“We do not see our emblems.
There is no longer any prophet.
There is none among us
Who knows how long.
Is the foe to scoff?
Is the enemy to revile your name forever?
Why do you hold back your hand?
Why do you keep your hand in your bosom?”
This is one of the few times when the Israelites seem to be without any leaders. Obviously the king was gone. Their emblems were not on display. There does not seem to be any prophets. No one seemed to know how long this was going to last. How long would the foes scoff at them? How long would they revile the name of God? Why did God keep his hand at this chest instead of striking down these foes? These were very serious questions.
“Your foes have roared
Within your holy place.
They set up their emblems there.
At the upper entrance
They hacked the wooden trellis with axes.
Then they smashed all its carved work
With hatchets and hammers.
They set your sanctuary on fire.
They desecrated the dwelling place of your name.
They said to themselves.
‘We will utterly subdue them.’
All the meeting places of God
In the land.”
Asaph then presented a detailed description of the destruction that took place. The enemies of God roared in God’s holy place. They set up their own emblems within the Temple. At the entrance to the Temple they hacked down the wooden trellis with axes. They smashed all the carved works with hatchets and hammers. Then they set the sanctuary on fire. They manually smashed and hacked away until they set it ablaze. They said to themselves that they had subdued the Israelites because they had burned their Temple and all the other meeting places of God. This might be later since originally there was only one Temple.