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Jeremiah is released
CHAP. XXXVIII.

from the dungeon. 4.M.Cor. 3415. surely be given into the hand of geon; and "he is like to die for 4. M. cir. 3415. 01. XLVII, 4: the king of Babylon's army, hunger in the place where he is : 01. XLVII. 4. Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., which shall take it.

Tarquinii Prisci,

for there is no more bread in R. Roman., cir. annum 28. 4 Therefore the princes said the city.

cir. annum 28. unto the king, We beseech thee, ' let this man 10. Then the king commanded Ebed-melech be put to death : for thus he weakeneth the the Ethiopian, saying, Take from hence thirty hands of the men of war that remain in this men m with thee, and take up Jeremiah the city, and the hands of all the people, in speak- prophet out of the dungeon, before he die. ing such words unto them : for this man seek- 11 So Ebed-melech took the men with him, eth not the & welfare of this people, but the hurt. and went into the house of the king under the

5 Then Zedekiah the king said, Behold, he treasury, and took thence old cast clouts and is in your hand : for the king is not he that old rotten rags, and let them down by cords can do any thing against you.

into the dungeon to Jeremiah. 6 Then took they Jeremiah, and cast him 12 And Ebed-melech the Ethiopian said unto into the dungeon of Malchiah the son of Jeremiah, Put now these old cast clouts and Hammelech, that was in the court of the rotten rags under thine armholes under the prison: and they let down Jeremiah with cords. cords. And Jeremiah did so. And in the dungeon there was no water, but 13 - So they drew up Jeremiah with cords, mire: so Jeremiah sunk in the mire.

and took him up out of the dungeon : and Je. 7. Now when Ebed-melech the Ethiopian, remiah remained in the court of the prison. one of the eunuchs which was in the king's 14 Then Zedekiah the king sent, and took house, heard that they had put Jeremiah in Jeremiah the prophet unto him into the P third the dungeon ; (the king then sitting in the entry that is in the house of the LORD: and the gate of Benjamin ;)

king said unto Jeremiah, I will ask thee a 8 Ebed-melech went forth out of the king's thing; hide nothing from me. house, and spake to the king, saying,

15 Then Jeremiah said unto Zedekiah, If I 9 My lord the king, these men have done declare it unto thee, wilt thou not surely put evil in all that they have done to Jeremiah the me to death ? and if I give thee counsel, wilt prophet, whom they have cast into the dun- thou not hearken unto me? See chap. xxvi. 11.

Chap. xxxvii. 21. Chap. xxxix. 16. 1 Heb. he will die. In Heb. in thine hand i Or, of the king.

n Ver. 6. Chap. xxxvii. 21.Or, principal. Verse 4. Let this man be put to death] And they fended it to the last extremity; and it appears that gave their reasons plain enough : but the proof was bread had been afforded to the prophet according to wanting.

the king's commandment, as long as there was any reVerse 5. He is in your hand] Ye have power to maining. See chap. xxxvi. 21. do as you please ; I must act by your counsel. Poor · Verse 10. Take from hence thirty men] The king weak prince! you respect the prophet, you fear the was determined that he should be rescued by force, if cabal, and you sacrifice an innocent man to your own the princes opposed. weakness and their malicé !

Verse 11. Went into the house of the kingand took Verse 6. -So Jeremiah sunk in the mire.] Their thence] Th eastern kings had their wardrobes alobvious design was, that he might be stifled in that ways well furnished ; as garments were a usual present place.

to ambassadors, &c. I cannot think that, in the proVerse 7. Ebed-melech] The servant of the king, per acceptation of the words, these were in any part one of the eunuchs who belonged to the palace. Per- of the king's house. haps it should be read, “ Now, a servant of the king, Old cast clouts, and old rotten rags] The fact a Cushite, one of the eunuchs,” &c.

seems to be this : there were several garments that The king then sitting in the gate of Benjamin) To had been used, and would not be used again; and give audience, and to administer justice. We have there were others which, through continuing long often seen that the gates of cities were the places of there, had by insects, &c. been rendered useless. public judicature.

These he took, tied to the cord, let down to the pro. Verse 9: My lord the king, these men have done evil] phet, that he might roll them round the ropes, and He must have been much in the king's confidence, place them under his arm-pits, so that in being hauled and a humane and noble spirited man, thus to have up he might not suffer injury from the ropes, which in raised his voice against the powerful cabal already this case must sustain the whole weight of his body. mentioned.

Verse 14. Into the third entry) A place to enter There is no more bread in the city.) They had de- / which two others must be passed through,

- Heb. peace.

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A. M. cir. 3415.
B. C. cir. 589.

