Page images

B. C. cir. 605.

cir. annum 12.

The influence and importance CHAP. XXIII.

of the word of God. A. M. cir. 3399. every man to his neighbour, 4 as32 Behold, I am against them 4. M. cir

. 3399. OI. XLIII.4. their fathers have forgotten my that prophesy false dreams, saith 01. XLIII. 4. Tarquinii Prisci,

Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., name for Baal.

the Lord, and do tell them, and

R. Roman., 28 The prophet y that hath a cause my people to err by their cir. annum 12. dream, let him tell a dream; and he that hath lies, and by their lightness; yet I sent my word, let him speak my word faithfully. them not, nor commanded them: therefore What is the chaff to the wheat ? saith the they shall not profit this people at all, saith LORD.

the Lord. : 29 Is not my word like as a fire ? saith the 33 And when this people, or the prophet, 'or Lord; and like a hammer that breaketh the a priest, shall ask thee, saying, What is c the rock in pieces ?

burden of the Lord? thou shalt then


unto 30 - Therefore, behold, 2 I am against the them, What burden? d I will even forsake you, prophets, saith the Lord, that steal my words saith the Lord. every one from his neighbour.

34 And as for the prophet, and the priest, 31 Behold, I am against the prophets, saith and the people, that shall say, The burden of the LORD, that use their tongues, and say, the LORD, I will even punish that man and He saith.

his house.

* Judg. iii. 7; viii. 33, 34. —-y Heb. with whom is.- - Deut.

xviii. 20; chap. xiv. 14, 15.

a Or, that smooth their tongues. - Zeph. iii. 4. Mal. i. 1.

d Ver. 39. -ot Heb, visit upon..

Verse 28. What is the chaff to the wheat? saith from the false, non-commissioned ones; those who run, the Lord.) Do not mingle these equivocal malfers though they are not sent, ver. 21. The word of him with positive revelations. Do not consider a dream, who has his commission from heaven shall be as a eren from a prophet, as that positive inspiration fire and as a hammer; sinners shall be convinced and which my prophets receive when their reason, judg. converted to God by it. But the others, though they ment, and spiritual feelings are all in full and in regu- steal the word from their neighbour-borrow or pilfer lar exercise. Mix none of your own devices with my a good sermon, yet they do not profit the people at all, doctrines.

because God did not send them, ver. 32 ; for the power Verse 29. Is not my word like as a fire ?] It en- of God does not in their ministry accompany the word. lightens, warms, and penetrates every part. When it There may be an allusion to the practice in some is communicated to the true prophet, it is like a fire shut mining countries, of roasting stones containing ore, up in his bones; he cannot retain it, he must publish before they are subjected to the hammer, in order to it: and when published, it is like a hammer that breaks pulverize them. In Cornwall I have seen them roast the rock in pieces; it is ever accompanied by a Divine the tin stones in the fire, before they placed them under power, that causes both sinner and saint to feel its the action of the hammers in the stamp mill. The weight and importance.

fire separated the arsenic from the ore, and then they In the original words there is something singular : /were easily reduced to powder by the hammers of the Ox3 937 70 x 577 halo coh debari kaesh, “ Is not thus mill; afterwards, washing the mass with water, the my word like fire ?" I suspect, with Dr. Blayney, that grains of tin sank to the bottom, while the lighter parts nod, coh, thus, was formerly written no coach, strength went off with the water, and thus the metal was proor power ; and so it was understood by the Targumist : cured clean and pure,

