I will plant in the wilderness the cedar, the shittah tree,
&c.] Where such trees had not used to grow, but in Lebanon, and such like places. The "shittah tree" is thought to be a kind of cedar; it is the same of which is the "shittim wood" mentioned in ( Exodus 25:5 ) ( Exodus 35:7 Exodus 35:24 ) and is so called by the Targum here: and the myrtle, and the oil tree;
about the former there is no difficulty, and one would think there should be none about the latter, and that the olive tree is meant; but Kimchi thinks that is not certain, and supposes the pine tree is meant; and observes that the olive tree is distinguished from this oil tree in ( Nehemiah 8:15 ) , as indeed it is; and is by our translators there rendered the pine tree, which they take to be meant by another word in the next clause: I will set in the desert the fir tree, and the pine, and the box tree
what we here render the "pine" the Targum interprets it of the "elm", and so the Vulgate Latin version: now by all these are figuratively meant converted persons in the Gentile world, in whom as great a change was wrought, as if, instead of briers and thorns, came up such trees as these; and who, by the grace of God, were made as goodly and beautiful as some of these trees were; as odorous and of as sweet a scent in their graces and duties as others; and as profitable and fruitful in grace and good works like others of them; and comparable to them, as being some of them evergreen, durable, and incorruptible; because of their perseverance in grace and holiness.