Karl F. Keil
Commentary on the Old Testament (1875) | Biblical Commentary on the Prophecies of Ezekiel (1876)
Deuteronomy 28:49, 50)
"The Lord would bring against it from afar a barbarous, hardhearted nation, which knew no pity.
"From afar" is still further strengthened by the addition of the words,
"from the end of the earth." The greater the distance off, the more terrible does the foe appear. He flies thence like an eagle, which plunges with violence upon its prey, and carries it off with its claws; and Israel does not understand its language, so as to be able to soften its barbarity, or come to any terms. A people
"firm, hard of face," i.e. upon whom nothing makes an impression (vid. Isa. 1. 7),—a description of the audacity and shamelessness of its appearance (Dan. viii. 23; cf. Prov. vii. 13, xxi. 29), which spares neither old men nor boys. This description no doubt applies to the Chaldeans, who are described as flying eagles in Hab. I. 6 sqq., Jer. xlviii. 4O, xlix. 22, Ezek. xvii. 3, 7, as in the verses before us; but it applies to other enemies of Israel beside these, namely to the great imperial powers generally, the Assyrians, Chaldeans, and Romans, whom the Lord raised up as the executors of His curse upon His rebellious people. Isaiah therefore depicts the Assyrians in a similar manner, namely, as a people with an unintelligible language (chap. v. 267 xxviii. 11, xxxiii. 19), and describes the cruelty of the Medes in chap. xiii. 17, 18, with an unmistakable allusion in ver. 50 of the resent threat." (Keil, 1.442.)
(On Daniel 9:24-27)
"The interpretations may be divided into three principal classes. 1. Most of the church fathers and the older orthodox interpreters find prophesied here the appearance of Christ in the flesh, His death, and the destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans. 2. The majority of the modern interpreters, onthe other hand, refer the whole passage to the time of Antiochus Epiphanes...." (Daniel, p. 336)
(On the Two Olive Trees of Zechariah 4)
"The two sons of oil can only be the two media, anointed with oil, through whom the spiritual and gracious gifts of God were conveyed to the Church of the Lord, namely, the existing representatives of the priesthood and the regal government, who were at that time Joshua, the high priest, and the prince Zerubbabel. These stand by the Lord of the whole earth as the divinely appointed instruments through whom the Lord causes his Spirit to flow into his congregation." (in loc.)
(On the 'Israel of God')
"The tribes of Israel which receive Canaan for a perpetual possession are not the Jewish people converted to Christ, but the Israel of God, i.e., the people of God of the new covenant gathered from among both Jews and Gentiles; and that Canaan in which they are to dwell is not the earthly Canaan or Palestine between the Jordan and the Mediterranean Sea, but the New Testament Canaan, the territory of the kingdom of God, whose boundaries reach from sea to sea, and from the river to the ends of the earth. And the temple upon a very high mountain in the midst of this Canaan in which the Lord is enthroned, and causes the river of the water of life to flow down from his throne over his kingdom, so that the earth produces the tree of life with leaves as medicine for men, and the Dead Sea is filled with fishes and living creatures, is a figurative representation and type of the gracious presence of the Lord in his Church, which is realized, in the present period of the earthly development of the kingdom of heaven, in the form of the Christian Church, in a spiritual and invisible manner, in the indwelling of the Father and the Son through the Holy Spirit in the hearts of believers, and in a spiritual and invisible operation in the Church.. (Bib. Comm on the Prophecies of Ezekiel, vol. ii, p. 425)
WHAT OTHERS HAVE SAID
"Let us not forget that once in the Church's history it was the common belief that John's 1000 years were gone. Dorner bears witness that the Church up to Constantine understood by Antichrist chiefly the heathen state, and to some extent unbelieving Judaism (System iv.,390). Victorinus, a bishop martyred in 303, reckoned the 1000 years from the birth of Christ.
Augustine wrote his magnum opus 'the City of God' with a sort of dim perception of the identity of the Christian Church with the new Jerusalem. Indeed we know that the 1000 years were held to be running by the generations previous to that date, and so intense was their faith that the universal Church was in a ferment of excitement about and shortly after 1000 A.D. in expectation of the outbreak of Satanic influence. Wickliff, the reformer, believed that Satan bad been unbound at the end of the 1000 years, and was intensely active in his day. That this period in Church history is past, or now runs its course, has been the belief of a roll of eminent men too long to be chronicled on our pages of Augustine, Luther, Bossuet, Cocceius, Grotius, Hammond, Hengstenberg, Keil, Moses Stuart, Philippi, Maurice." (Alexander Brown, Great Day of the Lord, p. 216.)
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