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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Jeremiah 1:11

The word of the LORD came to me saying, "What do you see, Jeremiah?" And I said, "I see a rod of an almond tree."

Adam Clarke Commentary

A rod of an almond tree - שקד shaked, from שקד shakad, "to be ready," "to hasten," "to watch for an opportunity to do a thing," to awake; because the almond tree is the first to flower and bring forth fruit. Pliny says, Floret prima omnium amygdala mense Januario; Martio vero pomum maturat. It blossoms in January, when other trees are locked up in their winter's repose; and it bears fruit in March, just at the commencement of spring, when other trees only begin to bud. It was here the symbol of that promptitude with which God was about to fulfill his promises and threatening. As a rod, says Dahler, is an instrument of punishment, the rod of the almond may be intended here as the symbol of that punishment which the prophet was about to announce.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/jeremiah-1.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

What seest thou? - If we admit a supernatural element in prophecy, visions would be the most simple means of communication between God and man.

A rod of an almond tree - Many translate “a staff of almond wood.” The vision would thus signify that God - like a traveler, staff in hand - was just about to set forth upon His journey of vengeance. But the rendering of the King James Version is supported by Genesis 30:37. The word rendered “almond” comes from a root signifying “to be awake;” and as the almond blossoms in January, it seems to be awake while other trees are still Sleeping, and therefore is a fit emblem of activity.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/jeremiah-1.html. 1870.

Coffman's Commentaries on the Bible

"Moreover, the word of Jehovah came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond-tree. Then said Jehovah unto me, Thou hast well seen: for I watch over my word to perform it."

The meaning of this vision turns upon the fact of the almond-tree being the first one that puts out blooms in the spring. JKP translated almond-tree here as "`The early-awake tree'; the Hebrew word translated `almond' means this."[11] Thus, the revelation to Jeremiah was that, just as the almond tree in bloom signified the near-approach of spring, so God was soon to bring his word to pass.


Copyright Statement
James Burton Coffman Commentaries reproduced by permission of Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. All other rights reserved.

Bibliography
Coffman, James Burton. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Coffman Commentaries on the Old and New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bcc/jeremiah-1.html. Abilene Christian University Press, Abilene, Texas, USA. 1983-1999.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Moreover, the word of the Lord came unto me,.... At the same time as before:

saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? The Septuagint version leaves out the word "Jeremiah":

and I said, I see a rod of an almond tree; a dry stick, without leaves or fruit upon it, and yet he knew it to be an almond tree stick; though some think it had leaves and fruit on it, by which it was known. The Targum is,

"and I said, a king hastening to do evil I see;'

meaning Nebuchadnezzar, king of Babylon, hastening to bring destruction upon the Jews.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
A printed copy of this work can be ordered from: The Baptist Standard Bearer, 1 Iron Oaks Dr, Paris, AR, 72855

Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/jeremiah-1.html. 1999.

Geneva Study Bible

Moreover the word of the LORD came to me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a m rod of an almond tree.

(m) He joins the sign with the word, for a more ample confirmation: signifying by the rod of the almond tree, which first buds, the hasty coming of the Babylonians against the Jews.

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Bibliography
Beza, Theodore. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "The 1599 Geneva Study Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/gsb/jeremiah-1.html. 1599-1645.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

rod — shoot, or branch.

almond tree — literally, “the wakeful tree,” because it awakes from the sleep of winter earlier than the other trees, flowering in January, and bearing fruit in March; symbol of God‘s early execution of His purpose; Jeremiah 1:12, “hasten My word” (compare Amos 8:3).


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/jeremiah-1.html. 1871-8.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.

Came unto me — This and the boiling caldron, verse13, is thought to be at the same time, and in the same vision, when he was first appointed to the work.

