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Gedaliah as Governor (586 b.c.)
Jeremiah 40:7 to Jeremiah 43:6 are briefly summarised in 2 Kings 25:22-26. The account in the book of Kings mentions merely the accomplished results; while here the process by which these results were brought about are fully detailed. We learn here in particular that Ishmael benNethaniah was prompted to assassinate Gedaliah by the Ammonite king, Baalis, and that Gedaliah was warned of the plot by Johanan, but that he refused to believe that Ishmael would do such a thing. Full details of the slaughter of the people at Mizpah are also given here, as well as an account of the pursuit of Ishmael by Johanan and the recovery of the captives. We are told here also what is omitted in Kings that when Johanan desired to go to Egypt for safety, Jeremiah sought to dissuade him, promising safety if the people remained in Judah, but destruction if they went to Egypt. Johanan, however, was incredulous, and took the remnant of Judah down to Tahpanhes in Egypt, and with them Jeremiah and Baruch.
1. The word that came] including the history which follows. No prophetic utterance comes till Jeremiah 42:9. To the Jews history and prophecy were intimately connected; e.g. they included most of the historical books of the Bible under the title of Prophets.
5. Reward] RV ’present.’
6. Mizpah] a city of Benjamin, NW. of Jerusalem, and the chief scene of the events now to be described.
7. Forces which were in the fields] keeping out of the way until the Babylonian army departed, and they should have learned the nature of the new government: cp. Jeremiah 40:13.
8. The Netophathite] Netophah was a village near Bethlehem (Nehemiah 7:26).
10. Gather ye wine, etc.] Make provision for the winter.
12. Returned] reassured by the fact that the new governor was their own countryman.
14. Ishmael felt aggrieved that he, though of royal birth (see Jeremiah 41:1), had been set aside in favour of Gedaliah. The instigation by Baalis may have arisen through designs of conquest.
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Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 40". "Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Third Week after Epiphany