Jeremiah is sent to call the Jews to repentance in order to prevent their captivity. Their vain confidence rejected after the example of Shiloh. God threateneth them for their idolatry: he requireth not the sacrifices of the disobedient. A call to mourning for the abominations in Tophet: judgments denounced because of them.
1THE word that came to Jeremiah from the LORD, saying,
2Stand in the gate of the LORD’S 1house, and proclaim there this word, and say, Hear the word of the LORD, all ye of Judah, that enter in at these gates 2to worship the LORD.
1 That is, the temple, as verse 4.
2 Hebr. properly: to bow yourselves or to bow down before the LORD. See Gen. 24 on verse 26.
3Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, 3Amenda your ways and your doings, and I will 4cause you to dwell in this place.
3 Whereas your conduct and dealing at present is wicked, therefore amend it so, that, departing from evil, ye purpose and practice the thing which is good, that is, truly repent. See verse 5; Jer. 18:11, etc. The word to amend signifies otherwise to make a thing that is good, yet better, and so to grow and increase in goodness.
a verse 5; Jer. 18:11; 26:13.
4 Namely, to establish you from age to age in your habitation, as verse 7.
4Trust ye not in 5lying words, saying, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, The temple of the LORD, are 6these.
5 Hebr. words or things of the lie or of falsehood, that is, whereby you will come short and deceive yourselves. Also verse 8.
6 As it were pointing with the finger to the parts of the structure of the temple, in which the court, the holy place and the Holy of Holies, all being called holy places and habitations of the Lord. This was the vain comfort of the false prophets, with which they hardened the people in their wickedness against the threats of God and His prophets, namely, that there was no danger, because they had the temple, and the temple worship among them, by which they thought to be sufficiently secured, though in the meanwhile they lived wickedly, and thereby profaned all things, as is explained in the sequel. Other, these things (our worship services) pertain to the temple; the sense being one and the same with the former.
5For if ye 7throughly amend your ways and your doings; if ye throughly execute judgmentb between a man and his neighbour;
7 Hebr. making good shalt make good, and thus: doing judgment shalt do judgment.
b Jer. 5:28.
6If ye oppress not the stranger, the fatherless,c and the widow, and shed not innocentd blood in this place, neither walk after other gods 8to your hurt:
c Isa. 10:1, 2.
d Isa. 59:7.
8 For which ye must fare amiss.
7Then will I cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your fathers, 9for ever and ever.
9 That is, from one age to another, that is, always.
8¶Behold, ye trust in 10lying words, that cannot profit.
10 As verse 4.
911Will ye steal, murder, and commit adultery, and swear falsely, and burn incense unto Baal, and walk after other gods whom ye know not;
11 As if the Lord said: Are ye not ashamed to deal so hypocritically and wickedly?
10And come and stand before me in this house, 12which is called by my name, and say, 13We are delivered 14to do all these abominations?
12 Hebr. upon which my Name is called or proclaimed. Also verses 11, 14, 30; Jer. 14:9; 15:16. Compare this manner of speech with Isa. 4:1.
13 That is, there is no cause to fear; we are now free and out of danger; we shall certainly escape and be saved; now we have performed our temple worship.
14 That is, to give yourselves this leave and liberty unto this wickedness, and to harden yourselves more and more in this wickedness, and to go on in it. Other, that we may do all these abominations.
11Is this house, which is called by my name, become a dene of 15robbers in 16your eyes? 17Behold, even I have seen it, saith the LORD.
e Mat. 21:13; Mark 11:17; Luke 19:46.
15 Hebr. properly: breakers through, breakers in, that is, such as use violence, highway men, thieves, robbers, murderers. See Psalm 17 on verse 4.
16 That is, do ye esteem it thus; is it such an house in your judgment, etc.
17 As if God said: Are ye not ashamed to commit such abominations before Mine eyes? Know therefore also, that I do behold it, and will seek it out; for, etc.
12But go ye now unto my place which was in Shiloh, where I 18set my name at the 19first, and see 20whatf I did to it for the wickedness of my people Israel.
18 See Psalm 78:60, and compare 1 Kings 8:13, with the annotation.
19 After Joshua had taken possession of the land of Canaan. See Joshua 18:1.
20 Namely, how I first caused the ark to be carried away captive by the Philistines. See 1 Sam. 4:11; Psalm 78:60, 61; and afterward caused the ten tribes, under which Shiloh was situated, to be carried away captive into Assyria. See verses 14 and 15.
f 1 Sam. 4:11; Psalm 78:60.
