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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Jeremiah 14

 

 

Verses 1-22

Jeremiah 14:1 to Jeremiah 15:9. The Drought in Judah, and Jeremiah's consequent Intercession.—The date of this disaster is unknown, but some year in the latter half of Jehoiakim's reign is most probable. The effects of the drought are graphically described in Jeremiah 14:2-6. The personified "gates" represent the people who gather at them in mourning attire and attitude ("sit in black upon the ground"; cf. Jeremiah 8:21, Jeremiah 13:18). The empty pits are dried-up storage cisterns (cf. Jeremiah 2:13). Men cover their heads because of grief (2 Samuel 15:30). The first clause of Jeremiah 14:4 (to "chapt") is best emended, with Duhm, after LXX, "The tillers of the ground are dismayed" (cf. mg.). The eyes of the wild asses fail through fruitless search for herbage (cf. Lamentations 4:17). In Jeremiah 14:7-9, the prophet confesses the people's sin, but appeals to Yahweh's honour (Jeremiah 14:7), and His ownership of Israel (Jeremiah 14:9; cf. Jeremiah 7:10), as a reason for His permanent presence and effective help. In Jeremiah 14:10-18, Yahweh replies that His aloofness corresponds ("even so") to the people's abandonment of Him (Jeremiah 14:10 b as Hosea 8:13), and announces evil as the only answer to their sacrifice; to which Jeremiah objects (Jeremiah 14:13) that the people have been misled by the prophets (Jeremiah 23:9 ff.) who promised peace. Yahweh, disowning these prophets (Jeremiah 14:14), announces their doom as well as that of the people, and Jeremiah is bidden to lament the horrors that are coming on Judah through invasion and its consequences. In Jeremiah 14:19-22, Jeremiah continues the dialogue with a further confession on behalf of the people, and with an appeal to the ties that bind Yahweh to Israel (Jeremiah 14:21 mg.); Yahweh alone can remove the terrors of this drought. In Jeremiah 15:1-9, Yahweh replies that even such pleaders as Moses (Numbers 14:13-20) and Samuel (1 Samuel 7:9) would not turn Him from His purpose; let the people go forth to pestilence ("death", Jeremiah 15:2), sword, famine, and captivity; let them be "an object of consternation" (for "tossed to and fro", Jeremiah 15:4) to all, because of the heathenism of Manasseh (2 Kings 21:11 ff.). It is Jerusalem that has rejected Yahweh (thou, Jeremiah 15:6, emphatic), and therefore is winnowed with a fork. The coming destruction is described (Jeremiah 15:8) as widespread and unexpected ("at noonday", as in Jeremiah 6:4); even the (happy) mother of seven (1 Samuel 2:5) utterly collapses.

Jeremiah 14:3. Read both mgg.

Jeremiah 14:14. divination, and a thing of nought: read, with Driver, "a worthless divination" by omission of one letter.

Jeremiah 14:18 b is difficult and obscure; for "go about" we should perhaps render "go begging", or, with second mg. alternative, simply "journey"

Jeremiah 14:21. the throne of thy glory: Jerusalem, as containing the Temple; cf. Jeremiah 17:12.

Jeremiah 14:22. vanities: i.e. "gods."

Jeremiah 15:7. fanned with a fan: i.e. winnowed; cf. Jeremiah 4:11, Isaiah 30:24, Matthew 3:12. The Eastern threshing-floor is described in Thomson, The Land and the Book, pp. 538ff.

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Jeremiah 14:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/jeremiah-14.html. 1919.

Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, November 16th, 2019
the Week of Proper 27 / Ordinary 32
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