Jeremiah (Ch 51-52)

•November 26, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The Chaldeans, especially under Nebuchadnezzar their king, has been described by God as “the king of Babylon, My servant” in multiple places (Jeremiah 25:9, Jeremiah 27:6, Jeremiah 43:10). So this and the previous chapter contain a long prophecy concerning the destruction of Babylon following their judgement as well.

Jeremiah 51

1 Thus saith the Lord: “Behold, I will raise up against Babylon, and against them that dwell in the midst of them that rise up against Me, a destroying wind. — thus saith the Lord, behold, I will raise up against Babylon… this is not a new prophecy, but a continuation and an enlargement of the former. The Babylonians being the last and most notorious enemies of the Jews, their destruction is further detailed here; and as they were against the Lord’s people the Lord was against them:

— and against them that dwell in the midst of them that rise up against me; that dwell in Babylon, the metropolis of the Chaldeans, the seat and centre of the enemies of God and his people. It is a periphrases of the Chaldeans; and so the Targum renders it, “against the inhabitants of the land of the Chaldeans;”

— a destroying wind; a northern one, the army of the Medes and Persians, which should sweep away all before it. The Targum says, “people that are slayers; whose hearts are lifted up, and are beautiful in stature, and their spirit destroying.”

And will send unto Babylon winnowers that shall fan her, and shall empty her land; for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about. — and I will send unto Babylon farmers that shall fan her, and shall empty her land… Or “strangers that shall fan her” meaning the Medes and Persians, who should be like a strong wind upon the mountains, where corn, having been threshed was fanned and the chaff carried away by the wind; and such would the Chaldeans be in the hand of the Persians, scattered and dispersed among the nations as chaff with the wind and their cities be emptied of inhabitants and of their wealth and riches;

— the Targum says, “I will send against Babylon spoilers, that shall spoil and exhaust the land:”

— for in the day of trouble they shall be against her round about; in the time of the siege they shall surround her on all sides so that none might escape; as Babylon had been a fanner of the Lord’s people, now she should be fanned herself and stripped of all she had.

Against him that bendeth let the archer bend his bow, and against him that lifteth himself up in his brigandine; and spare ye not her young men; destroy ye utterly all her host. — against him that bendeth let the archer bend his bow… these are either the words of the Lord to the Medes and Persians, to the archers among them, to bend their bows and level their arrows against the Chaldeans who had bent their bows and shot their arrows against others; or of the Medes and Persians stirring up one another to draw their bows and fight manfully against the enemy:

— and against him that lifteth up himself in his brigandine; or coat of mail; that swaggers about it, proud of it and putting his confidence in it as if out of all danger. The sense is, that they should direct their arrows both against those that were more lightly or more heavily armed; since by them they might do execution among the one and the other:

— and spare ye not her young men; because of their youth, beauty and strength: destroy ye utterly all her host; her whole army, whether officers or common soldiers; or let them be accoutred in what manner they will. The Targum says “consume all her substance.”

Thus the slain shall fall in the land of the Chaldeans, and they that are thrust through in her streets. — thus the slain shall fall in the land of the Chaldeans… by the sword or by the arrows and darts of the Medes and Persians:and they that are thrust through in her streets; either by the one or by the other, especially the latter since they only are mentioned.

For Israel hath not been forsaken, nor Judah by his God, by the Lord of hosts, though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel.” — though their land was filled with sin against the Holy One of Israel, rather, “but the land of the Chaldeans is filled with guilt,” because they refused to accept the true God in spite of the many manifestations of His power and glory in their midst as brought to their attention, for instance, through Daniel and his friends. Therefore the Lord addresses Himself to the members of His chosen people living in Babylon, urging the proper behavior at the time of Babylon’s downfall.

Flee out of the midst of Babylon, and deliver every man his soul; be not cut off in her iniquity, for this is the time of the Lord’S vengeance; He will render unto her a recompense. — flee out of the midst of Babylon and deliver every man his soul, not only his physical life, but his spiritual life as well; be not cut off in her iniquity, by taking part in the idolatry which brought destruction upon her; for this is the time of the Lord’s vengeance; He will render unto her a recompense. Note the contrast between human transgression on the one hand and the righteous punishment of the Lord on the other. This is brought out most strongly by the picture of the golden cup.

Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord’S hand, that made all the earth drunken; the nations have drunk of her wine; therefore the nations are mad. — Babylon hath been a golden cup in the Lord’s hand, a nation noted for power and glory; gold, denoting the grandeur, splendour and riches of the empire, all this due to the Lord’s blessing that made all the earth drunken, drawn the nations of the earth into idolatry, and other sins which were as poison in a golden cup, in pouring out the wine of His wrath upon all whom He desired to punish; the nations have drunken of her wine; therefore the nations are mad, intoxicated, bereft of reason, bound for destruction.

Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed: Howl for her! Take balm for her pain; if so be she may be healed. — Babylon is suddenly fallen and destroyed… Or “broken” even into shivers, as a cup is; for when it had been used to answer the purposes designed by the Lord, he let it fall cut of his hands at once and it was broken; or rather he dashed it in pieces as a potter’s vessel. The destruction of Babylon was brought about in a very short time, considering the strength of it; and was unexpected by its inhabitants and by the nations round about; but when it was come it was irreparable: so the destruction of mystical Babylon will be in one hour, and it will be an utter and entire destruction, Revelation 18:8.

We woud have healed Babylon, but she is not healed. Forsake her, and let us go every one into his own country, for her judgement reacheth unto heaven and is lifted up even to the skies.

10 The Lord hath brought forth our righteousness; come, and let us declare in Zion the work of the Lord our God.

11 Make bright the arrows! Gather the shields! The Lord hath raised up the spirit of the kings of the Medes; for His device is against Babylon to destroy it, because it is the vengeance of the Lord, the vengeance of His temple.

12 Set up the standard upon the walls of Babylon! Make the watch strong! Set up the watchmen! Prepare the ambushes! For the Lord hath both devised and done that which He spoke against the inhabitants of Babylon. — prepare the ambushes; or “lies in wait” to second or relieve those on the walls upon occasion; or seize unawares the besiegers, should they attempt to scale the walls and enter the city.

13 O thou that dwellest upon many waters, abundant in treasures, thine end is come, and the measure of thy covetousness. — O thou that dwellest upon many waters… here Babylon is addressed either by the Lord or by the prophet; who is described by her, situation, which was by the great river Euphrates; which being branched out into several canals or rivers, both ran through it and encompassed it; hence mention is made of the rivers of Babylon, Psalms 137:1; and a fit emblem this city was of mystical Babylon, which is also said to sit on many waters, interpreted as of many people and nations, Revelation 17:1;

— thine end is come, and the measure of thy covetousness; this flourishing city was now near its end and with it the whole Babylonish monarchy;

— the Targum says, “the day of thy destruction is come, and the time of the visitation of thy wickedness.”

14 The Lord of hosts hath sworn by Himself, saying, “Surely I will fill thee with men, as with caterpillars, and they shall lift up a shout against thee.”

15 He hath made the earth by His power; He hath established the world by His wisdom, and hath stretched out the heaven by His understanding.

16 When He uttereth His voice there is a multitude of waters in the heavens, and He causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth. He maketh lightnings with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of His treasures.

17 Every man is brutish by his knowledge; every founder is confounded by the graven image; for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.

18 They are vanity, the work of errors; in the time of their visitation they shall perish.

19 The portion of Jacob is not like them, for He is the former of all things; and Israel is the rod of His inheritance; the Lord of Hosts is His name.

20 “Thou art My battleax and weapons of war; for with thee will I break in pieces the nations, and with thee will I destroy kingdoms. — for with thee will I break in pieces the nations and with thee will I destroy kingdoms; or “with thee I have broke in pieces and have destroyed” as the nations and kingdoms of Judea, Egypt, Edom, Moab, Ammon and others.

21 And with thee will I break in pieces the horse and his rider; and with thee will I break in pieces the chariot and his rider.

22 With thee also will I break in pieces man and woman; and with thee will I break in pieces old and young; and with thee will I break in pieces the young man and the maid.

23 I will also break in pieces with thee the shepherd and his flock; and with thee will I break in pieces the husbandman and his yoke of oxen; and with thee will I break in pieces captains and rulers.

24 And I will render unto Babylon and to all the inhabitants of Chaldea all their evil that they have done in Zion in your sight,” saith the Lord. — all their evil that they have done in Zion, in your sight, saith the Lord; the sense is, that for all the evil the Chaldeans had done in Judea; the ravages they had made there, the blood they had shed and the desolation they had made; and particularly for what they had done in Jerusalem and especially in the temple, burning, spoiling and profaning; God would now righteously punish them and retaliate all this evil on them; and which should be done publicly before all the nations of the world and particularly in the sight of God’s own people: for this phrase, “in your sight” does not refer to the evils done in Zion but to the recompense that should be made for them.

25 “Behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain,” saith the Lord, who destroyest all the earth; “and I will stretch out Mine hand upon thee, and roll thee down from the rocks, and will make thee a burnt mountain. — behold, I am against thee, O destroying mountain, saith the Lord; Babylon was situated in a plain, but is called a mountain here; because a mountain being a strong nation, even an empire; a hill being a smaller nation;

— and I will stretch out mine hand upon thee: in a way of vindictive wrath, pouring it out upon her and inflicting his judgements on her; laying hold on and seizing her in a furious manner as a man does his enemy when he has found him.

26 And they shall not take from thee a stone for a corner, nor a stone for foundations; but thou shalt be desolate for ever,” saith the Lord.

27 Set ye up a standard in the land! Blow the trumpet among the nations! Prepare the nations against her; call together against her the kingdoms of Ararat, Minni, and Ashkenaz. Appoint a captain against her; cause the horses to come up as the rough caterpillars.

28 Prepare against her the nations with the kings of the Medes, the captains thereof, and all the rulers thereof, and all the land of his dominion.

29 And the land shall tremble and sorrow; for every purpose of the Lord shall be performed against Babylon, to make the land of Babylon a desolation, without an inhabitant.

30 The mighty men of Babylon have forborne to fight, they have remained in their strongholds; their might hath failed, they have become as women; they have burned her dwelling places, her bars are broken. — her bars are broken; the bars of the gates of the city, or of the palaces of the king and nobles and of the houses of the people, by the soldiers to get the plunder; see Isaiah 45:1.

31 One courier shall run to meet another, and one messenger to meet another to show the king of Babylon that his city is taken at one end,

32 and that the passages are stopped, and the reeds they have burned with fire, and the men of war are affrighted.

33 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “The daughter of Babylon is like a threshing floor; it is time to thresh her; yet a little while and the time of her harvest shall come.”

34 “Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon hath devoured me; he hath crushed me, he hath made me an empty vessel. He hath swallowed me up like a dragon; he hath filled his belly with my delicacies, he hath cast me out. — he hath swallowed me up like a dragon; or “whale” or any large fish which swallow the lesser ones whole. The allusion is to the large swallow of dragons which is sometimes represented as almost beyond all belief.

35 The violence done to me and to my flesh be upon Babylon,” shall the inhabitant of Zion say; “and my blood upon the inhabitants of Chaldea!” shall Jerusalem say.

36 Therefore thus saith the Lord: “Behold, I will plead thy cause, and take vengeance for thee; and I will dry up her sea, and make her springs dry.

37 And Babylon shall become heaps, a dwelling place for dragons, an astonishment and a hissing, without an inhabitant.

38 They shall roar together like lions; they shall yell as lions’ whelps.

39 In their heat I will make their feasts, and I will make them drunken, that they may rejoice, and sleep a perpetual sleep and not wake,” saith the Lord.

40 “I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter, like rams with hegoats. — I will bring them down like lambs to the slaughter… to the place of slaughter; who shall be able to make no more resistance than lambs. This explains what is meant by being made drunk, and sleeping a perpetual sleep, even destruction and death:

— like rams with he goats; denoting the promiscuous destruction of their princes and common people together.

41 “How Sheshach is taken! And how the praise of the whole earth is surprised! How Babylon has become an astonishment among the nations! — how is Sheshach taken!.. not the city Shushan but Babylon as is plain from a following clause; and so the Targum says, “how is Babylon subdued!”

— how is Babylon become an astonishment among the nations! or “a desolation” and indeed it had being a desolation was the reason of its being an astonishment among the nations; who were amazed to see so strong, rich and splendid a city brought to ruin in a very short time.

42 The sea has come up upon Babylon; she is covered with the multitude of the waves thereof.

43 Her cities are a desolation, a dry land and a wilderness, a land wherein no man dwelleth, neither doth any son of man pass thereby.

44 And I will punish Bel in Babylon, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up; and the nations shall not flow together any more unto him. Yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall. — and I will punish Bel in Babylon, the chief deity of the Babylonians, and I will bring forth out of his mouth that which he hath swallowed up, taking away from him what he had robbed and devoured through the hands of those who worshiped him; and the nations shall not flow together any more unto him, flocking to Babylon in streams to consecrate their treasures to him; yea, the wall of Babylon shall fall so that the city would be open to all enemies. The destruction of Babylon thus being decided, the people of God are admonished to leave its confines.

45 “My people, go ye out of the midst of her, and deliver ye every man his soul from the fierce anger of the Lord. — my people, go ye out of the midst of her… this is a call of the Jews to go out of Babylon, not before the taking of the city by Cyrus; but when he should issue out a proclamation, giving them liberty to return to their own land; which many of them, being well settled in Babylon, would not be ready to accept the offer, but choose to continue to live there; wherefore they are urged to depart from thence, because of the danger they would be exposed unto their idols; for though the city was not destroyed by Cyrus upon his taking it, yet it was by Darius Hystaspes some time after. The same call is given to the people of God to come out of mystical Babylon, Revelation 18:4.

46 And lest your heart faint and ye fear for the rumor that shall be heard in the land—a rumor shall both come one year, and after that in another year shall come a rumor and violence in the land, ruler against ruler”

47 therefore, behold, the days come, that I will do judgement upon the graven images of Babylon; and her whole land shall be confounded, and all her slain shall fall in the midst of her.

48 Then the heaven and the earth, and all that is therein, shall sing for Babylon, for the despoilers shall come unto her from the north,” saith the Lord. — then the heaven and the earth and all that is therein shall sing for Babylon, rejoicing over her fall; for the spoilers shall come unto her from the North, saith the Lord, and the sentence executed by him is the cause of their jubilation.

49 As Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel to fall, so at Babylon shall fall the slain of all the earth. — as Babylon hath caused the slain of Israel… in Jerusalem, when that city was taken the Chaldeans, and destroyed:

— so at Babylon shall all the slain of all the earth; or “land” that is, the land of Chaldea; the inhabitants of which fled to Babylon upon the invasion of the Medes and Persians, both for their own safety, and the defence of that city; and where being slain they fell; and this was a just judgement of them for what they had done to Israel. 

50 Ye that have escaped the sword, go away; stand not still. Remember the Lord afar off, and let Jerusalem come into your mind.

51 We are confounded because we have heard reproach; shame hath covered our faces, for strangers are come into the sanctuaries of the Lord’S house.

52 “Therefore behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will do judgement upon her graven images; and through all her land the wounded shall groan.

53 Though Babylon should mount up to heaven, and though she should fortify the height of her strength, yet from Me shall despoilers come unto her,” saith the Lord.

54 A sound of a cry cometh from Babylon, and great destruction from the land of the Chaldeans,

55 because the Lord hath despoiled Babylon, and destroyed out of her the great voice. When her waves do roar like great waters, a noise of their voice is uttered,

56 because the despoiler is come upon her, even upon Babylon, and her mighty men are taken; every one of their bows is broken. For the Lord God of recompenses shall surely requite.

57 “And I will make drunk her princes and her wise men, her captains and her rulers and her mighty men; and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep and not wake,” saith the King, whose name is the Lord of Hosts. — and I will make drunk her princes and her wise men, the counselors of the kingdom, her captains and her rulers and her mighty men, all those who were at the head of the nation, both in peace and in war; and they shall sleep a perpetual sleep, and not wake, namely, the sleep of death, saith the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts.

58 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “The broad walls of Babylon shall be utterly broken, and her high gates shall be burned with fire; and the people shall labor in vain, and the folk in the fire; and they shall be weary.”

59 The word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah into Babylon in the fourth year of his reign. And this Seraiah was a quiet prince. — the word which Jeremiah the prophet commanded Seraiah… the order the prophet gave this prince to take a copy of it with him to Babylon and there read it and cast it into the river Euphrates, with a stone bound it. Of this Seraiah we read nowhere else: he is further described as;

— the son of Neriah, when he went with Zedekiah the king of Judah into Babylon, in the fourth year of his reign; the Jews say that Zedekiah, in the fourth year of his reign, went to Babylon, to reconcile himself to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and took Seraiah with him and returned and came to his kingdom in Jerusalem; but we have no account in Scripture of any such journey he took. 

60 So Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon, even all these words that are written against Babylon. — so Jeremiah wrote in a book all the evil that should come upon Babylon… the evil of punishment predicted and threatened: this he delivered, not by word of mouth to Seraiah to relate when he came to Babylon; but he wrote it in a book for him to read and reread; and he wrote it himself; Baruch, his scribe, not one who transcripted for him here:

— even all these words that are written against Babylon; in this and the preceding chapter: this book written by Jeremiah was a copy of them.

61 And Jeremiah said to Seraiah, “When thou comest to Babylon and shalt see, and shalt read all these words,

62 then shalt thou say, ‘O Lord, Thou hast spoken against this place to cut it off, that none shall remain in it, neither man nor beast, but that it shall be desolate for ever.’

63 And it shall be, when thou hast made an end of reading this book, that thou shalt bind a stone to it and cast it into the midst of the Euphrates. — that thou shalt bind a stone to it, and cast it into the midst of Euphrates; a river by which Babylon was situated. The book being read was to be rolled up again and then a stone tied to it and cast into the middle of the river, where the waters were deepest and from whence it could not be taken up; and this was a sign confirming the above prophecy; compare with this what was done by a mighty angel concerning mystical Babylon, in which there is an allusion to this, Revelation 18:21.

64 And thou shalt say, ‘Thus shall Babylon sink, and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her; and they shall be weary.’” Thus far are the words of Jeremiah. — thus shall Babylon sink and shall not rise from the evil that I will bring upon her; as this book, with the stone bound to it does, and shall no more rise than that can; the evil of punishment brought on Babylon will sink her to such a degree that she will never be able to bear up under it; but be so depressed by it as never to rise to her former state and grandeur any more.

Jeremiah 52

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

1 Zedekiah was one and twenty years old when he began to reign, and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Hamutal the daughter of Jeremiah of Libnah. — and he reigned eleven years in Jerusalem; so that he was thirty two years of age when he was taken and carried captive into Babylon.

And he did that which was evil in the eyes of the Lord, according to all that Jehoiakim had done. — and he did that which was evil in the eyes of the Lord… though we do not read of any idolatry he was guilty of; yet he was disobedient to the word of the Lord, and did not humble himself before Jeremiah the prophet of the Lord, that spoke in his name; and particularly he rebelled against the king of Babylon and violated the oath he made to him, II Chronicles 36:12.

For because of the anger of the Lord it came to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, till He had cast them out from His presence, that Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon. — for through the anger of the Lord it came to pass in Jerusalem and Judah, His wrath over their idolatry causing Him to cast them from His presence and to permit the rebellion of Zedekiah, which resulted in the final overthrow of the southern kingdom, till He had cast them out from His presence, (the Shekinah left the temple, out of Jerusalem and finally out of the land of Judea) that Zedekiah rebelled against the king of Babylon.

And it came to pass in the ninth year of his reign, in the tenth month, on the tenth day of the month, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came — he and all his army — against Jerusalem, and encamped against it and built forts against it round about. — this would be around 588 BC.

So the city was besieged unto the eleventh year of King Zedekiah. — the siege continued about eighteen months; from the tenth day of the tenth month, in the ninth of Zedekiah’s reign to the ninth day of the fourth month, in the eleventh year of his reign; from 588 to 586 BC.

And in the fourth month, on the ninth day of the month, the famine was sore in the city, so that there was no bread for the people of the land. — the month Tammuz, which is part of June and part of July; hence the fast of the fourth month, for the taking of the city, Zechariah 8:19; in the year 586 BC.

Then the city was broken into, and all the men of war fled and went forth out of the city by night by the way of the gate between the two walls, which was by the king’s garden (now the Chaldeans were by the city round about), and they went by the way of the plain.

But the army of the Chaldeans pursued after the king, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and all his army was scattered from him.

Then they took the king and carried him up unto the king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath, where he gave judgement upon him.

10 And the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes; he slew also all the princes of Judah in Riblah. — and the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes… Or, however, ordered them to be slain;

— he slew also all the princes of Judah in Riblah; who together with the king’s sons were taken with him; or, however, were taken in Jerusalem and brought to Riblah; which of them is not certain, very probably the former.

11 Then he put out the eyes of Zedekiah. And the king of Babylon bound him in chains and carried him to Babylon, and put him in prison till the day of his death.

12 Now in the fifth month, on the tenth day of the month, which was the nineteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, came Nebuzaradan, captain of the guard, who served the king of Babylon, into Jerusalem.

13 And he burned the house of the Lord, and the king’s house; and all the houses of Jerusalem and all the houses of the great men burned he with fire. — and burnt the house of the Lord… the temple built by Solomon, after it had stood four hundred and seventy years, six months and ten days, according to Josephus: but the Jews say it stood but four hundred ten years;

— and all the houses of the great men burnt he with fire; of the princes and nobles in Jerusalem; it is in the singular number, “and every house of the great one” or “every great house.” Rashi interprets it of the synagogue, where prayer was magnified; but others, understood it of the schools, where the law was magnified.

14 And all the army of the Chaldeans who were with the captain of the guard broke down all the walls of Jerusalem round about.

15 Then Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried away captive certain of the poor of the people and the residue of the people who remained in the city, and those who fell away, who fell to the king of Babylon, and the rest of the multitude.

16 But Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, left certain of the poor of the land for vinedressers and for husbandmen. — but Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left certain of the poor of the land… of the land of Judea who lived in the country and had not been concerned in defending the city against the Chaldeans:

— for vinedressers and for husbandmen; to look after the vineyards and fields and dress and manure them, that the king of Babylon might receive some tributes in return by the conquest he had made.

17 Also the pillars of brass that were in the house of the Lord, and the bases, and the brazen sea that was in the house of the Lord, the Chaldeans broke, and carried all their brass to Babylon. — also the pillars of brass that were in the house of the Lord, on either aide of the main entrance of the Sanctuary, 1 Kings 7:15, and the bases and the brazen sea that was in the house of the Lord, the Chaldeans brake, in order to make all these pieces fit for transportation and carried all the brass of them to Babylon.

18 The cauldrons also, and the shovels, and the snuffers, and the bowls, and the spoons, and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away. — the cauldrons also, large pots used for sacrificial worship and the shovels and the snuffers and the bowls and the spoons, vessels for incense and all the vessels of brass wherewith they ministered, took they away, all those used for the altar of burnt offerings in the Court of the Priests.

19 And the basins, and the firepans, and the bowls, and the cauldrons, and the candlesticks, and the spoons, and the cups — that which was of gold in gold and that which was of silver in silver — took the captain of the guard away. — and the basins and the firepans and the bowls and the cauldrons and the candlesticks and the spoons and the cups, all these used chiefly in the ministrations of the Holy Place; that which was of gold in gold and that which was of silver in silver, in either case of solid metal, not of some cheap alloy or merely plated, took the captain of the guard away.

20 The two pillars, one sea, and twelve brazen bulls that were under the bases, which King Solomon had made in the house of the Lord — the brass of all these vessels was beyond weighing. — the two pillars, one sea and twelve brazen bulls that were under the bases, 1 Kings 7:23:, which King Solomon had made in the house of the Lord. The brass of all these vessels was without weight, its mass beyond calculation.

21 And concerning the pillars, the height of one pillar was eighteen cubits, and a fillet of twelve cubits did compass it, and the thickness thereof was four fingers; it was hollow. — and concerning the pillars, the height of one pillar was eighteen cubits, and a fillet of twelve cubits did compass it, that in round numbers, being the circumference of either of the pillars and the thickness thereof was four fingers; it was hollow. The thirty-five cubits of II Chronicles 3:15 either refer to a different cubit, or they give the sum total of both pillars less the bases.

22 And a capital of brass was upon it; and the height of one capital was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the capitals round about, all of brass. The second pillar also and the pomegranates were like unto these. — and a capital of brass was upon it and the height of its upper part, where it curved away from the shaft, was five cubits, with network and pomegranates upon the ters round about, all of brass, in the nature of ornaments in chains or festoons. The second pillar also and the pomegranates were like unto these.

23 And there were ninety and six pomegranates on a side; and all the pomegranates upon the network were a hundred round about.

24 And the captain of the guard took Seraiah the chief priest, and Zephaniah the second priest, and the three keepers of the door.

25 He took also out of the city a eunuch who had the charge of the men of war, and seven men from those who were near the king’s person who were found in the city, and the principal scribe of the host who mustered the people of the land, and threescore men of the people of the land who were found in the midst of the city.

26 So Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, took them and brought them to the king of Babylon at Riblah.

27 And the king of Babylon smote them and put them to death at Riblah in the land of Hamath. Thus Judah was carried away captive out of his own land.

28 These are the people whom Nebuchadnezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year, three thousand Jews and three and twenty; — these are the people whom Nebuchadnezzar carried away captive: in the seventh year, at the first captivity under Jehoiachin, three thousand Jews and three and twenty, these being of the tribe of Judah only, those from other tribes being more than twice as many;

29 in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty and two persons; — in the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar, after his actual accession to the throne, but nineteen years after he had gotten into power, II Kings 25:8, he carried away captive from Jerusalem eight hundred thirty and two persons;

30 in the three and twentieth year of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty and five persons: all the persons were four thousand and six hundred. — in the three and twentieth year of Nebuchadnezzar, Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, carried away captive of the Jews seven hundred forty and five persons; all the persons evidently of the tribe of Judah alone, not including any of the other tribes who had sought and found refuge in Jerusalem since the fall of the northern kingdom, were four thousand and six hundred, not including the general multitude and the women and children.

31 And it came to pass in the seven and thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin king of Judah, in the twelfth month, on the five and twentieth day of the month, that Evilmerodach king of Babylon, in the first year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin king of Judah and brought him forth out of prison; — and it came to pass in the seven-and-thirtieth year of the captivity of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, in the twelfth month, in the five and twentieth day of the month, the decree being issued on that day, although it was not carried out till two days later, II Kings 25:27, that Evilmerodach, king of Babylon, son and successor of Nebuchadnezzar, in the first year of his reign, lifted up the head of Jehoiachin, king of Judah, and brought him forth out of prison, delivering him from the special bondage in which he had been held all these years,

32 and he spoke kindly unto him, and set his throne above the throne of the kings who were with him in Babylon, — and spoke kindly unto him and set his throne above the throne of the king’s that were with him in Babylon, captive monarchs of other conquered nations,

33 and changed his prison garments. And Jehoiachin continually ate bread before him all the days of his life.

34 And for his diet, there was a continual diet given him by the king of Babylon, every day a portion until the day of his death, all the days of his life. — every day a portion, until the day of his death, all the days of his life; that is, of Jeconiah’s; how long he lived after this is not known; he was now fifty five years of age and cannot be thought to have lived a great while after, having been imprisoned so many years; and it is certain he did not live to the return from the captivity. Of the death of Zedekiah we have no account, only that he died in prison. The Jews say he died at this very time, when Jeconiah was advanced. The account here given of Jeconiah has led some to conclude that this chapter was not written by Jeremiah; since it cannot be well thought he should live so long as to the death of this prince; and besides had given an account of the destruction of Jerusalem in the thirty ninth chapter, which he would hardly repeat: though that he might do, partly for the sake of new circumstances here added; and partly as an introduction to the book of the Lamentations, which follows the book of Jeremiah. Amen!

Jeremiah (Ch 49-50)

•November 24, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 49 contains prophecies concerning the judgments of God on several nations and kingdoms, chiefly bordering on the land of Israel; on the Ammonites; Edomites, Edom, which lay south to the land of Israel; the kingdom of Damascus, or the Syrians, the Kedarenes or Arabians, and on the Elamites or Persians.

Jeremiah 49

1 Concerning the Ammonites, thus saith the Lord: “Hath Israel no sons? Hath he no heir? Why then doth their king inherit Gad, and his people dwell in his cities? — hath Israel no sons? hath he no heir? certainly he has, and who ought to possess the land; this is not speaking of the ten tribes, sometimes called Israel, for these had been long ago carried captive, and left no heirs of their tribes; but of all Israel, including the tribes of Judah and Benjamin; who though their brethren and being next in blood were the lawful heirs of their lands and possessions;

— why then doth their king inherit Gad? that part of the land of Israel which belonged to the tribe of Gad; this, when the ten tribes were carried captive by the king of Assyria and the Gadites among the rest was seized on by the Ammonites with their king at the head of them;

1 Kings 11:5; the Ammonites having got possession of the land set up their idol in it where their temples were built for him and altars erected and sacrifices offered to him, so that he might be said to inherit it; and which must be very offensive to, and highly resented by, the God of Israel.

Therefore behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will cause an alarm of war to be heard in Rabbah of the Ammonites; and it shall be a desolate heap, and her daughters shall be burned with fire; then shall Israel be heir unto them that were his heirs,” saith the Lord. — therefore behold the days come, saith the Lord… Or, “are coming” as they did in a very little time after this prophecy;

— that I will cause an alarm of war to be heard in Rabbah of the Ammonites; the metropolis of the Ammonites; it was their royal city in the times of David; this the Lord threatens with the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war or the noise of warriors as the Targum says; the Chaldean army under Nebuchadnezzar, who, about five years after the destruction of Jerusalem subdued the Ammonites;

— and it shall be a desolate heap; be utterly destroyed; its walls broken down, and houses demolished, and made a heap of rubbish:

— her daughters shall be burnt with fire: Rabbah was the mother city, and the other cities of the Ammonites were her daughters, which are threatened to be destroyed with fire by the enemy; or it may mean the villages round Rabbah, it being usual in Scripture for villages to be called the daughters of cities; so the Targum paraphrases it, “the inhabitants of her villages shall be burnt with fire,”

— then shall Israel be heirs unto them that were his heirs, saith the Lord: that is, shall inherit their land again which the Ammonites pretended to be the lawful heirs of; yea, not only possess their own land but the land of Ammon too: this was fulfilled not immediately upon the destruction of Ammon, but in part upon the return of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity when they repossessed their own country; and partly in the times of the Maccabees, when they subdued the Ammonites.

“Howl, O Heshbon, for Ai is despoiled! Cry, ye daughters of Rabbah; gird you with sackcloth! Lament, and run to and fro by the hedges; for their king shall go into captivity, and his priests and his princes together. — howl, O Heshbon, at that time occupied by the Ammonites; for Ai is spoiled, had already been subdued by the invaders; cry, ye daughters of Rabbah, the towns and villages near the capital, gird you with sackcloth, in token of deep mourning; 

— lament and run to and fro by the hedges in the fenced encampment, such as were quickly erected out in the open fields, since the cities no longer offered any protection; for their king shall go into captivity, in this case their idol Melchom with whom the heathen king was pleased to identify himself and his priests and princes together.

Why gloriest thou in the valleys, thy flowing valley, O backsliding daughter, that trusted in her treasures, saying, ‘Who shall come unto me?’ — wherefore gloriest thou in the valleys, thy flowing valley, flowing with abundance, with milk and honey, O backsliding daughter? so called because the children of Ammon had denied their descent from Lot and had turned to idolatry;

— that trusted in her treasures, in her wealth of resources and goods, saying, Who shall come unto me? namely, in a hostile attack. The Ammonites boasted that no enemy could successfully launch a campaign against their land.

Behold, I will bring a fear upon thee,” saith the Lord God of hosts, “from all those that be about thee; and ye shall be driven out, every man straight forth, and none shall gather up him that wandereth. — behold, I will bring a fear upon thee, saith the Lord God of hosts, from all those that be about thee, whose misfortune and overthrow would bring terror upon them; and ye shall be driven out, every man, right forth, straight ahead, without turning; 

— and none shall gather up him that wandereth, make any attempt to bring about so much as a semblance of order among the scattered fugitives. According to secular accounts the overthrow of Ammon took place in the fifth year after the destruction of Jerusalem, after King Baalis had executed the murder of Gedaliah, Jeremiah 40:14.

And afterward I will bring back the captives of the children of Ammon,” saith the Lord. — and afterwards I will bring again the captivity of the children of Ammon, saith the Lord. Perhaps by Cyrus; for, in the times of Judas Maccabeus, the children of Ammon were again a large and mighty people, “Afterward he passed over to the children of Ammon, where he found a mighty power and much people, with Timotheus their captain” (1 Maccabees 5:6).

Concerning Edom, thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Is wisdom no more in Teman? Is counsel perished from the prudent? Is their wisdom vanished? — concerning Edom, thus saith the Lord of hosts… Or, “unto Edom” thus saith the Lord; or “against Edom” all which is true, as observed on Jeremiah 49:1; meaning the Idumeans, the posterity of Esau, who was called Edom; Herod the Great, an Idumean, king over Judea; was a great example of the Idumean cruelty over the Jews; which could be as yet future, points at the destruction of Rome and the Romans, who with the Jews frequently go by the name of Edom; 

— is wisdom no more in Teman? a city in Edom which had its name from Teman, a grandson of Esau, Genesis 36:11; whose descendants were called Temanites; one of which was Eliphaz, a friend of Job’s, Job 2:11; it was a principal city, famous for men of wisdom; such an one was the person just mentioned: perhaps the grand senate of the country, or the chief counsellors, dwelt here; where schemes were formed for the good of the country in times of war or peace; or schools for the instruction of various arts and sciences; and which had continued to this time but now would be no more;

— the Targum says, “is there no more wisdom in the south?” but Rashi interprets it as Edom, which lay south to the land of Israel; “And your south side shall be from the desert of Zin close by the side of Edom” (Numbers 34:3).

Flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan; for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him, at the time that I will visit him. — flee ye, turn back, dwell deep, O inhabitants of Dedan… another city in Idumea; though some take it to be a country in Arabia, bordering on Edom, and subdued by the Edomites: the inhabitants of this place are advised to “flee” for their lives;

— since the enemy was just upon them; and “turn back” lest they should fall into his hands; and hide themselves in some deep caverns of the earth, in holes, and dens of rocks and such like places. It is a prophecy that they should flee from and turn their backs on their enemies and betake themselves to some very secret places for safety;

— for I will bring the calamity of Esau upon him; which was determined concerning him, threatened to him and was his just desert; even the utter destruction of the whole land:

— the time of his visitation; the time fixed to visit him in a way of wrath and punishment to come.

9 If grape-gatherers come to thee, would they not leave some gleaning grapes? If thieves by night, they will destroy till they have enough. — the Targum renders it, “if thy spoilers, as grape gatherers, should come to thee,” would not they leave some for the poor to glean? certainly they would and not take every cluster;

— if thieves by night, they will destroy till they have enough who break into houses by night, these will eat and drink as much as is sufficient, and carry off what serves their turn; but they seldom take away everything they find in a house; they leave some things behind them; but it is suggested that the Chaldeans should take away all from the Edomites and leave them nothing; see Obadiah 1:5.

10 But I have made Esau bare; I have uncovered his secret places, and he shall not be able to hide himself; his seed is despoiled, and his brethren and his neighbors, and he is no more. — but I have made Esau bare… by the hand of the Chaldeans; stripped him of everything that is valuable; of his cities, castles, villages, people, wealth and treasure:

— I have uncovered his secret places; where either his substance was hid, or his people; these were made known to their enemies, who seized on both:

— and he shall not be able to hide himself; even in his deep places in the caves and dens of the earth, but his enemy shall find him out:

— his seed is spoiled and his brethren and his neighbours, his children, as the Targum says; and his brethren, the Ammonites and Moabites; and his neighbours, the Philistines; or as many as were with him and belonged unto him:

— and he is not: his kingdom is not; he is no more a people and nation, but all destroyed by the sword or carried captive; or there should be none left of his brethren, and neighbours, and friends to say to him what follows: “leave thy fatherless children.”

11 Leave thy fatherless children; I will preserve them alive; and let thy widows trust in Me.” — the Targum takes them to be an address to the people of Israel, paraphrasing them thus: “you, O house of Israel, your orphans shall not be left, I will sustain them and your widows shall trust in my word.”

12 For thus saith the Lord: “Behold, they whose judgement was not to drink of the cup have assuredly drunk. And art thou he that shall altogether go unpunished? Thou shalt not go unpunished, but thou shalt surely drink of it. — behold, they whose judgement was not to drink of the cup have assuredly drunken; meaning some of the other nations, who had not dealt so ill with the Jews as the Edomites had, at least their sins were not so aggravated as theirs were in a comparative sense; for otherwise it was but just that they should be treated in the manner they were; since they were not so guilty as these were;

— and art thou he that shalt altogether go unpunished? if lesser sinners are not let go free, how should it be thought that greater ones should? and especially if judgement had begun at God’s own people, the wicked Edomite could not expect to escape;

— thou shalt not go unpunished, but thou shalt surely drink of it; the cup of wrath and vengeance; or have the just punishment inflicted on them threatened them.

13 For I have sworn by Myself,” saith the Lord, “that Bozrah shall become a desolation, a reproach, a waste, and a curse; and all the cities thereof shall be perpetual wastes.” — but Bozrah of Idumea is the royal city of Edom, Isaiah 63:1; shall become a desolation, a reproach, a waste and a curse.

14 I have heard a word from the Lord, and an ambassador is sent unto the heathen, saying, “Gather ye together, and come against her, and rise up to the battle!”

15 “For lo, I will make thee small among the heathen and despised among men. — for, lo, I will make thee small among the nations… Or “I have given thee” or “made thee” as if Edom was a people few in number, and their country not large, and which was the reason of gathering the Chaldeans against them, to reduce their number, weaken their strength, and destroy their substance and so make them a small, feeble and contemptible people;

— and despised among men: for the fewness of their men, the desolation of their country, the consumption of their wealth and riches, their poverty and meanness; see Obadiah 1:2 “Behold, I have made thee small among the nations; thou art greatly despised (as the term Latinos would indicate).

16 Thy terribleness hath deceived thee, and the pride of thine heart, O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that holdest the height of the hill; though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence,” saith the Lord. — thy terribleness hath deceived thee, the fact that other nations seemed to stand in awe of Edom had caused him to think that he was really formidable, and the pride of thine heart, insolence usually having this influence upon the heart of the proud to deceive them, wherefore the Lord now calls out;

— O thou that dwellest in the clefts of the rock, that boldest the height of the hill, some of the forts of Idumea being situated on almost inaccessible cliffs, though thou shouldest make thy nest as high as the eagle, I will bring thee down from thence, saith the Lord, showing that before Him no stronghold is impregnable.

17 “Also Edom shall be a desolation; every one that goeth by it shall be astonished and shall hiss at all the plagues thereof. — also Edom shall be a desolation; not only Bozrah, its principal city, before spoken of, but the whole country of Idumea should be laid waste; its fortified cities destroyed; its riches plundered; and its inhabitants slain with the sword; every one that goeth by it shall be astonished, filled with horrified surprise at the total overthrow of the country and shall hiss at all the plagues thereof with a sound expressing derision and mockery.

18 As in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbor cities thereof,” saith the Lord, “no man shall abide there, neither shall a son of man dwell in it. — as in the overthrow of Sodom and Gomorrah… which was so sudden and general, that nothing was left, or any spared; so should it be with Edom;

— no man shall abide there, neither shall a son of man dwell in it; it would be an uninhabited desert.

19 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of the Jordan against the habitation of the strong; but I will suddenly make him run away from her. And who is a chosen man, that I may appoint over her? For who is like Me? And who will appoint Me a time? And who is that shepherd that will stand before Me?” — behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan… the Targum interprets it of a king and his army, paraphrasing the words thus, “behold, a king with his army shall come up against them, as a lion comes up from the height of Jordan” as Nebuchadnezzar and his army that should come up against the Edomites from the land of Judea, where Jordan was;

— against the habitation of the strong the land of Edom, a country well fortified in which mighty men dwelt; particularly Mount Seir, where their king was and which was “the fold of the mighty” either of the mighty shepherd as it may be rendered or of the strong place; but what is this to a lion?

— and who is that shepherd that will stand before me? or king, as the Targum says, any king, prince or potentate, who both in Scripture and in other writings, are often called shepherds; the king of Edom is particularly pointed at whose habitation or fold is before observed: alas! what could such a shepherd do? or how could he stand before the almighty God or any lion he should send?

20 Therefore hear the counsel of the Lord that He hath taken against Edom, and His purposes that He hath purposed against the inhabitants of Teman. Surely the least of the flock shall draw them out; surely He shall make their habitations desolate with them. — surely he shall make their habitations desolate with them; or “their folds” the sheep shall be destroyed and their folds shall be demolished; that is, the inhabitants of Edom shall be slain with the sword, and their cities, towns and villages, shall be laid waste.

21 The earth is moved at the noise of their fall; at the cry the noise thereof was heard in the Red Sea. — the earth is moved at the noise of their fall, quaking with its intensity, at the cry the noise thereof was heard in the Red Sea, or “a crying the noise of it is heard at the Red Sea.”

22 Behold, He shall come up and fly as the eagle, and spread His wings over Bozrah; and at that day shall the heart of the mighty men of Edom be as the heart of a woman in her pangs. — behold, he, the conqueror, like Herod the Great, an Idumean, was a great eagle with his famed cruelty over the Jews as king over Judea; shall come up and fly and spread his wings as the eagle over Bozrah, to pounce down upon the whole country; and at that day shall the heart of the mighty men of Edom be as the heart of a woman in her pangs. No matter how impregnable the position of God’s enemies may seem in the eyes of human beings, they will quickly fall before the attack of the Lord.

23 Concerning Damascus: “Hamath is confounded, and Arpad, for they have heard evil tidings; they are fainthearted; there is sorrow on the sea; it cannot be quiet. — concerning Damascus. Hamath, a powerful city on the Orontes and formerly the capital of a country of the same name, is confounded, and Arpad, another mighty city, both of them now within the confines of Syria;

— for they have heard evil tidings; they are faint-hearted, full of concern on account of the reports which they have heard; there is sorrow on the sea, terror among the inhabitants along its shores; it cannot be quiet, there is no rest for worry over the outlook.

24 Damascus is waxed feeble and turneth herself to flee, and fear hath seized on her; anguish and sorrows have taken her, as a woman in travail. — Damascus is waxed feeble, utterly discouraged and enfeebled; and turneth herself to flee, and fear hath seized on her, anguish and sorrows have taken her as a woman in travail, the terror of utter despair.

25 How is the city of praise not left, the city of My joy! — how is the city of praise not left, the city of my joy? How was it that the place of delight as Damascus was called of old, was not abandoned by its inhabitants, so that they might have saved their lives by a speedy flight?

26 Therefore her young men shall fall in her streets, and all the men of war shall be cut off in that day,” saith the Lord of hosts. — therefore her young men shall fall in her streets, and all the men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the Lord of hosts; so great had been their terror at the approach of the enemy that they had not even had recourse to flight and so were cut down in the very streets of their city.

27 “And I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Benhadad.” — and I will kindle a fire in the wall of Damascus, and it shall consume the palaces of Benhadad, the royal dwellings and therewith at least a part, if not all, of the city.

28 Concerning Kedar and concerning the kingdoms of Hazor, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon shall smite, thus saith the Lord: “Arise ye, go up to Kedar, and despoil the men of the East. — concerning Kedar, and concerning the kingdoms of Hazor… a new prophecy concerning the Arabians; for Kedar was a son of Ishmael;

— which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon shall smite, thus saith the Lord: that is, “thus saith the Lord concerning”, or “unto” or “against Kedar” as in Jeremiah 49:1 which the king of Babylon “hath smitten” the past for the future, common in prophetic language: or “is about to smite” would do it in a very little time; for the phrase, “thus saith the Lord” is not to be connected with what follows after, but with what goes before; though indeed the next words are the words of the Lord to the Chaldeans:

— and spoil the men of the east; the Arabians, which lay east of Judea and Babylon: or “the children of Kedem” the same with Kedemah, another son of Ishmael, Genesis 25:15; whose posterity dwelt still more to the east; the Targum renders it “the children of the east.”

29 Their tents and their flocks shall they take away; they shall take for themselves their curtains and all their vessels and their camels; and they shall cry unto them, ‘Fear is on every side!’ — their tents and their flocks, the chief possessions of nomads, shall they take away; they shall take to themselves their curtains, the costly woven goods and the hangings of their tents;

— and all their vessels, household utensils as well as such pieces of furniture and adornment as comprised their wealth and their camels; and they, the invading forces, shall cry unto them, in a shout of war, Fear is on every side.

30 Flee, get you far off! Dwell deep, O ye inhabitants of Hazor,” saith the Lord. “For Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon hath taken counsel against you, and hath conceived a purpose against you. — flee, get you far off, run apace, dwell deep, hide themselves in remote places;

— O ye inhabitants of Hazor! saith the Lord; for Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon hath taken counsel against you, devised a plan to subdue them and hath conceived a design against you. This warning is addressed to the wilderness dwellers, since no conqueror would venture to follow them into the trackless wastes of the desert. In the next words the Lord once more turns to the enemies, bidding them continue their work of destruction.

31 “Arise, get you up unto the wealthy nation, that dwelleth without cares,” saith the Lord, “which have neither gates nor bars, which dwell alone. — arise, get you up unto the wealthy nation, a tranquil tribe, having no presentiment of evil that dwelleth without care in calm security, saith the Lord, which have neither gates nor bars, not dwelling in fenced and fortified cities;

— which dwell alone with little or no intercourse with other nations or tribes from which they might expect assistance in case of an attack.

32 And their camels shall be a booty, and the multitude of their cattle a spoil; and I will scatter into all winds them that are in the utmost corners; and I will bring their calamity from all sides thereof,” saith the Lord. — and their camels shall be a booty and the multitude of their cattle a spoil, a welcome bit of plunder for the enemies; 

— and I will scatter into all winds them that are in the utmost corners, those who have the edges of their hair trimmed; for these tribes had the custom of clipping the hair of head and beard in a peculiar angle; and I will bring their calamity from all sides thereof, saith the Lord.

33 “And Hazor shall be a dwelling for dragons, and a desolation for ever; there shall no man abide there, nor any son of man dwell in it.” — and Hazor shall be a dwelling for dragons, the habitation of jackals and a desolation forever; there shall no man abide there nor any son of man dwell in it. This prophecy was fulfilled when the Chaldeans on their way to the West and South, sent detachments of troops to bring these nomadic tribes into subjection.

34 The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet against Elam, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, saying, — the word of the Lord that came unto Jeremiah the prophet against Elam… the Persians, as it is commonly understood, who descended from Elam the son of Shem, Genesis 10:22; according to Josephus; but rather the country of Elymais is here designed; which though in the times of Cyrus was added to and made a part of the Persian empire, yet was a country distinct both from Persia and Media; and as though as near unto Persia and bordering on Media, a country that belonged to the Assyrians; and so it seems that Elam served under Sennacherib, king of Assyria, when he besieged Jerusalem.

35 “Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “‘Behold, I will break the bow of Elam, the chief of their might. — thus saith the Lord of hosts, I will break the bow of Elam… the inhabitants of this country were famous for their skill in archery; this the Lord threatens to break so that it should be useless and of no more service to them to defend themselves or annoy others. Their strength, as the Targum says; that in which their great strength and security lay; in which they put their trust and confidence;

— the chief of their might; which may be interpreted by way of apposition of their bow, the chief instrument of their might and power; or may design their mighty men, the archers themselves, who should be destroyed, even Elam itself, and all the inhabitants of it especially their warriors, who should be slain or carried captive.

36 And upon Elam will I bring the four winds from the four quarters of heaven, and will scatter them toward all those winds; and there shall be no nation whither the outcasts of Elam shall not come. — and upon Elam will I bring the four winds from the four quarters of heaven… the Targum interprets it the four kingdoms; see Daniel 7:2. Some think this had its accomplishment in the times of Alexander; or else after his death in the times of his four successors; but rather in the times of Nebuchadnezzar, who should bring with him, in his army, people that dwelt in the several parts of the world, comparable to the winds for their swiftness and strength; whose blast would be so great as to drive the Elamites to every part of the world, as every light thing is by the wind:

— and will scatter them towards all those winds; those four winds, east, west, north and south:

— and there shall be no nation whither the outcasts of Elam shall not come; those that are driven out of it, forced to flee from it or are taken captive, should come into the several nations of the world; so that there would not be any in which an Elamite was not.

37 For I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies and before them that seek their life; and I will bring evil upon them, even My fierce anger,’ saith the Lord; ‘and I will send the sword after them till I have consumed them. — for I will cause Elam to be dismayed before their enemies… frightened; thrown into the utmost consternation so that they shall have no heart nor spirit to go out against them and meet them and defend themselves; but make all haste imaginable to flee from them, such a panic would seize them;

— and before them that seek their life; a further description of their enemies; they being such, who, not content with their substance sought to take away their lives; nothing less would satisfy them; being cruel and blood thirsty:

— and I will bring evil upon them even my fierce anger, saith the Lord; and a greater evil than that cannot be; signifying that the destruction that should be made among them would be the effect of the wrath of God upon them for their sins:

— and I will send the sword after them till I have consumed them; that is, those that slay with the sword, as the Targum says; these should go after those that fled and destroy them till the greater part of them were consumed; for all of them that were taken were not destroyed; or otherwise there would have been none to return from captivity as is promised at the close of this prophecy.

38 And I will set My throne in Elam, and will destroy from thence the king and the princes,’ saith the Lord. — and I will set my throne in Elam… either when Alexander subdued it, or Cyrus, or rather Nebuchadnezzar, whose palace probably was, or his successors was, in Shushan in Elam, as before observed from Daniel 8:2. This is called the Lord’s throne, because he gave it to him; his conquest of Elam, and his dominion over it, were from him;

— and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the Lord; so that there should be no more kings of Elam, and princes and nobles of their own after this time; and because mention is made of the kings of Elam in the times of Nebuchadnezzar, Jeremiah 25:25; though that is observed in the first year of his reign, some have thought that it is best to understand it or Cyrus, the Lord’s servant and anointed; and whose throne might well be called the throne of God, which he gave him and set him on in an eminent manner, not only there, but elsewhere; see Ezra 1:2; and when this country of Elam, or Elymais, became at part of the Persian empire, and never had any more kings to reign over it separately.

39 “‘But it shall come to pass in the latter days, that I will bring back the captives of Elam,’ saith the Lord.” — and will destroy from thence the king and the princes, saith the Lord; so that there should be no more kings of Elam, and princes and nobles of their own, after this time; and because mention is made of the kings of Elam in the times of Nebuchadnezzar, Jeremiah 25:25; though that is observed in the first year of his reign, some have thought that it is best to understand it or Cyrus, the Lord’s servant and anointed; and whose throne might well be called the throne of God, which he gave him, and set him on in an eminent manner, not only there, but elsewhere; see Ezra 1:2; and when this country of Elam, or Elymais, became at part of the Persian empire, and never had any more kings to reign over it separately. Some of the Jewish Rabbins interpret the king and princes of Vashti of Haman and his sons; but very wrongly.

— that I will bring again the captivity of Elam, saith the Lord.

Jeremiah 50

The Chaldeans, especially under Nebuchadnezzar their king, has been described by God as “the king of Babylon, My servant” in multiple places (Jeremiah 25:9, 27:6, 43:10). So this and the following chapter contain a long prophecy concerning the destruction of Babylon following their judgement as well.

1 The word that the Lord spoke against Babylon and against the land of the Chaldeans by Jeremiah the prophet: — the word that the Lord spoke against Babylon… Or the city of Babylon, the metropolis of the Chaldean empire; sometimes it signifies the whole country, here the city only as appears by what follows:

— and against the land of the Chaldeans; where the Jews were carried captive, for whose comfort this prophecy is delivered out; and which had subdued other nations, and was become an universal monarchy; these people are mentioned last, because the rest of the nations were to drink the cup of God’s wrath at their hands, and then they were to drink it after them; see Jeremiah 25:9; this is to be understood not only of Babylon and its empire, literally taken, but of mystical Babylon and its dependencies; of Rome and its jurisdiction; of antichrist, and the antichristian states, the last enemies of the church and people of God, who will be destroyed by the pouring out of the seven vials; see Revelation 15:1. This prophecy, which is called “the word that the Lord spoke” for it was from him the warning was decreed and declared.

“Declare ye among the nations, and proclaim and set up a standard; proclaim and conceal not. Say, ‘Babylon is taken, Bel is confounded, Merodach is broken in pieces! Her idols are confounded, her images are broken in pieces!’ — declare ye among the nations and publish and to call the attention of all men to the importance and the significance of this announcement; publish and conceal not; say, Babylon is taken; Bel, the chief deity of the Chaldeans, thought by some to be the same with Baal by contraction;

— is confounded; Merodach, another name for the same idol is broken in pieces. Her idols are confounded, covered with shame and confusion, her images are broken in pieces, powerless before the almighty power of Yehovah.

For out of the north there cometh up a nation against her, which shall make her land desolate, and none shall dwell therein; they shall be removed, they shall depart, both man and beast. — for out of the north there cometh up a nation against her… the Medes and Persians, under Cyrus were one nation; and not only lay north of Judea where this prophecy came, but of Babylon, against which they were to come; and might lay more north to it before the enlargement of their dominions; and besides, Cyrus came through Assyria to Babylon which lay north of it; see Isaiah 41:25

“In those days and in that time,” saith the Lord, “the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together, going and weeping; they shall go, and seek the Lord their God. — in those days, and at that time, saith the Lord… when Babylon shall be taken and destroyed, then what follows shall be accomplished; which, as it respects the conversion of the Jews, shows that this prophecy is not to be restrained to literal Babylon:

— the children of Israel shall come, they and the children of Judah together: this is prophetic, parallel to Ezekiel 37 where the whole house of Jacob will be joined together.

They shall ask the way to Zion with their faces turned thitherward, saying, ‘Come, and let us join ourselves to the Lord in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten.’ — they shall ask the way to Zion, the habitation of Yehovah, their faces toward Jerusalem with steadfast purpose not to be daunted or to be turned aside by difficulties along the way;

— saying, Come and let us join ourselves to the Lord in a perpetual covenant that shall not be forgotten as the first covenant had been act aside by an apostate nation.

My people hath been lost sheep; their shepherds have caused them to go astray. They have turned them away on the mountains; they have gone from mountain to hill; they have forgotten their resting place. — My people hath been lost sheep; their shepherds have caused them to go astray, the very men who were entrusted with their care being guilty of this gross neglect; they have turned them away on the mountains, the places of idolatry;

— they have gone from mountain to hill, from one altar of idolatrous worship to the next; they have forgotten their resting-place, in the care of Yehovah where they could lie down in safety.

All who found them have devoured them; and their adversaries said, ‘We offend not, because they have sinned against the Lord, the habitation of justice, even the Lord, the hope of their fathers.’ — all that found them have devoured them… as lost and wandering sheep are liable to be found, and to be devoured, by every beast of prey, lions, wolves and bears; so the house of Jacobs were found by their neighbours, their enemies and especially by their endtime “Chaldeans” or “Assyrians” having forsaken God, and being forsaken by him; and which is their case now and are often found and seized upon by their enemies and made a prey of under one pretence or another.

“Depart out of the midst of Babylon, and go forth out of the land of the Chaldeans, and be as the hegoats before the flocks. — remove out of the midst of Babylon, so all Israelites in truth are now warned to go forth out of the land of the Chaldeans where they were as yet held in captivity and be as the he-goats before the flocks, the leaders of all oppressed nations as they now turned to flee.

For lo, I will raise and cause to come up against Babylon an assembly of great nations from the north country, and they shall set themselves in array against her. From thence she shall be taken. Their arrows shall be as of a mighty destroyer; none shall return in vain. — for, lo, I will raise and cause to come up, against Babylon an assembly of great nations from the North country, an army composed of many nations; and they shall set themselves in array against her with full equipment for warfare; 

— from thence, or “there,” she shall be taken, namely, where the hostile nations have assembled themselves; their arrows shall be as of a mighty expert man, one well versed in the art of warfare; none shall return in vain, none of them would fail to perform its deadly work.

10 And Chaldea shall be a spoil; all that despoil her shall be satisfied,” saith the Lord. — and Chaldea shall be a spoil, a prey ready for the invaders; all that spoil her shall be satisfied, saith the Lord, since they were getting all that their heart desired in the way of rich booty. In this sense the Lord now turns directly to Babylon in pronouncing sentence upon the Chaldean Empire.

11 “Because ye were glad, because ye rejoiced, O ye destroyers of Mine heritage, because ye are grown fat as the heifer at grass, and bellow as bulls, — because ye were glad, because ye rejoiced, O ye destroyers of Mine heritage, the Chaldeans called so on account of the pillage committed by them in destroying Judah, because ye are grown fat as the heifer at grass, skipping like a threshing calf or heifer, with proud insolence and bellow as bulls, or “neigh as steeds,” in overweening, challenging pride.

12 your mother shall be sore confounded; she that bore you shall be ashamed. Behold, the hindermost of the nations shall be a wilderness, a dry land and a desert. — your mother shall be sore confounded… the monarchy of the Chaldeans; so the Targum says, your congregation; or rather their metropolis, their mother city, the city of Babylon; which would be confounded when taken, none of her sons being able to defend her: the same will be true of mystical Babylon, the mother of harlots, Revelation 17:5.

13 Because of the wrath of the Lord it shall not be inhabited, but it shall be wholly desolate; every one that goeth by Babylon shall be astonished and hiss at all her plagues. — because of the wrath of the Lord, it shall not be inhabited… that is, Babylon; which the Targum expresses, “because thou, Babylon, hast provoked the Lord” by their idolatry, luxury, ill usage of his people and profanation of the vessels of the sanctuary; therefore it should be destroyed and left without an inhabitant in it.

14 Put yourselves in array against Babylon round about; all ye that bend the bow, shoot at her, spare no arrows, for she hath sinned against the Lord. — put yourselves in array against Babylon round about to surround the city and to attack her from all sides simultaneously; all ye that bend the bow, the archers representing the entire army of the enemy;

— shoot at her, spare no arrows; for she hath sinned against the Lord, she has fully deserved the punishment being meted out to her.

15 Shout against her round about; she hath given her hand. Her foundations are fallen, her walls are thrown down; for it is the vengeance of the Lord. Take vengeance upon her; as she hath done, do unto her. — shout against her round about, encouraging one another with loud and fierce battle-cries; she hath given her hand, thereby submitting to the conquerors; her foundations are fallen, the fortifications in which she trusted for safety;

— her walls are thrown down, so that she is now helpless before the invaders; for it is the vengeance of the Lord, the destruction of Babylon was a punishment determined by Him; take vengeance upon her, retaliation being permitted in this instance; as she hath done to others.

16 Cut off the sower from Babylon, and him that handleth the sickle in the time of harvest; for fear of the oppressing sword they shall turn every one to his people, and they shall flee every one to his own land. — cut off the sower from Babylon and him that handleth the sickle, or scythe in the time of harvest so that both sowers and reapers would be destroyed and there could be no harvesting in the entire country; 

— for fear of the oppressing sword they shall turn every one to his people and they shall flee every one to his own land, the strangers in the country getting ready to preserve their lives before the threatening catastrophe comes. Over against this fate of Babylon is placed the deliverance of Judah from oppression and exile.

17 “Israel is a scattered sheep; the lions have driven him away. First the king of Assyria hath devoured him, and last this Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon hath broken his bones.” — Israel is a scattered sheep… Or like a sheep that is frightened and drove from the fold and is dispersed and wanders about here and there; Israel includes all the twelve tribes:

— the lions have driven him away; from his own land and carried him captive and scattered him among the nations; these lions are afterwards interpreted of the kings of Assyria and Babylon: so the Targum says. “kings have removed them” comparable to lions for their strength, fierceness and voraciousness;

— first the king of Assyria hath devoured him; eaten up his flesh; meaning Shalmaneser king of Assyria, who carried captive the ten tribes that never returned and therefore said to be devoured:

— and last this Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon hath broken his bones; or “boned him” took out his bones, all his strength and substance; or took the flesh off of them, stripped him of all his wealth and riches, reduced him to his bones, made a mere skeleton of him:

18 Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Behold, I will punish the king of Babylon and his land, as I have punished the king of Assyria. — as I have punished the king of Assyria; not Shalmaneser, that carried the tribes captive; but a successor of his, Chynilidanus, the last king of Assyria; who was killed when Nineveh was taken, the metropolis of Assyria and which was done before this prophecy was delivered; and the return to their own land; which is prophesied in Jeremiah 50:19.

19 And I will bring Israel again to his habitation; and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon Mount Ephraim and Gilead. — and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan, and his soul shall be satisfied upon Mount Ephraim and Gilead; and as they were all fruitful places and had good pasturage, so they belonged to the ten tribes; which shows that it respects the return of them and the fulness of blessings, both temporal and spiritual, they shall then enjoy.

20 In those days and in that time,” saith the Lord, “the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none; and the sins of Judah and they shall not be found: for I will pardon them whom I reserve. — in those days and in that time, saith the Lord, the prophecy now again turning to the endtime, the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and there shall be none, no longer any guilt would be charged against it; 

— and the sins of Judah and they shall not be found; for I will pardon them whom I reserve, granting them forgiveness and pardon by virtue of the Messiah’s merits. If enemies of the Lord, whom He, for any reason whatever, has used as His instruments to carry out His plans, become overbearing and insolent as a consequence, He readily plunges them from the height of their pride to the depths of humiliation and confusion.

21 “Go up against the land of Merathaim, even against it and against the inhabitants of Pekod. Waste and utterly destroy after them,” saith the Lord, “and do according to all that I have commanded thee. — go up against the land of Merathaim… thought to be the country of the Mardi, which lay part of it in Assyria, and part of it in Armenia; Cyrus, with his army of Medes and Persians, who according to Herodotus, passed through Assyria to Babylon: and so it may be agreeably rendered, “go by the land of Merathaim” or the country of the Mardi; the Targum says, “the land of the rebellious people.”

22 A sound of battle is in the land, and of great destruction.

23 How the hammer of the whole earth is cut asunder and broken! How Babylon hath become a desolation among the nations! — how is the hammer of the whole earth cut asunder and broken!.. the Targum says, “how is the king cut down and broken that moved the whole earth!”

— the king of Babylon or the kingdom of Babylon, which was like a hammer for its hardness and strength; and being an instrument in the hand of God of beating to pieces and destroying kingdoms and nations; but is itself now destroyed. These are the words either of the prophet or rather of the people of other nations, wondering how this destruction came about and rejoicing at it;

— how is Babylon become a desolation among the nations! this explains who and what is meant by the hammer of the earth and by its being cut asunder and broken; even the utter destruction of the city and kingdom of Babylon.

24 I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon, and thou wast not aware; thou art found and also caught, because thou hast striven against the Lord. — I have laid a snare for thee, and thou art also taken, O Babylon… retorting to the strategy that Cyrus used, in draining the river Euphrates, and marching his army up through it into the midst of the city of Babylon and took it by surprise while the inhabitants were feasting and revelling all night: this is said to be a snare laid by the Lord because it was according to the counsel of his will and through his directing and overruling providence:

— and thou wast not aware; of what the enemy had done of his march into the city and taking of it; for one part of the city was seized and taken before the other knew anything of it:

— thou art found, and also caught; as wild beasts in a net or birds in a snare. The Targum says, “thy sins are sought and are found and also thou art taken:”

— because thou hast striven against the Lord; as persons litigate a point with each other in courts of judicature or as warriors strive against each other in battle; she sinned against the Lord and offended him, not only by her idolatry and luxury, but by her oppression of his people and profaning the vessels of his house; as Belshazzar did, the night Babylon was taken. The Targum says, “for with the people of the Lord thou hast strove.”

25 The Lord hath opened His armory and hath brought forth the weapons of His indignation; for this is the work of the Lord God of hosts in the land of the Chaldeans. — and hath brought forth the weapons of his indignation; as a king, when he goes to war, opens his armoury and takes out armour of every kind, both offensive and defensive: swords, spears, shields, so the Lord would now bring the Medes and Persians, well armed, to be the instruments of his wrath and vengeance on Babylon: or, “the vessels of his indignation” having some view to the vessels of the sanctuary, the king of Babylon had taken away and profaned them; these may well be applied to the vials of wrath poured out on them by the angels, called forth out of the temple.

26 Come against her from the utmost border; open her storehouses. Cast her up as heaps and destroy her utterly; let nothing of her be left. — come against her from the utmost border, from the most remote corner of the earth, or “all men, down to the very last,” open her storehouses; cast her up as heaps, that is, all the plunder of the city and destroy her utterly; let nothing of her be left, the city with all its possessions and treasures was to be burned with fire.

27 Slay all her bullocks; let them go down to the slaughter. Woe unto them! For their day has come, the time of their visitation. — slay all her bullocks, her entire population; let them go down to the slaughter. Woe unto them! for their day is come, the time of their visitation, their punishment at the hands of Yehovah.

28 The voice of them that flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, the vengeance of His temple. — the voice of them that flee and escape out of the land of Babylon, the fugitives saving their lives in the midst of the general destruction to declare in Zion the vengeance of the Lord our God, the vengeance of His Temple, for by the destruction of Babylon the Lord punished the Chaldeans for their profanation of His Sanctuary on Zion.

29 “Call together the archers against Babylon. All ye that bend the bow, camp against it round about; let none thereof escape. Recompense her according to her work; according to all that she hath done, do unto her. For she hath been proud against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel. — call together the archers against Babylon for the siege of the city; all ye that bend the bow, camp against it round about, leaving no loophole for escape; let none thereof escape. Recompense her according to her work;

— according to all that she hath done, do unto her, paying her back in her own coin; for she hath been proud against the Lord, against the Holy One of Israel, this pride being the fundamental transgression and fault of Babylon, a form of blasphemy challenging the Lord’s honor.

30 Therefore shall her young men fall in the streets, and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day,” saith the Lord. — therefore shall her young men fall in the streets… Or “surely” it is the form of an oath, according to Rashi, Cyrus, when he took Babylon, ordered proclamation to be made that the inhabitants should keep indoors; and that whoever were found in the streets should be put to death as doubtless many were: and all her men of war shall be cut off in that day, saith the Lord; as Belshazzar and his guards were; see Daniel 5:30.

31 “Behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud,” saith the Lord God of hosts; “for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee. — behold, I am against thee, O thou most proud, saith the Lord God of hosts, coming to teach her humility; for thy day is come, the time that I will visit thee to bring His punishment upon her in full measure.

32 And the most proud shall stumble and fall, and none shall raise him up; and I will kindle a fire in his cities, and it shall devour all round about him.” — and the most proud shall stumble and fall, literally, “Then pride totters and falls,” the abstract being used to emphasize Babylon’s guilt, and none shall raise him up; and I will kindle a fire in his cities and it shall devour all round about him, the smaller cities sharing the fate of the metropolis.

33 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together, and all that took them captives held them fast; they refused to let them go. — thus saith the Lord of hosts, The children of Israel and the children of Judah were oppressed together in the captivity of the exile, and all that took them captives held them fast, were still holding them at the time when this prophecy was given; they refused to let them go so that it might seem as though deliverance were a matter far beyond any possibility. Over against this, however, stands the strong assurance of Yehovah.

34 Their Redeemer is strong; the Lord of hosts is His name. He shall thoroughly plead their cause, that He may give rest to the land, and disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon. — their Redeemer is strong, the Lord of hosts is His name, the Commander of all the heavenly armies; He shall thoroughly plead their cause, taking their part with all needed energy;

— that He may give rest to the land so that Judah would once more enjoy peace and security and, on the contrary, disquiet the inhabitants of Babylon who thought that they were altogether secure against all enemies. In order to take the part of His people with the proper zeal, the Lord now calls upon the sword to perform its work against the Chaldeans.

35 “A sword is upon the Chaldeans,” saith the Lord, “and upon the inhabitants of Babylon, and upon her princes, and upon her wise men! — a sword is upon the Chaldeans, saith the Lord… Or, “shall be” or “O sword, be thou on the Chaldeans” that is, the sword of the Medes and Persians; those that kill with the sword, as the Targum says;

— and upon the inhabitants of Babylon; the metropolis of Chaldea; the common people in it as distinguished from those of high rank and degree following: and upon her princes; Belshazzar and his nobles who were slain the night Babylon was taken;

— and upon her wise men; prime ministers, politicians, and counsellors of state; neither high birth nor great wisdom can secure from the sword of the enemy when it has a commission from God as it had here.

36 A sword is upon the liars, and they shall dote! A sword is upon her mighty men, and they shall be dismayed! — a sword is upon the liars… the Targum renders it “diviners” and so Rashi agrees of which there were many among the Chaldeans who were a lying set of men who imposed upon and deceived the people; these with their divinations and soothsayings could not save the land, nor themselves from the devouring sword; nay, their sorceries and divinations were the cause of their ruin.

37 A sword is upon their horses and upon their chariots, and upon all the mingled people that are in the midst of her, and they shall become as women! A sword is upon her treasures, and they shall be robbed! — a sword is upon their horses and upon their chariots which were her boast in warfare and upon all the mingled people that are in the midst of her, her mercenaries and allies;

— and they shall become as women, weak and utterly unable for effective resistance; a sword is upon her treasures, the wealth which she had accumulated in the course of her campaigns and they shall be robbed.

