The murderer rising with the light killeth the poor and needy, and in the night is as a thief.
The murderer rising with the light,.... The light of the morning, before the sun is risen, about the time the early traveller is set out on his journey, and men go to distant markets to buy and sell goods, and the poor labourer goes forth to his work; then is the time for one that is used to commit robbery and murder to rise from his bed, or from his lurking place, in a cave or a thicket, where he has lain all night, in order to meet with the above persons: and so
killeth the poor and needy; takes away from them the little they have, whether money or provisions, and kills them because they have no more, and that they may not be evidence against him; it may be meant of the poor saints and people of God, whom the wicked slay out of hatred to them:
and in the night is as a thief; kills privately, secretly, at an unawares, as the thief does his work; or the "as" here is not a note of similitude or likeness, but of reality and truth; and so Mr. Broughton renders the words, "and in the night he will be as a thief"; in the morning he is a robber on the highway, and a murderer; all the day he is in his lurking place, in some haunt or another, sleeping or carousing; and when the night comes on, then he acts the part of a thief; in the morning he not only robs, but murders, that he may not be detected; at night he only steals, and not kills, because men are asleep, and see him not.