Lamentations 4:1

1 How the gold has lost its luster, the fine gold become dull! The sacred gems are scattered at every street corner.

Lamentations 4:1 in Other Translations

1 How is the gold become dim! how is the most fine gold changed! the stones of the sanctuary are poured out in the top of every street.
1 How the gold has grown dim, how the pure gold is changed! The holy stones lie scattered at the head of every street.
1 How the gold has lost its luster! Even the finest gold has become dull. The sacred gemstones lie scattered in the streets!
1 Oh, oh, oh . . . How gold is treated like dirt, the finest gold thrown out with the garbage, Priceless jewels scattered all over, jewels loose in the gutters.
1 How the gold has become tarnished, the fine gold become dull! The stones of the temple lie scattered at the corner of every street.

Lamentations 4:1 Meaning and Commentary

Lamentations 4:1

How is the gold become dim!
&c.] Or "covered" F2; or hid with rust, dust, or dirt; so that it can scarcely be discerned: [how] is the most fine gold changed!
this may be literally true of the gold of the temple; and so the Targum calls it

``the gold of the house of the sanctuary;''
with which that was overlaid, and many things in it, ( 1 Kings 6:21 1 Kings 6:22 ) ; and was sadly sullied and tarnished with the burning of the temple, and the rubbish of it: its brightness was lost, and its colour changed; but though there may be an allusion to that, it is to be figuratively understood of the people of God; for what is here expressed in parabolical phrases, as Aben Ezra observes, is in ( Lamentations 4:2 ) explained in proper and literal ones: godly and gracious men, there called the precious sons of Zion, are comparable to gold, even the most fine gold; partly because of their habit and dress; gold of Ophir; clothing of wrought gold; the rich robe of Christ's righteousness; which, for its brightness and splendour, is like the finest gold; and is as lasting and durable as that; and in which the saints look like a mass of pure gold, ( Psalms 45:9 Psalms 45:13 ) ; and partly because of the graces of the Spirit in them, which are like gold for their purity, especially when tried; for their value, and the enriching nature of them, and their duration; particularly the graces of faith, hope, love, humility, which are like rows of jewels, and chains of gold, and as ornamental as they; see ( Song of Solomon 1:10 Song of Solomon 1:11 ) ( 1 Peter 1:7 ) ( Revelation 3:18 ) ; as also because of the doctrines of grace received by them, which are more to be desired than gold, than fine gold; and are better than thousands of gold and silver, by reason of their intrinsic worth and value; for their purity and brightness, being tried and purified, and because of their duration, ( Psalms 19:10 ) ( 119:72 ) ( 1 Corinthians 3:12 ) ; as well as on account of the riches of grace and glory they are possessed of, and entitled to: now this, in either of the senses of it, cannot be lost as to substance, only become dim; may lose its brightness and glory, and like gold change its colour, but not its nature; and; this may be the case of good men, comparable to it; when there is a decline in them, with respect to the exercise of grace; faith in Christ and his righteousness is low, hope not lively, and love waxen cold; when there is a veil drawn over the Gospel, a great opposition to it, and a departure from it; or the doctrines of it are not so clearly and consistently preached; and when there is a failure in a holy walk, and conversation becoming it; all which is matter of lamentation: the stones of the sanctuary are poured out in the top of every street;
in the literal sense it may regard the costly stones of the temple, which, when that was destroyed, not only lay in heaps; but many of them, at least, were separated and scattered about, and carried into every corner of the city, and the streets of it, and there lay exposed, neglected, and trampled upon; see ( 1 Kings 5:17 ) ( Mark 13:1 Mark 13:2 ) ; but, in the figurative sense, it designs the people of God; who, though they are taken out of the common quarry and pit of mankind, and are by nature as common stones; yet by the Spirit and grace of God are made living and lively ones, and are hewn and fitted for the spiritual building the church; where they are laid, and are as the stones of a crown, as jewels and precious stones; but when there are animosities, contentions, and divisions among them, so that they disunite, and are scattered from one another, their case is like these stones of the sanctuary; and which is to be lamented. It is by some Jewish writers

F3 interpreted of great personages, as princes, and great men of the earth.
F2 (Mewy) "rubigine obducetur", Montanus; "obtectum [vel] absconditum", Vatablus. So Ben Melech.
F3 Vid. R. Sol. Urbin. Ohel Moed, fol. 50. 1.

Lamentations 4:1 In-Context

1 How the gold has lost its luster, the fine gold become dull! The sacred gems are scattered at every street corner.
2 How the precious children of Zion, once worth their weight in gold, are now considered as pots of clay, the work of a potter’s hands!
3 Even jackals offer their breasts to nurse their young, but my people have become heartless like ostriches in the desert.
4 Because of thirst the infant’s tongue sticks to the roof of its mouth; the children beg for bread, but no one gives it to them.
5 Those who once ate delicacies are destitute in the streets. Those brought up in royal purple now lie on ash heaps.

Cross References 1

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