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The prophet declares

CHAPTER XXVII.

Nebuchadnezzar's sovereignty.

made use of his interest with them to deliver Jere- || nary ministers may use ordinary means, provided miah from the danger that threatened him. Thus they be lawful ones, for their preservation; but they God wonderfully preserved Jeremiah, though he did that have an extraordinary mission may expect an not flee as Urijah did, but stood his ground. Ordi- | extraordinary protection.

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CHAPTER XXVII. Ambassadors having come to Zedekiah from the kings of Edom, Moab, and other neighbouring nations, probably to solicit

him to join with them in a confederacy against the king of Babylon, Jeremiah is here ordered to put bands and yokes about his neck, and to send them afterward to the before-mentioned kings, declaring the sovereignty of Nebuchadnezzar and his successors to be of divine appointment, and promising peace and protection to such as submitted quietly, but menacing evil in case of resistance, 1-11. A like admonition is delivered to Zedekiah, advising him not to expose himself and his people to certain ruin, by listening to the suggestions of false prophets, and revolting from the service of the king of Babylon, 12–15. The priests and all the people are also warned not to give credit to the false prophets, who taught them to expect a speedy restoration of the vessels which had been carried to Babylon together with Jeconiah. Instead of which it is foretold, that the remaining vessels in the house of God, and in the king's house at Jerusalem, should be carried after

the other, and should not return till the appointed period of Judah's captivity was at an end, 16-22. 6. M.: 3:08. In the beginning of the reign of 1.4 And command them ? to say unto 1. M: 3:08.

Jehoiakim the son of Josiah aking their masters, Thus saith the LORD of Judah came this word unto Jeremiah from of hosts, the God of Israel ; Thus shall ye say the LORD, saying,

unto your masters; 2 Thus saith the Lord to me; Make thee 5 ° I have made the earth, the man and the bonds and yokes, and put them upon thy neck, beast that are upon the ground, by my great

3 And send them to the king of Edom, and to power and by my outstretched arm, and have the king of Moab, and to the king of the Am-given it unto whom it seemed meet unto me. monites, and to the king of Tyrus, and to the 6 . And now have I given all these lands into king of Zidon, by the hand of the messengers the hand of Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babywhich come to Jerusalem unto Zedekiah king | lon, 'my servant; and 8 the beasts of the field of Judah;

have I given him also to serve him.

· Verses 3, 12, 19, 20; Ch. xxviii. 1.- Or, hath the LORD said. - Chap. xxvii. 10, 12 ; So Ezek. iv. 1 ; xii. 3 ; xxiv. 3. * Or, concerning their masters, saying.

c Psa. cxv. 15; cxlvi. 6; Isa. xlv. 12. d Psa. cxv. 16; Dan. iv. 17, 25, 32.—e Chap. xxviii. 14. Chap. xxv. 9; xliii. 10; Ezek. xxix. 18, 20.5 Chap. xxviii. 14; Dan. ii. 38.

NOTES ON CHAPTER XXVII.

Ezekiel, in like manner, was ordered to prophesy Verse 1. In the beginning of the reign of Jehoia- || by signs, Ezek. iv. 1 ; xii. 3; and xxiv. 17–19. In kim-Instead of Jehoiakim here, Dr. Waterland, making these yokes, putting them upon his neck, Houbigant, Blaney, and many others, read Zede- and fastening them on with bands, Jeremiah was inkiah, because it is difficult, if not impossible, to re- || tended to be a type both to his own people, and also concile the common reading with what follows. | to the people afterward mentioned, that they should Lowth also, in his commentary upon the place, gives be brought under subjection to the king of Babylon. it as his opinion, that “the least forced way of solv- i And send them to the king of Edom, &c.—These ing the difficulty is, to say that Jehoiakim has crept | nations were near to the Jews, and their princes had into the text by the negligence of the scribes, (who | their ambassadors resident at Jerusalem. They were might have their eyes fixed upon the beginning of | also some of those countries which God had declared the last chapter or section,) instead of Zedekiah. that he had given into the hand of the king of BabyThis emendation is confirmed by comparing this | lon: see chap. xxv. 21, 24. By the hand of the verse with the 3d, 12th, and 20th verses of this chap- | messengers, &c.— The business of these messengers ter, and with the beginning of the next. Such little seems to have been, to engage Zedekiah to join in a verbal mistakes must be allowed by all impartial league with the nations from which they came, readers to have sometimes happened in transcribing | against the king of Babylon. the Holy Scriptures, as well as in other books, and Verse 6. I have given all these lands into the may easily be corrected, by comparing the suspect-hand of Nebuchadnezzar_"God is the sole lord ed reading with other parts of the sacred text, which and proprietor of the world; and, by virtue of his admit of no difficulty or uncertainty."

