thought here, the clause should read, 
over Judah will he (Yahweh) be in the siege against Jerusalem. 
This translation, however, is satisfactory only, as will be explained, 
on the supposition that the whole clause is a gloss inserted by some 

* C}. Je. as 15 ff - Ez. 23 31 ff - Hb. a 15 f , etc. The last passage has generally been misunder 
stood and employed as an argument against social drinking. We. translates it, "Woe to the 
one that giveth the others to drink from the cup of his wrath," etc. 


one who thought, as many* have since done, that the situation is 
the same here as in ch. i4.f 

3. The expression, and it shall come to pass, occurs no fewer than 
eleven times in this and the following chapters; four times J alone 
and seven times with the addition of in that day. The latter is 
used alone ten times; seven times** at the beginning and three 
times ff elsewhere in the sentence. The two together may there 
fore fairly be regarded as characteristic of these chapters. Here 
they introduce a second figure. Says Yahweh, I will make Jerusa 
lem a heavy stone to all the peoples ; the peoples being presumably the 
same as in the preceding verse. The application of the figure im 
mediately follows: All that lift on it shall tear themselves grievously ; 
which means that, just as one, handling a heavy stone, tears one s 
hands on its rugged surface, so shall they suffer who attempt vio 
lence on Jerusalem and its inhabitants. The verb here used occurs 
elsewhere only in Leviticus, and there only of the practice, for 
bidden by the Hebrew law, of mutilating the body in token of 
mourning. Cf. Lv. iq 28 2i 5 . This circumstance has led Nowack 
and others to question the genuineness of the clause ; but unjustly, 
for (i) an injury resulting from a voluntary action can surely be 
said to be self-inflicted, and (2) the same word in Assyrian JJ is 
actually used to denote exposure to wounds in battle. There are, 
however, good reasons for suspecting the originality of the latter 
half of the verse, chief among which are: (i) that it is of the nature 
of a parenthesis; (2) that this is not the place for the statement 
made; and (3) that, like v. 2 b , it produces a discord by anticipating 
the leading thought of ch. 14, a discord that is only increased by 
interpreting there shall be gathered against it all the nations of the 
earth as meaning that the stone in question is a weight, and that 
the figure is derived from the lifting contests which, when this 
passage was written, had recently been introduced at Jerusalem. 

So We., Marti, et al. According to 2 Mac. 4 12 , the high priest Jason, by 
permission of Antiochus Epiphanes, built a gymnasium and introduced Greek 

* So Sta., Now., Marti, et al. 

t For other glosses of like origin, see vv. 3 - 4 - 6 . 

J I3 I4 7. 16. 17. , 2 3. 9 

** I2 4. 6. 8. II I3 1 I4 9. 20. -f-f J2 8 

%% Cf. Del., Ass. Handworterhuch, art. Sataru. 

I2 J 


exercises at Jerusalem. Cf. Josephus, Ant., xii, 5, i. Jerome, commenting 
on this verse, says that in his day there was preserved "an old custom accord 
ing to which, in the villages and towns and fortresses, round stones of great 
weight are provided on which the youths are accustomed to practice, raising 
the weight according to their strength, some to their knees, others to the navel, 
others to the shoulders and the head, but some, to display the greatness of 
their strength, with raised and joined hands over the head." In Athens, too, 
he says, he saw in the citadel near the statue of Athene a brass globe of great 
weight which he himself was not able to move. 

4. The omission of the last clause of v. 3 relieves an exegetical 
difficulty, but it leaves the relations between the Jews and their 
neighbours unchanged. The latter are still hostile, but the former, 
with Yahweh to help them, are confident of deliverance in any 
emergency. He is more than a match for any force that can be 
brought against them. This is what is meant by representing him 
as defying the cavalry of the surrounding peoples. The thought is 
the same as that in io 5 , but the terms here used are borrowed from 
Dt. 28 28 . He says, I will smite every horse with terror, and its 
rider with madness. The rest of the verse consists of two clauses, 
the first being in antithetic, while the second is in synonymous, 
parallelism with the one just quoted. The omission of one of 
them, so far from weakening, would decidedly strengthen the 
passage. Marti thinks it is the latter that has been added; but, 
if this were the case, would it not have been inserted next to the 
one it was intended to complete ? This seems a reasonable view 
of the matter. Hence it is better to omit the parenthetical clause, 
but upon the house of Judah will I open my eyes, as an accretion, 
and thus bring the clauses before and after it into their natural 

5. The effect of this display of Yahweh s favouring power will 
be to inspire his people with renewed confidence in him. Ac 
cording to the Massoretic text it is the chiefs or leaders who give 
expression to this feeling; but, since in v. 6 the word so rendered 
should apparently be translated families, it is probable that the 
proper rendering for the first clause of this verse is, Then shall the 
families of Judah say in their hearts. These rural Jews, if there is 
strife and bitterness between them and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, 
as some have inferred from v. 2 , ought to say something reflecting 


unfavourably upon the latter. There is nothing of the kind. The 
speech they make, so far from indicating hostility, or even disre 
spect, seems the natural expression for admiration or sympathy. 
This is explained by the preceding verses. It is as if the author 
had said, When the Jews of the country see Jerusalem spreading 
confusion and misfortune among the surrounding peoples, they will 
recognise the hand of Yahweh in these results, and put the thought 
into words similar to those quoted, There is strength for the inhab 
itants of Jerusalem in Yahweh of Hosts their God. On the text, 
see the critical notes. 6. This reflection will react upon those who 
make it, and stimulate them to rivalry with their urban brethren. 
It will then be possible for Yahweh to use them, and that effectu 
ally, against their nearest adversaries. This thought is presented 
in a double figure, I will make the families of Judah, he says, like 
a pan of fire among wood, and like a torch among bundled grain. 
The second of these similes is one that appealed strongly to the 
Hebrews, for they knew what it meant when a fire was started dur 
ing the dry season.* So destructive and troublesome will Jerusa 
lem be to all the peoples round. ^ There follows a reminder of 
Is. 9 19/2 , they shall devour to the right and to the left. Meanwhile, 
Jerusalem, and this clause seems to have been added to prevent 
the reader from suspecting the existence of any hostility between 
the city and the country, untouched by the fierce struggle raging 
about it, shall still abide in its place, the inviolate and inviolable 
centre and stronghold of the Chosen People.J 

7/. At this point there is a noticeable change in the form of 
discourse, which is carried through the next verse. Throughout 
these two verses the writer speaks, not for, but about Yahweh. 
This fact is taken by Marti as an indication of difference of author 
ship. But the same thing occurs four or five times in chs. 9 and 
io, and Marti himself says in his comments on io 3 that "the 
change from the first to the third person should not excite surprise 
in the case of our prophet, who, without hesitation, sometimes in 
troduces Yahweh as speaking and sometimes speaks in his own 

* See Ex. 22^/6 J U . I 5 4ff- 2 S. I4 30 IS. I0 f . 

t For other figures of like import, see Mi. 5 7 /8 J s . 41^ f.. 

% Cj. 14" Jo. 4/320. t Cj. 9 - " io s - 6. 

I2 1 - 8 3 2 5 

person." Nor does the content of these verses, as compared with 
that of the preceding context, warrant one in treating them as an 
addition to the original writing. True, some prominence is given 
to Judah in distinction from Jerusalem in v. 7 ; but that is evi 
dently due to an error in the Massoretic text, and it is neutralised 
in the next verse by special mention of the house of David and the 
inhabitants of the capital. It is not necessary, therefore, to adopt 
Marti s view of the authorship of the passage, or, if the last clause 
of v. 8 is an accretion, to suppose with him that v. 7 originally pre 
ceded v. 8 . 7. The omission of the last clause of v. G brings this 
verse into close connection with the preceding predictions on the 
same subject. The writer puts what he still has to say into a gen 
eral prophecy, saying that Yahweh will help the tents of Judah, the 
surrounding country in distinction from the capital, not first, as the 
Massoretic text reads, but, as the great versions have it, as at the 
first. This is evidently a reference to the period in the history of 
Judah when Hebron and Bethlehem were as important as Jerusa 
lem, and the men of Judah, under the leadership of David and his 
lieutenants, were the controlling power in Palestine. It is the will 
of Yahweh that this golden age be restored, and he grants the 
needed help that the glory of the house of David, or the glory of the 
inhabitants of Jerusalem, may not exceed that of the rest of Judah; 
or, to put it positively, that the glory of rural Judah may equal that 
of the court and the capital. This verse, therefore, so far from 
betraying any jealousy or partisanship, seems to have been in 
spired by the most commendable impartiality. 8. Having thus 
established a standard, the prophet returns to the city, that he may 
impress upon the reader how much he means by it. He begins 
with In that day, the oft-repeated phrase by which, in this and the 
following chapters, a new subject is usually introduced. The 
inhabitants of Jerusalem are made the starting-point for the fur 
ther development of his theme. Yahweh, he says, will protect the 
inhabitants, not inhabitant) of Jerusalem. Cf. Is. 3i 4f> . This 
thought is not inconsistent with that of the preceding context, for, 
as at once appears, the protection afforded will be of the kind that 
stimulates energy rather than encourages supineness. Under the 
aegis of the Almighty there will be so remarkable a rejuvenation, 


that the weakest among them in that day shall be as David, and the 
house of David like God* Wellhausen and others interpret the 
house of David as a designation for the government at Jerusalem. 
There certainly is no warrant for such an interpretation in Ps. 
i22 5 , where the poet is recalling the past glory, not describing the 
present condition, of Jerusalem. On the other hand, this reference 
to the house of David does not mean that a member of the family 
still ruled in Judah when this passage was written. It does, how 
ever, like v. 12 , indicate that he had descendants in Palestine, and 
that they still cherished hopes of the restoration of the dynasty. 
At first sight the added phrase, like the angel of Yahweh before 
them, looks like a gloss by some one "very jealous for Yahweh," 
who, like the Greek translators of Ps. 8, was offended that men 
should be compared to the Deity; but perhaps it is merely an al 
lusion to the Exodus intended more clearly to define the relation 
of the house of David to the rest of Judah. Cf. i4 19 . 

1 . Sj?] This prep, in such a connection as the present is usually ren 
dered against or concerning. Cf. io 3 Ju. 9 3 , etc. In this case neither is 
suitable. The former must be rejected because the oracle that follows 
is plainly intended, not to disturb, but to encourage. The latter is even 
more objectionable because, as explained in the comments, Israel is 
clearly not the subject of the -oracle. The incongruity would disappear 
if Sjofc" were replaced by oWiT, the real subject of this and the follow 
ing chapters, except 13 7 - 9 ; but, as there seems to be no other warrant for 
this change, it is necessary, with io Kenn mss., to substitute for Sy the 
Sx % of Mai. i 1 and translate the phrase to Israel. An additional reason 
for adopting this reading is that the title here found was probably sup 
plied by the author of the one in Malachi or copied from the latter. 
Marti questions the genuineness of v. b as well as the title, but he gives 
no reason for his doubts, except that similar ascriptions have been in 
serted into the book of Amos. Here, however, if he is correct in his 
analysis, there is nothing to which to attach such an assumption. DNJ] 
Sometimes elsewhere, but not often, placed at the beginning of an oracle. 
Cf. Nu. 24 3 - 15 2 S. 23" Ps. no 1 ; Ko. ^ 374 f -. naj] These participles, all 
three of them, must be construed as referring to past time. Cf. ofc , v. 2 ; 
Ges. % 116 - 2 < a >. p > D>DC ; ] Without the art. as usual in poetical language. 
Cf. Is. 44 24 5i 13 , etc.; cp. Gn. i, etc. 2. rp] Second ace. after oir. Cf. 
Ges. ^ 117 - B <- c >. The word more commonly means threshold; hence (i, 

* On the courage and prowess of David, see 2 S. i7 8 i8 3 ; on the comparison of the house of 
David to God, Ps. 8 6 / 5 Is. <?/* i S. i4 17 . 

I2 1 8 3 2 7 

irp66vpa; H, superliminare; &, ^Z; but the meaning bowl is required 
by the context. oSeh V DJI] No help in understanding this clause is to 
be had from the Vrss., which read as follows: (g, KCU ev T% lovdaig. 
<rrcu Tre/noxT/ tiri lepouaaX^/x; B, sed et Juda erit obsidione contra 
Jerusalem; &, >n\**o] >a^ jj^oj jooiJ l5oou*V^ ^|. The 
first does violence to Sy and both it and the third ignore the prep. 3. 
The second omits hy, thus bringing its rendering into harmony with 5F 
which reads, also of the house of Judah shall the peoples bring by violence 
in the siege to Jerusalem. Geiger, following B W, oms. Sy, which, he ex 
plains, may have been inserted for the purpose of removing the objec 
tionable thought of hostility between Judah and Jerusalem. Stade and 
others have adopted this view, not considering that the Jews would, 
hardly change the text to avoid an interpretation which they themselves 
accepted. Marti, who is followed by Kittel, omits n-nn> hy DJn and for 
niXDa mn> rds., with (i A Q, Houb., ittD rvm, and there shall be a siege. 
This is simpler than 4R, but it is not much more satisfactory, retaining, 
as it does, the sinister and inconsistent announcement of a siege against 
Jerusalem. The persistence of this disturbing element makes it neces 
sary to regard, not only Sj; or mvn Sy OJi, but the whole clause, as a 
mistaken gloss suggested by 9 14 . Cf. v. 4 6 . In this chapter, it must be 
remembered, the enemies of the Jews do not really succeed in reaching, 
much less taking, the city. -nxD2] Here, ace. to the accentuation, con 
strued with rvrr>, as it is with another form of the same verb in Ez. 4 3 . 
So Robinson, who om. Sj? and explains the other prep, as a 3 essentiae, 
thus getting the unintelligible statement that Judah will be besieged 
against Jerusalem. The interpretation here recommended requires that 
the verb be construed with the first, and "IUD3 with the second, part of 
the clause. 

3. HDD> ^] <g, KaTaira.To6tJ.evov, &, I-A-O? = DD^D. Better 2F, sSpn; 
but neither is so simple and expressive as $H. The prtc. here has an 
inceptive sense, which may be reproduced in English by would lift 
or, as it is rendered in the comments, lift on. The latter half of the 
verse is 142 a passively expressed. Note especially Y~\xn iij *?3, instead 
of the o^Djjn Ss of v. a or the aoo o^Djn Sj of w. 2 - 6 . The only other 
place where 0^1:1 occurs in this chapter is v. 9 , q. v. On the other hand, 
it is the characteristic term in ch. 14, where O- DJ? occurs only once, and 
then in a passage (v. 12 ) in which some mss. have o^J. 4. > DNJ] <S 
adds Tfa.vrwKpa.Twp. So & H , but Kenn. 130 oms. the whole phrase. So 
Kit. jmjn] On the use of the art. with abstract nouns, see Ges. $ 126 - 
3 < <r >; on the vocalisation in this case, Ges. $ 35 - 2 < 2 > <^> < 2 >. Ji no *?jn] 
The genuineness of this clause is attested, not only by the parallelism be 
tween it and the first of the verse, but by the occurrence of D^Djjn. Cf. 
vv. 2 - 3 - 6 . On the intervening clause, see the comments. 

5. iflSx] Rd. flS. Cf. i S. io 19 , where ^ occurs as a synonym of 


s. So We., Now., Marti, Kit. <& L adds Traj/res. nxsx] Two mss. 
have xxsx, from xxs, the reading represented by ( (evp-^a-0/j.ev) and Sf 
(nani?N). It does not, however, suit the context. Naturally, therefore, 
one must reject the suggestion of Brd., that HXON is only another form for 
NXipx; also of Sta., that the original was ^NXDX; and of Kui., that it was 
NSDN. Hi. conjectures V?nx DN for ^ HXDN; which is ingenious, but far 
fetched. The same can be said of Marti s STI xxsj. They are also un 
necessary, since nxcx harmonises with the context when pointed as a 
noun in either of two forms, nxcx ( dmsak) thefem. corresponding to ]cx 
(Jb. i7 9 ), for which de R. cites "nonnulli codices," or nxcx, the reading 
preferred by Ki. and adopted by Baer. See U (confortentur) and & 
(nl 4S). Ace. to Baer his F has nxipx, pf. Qal, and his E 3 nxpx 
imv. Pi.; but both are impossible, the former, because it ignores the form 
of the only word that can be construed as its subj., the latter because a 
direct appeal to Yahweh is not consistent with the final phrase through 
Yahweh their God. Oir> ^S] Here, on the other hand, there is need of 
correction, for the words quoted are clearly an error for oc^S. So , 
Dathe, Houb., Seek., Flugge, New., Ort., We., Now., van H., et al. 
6 . VD^N] Rd., as in v. 5 , ^flW. *vc>] Ace. to BDB., a swath, but more prob 
ably, in view of oriental methods in harvesting, grain in bundles. Cf. 
Am. 2 13 Je. 9 21 . ji natr*)] This clause is of precisely the same character as 
those in vv. 2 - 4 whose genuineness is questioned, having been dictated by 
a pious jealousy for the inviolability of the Holy City. oWno] Ace. 
to Houb. a corruption of oiStfa, but its omission by < Xc - b A Q indi 
cates that it is a superfluous gloss to mnnn. So We., Now., Marti, 
GASm., Kit. 7. njtfNia] So 5L Rd., with Kenn. 30, 180, as in Dt. 9 18 , 
rurx-o, or with Kenn. 17, 228, as in Ju. 2O 32 , nrtfxnar. So (& U &, 
Talm., Jer., Dathe. The idea thus conveyed is in harmony with the con 
text, for it is the measure of Judah s glory, and not the date of its achieve 
ment, about which Yahweh is concerned. On the construction, see Ges. 
113. 6 <*) t yfr \y^f\ This or xS nirx t^S (Nu. iy 5 ) is stronger than p. 
It points, not to a result which the subject would forestall, but to an event 
which it is his deliberate purpose and policy by all means to prevent. Cf. 
Mitchell, Final Constructions, 22 ff. TH] In 35 Kenn. mss. without \ 
2"] Rd., with 9 mss., (& B & 51, -oe". So Bla., New., We., Now. 
mim hy] Rd., with <8Q g> , n-nm I-PS S;?; a rare construction, JD rather 
than Sj? being commonly used to express comparison. Cf. Gn. 49 26 , etc.; 
Ges. * 133 - 1; K6. ^ 3og d> _8. -, 3 ] J n 915 ^.3^-,] Rd., with 9 mss., 
^ai: , as required by ona. So New., We., Now., Marti, Kit. S 
van H. suggests S ^nn! Kinn ova] Not necessary, but, since it adds cer 
tain emphasis and improves, rather than disturbs, the rhythm, Kit. is 
hardly warranted in omitting it. T"na] In 20 Kenn. mss. the > is want 
ing. <& A Q r rd. ws O?KOS Aauei 5, the first and third omitting 6 d ot/cos 
Aauet 5 = im r-ai, through the fault of a (Greek) copyist. It is not 

I2 a 14 329 

safe, however, to infer that the text on which these mss. are based read in 
the first case *vn rnaa, since they all have ws ol/cos 0eoO, although the 
original cannot have had D n 1 ?* ivaa. 01 modifies a PiSw to 
#&e princes. 

(2) ^ gratf lamentation (i2 9 14 ). The people of Jerusalem, 
protected by Yahweh and transformed by his Spirit, will be 
smitten with remorse for their misdeeds, and especially for their 
cruelty toward a nameless sufferer for whom they will observe a 
period of poignant and universal mourning. 

9. This verse at first sight seems to belong to the preceding 
paragraph, but the connection between the two is not so close as 
might be supposed. In those verses the prophet has been dealing 
with the relations of the Jews to their neighbours, the Edomites, 
Moabites, etc. He now, as some one undertook to do for him in 
v. 3 , gives the reader a glimpse of a larger world. It is no longer 
"the peoples round," but, as in ch. 14, all the nations, whose fate 
he describes. His object is to strengthen the assurance already 
given his people that Yahweh will protect them. He has said that 
their God will give them the mastery over their neighbours; he 
now puts into the mouth of Yahweh the declaration, / will seek 
to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem, that is, pun 
ish with destruction any nation, near or far, small or great, that at 
tempts an attack upon the Holy City. This is one side of the mat 
ter. There is another, and it is this latter to which the prophet 
gives most prominence. The key to his meaning is found in the 
thought that "the goodness of God leadeth to repentance," which 
is a favourite with Ezekiel. Thus, in 3p 26 he makes Yahweh say, 
"They shall bear their shame," realise their faithlessness, "when 
they dwell safely in their land, with none to terrify."* 

10. The bestowment of peace and security is not the only means 
that Yahweh purposes to employ to change the hearts of his people. 
The operation of his Spirit is another. Cf. Ez. 36 26 f \ Now, the 
fruits of the Spirit are various. Here, where it is poured upon the 
house of David and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, it is called 
the Spirit of kindness and entreaty. Cf. Is. 1 1 2 . The word ren- 

* Kraetzschmar makes the subject in this passage the heathen, but from i6 60 ff - 2o 42f - 
it is clear that it is Israel. So Ew., Or., Toy, el al. 


dered kindness is usually translated grace, and, since the grace of 
the Bible is oftenest the grace of God, some have inferred that it 
must be so in this instance. There is, however, a grace of men 
(Gn. 3o 27 ), and, since the word is here associated with entreaty, 
which is properly predicated only of human subjects, it seems fair 
to infer that the grace or kindness in question is that of the people 
of Jerusalem.* The thought, therefore, is that the Spirit will pro 
duce in the persons named a kindness of disposition and a mildness 
of attitude by which they have not thus far been characterised. 
Toward whom ? The answer to this question is found in the next 
clause, which describes the first act growing out of this changed 
character. It says, they shall consider him whom they pierced. 
To pierce is generally to put to death. Cf. i3 3 Ju. 9 54 . It is 
natural, therefore, to infer that the one pierced is here a victim of 
popular displeasure on whose fate the Jews high and low will one 
day be moved to reflect, and that because the dislike and harshness 
that once ruled have given place to their opposites. The identity 
of the martyr it is difficult to determine. The older exegetes gen 
erally see in him the Messiah. Those who adopt this view, how 
ever, overlook a point of great importance, namely, that while the 
effusion of the spirit and the effect produced by it are evidently 
future, the act of piercing the nameless victim belongs to the past. 
This means that the one pierced is not the Messiah, whose advent, 
all will agree, was still future when these words were written, but 
some one who had at the time already suffered martyrdom. It is 
easier to establish this point than to go further in the same direc 
tion, for, when the attempt is made to find an individual, the vic 
tim of popular passion, whose death the prophet would expect to 
see universally lamented, the inquirer learns that he has raised a 
question for which extant history has no answer. Zechariah, the 
son of Jehoida, put to death by order of King Joash,f Uriah, the 
son of Shemaiah, the prophet who suffered under Jehoiakim,J and 
Gedaliah, the governor treacherously murdered by Ishmael of the 
seed royal after the overthrow of the Davidic dynasty are all too 

* In Je. 3 1 9 the entreaty is not by Yahweh, but by the people he is leading. Cp. Bu., 
who for a^jijnn reads a>Dinjn, consolation. 
t Cf. 2 Ch. 2 4 *> -. t Cf. Je. 26" -. C\. Je. 41 -. 

