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God's Judgment Of The Heathen Nations, Ch. Xxv.
XXV. 1. The word which came to Jeremiah respecting the whole people of Judah in the fourth year of Jehoiakim, the son of Josiah, king of Judah,—this is the first year of Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon,—2. which Jeremiah the prophet spoke to all the people of Judah and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, saying: 3. From the thirteenth year of Josiah, the sou of Amon, king of Judah, until this day, these three and twenty years, the word of Yahveh has come to me, and I spoke to you early and diligently; but you hearkened not. 4. And Yahveh sent to you all his servants the prophets, early and diligently; but you hearkened not, nor inclined your ear to hear; 5. saying: "Turn ye every one from his evil way and from the wickedness of your deeds; then you
Ver. 1. The first by for ^K; in ver. 2 also the two interchange. In the fourth year of Jehoiakim. For the first time (apart from i. 2) a prophecy is here exactly dated to the year, which is done often afterwards. The year was one of special importance. It is described as the first of King Nebuchadnezzar (see on xxi. 2), in harmony with the reckoning elsewhere in this book and the Book of Kings. This parenthesis may have been added later. Yet the omission by the LXX proves nothing, since they have dropped every reference to that king. It is significant that in this year the destroyer of Jerusalem first came on the scene, fighting the decisive battle of Carchemish as his father's general, and advancing to Jerusalem and against Egypt, but recalled by his father's death to assume the government. Ver. 3 glances back at i. 2. About nineteen years of Jeremiah's labours belong to the reign of Josiah, the last four to that of Jehoiakim. D3CK for D3Cn, Aramaic form, Ges. § 53. 3. a. 2; Eng. § 52, unless a simple error in copying. Ver. 4. Cf. vii. 25, xi. 7 f. Ver. 5. "IDt6 joins on the first words of ver. 4. shall continue to dwell in the land, which Yahveh gave you and your fathers from of old for ever. 6. And run not after foreign gods to serve them and fall down before them; and provoke me not by the work of your hands, then I will do you no hurt." 7. But you hearkened not to me, is Yahveh's oracle, that you might provoke me by the work of your hands to your harm. 8. Therefore thus says Yahveh of hosts: Because you hearkened not to me, 9. behold, I send for all the tribes of the north, is Yahveh's oracle, and Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, my servant, and bring them against this land, and against its inhabitants, and against all these nations round about; and I lay them under a ban, and make them a solitude and a hissing and eternal desola
"And you dwell" = you shall dwell securely, Ges. § 130. 2; Eng. § 128. Ver. 7. Read with Keri '3D'jDn \so\ as in vii. 18, or 'jnn (J. D. Michaelis, Graf). "To your hurt," as in vii. 6. Ver. 9. The tribes of the north, as in i. 15. LXX have varpiav avo (3o^a, omitting King Nebuchadnezzar, which Hitzig prefers: pBvD nnSCD, a horde from the north. But this would be far too obscure a description of the Babylonian kingdom. Since now, on the other hand, the LXX presuppose the mention of the latter in ver. 12 f., although omitting lio there also (rJ Mh>i ixino, nj» yrp ixi/viji!), so also not merely may the indefinite plural "all races of the north " have stood in ver. 9; but it is proved that the LXX, who show themselves very untrustworthy in ver. 3 f., regularly omit the Babylonian king. A commentator would scarcely have been bold enough to call him Hay, which predicate the LXX erase also in xxvii. 6, xliii. 10, where they cannot avoid mentioning the king's name. He is called Yahveh's servant, of course not in the sense that God had special pleasure in him as in David, but as an instrument which God used in executing His plan in reference to Judah and the nations. '3u3 ?Kl depends on r6fc', I send to him = summon him. After general mention of the nations, who will execute the judgment, God's leading organ is mentioned in particular. And I bring them (the suffix referring to the hordes of Nebuchadnezzar) upon this land (Judah) and all these nations round about = the neighbouring peoples. The demonstratives point to those lying nearest; ntan therefore is not to be questioned, cf. xxviii. 14 . And lay them under a ban, carry out upon them the cherem, the doom of extermination—a phrase often applied in Deuteronomy and Joshua to the Canaanites, tions. 10. And I make the sound of singing and the sound of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom and the voice of the bride, the sound of the millstones and the light of the lamps, to vanish from them. 11. And this whole land shall be made a desolation, a solitude; and these nations shall serve the king of Babylon seventy years.
12. And it shall come to pass, when seventy years are fulfilled, I will visit on the king of Babylon and on that nation, is Yahveh's oracle, their transgression, and on the land of the Chaldaeans, and make it eternal solitudes. 13. And I bring upon that land all my words, which I have spoken respecting it (everything written in this book, which Jeremiah
in Jeremiah only again in the oracle respecting Babylon, l . 21, 26, li. 3. And make tlum (their land) a solitude and a hissing, see on xviii. 16 (xix. 8). Ver. 10. Cf. vii. 34, xvi. 9. The present passage adds also the sound of the mills and the light of the lamps, both signs of domestic life, which one sees and hears in all inhabited houses. Ver. 11. This people and these nations are distinguished, as in ver. 9. Their Babylonian bondage, and, of course, that of Judah also,will last seventy years. Even the LXX attest the passage, although they wrongly translate xal douXeveouaiv iv roT; ZHvtaiv hp&ofifixovTa £r>j. The critical attacks on 116 have dogmatic reasons and aims. It is true the same statement recurs ten yeare later in xxix. 10, but that passage assumes it to be already well kuown. Vv. 12-14 are attacked on various critical grounds by Hitzig, Graf, Nagelsbach, and others. The LXX omit only ver. 14, because they take 13c as the heading to the oracles respecting the heathen, and insert the latter here, so that no room is left for ver. 14. The LXX, therefore, do not come into account on the critical question. The mention of the seventy years' period requires a statement of what will then happen, i.e. an announcement of the overthrow of the Babylonian empire. The objection, that it is not credible that Jeremiah already spoke so fully and expressly (Nagelsbach) as in w. 12-14 of the destruction of Babylon, is refuted by the example of Habakkuk. Ver. 12. nt6D3, infin. like the n"i>; cf. Judg. viii. 1. inK goes back to 'un. nhy mDDC as in lx. 26, 62 (cf. xlix. 33), but not necessarily borrowed thence. Ver. 13. 'ntttm, Keri, puts the form usual in Jeremiah for TriK3rn, Kethib. In the addition of the copyist or of a commentator, ver. 13b, cannot refer to iBD3, but only to 3vi3n. There is therefore no reference to a special book
prophesied respecting all heathen nations); 14. for them also will many nations with great kings bring into bondage, and I will recompense them according to their doing and according to the dealing of their hands.