13And now, because ye have done all these works, saith the LORD, and I spake unto you, rising up 21earlyg and speaking, but ye heard not; and I calledh you, but ye answered not;
21 That is, sending My prophets unto you early and betimes, constantly and continually, with singular diligence. See 2 Chron. 36 on verse 15. Also verse 25; Jer. 11:7, and so often in this book.
g verse 25, etc.; 2 Chron. 36:15.
h Prov. 1:24; Isa. 65:12; 66:4.
14Therefore will I do unto this house, which is called by my name, wherein ye trust, and unto the place which I gave to you and to your fathers, 22as I have done to Shiloh.
22 By the Babylonians.
15And I will cast you out 23of my sight, as I have cast out all your brethren, even the whole seed of 24Ephraim.
23 Compare 2 Kings 17 on verse 18.
24 Understand the ten tribes, comprehended often under the name of Ephraim as the greatest, chiefest and noblest tribe, which were carried away out of their own land into Assyria. See 2 Kings 17:6, 23; 18:11.
1625Therefore prayi not thou for this people, neither lift up cry nor prayer for them, neither 26make intercession to me: for I will not hear thee.
25 The Lord speaks this to Jeremiah.
i Exod. 32:10; Jer. 11:14; 14:11.
26 By interceding or speaking for them. See Job 21:15. Also Jer. 27:18.
17¶Seest thou not what they do in the cities of Judah and in the streets of Jerusalem?
18Thej27children gather wood, and the fathers kindle the fire, and the women knead their dough, to 28make 29cakes to the 30queenk of heaven, and to 31pour out drink offerings unto other gods, that they may 32provoke me to anger.
j Jer. 44:19.
27 They are altogether mad and delirious with their idolatry.
28 That is, bake.
29 With idolatrous figures, as some expound the Hebrew word.
30 The Hebrew word Melecheth is diversely expounded by the learned. Some translate it: the queen of heaven, whereby some do understand the moon; others some great stars. Others translate it: the work or workmanship of heaven, that is, the entire firmament with all the stars. Compare Jer. 8:2; 19:13; 44:17, 18, 19, 25.
k Isa. 65:11; Jer. 8:2; 19:13; 44:19.
31 Or, tasting to pour out. See Psalm 16 on verse 4. Also Jer. 19:13; 32:29; 44:17, 18, 19, etc.
32 Or, to vex me, to stir up to wrath.
19Do they provoke me to anger? saith the LORD: 33do they not provoke themselves tol the confusion of their own faces?
33 Or, is it not to or against themselves?
l Isa. 65:13.
20Therefore thus saith the Lord GOD; Behold, mine anger and my fury shall be poured out upon this place, upon 34man, and upon beast, and upon the trees of the field, and upon the fruit of the ground; and it shall burn, and shall not be quenched.
34 Hebr. upon the man and upon the beast.
21¶Thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; 35Putm your burnt offerings unto your sacrifices, and eat flesh.
35 As if the Lord would say: Offer as much as you will, and fill yourselves full with the flesh of the peace offerings, ye do this for yourselves, not to serve Me by it (compare Hosea 8:13), as is shown in the sequel.
m Isa. 1:11; Jer. 6:20; Amos 5:21.
22For I spake 36not unto your fathers, nor commanded them in the day that I brought them out of the land of Egypt, concerning burnt offerings or sacrifices:
36 The sense is: This was not the most important thing which I commanded them, as ye hypocrites conceive of it, but such sincere obedience, which they have not yielded unto Me, and ye yet less do yield, as follows. See of such use of the word not in Hosea 6 on verse 6; Jer. 16 on verse 14.
23But this thing commanded I them, saying, Obeyn my voice, ando I will be your 37God, and ye shall be my 38people: and walk ye in all the ways that I have commanded you, that it may be well unto you.
n Deut. 6:3.
o Exod. 19:5; Lev. 26:12.
37 See Gen. 17 on verse 7.
38 See Deut. 7 on verse 6.
24But they hearkened not, nor inclined their ear, but walked in the counsels and in the 39imaginationp of their evil heart, and 40wentq backward, and not 41forward.
39 See Jer. 3 on verse 17.
p Jer. 3:17; 16:12.
