And the Lord showed me four carpenters.
] To saw and cut in pieces the four horns; or rather "four blacksmiths" F25; these horns were horns of iron; so the word is rendered a "smith" in ( 1 Samuel 13:19 ) and indeed it signifies both a worker in wood and a worker in iron; and who are sometimes distinguished by what they work in, whether wood or iron; see ( Isaiah 44:12 Isaiah 44:13 ) . The Jews say F26 these four carpenters are Messiah ben David, Messiah ben Ephraim, Elijah, and the priest of righteousness; or, as elsewhere F1, Elijah, the King Messiah, Melchizedek, and he that was anointed for war; though Kimchi much better interprets them of the kings, the princes above, who preside over kingdoms, that is, the angels; and so Jerom and Theodoret; who have been sometimes employed in the destruction of the enemies of God's people, or in preventing them doing the mischief they otherwise would; and even the several monarchies themselves have been the means of destroying each other; so the Babylonians were destroyed by the Medes and Persians; the Persians by the Grecians; the Grecians by the Romans; and the Romans by the Goths, Hunns, Vandals in the western part of the empire; and by the Saracens and Turks in the eastern part of it: and they may be applied to the apostles of Christ, who were chiefly mechanics, mean and illiterate persons, yet workmen in the Gospel, that need not to be ashamed; and who were sent by Christ into the four parts of the world, to spread his Gospel, set up his interest, and pull down the kingdom of Satan: and since the Jews make the Messiah himself one of these carpenters, they have no reason to upbraid or be offended at Jesus our Messiah being a carpenter, and a carpenter's son, as in ( Matthew 13:55 ) ( Mark 6:3 ) and Kimchi owns that their ancient Rabbins explain this verse of the days of the Messiah.
F25 (Myvrx) "fabros ferrarios", Pembellus, Sanctius, Burkius.
F26 T. Bab. Succa, fol. 52. 2.
F1 Shirhashirim Rabba, fol. 11. 4. Vid. Bemidbar Rabba, sect. 14. fol. 111. 4.