Then said I unto her that was old in adulteries
That had been an old adulterer or idolater; meaning either Aholah the ten tribes, who from Jeroboam's time had been guilty of idolatry; or Aholibah the two tribes, who had remained longer in their own country, and had been long given to idolatry; or both of them, as some think, the whole body of the people of Israel, who had been addicted to idolatry ever since they came out of Egypt, and so was like an old harlot indeed: now the Lord said "unto her", or "concerning her" F12; in his own mind, after the manner of men. So the Targum,
``I said concerning the congregation of Israel, whose people are old in sins:''will they now commit whoredoms with her, and she with them?
will they commit adultery with such an old harlot? are they not weary of her? and will they not rather loath and despise her? as it is common when such prostitutes grow old; and what pleasure can she take, thus advanced in years, in such impurities? suggesting that alliances and confederacies between the Jews and the nations of the world could not be agreeable on either side, especially to the former; but so it was, and so were their idolatries likewise. The Targum is,
``now she will leave her idols, and return to thy worship; but she returned not.''
F12 (hlbl) "de inveterata illa", Vatablus.