« PreviousContinue »
xv. 8. xxi. 6. Or it may signify, “ for JEHOVAH,” for his use and service.
Ibid. From the tower of Hananeel, &c.] Here follows a description of the circumference of a new city to be built on the site of Jerusalem ; but that it does not mean the city which was rebuilt after the return of the Jews from the Babylonish captivity, is evident from two principal circumstances ; first, because the limits are here extended farther, so as to include a greater space than was contained within the walls at that time; and, secondly, it is here said, that it should never be razed or destroyed any more. This new city therefore must be referred to those after times, when the general restoration of Israel is appointed to take place.
Ibid. From the tower of Hananeel unto the corner gate] Here I would beg leave to refer to a Plan of the city of Jerusalem, as rebuilt in Nehemiah's time, to be found in the Ancient Univ. History, Vol. I. Book i. Chap. 7. folio. According to this plan the tower of Hananeel appears to have stood in the north east part of the city, opposite to the west end of the temple precincts. - From thence the wall proceeded to the corner gate, supposed to be the same as the old gate, which stood directly north. It probably had the name of the corner gate given it from the wall running out into an angle in that part.
39.-a line of the measure] For 1777 fourteen MSS. and one Edi. tion read with the Masora, p. " A line of the measure” is a line marking the circumference.793 is rendered straight before him, or directly forward, Josh. vi. 5.
Ibid. Over the hill Gareb, and shall encompass Goatha] According to the abovementioned plan the hills Gareb and Goatha are out of the limits of the city. The latter is supposed to be Golgotha ; that is in Hebrew, The heap of Gotha ; which, being the place where our Saviour was crucified, was of course without the city walls at the time of that, transaction. These hills were a little to the north west of the old city walls, but seem destined to be brought within the compass of the new city.
40. And the whole valley of the dead bodies and of the ashes] This was undoubtedly the valley of Hinnom, called “the valley of the dead bodies and of the ashes" from its having been made a common burying place, and a receptacle for the rubbish and filth of the city. See Ch. vii. 32. xix. 11. and Note on Ch. xix. 2. The valley of Hinnom lay to the west of the city, winding to the south. See Note on Ch. xix. 2. compared with Ancient Univ. Hist. Vol. I. B. i. Ch. 7.
Ibid. And all the fields] Twenty five, perhaps twenty six, MSS. and six Editions, read here according to the Masora, 1927wn instead of niniwn. The fuller's fields are supposed to be meant. Aquila here renders te moshe, and the Vulg.confirms the reading of nyrtir, though divided into two words, nin
7777, regionem’ mortis. ' The fuller's field said to have been near the conduit of the upper pool, 2 Kings xviii. 17. and consequently on the south side of the city, where the pools were situate. Those fields with the valley of Hinnom, though
before without the line of the city, seem now to be included within it, if the verb 50%, shall wind about or encompass, extends to them, as well as to Goatha, by means of the copulative.
Ibid. ---the brook Kidron) This appears according to the beforementioned plan to be at the south east end of the city. Josephus places it at the foot of the mount of Olives, to the east of Jerusalem. De Bell. Jud. Lib. V. Cap. 2. Edit. Hudson. The horse gate was situate in the east.
Ibid. Sacred to JEHOVAH, it shall not be plucked up] The words norozily wip“ Holiness unto JEHOVAH,” were ordered to be inscribed on the plate that was worn upon the High Priest's forehead, to denote that his person was sacred, being set apart for the peculiar service of God. Exod. xxviii. 36. The same words, I conceive, are here used to signify, that the whole circuit of the city, being consecrated to God, appropriated to his honour and service, should not thenceforward be any more subjected to ruin and devastation.
CHA P. XXVII.
IT is evident, notwithstanding the mistake that has crept into the introductory sentence of this Chapter, as will be presently noticed, that the prophecies contained both in this Chapter, and in that which follows next, belong to the fourth year of Zedekiah's reign. About this time ambassadors came to Zedekiah from the kings of Edom, Moab, and other neighbouring nations, to solicit him, as it should seem, to join with them in a confederacy against the king of Babylon. On this occasion Jeremiah is ordered to put bands and yokes about his neck, and to send them afterwards to the beforementioned 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, v. 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, v. 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, v. 16 ---to the end.
