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1 In the type of a linen girdle, hidden at Euphrates, God prefigureth the destruction of his people. 12 Under the parable of the bottles filled with wine he foretelleth their drunkenness in misery. 15 He exhorteth to prevent their future judgments. 22 He sheweth their abominations are the cause thereof.
THUS saith the LORD unto me, Go and get thee a linen girdle, and put it upon thy loins, and put it not in water.
2 So I got a girdle according to the word of the LORD, and put it on my loins.
3 And the word of the LORD came unto me the second time, saying,
4 Take the girdle that thou hast got, which is upon thy loins, and arise, go to Euphrates, and hide it there in a hole of the rock.
5 So I went, and hid it by Euphrates, as the LORD commanded me.
6 And it came to pass after many days, that the LORD said unto me, Arise, go to Euphrates, and take the girdle from thence, which I commanded thee to hide there.
7 Then I went to Euphrates, and digged, and took the girdle from the place where I had hid it: and, behold, the girdle was marred, it was profitable for nothing.
8 Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
9 Thus saith the LORD, After this manner will I mar the pride of Judah, and the great pride of Jerusalem.
10 This evil people, which refuse to hear my words, which walk in the 'imagination of their heart, and walk after other gods, to serve them, and to worship them, shall even be as this girdle, which is good for nothing.
11 For as the girdle cleaveth to the loins of a man, so have I caused to cleave unto me the whole house of Israel and the whole house of Judah, saith the LORD; that they might be unto me for a people, and for a name, and for a praise, and for a glory: but they would not hear.
12 ¶ Therefore thou shalt speak unto them this word; Thus saith the LORD God of Israel, Every bottle shall be filled with wine and they shall say unto thee, Do we not certainly know that every bottle shall be filled with wine?
the prophets, and all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, with drunkenness.
14 And I will dash them 'one against another, even the fathers and the sons together, saith the LORD: I will not pity, nor spare, nor have mercy, "but destroy them.
15¶Hear ye, and give ear; be not proud: for the LORD hath spoken.
16 Give glory to the LORD your God, before he cause 'darkness, and before your feet stumble upon the dark mountains, and, while ye look for light, he turn it into the shadow of death, and make it of death, and make it gross darkness.
17 But if ye will not hear it, my soul shall weep in secret places for your pride; and "mine eye shall weep sore, and run down with tears, because the LORD's flock is carried away captive.
18 Say unto the king and to the queen, Humble yourselves, sit down : for your "principalities shall come down, even the crown of your glory.
19 The cities of the south shall be shut up, and none shall them Judah shall open be carried away captive all of it, it shall be wholly carried away captive.
20 Lift up your eyes, and behold them that come from the north: where is the flock that was given thee, thy beautiful flock?
21 What wilt thou say when he shall 'punish thee? for thou hast taught them to be captains, and as chief over thee: shall not sorrows take thee, as a woman in travail ?
22 And if thou say in thine heart, "Wherefore come these things upon me? For the greatness of thine iniquity are thy skirts discovered, and thy heels 'made bare.
23 Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the leopard his spots? then may ye also do good, that are accustomed to do evil.
24 Therefore will I scatter them as the stubble that passeth away by the wind of the wilderness.
25 This is thy lot, the portion of thy measures from me, saith the LORD; because thou hast forgotten me, and trusted in falsehood.
26 Therefore will I discover thy skirts upon thy face, that thy shame may appear.
27 I have seen thine adulteries, and thy neighings, the lewdness of thy whoredom, and thine abominations on the hills in the fields. Woe unto thee, O Jerusalem! wilt thou not be made clean? "when shall it once be?
8 Heb. from destroying them. 4 Isa. 8. 22. 5 Lam. 1. 2, 16, and 2. 18. 9 Or, shall be violently taken away. 10 Heb. taught. 11 Heb. after when yet?