B. C. civ. 589.
OI. XLVII, 4.

cir. annum 28.

Zedekiah is advised to

JEREMIAH.

surrender to the Chaldeans 16 So Zedekiah the king sware feet are sunk in the mire, and 4. M. cir. 3415. 01. XLVII. 4. secretly unto Jeremiah, saying, they are turned away back. Tarquinii Prisci,

Tarqninii Prisci, R. Roman.,

As the Lord liveth, 4 that made 23 So they shall bring out R. Roman., us this soul, I will not put thee all thy wives and wthy children

cir. annum 28. to death, neither will I give thee into the hand to the Chaldeans: and * thou shalt not of these men that seek thy life.

escape out of their hand, but shalt be taken 17 Then said Jeremiah unto Zedekiah, Thus by the hand of the king of Babylon : and saith the LORD, the God of hosts, the God of thou shalt cause this city to be burned Israel; If thou wilt assuredly 'go forth. unto with fire. the king of Babylon's princes, then thy soul 24 Then said Zedekiah unto Jeremiah, Let shall live, and this city shall not be burned no man know of these words, and thou shalt with fire; and thou shalt live, and thine not die. house :

25 But if the princes hear that I have talked 18 But if thou wilt not go forth to the king with thee, and they come unto thee, and say of Babylon's princes, then shall this city be unto thee, Declare unto us now what thou hast given into the hand of the Chaldeans, and they said unto the king, hide it not from us, and we shall burn it with fire, and thou shalt not will not put thee to death; and also what the escape out of their hand.

king said unto thee : 19 And Zedekiah the king said unto Jere- 26 Then thou shalt sảy unto them, z I

premiah, I am afraid of the Jews that are fallen to sented my supplication before the king, that he the Chaldeans, lest they deliver me into their would not cause me to return * 10 Jonathan's hand, and they "mock me.

house, to die there. 20 But Jeremiah said, They shall not deliver 27 Then came all the princes unto Jethee. Obey, I beseech thee, the voice of the remiah, and asked him: and he told them LORD, which I speak unto thee : so it shall be according to all these words that the king well unto thee, and thy soul shall live. had commanded, So they left off speaking 21 But if thou refuse to go forth, this is the with him; for the matter was not

perword that the Lord hąth showed me:. ceived.

22 And, behold, all the women that are left 28 So c Jeremiah abode in the in the king of Judah's house shall be brought court of the prison until the day forth to the king of Babylon's princes, and that Jerusalem was taken: and O1. XLVII. 4.

-XLVIII. 1, those women shall say, 'Thy friends have set he was there when Jerusalem thee on, and have prevailed against thee: thy was taken.

A. M. 3415

-3416. B. C. 589 --588

9 Isa. lvii. 16.—2 Kings xxiv. 12.—3 Chap. xxxix. 3. w Chap. xxxix. 6; xli. 10. Ver. 18. Heb. thou shalt Chap. xxxii. 4; xxxiv.3; ver. 23.-ul Sam. xxxi. 4.- - Heb. burn, &c.

Chap. xxxvii. 23. Chap. Xxxvii. 15.–

Heb, Men of thy peace.

they were silent from him.-Chap. xxxvi. 21 ; xxxix. 14.

Verse 16. As the Lord liveth, that made us this soul] gone forth privately to the principal officers of the He is the living God, and he is the Author of that life Chaldean army, and made the report mentioned in the which each of us possesses ; and as sure as he lives, end of this verse. These were the concubines or and we live .by him, I will not put thee to death, nor women of the second rank, give thee into the hands of those men who seek thy Verse 23. They shall bring out all thy wives and life. A very solemn oath'; and the first instance on thy children] These were the women of the first rank, record of the profane custom of swearing by the soul. by whom the king had children. These had no

Verse 17, Wilt assuredly go] On the king's obe- temptation to go out to the Chaldeans, nor would they dience to the advice of the prophet the safety of the have been made welcome; but the others being young, city depended.

and without children, would be well received by the Unto the king of Babylon's princes] The generals Chaldean princes. of the army then returning to the siege from the de- Verse 26. I presented my supplication! This was feat of the Egyptians ; for Nebuchadnezzar himself telling the truth, and nothing but the truth, but not the was then at Riblah, in Syria, chap. xxxix. 5, 6, whole truth. The king did not wish him to defile his

Verse 19. They mock me.] Insult me, and exhibit conscience, nor did he propose any thing that was not me in triumph.

consistent with the truth. Verse 22. All the women-brought forth] I think Verse 27. The matter was not perceived.] They this place speaks of a kind of defection among the did not question him farther; and the king's commandwomen of the harem; many of whom had already ment to remove him from the house of Jonathan being

Account of the

CHAP. XXXIX.

taking of Jerusalem. well known, they took for granted that they had all | embroil this weak king with his factious but powerful the information that they sought. And he was most princes, or affect his own life. He related simply certainly not obliged to relate any thing that might what was necessary, and no more.

