Commentary Critical and Explanatory
on the Whole Bible
PROPHECY OF THE
BABYLON, AND OF
1. shut up--
(Jer 32:2, 3;
Though Jeremiah was shut up in bondage, the word of God was "not
2. maker thereof--rather, "the doer of it," namely, that which
Jeremiah is about to prophesy, the restoration of Israel, an act which
is thought now impossible, but which the Almighty will effect.
formed it--namely, Jerusalem
[CALVIN]. Rather, "that formed," that is, moulds
His purpose into due shape for execution
Lord . . . his name--
(Ex 3:14, 15).
3. Call . . . I will answer--
Jeremiah, as the representative of the people of God, is urged by God
to pray for that which God has determined to grant; namely, the
restoration. God's promises are not to slacken, but to quicken the
prayers of His people
(Ps 132:13, 17;
Isa 62:6, 7).
mighty things--Hebrew, "inaccessible things," that is, incredible,
hard to man's understanding
[MAURER], namely, the restoration of the
Jews, an event despaired of. "Hidden," or "recondite"
thou knowest not--Yet God had revealed those things to Jeremiah, but
the unbelief of the people in rejecting the grace of God had caused him
to forget God's promise, as though the case of the people admitted of no
4. houses . . . thrown down by the mounts--namely, by
the missiles cast from the besiegers' mounds
"and by the sword" follows properly, as, after missiles had prepared
the way, the foe next advanced to close quarters "with the sword."
5. They--the Jews; the defenders of the "houses"
"come forward to fight with the Chaldeans," who burst into the city
through the "thrown-down houses," but all the effect that they produce
"is, to fill them (the houses) with" their own "dead bodies."
The answer to Jeremiah's mournful question
cure--literally, the long linen bandage employed in dressing wounds.
truth--that is, stability; I will bring forth for them abundant and
permanent peace, that is, prosperity.
7. cause . . . to return--that is, reverse
The specification, both of "Judah" and "Israel," can only apply fully to
the future restoration.
as at the first--
Heb 9:13, 14).
Alluding to the legal rites of purification.
all their iniquity . . . all their iniquities--both
the principle of sin within, and its outward manifestations in
acts. The repetition is in order that the Jews may consider how
great is the grace of God in not merely pardoning (as to the
punishment), but also cleansing them (as to the pollution of
guilt); not merely one iniquity, but all
9. it--the city.
a name . . . a praise--
them--the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
they shall fear . . . for all the goodness--
The Gentiles shall be led to "fear" God by the proofs of His power
displayed in behalf of the Jews; the ungodly among them shall "tremble"
for fear of God's judgments on them; the penitent shall reverentially
fear and be converted to Him
10. ye say . . . desolate--
(Jer 7:34; 16:9).
Praise the Lord, &c.--the words of
which were actually used by the Jews at their restoration
sacrifice of praise--
(Ps 107:22; 116:17).
This shall continue when all other sacrifices shall be at an end.
12. habitation of shepherds . . . flocks--in contrast to
"without man . . . inhabitant . . . without
Jer 31:24; 50:19;
13. pass . . . under . . . hands of him that telleth them--Shepherds,
in sending forth and bringing back their sheep to the folds, count them by striking each as it passes with a rod, implying the shepherd's
provident care that not one should be lost
Joh 10:28, 29; 17:12).
14. perform--"I will make to rise"; God's promise having for a
time seemed to "lie" dead and abortive
15. Repeated from
the land--the Holy Land: Israel and Judah
instead of this, it is "Israel." "The name" in the Hebrew
has here to be supplied from that passage; and for "he" (Messiah, the
antitypical "Israel"), the antecedent there
we have "she" here, that is, Jerusalem. She is called by the same name
as Messiah, "The Lord Our Righteousness," by virtue of the mystical
oneness between her (as the literal representative of the spiritual
Church) and her Lord and Husband. Thus, whatever belongs to the Head
belongs also to the members
(Eph 5:30, 32).
Hence, the Church is called "Christ"
The Church hereby professes to draw all her righteousness from Christ
(Isa 45:24, 25).
It is for the sake of Jerusalem, literal and spiritual, that God the
Father gives this name (Jehovah, Tsidkenu, "The Lord our
Righteousness") to Christ.
17. The promises of perpetuity of the throne of David fulfilled in
Messiah, the son of David
Ps 89:4, 29, 36;
Lu 1:32, 33).
18. Messiah's literal priesthood
(Heb 7:17, 21, 24-28),
and His followers' spiritual priesthood and sacrifices
Ro 12:1; 15:16;
1Pe 2:5, 9;
shall never cease, according to the covenant with Levi, broken
by the priests, but fulfilled by Messiah
(Nu 25:12, 13;
Mal 2:4, 5, 8).
20. covenant of the day--that is, covenant with the day:
answering to "covenant with David"
"with day"; compare
Jer 31:35, 36;
Ps 89:34, 37).
(Ge 15:5; 22:17).
The blessing there promised belonged to all the tribes; here it
is restricted to the family of David and the tribe of Levi, because it
was on these that the welfare of the whole people rested. When the
kingdom and priesthood flourish in the person of Messiah, the whole
nation shall temporally and spiritually prosper.
24. this people--certain of the Jews, especially those who spoke with
Jeremiah in the court of the prison
(Jer 32:12; 38:1).
the two families--Judah and Israel.
before them--in their judgment. They suppose that I have utterly cast
off Israel so as to he no more a nation. The expression, "My people,"
of itself, shows God has not cast off Israel for ever.
(Jer 31:35, 36;
Ps 74:16, 17).
I who have established the laws of nature am the same God who has made
a covenant with the Church.
Am 7:9, 16).