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Bible Commentaries

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible
Jeremiah 35

 

 

Verses 1-11

THE HISTORY OF THE RECHABITES A COUNTERPART OF THAT OF ISRAEL, Jeremiah 35:1-11.


Verse 2

2. House of the Rechabites — Their family. By the example of their obedience Jeremiah condemned the disobedience of the Jews. Bring them into the house of the Lord, etc. — First that the test might be a public one, and so the result known: and second, possibly because there may have been in this an implied censure of the loose ways of the priests, who made the chambers of the temple scenes of conviviality.


Verse 3

3. Jaazaniah — Probably the elder and chief of the tribe.


Verse 4

4. The sons of Hanan were probably not his children, but his followers, and so we seem to have suggested a religious sect, though of their principles and history we know nothing.

A man of God — This appellation belongs probably to Hanan, and not to Igdaliah, this being the usual mode of construing this Hebrew idiom.

Chamber of the princes — Probably an office or council-room where public business was attended to. Jeremiah 26:10, seems to belong with this verse.

Keeper of the door — Literally, of the threshold; as Keil suggests, “overseer of the watchmen of the temple gates,” of which, according to Jeremiah 52:24, and 2 Kings 25:18, there were three, who are there mentioned along with the high priest and his substitute. Maaseiah is probably the same whose son Zephaniah was “priest of the repetition,” or second priest. Jeremiah 52:24.


Verse 5

5. Pots — Bowls or large goblets, out of which the drinking cups were filled.


Verse 6-7

6, 7. Drink no wine — It will here be noticed that wine is intimately associated with settled life as opposed to a nomadic one. It is the fruit of culture — agri-culture — while the drink of the nomad is milk. The object of this rule of life would seem to be twofold. 1. To preserve their individuality; and 2. To preserve their purity.


Verse 11

11. Army of the Syrians — In the earlier times the Syrians were their great danger; and even now the greater army of the Chaldeans included the lesser of the Syrians.


Verse 14

THE APPLICATION OF THE RECHABITES’ EXAMPLE, Jeremiah 35:12-19.

14. The words of Jonadab… are performed;… but ye hearkened not unto me — Here is the plain application of this historical lesson. The Rechabites kept the commands of their father, and as a consequence have been rewarded. Ye violate the commands of your Father and will be punished. What could more thoroughly shame their unfaithfulness?


Verse 19

19. Shall not want a man to stand before me, etc. — The phrase “stand before me” may be technical and liturgical, as a writer in Smith’s Dictionary suggests, and this may have been fulfilled in that the Rechabites became in some way incorporated into the tribe of Levi. (See the title of Psalm lxxii, in the Septuagint: “To David of the sorts of Jonadab, and the first who were taken captive.”) A son of Rechab is mentioned in Nehemiah 3:14, in connexion with priests and Levites. But the better explanation is, that it means simply divine care. Existence and service are suggested, but not necessarily sacerdotal service.

 


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Bibliography Information
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 35:4". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-35.html. 1874-1909.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, September 16th, 2019
the Week of Proper 19 / Ordinary 24
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