8 Chap. 5. 19, and 16. 10.
Verse 1. “Get thee a linen girdle.”—The prophet had probably been accustomed to wear a girdle of leather; and hence the particular direction as to the quality of the girdle he was now to procure. The girdles now most usually worn in the East consist of long pieces of linen, cotton, or silk, wound in numerous folds around the waist. The girdles of linen or cotton are usually plain, but sometimes figured with silk. Girdles of silk are in some countries contined to the upper classes, but in others they form a part of national costume, as among the Koords, whose girdles are wholly, or in great part, of silk, and usually exhibit a plaided pattern. But muslin is the most general material of girdles. These are commonly white; but those who cannot afford the expense or trouble of keeping them clean, often wear them coloured. The girdles of white muslin are sometimes flowered or embroidered with gold, silver, coloured silk, or ingrain cotton. Rich shawls, or shawl stuffs are also used by persons of station for the same purpose. Great From importance is attached to the girdle; the size, richness, and fineness of which, marks the dignity of the wearer. this seems to arise the meaning of the present figurative action, in which marring the girdle is understood as equivalent to marring the pride, the dignity, and importance of Judah. The fashion of wearing the girdle varies in different parts; in some countries we find it folded wide upon the waist, as among the Turks and Arabians; whilst in Persia it very singular appearance. is folded in as narrow and thick a mass as possible over the tight body vest, and has thus When a loose robe is worn over it, it adds greatly to the apparent bulk of the figure: and bulk is dignity in the East. Girdles of other classes have already been noticed in the course of this work.
4." Hide it there in a hole of the rock."-This seems to have been in accordance, for typical purposes, of a practice some traces of which may be found in most nations. Mr. Roberts says:-"The Hindoos have a custom of burying certain articles by the side of a tank or river, in order to inflict or prefigure evil in reference to certain obnoxious individuals. Thus eggs, human hair, thread, a ball of saffron, or a little of the earth on which the devoted person has had his feet, are buried in the situations alluded to."
1 The grievous famine 7 causeth Jeremiah to pray. 10 The Lord will not be entreated for the people. 13 Lying prophets are no excuse for them. 17 Jeremiah is moved to complain for them
THE word of the LORD that came to Jeremiah concerning 'the dearth.
2 Judah mourneth, and the gates thereof languish; they are black unto the ground; and the cry of Jerusalem is gone up.
3 And their nobles have sent their little ones to the waters: they came to the pits, and found no water; they returned with their vessels empty; they were ashamed and confounded, and covered their heads.
4 Because the ground is chapt, for there was no rain in the earth, the plowmen were ashamed, they covered their heads.
5 Yea, the hind also calved in the field, and forsook it, because there was no grass.
6 And the wild asses did stand in the high places, they snuffed up the wind like dragons; their eyes did fail, because there was no grass.
7 ¶ŎLORD, though our iniquities testify against us, do thou it for thy name's sake: for our backslidings are many; we have sinned against thee.
8 O the hope of Israel, the saviour thereof in time of trouble, why shouldest thou be as a stranger in the land, and as a wayfaring man that turneth aside to tarry for a night?
9 Why shouldest thou be as a man astonied, as a mighty man that cannot save? yet thou, O LORD, art in the midst of us, and we are called by thy name; leave us
10 ¶ Thus saith the LORD unto this people, Thus have they loved to wander, they have not refrained their feet, therefore the LORD doth not accept them; he will now remember their iniquity, and visit their
11 Then said the LORD unto me, 'Pray not for this people for their good.
12 When they fast, I will not hear their cry; and when they offer burnt offering and an oblation, I will not accept them: but I will consume them by the sword, and by the famine, and by the pestilence.
13 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, the prophets say unto them, Ye shall not see the sword, neither shall ye have famine; but I will give you 'assured peace in this place.
14 Then the LORD said unto me, The prophets prophesy lies in my name: 'I sent them not, neither have I commanded them, neither spake unto them: they prophesy unto you a false vision and divination, and a thing of nought, and the deceit of their heart.
15 Therefore thus saith the LORD concerning the prophets that prophesy in my name, and I sent them not, yet they say, Sword and famine shall not be in this land; By sword and famine shall those prophets be consumed.
