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Bible Commentaries

Lange's Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical
Jeremiah 31

 

 

Verses 1-26

III. THE SPECIAL DISTRIBUTION OF SALVATION TO THE TWO HALVES OF THE NATION ( Jeremiah 31:1-26)

α. Ephraim’s Share ( Jeremiah 31:1-22)

1. The Decree of Restoration

Jeremiah 31:1-6

1 At that time, saith Jehovah, I will be God to all the families of Israel,

And they shall be my people.

2 Thus saith Jehovah; the people left of the sword has found grace in the desert.

Up![FN1] to bring him to rest,[FN2] even Israel.

3 Jehovah appeared unto me from afar.

And I love thee with everlasting love,

Therefore have I in loving-kindness respited thee.[FN3]

4 Again will I build thee and thou shalt be built, Virgin Israel;

Again shalt thou adorn thyself with thy tabrets,

And go forth in the dance of those that make merry.

5 Again shalt thou plant vineyards on the mountains of Samaria;

The planters shall plant and enjoy the fruit.

6 For there is a day when the watchmen cry on Mount Ephraim,

Arise and let us go up towards Zion, to Jehovah our God.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

According to Jeremiah 30:4 the prophet has in the previous passage been addressing Israel and Judah. Now he turns to Israel alone, as far as Jeremiah 31:22, then in Jeremiah 31:23-26 to Judah alone, finally in Jeremiah 31:27-40 to the entire Israelitish nation. After the comprehensive promise ( Jeremiah 31:1), which now allots the consolation, assured in Jeremiah 30:22 to the entire nation, especially to the ten tribes; he announces that the residue of Israel has found grace, and that the Lord arises to bring it to rest ( Jeremiah 31:2). The people see the Lord approaching from a distance, and telling them that he loves them with an everlasting love, of which the previous respite was a proof ( Jeremiah 31:3). Then follows the consolatory promise that the Virgin Israel shall be rebuilt, that she shall again go forth in cheerful dances ( Jeremiah 31:4), that vineyards shall again be planted in Samaria, and those who have planted shall enjoy the fruit ( Jeremiah 31:5). And not only this. Israel will also again have recourse to the national Sanctuary, and go up for worship to Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 31:1. At that time … my people. The section begins as the previous one had closed. That glorious consolation is again proclaimed specially to the ten tribes, the most ruined and almost lost portions of the people. The alterations and extensions occasioned by its position in the beginning and the inversion mark at the same time the distinction in reference to Jeremiah 30:22.

[“This metaphor, which may appear harsh in English, is to be explained from the use of the Hebrew word banah, to build, as applied to the building up a family of sons (banim) and daughters (banoth) who are like living stones of the household, built up from the mother, wedded as a Virgin Bride to her husband.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]—Adorn thyself, etc. Comp. Jeremiah 4:30. The kettle-drum, [or timbrel] is here designated as pertaining to the ornaments of a woman who appears in festal apparel.—Comp. Jeremiah 31:19.—To the rebuilt cities and the restored commonwealth, it is also necessary in order that the people may be happy, that there be agriculture, especially the culture of the vine, the fruit of which rejoiceth the heart of man.—Mountains of Samaria (comp. 1 Kings 16:24) are the mountains of the northern kingdom generally, in so far as they permitted the culture of the vine. Comp. Judges 9:27.— Hosea 2:17.—Enjoy the fruit. Jeremiah here refers to the legal enactment, Leviticus 19:13-25, that the fruit of newly planted trees should not be eaten at all in the first three years, and in the fourth year they should be holy unto the Lord; not until the fifth year should they be enjoyed ad libitum (comp. Saalschuetz, Mos. Recht. S. 168, 9). This appropriation permitted from the 5 th year onwards is designated by the expression הִלֶּלprofanare, in usum profanum convertere. He who has planted a vineyard and has not yet enjoyed the fruit of it is free from service in war, Deuteronomy 20:6. It is also one of the punishments threatened to the ungodly man that he shall plant a vineyard but another shall make it common ( Deuteronomy 28:30). In antithesis to this passage it is here promised as an element of blessing that the planter shall also be the profaner or partaker. (מְחַלֵּל). Comp. Isaiah 65:21.—For there is a day, etc. All this blessing promised to Israel in Jeremiah 31:4-5 shall and will be imparted to them on this account, that the people themselves will return to the service of Jehovah as of old. בִּיFor, Jeremiah 31:6, thus gives the reason of Jehovah’s action ( Jeremiah 31:4-5) in the behavior of Israel.—Watchmen. There were not only watchmen stationed on lofty eminences (comp. 1 Kings 17:9; 1 Kings 18:8) to announce danger from enemies ( Jeremiah 4:6; Jeremiah 4:19; Jeremiah 6:1, etc.) but also to announce the new moons and feasts. Comp. Saalschuetz, Mos. Recht, S. 387401.—The cry then, up to Jerusalem to worship Jehovah! sounds again as before the separation. Israel and Judah are again united in the Lord.

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).

Footnotes:

FN#1 - Jeremiah 31:2.—הָלוֹךְ. The infinitive absolute is to be taken as an imperative, in the sense of a summons to one’s self. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 92, 2, b.

FN#2 - Jeremiah 31:2.—In להרגיעו the prophet evidently alludes to Deuteronomy 28:65. This Hiphil denotes quietem agere, to make a rest (comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 18, 3). There is indeed no further instance to adduce in favor of the meaning quietum facere, yet, apart from its grammatical admissibility, it rests on a good foundation, partly in the etymology (comp. מַרְגּוֹעַ, Jeremiah 6:16; מַרְגֵּעַה, Isaiah 28:12) partly in the connection.—On the anticipation of the object by the suffix. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 77, 2and rems. on Jeremiah 9:14.

FN#3 - Jeremiah 31:3.—מָשַׁךְ חֵסֶד in the sense of prolongare gratiam is found in Psalm 36:11; Psalm 109:12 coll. Psalm 85:6. The sense would also be perfectly appropriate. Then the suffix would have to be taken in the sense of the dative. This use of the suffix is however proved only in the 1 person (ני), and the similar case of the third pers. masc. (יו). For such a use in the 2 d pers. we have only the uncertain instance of Isaiah 65:5. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 70.—I therefore take מָשַׁךְ with Hitzig and Fuerst in the sense of “respite” ( Ecclesiastes 2:3). חֶסֶד is the Accus. Instr. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 70, i.


Verses 7-14

2. The Execution

Jeremiah 31:7-14

7 For thus saith Jehovah, Shout joyfully over[FN4] Jacob,

And exult[FN5] over the head of the nations! Sing praises[FN6] aloud and say:

Deliver, O Jehovah, thy people, the remnant of Israel.

8 Behold, I bring them from the North country,

And collect them from the ends of the earth.

Among them are the blind and lame,

The pregnant and the parturient together;

A great assemblage shall they return hither.

9 With weeping shall they come, and with supplication.

I conduct them;[FN7] I lead them to water brooks,

By a straight way in which they shall not stumble:

For I am Israel’s father,

And Ephraim is my first-born son.

10 Hear Jehovah’s word, ye nations,

And proclaim it to the isles afar off,[FN8] and say:

He that scattered Israel will collect him,

And guard him as a shepherd his flock.

11 For Jehovah has redeemed Jacob,

And liberated him from the hand of him who was too strong for him.

12 And they will come and shout on the summit of Zion,

And stream hither to the blessing[FN9] of Jehovah,

For the corn and the new wine and the oil,

And for young lambs and calves:

And their soul shall be as a watered garden;

And they shall not languish any more.[FN10]

13 Then will the virgin rejoice in the dance,

And young men with the aged together;

And I will turn their mourning into joy,

And comfort them after their sorrow.

14 And I will satiate the soul of the priests with fat,

And my people shall be full of the blessing, saith Jehovah.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

After in the previous strophe the Lord has made known His purpose to liberate and restore Israel, the present strophe goes a step farther. It contains a summons at the head of each of its two halves. The first ( Jeremiah 31:7) is addressed to the Israelites themselves, and exhorts them, after the Lord in the foregoing verses, 1–6, has made known His gracious determination, to approach Him now with petitions for its actual execution. It is also at once promised that the Lord will respond to these petitions ( Jeremiah 31:8-9), for in these verses it is described how they will accomplish their journey from the North country and the most remote lands, a journey which will set in the most glorious light the filial relation of Israel to his God. At the head of the second half ( Jeremiah 31:10-14) is a summons to all nations to hear and proclaim the decree which God has formed with respect to His people, that, namely, they shall be liberated ( Jeremiah 31:10-11) and be brought home to a glorious life in joy and abundance on their native soil ( Jeremiah 31:12-14).

Jeremiah 31:7-9. For thus saith … first-born son.—For refers not merely to Jeremiah 31:7 but to all that follows. All that is subsequently said of the realization of the divine intentions is a proof of the truth of the promise given in Jeremiah 31:1-6. The summons to exult joyfully is addressed to the individual members of the holy nation. Who else will then supplicate for Israel? The antithesis to Jeremiah 31:10 also favors this view. There the heathen are summoned not to pray for Israel but to proclaim the purpose which the Lord has formed on this account. Israel is called the head of the nations. The prophet depends in this expression on those passages in the Pentateuch where Israel is called the holy nation, the treasure above all people, ( Exodus 19:5-6; Leviticus 20:24; Leviticus 20:26; Deuteronomy 7:6; Deuteronomy 14:2; Deuteronomy 26:18), the great nation, to which the Deity approaches ( Deuteronomy 4:7-8), the people of inheritance ( Deuteronomy 4:20), the highest above all nations ( Deuteronomy 26:19); further on prophetic passages which designate the nation as chief of the nations ( Amos 6:1 coll. Jeremiah 3:2) as one nation in the earth ( 2 Samuel 7:23 coll. Numbers 23:9; Deuteronomy 33:28).—Deliver, etc. It is evident that this is meant as an earnest petition from the accusative thy people. By His promise in Jeremiah 31:1-6 the Lord has given the Israelites the right and the courage to supplicate in comfort and in joy for the redemption of their nation. There Isaiah, it is true, an assonance in this word to the words of praise הושִׁיעָה נָּא [Hosanna. A.V.: save now. Comp. Matthew 21:9] ( Psalm 118:25) which are however not merely words of praise, but according to their verbal significance, are at the same time a petition, and in so far as they are that form of petition which is sure of being heard are at the same time praise. Jeremiah 31:8-9 then contain the comforting promise that the petition will be heard. It is as if the Lord in Jeremiah 31:7 had only provoked the petition, in order to announce His readiness to realize the promise given in vers2–6.—From the North country. As the שֹׁבִים came from the North, the שְׁבָי must also be brought back from the North country. Comp. Jeremiah 3:12; Jeremiah 3:18; Jeremiah 16:15.—Ends of the earth. Comp. Jeremiah 6:22; Jeremiah 25:32; Jeremiah 50:41.—Among them, etc. The deliverance is to comprise the whole people. The weak and frail will then not be excluded, but be conducted in a manner suited to their circumstances. With tears of joy and contrition, with prayer and supplication to the Lord their God will they retrace their way. Comp. Jeremiah 3:21; Jeremiah 50:4. As in Psalm 45:15; Isaiah 55:12, a being led forth with gladness and with peace is spoken of, so here it is said that the Lord will lead Israel with supplication, i. e., in the continued spirit and practice of prayer. Only thus is the symmetry of the construction preserved, according to which a more particular definition is to be given to each verb by means of a prepositional expression.—To water-brooks, in a level and comfortable path, are they to be brought. Comp. Isaiah 48:21.—This careful guidance is truly paternal. No wonder; for Jehovah is Israel’s father (comp. Deuteronomy 32:6; Isaiah 63:16; Jeremiah 3:19; Herzog, R-Enc. XVII.S. 252), and Ephraim is His first-born son. This predicate is ascribed to the whole nation. Exodus 4:22 coll. Deuteronomy 14:1. Here however Ephraim is purposely designated as first-born, in allusion to the preference, which Jacob awarded to the sons of Joseph ( Genesis 49:22 coll4), and which is distinctly defined in 1 Chronicles 5:2, where it is said that Judah obtained the dignity of chief ruler (נָגִיר), but Joseph the birthright (בְּכֹרָה). Comp. Delitszch on Genesis 49:3-4; Herzog, R-Enc. XIV, S. 769.