absolute sovereignty and dominion, has a right to Verses 2, 3. Make thee bonds and yokes, &c.—The give the kingdoms of the earth to whomsoever he prophets were frequently ordered to foreshow future pleases, Dan. iv. 17, and he exercises this authorievents by actions as well as by words. Thus Isaiah | ty by changing times and seasons, by removing was commanded to go naked and barefoot, Isa xx. 3. || kings, and setting up kings, Dan. ii. 24. The king A prophecy of Judah's

JEREMIAH.

subjection to Babylon.

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h And all nations shall serve him, || those will I let remain still in their A. M. 3408.

and his son, and his son's son, ' until own land, saith the LORD; the very time of his land come: kand then | shall till it, and dwell therein. many nations and great kings shall serve them- 12 4 I spake also to m Zedekiah king of selves of him.

Judah according to all these words, saying 8 And it shall come to pass, that the nation Bring your necks under the yoke of the king and kingdom which will not serve the same of Babylon, and serve him and his people, Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon, and that and live. will not put their neck under the yoke of the 13 " Why will ye die, thou and thy people, king of Babylon, that nation will I punish, || by the sword, by the famine, and by the saith the LORD, with the sword, and with the || pestilence, as the Lord hath spoken against famine, and with the pestilence, until I have the nation that will not serve the king of consumed them by his hand.

Babylon ? 9 Therefore hearken not ye to your prophets, 14 Therefore hearken not unto the words of nor to your diviners, nor to your dreamers, nor the prophets that speak unto you, saying, Ye

enchanters, nor to your sorcerers, which || shall not serve the king of Babylon ; for they speak unto you, saying, Ye shall not serve the prophesy oa lie unto you. king of Babylon :

15 For I have not sent them, saith the LORD, 10 ' For they prophesy a lie unto you, to re- yet they prophesy *a lie in my name; that I move you far from your land; and that I should might drive you out, and that ye might perish, drive you out, and ye should perish.

ye, and the prophets that prophesy unto you. 11 But the nations that bring their neck under 16 Also I spake to the priests and to all the yoke of the king of Babylon, and serve him, this people, saying, Thus saith the LORD;

to your

b 2 Chronicles xxxvi. 20.

k Chap. xxv. 14.

i Chap. xxv. 12 ; 1. 27; Dan. v. 26. 3 Heb. dreams. 1 Verse 14.

Chap. xxviii. 1; xxxviii. 17.- Ezek. xviii. 31.- Chap. xiv. 14 ; xxiii. 21 ; xxix. 8, 9.- _4 Heb. in a lie, or, lyingly.

of Babylon, my servant-One whom I have made of divination; and they, to please their patrons, use of as an instrument to execute my purposes in flattered them with assurances that they should not inflicting punishment on many nations: see note be brought into subjection and servitude by the king on chap. xxv. 9. And the beasts of the field have I of Babylon. By these means they designed to anigiven him—This is a hyperbolical way of speaking, mate them to a vigorous resistance: and though they to signify the most ample authority and dominion. had no ground for such an expectation, they hoped