I2 9 - 1 33 1 

remote ; Jeremiah also, of the manner of whose death there is no 
reliable information. The second objection holds in the case of 
Zerubbabel, in spite of Sellin s attempt to identify him with the 
Servant of Yahweh.* Under the circumstances any plausible 
suggestion is welcome. One of the most attractive is that the ob 
ject of consideration in the clause quoted is not a single unfortunate 
individual, but a considerable number of godly persons who have 
perished by violence. This interpretation is favoured by the strik 
ing likeness between the situation here outlined and that portrayed 
in Is. 52 15 ~53 12 , where the loyal remnant of Israel is represented by 
the Servant of Yahweh. Perhaps the one here pierced represents 
those who toward the end of the Persian period bore the reproaches 
of the reproachers of Yahweh and finally shed their blood in his 
cause. Perhaps, however, the author of this difficult passage took 
the Servant of Yahweh in Second Isaiah for a historical figure, 
otherwise nameless, who had died a martyr s death. This is pre 
cisely what was done by later Jews, who call him "Messiah the 
son of Joseph" and represent him as the forerunner of the greater 
son of David. f Finally, and this is even more to the point, they 
say that he is at the same time the sufferer in the passage now 
under consideration .J The prophet predicts that those who were 
responsible for the crime committed, or their descendants, will 
bitterly repent and lament it, using two very strong similes to 
illustrate the poignancy of their sorrow. They shall lament for 
him, he says, as one lamentethfor an only son, and they shall grieve 
for him as one grieveth for the first-born. It is only necessary to 
recall the eagerness of the Hebrews for offspring, especially sons, 
to realise the forcefulness of these figures. Cf. Gn. i5 12ff< 2 K. 
4 13ff -, etc. 

11. There is a third comparison, In that day, it runs, great shall 
be the lamentation in Jerusalem; like the lamentation of Hadadrim- 
mon in the Plain of Megiddo. The Plain of Megiddo, according 
to 2 K. 28 29 f> , was the scene of the battle between the Jews and 
the Egyptians in which King Josiah lost his life. The Chronicler 
enlarges upon the story, saying that "all Judah and Jerusalem 
mourned for Josiah," that, indeed, " Jeremiah lamented for 

* Zerubbabel, 174 /. t Weber, APT., 346 /. \ Cf. AE., Ra., KL, el al. 


Josiah," and "all the male and female singers spake of" him "in 
their lamentations to" his "day." The custom may have con 
tinued until this passage was written. If not, there was the tradi 
tion preserved by the Chronicler to suggest the allusion and to be 
suggested by the mention of Megiddo. At any rate it has always 
been the prevailing opinion that in the words quoted the writer was 
referring to the intense and universal grief occasioned by the death 
of the good king. This is the express teaching of the Targum* and 
the Syriac Version, the latter substituting "the son of Amon" for 
the name Hadadrimmon. Jerome adopts the same interpretation, 
explaining that Hadadrimmon was a place, not far from ancient 
Jezreel, which in his day was called Maximianopolis; and many 
others have followed his example. It was identified by van de 
Veldef with "a small village called Rumani about three-quarters 
of an hour south of Megiddo," doubtless the Rummaneh of later 
maps, which is located about four miles south-east of Lejjun, that 
is, Megiddo. According to ConderJ it is seven and a fourth miles 
from Zerin, the site of ancient Jezreel. Some modern scholars find 
in Hadadrimmon, not a topographical detail, but another name 
for the Babylonian god Tammuz, the Greek Adonis, the anni 
versary of whose death was observed as a day of lamentation. Cf. 
Ez. 8 14 . Thus Hitzig, Jeremias and others, while Cheyne main 
tains that the name is merely a corruption of Tammuzadon.** 
The former of these conjectures has been refuted by Baudissm,ff 
the latter is too arbitrary to require refutation. It is probable 
that neither of them would have been suggested had its author 
duly considered the fact that the mourning for Tammuz was not 
real, but fictitious, and that therefore there would be little force 
in a comparison in which it was recalled. There is no serious 
objection to the earlier view in the form in which it is put by Bau- 
dissin, who interprets the expression the lamentation of Hadadrim 
mon as meaning the demonstration by which the Jews expressed 
their grief, not at Hadadrimmon, wherever it may have been, but 

* It reads, "Like the mourning of Ahab, son of Omri, whom Hadadrimmon, son of Tab- 
rimmon slew, and like the mourning of Josiah, son of Amon, whom Pharaoh slew in the Plain 
of Megiddo." 

t Syria and Palestine, i, 355. % Tent Life, i, 129. AT., 113. 

** Cf. EB., art. Hadadrimmon. tt Studien, i, 305 ff. 




over the irreparable loss they there suffered.* 12. The lamenta 
tion will not only be bitter, but universal. This thought is ex 
pressed by the method of enumeration, which, however, is not car 
ried beyond a certain limit. First comes the general statement 
that the land shall mourn each family by themselves. The family 
is the largest division named because the author confines himself 
to the territory of Judah. He brings the families forward one 
after another, not, as Wellhausen imagines, from a fondness for 
processions and ceremonies, but for the purpose of reinforcing 
the thought that he wishes to convey. They will all join in the 
lamentation because each of them will have peculiar reason for 
mourning. Indeed, in the house of David, the first in rank and im 
portance, and in all the others as well, their women will lament by 
themselves. The second family to receive mention is the house of 
Nathan. There is no means of identifying with certainty the head 
of this family, but since, in the next verse, the name Levi is fol 
lowed by another from the genealogy of the priestly tribe, it is not 
improbable that the Nathan of this passage is the son of David of 
that name. Cf. 2 S. 5 14 .f 13. The priests must have united with 
the princes against the martyr, whoever he was, as they finally did 
in the case of Jeremiah. Cf. 37 15 38 4 . At any rate, the family of 
the house of Levi will be among the mourners, and that in all its 
branches; for this seems to be what the author means by adding 
the family of the Shimites, this family being, according to Nu. 3 21 , 
among the descendants of Gershom, the eldest son of Levi. At 
tention has already been called to the significance of the relation 
between the tribes of David and Levi as here presented. Cf. 
p. 258. It indicates that the passage belongs to a comparatively 
late date. See Je. 33" ff - as compared with 23 5ff -. 14. The 
names enumerated represent the ruling classes, who were doubt 
less largely responsible, as in the case of the persecution of Jere 
miah, for the outrage now lamented. The rest, however, cannot 
have been guiltless. They might have been introduced according 
to their families, but, if the list had been greatly lengthened, it 
would have defeated the author s purpose. He therefore cuts it 

* Studien, i, 319 /. 

t Others identify him with Nathan the prophet. So Jer., Ra., Pres., Brd., et al. 


short at this point, only adding by way of summation, all the fam 
ilies that are left, each family by themselves, and their women by 

9. In this chapter the enemies of the Jews have been their gentile 
neighbours, and have been called D cpn; except in v. 3 , where the last 
clause was pronounced a gloss, because it deviated in both respects from 
the context. The recurrence of D^un naturally makes one suspect an 
other addition to the text, and this may be the case; but it is also possible 
that, just as D^Dyn is once used in ch. 14 for DMJH (v. 12 ), so, by a slip of 
the pen of either the author or a copyist, OMJH has here taken the place of 
o^Ejjn. For another alternative, see the comments. D^fcon] De R. 319 
marg. has a- XDxn; but the Mas. expressly says that the latter word is found 
only in Nu. 3i 42 Is. 29? f -. Cf. Baer, notes, 84. 10. TH] In 25 Kenn mss. 
> is wanting. atf\| Rd., with 26 mss., (g H & , otf\ fin] With two gen 
itives, a rare construction of which, however, there are three cases in Is. 
ii 2 . Cf. Ges. * l28 - . D^unni] The pi. as an abstract noun. Cf. Ges. 
124. i (<*)./?.. >V N ] The prep, with the sf. of the ist sg.; no doubt the 
reading of the great majority of the mss. and edd. It is also the one rep 
resented by < 3C B & Aq. S 0, and adopted by Norzi, Dathe, de R. 
Baer, Gins., el al. There are, however, serious objections to its genuine 
ness. In the first place, it does not harmonise with the following context, 
where the one to whom it is predicted that the Jews will look is ap 
parently referred to in the third person. One method of meeting this ob 
jection is to make the sf. of vS;? refer to the act of piercing (Grot., el al.) ; 
but this interpretation is arbitrary and unnatural, and it is disproved 
by the comparisons by which the author illustrates the grievousness of 
the mourning predicted. Others, following (& , treat irx PN as if the 
text had T^X ^y. This device is naturally a favourite with Jewish schol 
ars, who see in the relative a reference to Messiah, the son of Joseph 
(AE.), or some other martyr or martyrs. So Ra. It must be rejected 
because the language used cannot properly be so interpreted. A second 
objection to iU is that, when taken in its most obvious meaning, it passes 
the limits of permissible anthropomorphism. Those who defend it seek 
to meet this difficulty by saying, with Koh., that Yahweh here identifies 
himself with the sufferer, so that he "regards a thrust through the Re 
deemer as a thrust that he himself has suffered." So Pres., Wri., el al. 
It is very doubtful if the author of the passage would go so far as this, 
but, if he did, why did he not write ^y instead of vSy, thus carrying the 
thought far enough to make it unmistakable ? Thus far mention has 
been made of but one reading. There is another, vSx. It is found in 45 
of the mss. collated by Kenn. and de R. It is the oriental, as distin 
guished from the occidental reading. Cf. Baer, notes, 89. It appears 
in Talm. (Suk. t v, 52) and in early editions of the commentaries of AE., 

I2 9 - 1 335 

Ra., Ki. Another witness for the same reading is the NT., for in Jn. 19", 
where this passage is quoted, it is rendered 6\f/ovrai els Sv ^eK^vnjffav. 
See also Rev. i 7 . This reading is the more remarkable because it 
varies, not only from the Heb., but also from (&, where, although the 
words 8\f/ovrat ets $v ^eK^vrrjffav are found in a series of mss. either with 
((S r ) or without ((8> L ) the alternate reading, avd" 1 &v KaTwpxri<ra.vTo, they 
are always preceded by irptxr /x = *?K. The following Fathers follow 
the NT. in omitting vpbs fit and thus practically accepting the reading 
vSx: Justin, Clement, Alexandrine, Barnabas, Theodoret, Ignatius, 
Irenaeus, Tertullian. Objection was made to the present reading that it 
did not harmonise with the following context or present an idea that 
could safely be attributed to the author of the passage. No such ob 
jection can be urged against vSx. The point may, however, be made, 
and, in fact, has been made by de R.,thatvSx is the easier reading; 
hence it is more probable that it is an error for 7K than vice versa. 
There is great force in this objection. Indeed, it so weakens the case 
for rSx that those who feel the incongruity of the Massoretic text will 
have to resort to emendation. The NT. points the way. Following it 
one may, with Bla., om. nx, and, for ^K, rd., either with Bla., *?g, as in 
Jb. 3 22 , or the prosal form Sx, thus obtaining the result aimed at in chang 
ing -"Sx to vSx. On the construction -tf Sx, see Ez. 42"; Ges. * 138 < 2 >. 
We., et al., see in nx a relic of a fuller reading; but a more probable 
explanation is that it is a variant for Sx or the result of an attempt to 
mend the text after Sx or -Sx had become Sx. Mention should here be 
made of the ingenious emendation proposed by van H., who puts a 
pause after Sx and for ncoi rds. noo 11 . nnm] The inf. abs. continuing 
the discourse after a finite vb. Cf. Ges. * 113 - 4 <*>. Perhaps the original 
was nnni. So (& H & 51, Houb. Some such word as Six is to be sup 
plied as an object. Cf. Am. 5 16 . 11 . pon-nn] This name has various 
forms in the mss., but they can all be explained as the results of the 
carelessness of copyists. Ace. to Che. it has gone through the follow 
ing modifications: piXTDn pt)B piB pan pB"mnI Van H., follow 
ing 01 (po&vos), rds. pot. pnjc] &, with 13 mss., rds. TUB. 12. nino^n 
ninorn] Rd., with <g A Q r , nrujro nnetf B. Cf. Gn. 32". -oS] Throughout 
this and the following verses with -?-, even with the lesser distinctives. 
Add., with (& SI, "oS an^ji. Tn] In 27 mss. > is wanting. -aS 3 ] Jer., 
in his translation of (, inserts here, Tribus domus Juda seorsum, et 
mulieres eorum seorsum. 13. ^Btfn] Kenn. 155, ^Bi^n na; I, 102, no 
>yrir. So 3L (&, TOV Su/xecbv; S, ofoou 2v/j.e&v; so &. 
In 26 Kenn. mss., nvncu D nmsu c; yet rd., with <&, nno 

(3) A great purification (is 1 " 6 ). A general announcement is fol 
lowed by a more detailed prediction concerning the suppression of 
idolatry and false prophecy. 


1. In the preceding paragraph th? author brought his revela 
tions to a point at which his people, by divine aid, realised and 
lamented their blindness and cruelty. The change makes it pos 
sible for Yahweh to introduce a better state of things. This par 
agraph, therefore, begins with a promise, In that day there shall be a 
fountain opened for the house of David and the inhabitants of Jeru 
salem^ the whole community. The fountain, as at once appears, 
is to be taken figuratively, being provided, not for external soilure, 
but for sin and impurity. The reference to sin recalls the great 
crime of the preceding paragraph, and suggests that the announce 
ment here made is virtually a decree of absolution for the same ; but 
this is not the case. If it were, the language used would be differ 
ent, and this verse would have to be attached to the twelfth chapter. 
The key to the writer s meaning is found in the word impurity* 
a technical term for ceremonial defilement, especially that caused 
by menstruation. Cf. Lv. i2 2 - 5 i5 24ff ", etc. Ezekiel uses it fre 
quently of the corrupting effect of idolatry. Thus, in 36 17 he makes 
Yahweh say that the way of the house of Israel before him has 
been "like the uncleanness of (menstrual) impurity"; which in 
v. 18 is explained as meaning that they have defiled the land "with 
their idols." But the most significant feature of Ezekiel s proph 
ecy is the promise (v. 25 ), "I will sprinkle upon you clean water; 
from all your uncleanness and from all your images will I cleanse 
you"; for it is pretty clear that this passage is the original from 
which the one now under consideration was freely copied. If so, 
this first verse looks forward rather than backward, being, not a 
decree of absolution for past offences, which seems to be taken for 
granted, but a promise of security from future contamination by 
unclean associations. In Is. i2 3 the same fountain supplies the 
redeemed people with unstinted draughts of salvation. 2. This 
view of the passage is confirmed by the context, for here, as in Eze 
kiel, the figurative term impurity is at once explained by a refer 
ence to idolatry. Cf. Ez. 36 25 37 23 . / will cut off, says Yahweh, the 
names of the idols, cause all mention of them to cease,/r0w the land,\ 
and they shall be no more remembered. Cf. Ho. 2 19 . The latter 
half of the verse contains an announcement, at first sight rather 

* mj. t Not, with Bla., Hd., el al. 

I3" 337 

startling, but it is not so new and radical as it has been represented. 
The author does not mean to make Yahweh say without quali 
fication that he will remove the prophets from the land. Here, as 
above, he is evidently following Ezekiel, trying, however, to say in 
a sentence what the earlier writer took much more space to express. 
The teaching of Ezekiel is found in the fourteenth chapter of his 
prophecies, where Yahweh first instructs him with reference to the 
lay member of the house of Israel who, taking "his images to his 
heart," comes to the prophet, that the latter may consult Yahweh 
for him. Then he adds (v. 9 ), "and, if the prophet be deceived 
and speak a word, I, Yahweh, have deceived that prophet, and I 
will stretch out my hand against him and destroy him from the 
midst of my people Israel; ... as the punishment of the one that 
consulteth him, so shall the punishment of the prophet be." In 
other words, the prophet, when, and because, he encourages, or 
neglects to rebuke, evil tendencies among his people, will be de 
stroyed with them. Cf. Dt. i3 2/l ff \ If, therefore, the prophets here 
include the whole guild, it is not because they are prophets, but 
because they have individually proven themselves unworthy of their 
high calling. Cf. Je. 23 9ff \ This is clear from what follows. 
The whole sentence reads, The prophets, also, and the spirit of 
undeanness will I remove from the land. Here, again, the writer 
is simply summarising Ezekiel. That prophet makes Yahweh say : 
"A new heart, also, will I give you, and a new spirit will I put 
within you; . . . and I will save you from all your uncleanness; 
. . . and ye shall loathe yourselves in your own sight for your in 
iquities and your abominations." The spirit of uncleanness, then, 
must be the disposition to neglect the precepts of Yahweh, or even 
worship the abominations of other peoples ; and the reference to 
the prophets in this connection may be taken to indicate that, when 
it was made, they were prominent exponents of a widespread dis 
loyalty, that, in fact, the word prophet was then almost synonymous 
with false prophet. 

3. The suppression of these false prophets will require time and, 
in the end, the most unflinching severity. If necessary, however, 
the Deuteronomic law requiring one to put one s relatives to death 
for attempted seduction from Yahweh will be applied. Cf. Dt. 


i3 7/eff> . If a man still prophesy, persist in posing as a prophet, 
his father and his mother who begot him will be his judges and 
executioners. The sentence, Thou shall not live, is based on a 
charge, Thou hast spoken falsehood in the name of Yahweh, which, 
at first sight, seems to conflict with the interpretation thus far 
followed. It must, however, be remembered that the gods of the 
nations did not require the exclusive devotion of their worshippers, 
and that, therefore, there was no reason, so far as they were con 
cerned, why the Jews who served them should not at the same time 
serve Yahweh. Indeed, this is precisely what Ezekiel, in a passage 
already quoted (i3 7 ), accuses them of doing. Cf. Je. y 8 f \ There 
is therefore nothing incongruous in the fact that prophets who have 
been condemned for idolatry are here represented as speaking in 
the name of the true God. Neither Yahweh nor one of his loyal 
worshippers, however, can tolerate such a form of syncretism. Th e 
parents of the offender, therefore, if he persists in his course, shall 
pierce him through when he prophesieth. 4. The prophets gener 
ally will not continue their unwarranted utterances in the name of 
Yahweh. They shall be ashamed, each of his vision; shall shrink 
from making public, as they are accustomed to do, their fictitious 
revelations. They will cease to desire to be recognised as proph 
ets. Therefore they shall not longer, like wolves in sheep s cloth 
ing, wear a hairy mantle, apparently a customary badge of the 
prophetic office, for the purpose of deceiving, making the false im 
pression that they are genuine men of God.* 5. Not that they 
have any scruples against deception: far from it; for, when it 
suits their interests, as, for example, when they are threatened with 
retribution by their outraged dupes, they will not hesitate to lie, 
saying, one and all, I am not a prophet. They will even, so great 
will be their demoralisation, seek a refuge among the humblest of 
the community, each of them declaring, The soil hath been my pos 
session from my youth. 6. The scene here described is one that 
may have taken place more than once in the streets of Jerusalem. 

* There is some difference of opinion about the garment in question. Rosenmiiller and 
others think it was of cloth woven from goats or camels hair, like that of John the Baptist. 
Cf. Mt. 3 4 . It is more probable, however, to judge from Gn. 2$* and 2 K. i 8 , that it was made 
from skins and intended to recall the simplicity of primitive times. See the customs of the 
Rechabites and the Nazirites. 

I3" 339 

It is now drawing to a close. It should have a dramatic character. 
Otherwise it might as well not have been portrayed. The proper 
effect can be produced in only one way. A cowering wretch has 
been accused by an indignant mob of being a false prophet. He 
denies it and points to his rustic dress as proof of his innocence. 
Since his defence is a falsehood, justice requires that he should be 
unmasked. The question, therefore, with which he is now assailed 
must be interpreted as an attempt to reach this result. In other 
words, when his accusers ask, What are these wounds between thy 
sides ? that is, on thy back, they mean that the wounds proclaim 
him at the same time a prophet and a liar. On the text, see the 
critical notes; on the subject of flogging among the Hebrews, 
Dt. 25 2 Pr. iQ 29 , etc.; DB., art. Crimes and Punishments. The 
reply has been variously understood. The last words of it have 
sometimes been rendered in the house of my lovers. This, how 
ever, though literal, is not correct, for my lovers, as usage abun 
dantly shows, could only mean false gods, and that in the mouth 
of the Jewish people under the figure of an unfaithful wife. Cf. 
Ho. 2 5 Je. 22 20ff - Ez. ib 33 ^, etc. What the suspected prophet 
actually says is, Those with which I was smitten in the house of my 
friends. By his friends he doubtless means his parents. If so, 
the wounds, or rather the scars, he bears are the traces of punish 
ment which he has received under the paternal roof. This may 
mean that the wounds were inflicted by his parents either in the 
ordinary course of rigorous discipline,* or for the offence of at 
tempting the role of a prophet.f Perhaps the ambiguity is in 
tentional. If so, the words must be regarded as a clever attempt 
of the accused to throw his inquisitors off the scent without telling 
another absolute falsehood. So Maurer. 

1 . -npo] <&, iras rdiros = oipD "?D. A palpable error, M being sup 
ported by Aq. (0X6/0 and S 6(71-777^) as well as H & 3F. nNBnS] Rd. 
nsanS, there being but one instance, and that a doubtful one, of the use 
of the cstr. before a i. So Sta., Now., Marti, Kit. Cp. Ges .* 13 < 2 >. 
n-uSv-ot^i] <gQ H H om< _ 2. nwa x] Om., with <S A Q.-m;?] Kenn.4, 112, 
150 add DDE 3 from Ho. 2 19 . D- SOjn] (g, robs 0ei;5o7rpo0r}raj. 

* So Theod. Mops., Ki., Dru., Koh., Klie., Pres., et at. 
t So Jer., Theodoret, Cal., Hi., Brd., et al. 