Jeremiah 31:10-14. Hear … saith Jehovah. The nations themselves which held Israel captive and mocked at his expulsion ( Jeremiah 15:4; Jeremiah 24:9; Jeremiah 29:18), must proclaim the purpose of God to liberate His people. We are here reminded of the edict of Cyrus ( Ezra 1:1 sqq.). This proclamation by those hitherto in power is itself a new and important step towards the realization of the promise given in Jeremiah 31:1-6.—Isles. Comp. Exeg. rems. on Jeremiah 2:10; Jeremiah 25:22.—Scattered. Comp. Jeremiah 15:7 to Jeremiah 23:3; Jeremiah 29:14.—Observe that the prophet, as in Jeremiah 31:8-9 he had described the glory of the return, so now he portrays the glory of the arrival and the prosperity to be expected afterwards.—For the corn. Comp. Deuteronomy 28:51; Joel 1:10; Joel 2:19, etc.—Watered garden. Isaiah 58:11.—Then will the virgin, etc. Comp. Jeremiah 31:4. The dances of virgins with men according to our custom are not to be thought of, for such dancing was not practised by the ancients generally and especially not by the Hebrews. (Comp. Herzog, R-Enc. XV, S. 414sqq.). Men’s dances also occur (comp. Judges 9:27; 2 Samuel 6:14), but in general dancing was regarded as something particularly appropriated to women and especially virgins. (Comp. Exodus 15:20; Judges 21:21; Judges 11:34; 1 Samuel 18:6; Winer, R-W-B. s. v. Tanz). Hence the joy in the dance is to be referred to the virgin alone. When it is further said that youths and old men would rejoice with each other, this is to express the general diffusion of the joy. Not only youth, the period addicted to joyousness, but even age shall be infected by the joy, so that all ages and sexes will participate in it. And every rank also! Hence the priests are rendered especially prominent, their share in the sacrifices ( Leviticus 7:32-34; Leviticus 9:21) being set forth as particularly fat, i. e. ample and dainty (the eating of fat being strictly forbidden, Leviticus 7:23-25).

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).

Footnotes:

FN#4 - Jeremiah 31:7.—רנו לי׳. לְ as in Psalm 22:31; Psalm 69:6; Psalm 69:27. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr, S. 227.—The accus. שִׁמְחָה as הֶמֶדּ in Jeremiah 31:3.

FN#5 - Jeremiah 31:7.—יצהלו. Comp. Isaiah 10:30; Isaiah 12:6; Jeremiah 5:8; Jeremiah 50:11. The construction with בְּ, as in Isaiah 24:14.

FN#6 - Jeremiah 31:7.—On the construction הַשְׁמִיעוּ הַלְלוּ, comp. rems. on Jeremiah 4:5; Jeremiah 13:18.

FN#7 - Jeremiah 31:9.—Hitzig would connect אוֹבִילֵם with what follows because it does not agree with תהנזנים, which does not signify miseratio, clementia. But we need not use the word in this sense. [Comp. Exeg. rems. which, however, do not accord with the rendering given by Naegelsbach in the text. Henderson and Noyes adhere to the A. V.: and with supplications—wdenotos,ill I lead them.—S. R. A.]

FN#8 - Jeremiah 31:10.—ממרהק. On the construction comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 112, 5, d.

FN#9 - Jeremiah 31:12.—אֶל-טוּב. On אֶל and its interchange with עַל comp. rems. on Jeremiah 10:1—טוּב, in distinction from טוֹב, is never used of moral, but always of material good. Comp. Jeremiah 2:7; Hosea 3:5.

FN#10 - Jeremiah 31:12.—לדאבה עוד. Comp. Jeremiah 31:25, and Olshausen, S. 532.


Verses 15-22

3. The threefold Turn

Jeremiah 31:15-22

15 Thus saith Jehovah: A voice is heard in Ramah,

Lamentation and most bitter crying;

Rachel weeps for her children,

Refusing[FN11] to be comforted for her children, for they are no more.[FN12]

16 Thus saith Jehovah: Restrain thy voice from weeping,

And thine eyes from tears:

For there is reward for thy work, saith Jehovah;

And they shall return from the land of the enemy.

17 There is also hope for thy future, saith Jehovah;

And children[FN13] shall return to their border.

18 I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself;

Thou hast chastised me,

And I allowed myself to be chastised like an untrained bullock.

Turn thou me again, that I may turn;

For thou art Jehovah my God.

19 For after my revolt,[FN14] I repent;

And after I have learned to know myself,[FN15] I smite on the thigh:

I blush, I am also ashamed

That I have borne the reproach of my youth.

20 Is then Ephraim a favourite[FN16] son to me or a bosom-child,[FN17]

That whenever I speak against him I must still remember him?

Therefore my bowels heave towards him;

I must have pity on him, saith Jehovah.

21 Erect for thyself signals, set up for thyself poles,[FN18]

Turn thy mind to the highway, the way thou wentest!

Return, O virgin Israel,

Return to these thy cities.

22 How long wilt thou turn hither and thither,[FN19] thou backsliding daughter?[FN20]

For Jehovah has created a new thing on earth:—

The woman shall turn the man.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

This strophe causes the return of Israel, set forth before us in prospect, to be seen from another side, viz. as at the same time an inward return to God, or conversion. In a wonderfully touching picture the prophet represents Rachel, the mother of the house of Joseph, as raising a lamentation at Ramah over the tracks of those who are going into exile, as though they were dead ( Jeremiah 31:15). Jehovah Himself, however, comforts her; a reward is still to be hoped for her work and comfort for the future, for the return of her children is promised ( Jeremiah 31:16-17). But is this possible? Yes, for Israel will turn inwardly to the Lord and thus fulfil that condition, which the outward return as a necessary consequence thereof must have. The prophet does this by introducing Ephraim as speaking and causing him to make an honest and hearty confession ( Jeremiah 31:18-19). On this Jehovah gives us to understand in touching words that His love for Ephraim is deeply rooted and invincible ( Jeremiah 31:20). Ephraim consequently receives the command to make all the preparations for return. Thus at the same time the (according to Jeremiah 3:1) entirely new and unheard of case is now realized, that a woman, rejected and shared by other men, brings back her first husband ( Jeremiah 31:21-22).

Jeremiah 31:15. Thus saith Jehovah … they are no more. With respect to Ramah and the grave of Rachel the greatest obscurity still prevails. My view is as follows: 1. The tomb of Rachel was near Ramah. This definitely follows from this passage and 1 Samuel 10:2. Delitzschremarks (Comm. on Genesis, 2te Aufl. ter Theil, S. 53) that Rachel’s weeping is heard in Ramah not because her tomb is in the neighborhood, but because, according to Jeremiah 40:1, the exiles assembled there, but to this it is opposed (a) that according to 1 Samuel 10:2 the tomb of Rachel was positively near Ramah; and (b) that Rachel’s weeping does not refer to the exiles mentioned in Jeremiah 40:1; for these were Jews, while according to the whole connection of this passage, Rachel bewails the exile of the Ephraimites2. Ramah, near which was Rachel’s tomb and where Samuel dwelt ( 1 Samuel 10:2) was in Benjamin, in the vicinity of Gibeah, north of Jerusalem. This is seen from Judges 19:13; Isaiah 10:29; Hosea 5:8. In Joshua 18:25 it is expressly said that Ramah was in Benjamin. The original and complete name is Ramathaim Zophim (רָמָתַיִם צוֹפִים), 1 Samuel 1:1 coll. Jeremiah 31:19. The statement that Ramah was situated on the mountains of Ephraim ( Judges 4:5; 1 Samuel 1:1) is not in contradiction to this, for the southern slopes of the mountains of Ephraim extended thus far. (Comp. Herzog, R-Enc. XII. S. 515 [Robinson, Bibl. Researches, II:315–317; 331–334; Thomson, The Land and the Book, II, 503.—S. R. A.]). It has been objected to the identity of the Ramah of Samuel and the Ramah near Gibeah that Saul in seeking the she-asses took three days in going from Gibeah to Ramah ( 1 Samuel 9:20), and that David fleeing from Gibeah took refuge in Ramah ( 1 Samuel 19:18). Even Raumer (Paläst. S. 219) lays some weight on these objections. [Comp. also Smith, Bible Dict., s. v. Ramah.—S. R. A.]. As to the first, however, it is clear from 1 Samuel 9:4-5 that Saul did not follow the direct road, but seeking or pursuing the track of the asses, reached Ramah by a very circuitous route. With respect to the second Ruetschi (Herz. R-Enc, ut sup.) has replied that David did not seek (temporary) protection from the city of Ramah but from Samuel3. There is also a Ramah in Gilead (Ramoth, Ramath Mizpeh, Joshua 13:26; Joshua 20:8; Joshua 21:38, etc.); another south-west from Jerusalem, west of the mountains of Judea (Ramathlebi, Judges 15:17=Eleutheropolis. Comp. Raumer, Paläst, S. 185, 6); a third in Naphtali ( Joshua 19:36); a fourth in Asher ( Joshua 19:29). A fifth place, which sometimes occurs under this name is Ramlah, a city which is not mentioned at all in the Old Testament (unless perhaps in Nehemiah 11:33), of later origin, and very probably identical with Arimathea, and situated to the west of Jerusalem in the plain of Saron near Lydia (Diospolis). Comp. Raumer, Paläst., S. 217, 8, 448. There is then no Ramah in the vicinity of Bethlehem! 4. Bethlehem is doubtless also called Ephrath or Ephratah ( Micah 5:1; Ruth 1:2; 1 Samuel 17:12). Now if Rachel’s tomb is in the neighborhood of Ramah it cannot be near Bethlehem, and the Ephratah near which ( Genesis 36:16; Genesis 36:19 coll. Jeremiah 48:7) Rachel bore Benjamin and was buried, cannot be Bethlehem.

