They that fled stood under the shadow of Heshbon, because of
Heshbon was a strong city in the land of Moab, to which many of the Moabites betook themselves in this time of their calamity; thinking they should be sheltered, under the protection of it, from the fury of the Chaldean army; hither they fled, and here they stood, imagining they were safe, "because of the force"; because of the strength of the city of Heshbon, as Kimchi; or because of the force of their enemies, for fear of them, as Kimchi's father; or for want of strength, because they had no more strength to flee, and therefore stopped there, so Jarchi and Abarbinel: but the words should rather be rendered, "they that stood under the shadow of Heshbon"; thinking themselves safe, but now perceiving danger, "fled with strength" F18; or as swiftly as they could, and with all the strength they had, that they might, if possible, escape from thence: for a fire
F19 (for so it should be rendered, and not "but a fire") shall come forth out of Heshbon, and a flame from the midst of Sihon;
the same with Heshbon; so called from Sihon, an ancient king of it; the meaning is, that the Chaldeans should make themselves masters of Heshbon, this strong city, in which the Moabites trusted; and from thence should go out like a flame of fire, and spread themselves all over the country, and destroy it: what was formerly said of the Amorites, who took the land of Moab out of the hands of the king of it, and it became afterwards a proverbial expression, is here applied to the Chaldeans; see ( Numbers 21:26-28 ) ; so the Targum, by a flame of fire, understands warriors: and shall devour the corner of Moab;
the whole country, even to the borders of it. The Targum is,
``and shall slay the princes of Moab;''so great men are sometimes called corners; see ( Zechariah 10:4 ) ( Numbers 24:17 ) ; and the crown of the head of the tumultuous ones;
not of the common people that were tumultuous and riotous, but of the great ones, who swaggered and boasted, and made a noise about their strength and riches; but now should have their heads broke, and their pride and glory laid in the dust. So the Targum,
``and the nobles, the children of noise.''
F18 (Myon xwkm) "ex virbus (soil. suis) erunt fugientes", Schmidt.
F19 (va yk) "quia ignis", V. L. Pagninus, Montanus, Cocceius, Schmidt.