3 . 13] If and as often as, a frequent usage in legal language. Cf. Ex. 
2 1 14 , etc. mSi IDSI vaNi] Twice questioned by Kit., but without reason 
given. Cf. Dt. I3 10 9 . imp-n] <g, (rv/j.Trodiovffiv, as if from impjn, Gn. 
22 9 ; but Aq. 9 have tKKevrf)<TQV(Tiv. 4. inNajna] A case, the only one in 
Niph., of confusion between an inf. from a final x, with one from a final 
n vb. Cf. Ges. ^ 74 - 3 - R - 2 . Rd. either ixajna or oxajna; or, since the 
word is really not only useless, but incongruous, omit it altogether. 
N 1 ?!] ( oms. the negative owing to a mistaken interpretation of iruSt jyn 1 ? 
which it renders &v0 &v tyevvavro. nr aS-*] Twenty Kenn. mss. add my. 
So uL 5. "OJN] Kenn. 112 adds, from Am. 7", OJN NOJ p N^I. 
OJN ^>x] An explanatory marginal gloss, omitted by (& A( 2 rH , which 
should have been inserted, if at all, at the end of the verse. Then o 
would have retained its original adversative meaning. Cf. Am. 7 14 . 
>jjpn onx] The text is unintelligible. The vb. njp means get in a broad 
sense, including the acquisition of the products of one s own efforts and 
the possessions of others. It may therefore be rendered create and 
rescue of God, and acquire and purchase of men. The derivative n;pD 
means possession, or, since the wealth of the early Hebrews consisted 
principally of animals, cattle. The Hiph., the form here used, naturally 
has the sense of a causative, and has generally been so rendered. Some 
of the renderings are: (&, eytwtio-ev; Dru., taught me (husbandry); AE., 
made me a landowner; Ra., made me a cattleowner; Ges., sold me as a 
slave; Houb., bought me as a slave. The last is the most widely accepted; 
but the thought that it expresses is hardly one to be expected in this con 
nection. A far better reading is secured by the emendation suggested 
by Wellhausen, viz., >rjp nmx, the soil hath been my possession, which 
is so simple and plausible that it has been generally adopted. If, how 
ever, this is the original form of the final clause, here is another reason 
for regarding the one preceding as a gloss. 6. ^CNI] The subj. is per 
sonal, but indefinite. Cf. Ges. ^ 44 - 3 ( a > TT] If the text is correct, 
the word T I , hand, is here, as elsewhere, used in the sense of ynr, arm, 
and between the hands has the meaning that "between the arms" has 
in 2 K. 9 24 , namely, between the shoulders or on the back. Perhaps, 
however, TT 1 is an error for THX, thy sides, this being the word required 
by the context and the one favoured by <& L , which has c5/xos here as well 
as in Is. 60 66 2 , where iK has ns. So also Aq. S 0. Sta. retains the 
reading of the text, but adds "\wy SJM. T^N] For pa "itfN. Cf. 12*. 
no] For noa. Cf. Gn. 38" etc.; Ges. 5 us. 2 (*>, Burger rds. onsp n>3, 
at home by my friends. 




The thought of the chapter is one, but it takes four phases in the 
course of its development. The first has to do with 

(i) The recovery of the Holy City (I4 1 - 5 ). The city is destined 
to be taken and plundered, but Yahweh will appear and by a stu 
pendous miracle throw the nations into confusion and rescue the 
remaining inhabitants. 

1. The general announcement with which the chapter opens is 
addressed to Jerusalem. Lo, it says, there cometh a day for Yah 
weh, a day appointed by him for the fulfilment of his purpose, 
when thy spoil shall be divided within thee. Note the difference in 
tone and content between this statement and the opening verses of 
ch. 12. In the latter passage the writer does not admit that Jeru 
salem is in danger. He represents it as, rather a menace to the sur 
rounding peoples. Here he is obliged to face the prospect, if not 
the reality, of a successful invasion of the country. This, however, 
is only one side of his vision. There is a brighter one to be revealed. 
2. The above interpretation takes for granted that the fuller de 
scription of the fate of the city which follows is by the same author. 
This is denied by Marti and others, chiefly because here for a 
space Yahweh speaks and Jerusalem is in the third person. But 
this, as has been shown, is not a sufficient reason for denying the 
genuineness of a passage, since such changes occur in cases in which 
the hand of the original author is generally recognised. See the 
comments on i2 7 f> . Note also that throughout the rest of this 
chapter Jerusalem is in the third person. Finally, its retention is 
required by "the nations" of v. 3 . The first clause, / will gather 
all the nations to Jerusalem for battle, recalls Ezekiel s great proph 
ecy (38/0 concerning Gog, from which some of the more striking 
features of the chapter were evidently borrowed.* Here, how 
ever, there is no attempt to create interest or sympathy by dwelling 
on the size and character of the invading army. The author is 
more concerned with the modifications of Ezekiel s predictions 
which time and events have made necessary. The prophet of the 

* Cf. Ez. 3 8 19 ff - 39 ; also Is. i 3 2 ff % 


Exile does not allow Gog and his hordes actually to attack Jerusa 
lem. They no sooner appear on " the mountains of Israel" than 
the jealousy of Yahweh is excited and he empties the vials of his 
wrath upon them. The author of this passage does not insist on 
the inviolability of the city, but goes so far as to teach that it will 
again be overcome and treated as captured cities in his day were 
usually treated. The city shall be taken, he says, and the houses 
plundered, and the women ravished. Cf. Am. y 17 Is. 13* 15 f> . 
He even foresees another deportation, in which half of the city shall 
go forth into captivity. Then, as explained in the next verse, Yah 
weh will interfere, so that the rest of the people shall not be cui off. 
If this passage were by the same author as i3 8 f> , the remnant 
would now be only a sixth of the original population. 

3. The rest of the paragraph has a decidedly apocalyptic char 
acter. Thus there is here no hint that the Jews will do anything 
in their own defence when their capital is attacked. Nor will Yah 
weh attempt to avert the catastrophe, but, after the city has been 
taken, he will come forth and fight with those nations, the nations 
that he himself, according to v. 2 , has brought thither to display his 
power upon them. C/. Ez. 39 2ff> . In 9" Yahweh comes "in the 
tempests of the South"; here he seems to descend from heaven. 
Cf. Mi. i 3 . At any rate, the next clause, as when hefighteth in the 
day of conflict, is an apparent allusion to Jb. 38 22 f -, whose "stores 
of hail . . . reserved . . . against the day of conflict" must be 
located in the sky. Cf. Jos. lo 11 . The author cannot, like Joel 
(4/3 16 ), have thought of him as issuing from Sion, since the city is 
supposed to be in the hands of the enemy. The day of conflict is 
interpreted by some as a general expression,* by others as an allu 
sion to a particular event, like the Exodus ;f but it were better, per 
haps, to combine the two views, for, even if the writer intended a 
general reference, he must have had an event like the Exodus in 
mind. 4. When Yahweh descends to meet his people s enemies, 
his feet shall stand on the Mount of Olives. There follows a de 
scription of the situation of this eminence, which Marti pronounces 
an interpolation. He thinks it was not necessary to tell the people 

* So Bla., Hi., Koh., Pres., Reu., el at. 

t So Jer., Grot., a Lap., Rosenm., Man., Ew.^ Burger, Hd., et a!. 

I4 1 6 343 

of the city that the mountain was over against Jerusalem eastward. 
This, however, is not the only reason that can be given for his opin 
ion. The clause is not important. The omission of it, therefore, 
causes no embarrassment, for there can be no doubt that the Mount 
of Olives, as it is here called for the first time in the Old Testament, 
is "the mountain that is on the east of the city," over which, ac 
cording to Ez. ii 23 , the glory of Yahweh hovered when he took his 
departure from the temple. This mountain, the modern name for 
which is Jebel et-Tur, is not a single peak, but a ridge, with three 
or four more or less prominent summits, the highest rising 2,723 
feet above the level of the sea. The part of it over against the city 
is everywhere higher than any part of the city itself. It therefore 
completely obstructs the view in that direction, but furnishes an 
excellent pedestal for such structures as the Russian Belvedere. 
When Yahweh makes his descent upon it, it shall be deft through 
its middle, eastward and westward, by a very great, that is, a very 
wide, as well as a very deep, transverse gorge; for, under his feet, 
half of the mountain, rent from its foundation, shall recede north 
ward, and the other half of it, in like manner, southward. Cf. Ez. 
3 8 19 f Mi. i 4 Na. i 5 Ju. 5* Hb. 3 Ps. i8 8 / 7 1 K. 19" f -. 

5. The object of the author in v. 4 seems to have been to present 
an impressive picture of the power of Yahweh. He now completes 
it by the addition of another realistic touch; as a result of the vio 
lent change in the contour of the Mount of Olives, Gihon, the inter 
mittent spring in the Valley of Kidron, now called "The Spring of 
St. Mary" or "The Spring of the Steps," shall be stopped, as it had 
been by other means more than once in the history of Jerusalem. 
Cf. 2 Ch. 32 4 - 30 . In explanation of this result he says, secondly, 
that the gorge of the mountains, the great cleft already described, 
shall reach to the side of it (Gihon), that is, across the Valley of 
Kidron to the hill on which the City of David was situated. These 
are simple and natural details perfectly intelligible to one who is 
acquainted with the Mount of Olives, but, by a curious error, they 
have been so distorted in the Massoretic text that the stoppage of 
the spring has become a flight by the gorge through the mountain 
like the escape of the fathers from the Egyptians by the miraculous 
passage through the Red Sea. Later some one added a compari- 


son with the flight before the earthquake in the days of Uzziah king 
of Judah. This is no doubt the earthquake mentioned in Am. i 1 , 
which, according to Josephus, occurred while Uzziah was trying to 
force his way into the temple, against the protests of the priests, 
to offer incense on the golden altar.* This scene, with which, as a 
historical event, every one was familiar, the glossator says, will be 
repeated when Yahweh cleaves the Mount of Olives asunder.f 
There is little comfort in such a prospect. Compare that presented 
by the latter half of the verse, where the original author, continu 
ing his description, says, Then shall Yahweh thy God come, and all 
his holy ones with him; the holy ones being the angels who serve as 
his attendants and messengers. { Here the description of the deliv 
erance of Jerusalem is for the time being discontinued. For the 
fate of the nations, see w. 12ff> . 

1. N3 DV] The sg. indefinite, here only. Cf. Je. 50"- 31 Mai. 3 19 /4>. 
pSm] When, etc. Ges. *i- 1 (>. The rhythmical character of this 
verse favours the idea expressed in the comments, that it is the theme of 
which the more prosaic part that follows is the development. 2. TOONI] 
Marti, as remarked in the comments, rejects this verse, for one reason 
because Yahweh speaks here in his own person. He is then obliged 
to omit ann DMJJ in v. 3 . A simpler way of meeting this difficulty would 
be to rd. here n DN1 > an d he will gather. nct-iSDu] This noun, when it is 
governed by 3 or *?, almost always (103 : 6) has the art. wrji] B, vasta- 
buntur = iDtfji. njSjtfn] Qr., njaatfn, a less objectionable word which 
in 15 Kenn. mss. has taken the place of the original reading. On the 
change in the tense, see GesJ 112 - i- R - 2 . 3. ann aim] These words 
presuppose v. 2 and are therefore omitted by Marti. Cf. v. 2 . ayo] Rd., 
with B, 103. 4. xinn ova] Om.. with oriental mss. and j. anpo v^x] 
On the genuineness of this clause, see the comments. DTPm -in] 
The reasons for omitting this phrase are: (i) It is unnecessarily explicit. 
The original author would have used inn, as he does below. (2) It is 
easily explained by the insertion of anpc ntrx and the consequent sepa 
ration of the subj. of ppaj from its antecedent. N^J] The abs. without 
the art., like the cstr., has _, except in Is. 40* (N-O), NIJ in i S. i7 : 2 being 
an error for ru. See also ^Sa, Is. I5 1 , and S^?, Is. i6 :i . On the con 
struction, the ace. of condition see Ges.^ 118 - 5 < r >. It is here fern. 

* Cf. Ant., ix, 10, 4; 2 Ch. 2616 ff.. 

t This, of course, is what is meant by as ye fled, for the most careless scribe would hardly, 
as Marti imagines, represent those of his own time as the contemporaries of Uzziah. For a 
precisely similar case, see 8 14 . 

tC/.Dt. 33 3 Ps.8 9 5ff. Jb. i S 6. 

I4 1 5 345 

nc-n vxns] <8 B , rb tffjuffv avrov irpfa dvaroXAs Kal BdXaffffav, ( AL Q r , rb 
ijfUffv avrov irpbs dvaroXAs /cat rb TJ/AKTV avrov Trpds 6d\affffav y clearly 
mistaken, because contradictory of what follows. IND i>*n] Marti 
would omit all these words, but, if the verse must be further shortened 
to make it conform to his metrical scheme, the clause that follows, which 
simply enlarges on the thought here expressed, might better be sacrificed. 
5. 050:1] The pf. 2d pi. Qal from Du. This is the occidental reading, 
and it is found in almost all the mss. that have been collated. It is sup 
ported by B &, and it has naturally been adopted in the printed texts and 
by a majority of the commentators. So Jer., KL, Dru., New., Rosenm., 
Mau., Hi., Ew., Burger, Hd., Kdh., Ke., Klie., Pres., Pu., Or., WrL, 
GASm., et at. The oriental reading, however, is onpji, the pf. 3d sg. 
Niph. from ono, stop. It is found in only 4 of the mss. cited by de R., but 
it has the support of (& 01 & H Aq. S O, and it is the one preferred by Jose- 
phus, Ra., and, among Christian scholars, Marck, Dathe, Fliigge, Bla., 
We., Now., Marti, Kit., et al. The latter reading, it will be noticed, is the 
one adopted by the latest authorities. These scholars, however, have 
strangely overlooked one point, and thus failed to seize the writer s pre 
cise meaning. This point is the peculiar force of the word ono. It oc 
curs elsewhere in a literal sense eight times, viz., Gn. 26 15 - 18 2 K. 3 19 - 25 
2 Ch. 32 3 - 4 - 30 Ne. 4 1 . In the last case it is used of closing the breaches 
of the wall of Jerusalem, but in all the rest the thing closed is a well or a 
spring, and this is the usage also in Aram. If, therefore, the oriental 
is the correct reading, it is more than probable that the subject is not this 
or that valley, but one of the springs in the vicinity of Jerusalem; and } 
since there are only two, it ought not to be impossible to discover which 
of them is meant. Josephus, in his description of the earthquake in the 
reign of Uzziah, mentions a place called Eroge. This name is, no doubt, 
a corruption of En-rogel, and, since the historian evidently had this pas 
sage in mind, one might infer that the spring stopped by the convulsion 
here described is the one just below the junction of the valleys of Kidron 
and Hinnom now called "the well of Job." A closer examination of the 
language used by Josephus, however, shows that he, like some modern 
writers, confounded En-rogel with Gihon, and that the place to which he 
refers is the site of the spring now called "The Spring of St. Mary." 
See further on the question of the identity of Gihon and En-rogel, JBL., 
xxii, 103 ff. If, then, it is a spring that is to be stopped, that spring is 
probably Gihon, and its name should be substituted for the meaning 
less phrase nn toj. The origin of the error can easily be traced. The 
scribe, in copying the text, after writing the first two letters of prv.j, look 
ing up, caught, not the word that he had been writing, but onn xu, and 
nearly finished it before he saw his mistake. Then, instead of correct 
ing the error, he proceeded with his task. This is a simpler emendation 
than that proposed by We. (oun XM) which, moreover, carries with it the 


mistaken assumption that the Valley of Hinnom was on the east of 
Jerusalem. The emendation suggested at first sight seems to find no 
support in the following clause, but it is only necessary, for SxvX, to read 
"tax, to produce the entirely satisfactory statement that the gorge of the 
mountains shall reach to the side of it, i. e., the side of Gihon. On the 
construction with pj, see Hg. 2 12 . >/] Rd., with 48 Kenn. mss., KM. 
*?xs] See above. The sf., being followed by another i, was easily over 
looked. DPDJi 2 ] Here clearly a derivative from DU, as both the occi 
dentals and the orientals point it. So also H & uL -use] <&, tv rals 
-rjntyais, except L. -riSx] Rd. TnVx, the final i having been lost by hap- 
log. So Marti, Kit So] Rd., with 83 mss., <S B $, hx. So We., 
Now., Marti, Kit. a^tf-ip] So <& B. Rd., with & SI, vehp. So New., 
Reu., We. ID?] Rd., with 45 mss., <g 1 * OT & H , isy. So Dathe, 
Houb., New., Bla., Hd., Reu., We., Now., Marti, GASm., Kit., van H., 
et al. 

(2) The transformation of Judah (i4 6 ~ n ). The author interrupts 
himself at this point to describe another miracle by which the 
country about Jerusalem will become a Paradise. 

6. With the coming of Yahweh will begin a new era for Jeru 
salem and Judah, the most peaceful, blissful and glorious in their 
history. The description of it should begin with this verse. It is 
clear, therefore, that the text, which now says that there shall then 
be no light, is corrupt, and that the original reading must have been, 
There shall no longer be cold and frost, such as sometimes add to the 
discomforts of a Syrian winter.* In other words, the climate of 
the country will be so modified that it will never be too cold for the 
comfort of the fortunate inhabitants. 7. The abolition of cold 
and frost will be accompanied by a still more miraculous transfor 
mation in existing conditions; for thenceforward there shall be con 
tinuous, lit., one, day. At this point the description of the coming 
day is interrupted by a pathetic outburst from a pious scribe who 
seems to have thought the day here promised to be "the day of 
Yahweh." // is known to Yahweh, he says, meaning thereby not 
so much the event as the date of its arrival. There follows an 
explanation of the rather ambiguous expression with which the 
verse began. The day in question is first defined negatively as not 
alternating day and night. Then, to make his meaning unmis- 

* The temperature in the hills of Palestine seldom falls below the freezing-point, but the 
winds that sweep over the country in the winter often cause the poorly fed and scantily clothed 
inhabitants extreme suffering. 

i4- ! 347 

takable, the writer adds, yea, it shall come to pass that at eventide 
there shall be light.* 

8. The picture is not yet complete. An oriental Paradise must 
have what Jerusalem and Judah always lacked, plenty of water. 
Thus, " a river went out of Eden to water the garden " of Gn. 2, and 
in Ezekiel s description of the Palestine of the future a stream issues 
from under the threshold of the sanctuary and flows eastward with 
growing volume, carrying health and fertility to that entire region. 
Cf. 47 1 ff *. The picture here presented, like Jo. 4/3 18 , is an adap 
tation of that of Ezekiel. The modifications are interesting. Thus, 
there shall go forth, not from the sanctuary, but from Jerusalem, 
living water, fresh water from an unfailing source, flowing, half of 
it toward the eastern sea, and half of it toward the western sea, the 
same being the Dead Sea and the Mediterranean. Finally, an 
inference from Ez. 47 12 is here put into the form of a statement to 
the effect that these streams, unlike most of those with which the 
Jews were familiar, would be perennial; in summer and in winter 
shall it, the water, be, continue to flow. Rain, therefore, would 
be as unnecessary as in Egypt. Cf. v. 18 . 

9. Thus far the writer s vision has been restricted to Palestine, 
and, indeed, apparently to that part of it known by the name of 
Judea. The scope of this verse is universal. It asserts that Yah- 
weh shall be king over, not merely the whole of Palestine, but all the 
earth ; and this is followed by the declaration that in that day Yah- 
weh shall be one, and his name one ; in other words, that Yahewh 
shall then be worshipped by all men, and that under the one name, 
Yahweh, revealed to the Chosen People. Now, one can hardly 
claim that all this is foreign to the thought of the author of the 
chapter. In vv. 16 f - he expresses himself in a similar fashion. 
In view, however, of the lack of relation with the following as well 
as the preceding context, it is safe to conclude that he did not so 
express himself in this connection. 10. This verse, on the other 
hand, is precisely in line with the thought of v. 8 . It continues the 
description of Jerusalem and its future surroundings, for the con 
figuration of the country, it seems, is to be changed as well as the 
meteorological and other conditions. The city will be the centre, 

* Ci. Is. 2 s 302* Rev. 21* 22 Is. 6o 9 f% 


and the whole land, hitherto in places considerably higher, and in 
others considerably lower, shall stretch round it like a plain. The 
limits of the plain in two directions are given. It will extend from 
Geba to Rimmon. The former of these places is the modern Jeba 
on Wadi Suweinit, opposite Mikhmas (Michmash) , about six miles 
north of Jerusalem. Cf. i S. i4 5 . In the reign of Asa it was forti 
fied by this king (i K. i5 22 ), and from that time onward was re 
garded as the northern limit of the kingdom of Judah. Hence the 
expression in 2 K. 23, "from Geba to Beersheba." The place of 
the latter is here supplied by Rimmon. This is without doubt the 
" En-rimmon" of Ne. n 29 , for which Jos. i5 32 has "Ain and Rim 
mon," and Jos. ig 7 and i Ch. 4 32 have u Ain, Rimmon." It has 
been identified with Umm er-Rammamin, a site about ten miles 
north-east of Beersheba with a fine spring and the ruins of a con 
siderable town. It was among the places reoccupied by the Jews 
on their return from exile. Cf. Ne. n 25ff -. Beersheba was an 
other ; but perhaps when this passage was written it had been lost 
or abandoned. The significance of these geographical details has 
been discussed in the Introduction, where it was shown that a 
writer whose vision was bounded by the places here named can 
not have been the author of chs. 9-11. In the midst of the plain 
just described, which, as appears from v. 8 , will be bounded on the 
east by the Dead Sea, and on the west by the Mediterranean, 
Jerusalem shall sit aloft in its place, on account of the depression 
of the surrounding country more prominent than ever. Cf. Mi. 
4 1 Is. 2 2 . There follows what looks like an outline of the limits of 
the city corresponding to the description already given of the ex 
tent of the country belonging to it. At first sight it is a little con 
fusing, but, if the Gate of Benjamin be identified with the Sheep 
Gate of Ne. i2 39 , and located north of the temple in the wall con 
necting the Tower of Hananel with the north-east corner of the 
sacred enclosure in its original dimensions,* and the phrase, to the 
site of the First Gate, omitted as a gloss, the meaning of the author 
will become apparent. He gives first the width of the city from 
east to west: it shall extend from the Gate of Benjamin, which al 
though it was not so far north, was farther east than the Tower of 

* Cj. Je. 3 7 13 38 7 ; Guthe, ZDPV., \, 282. 