Now we read in 2 Chronicles 13:19 of a place in the neighborhood of Bethel, the name of which according to the, Chethibh is עֶפְרוֹן but according to the Keri עִפְרַין. The latter reminds us of Ἐφραῖμ or Ἐφρέμ, a little town, which, according to Jerome, lay20 m. p. north from Jerusalem, where Christ remained for some time after the resurrection of Lazarus ( John 11:54). Josephus also relates (B. Jud. VI9, 9) that Vespasian destroyed Βηθηλᾶ τε καὶ Ἐφραῖμ πολίχνια, and then rode to Jerusalem. In Joshua 18:23עָפְרָה is mentioned among the cities of Benjamin. The same name recurs in 1 Samuel 13:17. Eusebius in his Onomast., s. v. Aphra, says: “est et hodie vicus Effrem in quinio milliario Bethiis ad Orientem respiciens.” The distances given point to the identity of Ephraim (Ephron) and Ophra. (Comp. Robinson, II, S. 333sqq. 3:124]; Raumer, S. 189,216). Now it is remarkable that the Alexandrian translators in 1 Samuel 13:17 render the name עָפְרָה by Γοφερά, and on the other hand in Joshua 18:23 by Ἐφραθά (Cod. Alex. Ἀφρά). From this it seems to follow that even in very ancient times עפרה and אפרת were interchanged, and that hence not only the הוא בית להם, Genesis 35:19; Genesis 48:7, but also the name אפרתה, Jeremiah 35:16; Jeremiah 35:19; Jeremiah 48:7, is to be regarded as a corruption of the original reading. I had reached this result before Graf’s treatise on the situation of Bethel and Rama (Stud. u. Krit., 1854, 4, S. 86S) became known to me.—The prophet goes back in spirit to the time when the inhabitants of the kingdom of the ten tribes were led away to Assyria into captivity. Since that time, he says, making use of figurative language, may be heard in Ramah, the greater city near Rachel’s tomb ( 1 Samuel 20:2), nightly wailing and bitter weeping ( Jeremiah 6:26). It is Rachel who is weeping for her children. The inhabitants of the kingdom of the ten tribes may be designated children of Rachel, because at their head stands the tribe of Ephraim, which is frequently mentioned as a representative of the kingdom of Israel, Isaiah 7:2-5; Isaiah 7:8-9; Isaiah 7:17; Isaiah 11:13; Hosea 4:17, etc.; Jeremiah 7:15; Jeremiah 31:9; Jeremiah 31:18; Jeremiah 31:20. The mother of the ruling tribe appears thus as the personification of the kingdom ruled by it. The spirit of Rachel is the genius of the kingdom of the ten tribes, whom the prophet represents by a bold poetical figure as rising from her tomb by night and bewailing the misery of her children.—Are no more. Comp. Isaiah 17:14; Ezekiel 26:21.

Jeremiah 31:16-17. Thus saith Jehovah . . . their border. The Lord comforts Rachel by promising her a glorious reward for her maternal labor and care, (on restrain thy voice comp. guard thy foot, Jeremiah 2:25. On there is reward comp. 2 Chronicles 15:7) viz. her children shall be redeemed from the land of captivity—and by setting before her the consolatory hope for the future, that the children will also return to their native land. On there is also hope comp. Jeremiah 31:11.

Jeremiah 31:18-19. I have surely . . . of my youth. These verses give the inner reason of that joyful change: Israel will fulfil the condition required of him by the Lord ( Jeremiah 3:13 sqq.). First the people express their acknowledgment that the chastisement was necessary for them, for they were like an untamed and untrained bullock (the prophet evidently has in mind Hosea 10:11), but they have also let themselves be chastened and accepted the chastening ( Jeremiah 5:3). As Jeremiah here generally moves in the same circle of thought as in Jeremiah 3, so especially in what follows, where also as there the idea of turning forms the central point or pivot of his Revelation -presentation.—Turn thou me, etc. The knowledge gained as the result of the chastisement produces a double effect: a positive and a negative. The positive effect consists in the desire to return to Jehovah. Meanwhile the people are well aware that willing is not performing. They therefore pray the Lord that He Himself will turn their hearts to Him, who alone is Israel’s God. (This is the sense of the causal sentence. For thou art, etc.). Then only will they really return. The bodily return is connected with the spiritual in the closest causal relation. Comp. Rems. on שׁוּבי, Jeremiah 31:19, and Lamentations 5:21.— Lamentations 3:40; Psalm 80:4; Psalm 80:8—The negative effect, which on their part forms the psychological condition of the positive, and is therefore introduced by for, is the inner turning and cutting loose from all that which had allured Israel, but had yet only brought him to hurt and shame.—The smiting on the side (יְרֵכַיִם,יָרֵךְduo femina cum natibus, comp. Ezekiel 21:17) was a sign of mourning. Comp. Winer and Herzog, R.-Enc., s. v. Trauer.—I blush, etc. Comp. Isaiah 45:16-17.—The connection of this passage is then as follows: Ephraim has taken the chastening to heart. In consequence he addresses the prayer for power to return to Jehovah, for he has now learned to repent of his turning away from Him, and to be ashamed of the consequences.

Jeremiah 31:20-22. Is then Ephraim . . . the man. Jehovah grants the moving petition. Astonished at surprising Himself, as it were, in such tender feelings towards Ephraim, Jehovah asks Himself if then Ephraim is his favorite Song of Solomon, his darling child (enfant gâté), since often as he has been obliged to bring the severe judgment of rejection upon him, he has yet never been able to forget him.—Speak against. We may compare 2 Chronicles 22:10, where it is said of Athaliah that she arose and וַתְּדַבֵּר all the seed royal. But apart from דִּבֵּר being here construed with a single accusative, we have in the parallel passage ( 2 Kings 11:1) וַתְּאַבֵּד so that it is easy to suspect a mistake. Now דִּבֵּר and נִדְבַּר in the sense of “speak,” are frequently connected with בְּ in different meanings: loqui per aliquem ( Numbers 12:2), de aliquo ( Deuteronomy 6:7; 1 Samuel 19:3; Psalm 119:46 coll23), ad aliquem ( Numbers 12:8; Habakkuk 2:1; Zechariah 1:9, etc., Numbers 12:2, etc., 1 Samuel 25:39; Song of Solomon 8:8). But it also signifies loqui contra aliquem, Numbers 21:7 coll. Jeremiah 31:5; Psalm 50:20; Psalm 78:19. This last meaning corresponds perfectly to the connection here:—Often as I (מִדֵי as in 1 Samuel 18:30; 1 Kings 14:28) speak against him, i. e., cast him from me by a sentence of reprobation, yet I cannot forget him. I am always reminded of him again, and then the old feelings of love and pity are excited anew.—Mybowels. Drechsler, correctly remarks on Isaiah 16:5, that מֵעִים does not like σπλάγχνα, viscera, include the nobler entrails (the heart). The word does not therefore designate the innermost source of the feelings, but only a place of the external organism where these make themselves specially noticeable. Comp. Song of Solomon 5:4; Job 30:27; Lamentations 1:20; Lamentations 2:11; Isaiah 63:15; Jeremiah 4:19.—The immediate effect of this excitation of love, is that Israel receives directions to make preparations for the journey homewards. Thus persons are to be sent in advance to set up stone pillars as way marks for the coming train, צִיֻןcippus, monumentum; comp. 2 Kings 23:17. Ezekiel 39:15.—Israel’s returning by the same road which he came is comforting in two respects, first in itself, second because it is known and easier to retrace.—-The word these, before thy cities, shows unquestionably that the author has his point of view in Palestine, and not in the lands of the captivity. Comp. Graf, S. 387, Anm.

Turn hither and thither. Hitzig finds in this not incorrectly the collateral idea of delay. This accords well with how long? which expresses a certain degree of impatience. Israel does not respond quickly enough to the invitation to return. The Lord has to drive him. The expression backsliding daughter, occurs besides only in a much later passage, of the people of the Ammonites.—It is surprising, that the Lord in the midst of this assurance of His tenderest love, and after Israel in Jeremiah 31:18-19, has manifested such sincere and deep penitence, should utter another word of harsh censure. In this passage there appears to me to be a play upon words. In the section Jeremiah 3:1-4; Jeremiah 3:2 namely, to which this discourse is most closely related in matter as well as in form, the prophet gives as many variations of the theme שׁוּב as possible, sometimes applying the idea to Israel and Judah in a physical, at others in a spiritual sense. A similar variation though in abbreviated measure is found in Jeremiah 8:4-5. In this passage also from Jeremiah 31:19 onwards, the idea of שׁוּב forms the main thought. It Isaiah, however, variously modified: in Jeremiah 31:16-17 the word is referred to bodily return, in Jeremiah 31:18 to spiritual and bodily turning, and in Jeremiah 31:19 to spiritual alienation, in Jeremiah 31:21 again to bodily conditioned by spiritual turning. Now when the prophet in Jeremiah 31:22 calls Israel שׁוֹבֵבָה, would he not thus wish to say that Israel is a person, who makes much of turning, who applies the idea of שׁוּב in every possible way? It appears to me that the prophet with the following sentence goes back again to the conceptions of Jeremiah 3. In the beginning of this chapter he designates it as a crime profaning the land that a man return to his rejected wife, who has meanwhile been another’s. Notwithstanding that Israel is such a wife, Jehovah yet calls her back to Himself. This is the repentance of which our passage speaks. For when the Lord does something which, according to His own law, has been hitherto regarded as inadmissible, this is certainly an exception to the rule, therefore something new and extraordinary. If now we ask how the Lord comes to make such an exception?—the answer is given in Jeremiah 31:20. Israel has done this to the Lord, he is His darling child, whom he cannot forget. Israel is like a magnet which irresistibly attracts the Lord. Israel, the woman, here mentioned by the specific name of the sex נְקֵבָה, causes the Lord to turn to herself, who is also antithetically designated by the word נֶבֶר which sets forth the specific distinction of the male sex. Thus the weak is victorious over the strong. It is not only a new thing that the Lord returns to his desecrated wife, but that this power to bring back proceeds from the weak, so that the strong succumbs to the weak. I therefore take תְּסוֹבֵב in the sense of “ to turn round, to cause to turn back.” Although no passage can be shown where סוֹבֵב is really used in this sense (everywhere where it occurs, it means either circuire, Psalm 26:6; Psalm 55:11; Psalm 59:7; Psalm 59:15; Song of Solomon 3:2, or circumdare; Deuteronomy 32:10; Psalm 7:8; Psalm 32:7; Psalm 32:10; Jonah 2:4; Jonah 2:6), this is only accidental, for there is nothing in the radical meaning which excludes this sense. The root סב which is radically related to שׁוּב has the meaning of turning or returning in the widest sense. And that it may also stand for reverti is shown by the passage, Psalm 71:20-21, where the verb is interchanged with שׁוּב. It cannot then be denied that תסובב may mean reducit. תִּשׁוֹבֵב would certainly be more suitable, especially as corresponding more exactly to שׁוֹבֵבָח, and it is not indeed impossible that the prophet did originally write תשובב. Neither the שׁובבה, nor in general the importance of the idea שׁוּבּ for the explanation of the whole passage, and particularly the reference to Jeremiah 3:1 being understood, may have occasioned the change into תסובב, unless indeed it is an error of the copyist. It is not, however, at all necessary to alter the reading, since even this, as we have shown, gives the sense required by the connection. It is exceedingly difficult to give the play upon words in the translation, since we have no corresponding word with the same variety of meanings. I know no better rendering now than “thou turn-coat daughter,” though the phrase is not particularly suitable as applied to a nation. This explanation is not a new one. It is essentially that of most of the Rabbins: “Proinde Hebræi hunc locum sic legendum contendunt: femina reducet virum, et hoc est novum in terra, at mulier, quæ passim aliis viris se prostituit, veteris mariti cupida, illum iterum sui amantem obtineat.” Muenster. My explanation of שׁוֹבֵבָה only is new, so far as I know, for all the commentators take the word as simply equivalent to שׁוֹבָבָה. The other explanations of the passage whose number is legion, all do violence either to the language or the connection. To mention only the principal ones—the old orthodox explanation, which refer the words “a woman shall compass,” etc., to the birth of the Saviour from a virgin, must take נקבה in the sense of virgin, a meaning which the word never has nor can have. Abarbanel explains “feminœ viros circumdabunt, i. e., superabunt,” understanding by the women the weak Israelites, by the men their strong enemies. But neither is this a new thing, nor has סובב this meaning. “Femina vertetur in virum” is the translation of Abulmalid, R. Tanchum, who are followed by Luther (in the first editions of his Bible till1538) and by Ewald among the moderns. The alteration of תְּסוֹבֵב into תְּסוֹבַב, however, or the rendering of the former in a passive sense is forced: the sense also must be such as to agree with the context. The explanation proposed by Schnurrer, which is adopted by many modern commentators, is “the woman will protect the Prayer of Manasseh,”—but neither corresponds to the connection, nor is it satisfactory in itself. When women protect men, either the men are become women and the women men, or there is no need of any protection.—The explanation given by Hitzig, “femina ambibit virum,” which is found also in Castalio and Clericus (Vid. Graf, S. 389) is not inappropriate in meaning, but cannot be justified grammatically. Hengstenberg, to whom Graf attaches himself for want of a better, takes סוֹבֵב in the sense of “to keep one’s self near, to persist in dependence, seeking protection” (Christology, Eng. Tr, II, p429). But this rendering is developed from the idea of “surrounding” which cannot be declared of a single person with respect to another. The sense thus obtained is also the reverse of the primary meaning of the words, on which the rendering is based. Radically the explanation of Hengstenberg is no other than that the man will surround the woman with his protection, as Meier also actually renders the words in his translation. Besides the larger commentaries, there are many monographs on this passage. Lists of them are found in Seb. Schmidt, Starke, J. D. Michaelis, Observ. in Jer., p248; Rosenmueller; Dietelmair in the Engl. Biblework, Tom. IX, S. 543. I add Andr. Dan. Habichhorst, Diss, de femina circumdante virum, 1670,1677.