Verses 7, 8. All nations shall serve him, his son, hereby to do them service. But Jeremiah here tells and his son's son-His son was Evil-merodach, and them, that it would prove to their destruction; for his son's son Belshazzar, in whom his kingdom end- || by resisting they would provoke the conqueror to ed. Then the time of reckoning with his land came, | deal severely with them, to remove them from their when the tables were turned ; and many nations and land, and to drive them out into a miserable captivigreat kings-Incorporated in the empire of the Medes ty, in which they should be buried in oblivion, and and Persians, served themselves of him. The na- | perish. But the nations that bring their neck under tion, fc., that will not put their neck under the yoke the yoke, &c.—That, upon the first summons, or of the king of Babylon-That will not submit to without making any hostile opposition, shall yield that servitude, represented by the yoke, mentioned themselves subjects to the king of Babylon, shall verses 2, 3; will I punish with the sword, &c.—With || continue in their own country and possessions, being one judgment after another, until they are wasted only made tributaries to that king. and ruined. Nebuchadnezzar was very unjust and Verses 12, 13. I spake also to Zedekiah, &c.barbarous in invading the rights and liberties of his What the prophet here says to Zedekiah has a parneighbours, and forcing them into a subjection to ticular weight in it, because he was made king of him; yet God had just and holy ends in view in per-|Judea by Nebuchadnezzar, and had taken an oath mitting it, namely, to punish those nations for their to be faithful to him, and never to resist his authoriidolatry and gross immoralities. They that would ty. Why will ye die, thou and thy people ?- That not serve the God that made and preserved them, || is, why wilt thou wilfully ruin, not only thyself

, but were justly made to serve their enemies that sought thy people, by the sword, the famine, and the pestito ruin them.

lence? by which judgments the Lord hath declared, Verses 9–11. Hearken not ye to your prophets, that all nations who will not willingly yield to the nor to your diviners—These nations, it must be ob- | king of Babylon shall be destroyed. served, had their prophets as well as the Jews, or Verses 16–18. Also I spake to the priests and to al. rather persons that pretended to foretel future events || this people— The prophet, being God's true servant, by consulting the stars, by dreams, and various arts || spared none, but gave faithful warning to all sorts Zedekiah warned against

CHAPTER XXVIII.

trusting in false prophets

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A. M. 3408. Hearken not to the words of your || and concerning the bases, and con- A. M. 3408.

prophets that prophesy unto you, say-cerning the residue of the vessels that ing, Behold, P the vessels of the LORD's house remain in this city, shall now shortly be brought again from Baby- || 20 Which Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon lon: for they prophesy a lie unto you.

took not, when he carried away " captive Jeco17 Hearken not unto them; serve the king of | niah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah from Babylon, and live: wherefore should this city | Jerusalem to Babylon, and all the nobles of be laid waste?

Judah and Jerusalem ; 18 But if they be prophets, and if the word 21 Yea, thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of the LORD be with them, let them now make of Israel, concerning the vessels that remain in intercession to the LORD of hosts, that the ves- | the house of the LORD, and in the house of the sels which are left in the house of the LORD, king of Judah and of Jerusalem; and in the house of the king of Judah, and at 22 They shall be s carried to Babylon, and Jerusalem, go not to Babylon.

there shall they be until the day that I ' visit 19 ( For thus saith the LORD of hosts 9 con- them, saith the LORD; then will I bring them cerning the pillars, and concerning the sea, | up, and restore them to this place.

P2 Chron. xxxvi. 7, 10; Chap. xxviii. 3; Dan. i. 2. -9 2 Kings || xxiv. 1. - 2 Kings xxv. 13; 2 Chron. xxxvi. 18.—2 Chron. xxv. 13; Chap. lii. 17, 20, 21. - 2 Kings xxiv. 14, 15; Chap. || xxxvi. 21; Chap. xxix. 10; xxxii. 5. Ezra i. 7; vii. 19.