14- 349 

Hananel, to the Corner Gate. This gate, as its name indicates, was 
at the north-west corner of the city,* and therefore in the so-called 
"Second Wall." The length from north to south is marked by 
two objects familiar to those for whom the passage was written, 
the Tower of Hananel at the north-west corner of the present 
Haram,f and the king s wine- press, which must have been in or 
near the Valley of Hinnom. Jerusalem as thus described would 
be about as large as that part of the city now within the walls, but 
it would not occupy the same ground, the southern limit being now 
some distance outside the walls. The language here used implies 
that it was not so large when the passage was written. 11. The 
city having been restored in these generous proportions, they, the 
people whose right it is by the favour of Yahweh, shall dwell in 
it undisturbed; for there shall not again be a curse, bringing de 
struction, but Jerusalem shall be a safe habitation. Cf. Je. 33 16 
Ez. 34" -. 

6. mm] <5 A Q r & om., but since the expression Ninn ova is frequent in 
chs. 12-14, both with and without mm, and & regularly omits the vb., it 
seems impossible to determine the original reading. See the comments 
on i2 3 . ji IIN] The text is evidently corrupt, because, as explained in 
the comments, it does not say what the author must have intended. 
Most of the attempts to emend must be rejected on the same ground. 
The rest are objectionable for some other reason. Ew. renders, there 
shall not be light and (alternating with it) cold and ice. This is unsatis 
factory, because the terms of the hypothetical comparison are not oppo- 
sites. The attempt of We. to remedy this defect is exposed to criticism 
from another point of view. He substitutes Din for TIN, thus getting 
there shall not be heat and cold and frost. So Oort, Now., Marti, Kit. 
The objection to this proposal is that Din, if it had ever had a place in 
the text, would hardly have been mistaken for a word so different and 
so much less suitable in this connection. Neither of these objections can 
be brought against the simpler expedient of replacing -ON by -njJ, and 
reading, as proposed in the comments, there shall no longer be cold 
and frost. The ~ns of M is easily explained by its appearance in v. 7 . 
The next two words, as now pointed, are usually rendered jewels (stars) 
shall dwindle, but there can be no doubt that, with < U & (F S, 
one should rd. PNB}?\ n-nf^ i. e., as above, cold and frost. 7. mm Nin] 
The incongruousness of these words is proof that they are an inter 
polation. Marti would read i?n> but with this prtc. the pronoun would 

* C]. 2 K. 14" Je. 3I 3 *; JBL., xxii, 136 ff. t Cf. Je. 31 Ne. 3 12^. 


probably have taken the second place. Cf. Ges. * i- ; Nrd. 55 772 - : 7 . 
21 connects this clause with the words that follow, thus, it is known 
before Yahweh, not as light by day, nor the opposite by night. 8 . mm] 
Wanting in (& >. Cf. v. G . DT] In Hebrew water is pi.; but this is 
not the English idiom. In the EV., therefore, the sg. should be substi 
tuted for the pi., not only of the noun, but of the pronouns of which 
it is the antecedent. mm] & om. We. retains the word, but puts 
it into the pi. with U. So Now., Marti, Kit. The change, however, 
is unwarranted. The thought of the author is correctly reproduced in 
(& by co-rat ovrias. If he had meant to make the subj. of this vb. o>D, 
he would have repeated NX>, as does in vpo: pm. 9. On the gen 
uineness of this verse, see the comments. 10. siD 11 ] The absence of the 
connective can hardly be intentional. Read, therefore, with B 4$, 3D>. 
So Houb., New. On the gender, see GesJ 145 - 7 (a) . The word never 
elsewhere means change, a fact that should have made K6., et al., think 
twice before rendering it so in this connection. mips] The absence of 
the art. seems to have been intended to prevent the reader from suppos 
ing, as do K6., et al.. that the author had the valley of the Jordan in mind. 
Cf. Ges. 5 as. 2 (*> (A) (2)> Ace. to Kit. this word is omitted by some au 
thorities; but, if 3D means lie about, it is necessary to the complete ex 
pression of the author s idea. 2Jj] With the force of h ajjn. Cf. Jos. 
I5 7 ; Ges. 1I8 - 2 <*>. fiB*o] Not, as one would gather from Ges. 72 - 7 - R - , 
the prtc., but the pf. 3d sg. fern., to agree with natf\ The N is therefore 
here a vowel letter, and the correct vocalisation that of Ben Naphtali, 
np&n. Similar forms occur elsewhere in the prtc. as well as in the pf. 
Cf. Ho. io 14 Ju. 4 21 , etc. Van H. rds. onn, with aWw for its subj. On 
the (adverbial) relation of this vb. to the next, see Ges. 120.2 (*>. 
pir>nn ny 1 ] This phrase is not only superfluous but unintelligible. The 
attempt by K6., et al., to save it by repesenting the author as taking his 
stand at the middle of the northern boundary and pointing out the limits 
east and west of that position ignores all precedents. It is doubtless a 
gloss to D>J3 "\ytf "\y, or, as it should read, rue ^u? -\y (2 K. i4 13 ), by some 
one who identified the Corner Gate with the so-called njsnn -\yv of Ne. 
3 6 i2 39 . On the omission of the art., see Ges. 126 - 5 - R - 1 <<*>. Marti 
would om. much more of the verse, viz., as far as SNJJP inclusive; but this 
seems too much to sacrifice to his metrical theory. See also Kit. S-uni] 
Rd., with 33 mss., B &, "?nj>nn\ So Dathe, New. Ace. to Bo. it is a case 
of breviloquence. So Hi., Ke., Ko., Wri., et al. 11. ru latfM] Marti 
oms. these words, and they do seem superfluous. If they are retained, 
they should be attached to the preceding verse. 

(3) The fate of the nations (i4 12 15 ). In this paragraph the 
prophet resumes his description of the relief of Jerusalem. The 
nations and their cattle will be smitten by a swift and deadly 


plague, and when, in their desperation, they turn their arms 
against one another, Judah will take advantage of the opportu 
nity to attack and destroy them. 

12. The Jews believed that Yahweh controlled all the calam 
ities to which mankind were subject, and that he employed them 
to correct or destroy those who offended him.* In 38 18 ff Ezekiel 
threatens Gog with a variety of such inflictions, the first three being 
earthquake, panic and pestilence. The author of this passage 
introduces the same three, but in a different order. The earth 
quake he has already described. Now comes a plague with which 
Yahweh will smite all the peoples that have served, taken military 
service, against Jerusalem.^ The effects of it are described in de 
tail. When men are attacked by it, their flesh shall rot away while 
they stand on their feet ; as if from leprosy, only, of course, much 
more rapidly. J The mere mention of such a mode of death makes 
one s flesh creep ; how much more a detailed description ! Yet the 
writer seems to dwell with satisfaction on the horrible particulars, 
as he recites how their eyes shall rot away in their sockets, and their 
tongues shall rot away in their mouths. The passage belongs to a 
class of which Ps. 137 is the most frequently cited example. The 
cruelty of which they are the expression is revolting, but it is hardly 
surprising in view of what the Jews suffered at various times from 
their oppressors. 13. The effects of this plague will not be meas 
ured by the number of persons who actually die of it. In such 
cases there is apt to supervene a demoralisation more destructive 
than the original epidemic. Cf. i2 4 . The writer predicts that 
it will be true in the case of this plague, that the havoc made by 
disease will unman the bravest of the hostile soldiery, and, in their 
frenzy to escape, they will fall upon one another with the weapons 
intended for the Jews. There shall be a great panic, he says, add 
ing, with the disregard for secondary causes characteristic of the 
Hebrews, from Yahweh. In a few words he gives a vivid descrip 
tion of the struggle: They shall seize, each his fellow, with one 
hand, and his other hand shall rise, be uplifted, against the hand 
of his fellow. It will be a fight to the death at close quarters. 

* Cf. Am. 4 6 ff - Lv. 26" ff- Dt. 28 15 * t Cf. Ez. sS 22 2 K. ig 35 . 

t Cf. Lv. ?6i6 p t . 28^ , Cf. Ju. 722 i S. 14" > 


14. The first clause of this verse is ambiguous. It may with 
equal propriety, so far as Hebrew usage is concerned, be rendered, 
Judah, also, shall fight in Jerusalem or Judah, also, shall fight 
against Jerusalem; but the latter is probably what the writer in 
tended to say. So the Vulgate. It is not, however, probable that 
in so saying he meant to assert or imply that on this occasion the 
Jews outside the city would be arrayed against its rightful inhabi 
tants. The situation does not require such an interpretation. The 
nations, according to v. 2 , have captured the city, but Yahweh has 
appeared to rescue his people. The conquerors, thrown into con 
fusion and consternation, are engaged in destroying one another. 
Now, it would be ridiculous, under these circumstances, to repre 
sent the rural Jews as taking the part of the gentiles. If, there 
fore, the clause is genuine, and against is the proper rendering 
for the preposition, it must be Jerusalem, wholly or partly occu 
pied by the gentiles and attacked by Yahweh, against which he 
means to say that Judah will fight. This position can be main 
tained without reference to the following context. When that is 
taken into account, especially if, as in the Greek, early Latin and 
Syriac versions, the verb of the next clause is rendered actively, 
one may be even more positive. In fact, it may be claimed that 
the above is the only consistent interpretation, since, unless Judah 
were to fight against the gentiles, there would be no sense in saying 
that it (they) should collect the wealth of all the nations, gold, and 
silver, and garments, the spoils gathered during the invasion which 
must now be abandoned, in great abundance. Cf. Ez. 38 12 39 f . 

15. The text now returns to the subject of the plague, and con 
tinues it, as if this verse immediately followed v. 12 , by adding that 
there shall be a plague, not only among the offending nations them 
selves, but also on the horse, the mule, the camel, and the ass, even 
all the cattle that are in those armies, and it will prove as destruc 
tive to them as this plague, namely, the one described in v. 12 , will 
be to the gentiles themselves. Cf. Ez. 38 20 . 

12. WNI] The rel. takes the place of the second, internal, obj. Cf. 
Ges. * 117 - 2 . Dinjjn] An exception, as already (12 9 ) noted, to the usage of 
this chapter, which requires o^an, just as in 12 9 DMJH is an exception to 
the rule in that chapter. In this case there are 5 Kenn mss. in which the 

I4 12 353 

copyist has recognised the usage and changed the text to make it uniform. 
pnn] This word, as pointed, is the Hiph. inf. abs. and an appositive 
of nsr. Cf. Gn. 1710 Lv. 6 7 Dt. 15"; Ges. * <>. The other forms of 
the same vb. found in this verse, however, are from Niph.; nor is the vb. 
elsewhere used in any other stem. It is therefore probable that the orig 
inal reading in this case was pon. The inf. abs. is precisely adapted to 
portray the suddenness of the infliction described and the rapidity with 
which it will do its work. Cf. Ges. * m. <*> (S> and ( 6 ). n fa] The sf. is 
distributive. It is therefore properly rendered in B by caro uniuscu- 
jusque, and in & by ^ooijJCLO, their flesh. Cf. Ges. * I45 - 5 - R . Jl lorn] A 
circumstantial clause, while he, etc. Cf. Ges. * 156 - 1 . orpca] Rd., in 
harmony with the analogous cases, in>ca. Cf. Mai. 2 6 f -. So Bla., We., 
Now., Marti, Kit. 13. This verse and the one following are rejected 
as secondary by the later critics, but, if the interpretation given to them 
in the comments is correct, it is clear that they have a place in the au 
thor s picture. Note D"ijn (v. 14 ), one of the characteristic words of this 
chapter. rrni] Om. $ &. mnn] (& oms., exc. a few curss. -n] The 
ace. construction is very rare, except in the cases of sfs. Rd., therefore, 
with 53 mss., i-a, or, with &, injna. nnSjn] This makes tolerable sense, 
but it is difficult to understand how (& got from it icai <ri;/i7rXaKi}<r6Tcu, U, 
et implicabitur, U, et conseretur, , wfl^rZo, and (5, fc Snni; for all of 
which npani would seem to be a more probable original. 14. mirv] The 
word is here used of the country, and is therefore fern. Cf. Ges. * 122 3 < a >. 
D^BTva] The preposition Sy is used with the place against which 
war is urged 16 t., and a almost as often. Cf. Jos. io 31 Ju. i 8 g 45 - 62 n 12 
i S. 231 2 S. i2 26 - ST. 29 ! K. 20 1 Is. 20 1 Ne. 4 2 2 Ch. 352. Cp. Robinson, 
62 /. ipNi] Rd., with <& (KO.I <rvt>Tdei), H (colliget), and & (wjJ^o). 
nsDsi. 200] Om. as inconsistent with the meaning of D un in this 
chapter. It was borrowed from i2 2 - 6 . 15. Dion] The sg. with the art. 
is here used of the class. Hence it may properly be translated by the pi., 
as it is by <g. Cf. GesJ 126 - 3 <*>. ironm] Ordinarily each noun after 
the first has \ Cf. Gn. I2 16 24.^. Sometimes, however, as in English, 
the connective is used only with the last. Here it marks the end of the 
series, and the one with the next word introduces a collective including 
the four classes enumerated. Cf. Ges. 5 154. note ( ) and ^ )> _ n , n ,] i n 2 g 
mss. rvnri, the more frequent construction; but the masc. of the vb. after 
a fern. subj. is also allowable. Cf. Gn. 5 6 Ex. I2 16 ; Ges. $" R - 2 . The 
presence of Va has no influence. Cf. g 19 u 1 . HDJDD] In 15 Kenn. mss. 
nsjci; but HI is preferable. So <8 H &3I. Marti sacrifices the whole 
phrase to metrical considerations. 

(4) A universal sanctuary (i4 10 " 21 ). The nations, thus chastened, 
will be disposed to recognise Yahweh as the true God, but, if any 
refuse so to do by presenting themselves at the feast of tabernacles 


in Jerusalem, they will receive further punishment. To accommo 
date them the sanctity of the temple and its furniture will be ex 
tended, not only to the city, but the whole of Judah. 

16. The natural effect of the inflictions above described will be 
to exalt Yahweh in the eyes of the nations. Ezekiel, at the end of 
the parallel passage, makes him say, " I will make myself known in 
the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am Yahweh." 
The author of this paragraph puts it even more strongly. He says 
that, after these plagues, the gentiles will not only recognise Yah 
weh, but that all that are left of all the nations that came against 
Jerusalem shall come up from year to year to worship the King, Yah 
weh of Hosts, at the very shrine that they would have destroyed. 
They will not be required, as are the Jews by the Law, to appear 
before Yahweh thrice every year, but they will be expected to keep 
the feast of tabernacles, the last and most important of the annual 
festivals, and the only one originally celebrated at the central 
sanctuary.* A universal pilgrimage to the Holy City every year 
would, of course, be impossible, yet the terms used are such that 
the prophet seems to have believed that it could be realised. 
17. A failure to observe this requirement will be severely punished. 
Moreover, the punishment will fit the offence. The feast of taber 
nacles, or, as it was sometimes called, the feast of ingathering, was 
a festival of thanksgiving for the harvest just completed. Cf. Ps. 
5^10/9 ff._ A refusal to celebrate it would argue an ingratitude 
which could not be more appropriately punished than by with 
holding rain, which began to fall soon after the feast of tabernacles, 
and thus preventing a normal harvest in the following year. Hence 
it is decreed that, if any of the families of the earth come not up to 
Jerusalem to worship the King, Yahweh of Hosts, on them, these 
ingrates, or, strictly, their soil, shall there be no rain, and, conse 
quently, no crops. 

18. The case of Egypt receives special treatment. The reason 
is evident. That country is, and always has been, watered, not 
from the clouds, but by the river Nile. Cf. Dt. n 10 . This being 

* Cf. Ju. 2 1 19 i K. 8 2 12 32 , etc. In Is. 66 s3 the extravagant prediction is made that "from one 
month to another, and from one week to another, all flesh shall come to worship" before Yah 
weh, but in this case " all flesh " includes only the Jews within reach of the temple. Cf. Jo. 3 . 

I4 1 " 35S 

the case, a threat to withhold rain would have been ridiculous. 
The prophet says, therefore, that, if the family of Egypt come not up 
and present themselves, then on them shall be the plague with which 
Yahweh shall smite all the nations, namely, the plague described in 
v. 12 . In the Massoretic text the nations are defined as those that 
come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles; but, although this clause 
is properly used in v. 19 , in this one, if translated according to the 
punctuation, it makes the writer say that the Egyptians will be 
punished in the same way as the other nations; which, as appears 
from v. 19 , is precisely what he did not intend to say. If, on the 
other hand, the punctuation be so changed that the latter half of 
the verse will read, then on them shall not be the plague, etc., he is 
prevented from saying how the Egyptians will be punished. These 
considerations show that Marti is correct in not only changing the 
punctuation and omitting the third negative, but in pronouncing 
the relative clause with which the verse now closes a gloss borrowed 
from v. 19 . 19. The correctness of the above reconstruction of 
v. 18 is shown by the harmony between the verse as emended and 
the statement which now follows. This, says the prophet, re 
ferring to vv. 17 f - as a whole, shall be the special punishment of 
Egypt, and the common punishment of all the rest of the nations 
that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles. It is clear that 
Egypt would not here have received special mention unless in the 
preceding verses there had been described two distinct methods 
of treating those who neglected the annual pilgrimage. 

20. The prophet in thought follows the pilgrims to Jerusalem. 
He seems to have pictured them to himself as journeying thither 
on horses. Now, the Hebrews did not at first look with favour 
upon the horse. The prophets, in this, as in many other matters, 
preserved the attitude of the fathers. They regarded the animal 
as a symbol of foreign pomp and power. Cf. Is. 2 7 Dt. iy 16 Ez. 
38 4 , etc. Therefore in portraying the peaceful future to which 
they taught their people to look forward, they naturally represented 
it without horses. See 9 and Mi. 5 10 / 9 , but especially Zc. p 9 , 
where the future king is represented as making his triumphal entry 
into Jerusalem, not on a horse, but on an ass. In the present in 
stance the prophet does not banish the horse from the Holy Land, 


it would have been cruel to the pilgrims from remote regions, but 
gives the animal a new meaning. In the good time coming shall 
the hells, or tinkling ornaments, of the horses, and, of course, the 
horses themselves, he holy to Yahweh. The horse is holy because 
he brings, not a warrior, to kill and waste, but a pilgrim to worship 
at the temple of Yahweh. The writer saw that the participation 
of the gentiles in the celebration of the feast of tabernacles would 
tax the resources of the temple, and made provision for it. He be 
gins by saying that the pots in the house of Yahweh shall be as the 
bowls before the altar. These words are capable of more than one 
interpretation. One is that the vessels used for inferior purposes 
will become as holy as the bowls from which the blood of sacri 
fices is sprinkled.* To this, however, there is the serious objec 
tion that there is no apparent ground for supposing one of these 
classes of vessels to have been regarded as holier than the other. 
Wellhausen and others, therefore, prefer to think that it is their size 
with reference to which the vessels are compared; but if, as the 
name given to them warrants one in inferring, the pots are the ves 
sels used in cooking the flesh of the sacrifices (v. 21 Ex. i6 3 ), they 
must already have been larger than the bowls for the blood of the 
victims. These objections can be avoided by supposing the writer 
to have meant that the supply of bowls in the temple would be so 
scanty that the pots would have to be used for the same purpose. 
The increase in the number of worshippers will create in the 
house of Yahweh a deficiency in cook-pots, which will be the 
greater because some or all of the vessels of this class already 
provided have been taken to meet the need of bowls. This de 
ficiency will be supplied from year to year, by the resident Jews, 
for every pot in Jerusalem and Judah, like those in the temple, 
shall then be holy because at length the land and the people have 
been sanctified. f The supply will be so generous that all that 
sacrifice shall come and take of them and cook therein, according to 
custom, the flesh allotted them for the sacrificial meal.J Most of 
the sacrificers will have to obtain animals for sacrifice at Jerusalem, 
but they will not be able to buy them within the sacred precincts, 

* So Marck, Mau., Hi., Koh., Klie., Brd., Hd., Pu., Or., Rub., Wri., et al. 

t C/. Is. ii 9 6 2 >2 Ez. 20 40 , etc. % C}. i S. a 13 Dt. ia f - 2 Ch. 3 5 13 , etc. 

14"- 357 

as they seem to have done when this passage was written and as 
they continued to do until the time of Jesus (Mt. 2i 12 f> ), for there 
shall no longer be a trader* in the house of Yahweh of Hosts in that 
day. Cf. Jo.4/3 17 - 

16. irnjn VD] The sg. prtc. with SD and the art. has the force of a pi. 
Hence iSjn in the next clause. Cf. Ges. 127 <<*> R - 1: 143 < rf > R - 2 . Kenn. 
72 has -by. nje ; a rutf] The later idiom for njtf rutf. C/". Ges. * 123 f> 
R - i. mnrwnS] On the form, see Ges. * . e. R. is. 17. -V^N] Kenn 154, 
perhaps correctly, "itfN So. See om 1 ??. PNC] Rd., with <S &,Sa PND. 
Si] On the i, see iSjn, v. I6 ; on the position of the negative, before the 
emphatic word, Ges. $ 152 - 2 - R - 3 . For v. b most mss. of < have /cai oCrot 
tKeivois Trpoa-red^ffovTai = ott Jj vm arnSp n^Ni (Koh.); but(i L follows HI. 
So also Aq. S 6. nxa N 1 ?)] Corrupt. Rd. either wan Si, or HN^I without 
thenegative. Cf.Ex. 28 43 Lv. ig l2 ,etc.; Ges.% 158 - 3 . z^y xSi] Rd., with 
Kenn. 624, ( ^, Dn-S>n, the N 1 ? having been imported from v. 17 . So Houb., 
Ew., Burger, Sta., We., Kui., Now., Marti, GASm., Kit., van H., et al. 
The punctuation must also be changed so that this word will become a 
part of v. b . a-njn PN] Rd., with 83 mss., (& U, OMJn S3 ns. The oriental 
reading is LPDjrn VD ns, as in v. 12 , to which the threat here made has refer 
ence. So also 1 1 mss. On the rel. clause with which the verse closes, see 
the comments. 19. In n Kenn. mss. this verse is wanting; but the Vrss. 
have it, and, when properly interpreted, it has a place in the discourse. 
20. Sy] Rd., with 5 Kenn. mss. and Talm. B J, So; which is also required by 
V. 21 . rn^xip] This is the reading preferred by Jerome s Jewish teachers, 
but the text of his day had mSso here as well as in i 8 and 10". Hence 
the fivdbv of Aq. 9. Van H. suggests for this and the following word 
VDI mSsD, which he renders poeles et marmite. mm] The sg. for the pi. 
Cf. Ges. * 145 - 7 <">. 21. Kit. rejects the last two words Ninn or a, and 
Marti, without sufficient warrant, questions the genuineness of the whole 
clause from xSi onward. 

