Isaiah 30:24 MEANING

Isaiah 30:24
(24) The oxen likewise and the young asses . . .--It is, perhaps, hardly necessary to remind the reader that the verb "ear" means "plough."

Clean provender.--Literally, salted. The epithet describes what in modern phrase would be the favourite "mash" of the highest class of cattle-feeding, corn mixed with salt or alkaline herbs; and this was to be made, not, as commonly, of inferior barley and chopped straw, but of the finest winnowed grain. That this should be given not to oxen and horses only, but to the lowlier asses, made up the ne plus ultra of plenty.

Verse 24. - The oxen likewise and the young asses that ear the ground; rather, theft till or cultivate the ground. The Hebrew word is generic, and does not apply to "eating" (i.e. ploughing) only. Shall eat clean provender. Delitzsch says that b'lil khamitz is "a mash, composed of oats, barley, and vetches, made more savory with salt and sour vegetables." Mr. Cheyne translates, "Shall eat mixed provender with salt." The general idea is clearly that they shall have for their ordinary food that superior kind of provender which, according to existing practices, was reserved for rare occasions. Winnowed with the shovel. Anciently, winnowing was chiefly effected by tossing the grain into the air with shovels in a draughty place (see Wilkinson,' Ancient Egyptians,' vol. 4. pp. 86, 89, 90). The fan was scarcely in use so early as Isaiah's time. He means by mizreh probably a second instrument for tossing the grain Delitzsch translates, "winnowing-fork."

30:19-26 God's people will soon arrive at the Zion above, and then they will weep no more for ever. Even now they would have more comfort, as well as holiness, if they were more constant in prayer. A famine of bread is not so great a judgment as a famine of the word of God. There are right-hand and left-hand errors; the tempter is busy courting us into by-paths. It is happy if, by the counsels of a faithful minister or friend, or the checks of conscience, and the strivings of God the Spirit, we are set right when doubting, and prevented from going wrong. They shall be cured of their idolatry. To all true penitents sin becomes very hateful. This is shown daily in the conversion of souls, by the power of Divine grace, to the fear and love of God. Abundant means of grace, with the influences of the Holy Spirit, would be extended to places destitute of them. The effect of this should be comfort and joy to the people of God. Light, that is, knowledge, shall increase. This is the light which the gospel brought into the world, and which proclaims healing to the broken-hearted.The oxen likewise and the young asses that ear the ground,.... Or till it; for though these might not be joined together in a yoke, yet they were made use of separately in ploughing land, Deuteronomy 22:10,

shall eat clean provender; the word for "provender" signifies a mixture, such as cattle eat, especially horses, as beans, oats, barley, and fitches, and of which there should be such plenty, that the cattle should eat of it; not of the chaff and husks of these, nor these in their husk and straw, but as cleansed from them, as follows:

which hath been winnowed with the shovel and with the fan: with the former of which the corn was raised up and shook, and with the latter fanned. Now this is expressive of great plenty, that cattle should feed on winnowed corn. The Septuagint indeed render it,

"they shall eat chaff mixed with winnowed barley;''

but if they were to eat chaff with it, there would be no need to winnow it. This may be mystically understood of apostles, and of apostolical men, as Jerom; and of all Gospel preachers, especially in the latter day, who labour in the word and doctrine, and feed upon the pure food of the Gospel themselves, and bring it to others; see 1 Corinthians 9:9, 1 Timothy 5:17.

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