38 A drought is upon her waters, and they shall be dried up! For it is the land of graven images, and they are mad over their idols. — a drought is upon her waters, and they shall be dried up, the dams and irrigation canals being destroyed by the invading army; for it is the land of graven images and they are mad upon their idols, literally, “their objects of horror or terror,” for the images which are usually found in heathen sanctuaries are really more likely to frighten than to attract. They have indulged in gross and revolting idolatry and must therefore bear their iniquity.

39 Therefore the wild beasts of the desert with the wild beasts of the islands shall dwell there, and the owls shall dwell therein; and it shall be no more inhabited for ever, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation. — therefore the wild beasts of the desert with the wild beasts of the islands, the jackals shall dwell there and the owls, literally, “daughters of crying,” that is, the female ostriches shall dwell therein and it shall be no more inhabited forever, neither shall it be dwelt in from generation to generation.

40 As God overthrew Sodom and Gomorrah and the neighbor cities thereof,” saith the Lord, “so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein. — so shall no man abide there, neither shall any son of man dwell therein; the same is said concerning Edom.

41 “Behold, a people shall come from the north, and a great nation, and many kings shall be raised up from the borders of the earth. — behold, a people shall come from the north and a great nation… the Modes and Persians, whose country lay north of Babylon.

42 They shall hold the bow and the lance; they are cruel and will not show mercy; their voice shall roar like the sea, and they shall ride upon horses, every one put in array like a man to the battle, against thee, O daughter of Babylon. — they shall hold the bow and the lance… Or “spear” the Targum interprets it, “shields” as many in Cyrus’s army had them; the one an offensive, the other a defensive weapon; or if bow and lance, the one is used at a distance, the other when near. The Medes and Persians were well skilled in handling the bow, the armour with large bows and short spears; besides bows and arrows, they had two javelins or lances, one of which they cast, and the other they held and used in their hands as they found necessary; and so Cyrus in a speech of his, says that they had breast plates to cover their bodies and lances or javelins which they could use by throwing or holding, as they pleased:

— they are cruel, and will not show mercy: not even to infants but dash them against the stones.

43 The king of Babylon hath heard the report of them, and his hands waxed feeble; anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail. — the king of Babylon hath heard the report of them… Belshazzar had the report brought to him of an invasion of his land; of their approach to Babylon and design upon it and of their number, character and force:

— and his hands waxed feeble as they did when he saw the handwriting upon the wall, Daniel 5:6;

— anguish took hold of him, and pangs as of a woman in travail; a sudden panic seized him and he was quite dispirited at once as a woman in childbirth, when her pains come upon her and there is no avoiding them.

44 Behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of the Jordan unto the habitation of the strong; but I will make them suddenly run away from her. And who is a chosen man that I may appoint over her? For who is like Me? And who will appoint Me the time? And who is that shepherd that will stand before Me?” — behold, he shall come up like a lion from the swelling of Jordan… what is said of Nebuchadnezzar coming up against Edom is here said of Cyrus coming up against Babylon; for of a king it is to be understood; as the Targum says, “behold, a king with his army shall come up against them, as a lion from the height of Jordan;”

— and who is that shepherd that will stand before me? or king? not Belshazzar, he could not stand before the Lord: so the Targum says “there is no king that hath strength before me” that is, to withstand him or hinder what he has appointed and ordered to be done.

45 Therefore hear ye the counsel of the Lord that He hath taken against Babylon, and His purposes that He hath purposed against the land of the Chaldeans. Surely the least of the flock shall draw them out; surely He shall make their habitation desolate with them. — surely the least of the flock shall draw them out; the weakest and most feeble in the army of Cyrus should be more than a match for any in Babylon and should draw them out and devour them as dogs and wolves the sheep out of the flock.

46 At the noise of the taking of Babylon the earth is moved, and the cry is heard among the nations. — at the noise of the taking of Babylon the earth is moved… it being so sudden and unexpected and so very astonishing:

— and the cry is heard among the nations that Babylon is fallen; which, as applied to mystical Babylon, will be matter of joy to some and of lamentation to others; see Revelation 14:8.

Jeremiah (Ch 47-48)

•November 23, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 47 contains a prophecy of the destruction of the Philistines chiefly; and also of the Tyrians and Zidonians; Chapter 48 is a prophecy about Moab. 

Jeremiah 47

1 The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah the prophet against the Philistines, before Pharaoh smote Gaza. — before Pharaoh smote Gaza; one of the five cities of ancient Philistines, a very strong and fortified place, but now it is considered a region of the Philistines;

— before Pharaoh struck Gaza: Rashi: when Nebuchadnezzar besieged Jerusalem in the tenth year of Zedekiah, Pharaoh’s army came forth from Egypt, and the Chaldeans withdrew from Jerusalem. Pharaoh heard about the Chaldeans withdrawal and invaded Gaza, then returned to Egypt.

Thus saith the Lord: “Behold, waters rise up out of the north, and shall be an overflowing flood, and shall overflow the land, and all that is therein, the city, and them that dwell therein; then the men shall cry, and all the inhabitants of the land shall howl. — thus saith the Lord, behold, waters rise up out of the north… meaning an army of men which should come in great numbers and with great force and rapidity like an overflowing flood. So the Targum says, “behold, people shall come from the north” that is, from Chaldea, which lay north of Palestine.

At the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong horses, at the rushing of his chariots and at the rumbling of his wheels, the fathers shall not look back to their children for feebleness of hands, — at the noise of the stamping of the hoofs of his strong horses… the noise of the cavalry of Nebuchadnezzar’s army as they came marching on towards the country of the Philistines; who, being mounted on strong prancing horses made a great noise as they came along and were heard at a distance:

— the fathers shall not look back to their children for feebleness of hands; they would be so frightened at the approach of the enemy and flee with much precipitancy to provide for their own safety that they should not think of their children or stay to deliver and save them; being so terrified as not to be able to lift up their hands to defend themselves and protect their children.

because of the day that cometh to despoil all the Philistines, and to cut off from Tyre and Sidon every helper that remaineth; for the Lord will despoil the Philistines, the remnant of the country of Caphtor. — to cut off from Tyrus and Zidon every helper that remaineth; these were cities in Phoenicia which bordered on the country of the Philistines who were their auxiliaries in time of distress; but now, being wasted themselves could give them no help when Nebuchadnezzar attacked them; as did Tyre in particular, which he besieged thirteen years, and at last destroyed it and Zidon with it.

Baldness is come upon Gaza; Ashkelon is cut off with the remnant of their valley. How long wilt thou cut thyself?” — baldness is come upon Gaza… the Targum says, “vengeance is come to the inhabitants of Gaza” it’s like a man whose hair is fallen from his head, or is clean shaved off; its houses were demolished; its inhabitants slain, and their wealth plundered; a pillaged and depopulated place. Some understand this of shaving or tearing off the hair for grief and mourning because of their calamities.

O thou sword of the Lord, how long will it be ere thou be quiet? Put up thyself into thy scabbard; rest and be still. — O thou sword of the Lord… for though it was the sword of the Chaldeans, yet being appointed and sent by the Lord, and having a commission from him and being ordered and directed in his providence to do his will, it is called his sword;

— and because, in multiple places (Jeremiah 25:9, Jeremiah 27:6, Jeremiah 43:10), God describes the one with his sword, Nebuchadnezzar, as “the king of Babylon, My servant.”

How can it be quiet, seeing the Lord hath given it a charge against Ashkelon and against the seashore? There hath He appointed it. — seeing the Lord hath given it a charge against Ashkelon and against the seashore? for it had a commission from the Lord to destroy the inhabitants of Ashkelon and other places, which lay still more towards the sea as Joppa and Jamne; and indeed all Palestine lay on the coast of the Mediterranean sea.

Jeremiah 48

Heshbon was the capital city of the Moabites: when the Chaldeans made themselves masters of Heshbon, a place of great importance, they consulted how to carry on their conquests over the rest of the country.

Ancient Heshbon was beyond, i.e. east of the Jordan. The city was where the Israelites passed by on their entry to the Promised Land and was assigned to the tribe of Reuben; afterwards it was given to the Tribe of Gad and became a Levitical city for the Merarites.

Heshbon is mentioned in the Tanakh in the Books of Numbers and Deuteronomy as the capital of Amorite king, Sihon (or Sehon). The biblical narrative records the story of the Israelite victory over Sihon during the time of Moses. Heshbon is highlighted due to its importance as the capital of Sihon, King of the Amorites: “For Heshbon was the city of Sihon, king of the Amorites, who had fought against the former king of Moab and had taken all his land out of his hand, as far as Arnon.”

Similar passages appear in Deuteronomy and Joshua, with the primary emphasis being the victory of the Israelites over King Sihon at the site of Heshbon. Moses died soon after the victory, after viewing the “promised land” from the top of Mount Nebo.

Following the death of Moses, Heshbon became a town at the border between the lands allocated to the Tribe of Reuben and the Tribe of Gad. Further biblical evidence suggests that the town later came under Moabite control, as mentioned by Isaiah and Jeremiah in their denunciations of Moab, and later under Ammonite occupation as Jeremiah 49:3 strongly suggests.

1 Against Moab, thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Woe unto Nebo! For it is despoiled; Kiriathaim is confounded and taken; Misgab is confounded and dismayed. — against Moab; thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Woe unto Nebo! an important city in Southwestern Moabitis. For it is spoiled, laid waste by the enemies; Kiriathaim, another ancient city of the country, is confounded and taken; Misgab, literally, “the citadel,” probably Kir-Moab, the strongest fort of the Moabites, or a general expression denoting the overthrow of Moab’s power, is confounded and dismayed.

There shall be no more praise of Moab; in Heshbon they have devised evil against it; ‘Come, and let us cut it off from being a nation.’ Also thou shalt be cut down, O Madmen; the sword shall pursue thee. — come, and let us cut it off from being a nation: this is what the Babylonians consulted together against Heshbon; and not only against that, a principal city; but against the whole country of Moab, to make such an entire desolation of it, that it should be no more a nation: that which the Moabites with others devised against the people of Israel is now devised against them; a just retaliation perhaps; see Psalms 83:4.

“A voice of crying shall be from Horonaim: ‘Despoiling and great destruction!’ — a voice of crying shall be from Horonaim… another city of Moab. The word Horonaim is a dual number; as there were two Horons, the upper and the lower; of this place should also be destroyed; and so a cry of its inhabitants should be heard out of it.

Moab is destroyed; her little ones have caused a cry to be heard. — either the whole nation in general; so the Targum, “the kingdom of Moab is broken.”

For in the going up of Luhith continual weeping shall go up; for in the going down of Horonaim the enemies have heard a cry of destruction. — for in the going up of Luhith continual weeping shall go up… this is another city, which was built on a high hill which had a considerable ascent to it, where those that escaped from Horonaim might flee for safety; but as they went up the hill would weep bitterly and all the way they went, because of the loss of friends and sustenance, and the danger they themselves were still in. Of this place came the Chaldeans and they heard the cries of those that fled from Horonaim and went up from thence to Luhith, and the cries continues.

Flee, save your lives, and be like a naked tree in the wilderness. — flee, save your lives… these are either the words of the Moabites, their cry of destruction mentioned above, who seeing nothing but ruin before their eyes, advise one another to flee in all haste and save their lives if possible since nothing else could be saved.

For because thou hast trusted in thy works and in thy treasures, thou shalt also be taken; and Chemosh shall go forth into captivity with his priests and his princes together. — and Chemosh shall go forth in captivity with his priests and his princes together; this was the god of the Ammonites, Judges 11:24; and of the Moabites, 1 Kings 11:7; hence the Moabites are called the people of Chemosh, Numbers 21:29.

And the spoiler shall come upon every city, and no city shall escape; the valley also shall perish, and the plain shall be destroyed, as the Lord hath spoken. — and the spoiler shall come upon every city… that is, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and his army. The Targum says, the spoilers, who came against and took every city of Moab and wasted them. Josephus makes particular mention of Nebuchadnezzar subduing the Ammonites and Moabites: and no city shall escape; the spoiler and destruction by him;

— the valley also shall perish and the plain destroyed, as the Lord hath spoken; not only the cities and their inhabitants; but the inhabitants of the valleys and plains as the Targum paraphrases it should be destroyed; and also the corn that grew upon them and the flocks and herds that grazed there, exactly as the Lord had foretold.

“Give wings unto Moab, that it may flee and get away; for the cities thereof shall be desolate, without any to dwell therein. — give wings unto Moab that it may flee and get away… that is, give wings to the inhabitants of Moab; signifying that they were in great danger and no probability of escape unless they had the wings of a swift bird; and passing away with wings may signify not their fleeing from danger and their attempt to escape; but their swift and sudden destruction;

— the Targum says, “take away the crown from Moab, for going it shall go away into captivity.”

10 “Cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully, and cursed be he that keepeth back his sword from blood. — cursed be he that doeth the work of the Lord deceitfully… which is said with respect to the Chaldeans, who were enjoined to destroy the Moabites; which is called the work of the Lord because he had given them a commission to do; and which was to be done by them, not by halves, or in a remiss and negligent manner, but fully and faithfully; they were not to spare them, as Saul did the Amalekites; all should be done in uprightness and sincerity with all faithfulness and integrity: it is done deceitfully when men play the hypocrite; and negligently when they are backward to it, lukewarm in it, and infrequent in its performance which brings upon them the curse of God;

— and cursed be he that keepeth back his sword from blood; from shedding the blood of the Moabites, when God had given command to do it. The curse is repeated to confirm the matter that it might be most assuredly expected; since it would certainly come if the Lord’s work was not done aright.

11 “Moab hath been at ease from his youth, and he hath settled on his lees, and hath not been emptied from vessel to vessel, neither hath he gone into captivity; therefore his taste remained in him, and his scent is not changed.

12 “Therefore, behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will send unto him wanderers, who shall cause him to wander, and shall empty his vessels and break their bottles. — a change would be made, and that in a very short time, as according to Josephus, it was about five years after the destruction of Jerusalem that the Moabites were subdued by the king of Babylon;

— but there is also a subtle change of theme, from immediate historic to prophetic; behold, the days are coming, indicating during the latter days; this being their case, this prophecy might be for the endtime;

— the Targum says, “I will send spoilers upon them, and they shall spoil them, and empty their substance, and consume the good of their land” whereas the Septuagint version is, “they shall cut in pieces his horns.”

13 And Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh, as the house of Israel was ashamed of Bethel, their confidence. — and Moab shall be ashamed of Chemosh… Moab’s idol; Jeremiah 48:7; of his worship of him, prayers to him, and confidence in him; he not being able to save him from the destruction of the Chaldeans and being carried captive by them; he himself also going into captivity;

— as the house of Israel were ashamed of Bethel their confidence; that is, of the golden calf that was set up in Bethel by Jeroboam and which the ten tribes of Israel worshipped; but that could not save them from being carried captive by the Assyrians; and so were ashamed of their idolatrous worship.

14 “How say ye, ‘We are mighty and strong men for the war’? — how say ye, we are mighty and strong men for the war? the Moabites were proud, haughty and arrogant; boasted much of their strength and valour; of the strength of their bodies and fitness for war, and their fortified cities; and secure from all danger: so for their pride, vanity and self-confidence, they are reproved here since their destruction was at hand.

15 Moab is despoiled and gone up out of her cities, and his chosen young men are gone down to the slaughter,” saith the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts. — Moab is spoiled, the whole country is ruined; which is spoken of as present though a future scenario, too, after the manner of prophecy;

— and gone up out of her cities; the inhabitants of Moab were gone up out of their cities, either through fear and flight; or through force, being made to go out of them and were carried captive. The Targum says, “the Moabites are spoiled, and their cities are desolate.”

16 “The calamity of Moab is near to come, and his affliction hasteneth fast. — the calamity of Moab is near to come… as it did come within live years after the destruction of Jerusalem, as observed on Jeremiah 48:12; and from Josephus: and his affliction hasteth fast; or “his evil” the evil of punishment for his sin is utter destruction.

17 All ye that are about him, bemoan him; and all ye that know his name, say, ‘How is the strong staff broken, and the beautiful rod!’ — all ye that are about him, bemoan him… the neighbouring nations such as the Ammonites and others are called upon to condole the sad case of Moab; all upon the borders of the country of Moab, either within them or without them.

18 Thou daughter that dost inhabit Dibon, come down from thy glory, and sit in thirst; for the despoiler of Moab shall come upon thee, and he shall destroy thy strongholds. — thou daughter that inhabit Dibon… a city in Moab; the Targum says, “O kingdom of the congregation of Dibon” but this was not a kingdom of itself, though a principal city in the kingdom of Moab.

19 O inhabitant of Aroer, stand by the way and espy; ask him that fleeth and her that escapeth, and say, ‘What is done?’ — O inhabitant of Aroer, another city that belonged to Moab situated on the border towards Ammon, near the river Arnon.

20 Moab is confounded, for it is broken down. Howl and cry! Tell ye it in Arnon that Moab is despoiled! — tell ye it in Arnon, that Moab is spoiled; the country of Arnon, so called from a river of that name, on the banks of which Aroer was situated; the inhabitants of which are desired to spread it all over that part of the country that Moab was utterly ruined by the Chaldean army.

21 “And judgement has come upon the plain country: upon Holon, and upon Jahazah, and upon Mephaath, — and judgement has come upon the plain country, upon the plateau; north of the Arnon, cities which had been in the possession of the tribe of Reuben for some centuries after the conquest, upon Holon, and upon Jahazah, and upon Mephaath,

22 and upon Dibon, and upon Nebo, and upon Bethdiblathaim,

23 and upon Kiriathaim, and upon Bethgamul, and upon Bethmeon,

24 and upon Kerioth, and upon Bozrah, and upon all the cities of the land of Moab, far or near.

25 The horn of Moab is cut off, and his arm is broken,” saith the Lord. — the horn of Moab, emblem of strength and sovereignty, is cut off, and his arm is broken, saith the Lord, he has lost all his former great power, his mighty position is shattered. All this, as the prophet now points out, is the result of Moab’s pride.

26 “Make ye him drunken, for he magnified himself against the Lord. Moab also shall wallow in his vomit, and he also shall be in derision. — make ye him drunken… not with wine, but with the cup of divine wrath; with the vengeance of God; with sore judgements, afflictions and calamities; give him his fill of them till he is quite intoxicated and has lost his senses and is brought to madness and distraction and reels, staggers and falls to the ground like a drunken man; and his state and kingdom ruined: this is said to the enemies of Moab, the king of Babylon and his army;

— the Targum interprets it of the people of God, paraphrasing; “bring distress upon them, that they may be like to drunken men; for against the people of the Lord have they magnified themselves.”

27 For was not Israel a derision unto thee? Was he found among thieves? For since thou spokest of him, thou skipped for joy. — for was not Israel a derision unto thee? in the time of his calamity when the ten tribes were carried captive by the Assyrians some years ago; and of late the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin by the Chaldeans; the Moabites rejoiced at this, which they ought not to have done;

— for since thou spoke of him, thou skipped for joy; or, “shookedst thyself” whenever the Moabites spoke of the distresses and calamities of Israel and of their captivity they laughed till they shook themselves; not only shook their heads but their whole bodies. The Targum says, “and because ye have multiplied words against them, therefore ye shall go into captivity.”

28 “O ye that dwell in Moab, leave the cities and dwell in the rock, and be like the dove that maketh her nest in the sides of the hole’s mouth.

29 We have heard the pride of Moab (he is exceeding proud)— his loftiness, and his arrogancy, and his pride, and the haughtiness of his heart.

30 I know his wrath,” saith the Lord, “but it shall not be so; his lies shall not so effect it. — I know his wrath, saith the Lord… against the Jews and other nations; what he has threatened to do unto them and would do if not restrained.

31 Therefore will I howl for Moab, and I will cry out for all Moab; Mine heart shall mourn for the men of Kirheres.

32 O vine of Sibmah, I will weep for thee with the weeping of Jazer; thy plants are gone over the sea, they reach even to the sea of Jazer. The spoiler is fallen upon thy summer fruits and upon thy vintage, — O vine of Sibmah, I will weep for thee with the weeping of Jazer… Sibmah was a city in the land of Moab abounding with vines, but now should be destroyed; and Jazer another city in the same country, which was destroyed before the other; and therefore its destruction should be lamented and wept over, as that had been: or “from” or “after the weeping of Jazer,” 

— the spoiler is fallen upon thy summer fruits and upon thy vintage: the king of Babylon, who came upon them with his army in the summer season and at the time of their vintage and devoured the fruits of their vines and fig trees with which this country abounded; and so impoverished and ruined them;

— the Targum of the whole says, “therefore as I have brought an army against Jazer, so I will bring slayers against Sibmah; they that carry them captive have waded; they have passed through the sea; they are come to the sea of Jazer; upon thy harvest, and upon thy vintage, the spoilers are fallen.”

33 and joy and gladness is taken from the plentiful field and from the land of Moab. And I have caused wine to fail from the wine presses; none shall tread with shouting; their shouting shall be no shouting. — the land of Moab, where there were good pasture, corn and fruit bearing trees, which produced great plenty of good things and caused joy to the owners of them: but now all being destroyed by the enemy, joy and gladness would cease.

34 “From the cry of Heshbon even unto Elealeh, and even unto Jahaz have they uttered their voice, from Zoar even unto Horonaim, as a heifer of three years old; for the waters also of Nimrim shall be desolate. — from the cry of Heshbon even unto Elealeh… two cities in the land of Moab; also see Isaiah 15:4. Heshbon being destroyed, a cry was made by its inhabitants which either reached Elealeh; or the destruction being carried on to that city, the cry continued there.

35 Moreover I will cause to cease in Moab,” saith the Lord, “him that offereth in the high places and him that burneth incense to his gods. — moreover I will cause to cease in Moab, saith the Lord, him that offereth in the high places… a burnt offering there; that is, the priest, who shall be taken and carried captive, Jeremiah 48:7; even everyone of them so that there will not be one left to offer sacrifice:

— and him that burneth incense to his gods: Chemosh, and others, the Moabites worshipped: this suggests that idolatry was one of the sins for which they were punished; and as all places and all sorts of persons should suffer in this calamity, so likewise idolatrous places, priests and worshippers.

36 Therefore Mine heart shall sound for Moab like pipes, and Mine heart shall sound like pipes for the men of Kirheres, because the riches that he hath gotten have perished. — therefore my heart shall sound for Moab like pipes… that are sounded on mournful occasions, as at funerals; this the prophet said, the inhabitants of Moab, whose hearts would yearn and sound for the calamities of their country like the doleful sound of minstrels. So the Targum says, “therefore the Moabites shall sound in their hearts like a harp;”

— because the riches that he hath gotten is perished; either Moab or Kirheres; the abundance of goods they had got together were now lost, falling into the hands of the enemy; and which was matter of lamentation. The Targum says, “for the rest of their substance they had got were spoiled.”

37 “For every head shall be bald and every beard clipped; upon all the hands shall be cuts and upon the loins sackcloth. — for every head shall be bald and every beard clipped… men, in times of mourning, used to pluck off the hairs of their head till they made them bald and shaved their beards which were the glory of their faces; see Isaiah 15:2;

— upon all the hands shall be cuttings: it was usual with the heathens to make incisions in several parts of their bodies, particularly in their hands and arms with their nails or with knives, in token of mourning; which are forbidden by the Israelites, Deuteronomy 14:1;

— and upon the loins sackcloth; this is a well known custom for mourners to put off their clothes and put on sackcloth; all these things are mentioned to show how great was the mourning of Moab for its calamities.

38 There shall be lamentation generally upon all the housetops of Moab and in the streets thereof; for I have broken Moab like a vessel wherein is no pleasure,” saith the Lord. — for I have broken Moab like a vessel wherein is no pleasure, saith the Lord; as an earthen vessel which the potter does not like and which is useless and unprofitable to any, and which he takes and dashes into pieces; into a thousand shivers and can never be put together again; or as a filthy unclean vessel a man cannot bear in his sight: Moab is by the Lord called his wash pot, Psalms 60:8. The Moabites were vessels of wrath, fitted for destruction by their own this; and now its time has come.

39 “They shall howl, saying, ‘How it is broken down! How hath Moab turned the back with shame!’ So shall Moab be a derision and a dismaying to all those about him.” — they shall howl, saying, how is it broken down?… Or, “how is it broken” or “thrown into consternation? they howl” that is, they howl out these words, or while they are howling, say, how is Kirheres or Moab broken all to pieces; their strength, power and glory; their cities and their mighty men; and are in the utmost fright and confusion? Rashi takes it to be an imperative and paraphrases it, “howl ye over her, and say, how is it broken!”

40 For thus saith the Lord: “Behold, he shall fly as an eagle, and shall spread his wings over Moab. — for thus saith the Lord, behold, he shall fly as an eagle… the enemy, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, with his army; who is compared to an eagle for his strength, swiftness and greediness after the prey:

— and shall spread his wings over Moab as an eagle spreads its wings, which are very large over the little birds it seizes upon as its prey; so the king of Babylon would bring a numerous army against Moab and spread it over his country.

— the Targum says ,”behold, as all eagle which flies, so a king shall come up with his army, and encamp against Moab.”

41 Kerioth is taken, and the strongholds are surprised; and the mighty men’s hearts in Moab at that day shall be as the heart of a woman in her pangs. — and the mighty men’s hearts in Moab at that day shall be as the heart of a woman in her pangs; even the hearts of the soldiers and the most courageous generals shall sink within them; and they be not only as timorous as women in common but as low spirited as a woman when she finds her pains are coming upon her and the time of her delivery is at hand.

42 And Moab shall be destroyed from being a people, because he hath magnified himself against the Lord. — and Moab shall be destroyed from being a people… for some time, not always; since the captivity of Moab is promised to be returned, Jeremiah 48:47; or from being such a people as they had been, enjoying so much ease, wealth, power and prosperity. Some Rabbi take it to be a comparative and renders it, “more than a people”; that is, shall be destroyed more than any other people;

— because he hath magnified himself against the Lord; the Targum says, against the people of the Lord; this is the cause of his destruction.

43 Fear and the pit and the snare shall be upon thee, O inhabitant of Moab,” saith the Lord. — fear and the pit, and the snare, shall be upon thee… a proverbial expression, showing, that if they escaped one danger or sore judgement, they should fall into another and greater: the words seem to be taken from Isaiah 24:17.

44 “He that fleeth from the fear shall fall into the pit, and he that getteth up out of the pit shall be taken in the snare: for I will bring upon it, even upon Moab, the year of their visitation,” saith the Lord. — he that fleeth from fear, trying to escape the general horror, shall fall into the pit, and he that getteth up out of the pit shall be taken in the snare, one or the other of the calamities will be sure to catch him; for I will bring upon it, even upon Moab, the year of his visitation, saith the Lord.

45 “They that fled stood under the shadow of Heshbon because of the force; but a fire shall come forth out of Heshbon and a flame from the midst of Sihon, and shall devour the corner of Moab and the crown of the head of the tumultuous ones. — they that fled, the fugitives who escaped the slaughter, stood under the shadow of Heshbon because of the force, powerless in the face of the danger confronting them; but a fire shall come forth out of Heshbon, the city in which they hoped to find refuge and a flame from the midst of Sihon, the ancient king of the Amorites, and shall devour the corner of Moab so that it would be totally destroyed and the crown of the head of the tumultuous ones, of the sons of warlike confusion.

46 Woe be unto thee, O Moab! The people of Chemosh perisheth! For thy sons are taken captive and thy daughters captive. — woe be unto thee, O Moab! the people of Chemosh perisheth… the inhabitants of Moab, who worshipped the idol Chemosh; Jeremiah 48:7; and so called his people, as Israel were called the people of the Lord; now these, notwithstanding their idol, whom they worshipped and in whom they trusted, should perish; and sad and deplorable would be their condition and circumstances;

— for thy sons and daughters are taken captives; this explains the woe that should come upon them and in what sense they should perish; since their sons and daughters who they hoped would have continued their name and nation, were taken and would be carried captives into Babylon; Numbers 21:29.

47 “Yet will I bring back the captives of Moab in the latter days,” saith the Lord. Thus far is the judgement of Moab. — yet will I bring again the captivity of Moab in the latter day, saith the Lord… some think this is added, not so much for the sake of Moab as of the Jews to assure them of their return from captivity as had been promised them, since this would be the case even of Moab. It had a literal accomplishment under Cyrus, as is thought, when they were restored to their land; and certain it is they were a people in the times of Alexander who subdued them, as Josephus relates.

Jeremiah (Ch 45-46)

•November 22, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 45

1 The word that Jeremiah the prophet spoke unto Baruch the son of Neriah, when he had written these words in a book out of the mouth of Jeremiah, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, saying, — the fourth year of Jehoiakim would be perhaps 606 BC or whereabout (that was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon); having the same beginning as chapter 25;

— in the fourth year of Jehoiakim; which was eighteen years before the destruction of Jerusalem; which would more properly have followed the 36th chapter; where we have an account of what Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah in a roll, and read to the people, and after that to the princes; which exposed him to danger, and caused the grief expressed by him in this chapter is postponed to this place.

“Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, unto thee, O Baruch:

Thou didst say, ‘Woe is me now! For the Lord hath added grief to my sorrow; I fainted in my sighing, and I find no rest.’ — thou didst say, woe is me now!… what will become of me? I am ruined; this he said in his heart, if not with his lips, perhaps both ways; and when the king gave orders to apprehend him and the prophet, being provoked at the roll which he had wrote and read, Jeremiah 36:26;

— for the Lord hath added grief to my sorrow; caused him grief upon grief, sorrow upon sorrow; for there was a variety of things which occasioned grief and sorrow; the trouble of his office as a scribe to the prophet; the grievous things contained in the prophecies he transcribed, concerning the ruin of his people and nation; the king’s displeasure at the roll and his burning it;

— I fainted in my sighing; he sighed and groaned at what he saw coming upon his country, which overcame his spirits; he sunk and swooned away: or “I laboured in my sighing” amidst his sighs and groans, he prayed to the Lord, and laboured in prayer, that he might be delivered from the evils he feared were coming upon him.

Thus shalt thou say unto him, ‘The Lord saith thus: Behold, that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up, even this whole land. — the Lord saith thus, behold, that which I have built will I break down, and that which I have planted I will pluck up; even the Jewish nation which the Lord had built up as a spacious and beautiful house to dwell in, and had planted as a vineyard and set it with pleasant plants; but now would demolish this building and destroy his estate:

— even this whole land; not a few cities only, or only Jerusalem the metropolis but the whole land of Judea; no part of it but what should be left desolate. The Targum says, “even the whole land of Israel, is mine.”

And seekest thou great things for thyself? Seek them not; for behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh, saith the Lord, but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places whither thou goest.’” — seekest thou great things for thyself? seek them not… riches and wealth honour and esteem, peace and prosperity; these were not to be sought after and expected, when the whole nation would be involved in such a general calamity. Baruch perhaps expected that his reading the roll to princes would have been a means of honouring him at court, of advancing him to some office, in which he might have acquired wealth and got applause and lived in peace and plenty all his days; but this was not to be expected; when the very roll he wrote and read contained in it prophecies of the general ruin of the nation;

— for, behold, I will bring evil upon all flesh; not upon every individual person in the world; but upon all the inhabitants of Judea, who should either die by the sword or by famine, by pestilence or be carried as captives;

— but thy life will I give unto thee for a prey in all places wherever thou goest; suggesting that he should be obliged to quit his native place and country, and go from place to place; as he did, after the destruction of Jerusalem, along with the prophet; and even into Egypt with the Jews that went there; where his life would be in danger, and yet the Scriptures are silent here, that he and Jeremiah and the king’s daughters should be taken by another great eagle to Ireland, see Ezekiel 17.

Jeremiah 46

1 The word of the Lord which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the nations. — the word of the Lord which came to Jeremiah the prophet against the nations; distinguished from the Jews; not all the nations of the world, but some hereafter mentioned: the Egyptians, Philistines, Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Syrians, Arabians, Persians, and Chaldeans: or “concerning the nations” mentioned above; though the prophecies delivered are all against them, none favourable.

Against Egypt, against the army of Pharaohnecho king of Egypt, which was by the River Euphrates in Carchemish, which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon smote in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: — against Egypt… this is the title of the first prophecy against Egypt; which is first mentioned because the Jews were most familiar with and have placed great confidence in and much relied on the Egyptians for help:

Wiki: Carchemish was the location of an important battle, about 605 BC, between the Babylonians  and Egyptians, mentioned in the Bible (Jeremiah 46:2). 

“Order ye the buckler and shield, and draw near to battle!

Harness the horses; and get up, ye horsemen, and stand forth with your helmets; furbish the spears, and put on the brigandines!

Why have I seen them dismayed and turned away back? And their mighty ones are beaten down, and are fled apace and look not back, for fear was round about,” saith the Lord. — wherefore have I seen them dismayed and turned away back?… the Egyptians, after all this preparation for war and seeming ardent to engage in battle; yet when they came to it, were seized with a panic, and thrown into the utmost consternation and turned their backs upon their enemy: these are either the words of the prophet, who are led by a spirit of prophecy, foreseeing the consternation, confusion and flight of the Egyptian army; or of the Lord, who foresaw all this:

— and their mighty ones are beaten down and fled apace, and look not back; or, “their mighty ones are broken” their valiant soldiers and officers, their best troops were broken to pieces, their ranks and files, and thrown into the utmost disorder; and therefore made all the haste they could to escape the fury of the enemy, and fled with the utmost horror and never stopped to look back upon their pursuers;

— for fear was round about, saith the Lord; their enemies surrounded them, and that was the reason fright was all around them, and both were from the Lord; or as he had determined and foretold it.

“Let not the swift flee away, nor the mighty man escape; they shall stumble and fall toward the north by the River Euphrates. — let not the swift flee away, nor the mighty men escape… those that were swift of foot, or carried but light armour, let not such trust to their swiftness; nor let the mighty man think to escape by reason of his great strength, to make his way through the enemy, and get out of his hands. Or this may be rendered as future, “the swift shall not flee away” so the Targum says neither one nor the other shall escape by the nimbleness of their heels, or the stoutness of their hearts:

— they shall stumble and fall toward the north, by the river Euphrates; which lay north of Judea, and also was to the north of Egypt, whose destruction is threatened: the place where this route and slaughter would be made was Carchemish, which was situated by that great river Euphrates.

“Who is this that cometh up as a flood, whose waters are moved as the rivers? — who is this that cometh up as a flood… these are either the words of the prophet, who having a vision in prophecy of the march of the Egyptian army from the south to the north, which he compares to a flood; in allusion to the river Nile, which used to overflow its banks; or they are the words of God, who puts this question in order to give an answer to it and thereby upbraid the Egyptians with their arrogance, pride and vanity; which would all come to nothing:

— whose waters are moved as the rivers? whose numerous armies came with a great noise and force, like the openings of the Nile, the seven gates of it; which were very boisterous, especially in hard gales of wind: it is no unusual thing for large armies to be compared to floods and rivers, which move forcibly and swiftly, and make a large spread; Isaiah 8:7. The Targum says, “who is this that comes up with his army as a cloud, and covers the earth, and as a fountain of water, whose waters are moved?”

Egypt riseth up like a flood, and his waters are moved like the rivers; and he saith, ‘I will go up, and will cover the earth; I will destroy the city and the inhabitants thereof.’ — and he saith, I will go up; Pharaohnecho king of Egypt said, I will go up from my own land to the north to meet the king of Babylon:

— and will cover the earth with his Egyptian army: even all toward the north country, including the Babylonish empire;

— I will destroy the city, and the inhabitants thereof; which restrains to the city Carchemish, where his army was smitten: but it is better to interpret, the singular by the plural, as the Targum does, “I will destroy cities” since it was not a single city he came up to take, nor would this satisfy his ambition and temper.

Come up, ye horses, and rage, ye chariots! And let the mighty men come forth: the Ethiopians and the Libyans that handle the shield, and the Lydians that handle and bend the bow. — come up, ye horses; and rage, ye chariots… these are either the words of Pharaoh, giving orders to his cavalry and charioteers to make haste and come up to battle, not doubting of victory: or rather of the Lord by the prophet, ironically calling upon the horsemen in the Egyptian army to come on and engage with the enemy, and behave gallantly; and those in the chariots to drive;

— the Ethiopians and the Libyans, that handle the shield; or Cush and Phut, both sons of Ham, and brethren of Mizraim, from whence Egypt had its name, Genesis 10:6; the posterity of these are meant. The Cushites or Ethiopians were near neighbours of the Egyptians, and their allies and confederates.

10 For this is the day of the Lord God of hosts, a day of vengeance, that He may avenge Him of His adversaries. And the sword shall devour, and it shall be sated and made drunk with their blood; for the Lord God of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the River Euphrates. — and the sword shall devour, and it shall be satiate and made drunk with their blood; that is, the sword of the Chaldeans shall destroy the Egyptians in such vast numbers, that there shall be no more to be slain; or there shall be no desire in the enemy to slay any more; they shall be glutted with their blood;

— for the Lord God of hosts hath a sacrifice in the north country by the river Euphrates near Carchemish, which lay north of Egypt; an allusion to the sacrifices of great warriors, which are many; the Lord of hosts had a sacrifice, or a great slaughter of men, his enemies; inflicted punishment on them, wherein his power and justice were displayed.

11 Go up into Gilead and take balm, O virgin, the daughter of Egypt; in vain shalt thou use many medicines; for thou shalt not be cured. — and take balm, O virgin, daughter of Egypt; the kingdom of Egypt, as the Targum says; so called because of its glory and excellency; and because as yet it had not been conquered and brought under the power of another.

12 The nations have heard of thy shame, and thy cry hath filled the land; for the mighty man hath stumbled against the mighty, and they are fallen both together.” — the nations have heard of thy shame… their shameful defeat and overthrow by the Chaldean army; so, after the manner of prophecy uttered, the warning fulfilled; the battle fought, and the victory obtained; and the rumour and fame spread among the nations, to the great mortification of this proud people:

— and thy cry hath filled the land; the shrieks of the wounded; the cry of the pursued and taken; the lamentation of friends and relations for their dead; with one thing or another of this kind the whole land of Egypt was filled; yea, all the countries round about them, in confederacy with them, were filled with distress for the loss of their own; the calamity was large and spreading:

— for the mighty man hath stumbled against the mighty, and they are fallen both together; either the mighty Egyptians against the mighty Chaldeans; and though the latter were the conquerors, yet lost abundance of men; so that there were mighty ones fell on both sides. The Targum says both were slain.

13 The word that the Lord spoke to Jeremiah the prophet, how Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon should come and smite the land of Egypt: — the word that the Lord spoke to Jeremiah the prophet… this is a new and distinct prophecy from the former, though concerning Egypt as that; but in this they differ; the former prophecy respects only the overthrow of the Egyptian army at a certain place; this latter the general destruction of the land; and was fulfilled some years after the other;

— to smite the land of Egypt; who was to come, and did come, out of his country, into the land of Egypt, to smite the inhabitants of it with the sword, take their cities, plunder them of their substance, and make them tributary to him; Rashi says, according to their chronicles, this was a second blow, in the twenty seventh year of Nebuchadnezzar’s reign; around 579 BC.

14 “Declare ye in Egypt and publish in Migdol, and publish in Noph and in Tahpanhes; say ye, ‘Stand fast and prepare thee, for the sword shall devour round about thee.’ — declare ye in Egypt… the coming of the king of Babylon, and his intention to invade the land and subdue it:

— say ye, stand fast and prepare thee; O Egypt, and the several cities mentioned and all others; prepare for war and to meet the enemy, resist and repel him; present yourselves on the frontiers of your country; put yourselves in proper places and keep your ground:

— for the sword shall devour round about thee; the sword of the Chaldeans, into whose hands fell Jerusalem, Judea, Syria and other neighbouring countries; and therefore it was high time for them to bestir themselves and provide for their defence and safety.

15 Why are thy valiant [showing courage] men swept away? They stood not, because the Lord did drive them. — why are thy valiant men swept away?… as with a mighty torrent, or a sweeping rain; to which the Chaldean army may be compared; which came with such irresistible force as to drive the Egyptians from their posts, so that they could not stand their ground;

— the Septuagint renders it, “why does Apis flee from thee? thy choice ox does not continue,” which was the god of the Egyptians, they worshipped in the form of an ox; this could not protect them, thought by them to be very mighty and powerful; their choice ox, Apis, of the Egyptians is believed to be a most powerful deity; yet could not save them;

— because the Lord did drive them; by means of the Chaldeans; he dispirited them; he put them into a panic and they fled from their posts; there is no standing against the Lord.

16 He made many to fall, yea, one fell upon another; and they said, ‘Arise, and let us go again to our own people and to the land of our nativity, from the oppressing sword.’ — and they said, arise: not those that fell, which may seem at first sight; but either the strangers in the land of Egypt, such as the Jews were; who, perceiving the destruction that was coming on Egypt, exhort one another to arise, and get out of it; or rather the auxiliaries of the Egyptians, as the Ethiopians, Libyans and Lydians,

— and let us go again to our own people, and to the land of our own country, where we were born, and where our friends and relations lived; so that we might be safe;

— from the oppressing sword; the sword of the Chaldeans.

17 They did cry there, ‘Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a noise! He hath passed the time appointed.’ — Pharaoh king of Egypt is but a noise; he boasted and bragged of great things he would do, but does nothing; he promised to bring a large army into the field, and talked big of attacking the enemy with great ardour and fury, and hectored and blustered as if he feared nothing, and was sure of victory; but when it came to the push, his courage failed him; and it may be said of him what the man said of his nightingale, “vox et praeterea nihil” a voice and nothing else. This was not Pharaohnecho, as the Septuagint have wrongly inserted, but Pharaohhophra, Jeremiah 44:30; or it may be supplied thus, “Pharaoh king of Egypt is a king of noise” a noisy, big and blusterous king in words, but in deeds nothing.

18 “As I live,” saith the King, whose name is the Lord of hosts, “surely as Tabor is among the mountains and as Carmel by the sea, so shall he come. — Tabor, a mountain in Galilee; and Carmel is by the sea of Galilee.

19 O thou daughter dwelling in Egypt, furnish thyself to go into captivity; for Noph shall be waste and desolate, without an inhabitant. — furnish thyself to go into captivity; or “make”, or “prepare for thyself vessels of captivity” or such things as are proper for captives, as suitable clothes to travel in, shoes to walk in, scrip and staff and the like; expect captivity and be prepared for it;

— for Noph shall be waste and desolate without an inhabitant; the city Memphis as the Targum says: this is particularly mentioned, because it was a royal city, and though a very populous one, its destruction should be so general, that not an inhabitant should be left in it: the devastation of this city is put for that of all the rest, and as a sure token of it and the whole nation going into captivity.

20 “Egypt is like a very fair heifer, but destruction cometh; it cometh out of the north. — the Targum says, “Egypt was a beautiful kingdom.”

— but destruction cometh, it cometh from the north; that is, the destruction of Egypt, which should come from Chaldea, which lay north of Egypt; and this threat is repeated.

21 Also her hired men are in the midst of her like fatted bullocks; for they also are turned back, and have fled away together. They did not stand, because the day of their calamity had come upon them, and the time of their visitation. — all her hired men are in the midst of her like fatted bullocks… or “bullocks of the stall” soldiers of other countries that were hired into the service of Egypt and lived so deliciously there, that they were unfit for war and were like fatted beasts prepared for the slaughter.

— the Targum interprets it, her princes; who had the care of this heifer and of the feeding of this princeling; these themselves were like that, nourished for the day of slaughter.

22 The voice thereof shall go like a serpent; for they shall march with an army and come against her with axes, as hewers of wood. — the voice thereof shall go like a serpent… that is, the voice of Egypt before compared to a heifer when in its glory; but now it shall not bellow like a heifer in fat pasture, bat hiss like a serpent when drove and pursued out of its hole; signifying, that their voice should be low and submissive and should not speak one big or murmuring word to their conquerors;

— for they shall march with an army; the Targum adds, against you; the meaning is, that the Chaldeans should come with a great army, and march against the Egyptians with great strength, force and fury:

— and come against her with axes, as hewers of wood; with battle axes as if they came to cut down trees; nor would they spare the Egyptians any more than such hewers do the trees; nor would they be able any more to resist them than trees can resist hewers of wood.

23 They shall cut down her forest,” saith the Lord, “though it cannot be searched, because they are more than the grasshoppers, and are innumerable. — they shall cut down her forest, saith the Lord… the land of Egypt compared to a forest for the multitude of its cities, towns and their inhabitants; which should be destroyed by the Chaldeans as a forest is cut down by hewers of wood;

— the metaphor is continued with the Targum interpreting this as the princes of Egypt and their destruction;

— because they are more than grasshoppers, are innumerable; which creatures come in large numbers, and eat up every green tree and herb; and so the Chaldean army, being alike numerous, would easily cut down the trees of this forest, because they were so many.

24 The daughter of Egypt shall be confounded; she shall be delivered into the hand of the people of the north.” — the daughter of Egypt shall be confounded… brought to shame before all the nations of the earth, being conquered by the Chaldeans; that is, the kingdom of Egypt, as the Targum says; or the inhabitants of it, being subdued and carried captive:

— she shall be delivered into the hand of the people of the north; the Chaldeans, who dwelt northward of Egypt, as is manifest from what follows.

25 The Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saith: “Behold, I will punish the multitude of No, and Pharaoh, and Egypt, with their gods and their kings, even Pharaoh and all them that trust in him. — behold, I will punish the multitude of No; the inhabitants of it, which were many, called “populous No” in Nahum 3:8; a famous city in Egypt. Some take it to be Diospolis or Thebes; and others the same that is now called Alexandria; and so the Targum renders it;

— and Pharaoh and Egypt, with their gods and their kings; Pharaoh, their present king of Egypt, who was Pharaohhophra, and all the land of Egypt; and all their numerous idols, which were many indeed; and the several governors of the nomes or provinces into which the land was distributed; these should be punished and suffer in the general calamity.

26 And I will deliver them into the hand of those that seek their lives, and into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and into the hand of his servants; and afterward it shall be inhabited as in the days of old,” saith the Lord. — and afterwards it shall be inhabited as in the days of old, saith the Lord; after forty years, as Ezekiel prophesied, Ezekiel 29:11-13; not that it should rise to the same glory and dignity as before, for it would be but a base kingdom; but whereas it was desolate and uninhabited after this destruction, it should now be inhabited again.

27 “But fear not thou, O My servant Jacob, and be not dismayed, O Israel; for, behold, I will save thee from afar off, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and be in rest and at ease, and none shall make him afraid. — I will save thee from afar off; these maybe the righteous in Egypt, who were carried there by Johanan against their will; and these small remnant should escape, Jeremiah 44:28; and these words are intended to comfort those in captivity, with a promise of their return, lest they should be discouraged, in hearing that the Egyptians should inhabit their own land again, and they not theirs;

— and Jacob shall return, and be in rest, and at ease, and none shall make him afraid: this will have its full accomplishment hereafter in the latter day; as Jacob includes the other ten tribes when all Israelites return to their own land, and never be disturbed any more.

28 Fear thou not, O Jacob My servant,” saith the Lord, “for I am with thee. For I will make a full end of all the nations whither I have driven thee, but I will not make a full end of thee, but correct thee in measure. Yet will I not leave thee wholly unpunished.” — fear thou not, O Jacob, my servant, saith the Lord, for I am with thee… though afar off in foreign lands and in captivity: this exhortation is repeated to strengthen their consolation and against their fears of being cast off by the Lord;

— but correct thee in measure; with judgement and in mercy for the full house of Jacob: yet will I not leave thee wholly unpunished.

Jeremiah (Ch 43-44)

•November 21, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 43 sets the background that lead to Chapter 44, where the impudent and impious contempt which the remnants of the Jews put upon this admonition, and their declared resolution to persist in their allegiance to the Queen of heaven and other idolatries, in despite both warnings from God and his prophet Jeremiah.

God’s judgement upon them for their obstinacy are shift; that they should all be cut off and perish in Egypt, except a still smaller number of which will escape; because the Pharaoh of Egypt should shortly fall into the hands of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and be unable to protect them any longer.

Jeremiah 43

1 And it came to pass that when Jeremiah had made an end of speaking unto all the people all the words of the Lord their God, for which the Lord their God had sent him to them, even all these words,

then spoke Azariah the son of Hoshaiah, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the proud men, saying unto Jeremiah, “Thou speakest falsely. The Lord our God hath not sent thee to say, ‘Go not into Egypt to sojourn there.’ — and Johanan and all the proud men; the great men among them, who are commonly proud of their greatness; of their descent, their family and blood; of their wealth and riches, and posts of honour; perhaps the captains of the forces are meant, who elsewhere are mentioned along with Johanan, Jeremiah 40:13;

— these were men full of themselves, had a high opinion of their own wisdom, and were prudent in their own eyes; and could not bear to be contradicted or advised by the prophet, nor even by the Lord himself; and are justly, by the Targum, called wicked men; their pride was the cause of their rebellion against God and disobedience to him and of their ungenteel and insolent behaviour to the prophet;

— saying unto Jeremiah, thou speakest falsely: or, “a lie” it being contrary to their minds: so the prophets of the Lord and even the word of God itself are charged with falsehoods;

— the Lord our God hath not sent thee to say, go not into Egypt to sojourn there; they did not care to own it was the word of the Lord; whatever convictions of it they had in their minds; because they would not openly appear to be opponents against God; but deny that the prophet was sent by him.

But Baruch the son of Neriah setteth thee against us, to deliver us into the hand of the Chaldeans, that they might put us to death and carry us away captives into Babylon.” — but Baruch the son of Neriah sets you against us to deliver us into the hand of the Chaldeans, that they might put us to death and carry us away captives into Babylon; upon this suspicion and accusation, these men based their opposition to Jeremiah’s counsel which conveyed to them the warnings of the Lord.

So Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces, and all the people obeyed not the voice of the Lord to dwell in the land of Judah. — so Johanan, the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces and all the people, in accordance with the idea which they had had in mind, obeyed not the voice of the Lord to dwell in the land of Judah.

But Johanan the son of Kareah and all the captains of the forces took all the remnant of Judah, who had returned from all nations whither they had been driven, to dwell in the land of Judah— these are those who upon the invasion of the land and siege of Jerusalem had fled to other countries, but now were returned from thence, in order to settle in the land of Judah; having heard that a governor from among the Jews was appointed over it; as from Moab, Ammon, Edom, and other countries; see Jeremiah 40:11;

even men, and women, and children, and the king’s daughters, and every person whom Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had left with Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, and Jeremiah the prophet, and Baruch the son of Neriah. — even men, and women, and children, and the king’s daughters, the princesses of the royal household, Jeremiah 41:10, and every person that Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard had left with Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, and Jeremiah the prophet, and Baruch the son of Neriah. All of these people were obliged to join the caravan of refugees, but the Q is, why didn’t Jeremiah and Baruch resist? And go their own way?

So they came into the land of Egypt, for they obeyed not the voice of the Lord; thus came they even to Tahpanhes. — so they came into the land of Egypt, for they obeyed not the voice of the Lord, as made known by the mouth of Jeremiah; thus came they even to Tahpanhes, the city of Daphne on one of the eastern delta-arms of the Nile.

Then came the word of the Lord unto Jeremiah in Tahpanhes, saying,

“Take great stones in thine hand, and hide them in the clay in the brickkiln, which is at the entry of Pharaoh’s house in Tahpanhes, in the sight of the men of Judah; — take great stones in thine hand and hide them in the clay in the brick-kiln which is at the entry of Pharaoh’s house in Tahpanhes, in the sight of the men of Judah, so that he would have trustworthy witnesses of his act. The palace of Pharaoh included not only the buildings proper, but their entire enclosure as well, which usually was surrounded by a high wall. Opposite the entrance of this enclosure the bricks for the building or for the repairing of the royal palace were made, and it was in the clay of this kiln that the stones carried by Jeremiah were to be hidden.

10 and say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will send and take Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and will set his throne upon these stones that I have hid; and he shall spread his royal pavilion over them. — and say unto them, the witnesses of his symbolical act, Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Behold, I will send and take Nebuchadnezzar, the king of Babylon, for as such he acted as My servant in this instance, in carrying out the Lord’s purpose upon Egypt, and will set his throne upon these stones that I have hidden; and he shall spread his royal pavilion over them, namely, the rich tapestry which formed the curtains of the throne.

11 And when he cometh, he shall smite the land of Egypt, and deliver such as are for death to death, and such as are for captivity to captivity, and such as are for the sword to the sword. — and when he cometh, in extending his campaign of conquest to Africa, he shall smite the land of Egypt and deliver such as are for death, principally by famine and pestilence, to death, and such as are for captivity to captivity, and such as are for the sword, that is, death in battle, to the sword. In this way, as the scourge of the Lord, he would also act as the servant of Yehovah. Both the act of laying the stones and the material spoken of are significant; for the stones of the throne’s foundation are symbolical of the power and firmness of Nebuchadnezzar’s rule, while the clay of Pharaoh’s palace signifies the weakness of his power.

12 And I will kindle a fire in the houses of the gods of Egypt, and he shall burn them and carry them away captives; and he shall array himself with the land of Egypt, as a shepherd putteth on his garment; and he shall go forth from thence in peace. — and I will kindle a fire in the houses of the gods of Egypt, to show the helplessness of their idols in the country whose security the Jews seeked; including the Queen of heaven, Astarte; and he, Nebuchadnezzar, shall burn them and carry them away captives, the very gods of Egypt who they serve; and he shall array himself in the land of Egypt as a shepherd putteth on his garment, and he shall go forth from thence in peace. The point of comparison is the freedom and the ease of the act; for just as easily and quickly as a shepherd takes up his mantle, practically his garment and wraps it about him, so easily will Nebuchadnezzar take hold upon Egypt and the whole country in his hand, leave without hindrance and none opposing him.

13 He shall break also the images of Bethshemesh [the House of the Sun] that are in the land of Egypt; and the houses of the gods of the Egyptians shall he burn with fire.’” — he shall break also the images of Bethshemesh that is in the land of Egypt, the renowned Temple of the Sun at Heliopolis, one of the greatest sanctuaries of the country; and the houses of the gods of the Egyptians shall he burn with fire. “The images of Bethshemesh are, above all, the obelisks, of which there was an unlimited number in the city. Of the oldest, however, were not the largest, one still remains in its place.” In this manner would all the representatives of Egyptian idol-worship fall before the power of Nebuchadnezzar, and the hope and trust of the Jews who fled to Egypt would find themselves worshipping these gods of woods and stones in vain.

— the images of the Bethshemesh; that is, the “city of the sun” as the Septuagint says; and so “Bethshemesh” signifies the “house of the sun” either it designs the temple of the sun, or the city where it was worshipped; as Heliopolis was famous for the worship of the sun, and for a magnificent temple in it, built for that purpose, and where abundance of persons resorted on that account, as Herodotus l observes; here were many images of the sun; and these now should be broke to pieces, when this city should become the city of destruction, as is foretold it should by Isaiah, Isaiah 19:18; where the Targum expressly calls it the city Bethshemesh, that is to be destroyed.

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Another parallel on Sun worship in Ezekiel 8 by the house of Judah with comments embedded below

15 Then said He unto me, “Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.”

16 And He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’S house, and behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshiped the sun toward the east. — the heads of the twenty-four courses of the priesthood, led by the high priest, making up the “twenty five men” were not only worshipping the sun: they were doing so in the very temple of God, with their backs turned upon the presence of God!

— the worship of heavenly bodies was against God’s will which Moses had warned the people (Deuteronomy 4:19, 17:3, whose penalty is to be stoned to death, Deuteronomy 17:5 ’till they die). These 25 men corrupted themselves by worshipping the sun; and so the Targum renders it, “and, lo, they corrupted themselves, worshipping facing the east the sun; their backs toward the temple of the Lord” — turned their backs to the most holy place; which is an aggravation of their impiety; casting the utmost contempt for God:

Moses’ warnings in Deuteronomy 17

3 And [if you] hath gone and served other gods and worshiped them, either the sun or moon or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded, 4 and it be told thee, and thou hast heard of it and inquired diligently, and behold, it be true and the thing certain that such abomination is wrought in Israel, 5 then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman who has committed that wicked thing unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones till they die. Deuteronomy 17:3-5

— today, more than 98.5 percent of Christians are honoring the SUN by observing SUNday worship. They have “their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshiped the SUN toward the east; whose penalty is to be stoned to death – ’till they die.

— also, following the SUN-worshipping Samaritans, most Church of God Communities are showing their contempt for God by having their “wavesheaf offering” and Pentecost on a SUNday; always on a SUNday. And these are supposedly in God’s Sanctuary, but God says He is a jealous God, so these pretentious Christians could be spewed out of His mouth! A death penalty – ’till they die!

Jeremiah 44

1 The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews who dwell in the land of Egypt, who dwell at Migdol, and at Tahpanhes, and at Noph, and in the country of Pathros, saying, — the word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the Jews which dwell in the land of Egypt, where they had settled in spite of the earnest remonstrances of Jeremiah, which dwell at Migdol, on the northeastern boundary of Egypt, and at Tahpanhes, in the delta of the Nile, and at Noph, or Memphis, the capital of Lower Egypt, and in the country of Pathros, that is, Upper Egypt, for in the intervening years the Jews had selected different parts of Egypt for temporary omes, but if Jeremiah and Baruch were faithful servants of God WHY did they allowed themselves to come to Egypt with Johanan the son of Kareah? Jeremiah and Baruch were not in chains so why didn’t they remain in Judah?

“Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Ye have seen all the evil that I have brought upon Jerusalem and upon all the cities of Judah; and behold, this day they are a desolation, and no man dwelleth therein, — thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, Ye have seen all the evil that I have brought upon Jerusalem and upon all the cities of Judah, most of the Jews addressed having been witnesses of the terrible catastrophe which brought destruction to the southern kingdom; and behold this day they are a desolation and no man dwelleth therein, the entire land, formerly so rich, fruitful and populous had become an uninhabited desert,

because of their wickedness which they have committed to provoke Me to anger, in that they went to burn incense and to serve other gods whom they knew not, neither they, ye, nor your fathers. — because of their wickedness which they have committed to provoke Me to anger in that they went leaving the path of right and duty set before them by the Word of God, to burn incense and to serve other gods, by such act of worship, whom they knew not, neither they, ye, nor your fathers. That was the first cause of the calamity which came upon Jerusalem.

Nevertheless, I sent unto you all My servants the prophets, rising early and sending them, saying, ‘Oh, do not this abominable thing that I hate.’ — however, I sent unto you all My servants the prophets, rising early and sending them, full of merciful eagerness to prevent the threatened catastrophe, saying, Oh, do not this abominable thing that I hate, which filled Him with loathing.

But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear to turn from their wickedness, to burn no incense unto other gods. — but they hearkened not nor inclined their ear to turn from their wickedness, they paid not the slightest attention to Yehovah’s admonitions and warnings, and not to burn incense to other gods.

Therefore My fury and Mine anger was poured forth and was kindled in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; and they are wasted and desolate, as at this day. — wherefore My fury and Mine anger was poured forth, like an overturned vessel spilling all its contents at once, and was kindled in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, for the fire of destruction was a manifestation of the divine anger; and they are wasted and desolate, as at this day, their ruin being entirely the fault of the stubbornness of the rebellious Jews and the consequences were still evident.

“Therefore, now thus saith the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel: Why commit ye this great evil against your souls to cut off from you man and woman, child and suckling, out of Judah to leave you none to remain, — therefore, now thus saith the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel, Wherefore commit ye this great evil against your souls, to the destruction of their own lives, for they were not injuring the Lord, but merely themselves, to cut off from you man and woman, child and suckling, out of Judah, in a judgement of complete extermination, to leave you none to remain,

in that ye provoke Me unto wrath with the works of your hands, burning incense unto other gods in the land of Egypt whither ye have gone to dwell, that ye might cut yourselves off and that ye might be a curse and a reproach among all the nations of the earth? — provoking Me to wrath with the works of your hands, burning incense unto other gods in the land of Egypt, where you have gone to dwell, having profited nothing by the example of Jerusalem’s destruction, that you might cut yourselves off, and that you might be a curse and a reproach among all the nations of the earth?

that they were looked upon as an accursed people of God, and their names were taken up for a proverb and a reproach everywhere; because of their dwelling there, Egypt was invaded; for if they hadn’t gone there, Egypt would have been left alone.

Have ye forgotten the wickedness of your fathers, and the wickedness of the kings of Judah, and the wickedness of their wives, and your own wickedness, and the wickedness of your wives which they have committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? — have ye forgotten the wickedness of your fathers, their manifold evil doings, and the wickedness of the kings of Judah, and the wickedness of their wives, and their own wickedness, and the wickedness of their wives, which they have committed in the land of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? The queens of Judah, together with the women throughout the country, had been the chief promoters of idolatry; for just as women may be the chief upholders of virtue, they may also be the chief agents for the spreading of wickedness.

10 They are not humbled even unto this day, neither have they feared, nor walked in My law, nor in My statutes that I set before you and before your fathers. — they are not humbled even unto this day, they had not yet learned to turn to the Lord with contrite hearts, neither have they feared nor walked in My Law nor in My statutes that I set before them and before their fathers. They had deliberately ignored the norm and rule which the Lord had given them to follow, and the Lord speaks of them partly in the third person to give expression to the supreme disgust which filled His heart at their behavior.

— the Targum says, “they cease not unto this day;” that is, from committing the same things; which shows they had no true humiliation and contrition for them. This is to be understood not of the Jews in Babylon only, but chiefly of those in Egypt.

11 “Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will set My face against you for evil, and to cut off all Judah. — and to cut off all Judah; not the whole tribe of Judah; not those that were in Babylon, which were by far the greatest number of that tribe; but those that were in Egypt.

12 And I will take the remnant of Judah who have set their faces to go into the land of Egypt to sojourn there, and they shall all be consumed and fall in the land of Egypt; they shall even be consumed by the sword and by the famine. They shall die, from the least even unto the greatest, by the sword and by the famine; and they shall be an execration and an astonishment, and a curse and a reproach. — that have set their faces to go into the land of Egypt, despites all the remonstrances made to them to the contrary; and were now actually sojourners there: this describes such persons who wilfully go against God’s will and of their own accord;

— and they shall all be consumed and fall in the land of Egypt; not by natural death, one after another; but by the judgements of God, as follows:

— they shall even be consumed by the sword and by famine; by a foreign army and sieges; by the sword of the king of Babylon;

— they shall die; from the least even unto the greatest, by the sword and by the famine; which is repeated for the confirmation of it, to persons of every age, state and condition, rank and degree, young and old, high and low, rich and poor: and they shall be an execration, an astonishment and a curse.

— that they were looked upon as an accursed people of God, and their names were taken up for a proverb and a reproach everywhere; because of their dwelling there, Egypt was invaded; for if they hadn’t gone there, Egypt would have been left alone.

13 For I will punish them that dwell in the land of Egypt, as I have punished Jerusalem by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence,

14 so that none of the remnant of Judah who have gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there shall escape or remain, that they should return into the land of Judah to which they have a desire to return to dwell there; for none shall return but such as shall escape.” — so that none of the remnant of Judah which are gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there shall escape or remain that they should return into the land of Judah, to the which they have a desire to return to dwell there, they were literally, “lifting up their souls with eagerness” and hoped to make Judea their home once more; for none shall return but such as shall escape. Since the Lord was speaking in general terms. He pictured the destruction as so universal that practically no one would escape, and the heaping of similar expressions heightens the impression of grim determination on His part. He is a jealous God, who visits the iniquity of sinners upon them with all the sternness which His justice demands;

— for none shall return but such as shall escape; out of the hands of Johanan and the rest of the captains; and should get out of the land of Egypt before the Chaldeans came into it. — perhaps Jeremiah and Baruch did escaped, together with the king’s daughters, whose mission to to build up and to plant; another commission of Jeremiah taken up by Ezekiel 17; of bringing down the high tree and exalting the low tree.

15 Then all the men who knew that their wives had burned incense unto other gods, and all the women who stood by, a great multitude, even all the people who dwelt in the land of Egypt, in Pathros, answered Jeremiah, saying, — then all the men which knew that their wives had burned incense unto other gods and all the women that stood by, a great multitude, the female contingent apparently being in the majority, from which many have concluded that the festival was one in honor of the Queen of Heaven herself, in whose service the women were very zealous, even all the people that dwelt in the land of Egypt, in Pathros, where this meeting was held, answered Jeremiah, saying,

16 “As for the word that thou hast spoken unto us in the name of the Lord, we will not hearken unto thee.

17 But we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, to burn incense unto the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings unto her, as we have done, we, and our fathers, our kings, and our princes in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem; for then had we plenty of bread, and were well and saw no evil. — but we will certainly do whatsoever thing goeth forth out of our own mouth, the vows which they had made when they embraced idolatry, to burn incense unto the Queen of heaven, that is, Ashtaroth, or Astarte, and to pour out drink-offerings unto her, as we have done, we and our fathers, our kings and our princes, in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, this statement amounts to revolting boastfulness; for then had we plenty of victuals, literally, “we were satisfied with bread,” having food of every kind in sufficient amounts, and were well and saw no evil, they enjoyed good fortune and happiness, as they believed. Fools attribute what they consider prosperity to the fact that God connives at their sin, so that they finally deny His very existence.

18 But since we left off burning incense to the queen of heaven and pouring out drink offerings unto her, we have been wanting in all things, and have been consumed by the sword and by the famine.”

19 “And when we burned incense to the queen of heaven and poured out drink offerings unto her, did we make her cakes to worship her, and pour out drink offerings unto her without our men?”

— the Queen of heaven: Geneva Study Bible: Read Jeremiah 7:18 it seems that the papists gathered of this place Salbe Regina and Regina caeli latare calling the virgin Mary Queen of heaven and so out of the blessed virgin and mother of Jesus Christ, made an idol; for here the prophet condemns their idolatry. (the Queen of heaven, that is, Ashtaroth or Astarte: more at the end)

20 Then Jeremiah said unto all the people — to the men, and to the women, and to all the people who had given him that answer, saying,

21 “The incense that ye burned in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, ye and your fathers, your kings and your princes, and the people of the land, did not the Lord remember them, and came it not into His mind? — the incense that ye burned in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, ye and your fathers, your kings and your princes, and the people of the land, of which they in their wickedness, now presumed to boast, did not the Lord remember them and came it not into His mind? Did not the present desolation of their homeland testify to the fact that the Lord was very well aware of their wickedness and that He had repaid their evil-doing?

22 So the Lord could no longer bear it, because of the evil of your doings and because of the abominations which ye have committed. Therefore your land is a desolation, and an astonishment and a curse, without an inhabitant, as at this day. — so that the Lord could no longer bear because of the evil of your doing’s and because of the abominations which ye have committed, with all His long-suffering He could no longer endure it; therefore is your land a desolation and an astonishment and a curse, without an inhabitant, as at this day. The evidences of His wrath upon the Land of Promise were still evident and all on account of their idolatry, as the prophet now repeats once more, for the sake of emphasis.

23 Because ye have burned incense, and because ye have sinned against the Lord and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord, nor walked in His law nor in His statutes nor in His testimonies, therefore this evil has happened unto you, as at this day.”

24 Moreover Jeremiah said unto all the people and to all the women, “Hear the word of the Lord, all Judah who are in the land of Egypt.

25 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saying: Ye and your wives have both spoken with your mouths and fulfilled with your hands, saying, ‘We will surely perform our vows that we have vowed to burn incense to the queen of heaven and to pour out drink offerings unto her.’ Ye will surely accomplish your vows and surely perform your vows! — thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saying, Ye and your wives have both spoken with your mouths and fulfilled with your hand, saying, We will surely perform our vows that we have vowed to burn incense to the Queen of heaven, and to pour out drink-offerings unto her; ye will surely accomplish your vows and perform your vows. Here is a bit of holy irony; for, as Jeremiah states, no one could accuse them of unsteadiness in keeping their idolatrous promises. If they had only been as steadfast toward Yehovah, the God of the covenant!

26 Therefore hear ye the word of the Lord, all Judah who dwell in the land of Egypt: ‘Behold, I have sworn by My great name,’ saith the Lord, ‘that My name shall no more be named in the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, “The Lord God liveth.” — that my name shall no more be named in the mouth of any man of Judah in all the land of Egypt, saying, the Lord God liveth: this cannot be understood of the name of the Lord being called upon them, or of their being called by his name, and reckoned his people, since this respects not a name by which they should be named, but which they should name; and intends their use of the divine name in an oath, of which this is a form, “the Lord God liveth”:

or as sure as the Lord lives, or by the living God, it is so and so; and especially as used in their vows to burn incense to the Queen of heaven, they vowing by the living God that they would do so, which must be very abominable to him; and therefore he solemnly swears there should not be a Jew in all Egypt that should use it; the reason is, because everyone of them that did should be cut off.

27 Behold, I will watch over them for evil and not for good; and all the men of Judah who are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword and by the famine, until there be an end of them. — and all the men of Judah that are in the land of Egypt shall be consumed by the sword, and by the famine, until there be an end of them; that is, the greatest part of them, excepting a few that shall escape, hereafter mentioned, particularly Jeremiah, Baruch and the king’s daughters; but as for the main body of such, who went of their own accord to Egypt, and settled, and fell: into the idolatry of the country; these should all perish one after another, till there were none of them left; either by the sword of the king of Babylon; or by famine, which his army and sieges would produce; or by pestilence, though not here mentioned, yet is in Jeremiah 44:13.