* Literally, Canaanile, but such cannot be the meaning in this connection, since the nations as 
such will be free to visit the temple. 



ADVERSARY, the, only in Zechariah, 
103; his character, i5o/. 

Alexander in Palestine, 253, 269. 

Altar at Jerusalem, restoration, 9 /. 

Angel; see Messenger of Yahweh. 

Angels in Zechariah, 103. 

Apocalyptic, characteristics, 239 /. 

Artaxerxes III (Ochus), in Palestine, 
253 n.; at Sidon, 264 /. 

Assyria, name, 246, 293 /. 

BEHISTUN Inscription, i7/., 22. 

CAMBYSES, conquest of Egypt, i4/.; 
treatment of Egyptians, 15 /.; re 
lations with Jews, 16; manner of 
death, 17. 

Chariots among the Hebrews, 177. 

Convulsions of nature, 61. 

Cypress, 296. 

Cyrus, conquests, 3, 13; deliverer of 
Jews, 4/., 6/.; treatment of Baby 
lon, 5; date of death, 13. 

"DARius, son of Ahasuerus," 41. 

Darius I (Hystaspes), overthrow of 
Gomates, 7 /.; suppression of 
satraps, 18, 21; date of accession, 
i9/.; action on the temple, 20 jf.; 
expedition to Egypt, 23; pacifi 
cation of Judea, 23 /.; confusion 
with others, 41 /. 

"Darius the Mede," 41. 

"Darius the Persian," 41. 

ELEPHANTINE, temple, 12 n. 
En-rogel, location, 345. 
Ephah, size, 172. 

Ethics, of Zc. 1-8, 105; of 9-14, 
241 /. 

FALSE prophets, 247. 
Fliigge on Zc. 9-14, 245. 

GIHON, location, 343; corruption of 

name, 345. 
Gilead, extent, 294. 
Gomates, the Magian, as Bardes, 

17; overthrow, 18; length of reign, 

19 n. 

Grotius on Zc. 9-14, 250. 
Griitzmacher on Zc. 9-14, 248. 

HADRAK, location, 262. 

Haggai the prophet, name, 25, 42; 
vocation, 26; age, 27. 

Haggai s book, genuineness, 27; 
unity, 28 jf.; text, 31^.; criticism, 
36/.; style, 37 /. 

High -priesthood, origin, 44; first 
mention, 44; growth of impor 
tance, 188. 

Hinnom, Valley of, location, 345 /. 

Horses among the Hebrews, 274, 
355 / 

IDOLATRY after the Exile, 247. 
Interpreter, the, in Zechariah s visi 
ons, 103. 


3 6o 


Introduction, historical, to Haggai 

and Zechariah, 3 ff. 
"Israel" in Zc. 1-8, 135, 214. 

JACHIN and Boaz, 178. 

Jealousy of Yahweh, I25/. 

Jerusalem, date of destruction, 196. 

Jews in Egypt, 292 /. 

Jordan, valley of the, 297 /. 

"Joseph" as a collective, 290. 

Joseph, son of Tobias, 303 /., 3io/. 

Joshua, the high priest, name, 44; 
genealogy, 44; a symbolic figure, 
152 /.; his great office, 156 ff. 

KUENEN on Zc. 9-14, 251. 

MARRIAGES with foreigners, 247. 

Measuring lines, 136 /. 

Mede on Zc. 9-14, 244. 

Messenger, the, of Yahweh, a proph 
et, 55; manifestation of Yahweh, 
61; champion of Israel, 124; 148 
/.; relation to Michael, 150 n. 

Messiah, son of David, identified 
with Zerubbabel, 77/., 158, i&$f.; 
in Zc. 9-14, 241 /., 249; absence 
from Zc. 7/., 250, 273. 

Messiah, son of Joseph, origin of 
conception, 273; found in Zc. 12 9 , 

33 1 - 

Michael, the archangel, 152. 
Months, names, 116. 
Myrtle, 118. 

NEUMANN S style, 174. 
Newcome on Zc. 9-14, 244. 

PROPHETS, the former, in Zc. 1-8, 

ioi/., 105, in. 
Ptolemy I (Soter), 255. 
Ptolemy II (Philadelphus), 255. 
Ptolemy III (Euergetes), 255, 303^". 
Ptolemy IV (Philopator), 256, 315. 

RAINFALL in Palestine, 497. 

Restoration, the, the Chronicler s 
account, 6 ff.; a probable theory, 
8/.; bearing of Hg. i 12 , 54. 

Robinson on Zc. 9-14, 242 ff. 

SAMARITANS, attitude toward Jews, 
12 n. 

Satan; see Adversary. 

Sellin on "The stone with seven 
eyes," 158. 

Sheshbazzar, governor of Judea, 6; 
confusion with Zerubbabel, 8; re 
storer of the great altar, 22. 

"Shoot" as a Messianic term, 186. 

Sion, proper application, 126; im 
proper, 177 n. 

Stade on Zc. 9-14, 250, 252. 

Stonard s style, 160. 

Storks in Palestine, 174. 

Suffixes, singular, with collective 
meaning, 271 /. 

TEMPLE, the second, date of foun 
dation, 10 Jf., 20, 71; interruption 
of the work, 20 ff.\ instrumental 
ity of Haggai, 20, 22 /.; of Zech 
ariah, 145; date of completion, 23. 

Teraphim, nature, 287; an actual 
plural, 298. 

Tyre, sieges of, 265. 

VISIONS of Zechariah, nature, n6/.; 
interpretation, 122 /., i8i/. 

WINE-PRESSES in Palestine, 70. 
Winter in Judea, 346 n. 

ZECHARIAH the prophet, name, 107 

/.; a priest, 81; genealogy, 81 /.; 

age, 82/.; influence, 145. 
Zechariah s book, structure, 84; text, 

84 /.; style, 98 /.; dates, 98; 

visions, 98 /., 102 /., i.i6/., 122, 



233; favourite forms of expres 
sion, ioo/., 236; indebtedness to 
predecessors, ioi/.; teaching, 102 
ff.; angels, 103; sobriety, 103 /., 

I 2 7 /> 135- 

Zechariah 9-14, structure, 2i8jf.; 
text, 220 ff.; authorship, 232 ff.; 
comparison with 1-8, 233 ff.; in 
debtedness to earlier prophets, 
2 37/-> apocalyptic element, 2T > gf.; 

Robinson s defence, 242 ff.; ear 
lier criticism, 244 /.; the pre- 
exilian theory, 245^.; postexilian 
theories, 250 ff.; a. constructive 
argument, 251^. 

Zerubbabel, name, 43, 187 n.; gene 
alogy, 43; confusion with Shesh- 
bazzar, 78; identification with the 
Messiah, 77 /., 156, 185 /.; dis 
appearance, 24. 


Genesis g 5 , 204; i5 10 , 204; 2Q 5 , 82; 

42 25 , 204. 
Exodus i4 20 , 139. 

1 Samuel i7 52 , 344; ig 135 -, 287 n. 

2 Samuel 2i 20 = i Chronicles 20", 

1 Kings 8 65f -, 166; 9 20 , 269 n. 

2 Kings 9 25 , 261. 

Isaiah u, 208; 42*, 55; 44**-, 4/5 

45 9 13 , 4J 5 2l5 -53 12 > 33 1 ; 55 11 , IJ 35 

63 9 - 14 , 61; 66 23 , 354. 
Jeremiah 23 33 , 261; 29", 63 /.; 31 , 

330 n.; 47 1 , 246; 49 3 , 178; 5o 38 , 

Ezekiel i 2f -, 98, 108; 8 2 , 118; 29 17ff -, 

266; 3i 3 , 296; 32 , 284; 38 5 , 142. 
Amos i 3ff -, 234; 46-", 70; 5 12 , 73. 
Habbakuk 2 16f -, 321 n.; 2 20 , 144. 
Haggai i 6 , 38; i 10 , 38; i, 38; 26-9, 

3 8/.; 2", 3 8; 219, 3 8; 220-23, 30. 

Zechariah i 4f -, 99; i 14b - 15 , ioo; i 17 , 
99; 2 12 / 8 , 99; a 14 / 10 - 17 /^ I0 o; 4- 10 , 
3> I00 ;8 2f -, 99. 

Malachi 2 7 , 55. 

Psalms IO4 4 , 178; 109*, 149 n.; 147", 


Daniel i lf -, 125; 7 s - 24 , 307; n 20 , 

257, 307. 
Ezra i 1 - 4 , 6; 2 lff -, ;/.; 3 1 - 6 , 9/5 3 7 , 47; 

3^ 3 , io/., 71; 4 6 - 10 , 13; 5 -6 12 , 2i/.; 

6 12 , 22; 7 1 , 82. 
Nehemiah 2 20 , 12; 7 6ff -, 8; i2 10 - 22 , 

41; i3 28 , 41. 

1 Chronicles 3 17 , 43; 3 18 , 8 n., 18, 42; 
2 1 1 , 149 n. 

2 Chronicles i 10 , 63; 34 12 , n n.] 36 22 , 

i Esdras 2 1 - 7 , 6 n. , 5 lff -, 8. 
Matthew i 12 , 43; 2i 5 , 274 w., 276; 

23 35 , 83; 26 3 = Mark 14", 318; 

27 3 -, 314; 27 , 311, 313. 
Mark i 2 , 311. 

Luke i7 8 , 156 n.; 3", 43; ii 61 , 84. 
John i2 12 , 274 n.; I2 1S , 274 n., 276. 
Acts io 36 , 65. 
Revelation n sff -, 165. 


N as a vowel letter, 350. 
^.N, foolish, 315. 
inN, after (post), 146. 
vr.N C >N, one another, 204 /. 

N, in a pregnant construction, 
47; confusion with T3, 50, 64, 


N SN, to him whom, 335. 



DN, for DNJ, in interpolations, 52, 
65, 114. 
, as a prisoner, 43. 

3, partitive, 55; essentia, 76; of in 
timate address, 129; of hostility, 


113 and "?$, 50, 64, 72. 
W-i, for *?N-n>3, 197. 
11? Kb, an interpolation, 57. 

n, the article, with a predicate, 203. 
n, the interrogative: its omission, 

ran, on, --on; their accentuation, 

3 J 3- 

nSian, the exiles, 183 /. 
N-in connective, 190. 
fc iain, from trn, 271. 
OTiuirin, conflate form, 300. 
non, anticipatory subj., 129. 
njn, before preps., 52. 
j-1 demonstrative, 72 /. 
in, highlands, 47 n. 

tf 1 ^ " n , of Judea, 207. 
i in a series, 353. 
^33-v; etymology, 43. 

ijn; derivation, 42. 

ion, kindness; of men, 329 /. 

is; as an appellative, 302. 

ixi\ for IXTN, 3137. 

l ?Nife > in Zechariah, 132, 135. 

"^ ^M? = i^y, 56- 
1133, glory ; of a theophany, 141. 
tfsin }ri3, for Vn^n jriDn, in Chron 
icles and Ezra, 44 n. 

, rw/e, power, 77 w. 
^>a/w and so/e, 50. 

and igi extremes, 75 /. 
? after a negative, 328. 

its position, 53. 
for D^Srin, 160. 

9, 74- 

j mn Din- ? s, 7 o/., 73 /., 75 /. 
D, EV. w*Vre, 152 
, burden and oracle, 261. 

DXJ, 299. 

DNJ, see ics. 

; derivation, 345. 




njj? at the beginning of a conversa 

tion, 129 /. 
ijj; and ^,276. 

niis, wine-press, 74 /. 

153 with and without ?, 299. 

nns, engrave, 157. 

frequency with nin>, 130. 
, 1 60. 
or pebble? 46 /. 

# ^ 340- 

i"\r, chestnut, 119, 129. 

au f , tear owe ^ si?//", 322. 
iW, prosperity, 63 /. 
jonSc for SsjonSsK , 56. 

nri for Nin, 271. 









i. Its Contents. 

The theme of the prophecy is stated clearly in the opening 
section of the book (i 2 5 ), viz. that Yahweh still loves Israel, 
notwithstanding the fact that appearances seem to tell against 
a belief in such love. The second and main section (i 6 ~3 12 ) 
points out in detail some of the obstacles that stand in the way 
of the full and free exercise of Yahweh s love toward his people. 
These obstacles are found in the failure of the people in general 
and the priests in particular to manifest that respect and rever 
ence toward Yahweh that are due from a people to its God 
(i 6 -2 9 ) ; in the fact that native Jewish wives have been divorced 
in order that the way might be cleared for new marriages with 
foreign women a proceeding exhibiting both inhumanity and 
apostacy (2 10 - 16 ); in the general materialism and faithlessness 
of the times, which call in question the value of faith and right 
eousness and will make necessary the coming of a day of judg 
ment (2 17 ~3 6 ) ; and in the failure to render to Yahweh generously 
and willingly the tithes and offerings that are his due (3 7 12 ). 
The last section (3 13 ~4 6 ) takes up again the note with which the 
prophecy opens, and it assures the pious that their labours have 
not been in vain; for in the day of Yahweh which is near at 
hand Israel s saints will experience the protection of Yahweh s 
fatherly love, whereas the wicked will perish. The book is evi 
dently well planned, being knit together into a well-developed 
and harmonious whole. 

2. Its Unity. 

The essential unity of the Book of Malachi has never been 
called in question. Editorial additions are few and slight. The 



only passages that have been attacked as not belonging to the 
original prophecy are 2 7 - n - 12 and 4 4 6 . In the case of 2 7 - n - 12 , 
the attack can hardly be deemed successful (v. com. in loc.). 
But the editorial origin of 4 4 - 6 must be granted (v. com. in loc.). 
The recent attempt of Riessler to demonstrate the presence of 
three strata in Malachi, viz. (i) fundamental prophecies, (2) 
parallels to the foregoing, and (3) notes, all three of which go 
back in the last analysis, nearly in toto, to the original writer 
himself, can be regarded only as a curiosum. The critical pro 
cedure upon which this assignment rests is subjective and arbi 
trary in the highest degree. 

It is probable that Malachi once circulated as one of a small 
collection of prophecies which also included Zechariah, chs. 9-11 
and 12-14, and perhaps chs. 1-8. The three superscriptions, Zc. 
g 1 I2 1 Mai. i 1 , are apparently either from the same hand, or Zc. 
I2 1 and Mai. i 1 were modelled after Zc. g l . In either case, they 
testify to the close relationship of this group of prophecies at 
some point in the history of their transmission prior to their in 
clusion within the Book of the Twelve, where Malachi now stands 
as an independent book. 

3. Its Style. 

The style of Malachi is clear and simple. It is at the same time 
direct and forceful. It makes but little demand upon the im 
agination of the reader. The element of beauty is almost wholly 
lacking, there being but slight attempt at ornamentation of any 
kind. The figurative element is very limited; but such figures 
as are employed are fresh and suggestive. A marked character 
istic is the frequent use of the catechetical method, in accordance 
with which general statements are met by questions calling for 
nearer definition or for citations of fact. This gives a certain 
appearance of vivacity to the discourse which tends to maintain 
interest. This method was carried to extremes in the later rab 
binical dialectics. 

In distinction from most of the prophetic books, Malachi 
must be classified as prose. Neither in spirit, thought, nor 


form, has it the characteristics of poetry. Certainly, there is 
an occasional flash of poetic insight and imagination, or a few 
lines which move to a poetic rhythm. But only by the loosest 
use of terms could we call the prophecy as a whole poetry. All 
attempts to treat it as poetry have involved much pruning of 
the text in order to bring the lines within the necessary limits 
of a poetic measure.* If Malachi is to be regarded as poetical, 
either in form or content, distinctions between poetry and prose 
must be abandoned. 


The Book of Malachi furnishes no statement regarding the 
time of its origin. Nor does external testimony aid much in de 
termining its date. The citation from 4 6 which occurs in BS. 
48 does, indeed, put practically out of the question the Macca- 
baean date proposed by some.f The mere fact of the presence 
of Malachi in the prophetic canon would seem to preclude the 
possibility of a Maccabaean date; for BS. 49 shows that the 
Book of the Twelve was already organised in the days of Ben 
Sirach. It is not at all likely that as late as the Maccabaean 
period a new book could have been incorporated among the 
Twelve, involving as it would either the omission of a book pre 
viously admitted, or the consolidation into one book of some 
two of the books already in the Book of the Twelve. J 

For further information regarding the time in which Malachi 
was written, we must depend upon the more or less indirect 
testimony of the contents of the book itself. The reference to 
Edom in i 2 - 4 raises our hopes. Edom has evidently received 
quite recently some telling blow which has left her prostrate. 
Israel s hatred of Edom is thereby gratified. This attitude to 
ward Edom is one which characterised Israel continuously from 

* Witness the arrangements of Marti, Siev., Now. K , and Riessler. 

t Viz. Wkl. and Spoer. The reply made by Spoer to the objection here urged is that Malachi 
may have quoted from BS.. But this is unconvincing, because the whole context in BS. is 
made up of allusions to and quotations from the OT., the very next line to the one in ques 
tion being a citation of Is. 4Q 6 ; whereas Mai. 4 6 bears the stamp of originality. 

t Cf. F. Brown, in Essays in Modern Theology and Related Subjects A Testimonial to Chas. 
A. Briggs (1911), pp. 68, 77J G. B. Gray, Isaiah (ICC., 1912), xliiijf.. 


the time of the fall of Jerusalem, when Edom had taken advan 
tage of Judah s helplessness to seize a part of Judah for herself 
(Ez. 35 10 12 36 3 - 5 ; cf. Is. 63 and Ob.). Any great disaster to 
Edom after this time would meet the requirements of this 
oracle.* Unfortunately, the history of Edom from the time of 
the exile to the outbreak of the Maccabaean revolt is almost 
wholly unknown. We do know that Southern Judah was called 
Idumaea as early as 312 B.c.f and that about that time the 
Nabataeans had already pressed in from the South and dis 
lodged the Edomites from their ancient fastnesses. But the 
exact period at which the expulsion of the Edomites by the 
Nabataeans took place is as yet unknown.f It is not at 
all improbable that this overrunning of Edom by the Naba 
taeans was the disaster to which our prophet refers. If so, 
the origin of Malachi must fall somewhere between 586 B.C. 
and 312 B.C.. 

A nearer approximation to the period of Malachi has been 
sought by some through the use of the word "governor" (nns) 
in i 8 . The only "governors" of Judah who could be identified 
were Zerubbabel and Nehemiah. But upon the basis of the Ele 
phantine papyri, we can now add Bagoas. These three, however, 
represent the entire period from 536 B.C. to 407 B.C.. Moreover, 
it is clear from Ne. 5 14 that Zerubbabel was not the only "gov 
ernor" prior to Nehemiah. Furthermore, the use of the word 
"governor" was so general (cf. Je. 5i 28 - 57 Ez. 23 6 Est. 3 12 ) that 
there is no reason to suppose that it ceased even with the pass 
ing of the Persian Empire. The Persians took over the title 
from the Babylonians and doubtless passed it on to the Seleucid 
dynasty. In later times, indeed, it was actually applied to the 
chief priests in Judaea. Hence, this term conveys no specific 
information regarding the date of the Book of Malachi. 

One definite date is furnished us by the contents of the proph 
ecy. It is quite evident that the temple was already rebuilt 

* Cf. the kindly feeling toward Edom attested by Dt. 23? f . 

t Diodorus, XIX, 94-100, where the contemporary record of Hieronymus of Kardia is cited 
as authority for this statement. 

J Ez. 25 4 - 10 may reflect the invading movements of the Nabataeans. 
V. Bikkurim, cited by Schurer, Geschichte, 4th ed., vol. II., p. 322. 


(i 10 3 1 - 10 ). Not only so, but the enthusiasm engendered by 
Haggai and Zechariah, which had carried the temple to comple 
tion, had passed away. The community had had sufficient time 
since that event to realise that the high hopes entertained by 
those prophets had not materialised. The conditions of life 
after the building of the temple were as hard and barren as they 
had been before and there was no visible sign of relief. This 
fixes the terminus a quo at about 510 B.C.. 

The terminus ad quern seems to be set by the reforms of Ne- 
hemiah, for the abuses attacked by Malachi are exactly those 
against which the reform was directed. The temple-services 
and offerings had fallen into disrepute (i 7 - 13 ). The priests them 
selves had grown careless, contemptuous and skeptical in the 
discharge of their official duties (i 6 - 8 - 12 - 13 2 1 - 8 ). Tithes and offer 
ings had been allowed to lapse, through the feeling that godli 
ness was not profitable for all things and that the service of Yah- 
weh was a one-sided contract, in accordance with which Israel 
gave everything and received nothing (2 17 y- 10 - 14 ; cf. Ne. io 32 ^ 39 
i3 10 - 13 ). In addition to these evils, the Jews had especially sig 
nalised their descent from spiritual heights by having divorced 
their Jewish wives and having entered into new marriages with 
n on- Jewish women belonging to the influential, but mongrel 
families of the vicinity (2 10 - 16 ; cf. Ezr., chs. 9-10; Ne. jo 28 30 
i3 23 - 31 ). Even the few words devoted by Malachi to the social 
wrongs of the times (3 5 ) find their justification in the conditions 
recorded in Nehemiah s memoirs (Ne. 5 1 13 ). The Book of Mal 
achi fits the situation amid which Nehemiah worked as snugly 
as a bone fits its socket. 