[Of English and American commentators, Blayney fenders “a woman shall put to the rout a strong man.” Henderson: “Woman shall encompass Prayer of Manasseh,” following however Blayney and Calvin in his explanation, “Jehovah would make the feeblest of them more than a match for the most powerful of their foes.” Wordsworth retains the interpretation of the words, which refers them to the miraculous conception of the Virgin, quoting in favor of this view S. Jerome and Jackson and Pearson on the Creed, with references also to Justin Martyr, Cyprian, Augustine, Luther, Œcolampadius, Chemnitz, Galatinus, Calovius, Huetius, etc. Noyes translates “the woman shall protect the Prayer of Manasseh,” with the note, “there shall be a state of peace and security, so that those who are regarded as feeble and defenceless, and unfit for war, shall be competent to the defence of the country.” Cowles agrees most closely with Naegelsbach, referring “the woman” to the Virgin Israel, the people of God, who “instead of perpetually going about after other lovers, will go about (in the sense of seeking to win the love of) her own divine Lord."—S. R. A.]

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).

Footnotes:

FN#11 - Jeremiah 31:15.—מאנה. Comp. Jeremiah 3:3; Jeremiah 5:3; Jeremiah 8:5; Jeremiah 15:18.

FN#12 - Jeremiah 31:15.—כי איננו. As in Jeremiah 11:4 the plural pronoun is referred to a singular, regarded collectively, so here, the case being reversed, the singular pronoun is referred to a plural, regarded as a unity. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 61, 1; Psalm 5:9; Job 24:24; כֻּלּה Job 8:6, etc.

FN#13 - Jeremiah 31:17.—The article is wanting before בָּנִים, comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 71,3.

FN#14 - Jeremiah 31:19.—אחרי שׁובי. This שׁובי has been commonly taken in the same sense as in Jeremiah 31:18 [A. V.: Surely after that I was turned], which has given rise to great obscurity and to arbitrary attempts to avoid it, as e.g. by Venema, who takes שׁוּבּי at once for שׁוּב לִי i. e. after I had come again to myself. The only correct rendering is that of Hitzig and Graf. They take שׁוּב in the sense of se avertere a Jove. They are justified in this by מְשׁוָּבה ( Jeremiah 3:6; Jeremiah 3:8; Jeremiah 3:11-12, etc.), שׁוֹבַב ( Jeremiah 3:14; Jeremiah 3:22), שׁוֹבְבָה,שׁוֹבֵבָה ( Jeremiah 8:6; Jeremiah 31:22), and by the expression שׁוּב מאַהֲרַי י׳ ( Jeremiah 3:19), which does not indeed occur without the מאחרי in Jeremiah 8:4, but it does in Joshua 23:12. It seems as though the prophet, here also as well an in Jeremiah 3, were endeavoring to bring the idea of שׁוּב into application in as great a variety of meanings as possible.

FN#15 - Jeremiah 31:19.—הורעי. Many commentators take this word in the sense of the passive of הוֹדִיעַ, edocere = to be made wise, to he instructed. But Niph. is only the reflexive or passive of Kal. It means therefore only to be acknowledged or to acknowledge one’s self. The latter signification, in which it moreover appears to be used in no other passage of the Old Testament but this, corresponds perfectly to the connection.

FN#16 - Jeremiah 31:20.—יקיד Hebrew here only; Chald. Ezra 4:10; Daniel 2:11. It denotes, like יָקָר ( Jeremiah 15:19; Lamentations 4:2, etc). and יְקָר ( Jeremiah 20:5), what is precious, a jewel.

FN#17 - Jeremiah 31:20.—שׁעשׁועים. Comp. נְטַע שֵׁ‍ֽעֲשׁוּעָיו, Isaiah 5:7 coll. Proverbs 8:30-31.

FN#18 - Jeremiah 31:21.—תַּמְרוּרִים from תָמַר, prominuit, related to תֹּמֵר, palmæ truncus, Jeremiah 10:5, and תְּמָרָה, columna, Joel 3:3, occurs here only. All other preparations are comprised in the brief phrase שָׁתִי לִכֵּך וגוֹ׳, Comp. Exodus 7:23; Psalm 48:14.

FN#19 - Jeremiah 31:22.—תתּחמקין. The verb is found only in Song of Solomon 5:6 and connected with עָבַד. The connection requires the meaning of “to turn one’s self away,” with which the only noun derived from it חָמוּק ( Song of Solomon 7:2) accords. This can only signify “winding, rounding” (Delitzsch: the swinging of thy loins). According to the etymology then the Hithp. must have the sense of turning one’s self hither and thither.

FN#20 - Jeremiah 31:22.—הבת השזבבה. Observe that it is שׁוֹבֵבָה, not שׁוֹבָבָה, as in Jeremiah 3:14; Jeremiah 3:22; Isaiah 57:17. The passive form has doubtless the meaning of “turned away, alienated.” The active form must primarily have an active meaning. The Pilel from שׁוּב is primarily objective causative and signifies to make some one or something return, bring back ( Jeremiah 50:19), restore ( Psalm 60:3; Psalm 23:3), to render alienated ( Isaiah 47:10). It may also have a subjective causative meaning: to make a turn, back or away, i. e. to turn one’s self back, to desert. Hiphil has primarily this signification. (Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 18, 3; 1 Kings 8:47). But the Piel forms also have it (Ew, § 120, c). As now it is decided by the connection in what sense the verb שׁוֹבֵב is to be taken, the meaning of the N. verbate is also thus decided. It may then mean one who brings back, restores, alienates, and also one who turns, deserts. It has the latter meaning in Jeremiah 49:4 and Micah 2:4.—The Pilel of hollow roots includes also the significance of the Piel (Ewald, § 121 a, coll. § 120). Especially does this word seem to me to involve the idea of שׁוּב in the causative sense, which corresponds to the following תְּסוֹבֵב, i.e, in the sense of reducens (comp. מְשׁוֹבֵב, Isaiah 58:12; Olsh, S. 552).

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).


Verses 23-26

b. The Share Of Judah

3. The Blessing of the Sanctuary

Jeremiah 31:23-26.

23 Thus saith Jehovah Zebaoth, the God of Israel:

Yet will they speak this word in the laud of Judah,

And in its cities, when I turn their captivity:

Jehovah bless thee, dwelling-place of salvation [or justice][FN21]

Mountain of the sanctuary!

24 And Judah shall dwell therein and all its cities together,

As husbandmen and those who go forth with flocks.[FN22]

25 For I refresh the panting soul,

And every languishing[FN23] soul I satisfy.

26 Upon this I awoke and looked up;

And my sleep had been sweet unto me.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

After the prophet had promised the tea tribes spiritual and material prosperity in richest measure, he now does the same with respect to Judah. Judah will also return to his country; the sanctuary, the central point and source of all blessing is again saluted with benedictions ( Jeremiah 31:23). The whole land is again inhabited; agriculture and cattle-breeding again flourish ( Jeremiah 31:24). For the Lord s disposed to afford help in every distress, satisfaction for every need ( Jeremiah 31:25). The prophet received this revelation in a dream. Its joyful import was the cause of his feeling on awaking that his sleep had been sweet ( Jeremiah 31:26). He remarks this specially because with no other revelation in a dream had he had a similar experience.

Jeremiah 31:23-25. Thus saith Jehovah . . . satisfy.—When I turn. Comp. on Jeremiah 29:14.—Jehovah bless thee. The words may mean either Jehovah will bless thee, or, Jehovah bless thee. The former bears more of the priestly character, the latter is more appropriate as spoken by the congregation. We find such a benediction specified in Psalm 122:6-9.—Dwelling-place, etc. Comp. Jeremiah 50:7, where, Jehovah himself is Song of Solomon -called.—Mountain, etc., may be in apposition to dwelling-place, etc., and then the expression may either be a designation of the temple alone, or of the whole city of Jerusalem (comp. Isaiah 66:20; Zechariah 8:3). It may also be taken as an asyndeton, so that then the former will designate the holy city, the latter the temple. Finally the double phrase may designate both at the same time, i. e., the city including the temple, and as there is no reason for excluding either of the two, this may well be the correct rendering. Comp. Psalm 2:6; Psalm 48:2 sqq.; Isaiah 11:9; Joel 4:17.

Jeremiah 31:25. Therein, i. e., the land, Jeremiah 31:23.—Judah and all its cities. The expression cannot designate Jerusalem and the provincial cities (comp. Jeremiah 11:12), nor the whole and the single parts of the nation, because such a distinction can be made only in abstracto. I therefore think that the prophet really distinguishes the people and the cities. Both sit, dwell, lie in the land. Comp. יָשַׁב30:18; Zechariah 2:8; Zechariah 12:6; Zechariah 14:10.

