Commentary Critical and Explanatory
on the Whole Bible
EPITOME OF THE
FOUND IN THE
2. this covenant--alluding to the book of the law
found in the temple by Hilkiah the high priest, five years after
Jeremiah's call to the prophetic office
Hear ye--Others besides Jeremiah were to promulgate God's will to
the people; it was the duty of the priests to read the law to them
4. in the day--that is, when. The Sinaitic covenant was made some
time after the exodus, but the two events are so connected as to be
viewed as one.
"Furnace" expresses the searching ordeal; "iron," the long duration of
it. The furnace was of earth, not of iron
a furnace, in heat and duration enough to melt even iron. God's
deliverance of them from such an ordeal aggravates their present guilt.
do them--namely, the words of the covenant
(Le 26:3, 12).
(Ps 105:9, 10).
a land flowing with milk and honey--(See on
as it is this day--These are the concluding words of God to the
Israelites when formerly brought out of Egypt, "Obey . . . that I may
at this time make good the promise I made to your fathers, to give,"
&c. [MAURER]. English Version makes the words apply to
Jeremiah's time, "As ye know at this time, that God's promise has
been fulfilled," namely, in Israel's acquisition of Canaan.
So be it--Hebrew, Amen. Taken from
Jeremiah hereby solemnly concurs in the justice of the curses
pronounced there (see
6. Jeremiah was to take a prophetic tour throughout Judah, to proclaim
everywhere the denunciations in the book of the law found in the temple.
Hear . . . do--
7. rising early--
8. imagination--rather, "stubbornness."
will bring--The words, "even unto this day"
confirm English Version rather than the rendering of ROSENMULLER: "I brought upon them."
9. conspiracy--a deliberate combination against God and against
Josiah's reformation. Their idolatry is not the result of a hasty
11. cry unto me--contrasted with "cry unto the gods,"
12. cry unto the gods . . . not save--
(De 32:37, 38).
Compare this verse and beginning of
in the time of their trouble--that is, calamity
13. shameful thing--Hebrew, "shame," namely, the idol, not
merely shameful, but the essence of all that is shameful
which will bring shame and confusion on yourselves [CALVIN].
14. There is a climax of guilt which admits of no further intercessory
in the Chaldee version, "leave off praying";
1Sa 16:1; 15:35;
Our mind should be at one with God in all that He is doing, even in the
rejection of the reprobate.
for their trouble--on account of their trouble. Other manuscripts
read, "in the time of their trouble;" a gloss from
15. my beloved--My elect people, Judea; this aggravates their
lewdness with many--
Rather, "that great (or, manifold) enormity"; literally, "the enormity,
the manifold"; namely, their idolatry, which made their worship of God
in the temple a mockery (compare
namely, the sacrifices, which, through the guilt of the Jews, were no
longer holy, that is, acceptable to God. The sacrifices on which
they relied will, therefore, no longer protect them. Judah is
represented as a priest's wife, who, by adultery, has forfeited her
share in the flesh of the sacrifices, and yet boasts of her prerogative
at the very same time [HORSLEY].
when thou doest evil--literally, "when thy evil" (is at hand).
PISCATOR translates, "When thy calamity is at hand
(according to God's threats), thou gloriest"
(against God, instead of humbling thyself).
English Version is best (compare
16. called thy name--made thee.
The "olive" is chosen to represent the adoption of Judah by the free
grace of God, as its oil is the image of richness
Ps 23:5; 104:15).
with . . . noise of . . . tumult--or,
"at the noise," &c., namely, at the tumult of the invading army
[MAURER]. Or, rather, "with the sound of a mighty
voice," namely, that of God, that is, the thunder; thus there is no
confusion of metaphors. The tree stricken with lightning has "fire
kindled upon it, and the branches are broken," at one and
the same time [HOUBIGANT].
17. that planted thee--
against themselves--The sinner's sin is to his own hurt
18, 19. Jeremiah here digresses to notice the attempt on his life
plotted by his townsmen of Anathoth. He had no suspicion of it, until
Jehovah revealed it to him
the Lord . . . thou--The change of person from the third to the
second accords with the excited feelings of the prophet.
then--when I was in peril of my life.
their doings--those of the men of Anathoth. His thus alluding to
them, before he has mentioned their name, is due to his excitement.
19. lamb--literally, a "pet lamb," such as the Jews often had in
their houses, for their children to play with; and the Arabs still have
His own familiar friends had plotted against the prophet. The
language is exactly the same as that applied to Messiah
Each prophet and patriarch exemplified in his own person some one
feature or more in the manifold attributes and sufferings of the
Messiah to come; just as the saints have done since His coming
This adapted both the more experimentally to testify of Christ.
tree with . . . fruit--literally, "in its fruit" or "food," that is,
when it is in fruit. Proverbial, to express the destruction of cause
and effect together. The man is the tree; his teaching, the fruit. Let
us destroy the prophet and his prophecies; namely, those threatening
destruction to the nation, which offended them. Compare
which also refers to prophets and their doctrines.
20. triest . . . heart--
revealed--committed my cause. Jeremiah's wish for vengeance was
not personal but ministerial, and accorded with God's purpose revealed
to him against the enemies alike of God and of His servant
(Ps 37:34; 54:7; 112:8; 118:7).
21. Prophesy not--
If Jeremiah had not uttered his denunciatory predictions, they would
not have plotted against him. None were more bitter than his own fellow
townsmen. Compare the conduct of the Nazarites towards Jesus of
22. The retribution of their intended murder shall be in kind; just
as in Messiah's case
the year of . . . visitation--The Septuagint translates, "in the year of their," &c., that is, at the time when I shall visit them
in wrath. JEROME supports English Version. "Year" often means
a determined time.