28 Yet a small number that escape the sword shall return out of the land of Egypt into the land of Judah, and all the remnant of Judah that are gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there shall know whose words shall stand, Mine, or theirs. — yet a small number that escaped the sword shall return out of the land of Egypt into the land of Judah; they shall make their escape out of the land of Egypt, where they did not go willingly; and, by one providence or another, shall come back to their native country, the land of Judea, When the rest will not; which must be a distinguishing factor among the groups:

— and all the remnant of Judah, that are gone into the land of Egypt to sojourn there, shall know what words shall stand, mine or theirs; those that are left of the sword, famine and pestilence, shall know by facts before them, whose words have their effect and accomplishment; whether theirs, that promised impunity and safety, peace and prosperity, in their idolatrous practices; or the Lord’s, which threatened with ruin and destruction. The Lord is true, and every man a liar; whatever devices are in a man’s heart, the counsel of the Lord, that shall stand.

29 And this shall be a sign unto you,’ saith the Lord, ‘that I will punish you in this place, that ye may know that My words shall surely stand against you for evil.’ — and this shall be a sign unto you, saith the Lord, that I will punish you in this place… in Egypt, as before threatened; and what follows is a confirming sign that so it would be; and which, when observed by some, gave the hint to them to make their escape; though others, being hardened in their idolatry, impenitence and unbelief, continued and perished.

30 Thus saith the Lord: ‘Behold, I will give Pharaoh Hophra king of Egypt into the hand of his enemies and into the hand of them that seek his life, as I gave Zedekiah king of Judah into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, his enemy who sought his life.’” — as I gave Zedekiah king of Judah into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon that sought his life; in like manner, and as sure as God had done to one, he would do the other; and God puts the Jews in mind of what they had done to him; and might from hence conclude that this as a sign of their own ruin; and which they might know that it was indeed, the king of Egypt, in whom they trusted, being taken by his enemies, and his country wasted, they must in course fall prey to the conqueror.

~~~

More on the Queen of heaven: Astarte, Easter

Easter (which is how you pronounce Ishtar) is originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex. Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, in its entry “Easter,” states:

“The term ‘Easter’ is not of Christian origin. It is another form of Astarte, one of the titles of the Chaldean goddess, the queen of heaven. The festival of Pasch [Passover] held by Christians in post-apostolic times was a continuation of the Jewish feast . . . From this Pasch the pagan festival of ‘Easter’ was quite distinct and was introduced into the apostate Western religion, as part of the attempt to adapt pagan festivals to Christianity” (W.E. Vine, 1985).

Ishtar was an ancient Mesopotamian goddess of war, fertility, and sex. She is featured in the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the “Ishtar Gate” was part of Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon. Her worship involved animal sacrifices; objects made of her sacred stone, lapis lazuli; and temple prostitution.

Superimposed over an image of Ishtar are these words: “This is Ishtar: pronounced ‘Easter.’ From Ishtar the name Easter was derived. It’s well known that Easter was originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex. Her symbols (like the egg and the bunny) were and still are fertility and sex symbols.

Back at the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, Constantine read out the letter that he would subsequently send to churches everywhere: “When the question arose concerning the most holy day of Easter it was decreed by common consent to be expedient, that this festival should be celebrated on the same day by all, in every place… Let us then have nothing in common with … the Jews” sums up one of the key movement for the establishment of Easter to be cerebrated in the Church today.

After Constantine decided to Christianize the Empire, Easter was changed to represent Jesus. And everything Jewish were understood to be totally incompatible with Christianity. But at its roots, Easter is outwardly all about celebrating fertility and sex but inwardly it’s paying homage to a Mesopotamian goddess, the Queen of heaven, Ishtar.

Jeremiah (Ch 41-42)

•November 20, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 41

1 Now it came to pass in the seventh month, that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, the son of Elishama, of the royal seed and the princes of the king, came with ten men unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam to Mizpah; and there they ate bread together in Mizpah. — now it came to pass in the seventh month…. the month Tisri, which answers to part of our September, and part of October; according to the Jewish chronicle, it was on the third day of this month, fifty two days after the destruction of the temple, that Gedaliah was slain; on which day a fast was kept by the Jews, after their return from captivity, on this occasion, called the fast of the seventh month, Zechariah 7:5;

— this event happened on the first day of the month, the beginning of the new year; but the fast was kept the day following, because the first day was a festival. Josephus says it was thirty days after Johanan had departed from Gedaliah, having given him information of the conspiracy against him.

Then arose Ishmael the son of Nethaniah and the ten men who were with him, and smote Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, with the sword and slew him whom the king of Babylon had made governor over the land. — and slew him; they all drew their swords and thrust at him; though it is probable that Ishmael gave him the mortal wound, since the phrase, “and slew him”, is singular. Josephus says that Gedaliah prepared a splendid table, and made a sumptuous entertainment for them, and being drunk himself, which they observed, took the opportunity and slew him, and all at table with him;

— whom the king Babylon had made governor over the land; which mentioned; both to aggravate the crime they were guilty of, and to observe the reason of it, and what it was that prompted them to it; for so the words may be rendered, “because the king of Babylon had made him governor over the land.”

Ishmael also slew all the Jews who were with him, even with Gedaliah at Mizpah, and the Chaldeans who were found there and the men of war. — Ishmael also slew all the Jews that were with him, even with Gedaliah at Mizpah… not only those that were at table, but that were in the city also. Josephus says, that having slain those that were at the feast with him, he went out in the night, and slew all the Jews in the city, and the soldiers that were left by the Babylonians in it; but this cannot be understood of all the individuals there, or of the main body of the people, for they were carried captive by him.

And it came to pass the second day after he had slain Gedaliah, and no man knew it.

that there came certain ones from Shechem, from Shiloh and from Samaria, even fourscore men, having their beards shaven and their clothes rent and having cut themselves, with offerings and incense in their hand to bring them to the house of the Lord. — that there came certain from Shechem from Shiloh and from Samaria… places in the ten tribes, and which belonged to the house of Israel; so that it seems even at this distance of time, though the body of the ten tribes had been many years ago carried captive, yet there were still remnants (these could be of the house of Israel or from the house of Judah; or even colonies of the Samaritans) remaining and who had some regards to the temple at Jerusalem.

And Ishmael the son of Nethaniah went forth from Mizpah to meet them, weeping all along as he went; and it came to pass as he met them, he said unto them, “Come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam.” — weeping all along as he go; pretending equal concern for the destruction of the land, city and temple as they had;

— he said unto them, come to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam; as if he was alive, and for whom he had a great respect, and whose character was well known to these men; and thought that this would be an inducement to come along with him: this he said either to try them, whether they had heard anything upon the road of the death of him; or as an argument to come into the city, suggesting the governor would gladly receive, and liberally entertain them. This looks as if their design was not to come to Mizpah, but to go on their way to Jerusalem, had they not been met with by him, and had he not thus solicited them.

And it was so when they came into the midst of the city, that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah slew them and cast them into the midst of the pit, he and the men who were with him. — and it was so, when they came into the midst of the city… there Gedaliah’s house was, to which he invited them; and as they went in, he shut up the court, as Josephus h says, and slew them, as it here follows:

— that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah slew them, and cast them into the midst of the pit; when he had slain them, the fourscore men he had enticed into the city, except ten of them, he cast their dead bodies into a pit near at hand:

— he, and the men that were with him; Ishmael and the ten princes, with what servants they brought with them; these were all concerned in the death of these men.

But ten men were found among them who said unto Ishmael, “Slay us not; for we have treasures in the field of wheat, and of barley, and of oil, and of honey.” So he forbore, and slew them not among their brethren.

Now the pit wherein Ishmael had cast all the dead bodies of the men, whom he had slain because of Gedaliah, was that which Asa the king had made for fear of Baasha king of Israel; and Ishmael the son of Nethaniah filled it with those who were slain. — now, the pit wherein Ishmael had cast all the dead bodies of the men whom he had slain because of Gedaliah, literally, “at the hand of Gedaliah,” that is, next to Gedaliah, whom he had first cast into this trench or cistern, was it which Asa, the king, had made for fear of Baasha, king of Israel,  and Ishmael, the son of Nethaniah filled it with them that were slain, a gruesome heap of his victims.

10 Then Ishmael carried away captive all the residue of the people who were in Mizpah, even the king’s daughters and all the people that remained in Mizpah, whom Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard had committed to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam; and Ishmael the son of Nethaniah carried them away captive, and departed to go over to the Ammonites. — then Ishmael carried away captive all the residue of the people that were in Mizpah, even the king’s daughters, all the princesses of the royal household, including the daughters of Zedekiah;

— and all the people that remained in Mizpah, whom Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, had committed to Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam, putting them into his care as people who had professed their loyalty to the Babylonian rule; and Ishmael, the son of Nethaniah, carried them away captive and departed to go over to the Ammonites, his intention being either to have his captives settle in the territory of the Ammonites, in the service of whose king he seems to have placed himself, or to sell them outright as slaves. Such is the way of men who yield to a life of sin: one crime leads to another, until they are fairly steeped in sins;

— even the king’s daughters; whether they were the daughters of Zedekiah, Jehoiakim, or Jehoiakim, we know not; but it is most likely that they were the daughters of Zedekiah the last king, and who was just taken and carried captive; and so Josephus expressly calls them; these the king of Babylon regarded not, because they could neither fight, nor claim the kingdom; only the sons of the king, whom he slew before his eyes; though it may be these were not his daughters by his lawful wife, but by his concubines and so were not properly of the royal family and less regarded.

11 But when Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him, heard of all the evil that Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had done,

12 then they took all the men and went to fight with Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon. — and found him by the great waters that are in Gibeon; taking this road to the country of Ammon, though it was not quite the direct road; either to avoid the forces of Johanan or rather for the sake of the hidden treasure at Shechem or Shiloh or Samaria, the ten men had promised him for their lives. 

13 Now it came to pass, that when all the people who were with Ishmael saw Johanan the son of Kareah and all the captains of the forces that were with him, then they were glad. — saw Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him, they were glad; looking upon them as their deliverers; hoping by their means to be preserved from being carried captives to the king of Ammon.

14 So all the people whom Ishmael had carried away captive from Mizpah turned about and returned, and went unto Johanan the son of Kareah. — so all the people that Ishmael had carried away captive from Mizpah cast about… or turned about, and wheeled off from Ishmael and deserted him at once; not at all regarding his authority nor fearing his menaces or his power; being in sight of the captains and their forces, they were determined to join and put themselves under their protection, knowing them to be their friends and that they came to deliver them;

— and returned and went unto Johanan the son of Kareah; turned their backs on Ishmael and marched directly to Johanan and the captains of the forces under them.

15 But Ishmael the son of Nethaniah escaped from Johanan with eight men, and went to the Ammonites.

16 Then Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him, took from Mizpah all the remnant of the people whom he had recovered from Ishmael the son of Nethaniah after he had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam — even mighty men of war, and the women, and the children, and the eunuchs whom he had brought again from Gibeon. — then took Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces that were with him… after Ishmael had made his escape, whom they did not think fit to pursue, and the people had committed themselves to their care and protection; and having brought them to Mizpah again, they took them from thence;

— all the remnant of the people whom he had recovered from Ishmael the son of Nethaniah from Mizpah, after that he had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam: those whom he had rescued from Ishmael and had returned to Mizpah be persuaded to go with him from thence;

— even mighty men of war and the women and the children and the eunuchs, whom he had brought again from Gibeon; or “men, [even] men of war” warlike men, soldiers; by which it appears that Ishmael must have more than ten men with him when he came to Mizpah, to do what he did there, to carry away such a number of captives, among which were mighty men, men of war, some of whom he had slain besides women and children, to which are added eunuchs not mentioned before, such as the king of Judah had in his court.

17 And they departed and dwelt in the habitation of Chimham, which is by Bethlehem, to go to enter into Egypt, — and dwelt in the habitation of Chimham, which is by Bethlehem: so called perhaps from Chimham, the son of Barzillai the Gileadite, to whom David or Solomon might give this place to dwell in, 2 Samuel 19:37;

— the Targum is express for the former, calling it “the habitation which David gave to Chimham, the son of Barzillai the Gileadite;” as it was near Bethlehem;

— to go to enter into Egypt; where they had an inclination to go; having still a friendly regard to that people, and a confidence in them, as appears by some following chapters; and that they might be ready and at hand to flee thither, should the Chaldeans come against them, which they feared.

18 because of the Chaldeans; for they were afraid of them, because Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, whom the king of Babylon made governor in the land. — because of the Chaldeans… which clause some think should have been joined to Jeremiah 41:17. This is a reason given why they departed from Mizpah, and dwelt at the habitation of Chimham in the way to Egypt;;

— for they were afraid of them; at least this they pretended that the Chaldeans would come upon them and cut them off;

— because Ishmael the son of Nethaniah had slain Gedaliah the son of Ahikam whom the king of Babylon made governor in the land; no doubt it was provoking to them to hear that the governor of the king of Babylon was slain in this manner; and still more so as there were many Chaldeans slain with him; but there was no reason to believe that the king of Babylon would carry his resentment against the Jews with Johanan or take vengeance on them, who had so bravely appeared against the murderers, and had rescued the captives out of their hands: this seems only a pretence for their going into Egypt; for though they were promised safety in Judah by the Prophet Jeremiah, yet they were still for going into Egypt as the following chapters show.

Jeremiah 42

1 Then all the captains of the forces, and Johanan the son of Kareah, and Jezaniah the son of Hoshaiah, and all the people from the least even unto the greatest, came near — then all the captains of the forces… having taken up their residence at Chimham on their way to Egypt, where they were desirous of going, and being afraid of the Chaldeans, as they pretended.

and said unto Jeremiah the prophet, “Let, we beseech thee, our supplication be accepted before thee, and pray for us unto the Lord thy God, even for all this remnant (for we are left but a few of many, as thine eyes do behold us), — for we are left but a few as thine eyes do behold us; the number of the people had been very large, but by the judgements of the sword, famine, and pestilence and captivity, they were greatly reduced; here was their whole number before the prophet; his eyes beheld them, and the condition they were in: this they said move his compassion, and very likely to suggest to him how improbable it was that they should ever be able to continue in their own land; but that it would be better to put themselves under the protection of a neighbouring nation, Egypt, whither they were inclined to go; and hoped to have a word from the Lord by the prophet, to direct them thither.

that the Lord thy God may show us the way wherein we may walk and the thing that we may do.”

Then Jeremiah the prophet said unto them, “I have heard you; behold, I will pray unto the Lord your God according to your words, and it shall come to pass that whatsoever thing the Lord shall answer you, I will declare it unto you; I will keep nothing back from you.” — behold, I will pray unto the Lord your God, according to your words; be an intercessor for them; use his connection with his God and their God; and on account of relation, might expect to be heard; whom he would humbly entreat to direct what they should do as they desired.

Then they said to Jeremiah, “The Lord be a true and faithful witness between us, if we do not do even according to all things for which the Lord thy God shall send thee to us. — if we do not according to all things for the which the Lord thy God shall send thee to us; they promise to do everything the Lord should signify by the prophet as his will; and if they did not, wish the severest judgements of God might fall upon them.

Whether it be good or whether it be evil, we will obey the voice of the Lord our God to whom we send thee, that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the Lord our God.” — that it may be well with us when we obey the voice of the Lord our God; they spoke as if they knew their own interest; for so it was, that it was well or ill with those people as they obeyed or disobeyed the voice of the Lord; and yet they acted not according to it; and what was worse, did not intend to. What a wretched scene of hypocrisy here!

And it came to pass after ten days that the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah.

Then called he Johanan the son of Kareah, and all the captains of the forces who were with him, and all the people from the least even to the greatest, — all the captains of the forces which were with him and all the people from the least even unto the greatest; they were all convened together as it was proper they should to hear the word of the Lord; since they all joined in a request to the prophet, Jeremiah 42:1.

and said unto them, “Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, unto whom ye sent me to present your supplication before Him:

10 ‘If ye will still abide in this land, then will I build you and not pull you down, and I will plant you and not pluck you up; for I repent of the evil that I have done unto you. — if ye will still abide in this land… in the land of Judea, their native country where they had always lived; and yet they thought of going out of it, which the Lord knew; and therefore to encourage them to abide in it and not think of departing into Egypt;

— and not pluck you up; that is, they should be firm and stable, happy and prosperous; and abound with all kind of blessings and increase in numbers, wealth and riches. The metaphors are taken from building houses and planting fields and vineyards:

— for I repent me of the evil that I have done unto you; not that he had done any unjust thing to them; or that he changed his mind concerning them; but that he had compassion on them and would change his way and course of providence towards them according to his unchangeable will.

11 Be not afraid of the king of Babylon, of whom ye are afraid; be not afraid of him, saith the Lord, for I am with you to save you and to deliver you from his hand. — be not afraid of the king of Babylon of whom ye are afraid… lest he should revenge the death of Gedaliah upon them, which was a groundless fear; Jeremiah 41:18; or that they should be dealt hardly with by him and be cruelly oppressed and not able to live in subjection to him; Jeremiah 40:9;

— be not afraid of him, saith the Lord: who being omniscient knew they were and being omnipotent a greater King than the king of Babylon, the King of king? they had no reason to fear anything from him since they were under his protection;

— for I am with you to save you and to deliver you from his hand; from his avenging and oppressing hand; though they were not to be delivered as yet from subjection to him, or being tributaries to him; which they might be and yet dwell in peace and safety.

12 And I will show mercies unto you, that he may have mercy upon you and cause you to return to your own land.’ — and I will show mercies unto you, literally, “I will give you to experience mercies,” that he, the king of Babylon may have mercy upon you and cause you to return to your own land which they were now leaving in abject flight.

13 “But if ye say, ‘We will not dwell in this land,’ neither obey the voice of the Lord your God, — but if ye say, We will not dwell in this land, neither obey the voice of the Lord your God, thereby once more becoming guilty of open rebellion against God;

14 saying, ‘No, but we will go into the land of Egypt where we shall see no war, nor hear the sound of the trumpet, nor have hunger for bread, and there will we dwell’ — saying, No, but we will go into the land of Egypt, a plan which they had at least been discussing, if they had not yet decided upon it, where we will see no war nor hear the sound of the trumpet as it called the soldiers to the battle, nor have hunger of bread in the various unfortunate conditions accompanying war with which they had become so familiar in the last year and there will we dwell.

15 and now therefore hear the word of the Lord, ye remnant of Judah! Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘If ye wholly set your faces to enter into Egypt, and go to sojourn there, — and now therefore hear the word of the Lord, ye remnant of Judah… a small remnant indeed, a few that were left in the land who ought therefore to have admired the distinguishing goodness of Providence in preserving them; where they should have continued and made use of their privilege to the glory of God and their mutual good:

— if you wholly set your faces to enter into Egypt: are resolved upon it and are actually engaged in it; turning their faces from Judea towards Egypt and obstinately pursuing it; their posture expresses their resolution, impudence and obstinacy;

— and go to sojourn there: to be sojourners and strangers there as their fathers had been before; the remembrance of which should be enough to set them against going into Egypt any more.

16 then it shall come to pass that the sword which ye feared shall overtake you there in the land of Egypt, and the famine whereof ye were afraid shall follow close after you there in Egypt; and there ye shall die. — then it shall come to pass that the sword which ye feared, contrary to the assurance of Yehovah, shall overtake you there in the land of Egypt, and the famine whereof ye were afraid shall follow close after you there in Egypt, pursuing you with unrelenting fierceness; and there ye shall die.

17 So shall it be with all the men that set their faces to go into Egypt to sojourn there. They shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence; and none of them shall remain or escape from the evil that I will bring upon them.’ — so shall it be with all the men that set their faces to go into Egypt to sojourn there, having definitely made up their mind to that effect: they shall die by the sword, by the famine and by the pestilence, which by God’s punishment, could strike them in Egypt as well as in Judea; and none of them shall remain or escape from the evil that I will bring upon them.

18 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘As Mine anger and My fury hath been poured forth upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so shall My fury be poured forth upon you when ye shall enter into Egypt. And ye shall be an execration and an astonishment, and a curse and a reproach; and ye shall see this place no more.’ — as mine anger and my fury hath been poured upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem; like a large hasty shower of rain; or rather like melted metal which suddenly and swiftly runs, and spreads itself and burns and consumes with a violent heat; such was the wrath of God on Jerusalem in its destruction by the Chaldeans:

— so shall my fury be poured forth upon you when ye shall enter into Egypt; as soon as they had well got there, quickly after they were settled there; for it was in the time of the then present king of Egypt, Pharaohhophra, and by the then present king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, that the destruction of Egypt was, in which these Jews suffered;

— and ye shall be an execration and an astonishment, a curse and a reproach; men should be astonished at the hand of God upon them;

— and ye shall see this place no more; and so their case would be worse than their brethren in Babylon; who after a term of years were expired, would return to their own land, but these they would never see any more.

19 “The Lord hath said concerning you, O ye remnant of Judah: ‘Go ye not into Egypt!’ Know certainly that I have admonished you this day. — the Lord hath said concerning you, O ye remnant of Judah, so the prophet now elaborates upon the direct prophecy of Yehovah, Go ye not into Egypt; know certainly that I have admonished you this day, testifying against you and warning you.

20 For ye dissembled in your hearts when ye sent me unto the Lord your God, saying, ‘Pray for us unto the Lord our God; and according unto all that the Lord our God shall say, so declare unto us, and we will do it.’ — and according to all that the Lord our God shall say, so declare unto us and we will do it; they pressed him to a faithful declaration of the will of God to them, and promised they would act according to it. Now he had done all this; prayed unto him as they requested, and had brought them his mind and will, and yet they did not appreciate it; so that the deceit was greatly magnified.

21 And now I have this day declared it to you, but ye have not obeyed the voice of the Lord your God, nor any thing for which He hath sent me unto you. — and now I have this day declared it to you; that ye have not obeyed the voice of the Lord, your God, nor anything for the which He hath sent me unto you.

22 Now therefore know certainly that ye shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence in the place whither ye desire to go and to sojourn.” — that ye shall die by the sword, by the famine and by the pestilence; by one or another, or all of them; some by one, and some by another, as before threatened; evils they thought to escape by going thither, but which should surely follow them and overtake them;

— in the place whither ye desire to go and to sojourn; that is, in Egypt, to which they had a strong inclination where they greatly desired to be, pleased themselves with the thoughts of it and which they chose of their own will and pleasure for their own destruction.

Jeremiah (Ch 39-40)

•November 19, 2021 • 1 Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 39

1 In the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah in the tenth month, came Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and all his army against Jerusalem, and they besieged it. — in the ninth year of Zedekiah king of Judah; that would be around 588 BC; in the tenth month… the month Tebet, which is part of December and part of January; so that it was in the winter season the siege of Jerusalem began:

— and they besieged it, provoked by Zedekiah’s breaking the covenant with him, and rebelled against him, who had set him upon his throne, so Nebuchadnezzar was determined to revenge; and came even in winter for a long march and a siege.

— the king of Babylon came in person at first; but having begun the siege, and given proper orders to his generals for the carrying of it on, and supposing it would be a long one, retired to Riblah in Syria, either for pleasure or for other issues. The time of beginning the siege exactly agrees with the account in II Kings 25:1; but there are more details given, expressing the day of the month, which was the tenth of it; and so in.

And in the eleventh year of Zedekiah in the fourth month, the ninth day of the month, the city was broken into. — and in the eleventh year of Zedekiah, in the fourth month… the month Tammuz, which answers to part of June, and part of July: the ninth day of the month, the city was broken up; or taken by storm; the walls of it were broken by engines and battering rams, so that the Chaldeans could enter and take it. This was just a year and a half after it had been besieged, which would be around 586 BC; not being able to hold out any longer, because of the famine; Jeremiah 52:6.

And all the princes of the king of Babylon came in and sat in the Middle Gate: even Nergalsharezer, Samgarnebo, Sarsechim, Rabsaris, Nergalsharezer, Rabmag, with all the residue of the princes of the king of Babylon.

And it came to pass that when Zedekiah the king of Judah saw them and all the men of war, then they fled and went forth out of the city by night, by the way of the king’s garden, by the gate betwixt the two walls; and he went out the way of the plain.

But the Chaldeans’ army pursued after them, and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; and when they had taken him, they brought him up to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, to Riblah in the land of Hamath, where he gave judgement upon him. — but the Chaldean army pursued after them… being informed of the flight by those surrendered to them, as Josephus says; or not finding the king, his family, nobles and guards at the palace, where they expected them, and knowing which way they must take, pursued after them; not the whole army, only a part of it; for some must remain at Jerusalem to demolish the city and take the spoil of it:

— and overtook Zedekiah in the plains of Jericho; not far from it, as Josephus says; that when his friends and generals saw the enemy near, they deserted him and fled and only a few were with him when being surrounded:

— and when they had taken him they brought him to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon to Riblah in the land of Hamath: which is generally thought to be Antioch in Syria; whither he had retired from the siege of Jerusalem, having left it to his generals to refresh himself in this pleasant place, as it seems it was; or that he might be nearer in his own kingdom; however, here he was, and here the army brought Zedekiah to him, and those they took with him;

— where he passed sentence on him, which was to have his eyes put out: he severely chide him and upbraided him for the perfidy he had been guilty of in breaking his oath;

— so Josephus says, “after he came to him, Nebuchadnezzar began to call him a wicked man and a covenant breaker, unmindful of promises he had made to preserve the country for him; he reproached him with ingratitude, in receiving the kingdom from him he had taken from Jehoiakim, and given to him, who had used his power against the giver; but, says he, the great God that hates thy manners has put thee into our hands.”

Then the king of Babylon slew the sons of Zedekiah before his eyes in Riblah; also the king of Babylon slew all the nobles of Judah. — all his sons were killed but nothing said about the daughters; these must be very young, at least some of them; since Zedekiah at this time was only thirty two years of age. This must be a dreadful spectacle for him and the pains must be cutting, that it was owing to his own obstinacy in not taking the advice of the prophet Jeremiah to surrender to the Chaldeans, whereby he and his family would have been saved, Jeremiah 38:17;

— also the king of Babylon slew all the nobles of Judah; who did not come over to the Chaldean army and surrender themselves; such who advised the king to stand out to the last and who fled and were taken with him; as many of them as fell into the hands of the king of Babylon. Rashi says those “the nobles of Judah” were members of the Sanhedrin, who advised Zedekiah from his oath to Nebuchadnezzar.

Moreover he put out Zedekiah’s eyes, and bound him with chains to carry him to Babylon. — moreover he put out Zedekiah’s eyes… by what means is not certain; however, hereby the prophecy of Jeremiah was fulfilled, that his eyes should see the king of Babylon, as they did, before they were put out, and that he should not die by the sword, Jeremiah 34:3;

— and also the prophecy of Ezekiel, Ezekiel 12:13; that he should be brought to Babylon, and yet should not see it; for his eyes were put out before he was carried there: a full proof of the prescience of God; of his foreknowledge of future and contingent events; of the truth and certainty of prophecy, and of the authority of divine revelation;

— and bound him with two brass or iron chains, or fetters, for both his legs; and thus bound and was carried to Babylon, where he remained to the day of his death.

And the Chaldeans burned the king’s house and the houses of the people with fire, and broke down the walls of Jerusalem. — and the houses of the people, with fire; the houses of the common people, as distinct from the king’s palace and the houses of the nobles, Jeremiah 52:13; but a den of thieves;

— and broke down the walls of Jerusalem; all the fortifications were entirely dismantled, that it might be no more a city of force and strength as it had been.

Then Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carried away captive into Babylon the remnant of the people that remained in the city and those who fell away, who fell to him, with the rest of the people who remained. — carried away into Babylon the remnant of the people that remained in the city; that were left of the pestilence, famine and sword; and who were found in it when it was taken.

10 But Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left the poor of the people, who had nothing, in the land of Judah, and gave them vineyards and fields at the same time. — but Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard left of the poor of the people, which had nothing, in the land of Judah… because they would have been of no service to the Chaldeans, but a burden to them; and because they had nothing to fear from them; they had no arms to rebel against them, nor money to purchase any; and because it would be to their interest to have the land manured, and not lie waste, that they might have some tribute from it;

— and gave them vineyards and fields at the same time; as their own property to dress and cultivate, and receive the advantage of them; though a tax was laid upon them; or they were to pay tribute to the king of Babylon; or, however, contribute out of them to the support of the government that was placed over them; and this was a happy incident in their favour; they, who before had nothing, are now proprietors of vineyards and fields, when the former owners were carried away as captives: there might be much of the justice of God conspicuous in this affair; such who had been oppressed and ill used by the rich are now retaliated with their possessions.

11 Now Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon gave charge concerning Jeremiah to Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard, saying,

12 “Take him and look well to him, and do him no harm; but do unto him even as he shall say unto thee.” — take him and look well to him… take him out of prison; take him under his immediate care; receive him kindly and use him humanely; provide everything necessary for him and let him not want for anything: or, “set thine eyes upon him” look pleasantly at him, and let him be always under your view and inspection; treat him not with neglect and contempt, but see to it that nothing is wanting to him;

— and do him no harm; no injury to his person by beating, imprisoning or starving him; nor suffer any to be done to him by the common soldiers or by his own people: let him have whatever he asks for: this was great favour from a heathen prince indeed and more than he met with from his own countrymen.

13 So Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard sent Nebushasban, Rabsaris, and Nergalsharezer, Rabmag, and all the king of Babylon’s princes.

14 even they sent and took Jeremiah out of the court of the prison and committed him unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan, that he should carry him home. So he dwelt among the people. — even they sent and took Jeremiah out of the court of the prison… where he was, when Jerusalem was taken, Jeremiah 38:28; and where he remained until this order came;

— and committed him unto Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son of Shaphan; the father of this person seems to be the same who saved Jeremiah from being delivered into the hand of the people to be put to death by them in Jehoiakim’s reign, Jeremiah 26:24; and he himself was doubtless a prince of Judah that deserted to the Chaldeans during the siege and was in esteem with them, and appointed a governor over those that were left in the land.

15 Now the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah while he was shut up in the court of the prison, saying,

16 “Go and speak to Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will bring My words upon this city for evil and not for good; and they shall be accomplished in that day before thee.

17 But I will deliver thee in that day, saith the Lord; and thou shalt not be given into the hand of the men of whom thou art afraid.

18 For I will surely deliver thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword; but thy life shall be as a prize unto thee, because thou hast put thy trust in Me, saith the Lord.’” — because thou hast put thy trust in me, saith the Lord; what he had done in serving the prophet and other good actions sprung from a principle of faith and confidence in the Lord and his prophet; and this the Lord had a respect unto; without which works are not right; and without which it is impossible to please God with them; and which faith may be and be true where fears are.

Jeremiah 40

1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord after Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, had let him go from Ramah, when he had taken him bound in chains among all who were carried away captive of Jerusalem and Judah, who were carried away captive unto Babylon. — here Nebuzaradan had further duty to do with his captives as they fell into his hands, among whom were Jeremiah, when he was taken out of prison and out of Jerusalem and brought him to Ramah:

— still bound in chains Jeremiah was not set free yet; but without the knowledge of Nebuzaradan, and through the inadvertency of inferior officers, he was taken and bound, and with other prisoners brought to Ramah, in order to be transported to Babylon, for Ramah was to the north of Jerusalem as Babylon was.

And the captain of the guard took Jeremiah and said unto him, “The Lord thy God hath pronounced this evil upon this place. — and said unto him, the Lord thy God hath pronounced this evil on this place; the city of Jerusalem; and now in ruins; the houses burnt; the walls broken down and the inhabitants spoiled and carried captive. This was the evil which the Lord, he says, had “decreed” as the Targum renders it.

Now the Lord hath brought it, and done according as He hath said: because ye have sinned against the Lord and have not obeyed His voice, therefore this thing has come upon you. — this heathen captain acknowledges the hand of the Lord in all this; and suggests, that his master, the king of Babylon himself, and the rest of the generals, were only instruments the Lord made use of; which is very piously as well as wisely said; and more is here acknowledged by him than by the Jews themselves.

And now behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thine hand. If it seem good unto thee to come with me into Babylon, come, and I will look well after thee; but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear. Behold, all the land is before thee. Wherever it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go.” — and now, behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thine hands… Or rather are; for, when he said these words, it is highly probable they were on him, though now ordered to be taken off;

— whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go; he left him to take his own way and do as he thought fit; and this agrees with his master’s orders to him, Jeremiah 39:12.

Now while he had not yet gone back, he said, “Go back also to Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, whom the king of Babylon hath made governor over the cities of Judah, and dwell with him among the people; or go wheresoever it seemeth convenient unto thee to go.” So the captain of the guard gave him victuals and a reward and let him go. — according to the Targum, these are the words of Nebuzaradan, which paraphrases them thus; “if thou wilt not return (that is, with him to Babylon, or rather to Jerusalem, or best to his own native place), or if thou wilt not dwell (that is, in this place), go back to Gedaliah.”

— or go wherever it seemeth convenient unto thee to go; though he gave him his advice, he did not press it, but left him at full liberty to take his own way and go into what part of the land he pleased and settle in it:

— so the captain of the guard gave him victuals (food or provisions), and a reward, and let him go; the prophet was just out of prison and destitute for the necessaries of life, and the land was laid waste by the enemy; and therefore he could not have subsisted without a supply, which was liberally given by the captain; not only food for sustenance sufficient for his journey, which way soever he took, but a present of money or clothes or both; which was very kind treatment of a prophet by a heathen victor.

Then went Jeremiah unto Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam, to Mizpah, and dwelt with him among the people who were left in the land.

Now when all the captains of the forces which were in the fields, even they and their men, heard that the king of Babylon had made Gedaliah the son of Ahikam governor in the land, and had committed unto him men and women and children, and the poor of the land of those who were not carried away captive to Babylon,

then they came to Gedaliah at Mizpah — even Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and Johanan and Jonathan the sons of Kareah, and Seraiah the son of Tanhumeth, and the sons of Ephai the Netophathite, and Jezaniah the son of a Maachathite, they and their men; — then they came to Gedaliah to Mizpah… having heard that the Chaldean army was gone, and so were in no fear of that; and also that Gedaliah was made deputy governor, one of their own nation, a pious, prudent man, a man of integrity under which was much preferable to captivity in a foreign country, though tributary to Babylon.

And Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan, swore unto them and to their men, saying, “Fear not to serve the Chaldeans. Dwell in the land and serve the king of Babylon, and it shall be well with you. — saying, fear not to serve the Chaldeans, as if it was an evil to do it; or as if their yoke was hard and intolerable; or they should be always in danger of their lives:

— dwell in the land and serve the king of Babylon; pay your tributes and and it shall he well with you; settle in the land and do not rove about from place to place like fugitives; nor go out of the land through fear of the king of Babylon, but continue in it and live in subjection to him and depend upon it you will live comfortably and safely.

10 As for me, behold, I will dwell at Mizpah to serve the Chaldeans, who will come unto us; but ye, gather ye wine and summer fruits and oil, and put them in your vessels, and dwell in your cities that ye have taken.”

11 Likewise when all the Jews who were in Moab, and among the Ammonites and in Edom, and who were in all the countries, heard that the king of Babylon had left a remnant of Judah, and that he had set over them Gedaliah the son of Ahikam, the son of Shaphan,

12 even all the Jews returned out of all places whither they were driven and came to the land of Judah, to Gedaliah at Mizpah, and gathered wine and summer fruits in abundance.

13 Moreover Johanan the son of Kareah and all the captains of the forces that were in the fields came to Gedaliah at Mizpah

14 and said unto him, “Dost thou certainly know that Baalis the king of the Ammonites hath sent Ishmael the son of Nethaniah to slay thee?” But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam believed them not. — that Baalis the king of the Ammonites hath sent Ishmael the son of Nethaniah to slay thee? very probably Ishmael, with the forces under him, fled to the king of the Ammonites when Jerusalem was captured; who, out of ill will to the Jews, always bore them by the Ammonites, envying their reestablishment under Gedaliah, and hoping to make a prey of them if their governor was removed, moved it to this young prince to dispatch him; and who might be forward enough to undertake it, being displeased that Gedaliah should be governor, which he might think was an office he had a better right to, being of the seed royal; and therefore readily agreed to be sent to take away the governor’s life;

— but Gedaliah believed them not; being a good man, and knowing he had done nothing to disoblige him, could not believe a person of such birth and dignity would ever be guilty of such an action: and being of the seed royal, it is highly probable Gedaliah had shown a distinguished regard to him, which he might think was the reason of this charge being brought against him, out of envy; yet he ought to have inquired into it, and provided for his own safety, against the worst that might happen.

15 Then Johanan the son of Kareah spoke to Gedaliah in Mizpah secretly, saying, “Let me go, I pray thee, and I will slay Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and no man shall know it. Why should he slay thee, that all the Jews who are gathered unto thee should be scattered and the remnant in Judah perish?”

16 But Gedaliah the son of Ahikam said unto Johanan the son of Kareah, “Thou shalt not do this thing, for thou speakest falsely of Ishmael.” — but Gedaliah the son of Ahikam said unto Johanan the son of Kareah… in answer to his request, and the motion made by him: thou shalt not do this thing; or, “do not do this thing” dissuading him from it, as being unlawful to take away a man’s life in such a secret manner, without any legal process against him; though it seems to carry more in it, that he laid his commands upon him not to do it, and threatened him if he did:

— for thou speakest falsely of Ishmael; or “a lie” a false accusation or a slander; which isn’t describing Johanan well, who had expressed such a concern for him. The events in the following chapter shows that the information was good and that it was no lie or speakest falsely that was told; and it would have been well for Gedaliah and the people of Judah if they had taken the warning seriously; but the time was not right for Judah to be restored; and things were thus to suffer more and further punishment of the people resulted.

Jeremiah (Ch 37-38)

•November 18, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 37

1 And King Zedekiah the son of Josiah reigned instead of Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, whom Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon made king in the land of Judah. — and King Zedekiah the son of Josiah reigned… the brother of Jehoiakim, whose untimely death, and want of burial, are prophesied of in the preceding chapter. The name of Zedekiah was Mattaniah before he was king; his name was changed by the king of Babylon, who made him king, II Kings 24:17.

But neither he nor his servants, nor the people of the land hearkened unto the words of the Lord, which He spoke by the prophet Jeremiah. — but neither he, nor his servants, nor the people of the land… the king, his courtiers and subjects the royal family, nobility, and common people; they were all degenerate and corrupt; that Jehoiakim was wicked, and so with all his people wicked but Zedekiah seems to possess one single righteous action of taking Jeremiah out of prison; and according to this account, king and people were all wicked.

And Zedekiah the king sent Jehucal the son of Shelemiah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest to the prophet Jeremiah, saying, “Pray now unto the Lord our God for us.” — to the Prophet Jeremiah, saying, pray now unto the Lord our God for us. This message was sent either upon the rumour of the Chaldeans coming against Jerusalem, as some think; or rather when it had departed from the city, and was gone to meet the army of the king of Egypt; so that this petition to the prophet was to pray that the king of Egypt alight get the victory over the Chaldean army, and that that might not return unto them. Thus wicked men will desire the prayers of good men in times of distress, when their words, their cautions, admonitions, exhortations, and prayers too, are despised by them at another time.

Now Jeremiah came in and went out among the people, for they had not put him into prison. — now Jeremiah came in and went out among the people… was free to go in and out of the city whenever he pleased; or go to any part of it, and converse with the people and prophesy to them; which he could not do in the latter part of Jehoiakim’s reign, who sent officials after him and Baruch to take them, and they hide themselves, yea, the Lord hid them,Jeremiah 36:19; but now he was under no restraint, as least as yet:

— for they had not put him into prison; not yet; they afterwards did, Jeremiah 37:15.

Then Pharaoh’s army came forth out of Egypt; and when the Chaldeans who besieged Jerusalem heard tidings of them, they departed from Jerusalem. — then Pharaoh’s army was come forth out of Egypt… at the time the above message was sent to Jeremiah. Zedekiah, though he had took an oath of homage to the king of Babylon, rebelled against him, and entered into a league with the king of Egypt, to whom he sent for succours in his distress; and who, according to agreement, sent his army out of Egypt to break up the siege of Jerusalem; for though the king of Egypt came no more in person out of his land, after his defeat at Carchemish by Nebuchadnezzar, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, Jeremiah 46:2; yet he sent his army to the relief of Jerusalem.

Then came the word of the Lord unto the prophet Jeremiah, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel: Thus shall ye say to the king of Judah, who sent you unto Me to inquire of Me: ‘Behold, Pharaoh’s army, which has come forth to help you, shall return to Egypt into their own land. — thus shall ye say to the king of Judah, that sent you unto me, to inquire of me; in an oracular way; for by this it seems that they were not only sent to desire the prophet to pray for them, but to obtain an oracle from the Lord, confirming it to them, that the Chaldean army which was gone would not return any more; this they were willing to believe, but wanted to have a confirmation of it from the Lord;

— and so the Targum says “to seek an oracle from me;” or to ask instruction or doctrine from me: now these messengers are bid to go back and tell the king, his nobles, and all the people of the land, what follows:

— behold, Pharaoh’s army, which is come forth to help you, shall return to Egypt, into their own land; being afraid to face the Chaldean army; or being defeated and driven back by it. Josephus a says there was a battle fought between the Egyptians and Chaldeans, in which the latter were conquerors, and put the former to flight, and drove them out of all Syria. Rashi relates a fable, how that the Egyptian army came by ships, and that at sea they saw strange appearances, upon which they said one to another, what means this? they replied, these are our fathers, whom the fathers of those we are going to help drowned in the sea; and immediately returned to their own land.

And the Chaldeans shall come again and fight against this city, and take it and burn it with fire.’ — and the Chaldeans shall come again… to Jerusalem, after they have defeated or drove back the Egyptian army:and fight against this city; with fresh rigour and resolution; being exasperated by the methods taken to oblige them to raise the siege:

— and take it, and burn it with fire; and they did, Jeremiah 39:8.

Thus saith the Lord: Deceive not yourselves, saying, ‘The Chaldeans shall surely depart from us,’ for they shall not depart.

10 For though ye had smitten the whole army of the Chaldeans who fight against you, and there remained but wounded men among them, yet should they rise up every man in his tent and burn this city with fire.”

11 And it came to pass that when the army of the Chaldeans had broken off from Jerusalem for fear of Pharaoh’s army, — and it came to pass, that when the army of the Chaldeans were broken up from Jerusalem… when the siege of the city was broken up and raised: or, when they “went up from Jerusalem” were gone from it;

— for fear of Pharaoh’s army; or rather “because of Pharaoh’s army”; the word “fear” is not in the text; nor did they leave Jerusalem for fear of his army, but to meet it, and give it battle, as they did; however, by this means there was a freer passage to and from the city.

12 then Jeremiah went forth out of Jerusalem to go into the land of Benjamin to separate himself from thence in the midst of the people.

13 And when he was in the Gate of Benjamin, a captain of the guard was there, whose name was Irijah the son of Shelemiah, the son of Hananiah; and he took Jeremiah the prophet, saying, “Thou fallest away to the Chaldeans!” — whose name [was] Irijah, the son of Shelemiah, the son of Hananiah: the grandson as some think, of that Hananiah the false prophet, of whose death Jeremiah the prophet prophesied, Jeremiah 28:16;

— and the Jews have a tradition that Hananiah ordered his son Shelemiah, that if he ever had an opportunity to bring Jeremiah to ruin, to do it; and the same charge Shelemiah gave to his son Irijah, who, having this opportunity, laid hold on him; Rashi make mention of it:

— and he took Jeremiah the prophet, saying, thou fallest away to the Chaldeans; it looks as if, though he might not have a family grudge against him, as the Jews suggest, yet had a hatred of him for his prophecies, and therefore fixes this calumny on him; for otherwise, why did he suffer the people to pass in great numbers without any such charge?

14 Then said Jeremiah, “It is false! I fall not away to the Chaldeans.” But he hearkened not to him; so Irijah took Jeremiah and brought him to the princes. — I fall not away to the Chaldeans; for the Chaldean army was gone from the city; nor did Jeremiah like so well to be with an idolatrous people; for after the city was taken, when Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard gave him his choice, either to go with him to Babylon, where he promised to take care of him; or to go to Gedaliah, who was made governor of Judah; he chose rather to be with him, and his poor company:

— so Irijah took Jeremiah, and brought him to the princes; the princes of Zedekiah’s court, or the princes of the people, the civil magistrates; or it may be the great Sanhedrin, who he knew had no good disposition towards the prophet.

15 Thereupon the princes were wroth with Jeremiah, and smote him and put him in prison in the house of Jonathan the scribe; for they had made that the prison. — and put him in prison, in the house of Jonathan the scribe; such an one as Elishama was in Jehoiakim’s time, who had a house or apartment at court as he had, who was now dead or removed, Jeremiah 36:12.

16 When Jeremiah had entered into the dungeon and into the cells, and Jeremiah had remained there many days,

17 then Zedekiah the king sent and took him out; and the king asked him secretly in his house, and said, “Is there any word from the Lord?” And Jeremiah said, “There is; for, said He: Thou shalt be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon!” — then Zedekiah the king sent and took him out… after Jeremiah had been in prison for some time; and the Chaldean army being returned, and having renewed their siege, the king is frightened; and knowing the prophet was in prison, sends a messenger to take him out from thence, and bring him to him; which was accordingly done:

— is there any word from the Lord? he means any particular word of prophecy, any late one, and what concerned their present circumstances, showing what would be the issue of the return of the Chaldean army; for prophecy did not come at all times, nor even according to the will of man, but always according to the will of God, and when he thought fit; this the king knew very well, and he wanted a comfortable word, some good news of the failure of the present attempt:

— for, said he, thou shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon; which was boldly and faithfully said, to be said to the face of the king himself, risking his life in so doing; or, at least, exposing himself to severer treatment, if severer could be used.

18 Moreover Jeremiah said unto King Zedekiah, “How have I offended against thee or against thy servants or against this people, that ye have put me in prison? — what have I offended against thee, or against thy servants, or against this people, that ye have put me in prison? or, “what have I sinned?” have I been guilty of treason against thee, O king? or of scandal and defamation of any of thy nobles and courtiers? have I done any injury to any of the king’s subjects? has there been any falsehood in my prophecies? has not everything appeared to be true that I have spoken, concerning the coming of the Chaldeans to invade the land, and besiege the city? and concerning the return of the Chaldean army when broken up?

— why then should I be cast into prison, and detained there? is it not a clear case that what I have said comes from the Lord? and therefore ought not to be used in this manner.

19 Where are your prophets now who prophesied unto you, saying, ‘The king of Babylon shall not come against you, nor against this land’? — where your prophets now that prophesied unto you… your false prophets, as the Targum says; what is become of their prophecies? where is the truth of them, to which general credit has been given? where are they?

20 Therefore hear now, I pray thee, O my lord the king. Let my supplication, I pray thee, be accepted before thee, that thou cause me not to return to the house of Jonathan the scribe, lest I die there.” — that thou cause me not to return to the house of Jonathan the scribe; but that he might be discharged from his confinement; or however be removed into another prison, not so uncomfortable and disagreeable as this man’s house or prison was; and which perhaps was still the worse through his cruel and ill natured carriage to him; and which all together endangered his life: wherefore he adds;

— lest I die there; for though he had continued there many days, yet the place was so exceedingly noisome, that he thought he could not long continue there, was he remanded back to it.

21 Then Zedekiah the king commanded that they should commit Jeremiah into the court of the prison, and that they should give him daily a piece of bread out of the bakers’ street, until all the bread in the city was spent. Thus Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison. — then Zedekiah the king commanded that they should commit Jeremiah into the court of the prison… he did not think fit to discharge him entirely, lest it should give offence to the princes, who had committed him; but he ordered him to be put in a court belonging to the prison, where he might breathe in a freer air, and have liberty of walking to and fro, where his friends might be admitted to come and see him:

— and that they should give him daily a piece of bread out of the bakers’ street; it seems there was a street in Jerusalem so called, where the bakers lived; and perhaps the king’s bakers; who had orders to deliver to the prophet every day a piece or loaf of bread, as much as was sufficient for a man; or, however, as much as the scarcity of provisions in a siege would allow. Kimchi makes mention of a Midrash, which interprets this of bread made of bran, which was sold without the palace; as if it was coarser bread than what was eaten at court:

— until all the bread in the city was spent; that is, as long as there was any. These were the king’s orders: thus Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison: until the city was taken; unless a small time that he was in the dungeon of Malchiah, out of which he was taken again, and restored to the court of the prison, and there continued; Jeremiah 38:6.

Jeremiah 38

1 Then Shephatiah the son of Mattan, and Gedaliah the son of Pashur, and Jucal the son of Shelemiah, and Pashur the son of Malchiah heard the words that Jeremiah had spoken unto all the people, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord: ‘He that remaineth in this city shall die by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence; but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live; for he shall have his life as a prey, and shall live.’ — but he that goeth forth to the Chaldeans shall live: that goes out of the city, throws down his arms, delivers up himself to the Chaldean army, and submits to their mercy, shall have quarters given him, and his life shall be spared.

Thus saith the Lord: ‘This city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army, which shall take it.’” — thus saith the Lord, this city shall surely be given into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army… when those found in it should be put to the sword, or carried captive: this the prophet declares with the greatest certainty; and what he had often affirmed for twenty years past, and now stands to it, having had fresh assurances from the Lord that so it would be; and which he faithfully published; though he had received some favours from the court, had his liberty enlarged, and was now eating the king’s bread, he was not to be bribed by these things to hold his peace; but the nearer the ruin of the city was, the more confident was he of its destruction.

Therefore the princes said unto the king, “We beseech thee, let this man be put to death; for thus he weakeneth the hands of the men of war who remain in this city, and the hands of all the people, by speaking such words unto them; for this man seeketh not the welfare of this people, but the hurt.” — we beseech thee, let this man be put to death; or, “let this man now be put to death,” as the Targum says;

— for thus he weakened the hands of the men of war that remain in this city, and the hands of all the people, in speaking such words to them; dispirited the soldiers who were set for the defence of the city, such of them as were left, who were not taken off by the sword, famine, or pestilence; since, if what Jeremiah said was true, all attempts to defend it must be in vain; and the people be without any hope of being delivered out of the hands of the enemy.

Then Zedekiah the king said, “Behold, he is in your hand; for the king is not he that can do any thing against you.”

Then they took Jeremiah and cast him into the dungeon of Malchiah, the son of Hammelech, which was in the court of the prison; and they let down Jeremiah with cords. And in the dungeon there was no water, but mire; so Jeremiah sank in the mire.

Now when Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, one of the eunuchs who was in the king’s house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in the dungeon (the king then sitting in the Gate of Benjamin),

Ebedmelech went forth out of the king’s house and spoke to the king, saying,

“My lord the king, these men have done evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the prophet, whom they have cast into the dungeon; and he is likely to die of hunger in the place where he is, for there is no more bread in the city.”

10 Then the king commanded Ebedmelech the Ethiopian, saying, “Take from hence thirty men with thee, and take up Jeremiah the prophet out of the dungeon before he dies.”

11 So Ebedmelech took the men with him, and went into the house of the king under the treasury, and took from thence old castoff clothes and old rotten rags, and let them down by cords into the dungeon to Jeremiah.

12 And Ebedmelech the Ethiopian said unto Jeremiah, “Put now these old castoff clothes and rotten rags under thine armpits, under the cords.” And Jeremiah did so.

13 So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, and took him up out of the dungeon; and Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison.

14 Then Zedekiah the king sent and took Jeremiah the prophet unto him into the principal entry that is in the house of the Lord; and the king said unto Jeremiah, “I will ask thee a thing; hide nothing from me.”

15 Then Jeremiah said unto Zedekiah, “If I declare it unto thee, wilt thou not surely put me to death? And if I give thee counsel, wilt thou not hearken unto me?”

16 So Zedekiah the king swore secretly unto Jeremiah, saying, “As the Lord liveth, who made us this soul, I will not put thee to death, neither will I give thee into the hand of these men who seek thy life.”

17 Then said Jeremiah unto Zedekiah, “Thus saith the Lord, the God of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘If you will surrender to the officers of the king of Babylon, then your soul will live and this city will not be burned with fire. Thus you and your household will live.’ — if thou wilt assuredly go forth unto the king of Babylon’s princes; the generals of his army, whose names are mentioned, Jeremiah 39:3; the king not being with his army at this time, but at Riblah, Jeremiah 39:5; the meaning is, if he would open the gates of Jerusalem, and go forth from thence to the Chaldean army, and surrender himself and the city into the hands of the princes in it, and general officers of it:

— then thy soul shall live; in thy body and not be separated from it; or live comfortably in peace and safety though not in so much splendour and glory as he had done; and thine house; not only himself, but his wives, children and servants.

— and this city shall not be burned with fire; as had been threatened; and as the Chaldeans would be provoked to do, should it hold out to the last extremity; but should preserve it upon a surrender.

18 But if thou wilt not go forth to the king of Babylon’s princes, then shall this city be given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they shall burn it with fire, and thou shalt not escape out of their hand.’” — but if thou wilt not go forth to the king of Babylon’s princes… and surrender to them: then shall this city be given into the hands of the Chaldeans; if not willingly delivered up by the king of Judah, it shall be forcibly taken by the king of Babylon’s army.

19 And Zedekiah the king said unto Jeremiah, “I am afraid of the Jews who are fallen to the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their hand, and they mock me.” — I am afraid of the Jews that are fallen to the Chaldeans; who did go out of the city, and surrendered to the Chaldeans, whom Zedekiah had cruelly used, or severely threatened:

— lest they deliver me into their hands, and they mock me; that is, lest the Chaldeans should deliver him into the hands of the Jews, and they should jeer and scoff at him, for doing the same thing he had forbidden them on the severest penalty; or lest they should put him to death in the most revengeful and contemptuous manner, but all this was either a mere excuse, or showed great weakness.

20 But Jeremiah said, “They shall not deliver thee. Obey, I beseech thee, the voice of the Lord, which I speak unto thee; so it shall be well with thee, and thy soul shall live. — obey, I beseech thee, the voice of the Lord, which I speak unto thee; the counsel he had given him, to surrender to the Chaldeans, was not from himself, but from the Lord: and though he had no express order to give it at that time, yet it was what was agreeable to the will of God, and what he had exhorted the people to in the beginning of this chapter; and therefore, since it came from the Lord, as it ought to be attended to, so he might be assured of the divine protection, should he act according to it:

— so it shall be well with thee, and thy soul shall live; that is, it would not only be much better with him than he feared, but than it would be with him should he obstinately stand out to the last; he should have more respect and honour from the king of Babylon; and not only have his life spared, but enjoy more of the comforts of life; particularly the sight of his eyes, which he lost when taken.

21 But if thou refuse to go forth, this is the word that the Lord hath shown me:

22 And behold, all the women who are left in the king of Judah’s house shall be brought forth to the king of Babylon’s princes, and those women shall say, ‘Thy friends have set thee up and have prevailed against thee. Thy feet are sunk in the mire, and they have turned away back.’ — and, behold, all the women that are left in the king of Judah’s house… that were left in the royal palace when Jehoiakim and Jeconiah were carried captives; or which were left of the famine and pestilence in, Zedekiah’s house; or would be left there when he should flee and make his escape; meaning his concubines, or maids of honour, and court ladies;

— and those women shall say, thy friends have set thee on, and have prevailed against thee: or, “the men of thy peace” the false prophets, and the princes that hearkened to them, and promised and flattered him with peace and prosperity, these deceived him; they set him on to hold out against the Chaldeans, and not believe the Prophet Jeremiah; and they prevailed with him to do so, though it was against himself, and his own interest:

— and they are turned away back; meaning either his feet, which were distorted, and had turned aside from the right way; or now could go on no further against the enemy, but were obliged to turn back and flee; or else the men of his peace, the false prophets and princes, who had fed him with vain hopes of safety, now left him, and every man shifted for himself. This would be said by the women, either in a mournful manner, by way of complaint; or as scoffing at the king, as a silly foolish man, to hearken to such persons; and so he that was afraid of being mocked by the Jews is jeered at by the women of his house.

23 So they shall bring out all thy wives and thy children to the Chaldeans. And thou shalt not escape out of their hand, but shalt be taken by the hand of the king of Babylon; and thou shalt cause this city to be burned with fire.” — so they shall bring out all thy wives and thy children to the Chaldeans… not the citizens of Jerusalem; but, as Kimchi observes, the Chaldeans that should enter the city shall bring them out to the Chaldeans without: or it may be rendered impersonally, “they shall be brought out” not only the ladies at court, that waited on him and his queen, as before; but all his wives and concubines, and his children, or his sons rather; for at the taking of the city no mention is made of daughters, only of sons, who were slain before his eyes, Jeremiah 39:6;

— and thou shalt not escape out of their hand, but shalt be taken by the hand of the king of Babylon; not by him personally, for he was not present at the taking of him, but by his army, who having taken him, brought him to him, and delivered him into his hand, Jeremiah 39:5;

— and thou shalt cause this city to be burnt with fire; or, “thou shall burn this city with fire” b; be the moral cause of it; through his sin and obstinacy, impenitence and unbelief, the burning of the city might be laid to his charge; his sin was the cause of it; and it was all one as if he had burnt it with his own hands. All this is said to work upon him to hearken to the advice given; but all was in vain.

24 Then said Zedekiah unto Jeremiah, “Let no man know of these words, and thou shalt not die.

25 But if the princes hear that I have talked with thee, and they come unto thee and say unto thee, ‘Declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king, also what the king said unto thee; hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death,’ — and say unto thee, declare unto us now what thou hast said unto the king; hide it not from us, and we will not put thee to death; also what the king said unto thee: the king knew how inquisitive they would be, and sift the prophet to the bottom, to know both what the prophet said to the king, about the state of affairs respecting the Chaldeans, and the surrender of the city to them, which they supposed to be the subject of the discourse; and what were the king’s thoughts about it, and his determinations concerning it; and in order to make the prophet easy, and more free and open to tell the whole matter, he suggests they would promise him his life should not be taken away.

26 then thou shalt say unto them, ‘I presented my supplication before the king, that he would not cause me to return to Jonathan’s house to die there.’” — then thou shalt say unto them… here the king puts words into the prophet’s mouth, what he should say to the princes, to put them off from inquiring further, and so keep the matter a secret:

— that he would not cause me to return to Jonathan’s house, to die there; this he had entreated of the king before, Jeremiah 37:20; and now, no doubt, renewed his request, having this fair opportunity with the king alone to do it; or, however, it is highly probable he did it upon this hint of the king. This shows how much the king stood in fear of his princes in this time of his distress; and that he had only the name of a king, and had not courage and resolution enough to act of himself, according to the dictates of his mind; yea, that he feared men more than he feared the Lord.

27 Then came all the princes unto Jeremiah and asked him, and he told them according to all these words that the king had commanded. So they left off speaking with him, for the matter was not perceived. — for the matter was not perceived; or, “was not heard” though there were persons that saw the king and the prophet together, yet nobody heard anything that passed between them; and therefore Jeremiah could not be confronted in what he had said, or be charged with concealing anything.

28 So Jeremiah remained in the court of the prison until the day that Jerusalem was taken, and he was there when Jerusalem was taken. — the Targum, rendering it, “and it came to pass when Jerusalem was taken.”

Jeremiah (Ch 35-36)

•November 18, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 35

1 The word which came unto Jeremiah from the Lord in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, saying, — the time indicated would be around 609-598 BC during Jehoiakim’s reign.

“Go unto the house of the Rechabites and speak unto them, and bring them into the house of the Lord, into one of the chambers, and give them wine to drink.” — go unto the house of the Rechabites… Or “family” these are the same with the Kenites, who descended from Hobab or Jethro, Moses’s father in law, Judges 1:16; these, as their ancestors, became proselytes to Israel, and always continued living with them, though a distinct people from them; these here had their name from Rechab, a famous man in his time among those people.

Then I took Jaazaniah the son of Jeremiah, the son of Habazziniah, and his brethren and all his sons and the whole house of the Rechabites,

and I brought them into the house of the Lord, into the chamber of the sons of Hanan, the son of Igdaliah, a man of God, which was by the chamber of the princes, which was above the chamber of Maaseiah the son of Shallum, the keeper of the door.

And I set before the sons of the house of the Rechabites pots full of wine, and cups; and I said unto them, “Drink ye wine.”

But they said, “We will drink no wine; for Jonadab the son of Rechab, our father, commanded us, saying, ‘Ye shall drink no wine, neither ye, nor your sons for ever. — for Jonadab the son of Rechab our father; not their immediate father, but their progenitor; perhaps the same Jonadab is meant who lived in the times of Jehu, and rode with him in his chariot; by which it appears he was a man of note and figure, and who lived near three hundred years before this time, II Kings 10:15; which is more likely than that he should be a descendant of his, and the proper father of the present Rechabites;

— commanded us, saying, ye shall drink no wine, nor your sons, for ever. What was the reason of this command and of what follows is not easy to say; whether it was to prevent quarrels and contentions, luxury and sensuality; or to inure them to hardships; or to put them in remembrance that they were but strangers in the land in which they lived; or to retain them in the original course of life their ancestors had lived in, feeding cattle; be it what it will, these his sons thought themselves under obligations to observe; perhaps finding, by experience, it was for their good so to do.

Neither shall ye build a house, nor sow seed, nor plant a vineyard, nor have any; but all your days ye shall dwell in tents, that ye may live many days in the land where ye are strangers.’ — neither shall ye build house, nor sow seed, nor plant vineyard, nor have any… that is, they were not to build houses, sow seed, or plant vineyards, for themselves, for their own profit and advantage; nor possess either of these through purchase or gift: partly because they were strangers in the land of Israel;

— and partly because the pastoral life was what their ancestors had lived; and therefore Jonadab was desirous it should be continued in his posterity; as well as because by this means they would live not envied by the Israelites; since they did not covet to get any part of their possessions into their hands; upon any public calamity, as sword, famine, or pestilence, they could more easily flee to other places.

Thus have we obeyed the voice of Jonadab the son of Rechab, our father, in all that he hath charged us: to drink no wine all our days, we, our wives, our sons, nor our daughters,

nor to build houses for us to dwell in; neither have we vineyard, nor field, nor seed.

10 But we have dwelt in tents, and have obeyed and done according to all that Jonadab our father commanded us.

11 But it came to pass, when Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon came up into the land, that we said, ‘Come, and let us go to Jerusalem for fear of the army of the Chaldeans and for fear of the army of the Syrians.’ So we dwell at Jerusalem.” — so we dwell at Jerusalem, making use of the city as a temporary refuge, until they might return to their home-land. The Rechabites thus offered a fine example of willing obedience to the command of their tribal head.

12 Then came the word of the Lord unto Jeremiah, saying,

13 “Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Go and tell the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, ‘Will ye not receive instruction to hearken to My words?’ saith the Lord.

14 ‘The words of Jonadab the son of Rechab, that he commanded his sons not to drink wine, are performed; for unto this day they drink none, but obey their father’s commandment. Notwithstanding I have spoken unto you, rising early and speaking, but ye hearkened not unto Me. — the words of Jonadab the son of Rechab, that he commanded his sons, not to drink wine, are performed… that article particularly, respecting drinking wine, has been carefully observed; which, though so agreeable to the nature of man, what cheers the heart of God and man, and was not prohibited them by any law of God; yet, being forbidden by their father, they abstained from it:

— for unto this day they drink none, but obey their father’s commandment; though prescribed them three hundred years ago; during all which time they had punctually observed it, even to that very day; which might with great truth and strictness be said; since they had that very day refused to drink any:

— notwithstanding I have spoken unto you, rising early, and speaking; who am the eternal God; the King of kings; the great Lawgiver, able to save and to destroy; who had spoken to them, and given them laws as soon as they were a people, very early, in the times of Moses, on Mount Sinai and Horeb; and of which they had been reminded time after time, and enforced by proper arguments and motives; whereas the command of Jonadab was that of a mere man, not above three hundred years ago, and of which his posterity had never been put in mind, but as it was handed down from father to son; and this they constantly observed:

— but ye hearkened not unto me; so that the house of Judah’s disobedience was greatly aggravated.

15 I have sent also unto you all My servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them, saying, “Return ye now every man from his evil way and amend your doings, and go not after other gods to serve them, and ye shall dwell in the land which I have given to you and to your fathers.” But ye have not inclined your ear, nor hearkened unto Me.

16 Because the sons of Jonadab the son of Rechab have performed the commandment of their father which he commanded them, but this people hath not hearkened unto Me,

17 therefore thus saith the Lord God of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will bring upon Judah and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem all the evil that I have pronounced against them, because I have spoken unto them but they have not heard, and I have called unto them but they have not answered.’” — behold, I will bring upon Judah, and upon all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, all the evil that I have pronounced against them: which means of all the threatenings and curses in the law and the prophets respecting the Jews, until the times of Jeremiah; though it may more especially intend the evil, God by him had pronounced upon them; namely, that the Chaldean army should come into their land, besiege Jerusalem, and take it, and to carry its inhabitants away as captives:

— because I have spoken unto them, but they have not heard; and I have called unto them, but they have not answered; he spoke to them by his prophets, he called to them in his providences, and took every method to warn them of their sin and danger, and bring them to repentance and reformation; but all to no purpose;

— the Targum says, “because I sent unto them all my servants the prophets, but they obeyed not; and they prophesied to them, but they returned not.”

18 And Jeremiah said unto the house of the Rechabites, “Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘Because ye have obeyed the commandment of Jonadab your father, and kept all his precepts and done according unto all that he hath commanded you,

19 therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not lack for a man to stand before Me for ever.’” — Jonadab the son of Rechab shall not want a man to stand before me for ever; which may be understood of a long time, of ages to come; or as long as the people of the Jews were a people, or the world should stand, the posterity of this man should continue: or, “a man shall not be cut off from Jonadab” his offspring shall never fail. It is certain that some of this family returned from the captivity, 1 Chronicles 2:55

— the Targum paraphrased, “ministering before me;” serving and worshipping God, for they were religious people; that is, in their own families, carrying on religious worship among themselves, though not in the temple, where they had no office, and did no service; though some think they had, some being called scribes.

Jeremiah 36

1 And it came to pass in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, that this word came unto Jeremiah from the Lord, saying: — and it came to pass in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah… around 606 BC; eighteen years before the destruction of Jerusalem.

“Take thee a scroll of a book, and write therein all the words that I have spoken unto thee against Israel and against Judah and against all the nations from the day I spoke unto thee, from the days of Josiah, even unto this day. — and write therein all the words that I have spoken unto thee against Israel, and against Judah; for though Israel was carried captive before the times of Jeremiah, and his prophecies were chiefly directed against Judah; yet as there were some of the ten tribes mixed with them, they were included in these prophecies, and therefore mentioned:

— and against all the nations; such as Egypt, Edom, Ammon, and Moab, Jeremiah 9:26;

— from the day that I spake unto thee, from the days of Josiah, even unto this day; that is, from the time the Lord called him to prophesy in his name, which was in, the thirteenth year of Josiah, who reigned thirty-one years; and this being the fourth year of Jehoiakim, it must be the twenty-third year of his prophesying, and the a course of full twenty-two years; Jeremiah 1:2;

— now all his discourses and prophecies he had delivered out against one and another, during this time, must all be written in one roll or book, that that they might be read. This roll could probably be the book of Lamentations, and if so, the book of Lamentations should serve as a appendix to the book of Jeremiah..

It may be that the house of Judah will hear all the evil which I purpose to do unto them, that they may return every man from his evil way, that I may forgive their iniquity and their sin.”

Then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah; and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the Lord which He had spoken unto him upon a scroll of a book. — then Jeremiah called Baruch the son of Neriah… one of his disciples, and whom he had before made use of in the purchase of a field of his uncle’s son, and to whom he gave the evidence of the purchase, Jeremiah 32:12; he was probably a better penman than the prophet, or a quicker writer;

— and Baruch wrote from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the Lord, which he had spoken unto him, upon a roll of a book; it seems that Jeremiah had not committed any of his prophecies to writing; and yet it cannot be thought that by the mere strength of memory he could repeat every discourse and prophecy he had delivered in the space of twenty-two years; wherefore it must be concluded that same Spirit, which first dictated the prophecies to him, brought them fresh memory; so that he could readily repeat them to Baruch, who took them down in writing on a roll of parchment.

And Jeremiah commanded Baruch, saying, “I am shut up; I cannot go into the house of the Lord.

Therefore go thou, and read in the scroll, which thou hast written from my mouth, the words of the Lord in the ears of the people in the Lord’S house upon the fasting day; and also thou shalt read them in the ears of all Judah who come out of their cities. — upon the fasting day; the day of atonement; the great fast, which was on the tenth day of the seventh month, in the fourth year of Jehoiakim; and so a different time of reading from that in Jeremiah 36:9. This was a very proper time to read it in, when the people were fasting and humbling themselves before the Lord; though some think this was a fast proclaimed by Jehoiakim, to avert the vengeance threatened by the Chaldean army.

It may be they will present their supplication before the Lord, and will return every one from his evil way; for great is the anger and the fury that the Lord hath pronounced against this people.”

And Baruch the son of Neriah did according to all that Jeremiah the prophet commanded him, reading in the book the words of the Lord in the Lord’S house.

And it came to pass in the fifth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, in the ninth month, that they proclaimed a fast before the Lord to all the people in Jerusalem, and to all the people who came from the cities of Judah unto Jerusalem. — and all the people that came from the cities of Judah unto Jerusalem: these proclaimed the fast; they applied to the government for one, or however obeyed the king’s orders, and published and proclaimed a fast; not only the inhabitants of Jerusalem, but those who came from other cities on the king’s order, or for worship.

10 Then read Baruch in the book the words of Jeremiah in the house of the Lord, in the chamber of Gemariah the son of Shaphan, the scribe, in the higher court at the entry of the New Gate of the Lord’S house in the ears of all the people.

11 When Michaiah the son of Gemariah, the son of Shaphan, had heard out of the book all the words of the Lord,

12 then he went down into the king’s house into the scribe’s chamber; and lo, all the princes sat there, even Elishama the scribe, and Delaiah the son of Shemaiah, and Elnathan the son of Achbor, and Gemariah the son of Shaphan, and Zedekiah the son of Hananiah, and all the princes. — and all the princes, who were either members of the great Sanhedrin, or courtiers; it appears from hence that this court was very profane and irreligious; for though they had proclaimed a fast, to make a show of religion, or at the importunity of the people; yet they did not attend temple worship and service themselves, but were all together in the secretary’s office, very probably about political affairs.

13 Then Michaiah declared unto them all the words that he had heard when Baruch read the book in the ears of the people.

14 Therefore all the princes sent Jehudi the son of Nethaniah, the son of Shelemiah, the son of Cushi unto Baruch, saying, “Take in thine hand the scroll wherein thou hast read in the ears of the people, and come.” So Baruch the son of Neriah took the scroll in his hand, and came unto them.

15 And they said unto him, “Sit down now, and read it in our ears.” So Baruch read it in their ears. — so Baruch read it in their ears; without any fear or dread, though in the king’s palace, and before an assembly of princes; nor did he excuse himself on account of weariness, having just read it to the people; or upbraid the princes with not being in the temple, where they might have heard it.

16 Now it came to pass, when they had heard all the words, they were afraid both one and the other, and said unto Baruch, “We will surely tell the king of all these words.”

17 And they asked Baruch, saying, “Tell us now, how didst thou write all these words from his mouth?”

18 Then Baruch answered them, “He pronounced all these words unto me with his mouth, and I wrote them with ink in the book.”

19 Then said the princes unto Baruch, “Go, hide thee, thou and Jeremiah; and let no man know where ye be.” — go hide thee, thou and Jeremiah, and let no man know where ye be. Some of these princes at least seem to be good men, and had regards for the prophet and his scribe, and were concerned for their welfare; and knowing the furious temper of the king, provided against the worst; and in point of prudence advised Baruch and his master to abscond, and not let anyone know where they were, lest they should be betrayed; nor did they, the princes, desire to know themselves. 

20 And they went in to the king into the court, but they laid up the scroll in the chamber of Elishama the scribe, and told all the words in the ears of the king.

21 So the king sent Jehudi to fetch the scroll; and he took it out of Elishama the scribe’s chamber. And Jehudi read it in the ears of the king and in the ears of all the princes who stood beside the king. — literally, “over the king” for since they were standing in his presence, their heads were higher than his;

— and Jehudi read it in the ears of the king, and in the ears of all the princes that stood by the king: as he doubtless was ordered; and which he did so loudly, clearly and distinctly, that the king and all the princes could hear.

22 Now the king sat in the winter house in the ninth month, and there was a fire on the hearth burning before him.

23 And it came to pass that when Jehudi had read three or four leaves, he cut it with the penknife and cast it into the fire that was on the hearth, until all the scroll was consumed in the fire that was on the hearth.

24 Yet they were not afraid, nor rent their garments, neither the king nor any of his servants who heard all these words. — yet they were not afraid, nor rent their garments… they were not struck with horror at such an impious action as the burning of the roll; nor afraid of the judgements and wrath of God threatened in it; nor did they rend their garments in token of sorrow and mourning on account of either, as used to be when anything blasphemous was said or done, or any bad news were brought.

25 Nevertheless Elnathan and Delaiah and Gemariah had made intercession to the king that he should not burn the scroll; but he would not hear them.

26 But the king commanded Jerahmeel the son of Hammelech, and Seraiah the son of Azriel, and Shelemiah the son of Abdeel to take Baruch the scribe and Jeremiah the prophet; but the Lord hid them. — but the Lord hid them; the princes advised them to hide themselves, and they did, very probably in a house of some of their friends; but this would not have been sufficient, had not the Lord took them under his protection.

27 Then the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, after the king had burned the scroll and the words which Baruch wrote at the mouth of Jeremiah, saying,

28 “Take thee again another scroll, and write in it all the former words that were in the first scroll, which Jehoiakim the king of Judah hath burned.

29 And thou shalt say to Jehoiakim king of Judah, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Thou hast burned this scroll, saying, “Why hast thou written therein, saying: the king of Babylon shall certainly come and destroy this land, and shall cause to cease from thence man and beast?”

30 Therefore thus saith the Lord concerning Jehoiakim king of Judah: He shall have none to sit upon the throne of David, and his dead body shall be cast out in the day to the heat and in the night to the frost. — he shall have none to sit upon the throne of David; that is, none of his seed that should reign after him, or succeed him in the throne of David and kingdom of Judah; for his son Jeconiah reigned but three months, which is reckoned as nothing, and could not be called sitting upon the throne; and Zedekiah, who followed, was not his lawful successor, not his seed but a brother to Jehoiakim, and was set up by the king of Babylon in contempt of the latter.

31 And I will punish him and his seed and his servants for their iniquity; and I will bring upon them and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem and upon the men of Judah all the evil that I have pronounced against them; but they hearkened not.’” — and I will bring upon them, and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem, and upon the men of Judah, all the evil that I have pronounced against them; the sword, famine, and pestilence; the destruction of their land, city, and temple; and their captivity in Babylon.

32 Then Jeremiah took another scroll and gave it to Baruch the scribe, the son of Neriah who wrote in it from the mouth of Jeremiah all the words of the book which Jehoiakim king of Judah had burned in the fire. And there were added to them many like words. — many like words or clauses, there were added unto them of the same nature and argument; besides, the discourse delivered in the Temple court was, in modern phrase, revised and enlarged, dictated to Baruch as before, and in this shape has probably come down to us through the fresh inspiration of God’s spirits, from hence we may infer that God did not always use the very form of words which the writers have set down, but directing them in general to express his sense with new dimensions, with a heavier denunciation of his wrath and vengeance. From whence proceeds that a variety of style and format which we may observe in the Scriptures, suitable to the different genius and flair of different writers.

Jeremiah (Ch 33-34)

•November 17, 2021 • 1 Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

Jeremiah 33

1 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah the second time, while he was yet shut up in the court of the prison, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord the maker thereof, the Lord who formed it to establish it, the Lord is His name: — the Lord isn’t his name, the Lord is a title; Yehovah is his name (more at the end)

‘Call unto Me, and I will answer thee, and show thee great and mighty things, which thou knowest not.’ — some copies read it, “things reserved” as the Targum says; and so Rashi, who interprets it of things future, of things reserved in the heart of God;

— which thou knowest not; until revealed; canst be known without further revelation; that by these great and hidden things are not meant the destruction of Jerusalem, nor the seventy years’ captivity, nor return from that, nor things which Jeremiah had been made acquainted with time after time, and had prophesied of them; but something not revealed as yet…

For thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning the houses of this city and concerning the houses of the kings of Judah, which are thrown down by the siege mounds and by the sword: — the Targum says, “which they pulled down, and threw up mounts to strengthen the wall, against those that kill with the sword.”

‘They come to fight with the Chaldeans, but it is to fill them with the dead bodies of men whom I have slain in Mine anger and in My fury, and for all whose wickedness I have hid My face from this city. — and for all whose wickedness I have hid my face from the city; had no pity for it, showed no mercy to it, gave it no help and assistance, or protection, having withdrawn his presence from it. So the Targum says, “I have caused my Shekinah to depart from this city, because of their wickedness.”

Behold, I will bring it health and cure; and I will cure them and will reveal unto them the abundance of peace and truth.

And I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to cease, and will build them as at the first. — and I will cause the captivity of Judah and the captivity of Israel to return… mention being made of the return of the captivity of Israel, or the ten tribes, as well as that of Judah, shows that this prophecy does not relate to the return of the Jews from their seventy years’ captivity in Babylon; but is to be understood to be yet in the future;

— according to the Septuagint of Ezekiel 4, the captivity of Judah is 40 years whereas the captivity of Israel will be 190 years.

And I will cleanse them from all their iniquity whereby they have sinned against Me; and I will pardon all their iniquities whereby they have sinned and whereby they have transgressed against Me.

And it shall be to Me a name of joy, a praise and an honor before all the nations of the earth, which shall hear all the good that I do unto them; and they shall fear and tremble for all the goodness and for all the prosperity that I provide unto it.’ — and they shall fear and tremble, for all the goodness and for all the prosperity that I procure unto it; that is, they shall fear the Lord, and tremble at his word; not with a slavish, but filial fear, which is consistent with joy and gladness.

10 “Thus saith the Lord: ‘Again there shall be heard in this place (which ye say shall be desolate, without man and without beast, even in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem that are desolate, without man and without inhabitant and without beast),

11 the voice of joy and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, “Praise the Lord of hosts, for the Lord is good; for His mercy endureth for ever” — and of those who shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord. For I will cause to return the captives of the land, as at the first, saith the Lord.

12 “Thus saith the Lord of hosts: ‘Again in this place which is desolate, without man and without beast, and in all the cities thereof shall be a habitation of shepherds causing their flocks to lie down.

13 In the cities of the mountains, in the cities of the vale, and in the cities of the South, and in the land of Benjamin, and in the places about Jerusalem, and in the cities of Judah, shall the flocks pass again under the hands of him that counteth them,’ saith the Lord.

14 “‘Behold, the days come,’ saith the Lord, ‘that I will perform that good thing which I have promised unto the house of Israel and to the house of Judah. — behold, the days are coming; there shall come a time when he will verify every good word which he hath spoken to, or concerning his people. 

15 In those days and at that time will I cause the Branch of righteousness to grow up unto David; and He shall execute judgment and righteousness in the land.

16 In those days shall Judah be saved, and Jerusalem shall dwell safely. And this is the name wherewith she shall be called: The Lord Our Righteousness.’

17 “For thus saith the Lord: ‘David shall never be in want for a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel; — David shall never want a man to sit upon the throne of the house of Israel; or, “there shall not be cut off unto David a man” and this is to be understood of the temporal kingdom of David, which has mysterious been preserved from even a long time ago.

18 neither shall the priests, the Levites, be in want for a man before Me to offer burnt offerings, and to kindle meat offerings, and to do sacrifice continually.’” — neither shall the priests the Levites for want a man before me… although the work of the Levitical priesthood has been abandoned long ago, their line, clan or tribe had mysterious been preserved.

19 And the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah, saying,

20 “Thus saith the Lord: ‘If ye can break My covenant of the day and My covenant of the night, and that there should not be day and night in their season, — thus saith the Lord, if you can break my covenant of the day, and my covenant of the night… the same with the ordinances of the sun, moon, and stars, Jeremiah 31:35; the original constitution and law of nature, settled from the beginning of the world, and observed ever since, in the constant revolution of day and night; and which was formed into a covenant and promise to Noah, after the deluge, that day and night should not cease, as long as the earth remained,

21 then may also My covenant be broken with David My servant, that he should not have a son to reign upon his throne, and with the Levites the priests, My ministers.

22 As the host of heaven cannot be numbered, neither the sand of the sea measured, so will I multiply the seed of David My servant and the Levites who minister unto Me.’”

23 Moreover the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah, saying,

24 “Considerest thou not what this people have spoken, saying, ‘The two families which the Lord hath chosen, He hath even cast them off’? Thus they have despised My people, that they should be no more a nation before them. — with respect to the two families, some thought there are families of Aaron and the families of the Levites; some interpret it of the kingdoms of Israel and Judah; and others of the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin.

25 Thus saith the Lord: ‘If My covenant be not with day and night, and if I have not appointed the ordinances of heaven and earth,

26 then will I cast away the seed of Jacob and David My servant, so that I will not take any of his seed to be rulers over the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; for I will cause their captivity to cease, and have mercy on them.’”