of persons, to take heed of being deceived by the Verses 19–22. Thus saith the Lord concerning false prophets, who undertook to foretel that the the pillars, &c.—These were all parts of the temple, vessels of the temple, carried away in the time of or vessels used in it: see 1 Kings vii. And all the Jehoiakim and his son Jeconiah, (of which we read nobles, &c.—Concerning the persons and things 2 Chron. xxxvi. 7, 10,) should be brought back again which the king of Babylon carried away, see 2 to Jerusalem in a short time: see chap. xxviii. 3. | Kings xxiv. 13-15. Yea, thus saith the Lord—The Hearken not unto them—Believe them not, but ac- prophet enlarges the divine threatening, and repre quiesce in God's providence with respect to you, and sents it as extending to all other vessels of value in be content to be subject to the king of Babylon, that the houses of the king, the nobles, or more wealthy so your lives may be given you for a prey. Where- citizens. They shall be carried to Babylon, and fore should this city be laid waste?—If you do not | there shall they beSee an historical account of the comply with God's will in this instance, your city | fulfilment of this prophecy, 2 Kings xxv. 13-16; will certainly be destroyed, and why should you and 2 Chron. xxxvi. 18; and that they abode in pull down such a judgment upon your own heads? Babylon till the end of the captivity, appears from But if they be prophets, &c. - If they be true pro- | Dan. v. 2, where we read of Belshazzar's sending phets, and have any power with God, instead of for them, to drink wine in at his fatal feast; until foretelling the bringing back of the vessels carried the day that I visit them—That is, until the expiraaway, let them apply to him in prayer to prevent tion of the time of the Jewish captivity, which was the carrying away of the vessels that yet remain, || seventy years. Then will I restore them to this whether in the house of the Lord, or in the king's | placeof the fulfilling of which part of the prohouse, or in Jerusalem, which can be done no other | phecy we have an account Ezra i. 7-9. So puncway than by pleading with God to turn away his tually was Jeremiah's prophecy in this place fulfilled, wrath, and not proceed in inflicting those sore judg- and so exactly does one part of holy writ agree ments which he is most certainly bringing upon || with another, which are irrefragable proofs of the you.

divine authority of the sacred Scriptures.

CHAPTER XXVIII. In the foregoing chapter Jeremiah had charged those prophets with speaking lies who foretold the speedy breaking

of the yoke of the king of Babylon, and the speedy return of the vessels of the sanctury; now here we have his contest with a particular prophet upon those heads. (1,) Hananiah, in contradiction to Jeremiah, pretends to foretel that, within two years, the Babylonish yoke should be broken, and the vessels which had been carried to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar, together with all the captives, should within that time be restored, 1-4. (2) Jeremiah consents to allow of Hananiah's pretensions to the character of a true prophet, in case his prediction should be accomplished, 5-9. (3,) Hananiah, in confirmation of what he had foretold, breaketh off the yoke from Jeremiah's neck, 10, 11. (4,) Jeremiah is ordered to declare, that the king of Babylon's yoke, instead of wood, should be made of iron, 12–14. (5) He foretels the death of Hananiah within the year; and he dies accordingly two months after, 15 17.

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4. M. 3498. AND it came to pass the same the Prophet Hananiah in the pre

year, in the beginning of the sence of the priests, and in the prereign of Zedekiah king of Judah, in the fourth || sence of all the people that stood in the house year, and in the fifth month, that Hananiah of the LORD, the son of Azur the prophet, which was of 6 Even the Prophet Jeremiah said, 4 Amen: Gibeon, spake unto me in the house of the the LORD do so: the LORD perform thy words LORD, in the presence of the priests, and of all which thou hast prophesied, to bring again the people, saying,

the vessels of the Lord's house, and all that 2 Thus speaketh the LORD of hosts, the God is carried away captive, from Babylon into of Israel, saying, I have broken the yoke of this place. the king of Babylon.

7 Nevertheless, hear thou now this word that 3 Within two full years will I bring again I speak in thine ears, and in the ears of all the into this place all the vessels of the Lord's people ; house, that Nebuchadnezzar king of Babylon | 8 The prophets that have been before me and took away from this place, and carried them to before thee of old, prophesied both against many Babylon.

countries, and against great kingdoms, of war, 4 And I will bring again to this place Jeco- and of evil, and of pestilence. niah the son of Jehoiakim king of Judah, with 9 e The prophet which prophesieth of peace, all the 2 captives of Judah, that went into Ba- when the word of the prophet shall come to bylon, saith the LORD; for I will break the pass, then shall the prophet be known, that the yoke of the king of Babylon.