1.-ZEDEKIAH-] The common reading of the text here is JEHOIAKIM ; but this is so difficult to reconcile with what follows, that Mr Lowth in his Commentary upon the place, with a liberality of sentiment the more laudable, as it was singular in his days, when almost all the world was infatuated with a vain prejudice of the absolute integrity of the Hebrew Text, owns his persuasion, that “the least forced way “ of solving the difficulty is to say, that JEHOIAKIM is crept into the
" Text, by the negligence of the Scribes (who might have their eyes “ fixed upon the beginning of the last Chapter or Section) instead of “ ZEDEKIAH.” Accordingly we find 177p7% in one MS. of good repute and antiquity, in the margin of another, and most probably it was so in the text of a third, where the i was evidently ¥ at first, and the remainder of the word is upon a rasure. The Syr. and the Oxford MS. of the Arabic Version also read, ZEDEKIAH. See Note on Ch. xxviii. l.
2. Thus said JEHOVAH unto me! The word is omitted by the LXX. as are all the words viy x r17 px na in the Syriac Version. One MS. for "yx reads 5x9w4.07.x. In all these cases it might not be improper to render in the preceding verse according to the usual form, " came this word unto Jeremiah from JEHOVAH, saying " But the introduction of 15x, " unto me,” which is found in all the collated MSS. and Editions, and in the Chald. and Vulgate Versions, and in the MS. Pachom. of the LXX. seems to imply, that the prophet was commanded to declare what JEHOVAH had given him in charge to do. And it follows accordingly ver. 12. that he did so declare it in the presence of Zedekiah, adding a serious admonition, with a particular application to that king and his people of what had been before laid down in general terms concerning every nation and kingdom, according as they did or did not submit to the power, which God had appointed to rule over them.
5.---and the man---] Three MSS. read 0987 7789, and the Syr. and Vulgate likewise prefix the conjunction. The LXX. omit all the
many nations, &c.] See Note on Ch. xxv. 14. 13.---and by famine] Seven MSS. and one Edition read 24721, conformably with the Syr. Chald. and Vulg. which all express the conjunction.
19.---the pillars---the sea---the bases---] See 1 Kings vii. 15, 23, 27. and compare Ch. lii. 17, &c.
21.---and in Jerusalem] One MS. reads here w1721, as at ver. 18. and another has a rasure in the place of 2. The Chald. also and Theodotion express the preposition.
.ואת האום ואת-הבהמה אשר על פני הארץ ,following words
HANANIAH pretendeth to prophesy in the name of JEHOVAH, that within two years the Babylonish yoke should be broken, and that the vessels which had been carried to Babylon by Nebuchadnezzar, together with all the captives, should within that time be restored ; v. 1.
-4. Jeremiah consenteth to allow of Hananiah's pretensions to the character of a true prophet, in case his prediction be accomplished ; v. 5-9. Hananiah in confirmation of what he had foretold breaketh off the yoke from Jeremiah's neck ; v. 10, 11. Jeremiah is ordered to declare that the king of Babylon's yoke instead of wood should be made of iron; v. 12–14. He foretelleth the death of Hananiah within the year; and he dieth accordingly two months after ; v. 15. to the end.
1.--in the same year-] Here we find the precise date of the preceding prophecy ascertained, and that it was delivered not only in the beginning of Zedekiah's reign, but in the fourth year of it, and gave rise to the following transaction.- How the fifth month of the fourth year of Zedekiah's reign can be said to be “the beginning” of it, see accounted for in the prefatory note on Ch. xxvi.
Ibid.-in the fourth year] The Masora instead of now2 reads wowa, which is more regular, and is the reading of twenty, perhaps twenty two, MSS, four Editions, and the Jerusalem Talmud.
Ibid. ---Hananiah the son of Azur the prophet] In what sense Hananiah was a prophet, see Note on Ch. xxvi. 7.
8.-and of calamity] So 795 signifies, which is the present reading of the Text; but twenty one MSS. and one Edition, read 27741, " and of famine;" and three MSS. read 387g without the conjunction. 29727 seems the most probable reading, if we consider that the evils frequently threatened by the prophet are the sword, (that is, war) famine, and pestilence. See Ch. xxiv. 10. xxvii. 8, 13. xxix. 17, 18. &c. The LXX. in this place omit the two latter, and speak only of monsplov, war ; but in the MS. Pachom. it is added, xat els xard, xos els Garden Tov; the Vulgate substitutes et de fame, instead of 7279.