~~~

More on God’s name, Yehovah.

God’s name is the four-letter Hebrew word יהוה‎ YHVH Yehovah, which are embedded in the Masoretic text over 6000 times, yet when translated into our English language most had been translated as Lord, or LORD, which are titles, but not his name. His name is יהוה‎ Yehovah, or YEHOVAH (but there are no capital letters in Hebrew).

It wasn’t until 1524 that Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian Renaissance grammarian, invented the letter J that this new letter started to take a hold in the writings of western Europe. Even in 1611 when the English Bible the King James has our subject of study by the prophet Jeremiah, he was known as Ieremiah. So Jehovah is a very late comer.

The following verses with the LORD erred in translation. His name Yehovah should be used:

I am the LORD; that is My name. And My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images. Isaiah 42:8

And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call. Joel 2:32

“I am sought of them that asked not for Me; I am found of them that sought Me not. I said, ‘Behold Me, behold Me,’ unto a nation that was not called by My name. Isaiah 65:1

When we call our God, the LORD, we err, because his name is not the LORD, which is a title. His name is YEHOVAH! May We all ask for his forgiveness, and may Our merciful God forgive us all.

Jeremiah 34

In this chapter, because of their breach of covenant to let servants go free, it is another cause of the taking and burning of Jerusalem; of the captivity of Zedekiah king of Judah; and of the destruction of the whole land.

1 The word which came unto Jeremiah from the Lord when Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon and all his army, and all the kingdoms of the earth of his dominion, and all the people, fought against Jerusalem and against all the cities thereof, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel: Go and speak to Zedekiah king of Judah and tell him, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will give this city into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire.

And thou shalt not escape out of his hand, but shalt surely be taken and delivered into his hand; and thine eyes shall behold the eyes of the king of Babylon, and he shall speak with thee mouth to mouth, and thou shalt go to Babylon.

Yet hear the word of the Lord, O Zedekiah king of Judah. Thus saith the Lord of thee: Thou shalt not die by the sword, — yet hear the word of the Lord, O Zedekiah king of Judah… which, though a king, he ought to hearken to the Lord;

— thus saith the Lord of thee, thou shalt not die by the sword: of Zedekiah king of Judah of a violent death; and therefore fear not to deliver thyself and city into the hands of the king of Babylon; for Zedekiah fears he would put him to death immediately.

but thou shalt die in peace; and with the burnings of thy fathers, the former kings who were before thee, so shall they burn incense for thee; and they will lament thee, saying, “Ah, lord!” For I have pronounced the word, saith the Lord.’”

Then Jeremiah the prophet spoke all these words unto Zedekiah king of Judah in Jerusalem,

when the king of Babylon’s army fought against Jerusalem and against all the cities of Judah that were left, against Lachish and against Azekah; for these fortified cities remained of the cities of Judah. — and against all the cities of Judah that were left; unconquered by him; when he invaded the land, he fought against, and took, and ravished all the cities that lay in his way; and it seems there were none that stood out against him but Jerusalem, now besieged by him, and two others, mentioned below;

— against Lachish, and against Azekah; for these defenced cities remained of the cities of Judah; two cities that had been fortified by Rehoboam, II Chronicles 11:9; and were still standing besides Jerusalem, which as yet had not fallen into the army of Babylon.

This is the word that came unto Jeremiah from the Lord, after King Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people who were at Jerusalem to proclaim liberty unto them: — this is the word that came unto Jeremiah from the Lord, which he recorded as faithfully as he had received it, after that the King Zedekiah had made a covenant with all the people which were at Jerusalem, entering into a solemn agreement with them, to proclaim liberty unto them, according to the Lord’s ordinance which permitted the Hebrews to keep the members of their own nation as bond-servants for only six years, since in the seventh year they must all be given their liberty, Exodus 21:22;

that every man should let his manservant and every man his maidservant, being a Hebrew or a Hebrewess, go free, that none should be served by them, to wit: by a Jew, his brother. — cause or compel them to be bond-servants, to wit, of a Jew, an Hebrew or an Hebrewess, for the Law concerned these only, not the slaves of another nationality.

10 Now when all the princes and all the people, who had entered into the covenant, heard that every one should let his manservant and every one his maidservant go free, that none should be served by them any more, then they obeyed and let them go. — they hearkened, and let them go free. That is, they conformed to the obligations of the covenant, which they had entered into at the instigation of their princes.

11 But afterward they turned, and caused the servants and the handmaids whom they had let go free to return, and brought them into subjection for servants and for handmaids. — but afterwards they turned, having cold feet… from the law of God, and their own agreement, and returned to their former usage of their servants; they changed their minds and measures.

12 Therefore the word of the Lord came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

13 “Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel: I made a covenant with your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage, saying,

14 ‘At the end of seven years let go every man his brother, a Hebrew who hath been sold unto thee; and when he hath served thee six years, thou shalt let him go free from thee.’ But your fathers hearkened not unto Me, neither inclined their ear. — this is another sin of Israel, the year of release, a release of a slave, and release of debt; the release of the land, a year of rest;

— but your fathers hearkened not unto me, neither inclined their ear; to obey the laws of God, and particularly this concerning servants. This is not to be understood of the fathers with whom the covenant was first made, and to whom this law was first given; but their posterity in later times, who yet lived long before the present generation, and so might with great propriety be called their fathers; and by which it appears that this law had been long neglected.

15 And ye had now turned, and had done right in My sight in proclaiming liberty every man to his neighbor; and ye had made a covenant before Me in the house which is called by My name.

16 But ye turned and polluted My name, and caused every man his servant and every man his handmaid, whom he had set at liberty at their pleasure, to return, and brought them into subjection to be unto you for servants and for handmaids.

17 “Therefore thus saith the Lord: Ye have not hearkened unto Me, in proclaiming liberty, every one to his brother and every man to his neighbor. Behold, I proclaim a ‘liberty’ for you, saith the Lord, to the sword, to the pestilence, and to the famine; and I will make you to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth.

18 And I will give the men who have transgressed My covenant, who have not performed the words of the covenant which they had made before Me when they cut the calf in twain and passed between the parts thereof—

19 the princes of Judah and the princes of Jerusalem, the eunuchs, and the priests, and all the people of the land who passed between the parts of the calf—

20 I will even give them into the hand of their enemies and into the hand of them that seek their life; and their dead bodies shall be for meat unto the fowls of the heaven and to the beasts of the earth.

21 And Zedekiah king of Judah and his princes will I give into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of them that seek their life, and into the hand of the king of Babylon’s army which has gone up from you.

22 Behold, I will command, saith the Lord, and cause them to return to this city; and they shall fight against it, and take it, and burn it with fire. And I will make the cities of Judah a desolation without an inhabitant.” — and they shall fight against it, and take it, and burn it with fire; they fought against it by shooting arrows from their bows, casting stones from their engines and by beating down the walls with their battering rams; with which making breaches, they entered in and took the city; burnt the temple, palaces and other houses with fire; of all which see the accomplishment in Jeremiah 52:4;

— and I will make the cities of Judah a desolation without an inhabitant: many of them were already; the king of Babylon having taken, ravaged and plundered them before he came to Jerusalem; and whither the inhabitants of them, that escaped the sword, fled for security; and others of them, that were not, now should be made desolate upon the taking of Jerusalem,

— as Lachish and Azekah, Jeremiah 34:7; which should fall into the hands of the enemy, and the inhabitants thereof be forced to flee into other countries, or would be carried away as captives; so that they would be but few, if any, to dwell in these two cities.

Jeremiah (Ch 31-32)

•November 16, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 31 is connected with the former chapters, respects the same times, and is full of prophecies and conversion of the nations; of the covenant of peace. It begins with the principal promise of the covenant, confirmed by past experience, of divine goodness, and with a fresh declaration of God’s everlasting commitment to Israel.

Jeremiah 31

1 “At the same time,” saith the Lord, “will I be the God of all the families of Israel, and they shall be My people.” — I be the God of all the families of Israel; not of some few persons only, or of one of a city, and two of a family, but of every family; and this will be when “all Israel” will be under God’s sovereign; which mean this will be prophetic, yet in the future as the house of Israel has never return, even now as this is written.

Thus saith the Lord: “The people who were left from the sword found grace in the wilderness, even Israel, when I went to cause him to rest.” — thus saith the Lord, the people which were left of the sword… which were not consumed by the sword of Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon, and who survived through his cruel edicts, and by his sword, famine and pestilence.

The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, “Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love; therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.

A Timbrels or a Tambourine for dance

Again I will build thee, and thou shalt be built, O virgin of Israel; thou shalt again be adorned with thy timbrels, and shalt go forth in the dances of them that make merry. — the Israelites have the title of “virgin of Israel” bestowed upon them to imply that, in consequence of their repentance after captivity, “they should be washed from the stains of their idolatries,” and they did; but other problems developed over the years: hypocrisies, over zealous of the laws, Sabbath-keepings while forgetting justice, mercy and faith;

Thou shalt yet plant vines upon the mountains of Samaria; the planters shall plant, and shall eat them as common things. — “the mountains of Samaria” is situated in today’s West Bank, which is populated by Palestinians and under Palestinian control; the ten tribes, especially of Ephraim, haven’t regain their land yet; perhaps B’ney Yosef (Children of Joseph) the North America branch will spearhead their recovery and set up the continent of North America for a global Hebraic awakening?

For there shall be a day that the watchmen upon Mount Ephraim shall cry, ‘Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion unto the Lord our God.’” — is B’ney Yosef their watchman? Let’s wait and see; but since God has foretold that a watchman will arise, so there will be one, whether is it B’ney Yosef or not we don’t know yet; or would there be another organisation? Perhaps there are a few watchmen, it’s in the plural – watchmen.

For thus saith the Lord: “Sing with gladness for Jacob, and shout among the chief of the nations; proclaim ye, praise ye, and say, ‘O Lord, save Thy people, the remnant of Israel.’ — “the chief of the nations” is obviously the United States of America; that’s the topdog! — hence whoever the watchmen is upon Mount Ephraim, he will cry aloud, “Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion”

— again, I couldn’t resist bringing forth a parallel passage from Ezekiel 6 with comments below:

2 “Son of man, set thy face toward the mountains of Israel, and prophesy against them — Son of man, set thy face towards the mountains of Israel… or cities of Israel, the future inhabitants of them; not the ancient ten tribes, for they had been carried captive long before this time, even in the times of Hezekiah; but far more likely, into the far future unless it can be thought that this prophecy is designed to show the reason of their captivity, which isn’t.

3 and say: ‘Ye mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord God. Thus saith the Lord God to the mountains and to the hills, to the rivers and to the valleys: Behold I, even I, will bring a sword upon you, and I will destroy your high places. — this message to the “mountains of Israel;” these mountains refer to the United States, UK and France… “and to the hills, to the rivers and to the valleys;” the hills: Ireland, Switzerland and the Scandinavian countries: Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, Finland, and Iceland; and the valleys, the low countries: Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg;

— and to the rivers; where during the nineteenth century, the British Royal Navy were known to “Rule the Waves” and the United States having been plowing up and down the five oceans with her Seven Fleets since the British left the scene.

Behold, I will bring them from the north country, and gather them from the coasts of the earth, and with them the blind and the lame, the woman with child, and her that travaileth with child together; a great company shall return thither.

They shall come with weeping, and with supplications will I lead them; I will cause them to walk by the rivers of waters in a straight way, wherein they shall not stumble; for I am a Father to Israel, and Ephraim is My firstborn. — for am a father to Israel, and Ephraim is my firstborn; and so very dear to him, as in Jeremiah 31:20. So the Targum says “and Ephraim is beloved before me;”

— all the blessings which God bestows upon men, whether Israelites or not, all flow from being as Abraham’s children; he first takes them into the relation of all his children, is a father to them in covenant; and then bestows children’s blessings on them. The allusion, perhaps, is to Joseph’s having the birthright, and whose younger son, Ephraim, was preferred to Manasseh the elder, 1 Chronicles 5:2. Ephraim becomes the head of Israel, the ten tribes, but excludes the house of Judah, who has the scepter.

10 “Hear the word of the Lord, O ye nations, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, ‘He that scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him as a shepherd doth his flock.’

11 For the Lord hath redeemed Jacob, and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he.

12 Therefore they shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together to the goodness of the Lord—for wheat and for wine and for oil, and for the young of the flock and of the herd; and their soul shall be as a watered garden, and they shall not sorrow any more at all.

13 Then shall the virgin rejoice in the dance, both young men and old together; for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them and make them rejoice from their sorrow. — for a country like the United States now, with so much filths, to be a virgin, it has to undergo much purifications, which in God’s eye has to undergo a prolonged captivity; Judah’s experience under Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon was just a preamble; just 70 years; currently a great captivity for Ephraim is in the making! Perhaps a super hyperinflation would be a start?

14 And I will satiate the soul of the priests with fatness, and My people shall be satisfied with My goodness,” saith the Lord.

15 Thus saith the Lord: “A voice was heard in Ramah, lamentation and bitter weeping; Rachel, weeping for her children, refused to be comforted for her children, because they were no more.” — Ramah was a city of Benjamin, near which Rachel, the mother of Joseph and Benjamin, was buried;

— Rachel weeping for her children; not really and in person, but by a figurative way of Ephraim and Manasseh. Rachel being the mother of Joseph and Benjamin; Joseph being the father of Ephraim and Manasseh.

16 Thus saith the Lord; “Restrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears; for thy work shall be rewarded,” saith the Lord; “and they shall come back from the land of the enemy. — thus saith the Lord, refrain thy voice from weeping, and thine eyes from tears… though sorrow on such an occasion may be lawfully indulged, yet it ought to be moderated; and attention should be given to those things which may serve to relieve under it, and especially when they come from the Lord himself; then a stop is to be put to the mournful voice, and wet eyes are to be dried up.

17 And there is hope in thine end,” saith the Lord, “that thy children shall come back to their own border.

18 “I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus: ‘Thou hast chastised me and I was chastised, as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke; turn Thou me, and I shall be turned, for Thou art the Lord my God. — thou hast chastised me and I was chastised; one possibility is that Ephraim has to undergo a cleaning of 190 years, and Judah 40; why the difference? Perhaps Judah had undergo numerous pogroms and cleanings whereas Ephraim has none since the day when went captivity and into apparent oblivion;

— Ephraim chastised . . . as a bullock; see, Ephraim is being symbolized by the bullock or ox again:

More on the Ox and the Unicorn:

His glory is like the firstling of his ox (bullock), and his horns are like the horns of unicorns. With them he shall push the people together to the ends of the earth; and they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh,” Deuteronomy 33:17.

In the above verse, the Ox and Ephraim are named first, the firstborn of his (Joseph’s) “bullock is his glory” the reference being to Ephraim; followed by Unicorn and Manasseh, which is embedded in the British Coat of Arms.

The Unicorn Embedded in the British Coat of Arms

Although Manasseh was the firstborn, Joseph the father crossed his hands and placed Ephraim as firstborn, hence Ephraim, often known as the thirteenth tribe, represents not just the house of Joseph, but more often the house of the 10-tribes Northern Kingdom.

— Ephraim bemoaning himself; but today Ephraim, with 7 fleets and the largest army/navy in the world, is proud and arrogant; boastful, drunk and amusing herself with her harlets; but that will change!

19 Surely after I was turned, I repented; and after I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh. I was ashamed, yea, even confounded, because I bore the reproach of my youth.’ — surely after that I was turned I repented… Ephraim’s prayer was answered; as he prayed he might be turned, he was; and when he was turned, then he repented, not only of sin in general, but of such sins as he had been particularly guilty of; not only of the grosser actions of life, but of inward sins: lusts, lies and corruptions.

20 Is Ephraim My dear son? Is he a pleasant child? For since I spoke against him, I do earnestly remember him still; therefore My heart is troubled for him; I will surely have mercy upon him,” saith the Lord. — I will surely have mercy on him, saith the Lord; or show mercy to him; as the Lord does to his children, by receiving them graciously upon their return; by manifesting and applying pardoning grace; by bestowing fresh favours on them; and by bringing them safe to eternal glory and happiness.

21 “Set thee up waymarks, make thee high heaps; set thine heart toward the highway, even the way which thou wentest; turn back, O virgin of Israel, turn back to these thy cities. — set thee up way marks, make thee high heaps… of stones, raised up as pillars, or like pyramids; or upright, as palm trees; to be marks and signs, to know the way again upon a return. The Targum says, “O congregation of Israel, remember the right works of thy fathers; pour out supplications; in bitterness set thy heart.”

— turn again, O virgin of Israel, turn again to these thy cities; an invitation and encouragement to Ephraim to turn again to their own land; from a “Babylonish captivity” to come, so from all lands in the latter day; after 190 years of purification, which is yet to be fulfilled, and to which the prophecy more properly belongs.

22 How long wilt thou go about, O thou backsliding daughter? For the Lord hath created a new thing in the earth: a woman shall compass a man.”

23 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “As yet they shall use this speech in the land of Judah and in the cities thereof, when I shall bring them back from captivity: ‘The Lord bless thee, O habitation of justice and mountain of holiness.’ — as yet they shall use this speech in the land of Israel, and in the cities thereof, when I shall bring again back from their captivity; not the Babylonish captivity, but a futuristic one; though there was repentance among them, by means of a type of Ezra and Nehemiah, and others; when, by way of salutation and prayer, the following words “The Lord bless thee,” will be said by all that know them, and wish well to them.

24 And there shall dwell in Judah itself, and in all the cities thereof together, husbandmen, and they that go forth with flocks.

25 For I have satiated the weary soul, and I have replenished every sorrowful soul.”

26 Upon this I awaked and beheld, and my sleep was sweet unto me.

27 “Behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah with the seed of man and with the seed of beast. — that I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah, with the seed of man, and with the seed of beast; that is, will multiply both man and beast, so that there shall be a great increase; whereas, through war, famine, pestilence and captivity, their numbers were greatly reduced.

28 And it shall come to pass, that as I have watched over them to pluck up and to break down, and to throw down and to destroy and to afflict, so will I watch over them to build and to plant,” saith the Lord. — to build and to plant, saith the Lord; to build their city and temple, and to plant them in their own land; the temple which God will be building, whose foundation he lays, the superstructure of which he rears up, and will complete it in his own time;

— the allusion is to the sowing of a field with seed, which in due time springs up, and produces a large increase. Some understand this of the spiritual blessing of regeneration; but of incorruptible seed by the word of God: though afterwards an account is given of the new covenant.

29 “In those days they shall say no more: “‘The fathers have eaten a sour grape, and the children’s teeth are set on edge.’ — that is, the fathers have sinned, and the children are punished for their sins. So the Targum says, “the fathers have sinned, and the children are smitten.”

30 But every one shall die for his own iniquity: every man that eateth the sour grape, his teeth shall be set on edge.

31 “Behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah — “Behold, the days will come,” again, this is prophetic, especially with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah; yet in the future.

32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, although I was a husband unto them,” saith the Lord. — not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers… meaning not Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob; or their ancestors that came out of Egypt, as appears by what follows; which was the covenant made at Sinai.

33 “But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel: After those days,” saith the Lord, “I will put My law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts, and will be their God, and they shall be My people. — I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; it will have the force of law or laws, which is a reigning, governing principle; and which is implanted in the genre by the spirit and power of God; the tables on which this law or laws are written are not tables of stone, but the fleshly tables of the heart; the heart is the proper seat.

34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbor and every man his brother, saying, ‘Know the Lord.’ For they shall all know Me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them,” saith the Lord, “for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.”

35 Thus saith the Lord, who giveth the sun for a light by day, and the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, who divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; the Lord of hosts is His name:

36 “If those ordinances depart from before Me,” saith the Lord, “then the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before Me for ever.”

37 Thus saith the Lord: “If heaven above can be measured, and the foundations of the earth searched out beneath, I will also cast off all the seed of Israel for all that they have done,” saith the Lord.

38 “Behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that the city shall be built to the Lord from the Tower of Hananeel unto the Gate of the Corner. — behold, the days are coming, saith the Lord… this prophecy refers to future times in the latter redemption, and were never fulfilled during the second temple period;

— that the city shall be built to the Lord; the city of Jerusalem; which was to be rebuilt upon the return of all Israelites from their captivity, as by the order, and under the direction and protection of the Lord, so for his service and worship; the temple, known as the Ezekiel temple, and divine worship restored; and both that and the city, built up a dwelling for God, where he is worshipped, feared and glorified.

39 And the measuring line shall yet go forth opposite it upon the hill Gareb, and shall compass about to Goath.

40 And the whole valley of the dead bodies and of the ashes, and all the fields unto the Brook of Kidron unto the corner of the Horse Gate toward the east shall be holy unto the Lord. It shall not be plucked up nor thrown down any more for ever.”

Jeremiah 32

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586)

1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord in the tenth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, which was the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar. — in the tenth year of Zedekiah king of Judah, which was the eighteenth year of Nebuchadnezzar; that would be 597 BC, the same with Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, a year before the taking of the city by him; for that was in the eleventh of Zedekiah, and the nineteenth of Nebuchadnezzar; Jeremiah 52:1.

For then the king of Babylon’s army besieged Jerusalem; and Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the prison, which was in the king of Judah’s house. — and Jeremiah the prophet was shut up in the court of the prison, which was in the king’s palace, showing great stupidity and hardness of heart in the king, his courtiers and elders, to imprison a prophet of the Lord when surrounded by an enemy’s army and that according to the prediction of a true prophet; who warned them of the taking of their city, and carrying them off as captives, would be fulfilled.

For Zedekiah king of Judah had shut him up, saying, “Why dost thou prophesy and say, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will give this city into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall take it;

and Zedekiah king of Judah shall not escape out of the hand of the Chaldeans, but shall surely be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon, and shall speak with him mouth to mouth, and his eyes shall behold his eyes; — and Zedekiah king of Judah shall not escape out of the hand of the Chaldeans… this is a continuation of the prophecy of Jeremiah, repeated to the king, as he was more of himself; who, upon the taking of the throne, he would endeavour to scheme his escape as he did; but wasn’t successful, Jeremiah 52:8.

and he shall lead Zedekiah to Babylon, and there shall he be until visit I him, saith the Lord; though ye fight with the Chaldeans, ye shall not prosper’?” — and he shall lead Zedekiah to Babylon… as he did in chains, from Riblah, where he was brought unto him after he was taken, endeavouring to make his escape, Jeremiah 52:8.

And Jeremiah said, “The word of the Lord came unto me, saying:

Behold, Hanameel the son of Shallum thine uncle shall come unto thee, saying, ‘Buy thee my field that is in Anathoth; for the right of redemption is thine to buy it.’ — behold, Hanameel the son of Shallum thine uncle shall come unto thee… Hilkiah, the father of Jeremiah, and this Shallum, were own brothers; so that Jeremiah and Hanameel were brothers’ sons, or own cousins:

— saying, buy thee my field that is in Anathoth; the place from whence Jeremiah came, about two or three miles from Jerusalem, and therefore must be in the possession of the Chaldean army; wherefore it may seem very strange in Hanameel to propose it to sale, and stranger still in Jeremiah to buy it.

So Hanameel mine uncle’s son came to me in the court of the prison according to the word of the Lord, and said unto me, ‘Buy my field, I pray thee, that is in Anathoth, which is in the country of Benjamin; for the right of inheritance is thine, and the redemption is thine; buy it for thyself.’ Then I knew that this was the word of the Lord.

“And I bought the field from Hanameel my uncle’s son, that was in Anathoth, and weighed out to him the money, even seventeen shekels of silver.

10 And I subscribed the evidence and sealed it, and took witnesses, and weighed him the money in the balances.

11 So I took the evidence of the purchase, both that which was sealed according to the law and custom and that which was open;

12 and I gave the evidence of the purchase unto Baruch the son of Neriah, the son of Mahseiah, in the sight of Hanameel mine uncle’s son, and in the presence of the witnesses who signed the book of the purchase, before all the Jews who sat in the court of the prison.

13 And I charged Baruch before them, saying,

14 ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Take these deeds, this evidence of the purchase, both which is sealed and this evidence which is open, and put them in an earthen vessel, that they may continue many days.

15 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Houses and fields and vineyards shall be possessed again in this land.’

16 “Now when I had delivered the evidence of the purchase unto Baruch the son of Neriah, I prayed unto the Lord, saying:

17 Ah Lord God! Behold, Thou hast made the heaven and the earth by Thy great power and outstretched arm; and there is nothing too hard for Thee.

18 Thou showest lovingkindness unto thousands, and recompensest the iniquity of the fathers into the bosom of their children after them. The Great, the Mighty God, the Lord of hosts is His name,

19 great in counsel and mighty in work. For Thine eyes are open upon all the ways of the sons of men, to give every one according to his ways and according to the fruit of his doings;

20 who hast set signs and wonders in the land of Egypt even unto this day, and in Israel and among other men, and hast made Thee a name, as at this day;

21 and hast brought forth Thy people Israel out of the land of Egypt, with signs and with wonders, and with a strong hand and with an outstretched arm, and with great terror;

22 and hast given them this land which Thou didst swear to their fathers to give them, a land flowing with milk and honey.

23 And they came in and possessed it, but they obeyed not Thy voice, neither walked in Thy law: they have done nothing of all that Thou commanded them to do. Therefore Thou hast caused all this evil to come upon them.

24 Behold the siege ramps! They have come unto the city to take it; and the city is given into the hand of the Chaldeans, who fight against it, because of the sword and of the famine and of the pestilence. And what Thou hast spoken has come to pass, and behold, Thou seest it.

25 And Thou hast said unto me, O Lord God: ‘Buy thee the field for money, and take witnesses,’ for the city is given into the hand of the Chaldeans.”

26 Then came the word of the Lord unto Jeremiah, saying,

27 “Behold, I am the Lord, the God of all flesh. Is there any thing too hard for Me?

28 Therefore thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will give this city into the hand of the Chaldeans and into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and he shall take it.

29 And the Chaldeans who fight against this city shall come and set fire on this city, and burn it with the houses upon whose roofs they have offered incense unto Baal, and poured out drink offerings unto other gods to provoke Me to anger.

30 For the children of Israel and the children of Judah have done only evil before Me from their youth; for the children of Israel have only provoked Me to anger with the work of their hands, saith the Lord.

31 For this city hath been to Me as a provocation of Mine anger and of My fury from the day that they built it even unto this day, so that I should remove it from before My face

32 because of all the evil of the children of Israel and of the children of Judah, which they have done to provoke Me to anger — they, their kings, their princes, their priests, and their prophets, and the men of Judah, and the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

33 And they have turned unto Me the back and not the face. Though I taught them, rising up early and teaching them, yet they have not hearkened to receive instruction; — sometimes God is explicit in expressing why Israel sinned, like idolatories; but sometimes God just hint at what’s wrong with his people; here is another one: “they have turned unto Me the back and not the face” for which the more details are found in the writing of another prophet, Ezekiel (more at the end)

34 but they set their abominations in the house which is called by My name to defile it.

35 And they built the high places of Baal, which are in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to cause their sons and their daughters to pass through the fire unto Molech, which I commanded them not, neither came it into My mind that they should do this abomination, to cause Judah to sin.

36 “And now therefore thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning this city whereof ye say, ‘It shall be delivered into the hand of the king of Babylon by the sword and by the famine and by the pestilence’:

37 Behold, I will gather them out of all countries whither I have driven them in Mine anger and in My fury and in great wrath; and I will bring them again unto this place, and I will cause them to dwell safely.

38 And they shall be My people, and I will be their God;

39 and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me for ever, for the good of them and of their children after them.

40 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them, that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; but I will put My fear in their hearts, that they shall not depart from Me.

41 Yea, I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will plant them in this land assuredly with My whole heart and with My whole soul.

42 “For thus saith the Lord: As I have brought all this great evil upon this people, so will I bring upon them all the good that I have promised them.

43 And fields shall be bought in this land whereof ye say, ‘It is desolate without man or beast. It is given into the hand of the Chaldeans.’

44 Men shall buy fields for money, and sign evidences and seal them, and take witnesses in the land of Benjamin and in the places about Jerusalem, and in the cities of Judah and in the cities of the mountains, and in the cities of the valley and in the cities of the South; for I will cause their captives to return, saith the Lord.”

~~~

More about their back against God, in Ezekiel 8

15 Then said He unto me, “Hast thou seen this, O son of man? Turn thee yet again, and thou shalt see greater abominations than these.”

16 And He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’S house, and behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshiped the sun toward the east. — the heads of the twenty-four courses of the priesthood, led by the high priest, making up the “twenty five men” were not only worshipping the sun: they were doing so in the very temple of God, with their backs turned upon the presence of God!

— the worship of heavenly bodies was against God’s will which Moses had warned the people (Deuteronomy 4:19, 17:3, whose penalty is to be stoned to death, Deuteronomy 17:5 ’till they die). These 25 men corrupted themselves by worshipping the sun; and so the Targum renders it, “and, lo, they corrupted themselves, worshipping facing the east the sun; their backs toward the temple of the Lord” — turned their backs to the most holy place; which is an aggravation of their impiety; casting the utmost contempt for God:

Moses’ warnings in Deuteronomy 17

3 And [if you] hath gone and served other gods and worshiped them, either the sun or moon or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded, 4 and it be told thee, and thou hast heard of it and inquired diligently, and behold, it be true and the thing certain that such abomination is wrought in Israel, 5 then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman who has committed that wicked thing unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones till they die. Deuteronomy 17:3-5

— today, more than 98.5 percent of Christians are honoring the SUN by observing SUNday worship. They have “their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshiped the SUN toward the east; whose penalty is to be stoned to death – ’till they die.

— also, following the SUN-worshipping Samaritans, most Church of God Communities are showing their contempt for God by having their “wavesheaf offering” and Pentecost on a SUNday; always on a SUNday. And these are supposedly in God’s Sanctuary, but God says He is a jealous God, so these pretentious Christians could be spewed out of His mouth! A death penalty – ’till they die!

Jeremiah (Ch 29-30)

•November 15, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 29 involves Jeremiah’s Letter to the Exiles and its Consequences.

The Contents of the Letter.

Just as certain false prophets had tried to arouse and maintain false hopes among the inhabitants in Jerusalem, there also certain men who were active among the exiles who had been taken to Babylon. The result was that a spirit of discontent and restlessness took hold of the Jews, which not only increased the bitterness of their affliction, but also tended to break down all moral restraint. Jeremiah therefore, by God’s command, sent a letter to the exiles, in which he gives them some excellent rules of behavior in the midst of the trying circumstances in which they found themselves.

Jeremiah 29

1 Now these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem unto the residue of the elders who were carried away captives, and to the priests, and to the prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away captive from Jerusalem to Babylon — now, these are the words of the letter that Jeremiah the prophet sent from Jerusalem unto the elders of the exile, to those who had survived the hardships up to that time;

— and the captives, the priests and prophets, and to all the people whom Nebuchadnezzar had carried away from Jerusalem to Babylon, to the congregation of the exiles, disorganized as it was in the conditions of their living situation;

— and the prophets: including one true prophet that was carried captive, and that was Ezekiel; but of false prophets were many.

(after Jeconiah the king, and the queen, and the eunuchs, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the carpenters, and the smiths had departed from Jerusalem), — after that Jeconiah (Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597)), the king, and the queen, Nehushta, the dowager, daughter of Einathan, and the eunuchs, the courtiers or chamberlains, high court officers, the princes of Judah and Jerusalem, and the carpenters, and the smiths, all the artisans and craftsmen of the city, II Kings 24:16, were departed from Jerusalem.

by the hand of Elasah the son of Shaphan and Gemariah the son of Hilkiah, whom Zedekiah king of Judah sent unto Babylon to Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, saying:

“Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, unto all who are carried away captives, whom I have caused to be carried away from Jerusalem unto Babylon:

Build ye houses and dwell in them, and plant gardens and eat the fruit of them. the exile would be 70 years, not just 2 years! The endtime iniquite, which could be a form of an exile, of whom Ezekiel was one for “bearing their iniquity” for the house of Israel could be 190 years, and not just 3 and a half years; see Ezekiel 4.

Take ye wives and beget sons and daughters, and take wives for your sons and give your daughters to husbands, that they may bear sons and daughters, that ye may be increased there, and not diminished. — take ye wives, and beget sons and daughters… that is, such as had no wives, who were either bachelors or widowers; not that they were to take wives of the Chaldeans, but of those of their own nation; for intermarriages with heathens were forbidden them; and this they were to do, in order to propagate their posterity, and keep up a succession.

And seek the peace of the city whither I have caused you to be carried away captives, and pray unto the Lord for it; for in the peace thereof shall ye have peace. — and seek the peace of the city… the prosperity and happiness of Babylon, or any other city in Chaldea, where they were placed: this they were to do by prayer and supplication to God, and by all other means that might be any ways conducive to the good of the state where they were.

For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Let not your prophets and your diviners who are in the midst of you deceive you, neither hearken to your dreams which ye cause to be dreamed. — let not your prophets and your diviners that be in the midst of you, deceive you; these are false prophets as the Targum says; and there were many such in the captivity; who pretended to foretell future events, and so impose upon others, who were too apt to believe them; these insinuated, that in a little time they should have their liberty, and return to their own land again, contrary to the prophecies that came from the Lord himself.

For they prophesy falsely unto you in My name: I have not sent them, saith the Lord.

10 “For thus saith the Lord: That after seventy years are accomplished at Babylon, I will visit you and perform My good word toward you, causing you to return to this place. — for thus saith the Lord, that after seventy years be accomplished at Babylon… these seventy years are not to be reckoned from the last captivity under Zedekiah; nor from the precise present time; nor from the first of Jeconiah’s captivity; but the fourth year of Jehoiakim, and the first of Nebuchadnezzar, when he first came up against Jerusalem; Jeremiah 25:1.

11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

12 Then shall ye call upon Me, and ye shall go and pray unto Me and I will hearken unto you. — then shall ye call upon me… when the expected end is about to be given; when God intends to bestow mercy, he gives his people a spirit of prayer to ask for it; and even the promise of it is a considerable argument to encourage and engage more to pray for it:

— and ye shall go and pray unto me: walk in my ways; or rather ye shall go into your private closets, or into those public buildings or places where prayers are made, and there put up your petitions; that they should continue praying without ceasing, until they enjoyed the blessing, and had the expected end given:

— and I will hearken unto you: God is a God hearing Being; he listens to the requests of his people, but answers them in his own time and way; which is no small encouragement to pray unto him.

13 And ye shall seek Me and find Me when ye shall search for Me with all your heart.

14 And I will be found by you, saith the Lord, and I will return you from captivity, and I will gather you from all the nations and from all the places whither I have driven you, saith the Lord; and I will bring you back into the place from whence I caused you to be carried away captive. — since the return from captivity is not just from Babylon but “from all the nations” this hints at a prophetic message, and this message is for the endtimes.

One parallel passage from Ezekiel 6:

“Son of man, set thy face toward the mountains of Israel, and prophesy against them — Son of man, set thy face towards the mountains of Israel… or cities of Israel, the future inhabitants of them; not the ancient ten tribes, for they had been carried captive long before this time, even in the times of Hezekiah; but far more likely, into the far future unless it can be thought that this prophecy is designed to show the reason of their captivity, which isn’t. 

and say: ‘Ye mountains of Israel, hear the word of the Lord God. Thus saith the Lord God to the mountains and to the hills, to the rivers and to the valleys: Behold I, even I, will bring a sword upon you, and I will destroy your high places. — this message to the “mountains of Israel;” these mountains refer to the United States, UK and France… “and to the hills, to the rivers and to the valleys;” the hills: Ireland, Switzerland and the Scandinavian countries: Denmark, Norway, and Sweden, Finland, and Iceland; and the valleys, the low countries: Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg;

— and to the rivers; where during the nineteenth century, the British Royal Navy were known to “Rule the Waves;” and the United States having been plowing up and down the five oceans with her Seven Fleets since the British left the scene.

15 “Because ye have said, ‘The Lord hath raised us up prophets in Babylon’ — the Lord hath raised us up prophets in Babylon; this is meant to be false prophets who foretold nothing but peace and prosperity; there is no need of other prophets if they have listened to those in Judea and in Jerusalem; but these are false prophets; yet, being such that prophesied to them things that could be agreeable, and as such, considered as prophets sent by God, when often they are not.

16 know that thus saith the Lord of the king that sitteth upon the throne of David, and of all the people that dwelleth in this city, and of your brethren who have not gone forth with you into captivity— these are those that refused to go into Babylon, saith the Lord, and be well with them; but those who refused to go are actually disobeying God.

17 thus saith the Lord of hosts: Behold, I will send upon them the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, and will make them like vile figs that cannot be eaten, they are so evil. — when they are actually disobeying God, they could expect to face the consequences; and that is “the sword, the famine, and the pestilence.”

18 And I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence, and will deliver them to be removed to all the kingdoms of the earth, to be a curse and an astonishment and a hissing, and a reproach among all the nations whither I have driven them, — and I will persecute them with the sword, with the famine, and with the pestilence… Or, “follow after them” such as should make their escape out of the city, and go into Egypt, or other countries, for shelter and safety, should be pursued by the vengeance of God, and should fall by sword, famine, or pestilence, in other places.

19 because they have not hearkened to My words, saith the Lord, which I sent unto them by My servants the prophets, rising up early and sending them; but ye would not hear, saith the Lord. — because they have not hearkened to my words, saith the Lord… which were spoken to them by the prophets; not hearkening to them, but despising them, a contempt of God, and his word, was the cause of their ruin.

20 “Hear ye therefore the word of the Lord, all ye of the captivity, whom I have sent from Jerusalem to Babylon. — all ye of the captivity, whom I have sent from Jerusalem to Babylon; some parts of this letter are directed to one sort of the captives, and others to another sort of them; some being good men, some bad; but what follows all are called upon to observe, good and bad; it being a prediction of a certain event, which they would see fulfilled in a short time; and therefore might be of service of them; to the godly, for the confirmation of them in the belief of what the Lord had promised; and to the rest, to make them stop giving heed to false prophets, that should here after arise.

21 Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning Ahab the son of Kolaiah, and of Zedekiah the son of Maaseiah, who prophesy a lie unto you in My name: Behold, I will deliver them into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon; and he shall slay them before your eyes. — of Ahab the son of Kolaiah, and of Zedekiah the son of Maaseiah, which prophesy a lie unto you: two false prophets, of whom we have no account any where else but here; and are, no doubt, the prophets, or however two of them, that they of the captivity boasted of that God had raised unto them in Babylon.

22 And of them shall be taken up a curse by all the captivity of Judah who are in Babylon, saying, ‘The Lord make thee like Zedekiah and like Ahab, whom the king of Babylon roasted in the fire,’ — or “burnt them” not at once, but with a slow fire; burning persons with fire, and casting them into a fiery furnace, were ways used by the Chaldeans in putting persons to death, Daniel 3:6.

23 because they have committed villainy (wicked or criminal behaviour) in Israel, and have committed adultery with their neighbors’ wives, and have spoken lying words in My name which I have not commanded them. Indeed I know, and am a witness, saith the Lord.”

24 Thus shalt thou also speak to Shemaiah the Nehelamite, saying, — Or, “the dreamer” because he pretended to have dreams from the Lord; or because what he delivered as prophecies were mere dreams; as that the captives should quickly return to their own land; so the Targum, paraphrasing “who was of Halem;” he was another of the false prophets in Babylon.

25 “Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saying: Because thou hast sent letters in thy name unto all the people who are at Jerusalem, and to Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest, and to all the priests, saying,

26 ‘The Lord hath made thee priest in the stead of Jehoiada the priest, that ye should be officers in the house of the Lord for every man that is mad and maketh himself a prophet, that thou shouldest put him in prison, and in the stocks.

27 Now therefore, why hast thou not reproved Jeremiah of Anathoth, who maketh himself a prophet to you? — now therefore why hast thou not reproved Jeremiah of Anathoth… not by words only, but by actions; by beating and scourging, by pillory or imprisonment, and so restraining him from prophesying to the people.

28 For therefore he sent unto us in Babylon, saying: This captivity is long; build ye houses and dwell in them, and plant gardens and eat the fruit of them.’” — for therefore he sent unto us in Babylon, saying… that is, Jeremiah the prophet; and this was the reason, because they couldn’t restrain him from prophesying; so that Shemaiah lays all the blame on Zephaniah, and his brethren the priests; who, had they done their duty, would have prevented Jeremiah’s letter to the captives, as he suggests; the purport of which was.

29 And Zephaniah the priest read this letter in the ears of Jeremiah the prophet. — in the ears of Jeremiah the prophet: whether out of good will, to let him know who were his enemies abroad; or out of ill will, to stir up the people against him; or in pretence of proceeding equitably with him; not taking him up, and punishing him before he brought the accusation and charge against him.

30 Then came the word of the Lord unto Jeremiah, saying,

31 “Send to all those of the captivity, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord concerning Shemaiah the Nehelamite: Because Shemaiah hath prophesied unto you, and I sent him not and he caused you to trust in a lie,

32 therefore thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite and his seed: he shall not have a man to dwell among this people, neither shall he behold the good that I will do for My people, saith the Lord, because he hath taught rebellion against the Lord.’” — behold, I will punish Shemaiah the Nehelamite, and his seed; not him only, but his posterity also: thus God sometimes visits the sins of parents on their children, they being, as it were, a part of themselves, and oftentimes partners with them in their iniquities:

— he shall not have a man to dwell among this people; either at Babylon, or at Jerusalem, whither he had promised a speedy return:

— neither shall he behold the good that I will do for my people, saith the Lord; by returning them, after seventy years captivity, to their own land, and to the enjoyment of all their privileges, civil and religious.

Jeremiah 30

The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

“Thus speaketh the Lord God of Israel, saying: ‘Write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book. — saying, write thee all the words that I have spoken unto thee in a book; being things of consequence, that they might remain to after ages; and be read to the use, comfort, and edification of the Lord’s people, in times to come.

For lo, the days come,’ saith the Lord, ‘that I will bring back from captivity My people Israel and Judah,’ saith the Lord; ‘and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it.’” — and I will cause them to return to the land that I gave to their fathers, and they shall possess it; the land of Canaan, given to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob; and which shall be again by the Jews their posterity; for, without that the Jews upon their call and conversion shall return to their own land, in a literal sense, I see not how we can understand this, and many other prophecies.

And these are the words that the Lord spoke concerning Israel and concerning Judah: — and these are the words that the Lord spake concerning Israel, and concerning Judah. Which follow in this chapter and the next; first concerning Israel, the ten tribes; and then concerning the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin, even concerning all Israel; whereas, if this prophecy only respects the return from the captivity in Babylon, there is very little in it which concerns the ten tribes, or but a very few of them. The words may be rendered, “unto Israel, and unto Judah”; as being the persons to whom they were directed, as well as were the subjects of them.

“For thus saith the Lord: ‘We have heard a voice of trembling, of fear and not of peace. — we have heard a voice of trembling, of fear, and not of peace; which is to be understood, of the fear and dread injected into them by the Babylonians when they besieged their city, and burned that, and their temple; nor of the fear and dread which came upon the Babylonians at the taking of their city by Cyrus, upon which followed the deliverance of the Jews.

Ask ye now, and see whether a man doth travail with child? Why do I see every man with his hands on his loins, as a woman in travail, and all faces are turned into paleness? — wherefore do I see every man with his hands his loins, as a woman in travail; the usual posture of women in such a condition, trying hereby to abate their pain, and ease themselves. This metaphor is made use of, both to express the sharpness and shortness of this distress; as the pains of a woman in travail are very sharp, yet short, and, when over, quickly forgotten; and so it wilt be at this time; it will be a sharp trial of the church and people of God; but it will last but for a short time; and the joy and happy times that will follow will soon cause it to be forgotten.

Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it. It is even the time of Jacob’s trouble, but he shall be saved out of it.

“‘For it shall come to pass in that day,’ saith the Lord of hosts, ‘that I will break his yoke from off thy neck, and will burst thy bonds, and strangers shall no more be served by him.

But they shall serve the Lord their God, and David their king, whom I will raise up unto them. — and David their king; not literally, who shall be raised up from the dead, and reign over them, though he does not assert it; nor his successors called by his name.

10 “‘Therefore fear thou not, O My servant Jacob,’ saith the Lord; ‘neither be dismayed, O Israel; for lo, I will save thee from afar, and thy seed from the land of their captivity; and Jacob shall return, and shall be in rest and be quiet, and none shall make him afraid. — this is prophetic, into our times, their return are “from afar” whereas Babylon is nearby comparatively.

11 For I am with thee,’ saith the Lord, ‘to save thee; though I make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee; but I will correct thee in measure, and will not leave thee altogether unpunished.’ — though I will make a full end of all nations whither I have scattered thee, yet will I not make a full end of thee; a full end has been made of the Assyrians, Chaldeans, and Egyptians; these people and their names are no more;

— the destruction of the national life of the heathen nations on whom judgment was to fall should be complete and irreversible, so that Moab, Ammon, Edom, should no more have a place in the history of the world;

— the Targum says, “in destroying I will not destroy thee.”

12 “For thus saith the Lord: ‘Thy bruise is incurable, and thy wound is grievous.

13 There is none to plead thy cause, that thou mayest be bound up; thou hast no healing medicines.

14 All thy lovers have forgotten thee; they seek thee not; for I have wounded thee with the wound of an enemy, with the chastisement of a cruel one for the multitude of thine iniquity, because thy sins were increased. — all thy lovers have forgotten thee… the Egyptians and Assyrians were historic, but Japan, Turkey, Germany and Spain could be futuristic, whom they sought unto for help, and entered into an alliance with, and who promised them great things; but forgot their promises and forsook them (more at the end)

15 Why criest thou for thine affliction? Thy sorrow is incurable for the multitude of thine iniquity; because thy sins were increased, I have done these things unto thee.

16 Therefore all they that devour thee shall be devoured, and all thine adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity; and they that despoil thee shall be a spoil, and all that prey upon thee will I give for a prey. — and all thine adversaries, everyone of them shall, fro into captivity; or be conquered and subdued, as were the Assyrians, Egyptians, Chaldeans, Grecians, Romans; and Rome Papal will also go into destruction; Revelation 13:10.

17 For I will restore health unto thee, and I will heal thee of thy wounds,’ saith the Lord, ‘because they called thee an outcast, saying, “This is Zion, whom no man seeketh after.”’

18 “Thus saith the Lord: ‘Behold, I will bring back from captivity Jacob’s tents, and have mercy on his dwelling places; and the city shall be built upon her own heap, and the palace shall remain after the manner thereof. — and have mercy on his dwelling places; by restoring Israel, or Jacob’s posterity, to their dwelling places in Jerusalem, and other places rebuilt by them and for them. The Targum says, “I will have mercy on his cities.”

19 And out of them shall proceed thanksgiving and the voice of them that make merry; and I will multiply them, and they shall not be few; I will also glorify them, and they shall not be small.

20 Their children also shall be as in former time, and their congregation shall be established before Me, and I will punish all that oppress them.

21 And their nobles shall be of themselves, and their governor shall proceed from the midst of them; and I will cause him to draw near, and he shall approach unto Me; for who is this that engaged his heart to approach unto Me?’ saith the Lord.

22 ‘And ye shall be My people, and I will be your God.’”

23 Behold, the whirlwind of the Lord goeth forth with fury, a continuing whirlwind; it shall fall with pain upon the head of the wicked.

24 The fierce anger of the Lord shall not return, until He has done it, and until He has performed the intents of His heart; in the latter days ye shall consider it. — in the latter days ye shall consider it; and in the latter day you shall understand it; and see it wholly and fully accomplished. 

~~~

More about “all thy lovers have forgotten thee” Jeremiah 30:14 with a parallel verse in Ezekiel 16:37

behold, therefore I will gather all thy lovers with whom thou hast taken pleasure, and all them that thou hast loved, with all them that thou hast hated. I will even gather them round about against thee and will uncover thy nakedness unto them, that they may see all thy nakedness Ezekiel 16:37: — when the going gets tough, the tough gets going and American allies (Germany, Turkey, S Korea, the Philippines and Japan?) will take their own interests first, team up with other enemies of the United States (Iran, N Korea, Russia and China?) and will turn against the United States.

And this is not these countries’ doings, but it is God’s will that will cause these allies to be against the United States, and it is again God’s will through His Spirits that will trap the United States in a snare (And I will spread My net upon him, and he shall be taken in My [not China’s nor Russia’s] snare, Ezekiel 17:20; and he will be like a beast caught in a cage squealing away to no avail) then uncover her nakedness, American nakedness.

Jeremiah (Ch 27-28)

•November 14, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

The year in that Jeremiah began to prophesy, Jeremiah 1:2 in the thirteenth year of Josiah reign would be around 628 BC, and he preached for the last 19 years of Josiah’s life, until 609 BC when Josiah died. By the time the kings of Judah reigns ended with Zedekiah being exiled to Babylon and his reign ended in 586 BC, Jeremiah’s prophesying life work in and around Jerusalem would have lasted some 42 years.

Jeremiah 27

In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, came this word unto Jeremiah from the Lord, saying, — Jehoiakim reign from 609 to 598; so this is another relaying, with more details, of the same scenes we have gone through before.

Thus saith the Lord to me: “Make thee bonds and yokes and put them upon thy neck, — thus saith the Lord to me, make thee bonds and yokes… the yokes were made of wood, as appears from Jeremiah 28:13; and the bonds were strings or thongs, which bound the yoke together, that it might not slip off the neck, on which it was put:

and send them to the king of Edom, and to the king of Moab, and to the king of the Ammonites, and to the king of Tyre, and to the king of Sidon by the hand of the messengers who come to Jerusalem unto Zedekiah king of Judah. — all neighbouring kings and states: Edom, Moab, children of Ammon, Tyre and Sidon, to whom the wine cup of God’s wrath was to be sent, and they made to drink of it.

And command them to say unto their masters, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel; thus shall ye say unto your masters:

I have made the earth, the man and the beast that are upon the ground by My great power and by My outstretched arm, and have given it unto whom it seemed meet unto Me.

And now have I given all these lands into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant; and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him. — and now I have given all these lands: Edom, Moab, Ammon, Tyre, Sidon and Judea:

— into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, my servant; whom God used as an instrument in correcting and chastising the nations; and who obeyed his will, though he knew it not; nor did what he did in obedience to it; and yet had the honour of being called his servant, and of being rewarded with a very large empire;

— and the beasts of the field have I given him also to serve him; either to bring him, and his armies, and his carriages of provisions for them, for the invasion and taking the above countries; or the cattle found there, which belonged to these countries, and the inhabitants thereof, which would fall into his hands with them.

And all nations shall serve him and his son and his son’s son, until the very time of his land comes; and then many nations and great kings shall themselves be served by him. — and his son, and his son’s son; their Scripture names were Evilmerodach and Belshazzar, Jeremiah 52:31.

And it shall come to pass, that the nation and kingdom which will not serve the same Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and that will not put their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, that nation will I punish, saith the Lord, with the sword and with the famine and with the pestilence, until I have consumed them by his hand. — that nation will I punish, saith the Lord, with the sword, and with the famine, and with the pestilence; with one judgement after another; some will perish by the sword of the enemy, sallying out upon them, or endeavouring to make their escape; others by famine their provisions being spent through the length of the siege; and others by pestilence, or the plague, or by the hand of God:

— until I have consumed them by his hand; Nebuchadnezzar’s; by any means of him; by his sword, and strait besieging them; or, “into his hand”;

— and so the Targum says, “until I have delivered them into his hand;” having consumed multitudes by the sword, famine and pestilence, will deliver the rest into his hands to be carried away as captives.

Therefore hearken not ye to your prophets, nor to your diviners, nor to your dreamers, nor to your enchanters, nor to your sorcerers, who speak unto you, saying, “Ye shall not serve the king of Babylon.” — which speak unto you, saying, ye shall not serve the king of Babylon; meaning, either that they ought not to become tributary to him; or they should not be brought into subjection by him: and so were stirred up to oppose him, and not submit to him.

10 For they prophesy a lie unto you to remove you far from your land, and that I should drive you out and ye should perish. — to remove you far from your land; not that they designed it by their prophecies, but so it was eventually; for, standing it out against Nebuchadnezzar, encouraged by the lies and dreams of their prophets, he, in process of time, took them and carried them as captives into Babylon; whereas, had they surrendered at once, they might have continued in their own land, paying a tax or tribute to the king of Babylon;

— and that I should drive you out, and ye should perish; drive them out of their own land, and so perish in a foreign land: God is said to do that which his servant or instrument did, being provoked by the sin and disobedience of the people, hearkening to their lying prophets and not to him.

11 But the nations that bring their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon and serve him, those will I let remain still in their own land, saith the Lord, and they shall till it and dwell therein.’” — but the nations that bring their neck under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him… that at once, and readily, submit unto him and pay him tribute.

12 I spoke also to Zedekiah king of Judah according to all these words, saying, “Bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him and his people, and live. — bring your necks under the yoke of the king of Babylon; you, O king, your nobles, and your people. Zedekiah was set upon the throne by the king of Babylon, was a tributary to him, and had took an oath to be faithful to him;

— and yet was meditating against him; consulting and entering into a confederacy with neighbouring nations to throw off the yoke and be independent from him.

13 Why will ye die, thou and thy people, by the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence, as the Lord hath spoken against the nation that will not serve the king of Babylon? — why will ye die, thou and thy people, the sword, by the famine, and by the pestilence… through a blockade of the Chaldean army, which would invade their land, and besiege their city, upon a refusal to be subject to their yoke.

14 Therefore hearken not unto the words of the prophets who speak unto you, saying, ‘Ye shall not serve the king of Babylon,’ for they prophesy a lie unto you. — therefore hearken not unto the words of the prophets… these are false prophets, as the Targum says; such bad kings always had them, to whom they listened, and which often brought forth bad and terrible consequences.

15 ‘For I have not sent them,’ saith the Lord, ‘yet they prophesy a lie in My name; that I might drive you out, and that ye might perish, ye and the prophets who prophesy unto you.’” — ye, and the prophets that prophesy unto you; for it would end in the ruin and destruction of them both; both by the false prophets, as the Targum here again calls them, and those that listened to their prophecies; both would fall into the same ditch.

16 Also I spoke to the priests and to all this people, saying, “Thus saith the Lord: Hearken not to the words of your prophets who prophesy unto you, saying, ‘Behold, the vessels of the Lord’S house shall now shortly be brought again from Babylon’; for they prophesy a lie unto you. — also I spoke to the priests, and to all this people, saying… from the court he went to the temple, and spoke to the priests that were ministering there, and place to meet with the people and the priests; which latter especially had a concern in what he had to say especially the vessels of the temple;

— behold, the vessels of the Lord’s house shall now shortly be brought again from Babylon; which were carried thither, both in the times of Jehoiakim, and of Jeconiah, II Chronicles 36:7; these vessels carried off would in a short time be returned; that the king of Babylon, either willingly and of his own accord, or being pressed or forced to it, would send them back; so little reason had they to fear an invasion from him or captivity by him.

18 But if they are prophets, and if the word of the Lord is with them, let them now make intercession to the Lord of hosts, that the vessels which are left in the house of the Lord and in the house of the king of Judah, and at Jerusalem go not to Babylon. — that the vessels which are left in the house of the Lord, and in the house of the king of Judah, and at Jerusalem, go not to Babylon; instead of prophesying about the return of what are gone, let them pray for the preservation and continuance of what are left, that they do not go also; of which there was great danger of following the same route of being taken away to Babylon,

— yea, certainty, in case of non-submission to, and rebellion against, the king of Babylon; there were some vessels of the sanctuary which yet remained, as well as others in the king’s palace, and in the houses of the noble and rich men in Jerusalem; for the keeping of which they would do well to show a proper concern; and nothing more effectual than prayer to God; and, next to that, submission to the Chaldean yoke.

19 For thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the pillars, and concerning the sea, and concerning the bases, and concerning the residue of the vessels that remain in this city, — for thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the pillars… the pillars of brass that stood in the temple; the one called Boaz, and the other Jachin, 1 Kings 7:15;

— and concerning the sea; the sea of molten brass, which stood upon twelve oxen, 1 Kings 7:23; and concerning the bases: the ten bases, which also were made of brass, 1 Kings 7:27; and concerning the residue of the vessels that remain in this city; in the king’s palace, and in the houses of the noblemen, and of the rich and wealthy of Jerusalem.

20 which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took not when he carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, from Jerusalem to Babylon, and all the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem” — which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took not… for he seems only to have taken the vessels of gold and silver, and left the vessels of brass, as the above were; II Kings 24:13;

— when he carried away captive Jeconiah, the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, from Jerusalem to Babylon, and all the nobles of Judah and Jerusalem; II Kings 24:12.

21 yea, thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, concerning the vessels that remain in the house of the Lord, and in the house of the king of Judah and of Jerusalem:

22 ‘They shall be carried to Babylon, and there shall they be until the day that I visit them,’ saith the Lord. ‘Then will I bring them up, and restore them to this place.’” — they shall be carried to Babylon… as they were; and of which, with others, there is a particular account in II Kings 25:13;

— and there shall be until the day that I visit them, saith to the Lord; the Chaldeans in a way of wrath, and the Jews as captives and slaves; which was at the end of the seventy years’ captivity; and so long the vessels of the sanctuary continued there; here we read of them as in use the very night that Belshazzar was slain, and Babylon taken, Daniel 5:2;

— then will I bring them up, and restore them to this place; which was fulfilled when the Lord stirred up the spirit of Cyrus, king of Persia to give leave to the Jews to return to their own land, and rebuild their temple; and at the same time delivered into the hands of Sheshbazzar, to the prince of Judah, the vessels of the temple, Ezra 1:1.

