Heavens/earth = people of Israel: Deu 31:19,30; Isa
WARPED AND CROOKED: "Perverse" (KJV). "Perversion: It
has an unpleasant, unwholesome ring -- and well it might: turning away from a
straightforward, healthy course to deformity and ugliness. It is the natural,
inevitable tendency of our sin-cursed flesh. It is not new, though its modern
victims proclaim it as the wave of the future. It is as old as the vile
Canaanites that Israel was to ruthlessly wipe out to cleanse the land from
filth: as old as the bestial Sodomites whom a holy God burned up in a dreadful
outpouring of righteous wrath: as old as the gross antediluvians who were swept
relentlessly away by the purifying judicial waters to rid God's fair earth of
their moral putridness. And now we have the whole earth sinking rapidly down to
the same state: every moral vice glorified as virtue. But perversion takes many
forms. Man was designed to serve God in total love, total holiness, total
devotion. Anything short of that is the perversion of the flesh. Such selfish
perversion in those who know -- or should know -- better may be more offensive
to God than the ignorant bodily perversion of the dead animal world around us.
We can so sink down from the true original ideal that we can't even see our own
pitiful perversion for what it is. Let us strive every moment to painfully (but
joyfully) work our way back up to where God from the beginning intended the
blessed and noble race of mankind to be" (GVG).
CREATOR: This meaning is confirmed by the Ugaritic (cp
Gen 4:1n; Gen 14:19,22).
The temptation of Israel in the desert // temptation of Christ
in the desert. Note //s between vv 9-20 and Luk 4:1-13.
THE LORD'S PORTION IS HIS PEOPLE: "How are they His? By
His own sovereign choice. He chose them, and set His love upon them. This He did
altogether apart from any goodness in them at the time, or any goodness which He
foresaw in them. He had mercy on whom He would have mercy, and ordained a chosen
company unto eternal life; thus, therefore, are they His by His unconstrained
"They are not only His by choice, but by purchase. He has
bought and paid for them to the utmost farthing, hence about His title there can
be no dispute. Not with corruptible things, as with silver and gold, but with
the precious blood of the Lord Jesus Christ [1Pe 1:18,19], the Lord's portion
has been fully redeemed. There is no mortgage on His estate; no suits can be
raised by opposing claimants, the price was paid in open court, and the Church
is the Lord's freehold for ever. See the blood-mark upon all the chosen,
invisible to human eye, but known to Christ, for 'the Lord knoweth them that are
His'; he forgetteth none of those whom he has redeemed from among men; he counts
the sheep for whom he laid down his life, and remembers well the Church for
which he gave himself.
"They are also his by conquest. What a battle he had in us
before we would be won! How long he laid siege to our hearts! How often he sent
us terms of capitulation! but we barred our gates, and fenced our walls against
him. Do we not remember that glorious hour when he carried our hearts by storm?
When he placed his cross against the wall, and scaled our ramparts, planting on
our strongholds the blood-red flag of his omnipotent mercy? Yes, we are, indeed,
the conquered captives of his omnipotent love. Thus chosen, purchased, and
subdued, the rights of our divine possessor are inalienable: we rejoice that we
never can be our own; and we desire, day by day, to do his will, and to show
forth his glory" (CHS).
THE APPLE OF HIS EYE: In Deu 32:10 and Psa 17:8 lit
means the little man or daughter of the eye: a picture in miniature of one's
self is seen, as in a mirror, when looking into another person's eye. The ref is
then to the pupil, and the surrounding iris.
HOVERS OVER: Brooding, as in Gen 1:2 (sw), over the new
TO CATCH THEM: The method by which eagles teach their
young to fly: the parent forces the fledgling from the nest, and then circles
underneath to catch it and bear it up on outstretched wings if it flounders. See
Lesson, Eagle and its young, the.
HONEY FROM THE ROCK: Bee hives among clefts of rocks
OIL FROM THE FLINTY CRAG: Olive trees grow best among
hard, flinty rock, among which they sink deep roots. Also, presses to extract
oil are carved from rocks: "The rock poured me out rivers of oil" (Job 29:6) (LB
WHICH ARE NOT GODS: "An idol is nothing" (1Co
GODS YOUR FATHERS DID NOT FEAR: "Fear" sw "devil /
he-goat" in Lev 17:7, identifying "shed" ('demons' here) with "seir"
The firstborn nation failed; the firstborn son succeeded (Luk