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III. AFTER THE FALL OF JERUSALEM (40-45)
The Treachery in the Land and the Flight to Egypt
1. Jeremiah’s choice (Jeremiah 40:1-6 )
2. Gedaliah and Ishmael’s deed (Jeremiah 40:7-16 ; Jeremiah 41:1-3 )
3. Ishmael’s further atrocities and retreat (Jeremiah 41:4-18 )
Jeremiah 40:1-6 . The opening paragraph of this chapter tells us of the choice which was given to Jeremiah. He was loosed from the prisoner’s chains and told by the captain of the guard “If it seems good unto thee to come with me into Babylon, come and I will look well unto thee, but if it seem ill unto thee to come with me to Babylon, forbear; behold all the land is before thee, whither it seemeth good and convenient for thee to go, thither go.” Jeremiah decided to stay with his people in the land.
Jeremiah 40:7-16 ; Jeremiah 41:1-3 . The history of this section is as follows: Gedaliah had been made governor by the victorious king. When the captains heard it they came to him at Mizpah and Gedaliah exhorted them to loyalty to the Chaldeans. Then Gedaliah is warned that Baalis, the King of Ammon, has sent Ishmael to assassinate him, but Gedaliah refuses to believe the report. Then Johanan declares himself ready to kill Ishmael, so that the dreadful results of the murder of the governor Gedaliah might be averted. Gedaliah thinks it is all slander and forbids it. In the seventh month Ishmael, with ten men, who are being entertained by Gedaliah, murders him and all the Jews and Chaldeans, who are present. It is a horrible story.
Jeremiah 41:4-18 . The next day Ishmael met eighty men who came from the north; he invited them to come to Gedaliah, who was dead in his house. When they came to the place he slew them, except ten men, who offered to reveal to him hidden treasures of food. Then he carried off all the rest of the people who were left in Mizpah, to go to the land of Ammon. When Johanan and the captains heard of what Ishmael had done, they pursued him unto Gibeon, but Ishmael with eight men escaped to the Ammonites. Johanan took those whom they had rescued out of the clutches of the monster Ishmael, and, fearing the Chaldeans, purposed to go to Egypt.
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Gaebelein, Arno Clemens. "Commentary on Jeremiah 40". "Gaebelein's Annotated Bible". https://www.studylight.org/
the Week of Proper 23 / Ordinary 28