The prosperity of Shobal, ver. 1 - 4.
Of Ashur, ver. 5 - 8.
The character and prayer of Jabez, ver. 9, 10.
The posterity of Chelah and others, ver. 11 - 20.
Of Shelah, ver. 21 - 23.
The posterity, cities and victories of Simeon, ver. 24 - 43.
|4:1||The sons - The posterity: for only Pharez was his immediate son. But they are all mentioned here only to shew Shobal's descent fromJudah.|
|4:9||Honourably - For courage, and for fervent piety. She records this, that it might be a memorandum to herself, to be thankful to God aslong as she lived, for bringing her through that sorrow: and a memorandumto him, that she bore him into a vale of tears, in which he might expectfew days and full of trouble. And the sorrow in his name might serve toput a seriousness upon his spirit.|
|4:10||Called - When he was undertaking some great and dangerous service. Enlarge - Drive out these Canaanites, whom thou hastcommanded us to root out. Grieve - That it may not oppress and overcomeme: more is understood than is expressed. He useth this expression inallusion to his name, which signifies grief.And God granted, &c. - Prospered him remarkably in his undertakings,in his studies, in his worldly business, and in his conflicts with theCanaanites.|
|4:12||Rechab - From these are sprung the present inhabitants of Rechab, a town not elsewhere mentioned.|
|4:14||Father - Of the inhabitants of the valley.|
|4:21||Shelah - Having treated of the posterity of Judah by Pharez, and by Zara, he now comes to his progeny by Shelah.|
|4:22||Had dominion - Which they ruled in the name and for the use of the kings of Judah, to whom Moab was subject from David's time.Ancient things - The sense is those blessed times are long since past.Our ancestors had the dominion over the Heathen, but their degenerateposterity are slaves in Chaldea, were they are employed as pottersor gardeners, or in other servile works.|
|4:23||There are - He seems to oppose their present servitude to their former glory, and to shew their mean spirits that had rather tarry amongthe Heathen to do their drudgery, than return to Jerusalem to serveGod and enjoy their freedom. The king - Of Babylon: esteeming it agreater honour to serve that earthly monarch in the meanest employments,than to serve the king of kings in his temple.|
|4:27||Of Judah - The tribe of Simeon did not increase proportionably to the tribe of Judah in which they dwelt; asappears by those two catalogues, Numbers 1:22 1ch 4: , 26:14 , which isto be ascribed to God's curse upon them, delivered by the mouth ofholy Jacob, Genesis 49:5 - 7, and signified byMoses's neglect of them when he blessed all the other tribes.|
|4:31||Their cities - Several of these cities though given to Simeon by Joshua, yet through the sloth or cowardice of that tribe, were nottaken from the Philistines, until David's time, who took some ofthem; and, the Simeonites having justly forfeited their right to themby their neglect, gave them to his own tribe. For it is evident concerningZiklag, one of them, that it was in the Philistines hands inDavid's time, and by them given to him, and by him annexed to the tribeof Judah, 27:6 .|
|4:40||Fat pasture, &c. - Those who thus dwelt (as we do) in a fruitful country, and whose land is wide and quiet and peaceable, have reason toown themselves indebted to that God, who appoints the bounds of ourhabitation. Of Ham - The Canaanites, who descended from Ham.And accordingly these words contain a reason, why they went and possessedthis place, because it was not in the hands of their brethren of Judah,but in the possession of that people which they had authority to expel.|