Jeremiah 28

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

1 And it came to pass the same year, in the beginning of the reign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth year and in the fifth month, that Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet, who was of Gibeon, spoke unto me in the house of the Lord in the presence of the priests and of all the people, saying, — since Zedekiah ruled for 12 years, his fourth could still be rendered the beginning of his reign, which would be around 594 BC;

— or for another explanation: it was the fourth of Zedekiah’s reign, the same year in which he paid a visit to the king of Babylon, Jeremiah 51:59; there in Babylon, Zedekiah had his kingdom confirmed to him, and it was even enlarged, and was made king over five neighbouring kings; and so this, though the fourth of his reign over Judah, was the first of his enlarged dominions.

— Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet; the false prophet, as the Targum and Septuagint versions call him; spoke unto me in the house of the Lord, in the presence of the priests, and of all the people; he came to the temple where Jeremiah was to confront him; the priests and all the people being present;

—the land Gibeon was allocated to the tribe of Benjamin; but Gibeonite may not even be Israelites, but one of the Canaanites who deceived Joshua into making a covenant with them so they may live, and not wiped out; when Joshua found out he condemned them to be hewers of wood and a drawers of water (Joshua 9:21, 23).

“Thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, saying, ‘I have broken the yoke of the king of Babylon. — thus speaketh the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel… using the language of the true prophets, and describing the Lord just in the same manner they do, and speaking in God’s name: a bold and daring action, when he knew the Lord had not sent him, nor had said any such thing to him..

Within two full years will I bring back into this place all the vessels of the Lord’S house that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place and carried them to Babylon. — within two full years… or, as the Targum says, “at the end of two years;” what the false prophets before had said would be done in a very little time; this fixes the precise time of doing it; a very short time; in comparison of the seventy years that Jeremiah had spoken of, Jeremiah 25:11;

— will I bring again into this place all the vessels of the Lord’s house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon took away from this place; the temple, where he now was; namely, all such vessels as before this time had been taken by him, both in Jehoiakim’s reign, and at the captivity of Jeconiah.

And I will bring back to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, with all the captives of Judah who went into Babylon,’ saith the Lord; ‘for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon.’” — and I will bring again to this place Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah… this he knew would please the people, who looked upon Zedekiah only as a vessel to the king of Babylon, and not properly their king; but Jeconiah, as he is here called; and he knew that Zedekiah dared not resent this, but was obliged to feigned a desire of Jeconiah’s return, though otherwise not agreeable to him;

— with all the captives of Judah that went into Babylon, saith the Lord; the princes, officers, and others, that should be living at the time fixed: for I will break the yoke of the king of Babylon; weaken his power over other nations, and particularly deliver the king of Judah from his bondage, and from subjection to him.

Then the prophet Jeremiah said unto the prophet Hananiah in the presence of the priests and in the presence of all the people who stood in the house of the Lord,

even the prophet Jeremiah said, “Amen. The Lord do so. The Lord perform thy words which thou hast prophesied, to bring back the vessels of the Lord’S house and all that is carried away captive from Babylon into this place. — even the prophet Jeremiah said, Amen…. or, “so be it”- he wished it might be so as Hananiah had said, if it was the will of God; as a prophet he knew it could not be;

— to bring again the vessels of the Lord’s house, and all that is carried away captive, to Babylon into this place; as a priest, this must be very desirable to Jeremiah, the Jews observe, since he would be a gainer by it; being a priest, he should eat of the holy things; when Hananiah, being a Gibeonite, would be a hewer of wood and a drawer of water to him (Joshua 9:21, 23).

Nevertheless hear thou now this word that I speak in thine ears and in the ears of all the people:

The prophets that have been before me and before thee of old prophesied both against many countries and against great kingdoms, of war and of evil and of pestilence. — the prophets that have been before me, and before thee of old… such as Isaiah, Hoses, Joel, Amos, Micah, Nahum, Habakkuk, Zephaniah, and others: these prophesied both against many countries and against great kingdoms; as Egypt, Babylon, Syria, Ethiopia, Moab, as Isaiah particularly did.

The prophet who prophesieth of peace, when the word of the prophet shall come to pass, then shall the prophet be known that the Lord hath truly sent him.”

10 Then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck, and broke it. — then Hananiah the prophet took the yoke from off the prophet Jeremiah’s neck… which he wore as a symbol of the subjection of Judea and other nations to the king of Babylon: but more so, it was the command of God that he made it, and wore it;

— but now he took the prophet’s yoke from his neck; and brake it; being made of wood, as it afterwards appears, and so might easily be broken.

11 And Hananiah spoke in the presence of all the people, saying, “Thus saith the Lord: ‘Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations within the space of two full years.’” And the prophet Jeremiah went his way. — even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all nations, within the space of two full years; the time he had fixed for the bringing back of the vessels of the sanctuary, Jeremiah 28:3;

— and the prophet Jeremiah went his way; showing thereby his dissent from him, and his dislike and detestation of his lies and blasphemies; patiently bearing his affronts and insolence; and prudently withdrawing to prevent riots and tumults; returning no answer till he had received one from the Lord himself, which he quickly had.

12 Then the word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah the prophet (after Hananiah the prophet had broken the yoke from off the neck of the prophet Jeremiah), saying,

13 “Go and tell Hananiah, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Thou hast broken the yokes of wood, but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron. — thou hast broken the yokes of wood: or, “bonds” or “the thongs” with which the yokes of wood were bound and fastened;

— but thou shall make for them yokes of iron; but Jeremiah said; who went on to prophesy of a more severe bondage the nations be brought into by Nebuchadnezzar, in direct contradiction to Hananiah’s prophecy; instead of wooden yokes, they would have iron ones; which would lie heavier, and bear harder upon them, and which could not be broken nor taken off.

14 For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: I have put a yoke of iron upon the neck of all these nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they shall serve him; and I have given him the beasts of the field also.’” — that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and they shall serve him; directly contrary to what Hananiah had prophesied,

— and I have given him the beasts of the field also; as he had said he would, Jeremiah 27:6; and which is repeated, to show that the whole would be punctually fulfilled; that not only those nations, the men, the inhabitants of them, would be delivered to him; but even the very cattle, and all that belonged to them.

15 Then said the prophet Jeremiah unto Hananiah the prophet, “Hear now, Hananiah, the Lord hath not sent thee, but thou makest this people to trust in a lie.

16 Therefore thus saith the Lord: ‘Behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth. This year thou shalt die, because thou hast taught rebellion against the Lord.’” — behold, I will cast thee from off the face of the earth; with the utmost indignation and abhorrence, as not worthy to live upon it: it signifies that he should die, and that not a natural, but violent death, by the immediate hand of God, by some judgement upon him; and so be by force taken off the earth, and buried in it, and be no more seen on it;

— this year thou shalt die; within the same year, reckoning from this time; so that, had he died any time within twelve months from hence, it would have been sufficient to have verified the prophecy:

— because thou hast taught rebellion against the Lord; to despise his word by his prophet; to contradict his will; to refuse subjection to the king of Babylon; to neglect his instructions, directions, and exhortations; and to believe a lie.

17 So Hananiah the prophet died the same year in the seventh month. — in the seventh month: it was two months after he had prophesied; for it was in the fifth month that he prophesied, and in the seventh he died.

Jeremiah (Ch 25-26)

•November 13, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

The year in that Jeremiah began to prophesy, Jeremiah 1:2 in the thirteenth year of Josiah reign would be around 628 BC, and he preached for the last 19 years of Josiah’s life, until 609 BC when Josiah died. By the time the kings of Judah reigns ended with Zedekiah being exiled to Babylon and his reign ended in 586 BC, Jeremiah’s prophesying would have lasted some 42 years.

Jeremiah 25

1 The word that came to Jeremiah concerning all the people of Judah in the fourth year of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah (that was the first year of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon), — the fourth year of Jehoiakim would be perhaps 606 BC or whereabout;

— before the prophet Jeremiah was sent to the shepherds, elders and kings of Judah only, Jeremiah 23 and 24; now his message is to all the people.

which Jeremiah the prophet spoke unto all the people of Judah and to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying: — which Jeremiah the prophet spake unto all the people of Judah… perhaps at one of the three feasts: at Passover, Pentecost, or Tabernacles; at which all the males appeared in Jerusalem as commanded.

From the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, even unto this day (that is, the three and twentieth year), the word of the Lord hath come unto me, and I have spoken unto you, rising early and speaking; but ye have not hearkened. — from the thirteenth year of Josiah the son of Amon king of Judah, even unto this day… the year in which Jeremiah began to prophesy, Jeremiah 1:2; which would be around 628 BC.

And the Lord hath sent unto you all His servants the prophets, rising early and sending them; but ye have not hearkened, nor inclined your ear to hear. — but ye have not hearkened; they took no notice of it; turned a deaf ear to it; however, did not obey or act as they were directed and exhorted to.

They said, “Turn ye again now every one from his evil way and from the evil of your doings, and dwell in the land that the Lord hath given unto you and to your fathers for ever and ever. — turn ye again now everyone from his evil way, and from the evil of your doings; repent of sins, and reform from them; particularly their idolatries, to which they were prone, and are after mentioned.

And go not after other gods to serve them and to worship them, and provoke Me not to anger with the works of your hands; and I will do you no hurt. — and I will do you no hurt; by sword, or famine, or pestilence, or captivity; signifying the hurt he had threatened them with should not be done, provided they forsook their idolatrous worship; God does no hurt to his true worshippers; yea, he makes all things work together for their good.

Yet ye have not hearkened unto Me,” saith the Lord, “that ye might provoke Me to anger with the works of your hands to your own hurt.”

Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Because ye have not heard My words,

behold, I will send and take all the families of the north,” saith the Lord, “and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, My servant, and will bring them against this land and against the inhabitants thereof, and against all these nations round about, and will utterly destroy them and make them an astonishment and a hissing and perpetual desolations. — and Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon my servant: though a great king, he was a servant of the Lord of hosts; a servant, a pawn both as a creature of his make, and as a king that ruled under him; and as he was an instrument in his hand to chastise his people the Jews;

— and against all these nations round about; Egypt and others; so that the Jews could have no help from them; nor an alliance with them;

— and will utterly destroy them, and make them an astonishment, and an hissing, and perpetual desolations; both the Jews and their neighbours; who should be an astonishment to some, and a hissing to others, and remain desolate for a long time; even till the seventy years were ended.

10 Moreover I will take from them the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones and the light of the candle.

11 And this whole land shall be a desolation and an astonishment, and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years. — and other nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years; both the Jews, and other nations of Egypt, reckoning from the date of this prophecy, the fourth year of Jehoiakim’s reign, when Daniel and others were carried captive, Daniel 1:1; to the first year of Cyrus.

12 And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are accomplished, that I will punish the king of Babylon and that nation,” saith the Lord, “for their iniquity, and the land of the Chaldeans, and will make it perpetual desolations. — that I will punish the king of Babylon, and that nation, saith the Lord, for their iniquity; the king for his tyranny, and the nation for their idolatry; and both for these and other sins they were guilty of;

— for, though they did the will of God in carrying the Jews captive, they no doubt in their usage of them exceeded their commission, and were justly punishable for their iniquities. This is not to be understood of the present king of Babylon, Nebuchadnezzar, nor of Nabonadius, or Belshazzar, whom the Lord punished by Cyrus; who appears to have been a very wicked man, and in the excess of not, profaning the vessels of the temple the night he was slain, Daniel 5:1.

13 And I will bring upon that land all My words which I have pronounced against it, even all that is written in this book, which Jeremiah hath prophesied against all the nations. — even all that is written in this book, which Jeremiah hath prophesied against all the nations: the Egyptians, Philistines, Moabites, Edomites, Arabians, Persians, and also the Babylonians, in Jeremiah 46:1.

14 For many nations and great kings shall serve themselves by them also; and I will recompense them according to their deeds and according to the works of their own hands.” — for many nations and great kings shall serve themselves of them also… take their cities, seize upon the kingdoms, spoil them of their wealth and riches, and bring them into servitude to them: these “many nations” which should and did all this, were the Medes and Persians, and those that were subject to them, or their allies and auxiliaries in this expedition; and the “great kings” were Cyrus and Darius, and those that were confederate with them.

15 For thus saith the Lord God of Israel unto me: “Take the wine cup of this fury at My hand, and cause all the nations to whom I send thee to drink it. — take the wine cup of this fury at my hand; in a vision the Lord appeared to Jeremiah with a cup of wine in his hand, which he bid him take of him. It is usual in Scripture for the judgments of God on men to be signified by a cup of hot and intoxicating liquor, Isaiah 51:17.

16 And they shall drink and be moved, and be mad because of the sword that I will send among them.” — and they shall drink, and be moved, and be mad… the judgements foretold shall come upon them, whether they will or not; which will have such effects upon them, as intoxicating liquor has on drunken persons; make them shake and tremble, and reel to and fro, and toss and tumble about, and behave like madmen.

17 Then took I the cup at the Lord’S hand, and made all the nations to drink, unto whom the Lord had sent me, — and made all the nations to drink, unto whom, the Lord had sent me; not that he travelled through each of the nations with a cup in his hand, as an emblem of what wrath would come upon them, and they should drink deep of; but this was done in vision, and also in prophecy; the prophet proclaiming the will of God, all his judgements upon the nations, and what would befall them.

18 to wit: Jerusalem and the cities of Judah, and the kings thereof and the princes thereof, to make them a desolation, an astonishment, a hissing and a curse, as it is this day; — to make them a desolation, an astonishment, an hissing, and a curse; to strip them of their crowns and kingdom, of their wealth, and riches, and honour, and bring them into slavery and bondage; so that they became an astonishment to some, to see the change that was made in them; and were hissed stand cursed by others:

— as it is this day; which is added, either because of the certainty of it, or because it began to take, place this very year; though more fully in Jeconiah’s time, and still more in Zedekiah’s; or rather this clause might be added by Jeremiah after the captivity; or by Baruch, or by Ezra, or whoever collected his prophecies, and put them into one volume, as Jeremiah 52:1 seems to be added by another hand.

19 Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and all his people; — Pharaoh king of Egypt… who is mentioned first after the kings of Judah; not only because the Jews were in alliance with Egypt, and trusted to them; and therefore this is observed, to show the vanity of their confidence and dependence; but because the judgements of God first took place on the king of Egypt; for in this very year, in which this prophecy was delivered, Pharaohnecho king of Egypt was smitten by Nebuchadnezzar, Jeremiah 46:2.

20 and all the mingled people, and all the kings of the land of Uz, and all the kings of the land of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, and Gaza, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod.

21 Edom, and Moab, and the children of Ammon; — Edom, and Moab, and the children of Ammon; all well known and implacable enemies of Israel; the Edomites descended from Esau; and the Moabites and Ammonites from Moab and Ammon, the two sons of Lot by his daughters. Their destruction is prophesied of in Jeremiah: chapters 48-49.

22 and all the kings of Tyre, and all the kings of Sidon, and the kings of the isles which are beyond the sea; — and all the kings of Tyrus, and all the kings of Zidon… two very ancient cities in Phoenicia, frequently mentioned together in Scripture, being near each other; their ruin were also foretold by prophet Ezekiel; chapters 26-28.

23 Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all that are in the utmost corners;

24 and all the kings of Arabia, and all the kings of the mingled people that dwell in the desert;

25 and all the kings of Zimri, and all the kings of Elam, and all the kings of the Medes;

26 and all the kings of the north, far and near, one with another, and all the kingdoms of the world which are upon the face of the earth; and the king of Sheshach shall drink after them. — and the king of Sheshach shall drink after them; or the king of Babylon, as the Targum; and that Babylon is meant by “Sheshach” is certain from Jeremiah 51:41; but why it is so called is not so easy to say. The Jewish writers make it to be the same with Babylon, by a change of the letters in the alphabet, put in such a situation, which they call “Athbash”, in which “shin” is put for “beth”, and “caph” for “lamed”; and so, instead of Babel or Babylon, you have “Sheshach” which is thought to be used rather than Babylon, that Nebuchadnezzar, now besieging Jerusalem.

27 “Therefore thou shalt say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Drink ye and be drunken, and spew and fall, and rise no more, because of the sword which I will send among you.’ — drink ye, and be drunken, and spew, and fall, and rise no more; as is sometimes the case of drunken men; they drink till they are quite intoxicated; and become drunk, and then they spew up what they have drunk; and, attempting to walk, fall, and sometimes so as never to rise; not only break their bones, but their necks, or fall into places where they are suffocated, where they could loose their lives.

28 And it shall be, if they refuse to take the cup at thine hand to drink, then shalt thou say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts: Ye shall certainly drink. — then shalt thou say unto them, thus saith the Lord of hosts, ye shall certainly drink; or those judgements shall certainly be inflicted; there will be no possibility of escaping, whether they were believed or not; for thus saith the Lord of hosts, who is omnipotent and does what he pleases with the armies of heaven over whom he has a despotic power and government on earth.

29 For lo, I begin to bring evil on the city which is called by My name. And should ye be utterly unpunished? Ye shall not be unpunished, for I will call for a sword upon all the inhabitants of the earth, saith the Lord of hosts.’ — judgement often begins at the house of God, for the correction of his people, and to be a warning to others; but the heaviest strokes are reserved for the ungodly.

30 “Therefore prophesy thou against them all these words, and say unto them: “‘The Lord shall roar from on high, and utter His voice from His holy habitation; He shall mightily roar upon His habitation; He shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth. — the Lord shall roar from on high: from heaven, like a lion in violent claps of thunder; or in such dreadful dispensations of his providence, as will be very amazing and yet terrifying;

— he shall give a shout, as they that tread the grapes, against all the inhabitants of the earth; or, “answer a shout” give the onset for battle against the inhabitants of the earth, as the general of an army; which is accompanied with a shout, like that which is made by workmen treading in the wine press, to encourage one another to go on the more cheerfully in their work.

31 A noise shall come even to the ends of the earth, for the Lord hath a controversy with the nations. He will plead with all flesh; He will give them that are wicked to the sword,’” saith the Lord. — a noise shall come to the ends of the earth; the report of these calamities and confusions shall reach the most distant countries; for the Lord hath a controversy with the nations God enters into judgement with men for their impieties (lack of piety or reverence for God).

32 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation, and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth.” — thus saith the Lord of hosts, behold, evil shall go forth from nation to nation… begin in one nation, and then go on to another; first in Judea, and then in Egypt; and so on, like a catching distemper, or like fire that first consumes one house, and then another; and thus shall the cup go round from nation to nation, before prophesied of: thus, beginning at Judea, one nation after another was destroyed by the king of Babylon; then he and his monarchy were destroyed by the Medes and Persians; and then they by the Macedonians; and then the Greeks by the Romans;

— and a great whirlwind shall be raised up from the coasts of the earth; or “from the sides of it” that is, “from the ends of it” as the Targum paraphrases it, “and many people shall come openly from the ends of the earth;” this was first verified by the Chaldean army under Nebuchadnezzar, compared to a whirlwind, Jeremiah 4:13; and then by the Medes and Persians under Cyrus; and after that by the Greeks under Alexander the Great, and last of all by the Romans under Titus Vespasian.

33 And the slain of the Lord shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth. They shall not be lamented, neither gathered, nor buried; they shall be dung upon the ground. — shall be at that day from one end of the earth even unto the other end of the earth; and like Covid-19 not that this should be at one and the same time; for there never was such a time, that there was such a general slaughter in the world, that the slain should reach from one end to the other;

Covid-19 could just be the beginning in which the cup should go round to all nations, meant by “at that day” the slain of the Lord would be in all parts of the world; or that, according to his will, there would be a great slaughter everywhere as the cup went round, or the sword was sent, first ravaging one country and then another.

34 Howl, ye shepherds, and cry; and wallow yourselves in the ashes, ye leaders of the flock; for the days of your slaughter and of your dispersions are accomplished, and ye shall fall like a pleasant vessel. — howl, ye shepherds, and cry… the Targum says, “howl, ye kings, and cry” and the rulers and governors of the nations before threatened with destruction are meant; who are here called upon to lamentation and mourning for the ruin and loss of their kingdoms.

35 And the shepherds shall have no way to flee, nor the leaders of the flock to escape. — and the shepherds shall have no way to flee… Or, “and flight shall perish from the shepherds” though they may attempt it, they shall not be able to accomplish it; neither the dignity of their persons, the greatness of their power, or the abundance of their riches, would make a way for them; their enemies being so numerous, powerful and watchful.

36 A voice of the cry of the shepherds, and a howling of the leaders of the flock shall be heard; for the Lord hath despoiled their pasture. — a voice of the cry of the shepherds; those are great calamities indeed that strike such a terror upon great men, and put them into this mighty consternation;

— for the Lord hath spoiled their pastures; in which they fed their flock, and out of which they fed themselves; the spoiling of this makes them cry out thus. Carrying on the metaphor of a lion roaring, the prophet alludes to the great fright into which shepherds are put when they hear a roaring lion coming toward them, and find that neither they nor their flocks can escape.

37 And the peaceable habitations are cut down because of the fierce anger of the Lord. — and the peaceable habitations are cut down; those that used to be quiet and not molested, who had long dwelt in peace and safety, shall now be exposed to all the calamities of war, and shall be thereby destroyed; or, those that used to be peaceable, and not to molest any of their neighbours, nor give provocation to any, shall yet not escape.

38 He hath forsaken His covert as the lion; for their land is desolate because of the fierceness of the Oppressor, and because of His fierce anger. — he hath forsaken his covert as a lion… some understand of God leaving Jerusalem, or the temple, where he dwelt; who, while he made it his residence, protected it; but when he forsook it, it became exposed to the enemy; that is true with the destruction of the first temple by Nebuchadnezzar; but also true with the destruction of the second temple; that is, by the Romans;

— because of the fierceness of the oppressor; the tyrant Nebuchadnezzar, and later by Hadrian; or the “oppressing sword” as some supply it and so the Targum says, “from before the sword of the enemy.”

Jeremiah 26

1 In the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, came this word from the Lord, saying, — in the beginning of the reign of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah king of Judah… so that the prophecy of this chapter were before the preceding chapter; that being in the fourth year, this in the beginning of Jehoiakim’s reign; so here is another flashback. Josiah was dead, Jehoahaz his son reigned but three months, and then was deposed by Pharaohnecho king of Egypt; and this Jehoiakim, another son of Josiah, also called Eliakim, was set on the throne.

“Thus saith the Lord: ‘Stand in the court of the Lord’S house, and speak unto all the cities of Judah, which come to worship in the Lord’S house, all the words that I command thee to speak unto them; diminish not a word. — and speak unto all the cities of Judah; the inhabitants of them; not only to those that dwelt at Jerusalem but also to those in the rest of the cities of Judah; for what he was to say concerned them all, they having all sinned, and needed repentance; without which they would be involved in the general calamity of the nation:

— which come to worship in the Lord’s house; as they did three times in the year, at the feasts of Passover, Pentecost, and Tabernacles; and it could be the last of these, when this prophecy was to be delivered to them.

It may so be they will hearken and turn every man from his evil way, that I may repent Me of the evil which I purpose to do unto them because of the evil of their doings.’

And thou shalt say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord: If ye will not hearken to Me, to walk in My law which I have set before you,

to hearken to the words of My servants the prophets whom I sent unto you, both rising up early and sending them, but ye have not hearkened — to hearken to the words of my servants the prophets… the interpretations they give of the law; the teachings they deliver; the exhortations, cautions, and reproofs given by them in the name of the Lord, whose servants they were; and therefore should be hearkened to; since hearkening to them is hearkening to the Lord himself, in whose name they speak, and whose message they deliver.

then will I make this house like Shiloh, and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth.’” — then will I make this house like Shiloh… where the ark was until it was taken by the Philistines; and then the Lord forsook his tabernacle there, Psalms 78:60; and so he threatens to do the like to the temple at Jerusalem, should they continue in their disobedience to him;

— and will make this city a curse to all the nations of the earth; that is, the city of Jerusalem, which should be taken up, and used proverbially in all countries; who, when they would curse anyone, should say, the Lord make thee as Jerusalem, or do unto thee as he has done to Jerusalem.

So the priests and the prophets and all the people heard Jeremiah speaking these words in the house of the Lord. — heard Jeremiah speaking these words in the house of the Lord; in the temple; in the court of Israel; they heard him out, and did not interrupt him while he was speaking; and having heard him, they were angry with him and were witnesses against him; they did not hear him so as to obey his words, receive his instructions and follow his directions; but they heard him with indignation, and were determined to prosecute him unto death.

Now it came to pass, when Jeremiah had made an end of speaking all that the Lord had commanded him to speak unto all the people, that the priests and the prophets and all the people took him, saying, “Thou shalt surely die! — that the priests and the prophets and all the people, took him; the priests and the prophets were the leading men in this action; they stirred up the people against him and through their instigation he was seized and laid hold on;

— saying, thou shall surely die; signifying that they would bring a charge against him, and which by the law would be death; unless they meant in the manner of zealots to put him to death themselves, without judge or jury; and which they would have put in execution, had not the princes of the land or the great Sanhedrin heard of it; and therefore to prevent it came to the temple, as is afterwards related.

Why hast thou prophesied in the name of the Lord, saying, ‘This house shall be like Shiloh, and this city shall be desolate without an inhabitant’?” And all the people were gathered against Jeremiah in the house of the Lord. — and all the people were gathered against Jeremiah in the house of the Lord; besides those that were in the temple that heard him, others, upon a rumour that he was apprehended by the priests and prophets and people in the temple, got together in a mob about him: or, they were “gathered to” to hear what he had to say in his own defence; but it appears afterwards that they were on his side, Jeremiah 26:16.

10 When the princes of Judah heard these things, then they came up from the king’s house unto the house of the Lord, and sat down in the entry of the New Gate of the Lord’S house. — and sat down in the entry of the new gate of the Lord’s house; as a court of judicature, to hear and try the cause between the prophet and his accusers. This gate of the temple is thought to be the upper gate, which Jotham built, II Kings 15:35;

the Targum calls it the eastern gate; but Jeremiah called it the New Gate, because being newly repaired, or some new structures added to it, it gives this reason for its being called new; that when Jehoiakim was carried captive, and some of the vessels of the temple, Nebuchadnezzar’s army broke the eastern gate, which Zedekiah afterwards repaired and made new.

11 Then spoke the priests and the prophets unto the princes and to all the people, saying, “This man is worthy to die; for he hath prophesied against this city, as ye have heard with your ears.” — for he hath prophesied against this city; the city of Jerusalem; saying that it should be a curse to other nations; or, as they interpreted it, that it should be utterly destroyed, and become desolate, and none should inhabit it.

12 Then spoke Jeremiah unto all the princes and to all the people, saying, “The Lord sent me to prophesy against this house and against this city all the words that ye have heard. — the Lord sent me to prophesy against this house, and against this city, all the words that ye have heard; he does not deny but that he had prophesied against the city of Jerusalem and against the temple, and that they should both come to ruin, unless the people repented and reformed;

— but then he urges, that he was sent by the Lord on this errand, and that every word that he had said, and they had heard, he was ordered to say by the Lord; and therefore what was he, that he should withstand God? he surely was not to be blamed for doing what the Lord commanded him to do; besides, all this was threatened only in case they continued being obstinate and impenitent.

13 Therefore now amend your ways and your doings, and obey the voice of the Lord your God; and the Lord will repent of the evil that He hath pronounced against you.

14 As for me, behold, I am in your hand: do with me as seemeth good and meet unto you. — do with me as seemeth good and meet unto you; he readily submitted to their pleasure, and should patiently endure what they thought fit to inflict upon him; it gave him no great concern whether his life was taken from him; he was satisfied he had done what he ought to do, and would do the same; and therefore they might proceed just as they pleased against him.

15 But know ye for certain that if ye put me to death, ye shall surely bring innocent blood upon yourselves and upon this city, and upon the inhabitants thereof; for truly the Lord hath sent me unto you to speak all these words in your ears.”

16 Then said the princes and all the people unto the priests and to the prophets, “This man is not worthy to die, for he hath spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God!” — then said the princes and all the people unto the priests and to the prophets… hearing Jeremiah’s testimony for themselves, it appeared that he was justified in what he had said and done; hence they acquitted him; and the people, who before were on the side of the priests and false prophets; yet hearing what Jeremiah had testified for himself and also the judgement of the princes, they joined with the court in an address to the priests and prophets, who were the chief accusers, and who would fain have had him brought in guilty of death; that

— this man is not worthy to die; or, “the judgement of death is not for this man”; we cannot give judgement against him; he is not guilty of any crime deserving death; 

— for he hath spoken to us in the name of the Lord our God; not in his own name, nor of his own head; but in the name of the Lord, and by his order; and therefore was not a false, but a true prophet: what methods they took to know this, and to make it appear to the people, is not said; very probably the settled character of the prophet; their long acquaintance with him, and knowledge of him; his integrity and firmness of mind; the plain marks of seriousness and humility, and a disinterested view, made them conclude in his favour.

17 Then rose up certain of the elders of the land, and spoke to all the assembly of the people, saying,

18 “Micah the Morasthite prophesied in the days of Hezekiah king of Judah, and spoke to all the people of Judah, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “‘Zion shall be plowed like a field, and Jerusalem shall become heaps, and the mountain of the house as the high places of a forest.’

19 “Did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him at all to death? Did he not fear the Lord, and besought the Lord, and the Lord repented of the evil which He had pronounced against them? Thus might we procure great evil against our souls.” — did Hezekiah king of Judah and all Judah put him at all to death?… no, they did not: neither the king, by his own authority; nor the Sanhedrin, the great court of judicature, for the nation; they never sought to take away his life, nor sat in council about it; they never arraigned him, and much less condemned him:

— did he not fear the Lord, and besought the Lord; that is, Hezekiah; he did, as knowing that Micah was a prophet of the Lord, and sent by him; wherefore he received his prophecy with great awe and reverence, as coming from the Lord, and made his supplications to him that he would avert the judgements threatened:

— and the Lord repented of the evil which he had pronounced against them? the king and his people, the city and the temple; and so the threatened evil came not upon them in their days.

20 And there was also a man who prophesied in the name of the Lord, Urijah the son of Shemaiah of Kirjathjearim, who prophesied against this city and against this land according to all the words of Jeremiah.

21 And when Jehoiakim the king, with all his mighty men and all the princes, heard his words, the king sought to put him to death; but when Urijah heard it, he was afraid and fled, and went into Egypt.

22 And Jehoiakim the king sent men into Egypt, namely, Elnathan the son of Achbor and certain men with him into Egypt.

23 And they fetched forth Urijah out of Egypt and brought him unto Jehoiakim the king, who slew him with the sword and cast his dead body into the graves of the common people.

24 Nevertheless the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah, that they should not give him into the hand of the people to put him to death. — nevertheless, the hand of Ahikam the son of Shaphan was with Jeremiah… though this instance was urged as a precedent to go by, being lately done; or though the king’s cruelty had been so lately exercised in such a manner; yet this man, who had been one of Josiah’s courtiers and counsellors, II Kings 22:12; stood by Jeremiah, and used all his power, authority, and influence, in his favour:

— that they should not give him into the hand of the people, to put him to death; that the Sanhedrin should not; who, by the last precedent mentioned, might seem inclined to it; but this great man, having several brothers, as well as other friends, that paid a regard to his arguments and solicitations; he prevailed upon them not to give leave to the people to put him to death, who appear to have been very fickle and mutable;

— at first they joined with the priests and false prophets against Jeremiah, to accuse him; but upon the judgement and vote of the princes, they changed their sentiments, and were for the prophet against the priests and the false prophets.

Jeremiah (Ch 23-24)

•November 12, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Jeremiah 23

1 “Woe be unto the shepherds that destroy and scatter the sheep of My pasture!” saith the Lord. — woe be unto the shepherds… or, “O ye shepherds” or “governors” as the Targum says; the civil rulers and magistrates, kings and princes of the land of Judag; since ecclesiastical rulers, the priests and prophets, are mentioned as distinct from them in Jeremiah 23:9; whose business it was to rule and guide, protect and defend the people;

— that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture, saith the Lord God; set them bad examples, led them into idolatry which were the cause of their ruin, and of their being carried captive, and scattered in other countries; inasmuch as these people were the Lord’s pasture sheep, whom he had an interest in, and a regard unto, and had committed them to the care and charge of these shepherds to be particularly taken care of.

Therefore thus saith the Lord God of Israel against the shepherds that feed My people: “Ye have scattered My flock and driven them away, and have not visited them. Behold, I will visit upon you the evil of your doings,” saith the Lord. — ye have scattered my flock, and driven them away, and have not visited them; they had been driven out of their dwellings, and out of their own land, and being among the nations of the world, and took no thoughts for their return;

— behold, I will visit you for the evil of your doings, saith the Lord; that is, punish them for their iniquities; since they visited not the flock in a way of mercy and kindness, as the duty of their office required, the Lord would visit them in a way of justice, and punish them according to their doings.

“And I will gather the remnant of My flock out of all countries whither I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase. — and I will gather the remnant of my flock, out of all countries… such of them as did not perish by the sword, famine, and pestilence, or died not in captivity, and chose not to remain in the kingdom where they were.

And I will set up shepherds over them who shall feed them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall they be lacking,” saith the Lord. — and I will set shepherds over them, who shall feed them… good shepherds, rulers and governors, that shall rule them with wholesome laws, and protect and defend them; such as Zerubbabel, Nehemiah and others, after the captivity.

“Behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch; and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgement and justice in the earth. — that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch; the Messiah; so it is explained by the Targum, which calls him the Messiah of the righteous; and by the ancient Jews also; who is spoken of frequently by the prophets as a branch, Isaiah 4:2.

In His days Judah shall be saved, and Israel shall dwell safely; and this is His name whereby He shall be called: The Lord Our Righteousness. — He shall be called, the Lord our, Righteousness; here the Messiah is spoken of by a name, in a figure, which is used also by Isaiah and Zechariah.

“Therefore, behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that they shall no more say, ‘The Lord liveth who brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’

but, ‘the Lord liveth who brought up and who led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all countries whither I had driven them.’ And they shall dwell in their own land.” — which brought up and which led the seed of the house of Israel out of the north country, and from all countries whither I had driven them: which respects not only the deliverance of the Jews from Babylon, which lay north of Judea; but the return of the ten tribes, and also the gathering of them together at the latter day, when they shall turn to the Lord, and return to their own land;

— notice the subtle change: from the house of Judah to the house of Israel; that is, now it is the ten tribes; and second, out of all the countries or nations, rather than just one nation Babylon; hence this is prophetic regarding the ten tribes and for the endtimes.

Mine heart within me is broken because of the prophets; all my bones shake. I am like a drunken man and like a man whom wine hath overcome, because of the Lord and because of the words of His holiness. — mine heart within me is broken because of the prophets… the false prophets, as the Targum rightly interprets it, because of their false doctrines and wicked lives; and because of the mischief they did the people, and the ruin they brought upon them and to themselves.

10 For the land is full of adulterers; for because of cursing the land mourneth; the pleasant places of the wilderness are dried up, and their course is evil, and their force is not right.

11 “For both prophet and priest are profane; yea, in My house have I found their wickedness,” saith the Lord. — for both prophet and priest are profane… being guilty of the mentioned sins; the Targum says, “the scribe and the priest;” and such were the scribes and priests in the time of our Lord; they played “the hypocrite” as some render the word here; and are often charged with the sin of hypocrisy and called hypocrites.

12 “Therefore their way shall be unto them as slippery ways in the darkness; they shall be driven on, and fall therein; for I will bring evil upon them, even the year of their visitation,” saith the Lord. — for I will bring evil upon them: the evil of punishment, which is from the Lord: as sword, famine, pestilence and captivity;

— “even the year of their visitation” could also mean a day of visitation at the latter days, see Jeremiah 23:20.

13 “And I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria: They prophesied in Baal and caused My people Israel to err. — and I have seen folly in the prophets of Samaria… the ten tribes of Israel, among whom, in Ahab’s time there were many false prophets, Baal’s prophets, even four hundred and fifty; whose “folly” the Lord had formerly taken notice of; even their idolatry and impiety for giving into which the ten tribes had been carried captive years ago. 

14 I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem a horrible thing: They commit adultery and walk in lies; they strengthen also the hands of evildoers, that none doth return from his wickedness. They are all of them unto Me as Sodom, and the inhabitants thereof as Gomorrah.” — I have seen also in the prophets of Jerusalem an horrible thing… or “so have I seen” as before observed even in the prophets of Jerusalem, where the temple was, and where the pure worship of God was professed to be observed;

— and walk in lies; or, “walking in lies” constantly speaking lies in their common talk and conversation; so that they were not to be believed in anything they said; which was monstrous; and delivering out false doctrines in the name of the Lord, pretending they received them from him; which was worse than prophesying in the name of Baal.

15 Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets: “Behold, I will feed them with wormwood, and make them drink the water of gall; for from the prophets of Jerusalem is profaneness gone forth into all the land.” — therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts concerning the prophets… concerning the false prophets, as the Targum says; their sin is before declared, and now their punishment: behold, I will feed them with wormwood; with some bitter affliction and calamity;

— so the Targum says, “behold, I will bring upon them distress bitter as wormwood;”

— and make them drink the water of gall: or “the juice of hemlock” or “poison” or “the savour of death” as they poisoned the people with their false doctrines, they shall drink poison themselves; they shall not only have that which is bitter and unpleasant, but that which is noxious and hurtful; not only a bitter potion, but a destructive one; the Targum says, “I will cause them to drink a cup of the curse, bad as the heads of serpent.”

16 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Hearken not unto the words of the prophets that prophesy unto you. They make you vain; they speak a vision of their own heart, and not out of the mouth of the Lord. — they make you vain; they filled their heads with vain and empty things, and their hearts with vain hopes;

— so the Targum says, “they deceive you;” they taught vain things, and made them vain and sinful in their lives and conversations; and therefore were not to be hearkened to.

17 They say still unto them that despise Me, ‘The Lord hath said, “Ye shall have peace.”’ And they say unto every one that walketh after the imagination of his own heart, ‘No evil shall come upon you.’” — the Lord hath said, ye shall have peace; all manner of prosperity; that they should dwell in their own land, and not go into captivity, and enjoy the good things of it in peace and prosperity; this they pretended they had from the Lord; which was an aggravation of their sins; not only to tell a lie, but to tell it in the name of the Lord, and in direct opposition to what the true prophets said from the mouth of the Lord, particularly Jeremiah.

18 For who hath stood in the counsel of the Lord, and hath perceived and heard His word? Who hath marked His word and heard it?

19 Behold, a whirlwind of the Lord is gone forth in fury, even a grievous whirlwind; it shall fall grievously upon the head of the wicked. — behold, a whirlwind of the Lord is gone forth in fury… or, “behold, a whirlwind of the Lord, of the fury is gone forth” which latter clause explains the former; and, hews, that by “the whirlwind of the Lord” is meant his “fury” or “wrath” which, like a whirlwind, would come suddenly and at an unawares and be very boisterous and powerful;

— and which was gone forth from the Lord and the Chaldean army would quickly appear and invade Judea and besiege Jerusalem, compared to a full and fanning wind, and its chariots to a whirlwind, Jeremiah 4:11.

20 The anger of the Lord shall not return, until He has executed and till He has performed the thoughts of His heart; in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly. — in the “latter days” (Genesis 49:1Numbers 24:14Deuteronomy 4:30Deuteronomy 31:29), i.e., in the then distant future), in the then distant future — literally, the end of the days, the endtimes;

— in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly; when too late to avert it by repentance and reformation when all this shall be fulfilled, and the seventy years captivity take place;

— or, “in the end of days” in the latter part off time, when the Jews seek the Lord their God, Hosea 3:5; then “shall they understand it with an understanding” as it may be rendered; when they shall have the veil removed from them, and turn to the Lord;

— in the latter days ye shall consider it perfectly; or rather, in the latter days ye shall understand it clearly, viz. that the calamities which will have come upon you are the divine judgement upon your sins;

— here and there the Scriptures hint the message is prophetic, into our time, the endtimes; hence one may read the rest of this chapter with the endtimes in mind, especially there is a proliferation of false prophets around.

21 “I have not sent these prophets, yet they ran; I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied. — I have not spoken to them, yet they prophesied; wherefore what they prophesied was not the word of the Lord, but what they themselves devised; and so was what was false;

— as the Targum adds: it is a sad character of men when they speak in public neither by the will of God, nor according to the word of God.

22 But if they had stood in My counsel and had caused My people to hear My words, then they should have turned them from their evil way and from the evil of their doings. — but if they had stood in My counsel and had caused My people to hear My words, proclaiming them as they were truly revealed, then they should have turned them from their evil way and from the evil of their doings;

— in other words, they would preach repentance from idolatry instead of confirming the people in their false security, which has ever been a trick of such as falsely proclaimed themselves messengers of the Lord. To give weight to these reproofs, the Lord now shows why it is that He is familiar with the hypocritical conduct of the false prophets.

23 “Am I a God at hand,” saith the Lord, “and not a God afar off? — God is omniscient, and omnipotent; the Targum says, “I God have created the world from the beginning, saith the Lord; and I God will renew the world for the righteous.”

24 Can any hide himself in secret places, that I shall not see him?” saith the Lord. “Do not I fill heaven and earth?” saith the Lord.

25 “I have heard what the prophets said who prophesy lies in My name, saying, ‘I have dreamed, I have dreamed.’ — saying, I have dreamed, I have dreamed; not a common dream, but a divine dream; this was one way in which the Lord formerly made known his mind and will to his servants, Numbers 12:6; wherefore these false prophets, in imitation of the true ones, and in order to gain credit from the people, pretended they had a dream from the Lord, in which such and such things were revealed to them;

— and this is repeated by them for the greater certainty of it, and to raise the people’s attention as to something very uncommon and extraordinary. So the Targum says “saying, a word of prophecy has been shown to me in a dream.”

26 How long shall this be in the heart of the prophets who prophesy lies? Yea, they are prophets of the deceit of their own heart, — how long shall this be in the heart of the prophets or prophetess, like one called Jezebel, that prophesy lies?…. to invent such lies, and deceive the people, and turn them away from God; agreeably to the preceding and following verses: this shows that this was not through ignorance and inadvertence; it was a meditated and studied thing by them; they contrived it in their hearts, and they were resolute and bent upon it, and took much delight and pleasure in it.

27 who think to cause My people to forget My name by their dreams which they tell every man to his neighbor, as their fathers have forgotten My name for Baal. — they cause my name Yehovah (YHVH) to be forgotten, and substituted it by false prophets and have used Baal as my name and the prophesying in such a name;

— His name is the four-letter Hebrew word יהוה‎ YHVH Yehovah (not Jehovah since the letter J wasn’t around but only after the sixteenth century; (more on this at the end)

28 The prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath My word, let him speak My word faithfully. What is the chaff to the wheat?” saith the Lord. — the prophet that hath a dream, let him tell a dream; the Septuagint version is, “let him tell his dream” let him tell it as his own, and not as a dream from the Lord;

— let him speak my word faithfully; or “truly” as it is; teachers of the word are stewards, and it is required of such that they be faithful, and a more honourable character they cannot well have; and then may the word of the Lord be said to be spoken faithfully, when nothing else is spoken but that; when there is no mixture of man’s with God’s; and when the whole of it is spoken, and nothing kept back or concealed;

— or, “let him speak my word, truth” which is truth; or, for it is truth; so this is a reason why it should be spoken freely, fully, publicly, and boldly, because it is truth, and nothing but truth: or, “let him speak my word as truth;”

— why do ye mix the chaff with the wheat? the Targum interprets this of persons, paraphrasing the words thus, “behold, as one separates between the chaff and the wheat, so I separate between the righteous and the wicked, saith the Lord.”

29 “Is not My word like as a fire?” saith the Lord, “and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? — is not My Word like as a fire? saith the Lord, devouring and destroying all the philosophy of men which will not stand the test of His eternal truth;

— and like a hammer that breaketh the rock in pieces? its power overcoming even the hardest and the strongest fabric of men’s imagination.

30 “Therefore behold, I am against the prophets,” saith the Lord, “that steal My words every one from his neighbor. — therefore, because the false prophets were practicing deceit and seducing the people, behold, I am against the prophets, saith the Lord, that steal My words, every one from his neighbor; they appropriated the inspired sayings of the true prophets in order to give their own oracles a show of right.

31 Behold, I am against the prophets,” saith the Lord, “that use their tongues and say, ‘He saith.’ — the Targum says, “who prophesy according to the will of their own hearts;” the Targum continues, “therefore, behold, I send my fury against the false prophets.”

32 Behold, I am against them that prophesy false dreams,” saith the Lord, “and do tell them, and cause My people to err by their lies and by their lightness; yet I sent them not, nor commanded them. Therefore they shall not profit this people at all,” saith the Lord. — behold, I am against them that prophesy false dreams, saith the Lord, or the prophetess’ false visions, insisting that the fabric of their own thoughts was to be accepted as God’s revelation, and do tell them, and cause My people, as the Lord still calls them for the sake of the true believers in their midst;

— to err by their lies and by their lightness, by their boastful and wanton inventions; yet I sent them not nor commanded them; therefore they shall not profit this people at all, saith the Lord, a most emphatic statement that their activity would result in nothing but injury to the people.

33 “And when this people or the prophet or a priest shall ask thee, saying, ‘What is the burden of the Lord?’ thou shalt then say unto them, ‘What burden? I will even forsake you, saith the Lord.’ — saying, what is the burden of the Lord? according to a custom by which the prophet was asked concerning any new revelations, which they purposely designated as an unpleasant burden, thou shalt then say unto them, What burden? 

— or, “Thou shalt tell them what the burden of Yehovah is,” namely, I will even forsake you, saith the Lord, an unloading of the burden, a rejecting of the people.

34 And as for the prophet and the priest and the people who shall say, ‘The burden of the Lord,’ I will even punish that man and his house. — and as for the prophet and the priest and the people that shall say, the burden of the Lord, in blasphemous mockery of His solemn announcement, I will even punish that man and his house, all the members of a man’s family who are guilty with him.

35 Thus shall ye say every one to his neighbor and every one to his brother, ‘What hath the Lord answered?’ and, ‘What hath the Lord spoken?’ — thus shall ye say, every one to his neighbor and every one to his brother, what hath the Lord answered? and, what hath the Lord spoken? thus showing the proper respect for the prophecy of Yehovah.

36 And the burden of the Lord shall ye mention no more, for every man’s word shall be his burden; for ye have perverted the words of the living God, of the Lord of hosts our God. — and the burden of the Lord shall ye mention no more, no more toss this expression about in mockery; for every man’s word shall be his burden, that is, this expression, if used in such a jeering sense, would become a burden to such a scorner, heavy enough to bear him down to the ground; 

— for ye have perverted the words of the living God, of the Lord of hosts, our God, whose majesty is here emphatically declared, to give added weight to His proclamation.

37 Thus shalt thou say to the prophet, ‘What hath the Lord answered thee?’ and, ‘What hath the Lord spoken?’ — what hath the Lord answered thee? and what hath the Lord spoken? this is repeated from Jeremiah 23:35; for the confirmation of it, and to show how much the Lord approved of such a way of behaving towards his prophet.

38 But since ye say, ‘The burden of the Lord,’ therefore thus saith the Lord: Because ye say this word, ‘The burden of the Lord,’ and I have sent unto you, saying, ‘Ye shall not say: The burden of the Lord,’ — for the words of God were delivered with a salutary tendency, to warn sinners of the danger of their situation, and to call them to repentance. Those, therefore, who made a right use of them would have no cause to complain. But those who despised and rejected them perverted that which should have been for their wealth into an occasion of falling.

39 therefore behold, I, even I, will utterly forget you, and I will forsake you and the city that I gave you and your fathers, and cast you out of My presence. — and the city that I gave you and your fathers; the city of Jerusalem, which he had given to them to dwell in, and their fathers before them; but now they having sinned against him, and provoked him;

— therefore, notwithstanding this grant of the place to them, and which is mentioned that they might not depend upon it, and buoy up themselves with hopes that they should be in safety on that account; as he had forsaken them, he would forsake that, and the temple in it, and give it up into the hand of the Chaldeans;

— the Targum says, “I will remove you far away, and the city which I save you and your fathers from my word;” it signifies their going into captivity.

40 And I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you, and a perpetual shame which shall not be forgotten.” — and I will bring an everlasting reproach upon you and a perpetual shame, namely, on the part of all her enemies and all the witnesses of her downfall, which shall not be forgotten; a similar fate awaits those who in our days purposely follow the lead of the false prophets and join them in jeering and mocking those who confess the truth of God’s Word.

Jeremiah 24

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

1 The Lord showed me, and behold, two baskets of figs were set before the temple of the Lord, after Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon had carried away captive Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, and the princes of Judah, with the carpenters and smiths, from Jerusalem and had brought them to Babylon.

One basket had very good figs, even like the figs that are first ripe; and the other basket had very bad figs, which could not be eaten they were so bad. — one basket had very good figs, being full of very fine specimens of this fruit, even like the figs that are first ripe, which were considered special delicacies; 

— and the other basket had very naughty figs, bad, unwholesome, rotten fruit, which could not be eaten, they were so bad.

Then said the Lord unto me, “What seest thou, Jeremiah?” And I said, “Figs: the good figs, very good; and the evil, very evil, that cannot be eaten they are so evil.” — then said the Lord unto me, What seest thou, Jeremiah? And I said, Figs; the good figs very good and the evil very evil, that cannot be eaten, they are so evil; the purpose of the question was to impress the lesson upon Jeremiah’s mind, to call attention to the objects which were to symbolize the Jews.

Again the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel: ‘Like these good figs, so will I acknowledge them that are carried away captive of Judah, whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the Chaldeans for their good. — thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, still the God of the covenant to all who are Israelites in truth; Like these good figs, so will I acknowledge them that are carried away captive of Judah, regarding them with favor, extending His pleasure to them;

— whom I have sent out of this place into the land of the Chaldeans for their good, to let them experience His blessings, to have them realize that His method of dealing with them was for their own benefit.

For I will set Mine eyes upon them for good, and I will bring them again to this land; and I will build them and not pull them down, and I will plant them and not pluck them up. — for I will set Mine eyes upon them for good, being most attentive to their wants in this respect, and I will bring them again to this land; and I will build them and not pull them down, as a building condemned to be wrecked; 

— and led them to repentance in the land of their captivity, the result being that their condition was bettered; and I will bring them again to this land, and I will plant them and not pluck them up;

And I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the Lord; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God; for they shall return unto Me with their whole heart. — and I will give them an heart to know Me, that I am the Lord, the punishment of the Babylonian captivity directing their minds to the one true God, who could thus carry out His threats, so that they likewise looked for mercy to Him alone;

— and they shall be My people, and I will be their God, thus restoring the original relation, which had been so rudely disturbed and made impossible by their idolatry; for they shall return unto Me with their whole heart, or, “I will be their God when they return to Me with their whole heart.”

“‘And as the evil figs, which cannot be eaten they are so evil’” — surely thus saith the Lord — “‘so will I deem Zedekiah the king of Judah, and his princes, and the residue of Jerusalem who remain in this land, and them that dwell in the land of Egypt. — and as the evil figs, which cannot be eaten they are so evil: surely thus saith the Lord, So will I give Zedekiah, the king of Judah, and his princes, all the rulers and nobles of the people;

— and the residue of Jerusalem that remain in this land, and them that dwell in the land of Egypt, the obstinate Jews, who refused to heed His warning and accept His advice to yield to the Chaldeans.

And I will deliver them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth for their hurt, to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse in all places whither I shall drive them. — and I will deliver them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth for their hurt, literally, “I will give them for a shaking-up, for evil to all kingdoms of the earth,” so that abuse and misfortune would strike them everywhere, to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt and a curse, in all places whither I shall drive them, they would be the object of blasphemous derision on the part of all those with whom they would come into contact.

10 And I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence among them till they be consumed from off the land that I gave unto them and to their fathers.’” — and I will send the sword, the famine, and the pestilence, the great scourges of all times, among them, till they be consumed from off the land, exterminated, extirpated from the Land of Promise, that I gave unto them and to their fathers;

