And it shall be as when the harvestman gathereth the
&c.] The "standing" corn, as in the Hebrew text: "and reapeth the ears with his arm"; or "his arm reaps the ears" F15; that is, with one hand he gathers the standing corn into his fist, and then reaps it with his other arm; and just so it should be with the people of Israel: they were like a field of standing corn, for number, beauty, and glory; the Assyrian was like a harvestman, who laid hold upon them, and cut them down, as thick and as numerous as they were, just as a harvestman cuts down the corn, and with as much ease and quick dispatch; they being no more able to stand before him than a field of corn before the reaper! this was done both by Tilgathpilneser, ( 2 Kings 15:29 ) and by Shalmaneser, ( 2 Kings 17:6 ) kings of Assyria: and it shall be as he that gathereth ears in the valley of Rephaim;
the Targum renders it,
``the valley of giants.''and so it is translated, ( Joshua 15:8 ) ( 18:16 ) mention is made of it in ( 2 Samuel 5:18 2 Samuel 5:22 ) ( 23:13 ) it was a valley not far from Jerusalem, as Josephus F16 says; who also calls it the valley of the giants: it is thought to have been a very fruitful place, where the ears of corn were very large and heavy, and so great care was taken in gathering and gleaning that none be lost: wherefore, as the former simile signifies the carrying off the people of Israel in great numbers by the above kings, this may signify, as some have thought, either the picking up of those that fled without, or the gleaning of them in after times by Esarhaddon, ( Ezra 4:2 ) .