Jeremiah 31:25. For I refresh. The perfect is the prophetical perfect. It represents the future fact as already accomplished. For denotes that all that has been previously mentioned is only the realization of the purpose of Jehovah to relieve every distress and need, wherefore the satisfaction of hunger and thirst spoken of in Jeremiah 31:25 is only to be understood as instar omnium. עיף of the thirsty. Comp. Psalm 63:2; Psalm 143:6; Proverbs 25:25; Job 22:7; Isaiah 32:2.

Jeremiah 31:26. Upon this sweet unto me. If we take these words, with Chr. B. Michaelis, Rosenmueller, Umbreit and others, as the words of God, we have the altogether crooked sense that Jehovah designates the time, when He was acting as a severe Judges, as a time of sweet sleep. If we understand the people as awaking, then we have again the contradictory thought that the time of visitation is compared with a sweet sleep. The explanations of Ewald (quotation from a well-known sang, which is to show that then they will have no more bad dreams), and of Graf (therefore will it then be said, I awake, etc.), are too artificial, for they require the supplementation of introductory formulas which by no means offer themselves. As the words stand they can be understood only of the prophet. But it is a question, whether it is a real physical sleep or an ecstatic condition resembling sleep, which is spoken of. It is difficult to decide. Hengstenberg has declared in favor of the latter (Christology, Eng. Tr. II, 426). But in Zechariah 4:1, to which passage Hengstenberg appeals, the prophet is awakened to an ecstatic vision. I do not think, moreover, that the ecstatic condition is anywhere directly called sleep, and that he who awakes from it has the feeling of having slept. It cannot be doubted that dreams generally served as the physical means of divine revelation. Comp. rems, on Jeremiah 23:25 and Numbers 12:6; Joel 3:1; 1 Kings 3:5; 1 Kings 9:2. Jeremiah never tells us elsewhere in what bodily condition he was when he received his Revelation, but of this he tells us that he received it in sleep. Why here only such a remark on the outward form of the revelation and the feeling which he had in connection with it? Let us remember that this prophecy is the only uninterruptedly consolatory one in the whole book. Is it not then very intelligible that that moment was never forgotten when, awaking after the reception of this Revelation, he had the feeling of an exceedingly sweet and refreshing sleep? I therefore perceive in this brief remark an indication that Jeremiah himself regarded the moment of the reception of this revelation as a point of light in his otherwise rough and laborious prophetic career (comp. Jeremiah 20:7 sqq.). We may indeed truly say that here we stand at the most comforting and brightest point in the prophecies of Jeremiah.—Upon this. על־זֹאת may well mean “upon this,” combining the local and causal senses (comp. Jeremiah 4:28).—Looked up. The prophet mentions that he opened his eyes and saw, to intimate that he was really and fully awake, and that in a fully awake and self-conscious state he had the feeling that his sleep had been sweet. There Isaiah, as we know, a half-awaking, which is only apparent and therefore deceptive.—Sweet unto me. Comp. Proverbs 3:24; Jeremiah 6:20.

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).

Footnotes:

FN#21 - Jeremiah 31:23.—On נָוֶה. Comp. Proverbs 3:33; Proverbs 24:15; for צֶדֶק comp. rems. on Jeremiah 7:5; Jeremiah 9:23.

FN#22 - Jeremiah 31:24.—ונסעו בעדר. Supply אֲשֶׁר before נָסְעוּ. This verb is the technical term for the nomadic mode of life. Comp. Genesis 33:12; Genesis 35:21; Genesis 46:1, etc.—On בְּ=in medio, i. e., cum. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 112, 5 a.

FN#23 - Jeremiah 31:25.—דאבה. Comp. Jeremiah 31:12. I do not see why this word should necessarily be a participial form. It may be a finite verb with אֲשֶׁר wanting. Comp. Jeremiah 14:1; Isaiah 51:1; Psalm 7:16


Verses 27-30

IV. The Entire Renovation

1. The New Life

Jeremiah 31:27-30

27 Behold, the days are coming, saith Jehovah,

When I will sow the house of Israel and the house of Judah,

With the seed of man and with the seed of beast.

28 And it shall be that as I have been wakeful over them,

To pluck up and to root out,

To pull down, to destroy and to afflict,

So I will be wakeful over them,

To build and to plant, saith Jehovah.

29 In those days it shall no more be said,

The fathers have eaten sour grapes,

And the teeth of the children are blunted.

30 But every one shall die for his own iniquity:—

Every man who eats sour grapes,

His teeth shall be blunted.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

Whether Jeremiah fell asleep again at once or whether the following revelation was separated by a longer interval from the previous one is a question which must remain undecided. Both cases are possible. At any rate there is a close logical connection. This and the quotation from Jeremiah 1:10 indicate that this passage by no means takes its origin from a sensibly later period. The prophet who, in Jeremiah 30, had treated of Judah and Israel, in Jeremiah 31:1-22 only of Israel, and in Jeremiah 31:23-26 only of Judah, now again directs his prophetic gaze on both (comp. Jeremiah 3:18; Jeremiah 5:11). He promises the old theocratic blessing of great fruitfulness both of the men and the cattle ( Jeremiah 31:27), the absence of all that, is destructive or afflictive, and on the other hand growth and progress on all sides ( Jeremiah 31:28). Entering more deeply into the ground of the previous destructive judgment, he sets before them so lofty a position and such energy of general morality that common guilt and solidaric implication of the following generations shall no more be spoken of. But the transgressions would be only exceptional cases, which would hence be no longer injurious to the whole, but only to the single individual ( Jeremiah 31:29-30).

Jeremiah 31:27-28. Behold the days . . . saith Jehovah. On the promise of fruitfulness, comp rems. on Jeremiah 29:6.—I will sow. Comp. Genesis 47:23.—I have been wakeful. Comp. rems. on Jeremiah 1:12; Jeremiah 1:10; Jeremiah 18:7; Jeremiah 18:9.

Jeremiah 31:29-30. In those days . . . be blunted. The proverb of the sour grapes and blunted teeth, here mentioned for the first time, may have a double meaning. It may mean the fathers have begun to eat sour grapes, but it is the sons only who have had their teeth blunted, i. e. the punishment does not always come immediately on the first, who are guilty, but on those of the second, third and fourth generations. It may also mean that the punishment does not always come on the guilty father, but often only on the innocent son or grandchild. In the latter sense Ezekiel, chap18, combats the proverb as a blasphemy of God’s justice. In the former sense however the proverb involves no blasphemy, but expresses only what the law itself declares in the words, I am a jealous God, visiting the sins of the fathers on the children, to the third and fourth generation of them that hate me ( Exodus 20:5; Exodus 34:7 : Numbers 14:18; Deuteronomy 5:9; Jeremiah 32:18; Lamentations 5:7). This canon of the divine justice rests on the hypothesis that there is not only an individual but a corporate sin, a sin of families, races generations, nations, states. Of course every such sin, common to many, has its history. It unfolds like every other germ, till it has attained its widest extent and fullest maturity. When the point of maturity is reached the judgment comes. Those who are then living have their teeth blunted, possibly indeed as the less guilty (think of Louis16, of France)—always, however, as the children of their fathers in the same sense as the expression is used in Matthew 23:31-32, i. e. as the apple falling not far from the trunk, as the organic continuation and perfection of the moral tendency adopted by the fathers. According to those who understand the proverb only in a bad sense, Jeremiah only declares in this passage “ that Jehovah will not then as now be accused of unrighteousness in an ungodly proverb, but it will be perceived that each one has to suffer for his own guilt (Graf).” Appeal is made in favor of this explanation to Deuteronomy 24:16. To which I make the following objections: 1. The non-employment of the proverb (in the false sense) proves certainly a correct knowledge of the justice of God, but only elementary, merely negative knowledge. It is not a symptom of greatly advanced knowledge to perceive that God does not punish any innocent person; while according to the whole connection of this passage a period of the highest, prosperity of theocratic life is to be here described, an essential basis of which is a corresponding stage of religious and moral perfection. Comp. Jeremiah 31:18-19.—2. The passage Deuteronomy 24:16 is to be regarded not as the norm of divine, but only of human punitive justice. By this declaration that savage custom of the heathen merely was to be guarded against, according to which ob noxam unius omnis propinquitas was to perish. (Comp. Judges 15:6; Haevernick on Ezekiel, S. 286). Comp. also 2 Kings 14:6; 2 Chronicles 25:4.—I accordingly do not supply they shall say after but, Jeremiah 31:30, but I regard Jeremiah 31:30 as the declaration of the prophet. The moral level will be so high that only individual transgressions will occur as isolated exceptions from the rule. In general, and as a whole, Israel will be a holy congregation in which the power of the prevailing spirit will not allow the evil proceeding from individuals to extend itself. This will be restricted to the individual author and lead to the ruin of himself alone. Comp. Isaiah 60:18; Isaiah 60:20. I find here the same view of the moral condition, which the kingdom of God is to attain as the highest stage of its earthly perfection, which lies at the basis of the Sermon on the Mount, and which found its certainly only precursory and passing realization in the apostolic church at Jerusalem. For in Matthew 5:21 sqq, the Lord tells us what will be the prevailing spirit in His Church, and according to what standard any contravention by individuals will be punished, to which Acts v. furnishes a practical commentary. In this view of the passage its connection with what follows is also clear, this passage being a preparation for what the prophet says of the Lord’s new covenant with the Church, and that being an elucidation of the present passage.

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).


Verses 31-40

2. THE NEW COVENANT

Jeremiah 31:31-40

31 Behold, the days are coining, saith Jehovah,

When I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah:

32 Not like the covenant which I made with their fathers

In the day that I took them by their hand,[FN24]

To lead them forth out of the land of Egypt;

Which my covenant they broke;

And yet I was their husband, saith Jehovah.

33 But this is the covenant which I will make

With the house of Israel after those days, saith Jehovah:

I will put my law within them, and write it on their heart,

And I will be their God and they shall be my people.

34 And a man will no more teach his neighbor,

Nor a man his brother, saying, Know Jehovah!

For all will know me from[FN25] the least to the greatest, saith Jehovah:

For I will forgive their sin,

And their iniquity I will remember no more.

35 Thus saith Jehovah, who giveth the sun for light by day,

And the laws of the moon and stars for light by night,

Who exciteth the sea so that its waves roar,

Jehovah Zebaoth is his name:

36 If these laws perish before me, saith Jehovah,

The seed of Israel will also cease to be a nation before me forever.

37 Thus saith Jehovah, When the heavens above are measured,

And the foundations of the earth searched out beneath,

Then will I also reject the whole seed of Israel

For all that they have done, saith Jehovah.

38 Behold, the days are coming,[FN26] saith Jehovah,

When the city shall be built for Jehovah,

From the tower of Hananeel to the corner-gate.

39 And the measuring-line[FN27] shall go forth further,

Straight out to the hill Gareb and turn towards Goath.

40 And the whole valley of the dead bodies and of the ashes,

And all the land[FN28] to the brook Kedron,

To the corner of the horse-gate towards the east,

Shall be holy unto Jehovah,

And shall no more be devastated nor destroyed forever.