— thus the Lord predicts further invasions and repeated sackings of Jerusalem. Thus was His curse, as uttered in the Law, Deuteronomy 28:37, carried out upon all those who refused Him obedience according to His demand, as a warning to men of all times.

~~~

More on God’s name, Yehovah.

God’s name is the four-letter Hebrew word יהוה‎ YHVH Yehovah, which are embedded in the Masoretic text over 6000 times, yet when translated into our English language most had been translated as Lord, or LORD, which are titles, but not his name. His name is יהוה‎ Yehovah, or YEHOVAH (but there are no capital letters in Hebrew).

It wasn’t until 1524 that Gian Giorgio Trissino, an Italian Renaissance grammarian, invented the letter J that this new letter started to take a hold in the writings of western Europe. Even in 1611 when the English Bible the King James has our subject of study by the prophet Jeremiah, he was known as Ieremiah. So Jehovah is a very late comer.

The following verses with the LORD erred in translation. His name Yehovah should be used:

I am the LORD; that is My name. And My glory will I not give to another, neither My praise to graven images. Isaiah 42:8

And it shall come to pass, that whosoever shall call on the name of the LORD shall be delivered; for in Mount Zion and in Jerusalem shall be deliverance, as the LORD hath said, and in the remnant whom the LORD shall call. Joel 2:32

“I am sought of them that asked not for Me; I am found of them that sought Me not. I said, ‘Behold Me, behold Me,’ unto a nation that was not called by My name. Isaiah 65:1

When we call our God, the LORD, we err, because his name is not the LORD, which is a title. His name is YEHOVAH! May We all ask for his forgiveness, and may Our merciful God forgive us all.

Jeremiah (Ch 21-22)

•November 11, 2021 • 3 Comments

Pashur, the son of Malchiah, was a priest, who was sent by king Zedekiah to Jeremiah to inquire of the Lord regarding the impending attack of King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon (Jeremiah 21:1). Pashur was also the captain, or overseer of the temple during Zedekiah’s reign. In this capacity as captain of the temple he had power to arrest and put in prison any who caused any disturbance in the temple.

In Jeremiah 38:1-6, this Pashur was also one of four men who advised Zedekiah to put Jeremiah to death for his prophecies of doom but who ended up throwing him into a cistern.

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Jeremiah 21

1 The word which came unto Jeremiah from the Lord when King Zedekiah sent unto him Pashhur the son of Melchiah, and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest, saying, — Pashur, the son of Malchiah, was a priest, who was sent by king Zedekiah to Jeremiah to inquire of the Lord regarding the impending attack of King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon (Jeremiah 21:1). In Jeremiah 38:1-6, this Pashur was also one of four men who advised Zedekiah to put Jeremiah to death for his prophecies of doom but who ended up throwing him into a cistern.

— and Zephaniah the son of Maaseiah the priest; who was of the “twenty fourth” course; see 1 Chronicles 24:9; in Jeremiah 52:24, he is called the “second priests” like Pashhur; or “sagan”, or deputies to the high priest.

“Inquire, I pray thee, of the Lord for us (for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon maketh war against us), if so it be that the Lord will deal with us according to all His wondrous works, that he may go up from us.” — for Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon maketh war against us; the same that is elsewhere called Nebuchadnezzar, who was on his way up to Jerusalem, and was besieging it, as had been predicted;

— if so be the Lord will deal with us according to all his wondrous works; which God had done in times past for that nation; as by bringing them out of Egypt; driving out the Canaanites before them; delivering them out of the hands of their neighbours, time after time; and particularly by destroying the Assyrian army in Hezekiah’s time, which was besieging the city of Jerusalem, and causing their king to depart and flee in haste; and their present case being similar to that, it is very likely that that was more especially in view;

— that he may go up from us; namely, the king of Babylon; that he may rise up, and raise the siege, and depart into his own country, as Sennacherib did.

Then said Jeremiah unto them, “Thus shall ye say to Zedekiah, — then said Jeremiah unto them… the two priests, Pashur and Zephaniah, after he had sought the Lord, and knew his mind and will: thus shall ye say to Zedekiah; by whom they were sent.

‘Thus saith the Lord God of Israel: Behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands, wherewith ye fight against the king of Babylon and against the Chaldeans, who besiege you outside the walls; and I will assemble them into the midst of this city. — behold, I will turn back the weapons of war that are in your hands; they shall hurt yourselves, and be the occasion of your own destruction; so that they would not hurt their enemy, but recoil upon themselves; or like a boomerang;

— the meaning is, that they should be useless and unserviceable; that they should neither be defensive to them, nor offensive to their enemies; but rather hurtful to themselves. It seems to suggest, as if they should fall out with one another; and turn their swords upon one another, and destroy each other; that is, civil wars among themselves;

— wherewith ye fight against the king of Babylon and against the Chaldeans which besiege you without the walls; by shooting arrows at them from outside the walls; or by sallying within the city with swords in hand: this shows that the Chaldean army under the command of the king of Babylon was now just outside the walls of Jerusalem, besieging it;

— and I will assemble them into the midst of this city; God himself will assemble the Chaldean army, which when breaking into the city, should cause the inhabitants of Jerusalem to be brought in to them in the middle of the city, and there slay them; or, so that its defenders, who were still attempting to repel the invaders outside the walls, would be compelled to take refuge in the center of the city, their weapons having proved powerless against the enemy.

And I Myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, even in anger and in fury and in great wrath. — and I Myself will fight against you with an outstretched hand and with a strong arm, exhibiting His almighty power in punishing them, like the way he destroyed the Egyptian army;

— with an outstretched hand, and with a strong arm; such as he had used formerly in delivering Israel out of Egypt, but now in delivering them into the hands of their enemies; see Exodus 6:6;

— even in anger and in fury and in great wrath; because of their sins and iniquities, this heap of words is used to show the depth of his indignation: this was not the chastisement of a father, but the rebuke of an enemy in hot displeasure; a punishment inflicted in vindictive wrath by a righteous Judge, appearing in a warlike manner.

And I will smite the inhabitants of this city, both man and beast; they shall die of a great pestilence. — and I will, that is, God himself will smite the inhabitants of this city Jerusalem, both man and beast, not the Chaldean army.

And afterward, saith the Lord, I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants and the people and such as are left in this city from the pestilence, from the sword, and from the famine into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of their enemies, and into the hand of those that seek their life. And he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; he shall not spare them, neither have pity nor have mercy.’ — I will deliver Zedekiah king of Judah, and his servants; the king himself shall not escape; though he shall not die by the pestilence or famine or sword, yet he shall fall into the hands of the Chaldeans, and also “his servants” his courtiers and counsellors;

— he shall smite them with the edge of the sword; that is, Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, or, whoever the army under his command; for what was done by the one is ascribed to the other: this is to be understood of such that fell into their hands upon taking the city, and who endeavoured to make their escape; Jeremiah 39:4;

— he shall not spare them, neither have pity, nor have mercy; they had no regard to rank or figure, to age or sex; the sons of the king were slain before his eyes, and then his eyes were put out; princes were hanged up by the hand; and no compassion shown to old or young, man or maiden; Jeremiah 52:10.

“And unto this people thou shalt say, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I set before you the way of life and the way of death. — behold, I set before you the way of life, and the way of death; the way how to preserve their lives; and which, if they did not choose to take, would be inevitable death. The allusion seems to be to a phrase used by Moses, when he gave the law; obedience to which would issue in life, and disobedience in death, Deuteronomy 30:15.

He that abideth in this city shall die by the sword and by the famine and by the pestilence; but he that goeth out and falleth to the Chaldeans who besiege you, he shall live, and his life shall be unto him as a prey. — he shall live; that is, surrender themselves unto the Chaldeans; submit to them, so as to obey them, and ye shall live.

10 For I have set My face against this city for evil and not for good, saith the Lord. It shall be given into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall burn it with fire.’ — and he shall burn it with fire; as he did, both the house of the Lord in it, the temple, the king’s house or palace, the stately houses of the princes and nobles, and even the houses of all the people; Jeremiah 52:13.

11 “And concerning the house of the king of Judah, say, ‘Hear ye the word of the Lord,

12 O house of David. Thus saith the Lord: “‘Execute judgement in the morning, and deliver him that is despoiled out of the hand of the oppressor, lest My fury go out like fire and burn, that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. — O house of David, whose descendants were still occupying the throne of Judah;

— execute judgement in the morning; be at it early, and dispatch it speedily; and do not delay it to the prejudice of persons concerned. The power of judgement with the Jews belonged to the king; he was supreme judge in their courts; they judged, and were judged, the Jews say by whom judgement was executed in a morning, and not in any other part of the day; and the case judged ought, as they say, to be as clear as the morning;

— lest my fury go out like fire, and burn that none can quench it; or put a stop to it, by all their prayers and entreaties, or by all that they can say or do;

— because of the evil of your doings; it is a sad thing when princes set bad examples; it is highly provoking to God, whose deputies they are; and to lead the people on, or they cannot expect safety for themselves and their people.

13 Behold, I am against thee, O inhabitant of the valley and rock of the plain, saith the Lord, who say, “Who shall come down against us? Or who shall enter into our habitations?” — O inhabitant of the valley and rock of the plain, saith the Lord; a description of Jerusalem; between the lower and higher part of which lay a valley, called Tyropaeon, which divided the two hills, on which the city was built; yea, the whole city was on high, on a rock, and around it a valley or plain; and because it was built upon a rock, and fortified with hills and mountains, the inhabitants of it thought themselves safe and secure, and even impregnable;

— which say, who shall come down against us? who shall enter into our habitations? who of our neighbours dare to make an attack upon us? they are so weak and would be foolish in any attempt to break through our fortifications, natural and artificial, and enter into our houses, and take away our possessions, and spoil us of our goods?

14 But I will punish you according to the fruit of your doings, saith the Lord; and I will kindle a fire in the forest thereof, and it shall devour all things round about it.’” — and I will kindle a fire in the forest thereof; not in the forest of Lebanon, but in the city of Jerusalem; whose houses stood as thick as trees in a forest, and which many of them, at least the most stately, might be built or ceiled with cedars from Lebanon; though some understand this of the cities and towns about Jerusalem;

— and so the Targum renders it, “in its cities” and it shall devour all things round about it; the mountains and trees upon them, the cities and towns adjacent.

Jeremiah 22

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Josiah (reign 640–609), Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Thus saith the Lord: “Go down to the house of the king of Judah, and speak there this word

and say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, O king of Judah, who sittest upon the throne of David, thou and thy servants and thy people who enter in by these gates. — thus saith the Lord, go down to the house of the king of Judah… to the palace of Jehoiakim, who was now the reigning king; the prophet is bid to go down to it, because he was now upon the mountain of the house, or in the temple, from whence to the king’s house there was a descent;

— during the reign of Jehoiakim, Jeremiah 22:18; if so this would be a flashback of about 20 years; but why is this a flashback, from king Zedekiah back to king Jehoiakim, to have a rerun? Perhaps relaying more details into their abominations?

Thus saith the Lord: Execute ye judgement and righteousness, and deliver the despoiled out of the hand of the oppressor, and do no wrong. Do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless nor the widow, neither shed innocent blood in this place. — thus saith the Lord, execute ye judgment and righteousness… judge righteous Judgement; give the cause to whom it belongs, without respect of persons, and without a bribe or corruption; do no unrighteousness to any, by withholding from them what is due unto them, which was what this prince was chargeable with, Jeremiah 22:13;

— and do no wrong, do no violence to the stranger, the fatherless, nor the widow: or those in similar situation, or in such a condition and circumstances as to defend themselves; and whom God has a peculiar regard unto; and therefore they who are his deputies and vicegerents, as kings and civil magistrates are ought to protect such persons, and neither grieve and injure them, nor suffer others to do it;

— neither shed innocent blood in this place; to grieve and wrong the above persons is a very great evil, but to shed the blood of innocent per tons is greater still; and this is aggravated by being committed by such who are set over men to secure and preserve their laws, properties and their lives; and such heinous sins as these the present reigning king of Judah was guilty of; which is the reason of their being mentioned; Jeremiah 22:17.

For if ye do this thing indeed, then shall there enter in by the gates of this house kings sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, he and his servants and his people. — the context here shows, that the prophecy is directed, not only to the king’s court in particular, but likewise to the whole city of Jerusalem, one part of which was called the city of David; and the whole looked upon as a royal city, kings sitting upon the throne of David;

— the Targum says, “by my word I swear:” that this house shall become a desolation; meaning not the temple, nor the city, but the king’s palace.

For thus saith the Lord unto the king’s house of Judah: “Thou art Gilead unto Me, and the head of Lebanon; yet surely I will make thee a wilderness, and cities which are not inhabited. — yet surely I will make thee a wilderness, and cities which are not inhabited; though as fruitful as Gilead, yet shall become like a barren desert; and though full of children, courtiers, princes, and nobles, yet shall be like cities quite depopulated.

And I will prepare destroyers against thee, every one with his weapons; and they shall cut down thy choice cedars and cast them into the fire. — they shall cut down thy choice cedars, and cast them into the fire; the sons of the king, the princes of the blood, the nobles of the land, and other persons of rank and distinction, comparable to the tall cedars of Lebanon;

— so the Targum says “and they shall slay the beauty of thy mighty ones, as the trees of a forest are cut down, and cast into the fire;”

— or else the stately palaces of the king and his nobles, and other beautiful buildings, which were lined and ceiled with cedar, are here meant; and which the Chaldeans burnt with fire, Jeremiah 52:13.

“And many nations shall pass by this city, and they shall say every man to his neighbor, ‘Why hath the Lord done thus unto this great city?’ — wherefore hath the Lord done thus unto this great city? so fortified and so full of people; the metropolis of the whole nation; the greatest city in the east; yea, the joy of the whole earth; a city peculiarly dear to the Lord; greatly honoured by him with his presence, worship, and ordinances, and yet now in ruins;

— how comes this to pass? they see and acknowledge the hand of the Lord in it, having a better notion of things than the Jews themselves had.

Then they shall answer, ‘Because they have forsaken the covenant of the Lord their God, and worshiped other gods and served them.’” — as the Targum says; they left the true God, who had done great and good things for them, and worshipped those who were only gods by name, and not by nature; and served stocks and stones.

10 Weep ye not for the dead, neither bemoan him, but weep sore for him that goeth away; for he shall return no more, or see his native country. — weep ye not for the dead, so Jeremiah admonished the people of Judah, neither bemoan him, namely, Josiah, the last good king, who had stayed the doom pronounced upon the reprobate people;

— but weep sore for him that goeth away, whose departure in this case is truly an occasion for great sorrowing, for he shall return no more nor see his native country, being dragged into a shameful exile, from which there would be no deliverance.

11 For thus saith the Lord concerning Shallum the son of Josiah king of Judah, who reigned instead of Josiah his father, who went forth out of this place: “He shall not return thither any more, — for thus saith the Lord touching Shallum… he was Shallum the fourth son of Josiah, 1 Chronicles 3:15; for it was likely that he should immediately succeed his father Josiah, after he was shot by archers during the battle against Neco of Egypt, where died upon his arrival on Jerusalem;

— Or, Josiah’s successor is Shallum indeed, the fourth son of Josiah; but that he was more commonly known as Jehoahaz; it seems probable that Shallum was his name before he ascended the throne, and that he changed it for Jehoahaz during his short reign;

— And the sons of Josiah were the firstborn Johanan, the second Jehoiakim, the third Zedekiah, the fourth Shallum, 1 Chronicles 3:15.

12 but he shall die in the place whither they have led him captive and shall see this land no more. — Shallum or Jehoahaz reigned only for 3 months before being deposed by the Egyptian Pharaoh Necho II and taken into Egyptian captivity and died there.

13 “Woe unto him that buildeth his house by unrighteousness and his chambers by wrong, that useth his neighbor’s service without wages, and giveth him nought for his work, — woe unto him, so the Lord now proceeds to call out upon Jehoiakim, the next king, that buildeth his house by unrighteousness, by unjust measures, by impressing people into work without compensation, that useth his neighbor’s service without wages.

14 that saith, ‘I will build me a wide house and large chambers, and cutteth him out windows, and it is ceiled with cedar and painted with vermilion.’

15 Shalt thou reign because thou enclosest thyself in cedar? Did not thy father eat and drink, and do judgement and justice, and then it was well with him? — shalt thou reign because thou closest thyself in cedar? making a show of wealth which he did not in reality possess and had no right to parade. Did not thy father eat and drink, enjoying the ordinary comforts of life;

— and do judgement and justice? exercising these two virtues according to the demands of righteousness. And then it was well with him, the blessing of the Lord resting upon him for his upright behavior.

16 He judged the cause of the poor and needy; then it was well with him. Was not this to know Me?” saith the Lord. — the Targum says, “is not this the knowledge with which I am well pleased? saith the Lord.”

17 “But thine eyes and thine heart are for nothing but thy covetousness and to shed innocent blood, and for oppression and for violence.” — but thine eyes and thine heart are not but for thy covetousness, being directed only to the gaining of his own advantage, regardless of the rights of other people, and for to shed innocent blood and for oppression and for violence to do it, Jehoiakim thus proving himself a tyrant in every sense of the word.

18 Therefore thus saith the Lord concerning Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah: “They shall not lament for him, saying, ‘Ah, my brother!’ or, ‘Ah, sister!’ They shall not lament for him, saying, ‘Ah, lord!’ or, ‘Ah, his glory!’ — they shall not lament for him; these words contrast the death as well as the life of Jehoiakim with that of Josiah. For him there should be no lamentation such as was made for the righteous king (II Chronicles 35:25), therefore thus saith the Lord concerning Jehoiakim… this shows who is before spoken of and described; Jehoiakim, the then reigning king in Judah, whose name was Eliakim, but was changed by Pharaoh king of Egypt, when he deposed his brother Jehoahaz or Shallum, and set him on the throne, II Kings 23:34;

— saying, ah my brother! or, ah sister!  that is, “Alas, His Majesty!” a woman meeting her brother would not say to him, O my brother, what bad news is this! we have lost our king! nor he reply to her, O sister, it is so, the loss is great indeed!

— Against him came up Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, and bound him (Jehoiakim) in fetters (a chain around the ankles) to carry him to Babylon, II Chronicles 36:6.

19 He shall be buried with the burial of an ass, drawn and cast forth beyond the gates of Jerusalem.

20 “Go up to Lebanon and cry, and lift up thy voice in Bashan, and cry from the Abarim; for all thy lovers are destroyed. — for all thy lovers are destroyed; their friends and allies, with whom they had not only entered into leagues, but had committed spiritual fornication with them; that is, idolatry, as the Egyptians and Assyrians; but these were now subdued by Nebuchadnezzar, and were at least so weakened and destroyed by him, that they could give no assistance to the Jews; see II Kings 24:7.

21 I spoke unto thee in thy prosperity, but thou saidst, ‘I will not hear.’ This hath been thy manner from thy youth, that thou obeyedst not My voice. — this hath been thy manner from thy youth; from the time they came out of Egypt, while they were in the wilderness; or when first settled in the land of Canaan: this was the infancy of their state; and from that time it was their manner and custom to reject the word of the Lord, and turn a deaf ear to it.

22 The wind shall eat up all thy shepherds, and thy lovers shall go into captivity; surely then shalt thou be ashamed and confounded for all thy wickedness. — the Targum says, “all thy governors shall be scattered to every wind;” and thy lovers shall go into captivity: the Assyrians and Egyptians, as before; see Jeremiah 52:31.

23 O inhabitant of Lebanon, that makest thy nest in the cedars, how gracious shalt thou be when pangs come upon thee, the pain as of a woman in travail? — O inhabitant of Lebanon, that makest thy nest in the cedars, this picture being chosen because, as the birds of Lebanon make their nests in the cedars, so the princes of Judah built their homes of the cedars of Lebanon;

— how gracious shall thou be, rather, “how shalt thou moan,” when pangs come upon thee, the pain as of a woman in travail! After this digression with its warning to the people as a whole the prophet turns to the consideration of Jehoiachin’s fate.

24 “As I live,” saith the Lord, “though Coniah the son of Jehoiakim, king of Judah, were the signet upon My right hand, yet would I pluck thee thence; — were the signet upon my right hand; ever so near to him, or ever so much valued by him, as he had been before, and so constantly cared for and regarded by him; as a ring, with anything respectable engraved on it, is constantly wore by persons, and greatly valued.

25 and I will give thee into the hand of those who seek thy life, and into the hand of those whose face thou fearest, even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon, and into the hand of the Chaldeans. — and I will give thee into the hand of them that seek thy life… cruel and bloodthirsty enemies, whom nothing would satisfy but his life; such were the persons following;

— and into the hand of them whose face thou fearest: being a terrible savage people, to be dreaded both for their number and their cruelty; a strange change this, to be removed out of the hand of God into the hand of such an enemy; even into the hand of Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon.

26 And I will cast thee out, and thy mother who bore thee, into another country where ye were not born, and there shall ye die.

27 But to the land whereunto they desire to return, thither shall they not return.”

28 Is this man Coniah a despised, broken idol? Is he a vessel wherein is no pleasure? Why are they cast out, he and his seed, and are cast into a land which they know not?

29 O earth, earth, earth, hear the word of the Lord! — O earth, earth, earth… either the inhabitants of the whole earth, or of the land of Israel; or rather the earth, on which men dwell, is here called upon as a witness to what is after said;

— to rebuke the stupidity of the people, and to quicken their attention to somewhat very remarkable and worthy of notice, and therefore the word is repeated three times;

— so the Targum says, “out of his own land they carried him captive into another land; O land of Israel, receive the words of the Lord,”

— Rashi mentions another reason of this threefold appellation, because the land of Israel was divided into three parts: Judea, beyond Jordan, and Galilee.

30 Thus saith the Lord: “Write ye this man as childless, a man that shall not prosper in his days; for no man of his seed shall prosper, sitting upon the throne of David and ruling any more in Judah.” — thus saith the Lord, write ye this man childless… that is, Coniah, or Jeconiah; who though he had children in the captivity, yet they died in it, or however never succeeded him in the throne;

— this, to show the certainty of the thing, the Lord would have written. The speech is directed to the prophets; though the words may be rendered impersonally, “let this man be written childless”, it may be set down, and taken for a sure and certain thing, as though it was written with a pen of iron, that he shall be alone, and die without children, and have none to reign after him.

Jeremiah (Ch 19-20)

•November 10, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 19 is foreshadowed, represented, and confirmed the destruction of Jerusalem, by the breaking of a potter’s vessel the prophet had in his hand; and by the place where he was bid to do this, and did it.

Jeremiah 19

1 Thus saith the Lord: “Go and get a potter’s earthen bottle, and take some of the elders of the people and the elders of the priests. — the prophet was to get or buy a earthen bottle and take the elders and the priests; those who were the greatest and principal men of the city, which include members of the Sanhedrin, and to go with the prophet to be witnesses of what were said and done, and to see the bottle broke.

And go forth unto the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, which is by the entry of the East Gate, and proclaim there the words that I shall tell thee, — which is by the entry of the east gate; the way into and out of Jerusalem, which lay through the east gate of the city;

— the Targum calls it “the dung gate” through which the filth of the city was carried out, and laid near it.

and say, ‘Hear ye the word of the Lord, O kings of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem. Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Behold, I will bring evil upon this place, of which whosoever heareth, his ears shall tingle. — behold, I will bring evil upon this place; the evil of punishment for the evil of sin; such as the sword, famine and captivity; meaning not on that spot of ground where the prophet with the elders were, but upon the city of Jerusalem and upon all the land of Judea.

Because they have forsaken Me and have estranged this place, and have burned incense in it unto other gods, whom neither they nor their fathers nor the kings of Judah have known, and have filled this place with the blood of innocents. — and have filled this place with the blood of innocents; young children that were sacrificed to idols, as they were in the valley of Hinnom, which seems to be the place principally intended; so that they were not only guilty of idolatry, but of murder; and of the murder even their own babes; cruelty which was shocking and unheard of!

They have built also the high places of Baal, to burn their sons with fire for burnt offerings unto Baal, which I commanded not nor spoke it, neither came it into My mind. — to burn their sons with fire unto Baal; from this as well as from some other places, it is plain that they slew and burned human victims to Baal as well as to Moloch; if these two names were not given, as some suppose they were, to one and the same idol.

Therefore behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that this place shall no more be called Tophet, nor the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter. — that this place shall no more be called Tophet: as it had been, from the beating of drums in it, that the cries and shrieks of infants burnt in the fire might not be heard by their parents;

— nor the valley of the son of Hinnom; which was its name in the times of Joshua, and long before it was called Tophet; but now it should have neither names;

— but the valley of slaughter; or, “of the slain” as the Targum says; from the multitude of those that should be killed here, at the siege and taking of Jerusalem; or that should be brought hither to be buried.

And I will make void the counsel of Judah and Jerusalem in this place, and I will cause them to fall by the sword before their enemies and by the hands of them that seek their lives; and their carcasses will I give to be meat for the fowls of the heaven and for the beasts of the earth. — and I will make void the counsel of Judah and Jerusalem in this place… the counsel which they took in this place and agreed to, in offering their sons and daughters to idols; and which they took with these idols and their priests;

— and I will cause them to fall by the sword before their enemies: such as sallied out from the city, or attempted to make their escape;

— and by the hands of them that seek their lives; and so would not spare them, when they fell into them;

— and their carcasses will I give to be meat for the fowls of the heaven, and for the beasts of the earth: signifying that they should have no burial, but their slain bodies should lie upon the earth, and be fed upon by fowls and beasts.

And I will make this city desolate and a hissing. Every one that passeth thereby shall be astonished and hiss, because of all the plagues thereof. — and I will make this city desolate, and an hissing… an hissing to its enemies; an hissing because it was desolate; when its walls should be broken down, its houses burnt with fire, and its inhabitants put to the sword, or carried away as captives;

— everyone that passeth thereby shall be astonished, and hiss; surprised to see its desolation; that a city once so famous and flourishing should be reduced to such a miserable condition; and yet hiss by way of detestation and abhorrence of it, and others for joy at its ruin;

— because of all the plagues thereof: by which it was brought to desolation, as the sword, famine, burning, and captivity.

And I will cause them to eat the flesh of their sons and the flesh of their daughters, and they shall eat every one the flesh of his friend in the siege and straits with which their enemies and they that seek their lives shall straiten them.’ — and I will cause them to eat the flesh of their sons, and the flesh of their daughters… for want of food; the famine should be so great and pressing. Jeremiah, that foretells this, was a witness of it, and has left it on record, Lamentations 4:10;

— and they shall eat everyone the flesh of his friend; the Targum interprets it, the goods or substance of his neighbour; which is sometimes the sense of eating the flesh of another; as it is to be taken in a literal sense;

— in the siege by their enemies, they that seek their lives shall straiten them; the siege of Jerusalem would be so severe, that no provision could be carried into the city for the relief of its inhabitants;

— though this was fulfilled at the Babylonish captivity, yet more fully when Jerusalem was besieged by Vespasian and Titus, and in the times of Hadrian. Josephus q gives us a most shocking scene of a woman eating her own son.

10 “Then shalt thou break the bottle in the sight of the men that go with thee,

11 and shalt say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord of hosts: Even so will I break this people and this city, as one breaketh a potter’s vessel that cannot be made whole again; and they shall bury them in Tophet till there be no place to bury. — and they shall bury them in Tophet, till there be no place: where there should be such great numbers slain; or whither such multitudes of the slain should be brought out of the city to be buried there, that at length there would not be room to receive any more dead;

— or, as the Syriac version renders it, “and in Tophet they shall bury, for want of a place to bury” in; in such a filthy, abominable, and accursed place shall their carcasses lie, where they were guilty of idolatry, and sacrificed their innocent babes, there being no other place to bury them.

12 Thus will I do unto this place, saith the Lord, and to the inhabitants thereof, and even make this city as Tophet. — make this city as Tophet; as full of slaughtered men and women as that had been of the blood of innocent children; and as filthy, abominable and execrable a place as that; and to lose its name as that is foretold it should, Jeremiah 19:6; and as Jerusalem did, after the desolation of it by Hadrian.

13 And the houses of Jerusalem and the houses of the kings of Judah shall be defiled as the place of Tophet, because of all the houses upon whose roofs they have burned incense unto all the host of heaven, and have poured out drink offerings unto other gods.’” — and the houses of the kings of Judah; the palaces of the king, princes, and nobles of Judah, one as well as their relatives;

— shall be defiled os Tophet; as that was defiled with the bodies and bones of the slain, and with the faith of the city brought unto it; so the houses of great and small, high and low, should be defiled with the carcasses of the slain that should lie unburied there; their houses should be their graves, and they buried in the ruins of them;

— or, “the houses of Jerusalem, and the houses of the kings of Judah, which are defiled” with the idolatries after mentioned, shall be as Tophet, places of slaughter.

14 Then came Jeremiah from Tophet, whither the Lord had sent him to prophesy; and he stood in the court of the Lord’S house and said to all the people, — and he stood in the court of the Lord’s house, and said to all the people; this was the court of the temple, called the outward court, or the court of the Israelites, where all the people met;

— here the prophet placed himself, on purpose to deliver his prophecy to all the people; even the same as he had delivered at Tophet to the people and the priests.

15 “Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: ‘Behold, I will bring upon this city and upon all her towns all the evil that I have pronounced against it, because they have hardened their necks, that they might not hear My words.’” — all the evil that I have pronounced against it; or decreed against it, as the Targum says; all that he had purposed, and all that he had threatened, or spoke of by Jeremiah, for whatever he has said he will do, and whatsoever he has solved upon, and declared he will do, God will assuredly bring to pass;

— because they have hardened their necks, that they might not hear his words; they turned their backs upon him, pulled away the shoulder, stopped their ears that they might not hear what was said by the prophets from the Lord; they neither inclined their ears to hearken to, nor bowed their necks to receive the yoke of his precepts;

— but, on the contrary, as was their general character, a stiffnecked people and uncircumcised in heart and ears, obstinate and disobedient; and this was the cause of their ruin, by which it appeared to be just and righteous.

Jeremiah 20

Pashur, the son of Malchiah, was a priest, who was sent by king Zedekiah to Jeremiah to inquire of the Lord regarding the impending attack of King Nebuchadnezzar II of Babylon (Jeremiah 21:1). In Jeremiah 38:1-6, this Pashur was also one of four men who advised Zedekiah to put Jeremiah to death for his prophecies of doom but who ended up throwing him into a cistern.

1 Now Pashhur the son of Immer the priest, who was also chief governor in the house of the Lord, heard that Jeremiah prophesied these things. — Pashur was not a high-priest, but only captain, or overseer of the temple. In this capacity he had power to arrest and put in prison the false prophets, and those who caused any disturbance in the temple;

— Pashur was, it seems a distant son of, and the head of the course of Immer, the sixteenth course of the priests fell by lot of of 24 courses 1 Chronicles 24:14; this Pashur was the son of Malchiah, (Jeremiah 21:1);

— the Targum calls him the “sagan” of the priests. There was such an officer, who was called the “sagan” or deputy to the high priest, who upon certain occasions acted for him; and some think that this man was in the same office; though others take him to be the same with the captain of the temple, Acts 4:1

Then Pashhur smote Jeremiah the prophet, and put him in the stocks that were in the High Gate of Benjamin, which was by the house of the Lord. — then Pashur, by virtue of the police- and judicial power vested in him, which he believed he must exercise in this instance, smote Jeremiah, the prophet, whose office is here purposely mentioned, and put him in the stocks, a five-holed instrument of torture in which the neck, the two hands, and the two feet were thrust.

And it came to pass on the morrow that Pashhur brought forth Jeremiah out of the stocks. Then said Jeremiah unto him, “The Lord hath not called thy name Pashhur, but Magormissabib [that is, Fear round about]. — but Magormissabib; or, “fear round about”; signifying that terrors should be all around him, and he should be in the utmost fright and consternation;

— the Targum says, “but there shall be gathered together against thee those that kill with the sword round about;” meaning the Chaldeans, which would make him a “Magormissabib” – changing from place to place; that is, going into captivity; a stranger and wanderer.

For thus saith the Lord: ‘Behold, I will make thee a terror to thyself and to all thy friends; and they shall fall by the sword of their enemies, and thine eyes shall behold it; and I will give all Judah into the hand of the king of Babylon, and he shall carry them captive into Babylon and shall slay them with the sword. — for thus saith the Lord, behold, I will make thee a terror to thyself, and to all thy friends… this is an interpretation of the name given, “Magormissabib” and shows that it was not a mere name he had, but that he should be what that signifies;

— his conscience should be filled with terror at the judgements of God coming upon him for his sins; and which could not be concealed from others, but he should be seized with such tremblings and shakings, and be such a spectacle of horror, that his own familiar friends, instead of delighting in his company, should shun and run away from him.

Moreover I will deliver all the strength of this city and all the labors thereof, and all the precious things thereof, and all the treasures of the kings of Judah will I give into the hand of their enemies, who shall despoil them and take them and carry them to Babylon. — and all the precious things thereof; all their plate and jewels, the rich furniture of their houses, and whatsoever was laid up in their treasures as rare and valuable;

— and all the treasures of the kings of Judah will I give into the hand of their enemies; which they in successive reigns had been laying up in store for years together; see Isaiah 39:6.

And thou, Pashhur, and all that dwell in thine house shall go into captivity; and thou shalt come to Babylon, and there thou shalt die and shalt be buried there, thou and all thy friends to whom thou hast prophesied lies.’” — and thou, Pashur, and all that dwell in thine house, shall go into captivity… particularly he and his family should not escape;

— and thou shalt come to Babylon; though sore against thy will: and there thou shalt die, and shalt be buried there; even in a defiled land, and to be buried in such a land;

— to whom thou hast prophesied lies; not only because he had so ill used Jeremiah, a true prophet of the Lord; but because he was a false prophet, and his friends had hearkened to his lies, and disbelieved those prophecies that came from the Lord himself.

O Lord, Thou hast deceived me, and I was deceived; Thou art stronger than I, and hast prevailed. I am in derision daily; every one mocketh me. — O Lord, thou hast deceived me, and I was deceived… what follows from hence to the end of the chapter is thought to have been said by the prophet, when in the stocks, or in prison, and shows mixture of courage and weakness in him; a struggle between flesh and spirit, and the force of a temptation under which he laboured, arising from difficulties and discouragements in his work; and he not only complains to God, but of him; that he had deceived him;

— when he first called him to be a prophet, by telling him that he should be set over nations and kingdoms, to pull them down, Jeremiah 1:10; which he understood of foreign nations, but now found his own people were meant;

— or by giving him reason to expect honour and ease, whereas he met with nothing but disrespect and trouble; and that he should have divine protection and success against his opposers, Jeremiah 1:18; whereas he was now delivered into their hands, and used in the most reproachful manner; but be it so, this was all a mistake of the prophet, and no deception of God;

— I am in derision daily, everyone mocketh me; he was the laughing stock of everyone of the people of Israel, from the highest to the lowest; princes, priests, and people, all derided him and his prophecies, and that continually, every day, and all the day long, and especially when he was in the stocks; though it was not only his person they mocked, but the word of the Lord by him, as appears from Jeremiah 20:8.

For when I spoke, I cried out; I cried, “Violence and despoliation!” because the word of the Lord was made a reproach unto me and a derision daily. — because the word of the Lord was made a reproach unto me, and a derision daily; which is a reason either why he cried with grief and sorrow; or why he cried violence and spoil, ruin and destruction: or, “though the word of the Lord was” yet he went on proclaiming it;

— or, “surely the word of the Lord was made a reproach” either because of the matter of it, it not being believed, or the manner in which it was delivered; or because it was not immediately fulfilled.

Then I said, “I will not make mention of Him, nor speak any more in His name.” But His word was in mine heart as a burning fire shut up in my bones; and I was weary with forbearing, and I could not hold back. — then I said, I will not make mention of him, nor speak any more in his name… not that he publicly said this before his enemies, or privately to his friends, but he said it in his heart; he thought, nay, resolved, within himself, to prophesy no more; since no credit was given to him, but contempt cast on him;

— “there was in mine heart as a burning fire” which made him uneasy, and constrained him to break his former resolution: for the phrase, “his word” is not in the original text; though it is in like manner supplied by the Targum, “and his words became in mine heart as fire burning and overflowing my bones;” or, “and the word of the Lord was in my heart as fire burning;” or Rashi says prophecy was as fire, to which it is compared, Jeremiah 23:29.

10 For I heard the defaming of many, fear on every side. “Report,” say they, “and we will report it!” All in my company watched for my halting, saying, “Perhaps he will be enticed, and we shall prevail against him; and we shall take our revenge on him.” — for I heard the defaming of many, as they talked about him and his office in a derogatory manner: Fear on every side, or, “Terror round about!” an attempt to deride the prophecy against Pashur;

— report, say they, and we will report it, that is, they want people to bring any sort of accusation against Jeremiah, and they would immediately act upon such information in bringing the matter to the attention of the authorities and having him punished. All my familiars, men who enjoyed his confidence, whom he considered his friends, watched for my halting, for any indication of stumbling on his part, saying, 

— perhaps he will be enticed, be induced to commit some sin, and we shall prevail against him, getting the better of Jeremiah in this situation, and we shall take our revenge on him. Over against this behavior of his false friends the prophet states the firm conviction of his heart.

11 But the Lord is with me as a mighty, fearsome one; therefore my persecutors shall stumble, and they shall not prevail. They shall be greatly ashamed, for they shall not prosper; their everlasting confusion shall never be forgotten. — but the Lord is with me as a mighty terrible one, as a mighty hero to defend him; 

— therefore my persecutors shall stumble, come to grief in the very way in which they hoped to see the prophet humbled, and they shall not prevail, as they had hoped to; they shall be greatly ashamed, for they shall not prosper, have no success in their plotting and scheming against him; 

— their everlasting confusion shall never be forgotten, they would be heaped with eternal disgrace, the ignominy of which would attach to them forever. This confidence on the part of Jeremiah now finds expression in a fervent appeal to the Lord to take his part and defend his cause.

12 But, O Lord of hosts, who triest the righteous and seest the reins and the heart, let me see Thy vengeance on them, for unto Thee have I opened my cause. — let me see thy vengeance on them; his enemies and persecutors; he does not seek vengeance himself, but desires it of the Lord;

— he does not ask to see his vengeance, but the Lord’s vengeance on them, what he thought was just and proper to inflict on them; he knew that vengeance belonged to the Lord, and therefore left it with him, and prayed for it from him;

— the Targum says, “let me see the vengeance of thy judgements on them.”

13 Sing unto the Lord, praise ye the Lord; for He hath delivered the soul of the poor from the hand of evildoers. — for he hath delivered the soul of the poor from the hand of evil doers; or, “the life of the poor”; meaning himself, a poor destitute person, few or none to stand by him but the Lord, who had delivered him out of the hand of Pashur and his accomplices.

14 Cursed be the day wherein I was born; let not the day wherein my mother bore me be blessed. — cursed be the day wherein I was born… if this was said immediately upon the foregoing, it was a most strange and sudden change of frame indeed that the prophet came into, from praising God, to cursing the day of his birth; wherefore some have thought it was delivered at another time, when in great anguish of spirit; 

at this sudden change of the prophet’s discourse, it is not unlikely that these words of complaint were uttered before the foregoing, which are expressive of confidence in God and gratitude for deliverance.

15 Cursed be the man who brought tidings to my father, saying, “A manchild is born unto thee,” making him very glad.

16 And let that man be as the cities which the Lord overthrew, and repented not; and let him hear the cry in the morning and the shouting at noontide, — and let that man be as the cities which the Lord overthrew… in his fury, as the Targum and Septuagint add. Meaning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah, who were utterly destroyed, and were never recovered;

— and repented not; whose sentence God never repented of, nor revoked: this was very severe and uncharitable, to wish for so sore a destruction upon an innocent person.

17 because he slew me not from the womb, or that my mother might have been my grave, and her womb to be always great with me.

18 Why came I forth out of the womb to see labor and sorrow, that my days should be consumed with shame? — that my days should be consumed with shame? through the bad usage of him, the reproach that was cast upon him, and the contempt he had to carry for prophesying in the name of the Lord;

— all this shows that there are fragilities and vulnerabilities in the best of men, and what they are when left to themselves; how weak, foolish and fragile they could be. And Jeremiah recording all his weaknesses and failings, is an argument of the uprightness and sincerity of the man Jeremiah; and of the truth and integrity of his records in the Scriptures.

Jeremiah (Ch 17-18)

•November 9, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Chapter 17 continues with more prophecies of the destruction of the house of Judah, their sins of idolatry, of Sabbaths breaking, both houses were notorious for their violations; of which they were sinners and both were send into captivity.

Jeremiah 17

1 “The sin of Judah is written with a pen of iron and with the point of a diamond. It is engraved upon the tablet of their heart and upon the horns of your altars, — with a pen of iron; this is an allegory; that is to say that it is deeply engraved, and cannot be erased with a pen of iron, with a diamond point;

— as expressed by Jeremiah, it’s called ‘an iron wall,’ and by Ezekiel, it was said (Ezekiel 3:9): “As a diamond, harder than flint have I made your forehead;”

— there is no need to limit the sin of Judah to idolatry, but it includes all other sins, like breaking the Sabbaths; and so the Targum expresses it in the plural number, “the sins of Judah;” though, if any particular sin is intended, its main one seems to be idolatry.

whilst their children remember their altars and their wooden idols by the green trees upon the high hills. — their children remember their altars… which is a further proof of their long continuance in idolatrous practices; they trained up their children in them; who, when grown up, imitated them, and went on in the same evil ways.

O My mountain in the field, I will give thy substance and all thy treasures to the spoil, and thy high places for sin throughout all thy borders. — O my mountain in the midst of the field… meaning either the temple, called the mountain of the house, and of the Lord’s house, Micah 3:12, or else Jerusalem, which stood on a hill in the midst of a plain, surrounded with fruitful fields and gardens; or in the midst of a land like a field;

— the Targum says, “because thou worshippest idols upon the mountains in the field:”

— I will give thy substance and all thy treasures to the spoil; all the riches of the city and temple to be the spoil and plunder of the enemy; and thy high places for sin, throughout all thy borders. 

And thou, even thyself, shalt discontinue from thine heritage that I gave thee; and I will cause thee to serve thine enemies in the land which thou knowest not; for ye have kindled a fire in Mine anger which shall burn for ever.” — I will cause thee to serve thine enemies in the land which thou knowest not; the Babylonians in Chaldea; or, later, the Romans.

Thus saith the Lord: “Cursed be the man that trusteth in man and maketh flesh his arm, and whose heart departeth from the Lord.

For he shall be like the heath (a tract of wasteland) in the desert, and shall not see when good cometh, but shall inhabit the parched places in the wilderness, in a salt land and not inhabited.

“Blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord, and whose hope the Lord is. — blessed is the man that trusteth in the Lord; in the Word of the Lord, as the Targum says.

For he shall be as a tree planted by the waters, and that spreadeth out her roots by the river, and shall not see when heat cometh, but her leaf shall be green; and shall not be disquieted in the year of drought, neither shall cease from yielding fruit.”

The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked; who can know it? — and it is a common mistake among mankind to think their own hearts a great deal better than they really are; the truth is, the heart of man, in his corrupt and fallen state, is false and deceitful above all things.

10 “I, the Lord, search the heart; I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings.” — I the Lord search the heart… the inward parts of it, every room and corner in it; and know the thoughts of it; all its intents, purposes, designs, contrivances, and imaginations; all the secret motions and emotions of it, and any wickedness that is in it.

11 As the partridge sitteth on eggs and hatcheth them not, so he that getteth riches, and not by right, shall leave them in the midst of his days, and at his end shall be a fool. — the partridge sitteth on eggs and hatcheth them not, or, a partridge hatching eggs which it has not laid;

— as the words may be more literally rendered, hatcheth eggs which she did not lay; so he that getteth riches, but not by his labour;

— the Targum says, “at his end he is called a wicked man;” because of the unjust manner in which he got his riches, and which appears by his end; every filthy rich is an abomination.

12 A glorious high throne from the beginning is the place of our sanctuary.

13 O Lord, the hope of Israel, all that forsake Thee shall be ashamed. “And they that depart from Me shall be written in the earth, because they have forsaken the Lord, the fountain of living waters.”

14 Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved; for Thou art my praise.

15 Behold, they say unto me, “Where is the word of the Lord? Let it come now.”

16 As for me, I have not hastened from being a shepherd to follow Thee; neither have I desired the woeful day, Thou knowest; that which came out of my lips was right before Thee.

17 Be not a terror unto me; Thou art my hope in the day of evil.

18 Let them be confounded that persecute me, but let not me be confounded; let them be dismayed, but let not me be dismayed. Bring upon them the day of evil, and destroy them with double destruction. — bring upon them the day of evil; of punishment; which they put far away, and scoff at; though the prophet did not desire the woeful day to come upon the people in general, yet upon his persecutors in particular. 

19 Thus said the Lord unto me: “Go and stand in the gate of the children of the people, whereby the kings of Judah come in and by which they go out, and in all the gates of Jerusalem;

20 and say unto them, ‘Hear ye the word of the Lord, ye kings of Judah and all Judah, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem that enter in by these gates.

21 Thus saith the Lord: Take heed for yourselves, and bear no burden on the Sabbath day, nor bring it in by the gates of Jerusalem; — neither carry forth a burden on the Sabbath, neither do ye any work; servile work is also forbidden to be done upon all solemn festivals, Leviticus 23:8; Leviticus 23:35, much more upon the sabbath days;

— but hallow ye the sabbath days; as the sabbath was instituted as a sign or token of God’s covenant with his people.

22 neither carry forth a burden out of your houses on the Sabbath day, neither do ye any work, but hallow ye the Sabbath day, as I commanded your fathers. — neither carry forth a burden out of your houses on the sabbath day… not of dirt and soil only, but of any ware or merchandise, in order to be sold in the city or elsewhere:

— neither do ye any work; any servile work, any kind of manufacture, either within doors or without; or exercise any kind of trade, or barter and merchandise, or do any sort of worldly business; nothing but what was of mere necessity, for the preservation of life; see Exodus 20:10;

— the penalty for breaking the Sabbath is death; but the gift of observing it is the identification of being of his chosen ones (more at the end)

23 But they obeyed not, neither inclined their ear, but made their neck stiff, that they might not hear nor receive instruction.

24 “‘And it shall come to pass, if ye diligently hearken unto Me, saith the Lord, to bring in no burden through the gates of this city on the Sabbath day, but hallow the Sabbath day to do no work therein, — but hallow ye the sabbath day; or, “sanctify it” by separating it from all worldly business, and devoting it to the worship of God in public and private, spending it wholly in acts of religion and piety:

— one part of the sanctification of the sabbath lay in a cessation from all servile work, though not wholly, but also in the observance of religious worship, and the one was in order to the other; for, unless they abstained from worldly business, they could not be at leisure to attend divine service.

25 then shall there enter into the gates of this city kings and princes sitting upon the throne of David, riding in chariots and on horses, they and their princes, the men of Judah and the inhabitants of Jerusalem; and this city shall remain for ever.

26 And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the South, bringing burnt offerings and sacrifices, and meat offerings and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise unto the house of the Lord.

27 But if ye will not hearken unto Me to hallow the Sabbath day, and not to bear a burden, even entering in at the gates of Jerusalem on the Sabbath day, then will I kindle a fire in the gates thereof, and it shall devour the palaces of Jerusalem, and it shall not be quenched.’” — there should be no fire kindled on the sabbath, but where the sabbath is profaned, it was that Jerusalem was destroyed and its people carried away as captives because they profaned the sabbath;

— and the observance of it was the distinguishing character of a Jew, whereby he declared himself to be a worshipper of the true God, who made heaven and earth, and ordained the sabbath day as a memorial of the creation. So that for the Jews to profane the sabbath, was in effect to renounce their share in God’s covenant;

— the sabbath was instituted as a sign or token of God’s covenant with his people, Exodus 31:13; it was to identify the people to God “that ye may know that I am the Lord,” and God to his people “that I am the Lord who doth sanctify you.” It’s a two-way streets.

Jeremiah 18

The word which came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

“Arise and go down to the potter’s house, and there I will cause thee to hear My words.” — and there I will cause thee to hear my words; there the Lord would tell him what he had further to say to him, and what he should say to the people; and by sensible objects before him, he would cause him to understand more clearly what he will say to them.

Then I went down to the potter’s house, and behold, he wrought a work on the wheels. — then I went down to the potter’s house, and, behold, he wrought a work on the wheels, literally, “on the disks,” for the potter’s lathe consisted of two horizontal wooden plates, the lower one larger than the upper, the clay being molded into shape on the upper disk.

And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make it.

Then the word of the Lord came to me, saying,

“O house of Israel, cannot I do with you as this potter?” saith the Lord. “Behold, as the clay is in the potter’s hand, so are ye in Mine hand, O house of Israel. — in previous chapters God’s words were usually directed against Jerusalem, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, their elders and priests, but here, it is to the house of Israel again;

— O house of Israel; this saying seems a bit late, since the house of Israel had been in exiled over a hundred years ago, so this renew warning must be prophetic, for the endtime;

— emphasis here is the house of Israel, which is repeated above, the lost ten tribes; but could also include the house of Judah, for they committed the same sins and would certainly share the same punishments.

At the instant I shall speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up and to pull down and to destroy it,

if that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them.

And at the instant I shall speak concerning a nation and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it, — to build and to plant, the royal family of the house of David; which applied to the planting of Jewish princesses to Ireland;

— the destruction of Zedekiah’s Pharez line; to the planting of the Zarah line ruling in the British Isles! (for more see “Judah’s Sceptre and Joseph’s Birthright” by J.H. Allen).

10 if it do evil in My sight, that it obey not My voice, then I will repent of the good wherewith I said I would benefit them.

11 Now therefore go to speak to the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I frame evil against you and devise a device against you. Return ye now every one from his evil way, and make your ways and your doings good.’” — behold, I frame evil against you; as the potter frames his clay upon the wheel, to which the allusion is; which is to be understood of the evil of punishment, but not of any secret purpose, and settled determination, in the mind of God to bring it upon them;

— and devise a device against you; the same as before; by which it looked as if he had thought of the matter, and had contrived a scheme, which if he went on with, would issue in the subversion of their whole state.

12 And they said, “There is no hope; but we will walk after our own devices, and we will every one do the imagination of his evil heart.”

13 Therefore thus saith the Lord: “Ask ye now among the heathen: Who hath heard such things? The virgin of Israel hath done a very horrible thing.

14 Will a man leave the snow of Lebanon which cometh from the rock of the field? Or shall the cold flowing waters that come from another place be forsaken?

15 Because My people hath forgotten Me, they have burned incense to vanity; and they have caused them to stumble in their ways from the ancient paths, to walk in paths, on a road not cast up,

16 to make their land desolate and a perpetual hissing; every one that passeth thereby shall be astonished, and wag his head.

17 I will scatter them as with an east wind before the enemy; I will show them the back, and not the face, in the day of their calamity.” — I will scatter them as with an east wind, a violent wind from the desert, before the enemy;

— I will show them the back, and not the face, in the day of their calamity, the metaphor is taken from the custom of kings and princes, which is, to turn their backs on, that is, will not look upon them in a favourable way, nor with any pity and compassion for them, nor hear their cries; but turn his back upon them, and a deaf ear unto them.

18 Then said they, “Come, and let us devise devices against Jeremiah; for the law shall not perish from the priest, nor counsel from the wise, nor the word from the prophet. Come, and let us smite him with the tongue, and let us not give heed to any of his words.” — then said they, come, and let us devise devices against Jeremiah… being enraged at the warning messages threatening them, they propose to enter into a confederacy and consultation together, to think of ways and means to stop the mouth of the prophet, and even to take away his life;

— since he had told them that God had devised a device against them, they would scheme for devising devices against him; so that they might walk after their own devices, without being teased and tormented by this prophet:

— nor counsel from the wise; we have wise rulers and governors, and members of the Sanhedrin, and judges of all controversies, and who are capable of giving advice upon any occasion; does he think to know better than our statesmen and sages, our counsellors in the temple and state affairs?

— nor the word from the prophet; we have prophets among us, that prophesy as well as he; and whose words of prophecy shall be fulfilled, when his will not; who assure us that we shall have peace and prosperity; and therefore let us not regard what this man says, or be intimidated by his threats:

— and so the Targum says, “let us bear false witness against him;” or, “let us smite him in the tongue” cut it out; or stop his mouth, and hinder him from speaking any more in this manner to the people; or, “let us smite him for the tongue” because of the words he says, or the prophecies he delivers.

19 Give heed to me, O Lord, and hearken to the voice of them that contend with me.

20 Shall evil be recompensed for good? For they have dug a pit for my soul. Remember that I stood before Thee to speak good for them, and to turn away Thy wrath from them. — they have digged a pit for my soul; that is, they have laid snares for me as for a wild beast; for pits are digged for wild beasts to fall into, that they may be taken;

— for they have digged a pit for my soul, where they hoped to catch him unawares.

21 Therefore deliver up their children to the famine, and pour out their blood by the force of the sword; and let their wives be bereaved of their children and be widows; and let their men be put to death; let their young men be slain by the sword in battle. — and let their wives be bereaved of their children, and be widows; let them have neither husbands nor children; which latter might be a comfort to them, when they are being stripped of these men and children, their affliction and distress would be much greater.

22 Let a cry be heard from their houses, when Thou shalt bring a troop suddenly upon them; for they have dug a pit to take me, and hid snares for my feet. — let a cry be heard from their houses, as the attacking forces enter, when thou shalt bring a troop suddenly upon them, namely, the murderous hordes of the invaders; for they have digged a pit to take me and hid snares for my feet, as the fowler does for the bird.

23 Yet, Lord, Thou knowest all their counsel against me to slay me; forgive not their iniquity, neither blot out their sin from Thy sight, but let them be overthrown before Thee; deal thus with them in the time of Thine anger. — deal thus with them in the time of thine anger; the set time for thy wrath to come upon them to the uttermost; then do unto them according to all the imprecations or curses now being prepared; which the prophet foresaw, and believed he would do; and therefore thus spake.

~~~

More about keeping the Sabbaths:

“Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, ‘Verily My Sabbaths ye shall keep; for it is a sign between Me and you throughout your generations, that ye may know that I am the Lord who doth sanctify you,” Exodus 31:13.

“Ye shall keep the Sabbath therefore, for it is holy unto you. Every one who defileth it shall surely be put to death; for whosoever doeth any work therein, that soul shall be cut off from among his people,” Exodus 31:14.

“Six days may work be done, but on the seventh is the Sabbath of rest, holy to the Lord. Whosoever doeth any work on the Sabbath day, he shall surely be put to death,” Exodus 31:15.

Keeping the Sabbaths identify the people to God “that ye may know that I am the Lord,” and God to his people “that I am the Lord who doth sanctify you.” It’s a two-way streets.

Even in the New Testament, Jews and Gentiles converted to Christianity, called Nazarenes, were meeting in synagogues on the Sabbath (Mark 6:2Luke 4:31Luke 13:10–16Acts 13:142742–4415:2116:1317:218:4). Obviously, with no work being done on the Sabbath day, the Sabbath day would be the ideal day to have organized worship services. This indicates early Christian believers still believe that the Sabbath be the day of rest as well as a day of worship. Besides being a sign of identity, of affiliation, before God and his chosen ones, the Sabbath is also the fourth of the Ten Commandments; and the penalty for profaning its observance is death.

Jeremiah (Ch 15-16)

•November 8, 2021 • Leave a Comment

In these chapters, God replies to the preceding supplications, the Lord’s answer to the prophet’s prayers, by declaring that not even the intercession of his favoured servants, Moses and Samuel, should divert him from executing his purpose of vengeance against Judah; which is denounced in terms of great severity to come.

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Jeremiah 15

1 Then said the Lord unto me, “Though Moses and Samuel stood before Me, yet My mind could not be toward this people. Cast them out of My sight, and let them go forth. — the meaning is, that even if Moses and Samuel were alive, and made intercession for the people, their prayers would not be regarded;

— yet my mind could not be towards this people; God could have no delight in them; could not be reconciled to them, that the favours asked for shouldn’t be granted or that they should be continued in their own land; and therefore it was in vain for the prophet to solicit on their account;

— cast them out of my sight; as persons loathsome and abominable; I cannot look upon them, or have anything to say to them, in a favourable way.

And it shall come to pass, if they say unto thee, ‘Whither shall we go forth?’ then thou shalt tell them, ‘Thus saith the Lord: “‘Such as are for death, to death; and such as are for the sword, to the sword; and such as are for the famine, to the famine; and such as are for the captivity, to the captivity.’ — then thou shall tell them, thus saith the Lord, such as for death, to death; such as were appointed to death, or to die by the pestilence, which is often signified by death; they shall go forth unto it; or it shall meet them, and seize upon them, and take them away:

— and such are for the sword, to the sword; who are appointed to die by the sword of the enemy, into whose hands they should fall by attempting to escape out of the city, shall perish by it:

— and such are for the famine, to the famine; such are appointed to die by that, shall die of it in the city, where they shall be besieged, and not be able to get out to fetch in any provisions, and where none can be brought, because of the enemy:

— and such are for the captivity, to captivity; such are spared from the pestilence, sword, and famine, and are designed to be carried captive into a strange land, shall be taken and carried thither; nor will it be in their power, or in any other’s, to hinder any of the above things, to which they are appointed of God. According to some experts, the latter of these is more grievous than the former; as the sword than death, and famine than the sword, so captivity than them all.

“And I will appoint over them four kinds,” saith the Lord: “the sword to slay, and the dogs to tear, and the fowls of the heaven and the beasts of the earth to devour and destroy. — the Targum says “four evil punishments;”

— the sword to slay: the first and chief of the four families or punishments, which had a commission from the Lord to sheath itself in his people, the Jews; even the sword of the enemy, the Chaldeans, drawn against them by a divine order and appointment:

— and the dogs to tear; the carcasses of those that are slain with the sword: or “to draw” as the word signifies; it being the usual way of dogs to draw and drag the flesh about they are feeding on;

— and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the earth, to devour and destroy; or “to eat, and to corrupt”, the bodies of those that are slain by the sword. The meaning is, that such should not have a burial, but should be the food of fowls and wild beasts.

And I will cause them to be removed into all kingdoms of the earth, because of Manasseh the son of Hezekiah, king of Judah, for that which he did in Jerusalem. — and I will cause them to be removed into all the kingdoms of the earth… not only into Babylon, but into all other countries of the earth indicates this could be prophetic, yet in the future, and not just the house of Judah but also the house of Israel.

“For who shall have pity upon thee, O Jerusalem? Or who shall bemoan thee? Or who shall go aside to ask how thou doest?

Thou hast forsaken Me,” saith the Lord, “thou art gone backward; therefore will I stretch out My hand against thee and destroy thee; I am weary with repenting. — thou art gone backward; they had set up idols, and idol worship; and this was the cause of the sword, pestilence, famine, and captivity, and of all the evils that befell them:

— therefore will I stretch out mine hand against thee, and destroy thee; his hand of power and vengeance, which when stretched out, and falls with weight, whether on particular persons, or on a nation, brings inevitable ruin and destruction with it.

And I will winnow them with a fan in the gates of the land; I will bereave them of children; I will destroy My people, since they return not from their ways. — I will fan them with a fan in the gates of the land… either of their own land, the land of Judea; and so the Septuagint says, “in the gates of my people”; alluding to the custom of winnowing corn in open places;

— and by fanning is meant the dispersion of the Jews, and being carried captive out of their own land into other countries: or of the land of the enemy, into their cities, as the Targum paraphrases it; gates being put for them frequently; whither they should be scattered by the fan of the Lord; for what was done by the enemy, as an instrument, is ascribed to him:

— yet they return not from their ways; though fanned with the fan of affliction, bereaved of their children, and threatened with destruction: it expresses their obstinate continuance in their evil ways, and the reason of God’s dealing with them as above.

Their widows are increased to Me above the sand of the seas; I have brought upon them, against the mother of the young men, a despoiler at noonday; I have caused him to fall upon it suddenly, and terrors upon the city. — their widows are increased to me above the sand of the seas… their husbands being slain; not only in the times of Ahaz, when a hundred and twenty thousand men were slain in one day in Judah, by Pekah the son of Remaliah, 2 Chronicles 28:6;

— but in the times of Zedekiah, at the siege of Jerusalem, and the taking of it, and during the Assyrian captivity before predicted. The children of Israel were to be as the sand of the sea; and here the widows are said to be so too; their husbands being dead;

— mention is made of “seas”, in the plural; there being many in or near Judea, as the Red sea, the sea of Galilee, and the Mediterranean sea.

10 Woe is me, my mother, that thou hast borne me, a man of strife and a man of contention to the whole earth! I have neither lent on usury, nor have men lent to me on usury; yet every one of them doth curse me. — woe is me, my mother, that thou hast borne me a man of strife to the whole earth! that is, one with whom the whole world, all men with whom he came into contact, were anxious to pick a quarrel for no other reason than for his faithful discharge of his office.

11 The Lord said, “Verily it shall be well with thy remnant; verily I will cause the enemy to deal with thee well in the time of evil and in the time of affliction. — the Lord promised, Verily it shall be well with thy remnant; the latter words of this verse expound the former: for by remnant, or residue, is meant the remnant of days that Jeremiah had to live;

— Nebuzaradan, the captain of the guard, begged him, “If it pleases you to come with me to Babylon:”

“And now behold, I loose thee this day from the chains which were upon thine hand. If it seem good unto thee to come with me into Babylon, come, and I will look well after thee; but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me into Babylon, forbear. Behold, all the land is before thee. Wherever it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go,” Jeremiah 40:4.

— or another explanation: it could be a remnant of Jeremiah’s close family; although he had no wife, thus no children; but the king’s daughters, who could be his nieces entrusted to him for care and protection.

12 “Shall iron break the northern iron and the steel? can iron break iron, especially that which comes from the north, which was harder than the common iron; or steel, the hardest of them all? though the Jews were as hard as iron, they could not prevail against and overcome those iron from the north.

13 Thy substance and thy treasures will I give as the spoil without price, and that for all thy sins, even in all thy borders. — thy substance and thy treasures, all the temple’s treasure, all the wealth of Judah, even all within thy borders, will I give to the spoil without price, they will be theirs to take away, and all because of thy sins.

14 And I will make thee to pass with thine enemies into a land which thou knowest not; for a fire is kindled in Mine anger, which shall burn upon you.” — for a fire is kindled in mine anger; meaning the wrath of God, compared to fire, which was kindled and excited by their sins, and which would continue upon them until it had destroyed them.

15 O Lord, Thou knowest; remember me and visit me, and avenge me on my persecutors. Take me not away in Thy longsuffering; know that for Thy sake I have suffered rebuke. — and visit me; in mercy for good; and so the Targum adds, “that thou mayest do well unto me.”

16 Thy words were found, and I ate them; and Thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart; for I am called by Thy name, O Lord God of hosts. — for I am called by Thy name, O Lord God of hosts, it was revealed to Jeremiah, he was called as a servant or messenger of His Word. He had, therefore, devoted himself to this calling with all seriousness.

17 I sat not in the assembly of the mockers, nor rejoiced; I sat alone because of Thy hand, for Thou hast filled me with indignation.

18 Why is my pain perpetual and my wound incurable, which refuseth to be healed? Wilt Thou be altogether unto me as a liar and as waters that fail?

19 Therefore thus saith the Lord: “If thou return, then will I bring thee back, and thou shalt stand before Me; and if thou take forth the precious from the vile, thou shalt be as My mouth. Let them return unto thee, but return not thou unto them. — let them return unto thee, but return not thou unto them; this is said of the people of the Jews, to whom the prophet was sent; and the sense is, that he should not at all comply with them, or conform to their humours, or flatter and sooth them in their sins, as the false prophets did.

20 And I will make thee unto this people a fortified brazen wall, and they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee, for I am with thee to save thee and to deliver thee,” saith the Lord. — they will still continue their opposition; and contradict his prophecies; or so as to take away his life, but they shall not prevail.

21 “And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of the hand of the terrible.” — and I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked… the wicked Jews, Zedekiah and his courtiers, who imprisoned him:

— the power of the terrible Chaldeans, into whose hands thou shalt come, but shalt be preserved from any harm by the workings of my providence in thy favour.

Jeremiah 16

1 The word of the Lord came also unto me, saying,

“Thou shalt not take thee a wife, neither shalt thou have sons or daughters in this place.” — thou shall not take thee a wife… not because it was unlawful; for it was lawful for prophets to marry, but because it was on account of the calamities and distresses which were coming upon the nation; which would be more bearable by him alone, than if he had a wife and children.

For thus saith the Lord concerning the sons and concerning the daughters who are born in this place, and concerning their mothers who bore them, and concerning their fathers who begot them in this land:

“They shall die of grievous deaths; they shall not be lamented, neither shall they be buried, but they shall be as dung upon the face of the earth. And they shall be consumed by the sword and by famine, and their carcasses shall be meat for the fowls of heaven and for the beasts of the earth.” — they shall die of grievous deaths, such as the sword, famine, and pestilence;

— but they shall be as dung upon the face of the earth; lie and rot there, and be dung to the earth; which would be a just retaliation, for their filthy and abominable actions committed in the land:

— the Targum particularly adds famine. It may be rendered, “deaths of diseases, or sicknesses” such are brought on by long sickness and lingering contagious diseases; by which a man suffers slowly, as by famine, and is not snatched away at once; and which are more grievous to bear.

For thus saith the Lord: “Enter not into the house of mourning, neither go to lament nor bemoan them; for I have taken away My peace from this people,” saith the Lord, “even lovingkindness and mercies. — neither go to lament nor bemoan them; neither go to the house of mourning, or the mourning feast; to the houses of the deceased to express sorrow, by shedding tears or shaking the head, or by any other gesture or ceremony as mentioned;

— for I have taken away my peace from this people; all peace or prosperity is of God, and therefore called his, and which he can take away from a people when he pleases; and having determined to take it away from this people because of their sins;

— they had turned “justice into wormwood, and cast righteousness to the ground” (Amos 5:7).

Both the great and the small shall die in this land. They shall not be buried, neither shall men lament for them, nor cut themselves, nor make themselves bald for them. — both the great and the small shall die in this land… the nobles as well as the common people, high and low, rich and poor; none shall be exempted from the grievous deaths by the sword, famine, and pestilence.

Neither shall men tear themselves for them in mourning to comfort them for the dead; neither shall men give them the cup of consolation to drink for their father or for their mother. — neither shall men give them the cup of consolation to drink for their father or for their mother: but now these drinks should be omitted; the calamity would be so great and so universal that there wouldn’t be any time left to perform such ordinances.

Thou shalt not also go into the house of feasting to sit with them to eat and to drink.” — thou shall not also go into the house of feasting… which was lawful to do, and which the prophet doubtless had done at other times; but now a time of calamity coming on, it was not proper he should; and that he was to abstain from such places.

For thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Behold, I will cause to cease out of this place, in your eyes and in your days, the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride.

10 “And it shall come to pass, when thou shalt show this people all these words, and they shall say unto thee, ‘Why hath the Lord pronounced all this great evil against us? Or what is our iniquity? Or what is our sin that we have committed against the Lord our God?’

11 Then shalt thou say unto them, ‘Because your fathers have forsaken Me,’ saith the Lord, ‘and have walked after other gods and have served them, and have worshiped them, and have forsaken Me, and have not kept My law. — and have walked after other gods and have served them and have worshipped them; were guilty of gross idolatry, serving and worshipping the creature more than their Creator; even idols of gold, silver, brass, wood, and stone which were no gods;

— for there is no other true God besides the Lord Yehovah; and which they were well informed of, and therefore their sin was the greater to leave him and worship them; and which sin, because of the heinousness of it, is repeated.

12 And ye have done worse than your fathers, for behold, ye walk every one after the imagination of his evil heart, that they may not hearken unto Me. — and ye have done worse than your fathers… not only committed the same sins, but greater, or, however, attended with more aggravating circumstances; they were wilfully and impudently done, and obstinately persisted in; and therefore deserving of the great evil of punishment pronounced against them.

13 Therefore will I cast you out of this land into a land that ye know not, neither ye nor your fathers; and there shall ye serve other gods day and night, where I will not show you favor.’ — therefore will I call you out of this land… by force, and against their wills, whether they would or not, and with abhorrence and contempt: it is to be understood of their captivity, which was but a just punishment for the above sins; for since they had cast off the Lord and his worship, it was but just that they should be cast off by him, and cast out of their land, which they held by their obedience to him:

— the Targum says, “and there shall ye serve people that worship idols day and night”; that as they had served idols, now they should serve the people, the worshippers of those idols; the former was their sin, the latter their punishment.

14 “Therefore behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that it shall no more be said, ‘The Lord liveth who brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt,’

15 but, ‘the Lord liveth who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither He had driven them.’ And I will bring them back into their land that I gave unto their fathers. — the Targum says: “that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north”; that is, from Babylon, which lay north of Judea. 

16 “Behold, I will send for many fishers,” saith the Lord, “and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks. — though some interpret this, and what follows, of the deliverance of the Jews by the Medes and Persians under Cyrus, who searched for them in all places, and sent them into their own land; or of Zerubbabel, and others with him, who used all means to persuade the Jews in the captivity to go with them, to return to Judea and to build the house of the Lord in Jerusalem.

17 For Mine eyes are upon all their ways. They are not hid from My face, neither is their iniquity hid from Mine eyes.

18 And first I will recompense their iniquity and their sin double, because they have defiled My land; they have filled Mine inheritance with the carcasses of their detestable and abominable things.”

19 O Lord, my strength and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the nations shall come unto Thee from the ends of the earth and shall say, “Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.” — and nations shall come; eventually, the nations will come to you and worship you of one accord, and they will say, “How did they make gods of woods and stones for themselves, as if they have no God?”

20 Shall a man make gods unto himself, and they are no gods?

21 “Therefore behold, I will this once cause them to know, I will cause them to know Mine hand and My might; and they shall know that My name is the Lord. — they shall know that my name is Yehovah, a name which implies absolute and necessary existence, the real source and origin of all creation.

Jeremiah (Ch 13-14)

•November 7, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Years could have passed and now Jeremiah was asked to prophecy again, probably in the year 602 BC during the reign of Jehoiakim.

This chapter contains a single and distinct prophecy, which, under two symbols, a linen girdle left to rot, and all vessels being filled with wine, foretells the utter destruction that was destined to fall upon the whole Jewish nation, including the individuals of every rank and denomination.

Jeremiah 13

1 Thus saith the Lord unto me, “Go and get thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins, and put it not in water.” — go and get thee a linen gird; this girdle represents the people of Judah with their corruption, when they were a people near unto the Lord, when they cleaved unto him, and served him: “and put it upon thy loins”; near the reins, the seat of affection, and that it might be visible and ornamental;

— the prophet was commanded not to put the girdle in water, that is, not to wash it, but to leave it in that state of filthiness which it had contracted in wearing it.

So I got a girdle according to the word of the Lord and put it on my loins.

And the word of the Lord came unto me the second time, saying,

“Take the girdle that thou hast got, which is upon thy loins, and arise, go to the Euphrates and hide it there in a hole of the rock.” — and arise, go to Euphrates, and hide it there in a hole of the rock; by the river side, where the waters, coming and going, would reach and wet it, and it drying again, would rot the sooner;

— this signifies the carrying of the Jews captive to Babylon, by which city the river Euphrates ran, and the obscure state and condition they would be in there; and where all their pride and glory would be marred, as afterwards declared.

So I went and hid it by the Euphrates, as the Lord commanded me. — so I went and hid it by Euphrates… or, “in” it; in a hole of the rock, upon the banks of it.

And it came to pass after many days, that the Lord said unto me, “Arise, go to the Euphrates and take the girdle from thence, which I commanded thee to hide there.” — that the Lord said unto me, arise, go to Euphrates, and take the girdle from thence, which I commanded thee to hide there; which may denote the return of these people from captivity, according to the prophecy of Jeremiah; see Jeremiah 25:11;

though this seems to be visionally done, in order to express the wretched state and condition these people were in; especially before the captivity, which was the chief cause for their captivity.

Then I went to the Euphrates and dug, and took the girdle from the place where I had hid it; and behold, the girdle was marred (rotten); it was profitable for nothing. — and, behold, the girdle was marred; or “corrupted” it become rotten by the washing of the water over it, and its long continuance in such a place:

— it was profitable for nothing; it could not be put upon a man’s loins, or be wore any more; nor was it fit for any other use, it was so sadly spoiled and so thoroughly rotten. It was not fit for anything.

Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

“Thus saith the Lord: ‘In this manner will I mar (destroy) the pride of Judah and the great pride of Jerusalem. — will I destroy the pride of Judah, and the great pride of Jerusalem; or their glory, or excellency; that which they gloried in, and were proud of; their city which was burnt, and their temple which was destroyed by the Chaldeans; their king, princes, and nobles, who were carried captive into Babylon, by the river Euphrates, and stripped of all their grandeur, honour, and glory;

— the Targum says, “so will I corrupt the strength of the men of Judah, and the strength of the inhabitants of Jerusalem;” meaning the proud or haughty men of Judah, and the many haughty men of Jerusalem would be destroyed.

10 This evil people, who refuse to hear My words, who walk in the stubbornness of their heart, and walk after other gods to serve them and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle which is good for nothing. — this evil people, which refuse to hear my words… sent by the prophets, to whom they turned a deaf ear; and though they pressed them, and desired them to give a hearing, they refused; and this showed them to be a bad people, very degenerate and wicked;

— shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing: as they were corrupt in their practices, and were useless and unserviceable to God; so they would be carried captive into a foreign country, where they would be inglorious or shameful, and unprofitable, uncomfortable in themselves, and of no use to one another.

11 For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto Me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah,’ saith the Lord, ‘that they might be unto Me as a people, and as a name, and as praise, and as glory; but they would not hear.’ — so have I caused the whole house of Israel, and the whole house of Judah to cleave unto me; whom God had chosen above all people to dwell in his courts; whom he favoured with his presence, and cleave to him; so that they were a people near unto him as a man’s girdle is to his loins;

— but they would not hear the words of the Lord, nor obey his voice; but served other gods, departed from the Lord, to whom they should have cleaved, and so became like this rotten girdle.

12 “Therefore thou shalt speak unto them this word: ‘Thus saith the Lord God of Israel: Every bottle shall be filled with wine.’ And they shall say unto thee, ‘Do we not certainly know that every bottle shall be filled with wine?’ — every bottle shall be filled with wine; God’s judgements are often represented under the figure of a cup full of intoxicating liquor: see this metaphor pursued at large, Jeremiah 25:15.

13 Then shalt thou say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I will fill all the inhabitants of this land — even the kings that sit upon David’s throne, and the priests, and the prophets, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem — with drunkenness. — behold, I will fill all the inhabitants with drunkenness; there is a wine of astonishment and confusion, Psalms 60:3;

— with that wine, saith God, I will fill all orders of persons, kings, priests, prophets, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem. And I will dash them one against another I will permit an evil spirit of strife and division to arise among them; a sort of civil strife out of nothing;

— with drunkenness; as wine brings on a state of intoxication, so the effect of God’s wrath and judgements upon the entire nation would be to reduce all its members to a state of helpless distraction, which would cause them to rush to their own ruin, with tribulation;

— with drunkenness; as the Targum interprets by adding, “and shall be like a drunken man;” giddy, stupid, unable to help themselves, or to advise one another.

14 And I will dash them one against another, even the fathers and the sons together,’ saith the Lord. ‘I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but shall destroy them.’” — and I will dash them one against another; I will permit an evil spirit of civil strife and division to arise among them, as Judges 9:23, so that they shall be set one against another, fathers against their sons, and sons against their fathers, and family against family; 

— I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, but destroy them: the Lord’s hand was in all this; everything was according to his will; he would not prevent the enemy’s invading, besieging, and taking them, nor hinder themselves from destroying one another; but suffer from one calamity to another, without showing the least mercy to them, so great were their sins, and the provocation in hastening the destruction of their kingdom.

15 Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud, for the Lord hath spoken.

16 Give glory to the Lord your God before He cause darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, He turn it into the shadow of death, and make it gross darkness. — and before your feet stumble; before the time come when ye shall be forced to flee by night unto the mountains for fear of your enemies;

— or, more generally, before you find yourselves overtaken by the pursuing judgements of God, notwithstanding all your endeavours to outrun and escape from them;

— the Targum says, “before tribulation comes upon you, and ye be like to those that walk in darkness.”

17 But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the Lord’s flock is carried away captive. — my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; your haughtiness, stubbornness, and vain confidence; and mine eye shall weep sore; because the Lord’s flock His people, and the sheep of his pasture; are carried away captive.

18 Say unto the king and to the queen, “Humble yourselves, sit down; for your principalities shall come down, even the crown of your glory.” — humble yourselves, sit down; or, “sit down humbled”; come down from your thrones, and sit in the dust; humble yourselves before the Lord for your own sins, and the sins of the people;

— in times of general corruption, and which threatens a nation with ruin, it becomes kings and princes to set an example of repentance, humiliation, and reformation; that they should descend from their throne, and lose their grandeur, and be in a low and abject condition, than an exhortation to what was their usual dominance;

— even the crown of their glory; or glorious crown, which should fall from their heads, or be taken from them, when they should be no more served, or treated as crowned heads.

19 The cities of the South shall be shut up, and none shall open them. Judah shall be carried away captive, all of it; it shall be wholly carried away captive. — the cities of the South shall be shut up, and none shall open them… meaning the walls of the cities of the South were closed even before those coming upon them from the north because of their fear of Nebuchadnezzar.

20 Lift up your eyes, and behold them that come from the north. Where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock? — the state and whole body of the people being called upon to observe the Chaldean army, which came from the north; and is on the march, just at hand to invade, besiege, take, and carry them captive;

— the Septuagint renders it, “lift up thine eyes, O Jerusalem”; or as the Targum interprets it, “O Israel: where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock?” that is, the people, which were committed to the care and charge of the king,

— as sheep into the hands of a shepherd; and were a fine body of people, chosen of God; a precious and distinguished above all others by their righteous laws and statutes, with special privileges; a people who were to be a kingdom of priests, a holy nation, and a peculiar people, the glory and a light to the whole earth;

— but now carried, or about to be carried, captive. It is no unusual thing to represent a king as a shepherd, and his people as a flock, guided, governed, and protected by him.

21 What wilt thou say when He shall punish thee? For thou hast taught them to be captains, and as chief over thee. Shall not sorrows take thee, as a woman in travail? — the Targum says, “when he shall visit on thee thy sin;” when God shall punish thee for thy sins;

— for thou hast taught them to be captains, and as chief over thee; some Jews showed the Chaldeans the way into their country, and taught them how to conquer them, and be masters over them; or, “hast taught them against thee”; to thy hurt and detriment;

Hezekiah even who showed the emissaries of Merodachbaladan of the Chaldeans his entire treasure house:

And Hezekiah was glad with them, and showed them the house of his precious things — the silver and the gold, and the spices and the precious ointment, and all the house of his armor, and all that was found in his treasures. There was nothing in his house nor in all his dominion that Hezekiah showed them not; Isaiah 39:2;

And Hezekiah hearkened unto them, and showed them all the house of his precious things: the silver, and the gold, and the spices, and the precious ointment, and all the house of his armor, and all that was found in his treasuries. There was nothing in his house nor in all his dominion that Hezekiah showed them not, II Kings 20:13.

— shall not sorrows take thee as a woman in travail? denoting the suddenness of their calamities; the sharpness and severity of them; and that they would be inevitable, even all the treasures of the temple to be carried away, and could no longer be prevented.

22 And if thou say in thine heart, “Why come these things upon me?”—for the greatness of thine iniquity are thy skirts uncovered, and thy heels made bare. — the phrases are expressive of captivity, the cause of which was the greatness and multitude of their sins; the Targum says, “because thy sins are multiplied, thy confusion is revealed, thy shame is seen;”

— are thy skirts uncovered, and thy heels made bare; being obliged to walk naked and barefoot, their buttocks uncovered, and their legs and feet naked, without stockings or shoes, as captives used to be led, to their great shame and disgrace; see Isaiah 20:2.

23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? Then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil. — can the Ethiopian change his skin, turning it to a white color, or the leopard his spots, characteristic as they have become of him? 

— then may ye also do good that are accustomed to do evil; the one was practically as impossible as the other; they were entirely given over to wickedness.

24 “Therefore will I scatter them as the stubble that passeth away by the wind of the wilderness. — by the wind of the wilderness; which blows freely and strongly; so the Chaldean army is compared to a dry wind of the high places in the wilderness, even a full wind that should scatter and destroy, Jeremiah 4:11;

— or, “to the wind of the wilderness”; and so may denote the wilderness of the people, or the land of Babylon, whither they should be carried captive, and from whence the wind should come that should bring them.

25 This is thy lot, the portion of thy measures from Me,” saith the Lord; “because thou hast forgotten Me, and trusted in falsehood.

26 Therefore will I uncover thy skirts upon thy face, that thy shame may appear. — the Targum says, “and I also will reveal the confusion of thy sin upon thy face, and thy shame shall be seen;” that their sins might appear to themselves and others, of which they had reason to be ashamed.

27 I have seen thine adulteries and thy neighings, the lewdness of thy whoredom and thine abominations on the hills in the fields. Woe unto thee, O Jerusalem! Wilt thou not be made clean? When shall it once be?” — wilt thou not be made clean? When shall it once be? The Lord is still stretching out arms of mercy to an apostate nation, a proof of the greatness of His love and patience for sinners.

Jeremiah 14

The word of the Lord that came to Jeremiah concerning the dearth:

“Judah mourneth, and the gates thereof languish; they are black unto the ground, and the cry of Jerusalem is gone up. — the Targum says; these mourned because of the drought and famine that were upon the land:

— they are black unto the ground; that is, the inhabitants of the cities, and those that sit in the gates, their faces are black through famine; see Lamentations 4:8, so the Targum says “their faces are covered with blackness, they are black as a pot.”

And their nobles have sent their little ones to the waters; they came to the pits and found no water; they returned with their vessels empty; they were ashamed and confounded, and covered their heads. — they came to the pits and found no water; their servants came according to order to the pools and cisterns, or to the deep wells, and to such places where there used to be a great confluence of water, and plenty of it, but now they could find none:

— and covered their heads; as persons ashamed, or as mourners used to do, being full of anguish and distress because of the drought.

Because the ground is chapped, for there was no rain in the earth, the plowmen were ashamed; they covered their heads.

Yea, the hind also calved in the field and forsook it, because there was no grass. — because there was no grass; for the hind to feed upon, and so had no milk to suckle its young with; and therefore left it to seek for grass elsewhere, that it might have food for itself, and milk for its young.

And the wild asses stood in the high places; they snuffed up the wind like dragons; their eyes failed, because there was no grass.”

O Lord, though our iniquities testify against us, do Thou it for Thy name’s sake; for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against Thee.

O the Hope of Israel, the Savior thereof in time of trouble, why shouldest Thou be as a stranger in the land, and as a wayfaring man that turneth aside to tarry for a night? — why shouldest thou be as a stranger in the land; or, a “sojourner” who abides but for a while; and it not being his native place, is not so solicitous for the welfare of it. 

Why shouldest Thou be as a man amazed, as a mighty man that cannot save? Yet Thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us, and we are called by Thy name; leave us not. — yet thou, O Lord, art in the midst of us; having his residence and dwelling in the temple at Jerusalem; and therefore was not a stranger and foreigner among them;

— and this carries in it an entreaty and an argument that he would not in his providence conduct towards them in such manner as though he was: leave us not in our distress and trouble, but deliver us out of it.

10 Thus saith the Lord unto this people: “Thus have they loved to wander; they have not restrained their feet. Therefore the Lord doth not accept them; He will now remember their iniquity and visit their sins.”

11 Then said the Lord unto me, “Pray not for this people for their good. — pray not for this people for their good; or “for good things”, as the Septuagint says, for rain, that the famine might cease; and for deliverance from their enemies, that they might not go into captivity; for these things were determined by the Lord.

12 When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them; but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.” — but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence; the Lord not only determines the continuance of the famine, notwithstanding the prayers of the prophet; but adds two other judgements, the sword and pestilence, by which he was resolved to consume them; and therefore it was to no purpose to pray to him on their behalf, he was inexorable.

13 Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! Behold, the prophets say unto them, ‘Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine, but I will give you assured peace in this place.’” — behold, the prophets say unto them; that is, the false prophets, who were influencing the people for evil.

14 Then the Lord said unto me, “The prophets prophesy lies in My name. I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spoke unto them. They prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought and the deceit of their heart. — the prophets prophesy lies in my name; it is a wicked thing to tell lies; it is more so to foretell them, and that in the name of the Lord; pretending they have his authority, and are under the influence and guidance of his Spirit;

— and it was sinful for the people to give credit to them, and the more so in that they were forewarned of these prophets and their lies, and had the reverse told them by a true prophet of the Lord, and therefore were inexcusable.

15 Therefore thus saith the Lord concerning the prophets that prophesy in My name, whom I sent not, yet they say, ‘Sword and famine shall not be in this land’: By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed. — yet they say, sword and famine shall not be in the land; though the Lord by his true prophet had said there should be both; which proves that they were not sent by the Lord, since what they said was in direct opposition to the word of the Lord; wherefore their doom in righteous judgement follows:

— by sword and famine shall these prophets be consumed; they should be some of the first, if not the first that should perish by these calamities; which would abundantly prove the falsehood of their predictions, and show that their lies could neither secure themselves nor others from the judgements which the Lord had said should come upon them.

16 And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and they shall have none to bury them — them, their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters — for I will pour their wickedness upon them. — shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem, because of the famine and the sword; they dying of the famine and of the sword, their carcasses should be cast out of their houses into the open streets, and there lie unburied, as a punishment for disbelieving the words of the Lord, and giving heed to the lies of the false prophets:

— them: their wives, their sons, their daughters; or rather, “they” – “their wives, and their sons, and their daughters”: these shall die by the famine and the sword, and shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem.

17 “Therefore thou shalt say this word unto them: ‘Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease; for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous blow. — the Septuagint, “bring down upon your eyes tears night and day, and let them not cease;”

— for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach; cities are sometimes called virgins, which were never taken; and so Jerusalem have never been taken since it was in the hands of the people of Judah; nor were its inhabitants as yet carried captive, but now together with the famine and the sword, by which many should perish, resulting in sorrows and mournings.

18 If I go forth into the field, then behold, the slain with the sword! And if I enter into the city, then behold, them that are sick with famine! Yea, both the prophet and the priest go about into a land that they know not.’” — then behold them that are sick with the famine! just ready to die, being starved for want of provisions; and multitudes dead, and their carcasses lying in the streets unburied; the prophet does not make mention of the dead indeed, only of the sick with famine; the reason of which is because the sick were more than the dead.

