Their widows are increased to me above the sand of the seas,.... Their husbands being slain; not in the times of Ahaz, when a hundred and twenty thousand men were slain in one day in Judah, by Pekah the son of Remaliah, 2 Chronicles 28:6, as Kimchi thinks; but in the times of Zedekiah, at the siege of Jerusalem, and the taking of it, and in the Babylonish captivity before predicted. The children of Israel were to be as the sand of the sea, and were very numerous; and here the widows are said to be so too, their husbands, who were numerous, being dead; and this, as it was of the Lord, so it was in his sight, and according to his counsel and will. Mention is made of "seas", in the plural, number, there being many in or near Judea, as the Red sea, the sea of Galilee, and the Mediterranean sea:
I have brought upon them against the mother of the young men a spoiler, at noonday; that is he would bring upon the Jews, against the mother of the young men, or mothers of them; for the young men being destroyed by the spoiler, it was against them; a calamity upon them, and a distress unto them, who have generally a tender concern for them. The Targum is,
"against the company of their young men;'
the Jews; or against Jerusalem, the mother city, the metropolis of the nation, full of young men fit for war: or, "against the mother", that is, Jerusalem, a "young man"F5על אם בחור "contra metropolin, juvenem", Junius & Tremellius, De Dieu; "contra matrem", Piscator; "super matrem, juvenem", Cocceius. ; meaning Nebuchadnezzar, who came against Jerusalem in the first year of his reign; and, as some say, in the eighteenth year of his age; and who came not as a thief in the night, but as a spoiler at noonday; not in a secret insidious manner, but openly and with force of arms making his way through the land to Jerusalem, in defiance of the Jews, and in the face of them:
and I have caused him to fall upon it suddenly; that is, upon the city of Jerusalem: for though he came openly, his march was quick, and he was presently at Jerusalem, and laid siege to it at once:
and terrors upon the city; or, "city and terrors"F6עיר ובהלות "civitatem et terrores", Montanus; so Schmidt. ; the city was immediately filled with terrors at the appearance of Nebuchadnezzar and his army. R. Joseph Kimchi interprets it, "an army and terrors", from 1 Samuel 28:16, the Babylonian monarch, at the head of his army, which spread terrors where he came. Some render the word, from Daniel 4:13, "a watcher and terrors"F7"Vigilem, vel vigiles et terrores", Gataker; "vigilias et terrores", Coeceius. : meaning the Chaldean army, called watchers, Jeremiah 4:16. The Targum is,
"I will bring an army upon them suddenly, and destroy their cities;'
it should be rendered "alienation of mind and terrors": from the use of the word, עיר, in the Arabic languageF8Ab "alteravit, mutavit et turbavit", Golius, Castel. Schindler. .