View Jeremiah 4 in the note window.
An invitation to true repentance, by promises, ver. 1 - 4.
And judgments coming on them by the Babylonians, contrary to the
predictions of their false prophets, for their sins, ver. 5 - 18.
A grievous lamentation for the miseries of Judah, ver. 19 - 31.
1: If - If thou wilt return, return; make no longer delay.
Remove - Thou shalt not go out of thine own land into exile.
2: Swear - This is put here for the whole worship of God,
acknowledging an& owning God as the only God; which is strongly
exprest by this act. In truth - That the matter and substance of it
be true. In judgment - Deliberately, advisedly, and reverently.
In righteousness - That none be injured by it, that the things we engage
be both lawful and possible, and that we look to the performance.
The nations - This shall be a means to work upon the Heathen nations, to
come into the same way of worship. They shall think themselves happy
to be incorporated with thee, that it may be with them according to that
promise, (Ge 12:3).
Glory - Whereas before they gloried in their idols, they shall glory in
3: For - The Lord turns now his speech from Israel to Judah.
Break up - Prepare your hearts by making them soft, tender, and pliable,
fit to embrace my word. A metaphor taken from plow - men. Thorns - Rid
your hearts and hands of what may hinder you of embracing my word.
4: Circumcise - Put away your corruptions. Heart - Let it be
inward, not outward in the flesh only.
5: The trumpet - The Lord being now about to bring enemies upon
them, speaks in martial language, warning them of the nature of their
6: Retire - Make haste away.
7: The lion - Nebuchadnezzar, so called from his fierceness and
9: The heart - They shall have no heart to do any thing, they shall
not be able to help their people, either by their counsel or arms.
Prophets - False prophets that had nothing but visions of peace for them.
10: Deceived - Hast suffered them to be deceived by their false
prophets. Whereas - To persuade them it should be well with them, when
the sword is at the door, not only ready to take away the comforts of
life, but even life itself.
11: At that time - There shall be tidings brought both to the country
and city. A dry wind - A drying wind, such as shall blast and scorch where
it comes, without any rain or moisture. It points at the stormy and
furious irruption of the Babylonian army. In the plain - Where
there is no stop in the way to break its fury. Toward - Directly, and
designedly, coming in the way leading to my people. Not - Not such a
gentle wind, as is made choice of to separate the chaff from the wheat;
but so boisterous and violent, that it shall sweep away, and lay waste,
12: Full - Heb. Fuller than they. A wind too strong for them.
Shall come - It shall presently come to me, to receive my commission,
and do my will.
13: As clouds - Denoting the suddenness of them, when not expected,
clouds often rising on a sudden, and overspread the whole face of the
heavens; or the great swiftness with which Nebuchadnezzar should march
against them. As a whirlwind - Which, besides the swiftness, denotes also
the confusion and amazement that they will cause.
14: Wash - As a means to prevent the judgments that are impending.
Vain thoughts - Vain fancies of safety.
15: From Dan - Dan was the first place the Chaldeans came to,
being the utmost boundary of Canaan northward. Ephraim was the
innermost border of Israel in the north of Judea, intimating the
march of the Babylonians thro' all Israel.
16: Make mention - These words are a proclamation, summoning the
nations by the Chaldeans. Watchers - Chaldean soldiers, who shall
so carefully encompass Jerusalem, that none shall escape.
Give out - They give a shout, encouraging the soldiers to battle.
17: As keepers - They will watch that none relieve them, and that
none get out to escape.
18: Bitter - Thy wickedness hath been the cause of bringing such a
bitter enemy against thee, which hath reached unto thy very heart.
19: My bowels - Here begins the complaint of the prophet.
My heart - Is disturbed within me. Because - I have heard in the
spirit of prophecy; it is as certain, as if I now heard the
20: Destruction - Good Josiah slain, and four of his successors
carried away, or slain. My tents - The enemy makes no more of overthrowing
my stately cities, than if he were overturning tents made of curtains.
23: I beheld - I Jeremiah saw this in a vision. It - The land
was squalid, and ruined, like the first chaos, for which reason
possibly he calls Judah the earth, in allusion to (Ge 1:2).
The heavens - He seems to proceed in his metaphor of the chaos.
Every thing above and below seemed to be wrapped up in dismal blackness.
24: Trembled - He proceeds in his figurative expressions.
Behold how the very mountains of Judea tremble!
Moved - As easily as dust, or feathers in a whirl - wind.
25: No man - All being either slain, or carried captive, or fled.
27: Yet - In the midst of judgment he will remember mercy.
28: Mourn - Expressions to set forth the dreadfulness of the judgment;
he makes the elements to personate mourners.
31: In travail - When the scripture would express any exquisite
sorrow, it doth it by a woman in travail. First child - Which is usually
the most painful. Spreadeth her hands - According to the use of persons
in great anguish, clapping or wringing their hands together.