19 Hast Thou utterly rejected Judah? Hath Thy soul loathed Zion? Why hast Thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us? We looked for peace, and there is no good; and for the time of healing, and behold, trouble! — hast thou utterly rejected Judah?…. the prophet, though forbid, proceeds to prayers and expostulations on account of this people, the people of the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin: or, “in rejecting hast thou rejected Judah?” from being a nation, from being under thy care and protection? hast thou cast them away, and wilt thou suffer them to go into captivity as the ten tribes?

20 We acknowledge, O Lord, our wickedness and the iniquity of our fathers; for we have sinned against Thee. — we acknowledge, O Lord, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers… this is said by the prophet, in the name of the few faithful that were among this people, who were sensible of their own sins, the sins of their ancestors, and which they ingenuously confess; their fathers had sinned, and they had imitated them;

— and continued in the same, and therefore might justly expect the displeasure of the Lord, and his controversy with them; for we have sinned against thee; Jeremiah 14:7.

21 Do not abhor us, for Thy name’s sake; do not disgrace the throne of Thy glory; remember, break not Thy covenant with us. — do not abhor us, for thy name’s sake… which was called upon them, and which they called upon; they deserved to be abhorred, they had done those things which might justly render them abominable, being what was abhorrent to him; and they deprecate this, not, for their own sake, who were unworthy of any favour, but for his own sake, for the sake of his honour and glory, which, as it is dear to the Lord, so to his people.

22 Are there any among the vanities of the Gentiles that can cause rain? Or can the heavens give showers? Art not Thou He, O Lord our God? Therefore we will wait upon Thee, for Thou hast made all these things. — art not Thou He, O Lord, our God? Since He had sent the dreadful droughts under whose hardships the land was groaning, therefore He alone could provide relief. 

Jeremiah (Ch 11-12)

•November 6, 2021 • 2 Comments

Jeremiah’s message were written about a hundred years after the house of Israel had been exiled to Assyria, when God called upon Jeremiah to deliver his message against the elders of Jerusalem of an enemy coming out from the north and an impending exile to follow if they continue with all their wickedness and idolatries, but his message was also for the house of Israel at the endtime.

Jeremiah 11

1 The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying,

“Hear ye the words of this covenant, and speak unto the men of Judah and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem;

and say thou unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord God of Israel: Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant, — cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant; which the prophet, it may be, had in his hands, even the book of the law, and held it forth unto them, while he was speaking; the language of which is, cursed is everyone that does not constantly and perfectly perform what is contained in it, Deuteronomy 27:26.

which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt from the iron furnace, saying, “Obey My voice, and do them, according to all which I command you; so shall ye be My people and I will be your God,” — according to all I command you; everything was to be done that was commanded, and a perfect and uniform obedience is to be yielded to the law, in order to enjoy the blessing, or a penalty is incurred.

that I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day.’” Then answered I, and said, “So be it, O Lord.” — that I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers, the special promises given to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, Deuteronomy 7:8;

— to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day, this beautiful and rich land being still in the possession of the children of Israel. 

Then the Lord said unto me, “Proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Hear ye the words of this covenant and do them. — proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem: with a loud voice, and openly, that all may hear.

For I earnestly protested unto your fathers in the day that I brought them up out of the land of Egypt, even unto this day, rising early and protesting, saying, “Obey My voice.”

Yet they obeyed not, nor inclined their ear, but walked every one in the imagination of their evil heart. Therefore I will bring upon them all the words of this covenant, which I commanded them to do, but they did them not.’”

And the Lord said unto me, “A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

10 They have turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, who refused to hear My words, and they went after other gods to serve them. The house of Israel and the house of Judah have broken My covenant which I made with their fathers. — in previous verses God’s words were usually directed against Jerusalem, the inhabitants of Jerusalem, their elders and priests, but here, it is to the house of Israel again.

11 Therefore thus saith the Lord: ‘Behold, I will bring evil upon them, which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto Me, I will not hearken unto them. — and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them: because their prayers were hypocritical, and not attended true repentance; otherwise, when men cry to God, under a sense of sin, being truly sorry for it, he hears them, and delivers them;

— but these would be concerned only for the evil that was come upon them, and not the evil they had been guilty of; and such sinners, when they pray to him, the Lord hears not;

— the Targum says, “and they shall pray before me, and I will not receive their prayers.”

12 Then shall the cities of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem go and cry unto the gods unto whom they offer incense; but they shall not save them at all in the time of their trouble. — go and cry unto the gods unto whom they offer incense; Baal; to Astarte, the queen of heaven; to a Christianised Mithra, the Persian sun-god, who was born on December 25th, on the winter solstice; to the moon, planets, and other hosts of heaven.

13 For according to the number of thy cities were thy gods, O Judah; and according to the number of the streets of Jerusalem have ye set up altars to that shameful thing, even altars to burn incense unto Baal.’ — for according to the number of thy cities were thy gods, O Judah, practically a different idol for every city; and according to the number of the streets of Jerusalem have ye set up altars, a different one for every open place;

— to that shameful thing, to the idol which is the essence of all that is shameful and even altars to burn incense unto Baal, this idol being the chief abomination of the Canaanite nations since remote times. The Lord, having thus set forth the wickedness of Judah, turns to His prophet with the command that he should not interfere with His just punishment upon the apostate nation.

14 “Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up a cry or prayer for them; for I will not hear them in the time that they cry unto Me for their trouble. — the Targum understands this of the prayers of the prophet for them, paraphrasing the words thus,”for there is no acceptance before me (or it is not pleasing to me) when thou shall pray for them before me, in the time of their evil;”

— neither their prayers, nor the prophet’s for them, would be acceptable to God, or of any avail, he being determined to bring evil upon them.

15 What hath My beloved to do in Mine house, seeing she hath wrought lewdness with many, and the holy flesh is passed from thee? When thou doest evil, then thou rejoicest.

16 The Lord called thy name, ‘A Green Olive Tree,’ fair and of goodly fruit. With the noise of a great tumult He hath kindled fire upon it, and the branches of it are broken.

17 For the Lord of hosts, who planted thee, hath pronounced evil against thee for the evil of the house of Israel and of the house of Judah, which they have done against themselves to provoke Me to anger in offering incense unto Baal.” — for the evil of the house of Israel; the ten tribes, who had committed sin, and for which the evil pronounced had been executed on them already, being some time ago carried captive:

— a message to the house of Israel again; this reminder could be historic but more probably, it is prophetic: the evil of whose heinous sins shall be followed with most dreadful punishments.

18 And the Lord hath given me knowledge of it, and I know it; then Thou showed me their doings.

19 But I was like a lamb or an ox that is brought to the slaughter; and I knew not that they had devised devices against me, saying, “Let us destroy the tree with the fruit thereof, and let us cut him off from the land of the living, that his name may be no more remembered.” — like a lamb or an ox; the Targum translates it “as a choice lamb;”

— that is brought to the slaughter; to be sacrificed or killed by the butcher; so ignorant was the prophet of the designs of his townsmen against him, and not at all jealous that they wished him ill; since he meant none to them, but sought their good:

— let us destroy the tree with the fruit thereof and let us cut him off from the land of the living that his name may be no more remembered; they wanted to bring ruin, if possible, death, to Jeremiah and his family and cause his warning be buried; or be forgotten. Therefore the prophet calls upon the Lord for vengeance in his just cause.

20 But, O Lord of hosts, who judgest righteously, who triest the reins and the heart, let me see Thy vengeance on them, for unto Thee have I revealed my cause. — but, O Lord of hosts, that judgest righteously… this is the prophet’s appeal to God, as the Judge of the whole earth, who will do right; he found there was no justice to be done him among men; he therefore has recourse to a righteous God, who he knew judged righteous judgement:

— let me see thy vengeance on them; the Targum says “I shall see the vengeance of thy judgement on them;”

— for unto thee have I revealed my cause; as a client to his patron; told his whole case, and left it with him, believing he would execute justice for him.

21 “Therefore thus saith the Lord of the men of Anathoth, who seek thy life, saying, ‘Prophesy not in the name of the Lord, that thou die not by our hand’ — saying, prophesy not in the name of the Lord; without their leave, and such hard things as he did, unless he would prophesy smooth things, and then he might go on, otherwise he must expect to die:

— that thou die not by our hand; or means; they intimate, that, should he persist in prophesying, they should not stay to carry on a judicial process against him, before a judge or the Sanhedrin, but should do as those called zealots in later times did; lay violent hands upon him.

22 therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts: ‘Behold, I will punish them: the young men shall die by the sword, their sons and their daughters shall die by famine. — the young men shall die by the sword, being cut down by the enemy in battle, their sons and their daughters shall die by famine, the result of the unmerciful siege begun by the enemies.

23 And there shall be no remnant of them; for I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, even the year of their visitation.’” — And there shall be no remnant of them, the Lord being determined to carry out His sentence of extermination upon them;

— this seems more prophetic than historical; for during their historical moment their remnants were carried off to either Assyria for the house of Israel or to Babylon for the house of Judah; so if there is no remnant left then it has to be prophetic, into our time;

— but in the book of Ezekiel more details were given about putting an end to even the remnants. Ezekiel 11:13 And it came to pass when I prophesied, that Pelatiah the son of Benaiah died. Then fell I down upon my face, and cried with a loud voice and said, “Ah, Lord God! Wilt Thou make a full end of the remnant of Israel?” — the conditions around Israel would be so bad that those few, if any, who survive would ask, “Would God make a full end to the remnant of Israel?”

Jeremiah 12

1 Righteous art Thou, O Lord, when I plead with Thee; yet let me talk with Thee of Thy judgements: Why doth the way of the wicked prosper? Why are all they happy that deal very treacherously? — yet let me talk with thee of thy judgements; of his laws, statutes, word, and ordinances;

— the Targum says, “but I will ask a question of judgements before thee;” things that are right; that are agreeable to the word of God and sound reason; things that are consistent with God, particularly his justice;

— why doth the way of the wicked prosper? Why is it that they seem to be fortunate in all their dealings?  Why are their designs and projects successful? 

— why are they all happy that deal very treacherously? How may the fact be explained that the very ones who are guilty of the worst perfidy, who practice the basest knavery, live in peace?

Thou hast planted them, yea, they have taken root; they grow, yea, they bring forth fruit. Thou art near in their mouth, but far from their reins. — thou art near in their mouth; they often made use of the name of God, either in swearing by it, or praying to him in an external manner; they called themselves the Lord’s people, and boasted of being his priests, and employed in his service; they took his covenant, and the words of his law, into their mouths, and taught them the people, and yet had no sincere regard for these things:

— and far from their reins; from the affections of their hearts, and the desires of their souls; they had no true love for God, nor fear of him, nor faith in him. The Targum says, “near are the words of thy law in their mouth, and far is thy fear from their reins.”

But Thou, O Lord, knowest me; Thou hast seen me and tried mine heart toward Thee. Pull them out like sheep for the slaughter, and prepare them for the day of slaughter. — prepare them for the day of slaughter; or, “sanctify them”; set them apart for it: this, doubtless, refers to the time of Jerusalem’s destruction by the Chaldeans.

How long shall the land mourn and the herbs of every field wither, for the wickedness of them that dwell therein? The beasts are consumed, and the birds, because they said, “He shall not see our last end.”

“If thou hast run with the footmen and they have wearied thee, then how canst thou contend with horses? And if in the land of peace, wherein thou trusted, they wearied thee, then how wilt thou do in the swelling of the Jordan?

For even thy brethren and the house of thy father, even they have dealt treacherously with thee; yea, they have called a multitude after thee; believe them not, though they speak fair words unto thee.

“I have forsaken Mine house, I have left Mine heritage; I have given the dearly beloved of My soul into the hand of her enemies. — I have forsaken my house… the temple, where the Lord took up his residence; this was fulfilled in the first temple, when it was destroyed by the Chaldeans; and more fully in the second, when that voice was heard in it, a little before the destruction of Jerusalem, as Josephus relates, “let us go hence;”

— the Targum says, “I have forsaken the house of my sanctuary.”

Mine heritage is unto Me as a lion in the forest: it crieth out against Me; therefore have I hated it.

Mine heritage is unto Me as a speckled bird: the birds round about are against her. Come ye, assemble all the beasts of the field; come to devour.

10 Many shepherds have destroyed My vineyard, they have trodden My portion under foot, they have made My pleasant portion a desolate wilderness. — many shepherds have destroyed my vineyard… this is a metaphor not just applying to the heathens, Nebuchadnezzar and his generals, but often apply to the elders and princes of Israel and Judah; shepherds that destroyed them are from with their own elders, princes or governors, civil or religious;

— the Targum paraphrases it, “many kings slay my people.”

11 They have made it desolate, and being desolate it mourneth unto Me; the whole land is made desolate, because no man layeth it to heart.

12 The despoilers are come upon all high places through the wilderness; for the sword of the Lord shall devour from the one end of the land even to the other end of the land. No flesh shall have peace. — the spoilers are come upon all high places through the wilderness… of Judea; or which lay between Chaldea and Judea, through which the Chaldean army came; called here the “spoilers”, because they spoiled and plundered all places where they came;

— for the sword of the Lord shall devour from the one end; of the land even the other end of the land; the sword of the Chaldeans is called the sword of the Lord, because it was drawn by his order and appointment, and by him to do execution, and the calamity thereof;

— no flesh shall have peace; no inhabitant of Judea shall be in safety, but be exposed to the sword, or to captivity.

13 They have sown wheat, but shall reap thorns; they have put themselves to pain, but shall not profit; and they shall be ashamed of your produce because of the fierce anger of the Lord.

14 “Thus saith the Lord against all Mine evil neighbours, who touch the inheritance which I have caused My people Israel to inherit: Behold, I will pluck them out of their land, and pluck out the house of Judah from among them. — “evil neighbours”: the Egyptians, Philistines, Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Tyre, and Sidon; whom the Lord calls his neighbours, because they were near the land of Canaan, where his people dwelt, his presence, and where the temple was in which he took up his residence; and his “evil” neighbours, because they often distressed and afflicted his people;

— behold, I will pluck them out of their land; cause them to be carried captive into other lands, or be destroyed on their own; see Jeremiah chapters forty six through forty nine: and pluck out the house of Judah from among them; such of the Jews they had formerly carried captive, or who had fled to them upon the Chaldean invasion; these the Lord would cause to come forth from among them, and return them to their own land.

15 And it shall come to pass after I have plucked them out, I will return and have compassion on them, and will bring them back, every man to his heritage and every man to his land. — and will bring them again every man to his heritage; thus, after God had threatened severe judgements upon several countries, he promises of their return from their captivity in the latter days; which probably relates chiefly to their conversion seems to indicate the conversion of the Gentiles in the latter day, when the fullness of them shall be brought in.

16 And it shall come to pass, if they will diligently learn the ways of My people, to swear by My name, ‘The Lord liveth,’ as they taught My people to swear by Baal, then shall they be built in the midst of My people. — then shall they be built in the midst of my people; become part of the building of God’s physical and spiritual government; being laid upon the same foundation of the patriarchs, the prophets and the apostles;

— the Targum says, “and they shall be established in the midst of my people.”

17 But if they will not obey, I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation,” saith the Lord. — I will utterly pluck up and destroy that nation, saith the Lord: root it up from being a nation, strip it of all its privileges and enjoyments, and destroy it with an everlasting destruction; see Zechariah 14:16.

Jeremiah (Ch 9-10)

•November 5, 2021 • Leave a Comment

In the next two chapters, Jeremiah sympathises with the calamities of his people, that they should humble themselves before the mighty hand of God. It begins with an exhortation to hear the word of the Lord, and not to learn the way of the heathens, since their customs were in vain, which lead on to expose their idols, and against the greatness and glory of God.

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Jeremiah 9

1 Oh, that my head were waters and mine eyes a fountain of tears, that I might weep day and night for the slain of the daughter of my people!

Oh, that I had in the wilderness a lodging place for wayfaring men, that I might leave my people, and go from them! For they are all adulterers, an assembly of treacherous men.

“And they bend their tongues like their bow for lies, but they are not valiant for the truth upon the earth; for they proceed from evil to evil, and they know not Me,” saith the Lord. — and they bend their tongues like their bow for lies… their tongues were like bows, and their lying words like arrows, which they directed against persons to their injury; see Psalms 11:2, or, “like their deceitful bow” to which the Targum agrees, “they teach their tongues words of falsehood, they are like to a deceitful bow.”

— the words may be rendered, “they bend their tongues, their bow is a lie” either deceitful, or carries a lie in it, and shoots one out of it.

“Take ye heed every one of his neighbor, and trust ye not in any brother; for every brother will utterly supplant, and every neighbor will walk with slanders.

And they will deceive every one his neighbor, and will not speak the truth. They have taught their tongue to speak lies, and weary themselves to commit iniquity. — they have taught their tongue to speak lies; the tongue, as it were, being almost compelled, as though unwilling to become guilty of so much wickedness, and become so accustomed to lying that they cannot do otherwise; it is as it were natural to them:

— Ephraim compasseth me about with lies, and the house of Israel with deceit; but Judah yet ruleth with God, and is faithful with the saints, Hosea 11:12;

— Ephraim is prone to telling lies, or a chronic liar (more at the end)

Thine habitation is in the midst of deceit; through deceit they refuse to know Me,” saith the Lord.

Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Behold, I will melt them and try them; for how else shall I do for the daughter of My people?

Their tongue is as an arrow shot out; it speaketh deceit: one speaketh peaceably to his neighbor with his mouth, but in heart he lieth in wait.

Shall I not visit them for these things?” saith the Lord. “Shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this?”

10 For the mountains will I take up a weeping and wailing, and for the habitations of the wilderness a lamentation, because they are burned up, so that none can pass through them; neither can men hear the voice of the cattle; both the fowl of the heavens and the beast have fled; they are gone.

11 “And I will make Jerusalem heaps and a den of dragons; and I will make the cities of Judah desolate, without an inhabitant.”

12 Who is the wise man that may understand this? And who is he to whom the mouth of the Lord hath spoken, that he may declare it? For why has the land perished and burned up like a wilderness, that none passeth through? — nobody seems to understand the various symbols and riddles in the book of Ezekiel to put all the puzzles into a cohesive and coherent picture;

— Jews couldn’t understand what or how the house of Israel could have any relevance since the days they went into exile; Christians taught themselves that they have already replaced the Israelites and God’s graceful promises of eternity are now theirs! Hence neither understand the meaning in “The crown of pride, the drunkards of Ephraim, shall be trodden under feet” Isaiah 28:3.

13 And the Lord saith, “Because they have forsaken My law which I set before them, and have not obeyed My voice, neither walked therein,

14 but have walked after the imagination of their own heart, and after the Baalim, which their fathers taught them.”

15 Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: “Behold, I will feed them, even this people, with wormwood and give them water of gall to drink. — the word rendered wormwood here, it seems, signifying an herb which is not only bitter and nauseous, but also noxious; hence the Targum says, “I will bring tribulation upon them, bitter as wormwood:”

— and give them water of gall to drink; meaning either of the entrails of a beast so called, or of the juice of the herb hemlock, as the word is rendered in Hosea 10:4, as poison of a serpent, and so the Targum says, “and I will give them the cup of cursing to drink as the heads of serpents:” signifying that their punishment would be very severe, though just;

— thus they believe in fantasies; of bunnies and eggs, or a Santa ho-ho-ho, or praying to a non existent holy ghost in their foreheads.

16 I will scatter them also among the nations, whom neither they nor their fathers have known; and I will send a sword after them till I have consumed them.” — yes, this enemy is coming from the SOUTH:

Ezekiel 20:45 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
46 “Son of man, set thy face toward the south, and drop thy word toward the south, and prophesy against the forest of the southland.
47 And say to the forest of the south: ‘Hear the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee and every dry tree. The flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
48 And all flesh shall see that I, the Lord, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched.’”
49 Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! They say of me, ‘Doth he not speak parables?’”
Ezekiel 21: And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
2 “Son of man, set thy face toward Jerusalem, and drop thy word toward the holy places, and prophesy against the land of Israel;
3 and say to the land of Israel, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I am against thee, and will draw forth My sword out of his sheath and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked.
4 Seeing then that I will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked, therefore shall My sword go forth out of his sheath against all flesh from the south to the north,
5 that all flesh may know that I, the Lord, have drawn forth My sword out of his sheath. It shall not return any more.’

Q: Who is this enemy from the SOUTH, and it warns “My sword out of his sheath and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked” and should we be curious how such scenarios would be played out?

17 Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “Consider ye, and call for the mourning women, that they may come; and send for skillful women, that they may come.

18 And let them make haste and take up a wailing for us, that our eyes may run down with tears and our eyelids gush out with waters.

19 For a voice of wailing is heard out of Zion: ‘How are we despoiled! We are greatly confounded, because we have forsaken the land, because our dwellings have cast us out.’”

20 Yet hear the word of the Lord, O ye women, and let your ear receive the word of His mouth, and teach your daughters wailing, and every one her neighbor lamentation.

21 For death is come up into our windows, and is entered into our palaces, to cut off the children from without, and the young men from the streets.

22 Speak, “Thus saith the Lord: ‘Even the carcasses of men shall fall as dung upon the open field, and as the handful after the harvestman, and none shall gather them.’”

23 Thus saith the Lord: “Let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, neither let the mighty man glory in his might; let not the rich man glory in his riches. — thus saith the Lord, let not the wise man glory in his wisdom, not in his natural wisdom, or knowledge of natural things: this is often but an appearance of wisdom, but to a true knowledge of God; 

— let not the rich man glory in his riches; these come of the hand of God, and these cannot profit in a day of wrath, nor deliver from death, corporeal, spiritual, or eternal;

— the Targum paraphrases them thus, “thus saith the Lord, let not Solomon the son of David the wise man praise (or please himself) in his wisdom; nor let Samson the son of Manoah the mighty man please himself in his might.”

24 But let him that glorieth glory in this: that he understandeth and knoweth Me, that I am the Lord who exercise lovingkindness, judgement, and righteousness in the earth; for in these things I delight,” saith the Lord.

25 “Behold, the days come,” saith the Lord, “that I will punish all them that are circumcised with the uncircumcised—

26 Egypt, and Judah, and Edom, and the children of Ammon, and Moab, and all that are in the utmost corners, that dwell in the wilderness. For all these nations are uncircumcised, and all the house of Israel are uncircumcised in the heart.” — the house of Judah and the house of Israel are listed among the heathens here.

Jeremiah 10

1 Hear ye the word which the Lord speaketh unto you, O house of Israel. — in previous chapters God’s words were usually directed against Jerusalem, the elders of Judah and priests, but pop here, it is to the O house of Israel;

— but other chapters were also directed at Israel: “Hear ye the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel,” (Jeremiah 2:4,26). So the rest of Jeremiah should be read in this context.

Thus saith the Lord: “Learn not the way of the heathens, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. — of the nations round about them, particularly the Chaldeans, whom the Jews were destined to live in captivity; meaning their religious ways, their ways of worship, their superstition and idolatry, and yet they learn from them; from the Samaritans to the Chaldeans;

— and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; the Chaldeans were addicted to astrology, and attributed to the heavenly bodies a considerable influence over human affairs. This naturally tended to beget a religious dread and awe of those objects: the sun, moon, and planets are said to have been set in the firmament for signs; from the eclipse of the sun to the eclipse of the moon.

For the customs of the people are vain; for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the ax.

They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.

They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not; they must be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them, for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.”

Inasmuch as there is none like unto Thee, O Lord—Thou art great, and Thy name is great in might”

who would not fear Thee, O King of nations? For to Thee doth it appertain, inasmuch as among all the wise men of the nations and in all their kingdoms, there is none like unto Thee. — the Targum renders it, “King of all people;”

— among all the wise men of the nations and in all their kingdoms there is none like unto Thee; no matter where a person searches for a god who might stand a comparison with Yehovah, the quest will be useless: He Yehovah alone is the one object of worship.

But they are altogether brutish and foolish; the stock is a doctrine of vanities.

Silver beaten into plates is brought from Tarshish, and gold from Uphaz, the work of the workman and of the hands of the founder. Blue and purple is their clothing; they are all the work of skillful men.

10 But the Lord is the true God; He is the living God and an everlasting King. At His wrath the earth shall tremble, and the nations shall not be able to abide His indignation. — at His wrath the earth shall tremble, shrinking back in terror before His living wrath, as the children of Israel had experienced at Mount Sinai.

11 “Thus shall ye say unto them: ‘The gods that have not made the heavens and the earth, even they shall perish from the earth and from under these heavens.’”

12 He hath made the earth by His power; He hath established the world by His wisdom, and hath stretched out the heavens by His discretion.

13 When He uttereth His voice, there is a multitude of waters in the heavens; and He causeth the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth. He maketh lightning with rain, and bringeth forth the wind out of His treasuries.

14 Every man is brutish in his knowledge; every founder is confounded by the graven image; for his molten image is falsehood, and there is no breath in them.

15 They are vanity and the work of errors; in the time of their visitation they shall perish. — and the work of errors, of deceit and mockery, causing their worshipers to be mocked and derided when the nothingness of the idols becomes evident; 

— in the time of their visitation they shall perish, that is, when God shall punish the idol-worshippers, the idols themselves shall likewise perish.

16 The portion of Jacob is not like them, for He is the Former of all things; and Israel is the rod of His inheritance; the Lord of hosts is His name.

17 Gather up thy wares out of the land, O inhabitant of the fortress.

18 For thus saith the Lord: “Behold, I will sling out the inhabitants of the land this once, and will distress them, that they may find it so.”

19 Woe is me for my hurt! My wound is grievous; but I said, “Truly this is a grief, and I must bear it.”

20 My tabernacle is despoiled, and all my cords are broken; my children are gone forth from me, and they are no more; there is none to stretch forth my tent any more, and to set up my curtains.

21 For the pastors are become brutish, and have not sought the Lord; therefore they shall not prosper, and all their flocks shall be scattered.

22 Behold, the noise of the clamor is come, and a great commotion out of the north country, to make the cities of Judah desolate, and a den of dragons. — here in Jeremiah, the house of Judah had been constantly warned of an enemy coming out from the North, but in Ezekiel 20-21, the house of Israel had been warned of a yet ‘unknown’ enemy of the future coming from the opposite direction, the South.

23 O Lord, I know that the way of man is not in himself; it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.

24 O Lord, correct me, but with judgment, not in Thine anger, lest Thou bring me to nothing.

25 Pour out Thy fury upon the nations that know Thee not, and upon the families that call not on Thy name; for they have eaten up Jacob, and devoured him and consumed him, and have made his habitation desolate.

~~~

Ephraim is prone to telling lies:

Below are some classic examples of lying and deceit in the house of Ephraim for reflection:

The Gulf of Tonkin incident was a perceived confrontation that led to the United States engaging in the Vietnam War. It involved a falsely claimed clash between ships of North Vietnam and the United States in the waters of the Gulf of Tonkin. The original American report blamed North Vietnam for an attack on the USS Maddox, but the Pentagon Papers, the memoirs of Robert McNamara, and NSA publications from 2005, proved that the US government lied to justify a war against Vietnam. 

The outcome of this deception was the passage by US Congress of the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, which granted President Lyndon Johnson the authority and justification for deploying US forces against “communist aggression”. 

“But I want to say one thing to the American people. I want you to listen to me. I’m going to say this again: I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky. I never told anybody to lie. Not a single time. Never,” Bill Clinton testified before the nation, Jan. 26, 1998. For his deceit, Clinton became the second president in American history impeached by the House of Representatives.

In an August 2002 speech that kicked off the Bush White House administration’s campaign for war against Iraq, Cheney asserted, “Simply stated, there’s no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. There is no doubt he is amassing them to use against our friends, against our allies, and against us.”

In October 2002, the late Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld claimed he had “bullet-proof” evidence that Saddam was tied to Osama bin Laden. And a National Intelligence Estimate said Iraq had “continued its weapons of mass destruction program.”

“However, there is no doubt at all that the development of weapons of mass destruction by Saddam Hussein poses a severe threat not just to the region, but to the wider world.” – Tony Blair, House of Commons, 10 April 2002.

Prime Minister Tony Blair defended himself in 2005: “I have never told a lie. No. I don’t intend to go telling lies to people. I did not lie over Iraq.”

Colin Powell, the former and late Secretary of State and Joint Chiefs of Staff in an interview on CNN’s “State of the Union” on June 7, 2020, called Donald Trump a chronic liar. “The one word I have to use with respect to what he’s been doing for the last several years is the word I would never have used before, never would have used with any of the four presidents I worked for, he lies,” said Colin Powell. “He lies about things. And he gets away with it because people will not hold him accountable.”

Jeremiah (Ch 7-8)

•November 4, 2021 • 1 Comment

We have read of the house of Israel and the house of Judah both have idolatries, but what are they? Perhaps, the following chapters could shed further light giving us more details about what walking after other gods means. (1) Astarte, the queen of heaven; from whom Easter is derived; (2) worshipping of heavenly bodies, especially the Sun, hence professing Christians have shifted the Sabbath from Saturday to Sunday by outlawing the keeping of the Sabbath.

Jeremiah 7

The word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord, saying:

“Stand in the gate of the Lord’S house, and proclaim there this word and say, ‘Hear the word of the Lord, all ye of Judah, who enter in at these gates to worship the Lord! — stand in the gate of the Lord’s house… that is, of the temple, and the court of it. This gate is believed to be the eastern gate, which was the principal gate of all; see Jeremiah 26:2:

— and proclaim there this word, and say; with a loud voice, as follows: hear ye the word of the Lord, all ye of Judah; the inhabitants of the several parts of Judea, which came to the temple to worship; very probably it was a feast day, either the Passover, or Pentecost, or feast of Tabernacles, when all the males in Israel appeared in court:

— that enter in at these gates to worship the Lord; there were seven gates belonging to the court, three on the north, three on the south, and one in the east, the chief of all;

— the names of them were these; on the south side were these three, the watergate, the gate of the firstlings; or the gate of offering, and the gate of kindling;

— on the north were these three, the gate Nitzotz, called also the gate of the song, the gate Korban, sometimes called the gate of women, and Beth Moked;

— and the gate in the east was the gate Nicanor, and this gate was the most frequented; and therefore Jeremiah was ordered to stand here, and deliver his message.

Thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel: Amend your ways and your doings, and I will cause you to dwell in this place.

Trust ye not in lying words, saying, “The temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord, the temple of the Lord are these.” — these were the lying words on which they trusted, and against trusting in which the prophet here solemnly cautions them;

— the three-fold repetition of the words, the temple of the Lord, was, because every Jew was obliged to visit the temple thrice a year. But it seems more likely that they are thus repeated, to express the confident and reiterated boasts of the temple;

— trust ye not in lying words… in the words of the lying prophets, as the Targum, “do not trust in lying words, for the false prophets do not profit you in anything;”

— the Septuagint version is, “trust not in yourselves, in lying words.”

For if ye thoroughly amend your ways and your doings, if ye thoroughly execute judgement between a man and his neighbor,

if ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless, and the widow, and shed not innocent blood in this place, neither walk after other gods to your hurt,

then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, for ever and ever.

“‘Behold, ye trust in lying words that cannot profit.

Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not,

10 and come and stand before Me in this house which is called by My name, and say, “We are delivered” — to do all these abominations?

11 Has this house, which is called by My name, become a den of robbers in your eyes? Behold, even I have seen it, saith the Lord.

12 “‘But go ye now unto My place which was in Shiloh, where I set My name at the first, and see what I did to it because of the wickedness of My people Israel. — but go ye now unto my place, which was in Shiloh, a city in the tribe of Ephraim, on the north of Bethel, and not far from Shechem;

— here were the tabernacle, the ark and altar of the Lord, and the sacrifices; and therefore the tabernacle is called the tabernacle of Shiloh; and here the Lord calls it his place; the place of the house of his Shekinah.

13 And now, because ye have done all these works, saith the Lord, and I spoke unto you, rising up early and speaking, but ye heard not, and I called you, but ye answered not,

14 therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by My name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, as I have done to Shiloh.

15 And I will cast you out of My sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim.’ — as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of Ephraim; or as the Targum says, the ten tribes; so called because Ephraim was their principal tribe and Jeroboam was their first king of the ten tribes;

— as Ephraim were carried captive off into Assyria, so would the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin; who could not expect to fare better than their brethren, who were more in number than they; and both were guilty of the same sins.

16 Therefore pray not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither make intercession to Me; for I will not hear thee.

17 “Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem? — and in the streets of Jerusalem? these words, with what is said next, show the reason why the prophet was forbidden to pray for this people, and the Lord was so provoked with them as to cast them out of his sight;

— and he appeals to the prophet, and to what he saw; for what was done was done not in secret, but openly, in the very streets of the city; by which he might be sufficiently convinced it was what God wanted to do and what he determined to do with them.

18 The children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough to make cakes to the queen of heaven, and to pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may provoke Me to anger. — the whole family involved; the children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough to make cakes to the queen of heaven, the female goddess Ashtoreth, or Astarte, the counterpart of the male idol Baal, in whose honor the cakes, made of honey, fine flour, and other ingredients, bore a round, flat surface to resemble the disk of the moon,

— and to pour out drink-offerings, the libations made as sacrifices, unto other gods that they may provoke Me to anger, the expression implying design on their part, the deliberate intention to arouse His wrath;

— from the queen of heaven, Astarte; to Easter today (more at the end)

19 Do they provoke Me to anger? saith the Lord. Do they not provoke themselves to the confusion of their own faces?

20 Therefore thus saith the Lord God: Behold, Mine anger and My fury shall be poured out upon this place — upon man and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn and shall not be quenched. — behold, mine anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place; as the flood of waters was poured upon the old world, or the shower of fire and brimstone upon Sodom.

22 For I spoke not unto your fathers nor commanded them, in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices.

23 But this thing commanded I them, saying, “Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and ye shall be My people; and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.”

24 But they hearkened not nor inclined their ear, but walked in the counsels and in the imagination of their evil heart, and went backward and not forward. — and went backward, and not forward; they went backwards from the ways of God, and walked not in them. The Targum says, “they turned the back in my worship, and did not put my fear before their face.”

25 Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day, I have even sent unto you all My servants the prophets, daily rising up early and sending them.

26 Yet they hearkened not unto Me nor inclined their ear, but hardened their neck; they did worse than their fathers.’

27 “Therefore thou shalt speak all these words unto them, but they will not hearken to thee; thou shalt also call unto them, but they will not answer thee.

28 But thou shalt say unto them, ‘This is a nation that obeyeth not the voice of the Lord their God, nor receiveth correction. Truth has perished and is cut off from their mouth. — but thou shalt say unto them, this is a nation that obeyeth not the voice of the Lord, their God, being therefore classed with the heathens;

— nor receiveth correction, hardened to the point that all rebukes make no impression upon them; truth is perished, all reliability, all fidelity is lost, and is cut off from their mouth. There is a fine bit of sarcasm in this phrase, for the Jews confessed the Lord (like professing Christians today) with their mouths only, and not with their hearts.

29 “‘Cut off thine hair, O Jerusalem, and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on high places; for the Lord hath rejected and forsaken the generation of His wrath.

30 “‘For the children of Judah have done evil in My sight, saith the Lord. They have set their abominations in the house which is called by My name, to pollute it.

31 And they have built the high places of Tophet, which is in the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire, which I commanded them not, neither came it into My heart. — and they have built the high places of Tophet… where was the idol Moloch; that the parents of the children that were burnt might not hear the cry of them: which is in the valley of the son of Hinnom; a valley near Jerusalem, and lay to the south of it.

32 Therefore behold, the days come, saith the Lord, that it shall no more be called Tophet, nor the Valley of the Son of Hinnom, but the Valley of Slaughter; for they shall bury in Tophet till there be no place.

33 And the carcasses of this people shall be meat for the fowls of the heaven and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall frighten them away.

34 Then will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah and from the streets of Jerusalem the voice of mirth and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride; for the land shall be desolate.

~~~

More on Astarte, Easter:

Easter (which is how you pronounce Ishtar) is originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex. Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary of Old and New Testament Words, in its entry “Easter,” states:

“The term ‘Easter’ is not of Christian origin. It is another form of Astarte, one of the titles of the Chaldean goddess, the queen of heaven. The festival of Pasch [Passover] held by Christians in post-apostolic times was a continuation of the Jewish feast . . . From this Pasch the pagan festival of ‘Easter’ was quite distinct and was introduced into the apostate Western religion, as part of the attempt to adapt pagan festivals to Christianity” (W.E. Vine, 1985).

Ishtar was an ancient Mesopotamian goddess of war, fertility, and sex. She is featured in the Epic of Gilgamesh, and the “Ishtar Gate” was part of Nebuchadnezzar’s Babylon. Her worship involved animal sacrifices; objects made of her sacred stone, lapis lazuli; and temple prostitution.

Superimposed over an image of Ishtar are these words: “This is Ishtar: pronounced ‘Easter.’ From Ishtar the name Easter was derived. It’s well known that Easter was originally the celebration of Ishtar, the Assyrian and Babylonian goddess of fertility and sex. Her symbols (like the egg and the bunny) were and still are fertility and sex symbols.

Back at the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD, Constantine read out the letter that he would subsequently send to churches everywhere: “When the question arose concerning the most holy day of Easter it was decreed by common consent to be expedient, that this festival should be celebrated on the same day by all, in every place… Let us then have nothing in common with … the Jews” sums up one of the key movement for the establishment of Easter to be cerebrated in the Church today.

After Constantine decided to Christianize the Empire, Easter was changed to represent Jesus. And everything Jewish were understood to be totally incompatible with Christianity. But at its roots, Easter is outwardly all about celebrating fertility and sex but inwardly it’s paying homage to a Mesopotamian goddess, the queen of heaven, Ishtar.

Jeremiah 8

1 “‘At that time, saith the Lord, they shall bring out the bones of the kings of Judah, and the bones of his princes, and the bones of the priests, and the bones of the prophets, and the bones of the inhabitants of Jerusalem out of their graves.

And they shall spread them before the sun and the moon and all the host of heaven, whom they have loved, and whom they have served, and after whom they have walked, and whom they have sought, and whom they have worshipped. They shall not be gathered nor be buried: they shall be for dung upon the face of the earth. — worshipping of heavenly bodies are forbidden, Deuteronomy 17:3-5, whose penalty is death;

— a parallel Scripture is in Ezekiel 8:16 “And He brought me into the inner court of the Lord’S house, and behold, at the door of the temple of the Lord, between the porch and the altar, were about five and twenty men with their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshipped the sun toward the east,” thus they worshipped the sun;

— the heads of the twenty-four courses of the priesthood, led by the high priest, making up the “twenty five men” were not only worshipping the sun: they were doing so in the very temple of God, with their backs turned upon the presence of God! (more at the end)

And death shall be chosen rather than life by all the residue of them that remain of this evil family, who remain in all the places whither I have driven them, saith the Lord of hosts.’

“Moreover thou shalt say unto them, ‘Thus saith the Lord: “‘Shall they fall and not arise? Shall he turn away and not return?

Why then has this people of Jerusalem slidden back by a perpetual backsliding? They hold fast deceit, they refuse to return.

I hearkened and heard, but they spoke not aright; no man repented of his wickedness, saying, “What have I done?” Every one turned to his course, as the horse rusheth into the battle.

Yea, the stork in the heaven knoweth her appointed times; and the turtle and the crane and the swallow observe the time of their coming; but My people know not the judgement of the Lord. — as was true in those days, and so much more true today;

— Jews and Christians don’t know the the significance of the events leading to the 70 AD inferno in Jerusalem; why did the Sadducees and Essenes died in the inferno while the Pharisees and Nazarenes escaped?

— Christians don’t know what are the Oracles of God; what are the components; some claim, “we don’t need the oral law” is this true?

— Jews don’t know that the Messiah they look so much for had came, but he went off and will come again; and they will morn for him one day as one morns for his firstborn; from Sabbath to Sabbath, they read the Scriptures diligently but couldn’t identify the second person in Psalm 110:1-5;

— no body seems to understand the various symbols and riddles in the book of Ezekiel to put all the puzzles into a big picture; Jews couldn’t neither do Christians!

— nobody knows who Ephraim is, neither anyone knows about the United States; and who or where her enemy will come from and what her destination is. All are written in a coded language by Ezekiel; hence God says “but My people know not the judgement of the Lord.”

“‘How do ye say, “We are wise, and the law of the Lord is with us”? Lo, certainly in vain made he it; the pen of the scribes is in vain.

The wise men are ashamed; they are dismayed and taken. Lo, they have rejected the word of the Lord: and what wisdom is in them?

10 Therefore will I give their wives unto others, and their fields to them that shall inherit them. For every one from the least even unto the greatest is given to covetousness; from the prophet even unto the priest every one dealeth falsely.

11 For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightingly, saying “Peace, peace,” when there is no peace.

12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush. Therefore shall they fall among them that fall; in the time of their visitation they shall be cast down, saith the Lord.

13 “‘I will surely consume them, saith the Lord. There shall be no grapes on the vine, nor figs on the fig tree, and the leaf shall fade; and the things that I have given them shall pass away from them.’”

14 Why do we sit still? Assemble yourselves, and let us enter into the fortified cities, and let us be silent there. For the Lord our God hath put us to silence, and given us water of gall to drink, because we have sinned against the Lord.

15 We looked for peace, but no good came; and for a time of health, and behold, trouble!

16 The snorting of His horses was heard from Dan; the whole land trembled at the sound of the neighing of His strong ones. For they have come and have devoured the land and all that is in it, the city and those that dwell therein.

17 “For behold, I will send serpents, cockatrices, among you, which will not be charmed, and they shall bite you,” saith the Lord.

18 When I would comfort myself against sorrow, my heart is faint within me.

19 Behold the voice of the cry of the daughter of my people, because of them that dwell in a far country: “Is not the Lord in Zion? Is not her King in her?” “Why have they provoked Me to anger with their graven images and with strange vanities?”

20 “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved!”

21 For the hurt of the daughter of my people am I hurt; I am black; astonishment hath taken hold on me.

22 Is there no balm in Gilead? Is there no physician there? Why then is not the health of the daughter of my people recovered?

~~~

Facing the East, worshipping the Sun:

— the worship of heavenly bodies was against God’s will which Moses had warned the people (Deuteronomy 4:19, 17:3, whose penalty is to be stoned to death, Deuteronomy 17:5 ’till they die). Those 25 men in Ezekiel 8:16 corrupted themselves by worshipping the sun; and so the Targum renders it, “and, lo, they corrupted themselves, worshipping facing the east the sun; their backs toward the temple of the Lord” — they turned their backs against the most holy place; which is an aggravation of their impiety; casting the utmost contempt for God:

Moses’ warnings in Deuteronomy 17

3 And [if you] hath gone and served other gods and worshipped them, either the sun or moon or any of the host of heaven, which I have not commanded, 4 and it be told thee, and thou hast heard of it and inquired diligently, and behold, it be true and the thing certain that such abomination is wrought in Israel, 5 then shalt thou bring forth that man or that woman who has committed that wicked thing unto thy gates, even that man or that woman, and shalt stone them with stones till they die. Deuteronomy 17:3-5

The following quotation show that the first Christians understood the Sabbath but were made forbidden and gathered for worship on Sunday: “Christians should not Judaize and should not be idle on the Sabbath, but should work on that day; they should, however, particularly reverence the Lord’s day and, if possible, not work on it, because they were Christians” (Canon 29 AD 360).

— today, more than 98.5 percent of Christians are honouring the Sun by observing Sunday worship. They have “their backs toward the temple of the Lord and their faces toward the east; and they worshipped the SUN toward the east; whose Godly penalty is to be stoned to death – ’till they die.

— also, following the SUN-worshipping Samaritans, most Church of God Communities are showing their contempt for God by having their “wavesheaf offering” and Pentecost on a Sunday; always on a Sunday. And these are supposedly in God’s Sanctuary, but God says He is a jealous God, so these pretentious Christians could be spewed out of His mouth! A death penalty – ’till they die!

Jeremiah (Ch 5-6)

•November 3, 2021 • Leave a Comment

The following chapters were written around 628 BC, which is about a hundred years after the house of Israel had been exiled to Assyria, when God called upon Jeremiah to deliver his message against the elders of Jerusalem of the house of Israel of an enemy coming out from the north and an impending exile to follow if they continue with all their wickedness and idolatries.

The list of kings of Judah towards the end; in successive reigns, as Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586).

Jeremiah 5

1 “Run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem, and see now and know, and seek in the broad places thereof if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgement, that seeketh the truth, and I will pardon it. — run ye to and fro through the streets of Jerusalem… these are the words of the Lord to Jeremiah to go through the whole city of Jerusalem, every street of it, and that backwards and forwards, not once only, but over and over again;

— and see and seek in the broad places thereof, in the wider streets and intersections of streets, where many people come together, if ye can find a man, if there be any that executeth judgement, carrying out justice and righteousness;

— if he could find one righteous, one who executeth justice, God will grant a pardon to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem.

2 And though they say, ‘The Lord liveth,’ surely they swear falsely.”

3 O Lord, are not Thine eyes upon the truth? Thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; Thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction. They have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return.

4 Therefore I said, “Surely these are poor, they are foolish; for they know not the way of the Lord, nor the judgement of their God. — therefore I said, Surely these are poor, their shepherds are interrupting themselves to voice an objection to the Lord; they are foolish, acting foolishly on account of their ignorance; 

— for they know not the way of the Lord nor the judgement of their God. The elites assume that only the untaught poor are guilty of such depravity, and that a better state of affairs may be expected in the higher ranks of society.

5 I will get me unto the great men, and will speak unto them; for they have known the way of the Lord, and the judgment of their God.” But these have altogether broken the yoke, and burst the bonds. — I will get me unto the great men, and speak unto them… the princes, nobles, and judges, the elders of the people, the scribes and doctors of the law:

— for they have known the way of the Lord, and the judgement of their God; it might be reasonably expected that they had, having had a good education, and being at leisure from worldly business to attend to the law, and the knowledge of it, and whatsoever God had revealed in his word, both in a way of doctrine and duty.

6 Therefore a lion out of the forest shall slay them, and a wolf of the evenings shall despoil them; a leopard shall watch over their cities. Every one that goeth out thence shall be torn in pieces, because their transgressions are many, and their backslidings are increased. — wherefore a lion out of the forest shall slay them and a wolf of the evenings, one of those found in the great steppes and deserts, shall spoil them, a leopard shall watch over their cities, lurking for his prey nearby, the strongest, the most ravenous, and the swiftest of the beasts of prey being chosen as types to represent the formidable character of the Babylonian invaders; 

— every one that goeth out thence shall be torn in pieces, because their transgressions are many, and their backslidings are increased, their acts of rebellion against God had become a great multitude. That is the feature which ever makes sin so reprehensible: it always amounts to a rebellion against God, the Father of all mankind.

7 “How shall I pardon thee for this? Thy children have forsaken Me, and sworn by them that are no gods. When I had fed them to the full, they then committed adultery and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots’ houses. — how shall I pardon thee for this? It would obviously be inconsistent with God’s holiness to overlook the transgressions of Israel, to let their wickedness go unpunished. Thy children have forsaken Me and sworn by them that are no gods, or, more emphatic, “by that which is no god,” worshipping a creature of their own imagination;

— when I had fed them to the full, in distributing the blessings of His bounty, or, “I bound them by the oath of allegiance and loyalty,” but they then committed adultery, transgressing the Sixth Commandment in the most flagrant manner, probably in connection with the idolatrous customs which they accepted, 

— and assembled themselves by troops in the harlots’ houses, rushing forward in companies in their eagerness to commit this beastly sin.

8 They were as fed horses in the morning; every one neighed after his neighbor’s wife.

9 Shall I not visit for these things?” saith the Lord. “And shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this? — shall I not visit for these things, punishing the guilty ones to the limit, saith the Lord, and shall not my soul be avenged on such a nation as this? 

— how could His anger be withheld under such circumstances? The Lord therefore turns to the Chaldeans, calling upon them to carry out His punishment upon Israel.

10 “Go ye up upon her walls and destroy, but make not a full end; take away her battlements, for they are not the Lord’S.

11 For the house of Israel and the house of Judah have dealt very treacherously against Me,” saith the Lord. — for the house of Israel and the house of Judah, the entire nation of God’s chosen people, have dealt very treacherously against Me, saith the Lord, their faithlessness being the Lord’s chief reason for complaint.

12 They have belied the Lord, and said, “It is not He; neither shall evil come upon us, neither shall we see sword nor famine. — they have belied the Lord, denying Jehovah, the God of the covenant, and said, It is not He, insisting that He was not the true and only God;

— neither shall evil come upon us, neither shall we see sword nor famine, thus both denying and challenging the threat of the Lord regarding the punishment which He had threatened for apostasy of every kind.

13 And the prophets shall become wind, and the word is not in them; thus shall it be done unto them.”

14 Therefore, thus saith the Lord God of hosts: “Because ye speak this word, behold, I will make My words in thy mouth fire, and this people wood, and it shall devour them. — wherefore, thus saith the Lord God of hosts, the mighty Captain of the heavenly armies, because ye speak this word, behold, I will make My words in thy mouth fire, Jeremiah being given a sharp and scathing message to the rebellious people whom the Lord here puts far from Him;

— and this people wood, fuel which is easily kindled, and it shall devour them, they would be consumed as a consequence of the denunciation which Jeremiah would make by God’s command.

15 Lo, I will bring a nation upon you from afar, O house of Israel,” saith the Lord. “It is a mighty nation, it is an ancient nation, a nation whose language thou knowest not, neither understandest what they say. — O house of Israel; this saying seems a bit late, since the house of Israel had been in exiled over a hundred years ago, so this renew warning must be prophetic, for the endtime.

16 Their quiver is as an open sepulcher; they are all mighty men.

17 And they shall eat up thine harvest and thy bread, which thy sons and thy daughters should eat; they shall eat up thy flocks and thine herds; they shall eat up thy vines and thy fig trees. They shall impoverish thy fortified cities, wherein thou trusted, with the sword. — and they shall eat up thine harvest, the standing grain, and thy bread, which thy sons and thy daughters should eat, which was intended for their food;

— they shall eat up thy flocks and thine herds; they shall eat up thy vines and thy fig-trees, everything that in any manner yielded food; they shall impoverish thy fenced cities, destroying all of Israel’s proud fortresses, wherein thou trustedst, with the sword.

18 “Nevertheless in those days,” saith the Lord, “I will not make a full end with you. — nevertheless, in those days; this seems futuristic, a prophecy that when this severe punishment strikes the nation, saith the Lord, I will not make a full end with you, He would not yet bring total annihilation upon them. 

19 And it shall come to pass when ye shall say, ‘Why doeth the Lord our God all these things unto us?’ Then shalt thou answer them, ‘As ye have forsaken Me and served strange gods in your land, so shall ye serve strangers in a land that is not yours.’

20 “Declare this in the house of Jacob, and publish it in Judah, saying: — this warning is prophetic; it is meant for our time; or the lost ten tribes, it could be for those who were carried captive into Assyria before this prophecy; it is meant for the house of Israel today, yet it also have a message for the Jews, now in the land of Judea;

21 Hear now this, O foolish people and without understanding, who have eyes and see not, who have ears and hear not: — which have eyes, and see not; which have ears, and hear not; like the idols they served, Psalms 115:4 this is an upbraiding of them with their folly and stupidity, their want of common sense, their blindness and ignorance; notwithstanding they had the means of light and knowledge, the law, and the prophets.

22 Fear ye not Me?” saith the Lord. “Will ye not tremble at My presence, who have placed the sand for the bound of the sea by a perpetual decree, that it cannot pass it; and though the waves thereof toss themselves, yet can they not prevail; though they roar, yet can they not pass over it?

23 But this people hath a revolting and a rebellious heart; they have revolted and gone.

24 Neither say they in their heart, ‘Let us now fear the Lord our God, who giveth rain, both the former and the latter in his season; He reserveth unto us the appointed weeks of the harvest.’

25 Your iniquities have turned away these things, and your sins have withheld good things from you.

26 For among My people are found wicked men; they lie in wait as he that setteth snares; they set a trap, they catch men. — they lay wait as he that setteth snares; or, “they look about”; that is, every man looks in the ways, to see if a man passed by, that he might rob him of what he had; as a man that lays snares, or sets a trap to catch birds.

27 As a cage is full of birds, so are their houses full of deceit; therefore they have become great and have waxed rich. — the Targum renders it, a house or place of fattening. The word is rendered a “basket” in Amos 8:1 and may here design one in which birds taken in snares, or by hawking, were put;

— the Septuagint version, and those that follow it, render it, “a snare”: which agrees with what goes before. It seems to intend a decoy, in which many birds are put to allure others; and, what with them, and those that are drawn in by them.

28 They have waxed fat, they shine; yea, they surpass the deeds of the wicked; they judge not the cause, the cause of the fatherless, yet they prosper; and the right of the needy do they not judge.

29 Shall I not visit for these things?” saith the Lord. “Shall not My soul be avenged on such a nation as this?

30 “An astonishing and horrible thing is committed in the land:

31 The prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests bear rule by their means; and My people love to have it so. And what will ye do in the end thereof? — the prophets prophesied falsely… proclaiming lies, that the people would have peace and prosperity, and not be carried captive into Babylon, as Jeremiah and other prophets of the Lord had predicted:

— these messages are for both the house of Israel, or the lost ten tribes, and the house of Judah, who has returned to dwell in the land of Judea, names the state of Israel.

Jeremiah 6

1 “O ye children of Benjamin, gather yourselves to flee out of the midst of Jerusalem! And blow the trumpet in Tekoa, and set up a sign of fire in Bethhaccerem! For evil appeareth out of the north, and great destruction. — O ye children of Benjamin, the tribe of Benjamin was with the tribe of Judah, and Jerusalem, at least part of it, was in the tribe of Benjamin, and particularly Anathoth, which was Jeremiah’s birth place, was in that tribe; and this could be a reason why the children of Benjamin are so distinctly addressed;

— today, Tekoa is an Israeli settlement in the West Bank, located 20 km northeast of Hebron, 16 km south of Jerusalem; and Bethhaccerem; this place lay between Jerusalem and Tekoa; 

— the trumpets be blown, that it might be heard far and near; so the warning is generally to the inhabitants of Jerusalem;

— during Jeremiah’s time, he warned of an enemy coming from the North, but Ezekiel waned of an enemy coming from the South; so what is it? (more at the end)

I have likened the daughter of Zion to a comely and delicate woman. — the daughter of Zion is a comely and delicate woman; that dwells at home and lives in pleasure, in peace and quietness, in ease and security, in no fear of enemies, or apprehension of danger; and so it describes the secure state of Israel. 

The shepherds with their flocks shall come unto her; they shall pitch their tents against her round about; they shall feed every one in his place.” — the Targum says, “everyone shall help his neighbour.” The sense is, one king or general shall lay siege against a city, or against cities, and so another, until they have consumed and subdued the whole land.

“Prepare ye war against her! Arise, and let us go up at noon. Woe unto us! For the day goeth away, for the shadows of the evening are stretched out.

Arise, and let us go by night, and let us destroy her palaces.”

For thus hath the Lord of hosts said: “Hew ye down trees, and cast a mound against Jerusalem. This is the city to be visited; she is wholly oppression in the midst of her. — hew ye down trees, and cast a mount against Jerusalem: the reason is because there were ditches around the city; and into these they poured in stones, dirt, trees, pieces of wood and so filled them up, and cast up a mount, on which they could raise their batteries, and demolish the walls, making Jerusalem defenceless.

As a fountain casteth out her waters, so she casteth out her wickedness. Violence and spoil are heard in her; before Me continually are grief and wounds.

Be thou instructed, O Jerusalem, lest My soul depart from thee; lest I make thee desolate, a land not inhabited.”

Thus saith the Lord of hosts: “They shall thoroughly glean the remnant of Israel as a vine; turn back thine hand as a grapegatherer into the baskets.”

10 To whom shall I speak and give warning, that they may hear? Behold, their ear is uncircumcised and they cannot hearken; behold, the word of the Lord is unto them a reproach; they have no delight in it. — behold, their ear is uncircumcised, closed against all admonitions by their own carnal-mindedness, and they cannot hearken, owing to the hardness of their hearts, brought on by their stubborn opposition;

— behold, the Word of the Lord is unto them a reproach, a mockery and a derision; they have no delight in it.

11 Therefore I am full of the fury of the Lord; I am weary with holding in. “I will pour it out upon the children abroad, and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged with him that is full of days. — I am weary with holding in, restraint was no longer a virtue; I will pour it out upon the children abroad, those playing in the streets and lanes;

— and upon the assembly of young men together; for even the husband with the wife shall be taken, the aged, the one who is just growing old, with him that is full of days. Thus the sentence of the Lord would strike all classes of people and every age without exception, the whole nation being included in the outpouring of His wrath.

12 And their houses shall be turned unto others, with their fields and wives together; for I will stretch out My hand upon the inhabitants of the land,” saith the Lord.

13 “For from the least of them even unto the greatest of them, every one is given to covetousness; and from the prophet even unto the priest, every one dealeth falsely. — from the prophet even unto the priest everyone dealeth falsely; the false prophet, as the Septuagint and other versions; the priest of Baal, both acted deceitfully; the one in prophesying lies to the people, the other in drawing them off from the pure worship of God;

— the Targum says, “from the scribe to the priest” from the lowest order of teachers to the highest in ecclesiastical office; the whole shows a most general and dreadful corruption.

14 They have healed also the hurt of the daughter of My people slightingly, saying, ‘Peace, peace,’ when there is no peace.

15 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? Nay, they were not at all ashamed, neither could they blush. Therefore they shall fall among them that fall; at the time that I visit them they shall be cast down,” saith the Lord.

16 Thus saith the Lord: “Stand ye in the highways and see, and ask for the old paths, where is the good way; and walk therein, and ye shall find rest for your souls. But they said, ‘We will not walk therein.’

17 Also I set watchmen over you, saying, ‘Hearken to the sound of the trumpet!’ But they said, ‘We will not hearken.’

18 Therefore hear, ye nations, and know, O congregation, what is among them. — what is among them; what sins and transgressions are committed by them; which were the cause of the Lord’s threatening them with sore judgements, and bringing them upon them; so the Targum says “and let the congregation of Israel know their sins.”

19 Hear, O earth: Behold, I will bring evil upon this people, even the fruit of their thoughts, because they have not hearkened unto My words nor to My law, but rejected it. — even the fruit of their thoughts; the Targum renders it, “the retribution or reward of their works.”

20 To what purpose cometh there to Me incense from Sheba, and the sweet cane from a far country? Your burnt offerings are not acceptable, nor your sacrifices sweet unto Me.” — your burnt offerings are not acceptable nor your sacrifices sweet unto Me; because the Lord was not deceived by outward appearances which were not in agreement with the true condition of the heart.

21 Therefore thus saith the Lord: “Behold, I will lay stumbling blocks before this people, and the fathers and the sons together shall fall upon them; the neighbor and his friend shall perish.”

22 Thus saith the Lord: “Behold, a people cometh from the north country, and a great nation shall be raised from the sides of the earth. — during Jeremiah’s time, he warned of an enemy coming from the North, but more relevant for us today, Ezekiel waned of an enemy coming from the South; so what is it? (more at the end)

— and a great nation shall be raised; that is, by the Lord, who would stir them up to this undertaking; the Targum says, “many people shall come openly.”

23 They shall lay hold on bow and spear; they are cruel and have no mercy. Their voice roareth like the sea; and they ride upon horses set in array as men for war against thee, O daughter of Zion.” — they shall lay hold on bow and spear… that is, everyone of them should be furnished with both these pieces of armour, that they might be able to fight near and afar off; they had bows to shoot arrows at a distance, and spears to strike with when near. 

24 We have heard the fame thereof; our hands wax feeble. Anguish hath taken hold of us, and pain as of a woman in travail.

25 Go not forth into the field nor walk by the way, for the sword of the enemy and fear is on every side. — and fear is on every side; all round the city, being encompassed by the Babylon army: or, the enemy’s sword “is fear on every side”; causes fear in all parts round the city;

— the Targum says, “because the sword of the enemy kills those who are gathered round about;” or on every side.

26 O daughter of my people, gird thee with sackcloth, and wallow thyself in ashes. Make thee mourning, as for an only son, most bitter lamentation; for the despoiler shall suddenly come upon us.

27 “I have set thee as a tower and a fortress among My people, that thou mayest know and try their way.

28 They are all grievous revolters, walking with slanders; they are brass and iron; they are all corrupters.

29 The bellows are burned, the lead is consumed by the fire; the founder melteth in vain, for the wicked are not plucked away.

30 Reprobate silver shall men call them, because the Lord hath rejected them.”

~~~

More on a prophecy of an “enemy” coming from the SOUTH:

Ezekiel 20:45 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
46 “Son of man, set thy face toward the south, and drop thy word toward the south, and prophesy against the forest of the southland.
47 And say to the forest of the south: ‘Hear the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee and every dry tree. The flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
48 And all flesh shall see that I, the Lord, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched.’”
49 Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! They say of me, ‘Doth he not speak parables?’”
Ezekiel 21: And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
2 “Son of man, set thy face toward Jerusalem, and drop thy word toward the holy places, and prophesy against the land of Israel;
3 and say to the land of Israel, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I am against thee, and will draw forth My sword out of his sheath and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked.
4 Seeing then that I will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked, therefore shall My sword go forth out of his sheath against all flesh from the south to the north,
5 that all flesh may know that I, the Lord, have drawn forth My sword out of his sheath. It shall not return any more.’

Q: Who is this enemy from the SOUTH, and it warns “My sword out of his sheath and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked” and should we be curious how such scenarios would be played out?

Jeremiah (Ch 3-4)

•November 3, 2021 • Leave a Comment

In Chapter 2 (Jeremiah 2:2), God’s words were directed against Jerusalem, the elders of Judah and priests: “Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem,” but later in the chapter it was also directed at Israel: “Hear ye the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel,” (Jeremiah 2:4,26). So Chapter 3 continues in that context.

Rashi is the acronym for Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, a well respected medieval French rabbi and author of a comprehensive commentary on the Hebrew Bible and the Talmud; hence his opinion is often quoted here.

Jeremiah 3

1 “They say, ‘If a man put away his wife, and she go from him and become another man’s, shall he return unto her again? Shall not that land be greatly polluted?’ But thou hast played the harlot with many lovers; yet return again to Me,” saith the Lord. — but thou hast played the harlot with many lovers, none of them her lawful husband; yet, in spite of the fact that it is not in accordance with legal regulations, return to Me, saith the Lord, for He was ready to show mercy even under such adverse conditions.

“Lift up thine eyes unto the high places, and see where hast thou not been lain with. By the wayside hast thou sat for them, as the Arabian in the wilderness; and thou hast polluted the land with thy whoredoms and with thy wickedness. — and see where thou hast not been lien with; see if there is a hill or mountain or any high place, where thou hast not committed idolatry;

— their harlotry was so notorious, and the facts and instances so many, there was no denying it; every hill and mountain witnessed to their idolatry;

— to which the Targum says, “see where thou hast not joined thyself to worship idols,” in the ways hast thou sat for them; for the idolaters, waiting for them, to join in their idolatries as harlots used to sit by the wayside to solicit their lovers.

Therefore the showers have been withheld, and there hath been no latter rain. And thou had a whore’s forehead; thou refused to be ashamed. — the showers have been withdrawn according to God’s warning, Leviticus 26:19Deuteronomy 28:23-24; that is, droughts were sent upon their land as a punishment in a judgement against her.

Wilt thou not from this time cry unto Me, ‘My Father, Thou art the guide of my youth? — Rashi: will you not from now: if only you repent of your evil and call me “My Father.” If you do so, will your Lord bear a grudge forever for what you have sinned? Will He keep it to eternity? He will not keep it;

— thou art the Guide of my youth? She uses the endearing term “Companion of my youth,” in speaking to the Lord, as though to win Him back.

Will He reserve His anger for ever? Will He keep it to the end?’ Behold, thou hast spoken, and done evil things as thou couldest.” — the Targum says, “is it possible that thy sins should be kept for thee for ever, or the stroke (of punishment) be strengthened upon thee to the end?”

The Lord said also unto me in the days of Josiah the king: “Hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? She hath gone up upon every high mountain and under every green tree, and there hath played the harlot. — hast thou seen that which backsliding Israel hath done? the ten tribes; that is, hast thou not heard? or dost thou not know the idolatry of the ten tribes, which was the cause of their captivity?

— for the facts, or the idolatrous actions of the ten tribes, were not done in Josiah’s and Jeremiah’s time; for they were carried captive in the sixth year of Hezekiah, ninety years or more before Jeremiah began to prophesy, and their idolatry was before their captivity, and therefore the house of Judah should have taken note, as a warning, and stopped following the path that the house of Israel had taken, least they should also be taken into captivity.

And I said after she had done all these things, ‘Return thou unto Me.’ But she returned not, and her treacherous sister Judah saw it. — and I said after she had done all these things, these were the thoughts which filled the Lord’s heart. Turn thou unto Me, but the northern kingdom consistently rejecting the Lord’s call; and though her sister Judah saw it, being influenced by Israel’s evil example, she treacherously rejected any return.

And I saw that for all the causes for which backsliding Israel committed adultery, I had put her away and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also. — the Targum says, “I caused them to go into captivity, as those that give a bill of divorce (to their wives) and dismiss them:”

— yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not: committed idolatry and offended the Lord, nor stood in awe of his judgements; but went and played the harlot; committed idolatry, as the ten tribes did, taking no warning by what befell them.

And it came to pass, because she made so light of her whoredom, that she defiled the land and committed adultery with stones and with stocks. — and committed adultery with stones and with stocks; that is, with images made of stone and wood, which they served and worshipped as gods; and is the adultery or idolatry they are charged with, and by which the land was defiled;

— the Targum says, “she erred or committed idolatry with the worshippers of stone and wood.”

10 And yet for all this her treacherous sister Judah hath not turned unto Me with her whole heart, but feignedly,” saith the Lord. — there was a show of reformation in Josiah’s time, but it was but a outward show; there was no true, hearty cordial repentance for the sin of idolatry, only a feigned one;

— there was an outward reformation, but inwardly the desires of the heart were to continue their idolatry; though Josiah was a good king, with a few others, were hearty in its reformation, the greater part of the people played the hypocrites;

— Rashi: but falsely: Josiah’s generation would show themselves as righteous although the others were wicked. They would make forms of pagan deities on the inside of their doors, half on this door and half on this one, and when the destroyers of idols would inspect, the door would be open, and they would not notice it.

— Rashi is the acronym for Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, a well respected medieval French rabbi and author of a comprehensive commentary on the Hebrew Bible and the Talmud.

11 And the Lord said unto me, “The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah. — the backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah; that is, was comparatively more righteous of the two; though neither of them could vindicate their conduct, or justify themselves before God;

— Judah was more to blame because after Israel committed idolatry and was carried captive, Judah took no warning, but fell into the same trap; and in Manasseh’s time committed greater idolatries than ever Israel did; and more than even the Amorites or other heathen nations had done, 2 Kings 21:6;

12 Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say: “‘Return, thou backsliding Israel,’ saith the Lord, ‘and I will not cause Mine anger to fall upon you; for I am merciful,’ saith the Lord, ‘and I will not keep anger for ever. — and I will not cause Mine anger to fall upon you, not continue to frown upon them in wrath and displeasure; for I am merciful, saith the Lord, preferring to show grace and mercy rather than indignation.

13 Only acknowledge thine iniquity: that thou hast transgressed against the Lord thy God, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed My voice,’ saith the Lord. — only acknowledge thine iniquity, freely confessing her transgressions and her guilt, that thou hast transgressed against the Lord, thy God, against whom in the last analysis every sin is directed;

— Rashi: and spreading her private parts to strangers under every leafy tree, wandering back and forth in her harlotry, and have not obeyed My voice, saith the Lord.

14 ‘Turn, O backsliding children,’ saith the Lord, ‘for I am married unto you; and I will take you, one from a city and two from a family, and I will bring you to Zion. — the Targum says, “for I am well pleased with you;” to which Rashi adds “because I am your Lord, and it is not my honour to leave you in the hand of my enemies.”

15 And I will give you pastors according to Mine heart, who shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.’ — and I will give you good shepherds, leaders in both the spiritual and the civil domain, as Zerubbabel and Nehemiah, according to Mine own heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding.

16 “And it shall come to pass when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days,” saith the Lord, “they shall say no more, ‘The ark of the covenant of the Lord.’ Neither shall it come to mind, neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it, neither shall that be done any more. — Rashi: they will no longer say, “The ark of the Lord’s covenant”: For your entire assembly will be holy, and I will dwell therein as though it were an ark;

— in the days when Israelites would be gathered; the sense is, that worship belonging to it, shall cease, Christ having came and been sacrificed, who was the substance of what the ark and all other rites did and a shadow for a time; and even during the Millennium, when there would have Passover and other Feasts with all the rites and ceremonies, they are only seen as memorial;

— neither shall that be done any more; the Targum paraphrases the last clause, “neither shall they make war with it any more.”

17 At that time they shall call Jerusalem the Throne of the Lord, and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of the Lord, to Jerusalem; neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart. —

18 In those days the house of Judah shall walk with the house of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers. — in those days the two houses of Israel shall walk together, all true Israelites being united in the land of Israel, 

— and they shall come together out of the land of the North, from all the countries of the dispersion, to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers, to enjoy their blessings together.

19 “But I said, ‘How shall I put thee among the children and give thee a pleasant land, a goodly heritage of the hosts of nations?’ And I said, ‘Thou shalt call Me “My Father,” and shalt not turn away from Me.’ — but I said, how shall I put thee among the host of other children, and give thee a pleasant land, a goodly heritage compared to all the other hosts of nations? 