If this be the allusion, it is very * Are not all my words strong, like fire ?" and probably appropriate. the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews read it thus, Verse 30. I am against the prophets] Three cases and had it in view when he wrote: “ For the word of are mentioned here which excited God's disapprobaGod is quick and powerful, and sharper than any two- tion : 1. The prophets who stole the word from their edged sword,” Heb. iv. 12. This admitted, the text neighbour; who associated with the true prophets, got would read, “ Is not my word powerful, like fire ?" or, some intelligence from them, and then went and pub“ Is not the power of my word like fire ?" · But how- lished it as a revelation which themselves had receivever we understand the words, let us take heed lested, ver. 30." 2. The prophets who used their longues ; we think, as some have thought and affirmed, that the doo'y o'np sa hallokechim leshonam, who lick or smooth sacred writings are quite sufficient of themselves to en- with their tongues--gave their own counsels as Divine lighten, convince, and convert the soul, and that there revelations, flattering them in their sins, and promising is no need of the Holy Spirit. Fire itself must be peace, when God had not spoken ; and prefaced them, applied by an agent in order to produce its effects; and “ Thus saith the Lord,” ver. 31. 3 The prophets who surely the hammer cannot break the rock in pieces, un- made up false stories, which they termed prophecies, reless rielded by an able workman. And it is God's vealed to them in dreams; and thus caused the people to Spirit alone that can thus apply it; for we find it fre- err, ver. 32. quently read and frequently spoken, without producing Verse 33. What is the burden of the Lord ?) The any salutary effects. And by this very thing the true word xv) massa, here used, signifies burden, oracle, propreachers of the word of God may be distinguished phetic discourse ; and is used by almost every prophet.

A. M. cir. 3399.
B. C. cir. 605.

Tarquinii Prisci,

R. Roman., cir, annum 12.

B. C. cir. 605.
Ol. XLIII. 4.

cir. annum 12.

The vision of the


good and bad figs. 35 Thus shall ye say every1 LORD; therefore thus saith the A. M. cir. 3399. one to his neighbour, and every LORD; Because ye say this

Tarquinii Prisci, one to his brother, What' hath word, The burden of the LORD, R. Roman.,

the Lord answered ? and, What and I have sent unto you, sayhath the LORD spoken?

ing, Ye shall not say, The burden of the 36 And the burden of the LORD shall ye LORD; . mention no more : for every man's word shall 39 Therefore, behold, I, even I, will utterly be his burden; for ye have perverted the words forget you, and I will forsake you, and the of the living God, of the Lord of hosts our God. city that I gave you and your fathers, and cast

37 Thus.shalt thou say to the prophet, What you out of my presence: hath the Lord answered thee? and, What hath 40 And I will bring an everlasting reproach the Lord spoken?

upon you, and a perpetual shame, which shall 38 But since ye say, The burden of the not be forgotten.

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But the persons in the text appear to have been mockers. Verse 39. I will utterly forget you, and I will for. “Where is this burden of the Lord ?"_“What is the sake you and the city] Dr. Blaynèy translates :-1 burden now?" To this insolent question the prophet will both take you up altogether, and will cast you off answers in the following verses.

logether wilh the city. Ye are a burden to me: but I I will even forsake you] I will punish the prophet, will take you up, and then cast you off. I will do with the priest, and the people, that speak thus, ver. 34. you as a man weary with his burden will do ; cast it off Here are burdens.

his shoulders, and bear it no more. Verse 36. Every man's word shall be his burden) Verse 40. I will bring an everlasting reproach upon Ye say that all God's messages are burdens, and to you] And this reproach of having rebelled against so you they shall be such : whereas, had you used them good a God, and rejected so powerful a Saviour, follows as you ought, they would have been blessings to you. them to this day through all their dispersions, in every

For ye have perverled the words of the living God] part of the habitable earth. The word of the Lord And thus have sinned against your own souls.

cannot fail.


Ol. XLV. 3.


A. M. 3106.

B. C. 598. OI. XLV. 3.


Under the emblem of the good and bad figs is represented the fate of the Jews already gone into captivity

with Jeconiah, and of those that remained still in their own country with Zedekiah. It is likewise intimated that God would deal kindly with the former, but that his wrath would still pursue the latter, 1-10. 1.MC: 3:06. THE Lord showed me, and, and the princes of Judah, with

behold, two baskets- of figs the carpenters and smiths from Tarquinn Prisci, were set before the temple of the Jerusalem, and had brought them Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 19. LORD, after that Nebuchadrezzar to Babylon.