Lord hath truly sent him. 5 Then the Prophet Jeremiah said unto 10 4 Then Hananiah the prophet took the

a Chapter xxvii. 1.

_b Chapter xxvii. 12.-
xxvii. 16.

_c Chapter

1 Heb. two years of days.

-2 Heb. captivity. e Deut. xviii. 22.

d 1 Kings i. 36.

NOTES ON CHAPTER XXVIII.

had threatened them by his ministry; for such an Verses 1-4. And it came to pass the same year- affection had he for them, and so truly desirous was Namely, the same in which the preceding prophecy he of their welfare, that he would have been content was delivered; for the words manifestly refer to the to lie under the imputation of being a false prophet time specified at the beginning of the foregoing so that their ruin might have been prevented. Nechapter, and confirm the conjecture there made, that vertheless, hear thou now this wordAs if he had Jehoiakim is put there, by a mistake in the copies, said, The word which I am about to speak concerns for Zedekiah: see note on chap. xxvi. 1, where the thee, and not thee alone, but all the people, therefore fourth year of Jehoiakim's reign is termed the be- || do thou mark it well, and let them observe it also. ginning of it. Hananiah the son of Azur the pro-|| The prophets that have been before me and before phetThat is, a pretended prophet. Being of Gibeon, thee-Namely, Joel, Amos, Hosea, Micah, Zephaa city belonging to the priests, it is probable he was niah, Nahum, Habakkuk, and others; prophesied a priest as well as Jeremiah ; spake unto me in the both against many countries and great kingdoms, house of the Lord—Delivered publicly, and solemn- || &c.—“Jeremiah offers two reasons in defence of his ly, and in the name of the Lord, what he wished to own prophecies, and against those of Hananiah. be considered as a true prediction; in the presence 1st, That many other prophets agreed with him in of the priests and of the peopleWho probably | prophesying evil against the Jews, and other neighwere expecting to have some message from Heaven. || bouring countries; whereas Hananiah, being single In delivering this feigned prophecy, Hananiah de- || in his predictions, nothing but the perfect answering signed to confront and contradict Jeremiah. His of the event to them could give him the authority prediction is, that the king of Babylon's power, at of a true prophet. 20, That, considering the geneleast over Judah and Jerusalem, should be speedily || ral corruption of the people's manners, it was highly broken; that within two full years the vessels of the probable that God would punish their iniquities. temple should be brought back, and Jeconiah, and To this the Jews add a third explication of the all the captives that were carried away with him, || words, namely, that when any prophet foretold peace should return; whereas Jeremiah had foretold that and prosperity, (namely, unconditionally and absothe yoke of the king of Babylon should be bound | lutely, as Hananiah here did,) his prophecy must on yet faster, and that the vessels and the captives | certainly be fulfilled to prove him to be a true proshould not return for seventy years.

phet; whereas, when a prophet foretold evil, which Verses 5-9. The Prophet Jeremiah said, Amen: was Jeremiah's case, the event might be suspended by the Lord do so!—Thereby expressing his hearty the repentance of the persons concerned.”—Lowth. concern for the good of his nation, and wishing that Verses 10-14. Then Hananiah took the yoke from God would repent him of the evil wherewith hell off Jeremiah's neck-Thus it appears that Jeremiah

Jeremiah predicts

CHAPTER XXVIII.

Hananiah's death.

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A. M. 3408. f yoke from off the Prophet Jeremiah's || God of Israel ; " I have put a yoke A. M. 3408 neck, and brake it.

of iron upon the neck of all these 11 And Hananiah spake in the presence of nations, that they may serve Nebuchadnezzar all the people, saying, Thus saith the LORD ; || king of Babylon; and they shall serve him: Even so will I break the yoke of Nebuchad- and I have given him the beasts of the field nezzar king of Babylon from the neck of all also. nations within the space of two full years. And 15 Then said the Prophet Jeremiah unto the Prophet Jeremiah went his way.