EXEGETICAL AND CRITICAL

This prophecy reaches its acme in the promise of a new covenant ( Jeremiah 31:31). This new covenant is the foundation of the moral condition set before us in Jeremiah 31:29-30. For the essence of the new covenant, in distinction from the old, which was broken ( Jeremiah 31:32), will be an inward central union with God ( Jeremiah 31:33), the consequence of Which will be, that on the part of men, outward instruction will be superfluous, the ground of which, on the part of God, is His forgiving love ( Jeremiah 31:34). This covenant has two further characteristics: 1. it will be eternal, as the eternal ordinances of nature ( Jeremiah 31:35-37); 2. it will also have in its train the penetration of the natural sphere with the elements of holy life. Jerusalem will be inwardly so holy to the Lord that even the unholy places, which the city has hitherto had, like all other cities, in its suburbs, will now, as being sanctified, be reckoned to the city itself ( Jeremiah 31:38-40).

Jeremiah 31:31-32. Behold … Jehovah. Here also the prophet’s discourse extends to both halves of the nation. The Lord will conclude a new covenant with the whole of Israel ( Jeremiah 32:40; Jeremiah 50:5; Isaiah 55:3). This new covenant stands in contrast to the old, which the Lord made with the fathers of the Israelites “in the day when He took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt.” Wrong as it would be to understand by this “day” the stay at Sinai, equally so would it be to restrict it to the day of the exodus ( Exodus 12:51; Exodus 13:3-4). Two things pertain to the conclusion of a covenant, a performance and a condition or requirement; the concluding of the covenant between Jehovah and the people Israel then lasted through the whole period of the Mosaic legislation, just as long as the bringing forth out of Egypt lasted. The manuduction ends only with the promised land, and from the day of the exodus to the day of his death Moses did not cease to give laws to the people ( Exodus 12to Deuteronomy 32). Since now there is no grammatical necessity of taking “day” in a literal sense (comp. Isaiah 11:16; 2 Samuel 21:12; 2 Samuel 22:1), we are justified in understanding by the covenant of Jeremiah 31:32 that covenant which Jehovah concluded through the mediation of Moses in different acts ( Deuteronomy 29:1; comp. Kurtz, Gerch. d. A. B. II, S. 522 [History of the Old Covenant] with the people Israel, and required as its condition the keeping of the Torah (comp. בְּחוֹצִאוֹ, Deuteronomy 29:24; Deuteronomy 28:1 sqq.; 13sqq.).—Which my covenant. Which is at any rate to be referred to my covenant, since this is also the main conception in the previous clause of the sentence.—They is emphatic: they broke the covenant, not I. It was the weak side of this covenant that it could be broken, and had God made this only, there might have been a doubt either as to His omniscience or His holy love. The first covenant, however, was only preliminary, preparatory and typical.—And yet I was their husband. The LXX, which translates Jeremiah 3:14κατακυριεύσω ὑμῶν, here has ἠμέλησα αὐτῶν . So likewise in Hebrews 8:9. From the context we should certainly expect an idea corresponding to broke, i. e. a word by which Jehovah’s relation to the covenant-breakers would be designated. Meanwhile grammatical considerations require us to take בָּעַל in the meaning, which it has everywhere else, namely=to possess, and indeed (predominantly) as spouse. But we cannot, with Hengstenberg, take the sentence and yet I, etc., as a promise (I will marry them), for that would be an anticipation of the turn of thought beginning with But, in Jeremiah 31:33; we must rather, with Ewald, regard it as an antithetical statement of a fact: and yet I was (or: while I was their husband). Thus the emphasis rests on the idea of husband, and the sense is: it is not a covenant concluded inter pares, which each of the contracting parties may renounce, which they have broken, but a marriage alliance in which they represent the woman, who is never justified in desiring the dissolution of the matrimonial connection, or in effecting it. [“Probably the true rendering Isaiah, and therefore I rejected them (from bâal, to refuse, to loathe). See the Syriac, Pococke (Port. Mosis, pp5–10, Gesenius, 130, and Mr. Turpie’s valuable work, ‘The Old Testament in the New’, pp251, 252).” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.].

Jeremiah 31:33-34. But this is … remember no more. כִּי is “for,” but in the sense of “but,” because it corresponds to not, in Jeremiah 31:32. Comp. Naegelsb. Gr., § 110, 4.—Those days. It is not said these, for this would be the days of the present, while the word used refers to more distant days, to those namely, which will precede the turn to good, the שׁוּכ שְׁכוּת ( Jeremiah 31:16 sqq.).—I will put, etc. The prophet evidently has in view the stone tables of the Law, on which the ten “words,” the kernel of the Torah, were written. This law of commandments ( Ephesians 2:15; Colossians 2:14) externally imposed on men by a subordinate mediator ( Galatians 3:19), was ἀσθενὴς καὶ ἁνωφελής ( Hebrews 7:19), wherefore it is also said of it οὐδὲν ἐτελείωσεν ( Hebrews 7:19). It was only to render men conscious how far the human subject in and of himself was in a condition to satisfy the demands of a holy God, i. e the law was to produce conviction of sin ( Romans 3:20). Only a heart in which the law has been livingly written and in which it dwells, i. e. only a human will, which has become one with the divine will, and thus free, can continue in covenant with God ( Jeremiah 32:40; Jeremiah 24:7; Ezekiel 11:19; 2 Corinthians 3:3). Only where this takes place is God truly the man’s God, and the people God’s people. To be God is to be the most exalted being, therefore the highest good, the source and end of life. Only where God is thus for Prayer of Manasseh, is He truly his God. And a people only which stands in this relation to God, is truly God’s people (comp. Jeremiah 7:23).—Hengstenberg is of opinion that between the old and new covenants there is only a quantitative not a qualitative difference. “Parallel to the passage under consideration is the promise of God of the pouring out of the Spirit, Joel 3:1-2 ( Jeremiah 2:28-29), so that what we remarked on that passage is applicable here also … As under the New Covenant generally in its relation to the Old there is nowhere an absolutely new beginning but always a completion only … so in reference to the communication of the Spirit, Joel puts only abundance in the place of scarcity, many in the place of few” [Christology, Eng. Tr. II, p439]. It is true no legal enactment of the Old Covenant is declared false in the New ( Matthew 5:17-19); it is true that men knew even under the Old Covenant that the law, in order to be fulfilled must not be merely externally before the eyes, or merely in the head, but that it must be in the heart ( Deuteronomy 30:6; Psalm 40:9; Proverbs 3:1-3). But this Old Testament having-in-the-heart, which is spoken of in the passages cited, is quite a different thing from that which Jeremiah means in this passage. There were many God-fearing Jews who had the law at heart, and in their heart, and who loved the Lord with all their strength, but was one of them justified by this observance of the law? We shall recur to this again directly.

Jeremiah 31:34. No more teach, etc. Theodoret says, τῶν δὲ ῥητῶν τούτων τέ τέλος μέλλων δὸξεται βίος. We have however no intimation that the prophecy of Jeremiah 31:34 will be fulfilled at another time than that which is spoken of before and afterwards. No passage can be shown in which the Old Testament prophets make predictions concerning the heavenly state. The prophet therefore sets before his hearers a period of terrestrial development in which the illumination of the Spirit ( Joel 3:1-2; John 6:45) will lead each of himself to the essentially correct knowledge of God. Reciprocal furtherance is certainly not thus denied.—For all will, etc. In these words the prophet indicates the proper basis of the gifts of grace previously named. So also the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews understands the passage, quoting Jeremiah 10:16 sqq. (in distinction from Jeremiah 8:7 sqq.) so that after διδοὺς νόμονς μου ἐπὶ καρδίας αὐτῶν καὶ ἐπὶ τὴν διάνοιαν αὐτῶν ἐπιγράψω αὐτούς he directly adds the concluding words of Jeremiah 31:34, καὶ τῶν ἁμαρτιῶν αὐτῶν καὶ ἀνομιῶν αὐτ͂ῶν οὐ μὴ μυησθήσομαι ἔτι. Only where the real (not merely ideal and hypothetical) forgiveness of sins conditioned by the true atoning sacrifice is imparted (comp. Hebrews 10:1-4), can there be the communication of the spirit of adoption ( Galatians 3:2; Galatians 3:6), and thus true knowledge, and the true walk according to God’s will. And herein also consists the most radical objective difference between the Old Covenant and the New, in the former all is shadow and type, the latter only has the essence of the good things itself ( Hebrews 10:1). Not till the sacrifice was offered on the cross was the veil of the temple rent, and the way of access to God actually opened. Now even if Moses and Elias be pointed to ( Matthew 17:3), it is certain that no one received the knowledge of the “mystery of godliness” ( 1 Timothy 3:16) before the death and resurrection of our Lord. John was more than a prophet, and yet the least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he ( Matthew 11:9 sqq.) The for before I will forgive is therefore to be well observed. Here also we learn the meaning of כָּרָתַּי בדית. It is without doubt incorrect to take it in the sense of “constituere, to establish, make arrangements,” for everywhere else it signifies to conclude a covenant. But where God concludes a covenant it is always at the same time He who works the will and the execution, whence also in this passage gifts of God only are mentioned. At the same time we are neither justified nor in a condition to give a definite historical date for the conclusion of the New Covenant. If we should designate the day of the crucifixion as on the part of God the moment when He entered into the New Covenant relation, yet on the part, of mankind there would then be no corresponding date of acceptance. In the fact that the Covenant is in the most exalted sense granted, lies also the necessity of its acceptance. God does not give His Son for an uncertainty. The taking is included in the giving. In fact the measure of the covenant members becomes full by the successive accession of individual believers.

Jeremiah 31:35-37. Thus saith … Jehovah. Not only by its inwardness, but, also, closely connected with this by its eternal duration, is the New Covenant distinguished from the Old. The Old was broken by Israel and the nation therefore rejected by Jehovah. This will no more take place under the New Covenant. This will be as it were a second ordinance of nature. It will be as immovable as the great laws of nature.—Who giveth the sun, etc. The prophet has Genesis 1:14 in view. Comp. Psalm 136:8. The expression and the laws, etc., seems to be a reminiscence of Job 38:33, which comes out more plainly in Jeremiah 33:25.—Who exciteth the sea, etc., is taken from Isaiah 51:15. There the might of the Lord, as it has been displayed in the wonders of history and of nature in general, is set forth for the comfort of Israel. Here all the emphasis lies on the idea of the fixedness and stability of the ordinances of nature, which God has created. That God can excite the mighty ocean is rather a proof of His power than-an instance of the inviolate order of nature, and it is hence probable that the expression originated with Isaiah.

Jeremiah 31:36. If these laws, etc. As certainly as the laws of nature are inviolable, so certainly shall Israel everlastingly continue as a nation before the Lord ( Jeremiah 33:20-26; Psalm 89:37-38). The question is natural here: why then has Jehovah raised the eternal continuance of the people of Israel as it were to the rank of a law of nature? The answer is given in Jeremiah 31:37, (which does not feebly hobble after, as Graf supposes), not however with a solution of the problem, but with the declaration that the ground of the historical fact is as secret as the heavens above us are immeasurable, and the earth beneath us in its profoundest depths is unsearchable. Comp. Jeremiah 33:22; Jeremiah 33:26.