— and I said, thou shall call Me, My Father, returning once more to the true God; and shall not turn away from Me, fully restored to the favor of Yehovah.

20 Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel,” saith the Lord. — surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, forsaking the companion of her youth, so have ye dealt treacherously with Me, O house of Israel, saith the Lord. Upon this final accusation of the Lord the sorrow of the people and their confession of sins is brought out with dramatic intensity;

— emphasis here is the house of Israel, the lost ten tribes; but could also include the house of Judah, for they committed the same sins and share the same destination.

21 A voice was heard upon the high places, weeping and supplications of the children of Israel; for they have perverted their way, and they have forgotten the Lord their God. — again, the emphasis here is the house of Israel, who have perverted their ways, went into captivity and now known as the lost ten tribes;

— here at least of a contrast to the house of Judah who had always remember the Sabbath, thus always known as God’s people to the outside world, and were never considered lost as the house of Israel is.

22 “Return, ye backsliding children, and I will heal your backslidings.” “Behold, we come unto Thee, for Thou art the Lord our God. — the Targum says, “I will forgive you when ye return;”

— and I will heal your backslidings; that is, I will forgive your sins; sins are the breaking of God’s commandments, and the wounds that resulted from it; and pardoning them is healing them.

23 Truly in vain is salvation hoped for from the hills and from the multitude of mountains. Truly in the Lord our God is the salvation of Israel. — truly, in vain they awaited salvation from the hills and the mountains where they worshipped idols there, but it is a delusion and a snare to expect help from them; for truly, in the Lord our God, is the salvation of Israel; He alone can bring about the deliverance of His people.

24 For shame hath devoured the labor of our fathers from our youth — their flocks and their herds, their sons and their daughters. — the idolatry with which they occupied themselves and had turned themselves into a shameful thing from the days of their fathers in their youth; the idols, whose worship brought shame and disgrace upon themselves;

— because of the iniquity of idols worship, their toil of the flocks and herds were pillaged, or as a steady stream of sacrifices, but their worship also brought down by which their children were torn from them; or that evils have befallen upon their sons and daughters.

25 We lie down in our shame, and our confusion covereth us; for we have sinned against the Lord our God, we and our fathers, from our youth even unto this day, and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God.” — their consciences for the sins against God have surrounded them and filled them with shame, from the days of their fathers, from their youth even unto this day, and have not obeyed the voice of the Lord, our God;

— a full and unequivocal confession of sins, a complete acknowledgement of guilt, is the first step in true repentance; he that covereth his sins shall not prosper; but whosoever confesseth and forsaketh them shall have mercy.

Jeremiah 4

The first two verses of this chapter seem to be closely connected with the preceding, being directed to Israel, the ten tribes, by way of reply to their compliance with God’s call, encouraging them to keep and execute their resolution. The rest of the chapter concerns Judah and Jerusalem.

1 “If thou wilt return, O Israel,” saith the Lord, “return unto Me; and if thou wilt put away thine abominations out of My sight, then shalt thou not be removed. — if you return to Me, O Israel, you shall not be exiled;

— and if you remove your detestable things, you will return to your former glory and greatness.

And thou shalt swear, ‘The Lord liveth,’ in truth, in judgement, and in righteousness; and the nations shall bless themselves in Him, and in Him shall they glory.” — and thou shalt swear, the Lord liveth, in truth, not in hypocrisy; and in righteousness, in a just cause and with genuine uprightness of heart;

— and the nations under the influence of this confession shall bless Him, and in Him shall they be glorified, thereby becoming partakers of the blessings which were promised to the patriarchs.

For thus saith the Lord to the men of Judah and Jerusalem: “Break up your fallow ground, and sow not among thorns. — unless the fallow ground is broken up, it will be no better than sowing among thorns;

— and unless the hearts of men are opened to God, they will not attend to the things that are spoken; preaching and eating the word will be like sowing among thorns; the cares of this world, the deceitfulness of riches, are comparable to thorns.

Circumcise yourselves to the Lord, and take away the foreskins of your heart, ye men of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem, lest My fury come forth like fire, and burn that none can quench it, because of the evil of your doings. — lest my fury come forth like fire; to which the wrath of God is sometimes compared, Nahum 1:6 and is sometimes signified by a furnace and lake of fire, even his eternal wrath and vengeance.

“Declare ye in Judah and publish in Jerusalem, and say, ‘Blow ye the trumpet in the land!’ Cry, gather together and say, ‘Assemble yourselves, and let us go into the fortified cities!’ — declare ye in Judah, announcing it, making it known widely and publish in Jerusalem and say, Blow ye the trumpet in the land, as a signal calling the inhabitants to arms; 

— cry, gather together, and say, rather, “cry fully,” that is, with a loud voice, shouting; assemble yourselves and let them go into the fortified cities behind their strongest fortresses.

Set up the standard toward Zion. Retire, stay not! For I will bring evil from the north, and a great destruction.” — set up the standard toward Zion, raising their banners as a signal to make the city of God their refuge; retire, stay not, but flee, do not try to make a stand;

— for I will bring evil from the North, from Babylon, followed by a great destruction.

The lion has come up from his thicket (thick wood), and the destroyer of the nations is on his way. He has gone forth from his place to make thy land desolate; and thy cities shall be laid waste, without an inhabitant. — the lion is come up from his thicket… meaning Nebuchadnezzar from Babylon who is compared to a lion for his strength, fierceness and cruelty; see Jeremiah 50:17;

— he is gone forth from his place, to make thy land desolate; from Babylon, where his royal palace was, in order to lay waste the land of Judea; and he is represented as being on the road to strike the inhabitants of Judea with great terror, their destruction being determined and certain.

For this, gird you with sackcloth, lament and howl; for the fierce anger of the Lord is not turned back from us. — for the fierce anger of the Lord . . . although Josiah repented wholeheartedly, others were not (II Kings 23:26)…“the Lord did not turn back from his great wrath… because of all the provocations that Manasseh had provoked Him.”

“And it shall come to pass at that day,” saith the Lord, “that the heart of the king shall perish, and the heart of the princes; and the priests shall be astonished, and the prophets shall wonder.” — Rashi: and it shall be on that day: On the day of Josiah they will wonder why so much befell him, for they do not know that his generation did not repent properly. When he came to abolish idolatry, what did the scorners of the generation do? They would engrave an image of a pagan deity on their doors, half of it on this door and half of it on this door. When he would open it, it was not discernible, and when he went away from there, he would close it, and it would join together;

— that the heart of the king shall perish; meaning Zedekiah king of Judah, who should be in the utmost fright and consternation, not knowing what to do, being devoid both of wisdom and courage; see Jeremiah 39:4;

— and the heart of the princes; who being seized with the same panic, and at their wits’ end, would not be able to give any advice and counsel to the king; so that the people would have no help from the king and his nobles, in whom they put their confidence.

10 Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! Surely Thou hast greatly deceived this people and Jerusalem, saying, ‘Ye shall have peace,’ whereas the sword reacheth unto the soul.” — then said I, Ah, Lord God! The Hebrew word, Aha, is a word expressive both of admiration and lamentation;

11 At that time shall it be said to this people and to Jerusalem: “A dry wind of the high places in the wilderness toward the daughter of My people — toward the daughter of My people, the children of God’s chosen nation, not to fan nor to cleanse, not the gentle breeze which ordinarily carried off the chaff as the threshed grain was winnowed;

— the Targum says, “as the south wind upon the heads of floods of water in the wilderness, so is the way of the congregation of my people; but rather the north wind is designed, since that is a dry one, and the south wind a moist one; and the rather, since this wind intends Nebuchadnezzar and his army, which should come from Babylon, from the north.

12 even a full wind from those places shall come unto Me. Now also will I give sentence against them.” — a wind full of those punishments which God had threatened, and determined to bring upon this people, and would not turn from, nor repent of: and the phrase “shall come unto me.”

13 Behold, he shall come up as clouds, and his chariots shall be as a whirlwind. His horses are swifter than eagles! Woe unto us, for we are despoiled! — the metaphor denotes the swiftness of the lion, Nebuchadnezzar’s coming, and the multitudes he should come with, and that darkness and distress he should bring with him upon the house of Judah.

14 O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness, that thou mayest be saved. How long shall thy vain thoughts lodge within thee? — O Jerusalem, wash thine heart from wickedness, for a mere outward change of behavior is not sufficient; heart and mind and soul must undergo a complete transformation,

— that thou may be saved, for only he who truly repents may partake of the Lord’s deliverance. How long shall thy vain thoughts lodge within thee? It was high time for all sinful thoughts to be dismissed.

15 For a voice declareth from Dan, and publisheth affliction from Mount Ephraim: — and publish affliction from Mount Ephraim: which lay on the border of the tribe of Benjamin, and near to Jerusalem; and this publication represents the enemy as advancing nearer, and being just at hand;

— the word for “affliction” signifies “iniquity” and it denotes that the affliction spoken of, which is the destruction of the house of Judah, and their captivity in Babylon, were occasioned by their sins. Some think that Dan and Ephraim are mentioned, because of the calves that were worshipped in Dan and in Bethel, which was in the tribe of Ephraim;

— thus the Targum paraphrases the words, “for the voice of the prophets that prophesied against them that go into captivity, because they worshipped the calf, which is at Dan; and they that bring evil tidings, shall come upon them, because they served the image which Micah set up in the mount of the house of Ephraim.”

— Q: who was Micah? Wasn’t he Jeroboam? Perhaps Jeroboam set the alters in Dan and Bethel, but a later Micah came and set up another idol in one of the mountains of Ephraim, hence Mount Ephraim?

16 “Make ye mention to the nations. Behold, publish against Jerusalem that watchers come from a far country and give out their voice against the cities of Judah. — the Targum says, “the army of a rapacious people, like the grape gatherers, come from a far country:”

— and give out their voice against the cities of Judah; threaten the ruin of them; blow the trumpet, the alarm of war; give the orders to besiege; and being sure of victory, triumph before the attack is made.

17 As keepers of a field are they against her round about, because she hath been rebellious against Me,” saith the Lord.

18 “Thy way and thy doings have procured these things unto thee: this is thy wickedness, because it is bitter, because it reacheth unto thine heart.”

19 My heart, my heart! I am pained at my very heart! My heart maketh a noise in me; I cannot hold my peace, because thou hast heard, O my soul, the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war. — I writhe in pain; an expression of writhing in pain and shuddering;

— my heart makes a noise in me; palpitates, beats and throbs, being filled with fears and dread, with sorrow and concern, at what was coming on; it represents an aching heart, all in disorder and confusion;

— the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war, the shout of battle, as the enemy advances to subdue the land of Israel.

20 Destruction upon destruction is cried, for the whole land is despoiled; suddenly are my tents despoiled, and my curtains in a moment. — suddenly are my tents spoiled, and my curtains in a moment: meaning either the armies of his people, which dwelt in tents, and were destroyed at once; or the cities, towns, and habitations of his countrymen, which he compares to tents, as being easily beat down or overthrown;

— and so the Targum interprets it of cities; and the prophet seems to intimate that this destruction would reach to Anathoth, where his tent; cottage, and curtains were. So sudden destruction some times comes, when men are crying “Peace, Peace.”

21 How long shall I see the standard, and hear the sound of the trumpet?

22 “For My people are foolish, they have not known Me; they are sottish children, and they have no understanding. They are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.” — they are wise to do evil; cunning inventors of evil things, crafty schemers that way, may be full of all wicked subtlety,

— and expert at over reaching and defrauding their brethren; when professors of religion especially ought to be wise unto that which is good, and simple concerning evil;

23 I beheld the earth, and lo, it was without form, and void; and the heavens, and they had no light.

24 I beheld the mountains, and lo, they trembled, and all the hills moved lightly. — I beheld the mountains, and, lo, they trembled, because the very foundations of the earth were shaken, 

— and all the hills moved, as heavy bodies which shake with the slightest disturbance.

25 I beheld, and lo, there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens had fled. — and all the birds of the heavens had fled; at the sound of the trumpet, the alarm of war; at the blackness of the heavens, filled with smoke; at the barrenness of the earth, there being no seed sown; and the earth, as at the first creation, having no herb, nor trees bearing fruit, and so no food for birds; and therefore they went elsewhere, both wild and tame.

26 I beheld, and lo, the fruitful place was a wilderness, and all the cities thereof were broken down at the presence of the Lord and by His fierce anger. — and behold, the fruitful field: the land, planted with all good like a forest, has become like a desert.

27 For thus hath the Lord said: “The whole land shall be desolate; yet will I not make a full end. — yet will I not make a full end; God would not bring about a total annihilation at this time.

28 For this shall the earth mourn, and the heavens above be black, because I have spoken it; I have purposed it and will not repent, neither will I turn back from it.

29 The whole city shall flee for the noise of the horsemen and bowmen; they shall go into thickets and climb up upon the rocks; every city shall be forsaken, and not a man dwell therein. — the whole city, or, “every city,” all the cities of the land, shall flee for the noise of the horsemen and bowmen as the invading army draws near; 

— they shall go into thickets, their hiding-places, and climb up upon the rocks, seeking refuge before the attacking hordes; every city shall be forsaken and not a man dwell therein.

30 And when thou art despoiled, what wilt thou do? Though thou clothest thyself with crimson, though thou deckest thee with ornaments of gold, though thou rendest thy face with painting, in vain shalt thou make thyself fair. Thy lovers will despise thee; they will seek thy life. — though thou clothest thyself with crimson, in garments of the most expensive material, though thou deckest thee with ornaments of gold, in decking herself for the purpose of coquetting with heathen nations;

— though thou rentest thy face with painting, applying antimony black to the eyelids, in order to increase the luster of the eyes, a custom still followed by harlots and vain women, all arts exercised to procure the aid of foreign nations would be useless; thy lovers will despise thee, no longer attracted by such artifices, they will seek thy life.

31 For I have heard a voice as of a woman in travail, and the anguish as of her that bringeth forth her first child, the voice of the daughter of Zion that bewaileth herself, that spreadeth her hands, saying, ‘Woe is me now, for my soul is wearied because of murderers!’ — for I have heard a voice as of a woman in travail and the anguish as of her that bringeth forth her first child, heartrending wails and moans, the voice of the daughter of Zion, of the Lord’s own chosen people, that bewaileth herself, that spreadeth her hands, saying, panting in her agony;

— Woe is me now! for my soul is as one who yields to murderers, unable to withstand any longer. Such is the usual fate of men who disregard the warnings and pleadings of the Lord: when it is too late, they begin to mourn and lament, bewailing their fate. But as far as God is concerned, love is still with Him even in the height of His anger.

Jeremiah (Ch 1-2)

•November 1, 2021 • Leave a Comment

Around 629 BC, which is about a hundred years after the house of Israel had been exiled to Assyria, the words of the Lord came to Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah; hence Jeremiah is the general title of this prophecy, and includes all his discourses and sermons; and designs not in Jeremiah’s own words, but the words of the Lord which were put into his mouth, and he delivered under divine inspiration.

The Septuagint version renders it, “the word of God”; the Targum says, “the words of the prophecy of Jeremiah;” who is described by his descent and parentage, “the son of Hilkiah.” This Hilkiah could be the same high priest, who in the days of king Josiah, of the southern house of Judah, found the book of the law.

The Targum is another source of the Bible, much like the Masoretic Text and the Septuagint. The Targum was started by Ezra for those returning from the Babylon exile and for these returnees they could only understand the Scriptures in Aramaic. Hence the Targum is as if Ezra is speaking to us from the Hebrew Bible quoted.

Jeremiah 1

1 The words of Jeremiah the son of Hilkiah, of the priests who were in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin, — Jeremiah was of a priestly family; also a Levite, but he lived in Anathoth in the land of Benjamin; Jerusalem was designated to Benjamin, not Judah, which is further south, centred around Bethlehem;

— to be more specific, Anathoth was a city about three miles north of Jerusalem in the tribe of Benjamin, but designated and belonged to the priests, Joshua 21:18.

to whom the word of the Lord came in the days of Josiah the son of Amon, king of Judah, in the thirteenth year of his reign. — in the thirteenth year of his reign: in the twenty first of Josiah’s age, for he began to reign when he was eight years old, and he reigned eighteen years after, for he reigned in all thirty one years; and it was five years after this that the book of the law was found by Hilkiah the high priest;

— king Josiah was said to have reigned 640–609 BC; so the thirteenth year of his reign would be around 628 BC.

It came also in the days of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah, king of Judah, unto the end of the eleventh year of Zedekiah the son of Josiah, king of Judah, unto the carrying away of Jerusalem captive in the fifth month. — and it came also in the days of Jehoiakim (reign: 609–598 BC), the son of Josiah king of Judah… in the beginning of his reign, and in the fourth year of his reign; see Jeremiah 25:1.

Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,

“Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee, and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” — before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee not merely by his omniscience, but knows Jeremiah before his conception and birth; in the sense the Lord knows those that are his.

Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! Behold, I cannot speak, for I am a child.” — then said I, Ah, Lord God!…. the word אהה, “Ah” is used in distress and grief, showing that the prophet was troubled and uneasy at his call, and would gladly have been excused on the following account;

— behold, I cannot speak; or, “I know not how to speak” properly, politely and eloquently, especially before great personages, kings and princes, and the citizens of Jerusalem; a similar excuse Moses made, Exodus 4:10;

— the Targum says, “I know not to prophesy: for I am a child”; meaning either in knowledge and understanding, or in years; not a mere child, but a “junior” as the Septuagint version renders it: a “young man.”

— the Targum is another source of the Bible. Started by Ezra for those returning from Babylon and for these returnees they could only understand in Aramaic; hence the Targum is as if Ezra is speaking to us from the verses quoted.

But the Lord said unto me, “Say not, ‘I am a child,’ for thou shalt go to all whom I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak. — for thou shall go to all that I shall send thee; either to “every place”, as the Targum paraphrases: “to all persons to whom” he should be sent;

— or as the Septuagint renders the words; or “to all things for which” he should send him. The sense is, that he should go everywhere, and to every person, and on every errand and message he should be sent unto and with.

Be not afraid of their faces, for I am with thee to deliver thee,” saith the Lord. — be not afraid of their faces… their stern looks, their frowning brows, and angry countenances, which would threaten him with destruction and death;

— for I am with thee, to deliver thee, saith the Lord; out of their hands, when in the most imminent danger. 

Then the Lord put forth His hand and touched my mouth. And the Lord said unto me, “Behold, I have put My words in thy mouth. — behold, I have put my words in thy mouth; by the seeing of this symbolical action in his vision, and the hearing of these words, Jeremiah could not but be assured that he should be able to speak in the proper language of a prophet.

10 See, I have this day set thee over the nations and over the kingdoms to root out and to pull down, and to destroy and to throw down, to build and to plant.” — to root out, and to pull down, and to destroy, and to throw down; that is, to foretell that such a kingdom and nation should be rooted out;

— as a tree or plant that is plucked up by the roots; and that such an one should be pulled, and thrown down, and destroyed, as may be understood of the destruction of the Jews by Nebuchadnezzar, of their temple, city, and nation;

— to build, and to plant, the royal family of the house of David; which applied to the planting of Jewish princesses to Ireland;

— the destruction of Zedekiah’s Pharez line; to the planting of the Zarah line ruling in the British Isles! (for more see “Judah’s Sceptre and Joseph’s Birthright” by J.H. Allen).

11 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, “Jeremiah, what seest thou?” And I said, “I see a rod of an almond tree.” — and I said, I see a rod of an almond tree; a dry stick, without leaves or fruit upon it, and yet he knew it to be an almond tree stick; though some think it had leaves and fruit on it, by which it was known;

— the Targum says, “and I said, a king hastening to do evil I see;” meaning Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, hastening to bring destruction upon the house of Judah.

12 Then said the Lord unto me, “Thou hast well seen, for I will hasten My word to perform it.” — for l will hasten my word to perform it; the name of the almond tree in Hebrew; which is so called because it is quick and early, and hastens to bring forth its flowers, leaves, and fruit; in like manner the Lord says he would hasten to perform what he had said or should say by him concerning the destruction of Jerusalem, and the captivity of the people.

13 And the word of the Lord came unto me the second time, saying, “What seest thou?” And I said, “I see a seething pot, and the face thereof is toward the north.” — the Targum paraphrases the words thus, “and I said, I see a king boiling as a pot, and the banner of his army, which was brought and came from the north;”

— a boiling pot or a boiling cauldron denoting Judea or Jerusalem, expressed by the same figure, Ezekiel 11:3Ezekiel 11:7Ezekiel 24:3.

— much like the four angel asked to let loose the river of Euphrates, for the 200 million on horseback to ride over in Revelation 9:15-16 to slay a third part of men.

14 Then the Lord said unto me, “Out of the north an evil shall break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land. — out of the north an evil shall break forth upon all the inhabitants of the land; that is, out of Babylon, which lay north, and so the Talmud says: northeast to the land of Israel; from hence came Nebuchadnezzar and his army, which are meant by “the evil” that should break forth, or be opened and let loosed, which before were bound and hindered by the providence of God;

— here in Jeremiah, the house of Judah had been constantly warned of an enemy coming out from the NORTH, but in Ezekiel 20-21, the house of Israel had been warned of a yet ‘unknown’ enemy of the future coming from the SOUTH (more at the end).

15 For lo, I will call all the families of the kingdoms of the north,” saith the Lord; “and they shall come and they shall set every one his throne at the entrance of the gates of Jerusalem, and against all the walls thereof round about, and against all the cities of Judah. — and against all the walls thereof round about, and against all the cities of Judah; not only besiege Jerusalem, and take that, but also all the rest of the cities of the land.

16 And I will utter My judgements against them concerning all their wickedness, who have forsaken Me, and have burned incense unto other gods, and worshipped the works of their own hands. — and I will utter my judgements against them… not against the kingdoms of the north, but against the people of the house of Judah. The sense is, that God would enter into judgement with this people, and pass sentence upon them, and execute it;

— for they worshipped the works of their own hands: idols of gold, silver, brass, and wood, which their own hands formed and carved, and which argued great stupidity and ignorance.

17 Thou therefore gird up thy loins, and arise and speak unto them all that I command thee. Be not dismayed at their faces, lest I confound thee before them. — and arise; and go from Anathoth to Jerusalem; and arise and speak unto them all that I command thee, the fact of his being the Lord’s messenger and envoy once more being stressed;

— be not dismayed at their faces, shrinking back before them, lest I confound thee before them, so that he would be rejected, crushed, and overcome before them.

18 For behold, I have made thee this day a fortified city, and an iron pillar, and brazen walls against the whole land — against the kings of Judah, against the princes thereof, against the priests thereof, and against the people of the land. — against the whole land of Judea, against all its inhabitants and the kings of Judah; in successive reigns, as Jehoahaz (reign 609), Jehoiakim (reign 609–598), Jehoiachin or Jechonias (reign 598–597), and Zedekiah (reign 597–586);

— against the priests who all of them dealt falsely, and were given to covetousness, Jeremiah 8:10; and against the people of the land; who were grievously addicted to idolatry, and all manner of wickedness.

19 And they shall fight against thee; but they shall not prevail against thee, for I am with thee,” saith the Lord, “to deliver thee.” — and they shall fight against thee… the Targum adds, “that they may hide the words of thy prophecy;”

— for I am with thee, saith the Lord, to deliver thee; as he did; he hid him when they sought for him, and delivered him out of the dungeon and bonds into which he was cast by them.

~~~

More on a prophecy of an “enemy” coming from the SOUTH:

Ezekiel 20:45 Moreover the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
46 “Son of man, set thy face toward the south, and drop thy word toward the south, and prophesy against the forest of the southland.
47 And say to the forest of the south: ‘Hear the word of the Lord. Thus saith the Lord God: Behold, I will kindle a fire in thee, and it shall devour every green tree in thee and every dry tree. The flaming flame shall not be quenched, and all faces from the south to the north shall be burned therein.
48 And all flesh shall see that I, the Lord, have kindled it; it shall not be quenched.’”
49 Then said I, “Ah, Lord God! They say of me, ‘Doth he not speak parables?’”
Ezekiel 21: And the word of the Lord came unto me, saying,
2 “Son of man, set thy face toward Jerusalem, and drop thy word toward the holy places, and prophesy against the land of Israel;
3 and say to the land of Israel, ‘Thus saith the Lord: Behold, I am against thee, and will draw forth My sword out of his sheath and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked.
4 Seeing then that I will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked, therefore shall My sword go forth out of his sheath against all flesh from the south to the north,
5 that all flesh may know that I, the Lord, have drawn forth My sword out of his sheath. It shall not return any more.’

Q: Who is this enemy from the SOUTH, and how would such scenarios be played out?

Jeremiah 2

1 Moreover the word of the Lord came to me, saying, — the Targum calls it, “the word of the prophecy from the Lord.”

“Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, ‘Thus saith the Lord: “‘I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after Me in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. — in the wilderness, in a land that had not been cultivated; where they passed through many difficulties;

— the Targum says, “and they walked after my two messengers, after Moses and Aaron, in the wilderness forty years without food, in a land that was not sown;”

— and lived upon the providence of God, which, in a wonderful manner, supported them with the necessaries of life, which otherwise they could not have had.

Israel was holiness unto the Lord, and the firstfruits of His increase. All that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them,’” saith the Lord. — evil shall come upon them, saith the Lord; His punishment descended upon the Amalekites, the Amorites, and upon all other nations that interfered with His plans for His chosen people. Such were the manifestations of God’s mercy and kindness to Israel, and therefore His rebuke certainly came with good reason.

Hear ye the word of the Lord, O house of Jacob, and all the families of the house of Israel. — this in respects the two tribes of Judah and Benjamin, and the ten tribes had long been carried away captives to Assyria.

Thus saith the Lord: “What iniquity have your fathers found in Me, that they are gone far from Me, and have walked after vanity, and have become vain? — the Targum says, “what falsehood have your fathers found in my word?” None at all; God is a covenant keeping God.

Neither said they, ‘Where is the Lord that brought us up out of the land of Egypt, that led us through the wilderness, through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought and of the shadow of death, through a land that no man passed through and where no man dwelt?’ — the Lord that brought them out through a land of deserts and of pits, through a land of drought, and of the shadow of death; where there were scorpions, fiery serpents, drought,

— and no water, and so very dangerous as well as uncomfortable travelling; and yet through all these obstacles they were led and wonderfully supplied and preserved.

And I brought you into a plentiful country to eat the fruit thereof and the goodness thereof; but when ye entered, ye defiled My land and made Mine heritage an abomination. — the Targum paraphrases it; with wheat, barley, vines, fig trees, pomegranates and olives; a land flowing with milk and honey, Deuteronomy 8:8;

— but when ye entered ye defiled my land; which the Lord had chosen above all lands, where he would have a temple built for his worship, and where he would cause his Shekinah to dwell; but this they defiled by their sins, and particularly by their idolatry.

The priests said not, ‘Where is the Lord?’ And they that handle the law knew Me not; the pastors also transgressed against Me; and the prophets prophesied by Baal, and walked after things that do not profit. — and they that handle the law knew me not; and according to Rashi, the Sanhedrin, the lawyers and scribes, the rabbis and doctors of the law, whose business it was to read and explain it; these they did not understand;

— and the prophets prophesied by Baal; in his name; pretending to be inspired by that idol, and to receive the spirit of prophecy from him.

“Therefore I will yet plead with you,” saith the Lord, “and with your children’s children will I plead. — wherefore I will yet plead with you, saith the Lord… either verbally, by reasoning with them, and reproving them for their ignorance, stupidity, and idolatry; or by deeds, inflicting punishment upon them;

— so the Targum, “therefore I will take vengeance on you, or punish you, saith the Lord.”

10 For pass over to the isles of Chittim and see; and send unto Kedar and consider diligently, and see if there be such a thing. — and send unto Kedar; which was in Arabia, and lay to the east, as Chittim to the west; and so the Targum paraphrases it, “send to the provinces of the Arabians.”

11 Hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? But My people have changed their Glory for that which doth not profit. — hath a nation changed their gods, which are yet no gods? In spite of the fact that their idols were false gods, the heathen at least had the pride and the decency of clinging to their gods; 

— but My people have changed their glory for that which doth not profit, exchanging their possession of their true God, for vain idols, with less consistency than that shown by the ignorant and despised heathen.

12 Be astonished, O ye heavens, at this, and be horribly afraid; be ye very desolate,” saith the Lord. — in astonishment and horror the Lord cries out: Be horribly afraid, be ye very desolate,” saith the Lord; all which may be signified by storms and tempests, by thunder and lightning, and by the sun’s withdrawing its light.

13 “For My people have committed two evils: They have forsaken Me, the fountain of living waters, and hewn them out cisterns—broken cisterns that can hold no water. — for My people have committed two evils, thus exceeding even the heathen with their one transgression of foolish idolatry: (1) they have forsaken Me, the Fountain of living waters, the only true and living God, 

— and (2) hewed them out cisterns, whose waters lack the freshness and the sparkle of spring- or well-water, broken cisterns, that can hold no water. Putting aside the one and only Source of spiritual life and power, they placed their trust in gods which belied even the outward appearance that men had given them.

14 “Is Israel a servant? Is he a home born slave? Why is he despoiled? — is Israel a servant?… that he does not abide in the house, in his own land, but is carried captive, becomes subject to others, and is used as a slave.

15 The young lions roared at him and yelled, and they made his land waste; his cities are burned without inhabitant. — the young lions roared upon him, and yelled… or, “gave out their voice”; meaning the kings of the nations, as the Targum explains it; and are to be understood of the kings of Assyria and Babylon, and particularly of Nebuchadnezzar; see Jeremiah 50:17.

16 Also the children of Noph and Tahpanhes have broken the crown of thy head.

17 Hast thou not procured this unto thyself, in that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God when He led thee by the way? — hast thou not procured this unto thyself, the Israelites having brought this calamity upon themselves, in that thou hast forsaken the Lord, thy God, when He led thee by the way? on the good path of His will, on the road of righteousness.

18 And now what hast thou to do in the way of Egypt, to drink the waters of Sihor? Or what hast thou to do in the way of Assyria, to drink the waters of the river? — Or what hast thou to do in the way of Assyria; to send to them for help; for this was the usual method of first the house of Israel and later the house of Judah;

when the Assyrians oppressed them, then they sent to Egypt for help; and when the Egyptians were upon them, then they applied to the Assyrians; and in both cases acted wrong, for they ought to have sought the Lord their God only.

19 Thine own wickedness shall correct thee, and thy backslidings shall reprove thee. Know therefore and see that it is an evil thing and bitter that thou hast forsaken the Lord thy God, and that the fear of Me is not in thee,” saith the Lord God of hosts. — thine own wickedness shall correct thee… that is, either their wickedness in going to Egypt and Assyria, and the ill success they had in so doing might be an instruction to them to act otherwise, and a correction of their sin and folly; or that their wickedness was a reason, and a very just one, why they were chastened and corrected by the Lord.

20 “For of olden time I have broken thy yoke and burst thy bonds; and thou saidst, ‘I will not transgress,’ when upon every high hill and under every green tree thou wanderest, playing the harlot. — upon every high hill, and under every green tree, thou wanderest, playing the harlot; that is, committing spiritual whoredom or idolatry with idols, set on high hills and mountains, and under green trees, groves, and shady places; going from one idol to another, as harlots go from one stew to another; or as whoremongers go from harlot to harlot.

21 Yet I had planted thee, a noble vine, wholly a right seed. How then art thou turned into the degenerate plant of a strange vine unto Me? — yet I had planted thee a noble vine, wholly a right seed… it is usual to compare the children of Israel to a vineyard, and to vines; and their settlement in the land of Canaan to the planting of vines in a vineyard; see Isaiah 5:1.

22 For though thou wash thee with soda and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity is marked before Me,” saith the Lord God. — the sense is, let this backsliding and degenerate people take whatever methods they need to cleanse themselves from their sins, as by their ceremonial ablutions and sacrifices, which was the usual method they had recourse to, to purify themselves, and in which they rested:

— yet thine iniquity is marked before me, saith the Lord God; or, “will retain its spots” these remain; the filth are not washed away; their iniquities are not hidden and covered; they appears very plain and manifest;

— the Targum says, “for if you think to be cleansed from your sins, as they cleanse with nitre, or make white with “borith”, or soap; lo, as the mark of a spot which is not clean, so are your sins multiplied before me, saith the Lord God.”

23 “How canst thou say, ‘I am not polluted; I have not gone after the Baalim’? See thy way in the valley; know what thou hast done. Thou art a swift dromedary traversing her ways, — I have not gone after Baalim? or, “the Baalim”; the idols of the people, as the Targum interprets it; for there were many Baals, as Baalzephon, Baalpeor, Baalzebub, and others.

24 a wild ass used to the wilderness, that snuffeth up the wind at her pleasure. In her need who can turn her away? All they that seek her will not weary themselves; in her month they shall find her.

25 Withhold thy foot from being unshod, and thy throat from thirst. But thou saidst, ‘There is no hope; no, for I have loved strangers, and after them will I go.’

26 “As the thief is ashamed when he is found, so is the house of Israel ashamed—they, their kings, their princes, and their priests and their prophets, — as the thief is ashamed when he is found, put to shame by the evidences of his guilt, so is the house of Israel ashamed; they, their kings, their princes, and their priests, and their prophets, leaders and people in the same condemnation.

27 saying to a stock, ‘Thou art my father,’ and to a stone, ‘Thou hast brought me forth.’ For they have turned their back unto Me, and not their face; but in the time of their trouble they will say, ‘Arise, and save us!’

28 But where are thy gods that thou hast made thee? Let them arise if they can save thee in the time of thy trouble; for according to the number of thy cities are thy gods, O Judah. — but where are thy gods that thou hast made? Let them save thee in times of thy troubles, O Judah! Idolaters of all times and places have the same experience, namely, that idols of any kind cannot deliver them from trouble, no matter how great their numbers.

29 “Why will ye plead with Me? Ye all have transgressed against Me,” saith the Lord. — ye all have transgressed against me, saith the Lord; high and low, rich and poor, great and small; men of all ranks, degrees, and character; kings, priests and prophets; and therefore ought not to contend with God, and charge him with injustice or unkindness, but themselves with folly and wickedness.

30 “In vain have I smitten your children; they received no correction. Your own sword hath devoured your prophets like a destroying lion. — the rod of chastisement was used in vain; the afflictions that came upon them had no effect on them to amend and reform them; they were never the better for them:

— your own sword hath devoured your prophets, like Isaiah, who were sent to them to reprove and correct them, but they were so far from receiving their correction, that they put them to death.

31 O generation, see ye the word of the Lord! Have I been a wilderness unto Israel? A land of darkness? Why say My people, ‘We are lords; we will come no more unto Thee’?

32 Can a maid forget her ornaments, or a bride her attire? Yet My people have forgotten Me days without number. — yet my people have forgotten me; which shows great stupidity and ingratitude; the Lord not being so much to them, from whom they had received so many favours, as the ornaments of a maid, and the attire of a bride, are to them.

33 Why readiest thou thy way to seek love? Therefore hast thou also taught the wicked ones thy ways. — the Targum says: “why dost thou make thy way beautiful, to procure loves (or lovers) to be joined to the people?”

— or the sense is, why art thou so diligent and industrious to make thy way, which is exceeding bad, look a good one, by sacrifices and ceremonies, oblations and ablutions, in order to seek and obtain my love and favour, which is all in vain? it is not to be gained by such methods.

34 Also in thy skirts is found the blood of the souls of the poor innocents; I have not found it by secret search, but upon all these. — in thy skirts is found the blood of poor innocents, of holy men and prophets who dared to reprove Israel for her sins. I have not found it by secret search, such a careful scrutiny was not necessary in this case, but upon all these, on account of the sin of idolatry, which finally led to the murder of the Lord’s servants.

35 Yet thou sayest, ‘Because I am innocent, surely His anger shall turn from me.’ Behold, I will plead with thee because thou sayest, ‘I have not sinned.’ — surely his anger shall turn from me; the anger of God, since innocent; or, “let his anger be turned from me”, or as the Septuagint says; pleading for the removing of judgements upon the foot of innocency, which is pretended.

36 Why gaddest thou about so much to change thy way? Thou also shalt be ashamed of Egypt as thou wast ashamed of Assyria. — sometimes going one way, and sometimes another; sometimes to Egypt, and then to Assyria; seeking sometimes to the one for help, and sometimes to the other;

why change thy way? in forming alliances with her heathen neighbors. Thou also shall be ashamed of Egypt, whose vassal Israel was for a while, as thou wast ashamed of Assyria, after King Ahaz had sent there for help, but ultimately ended up being their captives.

37 Yea, thou shalt go forth from him with thine hands upon thine head; for the Lord hath rejected thy confidences, and thou shalt not prosper in them. — and thine hands upon thine head; plucking and dishevelling the hair, as women in distress; so Tamar, when abused by her brother, laid her hand on her head, and went out crying, 2 Samuel 13:19.

A Study Index of Revelation

•October 29, 2021 • Leave a Comment

In the Study, we’ll find that John’s prophecies were not solely meant to be fulfilled during his time; although some of them were, but the majority of their timing were a great distance into the future, into our time.

A Study Index of Revelation

Table of Contents

Chapter 1

— John was in vision on the Island of Patmos
— the Revelation of Jesus Christ, not John
— before the throne of God the Father
— seven spirits before His throne
— the “hand of God” vs the “spirit of God”

~ Chapter 2

— messages to the seven churches
— Ephesus; some are apostles, others art liars
— Smyrna; works in tribulation, but thou art rich
— Pergamos; thou dwellest where Satan’s seat is
— Thyatira; Jezebel who calleth herself a prophetess

A Study of Chapters 1 and 2 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 3

— Sardis; thou hast a name, but thou art dead
— Philadelphia; before thee an open door, no man can shut
— Laodicean; thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot
— thou art wretched, miserable, poor, blind and naked

~ Chapter 4

— in heaven, One sat on the throne
— the 24 elders; art thou angels or saints?
— before the throne a sea of glass like crystal
— absence of the “Holy Ghost” around the throne

A Study of Chapters 3 and 4 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 5

— a book sealed with seven seals
— in the midst of the throne are four living beings
— a Lamb having seven horns and seven eyes
— the 4 creatures and 24 elders worship the Lamb

~ Chapter 6

— the first seal, a white horse with a bow
— second seal, a red horse
— third seal, a black horse
— fourth seal, a pale horse
— fifth seal, men that were slain
— sixth seal, a great earthquake

A Study of Chapters 5 and 6 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 7

— I heard the number of them that were sealed
— a hundred forty-four thousand of the tribes of Israel
— included are of the tribe of Manasseh
— of the tribe of Joseph
— but no mention of the tribe of Dan

~ Chapter 8

— the opening of the seventh seal
— seven angels were given seven trumpets
— another stood at the altar, having a golden censer
— first angel with trumpet blown; fire mingled with blood
— second angel; a mountain with fire; sea became blood
— third angel; fell a great star from heaven
— fourth angel; the sun smitten the world darkened
— fifth trumpet blown: “Woe, woe, woe”

A Study of Chapters 7 and 8 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 9

— fifth angel sounded; first woe, out came smoke locusts
— sixth angel sounded; loose 4 angels from the Euphrates
— releasing the two hundred millions
— a third part of men killed by fire, smoke and brimstone,
— seventh angel appears in both chapters 10 and 11

~ Chapter 10

— another mighty angel come with a little book
— thunders uttered, but write not; secrets still sealed
— seventh angel sounded; “Go and take the little book”
— “Take it and eat it, and it shall make thy belly bitter
— but it shall be in thy mouth sweet as honey.”
— “Thou must prophesy again . . .

A Study of Chapters 9 and 10 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 11

— “Rise, and measure the temple and the altar”
— power to two witnesses who shall prophesy 1260 days
— there was another great earthquake
— second woe is passed
— third woe; seventh angel sounded
— locusts as scorpions and have stingers in their tails

~ Chapter 12

— a woman clothed with the sun and moon under her feet
— being with child, she cried, travailing in birth
— a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns
— his tail drew a third part of the stars of heaven
— woman brought forth a child, but taken to heaven
— the dragon went after remnant of her seed

A Study of Chapters 11 and 12 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 13

— a beast rise up out of the sea
— his heads was, as it were, wounded
— his mouth in blasphemy against God
— another beast coming up out of the earth
— he had two horns like a lamb
— but he spoke like a dragon

~ Chapter 14

— the hundred forty and four thousand
— “Babylon is fallen! is Fallen!”
— the third angel, “If any man worship the beast”
— he shall drink the wrath of God
— the Son of Man, in his hand a sharp sickle
— and gathered the vine of the earth

A Study of Chapters 13 and 14 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 15

— seven angels holding seven last plagues
— a sea of glass mingled with fire
— they sing the song of Moses
— another seven angels each given a golden vial
— full of the wrath of God

~ Chapter 16

— seven vials of the wrath of God 
— fifth vial poured upon the seat of the beast
— sixth vial poured upon the great river Euphrates
— a place called in the Hebrew tongue, Armageddon
— seventh vial poured out his vial into the air
— there fell upon men a great hail out of heaven

A Study of Chapters 15 and 16 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 17

— seven angels, each with a vial
— a woman sitting upon a scarlet-colored beast
— the woman arrayed in purple and scarlet color
— Mystery, Babylon the Great, Mother of Harlots
— the woman was drunk with the blood of the saints
— ten horns shall hate the whore

~ Chapter 18

— “Babylon the great is fallen, is fallen”
— therefore shall her plagues come in one day
— the kings of the earth shall bewail and lament her
— “Alas! Alas, that great city is made desolate!”
— in her was found the blood of prophets and saints

A Study of Chapters 17 and 18 HERE ~ —— ~

Chapter 19

— a great multitude of people in heaven
— with the 24 elders and the four living creatures
— the voice of a great multitude, saying, “Alleluia!
— “Blessed are they at the marriage of the Lamb”
— a white horse with “a sharp two edged sword”
— the beast was taken and with him the false prophet
— both cast alive into the lake of fire and brimstone

~ Chapter 20

—  an angel laid hold on the dragon
— first general resurrection before the Millennium
— the saints to rule a thousand years
— Gog and Magog from the four quarters of the earth
— the Great White Throne appears after the Millennium
— names written in the Book of Life

A Study of Chapters 19 and 20 HERE~ —— ~

Chapter 21

— after the Millennium a new heaven and a new earth
— New Jerusalem coming down out of heaven
— “Behold, I make all things new”
— new City has a great high wall with twelve gates
— the city lit up by the Glory of God, the Shekinah
— more names written in the Lamb’s Book of Life

~ Chapter 22

— a pure river of the Water of Life
— the Shekinah, glory of God will lit the sky
— “I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End”
— “If any man shall add unto these things”
— more on liars and the ever absent holy ghost

A Study of Chapters 21 and 22 HERE ~ —— ~

Revelation (Ch 21-22)

•October 27, 2021 • 1 Comment

Chapter 21 contains an account of the happy state of those being saved, consisting of all the elect, both Jews and Gentiles, which will take place upon the first resurrection, and will continue during the thousand years’ reign, and which will be happy times in the new heaven and the new earth.

Revelation 21

1 And I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no more sea. — a new atmosphere took place when saints came not to Mount Sinai, but to Mount Zion, the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem; and when God dwelt among men;

— everything that has any connection with sin will be removed; the ‘sea’ also, from which the beast and the dragon came forth, will be no more.

And I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from God out of heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. — the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down from heaven from God, all ready like a bride arrayed for her husband;

— earth shall then become as heaven, or rather it shall be heaven on earth; God dwelling visibly among men, and sin and suffering being forever done away. 

And I heard a great voice out of heaven, saying, “Behold, the tabernacle of God is with men, and He will dwell with them; and they shall be His people, and God Himself shall be with them and be their God. — saying, behold the tabernacle of God is with men; in allusion to the tabernacle being with the Israelites in the wilderness, and the Shekinah, or divine Glory and Majesty, being in the midst of them, as an accomplishment of the promise in Ezekiel 37:27;

— the phrase seems to denote the personal presence of God the Father appearing with his Son, the Messiah with his saints in the Temple; and reign among them as their King.

And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes, and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain; for the former things are passed away.” — and there shall be no more death; natural or violent; or persecution of them as in former times; nor will they die a natural death any more; these children of the resurrection;

— and inhabitants of the new heaven and earth, and as kings and priests, they will live better than angels.

And He that sat upon the throne said, “Behold, I make all things new.” And He said unto me, “Write, for these words are true and faithful.” — and he that sat upon the throne said… by whom is meant, God the Father, who is often represented in this book as sitting on the throne, as distinguished from Christ the Lamb.

And He said unto me, “It is done! I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the Water of Life freely. — God the Father is also the Alpha and Omega, as Aleph is the beginning of the Hebrew alphabet; and cause of all things; as Tau is the last of the Hebrew alphabet;

— in fact, this same title “Alpha and Omega,” among many others, are derived from the Father’s.

He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son. — he that overcometh… against all spiritual enemies, sin, Satan, and the world, the antichristian beast, his image, mark; not being deceived; obey his commandments who is more than a conqueror through Christ;

one that perseveres to the end, notwithstanding all temptations, trials and difficulties.

But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers,and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death.” — the Ethiopic version renders it, “who pollute themselves” with unnatural lusts;

— and all liars; and particularly those who speak lies in successions, as the followers of the man of sin, and who are given up to believe a lie, that they might be damned; all lies being of the devil, and abominable to God. Each and everyone of them are.

And there came unto me one of the seven angels, who had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, “Come hither; I will show thee the bride, the Lamb’s wife.” — the bride, his wife, all the elect of God, consisting of the raised and living saints at the coming of Christ; who will make up one body, one general assembly;

— and be as a bride, prepared and adorned for her husband: these were first betrothed to Christ in eternity, and now all glorified, the marriage is consummated, and they are declared publicly to be the bride, the Lamb’s wife; Revelation 19:7.

10 And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the Holy Jerusalem, descending out of heaven from God, — John never saw this Holy Jerusalem or “the new Jerusalem” before; so this is another new revelation.

11 having the glory of God. And her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal. — even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal: God the Father, who sits on the throne, is said to be looked upon like a “jasper”;

— the divine Shekinah illuminating the whole city, perhaps the whole earth which pendant in the air, shone with an elegant and amazing lustre, expressive of the perfect illumination, purity, and holiness of its happy inhabitants.

12 It had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels; and names were written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: — but these gates of that great city, the New Jerusalem, are said to be twelve, in allusion to the twelve apostles, who pointed out to men the way of salvation by Christ; and to the twelve tribes of Israel, who represent all the elect of God, and to the twelve gates of Ezekiel’s city, Ezekiel 48:31;

— or, having a great and high wall, having twelve gates, and upon the gates twelve angels and their names inscribed, which are the twelve tribes of the children of Israel: on the east three gates and on the north three gates and on the south three gates and on the west three gates; and the wall of the city having twelve foundations, and on them the twelve names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

13 on the east three gates, on the north three gates, on the south three gates, and on the west three gates. — East: Issachar, JUDAH, Zebulon;

— West: Benjamin, EPHRAIM, Manasseh;

— North: Asher, DAN, Naphtali;

— South: Gad, REUBEN, Simeon;

— but these would be different from that of Ezekiel 48:31 shall be the gates of the city, named for the tribes of Israel, three gates toward the north: the gate of Reuben, one; the gate of Judah, one; the gate of Levi, one.

14 And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and on them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.

15 And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof and the walls thereof.

16 And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as great as the breadth; and he measured the city with the reed: twelve thousand furlongs; the length and the breadth and the height of it are equal. — and the city lieth four square… to the four corners of the world, from whence its inhabitants come, and denotes the regularity, uniformity, perfection, and immovableness of it;

— and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs; or fifteen hundred miles; a monstrously large city indeed! such an one as never was upon earth; see Ezekiel 48:35 and which shows, that this is not to be understood literally, but mystically;

— and intends the capaciousness of it, here being room enough for all the twelve tribes of Israel; that is, for all the elect of God; for as in Christ’s Father’s house, so in this kingdom state of his, there will be many mansions, or dwelling places, enough for all his people. This city will hold them all;

— the Jews say of the Jerusalem to come, that in time it shall be so enlarged as to reach to the gates of Damascus, yea, to the throne of glory.

17 And he measured the wall thereof: a hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel.

18 And the wall was built of jasper; and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass. — the jasper being a very hard and bright stone; and salvation can never be made void; it will last for ever, and in this state will come forth as light, as a lamp that burneth; it is represented by the same precious stone as God sitting on his throne; see Revelation 4:2.

19 And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones: the first foundation was jasper, the second sapphire, the third chalcedony, the fourth emerald,

— (1) jasper, on this stone, in the breastplate, Benjamin’s name was written (2) sapphire, its colour is azure, or sky blue (3) chalcedony, a misty grey colour, clouded with blue, yellow, or purple (4) emerald, on this stone Judah’s name was written.

20 the fifth sardonyx, the sixth sardius, the seventh chrysolite, the eighth beryl, the ninth topaz, the tenth chrysoprase, the eleventh jacinth, and the twelfth amethyst.

— (5) sardonyx, partly of the sardian, and partly of the onyx stone (6) sardius, this was Reuben’s stone (7) chrysolite, a stone of a dusky green colour, with a cast of yellow (8) beryl, a stone of a pale green colour (9) topaz, a stone very hard and transparent, of a beautiful yellow, or gold colour (10) chrysoprase, a stone of a green colour, inclining to that of gold (11) jacinth, a stone of a purple, or violet colour (12) amethyst, a stone of a violet colour, bordering on purple.

21 And the twelve gates were twelve pearls; each separate gate was of one pearl, and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were, transparent glass. — a single gate was of one pearl; the pearl of great price: this shows that this account cannot be taken literally, but mystically, for no such pearl was ever known, large enough to make a gate of.

22 And I saw no temple therein, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. — poor thing, the Holy Ghost always missed out! and those who call themselves “pastors” are continuing telling lies saying and re-enforcing in numerous ways that there is a holy ghost!  

— Revelation 21: 8 above: “and all liars,” shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone;

— so is it wrong to say that 99.99 percent of professing Christians are LIARS?

23 And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon to shine in it; for the glory of God gave it light, and the Lamb is the light thereof. — for the glory of God did lighten it; the Shekinah, or glorious presence of God, which filled the temple of Solomon, and shone round about the shepherds at the incarnation of Christ; with the presence of God, who is light itself.

24 And the nations of them that are saved shall walk in the light of it, and the kings of the earth bring their glory and honor into it. — and the nations of them which are saved… most nations are saved, with a few exceptions: Ammon, Tyre, the Amalekite and perhaps a section of Egypt.

26 and they shall bring the glory and honor of the nations into it.

27 And there shall in no wise enter into it anything that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie, but only they that are written in the Lamb’s Book of Life. — those that are written in the book of the Lamb, the true children, the elect of God, will enter the heavenly city, where they will have complete and perfect salvation. Then shall the righteous shine like the sun in their Father’s kingdom. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear!

Revelation 22

Chapter 22 contains a further account of New Jerusalem, a City beautified by the river that ran through it, called a river of water of life, said to be pure and clear as crystal, and to have its rise from the throne of God and the Lamb; and by the tree of life in its midst, situated on each side the river, bearing twelve sorts of fruit, yielded every month, the leaves of which heal the nations.

1 And he showed me a pure river of the Water of Life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. — and he showed me the river coming forth out of the throne of God and of the Lamb; a great stream or river watered the Garden of Eden, so here the heavenly Paradise receives its water from a healing stream of perennial waters issuing from the throne of God and of the Lamb Himself. 

In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, there was the Tree of Life, which bore twelve kinds of fruit and yielded her fruit every month; and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. — there twelve kinds of fruit are planted on each side of beautiful trees, not only to serve for ornament and refreshment, but which, like the tree of life in paradise, should make the inhabitants immortal.

And there shall be no more curse, but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it, and His servants shall serve Him.

And they shall see His face, and His name shall be in their foreheads. — and they shall see his face… the face of God, so as if he is not to be seen ’till now; they shall see him as he is; not only the angels, who always behold the face of God, but all the saints, risen and changed, being pure in heart, and perfectly holy; they shall see him face to face;

— it appears as if during the Millennium the saints didn’t managed to see the Father’s face, only after the Millennium is over?

And there shall be no night there, and they will need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light. And they shall reign for ever and ever. — again, for the glory of God will lit the sky; the Shekinah, or glorious presence of God will be manifested.

And he said unto me, “These sayings are faithful and true,” and the Lord God of the holy prophets sent His angel to show unto His servants the things which must shortly be done.

“Behold, I come quickly.” Blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. — this book is a prophecy of things to come, and therefore cannot refer to the times of Jerusalem’s destruction in 70 AD or 132 AD, which some interpreters do, like the book of Ezekiel, for then it would be a narrative of things past; the sayings of it are the things contained in it; to keep these sayings is to read them with an open mind with observation, so that as events unfold we can meditate upon them.

And I, John, saw these things and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel who showed me these things.

Then said he unto me, “See that thou do it not, for I am thy fellow servant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them that keep the sayings of this book. Worship God!” — this is the second time John did so, though being warned of and rebuked for it; 

— for angels are not to be worshipped; hence John was forbidden to worship an angel, any angel; the angel being a fellow servant of the same Lord;

— worship God: Father and Son, and these two only, not three, with reverence and godly fear and according to God’s revealed will.

10 And he said unto me, “Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book, for the time is at hand.

11 He that is unjust, let him be unjust still; and he that is filthy, let him be filthy still; and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still; and he that is holy, let him be holy still.”

12 “And behold, I come quickly, and My reward is with Me, to give to every man according as his work shall be.

13 I am Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last.” — God the Father is also the Alpha and Omega, as Aleph is the beginning of the Hebrew alphabet; and cause of all things; as Tau is the last of the Hebrew alphabet.

14 Blessed are they that do His commandments, that they may have right to the Tree of Life, and may enter in through the gates into the city. faith alone isn’t enough; commandments need to be kept, which are the whole duty of man; so the question is, which commandments to keep? This is a life-long question.

15 For outside are dogs and sorcerers, and whoremongers and murderers and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie. — lying is a serious crime, and many are liars, particularly those lying tongues that speak lies in successions; (more at the end):

16 These six things doth the Lord hate, yea, seven are an abomination unto Him:
17 a proud look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood,
18 a heart that deviseth wicked imaginations, feet that be swift in running to mischief,
19 a false witness that speaketh lies, and he that soweth discord among brethren. Proverbs 6:16-19

16 “I, Jesus, have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, and the Bright and Morning Star.” — both in a temporal and spiritual sense; he sprung from the root of David, or descended from him;

— as David’s Lord and David’s Son; he is also the bright Star of the morning; not the other “light bringer” Lucifer, which the Roman church had given him.

18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book: If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book. — this may likewise be considered as an awful sanction given to the whole Scriptures; in like manner, as Moses guarded the law, (Deuteronomy 4:2Deuteronomy 12:32,). It is equally true, however, that this solemn caution particularly refers to this book of the Revelation.

19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the Book of Life and out of the Holy City, and from the things which are written in this book.

20 He that testifieth these things saith, “Surely I come quickly.” Amen. Even so, come, Lord Jesus.

21 The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.

~~~

More on liars and the non-existing yet offending ‘holy ghost’:

Throughout the study of this mysterious holy ghost we have found him to be missing in the entire book of Revelation. John never saw him; it is as if he had taken a long journey away, or that he was lying in bed with a flu. He was simply not around; Period.

But there was one cherub in the Garden, full of beauty and power, but pride and ego swelled over his head, and he slowly envy and like to be the Most High, led a rebellion to take over the heavenly throne of the Most High, but he was kicked out and fallen like lightning down onto this earth. He was and is the dragon, the Devil, Lucifer, the other ‘light-bringer’ which the Roman church, whom John describes as the great whore of Babylon, has so much affiliation with, and that this lie is also well-embedded and entrenched by her protesting harlotry daughters.

Such deceitful doctrine is a big cover-up of the Devil, who craves to be the Third Person, but is an abomination to God. There are professing Christians who loves to invent lies, others to tell lies, and still others loves to hear them; more so with this doctrinal lie of the holy ghost. Unless repented off, such lie infuriates both the Father and the Son, and the penalty is death: “and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone, which is the second death,” Revelation 21:8.

Revelation (Ch 19-20)

•October 25, 2021 • 1 Comment

Chapter 21 contains the triumph of the saints over Babylon, and their thanksgiving to God because of his judgements on her; the marriage of Christ and his church, and a battle between him and his and her enemies, with the beast and false prophet both cast alive into the lake of fire and brimstone.

Revelation 19

1 And after these things I heard a great voice of a multitude of people in heaven, saying, “Alleluia! Salvation and glory and honor and power, unto the Lord our God, — saying Alleluia; an Hebrew word, which signifies “praise ye the Lord,”

— since He has judged the great harlot John heard the songs of the righteous and saints to rejoice at her overthrow, and a mighty angel had expressed her ruin in the strongest terms, with the reasons of it.

for true and righteous are His judgements: He hath judged the great whore who corrupted the earth with her fornication, and hath avenged the blood of His servants at her hand.” — His judgements, His sentences, are just and true; they have been rendered in accordance with His promises; and they are just and true.

And again they said, “Alleluia!” And her smoke rose up for ever and ever. — by the words “Praise ye the LORD”, as in Psalms 106:1;

— hallelujah! the great harlot is cast into the abyss of fire and brimstone; as smoke rose, she was burned with fire.

And the four and twenty elders and the four living beings fell down and worshipped God who sat on the throne, saying, “Amen! Alleluia!” — of the four and twenty elders and four living creatures, who worship God, assent to what had been before said, and join in praising the Lord.

And a voice came out of the throne, saying, “Praise our God, all ye His servants, and ye that fear Him, both small and great.” — and ye that fear him, both small and great; whether greater or lesser believers, fathers, young or old; Jews or Gentiles, or of whatsoever nation, kindred, or people; see Psalms 115:13.

And I heard, as it were, the voice of a great multitude, and the voice of many waters, and the voice of mighty thunderings, saying, “Alleluia! For the Lord God Omnipotent reigneth. — the voice of a great multitude… even of all the servants of the Lord, and them that fear him, small and great; a vast multitude of converted Jews and Gentiles, from all parts of the world, who in answer to the voice out of the throne, came with songs, dances and energy, lift up their voices in praise to God, both for their own redemption, and for the downfall of Babylon;

— saying, Alleluia; or praises the four and twenty elders and four living creatures, the 144,000; and this is the fourth time the same word is used in this context.

Let us be glad and rejoice and give honor to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb is come, and His wife hath made herself ready.” — for the marriage of the Lamb is come; that is, of Christ, the Son of God, with the Church more especially; first was a secret betrothing of all the elect before the world began; and there is an open espousal of every individual of them at conversion; but the public and general solemnization of the nuptials will not be until now before the personal reign of Christ;

— the bride, moreover, is clothed in the most gorgeous wedding-garment, all pure white and shining with brilliancy. It is a pure, precious dress of honor, the dress of a bride worthy to ruin with Him.

And to her was granted that she should be arrayed in fine linen, clean and white; for the fine linen is the righteousness of saints. — “the marriage of his Lamb is come, and the wife is prepared”; and that her preparation is by her own merits and works of righteousness;

— these are those that passed the last judgement; and are found justified, also because of their excellency; so other Scripture uses the word in the plural: the Targum on Zechariah 3:4 paraphrases the text, “I will clothe thee” זכוך, “with righteousnesses.”

And he said unto me, “Write: ‘Blessed are they that are called unto the marriage supper of the Lamb.’” And he said unto me, “These are the true sayings of God.” — and he saith unto me, write… what follows, because of the importance of it, and that it may be regarded and remembered: the person speaking is either the voice from the throne, Revelation 19:5 or the angel that attended John all along, and showed him this revelation, Revelation 1:1 asking John to write them down.

10 And I fell at his feet to worship him. But he said unto me, “See that thou do it not! I am thy fellow servant and one of thy brethren, who hold to the testimony of Jesus. Worship God! For the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” — so this is the angel speaking, one of the ministering spirits or angels; he being a servant of the same Lord as John; for angels are not to be worshipped.

11 And I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war. — this is Christ on a white horse, with a sword (verse 15: “a sharp two edged sword”), not with a bow that the beast had, conquering and to conquer; will fully execute to the utter destruction of all his enemies.

12 His eyes were as a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns; and He had a name written that no man knew, but He Himself. — His eyes were as a flame of fire  and on His head He had many diadems, having a name written which no one knows but Himself, and clothed with a garment bespattered with blood.

13 And He was clothed with a vesture dipped in blood, and His name is called, The Word of God. — and clothed with a garment bespattered with blood, or else in the blood of his saints, he now comes to avenge; or rather in the blood of his enemies, with which he appears as stained; and His name is called “The Word of God.”

— the metaphor is taken from persons treading in a winepress, whose garments are stained with blood of grapes; see Revelation 19:15.

14 And the armies which were in heaven, clothed in fine linen white and clean, followed Him upon white horses. — upon white horses; they had served Christ in his Gospel, which some of them had preached, and all professed, and had maintained the purity of doctrines and practices, and now triumphed in Christ, and along with him, riding upon horses of the same colour with his, as being his princes and nobles, and whom he had made them kings as well as priests.

15 And out of His mouth goeth a sharp sword with which He shall smite the nations, and He shall rule them with a rod of iron; and He treadeth the wine press of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty God. — “a sharp two edged sword” and that with it he should smite the nations; and those that have adhered to Babylon, and have drunk of the wine of her fornication;

— and he shall rule them with a rod of iron; use them with the utmost severity; the phrase is taken out of Psalms 2:9 a prophecy of Christ.

16 And He hath on His vesture and on His thigh a name written: King of kings, And Lord of lords. — which will well suit him now when he shall be openly King over all the earth; the great army of heaven, consisting of the troops of all the elect, takes part in the triumph of their Conqueror. — or KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS To show that he was really possessed of an enormous dominion over all the princes and kingdoms of the earth? as his mouth proceeds a sharp double-edged sword, that with it He should smite the nations, and Himself will rule them with an iron rod.

17 And I saw an angel standing in the sun, and he cried with a loud voice, saying to all the fowls that fly in the midst of heaven, “Come and gather yourselves together unto the supper of the great God, — for not only will the corpses of the enemies of the Lord lie unburied, in itself one of the worst misfortunes which men knew of, but their bodies should become the prey, the food, of the birds, mainly the vultures that fly in the sky above the heads of men.

18 that ye may eat the flesh of kings, and the flesh of captains, and the flesh of mighty men, and the flesh of horses and of them that sit on them, and the flesh of all men, both free and bond, both small and great.” — Come, gather yourselves to the great feast of God, that ye may eat the flesh of kings, the flesh of general, the flesh of mighty ones, the flesh of horses, of those that sit upon them, and the flesh of all free as well as of slaves, both small and great;

— this is a ghastly announcement, all the more so because of its finality. In a most commanding and conspicuous position the angel with this command is placed, in order that all hearers should realize and appreciate its importance;

— the destruction of Anti-Christ and of his host is thus assured from the beginning; they will be given to the evil spirits, to the devil and his angels, to be destroyed and tormented forever.

19 And I saw the beast, and the kings of the earth, and their armies gathered together to make war against Him that sat on the horse, and against His army. — and l saw the beast… is this beast the one that hate the whore and shall make her desolate and naked, and shall eat her flesh and burn her with fire? Revelation 17:16;

— or, perhaps the remains of the antichristian civil and religious powers, and which, though it may chiefly regard the antichrist, and the remains of their idolatry, or may take in any of the Mahometan powers, which may join together in this battle; the beast will survive for a while after the downfall of his seat, Babylon or Rome.

20 And the beast was taken, and with him the false prophet who wrought miracles in his presence, by which he deceived them that had received the mark of the beast, and them that worshipped his image. These both were cast alive into a lake of fire, burning with brimstone. — seem like the beast and the false prophet were not destroyed until now; perhaps they fall earlier and captured but were not eliminated until now;

— Gill: the Alexandrian copy reads, “and they that are with him, the false prophet Jezebel”; the false prophetess and her children, who will now be killed with death, Revelation 2:20;

— both were cast alive into a lake of fire burning with brimstone; which is the second death, Revelation 21:8. The severe punishment of antichrist, considered in both his capacities, civil and ecclesiastic, is expressed by being “cast into a lake of fire”;

— not material fire, but the wrath of God, which will be poured out like fire, and will be intolerable; and by this lake “burning with brimstone”, which, giving a nauseous stench, aggravates the punishment;

— the allusion seems to be to the place where Sodom and Gomorrah stood, which is become a sulphurous lake, and is an emblem of the vengeance of eternal fire.

21 And the remnant were slain with the sword of Him that sat upon the horse, whose sword proceeded out of His mouth. And all the fowls were filled with their flesh. — okay any remains are now eliminated; eaten by the fowls and hyenas feasting on them.

Revelation 20

Chapter 20 contains the binding of Satan, the saints’ thousand years’ reign with Christ, the loosing of Satan again, the destruction of him, and the Gog and Magog army, and the last judgement: the angel that is to bind Satan.

1 And I saw an angel come down from heaven, having the key to the bottomless pit and a great chain in his hand. — the key of the bottomless pit: the abyss, the same out of which the beast ascended.

And he laid hold on the dragon, that serpent of old, who is the devil and Satan, and bound him for a thousand years. — that old serpent; so called with respect to his cunning and subtlety, as well as his antiquity, being from the beginning of creation, having beguiled Adam and Eve;

— with the great chain he had in his hand: the devil is in chains now, is under the power of divine Providence, and can do nothing without divine permission.

And he cast him into the bottomless pit, and shut him up and set a seal upon him, that he should deceive the nations no more till the thousand years should be fulfilled; and after that he must be loosed a little season. — and after that he must be loosed a little season; a small space of time, in comparison of the thousand years; how long it will be exactly, cannot be said; but because of the decree of God, who has so appointed it, for the glorifying of himself, in the salvation of his people, and in the final destruction of the devil, and the Gog and Magog army.

And I saw thrones and they that sat upon them, and judgement was given unto them. And I saw the souls of them that had been beheaded for the witness of Jesus and for the Word of God, and who had not worshipped the beast, nor his image, nor had received his mark upon their foreheads or on their hands; and they lived and reigned with Christ a thousand years. — and judgement was given unto the saints; that is, power, dominion, regal authority, possession of a kingdom, answerable to their character as kings, and to their position, sitting on thrones, Daniel 7:22.

But the rest of the dead lived not again until the thousand years were finished. This is the first resurrection. — this must be a first general resurrection; for the 24 elders and the 144,000 must have already been resurrected way before this time.

Blessed and holy is he that hath part in the first resurrection: on such the second death hath no power, but they shall be priests of God and of Christ, and shall reign with Him a thousand years. — this first general resurrection occurs at the beginning of the Millennium so that they will rule with Christ for a thousand years.

And when the thousand years are expired, Satan shall be loosed out of his prison, — this loosing of Satan is for a trial and testing of people born and coming into life during the Millennium; they have never been tested or judged to be worthy, not yet; so it was their turn; and that it is the same judgement upon any unbelievers for their characters; in this fiery trial God intends to purify their performance and faith from all dross to make them strong.

and shall go out to deceive the nations to the four quarters of the earth — Gog and Magog — to gather them together for battle, the number of whom is as the sand of the sea. — Gog and Magog, in Ezekiel, are said expressly (Ezekiel 38:6Ezekiel 38:15) to come from the north quarters and the north;

— but here, Gog and Magog is not the same which are mentioned in Ezekiel 38:1 though there is an allusion to them, and from thence the names are taken, but these are from the four angles, or corners, of the earth; and design the enemies of God’s people from any angle of life; so the Scriptures speak of a Gog and Magog, to signify any rebellion that will come up against Jerusalem in the days of the Messiah, whom they still expect, by whom they shall be destroyed.

And they went out over the breadth of the earth, and compassed the camp of the saints about, and the beloved city. And fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them. — just as Gog and Magog are said to cover the land of Israel, as a cloud, Ezekiel 38:16 and it may be observed, that the very phrase of רחב ארצך, “the breadth of thy land”, is used in the land of Israel, in Isaiah 8:8;

— and fire came down from God out of heaven, and devoured them; both material fire; with this the earth, and the bodies of the wicked then upon it, will be burnt at the end of the thousand years.

10 And the devil who had deceived them was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone, where the beast and the false prophet are; and they shall be tormented day and night for ever and ever. — the devil is being cast away the second time which might be his final state.

11 And I saw a great white throne and Him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away, and there was found no place for them. — the great white throne appears only after the thousand years are over;

— John never saw this in all the chapters before this; so this is a new revelation.

12 And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and the books were opened; and another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. — notice, they were judged not according to their faith, but their work; that is, what commandments they believe and what they had done.

13 And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them; and they were judged every man according to their works. — and the sea gave up the dead that were in it, and death and hell gave up the dead that were in them; and they were judged, every one according to their works;

— but were judged according to their work, not their faith; that is, if it were just faith and not work, many would have been saved, but they were not, unfortunately. Faith without work is dead; James 2:26.

14 And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. — and death and hell were thrown into the lake of fire. These two great enemies of mankind, that have dogged its footsteps ever since the first sin, will be disposed of forever in a punishment which fits their crime: This is the second death, the lake of fire. From this death all children of God are free, since they are partakers of the first resurrection, since the second death, eternal damnation, has no power over them.

15 And whosoever was not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the lake of fire.