R. Roman., 19. king of Babylon had carried away captive 2 One basket had very good figs, even like • Jeconiah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, the figs that are first ripe; and the other basket

a Amos vii. 1, 4; viii. 1.7.2 Kings xxiv. 12, &c; 2 Chron. xxxvi. 10. - See chap. xxi. 24, &c.; xxix. 2. NOTES ON CHAP. XXIV.

the figs that are first ripe ; and the other basket had Verse 1. The Lord showed me, and, behold, two bas- very naughty figs, which could not be eaten, they were kets of figs] Besides the transposition of whole chapters so bad." in this book, there is not unfrequently a transposition This arrangement restores these verses to á better of verses, and parts of verses. Of this we have an sense, by restoring the natural connexion.instance in the verse before us ; the first clause of which This prophecy was undoubtedly delivered in the first should be the last. Thus:

year of the reign of Zedekiah. “After that Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon had Under the type of good and bad figs, God represents carried away captive Jeconiah, the son of Jehoiakim the state of the persons who had already been carried king of Judah, with the carpenters and smiths from captives into Babylon, with their king Jeconiah, comJerusalem, and had brought them to Babylon, the Lord pared with the state of those who should be carried away showed me, and, behold, two baskets of figs were set be- with Zedekiah. Those already carried away, being the fore the temple of the Lord.”

choice of the people, are represented by the good figs : Verse 2. “One basket had very good figs, even like those now remaining, and soon to be carried into captive

B. C. 598.




Prediction concerning


the king of Judah A. M 3406.

had very naughty figs, which | And I will give them h a heart A. M. 3406 B. C. 598. OL. XLV. 3. could not be eaten, d they were to know me, that I the LORD: Ol. XLV. 3 Tarquinii Prisci, so bad.

and they shall be i my people, Tarquinu Prisci, R. Roman, 19. 3 Then said the Lord unto me, and I will be their God : for they

R. Roinan., 19. What seest thou, Jeremiah ? And I said, shall return unto me k with their whole heart. Figs; the good figs, very good; and the evil, 8 And as the evil ? figs, which cannot be very evil, that cannot be eaten, they are eaten, they are so evil; surely thus saith the so eyil.

LORD, So will I give Zedekiah the king of 4 Again the word of the Lord came unto me, Judah, and his princes, and the residue of saying,

Jerusalem, that remain in this land, and mthem 5. Thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel ; that dwell in the land of Egypt: Like these good figs, so will I acknowledge 9 And I will deliver them " to o be removed them that are carried away captive of Judah, into all the kingdoms of the earth for their whom I have sent out of this place into the hurt, P to be a reproach and a proverb, a taunt land of the Chaldeans for their good. 9 and a curse, in all places whither I shall

6 For I will set mine eyes upon them for drive them. good, and I will bring them again to this 10 And I will send the sword, the famine, land': and I will build them, and not pull and the pestilence,'among them, till they be them down; and I will plant them, and not consumed from off the land that I gave unto pluck them up.

them and to their fathers. • Heb. for badness.

e Heb. the captivity: Chap. xii. 15; Chap. xxix. 17. -m See chap. xliii. xliv. Heb. for rexxix. 10.—Chap. xxxii. 41; xxxiii. 7 ; xlii. 10.

moving, or veration. - Deut. xxviii. 25, 37; 1 Kings ix. 7; 6; chap. xxxii. 39; Ezek. xi. 19; xxxvi. 26, 27.- Chap. XXX. 2 Chron. vii. 20; chap. xv. 4; xxix. 18; xxxiv. 17.—Psa. 22: Ixx. 33 ; xxxii. 38. - Chap. xxix. 13.

xliv. 13, 14. – Chap. xxix. 18, 22. ity, are represented by the bad figs, that were good Verse 5. Like these good figs, so will I acknowledge] for nothing. The state also of the former in their Those already carried away into captivity, I esteem captivity was vastly preferable to the state of those who as far more excellent than those who still remain in were now about to be delivered into the hand of the the land. They have not sinned so deeply, and they king of Babylon. The latter would be treated as double are now penitent; and, therefore, I will set mine eyes rebels; the former, being the most respectable of the upon them for good, ver. 6. I will watch over them inhabitants, were treated well; and even in captivity, a by an especial providence, and they shall be restored marked distinction would be made between them, God to their own land. ordering it so. But the prophet sufficiently explains Verse 7. They shall be my people] I will renew his own meaning.

my covenant with them, for they will return to me with Set before the temple]—As an offering of the first their whole heart. fruits of that kind.