40 Hebr. became or have been.
q Jer. 2:27; 32:33.
41 Hebr. according to or before the face, that is, they turned their neck or back, and not their face towards Me, as Jer. 2:27; 32:33, etc.
25Since the day that your fathers came forth out of the land of Egypt unto this day I have even sent unto you all my servants the prophets, daily rising up 42early and sending them:
42 That is, seasonably and constantly sending. Compare verse 13.
26Yet they hearkened not unto me, nor inclined their ear, but hardened their 43neck:r they did worse than their fathers.
43 See Exod. 32 on verse 9. Also Neh. 9:17, 29; Jer. 17:23; 19:15.
r Neh. 9:17, 29; Jer. 17:23; 19:15.
27Therefore thou shalt speak all these words unto them; but they will not hearken to thee: thou shalt also call unto them; but they will not answer thee.
28But thou shalt say unto them, This is a nation that obeyeth not the voice of the LORD their God, nor receiveth correction:s44trutht is perished, and is 45cut off from their mouth.
s Jer. 5:3.
44 Or, faithfulness, faith, as Jer. 5:1.
t Jer. 5:1.
45 Or, destroyed, that is, they all deal hypocritically, unfaithfully and falsely; they keep not their word nor faith with their God.
29 ¶ 46Cutu off thine 47hair, O Jerusalem, and cast it away, and take up a lamentation on high places; for the LORD hath rejected and forsaken the 48generation of his 49wrath.
46 A sign of great mourning. See Job 1:20; Isa. 15:2; Jer. 16 on verse 6.
u Job 1:20; Isa. 15:2; Jer. 16:6.
47 The Hebrew word signifies such kind of hair that a man has permitted to grow long, and from the cutting off whereof he has abstained. Of the same root comes also the word nazarite, of which see Num. 6:2, 5; Judges 13:5.
48 See Psalm 12 on verse 7.
49 Or, running up, overrunning anger, that is, at whom He is extremely vexed and provoked to anger. Or (as some): that had provoked his wrath, it comes all to one sense. Compare Deut. 32 on verse 19.
30For the children of Judah have done evil in my sight, saith the LORD: they have set their 50abominations in the 51house 52which is called by my name, to pollute it.
50 As Jer. 4:1.
51 The temple.
52 As verse 10.
31And they have built the highv places of 53Tophet, which is in the valley of the 54son of Hinnom, to burn their sons and their daughters in the fire; which I 55commanded them not, neither came it into my 56heart.
v 2 Kings 23:10; Jer. 2:23; 19:5, 6.
53 See of this abomination 2 Kings 23 on verse 10.
54 In 2 Kings 23:10 called the valley of the children (Hebr. sons) of Hinnom. See there and Jer. 32:35.
55 But indeed have sharply forbidden, and abhorred it. See Lev. 18:21.
56 Or, ascended up into or upon mine heart. It is spoken of after the manner of men, as we say: It never came into my mind, it came not once into my heart, it never ascended into my thoughts; understand that I would command them such abominations, or, that I would be pleased with them. Compare Jer. 3:16; 19:5; 32:35; 51:50. Likewise Ezek. 11:5; 14:4; 20:32; 38:10; Luke 24:38. The same manner of speech is used somewhat differently Jer. 44:21 for to lay to heart, or that something comes up into the heart to observe and to punish it.
32¶Therefore, behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that it shall no more be called Tophet, nor the valley of the son of Hinnom, but the valley of slaughter: for 57they shall bury in 58Tophet, 59till there be no place.
57 Or, one shall, etc.
58 This place, which the idolatrous Jews by their abominable idolatry held to be very holy, shall be then polluted by the dead bodies of the slain. Also Jer. 19:11, 13.
59 Other, because there shall be no place.
3360Andw the carcases of this people shall be meat for the fowls of the heaven, and for the beasts of the earth; and none shall 61frayxthem away.
60 Hebr. the carcase. Also Jer. 16:4; 34:20, etc.
w Deut. 28:26; Jer. 34:20.
61 Chase away the fowls or the beasts from the carcasses.
34Theny will I cause to cease from the cities of Judah, and from the streets of Jerusalem, the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride: for the land shall be desolate.z
y Isa. 24:7; Jer. 16:9; 25:10; Ezek. 26:13; Hosea 2:10.
z Jer. 6:8.