13.---yokes of wood] For now, which is singular, nineteen MSS. and one Edition read nions, and thirteen MSS. and three Editions, noin at large. Also for nowy!, “but thou shalt make,” the LXX. and Arab. render, “ but I will make,” as from n'wyn.
16.---prevarication---) See Note on Ch. xxix. 32.
THIS Chapter contains the first of those prophecies, which were delivered by Jeremiah subsequent to the revolt of Zedekiah, and the breaking out of the war thereupon, and which are continued on to the taking of Jerusalem, related in Ch. xxxix. in the following order, Ch. xxi. xxxiv, xxxvii. xxxii. xxxiii. xxxviii, xxxix.
The Message in this Chapter has by some been confounded with that in Ch. xxxvii. (See the Argument prefixed to Ch. xxi. in Mr Lowth's Commentary). but they are, I think, clearly and undeniably distinct from each other. From the reply given to that in Ch. xxxvii
. it is manifest, that the Chaldeans, who bad been besieging Jerusalem for some time, had already raised the siege, and were gone to meet the Egyptian army, leaving the Jews in great hopes that they would never relurn again. But the terms of this message seem to imply, that the king of Babylon had but just commenced his hostilities against Judah, of which Zedekiah informs the prophet, as of a matter that might not yet have come to his certain knowledge ; and desires him to intercede with God, that he would divert the storm by some such extraordinary interposition, as he had been wont to manifest in favour of his people, v. 1, 2. The answer likewise takes no notice of any siege or operations past, but simply regards the future, which it is declared should end unfortunately, because God would take an active part against the inhabitants of Judah, and would deliver both their city, and also the king and his
people, into the hands of their merciless enemies, v. 3---7. It is further shewn, that the only resource of the people for safety was to surrender themselves to the Chaldeans, v. 8---10. And as for the Royal house, they are warned to prevent the effects of God's indignation by doing justice and right, and not to trust to their strong hold, which would stand them in no stead, when God was bent on their destruction, v. 11. to the end. The time of this transaction therefore I conceive to be in the ninth year of Zedekiah, previous to the siege of Jerusalem, which began in the tenth month of that year.
2. INTREAT---] 177 signifies to seek or apply to God by prayer and supplication, as well as to inquire any thing of him. See Isai. lv. 6. and the former sense is most suitable in this place. See note on Ch. xxxvii. 7.
Ibid.---NEBUCHADREZZAR] Dr Kennicot has observed that the name of the king of Babylon is thus spelt in twenty six other places of this book, besides that before us, in the printed copies; and in ten places, Nebuchadnezzar. There is a great variation in the MSS. 3. Thus shall ye say ] Thirty MSS. and three Editions read
One MS. seems to read 9780, and in another , is upon a rasure.
9.-he shall even live-] The Masora for 77977 reads run, and is countenanced by eighteen MSS. two capital Editions, the margin of Felix Pratensis, the Chald. Paraphrast, and the Babylonish Talmud. There is also some trace of it in the LXX ; for though we read there, ζησεται, και εσαι η ψυχη αυτε εις σκυλα, it follows immediately και ζησε
.תא מורן instead of תאמרון
Ibid. his life shall be unto him as spoil] See note on Ch. xlv. 5. In the MS. Pachom. of the LXX, instead of els oxunce, we read & ωφελειαν.
10.-in an evil, and not in a friendly manner] See notes on Ch. xiv. 11. xxiv. 5, 9.
12.---scarching out right] pas appears to me to be the Gerund from 7pa, to seek, or search out diligently ; and to afford a better sense than if we render it, " in the morning."- Perhaps we may find a similar mistake in the sense of inpas, Isai. xxxiii. 2. which is there rendered by our English Translators, "every morning." But might not the words DM7 07107 opaz be better translated, “ Be thou their support to those that seek,” or make application to thee for that purpose? The pleonasm of the affix in being an extremely conmon Hebrew idiom.
Ibid.---lest my wrath go forth like fire] It has been the opinion of many learned
and Mr Lowth in particular, in the argument prefixed to this Chapter in his Commentary, gives it for his, that "all