Verse 8. So will I give Zedekiah] I will treat these Verse 2. Very good figs] Or, figs of the early sort. as they deserve. They shall be carried into captivity, The fig trees in Palestine, says Dr. Shaw, produce and scattered through all nations. Multitudes of those fruit thrice each year.

The first sort, called boccore, never returned to Judea ; the others returned at the those here mentioned, come to perfection about the end of seventy years. middle or end of June. The second sort, called kermez, Verse 10. I will send the sword] Many of them fell or summer fig, is seldom ripe before August. And the by sword and famine in the war with the Chaldeans, and third, which is called the winter fig, which is larger, many more by such means afterwards. The first reand of a darker complexion than the preceding, hangs all ceived their captivity as a correction, and turned to the winter on the tree, ripening even when the leaves God; the latter still hardened their hearts more and more, åre shed, and is fit for gathering in the beginning of spring. and probably very many of them never returned : per

Could not be eaten] The winter fig,—then in its haps they are now amalgamated with heathen nations. crude or unripe state; the spring not being yet come. Lord, how long ?

.b Deut. XXX.

CHAPTER XXV. This chapter contains a summary of the judgments denounced by Jeremiah against Judah, Babylon, and many

other nations. It begins with reproving the Jews for disobeying the calls of God to repentance, 1-7; on which account their captivity, with that of other neighbouring nations, during seventy years, is foretold, 8-11 At the expiration of that period, (computing from the invasion of Nebuchadnezzar in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, to the famous edict of the first year of Cyrus,) an end was to be put to the Babylonian empire, 12-14. All this is again declared by the emblem of that cup of wrath which the prophet, as it

B. C. 607.
Ol. XLII. 2.


[ocr errors]

An exhortation

to repentance. should seem in a vision, tendered to all the nations which he enumerates, 15–29. And for farther confirmation, it is a third time repeated in a very beautiful and elevated strain of poetry, 30-38. The talent of diversifying the ideas, images, and language, even when the subject is the same, or nearly so, appears no where in such perfection as among the sacred poets.

A. M. 3397.
8. 1. 397. THE word that came to Jere- and to worship them, and provoke
Ol. XLIII. 2. miah concerning all the peo- me not to anger with the works

Tarquinii Prisci, ple of Judah a in the fourth year of your hands; and I will do Tarquinii Prisci,
R. Roman, 10. of Jehoiakim the son of Josiah you no hurt.

R. Roman., 10. king of Judah, that was the first year of Ne- 7 Yet


have not hearkened unto me, saith buchadrezzar king of Babylon

the LORD; that ye might 'provoke me to anger 2 The which Jeremiah the prophet spake with the works of your hands to your own hurt. unto all the people of Judah, and to all the 8. Therefore thus saith the Lord of hosts ; inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying,

Because ye have not heard my words, 3 b From the thirteenth year of Josiah the 9 Behold, I will send and take & all the fason of Amon king of Judah, even unto this milies of the north, saith the LORD, and Nebuday, that is the three and twentieth year, the chadrezzar the king of Babylon, my servant, word of the Lord hath come unto me, and I and will bring them against this land, and have spoken unto you, rising early and speak- against the inhabitants thereof, and against all ing; but ye have not hearkened.

these nations round about, and will utterly de4 And the Lord hath sent unto you all his stroy them, and make them an astonishment, servants the prophets, d rising early and send- and a hissing, and perpetual desolations. ing them; but ye have not hearkened, nor in- 10 Moreover k I will take from them the clined your ear to hear.

I voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the 5 They said, • Turn ye again now every one voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the from his evil way, and from the evil of your bride, m the sound of the millstones, and the doings, and dwell in the land that the LORD light of the candle. hath given unto you and to your fathers for 11 And this whole land shall be a desolation, ever and ever :

and an astonishment; and these nations shall 6° And go not aster other gods to serve them, serve the king of Babylon seventy years.

a Chap. xxxvi. I.- – Chap. i. 2. Chap, vii. 13; xi. 7, 8, Chap. i. 15.- th Chap. xxvii. 6; xliii. 10; see (sa. xliv. 28;
10; xiii. 10, 11 ; xvi. 12; xvii. 23; xviii, 12; xix. 15; xxii. 21. xlv. l; chap. xl. 2.- - Chap. xviii. 16. Heb. I will cause to
d Chap. vi. 13, 25; xxvi. 5; xxix. 19,- - 2 Kings xvii. 13; perish from them. —Isa. xxiv. 7; chap. ru. 34 ; xvi.
chap. xviii. 11; xxxv. 15; Jonah iii. 8.- -f Deut. xxxii. 21; 9; Ezek. xxvi. 13; Hos. ii. 11; Rev. avui. 23.-Eccles.
chap. vii. 19; xxxi. 30.

Instead of 5x1 veel, and to Nebuchadrezzar," as in
Verse 1. The word that came to Jeremiah-in the the.common Hebrew Bible, seven MSS. of Kennicott's
fourth year] This prophecy, we see, was delivered in and De Rossi's, and one of my own, have nni veetk,
the fourth year of Jehoakim, and the chapter that “ AND Nebuchadrezzar,” which is undoubtedly the true
contains it is utterly out of its place. It should be reading.
between chapters xxxv. and xxxvi.

Verse 10. I will take from them] See chap. vii. The defeat of the Egyptians by Nebuchadnezzar 34, and xvi. 9. at Carchemish, and the subsequent taking of Jerusa- The sound of the mill-stones, and the light of the lem, occurred in this year, viz., the fourth year of candle.) These two are conjoined, because they geJehoiakim.

nerally ground the corn before day, by the light of the The first year of Nebuchadrezzar] This king was candle. Sir J. Chardin has remarked, that every associated with his father two years before the death where in the morning may be heard the noise of the of the latter. The Jews reckon his reign from this mills ; for they generally grind every day just as much time, and this was the first of those two years; but the as is necessary for the day's consumption. Where Chaldeans date the commencement of his reign two then the noise of the mill is not heard, nor the light years later, viz., at the death of his father.

of the candle seen, there must be desolation ; because Verse 7. That ye might provoke] Ye would not these things are heard and seen in every inhabited hearken; but chose to provoke me with anger. country.

Verse 9. Behold, I will send] At this time Nebu- Verse 11. Shall serve the king of Babylon seventy chadrezzar had not invaded the land, according to this years.] As this prophecy was delivered in the fourth Version ; but the Hebrew may be translated, “Behold year of Jehoiakim, and in the first of Nebuchadnezzar, I am sending, and have taken all the families ;" that and began to be accomplished in the same year, (for is, all the allies of the king of Babylon.

then Nebuchadnezzar invaded Judea, and took Jerusa

xii. 4.


A. M. 3397.

B, C. 607. OI. XLIII. 2.


B. C. 607. Ol. XLIII. 2.


The cup of God's wrath


presented to the nations: 12 And it shall come to pass, and made all the nations to drink, 4. M. 3397.

when seventy years are accom-unto whom the Lord had sent me: Tarquinii Prisci, plished, that I will punish the 18 To wit, Jerusalem, and the Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 10, king of Babyłon, and that nation, cities of Judah, and the kings

R. Roman., 10. saith the Lord, for their iniquity, and the land thereof, and the princes thereof, to make them of the Chaldeans, Pand will make it perpetual a desolation, an astonishment, a hissing, and dcsolations.

*a curse; as it is this day; 13 And I will bring upon that land all my 19, Pharaoh king of Egypt, and his serwords which I have pronounced against it, vants, and his princes, and all his people; even all that is written in this book, which 20 And all ? the mingled people, and all the Jeremiah "bath prophesied against all the 'kings of the land of Uz, and all the kings påtions.

of the land of the Philistines, and Ashkelon, 14 . For many nations and great kings shall and Azzah, and Ekron, and the remnant of * serve themselves of them also :.t and I will Ashdod, recompense them according to their deeds, and 21 Edom, and • Moab, and the children of according to the works of their own hands. f Ammon,

15 For thus saith the LORD God of Israel 22. And all the kings of & Tyrus, and all the unto me; Take the u wine cup of this fury at kings of 'Zidon, and the kings of the hisles my hand, and cause all the nations, to whom which are beyond the i sea, I send thee, to drink it.