16 And the people to whom they prophesy shall be cast out in the streets of Jerusalem because of the famine and the sword; and they shall have none to bury them, them, their wives, nor their sons, nor their daughters: for I will pour their wickedness upon them.
Heb. thy name is called upon us. 3 Exod. 32. 10. Chap. 7. 16, and 11. i4. 1 Heb. the words of the dearths or restraints. Isa. 1. 15. Chap. 11. 11. Ezek. 8. 18. Mic. 3. 4. Heb. peace of truth. Chap. 23. 21, and 27. 15, and 29. 8, 9. • Prov. 1. 28. 25
17 Therefore thou shalt say this word unto them; 'Let mine eyes run down with tears night and day, and let them not cease: for the virgin daughter of my people is broken with a great breach, with a very grievous blow.
18 If I go forth into the field, then behold the slain with the sword! and if I enter into the city, then behold them that are sick with famine! yea, both the prophet and the priest go about into a land that they know
19 Hast thou utterly rejected Judah? hath thy soul lothed Zion? why hast thou smitten us, and there is no healing for us?
"The leaves grew wan upon the wither'd sprays,
The grass and growing herb all parched were;
Nor yet more comfort brought the gloomy night,
Chap. 8. 15.
Verse 4. "The ground is chapt, for there was no rain in the earth.”—The whole of this remarkable description of the effects of continued drought upon the earth, and upon men and animals, is very beautifully illustrated by the description which Tasso gives of the sufferings of the Christian army under the walls of Jerusalem. We may quote from it, rather largely, with the less hesitation, as it is perfectly clear, from the minute accuracy of the details, that the poet, in this and many of his other descriptions, spoke from authentic records or traditional information. We must omit some parts of the description, though its effect will be much impaired by abridgment.
Those waters cool he drank in vain conceit,
Whom neither marching far, nor tedious way
With blazing stars and gliding fires for gold;
The niggard moon let fall her May-dews cold;
'we looked for peace, and there is no good; and for the time of healing, and behold trouble!
20 We acknowledge, O LORD, our wickedness, and the iniquity of our fathers: for J0we have sinned against thee.
7 Chap. 13. 17. Lam. 1. 16, and 2. 18. 8 Or, make merchandize against a land, and men acknowledge it not, chap. 5. 31. 10 Psal. 106. 6. Dan. 9. 8.
Of purest crystal on the Christian hands, The pebbles naked in his channel shows,
And scantly glides above the scorched sands. He that the gliding rivers erst had seen,
Adown their verdant channels gently roll'd, Or falling streams that to the valleys green,
Distill'd from tops of Alpine mountains cold, These he desir'd in vain, new torments been
Augmented thus with wish of comforts old;
21 Do not abhor us, for thy name's sake, do not disgrace the throne of thy glory: remember, break not thy covenant with us.
22 Are there any among the vanities of the Gentiles that can cause rain? or can thy heavens give showers? art not thou he, O LORD our God? therefore we will wait upon thee: for thou hast made all these things.
1 The utter rejection and manifold judgments of the Jews. 10 Jeremiah, complaining of their spite, receiveth a promise for himself, 12 and a threatening for them. 15 He prayeth, 19 and receiveth a gracious promise.
Languish'd the steed, late fierce, and proffer'd grass,
Nor with desire of glory swell'd his breast;
Of his dear lord and cabin both forgot;
To cool the burning in his entrails hot;
To 'suage the stomach's heat) now booted not,
A more true description than this, of an Oriental drought, in its leading circumstances and effects, we have never yet After long drought in the East, particularly where the soil is rich and ard, the ground splits into wide and deep fissures, which, when exhibited to any considerable extent, render cultivation impracticable, and travelling troublesome, if not dangerous. This did not escape Tasso, and is noticed in our present text.
'Moses and 'Samuel stood before me, yet my mind could not be toward this people: cast them out of my sight, and let them go forth.
2 And it shall come to pass, if they say unto thee, Whither shall we go forth? then thou shalt tell them, Thus saith the LORD;
THEN said the LORD unto me, 'Though 'Such as are for death, to death; and such
1 Ezek. 14. 14.
* Exod. 32. 11, 14.
