He causeth the vapours to ascend from the ends of the earth,
&c.] Up to the heavens. Aben Ezra interprets this of the mist which went up out of the earth, and watered it, ( Genesis 2:6 ) ; and still vapours are exhaled out of the earth by the force of the sun, and carried up into the air, and form various things, as wind, rain The Targum, Kimchi, and others, explain it of the "clouds", so called from their elevation on high: these rise up out of the sea, the borders, and boundaries, and uttermost parts of the earth; see ( 1 Kings 18:44 ) ( Amos 5:8 ) . Jerom interprets these clouds, spiritually and mystically, of the apostles and prophets, raised from a low and mean estate; and so may be applied to the ministers of the word, who are clouds full of water; of good doctrine, which they are sent to carry about the world, and publish in it; see ( Isaiah 5:6 ) ;
he maketh lightnings for the rain:
for the descent of the rain, as the Targum; by lightning oftentimes the clouds are broke, and so pour down rain; see ( Job 28:26 ) ; or, "lightnings with the rain" F7; as Kimchi: these frequently come together, which is very surprising, that two such different elements should meet together as fire and water; and yet the fire not quenched by the water, nor the water heated by the fire: these the above ancient Christian writer interprets of the light of knowledge, and the rain of doctrine; see ( Zechariah 9:14 ) ( Deuteronomy 32:3 ) ( Isaiah 55:10 Isaiah 55:11 ) ;
he bringeth the wind out of his treasuries;
as he has his treasuries for the snow and hail, ( Job 38:22 ) ; so for the winds: not the caverns of the earth, thought to be the repositories of the wind F8; nor are there proper repositories of it: but the air, as Suidas F9; which, when without wind, is easily moved by the wise hand of God; so Theodoret, from whom he seems to have taken this hint. In Scripture only mention is made of four winds, ( Ezekiel 37:9 ) ( Matthew 24:31 ) ( Revelation 7:1 ) ; and so the ancient Greeks only reckoned four cardinal winds, but at length they added four more; and at Athens was a marble temple, built by Andronicus Cyrrhestes, called "the temple of the eight winds": this was an octagon, and on each side were engraven the images of every wind; and on the top of it was a Triton of brass, with a rod in his right hand, which being moved about by the wind, pointed to that which then blew F11: but now, through the great improvement of navigation, the winds are divided and subdivided in the points of the compass; and, besides the four cardinal ones, there are twenty eight collateral ones, in all thirty two; but be they reckoned as many as they may, they are all in the hands of God, and disposed of at his pleasure. Jerom here interprets them of the angels; perhaps it might be better to apply them to the gifts and graces of the Spirit, sometimes compared to wind, which are treasured up in Christ; see ( John 3:8 ) ( Acts 2:1-4 ) .