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Jeremiah’s Sixteenth Prophecy (Reign of Zedekiah, Earlier Part). The Babylonian Yoke
Babylon had already shown its power. Jehoiakim and the chief of the people had been carried captive. Zedekiah was king only on sufferance. The neighbouring nations were under those circumstances willing to make common cause with the Jews against Nebuchadnezzar, many of whom, however, refused to realise the gravity of the danger. In these chs., therefore, Jeremiah sets himself to show that the power of Babylon would be permanent and irresistible. He addresses on this subject (Jeremiah 27:1-11) the neighbouring nations, (Jeremiah 27:12-15) Zedekiah, (Jeremiah 27:16-22) the priests and prophets, (Jeremiah 28) the false prophets, (Jeremiah 29) the exiles in Babylon.
1-14. Jeremiah’s letter to the exiles. Release after seventy years.
1. Prophets] The exiles in Babylon had also false prophets, e.g. Ahab and Zedekiah (Jeremiah 29:21), and Shemaiah (of Jeremiah 29:24) among them. But they were on the whole of a better class (see Jeremiah 24:5-7), and the prophet might hope that his words would have more effect.
2. Carpenters] RV ’craftsmen.’
4-7. They are not to sit loose to the land of their exile, but to make homes for themselves there. Else they will soon dwindle away.
10. At Babylon] RV ’for Babylon,’ referring to the duration of its power: cp. Jeremiah 25:11.
11. An expected end] RV ’hope in your latter end.’
15-23. The exiles reply:—The prophets here tell us that we shall be delivered speedily. Jeremiah answers that their teaching shall soon be disproved by the overthrow of Jerusalem, and they shall themselves die miserable deaths.
17. Vile figs] cp. Jeremiah 24:2. The exiles would probably already know that prophecy.
24-32. On the arrival of Jeremiah’s letter at Babylon, Shemaiah had written to Zephaniah, the acting high priest (Jeremiah 52:24) at Jerusalem, to have the prophet silenced as a madman. Jeremiah, having seen the letter, writes again to denounce the writer, and foretell his punishment.
26. In prison, and in the stocks] RV ’in the stocks and in shackles.’
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 29". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Second Week after Epiphany