Commentary Critical and Explanatory
on the Whole Bible
SUPPLEMENT TO THE
Jeremiah, having already (thirty-ninth and fortieth chapters) given the
history in the proper place, was not likely to repeat it here. Its
canonical authority as inspired is shown by its being in the
Septuagint version. It contains the capture and burning of
Jerusalem, &c., Zedekiah's punishment, and the better treatment of
Jehoiachin under Evil-merodach, down to his death. These last events
were probably subsequent to Jeremiah's time.
3. through . . . anger of . . . Lord . . . Zedekiah rebelled--His
"anger" against Jerusalem, determining Him to "cast out" His people
"from His presence" heretofore manifested there, led Him to permit
Zedekiah to rebel
(2Ki 23:26, 27;
Ex 9:12; 10:1;
That rebellion, being in violation of his oath "by God," was sure to
bring down God's vengeance
Eze 17:15, 16, 18).
4. forts--rather, towers of wood
[KIMCHI], for watching the
movements of the besieged from the height and annoying them with
7. (See on
9. gave judgment upon him--as guilty of rebellion and perjury
"I will bring him to Babylon . . . yet shall he not see
prison--literally, "the house of visitations," or "punishments," that
is, where there was penal work enforced on the prisoners, such as
grinding. Hence the Septuagint renders it "the house of the mill."
So Samson, after his eyes were put out, "ground" in the Philistine
12. tenth day--But in
it is said "the seventh day." Nebuzara-dan started from
Riblah on the "seventh" day and arrived in Jerusalem on the
"tenth" day. Seeming discrepancies, when cleared up, confirm the
genuineness of Scripture; for they show there was no collusion between
the writers; as in all God's works there is latent harmony under
13. all the houses . . . and all the houses of the great--the "and"
defines what houses especially are meant, namely, the houses of the
15. poor of . . . people--added to the account in
"The poor of the people" are of the city, as distinguished from
"the poor of the land," that is, of the country.
17. brake--that they might be more portable. Fulfilling the prophecy
1Ki 7:15, 23, 27, 50.
Nothing is so particularly related here as the carrying away of the
articles in the temple. The remembrance of their beauty and
preciousness heightens the bitterness of their loss and the evil of sin
which caused it.
brass . . . brazen--rather "copper . . . of copper."
19. of gold in gold--implying that the articles were of solid gold
and silver respectively, not of a different metal inside, or alloyed
[GROTIUS]. Whole: not breaking them as was done to the "brass"
20. bulls . . . under the bases--But the bulls were not "under the bases," but under the sea
(1Ki 7:25, 27, 38);
the ten bases were not under the sea, but under the ten lavers. In
English Version, "bases," therefore, must mean the lower
parts of the sea under which the bulls were. Rather, translate,
"the bulls were in the place of (that is, 'by way of'; so the
bases," or supports to the sea [BUXTORF]. So the
omits the "bulls," and has "and the bases"; so GROTIUS here reads "the bulls (which were) under (the
sea) and the bases."
21. eighteen cubits--but in
it is "thirty-five cubits." The discrepancy is thus removed.
Each pillar was eighteen common cubits. The two together,
deducting the base, were thirty-five, as stated in
[GROTIUS]. Other ways (for example, by reference
to the difference between the common and the sacred cubit) are proposed:
though we are not able positively to decide now which is the true way,
at least those proposed do show that
the discrepancies are not irreconcilable.
22. five cubits--so
has "three cubits." There were two parts in the chapiter: the one lower
and plain, of two cubits; the other, higher and curiously carved, of
three cubits. The former is omitted in
as belonging to the shaft of the pillar; the latter alone is there
mentioned. Here the whole chapiter of five cubits is referred
23. on a side--literally, (on the side) towards the air or
wind, that is, the outside of the capitals of the pillars conspicuous
to the eye, opposed to the four remaining pomegranates which were not
seen from the outside. The pomegranates here are ninety-six; but in
they are two hundred on each chapiter, and four hundred on the two
It seems there were two rows of them, one above the other, and
in each row a hundred. They are here said to be ninety-six, but
immediately following one hundred, and so in
Four seem to have been unseen to one looking from one point; and
the ninety-six are only those that could be seen [VATABLUS]; or, the four omitted here are those
separating the four sides, one pomegranate at each point of separation
(or at the four corners) between the four sides [GROTIUS].
24. Seraiah--different from the Seraiah
son of Neriah; probably son of Azariah
Zephaniah--son of Maaseiah
25. seven men--but in
it is "five." Perhaps two were less illustrious persons and are
principal scribe of the host--
His office was to preside over the levy and enroll recruits. RAWLINSON observes that the Assyrian records are free
from the exaggerated expressions found in the Egyptian. A minute
account was taken of the spoil. Two "scribes of the host" are seen in
every bas-relief, writing down the various objects brought to them: the
heads of the slain, the prisoners, cattle, sheep, &c.
28. seventh year--in
2Ki 24:12, 14, 16,
it is said "the eighth year" of Nebuchadnezzar. No doubt it was
in part about the end of the seventh year, in part about the beginning
of the eighth. Also in
and seven thousand men of might, and a thousand craftsmen
are said to have been carried away, But here three thousand
twenty-three. Probably the latter three thousand twenty-three were of
the tribe of Judah, the remaining seven thousand out of the ten
thousand were of the other tribes, out of which many Israelites still
had been left in the land. The thousand "craftsmen" were exclusive of
the ten thousand, as appears, by comparing
with Jer 52:16.
Probably the three thousand twenty-three of Judah were first removed in
the end of "the seventh year"; the seven thousand and a thousand
craftsmen in the "eighth year." This was at the first captivity under
29. eighteenth year--when Jerusalem was taken. But in
and 2Ki 25:8,
"the nineteenth year." Probably it was at the end of the eighteenth and
the beginning of the nineteenth [LYRA].
eight hundred and thirty and two--The most illustrious persons are
meant, who no doubt were carried away first, at the end of the
30. Not recorded in Kings or Chronicles. Probably it took place
during the commotions that followed the death of Gedaliah
four thousand and six hundred--The exact sum-total of the numbers
specified here, namely, three thousand twenty-three, eight hundred
thirty-two, seven hundred forty-five, not including the general
multitude and the women and children
five and twentieth day--but in
it is "the twenty-seventh day." Probably on the twenty-fifth the decree
for his elevation was given, and the preparations for it made by
releasing him from prison; and on the twenty-seventh day it was carried
Evil-merodach--son and successor of Nebuchadnezzar [LYRA]; and the Hebrew writers say that during
Nebuchadnezzar's exclusion from men among beasts, Evil-merodach
administered the government. When Nebuchadnezzar at the end of seven
years was restored, hearing of his son's misconduct and that he had
exulted in his father's calamity, he threw him into prison, where the
latter met Jeconiah and contracted a friendship with him, whence arose
the favor which subsequently he showed him. God, in his elevation,
rewarded his having surrendered to Nebuchadnezzar (compare
with 2Ki 24:12).
lifted up . . . head--(Compare
Ge 40:13, 20;
Ps 3:3; 27:6).
32. set his throne above--a mark of respect.
the kings--The Hebrew text reads (the other) "kings."
"The kings" is a Masoretic correction.
33. changed . . . garments--gave him garments suitable to a king.
did . . . eat bread before him--
34. every day a portion--rather, "its portion," (compare