31 Sam. 7. 9.
4 Chap. 43. 1. Zech. 11. 9.
as are for the sword, to the sword; and such as are for the famine, to the famine; and such as are for the captivity, to the capti
vity And I will 'appoint over them four the steel?
*kinds, saith the LORD: the sword to slay, and the dogs to tear, and the fowls of the heaven, and the beasts of the earth, to devour and destroy.
4 And I will cause them to be removed into all kingdoms of the earth, because of 'Manasseh the son of Hezekiah king of Judah, for that which he did in Jerusalem.
5 For who shall have pity upon thee, O Jerusalem? or who shall bemoan thee? or who shall go aside to ask how thou doest?
6 Thou hast forsaken me, saith the LORD, thou art gone backward: therefore will I stretch out my hand against thee, and destroy thee; I am weary with repenting.
7 And I will fan them with a fan in the gates of the land; I will bereave them of children, I will destroy my people, since they return not from their ways.
8 Their widows are increased to me above the sand of the seas: I have brought upon them against the mother of the young men a spoiler at noonday: I have caused him to fall upon it suddenly, and terrors upon the city.
9 She that hath borne seven languisheth: she hath given up the ghost; "her sun is gone down while it was yet day: she hath been ashamed and confounded: and the residue of them will I deliver to the sword before their enemies, saith the LORD.
10 "Woe is me, my mother, that thou hast borne me a man of strife and a man of contention to the whole earth! I have neither lent on usury, nor men have lent to me on usury; yet every one of them doth curse
with thy remnant; verily "I will cause the enemy to entreat thee well in the time of evil and in the time of affliction.
12 Shall iron break the northern iron and
5 Levit. 26. 16, &c. 6 Heb. families. 1 Or, against the mother city a young man 15 Or, I will intreat the enemy for thee. 20 Chap. 30. 15.
13 Thy substance and thy treasures will I give to the "spoil without price, and that for all thy sins, even in all thy borders.
14 And I will make thee to pass with thine enemies into a land which thou knowest not: for a "fire is kindled in mine anger, which shall burn upon you.
15 O LORD, thou knowest: remember me, and visit me, and revenge me of my persecutors; take me not away in thy longsuffering: know that for thy sake I have suffered rebuke.
16 Thy words were found, and I did eat them; and thy word was unto me the joy and rejoicing of mine heart: for "I am called by thy name, O LORD God of hosts.
17 I sat not in the assembly of the mockers, nor rejoiced; I sat alone because of thy hand for thou hast filled me with indignation.
18 Why is my "pain perpetual, and my wound incurable, which refuseth to be healed? wilt thou be altogether unto me as a liar, and as waters that "fail?
19 Therefore thus saith the LORD, If thou return, then will I bring thee again, and thou shalt stand before me: and if thou take forth the precious from the vile, thou shalt be as my mouth: let them return unto thee; but return not thou unto them.
21 And I will deliver thee out of the hand of the wicked, and I will redeem thee out of 11 The LORD said, Verily it shall be well | the hand of the terrible.
20 And I will make thee unto this people a fenced brasen "wall: and they shall fight against thee, but "they shall not prevail against thee: for I am with thee to save thee and to deliver thee, saith the LORD.
7 Heb. I will give them for a removing. 8 Deut. 28. 25. Chap. 24. 9. 2 Kings 21. 11. 10 Heb. to ask of thy peace. 11 Or, whatsoever is dear. spoiling, &c. or, against the mother and the young men. 19 Amos 8. 9. 14 Job 3. 1, &c. Chap. 20. 14. Chap. 17. 3. 17 Deut. 32. 22. 18 Ezek. 3. 3. Rev. 10. 9. 19 Heb. thy name is called upon me. 21 Heb. be not sure. Chap. 1. 18, and 6. 27. 23 Chap. 20. 11, 12.