Hananiah the prophet, Hear now, Hananiah; 12 | Then the word of the LORD came unto | The LORD hath not sent thee; but k thou Jeremiah the prophet, after that Hananiah the makest this people to trust in a lie. prophet had broken the yoke from off the neck 16 Therefore thus saith the LORD; Behold, of the Prophet Jeremiah, saying,

I will cast thee from off the face of the earth : 13 Go and tell Hananiah, saying, Thus saith this year thou shalt die, because thou hast the LORD; Thou hast broken the yokes of wood; taught rebellion against the LORD. but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron. 17 So Hananiah the prophet died B. C. 596. 14 For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the the same year in the seventh month.

"Chap. xxvii. 2. -5 Chap. xxvi. 7. ch Deuteron. xxviii. 48 ;

Chap. xxvii. 4, 7.- Chap. xxvi. 6.

k Chap. xxix. 31; Ezek. xiij. 22. -1 Deuteron. xiii. 5; Chap.

xxix. 32. -3 Heb. revolt.

wore this yoke, agreeably to the command given than they otherwise would have had, by persuading him by God, as a symbol of that subjection to the them not to submit to Nebuchadnezzar. king of Babylon to which he admonished the Jews Verses 15–17. Then said Jeremiah, Hear now, and other neighbouring nations to submit, in order | Hananiah~Jeremiah, being a second time confirmthat they might prevent the extreme evil which | ed in the truth of what he had foretold, and having would otherwise fall upon them: and this yoke Ha- || likewise a special revelation relating to this false naniah took off the prophet's neck, and broke it, by prophet, comes and calls him by his name, and tells way of a symbolical sign that the Jews, and these him his doom, that he should die within a year, beother nations, should be freed from the Babylonian cause he had taught rebellion against the Lordyoke within two years. And the Prophet Jeremiah Had taught people to believe and trust to what was went his way-Quietly and patiently, knowing that | false, contradicting God's will revealed by Jeremiah, it would answer no good end to contend with one and encouraging and exciting the people to hold out whose mind was heated, and in the midst of the against Nebuchadnezzar, and not quietly to yield to priests and people that were violently set against this dispensation of God. “Thus, as Hananiah had him. Doubtless he expected that God would soon || limited the accomplishment of his prophecy to the send a special message to Hananiah, and he would space of two years, to gain credit with the people say nothing till he received it. It is often our wisdom by such a punctual prediction, so Jeremiah confines and duty to yield to violence, to bear revilings with the trial of his veracity to a much shorter time, and patience, and to retreat rather than contend. Then the event, exactly answering to the prediction, evithe word of the Lord came unto Jeremiah-To rati- || dently showed the falsehood of Hananiah's prefy and confirm the prophecy he had lately uttered; || tences.”—Lowth. So Hananiah died the same year saying, Go and tell Hananiah, Thou hast broken in the seventh monthTwo months after he had the yokes of wood, &c.—Which were light and easy; // uttered this false prophecy, as appeareth from verse but thou shalt make for them yokes of iron-Such || 1. So dangerous a thing it is for those who speak as no human strength can break; that is, thou shalt in the name of God to teach people contrary to his bring a heavier and more grievous yoke upon them || revealed will !

CHAPTER XXIX. In the preceding chapter we had Jeremiah's contest with a false prophet, face to face; here is another, carried on by

letters. In the letter which Jeremiah wrote to the captives in Babylon, 1-3, (1,) He directs them how to make their captivity as easy as they could, 4—7. (2.) He cautions them to give no credit to their false prophets, who pro. mised them a speedy relief, 8, 9. (3) He assures them that, after seventy years, the Lord would mercifully re. store them to their own land, 10–14. (4,) He foretels that those Jews who remained in Canaan should, after mani. fold grievous disasters, be brought captives to Babylon, 15–19. (5) He foretels the ruin of two false prophets at Babylon, who, by their bad example and flattering seductions, encouraged them to wickedness, 20–23. In resent. ment, Shemaiah, a false prophet at Babylon, wrote to the priests at Jerusalem, to persecute Jeremiah as a villain or madman, 22-29 : and thereby drew upon himself and family a prediction of ruin by Jeremiah, 30–32.

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