Jeremiah (Ch 35-36)

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.

~ by Joel Huan on November 18, 2021.

One Response to “Jeremiah (Ch 35-36)”

  1. […] Study of Chapters 35 and 36 HERE ~ —— […]

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