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Shall the prey be taken from the mighty…
This is an objection to the accomplishment of what is predicted and promised above, taken from the power of the enemy, and his right to detain the people; and are either the words of the nations among whom the Jews were, according to Kimchi, boasting of, and presuming upon, and opposing to what is said, both their might and right, to keep the people in their own hands, bidding as it were defiance to any to attempt to take them from them; or the words of the prophet, in the name of the people, as Aben Ezra, objecting to their deliverance, doubting the effecting of it, or admiring at it: it may be applied to the taking of the Lord's people out of the hands of Satan, who may be said to be "mighty" or "strong", as he appears to be from his nature, a spirit; from his names, the strong man armed, a roaring lion, the great red dragon, leviathan, the piercing serpent…; and from his power and dominion over the evil angels, and over men, both their bodies and souls; and to whom the Lord's own people are a "prey", while they are in a state of nature, as all mankind, and every unconverted man, be; a difficult thing it is to take any out of his hands, and a wonder of grace it is when it is done: or the lawful captive delivered?
justly and lawfully taken captive in war, as the Jews were by the Babylonians: or, "the captivity of the righteous be delivered" F20; that is, either the righteous who were taken captives; or those that took them, who were so in their opinion, at least with respect to the taking of them, doing, as they judged, what was lawful and just. The people of God are in their state of nature led by Satan at his will, and are lawful captives in the judgment of him, and his principalities; and are in reality taken in war by him, and not only led captive by him at his will, but with their own will, and are justly given up unto him. Perhaps all this may be better referred to the people of God being a prey to the Romish antichrist, and detained as a lawful captive by him, and to the difficult and wonderful deliverance of them from him in the latter day; see (Revelation 13:4,7,10) (18:4) . The Targum interprets this and the following verse of the captives of Esau and Ishmael, by whom seem to be meant the Pope and Turk.
The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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