CHAPTER XXXIX.

A. M. 3416.
B. C. 588.

This chapler gives an account of the siege and taking of Jerusalem ; the flight, capture, and punishment

of Zedekiah ; the burning of the city ; and the carrying away of the people, (a few of the meanest excepted,) to Babylon, 1-10 ; also of the release of Jeremiah, and the special orders of Nebuchadnezzar concerning him, 11-14. The remaining verses relate to the subject of the preceding chapter ; and contain promises of personal safety to Ebed-melech the Ethiopian amidst the public calamities, on account of his piety, and his humanity to the prophet, 15-18. . A. M. 3414. IN the a ninth

of Zedekiah B. C. 590.

year

4 © And it came to pass, that Ol. XLVII. 3. king of Judah, in the tenth when Zedekiah the king of Judah 01. XLVIII. 1.

Anno Tarquinii Prisci, month, came Nebuchadrezzar saw them, and all the men of war, Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 27.

king of Babylon and all his army then they fled, and went forth R. Roman., 29. against Jerusalem, and they besieged it. out of the city by night, by the way of the A. M. 3416.

2 And in the eleventh year of king's garden, by the gate betwixt the two B. C. 588. 01. XLVIII.1. Zedekiah, in the fourth month, walls: and he went out the way of the plain. Targuinii Prisci, the ninth day of the month, the 5 But the Chaldeans army pursued after R. Roman., 29. city was broken up.

them, and d overtook Zedekiah in the plains of 3 And all the princes of the king of Baby- Jericho: and when they had taken him, they lon came in, and sat in the middle gate, even brought him up to Nebuchadnezzar king of Nergal-sharezer, Samgar-nebo; Sarsechim, Babylon to e Riblah in the land of Hamath, Rab-saris, Nergal-sharezer, Rab-mag, with all where he gave judgment upon him. the residue of the princes of the king of Ba- 6 Then the king of Babylon slew the sons bylon.

of Zedekiah in Riblah before his

eyes: also the

Heb.

a 2 Kings xv. 1-4; chap. lii. 4-7. Chap. xxxvii. 17.

c2 Kings xxv. 4, &c.; chap. lii. 7, &c.

Chap. xxxii. 4 ; xxxviii. 18, 23.- 2 Kings xxiii. 33.

spake with him judgments ; chap. iv. 12.

NOTES ON CHAP. XXXIX.

Nergal-sharezer] These were the principal comVerse 1. In the ninth year of Zedekiah-in the manders; but Dr. Blayney thinks that instead of sir tenth month} This month is called Tebeth in Esther persons, we have in reality but three, as the name that ä. 16. It began with the first new moon of our follows each is a title of office. Thus, Nergal-shareJanuary, and it was on the tenth day of this month zer, who was Samgar ; Nebu-sarsechim, who was that Nebuchadnezzar invested the city.

Rab-saris ; and Nergal-sharezer, who was Rab-mag. Verse 2. The eleventh yearin the fourth month] As Nergal-sharezer occurs twice here, and we know This month in the Hebrew calendar is called Tham- that Nebuzar-adan was general-in-chief, the first Nermuz, and commences with the first new moon of our gal-sharezer is probably a mistake for Nebuzar-adan, July. The siege had lasted just eighteen months. or some other of the commanders.

But these things The city was broken up.] A breach was made in are as uncertain as they are unimportant. the wall by which the Chaldeans entered.

Verse 4. Went forth out of the city by night] ProVerse 3. Sat in the middle gate] The city of bably there was a private passage under ground, leadJerusalem stood upon two hills, Sion to the south, and ing without the walls, by which Zedekiah and his folAcra to the north, with a deep valley between them. lowers might escape unperceived, till they had got The gate of the centre, as the term seems plainly to some way from the city. import was a gate of communication in the middle of The way of the plain.] There were two roads from the valley, between the two parts of the city, some- Jerusalem to Jericho. One passed over the mount of times called the higher and the lower city. The Olives; but, as this might have retarded his flight, he Chaldeans entered the city on the north side by a chose the way of the plain, and was overtaken near breach in the walls, and rushing forward and posting Jericho, perhaps about sixteen or eighteen miles from themselves in this gate, in the very heart or centre of Jerusalem. He had probably intended to have passed the city, became thereby masters at will of the whole. the Jordan, in order to escape to Egypt, as the EgypZedekiah with his troop, perceiving this, fled out of tians were then his professed allies. the opposite gate on the south side. See Blayney. I Verse 5. To Riblah] This city was situated on the This is likely; but we know nothing positively on this northern frontier of Palestine, and Hamath was a large subject,

I city belonging also to Syria. See Gen. x. 18.