Yet the precise point at which the writer of Malachi appeared 
still eludes us. The conditions found by Nehemiah did not, of 
course, develop suddenly, but were the outcome of a long social 
process. There may, indeed, have been no appreciable change 
in the situation for a quarter of a century or more before the 
arrival of Nehemiah. Malachi would be intelligible as coming 
from any portion of such a period. Some would place it before 
the coming of Ezra;* others, contemporary with Ezra and Ne- 

* So e, g. We.(?), GASm.(?), Now., Cor., Bu. G " h -, Sta.eoi. ( Marti, van H., DU.P. 


hemiah;* still others, during Nehemiah s absence at the Persian 
court; f while a few would place it during or after Nehemiah s 
second visit to Jerusalem.! It is difficult to regard Malachi as 
coming from any time when Nehemiah was actually in Jerusa 
lem; because i 8 implies the presence of a governor who was ac 
customed to receive gifts from the citizens, while Nehemiah 
distinctly says that he did not avail himself of this privilege 
(Ne. 5 15 - 18 ). On the whole, it is best to interpret the author of 
Malachi as one who prepared the way for the reforms of Nehe 
miah. He betrays no knowledge of any contemporary or recent 
reform movement; whereas if he had participated in the reform, 
he would almost certainly have reinforced his words by refer 
ring to the solemn covenant to which his hearers had recently 
subscribed, while they were now violating it daily at every point. 
The choice of the period immediately preceding the reform is 
supported by the hints given in the prophecy as to the code of 
laws in force at the time it was written. No distinction is made, 
for example, between the priests and the Levites; in 2 4 8 , the 
terms "priest" and "Levi" are apparently coterminous; and 
in 3 3 , the sons of Levi" as a class are represented as qualified 
to offer sacrifice, whereas in the legislation introduced in connec 
tion with the reform the right of sacrifice was confined to the 
"sons of Aaron." The Priestly Code provides that the sacrificial 
animal may be either male or female, but Mai. i 14 mentions 
only the male. The regulations regarding the tithes (3 8 10 ) are 
nearer to the law of the Priestly Code, indeed, than to that of 
Deuteronomy, in that they contemplate the payment of all the 
tithes at Jerusalem, whereas Deuteronomy requires a triennial 
tithe to be paid over to the Levites and the poor in their city 
gates, where they are to eat it. This departure from Deuteron 
omy in Malachi is explicable on two grounds. In the first place, 
it is quite probable that in the time of Malachi all the Levites 
were living in Jerusalem itself or in its immediate vicinity; in 
the second place, the Priestly Code was not created wholly ex 
nihilo. There were preparatory stages of development; for 

* So e. g. Hd., Pres., Schegg. 

fSoe. g. Koh.; Stei.; Ko. Ei ; Or.; Volck, inPRE*; Dr.^SsS?. 

$ So e. g. Rosenm., Ew.,!.Ke., Hengstenberg, Iteinke, Kue.. 


example, the Holiness Code and Ez., chs. 40-48. Consequently, 
with customs and rites continually undergoing modification, it 
is more than probable that the Priestly Code, in the matter of 
tithes as in many other respects, did but recognise officially 
what custom had already approved. Malachi thus represents a 
stage in the history of tithing midway between that of Deuteron 
omy on the one hand and the Priestly Code on the other. The 
tithing called for by Malachi seems less elaborate and complicated 
than that arranged for in Ne. io 37 - 38 . Likewise, Malachi joins 
the heave-offering ("C^fi) with the tithe as in Deuteronomy, 
while the Priestly Code separates the two, assigning the former 
to the priests, as distinguished from the Levites in general. 
Even 4 4 , the later addition, uses Deuteronomic terminology, viz. 
in locating the law-giving at Horeb, rather than Sinai, and in 
employing the phrase "statutes and judgments." It seems safe 
and just, therefore, to give to Malachi some credit for aid in pre 
paring the way for the reform. The book voices the thought of 
one who remained true to the old ideals and customs, at a time 
when those around him were rapidly losing faith and becoming 
desperate. The attempt of Spoer to interpret the utterances of 
Malachi as a protest against the reform, at least in so far as it 
deals with priests and Levites and with divorce, can hardly be 
considered as other than fantastic. 


The Book of Malachi is an anonymous writing. The name 
" Malachi" is apparently one attached to the book by an editor. 
It owes its origin to 3 1 . As the name stands, it can only mean 
"my messenger." This is a very unlikely appellation for a 
parent to bestow upon a child. It might, however, be an abbre 
viated form of Malachiah (rfttttta; cf. ^K, of 2 K. i8 12 with 
PP2K, of 2 Ch. 2Q 1 ); in which case, the translation best sup 
ported by the analogy of similar formations would be " Yahweh 
is a messenger." This is clearly an improbable meaning. Thus 
the meaning " the messenger of Yahweh" is necessitated for the 
supposititious longer form. This, too, is hardly a probable name 


for a child, but suggests an allusion to 3 1 (cf. 2 7 ). For further 
considerations opposed to the treatment of " Malachi" as a ver 
itable name, v. pp. 18 /.. 

The book being anonymous, nothing can be known of the 
author beyond what the book itself may reveal as to his char 
acter and temperament. Jerome testifies that the Jews of his 
day identified "Malachi" with Ezra,* as does the Targum. 
The book has been assigned by tradition to various other 
authors; for example, Zerubbabel and Nehemiah. Pseudo- 
Epiphanius declares Malachi to have been a man of Sopha in 
Zebulun and to have been characterised by an angelic form and 
appearance.f Not content with this, tradition has made him 
a Levite and a member of the " Great Synagogue" and has de 
clared him to have died while still young. But these and similar 
traditions are all of late origin, fanciful and contradictory in 
character, and without any historical value as witnesses to the 
life of our prophet. 

His prophecy shows him to have been a patriotic Jew, loving 
his country and his people passionately and hating the enemies 
of Israel fervently. He can think of no more convincing proof 
gf Yahweh s love for Israel than the fact that Edom has recently 
been stricken down in accordance with Yahweh s will. Jeru 
salem is the city and Israel the people that Yahw r eh loves and 
intends to make the one envied by all the beholding nations. He 
is also evidently a man of vigorous personality and strong con 
victions. While others tremble and doubt, he stands brave and 
firm. His faith is equal to the removal of any mountain. He 
never entertains the possibility of Yahweh failing his people at 
any point; the failure is all on Israel s side. The trials and dis 
couragements that overturn the faith of others do but cause him 
to strike root deeper into the love and power of God. He re 
mains loyal to the old ways and the ancestral religion when others 
give up in despair and would exchange old faiths for new. He 
pleads earnestly for diligent and dignified observance of the outer 
forms of religion, deprecating severely the neglect and indiffer- 

* V. Praefatio in duodecim Prophetas. 

t Vitae prophetarum, cited in Nestle s Marginalien, 28/.. Cf. similar statements by Doro- 
theus, Ephraem Syrus, Hesychius, and Isidorus Hisp.. 


ence with which they are being conducted. Yet he is no mere 
formalist or ritualist, but a man ethically and spiritually minded 
in a high degree. He does not regard ritual as an end in itself 
or as an opus opera-turn, but as the outer and visible sign of an 
inward and spiritual grace, the expression of faith in and devo 
tion toward Yahweh. Its neglect indicates a lack of true re 
ligion. The very vigour of our prophet s faith shows that his 
religion does not lie upon the surface of his soul and that it can 
not be satisfied with externalities, but is of the very essence of 
his life and can be content with nothing less than the presence 
of God. In this respect he is a true successor of the great 


The task of this unknown prophet was to rekindle the fires 
of faith in the hearts of a discouraged people. Ezekiel and the 
author of Is. chs. 40-55 had kept alive the faith of the exiles by 
assurances of the speedy approach of deliverance and by promises 
of the establishment of the coming kingdom of God. Ezekiel 
had been so sure of this as to prepare a set of regulations for the 
guidance of the citizens of the coming kingdom. Deliverance 
came in some measure; but the dawn of the Messianic age was 
delayed. Fading hopes were revived by the preaching of Haggai 
and Zechariah. Under the spur of their enthusiasm, the temple 
was rebuilt and faith was quickened. AH obstacles to the coming 
of the kingdom being now removed, the prophets and the people 
looked confidently for the appearance of the longed-for Golden 
Age. They went so far, indeed, as to identify Zerubbabel with 
the expected Messiah and to crown him in recognition of his 
right (Zc. 6 9 - 15 ). But the Messianic age still delayed its coming. 
The hopes centred in Zerubbabel were dissipated and shattered. 
The glowing pictures of Haggai and Zechariah were not realised. 
The first zeal for the new temple rapidly cooled. Israel was ap 
parently as far from exaltation to influence and power now as she 
had ever been. What ground was there for encouragement or 
hope? Why continue denying oneself in order that the temple- 


services might be properly maintained? Yahweh apparently 
had no interest in his people or in the vindication of justice and 
righteousness. Was the service of Yahweh worth while? Did 
it yield tangible and satisfactory returns to its adherents? 

In the midst of such conditions and amid such sentiments, 
the writer of Malachi prepared his apologia in behalf of Yahweh. 
He must accomplish two things at least, viz. furnish a satisfac 
tory explanation of the delay in the fulfilment of Israel s expec 
tations and re-establish confidence in Yahweh and in the speedy 
coming of his Messiah. The first of these he seeks to achieve 
by the genuinely prophetic method of transferring the responsi 
bility for the delay from the shoulders of Yahweh to those of 
Israel herself. The sins of Israel render it inconceivable that the 
blessing of Yahweh should rest upon her as she now is. Just as 
Haggai and Zechariah had insisted upon the rebuilding of the 
temple as the only way to the favour of Yahweh, so our prophet 
demands certain definite and tangible action as a prerequisite 
to the coming of the desired good. The corrupt and careless 
priesthood must mend its ways and return to the ideal condition 
that prevailed in ancient times when true teaching was in the 
priest s mouth, unrighteousness was not found upon his lips, 
and by his blameless life he turned many away from iniquity. 
His conduct now is an insult to his God. The sacrifices and offer 
ings must be kept up to proper form and quality. The neglect 
of these is an unpardonable offence. No gifts will be forthcom 
ing from Yahweh so long as the tithes and offerings due him are 
withheld. If Israel will but discharge its obligations to the full, 
Yahweh may be counted upon to fulfil all his promises made 
through the prophets. 

Notwithstanding the emphasis and insistence of the prophet 
upon these external phases of the religious life, he is not on that 
account to be accused of a shallow conception of religion. He 
deplores the neglect and contempt of these things, not on the 
score that they themselves are essential to the well-being of God, 
or of themselves have any value whatever in his eyes; but on 
the ground that the neglect is a symptom of a state of mind and 
heart that is anything but pleasing to God. It reveals a lack 


of reverence, faith and love that is a prime defect in Israel s 
religious life. The people and the priests care so little for 
Yahweh that they do not observe his requirements regarding 
ritual. The truly pious must do the whole will of God with 
his whole heart. 

The genuinely inward element in the religion of Malachi is 
also shown in the further demands for reform which it urges. 
The old prophetic protest against social injustice sounds forth 
again in 3 5 , showing that the ethical interests so characteristic 
of earlier prophecy lay near to the heart of this prophet also. A 
special phase of this protest is the denunciation of the common 
practice in accordance with which Jewish husbands divorce their 
Jewish wives and take wives from the surrounding non- Jewish 
families in their place. The cruelty toward the divorced wife 
that is involved is clearly realised and keenly resented by the 
prophet. He does not hesitate to characterise the procedure as 
treachery on the part of the offender toward his own people. 
But, more than this, it is treachery to Yahweh. It brings into 
the heart of the Jewish family those who have no interest in or 
care for the things of Yahweh. It involves the birth of half- 
breed children, who will be under the dominating influence of 
mothers who serve not Yahweh. It means the contamination 
of Jewish religious life at its source, by the introduction of 
heathen rites and beliefs. If the worship of Yahweh is to con 
tinue in Israel, or the favour of Yahweh to be poured out upon 
Israel, the intermarriage of Jews and non- Jews must cease. Is 
rael, as the people of the holy God, must keep herself holy. No 
contact with unholy people or things can be endured. But the 
adherents of other gods are at the farthest possible remove from 
being holy to Yahweh. Hence, Israel must break off completely 
all such idolatrous connections. 

The prophet s demands involve a complete change of heart 
and attitude on Israel s part. This is the indispensable condition 
for the coming of the Messianic age. The lack of this requisite 
attitude of obedience and trust is the all-sufficient explanation for 
the withholding of Yahweh s favour and for the delay in the com 
ing of the Messianic kingdom. But the further task remained 


for the prophet, viz. that of rekindling such faith and hope as 
would furnish the motive-power for the institution and execu 
tion of the desired reforms and so render possible the granting 
by Yahweh of the longings of the pious. Our prophet makes 
no effort to demonstrate the validity of his hope for the future 
or to point out signs of the coming of the kingdom. Faith 
comes not by reason. He contents himself with the ardent affir 
mation and reiteration of his own firm conviction. He would 
warm their hearts by the contagious enthusiasm of his own spirit. 
Whether or not his hopes were kindled by the course of contem 
porary history, we do not know. The author of Is., chs. 40-55, 
was aroused by the tidings of the triumphant career of Cyrus. 
The appearance of Haggai and Zechariah was coincident with 
the revolts throughout the Persian Empire upon the death of 
Cambyses and the accession of Darius. The defeat of Persia 
by Greece at Marathon (490 B.C.), Thermopylae and Salamis 
(480 B.C.), and Plataea (479 B.C.), with the revolt of Egypt aided 
by the Greeks (460 B.C.), may have awakened expectations in 
the soul of our prophet. But such external stimuli and supports 
were not indispensable to the prophets. They continually made 
the sheer venture of faith. Our author shows himself capable 
of such venture in his prediction of the forerunner who is to pre 
pare the way for the coming of Yahweh. That his thought moves 
in the realm of spiritual agencies rather than in that of political 
forces is also seen in his conception of the coming of Yahweh 
as sudden and as overwhelming in its destructive and purificatory 
effect. In keeping with the trend of post-exilic thought, he sets 
his whole mind upon the coming of the Messiah and his king 
dom. This kingdom, which is to be above all the kingdoms of 
the world, needs not the assistance of any earthly power to es 
tablish itself in its rightful place. Yahweh himself will bring it 
into its own. 

The problem that confronted the author of Malachi and his 
contemporaries was not new in Israel. It was the ever-recurring 
question as to why the fortunes of Israel were not commensurate 
with her position as the people of God. How could the justice 
of God be demonstrated and vindicated in view of the disasters 


that continually befell his people? Why should other nations 
constantly triumph at the expense of the people of God? The 
prophets all agree with the people that Yahweh s nation ought 
to prosper to an extent far surpassing all other nations. The 
prophets part company with the people in accounting for the 
discrepancy between Israel s lot and Israel s due as caused by 
the enormity of Israel s sins. Let these be removed and the 
desired harmony between external fortune and spiritual birth 
right will be at once established. The author of Malachi agrees 
in this with all his predecessors. Like them, he conceives of 
piety as entitled to its material rewards. He is sure that, if 
those rewards are not bestowed in the existing dispensation, they 
will be forthcoming in full measure in the Messianic age. The 
thought that piety is its own reward, that God is his own best 
gift, finds no expression from him. But, at a time when faith 
was wavering, he met his contemporaries on their own ground, 
and thrilled their hearts with the assurance that the dawn of 
the Golden Age was at hand. Not only so, but he also made 
this mighty eschatological hope operative in the betterment of 
the moral and religious conditions of his own day. 

i. Commentaries. 

The more important modern commentaries are those of 
Reinke (1856), Kohler (1865), Ewald (1868), Hitzig-Steiner 
(1881), Orelli (1888; $d ed. 1908), Wellhausen (1892; 3d ed. 
1898), Nowack (1897; 2d ed. 1903), G. A. Smith (1898), Marti 
(1903), Driver (1906), van Hoonacker (1908), and Isopescul 

To be classified with these are: Halevy s translation and notes 
in Revue semitique for 1909; Marti s translation and notes in 
Kautzsch s Heilige Schrift, ed. 3 (1910); Duhm s translation 
in Die Zwolf Propheten in den Versmassen der Urschrift uber- 
setzt (1910), with the accompanying notes in Zeitschrift fiir die 
alttestamentliche Wissenschaft, vol. XXXI (1911); Kent s trans- 


lation, with notes, in Sermons, Epistles and Apocalypses of Israel s 
Prophets (1910); and P. Riessler, Die Kleinen Propheten oder 
das Zwolfprophetenbuch nach dem Urtext iibersetzt und erklart 

2. Introductions. 

The general "introductions" to the Old Testament all treat 
the Book of Malachi. The more important are those of Driver 
(new ed. 1910), Cornill (6th ed. 1908; English ed. 1907), Konig 
(1893), Strack (6th ed. 1906), Kuenen (1889), Wildeboer (3d 
ed. 1903), Gautier (1906), R. Comely (Historicae et criticae in- 
troductionis in libros sacros compendium [1909]), and K. Budde 
(Geschichte der alt-hebrdischen Litter atur [1906]). 

Special introductions and treatments of special topics are: W. 
R. Smith and C. C. Torrey, art. "Malachi," Encyclopedia Bib- 
lica (1902); A. C. Welch, art. "Malachi," Hastings s Diction 
ary of the Bible (1901); Volck, art. "Maleachi," Protestantische 
Real-encyklopddie, 3d ed. (1905); W. H. Bennett, The Religion 
of the Post-exilic Prophets (1907), pp. 88-102; Bohme, "Zu 
Maleachi und Haggai," Zeitschrifl fitr die alttestamentliche Wis- 
senschaft, vol. VII (1887), pp. 210-217; H. Spoer, "Some New 
Considerations towards the Dating of the Book of Malachi," 
Jewish Quarterly Review, vol. XX (1908), pp. 167-186; von 
Bulmerincq, Der Auspruch uber Edom im Buche Maleachi (1906) ; 
P. Kleinert, Die Profeten Israels in sozialer Beziehung (1905), 
pp. i29/.; C. C. Torrey, "The Prophecy of Malachi," Journal 
of Biblical Literature, vol. XVII (1898), pp. 1-15; H. Winckler, 
Altorientalische Forschungen, vol. II (1899), pp. 531-539; B. 
Stade, Geschichte des Volkes Israel, vol. II (1888), pp. 128-138; 
Idem, Biblische Theologie des Alien Testaments, vol. I (1905), pp. 

3. Miscellaneous. 

Ed. Sievers, "Alttestamentliche Miscellen, No. 4," in Berichte 
uber die V erhandlungen der Kb niglich Sdchsischen Gesellschaft 
der Wissenschaften [Philologisch-historische Klasse], vol. LVII 
(1905). D. H. Mliller, "Discours de Malachie," Revue biblique 


for 1896, pp. 535-539 ( = Strophenbau und Res pension [1898], pp. 
40-45). Job. Bachmann, Dodekapropheton aethiopium; Heft 2 
Der Prophet Maleachi (1892). A. Schulte, "Die Koptische 
Uebersetzung der Kleinen Propheten untersucht," Theologische 
Quartalschrift, vol. LXXVII (1895), pp. 219-229. K. Budde, 
"Zum Texte der drei letzten Propheten," Zeitschrift fur die alt- 
testameniliche Wissenschaft, vol. XXVI (1906). F. Buhl, Ge- 
schichte der Edomiter (1893). T. Noldeke, art. "Edom," Ency 
clopedia Biblica (1901). W. von Baudissin, art. "Edom," Prot- 
estantische Real-encyklopadie, 3d ed. (1898). Ed. Meyer, Die 
Entstehung des Judenthums (1896), pp. 105-119. C. C. Torrey, 
"The Edomites in Southern Judah," Journal of Biblical Liter 
ature, vol. XVII (1898), pp. 16-20. Graetz, "Die Anfange der 
Nabataerherrschaft," Monatsschrift fur Wissenschaft und Ge- 
schichte des Judenthums, for 1875, PP- 60-66. 



The superscription states the ultimate source of the prophecy, 
the people to whom it is addressed, and the agent of its trans 
mission. The superscription of no prophetic book offers less 
of genuine information; those of Obadiah and Habakkuk are 
its only rivals in this respect. 

The editorial origin of this superscription is now quite generally con 
ceded. This opinion is supported by the close resemblance in form 
between this superscription and those in Zc. g l i2 l , which are likewise 
of editorial origin. It is probable that all three were written by the 
same hand; or, at least, that two of them were modelled after the third 
one. The structure is too unusual to make it likely that they were of 
independent origin (v. i.}. 

1. Oracle of the word of Yahweh to Israel] For the use of the 
word "oracle," v. note on Na. i 1 in ICC.. This and Zc. 9 1 I2 1 
are the only passages in which "oracle" is followed by "word," 
though "oracle of Yahweh" and "word of Yahweh" are com 
mon phrases. "Israel" here represents the Jewish community 
as the people of God for whom all the ancient promises and 
expectations are to be realised. Through Malachi] The source 
of this statement is evidently 3 1 , where "Malachi" is not a 
proper name, but the equivalent of "my messenger" or "my 
angel." (& renders here "through his messenger." 01 likewise 
treats it as a common noun, rather than as a proper name. 
For the personality and character of the prophet, v. Introduc 
tion, 3; and for the time of his activity, v. Introduction, 2. 

1. SN] <g tiri = <?;?, as in Zc. I2 1 ; so & 2L ^Sc] <& ayyt\ov avrov = 
"ON^D; so Bu.. 21 renders my angel whose name is called Ezra, the scribe. 
Against the treatment of a as a bona-fide name may be urged (i) the 
fact that the name is not found elsewhere, though isSc is a common 


I 1 19 

word; (2) the lack of any definite information concerning such a man; 
(3) the improbability that any parent would bestow such a name upon 
an infant; (4) the absence of any early tradition treating it as a proper 
name (cf. <S8 ). If it were a proper name, the affix " might be either 
an abbreviation of ?v, or an adjectival ending. Cf. m and nnix; -ON 
and na_N; ^aSs and SN^C, etc.; v. No., art. "Names," 52, EB.. The 
anonymous author has been variously identified; e. g. as Ezra (Q, Jer., 
Calvin); as Mordecai (Rabbi Nachman); as Haggai (various rabbis; 
perhaps also the view of the editor who added a citation from Hg. in 
<8) ; as Joshua, son of Jozedek (Clement of Alexandria) ; and as an angel 
(Origen, Tertullian, Chrysostom). The earliest witnesses to the inter 
pretation of o as a proper name are 9, 0, S, H and the title of the book 

<S adds here: OfoQe dij f-rrl rcis KapStas v/j.wv. & H has it under obelus. 
Jer. says, " Hoc in Hebraico non habetur, sed puto de Aggaeo additum 
in quo legimus: et nunc ponite super corda vestra, etc.". This sup 
position is probably correct, for <8> N c - b - A0 - r have the same rendering in 
Hg. a 15 as <g here. 05 B substitutes els for tvl in Hg.; cf. <& on Mai. 2 2 . 
HI of Hg. 2 15 = oaaaS xj )D*; hence Gr. would restore oaaaS Sy NJ urtp 
here. Bach, finds in this gloss from < the otherwise unknown name of 
the prophet, by supposing <& to represent aSa wfen, the original of 
which was aSa lotf-i. But ^Sa ID^ is not good Hebrew, which would 
require either aS hy v, or Vj? aS m^ as in Hg. 2 15 . C/. Matthes, Z^IPF. 
XXIII (1903), 126 /.. For a similar marginal citation from another 
book, v. the quotation from Mi. i" in i K. 22 28 . 

