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Verses 2-5

Zechariah 9:2-5. And Hamath also shall border there by Or, Hamath also shall be within its borders. That is, the borders of this prophecy. Hamath shall be involved in the calamities which this prophecy denounces. “I suppose,” says Newcome, “that Hamath on the river Orontes is meant.” It was the capital of one part of Syria, and formed, some time, an independent kingdom. See note on Jeremiah 49:23. Tyrus and Zidon These cities also, shall be reached by the judgments threatened in this prophecy; though it be very wise Although Zidon prides itself so much for its skill and knowledge of things, and puts much confidence in its crafty counsels. Blayney renders the latter clause of this verse and the next, And Sidon, though she be very wise, and hath built Tyre, a fortress, for herself; and hath heaped up silver as the dust, and fine gold as the mire of the streets. Zidon was the capital of Phenicia, and mother of Tyre. For Justin informs us, (lib. 18. cap. 3,) that the Sidonians, when their city was taken by the king of Ascalon, betook themselves to their ships and built Tyre. Hence Tyre is called the daughter of Sidon, Isaiah 23:12. The Sidonians were famous all over the world for their knowledge and skill in arts and sciences, and for their great riches, acquired by their traffic: see notes on Isaiah 23:2; Isaiah 23:4; Isaiah 23:12; Ezekiel 27:8; Ezekiel 28:2.

Behold, the Lord will cast her out Will cast out her inhabitants. And he will smite her power in the sea, &c. The Sidonians, according to Diodorus Siculus, (lib. 16. p. 116;) on the approach of the army sent against them by Ochus, king of Persia, first of all destroyed their shipping at sea; and then retiring within the walls of the city, when they found they could hold out no longer, set fire to their houses, and burned themselves with all their families and effects together. Thus their wealth was effectually smitten, when by burning their ships, their commerce, the source of their riches, was annihilated; and this last act of desperation completely fulfilled the remaining part of the prophecy. No wonder if their neighbours, the Philistines, (as is signified in the next verse,) were struck with consternation at seeing the disastrous fate of those on whose assistance they depended. See Blayney. Probably also the destruction of Tyre by Alexander the Great may be predicted in these verses; of which see the places referred to above. Ashkelon shall fear; Gaza also be very sorrowful, and Ekron These cities flattered themselves, that if Tyre could withstand Alexander, they also should be able to escape his hand; but Tyre being taken, all these hopes vanished. Alexander made himself master of Gaza immediately after the taking of Tyre; 10,000 of the inhabitants were slain, and the governor Betis dragged round the city wall till he was dead. King is a general word for any governor, in Hebrew, as has been before observed. Strabo, speaking of Gaza, lib. 16., says, “It was formerly a city of note, but was destroyed by Alexander the Great.” Or, according to Josephus, having suffered severely, upon being taken by Alexander, it was at length totally ruined and destroyed by Alexander Jannæus, one of the Asmonean kings of Judah. Hence we read, Acts 8:26, Gaza which is desert. And Ashkelon shall not be inhabited Blayney reads, shall not be established; literally, shall not sit. “Ashkelon, and the other cities of the Philistines, having been subjugated by Nebuchadnezzar, as foretold Jeremiah 47:0., never recovered their former independence, but, falling under the dominion of the great empires in succession, were almost continually involved in their wars, and suffered considerably, till by degrees they dwindled away, and at last sunk to nothing.”

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