Ploughshare (אֵת, eth, Isa 2:4). The ploughshare is a piece of iron, broad but not large, which tips the end of the shaft. So much does it resemble the short sword used by the ancient warriors that it may with very little trouble be converted into that deadly weapon, and when the work of destruction is over, reduced again into its former shape, and applied to the purposes of agriculture. In allusion to the first operation the prophet Joel summons the nations to leave their peaceful employments in the cultivated field, and buckle on their armor: "Beat your ploughshares into swords, and your pruning-hooks into spears" (Joe 3:10). This image the prophet Isaiah has reversed, and then applied to the establishment of that profound and lasting peace which is to bless the Church of Christ in the latter days: "And they shall beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into pruning-hooks; nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war any more." SEE PLOUGH.

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