2. A PROOF OF YAHWEH S LOVE (i 2 5 ). 

In this opening section the prophet meets the lament of his 
people that Yahweh has ceased to love Judah, by reminding 
them of the recent overthrow of Edom, their hated foe, as an 
evidence of the love that they are calling in question. This ref 
erence to the fate of Edom would seem to fix the date of this 
prophecy; but unfortunately the information here is too vague 
and our knowledge of the later history of Edom too incomplete 
to render any degree of certainty as to this question possible; 
v. Introduction, 2. These verses really state the theme of the 
whole book; for the writer s task is that of showing Israel, on 
the one hand, that Yahweh loves her and, on the other, that her 
own sinful conduct prevents her from enjoying the full fruitage 
of that love. 


2. / have loved you, says Yakweh] The tense of the verb in 
dicates a love that has not only operated in the past, but is also 
in effect at the present. This is the proposition that the prophet 
seeks to establish. It was not a new idea in any sense, but had 
been the accepted teaching regarding Yahweh s attitude to 
ward his own people for centuries; cf. Ho. n 1 Dt. f io 18 Ez. 16. 
The trouble was that at this time the people had lost faith in 
Yahweh s love. They had become skeptical. But you say, 
Wherein hast thou loved us?} Under the form of question and 
answer, a characteristic feature of the style of this prophecy, 
the prophet carries on an argument with his readers. Cf. i 6 - 7 
2 n y. s. is. t ne same usage appears in germ in Je. i3 12ff I5 1 f -, 
while Zc., chs. 1-8, makes much use of the question and answer 
as a means to secure vividness. The question here on Israel s 
part calls for a bill of particulars from the prophet. What evi 
dence has he that Yahweh still loves his people? Do not the 
facts indicate that he has ceased to care for their interests? 
This state of mind in Judah was due largely to their long- 
continued sufferings and to their repeated disappointments. The 
people had returned from exile with the full expectation of the 
immediate coming of the Messianic kingdom. They had been 
spurred on to the rebuilding of the temple by similar promises 
from Haggai and Zechariah. But the kingdom had not come; 
the power of Persia was still unbroken. The lot of Judah was 
one of hardship and oppression. Since the responsibility for 
this condition must be borne by Yahweh, the only conclusion 
to which the discouraged people could come was that Yahweh 
no longer loved them. The prophet s reply to their demand for 
evidence to the contrary was immediate and direct. Is not 
Esau a brother of Jacob ? It is the oracle of Yahweh] Esau here 
represents Edom, as is shown clearly by v. 4 . For other cases of 
the same usage, cf. Gn. 36 l - 8 - 19 Je. 4Q 8 - 10 Ob. 6 . Similarly Jacob 
represents the people of Judah, as also in 2 12 Is. 4i 8 42 24 Je. 3O 10 - 18 
Ps. 20 1 , and often elsewhere. Of the various members of the 
Hebraic family, Edom is the only one that is ever recognised 
in the Old Testament as sustaining the close relationship of 
brother to Israel; cf. Am. i 11 Dt. 23 8 . The very closeness of 



the tie seems to have made the hostility that developed all the 
more bitter; cf. Ob. 10 - 12 . As brothers, Edom and Judah were 
on the same footing before Yahweh. Yet he had chosen Judah 
rather than Edom as the object of his love. Earlier commen 
tators saw here evidence of the doctrine of predestination.* But 
it is clear that the writer had no such thought in mind. He was 
merely concerned to indicate clearly that the choice of Judah 
was an act of free grace on the part of Yahweh; he had been 
under no constraint to choose as he had done. On the conclud 
ing phrase, with which the divine authority of the statement is 
asserted, v. H. AH , p. 59. But I have loved Jacob (3) and hated 
Esau] The love for Jacob is demonstrated by the hatred to 
ward Esau, convincing evidence of which is forthcoming. This 
reflection of the feelings of Judah toward Edom is a clear indi 
cation of the post-exilic origin of the prophecy. The bitterness 
of Judah toward Edom grew increasingly intense in the post- 
exilic period. The insults and injuries inflicted by Edom at 
the time of the Babylonian captivity rankled in the memory of 
Judah and constituted a source whence increased significance 
was drawn and attached to every fresh injury, fancied or real. 
The constant encroachment of Edom upon Jewish territory, 
made necessary by the unceasing advance of the Nabataeans, 
kept the hostility continually alive. A love for Judah that did 
not involve corresponding hatred for Edom was unthinkable. 
The humiliation and downfall of Edom was an indispensable 
accompaniment of the coming of the Messianic age; cf. Ob. 18 ~ 21 
Is. 34 5< 6 63 1 " 6 Je. 4Q 13 - 17 - 18 . The older interpreters,! hesitating 
to make the prophet ascribe such feelings to Yahweh, sought to 
make "hate" mean "love less." But it is a question, not of 
degrees of love, but of love or no love. Hebrew prophets had 
no scruples about ascribing their own deepest convictions and 
feelings to Yahweh. And, I have made his mountains a desolation 
and his inheritance pastures in the wilderness] The last phrase 
occurs also in Je. g 10 23* Jo. i 19 - 20 2 22 Ps. 6s 12 . il has here in its 
place "to jackals of the wilderness"; but this does not form a 
satisfactory completion of "I have made his inheritance." IE 
requires either the insertion of a second verb, e. g. "and I have 

* E. g. Calvin. t E. S- J- H. Michaelis, Dathe, Rosenm.. 


given his inheritance to," etc.; or the use of the verb "made" 
in two different senses, viz. "I have made his mountains a deso 
lation and I have put (or placed) his inheritance for the jackals," 
etc.. But the oldest witnesses to the original rendering of (36, 
including &, support the reading here adopted. The prophet 
here in all probability refers to some calamity that has recently 
befallen Edom and cites it as indisputable evidence of Yahweh s 
love for Judah. As to the historical event he may have had in 
mind, -o. Introduction, 2. 4. If Edom says, We are beaten down, 
but we will rebuild the ruins] The prophet now meets the objec 
tion that the overthrow of Edom is not final, but only for the 
moment. "She has fallen before," says Judah, "but only to 
rise again." Thus says Yahweh of hosts] The word of Yahweh 
is set over against the word of Edom, in paralysing contrast. 
This title is the most frequent designation of Yahweh in this 
prophecy, occurring no less than twenty-one times. On its usage 
and significance, cf. H. AH , pp. 83/.. They may build, but I shall 
tear down] The futility of their efforts as opposed to Yahweh s 
will is thus clearly brought into view. The destruction already 
accomplished is fatal. There can be no permanent recovery from 
it. And men will call them, "wicked country"} The smitten 
state of Edom will be convincing proof to all that she was pre 
eminently wicked. This is the view of the old theology, shared 
by all the prophets, viz. that disaster and suffering are always 
caused by sin and that the greater the affliction, the greater 
must have been the sin that caused it. The term "wicked" 
here probably includes much of the bitterness and contempt 
associated with its use in the mind of the members of the later 
Jewish community. Among these, it came to be a technical 
epithet opposed to the term "pious" (TDPI) which was applied 
to those loyal to Yahweh and faithful in their adherence to all 
the tenets of the law. The "wicked," however, were those who 
apostatised from Yahwism or persecuted the followers of Yah 
weh. Such were the Edomites in very fact. And "the people 
against whom Yahweh is angry perpetually"} This is another epi 
thet which men will apply to Edom. Its ruins will be a standing 
witness to the abiding wrath of God. Some scholars, striving 
to make this material conform to metrical standards, would omit 

I 4-5 23 

the last phrase "for ever" or "perpetually." But this is the 
essential element in the sentence. The prophet s purpose is to 
convince Judah that Edom s overthrow is final, not a mere tem 
porary disaster due to a passing fit of anger on the part of Yah- 
weh. 5. And your eyes will see and you yourselves will say] The 
proof of Yahweh s love and power is not to be indefinitely post 
poned, but will come with crushing force within the lifetime of 
the prophet s contemporaries. As each successive attempt of 
the Edomites to re-establish themselves is thwarted by Yahweh, 
they will come to realise the range and scope of Yahweh s pur 
pose and the effectual working of his love. What they them 
selves shall see will lead them to say "Yahweh is great above 
the territory of Israel "] Judah will be at length convinced that 
Yahweh has not forsaken his people. The rendering of this sen 
tence which is now generally adopted is " Yahweh is great be 
yond the border of Israel";* that is, Yahweh s power is recog 
nised as extending to nations other than Israel. But at the time 
when this prophecy was written, there was little question in 
Judah as to the extent of Yahweh s power. The question rather 
was as to his love for and interest in Israel. Hence, what is 
needed here is a statement expressing the thought that Yahweh 
has convincingly demonstrated his love for Israel. Further, the 
prepositional phrase rendered "beyond" nowhere else has that 
sense. It occurs in Gn. i 7 i S. i; 39 Ez. i 25 Jon. 4 6 Ne. i2 31 - 37 - 39 
2 Ch. i3 4 24 20 26 19 , and it always means "over," "above," or 
"upon." The prophet pictures Yahweh as enthroned over Is 
rael in majesty and power and attracting the wonder and rever 
ence of the world at large. The Messianic age for which Israel 
has so long looked in vain is thus to come within the lifetime of 
the prophet s audience. 

2. >ronx] Present pf.; Ges. N. on-cxi] Pf. with waw conjunc 
tive, co-ordinate with the preceding present pf.. * ONJ] The only oc 
currence of this phrase in Mai.. Marti adds nwa* mtr. cs. , so Now. K , 
Kent. But > ^ON in 2a lacks x, and metrical considerations have no 
force in prose. Boh. drops ^ : as a gloss; so Siev., Bu.. But in a 
writing which cites divine authority as frequently as Mai. does, the 

* So e. g. Rosenm., Mau., Hi., Ew., Umbreit, Reink, Schegg, We., Now., GASm., Marti, 
Dr., Or., van H., Hal., Du. Fr " . C/. Hd., "Let Y. be magnified from the border of Israel." 
" Above" is preferred by Ke., Kob., Pu., Bulmexincq. 


closeness of * j to the foregoing * IDN is no reason for suspecting the 
text; cf. i 8 - 9 - 10 - ". apr nx an so] <gN adds X^7 wJptos. In <S and in 
the quotation of this and the following phrase in Rom. g 13 , the vbs. are 
rendered by the aorist. 3. nun 1 ?] Rd. nu (= rnxj; cf. Zp. 2 6 Je. g 9 
Ez. 25 5 Ps. 6s 13 ), dropping nS as dittog. from the preceding word; so 
Torrey, SS., Now.(?), van H., Kent. The reading nu 1 ? (= nw 1 ?) was 
proposed by Capellus (Com. et not. crit. [1698], p. 183); so also Boh., 
Sta. GVI - m , Gr., Du. pro -. nu is supported by the reading els 56/j.aTa in 
the oldest witnesses to the text of <&; viz. & H C B -, and also by & 
which renders it by "dwellings." The Comp. and Sixtine edd. also 
have 56fj,a.Ta. <g ABX , HP. 95, 185, 310, A, Arm. have els 56yuara, cer 
tainly an error for Sc^iara. Aq. ds <reip?jvas. U dracones. S, 9, els 
aveTripara. <F unto desolation. Oort del. nun as dittog., reading ">2"|oS. 
Che. nnvflS. Marti treats nunS as a corruption of "? ^ro; so Siev., 
Bu.; so apparently Eth., which certainly does not recognise the pres 
ence of nun. Bulmerincq, f^O D? 1 ? 1 ?) with naiD as an explanatory gloss. 
For nu, v. note on Zp. 2 6 in ICC.. Scholars who retain nun, which 
is &TT., treat it either as a fern. pi. corresponding to a^n (so AE., Koh., 
Ke.) or as connected with Ar. iana a and so contracted from ms:n = 
"dwellings" (so Ges. in Thesaurus); but neither the noun nor the 
root appears elsewhere in OT.. 4. :>] With conditional force, as in 
Dt. i4 24 i S. 2o 12 - 13 Pr. 30 4 ; so & B. insn] PI. in 21. Bu. "ins" (?). 
The form is better taken as a 3d fern. sg. than as 2d masc. sg., 
though ons is usually treated as a masc.. But names of countries 
regularly take the fern, and it is the country personified that is spoken 
of here; cf. also Je. 35 15 36 s Ez. 32 29 . Utrsn] <& KO.T for pa-Krai; cf. Ka- 
rao-Tptyb} for onnx. 3 W = we are made poor, as a Polal from t?n = 
"be needy." Its only other occurrence is as Poel in Je. 5" (where 
text is doubtful); hence Now. would point as Poal here. Syr. ras = 
"strike with the hammer" and Ar. ratio, "be beaten" are related 
roots, as likewise Heb. V*" 1 and DDI. The fact that it is used of build 
ings in Je. 5 17 does not prevent its use here, in a figurative sense, of a 
country or people; contra We.. aitpj] IP is often used to express the 
idea of re-doing a thing as here. impi] The 3d p. pi. act. used in 
definitely, as the equivalent of a pass.; cf. (& eTrt/cX^^Tjo-erat. It is un 
necessary to change to N"3P}, with Marti. nyan] A noun in gen. with 
a cstr. to express an adjectival idea; Ges. ^ 128 P. oSiy-np] Omitted mtr. 
cs. by Siev., Marti., Now. K , Kent; but v. s..5. SIP] <g cfueyaMve-ti. U 
magnificetur ; so &. Hal. S^jn = "has done great things." J here is = 
"is glorified" or "has shown his greatness"; cf. Ps. 35" 40" yo 5 . 
Syn] The rendering of <& virepavw and B super is better than that of & 
21 = beyond; v. s.. The regular idioms for " beyond " are nSym . . . f to (Ju. 
i 36 i S. 9 2 i6 ls Ex. 30"), nSpcS (Ezr. 9 6 ), and -iaj?a (Dt. passim). 
f?j] & pi.. 

j6_ 2 9 


HIM (i 6 -2 9 ). 

Having shown in 2 that there was no warrant for continuing 
to doubt the love of Yahweh toward his people, the prophet now 
proceeds to indicate the causes that make it impossible for Yah 
weh to let this love have full sway. Starting with the general 
principle that a people must show honour toward its God, he 
charges Israel with heaping dishonour upon Yahweh by indiffer 
ence, carelessness, and deception in the bringing of its sacrificial 
gifts (i 6 - 9 ). No sacrifice at all were better than this (i 10 ). In 
the heathen world, due reverence is shown to Yahweh; but in 
his own city and temple he is treated with contempt. For blem 
ished animals are substituted for sound and healthy ones which 
alone are suitable for sacrifice. Hence curses rather than bless 
ings must be the lot of such worshippers (i u ~ 14 ). It is especially 
incumbent upon the priests, the ministers of Yahweh, to see to 
it that he is fitly honoured in the proper conduct of the ritual. 
Failure to secure this will bring upon them a terrible curse for 
their unfaithfulness to the covenant between them and Yahweh. 
In days gone by, the priesthood lived up to the full measure of its 
responsibility; but now, they are leaders in wickedness rather 
than in righteousness. Consequently, the low esteem in which 
they are now generally held is the due reward of their conduct 
as perverters of the law (2 1 - 9 ). 

6. A son honours his father] Reverence for parents was an 
outstanding Semitic virtue; cf. Dt. 5 16 2i 18 - 21 and the Code of 
Hammurabi, 186, 192, 193, 195. The term "fatherhood," 
according to Semitic usage, connotes authority rather than love, 
though the latter is by no means excluded.* And a servant fears 
his master] The word "fears" is supplied upon the basis of (. 
The verbs "honour" and "fear" express their customary mean 
ings. These are the relations that usually obtain and should 
obtain between fathers and sons, masters and servants. The 
word " servant " may denote either a free servant or a slave. The 

* Cf. GASm.. 


latter certainly had good reason to fear his master; cf. Ex. 2I 20 f - 
26 f - and the Code of Hammurabi, 197-199, 205, 210, 214, 217, 
etc. . But if I be a father, where is my honour ? A nd if I be a master, 
where is my reverence?] The honour and reverence due to Yahweh 
from his people have not been rendered to him. The idea of the 
worshipper as the "slave" or "servant" of Yahweh was one of 
long standing in Israel; cf. 3 14 Zp. 3 9 i S. 3 9 i K. 8 66 Ex. 3 12 9 L 
Ezr. 5". The conception of Yahweh as the " father" of his peo 
ple was also not new with this prophet; v. Ho. n 1 Ex. 4 22 f - Je. 3 4 
Is. 43. Cf. Is. 9 6 63 1G 64 8 Ps. 68 5 89 26 i03 13 . On the deity as 
an object of fear, cf. Gn. 3i 53 . Says Yahweh of hosts to you, O 
priests, who despise my name] This is the favourite title of God 
in this prophecy; v. on v. 4 ; hence there is no sufficient reason for. 
dropping "of hosts" here as some do for the sake of a suppositi 
tious metre. The priests, who of all men should have held Yah 
weh in honour, are charged with holding his name in contempt. 
The "name" and the personality were so closely associated in 
Hebrew thought as to be almost identical.* To despise the 
"name," therefore, was to despise Yahweh himself. But you 
say, How have we despised thy name ?] This question opens the 
way for a bill of particulars; cf. v. 2 . Concrete facts are now called 
for. 7. In bringing upon my altar polluted food] In Ez. 44% 
the fat and the blood are called the food of Yahweh; cf. Lv. 

3 11. 16 2I 6-8. 17. 21. 22 22 25 Nu> 2g2> The game idea ^^ hfire as 

is clear from v. 8 . That the show-bread is not meant is clear 
from the fact that the "food" is presented upon the "altar," 
whereas the show-bread was laid upon a special table. The na 
ture of the pollution or defilement also is indicated in v. 8 . The 
solicitude of this writer in behalf of the proper observance of the 
sacrificial ritual is in striking contrast with the attitude of the 
prophets of the eighth century B.C. ; e. g. Am. 4 5 5 21 - 25 Ho. 6 6 Is. 
i 11 - 16 . Yet, it must be borne in mind that this prophet s indigna 
tion was aroused, not because of the neglect of sacrifice per se, 
but because of the indifference toward Yahweh that it reflected. 
The religion of the day was a hollow form; there was no deep 
conviction or uplifting devotion in it. But you say, How have 

* Cf. F. Giesebrecht, Die altlestamentliche Schalzung dcs Gottesnamens (1901), 17 /., 6jf., 88/.. 


2 7 

we polluted it?} M reads "thee" for "it"; but this is virtually 
to repeat the question of v. 6 and it presupposes the charge of 
having polluted Yahweh himself, which is hardly thinkable. 
Hence, it is better to read " it " with <g OF. This is better than to 
omit the phrase,* or to drop merely "and you say" and trans 
pose the question to the end of v. 6 .f In that you say, The table 
of Yahweh is contemptible] This is rather a sentiment which the 
prophet ascribes to them than a statement which they have ac 
tually made. Interpreting their attitude by their actions, this 
is the state of mind in which he finds them. For other instances 
of "say" in the sense "say to oneself" i. e. "think," v. Ex. 2 14 
2 S. 2 1 16 2 K. 5 11 . The priests had evidently come to regard it 
as of little consequence whether the sacrifices were properly 
conducted or not. The term " table of Yahweh " occurs only here 
and in v. 12 . It may apply to the table of show-bread (Ex. 25 30 
i K. 7 48 Nu. 4 7 ), but it is more probably a general term here, in 
cluding that table and the altar (Ez. 4i 22 44 16 ). The use of such 
a term is a survival from the time when the sacrifice was thought 
of as a meal of which the Deity partook along with his wor 
shippers. 8. And when you bring the blind to sacrifice, is there 
no harm? And when you bring the lame and the sick, is there no 
harm?} Law and custom required that every sacrificial victim 
should be free from spot or blemish, sound in every particular; 
v. Dt. is 21 ly 1 Lv. 22 18ff - 22ff - Ex. i2 5 29 1 Nu. 6 14 19* Ez. 45 23 . 
Even the ministering official himself must possess the same per 
fection; v. Lv. 2 1 17 f -. Requirements of this kind, it is probable, 
originated in the earlier days when disease and deformity were 
looked upon as due to the malevolent activity of demons, and 
persons and animals so afflicted were naturally regarded as tabu 
or unclean in the sight of Yahweh. But here, as the following 
questions show, the sacrifice is thought of as a gift to Yahweh, 
and the blemishes as imperfections in the gift which reflect slight 
regard on the part of the donor for the one to whom the gift is 
offered. The exact force of the last phrase is uncertain. It is 
most easily understood as a rhetorical question,! the answer to 
which is patent to all. But it may also be regarded as the state- 

* Contra We., Now.. i Contra Bu.. J So ffi H; (g is as ambiguous as 4H. 


ment of a sentiment attributed to the accused priests,* the words 
"you say" or "you think" being understood. Offer it now to thy 
governor, will he accept it?] How much less can Yahweh be ex 
pected to be pleased with it! HI reads "accept thee"; but the 
text of <H seems preferable and is supported by i 10 - 13 . The 
same confusion of suffixes has occurred in i 7 . The word rendered 
"governor" furnishes a slight indication as to the date of the 
prophecy. It occurs only in exilic and post-exilic writings (viz. 
Je., Ez., K., Hg., Ezr., Ne., Est., and the Elephantine papyri), 
is probably borrowed from Assyrian, and is used only of governors 
appointed by foreign rulers, except in i K. io 15 , a very late addi- 
tion,t where it is applied to the subordinates of Solomon. Cf. 
Introduction, 2. Or will he receive you graciously?} Lit. "lift 
up your face " i. e. make you to look up in gladness and confi 
dence because of his kindness. The same idiom is used in 2 9 , 
and often elsewhere, to express the idea of showing partiality. 
Here, however, the meaning "show favour" contains no implica 
tion of injustice. Says Yahweh of hosts} There is no sufficient 
reason for the omission of this phrase as a gloss; t cf. vv. 6 - 9 - 10 - 
11. is t 9. And now, seek the favour of God that he may be gracious 
to us] Cf. Zc. y 2 Dn. g 13 . This is an ironical suggestion,! as the 
sequel shows. The prophet includes himself as one in need of the 
divine favour even as those whom he addresses. The innocent 
are involved with the guilty in the sufferings occasioned by the 
sins of the latter and are consequently in equal need of the mercy 
of God. From your hand has this been] This is a gloss,** occa 
sioned by the pronoun at the close of the preceding sentence. 
Some reader, fearful lest the prophet by including himself among 
those in need of mercy might seem to be acknowledging that he 
himself was one of those responsible for the miseries of Judah, 
inserted this disclaimer in order that the responsibility might 
be placed squarely upon the shoulders of those to whom it be 
longed. The interruption between the implied protasis in the 

* So e. g. Rosenm.. 

t So Gie. (ZAW. I, 233), Benzinger, Kittel, Sta. and Schwally, Kamphausen, et al., ad loc.. 

