Under the similitude of good and bad figs, the Lord showeth the state of his faithful people, and the sad end of the ungodly.
The date of this part of Jeremiah's prophecy is given, perhaps with a view, that the reference made in it might be the stronger. Many of the people were at this time in Babylon, carried away in the captivity of Jeconiah. And it should seem, that these were among the most zealous and faithful of the people. The Prophets Ezekiel and Daniel were at this time in Babylon with many of the princes. If we consult Ezekiel 1:2-3 and Daniel 1:6, we shall find it so, as appears by the date mentioned.
Here the Lord himself becomes the Preacher to the Prophet, and explains. The bad figs, represented Zedekiah and his court, still in the land, but against whom, the Lord would in his own appointed time bring the army from Babylon. And the good figs, referred to the Lord's faithful ones, now in captivity. Reader! it is blessed to mark the final issue of all things. Tell ye the righteous it shall be well with him. Say ye to the wicked it shall be ill with him. Isaiah 3:10-11. But while this is and must be the comfort and consolation of the redeemed; they cannot but feel concern at general calamities, and take part with the sorrows of desolation. That is a sweet promise of the Lord, on this account, Zephaniah 3:18.
I BEG the Reader to make due reflections on the contents of this short but most interesting Chapter, and he will find cause in making application of what is here said, in reference to the times of the Church then in being, to see how much the people of God are concerned at all times to consider the same doctrine. Both upon a civil, and upon a religious account; times of national distress, are times of great concern. If the good figs as well as the bad figs were to be carried away, we learn from it, that in outward things there is one event to the righteous, and to the wicked. Like passengers in a vessel, if the ship founders, all on board partake of the same. And though God's people are preserved from eternal shipwreck by grace; yet in temporal concerns, the Lord saith, I will draw forth my sword out of his sheath, and will cut off from thee the righteous and the wicked. Reader! let us pray for grace, to take part in all the national afflictions of our land, and to sympathize with all the sorrows of the people. But while we do this, let us look up and bless that gracious God, who hath placed our spiritual concerns out of the reach of danger. Precious Jesus, in thy hands, all the concerns of thy people, both their persons and their interests are eternally secure. Blessed, forever blessed be God for Jesus Christ.
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Hawker, Robert, D.D. "Commentary on Jeremiah 24". "Hawker's Poor Man's Commentary". https://www.studylight.org/
the First Week after Epiphany