Verse 12. "The northern iron.”—This text of course intimates that this northern iron was superior to all other then known Grotius, with whom some later commentators concur, supposes that it denotes, in the primary sense, that kind of hardened iron or steel, called in Greek xaλvy, from the Chalybes, a people bordering on the Euxine Sea, and consequently to the north of Judea, by whom the art of tempering steel is said to have been discovered. In this verse the "iron" of course represents the Jews, and the "northern iron” the Chaldeans, as some explain, or, as others, Jeremiah himself,
18. “ As a liar, and as waters that fail."-Blayney translates, "As the lying of waters that are not sure.” However translated, the allusion is probably to the serab-the delusive appearance of water in the desert.
1 The prophet, under the types of abstaining from marriage, from houses of mourning and feasting, foresheweth the utter ruin of the Jews, 10 because they were worse than their fathers. 14 Their return from captivity shall be stranger than their deliverance out of Egypt. 16 God will doubly recompense their idolatry.
THE word of the LORD came also unto me, saying,
2 Thou shalt not take thee a wife, neither shalt thou have sons or daughters in this place.
3 For thus saith the LORD concerning the sons and concerning the daughters that are born in this place, and concerning their mothers that bare them, and concerning their fathers that begat them in this land;
4 They shall die of 'grievous deaths; they shall not be lamented; neither shall they be buried; but they shall be as dung upon the face of the earth: and they shall be consumed by the sword, and by famine; and their carcases shall be meat for the fowls of heaven, and for the beasts of the earth.
5 For thus saith the LORD, Enter not into the house of mourning, neither go to lament nor bemoan them: for I have taken away my peace from this people, saith the LORD, even lovingkindness and mercies.
6 Both the great and the small shall die in this land: they shall not be buried, neither shall men lament for them, nor "cut themselves, nor make themselves bald for them:
7 Neither shall men tear themselves for them in mourning, to comfort them for the dead; neither shall men give them the cup of consolation to drink for their father or for their mother.
evil against us? or what is our iniquity? or what is our sin that we have committed against the LORD our God?
11 Then shalt thou say unto them, Because your fathers have forsaken me, saith the LORD, and have walked after other gods, and have served them, and have worshipped them, and have forsaken me, and have not kept my law;
8 Thou shalt not also go into the house of feasting, to sit with them to eat and to drink.
12 And ye have done 'worse than your fathers; for, behold, ye walk every one after the "imagination of his evil heart, that they may not hearken unto me:
13 "Therefore will I cast you out of this land into a land that ye know not, neither ye nor your fathers; and there shall ye serve other gods day and night; where I will not shew you favour.
14 Therefore, behold, the "days come, saith the LORD, that it shall no more be said, The LORD liveth, that brought up the children of Israel out of the land of Egypt;
15 But, The LORD liveth, that brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north, and from all the lands whither he had driven them: and I will bring them again into their land that I gave unto their fathers.
16¶ Behold, I will send for many fishers, saith the LORD, and they shall fish them; and after will I send for many hunters, and they shall hunt them from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks.
17 For mine eyes are upon all their ways: they are not hid from my face, neither is their iniquity hid from mine eyes.
18 And first I will recompense their iniquity and their sin double; because they have defiled my land, they have filled mine inheritance with the carcases of their detestable and abominable things.
19 O LORD, my strength, and my fortress, and my refuge in the day of affliction, the Gentiles shall come unto thee from the ends of the earth, and shall say, Surely our fathers have inherited lies, vanity, and things wherein there is no profit.
9 For thus saith the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel; Behold, 'I will cause to cease out of this place in your eyes, and in your days, the voice of mirth, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride.
20 Shall a man make gods unto himself, and "they are no gods?
10 And it shall come to pass, when 21 Therefore, behold, I will this once thou shalt shew this people all these words, cause them to know, I will cause them to and they shall say unto thee, Wherefore known mine hand and my might; and they hath the LORD pronounced all this great shall know that my name is The LORD. Psal. 79. 2. Chap. 7. 33, and 34. 20. 4 Or, mourning feast.
Chap 25. 33.
1 Chap. 15. 2.
5 Levit. 19. 28. Deut. 14. 1.