Almond-tree — That had leaves, and probably blossoms on it like Aaron's. This is a tree that blossoms early, and speedily, and so it may point at either God's readiness, to smite, verse12, or Israel's ripeness to be smitten; this rod being like a portentous comet, shewing to Jeremiah the miseries that were at hand, at the death of Josiah, which soon followed this vision, the taxing them by Pharaoh Necho, presently after the breaking in of the Chaldees, Syrians, Moabites, and Ammonites, and then the Babylonian captivity.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/jeremiah-1.html. 1765.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

God confirms in this passage what he had previously said of the power of his word. These two verses, then, are to be taken as explanatory, for no new subject is introduced; but the former part is confirmed — that the Prophets spoke not in vain, or to no purpose, because they were invested with celestial power to plant and to build, and, on the other hand, to pull down and to root up, according to what we have quoted from Paul, who says that true teachers are armed with such power. (2 Corinthians 10:5) We have in readiness, he says, vengeance against all the unbelieving, however proud they may be: and though their height may terrify the whole world, yet we have a sword in our hands which will stay them; for God’s word has sufficient power to destroy the rebellious.

God then proceeds with the same subject when he says, What seest thou, Jeremiah? He had set before him a staff or a rod of almond, as some render the word: and שקר, shaked, means an almond; but as it comes from a verb which means to watch or to hasten, we cannot fitly render it here, almond. I do not, however, deny that the Hebrew word has this meaning. But it is written here with Kamets; the participle which afterwards follows has Holem: we hence see what affinity there is between the two words. The word שקר , shaked, an almond, is derived from the verb, שקר, shakad, to watch; and it has been thought that this tree is so called, because it brings forth fruit earlier than other trees; for almonds, as it is well known, flower even in winter, and in the coldest seasons. Now, were we to say in Latin, I see a rod or a staff of almond; and were the answer given, Thou hast rightly seen, for I watch, the allusion in the words would not appear, the sentence would lose its beauty, and there would indeed be no meaning. It is hence necessary to give another version, except we wish to pervert the passage, and to involve the Prophet’s meaning in darkness. It should be, “I see the rod, “or the staff, “of a watcher.” Let us grant that the almond is intended; yet the tree may be called watchful, according to what etymology requires, and also the sense of the passage, as all must see. (14)

11. And the word of Jehovah came to me, saying, “What seest thou, Jeremiah?” and I said, “The rod of a watcher is what I see.”

12. Then Jehovah said to me, “Thou seest rightly, for I am watching over my word to do it.”

Ed.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/jeremiah-1.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

rod

(See Scofield "Numbers 17:8")


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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Jeremiah 1:11". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/jeremiah-1.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

Jeremiah 1:11 Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.

Ver. 11. Jeremiah, what seest thou?] It was great kindness and familiarity thus to parley with him, and to call him by his name.

And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.] Which hath its name in Hebrew from watching, because it watcheth, as it were, to bud and bear before other trees, even in the deep of winter, and when it is at coldest. Hereby the prophet is animated, though but young, and assured that he shall have the fruit of his so early labours. God careth not for those arbores autumnales [ 1:12] trees which bud not till the latter end of harvest. The truth of all his predictions is designed, though little believed by the most; the speediness also of their performance, [Jeremiah 1:12 Ezekiel 7:10-11] a good comment upon this text. The sins of God’s people, saith one, are sooner ripe than of the heathens, because they have the constant light and heat of his Word to hasten their maturity. This was typified by the basket of summer fruits, and by the almond tree in this text. As the almond tree, saith another, hath a bitter rind, but a sweet kernel, so hath affliction sanctified; and again, as the almond tree is made more fruitful by driving nails into it, letting out a noxious gum that hindereth the fruitfulness thereof, so is a good man made better by afflictions. (a)


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/jeremiah-1.html. 1865-1868.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

This and the boiling caldron, Jeremiah 1:13, is thought to be at the same time, and in the same vision, when he was first appointed to his work.

A rod of an almond tree, viz. that had leaves, and possibly blossoms, on it, like Aaron’s, Numbers 17:8; for without leaves at least it is possible he had not so readily guessed of what kind it had been. This is a tree that blossoms early and speedily, and hence hath its name in Hebrew scaked, signifying watchful, forward, nimble, or quick; and so it may point at either God’s readiness to smite, Jeremiah 1:12, which is described elsewhere by summer fruit, Amos 8:1,2; or Israel’s ripeness to be smitten, as we have the like Ezekiel 7:10,11; or both; this rod being like a portentous comet, showing to Jeremiah the miseries that were at hand, as the death of Josiah, which soon followed this vision, 2 Kings 23:29, and the taxing them by Pharaoh-nechoh, 2 Kings 23:35, and presently after the breaking in of the Chaldees, Syrians, Moabites, and Ammonites, 2 Kings 24:2, and then the Babylonian captivity, 2 Kings 24:10, which happened in the eighth year of Jehoiachin, 2 Kings 24:12, when Nebuchadnezzar took him with others, and carried them away, about twenty-three years from hence; and about the fortieth year Jerusalem was taken, and the temple burnt.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/jeremiah-1.html. 1685.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

11. What seest thou — A form of question many times used to call attention to a prophetic vision. See especially the book of Zechariah.