Jeremiah 31:38-40. Behold the days … forever.—Tower of Hananeel. This tower designates, as is acknowledged, the North-East corner of Jerusalem. It is also mentioned in Zechariah 14:10; Nehemiah 3:1; Nehemiah 12:39. The corner-gate (comp. 2 Kings 14:13; 2 Chronicles 26:9, and also שַׂעַד הַפִּנִּים, Zechariah 14:10) designates the North-West corner. Vid. Raumer, Paläst. S. 290. By these two points then the northern limit of the city is defined. As the tower of Hananeel and the corner tower were part or the fortifications of the city, there seems to be no further extension on this side—Straight out, ננדו accus. of motion to the question whither? To its opposite, i. e., straight out. Comp. Amos 4:3; Joshua 6:5; Joshua 6:20.—Gareb occurs here only as the name of a place, as the name of a person in 2 Samuel 23:38; 1 Chronicles 11:40. The meaning of the word must according to נָרָכscabies, ( Leviticus 21:20; Leviticus 22:22) be “scabby, leprous.” In accordance with the other localizations, this must mean, as Graf has shown, the South-West corner. What Goath (נעָה) Isaiah, is quite uncertain. The word occurs were only. The Chald. has בְּרֵכַת עֶנְלָא (cowpond) the Syr. lormeto, i.e., rocky hill, by which it seems to have understood the projecting rock of the castle Antonia (Hitzig, Fuerst). Vitringa and Hengstenberg take it as = נל נועתה, i. e., Golgotha. But both the etymology and topography are very uncertain. The valley of corpses and ashes is without doubt the vale of Hinnom in the South, for that was the place where all the refuse of the city ran or was carried. (Comp. Comm. on Jeremiah 19:2). פֶנֶר is the unburied cadaver of men and beasts ( Jeremiah 41:9; Genesis 15:11), דֶּשֶׁן is especially the ashes of burnt fat ( Leviticus 1:16; Leviticus 4:1). It is better to regard it as the ashes of the offal, burned without the camp, than of the sacrifices burned on the altar (flesh, skin, dung, Leviticus 4:11-12; Leviticus 7:17; Leviticus 7:19; Leviticus 8:17; Leviticus 8:32; Leviticus 9:11; Leviticus 16:27; Leviticus 19:6) and clothing ( Leviticus 13:52; Leviticus 13:55; Leviticus 13:57). The horse-gate was on the East of the city by the temple ( Nehemiah 3:18; Nehemiah 12:39-40). So far as we can perceive in general from these local determinations, the subject is not primarily, as in Ezekiel 48:15 sqq. an extension of the city. For the gain in space according to the boundaries mentioned is relatively insignificant. Only in the South-West, South, and at any rate in the South-East, are some small portions added to the city. The main point is that by this extension the places which were unholy will be rendered holy. They were the purlieus of the city. If even these places are added to the city, it shows that the city no longer needs such places. It is in itself so thoroughly holy to the Lord that it will have nothing unholy to cast out. Nothing unclean will enter ( Revelation 21:27), therefore nothing unclean will proceed from it. It will be thoroughly sanctified and enlightened, therefore safe from destruction to all eternity.

Footnotes:

FN#24 - Jeremiah 31:32.—On the punctuation of הֶ‍ֽהֶזקוּ comp. Olshausen, § 192 f.

FN#25 - Jeremiah 31:34.—On לְמִן comp. rems. on Jeremiah 7:7; Jeremiah 7:25.

FN#26 - Jeremiah 31:38.—בָאִים, which is wanting in the Chethibh, but is supplied by the Keri, is nowhere else lacking in the formula, so frequent in Jeremiah. There is probably then a scriptural error.

FN#27 - Jeremiah 31:39.—Instead of קָוה the Masoretes would read קָו (here as in 1 Kings 7:23; Zechariah 1:16). Although קָו is the usual form, the form קָוֶה (comp. שָׂדֶה) is however not to be discredited.

FN#28 - Jeremiah 31:40.—A word שְׁרֵמָה does not occur, nor is a root שָׁרַם to be found. We are therefore obliged to read with the Masoretes שְׁדֵמוּת. (Comp. Isaiah 37:27; Isaiah 16:8; Habakkuk 3:17; Deuteronomy 32:32; 2 Kings 23:4).

DOCTRINAL AND ETHICAL

1. Joh. Conr. Schaller, pastor at Cautendorf, says in his Gospel Sermons, (Hof1742, S. 628), “These chapters are like a sky in which sparkle many brilliant stars of strong and consolatory declarations, a paradise and pleasure-garden in which a believing soul is refreshed with delightsome flowers of instruction, and solaced with sweetly flavored apples of gracious promise.”

2. On Jeremiah 30:1-3. The people of Israel were not then capable of bearing such a prophecy, brimming over with happiness and glory. They would have misused it, hearing to the end what was promised them, and then only the more certainly postponing what was the only thing then necessary—sincere repentance. Hence they are not yet to hear this gloriously consolatory address. It is to be written, that it may in due time be perceived that the Lord, even at the time when He was obliged to threaten most severely, had thoughts of peace concerning the people, and that thus the period of prosperity has not come by chance, nor in consequence of a change of mind, but in consequence of a plan conceived from the beginning and executed accordingly.

3. On Jeremiah 30:7. The great and terrible day of the Lord ( Joel 3:4) has not the dimensions of a human day. It has long sent out its heralds in advance. Yea, it has itself already dawned. For since by the total destruction of the external theocracy judgment is begun at the house of God ( 1 Peter 4:17), we stand in the midst of the day of God in the midst of the judgment of the world. Then the time of trouble for Jacob has begun ( Jeremiah 30:7), from which he is to be delivered, when the fulness of the Gentiles is come in ( Romans 11.)

4. On Jeremiah 30:9. Christ is David in his highest potency, and He is also still more. For if we represent all the typical points in David’s life as a circle, and draw a line from each of these points, the great circle thus formed would comprise only a part of the πλήρωμα given in Christ. Nevertheless Christ is the true David, who was not chosen like Saul for his bodily stature, but only for his inward relation to God (comp. Psalm 2:7), whose kingdom also does not cease after a short period of glory, but endures forever; who will not like Saul succumb to his enemies, but will conquer them all, and will give to his kingdom the widest extent promised; all this however not without, like David, having gone through the bitterest trials.

5. On Jeremiah 30:11. “Modus paternæ castigationis accommodatus et quasi appensus ad stateram judicii Dei adeoque non immensus sed dimensus.” “Christus ecclesiam crucis suæ hæredem constituit. Gregor. M.” Förster.

6. On Jeremiah 30:14. “Cum virlutem patientiæ nostræ flagella transeunt, valde metuendum Esther, ne peccatis nostris exigentibus non jam quasi filii a patre, sed quasi hostes a Domino feriamur. Gregor. M. Moral. XIV:20, on Job 19:11.” Ghisler.

7. On Jeremiah 30:17. “Providentia Dei mortalibus salutifera, antequam percutiat, pharmaca medendi gratiâ componit, et gladium iræ suæ φιλανθρωπίᾳ acuit. Evagr. Hist. Ecclesiastes 4:6.”—“Quando incidis in tentationem, crede, quod nisi cognovisset te posse illam evadere, non permisisset te in illam incidere. Theophyl. in cap. 18 Joh.” Förster.—“Feriam prius et sanabo melius. Theophyl. in Hosea 11.” Ghisler.

8. On Jeremiah 30:21. “This church of God will own a, Prince from its midst—Jesus, of our flesh and blood through the virgin Mary, and He approaches God, as no other can, for He is God’s image, God’s Song of Solomon, and at the same time the perfect, holy in all His sufferings, only obedient son of man. This king is mediator and reconciler with God; He is also high-priest and fulfilled all righteousness, as was necessary for our propitiation. What glory to have such a king, who brings us nigh unto God, and this is our glory!” Diedrich.

9. On Jeremiah 31:1. “There is no greater promise than this: I will be thy God. For if He is our God we are His creatures, His redeemed, His sanctified, according to all the three articles of the Christian faith.” Cramer.

10. On Jeremiah 31:2. “The rough heap had to be sifted by the sword, but those who survived, though afflicted in the desert of this life, found favor with God, and these, the true Israel, God leads into His rest.” Diedrich.

11. On Jeremiah 31:3. “The love of God towards us comes from love and has no other cause above or beside itself, but, is in God and remains in God, so that Christ who is in God is its centre. For herein is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us ( 1 John 4:10).” Cramer. “Totum gratiæ imputatur, non nostris meritis. Augustine in Psalm 31.” Förster. “Before I had done anything good Thou hadst already moved towards me. Let these words be written on your hearts with the pen of the living God, that they may light you like flames of fire on the day of the marriage. It is your certificate of birth, your testimonial. Let me never lose sight of how much it has cost Thee to redeem me.” Zinzendorf. “God says: My chastisement even was pure love, though then you did not understand it; you shall learn it afterwards.” Diedrich. [“I incline to the construction given in the English version, both because the suffix to the verb is more naturally, ‘I have drawn thee,’ than ‘I have drawn out toward thee,’ and because there seems to be a tacit allusion to Hosea 11:4, ‘With loving kindness have I drawn thee.’—-A great moral truth lies in this passage so construed, viz., that the main power which humbles man’s pride, softens his hard heart and makes him recoil in shame and sorrow from sinning, comes through his apprehension of God’s love as manifested in Christ and His cross. It is love that, draws the fearful or stubborn soul to the feet of divine mercy.” Cowles.—S. R. A.]

12. On Jeremiah 31:6. “It is well: the watchmen on Mount Ephraim had to go to Zion. They received however another visit from the Jewish priests, which they could not have expected at the great reformation, introduced by John, and which had its seat among other places on Mount Ephraim. The Samaritans were not far distant, and Mount Ephraim had even this honor that when the Lord came to His temple He took His Seat as a teacher there.” Zinzendorf. [“God’s grace loves to triumph over the most inveterate prejudices… No words could represent a greater and more benign change in national feeling than these: Samaria saying through her spiritual watchmen, ‘Let us go up to Zion to worship, for our God is there.’ ” Cowles. “ ‘Ascendamus in Sion, hoc est in Ecclesiam’ says S. Jerome. According to this view, the watchmen here mentioned are the Preachers of the Gospel.” Wordsworth.—S. R. A.]

13. On Jeremiah 31:9. “I will lead them. It is an old sighing couplet, but full of wisdom and solid truth:—

‘Lord Jesus, while I live on earth, O guide me,

Let me not, self-led, wander from beside Thee.’ ”

—Zinzendorf.

14. On Jeremiah 31:10. “He who has scattered Israel will also collect it. Why? lie is the Shepherd. It is no wolf-scattering. He interposes His hand, then they go asunder, and directly come together again more orderly.” Zinzendorf.

15. On Jeremiah 31:12-14. “Gaudebunt electi, quando videbunt supra se, intra se, juxta se, infra se. Augustine.”—“Præmia cœlestia erunt tam magna, ut non possint mensurari, tam multa, ut non possint numerari, tam copiosa, ut non possint terminari, tam pretiosa, ut non possint æstimari. Bernhard.” Förster.

16. On Jeremiah 31:15. “Because at all times there is a similar state of things in the church of God, the lament of Rachel is a common one. For as this lament is over the carrying away captive and oppressions of Babylon, so is it also a lament over the tyranny of Herod in slaughtering the innocent children ( Matthew 2:1-7.)”Cramer. “Premuntur justi in ecclesia ut clament, clamantes exaudiuntur, exauditi glorificent Deum. Augustin.” Förster.—With respect to this, that Rachel’s lament may be regarded as a type of maternal lamentation over lost children, Förster quotes this sentence of Cyprian: non amisimus, sed præmisimus ( 2 Samuel 12:23). [On the application of this verse to the murder of the innocents consult W. L. Alexander, Connexion of the Old and New. Testament, p54, and W. H. Mill in Wordsworth’s Note in loc.—S. R. A.]

