Bible Commentaries
Jeremiah 38

Bell's Commentary on the BibleBell's Commentary

Verses 1-28

  1. DUNGEON DUTY! (1-6)
    1. Here we go again.
    2. Vs.5 – Q: This Reminds us of what leader in the N.T. (Pilate washing his hands).
    1. Ebed-Melech – Philanthropist or God Lover?
      1. His name means “servant/slave of the king”
      2. Read background on this mans clan – [Lockyer pg.94 “All Men of Bible]
      3. “Can a Ethiopian change his skin?” No, but he can change his heart!
        1. Some translations, “the Cushite” most likely refers to the region of Nubia & northern Sudan. (This sounds like Wes’ friend in Sudan…Michael)
      4. Ebed seem to be one of those guys who love to make life a lil easier for you! Thoughtful, practical.
        1. Example: He even cared for Jeremiah’s armpits! He didn’t bring just a rope, but rags & old clothes to pad his pits! That’s love!
        2. He was superior to his surroundings! Read – Lockyer list.
          1. See 39:16-18
    2. Expect to be cared for by God! – Jeremiah didn’t have an easy life, but God cared for him.
      1. We can only appreciate the miracle of a sunrise if we have waited in the darkness.
    3. Vs.10 – Took a small rescue party!
    4. Vs.13 – Mission accomplished!
      1. David couldn’t have described this better than in Ps.40:2 “He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, Out of the miry clay, And set my feet upon a rock, And established my steps.” And in Ps.18:16,35b “He sent from above, He took me; He drew me out of many waters”… & “Your gentleness has made me great.”
  3. SECRET INTERVIEW #2 (14-28)
    1. ​​​​​​​Zedekiah most likely trying to change the mind of God rather than his own.
    2. Vs.17 – Mercy offered even in this late hour, still under the original terms yet still offered to those who’ll surrender.
      1. (20)say Yes & be free; or (21-23)give a cowards No & be helpless, w/no kind Ebed-melech to haul you up from your pit(22b)!
      2. Next chapter will reveal the horror of his decision for he & his family.
    3. ​​​​​​​Let’s look at he character of both men.
    4. Zedekiah
      1. ​​​​​​​Maybe James(1:8) was describing Zed when he said, “a doubleminded man was unstable in all his ways!”
      2. (14)Insecurity all through(3rd entrance, don’t tell). A man riddled with fears. Never able to make his own firm decisions.
      3. (19)Still unwilling to surrender to Babylonians…why? Afraid of Jews! (they’ll hold him responsible for drawing out the agony of their people.)
      4. (24)This whole interview is “off the record”…even threat of death.
      5. Zedekiah vacillated until Jerusalem burned!
    5. Jeremiah
      1. ​​​​​​​He is on edge.
      2. (15) Before he speaks he wants reassured what he says won’t be used against him.
        1. 2 Concerns: [1] He doesn’t sign his own death warrant [2] He doesn’t want to be ignored again.
      3. (16)With safety guaranteed he speaks.
    6. Vs.28 – Strangely & providentially he survived, living on daily prison rations.
    7. “Sometimes God judges a sinful nation by sending then weak leaders who are hesitant & vacillating & whose leadership(or lack of it) plunges the nation only deeper into trouble.” (www)
      1. John F. Kennedy said, “we, the people, are the boss, & we get the kind of political leadership, be it good or bad, that we demand & deserve.” {congrats Judah}
Bibliographical Information
Bell, Brian. "Commentary on Jeremiah 38". "Bell's Commentary". 2017.