A rod of an almond tree — The word שׁקד, “almond,” means primarily wakeful, vigilant, and is applied to this tree because it wakes up to life, and blossoms in January, while the other trees are still in their winter’s sleep. Hence it is a natural symbol of vigilance, and so God uses it to suggest his own ever-wakeful activity. The word מקל, (makkel,) though ordinarily meaning “rod,” is here used in the sense of shoot or twig. Both Gesenius and Furst give to the root form the meaning to germinate. Other examples of the sense which seems to be demanded in this text are, Genesis 30:37 ; Jeremiah 48:17.


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Bibliography
Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/jeremiah-1.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

The Lord directed the prophet to observe the branch of an almond tree. The almond tree is distinctive, as it is the first tree to blossom in the spring in Israel. Many almond trees still grow in Israel, even in the area of old Anathoth, so the tree was probably common to Jeremiah.


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Bibliography
Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/jeremiah-1.html. 2012.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Watching. Hebrew, "of an almond." Septuagint, "nut-tree." (Haydock) --- The almond-tree flourishes in January, and bears fruit in March. (Theodoret) (Pliny, [Natural History?] xvi. 25.) --- Thus God will speedily send his scourge from Babylon, to punish his people. (Calmet) ---The sense is the same. (Menochius) --- God's law is outwardly bitter, but the kernel is sweet. (Theodoret) (Worthington)


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Bibliography
Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/jeremiah-1.html. 1859.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

Jeremiah"s Second Prophecy (see Book comments for Jeremiah).

Moreover = And. Another commission introducing two visions.

a rod = a staff for striking. Hebrew. makkel, as in Jeremiah 48:17 and Genesis 30:37-41.

a rod of an almond tree. Denotes an almond tree staff, corresponding with a vigilant watchman.

an almond tree. Hebrew. shaked = a watcher, or an early waker, because it is the first of the trees to wake from its winter sleep, and is thus what the cock is among birds.


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Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/jeremiah-1.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.

Rod - shoot or branch.

Almond tree - literally, the wakeful tree [ shaaqeed (Hebrew #8247), from shaaqad (Hebrew #8245), to awake], because it awakes from the sleep of winter earlier than the other trees, flowering in January and bearing fruit in March; symbol of God's early execution of its purpose, Jeremiah 1:12 "I will hasten my word to perform it" (cf. Amos 8:2).


Copyright Statement
These files are public domain.
Text Courtesy of BibleSupport.com. Used by Permission.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/jeremiah-1.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(11) The word of the Lord . . .—As before, we have the element of ecstasy and vision, symbols not selected by the prophet, and yet, we may believe, adapted to his previous training, and to the bent and, as it were, genius of his character.

The poetry of the symbols is of exquisite beauty. In contrast to the words of terror, in harmony with the words of hope, he sees the almond-bough, with its bright pink blossoms and its pale green leaves, the token of an early spring rising out of the dreariness of winter. The name of the almond-tree (here the poetical, not the common, name) made the symbol yet more expressive. It was the watcher, the tree that “hastens to awake” (shâkêd) out of its wintry sleep, and thus expresses the divine haste which would not without cause delay the fulfilment of its gracious promise, but would, as it were, make it bud and blossom, and bear fruit.


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Bibliography
Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/jeremiah-1.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Moreover the word of the LORD came unto me, saying, Jeremiah, what seest thou? And I said, I see a rod of an almond tree.
what seest thou
Amos 7:8; 8:2; Zechariah 4:2; 5:2
I see a rod
Numbers 17:8; Ezekiel 7:10

Copyright Statement
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Bibliography
Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Jeremiah 1:11". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/jeremiah-1.html.

Lectionary Calendar
Wednesday, June 3rd, 2020
the Week of Proper 4 / Ordinary 9
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