And lest your heart faint, and ye fear for the rumour that
shall be heard in the land
The rumour of war in the land of Chaldea; the report of the Medes and Persians preparing to invade it, and besiege Babylon, in the peace of which city the Jews had peace; and therefore might fear they should suffer in the calamities of it; but, lest they should, they are ordered to go cut of it, and accept the liberty that should be granted by the conqueror, who would do them no hurt, but good; and had therefore nothing to fear from him; and, as a token, assuring them of this, the following things are declared; which, when they should observe, they need not be troubled, being forewarned; yea, might take encouragement from it, and believe that their redemption drew nigh: a rumour shall both come [one] year and after that in [another] year
[shall come] a rumour;
in one year there was a rumour of the great preparation Cyrus was making to invade Chaldea, and besiege Babylon; in another year, that is, the following, as the Targum rightly renders it, there was a second rumour of his coming; and who actually did come into Assyria, but was stopped at the river Gyndes, not being able to pass it for want of boats; and, being enraged at the loss of a favourite horse in it, resolved upon the draining it; which he accomplished, by cutting many sluices and rivulets; in doing which he spent the whole summer; and the spring following came to Babylon, as Herodotus F12 relates; when what is after predicted followed: and violence in the land, ruler against ruler;
the king of Babylon came out with his forces to meet Cyrus, as the same historian says; when a battle ensue, in which the former was beat, and obliged to retire into the city, which then Cyrus besieged; and thus violence and devastations were made in the land by the army of the Medes and Persians; and ruler was against ruler; Cyrus against Belshazzar, and Belshazzar against him. Some read it, "ruler upon ruler" F13; that is, one after another, in a very short time; so Jarchi, Kimchi, and Abarbinel; thus two before Belshazzar, then Darius, and, after Darius, Cyrus.