\ Contra Marti, Now. K , Siev., et al. 

It is taken as a genuine call to repentance by Hi., We., Now., et al.. 

** So Marti, Now. K , Siev.. 

I 9 - 10 29 

previous sentence and the apodosis in the succeeding question 
makes its glossarial origin clear. Will he be gracious toward you?] 
Lit. "will he lift up faces from you?", a form of the phrase no 
where else found. This rhetorical question calls for a negative 
answer. The conduct of the priests effectually hinders Yahweh 
from showing them any favour. Says Yahweh of hosts] This is 
omitted by some as a gloss,* but without due cause; v. on v. 8 . 
With v. 10 , the prophet takes a new start and represents Yah 
weh as entreating the priests to discontinue their sacrificial 
rites which are so distasteful to him. 10. O, that there were some 
one among you to dose the doors, so that you might not kindle mine 
altar in vain] The double doors of the temple court are the ones 
meant; cf. Ez. 4i 23 - 24 . The closing of these would cut off access 
to the altar. The sacrifices which bulk so large in the ritual are 
worse than useless in Yahweh s sight as they are now performed. 
These words have been differently interpreted by reason of the 
fact that the last word has a twofold meaning, viz. "in vain" 
and "gratis." Hence some have seen here evidence that the 
priests had become too lazy and indifferent even to close the 
temple doors at the proper time.t Others interpret to the effect 
that the meanest attendant of the temple now demands a reward 
for the simplest action, even the closing of the doors, t / have 
no pleasure in you, says Yahweh of hosts] Yet the very purpose 
of the sacrifices was to make sure of the favour of Yahweh by 
affording him pleasure. Nor will I accept an offering from your 
hand] This language recalls the sentiments of previous proph 
ecy; e. g. Am. 5 21 f - Ho. 6 6 8 13 Is. i 11 ff -. Though the particular 
thing to which this prophet takes exception is different from that 
objected to by the former prophets, yet the central interest of 
all is the same. They insist upon a right conception of Yahweh 
and a proper attitude of mind and heart toward him. Amos 
and his immediate successors opposed the cultus because of the 
superstitious and overzealous devotion of their contemporaries 
who failed to understand that the chief interests of Yahweh 
centred in other things; this prophet resents an indifference on 
the part of the priests which is an insult to Yahweh. 11. For 

* So Marti, Now. K , Siev.. t So e. g. Hesselberg, Hd.. J So Jer., Grotius, Pu.. 


from the rising of the sun even to its setting, my name is great among 
the nations] The connection between this verse and the pre 
ceding is not obvious. But probably the thought is that Yahweh 
is not dependent upon the worshippers in Jerusalem for a right 
recognition of his place and power. He can refuse to receive 
them for he has other worshippers scattered throughout the world. 
The honour denied him in his own city is freely accorded him in 
foreign cities. The exact significance of the phrase "great among 
the nations" is open to question. It may mean that Yahweh is 
now acknowledged as God by the nations at large, who have be 
come convinced of his superiority to other gods; or that here 
and there among the nations may be found groups of people 
who turn their backs upon idolatry and give themselves to the 
worship of the true God; or that, even if the Jews at home insult 
Yahweh, the Jews of the Dispersion are doing him honour among 
the nations of the earth where they have been so widely scattered. 
The first of these alternatives is improbable, because it is so far 
from accordance with the facts of history. At no time in the 
life of Israel could it be said with any shadow of verisimilitude 
that Yahweh was universally acknowledged as God. Nor is 
there any evidence that Judaism ever had any appreciable suc 
cess among the nations at large in the propagation of its faith, 
even if any serious attempt at the conversion of the nations could 
be proven. Aside from a few idealists, like the author of Jonah, 
the followers of Judaism seem to have lacked any aggressive 
missionary spirit. What religious approach was made to the 
nations was apologetic rather than missionary. It was merely 
the response of Judaism to the necessity of justifying its own 
right and fitness to live alongside of the religions of the con 
querors. Consequently, it is not likely that the number of prose 
lytes was ever large enough or widely enough distributed to 
serve as a basis for the statement of the text. But at the time 
of this prophecy, the Dispersion extended from Babylonia and 
Persia in the East to Southern Egypt in the West. It is not at 
all unlikely that the standard of Yahwism was on the whole 
higher among the exiles than it was in Jerusalem. This was 
certainly true of the Babylonian exiles at least; cf. Je. 24 1 ff - 

I" 31 

Ez. 6 8 ff -. The impetus to reform and progress in Jerusalem 
came from without, not from within, according to all Jewish tra 
dition. These facts make the allusion to the widely scattered 
Jewish community to be the most probable interpretation of 
the prophet s words. The view that this statement reflects the 
author s conviction that the gods of the heathen were only so 
many different names for the one great God and that the nations 
were therefore in reality worshipping Yahweh finds many sup 
porters.* But against this is the following statement that incense 
is offered to Yahweh s name. Moreover, the emphasis in Malachi 
upon ritualism and its attitude toward mixed marriages militate 
strongly against the hypothesis that its author could have taken 
so charitable and sympathetic a view of paganism. Still another 
view commonly heldf is that the author refers to the Messianic 
future w r hen the nations will all have been brought to acknowl 
edge Yahweh as Lord. But the contrast between the Jews and 
the nations is more natural when applied to the pagan world that 
now is than as between Judaism in the present and paganism 
in the future. There is no differentiation in form between v. u 
and v. 12 such as we should expect did they refer to different dis 
pensations. The presumption of the grammar is that they both 
refer to the same age and, in v. 12 , it is unmistakably the present. 
And in every place, smoke is made to arise to my name, and a 
pure offering] Throughout the heathen world, the sacrifices are 
being brought to Yahweh in accordance with all the requirements 
of the ritual. The usual interpretation of this has been to the 
effect that the prophet refers to the worship of Yahweh by the 
heathen peoples, whose sacrifices were "pure" because not sub 
ject to the same rigid requirements as those in Jerusalem; or 
that he uses the word "offering" in a figurative sense, meaning 
thereby the prayer and praise offered to Yahweh by the non- 
Jewish world. Others, holding similar views as to the meaning, 
have made the statement apply to the coming Messianic age,J 
not to actually existing conditions. Sacrifices, on the part of 

* So e. g. Hi., We., Torrey, Now., Marti. 

t So e. g. Justin, Irenaeus, Theodoret, Augustine, Reinke, AV., Schegg, Pu., van H., Isop.. 
t Note especially the view of Isop. that the prophet had in mind the Holy Eucharist of the 
Catholic Church. 


Jews at least, anywhere except at the temple in Jerusalem have 
been until recently regarded as placed under the ban by the Deu- 
teronomic law and therefore not to be designated as a "pure offer 
ing." But the discovery of the Elephantine papyri has changed 
all this. The colonists in Egypt evidently were conscious of no 
irregularity in the erection of a shrine to Yahweh on Egyptian 
soil and in the offering of sacrifices to Yahweh therein.* Nor is 
it altogether certain that the Jerusalem hierarchy condemned 
their action; the failure of the priests to respond to the request 
of the colonists for aid may well have been due to other reasons 
than disapproval of the enterprise upon ritualistic grounds. In 
ability to render aid, or fear of arousing the hostility of the Per 
sian officials may have caused the disappointment to their dis 
tant fellow-countrymen. In any case, it is quite evident that 
the writer of this prophecy may have shared the views of the 
colonists as to the legitimacy of sacrificial worship upon foreign 
soil and may have had such shrines as that at Elephantine in 
mind when he wrote.f It is by no means clear that the Deu- 
teronomic legislators intended to condemn sanctuaries on for 
eign soil. Their purpose was to eliminate impurity from the 
worship of Judah by centralising it in Jerusalem under rigid 
supervision. They were not legislating for exiles, if indeed they 
so much as contemplated the possibility of a general Diaspora. 
The Babylonian exile introduced a new set of conditions into 
the political and the religious world of Judaism. As a matter of 
fact, the further development of the ritual was along narrow and 
exclusive lines; but it was not carried through without a fierce 
struggle. Many devout Jews aligned themselves with the more 
liberal tendencies of the times, as evidenced by the books of 
Jonah and Ruth. Probably Malachi is to be placed in the same 
class in so far, at least, as the localisation of the ritual is con- 

* There is no necessity for supposing that the action of these colonists in erecting a temple 
on foreign soil was unique. It is altogether probable that similar shrines were erected in other 
Jewish centres. The later temple at Heliopolis is a case in point. The same longings and 
needs that caused the building of the temple at Elephantine existed in many other regions 
and may easily have resulted in similar action. So also Torrey, Ezra Studies, 315 jf.. For 
a contrary view, v. W. R. Arnold, JBL., XXXI (1912), 31 Jff- 

t So also O. C. Whitehouse, in Transactions of Third International Congress for the History 
of Religions, I (1908), 284; J. W. Rothstein, Jiideti und Samaritaner (1908), ??/.; Du. ZAW. 
XXXI (1911), I7Q/.. 

I" 33 

cerned. For great is my name among the nations, says Yahweh 
of hosts] There is some justification, aside from the question of 
metre, for holding this to be a gloss,* since it but repeats what 
has already been said. Yet this is not a necessary conclusion; 
for coming, as it does, immediately before v. 12 , it furnishes an 
antecedent near at hand for the pronoun "it" in the latter, be 
sides bringing the magnification of Yahweh among the nations 
into immediate contrast with the contrary conduct of Israel. 
12. But you are profaning it] i. e. treating the name of Yahweh, 
which is practically identical with Yahweh himself, as though 
it were not holy. When you say] i. e. think in your hearts, or 
say by your actions. The table of the Lord is defiled and its food 
despicable] Cf. v. 7 where the same language is employed in part.f 
The basis for the prophet s interpretation of their attitude to 
ward Yahweh s sacrifices is furnished by w. 8 - 13 2 1 3 . It seems 
wholly unjustifiable to interpret this as a lament on the part of 
the priests to the effect that their work is heavy and their pay 
light, t the "food" being the portion of the sacrifice which fell 
to the priest. Had this been the thought, the priests would 
hardly have been represented as careless and indifferent regarding 
the quality of the sacrificial animals. It would have been a 
matter of personal interest to them that these should be sound 
and perfect. 13. And when you say, Behold, what a weariness!] 
The care of the ritual and the bringing of the offerings have be 
come a burden to them. They no longer do it out of gratitude 
and devotion, but as a matter of hard necessity from which they 
would escape if they could. They have allowed it to become dull 
routine upon their hands, a danger to which the ministers of 
highly ritualistic cults are always peculiarly liable. And you 
esteem me lightly] Lit., "You snort (or sniff) at me." HI reads 
"at it"; but this is a scribal correction made for the purpose of 
removing an expression thought to reflect dishonour upon Yah 
weh (v. i.). Says Yahweh of hosts] This is the ninth affirma 
tion of the authority of Yahweh in support of the prophet s 
utterance; but the frequency of the phrase is not a sufficient 

* Cf. A, Marti, Siev., Now.*. 

t Hence Marti eliminates b as a gloss. But this needs stronger support than the need of 
the "poetic" structure. , -/ 

J So e. g. Rosemn., Reinke. 


ground for rejecting it.* And you bring the salvage and the lame 
and the sick] Repeated from v. 8 , with a change in the first word. 
Some would correct this word to agree with v. 8 ; but this is un 
necessary. The "salvage" is literally, "that snatched away," 
soil, from the jaws of wild beasts ;f hence mangled and unfit for 
sacrifice, or even for use as food; cf. Ex. 22 31 Lv. ly 15 . Yea, you 
bring it as an offering] The verb is resumed after an exceptionally 
long object has intervened; it is, therefore, an error to omit it.t 
Can I accept it at your hand ? says Yahweh of hosts] 4H omits 
"of hosts"; but it is the customary title in Malachi and it is 
read here by ( ^. The question carries its answer with it; they 
are acting unreasonably. 14. But cursed be the cheat, in whose 
flock there is a male, yet he vows, and then sacrifices a damaged thing 
to the Lord] This is a specific example of the conduct of those 
who despise the altar of Yahweh.** The nature of the offender s 
deceit is indicated by the act ascribed to him. Though having 
in his possession an animal that fully meets all the requirements 
for sacrifice, he nevertheless pays his sacrificial vows with a blem 
ished and therefore less valuable animal, thus exhibiting stingi 
ness and deceit toward Yahweh in one and the same act. Some 
interpreters would omit the phrase "yet he vows";ft but this 
leaves the charge weaker. There might be some excuse for such 
conduct on the part of the offender if his sacrifice were obligatory; 
but this is a case where he has himself voluntarily promised 
Yahweh a sacrifice and then grudges the fulfilment of his prom 
ise. Such an attitude is inexcusable. J| For a great king am I, 
says Yahweh of hosts] If such conduct toward an earthly king 
be reprehensible and certain to arouse his anger, how much more 
so in the case of the king of kings! For the same line of reason 
ing, cf. v. 8 . For the conception of Yahweh as a king, which is 
exceedingly frequent in post-exilic writings in general and in 
the Psalms in particular, cf. i S. i2 12 Je. 8 19 io 10 Is. 33 22 43 15 44 6 

* Contra Marti, Siev., el al. t So BDB., van H., el al.. 

J Contra Now., Marti, et al.. So also Marti, Siev., Bu., Isop.. 

** The connection with v. 13 is somewhat loose; hence Du. makes v. " a gloss. 

ft So Siev., Now. K . 

ft For a Babylonian judgment upon similar conduct, cf. the following citation from the 
Skurpu series of texts containing exorcisms: "Has he promised with heart and mouth but 
not kept it, by a (retained) gift despised the name of his god, consecrated something but held 
it back, presented something . . . but eaten it?" V. Jeremias, The OT. in the Light of the 
Ancient East, I, 226. 

i"-2 2 35 

Zp. 3 15 Ps. io 16 24 7 - 10 84 3 95 3 . And my name is held in awe 
among the nations] This is a reiteration of the thought of v. 11 ; 
but it forms a fitting close to the paragraph. 

With 2 1 , the thought changes again, being addressed specifi 
cally to the priests. 2 1 . And now, unto you is this command, O 
priests] The special command here referred to is not at once 
discoverable. There is no express " command " in the immediate 
context. On the other hand, the arraignment in the preceding 
verses charges that the accused have failed to honour Yahweh 
fittingly, which is their just and lawful service. Likewise, in 
the following verses stress is laid upon the necessity of glorifying 
Yahweh. Hence, the "command" is most easily explained as 
the behest to honour Yahweh, which lies behind the whole con 
text. On account of the absence of any explicit "command" 
in the immediate context, other renderings have been offered, 
such as "admonition," "decision," "message," and "warning." 
But neither of these affords any appreciable advantage, since 
the context does not contain any one of them explicitly. 2. // 
you do not hearken, and if you do not lay it to heart] Cf. Is. 57 1 
Dn. i 8 . This repetition of the idea in different terms is after 
the manner of poetic parallelism and serves to emphasise the 
importance of the utterance. To give honour to my name, says 
Yahweh of hosts] This is the main function of a priest; to fail 
here is to fail lamentably. The preceding verses have made it 
clear that the kind of honour meant is a due regard for the proper 
forms and other requirements regarding sacrifices and offerings.* 
Then I will send the curse among you] Cf. 3 9 4 6 . This is a kind 

* For the Babylonian feeling concerning the necessity of honouring the gods, cf. the following 
citation from the Shurpu series of incantations, as translated by Jeremias, in The OT. in the 
Light of the Ancient East, 1, 228: 

As though no libation had I brought to my god, 

Or at mealtime my goddess had not been called upon, 

My face not downcast, my footfall had not become visible; 

(Like one) in whose mouth stayed prayer and supplication, 

(With whom) the day of god ceased, the festival fell out; 

Who was careless, who attended not to (the god s) decrees(?), 

Fear and reverence (for god) taught not his people; 

Who called not upon his god, ate of his food, 

Forsook his goddess, a writing(?) brought her not; 

He then, who was honoured, his lord forgot, 

The name of his mighty god pronounced disparagingly 

Thus did I appear. 


of thought that is very common in the Old Testament. Failure 
to conform to the requirements of Yahweh brings down his 
wrath upon the offender. Misfortune and suffering are in them 
selves evidences of that wrath. For representations of disaster 
as due to the curse of God, cf. Gn. 3 14 - 17 5 29 8 21 Dt. 28 20 30?. 
And I will turn your blessing into a curse] Lit. "I will curse 
your blessing," i. e. send a curse upon and blast that which you 
count your blessing. In Ethiopic, "blessings" often means 
"goods" as in 3 10 Is. 6s 8 Jo. 2 14 Gn. 49" f - Ps. 2i 3 84 6 Pr. 28 20 ; 
cf. Lk. 12 s . This is better than to interpret the threat as apply 
ing to the priestly benedictions,* or specifically to the priestly 
revenues, f or in general to the priestly privileges.:]: For the re 
verse of this action on Yahweh s part, v. Dt. 23 5 Ne. i3 2 . Yea, 
indeed, I have cursed it, because you are not laying it to heart] Cf. 
v. 2a . The verb might also be rendered as a prophetic perfert, 
"I will curse it." But whether so taken, or taken as referring 
to the past, the whole sentence seems superfluous. As referring 
to the past it interrupts the connection between the preceding 
sentence and v. 3 , both of which look to the future. Furthermore, 
it blunts the edge of the threat, since it reveals the fact that in 
stead of some new and awful calamity, which the preceding 
verses seem to announce, there will be nothing but a continua 
tion of the present distress, which they have learned to endure. 
Not only so, but it also seems to take for granted the failure of 
the priests to respond to Yahweh s demands, notwithstanding his 
threats. In connection with this interpretation, it is possible to 
give the latter part of the sentence the rendering "though you 
are not laying it to heart." That is, the curse has already fallen, 
but you have failed to realise the significance of the afflictions 
that have befallen you. As referring to the future, it unneces 
sarily repeats the substance of the preceding protasis and apodo- 
sis. It is, therefore, probably due to marginal annotation. 
3. Behold, I am going to hew off the arm for you] Cf. i S. 2 31 . HI 
reads, "rebuke the seed for you." But this would be primarily 
a punishment upon the farmers, and only through them would 

* So Ew., Ke., Schegg, Knabenbauer, Or.. t Hi.. 

t Now., van H.. So Marti, Now. K , Siev., Kent. 

2" 37 

the priests suffer.* The reference to "faces" immediately fol 
lowing makes the reading "arm" more probable. Besides this, 
it has the support of the versions. The figure is a bold one and 
is used to express forcefully the idea that the priestly arm here 
tofore stretched out in blessing upon the people will lose its 
power and fail to bring the desired results, t And I will strew 
dung upon your faces] Thus rendering the priests unclean and 
wholly unfit for the discharge of the priestly function ; cf. Ez. 4 12 15 . 
The dung of your feasts] This is probably an interpreter s gloss.t 
The festal sacrifices in honour of Yahweh will be made by him 
the means of discrediting and disgracing the faithless priesthood. 
And I will carry you away from beside me] HI reads, "And 
he will carry you away unto it." But the change of person is 
too abrupt and the "it" is too indefinite. Hence the reading of 
&, with the first person, must be considered as the original. As 
corrected, the text threatens the priests with removal from the 
presence of Yahweh, i. e. exile from the holy city and the tem 
ple with which their whole life is bound up. 4. And you will 
know that I sent forth this law unto you] Their knowledge will 
come through their realisation that the fact of their exile means 
that Yahweh s anger has been aroused against them on account 
of their laxness and indifference regarding the cultus for which 
they are held responsible. The "law" referred to is evidently 
the same as in v. 1 . Seeing that my covenant was with Levi, says 
Yahweh of hosts] This indicates the reason for Yahweh s having 
laid this responsibility upon the priesthood. The language used 
also permits a translation of the clause as expressive of purpose, 
viz. "in order that my covenant might be with Levi."** But 
it is difficult to discover any meaning for such a purpose-clause 
in this context. The common method of explanation on this 
basis is to say that the prophet refers to the decree of punish 
ment which has gone forth from Yahweh and is to take the place 

* Yet Or. interprets "seed" of posterity; the priests are thus threatened with childlessness. 

t So Ew., Reinke, et al.. Others interpret "arm" of the shoulder of the sacrificial victim, 
which portion belonged to the priest; so Reuss, Isop., Nestle (ZAW. XXIX, I54/.). 

t So We., Now., Wkl. ( Marti, Siev.. 

Cf. Am. 4 s , from which Marti would derive this as a gloss (so Siev.. Now. K . Kent) 
Now. et al. abandon the attempt to interpret this phrase. 

** So e. g. &, Jer., Hi., Mau., van H.. 


of the old covenant.* But a decree is not a covenant, nor is 
there any reason to suppose, in the nature of the language used, 
that v. 4 refers to a different time from that alluded to in v. 5 , 
which is evidently not in the future, but in the past. The char 
acter of the covenant with Levi to which reference is made is 
indicated in v. 5 . " Levi " is here best accounted for as represent 
ative of the priestly class, rather than as the name of the son 
of Jacob. Thus it appears that the writer thinks of the priests 
as "sons of Levi" (cf. 3 3 ) in accordance with the standard of 
Deuteronomy, rather than as "sons of Zadok" (Ez. 44 15 )> or as 
"sons of Aaron," the designation of P (Lv. 8, 2I 1 ). This points 
to the origin of Malachi as lying in the period before the adop 
tion of the Priestly Code. 5 . My covenant was with him] A re- 
affirmation for the sake of emphasis. As usually rendered, these 
words are connected directly with the two following in some way ; 
e. g. "my covenant was with him (regarding) life and peace," 
or "my covenant was with him (a covenant of) life and peace." 
But the syntax of such renderings is very difficult and the accen 
tuation of HI is against them. Life and welfare / gave them to 
him] Yahweh fulfilled his side of the covenant. The word 
"welfare" represents a complex of ideas, viz. peace, quiet, pro 
tection, and health. Yahweh s gift included life and all that 
makes life worth living. The thought and phraseology of this 
verse thus far at once recall Nu. 2$- 13 (=P), where the cove 
nant of Yahweh is said to have been established with Phinehaz, 
the son of Aaron. But that is a more specialised and advanced 
form of the tradition than this which extends the blessings of 
the covenant in question to the whole family of Levi. Fear, 
and he feared me] "Fear" is co-ordinate with "life and welfare," 
all three being in reality objects of "gave." "Fear" here is evi 
dently not terror, but rather reverence and awe such as kept the 
priesthood in faithful obedience to the will of God as expressed 
in the rit