Ol. XLVIII. 1.

Anno

Anno

Jeremiah is treated kindly

JEREMIAH

by the Chaldeans. A. M. 3416. king of Babylon slew all - the sharezer, Rab-mag, and all the

A. M. 3416. B. C. 588.

B, C. 588. Ol. XLVHI. 1. nobles of Judah.

king of Babylon's princes; Targuínii Prisci, 7 Moreover she put out Zede- 14 Even they sent, and took Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 29.

kiah's

eyes, and bound him with Jeremiah out of the court of the R. Roman., 29. chains, to carry him to Babylon.

prison, and committed him ' unto Gedaliah the 8 i And the Chaldeans burnt the king's house, son of * Ahikam the son of Shaphan, that he and the houses of the people, with fire, and should carry him home': so he dwelt among brake down the walls of Jerusalem.

the people. 9 Then Nebuzar-adan the captain of the 15 Now the word of the LORD came unto guard carried away captive into Babylon the Jeremiah, while he was shut up in the court remnant of the people that remained in the city, of the prison, saying, and those that fell away, that fell to him, with 16 Go and speak to Ebed-melech the Ethithe rest of the people that remained. opian, saying, Thus saith the LORD of hosts,

10 But Nebuzar-adan the captain of the the God of Israel; Behold u I will bring my guard left of the poor of the people, which had words upon this city for evil, and not for good ; nothing, in the land of Judah, and gave them and they shall be accomplished in that day bevineyards and fields n at the same time. fore thee.

11 Now Nebuchadrezzar king of Babylon 17 But I will deliver thee in that day, saith
gave charge.concerning Jeremiah oto Nebuzar- the Lord: and thou shalt not be given into
adan the captain of the guard, saying, the hand of the men of whom thou art

12 Take him, and P look well to him, and afraid.
do him no harm; but do unto him even as he 18 For I will surely deliver thee, and thou
shall say unto thee.

shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall 13 So Nebuzar-adan the captain of the guard be for a prey unto thee : " because thou hast sent, and Nebushasban, Rab-saris, and Nergal- put thy trust in me, saith the LORD.

6 Ezek. xii. 13, compared with chap. xxxii. 4.- h Heb. with * Heb. in that day. Heb. by the hand of. Hela two brazen chains or fetters.--2 Kings xxv. 9; chap. xxxviii. set thine eyes upon him — Chap. xxxviii. 28.

– Chap 18; lij. 13.2 Kings xxv. 11, &c. ; chap. lii. 15, &c. xl. 5. Chap. xxvi. 24.— Chap. xxxviii. 7, 12. 1 Or, chief marshal.- m Heb. chief of the erecutioners, or slaugh. ix. 12.- Chap. xxi. 9; xlv. 5.

-1 Chron. v. 20; Psa. fermen ; and so ver. 10, 11, &c.; see Gen. xxxvii. 26.

xxxvii. 40. Verse 7. Bound him with chains) Margin : “ Two fluence to induce Zedekiah to pay the tribute, and not þrazen chains;" one for his hands, and the other for rebel against him; and on this account would be inhis feet.

clined to show the prophet especial favour. Verse 9. Those that fell away). That deserted to the Verse 16. Go and speak to Ebed-melech] The king's Chaldeans during the siege.

servant, the Cushite, Verse 10. Left of the poor of the people) The very Verse 18. I will surely deliver thee] Thou hast refuse of the inhabitants, who were not worthy of being feared the Lord, and not the king, nor his princes, carried away; and among them he divided the fields and thou hast taken the part of the prophet, and beand vineyards of those whom he took away.

come his intercessor. Thou shalt not be slain. Thou Verse 12. Take him-look well to him] Nebuchad hast put thy trust in me; thou shalt therefore be safe nezzar had heard that this prophet had foretold his whithersoever thou goest. They that fear God need çapture of the city, and had frequently used all his in- | fear nothing besides.

Dan.

