Go up against the land of Merathaim
Thought to be the country of the Mardi, which lay part of it in Assyria, and part of it in Armenia; expressed in the dual number, because one part of it lay on one side the Tigris, and the other on the other side. Cyrus, with his army of Medes and Persians, is here called upon; who, according to Herodotus, passed through Assyria to Babylon: and so it may be agreeably rendered, "go by the land of Merathaim"; or the country of the Mardi. Many interpreters take it for an appellative, and not the proper name of a country. The Vulgate Latin version renders it, "the land of rulers"; and the Targum,
``the land of the rebellious people;''and so Kimchi F23: and to the same sense Jarchi, the land
``that hath exasperated me, and provoked me to anger;''meaning the land of the Chaldeans, which had ruled over others, rebelled against the Lord, and provoked him to wrath against it. The word, being in the dual number, may, in the mystical sense, respect the two antichrists, the eastern and western, that have ruled over the nations, and rebelled against God, and provoked him; the Turks and Papists, those two rebels, the beast and false prophet, ( Revelation 19:20 ) ; against whom the Christian princes will be bid to go up; [even] against it, and against the inhabitants of Pekod;
the name of a place in Assyria; see ( Ezekiel 23:23 ) ; by which also Cyrus might go up to Babylon, so Jarchi; and the Targum takes it to be the name of a place: but Kimchi and others take it to be an appellative; and so it may be rendered, "the inhabitants of visitation" F24; because the time was come to visit and punish them for their sins; and may particularly design the inhabitants of Babylon, the city to be visited for its iniquities; and especially mystical Babylon, which shall come up in remembrance before God, ( Revelation 16:19 ) ; waste and utterly destroy after them, saith the Lord;
either after the destruction of the places before mentioned; or pursue after those that flee and make their escape from thence, and destroy them; or rather their posterity, the remnant of them, as the Targum: and do according to all that I have commanded thee;
either Cyrus, according to all the Lord commanded him by the Prophet Isaiah, as Jarchi; or the seven angels, that are to pour out the vials of wrath on antichrist; the kings of the earth, who are to fulfil the will of God upon the man of sin, ( Revelation 16:1 ) ( 17:16 ) .
F23 (Mytrm Urah le) "contra terram rebellantium", Pagninus; "super", Montanus; "contra terram rebellionum", Schmidt.
F24 (dwqp ybvwy) "habitatores visitationis", Vatablus, Calvin, De Dieu.