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Bible Commentaries

Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible
Jeremiah 27

 

 

Introduction

Jeremiah 27-29. Certain linguistic peculiarities (e.g. the incorrect spelling, Nebuchadnezzar) suggest that these three chapters may have circulated as a separate pamphlet, e.g. in Babylon. They deal with the rebuke of false hopes concerning a speedy return from exile.

Jeremiah 30-31. The Future of Israel and Judah.—These two chapters of prophecy, dealing with the future restoration of Israel and Judah, appear to be a later editorial insertion in the narrative scheme of Jeremiah 26-45, placed here perhaps because Jeremiah 32 and Jeremiah 33 contain narratives and prophecies dealing with the same subject (cf. also Jeremiah 29:10 ff.). In Jeremiah 30 and Jeremiah 31, there are numerous points of contact with Deutero-Isaiah, a fact which, with other features, has suggested to many scholars an exilic or post-exilic date for much that these chapters contain. The contrast with the general "pessimism" of earlier chapters is very noticeable. On the other hand, the internal evidence for Jeremiah 31:2-6, Jeremiah 31:15-22, Jeremiah 31:31-34 entitles us to regard these sections as Jeremianic.

Jeremiah 40-44. The next five chapters continue the biography of Jeremiah, including connected events, after the capture of Jerusalem.

Jeremiah 46-51. The Foreign Prophecies.—These form the third principal division of the Book of Jeremiah. As already seen (Jeremiah 1:5; Jeremiah 1:10, Jeremiah 25:15), Jeremiah's prophetic horizon naturally included the surrounding nations; how far the prophecies that follow are his can be decided only by detailed criticism in each case. They refer, though in somewhat different order, to the several nations enumerated in Jeremiah 25:19-26 (which may be regarded as an introduction to them), except that an oracle on Damascus here replaces the reference to Tyre, Sidon, and the Mediterranean. (The LXX, which places this group of prophecies after Jeremiah 25:13, follows a third order.) It is generally admitted that the long prophecy on Babylon (Jeremiah 50 f.) is not by Jeremiah (see prefatory note). As to Jeremiah 46-49, there is considerable difference of opinion, ranging from Duhm's rejection of the whole, through Giesebrecht's acceptance of Jeremiah 47 (except towards end), with the nucleus of Jeremiah 46:2-12, Jeremiah 49:7-11, up to Cornill's acceptance of most of Jeremiah 46-49 (so also Peake). It is in any case natural to suppose that there are genuine prophecies by Jeremiah which underlie these chapters, though they have been worked over, or incorporated with other non-Jeremianic prophecies (e.g. Jeremiah 48) by later writers. For details, the larger commentaries must be consulted.

Jeremiah 26-45. These chapters, usually ascribed in the main to Baruch, chiefly narrate selected incidents in the life of Jeremiah, often with connected prophecies; they form a second main section of the book, in contrast with 1-25, which consist chiefly of prophecies, with little narrative.


Verses 1-11

Jeremiah 27-29. Certain linguistic peculiarities (e.g. the incorrect spelling, Nebuchadnezzar) suggest that these three chapters may have circulated as a separate pamphlet, e.g. in Babylon. They deal with the rebuke of false hopes concerning a speedy return from exile.

Jeremiah 27:1-11. The Conspiracy against Babylon.—Probably in 593 (note correction by mg. of Jeremiah 27:1; the more definite date of Jeremiah 28:1 seems to belong here) Jeremiah is told to make and wear a yoke (as symbol of submission to Babylon; cf. 1 Kings 22:11, and the note on Jeremiah 13:1 ff.). He is to send an interpretative message by the representatives of the five kings who are seeking the alliance of Zedekiah in a conspiracy against Babylon. Yahweh, the Creator of all, has given all into the power of the Babylonian king. Those who will not bear the yoke willingly shall be given into his hand after much suffering. They are not to be deceived by false guides. On Jeremiah's characteristic policy of submission to Babylon, and its consequences to himself, see Introduction, § 2.

Jeremiah 27:3. Omit "them", with the LXX of Lucian; according to Jeremiah 28:10, Jeremiah is still wearing the yoke himself.

Jeremiah 27:6. the beasts of the field, etc.: the words simply emphasize the absolute sovereignty of the Babylonian king; cf. Daniel 2:38.

Jeremiah 27:7 (omitted by LXX) limits the Babylonian tenure of power to two more generations; it is probably, like Jeremiah 25:12-14, a later addition.

Jeremiah 27:8. consumed . . . by: should probably be emended into "given into".

Jeremiah 27:9. dreams: read "dreamers" with VSS.


Verses 12-22

Jeremiah 27:12-22. The Warning to Zedekiah.—Jeremiah also warns Zedekiah to the same effect (Jeremiah 27:12-15), and tells priests and people not to believe the prophets who promise an early return of the Temple vessels. Let the prophets rather pray that the vessels left by the Babylonians be not also carried off; for Yahweh intends to remove these also, that they may remain in Babylon until His appointed time. This warning was apparently successful; Zedekiah did not revolt until four or five years later. In order to quell the suspicions excited by the embassies of Jeremiah 27:3, he may have made the journey to Babylon mentioned in Jeremiah 51:59.

Jeremiah 27:16. the vessels of Yahweh's house: the popular emblems of patriotism and religion, carried off in 597; cf. Jeremiah 27:20.

Jeremiah 27:16-22. LXX has a shorter text, without any promise of the ultimate restoration of these vessels.

Jeremiah 27:19. For the details, see on 1 Kings 7:15 ff. The larger objects were broken up in 586, and the metal carried to Babylon (Jeremiah 52:17); the smaller were restored by Cyrus in 538 (Ezra 1:7-11).

 


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Bibliography Information
Peake, Arthur. "Commentary on Jeremiah 27:4". "Arthur Peake's Commentary on the Bible ". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/pfc/jeremiah-27.html. 1919.

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