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This and the four following chapters cantain a distinct account of what passed in the land of Judah from the

taking of Jerusalem to the retreat of the remnant of the people to Egypt; together with the prophecies of Jeremiah concerning that place, whither he himself accompanied them. In this chapter we have an account of the enlargement of Jeremiah by Nebuzar-adan, the captain of the guard, who advises him to put himself under the jurisdiction of Gedaliah, the son of Ahikam, whom the king of Babylon had made governor over the land of Judea, 1-5. The prophet and many of the dispersed Jews repair to Gedaliah, 6–12. Jahanan acquaints the governor of a conspiracy against him, but is not believed, 13–16

360

A. M. 3416.
B. C. 588.

OI. XLVIII. 1.

Anno

R. Roman., 29.

The prophet and people

CHAP. XL.

repair to Gedaliah. 8. M. 346. THE word that came to Jere- , son of Ahikam to Mizpah;

miah from the LORD, a after and dwelt with him among the 01. XLVIII. 1. Tarquinii Prisci, that Nebuzar-adan the captain of people that were left in the Tarquinii Prisci, R. Roman., 29.

the guard had let him go from land. Ramah, when he had taken him being bound 7 m Now when all the captains of the forces in chains among all that were carried away which were in the fields, even they and their captive of Jerusalem and Judah, which were men, heard that the king of Babylon had carried away captive unto Babylon.

made Gedaliah the son of Ahikam governor 2 And the captain of the guard took Jere- in the land, and had committed unto him men, miah, and said unto him, The LORD thy God and women, and children, and of the poor of hath pronounced this evil upon this place. the land, of them that were not carried away

3 Now the LORD hath brought it, and captive to Babylon ; done according as he hath said : d because ye 8 Then they came to Gedaliah to Mizpah, have sinned against the LORD, and have not even. Ishmael the son of Nethaniah, and obeyed his voice, therefore this thing is come Johanan and Jonathan the sons of Kareah, upon you.

and Seraiah the son of Tanhumeth, and the 4 And now, behold, I loose thee this day from sons of Ephai the Netophathite, and Jezathe chains which were upon thine hand. If niah the son of a Maachathite, they and it seem good unto thee to come with me into their men. Babylon, come, and I will look well unto 9 And Gedaliah the son of Ahikam the son thee : but if it seem ill unto thee to come with of Shaphan sware unto them and to their me into Babylon, forbear: behold, h all the men, saying, Fear not to serve the Chaldeans : land is before thee: whither it seemeth good dwell in the land, and serve the king of Baand convenient for thee to go, thither

go. bylon, and it shall be well with you. 5 Now while he was not yet gone back, he 10 As for me, behold, I will dwell at Mizpah, said, Go back also to Gedaliah the son of P to serve the Chaldeans, which will come unto Ahikam the son of Shaphan, i whom the king us : but ye, gather ye wine, and summer of Babylon hath made governor over the cities fruits, and oil, and put them in your vessels, of Judah, and dwell with him among the peo- and dwell in your cities that ye have taken. ple: or go wheresoever it seemeth convenient 11 Likewise when all the Jews that were in unto thee to go. So the captain of the guard Moab, and among the Ammonites, and in gave him victuals and a reward, and let him go. Edom, and that were in all the countries, 6 Then went Jeremiah unto Gedaliah the heard that the king of Babylon had left a

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NOTES ON CHAP. XL.

captive unto Ramah. But if the order of the senVerse 1. The word that came to Jeremiah] This tence be well observed, as well as the more common and the four following chapters contain a particular use of the verb nps lakach, it will; I think, rather account of what passed in the land of Judea from the appear that those words relate to his taking or having taking of the city to the retreat of the people into him brought to him, in order to give him his disEgypt, and the prophecies of Jeremiah concerning charge.” them there.

Verse 2. The Lord thy God hath pronounced] I Had let him go from Ramah] This has embarrassed know that thou art a true prophet, for what thou hast most of the commentators. Dr. Blayney has thrown predicted from thy God is come to pass. much light upon it by his translation and note :

Verse 4. Come; and I will look well unto thee] “ The word that came to Jeremiah from Jehovah, Thou art now at full liberty to do as thou pleasest; after that Nebu-Zaradan captain of the guards had either to come to Babylon, or to stay in thy own land. taken him, and let him go from Ramah : for he had Verse 5. Go back, also to Gedaliah] If thou wilt been bound with chaius among all the captives of stay in thy own land, thou hadst best put thyself under Jerusalem and Judah, who were carried away captive the protection of thy countryman Gedaliah, whom the to Babylon.”

king of Babylon has made governor of the land. “ HAD TAKEN HIM, AND LET HIM GO.—Most inter- Verse 8. Ishmael, the son of Nethaniah] This is preters have understood ins innpa bekachto otho of he who afterwards murdered Gedaliah. He had been Nebuchadnezzar's having first taken Jeremiah as a employed to do this by Baalis, king of the Ammonites,

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