15. For thus said Yahveh, the God of Israel, to me: Take
containing the oracles respecting the heathen, in which the particular oracles about Babylon (ch. l. 41) were to be found. Looking at the form of this addition, it might be thought that the copyist thought "all my words respecting them" needed an explanation, because there were no direct oracles about Babylon in the book before him. In this case the meaning would be: everything which Jeremiah said of the judgment on the heathen together (from ii. 3 up to and including ch. xxv.), applies also to Babylon; cf. ver. 14. It is more probable to us that 'n '3 by, s K3J icK, is the heading of a commentator to xxv. 15 ff. found on the margin, and then inserted in an awkward place (cf. LXX); whereas the first part of the chapter, according to ver. 1, was spoken mvr> ay ^3 by, now an oracle D'un ^3 by follows (see this very phrase in ver. 15 and xxxvi. 2, after which, besides the oracles of this chapter, others spoken respecting the heathen followed here originally). Consequently the remark added by the copyist, run iBD3 3vi3n $>3, must, of course, apply to ch. l. f., and spring, not from the redaction of the fourth or fifth year of Jehoiakim, but from the later one which took up those chapters. All my xcords, which I spoke respecting them, will apply to the specific oracles respecting Babylon, although not necessarily to all now collected in ch. l. f.; there may be a reference even to the sayings of other prophets like Isaiah and Habakkuk respecting that city. The clause would have to be explained differently, if originally the judgment on Babylon were only intimated in a brief saying, supplemented in the subsequent redaction, according to ch. l. f. So Ewald takes as the original wording instead of vv. 12-14: "But when seventy years are fulfilled, I will visit on that people (says Yahveh) their trangression; for even them (eos) many nations and great kings shall reduce to bondage, and I will recompense them according to their action, according to the work of their hands." Ver. 14. Nemesis will overtake even them (pronoun added separately for emphasis). Cf. the similar oracle, xxvii. 7. It should not be said that only the latter one is genuine and accurate. The perf. T\zy is prophetic. After the formal announcement of ver. 13, one quite looks for definite information. Ver. 15. The confirmatory '3 goes back this goblet of the wine of wrath from my hand and give it to all the nations to drink, to which I send thee. 16. And they shall drink, and reel, and be mad because of the sword which I send among them. 17. Then I took the goblet from the hand of Yahveh and gave all the nations to drink, to which Yahveh sent me: 18. Jerusalem and the cities of Judah and their kings, their princes, to make them a desolation, a solitude, a hissing and a curse (as it is this day), 19. Pharaoh, king of Egypt, and his servants, and his princes, and his whole nation, 20. along with every mixed nation, and all the kings of the land of Uz, and all the kings of the land of the Philistines, and Ascalon, and Gaza, and Ekron, and the remnant of Ashdod; 21. Edom, and Moab, and the sons of Ammon, 22. and all the kings of Tyre and all the kings of Sidon, and
to the chief prophecy, ver. 11, which included already not merely Judah, but also the heathen nations. nDnn, apposition to pn, of wine, which is the divine wrath. nKtn belongs to Di3 (fem.); imK refers to pn; cf. xiii. 13. Ver. 16. Eeeling (cf. v. 22) of a drunken man; just so &innn, to behave foolishly; cf. ver. 27. Ver. 18. Their kings, see on xvii. 19; hissing, see on xviii. 16. ntn DV3 (see on xi. 5) omitted by LXX, added later when the fulfilment took place, but possibly by the prophet himself, who probably also repeated this enumeration afterwards. Ver. 20. 3nyn nKi belongs to the preceding verse. The non-Egyptian settlers in the land are meant, e.g. Phoenicians, especially perhaps the Ionian and Carian troops, who had been settled there since the days of Psammetichus, lather of Necho. 3iy or from Tip, to mix, see Ex. xii. 38; Neh. xiii. 3; so in Jer. l . 37, of the foreign colony in Babylon. The idea is rather different in ver. 24. The land of Uz (wanting in LXX), an idea combining, according to Lam. iv. 21, geographically with Edom (cf. also the friendship of Job, who dwelt in Uz, with the Temanite Eliphaz), is here distinguished politically from Edom. These tribes perhaps dwelt east of Edom towards the Arabian desert. Of the five Philistine towns, Gath is not even mentioned, because its importance was lost (cf. Amos vi. 2; 2 Chron. xxvi. 6); it is also wanting in Zeph. ii. 4; Zech. ix. 5 ff.; only the remnant of Ashdod, because the town was taken and destroyed by Psammetichus after a twenty-nine years' siege (Herod. ii. 157). Ver. 22. All the kings of Tyrus, etc. All the governments dependent on these chief cities are meant. The kings of the island. 'Kn (sing.) denotes the coast, both of