17. On Jeremiah 31:18. The conversion of man must always be a product of two factors. A conversion which man alone should bring about, without God, would be an empty pretence of conversion; a conversion, which God should produce, without Prayer of Manasseh, would be a compulsory, manufactured affair, without any moral value. The merit and the praise Isaiah, however, always on God’s side. He gives the will and the execution. Did He not discipline us, we should never learn discipline. Did He not lead back our thoughts to our Father’s house which we have left ( Luke 15) we should never think of returning.

18. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The children of God are ashamed their life long, they cannot raise their heads for humiliation. For their sins always seem great to them, and the grace of God always remains something incomprehensible to them.”Zinzendorf. The farther the Christian advances in his consciousness of sonship and in sanctification, the more brilliantly rises the light of grace, the more distinctly does he perceive in this light, how black is the night of his sins from which God has delivered him. [“It is the ripest and fullest ears of grain which hang their heads the lowest.”—S. R. A.]

19. On Jeremiah 31:19. “The use of the dear cross is to make us blush ( Daniel 9:8) and not regard ourselves as innocent ( Jeremiah 30:11). And as it pleases a father when a child soon blushes, so also is this tincture a flower of virtue well-pleasing to God.” Cramer. “Deus oleum miserationis suæ non nisi in vas contritum et contribulatum infundit. Bernhard.”Förster.

20. On Jeremiah 31:19. The reproach of my youth. “The sins of youth are not easily to be forgotten ( Psalm 25:7; Job 31:18). Therefore we ought to be careful so to act in our youth as not to have to chew the cud of bitter reflection in our old age. It is a comfort that past sins of youth will not injure the truly penitent. Non nocent peccata præterita, cum non placent præsentia. Augustine. To transgress no more is the best sign of repentance.” Cramer.

21. On Jeremiah 31:20. “Comforting and weighty words, which each one should lay to heart. God loves and caresses us as a mother her good child. He remembers His promise. His heart yearns and breaks, and it is His pleasure to do us good.” Cramer. “lpsius proprium Esther, misereri semper et parcere.” Augustine.—“Major est Dei misericordia quam omnium hominum miseria.” Idem.

22. On Jeremiah 31:23. The Lord bless thee, thou dwelling-place of righteousness, thou holy mountain. “Certainly no greater honor was ever done to the Jewish mountains than that the woman’s seed prayed and wept on them, was transfigured, killed and ascended above all heaven.” Zinzendorf. “ It cannot be denied that a church sanctifies a whole place …. Members of Jesus are real guardian angels, who do not exist in the imagination, but are founded on God’s promise ( Matthew 25:40).” Idem.

23. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “The Song of Solomon -called family curse has no influence on the servants of God; one may sleep calmly nevertheless. This does not mean that we should continue in the track of our predecessors, ex. gr., when our ancestors have gained much wealth by sinful trade, that we should continue this trade with this wealth with the hope of the divine blessing…. If this or that property, house, right, condition be afflicted with a curse, the children of God may soon by prudent separation deliver themselves from these unsafe circumstances. For nothing attaches to their persons, when they have been baptized with the blood of Jesus and are blessed by Him.” Zinzendorf.

24. On Jeremiah 31:29-30. “In testamento novo per sarguinem mediatoris deleto paterno chirographo incipit homo paternis debitis non esse obnoxius renascendo, quibus nascendo fuerat obligatus, ipso Mediatore di cente: Ne vobis patrem dicüis in terra ( Matthew 23:9). Secundum hoc utique, quod alios natales, quibus non patri succederemus, sed cum patre semper viveremus, invenimus.” Augustine, contra Julian, VI:12, in Ghisler.

25. On Jeremiah 31:31. “In veteribus libris aut nusquam aut difficile præter hunc propheticum locum legitur facta commemoratio testamenti novi, ut omnino ipso nomine appellaretur. Nam multis locis hoc significalur et prænuntiatur futurum, sed non ita ut etiam nomen lega’ ur expressum.” Augustine, de Spir. et Lit. ad Marcellin, Cap. 19 (where to Cap29 there is a detailed discussion of this passage) in Ghisler.—“In the whole of the Old Testament there is no passage, in which the view is so clearly and distinctly expressed as here that the law is only παιδαγαγός. And though some commentators have supposed that the passage contains only a censure of the Israelites and not of the Old Covenant, they only show thus that they have not understood the simple meaning of the words.” Ebrard. Comm. zum Hebräerbr. S. 275.

26. On Jeremiah 31:31, sqq. “Propter veteris hominis noxam, quæ per literam jubentem et minantem minime sanabatur, dicitur illud testamentum vetus; hoc antem novum propter novitatem spiritus, quæ hominem novum sanat a vitio vetustatis.” Augustine, c. Lit. Cap. 19.

27. On Jeremiah 31:33. “Quid sunt ergo leges Dei ab ipso Deo scriptæ in cordibus, nisi ipsa præsentia Spiritus sancti, qui est digitus Dei, quo præsente diffunditur charitas in cordibus nostrio, quæ plenitudo legis est et præcepti finis?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 20.

28. On Jeremiah 31:34. “Quomodo tempus est novi testamenti, de quo propheta dixit: et non docebit unusquisque civem suum, etc. nisi quia rjusdem testamenti novi æternam mercedem, id est ipsius Dei beatissimam contemplationem promittendo conjunxit?” Augustine, l. c. Cap. 24.

29. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. “This is the blessed difference between law and Gospel, between form and substance. Therefore are the great and small alike, and the youths like the elders, the pupils more learned than their teachers, and the young wiser than the ancients ( 1 John 2:20 sqq.). Here is the cause:—For I will forgive their iniquities. This is the occasion of the above; no one can effect this without it. Forgiveness of sins makes the scales fall from people’s eyes, and gives them a cheerful temper, clear conceptions, a clear head.”Zinzendorf.

30. On Jeremiah 31:35-37. “Etsi particulares ecclesiæ intotum deficere possunt, ecclesia tamen catholica nunquam defecit aut deficiet. Obstant enim Dei amplissimæ promissiones, inter quas non ultimum locum sibi vindicut quæ hic habetur Jeremiah 31:37.” Förster.

31. On Jeremiah 31:38-40. “Jerusalem will one day be much greater than it has ever been. This is not to be understood literally but spiritually. Jerusalem will be wherever there are believing souls, its circle will be without end and comprise all that has been hitherto impure and lost. This it is of which the prophet is teaching, and which he presents in figures, which were intelligible to the people in his time. The hill Gareb, probably the residence of the lepers, the emblem of the sinner unmasked and smitten by God, and the cursed valley of Ben-Hinnom will be taken up into the holy city. God’s grace will one day effect all this, and Israel will thus be manifested as much more glorious than ever before.” Diedrich.

HOMILETICAL AND PRACTICAL

1. On Jeremiah 30:5-9. Sermon on one of the last Sundays after Trinity or the second in Advent. The day of the judgment of the world a great day. For it Isaiah, (1) a day of anxiety and terror for all the world; (2) a day of deliverance from all distress for the church of the Lord; (3) a day of realization of all the happiness set in prospect before it.

2. On Jeremiah 30:10-12. Consolation of the church in great trial1. It has well deserved the trial ( Jeremiah 30:12); 2. it is therefore chastised, but with moderation; 3. it will not perish but again enjoy peace.

3. On [“The Restorer of mankind1. Faith in the Christian Sacrament and its attendant revelation of divine character alone answer the demand of the heart and reason of man for a higher state of moral perfection2. Christianity offers to maintain a communication between this world and that eternal world of holiness and truth3. It commends itself to our wants in the confirmation and direction of that principle of hope, which even in our daily and worldly life, we are perpetually forced to substitute for happiness, and4. By the adorable object, which it presents to our affections.” Archer Butler—S. R. A.]

4. On Jeremiah 31:1-2. Gesetz and Zeugniss (Law and Testimony) 1864, Heft. 1. Funeral sermon of Ahlfeld.

5. On Jeremiah 31:2-4. lb. 1865. Heft 1. Funeral sermon of Besser, S. 32ff.

6. On Jeremiah 31:3. C. Fr. Hartmann (Wedding, School, Catechism and Birth-day sermons, ed. C. Chr. Eberh. Ehemann. Tüb1865). Wedding sermon1. A grateful revival in the love of God already received2. Earnest endeavor after a daily enjoyment of this love3. Daily nourishment of hope.

7. On Jeremiah 31:3. Florey. Comfort and warning at graves. I. Bändchen, S. 253. On the attractions of God’s love towards His own children. They are, 1. innumerable and yet so frequently overlooked; 2. powerful and yet so frequently resisted; 3. rich in blessing and yet so frequently; unemployed. [For practical remarks on this text see also Tholuck, Stunden der Andacht, No11.—S. R. A.]

8. On Jeremiah 31:9. Confessional sermon by Dekan V. Biarowsky in Erlangen (in Palmer’s Evang. Casual-Reden, 2 te Folge, 1 Band. Stuttgart, 1850.) Every partaking of the Lord’s supper is a return to the Lord in the promised land, and every one who is a guest at the supper rises and comes1. How are we to come? (weeping and praying). 2. What shall we find? (Salvation and blessing, power and life, grace and help).

9. On Jeremiah 31:18-20. Comparison of conversion with the course of the earth and the sun1. The man who has fallen away is like the planet in its distance from the sun; he flees from God as far as he Song of Solomon 2. Love however does not release him: a. he is chastened (winter, cold, long nights, short days); b. he accepts the chastening and returns to proximity to the sun (summer, warmth, light, life). Comp. Brandt, Altes und Neues in i extemporirbaren Entwürfen. Nüremberg, 1829, II:5. [The stubborn sinner submitting himself to God. I. A description of the feelings and conduct of an obstinate, impenitent sinner, while smarting under the rod of affliction: He is rebellious—till subdued. II. The new views and feelings produced by affliction through divine grace: (a) convinced of guilt and sinfulness; (b) praying; (c) reflecting on the effects of divine grace in his conversion. III. A correcting but compassionate God, watching the result, etc., (a) as a tender father mindful of his penitent child; (b) listening to his complaints, confessions and petitions; (c) declaring His determination to pardon. Payson.—S. R. A.]

10. On Jeremiah 31:31-34. Sermon on 1 Sunday in Advent by Pastor Diechert in Gröningen, S. Stern aus Jakob. I. Stuttg1867.

11. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. Do we belong to the people of God? 1. Have we holiness? 2. Have we knowledge? 3. Have we the peace promised to this people? (Caspari in Predigtbuch von Dittmar, Erlangen, 1845).

12. On Jeremiah 31:33-34. By the new covenant in the bath of holy baptism all becomes new1. What was dead becomes alive2. What was obscure becomes clear3. What was cold becomes warm4. What was bound becomes free (Florey, 1862).

 


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Bibliography Information
Lange, Johann Peter. "Commentary on Jeremiah 31:4". "Commentary on the Holy Scriptures: Critical, Doctrinal, and Homiletical". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/lcc/jeremiah-31.html. 1857-84.

Lectionary Calendar
Sunday, October 20th, 2019
the Week of Proper 24 / Ordinary 29
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