The fortress also shall cease from Ephraim
The ten tribes, now in confederacy with the Syrians, whose metropolis or fortress was Samaria, which seems to be intended here; and should be destroyed, at least taken out of the hands of the Israelites, and they be carried captive by Shalmaneser king of Assyria, ( 2 Kings 17:6 ) and this may be understood, not of that particular city and fortress only, but of all their strongholds, the singular being, put for the plural. The Targum is, "the government shall cease from Ephraim"; they shall have no more a king over them, nor have they to this day: and the kingdom from Damascus, and the remnant of Syria;
Damascus was the head city of Syria, where the kings of Syria had their palace; but now that and the rest of Syria should no more be a kingdom of itself, but should be subject unto others, as it has been ever since: they shall be as the glory of the children of Israel, saith the
Lord of hosts;
that is, the Syrians, who were in alliance with Israel, should share the same fate; should be carried captive as they were; should have their metropolis and other cities, and their whole kingdom, taken from them, and be stripped of their grandeur and wealth, and have no more glory than they had; which was none at all; or at least very small, as the next verse shows ( Isaiah 17:4 ) .