31:1 And it came to pass in the a eleventh year, in the third [month], in the first [day] of the month, [that] the word of the LORD came to me, saying,
(a) Of Zedekiahs reign, or of Jeconiahs captivity. 31:2 Son of man, speak to Pharaoh king of Egypt, and to his multitude; Whom art thou b like in thy greatness?
(b) Meaning that he was not the same in strength to the king of the Assyrians whom the Babylonians overcame. 31:4 The waters made him great, the deep set him up on high with her rivers running round his plants, and sent out her c little rivers to all the trees of the field.
(c) Many other nations were under their dominion. 31:8 The cedars in the garden d of God could not hide him: the fir trees were not like his boughs, and the chesnut trees were not like his branches; not any tree in the garden of God was like him in his beauty.
(d) Signifying that there was no greater power in the world than his was. 31:11 I have therefore delivered him into the hand of the e mighty one of the nations; he shall surely deal with him: I have driven him out for his wickedness.
(e) That is, of Nebuchadnezzar, who was the monarch and only ruler of the world. 31:12 And strangers, the terrible of the nations, have cut him off, and have left him: upon the mountains and in all the valleys his branches are fallen, and his boughs are f broken by all the rivers of the land; and all the people of the earth have gone down from his shadow, and have left him.
(f) By this is signified the destruction of the power of the Assyrians by the Babylonians. 31:15 Thus saith the Lord GOD; In the day when he went down to the grave I caused a mourning: I g covered the deep for him, and I restrained its floods, and the great waters were stayed: and I caused Lebanon to mourn for him, and all the trees of the field fainted for him.
(g) The deep waters that caused him to mount so high (meaning his great abundance and pomp) will now lament as though they were covered with sackcloth. 31:16 I made the nations to shake at the sound of his fall, when I cast him down to the grave with them that descend into the pit: and all the trees of Eden, the choice and best of Lebanon, all that drink water, shall h be comforted in the lower parts of the earth.
(h) To cause this destruction of the king of Assyria to seem more horrible, he sets forth other kings and princes who are dead, as though they rejoiced at the fall of such a tyrant. 31:18 To whom i art thou thus like in glory and in greatness among the trees of Eden? yet shalt thou be brought down with the trees of Eden to the lower parts of the earth: thou shalt lie in the midst of the k uncircumcised with [them that are] slain by the sword. This [is] Pharaoh and all his multitude, saith the Lord GOD.
(i) Meaning that Pharaohs power was nothing so great as his was.
(k) Read ( Ezekiel 28:10 ).