23 Dedan, and Tema, and Buz, and all 16 And v they shall drink, and be moved, that are in the utmost corners, and be mad, because of the sword that I will 24 And mall the kings of Arabia, and all send among them.

the kings of the mingled people that dwell 17 Then took I the cup at the Lord's hand, in the desert,


P2 Chron. xxxvi. 21, 22; Ezra i. 1 ; chap. xxix. 10; Dan. ix. 2; y Chap. xlvi. 2, 25. Ver. 24.- Job i.). - Chap. xlvii. 2 Kings xxiv. 1.

Heb. visit upon.

=> [sa. xiii. 19; xiv. 23; | 1, 5, 7.- - See Isa. xx. 1. - Chap. xlix. 7, &c. Chap. xxi. I, &c.; xlvii. l; chap. 1. 3, 13, 23, 39, 40, 45; li. 25, 26. xlviii. 1.- Chap. xlix. 1.-. Chap. xlvi. 4.

Or, region Chap. 1. 9; li. 27, 28. Chap. I. 41; li. 27. s Chap. xxvii. by the sea side. - Chap. xlix. 23.

—Chap. xlix. B. Heb. 7. Chap. 1: 29 ; li. 6, 24.-- Job xxi.- 20; Psa. lxxv. 8; cut off into corners, or having the corners of the hair polled ; - chap: İsa. li. 17; Rev, xiv. 10. Chap. li. 7; Ezek. xxji. 34 ; Nah, ix. 26; xlix. 32.—_m2 Chron. ix. 14: See ver. 20, chap. iii. 11. — Vör. 9, 11.-Chap. xxiv. I.

- xlix. 31 ; 1. 3; Ezek. xxx. 5.

lem,) seventy years from this time will reach down to took the cup;" I declared publicly the tribulation that the first year of Cyrus, when he made his proclama- God was about to bring on Jerusalem, the cities of tion for the restoration of the Jews, and the rebuilding. Judah, and all the nations. of Jerusalem. See the note on Isa. xiii. 19, where the Verse 19. Pharaoh king of Egypt] This was Phasubject is farther considered in relation to the reign of raoh-necho, who was the principal cause of instigating Nebuchadnezzar, and the city of Babylon.

the neighbouring nations to form á league against the Verse 12. And that nation] xina in haggoi hahu. Chaldeans. Dr. Blayney contends that this should be translated his Verse 20. All the mingled people] The strangers nation, and that 81717 hahu is the substantive pronoun and foreigners ; Abyssinians and others who had setused in the genitive case. It is certainly more clear' tled in Egypt. and definite to read, “ I will punish the king of Baby- Land of Uz] A part of Arábia near to Idumea. lon, and his nation."

See on Job i. 1. Will make it perpetual desolations) See the note Verse 22. Tyrus and-Zidon] The most ancient on Isa. xiii. 19, where the fulfilment of this prophecy of all the cities of the Phænicians. is distinctly marked.

Kings of the isles which are beyond the sea.] As Verse 14. Many nations and great · kings] The the Mediterranean Sea is most probably meant, and Medes and the Persians, under Cyrus; and several the Phænicians had numerous colonies on its coasts, I princes, his vassals or allies.

prefer the marginal reading, the kings of the region by Verse 15. Take the wine cup of this füry] For an the sea side. ample illustration of this passage and simile, see the Verse 23. Dedan) Was son of Abraham, by Kénote on Isa. li. 21.

turah, Gen. xxv. 3. Verse 17. Then took I the cup- and made all the Tema] Was one of the sons of Ishmael, in the north nations to drink] This cup of God's wrath is merely of Arabia, Gen. xxxvi. 15. symbolical, atid simply means that the prophet should Buz] Brother of Uz, descendants of Nahor, brother declare to all these people that they shall fall under of Abraham, settled in Arabia Deserta, Gen, xxii. 21. the Chaldean yoke, and that this is a punishment in- Verse 24. The mingled people] Probably the Sceflicted on them by God for their iniquities. “Then I | nite Arabians.

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